Monday, December 14, 2015

From Ian:

Zionist NGO: Leftist groups sabotaging Israel 'from within'
The left-wing Israeli group Breaking the Silence, which publicizes former IDF soldiers' testimonies about misdeeds of the Israeli military, is heavily funded by a Palestinian organization, as is a lobbyist for another left-wing group, B'Tselem, a report issued Sunday by the right-wing Zionist group Im Tirtzu reveals.
In its report, titled "Shtulim 2015" -- a reference to foreign bodies "planting" representatives in Israeli organizations -- the group argues that "there are Israeli organizations perceived by society as 'leftist' or 'human rights' groups but in fact they are not as such. They are plants, extensively funded by foreign governments, and operating from within against Israeli society, against IDF soldiers and against Israel's ability to defend itself in the war on terror," the group said.
The organizations labeled as "plants" by Im Tirtzu are Breaking the Silence, whose work has been accused of being vastly detrimental to the IDF; B'Tselem -- a human rights organization that focuses on the rights of Palestinians; Adalah -- the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel; Yesh Din -- a volunteer organization working to defend the human rights of the Palestinian civilian population and a long list of others.
According to Im Tirtzu, the common denominator between all these groups, aside from being funded by foreign bodies, is the "public relations and financial support they receive from the American organization the New Israel Fund."
Of the 20 Israeli organizations named in the report, 15 are directly funded by the New Israel Fund. Four of the organizations have legally defended terrorists or families of terrorists, some of them even terrorists who participated in the most recent surge of violence, which is still ongoing. Four of the organizations employ 15 national service volunteers under the auspices of the state.
Report: ‘Breaking the Silence’ is financed by Palestinian funds
The grassroots Zionist organization Im Tirtzu has revealed that the New Israel Fund (NIF) is behind the funding of numerous organizations that are involved in anti-Israel activity.
One of these organizations, Breaking the Silence (Shovrim Shtika), is also funded by Palestinian beneficiaries.
The report further reveals that in 2016, The Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Secretariat - a Palestinian foundation - is due to fund some 10,000,000 NIS (2,600,000 USD) to bolster the activities of foreign organizations against IDF soldiers and in favor of Palestinian terrorists. In addition, the report reveals that the Palestinian foundation funds a lobbyist in the Knesset by means of the B’Tselem organization.
Im Tirtzu commented: “The President of Israel cannot partake in this event following the revelation of this information. This is the most severe report to ever be compiled against Israeli organizations. It turns out that while we are fighting terrorism – these foreign agent organizations are fighting us. We will urgently consider our next steps, including in the Knesset, in order to eradicate this phenomenon.”
Ya'alon bans 'malicious' NGO Breaking The Silence from IDF events
Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon has banned the Breaking The Silence Group from taking part in any IDF activities, describing the organization as having malicious motivations.
In a statement posted on the defense minister's official Facebook page on Sunday night, Ya'alon said Israel "supports the combat soldiers and commanders who go out and fight for it, and we will know how to protect every soldier if any element persecutes or tries to harm them during visits abroad."
Breaking The Silence describes itself on its website as "an organization of veteran combatants who have served in the Israeli military since the start of the Second Intifada and have taken it upon themselves to expose the Israeli public to the reality of everyday life in the Occupied Territories."
"We endeavor to stimulate public debate about the price paid for a reality in which young soldiers face a civilian population on a daily basis, and are engaged in the control of that population’s everyday life," the organization says.
Ya'alon said he was aware of the "foolish attempts by various organizations to slander us and slander IDF soldiers around the world."
Peace Now accuses right-wing NGOs of lack of transparency
At the heart of the foreign-funding transparency debate is the relevance of distinguishing between donations from foreign governments and those from private donors. Proponents of Shaked’s bill have argued that the delineation is significant and that the foreign-funded groups scrutinizing Israeli policy violates its sovereignty, while some of the left-wing groups have attempted to expand the debate to transparency in general, arguing that the legal standards of scrutiny should be equal for all.
“While the law today requires every organization to publicize each quarter the donations [it has received] that come from the budgets of foreign states, receiving a donation from the budget of the State of Israel, at the expense of the Israel tax-payer, does not require publication, and can remain hidden from the public,” the Peace Now report said.
According to figures by Peace Now, in 2012, the left-wing organization received over NIS 1 million ($259,000) from the Norwegian Embassy, some NIS 500,000 ($129,000) from the Belgian Foreign Ministry, over NIS 350,000 ($90,000) from the British Foreign Office, some NIS 224,000 ($58,000) from the Swiss Foreign Ministry, and NIS 136,000 ($35,000) from the Dutch Embassy.
