Sunday, July 19, 2015

From Ian:

Netanyahu: Khamenei's words prove nuclear deal will not stop Iranian terror machine
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Sunday that those who thought signing a nuclear deal with Iran would cause the Islamic Republic to temper its extremism were proven wrong over the weekend when Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei vowed to continue opposition to the United States and its Middle East policies.
Speaking at the weekly cabinet meeting, Netanyahu said, "If anyone thought that excessive concessions to Iran would lead it to change its policies, they received a decisive answer this weekend with the aggressive and adversarial speech by Iran's leader Khamenei."
The prime minister said that "the Iranians are not even trying to hide the fact that they will use the hundreds of millions that they will get from this deal in order to arm their terror machine, and they say outright that they will continue their fight against the United States and its allies, Israel being chief among them."
In a speech at a Tehran mosque Saturday, punctuated by chants of "Death to America" and "Death to Israel," Khamenei said he wanted politicians to examine the agreement to ensure national interests were preserved, as Iran would not allow the disruption of its revolutionary principles or defensive abilities.
An arch conservative with the last word on high matters of state, Khamenei repeatedly used the phrase "whether this text is approved or not," implying the accord has yet to win definitive backing from Iran's fictionalized political establishment.
Nine things Khamenei hates about you
The following are key points from the speech delivered on July 18, 2015, by Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, at Eid al-Fitr prayers in Tehran. The full translated text of the speech is available here.
1. Praise for Iranian calls of “Death to Israel” and “Death to America”:
2. Conditional backing for last week’s nuclear deal with the P5+1 powers, and for President Rouhani and the team that negotiated it:
3. A pledge of ongoing support to regional allies, including the Palestinians, against their enemies:
4. No warming of relations with America, and no change in opposition to what America emblemizes:
5. Denial of Hezbollah terrorism, and accusation of Israeli terrorism:
6. Derision of the US government’s account of the nuclear deal:
7. A vow that Obama will never prevail against Iran:
8. Boasting that Iran has forced the West to accept its nuclear industry:
9. America will lose should war break out:
  Steinitz slams Kerry claim that better Iran deal was ‘fantasy’
National Infrastructure Minister Yuval Steinitz on Sunday slammed remarks by US Secretary of State John Kerry, who over the weekend dismissed as “fantasy” the claim — raised by Israel and domestic US critics — that it was possible to have penned a better nuclear deal than the one signed by world powers and Iran last week.
“To the best of our professional assessment, these remarks are baseless,” Steinitz, who is Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s point man on the Iranian nuclear threat, told Army Radio on Sunday.
“One can easily think of a better agreement in which, as is the international practice in such cases, Iran must reveal everything it has done in the past and not simply answer questions of procedure, which really ignores the issue,” he said.
Speaking on US television Friday, Kerry insisted that Israel that “will be safer” under the terms of the nuclear deal, and that the concept of a more stringent nuclear deal was unrealistic.
I’ve Read the Nuclear Deal, Mr. President, and It’s Awful
First off it’s worth noting that Energy Secretary and MIT nuclear physicist Ernest Moniz said back in April that to be effective the deal would have to include “anytime, anywhere,” inspections, so Obama’s explanation about why 24 days notice is now good enough fails to convince me.
I want Moniz to explain why he changed his position on this AND why 24 days is now acceptable. I would like Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes to explain why he walked back his comments on requiring “anytime, anywhere” inspections.
And I want a more convincing explanation than negotiator Wendy Sherman’s excuse that the term was just a “rhetorical flourish.” (If that was a rhetorical flourish, I’m curious how many other administration comments about the nuclear deal were rhetorical flourishes.)
But in that paragraph, Obama limits the grounds of questioning the deal to whether the language of the deal is insufficient to prevent Iran from achieving a nuclear breakout over the course of the deal.
Here’s where I have problem. Even if the agreement was airtight, and I doubt that it is, there’s a matter of the administration’s behavior during the Joint Plan of Action, which was agreed to in November 2013. The problem is that the Obama administration has acted as “Iran’s attorney” covering for Iran’s violations of the previous agreement.

