Saturday, June 21, 2014

From Ian:

Mother of missing teen appeals for world help
The anguished mother of one of the missing Israeli teens believed kidnapped by Hamas on June 12 spoke to CNN Friday, appealing to the world for assistance in bringing the three home.
Rachel Frankel told the American news channel that anyone who’s listening should do anything they can to bring the teens back home. “They are boys, they should be brought back to their families,” she said.
She called on “anybody in the world that’s listening… to do anything they can to get our children back home. We just want them back in our homes.”
“Any decent person would do anything they can to get them back,”
she said.
Chloé Valdary: Hashtag Diplomacy, Or: How We Learned to Stop Worrying And Love Apartheid
Usually, when a foreign government engages in corrupt, pernicious activity — like embezzling billions of dollars per month, promoting racism in its official news media outlets, teaching children that they were born superior to those different from them and denying basic civil liberties to the inhabitants they’re governing — the West responds with, at the very least, righteous indignation.
Yet, in the Middle East, the Palestinian Authority (P.A.) and Hamas, two genocidal racist regimes that preach a doctrine of Arab and Islamic supremacism to their people, are both allowed to perpetuate this same vitriolic racism without consequence. Indeed, the USA in particular has given its approval — in the form of billions of dollars and military training — to the Palestinian Authority, which just recently signed a unity deal with Hamas. This makes the two organizations one and the same.
Palestinian Authority police assault CNN reporter, cameraman during pro-Hamas rally
Members of the Palestinian Authority security services assaulted a CNN reporter and his cameraman on Friday in the West Bank town of Hebron.
Ben Wedeman, the US news network’s correspondent who covers events in Israel and the Palestinian-administered territories, said that he was accosted by PA policeman who ordered that the cameraman cease filming a pro-Hamas demonstration.
Wedeman later told CNN that he came away with “a couple of bruises and a few scratches,” though there was damage to the camera.
Hamas had organized the demonstration as a show of solidarity for Palestinian prisoners languishing in Israeli jails.
“The Palestinian Authority doesn’t like press coverage of pro-Hamas protests, since these demonstrations are always aimed against the PA,” Wedeman told CNN. (h/t MtTB)
CNN reporter roughed up during protest (h/t Yenta Press)




Search for teens focused on wells, caves in Hebron area
Israeli security forces focused their search on Saturday for the three kidnapped teenagers — Eyal Yifrach, Naftali Frankel and Gil-ad Shaar — on water wells and caves in the Hebron area.
On the ninth day of Operation Brother’s Keeper to locate the teens, security forces were joined by fire fighters and police specialized in rescue operations.
Israeli forces are embarked on a massive campaign to locate the trio while simultaneously destroying parts of the Hamas terror infrastructure in the West Bank.
Official: Noose Tightening Around Kidnappers of Israeli Teens
Speaking to Channel 10, the official said that, based on security assessments, the teens were still somewhere in the West Bank and that their abductors were unsuccessful in moving them in the direction of Jordan, Gaza, or Sinai.
Troops were concentrated in large numbers in an area close to Hebron on Friday night, with soldiers searching house-to-house and the area was closed off to outside traffic.
Naftali Frankel, Gil-ad Shaar and Eyal Yifrach were last seen last Thursday night. Several Palestinian groups have taken responsibility of their abduction but the authenticity of the claims are questionable.
UN Envoy Urges 'Israeli Restraint' During Security Operations
The United Nations’ Middle East envoy, Robert Serry, on Friday spoke out against Israel’s operation in Judea and Samaria to locate the three teenagers who were kidnapped by terrorists.
While Serry called for the release of the three, he expressed “deep concern” over Israel’s arrest of wanted terrorists.
“The United Nations understands that these security operations and tightened restrictions on movement throughout and in and out of the West Bank are part of all possible efforts by Israel to bring the three youths home safely. We continue to call for their immediate release,” Serry said in a statement.