By contrast, NGO Monitor maintained state funding is “entirely different” than private funding, in part because foreign governments are not transparent.“States exercise sovereign power on an exclusive basis, and state interference or manipulation of civil society organizations in other states violates that sovereignty. In addition, while private individuals and funds distribute their money as an expression of free choice, governments do not consult their citizens before deciding on grants to selected foreign NGOs,” it said.

Baby among 14 injured in terror attack at entrance to Jerusalem
A terrorist from East Jerusalem plowed his car into a group of Israeli civilians at a bus stop at the entrance to Jerusalem on Monday afternoon, injuring 14 people, three of them moderately. The moderately hurt include an 18-month-old baby and a woman in her 70s.
Police named the terrorist as Abed el-Muhsen Hassuna, a 21-year-old resident of the neighborhood of Beit Hanina. He was shot dead by security forces as he tried to exit the car. A new axe and a new screwdriver were found in the vehicle.
Hassuna drove his white Mazda sedan onto the sidewalk, smashing into pedestrians at a bus stop, close to the Chords Bridge and near the capital’s central bus station, police said. The car also struck a fire hydrant, sending water shooting into the air.
A member of the security forces, a security guard and an armed civilian who saw the attack taking place shot the attacker before he was able to get out of his car and approach the civilians. The civilian was the first to respond, and shot the driver, Channel 2 said.
Israeli jets strike Gaza after rocket attack
Israeli aircraft struck in the Gaza Strip Sunday night, hours after a rocket fired from the territory exploded in Israel.
The army said it targeted two Hamas military posts in northern and central Gaza. There were no immediate reports of Palestinian casualties.
The IDF noted that it holds Hamas rulers responsible for any attacks emanating from the Strip.
The rocket prompted air-raid sirens in multiple communities in the Sha’ar Hanegev Regional Council, the IDF said. Residents of Sha’ar HaNegev, a group of communities bordering the Gaza Strip, said they heard a loud explosion, but no injuries or damage were reported.
The military said the rocket landed in an open area.
Policeman questioned over shooting of teenage stabber
A police officer has been questioned by the Police Investigations Unit over his shooting of a 16-year-old Palestinian teenager who carried out a stabbing attack with a pair of scissors in Jerusalem, along with her 14-year-old cousin three weeks ago, the Justice Ministry said Sunday.
The investigation was opened following a decision by Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein, on the advice of the state prosecutor, amid claims that the officer continued to shoot the teen after she no longer posed any danger.
The officer, from the Jerusalem bomb disposal unit and whose identity is protected by a gag order, maintains he fired at the teenager as he believed that she was still capable of further attacking civilians.
During questioning last week, the officer noted that he was alone at the scene and shot at the stabbers with the aim of neutralizing them — but not killing them — the Hebrew-language Walla news reported. He also told investigators he was concerned the attacker might be wearing an explosive vest that she may have been able to detonate.
MKs: Leave officer who felled scissor-wielding terrorist alone
A police officer whom, his supervisors said, prevented a major terror attack last month at Jerusalem's Mahane Yehuda market is being investigated for that very act, it was revealed Sunday – and MK Shuli Muallem-Refaeli (Jewish Home) is up in arms over what she said was a “terrible injustice. The decision to investigate a police officer for shooting a terrorist is unfathomable, and is likely to cause officers to hold back when fighting terrorists, lest they get in trouble.”
At issue is the shooting of a 16 year female terrorist at the market. The incident occurred on November 23, 2015. The terrorist had pulled out a pair of scissors, and together with a cousin, began stabbing people around her. The only victim of the pair was a 70 year old Arab man who was moderately wounded; before they could get to more victims, a police officer who happened by opened fire on the terrorists, killing one and seriously wounding the other.
Israel redeploys guards to protect Jerusalem buses, trains
As a result of the ongoing threat of terrorism in the nation’s capital, Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz on Sunday approved the deployment of 300 additional security guards for Jerusalem’s public transport, the Maariv news site reported.
The guards and a number of security vehicles will be sent out to bus stops and Jerusalem Light Rail stops throughout the city. “The very deployment and correct use of the guards can bring the threat to a minimum and even prevent it,” Katz said.
In the first few weeks of the ongoing violence, a similar group of guards and IDF soldiers were sent to protect Jerusalem’s public transportation system, but they were eventually taken off that duty. Now, however, they will return.
The guards, all former combat soldiers, will be given uniforms, pistols and radios in order to protect passengers. They will also be given legal permission to conduct searches of those they determine to be potential security risks.
