Friday, November 17, 2017

From Ian:

'Watching the moon at night': The film that speaks truth to terror
A documentary about terror, especially if you have come perilously close to experiencing it in your own life or have lost people you love to it, as I have, can have you biting your lips, pressing your hand against your mouth or shutting your eyes to avoid horrific sights. None of those reactions are applicable to "Watching the Moon at Night: On terrorism and anti-Semitism," a film which instead, has you wiping unexpected tears of empathy from your eyes, feeling your heart break or taking deep breaths to overcome the despair brought on by thiinking too much about the state of the human race.

This unforgettable movie is not out to show you gory details of terror attacks, although, of course, it cannot avoid them completely. The film is meant to make you think, to stay with you after you leave the theater. And it does.

"Watching the Moon at Night" is filled with ordinary people, not terrorists, people whose world has alternated for years between shock and resignation at the senselessness, the uselessness, of what befell them on what should have been an ordinary day. Swedish filmmakers Bo Persson and Joanna Helander have, with great sensitivity, given those bereft by terror the opportunity to describe the indescribable, and the effect is much more powerful than scenes of actual terrorist attacks.

Unadorned narratives of loss and the geographic range in which it has been experienced, the cultural diversity the speakers display contrasted with the commonality of their sadness, make for a gripping way to expose the spreading scourge of terror permeating the period in which we live and the political attempts to justify it. For me, a neighbor of sunny Malki Roth whose Australian-born father Arnold speaks in the film, his words about the feeling of isolation since her murder in Jerusalem's Sbarro pizzeria at the age of 15, were particularly devastating.
Learn How to Make the Case for Israel, with Professor Alan Dershowitz


WATCH: SJWs Protesting 'Nazi' Ben Shapiro's Speech Are Confronted By Reporter. They're Totally Clueless.
On Monday, about 200 SJW protesters took to the campus of UCLA in an attempt to silence conservative writer and commentator Ben Shapiro. The protest was unsuccessful and Shapiro gave his speech, which was, ironically, about creeping fascism on campus.

The protesters engaging in the sort of behavior that Shapiro was warning against inside the lecture hall were confronted by right-wing journalist Austen Fletcher, known as Fleccas. They were about as incoherent and clueless as you might imagine.

Flooding the venue, protesters chanted loudly, "Nazis go home!" — (Shapiro is an Orthodox Jew) — "Right-wing bigots go away!" and "It isn't a debate when you're just spreading hate!"

"I don't think he should be able to speak. Ben Shapiro incites hate speech, he does not incite free speech," explained one clueless female protester.

"Donald Trump is worse than Hitler!" screamed another anti-free-speech college student. As noted by Fleccas, this chant, like the rest of them, seems misplaced (and insultingly inaccurate) considering Shapiro did not even vote for Trump.

"Just because somebody is wearing a suit, just because he looks like Richard Spencer, is wearing a haircut like the Hitler youth, doesn't mean they're right," said one male protester.

Yeah, apparently there's a strong stereotype that a person who has a "Hitler youth" haircut is always "right." Shapiro doesn't even have that haircut. The protester was also completely ignoring Shapiro's consistent condemnation of the alt-right, which has consistently targeted him.

"F*** Ben Shapiro and f*** Milo Yiannopoulos," screamed another protester, apparently totally ignorant of Shapiro's take on Yiannopoulos.

Other protesters trying to shut down Shapiro were confronted by pro-free-speech counter-protesters. When the protesters were asked what their beef was with Shapiro, they deflected to President Trump, gave no specific answer, and then fled the interaction.
Free Speech Protesters Can't Compete with Ben Shapiro Supporters at UCLA


From Ian:

Two injured, one seriously, in West Bank car ramming; terrorist shot
A Palestinian terrorist rammed his car into two people, seriously injuring one of them, before getting shot while trying to stab soldiers in the central West Bank on Friday morning, the army said.

The driver of the vehicle, a 17-year-old who was not immediately named, rammed his car into the first victim, a 70-year-old man, who sustained a light head wound, at the Efrat South junction, medics said.

He continued down the road to the nearby Gush Etzion Junction where he hit another Israeli man, 35, according to the Magen David Adom ambulance service.

The second victim was initially said to have been lightly-to-moderately wounded, but the hospital later said his condition was serious, with a brain injury.

The army said the driver then got out of his car with a knife and tried to stab soldiers.

“The soldiers responded by firing towards the attacker, resulting in his injury,” the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.
Palestinian Terrorist Had 'Big Smile on His Face,' Israeli Wounded in Gush Etzion Ramming Attack Recalls
Two Israeli civilians were wounded — one seriously — in a vehicular-ramming attack carried out by a Palestinian terrorist in the West Bank on Friday morning.

The assailant — a 17-year-old male from the city of Halhul, north of Hebron — was shot and detained by IDF soldiers at the Gush Etzion Junction after he left the van he was driving and tried to stab them.

The seriously wounded Israeli — 35-year-old Evven Ezer Holhering, a married father of six from Kiryat Arba — was transported to the Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Jerusalem with a head injury. His wife, Miriam, has asked the people of Israel to pray for her husband.

