Friday, July 20, 2018

  • Friday, July 20, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
I will not be blogging until Sunday afternoon because of Tisha B'Av.

Meanwhile, here is something I wrote about it a few years ago.

It was not that long ago that Jews cried real tears for the Temple - and not only once a year. Countless Christian pilgrims visiting Jerusalem chronicled the heartbreaking sight of Jews gathering at the Kotel, then known then as the Wailing Place of the Jews, every Friday.

From Dwight's American Magazine, Volume 3, 1847:
I have said how proud and prosperous looked the Mosque of Omar, with its marble buildings, its green lawns, and gaily dressed people, some at prayer under the cypresses, some conversing under the arcades ; female devotees in white sitting on the grass, and merry children running on the slopes; all these ready and eager to stone to death on the instant, any Christian or Jew who should dare to set his foot within the wails. This is what we saw within. Next we went around the outside till we came by a narrow, crooked passage, to a desolate spot, occupied by desolate people. Under a high, massive, and very ancient wall was a dusty, narrow space, enclosed on the other side by the backs of modern dwellings, if I remember right. The ancient wall, where the weeds are springing from the crevices of the stones, is the only part remaining of the old Temple wall; and here the Jews come every Friday, to their Place of Wailing, as it is called, to mourn over the fall of their Temple, and pray for its restoration. What a contrast did these humbled people present to the proud Mohammedans within! They were seated in the dust, some wailing aloud, some repeating prayers with moving lips, and others reading them from books on their knees. A few children were at play on the ground; and some aged men sat silent, their heads drooped on their breasts. Several young men were leaning against the wall, pressing their foreheads against the stones, and resting the books on their clasped hands in the crevices. With some, this wailing is no form; for I saw tears on their cheeks. I longed to know if any had hope in their hearts, that they or their children of any generation should pass that wall, and should help to swell the cry, "Lift up your heads, O ye gates, that the King of Glory may come in!" If they have any such hope, it may give some sweetness to this rite of humiliation. We had no such hope for them; and it was with unspeakable sadness that I, for one, turned away from the thought of the pride and tyranny within those walls, and the desolation without, carrying with me a deep felt lesson on the strength of human faith, and the weakness of the tide of brotherhood.

From Home Life in the Bible, 1881:
Among the impressive sights of Jerusalem for the traveller, none perhaps is sadder than the Wailing-place of the Jews, which affords probably the only example of national ceremonial mourning in the world. The resident Hebrews assemble every Friday at the base of the wall of their ancient Temple in the Valley of the Tyropean, and with prayers and tears bewail before God the fallen glory of his chosen people. The formal lamentation consists of chanting certain appropriate portions of Scripture, such as the words of Isaiah: "Be not wroth very sore, O Lord, neither remember iniquity forever: behold, see, we beseech thee, we are all thy people. Thy holy cities are a wilderness, Zion is a wilderness, Jerusalem a desolation. Our holy and our beautiful house, where our fathers praised thee, is burned up with fire: and all our pleasant things are laid waste" (Isa. lxiv. 9—11); and those of the Psalmist: "O God, the heathen are come into thine inheritance ; thy holy temple have they defiled ; they have laid Jerusalem on heaps. Pour out thy wrath upon the heathen that have not known thee, and upon the kingdoms that have not called upon thy name. For they have devoured Jacob, and laid waste his dwelling place. O remember not against us former iniquities: let thy tender mercies speedily prevent us ; for we are brought very low" (Ps. lxxix. 1, 6-8). This touching custom is very old; and during periods of foreign oppression the Jews maintained it only by paying a heavy tax for the precious privilege of touching and kissing the stones of their once glorious sanctuary. In the reign of Constantine the expelled race were allowed to enter the city only once a year to wail over the ruined Temple.
From The Church of England magazine, 1869:
A very striking sight is the wailing ot the Jews at the Temple wall, which any traveller may witness on a Friday afternoon about four or five o'clock. There is a narrow passage along the west side of the Temple area between what are known as Robinson's and Wilson's arches. The wall rises to a considerable height, and the lower part is formed of very large stones, which are supposed to bo remains of the Temple. They are much ruined, and the grass and herbage grow in the shattered crevices of the once neatly-joined masonry. In these crevices the Jews place little scrolls of parchment, on which are written prayers to the messiah to come and deliver them. Before this wall are gathered a throng of Jews: most of them are women, who wear long mourning veils of linen over their heads. Some are close to the wall, kissing the sacred stones and watering them with their tears. Others are seated on the ground, reading passages of scripture to one another from the Lamentations of Jeremiah and penitential psalms. All seem to be absorbed in deep and genuine grief. At one end may be seen a party of rabbis rocking themselves backwards and forwards in almost frantic grief, reciting in a wild chant psalms and passages of holy scripture, which are responded to by several boys in a sort of chorus.

A mere century ago, Jews keenly felt  a personal bereavement of the loss of the Temple. They sobbed and wailed over the fact that the beautiful Temple, the symbol of their nationhood as well as their faith, was being desecrated daily, that the Holy of Holies was being treated like a playground, or worse. The Wall symbolized the loss of Jerusalem and the millennia of exile of the Jewish people.

We should be crying today as well - for the fact that we no longer cry.

