Thursday, November 21, 2013

From Ian:

Tom Gross: Al-Quds seems only to be sorry that they were caught out
As I wrote last week, a better outcome would have been for Brandeis to work with Al-Quds to ensure that this kind of activity never happens again, and for the Al-Quds president unequivocally to condemn this kind of behavior to his students. It seems clear that Brandeis would also have preferred this.
But the fact that in his new statement yesterday, Al-Quds President Nusseibeh (described as a “moderate” by Ha’aretz and the New York Times) not only fails to properly condemn the Fascist-style rally, but says it is all the fault of the “Jews” for having the temerity to ask for Fascist rallies not to be held on the main square on campus, has left Brandeis no choice but to take the difficult decision to suspend relations with Al-Quds.
The Al-Quds president’s statement is very revealing. It is carefully written so as to barely mention the rally itself, suggesting it was a fringe event (when in fact it is the third student rally praising suicide bombers to be held on campus this academic year). Like the other rallies, the Nov. 5 rally was clearly produced with some financial and logistical backing which calls into doubt the notion that it was a fringe event. Rather than being sorry that such a hate-rally took place, the Al-Quds president’s statement makes it sound like he is only really sorry that they were caught.
What Americans Don’t Know About Palestinian Culture
But the point about campus activities at Al Quds is that there is nothing exceptional about large groups of students demonstrating their hate for Israel and their devotion not to Palestinian nationalism but its extreme Islamist adherents such as Hamas and Islamic Jihad that call for the death of Jews. Such groups are not just welcome at Palestinian schools but an essential part of the fabric of student life as well as the general culture.
Thus, the shock here is not that Brandeis (if not Bard) has been alerted to the true nature of their partner and even a respected front man like Nusseibeh. Rather, it’s that it never occurred to anyone in authority at Brandeis that this was the inevitable result of any cooperation with Al Quds. If it had or if more American academics got their heads out of the sand and realized the cancer of hate that is still the dominating feature of Palestinian political culture, the assumption that Israel is the villain of the Middle East conflict might be challenged more often.
Roy Amlot in The Times: Israeli soldiers kill Palestinian children with relative impunity
Beyond the specifics, however, the smear that Israeli soldiers murder Palestinian children with impunity is part of a larger lethal narrative advanced by anti-Israel activists and some Guardian “journalists” which we’ve addressed previously. Indeed, no matter how absurd the charges that the IDF targets innocent Palestinian kids, such morally reckless memes evoking the specter of unimaginable Jewish malevolence have become so ingrained in the Islamist and extreme-left imagination that the facts regarding such libels become almost irrelevant.
However, as it is the job of professional journalists to distinguish between proven facts and unsupportable accusations, we eagerly await a clarification by Amlot (or Times editors) which includes details on the supposed ‘impunity’ granted to Israeli soldiers who allegedly have ‘killed Palestinian children’.
Huffington Post Serves as a Mouthpiece for Hamas
In the article, Almodallal voices her support for standard-issue genocidal Hamas threats (that all of Israel should be wiped out, as it sits on Palestinian land), and her belief that Hamas has a bad reputation not because of its terrorism, genocidal threats, or suicide bombings, but because of “unfair Israeli media.” Her new job, she says, is to make the Palestinian issues “more human” to the outside world.
Ironically, earlier this year, another pro-Palestinian, anti-Israel propagandist, Ahmed Shihab-Eldin – who happens to be one of the top hosts of HuffPostLive, its video “news” service – described his job in almost identical terms: as being “to humanize” the Palestinians.
If you define “humanizing” a culture as whitewashing terrorists and publishing false, incendiary propaganda about their victims (namely Jews), then HuffPost’s senior management (which repeatedly claims it is a “nonpartisan” news operation) has been allowing Shihab-Eldin to fulfill his “job”.
Azerbaijan jails Iranian for plot against Israeli embassy
Hasan Faraji, 31, was arrested in late October after he was seen wandering near the embassy, Azeri news site APA reported. A security guard stopped him for questioning and, after refusing to cooperate, Faraji was detained and taken to a nearby police station. He was later sentenced to 30 days in prison, but there was no indication from the report why he was incarcerated.
According to a Channel 10 News report on Wednesday, Azeri police claimed they had discovered photos and blueprints of the Israeli embassy in Faraji’s apartment.
Drifting from US, Liberman calls to diversify foreign policy
“For many years, Israel’s foreign policy has been one-directional toward Washington,” he said, speaking at the Sderot Conference for Society. “I support multi-directional foreign policy.”
Israel’s foreign policy “should not focus solely on the United States,” he added, according to Army Radio.
Moroccan parliament moves to outlaw contacts with Israelis
The bill was proposed by five parties in the Moroccan House of Representatives — including that of Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane. Introduced earlier this summer, and largely unnoticed at the time, it was given the heading “Criminalizing Normalization with the Israeli Entity.”
The proposed law seeks to prohibit attendance at or support for any “activity in Morocco in which a natural or legal person holding Israeli citizenship or being resident of the Israeli entity contributes, participates, or attends."
Palestinian official accuses ‘fool’ Bush of colluding in Arafat’s death
A Palestinian Authority official accused former US President George W. Bush of colluding with former Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon in the assassination of PA President Yasser Arafat, Palestinian Media Watch revealed Wednesday.
During an interview with official Palestinian Authority television on November 10, Jibril Rajoub, a former security official and Fatah member who currently heads the Palestinian soccer association, said it was “clear” that Israel was not alone in killing the Palestinian leader.
PMW: Song glorifying violence at PA cultural event: "No force can remove the weapon from my hand"