Holhering is a member of the Bnei Menashe community, a group of Indian Jews who believe they are descendants of one of the ancient ten lost tribes of Israel.

David Ramati — a 70-year-old Israeli man who was lightly wounded in the attack — told reporters the terrorist “had a big smile on his face” before running into to him on the side of Route 60, the main north-south thoroughfare in the West Bank.
IDF enforces closure on West Bank hometown of car-rammer
The Israeli army on Friday set up checkpoints around the West Bank town of Halhul, the home of a Palestinian terrorist who earlier in the day rammed his car into two people, seriously injuring one of them, the military said.

The family of the terrorist was also detained for questioning, the army said.

Just after 6:30 a.m., the 17-year-old barreled his car into the first victim, a 70-year-old man, who sustained a light head wound, at the Efrat South Junction.

From his hospital bed, the first victim, David Ramati, described seeing the Palestinian terrorist, “with a big smile on his face,” driving toward him at some 100 kilometers (60 miles) an hour. Ramati said he had a pistol and tried to shoot the 17-year-old driver, but he was hit by the car before he could.

The terrorist continued down the road to the nearby Gush Etzion Junction where he hit and seriously injured another Israeli man, 35, according to the Magen David Adom ambulance service.
Wife of seriously wounded terror victim urges prayers for his life
The seriously injured victim of Friday’s car-ramming terror attack was named as Even Ezer Holaring, 35, from the Bnei Menashe community, and his wife urged people to pray for the father of five.

Holaring was seriously wounded when he was hit by a car driven by a Palestinian terrorist early in the morning as he stood at the Gush Etzion Junction south of Jerusalem in the West Bank.

“I am the wife of Even Ezer who was wounded in the attack this morning,” his wife said in a short video from the hospital. “His condition is very serious and I am asking every one to pray for him, Even Ezer, the son of Malka,” she said.

Holaring was taken for surgery with a head wound, surgeons at the Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem in Jerusalem said.

“He suffered a head wound. He has an intracranial hemorrhage and will require brain surgery,” his doctor said. “He’s in serious condition, but he is stable.

  • Friday, November 17, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Palestinian Media Watch reported last week:

For almost a decade, the Palestinian NGO Defence for Children International - Palestine (DCI-P) has unjustifiably been accusing Israel of breaching the rights of Palestinian minors who are arrested on suspicion of committing terror attacks. Most recently, DCI-P launched a campaign in the US and in Canada under the title "No Way to Treat a Child", whose goal is "to challenge and end Israel's prolonged military occupation of Palestinians by exposing widespread and systematic ill-treatment of Palestinian children in the Israeli military detention system."

Among other baseless claims, DCI-P argues that the Palestinian minors are arrested, interrogated in breach of all of their rights, prosecuted and sentenced to prison terms.

A recent interview with DCI-P's Accountability Program Director Ayed Abu Qteish on official PA TV, shows that the claims made by his own organization are false. Abu Qteish explained that Palestinian minors do in fact commit terror attacks, and they do it, not necessarily because they want to attack Israelis, but in order to enhance or maintain their status in Palestinian society.

Ayed Abu Qteish: "There are children who, when they were in prison, told the lawyer: 'I want to be imprisoned.' The first time [the child] was imprisoned, he didn't confess, and they released him because there was no evidence to convict him in the Israeli military court. The second time, there was no evidence either. The third time, he wanted to be imprisoned so that his image won't be hurt in the eyes of his friends, even though he is actually innocent... In several cases [Palestinian children] carried out stabbing operations because of the way the public looks at them. They realized 'the best way to clear myself of this image [of helping Israel] is to participate in resistance operations.'"
[Official PA TV, Personal Encounter, Oct. 11, 2017]
 PMW correctly points out that this interview shows that, contrary to DCI-P's claims, Israel does not unjustly convict kids.

But I think the most important part of this is the sheer hypocrisy of DCI-P. They claim to "defend" Palestinian children's rights, but they have nothing to say about a society where the kids are brought up to hate. To lionize stabbers and suicide bombers. To aspire to martyrdom. To gain social status by becoming terrorists and criminals.

One would think that the defense of children would include a mention of these actual things that can incarcerate, injure or kill children. But DCI-P is not an organization that cares about helping children, it is only meant to attack Israel under the pretext of helping children.

It is a shame that most people cannot tell the difference.



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  • Friday, November 17, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Yesterday I wrote about an absurd article in Arab America about how Arabs feel that Israeli Jews are engaging in cultural theft by incorporating "Palestinian" foods in their cuisine. For some reason, Polish or Russian or Moroccan foods are not "cultural theft" when Israelis eat them - but "Palestinian" foods are.

Now, I read that there was a conference on “Israeli Cuisine as a Reflection of Israeli Society” in Washington  yesterday - and the same absurd accusations, and more, were made by moronic Israeli leftists who participated.

From JTA:

[A]ppropriation was very much the theme of the next panel, “Israeli-Arab Food Politics.”