The triumphant words of Colonel Motta Gur, exclaimed in 1967, that "הר הבית בידינו" -"The Temple Mount is in our hands!", seems like a cruel joke today. It was in our hands - for only a matter of hours. In what can only be regarded as a modern Jewish tragedy, Moshe Dayan decided to hand the keys of the Temple Mount to the Waqf of Jordan.

Now, as before, Muslims continue to do whatever they want in Judaism's holiest spot - but the tragedy is multiplied, because now it is Jews who are stopping other Jews from ascending and it is Jews who are allowing the defilement of our holiest space to continue.

The Kotel, formerly a bitter symbol of destruction, now is characterized as a plaza of victory. Yet it is merely a retaining wall for a platform upon which is found Judaism's holiest spot. The focal point of Jewish yearning has never been the Wall - the Wall has always been, and remains today, a stark reminder of the loss of the Temple. The focus is only a few meters beyond the Wall, to a place that continues to be desecrated every minute of every hour of every day. The Kotel is not a place to celebrate - it is a place to mourn that continuing desecration..

We used to gather three times a year at that location. All personal differences dissolved during each Chag. The festivals were national celebrations, a family reuniion, the happiest times of the year.  That has been lost.

Why aren't we crying? Why have we lost sight of the tragedy that still exists, today, in the Har HaBayit? At the very moment of the culmination of Jewish national aspiration for 1900 years, during the giddy and emotional high of finally returning to the epicenter of our forefathers' yearnings, we faltered. We acted as if we really were not masters of our own land. We failed the generations before us. The millions of tears of those who cried at the Kotel for hundreds of years are wasted.

Giving up the Temple Mount was not an act of peace. Instead, it was a guarantee for perpetual war. Because we did not take control of this supremely important place, we now are in a position of bargaining for our own capital - as if it doesn't really belong to us. Even with political sovereignty, we are still acting as if we need to get permission from others in order to assert our rights.

It is of course a wonderful thing to see Zechariah's prophecy come true, with children playing on the streets of Jerusalem again, to see the Hurva resurrected, to see Jews return to the center of their universe - but today's Jerusalem has a cancer in its very heart. A cancer that is spreading.

The tragedy is even keener than it was before 1948, before 1967. The tragedy today is our own fault. The Psalmist asks"?מי יעלה בהר ה' , ומי יקום במקום קדשו,"Who shall ascend into the mountain of the Lord? and who shall stand in His holy place?"   How can we answer that question today without tears?

Yet we have forgotten how to cry. We have masked our bare, painful emotions with intellectualism and secularism. We have discarded our hearts and act as if we can survive with only our brains.

We cry at movies, at sports events - but we don't cry on Tisha B'Av. As much as we should be weeping for the loss of the Temples, we should also be weeping at the loss of our ability to internalize that loss.

We need to look at the tears of the Yerushalmi Jews of old and understand their source. Because the tears of loss are necessary to  give us the strength to win.

I wish my Jewish readers an easy and meaningful fast. May this be the last Tisha B'av we observe as a day of mourning.  

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:

David Singer: Trump and Putin may attempt a return to pre-PLO and Hamas days
The 1964 PLO Charter said: “This Organization does not exercise any regional sovereignty over the West Bank in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, on the Gaza Strip or the Himmah Area..." Good idea.

When Security Council Resolution 242 was passed on 22 November 1967:
The Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) was not the sole spokesman for the Palestinian Arabs - having only being so appointed at the 7th Arab League Summit held in Rabat in October 1974.

Arabs living in Judea and Samaria (West Bank) (“Territories”) were Jordanian citizens and possessed Jordanian passports following these Territories being unified with Transjordan on 24 April 1950 and subsequently being renamed Jordan.

The PLO was expressly not claiming territorial sovereignty in the Territories or Gaza - article 24 of the PLO Charter proclaiming:

“This Organization does not exercise any regional sovereignty over the West Bank in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, on the Gaza Strip or the Himmah Area. Its activities will be on the national popular level in the liberational, organizational, political and financial fields.

No additional Arab State in former Palestine – in addition to Jordan – was contemplated.

Hamas had not been founded.

Resolution 242 still contains the only internationally agreed formula for peacefully ending the 100 years old Arab-Jewish conflict.

A conference to resolve this long-running conflict in accordance with Resolution 242 - co-chaired by America and Russia – would see Israel and every Arab State in the area attending but would exclude non-States PLO and Hamas.

Such a conference now looms as a possible Trump-Putin initiative - putting Trump’s unannounced “ultimate deal” on the backburner.

Going back to 1967 could indeed be the key to resolving the 100 years old Arab-Jewish conflict.

Caroline Glick: Who is betraying America?
When Putin endorsed Israel’s position that the 1974 Syrian-Israeli disengagement agreement must be implemented along the border, he told the Iranians that in any Iranian-Israeli war in Syria, Putin will not side with Iran.

Time will tell if we just averted war. But what we did learn is that Israel’s position in a war with Iran is stronger than it could have been if the two leaders hadn’t met in Helsinki.

And this is exceedingly important.

Trump is being condemned for adopting a conciliatory tone towards Putin while employing a combative tone towards the Europeans and particularly Germany at the NATO summit. This criticism ignores how Trump operates in the international arena.

Trump views his exchanges with foreign leaders as separate engagements. He has goals he wishes to advance with China; with North Korea; with Russia; with Canada; with Mexico; with Europe; with Britain; with US Arab allies. In each separate engagement, Trump employs a combination of carrots and sticks. In each engagement he adopts a distinct manner that he believes advances his goals.