Netanyahu vows: No nukes for Iran’s ‘dark regime’
The Iranian government is reminiscent of “dark regimes of the past” that tried to wipe out the Jews and then conquer the world, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday in Moscow, vowing to deny Iran nuclear weapons.
“The Iranians deny our past and repeat their commitment to wipe the State of Israel off the map. This reminds us of the dark regimes of the past that plotted against us first and then against all of humanity,” Netanyahu said in an address to Russian Jewish community leaders.
Iran has all but become Nazi
There were other troubling features in his rare public appearance, but stripping Jews of their humanity was the lowest point. The world has looked the other way. It is not lending its ears. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton have tried to play dumb, as if the subconscious malice-filled campaign coming out of Tehran has been somehow lost on them. They yearn for a deal, at any price. Despite the draft agreement being taken off the table -- because France had sobered-up in the nick of time -- Iran now wants to discuss it again. But it wants more than that -- it also wants to punish the West; it seeks revenge after the West slammed the brakes and did some thinking.
John Bolton: Obama’s ‘Deal’ Will Let Iran Get the Bomb
Secretary of State John Kerry has spared no effort to avoid another Geneva debacle, almost certainly making more concessions to Iran to secure agreement. The failed deal was certainly wretched from America’s perspective, involving countless problems and deficiencies. This week’s deal will be worse.
It is no answer that Obama is seeking merely an “interim” understanding with Iran. “Interim” concessions have a way of getting locked-in, as seemingly ad hoc trade-offs freeze into permanence. Indeed, Obama’s “step-by-step” approach itself tells Tehran’s mullahs how desperately Obama wants a deal, and how willingly he ignores the reality that Iran’s nuclear program has never been peaceful.
Israel starting to consider 'day after' Iran agreement
Israel’s main problem with the proposed deal is that it freezes Iran’s program but does not dismantle it or significantly roll it back, in exchange for sanctions relief that Jerusalem believes severely weakens the pressure on Tehran. Intelligence Minister Yuval Steinitz said on Tuesday that in accepting this agreement, the world would be demonstrating that it “is willing to deceive itself.”
Israel Warns US: Iran Building ICBMs for YOU, Not for Us
Tuesday evening, Nov. 19, Israeli government spokesperson Mark Regev told CNN’s Jake Tapper that it isn’t just Israel in Iran’s cross-hairs, but it is the U.S. itself that is an intended target of Iran’s nuclear weapon.
Israel, Gulf in ‘strange alliance’ against Iran
There seems little chance of major diplomatic breakthroughs between Israel and the Gulf’s array of ruling monarchs and sheiks. But their shared worries over Iran’s influence and ambitions already has brought back-channel contacts and “intimate relationships” on defense and other strategic interests through forums such as the UN, said Dan Gillerman, a former Israeli ambassador to the world body.
The stepped-up anxieties on Iran could bring new space for the Gulf-Israel overlap.
Obama’s Israel Spat Boosts Iran’s Leverage
By downgrading the alliance with Israel and Saudi Arabia and trying to delegitimize his critics as warmongers, the president has strengthened Iran’s bargaining position and made it less rather than more likely that there will be a satisfactory conclusion to both the current negotiations and those that will follow. Rather than allowing diplomacy to succeed, what he has done may have ensured that Iran will never be convinced to give up its nukes by any means short of a use of force that no one wants.
Despite critique, Jewish groups continue Iran push
A day after columnist Thomas Friedman blasted Jewish groups for allying with Saudi Arabia in what he described as a push to derail nuclear negotiations with Iran, the Jewish Federations of North America issued a statement calling for strong caps on Iran’s nuclear program. In a resolution passed by the JFNA’s executive committee, the organization aligned itself closely with the policy advocated by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, insisting that any diplomatic solution reached in nuclear talks with Iran must result in the “complete dismantling of Iran’s capability of producing nuclear weapons and ensure mechanisms for ongoing verification of Iranian compliance.”
Iranians will ‘cut your throat,’ ex-US official warns negotiators
“The Iranians are known as great rug merchants, not for nothing,” the 92-year-old former US secretary of state George Shultz told the BBC in an interview. “They’re good at this business of smiling, encouraging you on and then cutting your throat, so you have to be tough-minded, you have to be realistic.”
Al Arabiya Chief: Obama Boosting Iran’s Confidence to Become Nuclear Country
“The ideal solution is to insist on preventing Iran from building nuclear weapons. Unfortunately, however, the involvement of U.S. President Barack Obama’s government in six months of negotiations boosts Iran’s confidence that it can force the international community to accept it as a nuclear country, despite all the offers, guarantees and promises made to stop this from happening,” Al-Rashed said, according to a translation provided by the Middle East Media Research Institute.
Egypt: Two Dead in Clashes at Cairo University
More than 1,500 students had marched earlier from the university campus in Cairo's Nasr City to Al-Azhar’s central administrative building, the state-owned Al-Ahram news website reported.
When the students attempted to storm the building, security forces intervened and forced them to return to the campus, an Al Arabiya correspondent reported.
Kerry: Muslim Brotherhood 'Stole' Egypt's Revolution
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday accused the Muslim Brotherhood of “stealing Egypt's revolution”, AFP reported.
In a speech to a forum on enhancing links between private sector businesses and diplomatic security agencies, Kerry said "the best antidote to extremism is opportunity."
IDF Blog: Hezbollah Indoctrinates Youth with Messages of Hate and Murder



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