If you really want to bomb Iran, take the deal
Iran hawks are already out in force denouncing the announced nuclear deal between the United States and Iran. They worry that it takes the military option off the table. But the reality is just the opposite – anyone who supports the United States bombing Iran are well advised to jump on this deal.
I have spent a large portion of the past decade assessing military options against Iran’s program and the costs, benefits and likely consequences of the use of force. I have previously argued that any attack must answer the question of the end game: what is the long-term outcome of military force? Taking this deal, if it is implemented as currently outlined, not only increases the benefits and reduces the costs of military action should Iran attempt breakout, it also helps answer the end game question.
There are three main ways the deal improves the benefits of potential military action. First, one of the main objections to using force is that after Iran is bombed it can reconstitute its program, primarily by building new centrifuges for enrichment. Critics of force often argue Iran could reconstitute quickly because the United States lacks detailed knowledge of the supply chain that would allow Iran to build new centrifuges.
The deal very specifically addresses this objection in multiple points. It calls for inspectors to continuously monitor Iran’s supply chain, emphasizing “Iran’s centrifuge manufacturing base will be frozen and under continuous surveillance.” Further, Iran will only be allowed to procure nuclear components through a transparent and dedicated procurement channel. From an intelligence perspective this as an unparalleled opportunity to collect, analyze and develop targeting databases on this crucial element of Iran’s ability to reconstitute its nuclear program. A bombing campaign that effectively destroyed the centrifuge manufacturing base would cripple Iran’s ability to reconstitute for years, perhaps even a decade or more. This opportunity alone should make Iran hawks gleeful. (h/t Serious Black)
Opening the ‘gates of evil’
Among pro-Iranian elements, such as President Bashar Assad of Syria and Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah, the news of the deal has, predictably, been met with jubilation. Assad described the agreement as a “historic achievement” and a “great victory.”
Among Sunni elements opposed to the advance of Iran, concerns have focused less on the nuclear elements of the deal – that is, whether it will effectively halt Iran’s march toward the bomb. Instead, attention has centered on the deal’s implications for Iran’s push for hegemony in the Middle East, and its interference in and subversion of regional states as part of this effort.
An editorial by Salman Aldosary, in the Saudi- owned Asharq al-Awsat newspaper, summed up these concerns in the following passage: “Western governments will be under great pressure to make the deal succeed and therefore turn a blind eye to many of Iran’s destabilizing policies as well as Tehran’s blatant interference in the domestic affairs of its neighbors. Moreover, the West will also have to neglect Tehran’s support of extremist militias, such as Iraq’s Popular Mobilization forces, also known as the Hashd al-Shaabi, that have gradually become almost part of Iraq’s military. Iran has established a policy based on the equation of fighting terrorism with terrorism amid deafening silence from the West.
“Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states can only welcome the nuclear deal, which in itself is supposed to close the gates of evil that Iran had opened in the region. However, the real concern is that the deal will open other gates of evil, gates which Iran mastered knocking at for years even while Western sanctions were still in place.”
'Iran nuclear deal opens window for Israel to join new Mideast order'
The former head of Israel’s vaunted intelligence agency Mossad said on Sunday that the nuclear deal struck between Iran and Western powers offers Jerusalem an opening to join “a new Middle Eastern order.”
Shabtai Shavit, who served as Mossad director from 1989 to 1996, told US radio broadcaster Aaron Klein that Israel now has even more impetus to make common cause with Sunni Arab countries who are nervous over the West’s overtures toward their common nemesis - Iran.
“I believe that in the present time there is a widow of opportunity for Israel in order to try and pursue a new order in the Middle East,” Shavit said.
The former spy chief said that Sunni states like Egypt, Jordan, and the Gulf sheikhdoms share Israel’s suspicions about Iran, giving the Jewish state a de facto membership in the moderate camp.
“Iran is considered to be the adversary of all those countries that you mentioned, of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and the Emirates,” Shavit said. “In other words, the more moderate Sunni Islam. And we are a member in this same camp.”
"We have here a unique opportunity to try and create a coalition of moderate Arab countries headed by Saudi Arabia and Israel, both in order to address the Iranian potential nuclear capability in the future and also in order to create a new order in the Middle East," he said.
