Saturday, November 30, 2013

From Ian:

Sarah Honig: Bloodlust and lies
Thus started the Nazi-financed, three-year Arab revolt – an uprising that was every bit as deformed as the misnamed Arab Spring. Haj-Amin’s ambitious undertaking cost thousands of lives, but paradoxically it fortified the emergent Jewish state, which would achieve independence 12 years later.
Haj-Amin wasn’t the odd-man-out. He gave expression to his people’s overwhelming vehemence. Already in 1937 Josef Goebbels praised Arab “national and racial awareness,” noting that “in Palestine they hoist Nazi flags and deck their homes with swastikas and portraits of Hitler.”
Arabs were among the first to latch onto Nazi ideology.
Undisguised fascist parties proliferated – from Syria’s Nationalist-Socialists headed by Anton Saada to Ahmed Hussein’s Young Egypt. Haj-Amin was the kingpin.
Israel and Creation Myths
Had there been no war, there would have been no dispossession, and yet, there still would have been a thriving Jewish State in former Palestine. Arab property was neither coveted nor needed before the war, although occasionally it was plundered and appropriated afterward. (But the same is true for thousands of Jewish homes and property that ended up in Arab-controlled Palestinian areas, i.e, the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza, not to mention the millions of Jews plundered in Arab countries in revenge for the “Naqba.”)
To conclude, many currently existing nation-states, besides the US, “willed” themselves into existence often by throwing off the rule of a foreign power (e.g. Greece, India, Pakistan) or were born out civil war (e.g., South Korea, Eritrea). Israel is no different, and has no less of a right to exist than any of those nations. And all of the claims that somehow Israel is an artificial entity with no right to exist is just a myth.
The world has been sorely remiss in remaining silent in or acquiescing to the blatant lies the anti-Israel forces spread. The issue is not simply historical accuracy and fairness. Palestinian Arab hatred, intransigence and violence is fueled by this false narrative of Israel’s illegitimacy. Peace will only be possible when Palestinian leadership and its supporters are forced to confront and acknowledge the truth: The Palestinian Naqba was self inflicted. It’s time for Palestinians to own up to that fact, to put an end to their “righteous” warfare, and for them to live in peace with their Israeli neighbors.
International "law" as the anti-Zionist Bible
Consider the latest parallel case when Israel was slammed for violating international law on occupation while Morocco, another "occupier", came away with a handshake and a deal.
The slammer and the deal maker was the European Union. Lawyers advised that no law stopped Europe making a fisheries deal with Morocco over occupied waters in Western Sahara. Allowing European companies to drill for oil in those waters, despite a UN legal opinion that it would violate international law, was also no problem. ‘Thank you very much,’ said the fatcats of Brussels. Morocco was happy too; the EU offered to pay a royalty for access to the occupied zone.
Hillel Neuer: Reports that Israel joined the UN Human Rights Council’s Western group are premature
Contrary to several news reports, admission to WEOG in Geneva does not mean membership on the 47-nation council. Israel like every other UN member state automatically has the status of an observer state at the council. Whether a state is one of the 47 voting members of the council, or one of its 146 observer states, all (except Israel) essentially belong to one of the five regional groups.
Contrary to exaggerated reports in the Israeli media, the country’s admission to WEOG would have zero effect on the Arab states’ continued ability to target Israel through excessive, one-sided and disproportionate resolutions, urgent sessions, and the special agenda item that focuses on Israel at every council meeting.
Amer Studies Assoc May Boycott Israeli Univs, Reveal Ignorance
In other words, all those who blathered on, urging the ASA to approve the resolution to boycott Israeli academic institutions presumably would prefer that there were no Palestinian Arab institutions of higher learning.
Because not a single one of the 19 degree granting institutions serving the Arab Muslim population of the “West Bank” or Gaza existed before 1967.
Several universities were established in the 1970′s, including the University of Palestine, which is located in Gaza, and was founded in 1972. Prior to the “Occupation,” Egypt controlled Gaza and maintained the Palestinian Arab population living there under unrelenting military rule.