“At the same time we call for restraint and expect Israel to carry out the related security operations in compliance with international law and respect for the lives, dignity and livelihoods of Palestinians,” he added.
‘Liberman intends to boot out UN’s Mideast coordinator’
Israel’s Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman intends to kick out the UN’s top Jerusalem-based Middle East official for seeking to transfer tens of millions of dollars of funds to Hamas, Israeli television reported Saturday night.
Liberman will seek the approval of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for the move to expel the UN’s Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, and have him declared persona non grata, Channel 2 said. The report added that Liberman would discuss the move, which could place Israel on a collision course with the world body, with officials at his ministry on Sunday. There was no immediate response from Serry, a Dutch diplomat who has held the post since 2007.
Liberman was reported to have long regarded Serry as biased against Israel, but the specific grounds for the foreign minister’s extraordinary move reportedly relate to ongoing efforts by the UN official to arrange the transfer of funding to Hamas in Gaza.
Hamas slams Palestinian foreign minister for criticism of kidnappings
Following remarks made by Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad al-Malki on Friday – that if Hamas turned out to be behind the kidnapping of the three Israeli youths then the recent reconciliation deal would be jeopardized – has spurred a harsh reaction from the Islamic organization.
Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu-Zuhri said al-Malki's remarks "reflect his dubious positions." He noted that even as the kidnapping story remains an Israeli version of events, the policy of kidnapping soldiers and settlers is "not a crime, but a source of pride for Palestinians." Al-Malki had also said that if they reached the conclusion that Hamas was responsible, "then the president [Mahmoud Abbas] will take drastic decisions."
Hamas vows revenge for IDF West Bank operation
Since the disappearance Thursday, June 12, of Naftali Frankel, Gil-ad Shaar and Eyal Yifrach, thousands of Israeli troops have searched hundreds of locations in the West Bank and arrested more than 300 Palestinians, many from Hamas, including some who were freed in a 2011 prisoner exchange for Hamas-kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.
“This [operation] will not break Hamas. Hamas is too strong a movement for this [operation] to break it. Our popularity will only increase,” said Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuheiri, according to Channel 10.
Hanin Zoabi: IDF operation in West Bank is terrorism
Zoabi then accused the Israeli government and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of using the kidnapping as a pretense to “invade the West Bank” and “kill Palestinians.”
“Netanyahu is not looking for those boys, he’s busy invading the West Bank and killing Palestinians. The main goal of the operation is to destroy Hamas, not to find the boys,” she charged.
“The context of this operation is the Israeli occupation and [Israeli] terror,” she went on. But “the only way to end this kidnapping is to release Palestinian prisoners,” she said
Zoabi proceeded to question whether the kidnapping had actually taken place, asserting that no one really knew for sure that it had.
Lapid Praises Abbas's 'Courageous' Comments on Kidnapping
Finance Minister Yair Lapid on Friday praised Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas for his “courageous” comments on the kidnapping of three teenagers, but also said that Israel had to “break Hamas”.
"Abbas sits in the Arab League and says in Arabic that the abduction is a terrible thing. This is a brave stance, because you could be killed because of it in the Middle East,” Lapid told Channel 2 News in an interview, referring to Abbas’s recent statement condemning the kidnapping and expressing hopes that the three boys will be found alive.
Nicky Campbell ‘contextualises’ kidnapping of Israeli teens on BBC radio 5 live
Nicky Campbell: “Well, at the end of April 2014 – many would point this out – 5,021 Palestinian security detainees and prisoners were held in Israeli prisons – 373 of them from the Gaza Strip. An additional 1,333 Palestinians were held in Israeli Prison Service facilities for being in Israel illegally. You know, the Palestinians would say perhaps these people were in the West Bank illegally. But those figures; there are those that would argue that gives this some perspective.”