Iran deal is not worthy of Nobel recognition
Moments after it was announced that the United States and its allies had reached a nuclear deal with Iran, the drums began beating for a Nobel Peace Prize. Carl Bildt, the former Swedish prime minister, tweeted happily:
I think the work of the Nobel Committee of the Norwegian Parliament this year just got much easier.
On Wednesday, a director of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, an influential think tank with ties to the Nobel organization, recommended that the 2016 prize be awarded to Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.
The Vienna deal is a capitulation to one of the worst regimes on earth. Far from requiring the Iranians to dismantle their illicit nuclear program, the accord leaves almost all of it intact. In exchange for little more than a promise to delay its development of nuclear warheads, Tehran is rewarded with $150 billion in sanctions relief and, within a few years, the lifting of the UN embargo on conventional weapons and missile sales. The Islamic Republic is the world’s foremost state sponsor of terrorism, yet nothing in the agreement requires any change in its notorious behavior. And despite the regime’s long record of treaty violations and deceit, the deal enables it to stall for almost a month before complying with a demand for access by inspectors — hardly the “anytime, anywhere, 24/7” inspections that the Obama administration had claimed it would insist on.
The White House wanted to sign a deal; Iran’s rulers wanted to ensure their path to the bomb and nuclear legitimacy. Both got what they wanted. The consequences will be a nuclear arms race in the Middle East, more Iranian terrorism and subversion, and a greater likelihood of war.
A Nobel Peace Prize — for that?
It wouldn’t be the first time.
Congress Must Ditch the Corker Bill and Treat the Iran Deal as Either a Treaty or Proposed Legislation to be Voted Up or Down
It is time to end the Kabuki theater. The Corker Bill and its ballyhooed 60-day review process that undermines the Constitution is a sideshow. If you scrutinize President Obama’s Iran nuclear deal, you find that the president ignores the existence of the Corker process. So should Congress.
Obama’s Iran deal also ignores the existence of Congress itself – at least, of the United States Congress. As I’ve previously detailed (piggy-backing on characteristically perceptive analysis by AEI’s Fred Kagan), the deal does expressly defer to the Iranian Congress, conceding that key Iranian duties are merely provisional until the jihadist regime’s parliament, the Majlis, has an opportunity to review them as required by Iran’s sharia constitution. The United States Constitution, however, is a nullity in the eyes and actions of this imperial White House.
Enough is enough – way beyond enough.
The Congress, particularly the Senate, has not only a clear justification but a constitutional duty to scrap the legally defective and, now, factually nigh-irrelevant Corker review process, codified as the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015. I am proud of having been an adamant opponent of the Corker Bill since it was first proposed, but that is neither here nor there at this point. Even supporters of the Corker Bill must now see that the legislation anticipated and is designed to address an international agreement that is fundamentally different from the one the Obama administration has struck with America’s enemies.
Obama’s Iran deal has thoroughly marginalized the Corker Bill. Congress should treat it that way, too.
Obama to Push Iran Deal on ‘Daily Show’ Tuesday
Jon Stewart will interview President Obama for the last time on next Tuesday’s “Daily Show.” It will be Obama’s seventh appearance on Stewart’s show, third as president.
Obama was also one of the last guests on David Letterman’s Show in May, and on The final Colbert Report last December.
Stewart’s last show will be on August 6, and Trevor Noah, his replacement, will start hosting the show on September 28.
Bloomberg speculated that the president will take advantage of his appearance to push the Iran deal.
Back in March, Stewart described Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech against the Iran deal, before a joint session of Congress the day before, as a “festival of slights,” and ” the State of the Union address the Republicans wanted, delivered by the leader they wished they had.”
Heady After Iran 'Success', EU Ministers Turn to Israel-PA Talks
Hot on the heels of her success in helping to broker a deal between the P5+1 and Iran, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini is now planning to turn her efforts to getting the EU actively involved in favor of a two-state solution in Israel.
So reports European Jewish Press, quoting an "EU source."
The 28 EU Foreign Ministers are planning to meet Monday in Brussels, and the long stalemated diplomatic process between Israel and the Palestinian Authority will be on the table. Four months ago, the EU named a new special envoy for the Middle East peace talks, Fernando Gentilini, who will also be present at Monday’s meeting.