“There is a lot of politics behind the food you eat,” said the moderator, Johanna Mendelson Forman, who teaches a course at American called Conflict Cuisine: An Introduction to War and Peace Around the Dinner Table. “The kitchen has become the venue of new foreign policy.”
The three social scientists on the panel — Nir Avieli, Ronald Ranta and Ronit Vered, all Israeli Jews — advanced the theme that there was an original sin to Israeli cuisine: the repression of its origins among Palestinians.

Some of their arguments were salient and recognizable to anyone who has lived in Israel. For instance, there’s the tendency for Israelis to refer to “Arab cuisine” — and not Palestinian — although there are dishes adopted by Israelis that are specifically indigenous to Palestinians, such as maqloubeh, a meat, rice and vegetable concoction. (Solomonov is an adamant exception and refers to an indigenous Palestinian cuisine that he has incorporated into his repertoire.)
It is hard to research the origins of certain foods. Maqloubeh is generally regarded nowadays as "Palestinian" but not universally - some people say it is Iraqi. Some say it is Jordanian.  A version of the dish (same name which means "upside-down," , different recipe) was in a 13th century Baghdad cookbook. Is it such a crime to refer to dishes like these as "Arab?" It seems far more accurate, not an attempt to "erase" a culture.

On the contrary, the impression I get is that giving the "Palestinian" label to foods nowadays is far more of a political statement than Israelis referring to them as "Arab."

Other arguments from the academics, however, seemed a tad overeager to make a point about Israel and colonialism. Ranta, a lecturer on international relations at Kingston University in London, decried the “denial of an Arab Palestinian contribution” among Israelis to their cuisine, saying that the argument that many Jews of Middle East origin were likely to already be acquainted with the dishes was a “glaring example” of this denial.
Um....half of Israelis come from Sephardic parents.  Going back to maqloubeh - they certainly ate it before Israeli chefs incorporated it in their menus.

These guys are nuts.

But the self-hating Israelis reach the height of absurdity here:

Avieli, the president of the Israeli Anthropological Association, said that pizza was the most popular food in Israel, suggesting it was because Israelis despise their neighbors and long to be European.
“They are in the Middle East, what can you do? Where they would like to be is southern Italy,” he said.
Yes, the president of the Israeli Anthropological Association claims that Israelis liking pizza means they long to be in Italy and despise where they live.

It takes an academic to say something so breathtakingly stupid.

And notice how the deranged hate of Israel manifests itself: When Israelis like Arab food, it is to culturally appropriate/steal it. When Israelis like non-Arab foods, it is because they hate Arabs.

The only hate that is evident at conferences like this is the hate against Israeli Jews.

The idea that people eat foods because they taste good is apparently way too difficult to digest for self-hating Israeli "scholars."

How these halfwits manage to draw salaries for their scholarship is truly a mystery.




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  • Friday, November 17, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon


The 2016 FBI hate crime statistics are out, and as in every year, anti-Jewish incidents dwarf all other anti-religious incidents - combined.

684 of the 1273 anti-religion incidents were against Jews.

Anti-Muslim incidents have gone up significantly in the past few years, though. 381 of the incidents were anti-Muslim. That number is more than double the 154 in 2014. (The antisemitic incident number in 2014 was 609.)

Breaking down the incidents further, anti-Muslim incidents tended to be much more violent than anti-Jewish incidents. 127 of the anti-Muslim incidents were assault (aggravated or simple), as opposed to  73 of the anti-Jewish incidents.

On the flip side, the antisemitic incidents were concentrated in destruction/damage/vandalism (489) and intimidation (238).

I read this to mean that Muslims are more likely to become the victims of sudden rage when someone sees a recognizably Muslim person in the street, while Jews are much more likely to be the victims of those who want to target the larger Jewish community by targeting synagogues and Jewish cemeteries.

The FBI doesn't look at the religion of the offender, only the race, so it is not clear how much of the anti-Jewish crime is done by Christians or Muslims or anyone else.

It is interesting that the relative uptick of anti-Muslim crimes follows the warnings of "Islamophobia" we were hearing about in years past when such crimes were far less prevalent. Cause and effect are not easy to distinguish, but it is almost like the warnings of Islamophobia are becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy.




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Thursday, November 16, 2017

From Ian:

Evelyn Gordon: U.S. Jews and Israel’s Right to Be Heard
The growing divide between Israeli and American Jews was a major topic of conversation at this week’s annual meeting of the Jewish Federations of North America. It was also the topic of a lengthy feature in Haaretz, which largely blamed the Israeli government. Inter alia, it quoted former U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro as saying, in reference to that majority of American Jews who identify as non-Orthodox and politically liberal, “There is an idea that has some currency in certain circles around the Israeli government that says, ‘You know what, we can write off that segment of American Jewry because in a couple of generations their children or grandchildren will assimilate.’”