French court fines boycott-Israel activists for discrimination
A French court imposed a $1,300 fine on members of an anti-Israel group who called on supermarket shoppers to boycott Israeli products.
The Court of Appeals of Colmar near Strasbourg fined each of the group’s 12 members individually on Wednesday for their participation in a pro-boycott activity in 2009-2010, which the court qualified as “provocation to discrimination.” The court also gave the activists a suspended jail sentence, according to a report by the CRIF umbrella group of French Jewish communities.
Mother of 2-Year-Old Victim of Rock Throwing Attack Speaks Out
The mother of a two-year-old toddler was still in shock on Friday, as Avigail Ben-Zion recovered in a Jerusalem hospital from injuries sustained by rocks thrown at their moving car by four Arab teenagers on Thursday evening on the outskirts of Jerusalem, Israel’s Channel 2 reported.
“Avigail will be fine,” Shirin Ben-Zion told Channel 2. ”She has a fractured skull, and we wait. I never thought that something like this could happen. Initially, I thought it was an accident, but then I realized very quickly that what crashed into us wasn’t any vehicle.”
Referring to her assailants, Ben-Zion was at a loss for words: “I can not talk about them as people – those figures who decided to hurt kids, I have nothing to say about them.”
Toddler injured by stone-throwers in Jerusalem not news for the BBC
The BBC’s Jerusalem Bureau is some eleven minutes’ drive from the location of the incident in which Avigail was injured. Twenty-four hours later, no report on the attack has appeared on the BBC News website. Readers of the website can, however, instead learn all about Orthodox beauty salons in Jerusalem.
Abbas: We'll Never Give Up on a Single Demand
While no official ceremony was scheduled Friday in the PA to mark the November 29, 2012 vote of the UN General Assembly, in anniversary comments published a day earlier, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas pledged to do everything possible to establish a Palestinian state with its capital in eastern Jerusalem.
The comments were published by the official PA news agency Wafa and quoted by AFP on Friday.
Abbas said that he would "never give up an ounce of the Palestinians' demands nor sign a peace agreement that failed to meet the aspirations of the people."
PMW: Song glorifying violence at PA Arafat memorial
Palestinian Media Watch has documented that the Palestinian Authority often chooses this song to be performed at official events. Recently, it was performed at an event under the auspices of Abbas. The song was also recently performed in a historical context at an event celebrating Palestinian musical folklore arranged by the PA Ministry of Culture.
Sunni, Shi’a Strife Brings Uncertainty to Israel
“Once the Geneva agreement is signed, the military option will be back on the table. The Saudis are furious and are willing to give Israel all the help it needs,” an anonymous source told the Sunday Times.
“Most of the Middle East has an interest in preventing Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. At the moment it seems the world powers, led by America, are going to cave in to Iran. So you don’t really have a choice, you need to cooperate with the ‘devil’ as you see it,” Karsh told JNS.org.
“When Netanyahu is campaigning against Iran’s nuclear weapons, while America has this romance with [newly elected Iranian President Hassan] Rouhani, many Arabs are saying right now, ‘Well thank God someone is doing it,’” Ajami said.
Fueled by Iran’s desire for regional hegemony, the Sunni and Shi’a battles are unlikely to abate anytime soon, forcing Israel look for unlikely new partners, covertly or not, to confront its most dangerous enemies.
“Israel and Saudi Arabia agree on most things, they could almost have a silent partnership. They don’t have to acknowledge it. You won’t be seeing the Star of David flying in Riyadh anytime soon, but I think strategically, in view of the Iranian assault, there is a covert understanding between Saudi Arabia and Israel on what this region should look like,” Ajami said.
Obama Sides With Putin, Assad, and Khamenei
The outlines of a deal emerged: Assad would stay, Iran’s coffers would be refilled and its nuclear project continued in most of its important aspects, and Russia would have a partner. And President Obama would get his deal. Not a perfect deal. Not a “this justifies the Nobel Peace Prize” deal. But a deal.