‘’The discussion will be much deeper than last time,’’ a senior EU official said, or warned, this past Friday, ahead of the Foreign Affairs Council meeting. ‘’[The ministers] will examine how the EU can strengthen its contribution to the peace process, particularly to the two-state solution, and play a more important role,’’ the official said.
Many in Israel believe that an actual solution leading to acceptance of Israel as a Jewish state and true peace is currently impossible, and that therefore the status quo is better than any other option. They cite as proof past peace initiatives, all of which failed and brought increased Palestinian terrorism in their wake.
Elliott Abrams: There goes the ICC
The International Criminal Court was an experiment. From the beginning, its potential ‎success was threatened, as all United Nations-linked bodies are, by the danger of falling ‎into U.N. Human Rights Council-like obsessions with Israel. Such actions would delegitimize ‎the new ICC, certainly for Americans and anyone else taking a fair look at its activities.‎
The court's first prosecutor, the Argentine jurist Luis Moreno Ocampo, was well aware of ‎this danger. He resisted it, whatever his personal views, in the interest of building the ‎credibility of the institution. Same for his successor, the second and current prosecutor, the ‎Gambian lawyer Fatou Bensouda. When various groups tried to get the ICC to take on the ‎case of the Mavi Marmara (the Turkish vessel that tried to break the Israeli sea blockade ‎of Gaza in 2010, with a resulting battle in which nine were killed), she looked into it and said no.‎
Such a decision by the prosecutor has never been overridden in the ICC's history -- until ‎now. And of course in a case involving Israel. In a 2-1 ruling, the "Pre-Trial Chamber" set ‎aside her decision and said the prosecutor has to move forward with the case.‎
US warns Israel against 'provocative' plan to raze Palestinian village
The United States on Friday warned Israel against following through with a planned demolition of a tiny Palestinian village in the South Hebron Hills.
Israeli authorities say that many of the structures in the village of Sussiya were built illegally, but the US State Department said that razing the buildings would constitute a “provocative” act.
“We’re closely following developments in the village of Sussiya in the West Bank, and we strongly urge the Israeli authorities to refrain from carrying out any demolitions in the village,” said State Department spokesman John Kirby. “Demolition of this Palestinian village or of parts of it, and evictions of Palestinians from their homes would be harmful and provocative.”
Human rights groups say that if Israel goes through with the demolition, it would force the more than 300 residents of Sussiya to leave.
Hamas plot to attack Israel, PA in West Bank foiled by mass arrests
Hamas reportedly planned to carry out a series of terrorist attacks against Israel and Palestinian Authority in the near future, but the plot was scuppered because of the arrest of over 250 Hamas members by PA security in the West Bank, a Palestinian official told The Times of Israel.
The Hamas cells planned to kidnap Israelis, fire at vehicles on main arteries in the West Bank, launch attacks on IDF checkpoints and assassinate senior PA security officials.
Behind the plot was a cadre of veteran Hamas fighters known as the “West Bank office,” comprising former convicted terrorists from the West Bank who were released from Israeli prisons to the Gaza Strip in the 2011 Gilad Shalit deal. The cells were managed by senior Hamas official Saleh al-Arouri.
The aim, the PA official said, was to deteriorate ties between Israel and the PA, and to cause Israel to make a drastic move which would inflame the West Bank.
The PA confiscated funds in possession of the Hamas operatives and captured weapons and explosives.
'Documentary Shows Rising Islamic State Influence Among Israeli Muslims'
The month-long Muslim fast of Ramadan is behind us, having ended with the traditional Eid al-Fitr feast.
Many people will not see another Ramadan after the Islamic State unleashed a wave of terror attacks across the globe during the fast.
Some of the attacks predicted by the Islamic State at the outset of Ramadan didn’t materialize, such as the attack on the United States.
Another country that was on the ISIS list of targets was Israel; but Ramadan came and went and the predicted large-scale attack didn’t take place. Israel did, however, witness a surge in Palestinian terror during Ramadan.