I agree that the idea of writing off this segment of American Jewry has some currency in Israel. But in most cases, it’s due less to fantasies about liberal Jews disappearing than to a belief that Israel will have to do without them whether it wants to or not, because liberal Jews can no longer be depended on for even the most minimal level of support. And by that, I don’t mean support for any specific Israeli policy, but for something far more basic: Israel’s right to be heard, by both Jewish and non-Jewish audiences.

Nothing better illustrates this than recent decisions by two campus Hillels to bar mainstream Israeli speakers from addressing Jewish students. At Princeton, it was Israel’s deputy foreign minister, Tzipi Hotovely, and at Stanford, it was a group of Israeli Arab veterans of the Israel Defense Forces. I can understand Hillel refusing to host speakers from the radical fringes. But how are Jewish students supposed to learn anything about Israel if campus Hillels won’t even let them hear from representatives of two of the country’s most mainstream institutions – its elected government and its army?

Both Hillels later termed their decisions a “mistake” – most likely under pressure from Hillel International, whose CEO, Eric Fingerhut, was the lead author on Princeton Hillel’s apology. But that doesn’t change the fact that at two leading universities on opposite sides of the country, the Hillel directors, both non-Orthodox rabbis, initially thought canceling the speeches in response to progressive students’ objections was a reasonable decision. Princeton’s Julie Roth thought it completely reasonable to deny her students the chance to hear an official Israeli government representative try to explain the government’s policies. And Stanford’s Jessica Kirschner – backed, incredibly, by the university’s “pro-Israel” association – thought it completely reasonable to deny her students the chance to hear from non-Jewish Israelis who don’t agree that Israel is an apartheid state.
Ben Shapiro: BDS is Antisemitism


A Leftist Crank on Fox News
There was no pushback from Carlson, usually known for his spunky, combative style. Nor did he bother to present a charitable version of the opposing argument. In the Washington Post, Brookings fellow and COMMENTARY contributor James Kirchick has written a strong brief for why the U.S. should make it harder for RT to access American airwaves. Yet I’m not quite persuaded of the wisdom of such restrictions. I worry about opening the door, even an inch, to government regulation of broadcast speech, even if that speech comes from an adversarial, autocratic regime. Perhaps such moves make sense in small, fragile, Kremlin-endangered states that lack a robust indigenous media. But in the U.S., with its large and diverse media market, the best antidote to Moscow’s lies is truthful reporting.

But never mind all that. What Blumenthal wanted to talk about were the real sources of malign foreign influence in Washington: the Jews. Or as Blumenthal put it to Carlson, “the Israel lobby and organizations like [the American Israel Public Affairs Committee], which have been promoting a humanitarian catastrophe in the Gaza Strip, war on Lebanon, war on Iran, which is [sic] not required for some reason to register as a foreign agent, and I don’t why that is.”

Carlson didn’t offer a single critical note in response to any of this. Instead, he went on to underscore Blumenthal’s points, raising a knowing eyebrow here and there as his guest cast the pro-Israel lobby–a domestic, small-“d” democratic movement reflecting a broad opinion consensus among U.S. voters–as equally if not more malign than Putin’s infowar operations. And Blumenthal said all this, unchallenged, not on Amy Goodman’s Democracy Now–but on Fox News.

The Blumenthal interview followed an earlier segment, in which Carlson approvingly quoted Noam Chomsky to the effect that American democracy represents a form of “manufactured consent”–i.e., that it is merely a more subtle form of dictatorship than those found in obviously unfree societies. I wonder: Which icon of leftist crankery will Carlson elevate next? Naomi Klein? Slavoj Zizek? The ghost of Howard Zinn? Tune in to Fox to find out.

  • Thursday, November 16, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Reading about Israeli political victories through the eyes of Israel-haters who are not used to having the tide turned against them is a lot of fun.

From Scoop.nz: 

Anti-BDS Laws and Pro-Israeli Parliament: Zionist Hasbara is Winning in Italy

By Romana Rubeo and Ramzy Baroud
A proposed law at the Italian Parliament is set to punish the boycott of Israel. In the past, such an initiative would have been unthinkable. Alas, Italy, a country that had historic sympathies with the Palestinian cause has shifted its politics in a dramatic way in recent years. Most surprisingly, though, the Left is as implicated as the Right in the rush to please Israel, at the expense of Palestinian rights.

The sad reality is this: Italy is moving to the Israeli camp. This is not only pertinent to political alignment, but in the reconfiguration of discourse as well. Israeli priorities, as articulated in Zionist hasbara (official propaganda) have now become part of our everyday lexicon of Italian media and politics. As a result, the Zionist agenda is now part and parcel of Italian political agenda as well.

Italy’s anti-Fascist, anti-military occupation and revolutionary past is being overlooked by self-serving politicians, growingly beholden to the pressures of a burgeoning pro-Israel lobby.

The pro-Israel trend has been in motion for years. In a famous interview with the Israeli newspaper Yediot Aharonot in 2008, former Italian President Francesco Cossiga declared: “Dear Italian Jews, we sold you out”.

Cossiga was referring to the so-called “Lodo Moro”, an unofficial agreement, which was allegedly signed in the 1970’s by Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro and the leaders of The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PLFP). Its understanding supposedly allowed the Palestinian group to coordinate its actions throughout the Italian territory, in exchange for the PLFP keeping Italy out of its field of operation.