So far, unlike Obama’s foreign policy by this point in his presidency, none of Trump’s exchanges have brought disaster on America or its allies. To the contrary, America and its allies have much greater strategic maneuver room across a wide spectrum of threats and join adversaries than they had when Obama left office.

Trump’s opponents’ obsession with bringing him down has caused great harm to his presidency and to America’s position worldwide. It is a testament to Trump’s commitment to the US and its allies that he met with Putin this week. And the success of their meeting is something that all who care about global security and preventing a devastating war in the Middle East should be grateful for.
Melanie Phillips: Institutionalizing antisemitism in UK’s Labour Party
The Jewish leadership has always been nervous about linking Israel with antisemitism, believing that Israel merely “complicated” the issue. But today, it is the issue.

Now British Jews find themselves caught up in an internal Labour Party war over it. The real agony for them is that the climate in Britain has deteriorated to such a point that Labour feels licensed to treat British Jews – as Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis has said – with unprecedented contempt.

They plan a continuing campaign to get Labour to adopt the full IHRA definition. But that is to continue avoid confronting the elephant in the room.

This is the fact that so many on the progressive side of politics have swallowed the Big Lies about Israel. And that includes a dismaying number of British Jews themselves, who do things like recite kaddish for Hamas terrorists killed by Israel to prevent them murdering Israelis.

These Jews for Injustice against Jews who demonize and delegitimize the State of Israel provide cover for Labour’s new antisemitism. This stretches far beyond the Corbynite hard Left; it is in fact the default position for most of liberal and left-wing society.

The real task, therefore, is not to adopt the IHRA wording. It is to start telling the British public that virtually everything they hear about Israel from the media and intelligentsia is a lie; that anyone who supports Palestinianism is endorsing the most profound and demonic kind of antisemitism; and that Israel stands unambiguously for law, justice, truth and human rights, and that those who vilify it are themselves repudiating all these things.

Will British Jews finally step up to the plate and start saying all this? Unlikely. Why? It’s not just their timidity. They first need to start believing it themselves.

  • Friday, July 20, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
The sheer amount of lies about the Nation State of the Jewish People law prompted me to create this....

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:

Eugene Kontorovich: Stop funding UN agencies that welcome the PLO
Last month, two UN agencies, whose membership is limited to sovereign countries, gave a “member state” seat to the Palestinian Liberation Organization. Under a law passed with overwhelming and bipartisan support in Congress over two decades ago, that means these UN bodies can no longer get taxpayer funding.

Yet US contributions continue — along with money to two other UN organizations the Palestinians joined in recent years.

Continuing to pay a total of $40 million a year for these agencies flouts US law and undermines American credibility. Ambassador Nikki Haley has been commendably pressing for UN reform, but Turtle Bay may sneer at such demands if the US isn’t even following its own legally mandated restrictions. Moreover, it encourages the Palestinian Authority to continue its campaign of “internationalizing” the conflict.

The law bars any congressionally appropriated money from going to UN agencies that accept the PLO as a “member state.” It seeks to deter the PLO from using the UN, where it enjoys an automatic majority of support, to purport to confer upon it the status of a sovereign state that, in turn, would be used by the Palestinians to present Israel with a diplomatic fait accompli, and completely remove any pressure on the Palestinians to make any compromises.

Once the Palestinians join such organizations, they hijack their agendas, and turn these organizations, already heavily biased against Israel, into platforms for nakedly anti-Semitic agendas.

Khaled Abu Toameh: U.S. consulate cancels visit to Nablus following Palestinian protests
Palestinians boasted on Thursday that they had forced the US consulate-general in Jerusalem to cancel a visit by its officials to Nablus and the nearby town of Sebastiya.

The Palestinians said the visit of the US delegation was canceled following protests by various Palestinian factions and figures.

The Palestinian Authority leadership has been boycotting US administration officials since President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in December 2017.

Nasr Abu Jeish, a senior official with the Palestinian People’s Party, formerly the Palestinian Communist Party, told the Palestinian Ma’an news agency that the visit to Nablus was called off after representatives of various Palestinian factions protested outside the Palestine Securities Exchange offices in Nablus.

The US delegation was scheduled to visit the offices of the Palestinian Securities Exchange in the city and tour Sebastiya.

Abu Jeish said the Palestinians were opposed to the visit because of the US administration’s “bias” in favor of Israel and “attempts to impose the ‘deal of the century’” on them, referring to Trump’s yet-to-announced plan for peace in the Middle East.
US indicates readiness to work with Hamas if it ends terror; Hamas says no
The Trump administration indicated it was prepared to work with the Hamas terror group which controls the Gaza Strip if it first recognizes Israel’s right to exist and renounces violence.

US Middle East envoys Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt, together with US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, wrote in an op-ed published in the Washington Post late Thursday that the US and other countries were prepared to offer humanitarian aid to the beleaguered Strip, but were stymied by Hamas’s commitment to fighting Israel.

On Friday Hamas rejected the offer, dismissing the US envoys as “spokesmen of the Israeli occupation.”

“International donors are conflicted: Should they try to help the people directly, at the certain risk of enriching terrorists, or withhold funding to Hamas and watch the people it is supposed to govern suffer?” the Americans wrote.