Tzvi Yehezkieli, the Middle East expert of Israeli TV Channel 10, investigated what the relation is between incitement in Israeli and Palestinian mosques and the increase in terror attacks during Ramadan. He came to the conclusion that the influence of the Islamic State ideology is growing in Israeli mosques and discovered that the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount has been turned into an Islamist bulwark dominated by Hamas, the Islamic State, and Hizb ut-Tahrir.
His documentary, titled “Every Muslim Was Born to Become a Jihadist,” was broadcast on Channel 10 two days ago.
Court denies equal work conditions for Palestinians in West Bank legal no-mans-land
In a ruling with massive implications for Israeli-Palestinian work relations as well as possible diplomatic consequences, the National Labor Court on Sunday denied three Palestinians who work in an Israeli industry near Tulkarm equal work conditions to Israelis, deciding that the location is essentially a legal no-man's land because of its special circumstances.
The core of the debate, which has come up in parallel cases, was whether Israeli law applied to the Palestinians since they have Israeli employers, or 1967 Jordanian law, since the industrial workspaces are in Area C of the West Bank.
Under international law, an “occupying country” (in the legal sense, absent the political debate, occupying just means a country that has conquered territory) is supposed to apply the law that already existed to the local population that comes under its rule.
Since Israel conquered the West Bank from Jordan in 1967, Israel has always taken the position that 1967 Jordanian law applies to Palestinians in a number of areas of life.
But in 2007, the High Court of Justice issued a major ruling that Palestinians who lived in the West Bank but worked for Israelis in the Givat Ze’ev settlement would get the same minimum level work conditions as Israelis in terms of pay, vacation days, work days and termination pay.
The three Palestinians along with Combatants for Peace and the Wac-Maan – Workers Advice Center wanted to apply that 2007 ruling to this case.
Poll of U.S. Muslims Reveals Ominous Levels Of Support For Shariah, Jihad
In light of the murder of five American military personnel in Chattanooga last week at the hands of presumed jihadist Mohammad Youssuf Abdulazeez, it's worth revisiting a worrying poll of American Muslims released last month by Frank Gaffney's Center for Security Policy (CSP). That survey of 600 Muslims revealed that "significant minorities embrace supremacist notions that could pose a threat to America’s security and its constitutional form of government."
As CSP notes,
The numbers of potential jihadists among the majority of Muslims who appear not to be sympathetic to such notions raise a number of public policy choices that warrant careful consideration and urgent debate, including: the necessity for enhanced surveillance of Muslim communities; refugee resettlement, asylum and other immigration programs that are swelling their numbers and density; and the viability of so-called “countering violent extremism” initiatives that are supposed to stymie radicalization within those communities.
According to the survey, a slim majority (51%) agreed that “Muslims in America should have the choice of being governed according to shariah.” That's 51% as opposed to the 86%-2% margin of respondents from the broader population in an earlier national survey who held that "shariah should not displace the U.S. Constitution."
Again, a slim majority (51%) of U.S. Muslims polled also believe either that they should have the choice of American or shariah courts, or that they should have their own tribunals to apply shariah. Only 39% of those polled said that Muslims in the U.S. should be subject to American courts.
Respondents from the national survey believe by a margin of 92%-2% that Muslims should be subject to the same courts as other citizens here in the U.S.
Saudi Arabia says it broke up IS network, arrests 431 members
Saudi authorities announced Saturday that they have broken up an organization linked to the Islamic State group and have so far arrested 431 of its members, mostly Saudis.
Authorities have “managed over the past few weeks to destroy an organization made of a cluster of cells, which is linked to the terrorist Daesh organization,” the interior ministry said, using the Arabic acronym for IS.
Network members were engaged in a “plot managed from areas of unrest abroad, with the aim of sowing sectarian sedition and spreading chaos,” the ministry said.
The cells were involved in several attacks and plots, including the deadly suicide bombings that hit Shiite mosques in the kingdom’s Eastern Province, it said.
The Islamic State, which considers Shiites heretics, has claimed responsibility for the attacks.
IS controls swathes of neighboring Iraq and Syria, and has claimed widespread abuses including the beheading of foreign hostages.
Watch: Jews Lead Israel Boycott on US Campuses
Channel 2, Israel's most widely viewed television channel, devoted an in-depth report on its main weekend newscast to the American Jews who play a prominent role in the movement that calls to boycott Israel and end security assistance to it.