The “Lodo Moro” is often used in Israeli hasbara to highlight Italy’s supposed failures in the past, and to continue associating Palestinians with terrorism.

...

In 1974, the Italian government advocated for Palestinian leader, Yasser Arafat’s participation in the United Nations General Assembly; in 1980, it committed to the EEC Declaration of Venice, which recognized the Palestinian ‘right to self-determination’ and, expectedly strongly opposed by Israel and the US.

Throughout the 1980’s, the attitude of Italian government was openly pro-Palestinian, which often lead to foreign policy clashes with Israel and its American benefactors, especially during the so-called Crisis of Sigonella in 1985.

During a speech at the Italian Parliament, socialist Prime Minister, Bettino Craxi, went as far as defending the Palestinian right to armed struggle.

In 1982, the Italian President Sandro Pertini talked at length about the horror of the Sabra and Shatilla massacre in his traditional end of the year address to the Nation.

While center-left political forces supported Palestine to keep good relations with Arab countries, left-wing parties were mainly motivated by the anti-imperialist struggle, which then resonated within Italian intellectual circles.

But things have changed as Italy is now living in its ‘post-ideological age’, where morality and ideas are flexible, and can be reshaped as needed to confer with political interests.

Today, left-wing parties don’t feel the need to stand for oppressed nations. They are too beholden to the diktats of globalization, and are thus driven by selfish agendas, which, naturally brings them closer to the US and Israel.

While neo-liberal politics has ravaged much of Europe in recent years, Italy proved that it is not the exception.

In October 2016, Italy abstained from the vote on the UNESCO resolution, condemning the Israeli occupation of Palestinian East Jerusalem.

Even that half-hearted move angered Israel, promoting the Israeli ambassador to Italy to protest. The Italian prime minister moved quickly to reassure Israel.

Matteo Renzi spoke harshly of UNESCO’S proposal. “It is not possible to continue with these resolutions at the UN and UNESCO that aim to attack Israel”, he said.

One year earlier, Renzi had officially reaffirmed Italy’s commitment to Israel in the Israeli Knesset, declaring: “Supporters of ‘stupid’ boycotts betray their own future”.

During his inaugural speech, Italy’s current President Sergio Mattarella addressed the ‘menace of international terrorism’ by mentioning the attack in front of The Great Synagogue in Rome, in 1982. His words “deeply touched Italian Jews”, according to the right-wing Israeli newspaper the Jerusalem Post.

Zionist groups constantly try to sway Italian public opinion. Their strategy is predicated on two pillars: infusing Israel’s sense of victimhood (as in poor little Israel fighting for survival among a sea of Arabs and Muslims) and injecting the accusation of anti-Semitism against anyone who challenges the Israeli narrative.

The hasbara instruments are working, as Italian politics and even culture (through the media) are increasingly identifying with Israel. Worse still, the pro-Israel feeling is now completely accepted among left-wing political parties as well.

According to Ugo Giannangeli, a prominent criminal attorney who devoted many years to defending Palestinian’s rights, the Italian Parliament is working on several laws, with the sole purpose of winning Israel’s approval.

One of these initiatives is Draft law 2043 (Anti-discrimination act. It ought to be called the Anti-BDS act. The signatories compare boycott of Israel to “disguised anti-Semitism”. If approved, the legislation would provide exemplary punishment for BDS campaigners.

Among the signatories is Emma Fattorini, member of the Italian Democratic Party and also member of the “Committee for the protection and promotion of human rights”. Palestinian rights, are of course, of no concern to Fattorini at the moment since it appears nowhere in her ‘human rights’ agenda.

Another signatory is Paolo Corsini, who abandoned the Democratic Party and moved to left-wing party MDP – Articolo 1. Corsini was also the rapporteur of the “Agreement between Italy and Israel on public safety”, already ratified by the Italian Parliament. The agreement strengthens the relationship between the two countries at a more effective way, in exchange for Israeli sharing of information on public order and how to control mass protests.




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 Vic Rosenthal's Weekly Column


Right now, today, is a critical point in Jewish history. Maybe you don’t think so, because it’s easy to be distracted by the small stuff. But we need to step back and look at the forest instead of the trees.

Israel, a Jewish state reborn after almost two millennia, is facing a real threat to its survival – perhaps as great or greater than at any time since 1948. The threat is from Iran, which a) has taken control of Lebanon and built a massive rocket and missile installation aimed at our critical infrastructure, b) has achieved strategic dominance of critical territory in Iraq and Syria, will soon have its own troops and proxy militias on our Syrian border as well (with the acquiescence of the US and Russia), and c) either already has or could presently have nuclear weapons.

Iran’s enmity to Israel is a result of religious dogma, and of Iran’s determination to dominate the Mideast and become a world superpower by defeating the US. In the past few years it has moved steadily toward its strategic goals, which include eliminating the Jewish state that it sees as both an outpost of the US and the major obstacle to its local ambitions.