“There are engaged, interested parties with resources who are ready to get to work. Yet without real change accompanied by reliable security, progress is impossible,” they said in the opinion piece. “If Hamas demonstrates clear, peaceful intentions — not just by word but, more importantly, by deed — then all manner of new opportunities becomes possible.”

  • Friday, July 20, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
In an ignorant critique of the new Nation State of the Jewish People law in a Palestinian newspaper, the author ridicules the idea that there are a Jewish people altogether, saying that it is merely a religion.
Has there ever been a religion in the world with "people" of its own ?! If it is true that the followers of any religion form a nation, the nation is above the peoples, nationalities and ethnicities.
The modern concept of "people" is linked to a geopolitical and legal entity, and to form ethnic groups or nationalities, which does not apply to any religion at all including the Jewish religion
This is a constant theme of Palestinian political theorists, because they know quite well that if Jews are a people, then they were in the area before Arabs were.

The logical fallacy is that Judaism is only a religion, when in fact it is both a faith and a nation.

Before the rebirth of Israel, everyone knew this. A couple of books from the 19th century:

The world always knew Jews formed a nation and were a people, beyond a religion.

And if the Jewish people require a home, where would it be?

The illustration at the start of one of these books shows it clearly:

"Palestine to Illustrate the History of the Jews."

The land that was called Palestine by most of the world was also recognized as the homeland of the Jewish people by most of the world before Zionism.

The other irony with this author claiming that members of a religion cannot be members of anything other than a religion is the entire concept of the Islamic 'umma, or community.

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
  • Friday, July 20, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
Elie Trabelsi, a prominent Tunisian Jewish businessman, published on his Facebook page a set of photos showing Arabs desecrating an old Jewish cemetery in Sousse  and cooking a barbeque.

He was outraged, and he also pointed out that it was against Tunisian law.

The good news is that the Tunisian police actually took this seriously. The mayor of Sousse,  Tawfiq al-Oreybi. says that they are investigating and that the police will take appropriate action, stressing that desecrating a cemetery is unacceptable. 

Sousse police arrested 6 men in the cemetery, but it doesn't appear that they are the ones pictured here. Apparently the cemetery has turned into a hangout.

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

  • Friday, July 20, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

Palestine Press reports that about 60,000 people crossed the Allenby/King Hussein Bridge between Jordan and the West Bank last week.

30,718 people went to Jordan and  29,010 came the other direction, according to Palestinian police.

This was considered an average week, the statement said.

Palestinian police arrested 57 people on criminal charges for people crossing in both directions.

Israel has control over this and the other crossings to Jordan, and yet the fact that it allows so many people to freely move in both directions every week is at odds with the image that Palestinians and anti-Israel activists want to show the world.

For example, Gisha, the NGO that is concerned with freedom of movement for Palestinians, doesn't even publish statistics on how easily they can travel between the West Bank and Jordan on their Graphs page - only statistics about Gaza.

This sort of selective reporting is a way to obfuscate, rather than reveal, the truth.

If Gaza was not controlled by an Islamic extremist terror organization, the statistics on Gazans traveling to Egypt and through Israel to the West Bank would be much, much higher. But that is another fact that must be hidden from the world by NGOs that supposedly care about Palestinians but whose reports reveal they really only care to attack 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.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

  • Thursday, July 19, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
As the world freaks out over Israel calling itself a Jewish state, stating Hebrew is the official language, declaring Jerusalem as its capital and other parts of the new Basic Law , here are the first four articles of the constitution of "Palestine:"

Palestine is part of the large Arab World, and the Palestinian people are part of the Arab Nation. Arab Unity is an objective which the Palestinian People shall work to achieve.

The Palestinian People are the source of all power, which shall be exercised through the legislative, executive, and judicial authorities, based on the principle of separation of powers, and in the manner set forth in this Basic Law.

Jerusalem is the Capital of Palestine.

Islam is the official religion in Palestine. Respect and sanctity of all other heavenly religions shall be maintained.
The principles of Islamic Shari’a shall be the main source of legislation.
Arabic shall be the official language.
I bet there was not a single op-ed that called this document "racist" when it was adopted in 2003.

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:

PMW: Cheering Palestinians hang and burn effigy of Donald Trump
Palestinians from Abbas' Fatah party held an anti-America rally in Nablus, to express support for Mahmoud Abbas' rejection of the American peace proposal. The highlight of the rally was when a giant Donald Trump doll hanging from a noose was brought in front of the crowd, who cheered as Trump's effigy was then ignited and burned.

Mahmoud Al- Aloul, Abbas' deputy who is seen as Abbas' choice to succeed him as chairman of the PA, participated in the anti-US rally. Strikingly, in one of the pictures that the Fatah of Nablus posted on its Facebook, PMW has noted that Al-Aloul raised his hand in a "V" sign for "Victory" to Trump's burning effigy.

Official PA TV news also broadcast the burning of Trump's effigy stressing that this was to counter the US peace proposal:

Official PA TV newsreader: "In opposition to the attempts to eliminate the Palestinian cause and to [US President] Trump's deal, masses of our people in the Nablus district participated in the central rally that was organized by the Fatah Movement at Martyrs (Shahids) Square in the center of the city."

Official PA TV reporter: "The official and popular Palestinian protest is strengthening, opening the way for future activities, given the attempts to harm the symbols of the [Palestinian] cause and its red lines."