Arab World Conspiracy Theories: US, Europe, Israel Created Islamic State, Planned Paris Massacre
From Morocco to Saudi Arabia, the conspiracy that the US, Europe and Israel are behind the creation of the Islamic State and subsequent terror attacks is gaining more and more prevalence, especially in Arab media.
Over the past couple of months, The Middle East Media Research Institute, or MEMRI, has translated articles from all over the Arab world that blame the West for terror attacks – especially the November 13 attacks on Paris – saying that ISIS was a tool created by Western countries to further their own goals. The articles further state that the US is the biggest perpetrator of global terrorism and that the main victims of that terror are Arabs and Muslims.
In the official Saudi daily Al-Watan, writer Muhammad Al-Sa’idi claimed that most of the attacks in the West and the Arab world were planned by international intelligence agencies. These begin with the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center and continue right up until the downing of the Russian plane in Sinai and recent attacks on Hezbollah in Beirut. He wrote that Western intelligence agencies “do not shy away from sacrificing some members of their own nation or sect in order to achieve strategic goals.” He also added that in many cases, terror organizations such as ISIS and its predecessor Al Qaeda claim responsibility for the attacks but are not even aware of them until after they have occurred.
PreOccupiedTerritory: Tolerance Is So Important To Us, We’ll Even Tolerate Intolerance* By Western Europe (satire)
This welcome blossoming of tolerance in our society chiefly takes he form of allowing bigoted, misogynistic, hate-filled groups live undisturbed even when that bigotry, misogyny, and hate adversely affects others. It would be intolerant to assert government control in neighborhoods dominated by certain ethnicities; we therefore adopt police no-go zones, the better to avoid any appearance of intolerance for those communities’ way of life. It would be unacceptably intolerant to enforce laws against rape when that act is committed by immigrants from countries where oppression of women is simply part of the culture. Who are we, tolerant and enlightened, to judge others in that respect? It would be intolerant.
But perhaps the most important manifestation of our extreme tolerance is our acceptance of those who showcase their intolerance for Jews. We, of course, would never dream of directly saying or doing such things, since doing so would betray the spirit of tolerance for Jews that has made Europe so famous, historically. But far be it from us to foist our tolerance on those who do not tolerate Jews. It would be intolerant to force them to adopt our tolerant ways. We must therefore allow them to call for the deaths of Jews, to shoot them, burn synagogues, and deface Jewish graveyards. In the spirit of tolerance, we Europeans will accept even those extreme views and actions, for if we do not include those who do not think like us in our tolerance, what good, really, is that tolerance?
This phenomenon explains another: when Muslims in Europe (and increasingly in the US) attack no-Muslims, our first reaction is not to take steps to prevent a recurrence of the violence, but to worry about a backlash against Muslims. About Islamophobia. God forbid anyone be suspicious of Muslim migrants or immigrants killing people in the name if Islam! Tolerance, dear people. Tolerance.
Now, as for the unacceptable phenomenon of Jews seeking too live safely in the land of their forefathers….
*especially of Jews
Understanding Terror
Depravity is a choice.
What comes of these divinings is, finally, a confusion of categories. The Paris atrocities, the Jerusalem stabbings, the San Bernardino shootings are not chapters in a novel to be intensively parsed. A novel is a cultural artifact. A human mind, whatever culture it is born into, is privately, even instinctively, free to enact individual will. Everyone — Pamuk's own wide-ranging "everyone" — can choose whether to murder or not to murder.
Here, accordingly, one may be driven to ask: Is there no infamy so depraved that it can escape explanation, apologia, vindication verging on exoneration, all under the gentle rubric of "understanding"? The terrorist's mind: Let us strive to understand it — what shall we find there? Deformations of humanity, corruptions neither inborn nor bred, but chosen. If pornography can be defined as avid curiosity focused on distortions of appetite, then the urge to understand the terrorist is indisputably a kind of pornography — a desire to penetrate what Mark Twain uncannily names "evil joy." And we have, yes, on TV the other night, seen evil joy in action: the corpse of the Palestinian "martyr" as he is "escorted to his wedding," accompanied by ululations and his honored mother's camera-ready avowal of pride and jubilation, yearning to offer the next-in-line killer son.