Anchorman and reporter Danny Kushmaro interviewed Candace Graff, a Harvard graduate and activist in Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), who told him: "After spending a year in Israel before I started college, I've never felt less Jewish. I've never felt less connected to my religion than when I was in Israel. Because my Jewish identity is about justice, freedom and equality.”
A shaky video showed mostly female members of JVP entering the offices of Friends of the IDF and reading out names of Palestinians killed in Gaza, reportedly in a protest against US assistance to Israel.
Graff said that she boycotts all Israeli products, including those made in Tel Aviv. “There is no separation between the Occupation and the economy of Israel,” she explained. A second activist, Brandon Davis, confirmed to a shocked Kushmaro that he has no problem with several million Palestinians entering Israel as part of the “Right of Return.”.
Facebook Redraws Israel's Borders
Facebook not only considers Jewish areas of Judea and Samaria (Shomron), but also parts of Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, as outside of Israel, according to exposé published Sunday.
The social network updated its advertising system recently allowing editors of popular pages the chance to gear their posts toward a specific geographical location.
However, a great deal of the State of Israel is not considered within Israel's borders, according to Channel 2.
Areas within the desired country are usually shown 'highlighted', whereas areas outside that country's borders are greyed out, they explained.
Channel 2 tested the new system to aim posts in eastern neighborhoods of Jerusalem, for example, and saw that the rest of the State of Israel became automatically "greyed out." The same happened during any attempt to aim posts toward areas over 1949 Armistice lines or in the Golan Heights.
The news site notes that, as of right now, the posting system merely becomes burdensome; whereas choosing "Israel" should aim the posts to all of the State of Israel automatically, separate settings are required to specify areas Facebook apparently deems as outside its borders.
Telegraph Places Al-Aqsa Mosque in “Jerusalem, Palestine”
According to the Telegraph, the mosque is located in “Jerusalem, Palestine.”
The text is also problematic:
Jerusalem’s Old City is currently under Israeli control, and worship at the Noble Sanctuary is limited to Muslims only, but tension between Palestinians and Israelis mean that the former find themselves denied access to the site by the latter’s security forces.
Stating that the Old City is “currently under Israeli control” infers a potentially temporary situation. The reality is that the Old City is an integral part of Jerusalem, which is Israel’s capital city and under its sovereignty.
The Al-Aqsa Mosque itself is clearly a Muslim holy site. The Noble Sanctuary, however, is the Muslim name for the Temple Mount, the holiest site in Judaism. The Telegraph has therefore addressed more than just the mosque. That being the case, surely it should be mentioned that the only people who are denied the right to worship on the Temple Mount are Jews.
In addition, while there are restrictions sometimes placed on Palestinians concerning access to the site, this is wholly dependent on security considerations at any given time and not a blanket ban. Muslims have absolute freedom of worship in their holy places.
It appears that geography isn’t the only thing that the Telegraph is confused about.
What Part of “Death to Israel” Is Confusing?
HonestReporting’s Yarden Frankl joins Daniel Seaman and Daniela Traub, filling in for Josh Hasten, to review this week’s media coverage of Israel.
Frankl takes on the BBC’s assertion that Iran no longer threatens Israel and asks why the New York Times is acting like a cheerleader for the Iran deal while other media are more skeptical.
Channel 4 presenter Jon Snow (@jonsnowC4) is clueless in Gaza
Channel 4 News presenter Jon Snow was among the many foreign journalists who visited Gaza on the one year anniversary of the 2014 summer war. In one of his video segments on his visit, titled ‘Gaza one year on: The Rising Jihadst Threat‘, suggesting that the Israeli blockade was radicalizing the population, he visits the following building destroyed by Israeli forces during the war.
Of course, if Snow (the investigative reporter) would have so much as Googled the terms “al-Basha tower” and “Gaza” he could have easily learned that – in addition to “brilliant IT startups” – the building reportedly housed offices used by Hamas and a propaganda outlet for Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).

Maureen Dowd, "Hi-Ho, Lone Ranger": More Anti-Semitism Courtesy of The New York Times
I am so sick of New York Times op-eds alluding to Jewish money, Jewish power and Jewish control over government.