Fatah Deputy Chairman Mahmoud Al-Aloul was also interviewed by PA TV, and stressed the anti-American focus of the Fatah event:
"[The rally is being held] because the public understands the weight of the pressures to which [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian leadership are being subjected by the US. It wants to execute its deal, which it called 'the deal of the century,' and which President Mahmoud Abbas is standing firm against and rejecting - he and the Palestinian leadership - most decisively."
Melanie Phillips: The hysteria over Helsinki and the real threat to the free world
Just as he did with Kim Jong-un, another formidably dangerous foe, he therefore flatters him in public as a kind of feint in order to cement what he’s doing behind the scenes in making him an offer he can’t refuse. It’s a negotiating strategy.

That also explains the difference between the way he approaches Putin or Kim Jong-un and the way he treats the EU, Angela Merkel and Theresa May. He holds the EU and Merkel in contempt as weak and relatively powerless; there’s little if anything he wants from the EU, except for them to pay more towards their own defence. He does, though, want a good deal with the UK; hence the way he tempered his criticism of Mrs May’s catastrophic Brexit negotiating strategy with more emollient language, in order to convey his message that he wanted to deal with an independent Britain and not with an EU proxy.

Trump’s personality flaws – his self-obsession, his lack of attention span, his thin skin against criticism, his inability to speak carefully and accurately – are plain for all to see. The crucial point, however, is not what Trump says, nor the content of his character, but what he does and what he achieves.

And here’s what Putin said that was potentially so significant. For his remarks suggested that he would support Trump’s attempts to defang both Iran and North Korea. If Trump turns out to have succeeded in detaching Russia from Iran over Syria and from China over North Korea, that would be a huge step towards defeating two of the most evil and dangerous regimes in the world.

Seen in this light, the reaction of the media and political class to the Helsinki press conference was not just hysterical and disproportionate and a display of near-pathological hatred towards Donald Trump, but a malevolent undermining of the most promising attempt for years to tackle some of the major threats to the peace and security of the world.
Melanie Phillips: Crazy world Brexit, Helsinki, Labour, Tommy Robinson
Please join me here as I discuss with Avi Abelow of Israel Unwired the mass hysteria breaking out all over the place: over Britain’s Brexit impasse, President Trump’s Helsinki press conference, Labour Party antisemitism and the jailing of Tommy Robinson.

Caroline Glick: Trump Was the Big Winner at Helsinki Summit
In their remarks, both Putin and Trump said that they are committed to Israel’s security. Putin said that he accepts Israel’s position that the 1974 disengagement of forces agreement between Israel and Syria must be implemented. The agreement bars Syrian military forces from deploying to the border with Israel and limits their deployment in the area adjacent to it. Trump stated outright that the U.S. supports Israel’s efforts to prevent Iran from entrenching its forces in Syria.

Both leaders also expressed their admiration and respect for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

These remarks were significant on two levels. First, they reduced the prospect of war by communicating key messages to Iran and Hezbollah.

Trump’s statement that,“the United States will not allow Iran to benefit from our successful campaign against ISIS” dovetailed a statement by National Security Advisor John Bolton ahead of the summit. Speaking Sunday with ABC News, Bolton said, “I think the president has made it clear that we are there [in Syria] until the ISIS territorial caliphate is removed and as long as the Iranian menace continues throughout the Middle East.”

Iran will understand the remarks of both men to mean that the U.S. will fight with Israel in any war with Iranian-controlled forces in Syria to ensure their withdrawal, just as they fought with their allies in Syria to defeat ISIS.

Then there is Putin. Putin’s statement of support for Israel’s security and peaceful relations between Syria and Israel also sent a signal to Iran. Whereas Putin has worked with Iran to enable Assad to survive and restore his control over territory previously controlled by rebel forces, Putin will not cooperate with Iran if it chooses to remain in Syria and face Israeli and perhaps U.S. forces in battle.

Putin may or may not help Israel in such a war. He may or may not work with the U.S. But he will not fight on Iran’s side.

While it is unlikely that these statements will suffice to convince Iran and Hezbollah to withdraw their forces from Syria, it is clear enough that the summit reduced the prospects of war in the immediate term.

And again, if that was the only thing accomplished at the summit, its importance would be incontestable.
Trump/Putin Summit. Trump is Right on Russia! And More

  • Thursday, July 19, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
This is from Professor Eugene Kontorovich's written testimony to a congressional committee on national security on July 17.

He first goes through the legal arguments that no international law is violated by Israel's annexation of the Golan Heights.

But then he digresses and discusses the issue of the "experts" that are against the US recognizing this annexation, and how very wrong these "experts" have been on Syria.


Even discussing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan purely from a legal perspective goes sharply against the grain of consensus among Middle East experts. The conventional view is that Israel must at some point return the Golan Heights to the Syrian Arab Republic. Many will likely argue that recognition would harm U.S. relations with the Arab world, or be “destabilizing.” Thus in closing, a few observations are in order about the value of the accepted wisdom in these matters.

.... Less than a decade ago, the conventional wisdom of the foreign policy establishment was that Israel should return the Golan Heights to Syria in a peace deal. Not only would an Israeli withdrawal make peace between the two countries, the story went, it would get Damascus to break its alliance with Iran. The views of Amb. Martin Indyk in a 2010 New York Times op-ed were typical:

Today, nothing could better help Obama to isolate Iran than for Netanyahu to offer to cede the Golan. . . Netanyahu must make a choice: take on the president of the United States, or take on his right wing. 
 This position was standard. Indeed, never were experts more confident that Assad was a partner for peace than in the years just prior to his campaign of systematic ethnic cleansing and gassing of his own population.