Mark Regev: “I beg to disagree. When someone has been convicted and tried through a due process of law, you can’t compare that with a terrorist coming up to a bus stop in the West Bank and kidnapping three youngsters. It’s just no comparison; morally, legally, it just doesn’t compare. We have a situation where there’s a huge operation for these three young men – or boys, I should say – that we’re looking for. We’re very concerned about their lives, we’re very concerned what is happening to them now and what could happen to them in a short time and so of course we’re making a maximum effort to try to find them. Now this is a terrorist kidnapping and I don’t think it can be compared with anything else.
The item ends at that point. Campbell’s attempt to compare the kidnapped Israeli teenagers with convicted terrorists, his claim that the issue of those terrorists convicted by a due process of law “gives…some perspective” to the topic of three youths kidnapped whilst travelling home from school, his odious implication that the teens were in fact to blame for their own abduction because they “were in the West Bank illegally” and that their being forcefully held by parties unknown is comparable to the detention of Palestinian illegal infiltrators into Israel, clearly calls into question the impartiality of this item.
Two more misleading BBC News reports on search for kidnapped teens
Continuing a theme promoted in the previous report, the article opens with a description of the kidnapped youths as “missing”, despite the fact that one of them managed to make a phone call reporting the abduction – a point which the BBC has so far failed to report in any of its articles on the topic.
Yet again, neither of these articles informs BBC audiences of the vast amounts of explosives and weapons uncovered by the IDF during the operation to find the three abducted youths or of the Palestinian celebrations of various descriptions in reaction to the kidnappings.
Also absent from either of these reports is news of the ongoing missile fire from the Gaza Strip targeting civilian communities in southern Israel. On the night of June 18th one of those missiles hit a home in an agricultural community near the border, fortunately causing no injuries.
Legal Insurrection: On The Larry Elder Show talking anti-Israel boycott movement


Jewish Voice for Peace Goes to Washington
Jewish Voice for Peace, the organization whose stated purpose is to drive a wedge through the Jewish community is planning a congressional day of action on June 24. Although JVP is a fringe group that is unrepresentative of mainstream Judaism and Jewish thought, they are claiming to speak in our names.
JVP has asked their minions to encourage Congress to show up at their briefing, in order to gain "a foothold in the beltway" , and to be better able than ever to amplify their voices to key decisionmakers
But JVP doesn't speak for me, or for you. JVP represents an extremist group that is "agnostic" on Israel as the homeland of the Jewish people. They routinely stand hand in hand with those seeking our destructive. They do not deserve attention or legitimacy.
They've provided this script, as full of lies as they are.
BDS'holes Behaving Badly
British BDS holes behaving badly.
Obviously fake profile Palestinian activist proudly damages Israeli Produce in Tesco and brags to her facebook friends about it.
In a world where children go to bed hungry every night, these jerks would prefer to vandalize and waste food, simply because it is imported from Israel.
Some "peace" activists
Dutch Pension Fund PGGM Reportedly Regrets Divesting From Israeli Markets
Dutch pension fund giant PGGM now regrets a decision in January to divest from five Israeli banks, according to Dutch fund managers cited by the Financial Times, as part of a wider review of how pension funds and fund managers now view the campaign to divest from Israeli companies, or international companies active in the West Bank. As recently as March, PGGM’s parent company, PFZW, defended the decision to divest from Israeli banks, but now the fund is said to regret the move.
The FT said: “A Dutch fund manager, who asked to remain anonymous, believes several senior executives at PGGM now regret excluding the five Israeli banks, after the pension fund unwittingly became the champion for the divestment movement.”
The FT said that both ABP, the biggest Dutch pension fund, and Nordea Investment Management, the Nordic fund house, have since announced that they will remain invested in the Israeli banks, contradicting PGGM’s stance. Norway’s government pension fund also said this month that it has over a $1 billion invested in Israeli equities.
Gaza Rockets Pummel Columbus, Georgia (Now Do You Understand?)
COLUMBUS, GA – A rocket fired from a nearby former US army base exploded in a shopping center in Columbus, GA., on Thursday, wounding 70 people and leaving two trapped under rubble, officials said.