Some day historians will ask why an American president, Barack Obama, did so much to help one of America’s most dangerous enemies – and also to hurt the Jewish people. But that’s not my subject today.

At the same time that the Iranian threat grows, there is a pandemic of Jew-hatred spreading throughout the world. Europe at times seems to have regressed to pre-WWII conditions or worse, with Jews caught between re-empowered right-wing Jew-baiting, fierce Islamic hatred, and left-wing “intersectional” antisemitism. Similar phenomena exist in the US, although less severe so far – except possibly on university campuses.

But while some European Jews are starting to worry about their future, in America and in  Israel – where they absolutely should know better – they are acting irrationally, busying themselves  with trivia or even doing exactly the opposite of what’s needed to ensure their survival and that of the Jewish state and people.

To European Jews – and here I include the UK – I have a simple message: get out. The natives don’t like you (they never did, as Herzl noticed), and Islamification is proceeding apace. It can’t get better, only worse. I would like to see you make aliyah, but I understand the economic realities, and also the risk from the coming Mideast war. This is a decision you will have to make yourselves.

The US and Canada together have about half the world’s Jews, 90% of these are non-Orthodox, and the majority of them don’t have a clue about Jewish history or the Jewish state and the conflicts and issues surrounding it. They are geographically far from the Middle East, and can’t read Jewish texts or anything else in Hebrew. For most of them, their Judaism has become attenuated and even replaced by a form of liberal humanism that makes them blind to the dangers they face and drives them away from the Jewish state.  For these Jews I have several messages, depending on which of several groups they fall into.

To the supporters of J Street, Jewish Voice for Peace, If Not Now, the New Israel Fund, and so on: if you still have positive feelings about the Jewish people, please believe me that you are not doing it any favors, and find some other cause – helping the homeless in your own country is a good one – that will allow you to feel good about yourself without hurting your people.

To those who think that it is their duty to make Israel a better place by activism on behalf of Jewish pluralism, improving the treatment of our Arab citizens, protecting the rights of illegal immigrants or Palestinians, or even promoting the (impossible) “two-state solution:” please understand that you know less than nothing about these issues; and the fact that your parents were Jewish does not give you the right to intervene in our affairs. If you want to change things here, then make aliyah, vote, and send your kids to the army. Otherwise leave us alone.

To those that think that they are making things better by engaging in interfaith dialogue with Muslims, fighting “Islamophobia,” and favoring increased immigration from Muslim countries, you are being used. Don’t complain when the US and Canada have the same problems as Europe.

And now some suggestions for my fellow Israelis, for whom ignorance is not an excuse.

If you are the Prime Minister  you should be meeting with the Chief of Staff and insisting that he develop a plan and a timetable to fight and win the inevitable war with Iran and its proxies. Waiting to see what will happen and then responding is not a strategy for victory: preemption is.

If you are the Minister of Defense, in addition to assisting in planning for the unavoidable war, you should be directing massive resources toward strengthening the home front, especially in the north of the country, which will bear the brunt of Hezbollah’s 130,000 rockets when war breaks out.

If you are the police commissioner, you should investigate the seditious publisher of Ha’aretz Amos Schocken, his poison-pen writer Gideon Levy, or the arguably treasonous Breaking the Silence organization, rather than engaging in politically-motivated harassment of the Prime Minister and his wife.

If you are a Member of the Knesset, you should ask yourself whether the “status quo” concerning whether markets should be open on Shabbat in Tel Aviv is really a question that is worthy of your time right now.

The world and especially the region that we live in is undergoing great strategic shifts, and their direction is not to our advantage. It seems as though events are driven according to the plans of Iran and Russia, and we are playing defense.

Israel is a powerful country, but one with little strategic depth or capacity to absorb a surprise attack. The coming war promises to be extremely destructive, both for us and for our opponents. In addition to conventional warfare, it will see cyber attacks and possibly the use of electromagnetic pulse weapons.  Even the employment of nuclear weapons by one or both sides is not unimaginable.

Israel must be ready to win the “kinetic” war, the cyber battles, and the psychological warfare that will come along with them, while protecting her population and infrastructure. Not an easy task – but one that requires focus and unity of purpose. There are few obvious signs of this.

Of course I don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes. Maybe the PM is sitting with the Chief of Staff every day (after his regular police interrogation). Maybe they are working to ensure adequate shelters for the population in the north of the country. Maybe Schocken is planning to close his “newspaper” and move to Germany.

Most importantly, maybe the courageous decision has finally been made to launch a preemptive attack and not wait for thousands of rockets to fall.




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From Ian:

Benjamin Netanyahu: Regime cares more about hating us than helping Iranian people
Israel cares more for the Iranian people than its own government does, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday in a video message he issued from Jerusalem.

In the short message he repeated an offer that was initially made on Tuesday night to provide relief and technical assistance to regions in Iran and Iraq impacted by a magnitude 7.3 earthquake that struck Sunday evening.

The most severe such quake in a decade, it left at least 445 people dead and injured more than 7,000.