In 2009, a blue-ribbon panel that that included Zbigniew Brzezinski, Chuck Hagel, Lee Hamilton, Brent Scowcroft and others released a report about the “last chance” for peace. Among other things, it recommended that the U.S push for a full Israeli withdrawal from the Golan to "fundamentally transform the regional landscape and ultimately detach Damascus from its uneasy strategic partnership with Iran.”

 In the same vein, Richard Haass, the head of the Council on Foreign Relations, painted this rosy picture:
Israel's security could be further buttressed by demilitarizing the territory returned to Syria. Technology could provide early-warning systems. Peacekeepers (possibly American) could be stationed there, much as they are in the Sinai to buttress the peace between Israel and Egypt. And the Syrian leadership is sufficiently strong that it could live up to security commitments.”

 Today, every aspect of the assumptions behind these suggestions has been entirely discredited.

Firstly, Assad is not and never was a peacemaker. The notion that he would abide by a deal with Israel any more than the countless ceasefires, chemical weapons agreements and treaties, and basic international commitments that he has flouted in the past seven years strains credulity.

Second, his alliance with Iran is not a bad relationship he stumbled into, but rather his greatest strategic asset. Iran has ensured the survival of his regime and family when most others countries would turn away in disgust: that is not an alliance he would give up for the Golan.

As for peacekeepers in a possible peace deal, the U.N. peacekeepers already stationed in the Golan fled their positions at the outbreak of the civil war. The demilitarized zone between Israel and Syria – the fruit of earlier diplomatic accords - has been remilitarized by both Assad and rebel groups. Nor have U.S. allies in Syria, such as the Kurds, been able to rely much on direct U.S. backing when the going gets tough.

Thus the peace deal widely favored just a few years ago by leading policy experts would have expanded Assad’s power and threatened Israel – for naught.

The profound and demonstrable error of the foreign policy consensus in these matters – from Jerusalem to the Golan – is something that must be taken into account going forward. It suggests that in charting future policy, the U.S. should not be guided by the same hollow certitudes. In the wake of these serious misjudgments by leading Middle East professionals, it would behoove the U.S. to look in totally different directions for solutions. Just as many said “now is not the right time” to move the embassy, a similar refrain will be heard about the Golan. But now – in the wake of falsely positive predictions about the nature of the Assad regime and falsely negative ones about the consequences of moving the embassy to Israel – it is the right time to seek entirely new paradigms in these matters. Recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan is a start.

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.

 Vic Rosenthal's Weekly Column

Suppose someone told you that they wanted to take a billion and a half dollars of American and European taxpayer money each year, and use it to raise an army.

It would feed and house more than five million people, and educate the children to prepare them for the future role as soldiers to overrun a particular country. The teachers would in many (or most) cases be members of organizations recognized in your country as terrorist groups.

This army would be required to live in camps in various countries. But its soldiers would not be allowed to become citizens of those countries.

Membership in the army would be hereditary, and child allowances would be calibrated to incentivize reproduction. There would be no need for members to work, since they would receive a dole regardless of employment. In any case, there are few options for work in the camps.

The members do not have passports. They are not allowed to settle anywhere else in the world. They are told that the only way to change their status is to overrun the target country and take “back” their homes from the current residents. But only 0.4% of them ever lived in the target country, and this was more than 70 years ago.

Of course I am talking about “Palestinian refugees” and the organization that supports and nurtures them is called UNRWA, the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine.

In the sad history of the 20th century, millions of people became refugees. After WWII, Jews could not return to Europe, and ethnic Germans were kicked out of Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Hungary. In 1948, about 650,000 Arabs fled from what became the new state of Israel; and immediately afterwards some 800,000 Jews escaped unfriendly Arab countries. Many of these refugees lost all of their property and were forced to flee with just the clothes on their backs.

Most of these refugees found new places to live, and in many cases had to start over from nothing. Most of the Germans went to Germany, although some ended up in the Soviet Gulag. The Jews of Europe went to Israel, America, and other places. The Jews from the Arab world were mostly absorbed by the new state of Israel. By the mid-1950s, most of these refugees had new homes – all but the Palestinian Arabs.

The Arab nations were unhappy that they lost the war they launched against Israel in 1948. So they came up with a brilliant plan to create a weapon that could be used to destroy Israel, a weapon that would automatically grow stronger with the passage of time, which would be a military, psychological, and diplomatic weapon all at the same time. Best of all, someone else would pay for it.

They invented the Palestinian refugee, a creature like no other refugee, because Palestinian refugee status in hereditary. They established UNRWA, an agency whose charter – unlike all other refugee relief agencies ever – was not to resettle refugees, but rather to increase their number. And the West, which pays almost all of the bills of the UN, bought into it out of cowardice and lack of will to oppose the Arabs, who had all that oil, after all.

And so the “refugee camps,” which more and more became to resemble permanent neighborhoods, came into being in several nations and became breeding grounds for recruits to the multiplicity of Palestinian terror organizations – Fatah, Hamas, PFLP, DFLP, PFLP-GC, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Abu Nidal group, etc. Unemployed young Palestinian men flocked to these groups in order to lend purpose to their lives. The growth of anti-Israel and international terrorism since 1960 was caused to a great degree by the activities of these groups. Palestinian terrorists popularized airline hijacking and suicide bombing, leading directly to 9/11 and other atrocities. Thus was the West paid back for its investment.