(Got your attention, now? Good. So calm down, take a moment to wipe down the screen and keyboard – I’ll wait – and read on…)
While thousands of Israeli troops scour the West Bank for a trio of teens kidnapped by Hamas a week ago, Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip have bombarded southern Israel with rocket fire for the last six nights.
Bet you didn’t hear much about it in the news, right?
PA to pro-Israel Christian: Time to Go
Brian Schrauger, a pro-Zionist Christian writer who has been living in Beit Jala since December was visited earlier this week by officials from the Palestinian Authority and told in no uncertain terms that he should leave the city. He was visited by the PA on Thursday morning.
During his discussion with the PA officials, Schrauger was told that his writings had offended too many people and something bad could happen to him if he stayed. Most of the Palestinians are peace-loving people, but a small minority might do something violent, Schrauger was told during the conversation. People knew where he was staying, he was informed. (h/t Elder of Lobby )
UNESCO: West Bank landscape is endangered heritage
Overruling its own experts, UN cultural agency UNESCO on Friday granted endangered World Heritage status to ancient terraces in the West Bank that are under threat from the Israeli security barrier.
After an emergency nomination by Palestinian officials, UNESCO’s annual World Heritage Committee gathering in Doha voted to grant the protected status to the agricultural community of Battir, which straddles the Green Line just south of Jerusalem and where Israel plans to erect part of the barrier.
The granting of the status is likely to boost the efforts of local residents locked in a high-profile court battle to change the route of the barrier.
Gaza Terror Groups Warn Residents: Beware of Israeli Intelligence
Terror groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad (IJ) are cautioning Gaza residents to be alert for signs of infiltration attempts by Israeli intelligence–gathering units.
“If you are contacted by a ‘foreign entity’ or get a call from an unknown number, don’t answer the call,” read a flyer being distributed in the coastal enclave, suggesting that residents “alert Jihad security forces immediately.”
PA Foreign Minister: Abbas Will Prevent Third Intifada
Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas will prevent a third Arab intifada (uprising), the PA’s foreign minister declared on Friday, speaking to Reuters in an interview.
"I can assure you that as long as President Abu Mazen is in charge, there will be no third Intifada," said the minister, Riad al-Malki, referring to Abbas by his nom de guerre.
Al-Malki further told Reuters that Israel’s operation in Judea and Samaria following the kidnapping of three Jewish youths a week ago was unacceptable. Nevertheless, he said, Abbas would continue assisting Israel in an effort to end the crisis.
Hamas official: 'We will continue to make rockets, dig tunnels'
Khalil al-Haya, a senior Hamas official spoke during a funeral for five member of the organization, saying Hamas and its military wing, the al-Qassam brigades, will continue to dig tunnels and make rockets - even cross the ocean - "until we defeat our enemy."
The official added that the organization will continue "in the way of resistance and death of heroes," adding, "the threats of our enemy will not deter us!"
Saddam Hussein’s In-Law and Head of Baath Party May Be Behind Al Qaeda in Iraq
Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri was Saddam’s former In-law, as his daughter was married to Uday Hussein, and became his successor as head of the Baath Party. If there’s anyone waiting to step into Saddam’s place, it’s al-Douri.
Al-Douri was rumored to have been a key figure behind the Sunni insurgency against US forces. Back then he was supposed to be in Syria, then Qatar, which has become a hub for supporting Islamic terrorism.
Now he’s back in a very big and public way. And the Baathists may have given ISIS the professional edge it needed. (h/t Elder of Lobby)
Iran rejects 'excessive demands' in nuclear talks with six powers
Iran told six big powers on Friday it would not accept their "excessive demands" after the latest talks on lifting sanctions against Tehran in exchange for curbs on its nuclear work yielded no breakthrough, with a deadline for a deal just a month away.