“I saw mothers and fathers searching for their children, children buried under the rubble from this horrible earthquake. As a father, as an Israeli, as a Jew I wanted to help,” he continued.

“That is why yesterday I instructed that Israel offer medical aid via the Red Cross to victims of this disaster. Israel has no quarrel with the people of Iran. We never have. Our only quarrel is with the cruel Iranian regime, a regime that holds its people hostage, a regime that threatens our people with annihilation,” the premier clarified.


Case closed: Breaking the Silence spokesman lied
The Deputy State Prosecutor decided in coordination with the State Attorney to close the investigation against Breaking the Silence spokesman Dean Issacharof.

The investigation was opened after Issacharoff said in a video that he had beaten an Arab during his military service in Hevron. The comments had been made to highlight alleged human rights abused by the IDF Breaking the Silence claims take place in Judea and Samaria.

However, the investigation revealed that the events described by Issacharoff "did not happen at all."

The State Attorney's office said in its decision: "During the interrogation, the suspect was questioned, messages were taken from the suspect's company commander during the relevant period, and various investigation materials were collected. From all the evidence, it appears that the incident described by the suspect is suitable for only one incident, in which a Palestinian named Hassan Giulani was arrested in February 2014.

During his interrogation, Issacharoff did not deny the statements made by him, adding details about the date and circumstances of the incident in question. The suspect even noted that "I had to use force to stop him" and that it was not possible to handcuff the Arab without the use of force.

In his statement, Giulani confirmed that he was arrested after throwing stones at the soldiers, as the suspect described. However, Giulani denied that his arrest was accompanied by any kind of violence on the part of the soldiers, except for the use of force to handcuff him, which was required in view of his resistance to the handcuffing. Giulani claimed he was not beaten, not bruised, did not bleed, did not feel dizzy and did not pass out.

The investigation further revealed that Giulani had filed no complaint over excessive force during his arrest, and that there were no indications of any wounds or injuries to Giulani's body. In addition, Giulani's testimony matched that of Issachoroff's commanding officer, and not that of Issachoroff.

MESSAGE TO THE UNITED NATIONS: STOP THE ISRAEL BASHING





Dear people of Sutherland Springs, 

I am writing to you, from Israel, to tell you that I see you.

Half way around the world, with enough worries of our own, it was heart-breaking to hear of the devastating shooting in your community.

We know what it means to have our loved ones ripped from us.

I see you. I see your pain. I see the children who no longer have parents. I see the parents who yearn for their children but will never again have the luxury of embracing them or reading them a bedtime story. Who will watch other children grow up, knowing that theirs should be the same age, be having similar experiences but, instead, are a memory, frozen in time.

I see the kids who want to play with friends who are no longer alive. I see cousins, uncles, grandparents, friends who are left behind, not knowing how to go on living when other family members, other friends are dead.

I see gaping holes that can never be filled. Lives lost, love lost.

And those who are left behind, injured in body, hurting in soul. A community, like a person trying to get warm under a blanket only to discover that the blanket is full of holes…

I see you.

An insane, sick murderer is not the same as the ideological terrorists who attack us and yet, what is experienced by those left behind, is very similar. We know your pain. 

When people from abroad hear about attacks on my people they often see agenda, not people. They see politics, not humanity. Similarly, in your case, I saw the media jump on the issues of gun control, NRA and religion, whether or not Stephen Willeford is a hero (he acted heroically, all real heroes say that they are not heroes. Many, like Stephen, mourn those they did not manage to save). Much focus is put on agendas and very little attention to the people behind the headlines...

I am writing you to say that I see you.

I see decent, God fearing people, who just want to live their lives the best way they know how – just like us. I see people who would have preferred no one ever heard of their little town, if only they could have their loves ones back – just like us. 

I also see something else. I see opportunity.

You cannot control what happened to you. You do not have the power to turn back time and undo this horror. But, at the same time you are not powerless.

You have a power that seems lost to much of America. You have love. You have each other.

While people who live in other towns and cities do not know their neighbors, you already know yours well. You know how to look beyond self-interest, beyond the walls of your own home, to reach out to help a neighbor in need, to make your community a better, stronger, kinder place.

To you, We the People, still means something.

I am not writing to tell you how to deal with this tragedy. From everything I have read about your community, I believe your hearts and your faith will lead you to do what is right.

This horror will not divide you, instead it will make you stronger.

While the gaps in your individual families cannot be filled, it is possible to step closer to each other as a community. To be there for those who no longer have the ones they wish were there. Parents who lost children can do wonders for the children of others, children who no longer have their parents. Friends can do amazing things for husbands and wives who no longer have their spouse to rely on.
No murderer can break you. Only lack of love can do that.

I am writing you to say that your tragedy is also an opportunity. By being who you are, you provide a shining light to the rest of the Nation. My people are those commanded to be a “Light to the Nations.” We do our best to fulfil this task by being the best we can be, by returning darkness with light, by deliberately infusing happiness and positivity in the places where our attackers tried to create sorrow and horror. By living and living well, when others wish us dead.

You can do the same. 