But the Malthusian logic of the Palestinian refugee system has finally caught up with it. There are about 5.2 million Arabs with Palestinian refugee status today, and the West can’t afford any more to feed, house, clothe, and “educate” them. The power of Arab oil is diminishing. The US is sharply cutting what it gives UNRWA.

The system is wrong in multiple ways. Hereditary and permanent refugee status is fiscally unsustainable for the Western donors, cruel to the “refugees,” destabilizing to the host countries, and a threat to the targeted country, Israel. There is no legal justification for it: despite Arab claims, there is no “right of return” for refugees in international law, and even less so a “right of return” for the descendants of refugees.

If you wonder why the Arab nations have allowed this system to continue, there is a simple reason, which I call the First Principle of Arab Leadership: it is always more important to hurt Jews than to help Arabs.

The US State Department produced a report on the Palestinian refugee situation during the Obama Administration which supposedly (it is classified) says that the actual number of true refugees – when counted by the criteria used for non-Palestinians – is actually closer to 30,000 than the 5.2 million that UNRWA claims today. Apparently the State Department believes that if the details in it were released, US contributions to UNRWA would be cut even further.

Which is what should happen. In fact, they should be cut to zero, and the terrorist-ridden organization disbanded. The Arab clients of UNRWA should be granted citizenship in their host countries, and funds for their absorption and integration into society transferred to these countries for a limited period of time. Hereditary refugee status should be abolished. The 30,000 who are actually refugees should be assisted by the normal UN refugee agency, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, which has been successful in resettling hundreds of thousands of refugees since 1950. 

The system could be changed tomorrow, and it would not be too soon.

The fact that the Western countries have tolerated this perverse and vicious system for so long is a massive moral failure on their part. The UN, the European Union, and the US State Department share in the blame. Israel, the target of this infernal mechanism, has suffered wars and terrorism for decades because of it. And generations of “refugees” have had their chances for a normal life foreclosed.

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:

Nikki Haley Slams Human Rights Council as ‘Greatest Failure’ of the UN
U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said Wednesday the United Nations' Human Rights Council is the "greatest failure" of the international organization given its continued support to dictatorial regimes and entrenched bias against Israel.

"The Human Rights Council has provided cover, not condemnation, for the world's most inhumane regimes," Haley said in remarks at the Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C.

"It has been a bully pulpit for human rights violators. The Human Rights Council has been not a place of conscious, but a place of politics. It has focused its attention unfairly and relentlessly on Israel. Meanwhile, it has ignored the misery inflicted by regimes in Venezuela, Cuba, Zimbabwe, and China."

Haley doubled down on the Trump administration's decision last month to withdraw the United States from the council amid what she viewed as a "chronic" anti-Israel bias that led to over 68 condemnations of the Jewish state over a 10-year period versus just six for Iran. She also accused the council of allowing notorious human rights abusers as members.

She cited the council's acceptance of the Democratic Republic of Congo as a member in October even as mass graves were being uncovered there, and its unwillingness to confront habitual human rights abuses in Cuba, Iran, and Venezuela.

She said American participation was the "last shred of credibility" the council had.

"It has taken the idea of human dignity—the idea that's at the center of our national creed and the birthright of every human being—and it has reduced it to just another instrument of international politics and that is a great tragedy," Haley said.

Khaled Abu Toameh: Why Iran Supports Palestinian Terror Groups
The Iranian general did not offer to build the Palestinians a hospital or a school. Nor did he offer to provide financial aid to create projects that would give jobs to unemployed Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. His message to the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip: Iran will give you as much money and weapons as you need as long as you are committed to the jihad (holy war) against Israel and the "big Satan," the US.

The same Hamas that is telling UN representatives that it wants to improve the living conditions of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip is the one that is reaching out its hand to Iran to receive funds and weapons.

Now, someone needs to step in and stop Iran from setting foot in the Gaza Strip and using the Palestinians as cannon fodder in Tehran's campaign against the US and Israel. How might someone do that? It is not so complicated. Any international aid to the Gaza Strip must be conditioned on ending Iran's destructive effort to recruit Palestinians groups as its soldiers. It is that simple.
Employee of European NGO caught puncturing Israeli’s tire in Hebron
An employee of a European pro-Palestinian NGO called Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH) was filmed puncturing the tire of a vehicle that belongs to a Jewish resident of Hebron, according to a police report.

A nearby security camera in the area captured the incident last year. The footage was subsequently turned over to the district police, which determined that a TIPH activist in uniform emerged from a vehicle emblazoned with the organization’s markings and proceeded to puncture one of the vehicle’s tires.

According to Haaretz, the police report described the entire incident, which included two accomplices standing watch as the suspect damaged the vehicle, which belonged to a Jewish resident of Hebron named Nili Dvorah.

Dvorah explained to the police that the incident represented the third time her car’s tires had been punctured in a one week period.

TIPH operates in the Hebron area and is staffed by individuals from Italy, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey who “enjoy diplomatic immunity” and “cannot be detained or arrested,” according to the organization’s website.

Last Friday, a TIPH “observer” was caught on video slapping a 10-year-old Jewish resident of Hebron so hard that he knocked the boy’s skullcap off of his head.