U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman said it was Iran that would need to shift its position: "What is still unclear is if Iran is really ready and willing to take all the necessary steps to assure the world that its nuclear programme is and will remain exclusively peaceful."
The stakes are high in the Vienna talks, which will resume on July 2, as the powers seek a negotiated solution to a more-than-decade-long standoff with Iran that has raised fears of a new Middle East war and a regional nuclear arms race.
Black Jews in France foresaw Dieudonne fiasco
Although months have passed since the high-profile Dieudonne affair, the scars are still fresh in the memory of French Jews. But the black comedian’s arguably anti-Semitic salute was felt above all in the small black Jewish community.
Led by Guershon N’duwa, president of the 250-family Black-Jewish Federation in Paris, black Jews have recently begun expressing their bitterness in the media.
N’duwa was aware of Dieudonne’s controversial shows since the early 2000s, he said, arguing that the performer’s latest anti-Semitic diatribes were not surprising. The black Jewish community repeatedly tried – in vain – to warn Jewish authorities, N’duwa said.

Jewish demonstrators protest Argentina-Iran World Cup game
Dozens of Jewish demonstrators gathered for a minute of silence Saturday before the Argentina-Iran World Cup game, demanding justice for a still unsolved bombing attack against a Buenos Aires Jewish center 20 years ago that left 85 dead and for which Iran has been blamed.
Demonstrators wore black T-shirts marking the event and held banners reading slogans such as “20 years without justice” and “a red card for lack of justice.” They recited the names of the 85 victims of the bombing against the Argentine-Israeli Mutual Association, AMIA for short, and then held their heads in silence at 12:59 — exactly one minute before Argentina and Iran kicked off their Group F match in Belo Horizonte.
105-year-old Chinese synagogue reopens
The Chinese city of Harbin reopened a 105-year-old synagogue to the public after an extensive restoration.
The Main Synagogue on Harbin’s Tongjiang Street was reopened last week after 12 months of renovations at a festive ceremony featuring a performance by the String Quartet of the State Glazunovs Conservatory from the city of Petrozavodsk in Russia, the Xinhua news agency reported.
In 19th and 20th centuries, thousands of Jews immigrated to the northeastern city of Harbin to escape persecution in Europe and Czarist Russia, establishing there one of the largest Jewish communities in the Far East.
Story of Moroccan Jewry Now Available Online
When Oren Kosansky stumbled upon the Rabat Geniza in 2005, it was nothing but a collection of books and papers stashed in a synagogue in Rabat, Morocco. Kosansky, an anthropology professor at Lewis and Clark College doing research in Rabat, had unknowingly entered the synagogue’s geniza, or storeroom for sacred documents—which, according to Jewish tradition, cannot be discarded without a ritual burial—and found documents detailing centuries of Jewish life in Morocco.
While Jewish law says only sacred documents must be collected for burial, communities often stored all kinds of documents together without distinguishing the sacred from the mundane. The Cairo Geniza, discovered in the late 1800s, featured everything from liturgical texts to shipping orders. Kosansky described the Rabat Geniza’s contents as providing “the collective library of the Rabat Jewish community at the end of the 20th century.”
Kosansky got permission from the synagogue to remove some of the documents from the genizah, sorting through the documents and donating those he felt contained historical and cultural relevance to the Jewish Museum of Casablanca, Morocco. The collection at the museum consists of documents both sacred and secular from the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries; items range from canonical Jewish texts to community records and public notices.
In memory of Col. Ramon
When I opened up Google this morning, I saw a refreshing break from the barrage of World Cup related Google doodles. As the daily doodle is based on region, today shows an astronaut, writing in his diary while observing space from his Google-shaped windows. The sleeve of his spacesuit bears an Israeli flag.
Today would have been Col. Ilan Ramon’s 60th birthday. In 2003, he perished along with six other astronauts, when the Space Shuttle Columbia disintegrated upon it’s re-entry to the Earth’s atmosphere somewhere over Texas.


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