Well, it is now July 2015, and Maureen Dowd has just one-upped (one-downed?) Cohen and Friedman. Dowd concludes her latest New York Times op-ed entitled "Hi-Ho, Lone Ranger" by informing us:
"Obama has always radiated the smug air that he was right and any other positions were illogical. But it is gratifying when aimed at the obnoxious Republicans and more obnoxious Bibi.
Republicans were never going to go for the Iran deal. Their apocalyptic statements were written well in advance and they just had to hit 'Send' followed by a fund-raising appeal to Jewish donors.
Obama is gambling that he won’t hurt his party and that in 10 years Iran will be a better member of the international community. But he can’t do worse as an oracle of the Middle East than the conservative warmongers who ravaged the region."

Notice that Dowd directly refers to "Jewish donors" and does not even bother pointing an accusing finger at the "Israel lobby" or AIPAC. No mention by Dowd that billionaire George Soros, a Jew, is lobbying hard for the nuclear deal with Iran through the various "progressive" organizations that he funds, e.g., J Street and MoveOn. Also no mention by Dowd that the nuclear deal was negotiated by Jewish social worker Wendy Sherman, who "aced" the nuclear negotiations with North Korea. And no mention by Dowd that Obama had the overwhelming support of American Jews in both 2008 and 2012.
Author Dreads to Think What Holocaust Survivor Parents Would Say About Rise in Antisemitsm
“I dread to think what my parents would say if they were alive today and saw the rise of antisemitism again,” Jewish author Agnes Grunwald-Spier, 70, told the U.K.’s Ham & High.
Grunwald-Spier was born in Hungary in 1944 and now lives in the mostly Orthodox Jewish neighborhood of Golders Green in northern London, a neighborhood that was recently targeted by neo fascists for an antisemitic march.
Grunwald-Spier’s mother was spared from deportation to the Auschwitz concentration camp during World War II but the family was later sent to the Budapest Ghetto. She was a baby in the Holocaust and said she was very fortunate to survive with her parents, though they were “bitterly scarred” by Nazi atrocities.
“I don’t have any siblings because my father wouldn’t bring any more children into this world after his experiences as a forced laborer,” said Grunwald-Spier, who is a founder trustee of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust.
The author of The Other Schindlers: Why Some People Chose to Save Jews in the Holocaust, said the problem of prejudice and intolerance against Jews has “not gone away,” and it is an issue she would like to see reported on.
Remains of Holocaust Victims Found at French Forensic Institute
Remains belonging to victims of Nazi anatomy professor August Hirt have been found at a forensic medicine institute in eastern France, local authorities said in a statement Saturday, according to AFP.
Eighty-six Jews had been sent to the gas chambers in 1943 and their bodies brought to the eastern French city of Strasbourg, then under Nazi occupation and where Hirt was assembling a macabre collection of corpses.
The bodies, some intact, others dismembered or burned, were found in November 1944 after the liberation of Strasbourg, in bins filled with distilled alcohol. They were then buried in a common grave in 1946 following autopsies.
But on July 9, historian Raphael Toledano found that some remains were still lying undiscovered at the forensic medicine institute more than 70 years on.
Along with the current director of the institute Jean-Sebastien Raul, the historian managed to identify several of the body parts, including "a jar containing skin fragments of a gas chamber victim."
The remains found at the institute had actually been preserved by a forensic professor from Strasbourg's medicine faculty, Camille Simonin, as part of an investigation into Hirt's crimes.
How Nazi guard Oskar Gröning escaped justice in 1947 for crimes at Auschwitz
Oskar Gröning, the convicted Auschwitz death camp guard, escaped prosecution in Britain nearly 70 years ago because of the United States’ desire to fight the cold war, according to newly discovered documents.
Researchers in London combing through the archives of the UN War Crimes Commission (UNWCC) have discovered that charges against him were being prepared just as the entire judicial process against Germans accused of committing war crimes was closed down after political intervention from above.
Gröning escaped justice until this week when the former SS bookkeeper at Auschwitz, now aged 94, was finally found guilty of being an accessory to the murder of 300,000 people and sentenced to four years in prison. It is likely to be one of the last Holocaust trials.