EoZTV Podcast

Podcast URL

Subscribe in podnovaSubscribe with FeedlyAdd to netvibes
addtomyyahoo4Subscribe with SubToMe

search eoz



follow me

Follow by Email


Share on Whatsapp


For $18 donation

Sample Text

EoZ's Most Popular Posts Ever


Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 12 years and over 25,000 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.


Donate to fight for Israel!

Monthly subscription:
Payment options

One time donation:

subscribe via email

Follow EoZ on Twitter!



The Jerusalem Report:"A seemingly indefatigable one-man operation, armed only with a computer, chutzpa and stamina."

Algemeiner: "Fiercely intelligent and erudite"

Omri: "Elder is one of the best established and most respected members of the jblogosphere..."
Atheist Jew:"Elder of Ziyon probably had the greatest impression on me..."
Soccer Dad: "He undertakes the important task of making sure that his readers learn from history."
AbbaGav: "A truly exceptional blog..."
Judeopundit: "[A] venerable blog-pioneer and beloved patriarchal figure...his blog is indispensable."
Oleh Musings: "The most comprehensive Zionist blog I have seen."
Carl in Jerusalem: "...probably the most under-recognized blog in the JBlogsphere as far as I am concerned."
Aussie Dave: "King of the auto-translation."
The Israel Situation:The Elder manages to write so many great, investigative posts that I am often looking to him for important news on the PalArab (his term for Palestinian Arab) side of things."
Tikun Olam: "Either you are carelessly ignorant or a willful liar and distorter of the truth. Either way, it makes you one mean SOB."
Mondoweiss commenter: "For virulent pro-Zionism (and plain straightforward lies of course) there is nothing much to beat it."
Didi Remez: "Leading wingnut"

Interesting Blogs


Abbas liar Academic fraud administrivia al-Qaeda algeria American Jews Amnesty analysis anti-semitism antisemitism apartheid arab refugees Arafat archaeology art ASHREI B'tselem bahrain Balfour bbc BDS BDSFail Bedouin Beitunia beoz book review Brant Rosen breaking the silence Campus antisemitism Cardozo Chakindas Chanukah Christians circumcision Clark Kent Community Standards conspiracy theories Cyprus Daled Amos Daphne Anson David Applebaum Davis report DCI-P Divest This double standards Egypt Elder gets results ElderToons Electronic Intifada Embassy EoZ Trump symposium eoz-symposium EoZNews eoztv Erekat Erekat lung transplant EU Euro-Mid Observer European antisemitism Facebook jail Fake Civilians 2014 Farrakhan Fatah featured Features fisking flotilla Forest Rain Forward free gaza freedom of press palestinian style future martyr Gary Spedding gaza Gaza Platform George Galloway George Soros German Jewry gideon levy gilad shalit gisha Goldstone Report Good news Grapel Guardian guest post gunness Haaretz Hadassah hamas Hamas war crimes Hananya Naftali hasbara Hasby 2014 Hasby 2016 Hasby 2018 hate speech Hebron helen thomas hezbollah history Hizballah Holocaust Holocaust denial honor killing HRW Human Rights Humanitarian crisis humor huor Hypocrisy ICRC IDF Ilan Pappe impossible peace incitement Indonesia international law intransigence iran Iraq Islamic Judeophobia Islamism Israel Loves America Israeli culture Israeli high-tech J Street jabalya jeremy bowen Jerusalem jewish fiction Jewish Voice for Peace jihad jimmy carter John Kerry jokes jonathan cook Jordan Joseph Massad Juan Cole Judaism Judea-Samaria Judean Rose Kairos Karl Vick Keith Ellison ken roth khalid amayreh Khaybar Lebanon leftists Linda Sarsour Linkdump lumish mahmoud zahar Malaysia max blumenthal Mazen Adi McGraw-Hill media bias Methodist Michael Ross Miftah Missionaries moderate Islam Mohammed Assaf Mondoweiss moonbats Morocco Mudar Zahran music Muslim Brotherhood Nakba Nation of Islam Natural gas Nazi Netanyahu News nftp NGO NIF Noah Phillips norpac NYT Occupation offbeat Omar Barghouti Only in Israel Opinion oxfam PA corruption PalArab lies Palestine Papers pallywood pchr PCUSA Peace Now Peter Beinart Petra MB poetry Poland poll Poster Preoccupied Prisoners propaganda Proud to be Zionist Puar Purim purimshpiel Putin Qaradawi Qassam calendar Quora Rafah Ray Hanania real liberals reference Richard Falk Richard Silverstein Right of return Rivkah Lambert Adler Robert Werdine rogel alpher roger cohen roger waters Rutgers Saeb Erekat Saudi Arabia saudi vice self-death self-death palestinians sex crimes SFSU shechita sheikh tamimi Shujaiyeh Simchat Torah Simona Sharoni SodaStream South Africa Speech stamps Superman Syria Tarabin Temple Mount Terrorism This is Zionism Thomas Friedman TOI Trump Tunisia Turkey UCI UK UN UNDP unesco unhrc UNICEF United Arab Emirates Unity unrwa UNRWA hate unrwa reports UNRWA-USA unwra Varda Vic Rosenthal Washington wikileaks work accident X-washing Y. Ben-David Yemen YMikarov zahran Ziesel zionist attack zoo Zvi

Blog Archive