Today, the USA seems enshrouded by darkness, division and anger. This makes America weak and a weak America makes the world more dangerous (believe me, I know). I pray the people of America look to you and remember what it means to be decent, regular folks who look out for each other.
This may just be the moment when you are the most powerful you have ever been, could ever be.
Dear people of Sutherland Springs, I see you. I see your pain and I see your light.

I pray for your injured to be healed, for your bereaved to find comfort and that the people of America see what I see when I look to you.

Blessings from Israel,


Forest Rain




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  • Thursday, November 16, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
J-Street, led by J-Street U, started a new campaign this week called  "Stop Demolitions, Build Peace."

Acting exactly like any anti-Israel organization, J-Street U is "partnering" with six Arab communities in the West Bank to protect them from Israel demolishing illegal structures.

So for example, one of the communities being partnered with is Jabal al-Baba, a village I cannot find listed in the comprehensive Survey of Western Palestine indicating that it is not an ancient village at all. In August, Israel was accused of destroying a kindergarten there - but in reality it was an illegally erected shed that had never been in use.

Another community that J-Street is partnering with is Susya, which is simply an illegal village created after "occupation."  It didn't exist in 1999.



The slick video that J-Street produced for this effort claims, falsely, that Israel demolishes Arab communities and then builds Jewish settlements on the same areas.



J-Street falsely says in the video, "The Israeli government is engaged in a process of 'creeping annexation' in the West Bank. Central to this trend is the systematic demolition of Palestinian communities in the West Bank to make way for more Israeli settlements."

If there have been no new settlements built in decades, then what Arab communities have been destroyed and replaced by Israel?

If you consider Area C to be occupied, then Israel has the obligation under international law to uphold zoning laws on the land, although security concerns trump other considerations - again, under international law. When Israel demolishes a structure that was illegally built, it is following international law, not spurning it. The Palestinian Authority would do the exact same thing.

And Israel isn't destroying any communities unless they were set up illegally - in recent years - to begin with.

J-Street is once again shown to be completely anti-Israel, anti-international law and anti-truth.





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  • Thursday, November 16, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon


There is a documentary making the rounds called "In Search of Israeli Cuisine."

From watching the trailer, it is clear that the chefs and experts in the film readily acknowledge the influence of the cuisine of the Arab world as influencing Israeli cuisine, even going so far as pointing to hummus and calling it "Palestinian" - which is of course absurd.



“Yemenite, Palestinian, Iraqi, Moroccan, Russian, Turkish… I don’t even know- how many countries are represented in one place,” says renowned chef Michael Solomonov as he points to an array of salads and appetizers that are ubiquitous to Israeli restaurants.

An Israeli baker says “Food is not political. It is what is grown on this land by the people who are living in it. If they are called Palestinians or Israelis, I don’t think the tomato cares.”

Arab America is very upset. To them, Israeli cuisine is political and even Israeli chefs admitting the influence of "Palestinian" food culture is cultural theft.

This statement coupled with calling Palestinian food “Israeli” though meant well, blatantly ignores the ethnic notions of what it means to be a Palestinian in Israel or the occupied territories. And though Solomonov might want food not to be related to politics, it is impossible and unrealistic to expect it to be so. Because food is a part of the culture and Palestinian culture is under attack in Israel, food can and does inherently become political.
Setting aside that Palestinian culture is essentially a myth, the experts in the film are elevating it beyond what it deserves to be - putting it on par with every other culture.

Komarovsky’s statement and Solomonovo’s movie do not take into account the inequalities Palestinians face in Israel which whitewashes Palestinian suffering. By calling Palestinian food in particular, Israeli, one justifies these actions and appropriates Palestinian cultures that the Israeli government tries so hard to destroy. At the bottom of this debate is the idea of privilege and who holds it in a society. Privilege is the invisible advantage and unearned benefits which are given to dominant and powerful groups because of identity traits.
This paragraph is a neat piece of hypocrisy. At the same time of asserting, without any evidence, that the Israeli government is trying to hard to destroy Palestinian culture (Israel has museums dedicated to Arab culture) the writer reveals that she doesn't admit that there is anything that can be considered Israeli cuisine. Because the chef mentioned many countries as contributing to Israeli cuisine, but this Arab writer does not accept that Israel has created a new and vibrant cuisine over 70 years. It isn't Jewish - it is Israeli.

So the only person denying a food culture is the Arab, not the Israeli Jew.

While Michael Solomonov and his associates did not consciously make the decision to participate in this cycle of oppression of Palestinians, it is something that happens automatically in privileged circles that interact with aspects of oppressed groups. The effect is the same. Because of the ethnic cleansing involved with the Palestinian people, Israeli words, and sentiments about Palestinian culture matter.
Where exactly is the ethnic cleansing of a people who didn't exist a hundred years ago and now say they are 12 million strong? A people who literally would not exist if Israel wasn't created?

The complaints given to the film are so over-the-top (and creative) that one wonders what Palestinians could accomplish if they spent one tenth of the effort they give towards being pissed off to doing something constructive.







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

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