Although he did not kill anyone while working at the camp in Nazi-occupied Poland during the second world war, prosecutors argued that by sorting banknotes taken from the trainloads of arriving Jews he helped support a regime responsible for mass murder.
Gröning had admitted moral guilt but said it was up to the court to decide whether he was legally guilty. The trial raised the issue of whether those deemed to be small cogs in the Nazi machinery, but who did not actively participate in the killing of 6 million Jews, were guilty of crimes.
Israel tech firms are taking the lead in mobile health
Mobile health, or mHealth, is a fast-growing global industry that uses mobile technology to improve the practice of medicine. And Israel is at the cutting edge of that technology.
The industry in Israel has seen a growth spurt in recent years, with 28 digital health companies established in 2014, up from 17 the year before, according to mHealth Israel.
Mobile health is all about the apps – enabling people to interact while on the move with websites and online databases that help both with the maintenance of health, such as fitness apps that guide users to proper exercise and diet as well as apps that help individuals with health problems, including diabetics.
Levi Shapiro, lead organizer of the mHealth Israel Conference, said Israel is an ideal setting for mobile health technologies due to its start-up culture and healthcare system.
“Israel has also had electronic medical records for 24 years,” he noted, giving start-ups a huge trove of historical data to tap into.
Next robot revolution — a virtual bartender?
After the robot revolution of recent years — in which machines have taken over much of the rote manufacturing and service work that a generation ago was done by humans — a new wave of robots is set to take over more “intelligent” occupations, many experts believe.
Lawyers, accountants — and even bartenders — aren’t immune to being replaced by a machine.
For professionals in the latter category, the future is now, with the development by a group of Technion students of a computerized, robotic bartender, capable of mixing drinks using precise recipes, with just the right twist of lemon or lime to satisfy any taste.
It can’t, however, listen to the gripes and sorrows of barflies, in the way that a “real” bartender could — at least, not yet.
The RoboDrink machine was designed by Michal Friedman, Yoav Mizrahi and Zorik Gechman, under the guidance of Prof. Yossi Gil; tutorial teachers Boris van Sosin and Marina Minkin; and Dr. Nir Levy, academic relations director at Microsoft, using the open-source Arduino platform.
Somewhat like a vending machine for mixed drinks, the RoboDrink, in its basic form, holds eight bottles that are the ingredients for dozens of cocktails, martinis, and other mixed drinks, according to Friedman.
Meet Lady Gaga’s Israeli shoe designer
Shoe designer Kobi Levi was working in his design studio in 2011 when he got an email that he was sure couldn’t be real.
It was from a studio executive working on Lady Gaga’s newest video — a raunchy, otherworldly clip to accompany her pop anthem “Born This Way.” The studio wanted to order several pairs of Levi’s custom-made “double” boots for the singer to wear in the video, a request that Levi — once he determined that the email was indeed real and not a practical joke from his friends — was happy to oblige.
But there was one problem: Levi had no idea how much to charge for the shoes. That’s because, despite spending the past 14 years furiously designing and executing fantastical footwear in a side room of his snug apartment here, he had never sold a single pair.
A lot has changed since then.
Weizmann Institute of Science ranked 10th in the world for research quality
Rehovot’s Weizmann Institute of Science has been ranked 10th in an international ranking of research institutions and universities and is the only one of the top 10 to be located outside the US. The ranking is conducted by the Center for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) of Leiden University in the Netherlands.
The CWTS Leiden Ranking is based solely on numeric indicators instead of question-based surveys. That includes publishing statistics for the scientists of the various universities and how often the papers are cited by other researchers -- both of which reflect the quality of the papers. These numbers are weighted accorded to the size of the research institute or university.
This rank reflects a significant rise in the quality of Weizmann Institute researchers in the last decade between 2006 and 2015. From the beginning of the decade, when the Weizmann Institute was a merely respectable 19th in the Leiden Ranking (after three non-American institutes), it has risen to the highly impressive 10th place.
According to the report, 19 percent of the research papers published by Weizmann researchers were ranked in the top 10% of scientific papers for impact. In addition, 21.4% of papers by Weizmann scientists in the life sciences and medicine were also ranked in the top 10% for impact.

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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