Oh, yes, and the Iranian regime would be safe from military action as long as the conversation continues. Indeed, at least one report indicates that the White House made clear to Israel and Saudi Arabia, who have been huddling in the corner a lot of late, that military action against Iran will not be tolerated.
Thus has the United States become the guarantor of the Iranian and Syrian regimes, and of Russian interests in the Middle East. How far we’ve fallen.
‘Secret talks with Iran led Obama to shelve strike on Syria’
The issue of Assad’s chemical weapons use came up in the secret US-Iran contacts held in recent months in Oman, Israel’s Channel 2 news reported Friday, and it quoted unnamed Israeli intelligence and security sources asserting Obama’s change of heart was affected by those contacts.
The report speculated that Iran persuaded Assad to agree to dismantle his chemical weapons capability in return for Obama not carrying out the intended attack.
‘US freed top Iranian scientist as part of secret talks ahead of Geneva deal’
The secret back channel of negotiations between Iran and the United States, which led to this month’s interim deal in Geneva on Iran’s rogue nuclear program, has also seen a series of prisoner releases by both sides, which have played a central role in bridging the distance between the two nations, the Times of Israel has been told.
In the most dramatic of those releases, the US in April released a top Iranian scientist, Mojtaba Atarodi, who had been arrested in 2011 for attempting to acquire equipment that could be used for Iran’s military-nuclear programs.
Iranian Nuclear Envoy Slams Israeli 'Aggression'
Iran’s envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) slammed Israel on Friday, accusing the Jewish state of attacking its neighbors and committing atrocities.
"Israel, sitting on 200 nuclear warheads all of them targeted at Muslim cities ... is crying wolf about nuclear proliferation,” the envoy, Reza Najafi, told the UN nuclear agency.
US offers to destroy Syrian chemical arms offshore
The US has offered to help destroy some of the most lethal parts of Syria’s chemical weapons stockpile at an offshore facility, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical weapons said Saturday.
The international organization’s director-general, Ahmet Uzumcu, said in The Hague, Netherlands that the US government will contribute “a destruction technology, full operational support and financing to neutralize” the weapons, most likely on a ship in the Mediterranean Sea. The weapons are to be removed from Syria by Dec. 31.
Watchdog says Syria most dangerous country for journalists
The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said on Tuesday that the civil war in Syria posed the greatest danger for working reporters in conflict areas.
“Syria remains the most dangerous country in the world for journalists,” CPJ said. “At least 55 journalists have been killed covering the conflict since 2011, with local journalists comprising 90 percent of the fatalities.”
Swiss lawmaker excluded from party after saying Israel is "on path of carbonization"
Swiss lawmaker Denis Menoud was excluded from the populist Geneva Citizens' Movement (MCG) on Friday after commenting that Israel was "on the path of carbonization" following the signing of the interim nuclear deal with Iran, AFP reported.
His comments, written on his Facebook page on Tuesday, caused an uproar in the party, leading party president Roger Colay to condemn his words and demanding him to resign.
Johanne Gurfinkel of CICAD, a Swiss group that monitors anti-Semitism, called on Menoud to “publicly apologize for his statement.” Gurfinkel also asked Menoud’s rightist MCG party to take a stand against “this type of hateful comments.” (h/t Bob Knot)
Swiss alderman seeks ban on Hanukkah ceremony
A city council member from Geneva has warned his municipality against allowing a public Hanukkah event, which he said would violate Swiss law.
“I’m not afraid of being called anti-Semitic, because my request is not directed at a religious community [but at] the authorities, which do not comply with the law by issuing an authorization for this event,” council member Pierre Gauthier is quoted as telling the Tribune de Geneve daily newspaper this week.
BBC does a makeover on Hannukah
Readers celebrating Hanukkah may be rather surprised to learn that, according to that article, that they are in fact marking the rededication of the Temple after the “victory of the Maccabees against the Syrians”.
Where did Lewis glean that curious piece of information? It appears to have been taken from the source to which he links in that section of his article: a page titled ‘Hanukkah’ on the BBC Schools website. There, teachers and students seeking information (presumably factual) from a site which is self-promoted as “educational resources from the BBC” are told that:


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