At bottom, an open-hearted willingness to understand "everyone" is an appalling distraction from the intrinsic depravity of the act of premeditated murder. The evil deed speaks for itself; to search out the evildoer's "backstory," to look for some exculpating raison d'être, is no more useful or edifying or moral than an attraction to pornography. Pascal's aperçu — to understand is to forgive — comes perilously close to our current penchant to treat terrorists as interesting characters in a novel. True, Conrad did it in The Secret Agent; James did it in The Princess Casamassima. But let the Roman poet Terence have the last (Latin) word: Quod licet Jovi non licet bovi. What is permitted to the gods is not permitted to pornographers. James and Conrad, after all, understood that a terrorist in a novel is not the same as a jihadist spree in California or a terror massacre in Paris; and that murder, contra Pamuk, deserves no artistic credo.
Syria militia leader: Sunni rebels are ‘mercenaries of Jews’
In a video uploaded to the internet in December, Iraqi militias fighting in the Syrian civil war say Sunni rebels are “the mercenaries of the Jews and the Americans.”
In the video, Sheikh Akram al-Kabi, leader of the al-Nujaba militia which originates in Iraq and which has ties to Lebanon’s Hezbollah organization, calls out slogans which are repeated in a chant by his followers.
“No to America! No to Israel! Death to Sunnis!” he cries.
He berates the “deluded” Sunnis, who he calls “the mercenaries of the Jews and the Americans.”
In a second part of the video an armed militant calls out: “The al-Nujaba movement is ready for war and victory is near, Allah willing.”
Egyptian report on Russian plane crash in Sinai: No terrorism indicated
Egypt has completed a preliminary report on the Russian plane crash in Sinai on October 31 that killed all 224 people on board, the civil aviation ministry said on Monday.
"The technical investigative committee has so far not found anything indicating any illegal intervention or terrorist action," the ministry said in a statement.
Russia said the plane was brought down by a bomb, and Islamic State claimed responsibility.
In mid-November, Islamic State's official magazine carried a photo of a Schweppes soft drink can it said was used to make an improvised bomb that brought down the Russian airliner.
The photo showed a can of Schweppes Gold soft drink and what appeared to be a detonator and switch on a blue background, three simple components that if genuine are likely to cause concern for airline safety officials worldwide.
The Internet Is a Megaphone for Islamic Extremists
In a May 2010 letter found by US Special Operations forces inside his compound, bin Laden wrote: “The wide-scale spread of jihadist ideology, especially on the Internet, and the tremendous number of young people who frequent the Jihadist Web sites [are] a major achievement for jihad.”
The ability of extremists to broadcast violent messages and to remain online, inspiring countless followers, should not be brushed off as the unfortunate dark side of Internet. Twitter made a public apology to its female users for not doing enough to prevent threatening and abusive tweets, and announced concrete steps to kick off offenders. There is no reason why that type of effort cannot be replicated for those who abuse the platform to recruit and urge violence. Companies like, Facebook and YouTube, for example, have taken proactive steps to ensure their sites are free from violent extremist messaging and images.
Permanently removing those extremists who advocate violence from the Internet would be a step toward a safer online environment. Extremists will never stop trying to convince others to join their violent cause, but making it easy for them to urge lone-wolf attacks, glorify beheadings and recruit vulnerable young people is inexcusable.
JPost Editorial: Christian genocide
The US State Department is reportedly about to designate the attacks by the Islamic State terrorist group on the Yazidis as genocide. As commendable as such a diplomatic gesture may be, the question that begs to be asked is, if the Yazidis, why not the Christians?
The 1948 Genocide Convention defines “genocide” as, among other things, “deliberately inflicting on” a religious group “conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.” As Islamic State continues to drive Christians from their homes, seizing their property, and offering them the “choice” between converting to Islam or being massacred, one must conclude that this qualifies as genocide.
To cite just one incident reported in the National Review in October, Islamic State terrorists demanded that two Christian women and six men in a conquered village convert to Islam. When they refused, the women were publicly raped and then beheaded along with the men. The Islamists then cut off the fingertips of a 12-year-old boy to persuade his Christian father to convert. When the father refused, he and his son were tortured and then crucified.
Such is the fate of Christians living in areas of Iraq and Syria that have been occupied by ISIS. During his Bolivian trip in July, Pope Francis called it “genocide.” ISIS seeks to spread the terror of its ways via social media videos of beheadings and crucifixions, but these have become so commonplace that they hardly register in the public consciousness.
Report: Iran Withdrawing Special Forces From Syria as Tensions With Russia Intensify
Iran has started to withdraw its elite Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) forces from Syria, the Saudi-aligned London-based daily Asharq Al-Awsat reported on Sunday.
Among the reasons for the retreat cited in the report is the heavy losses suffered by Iran during the two months since Russia has begun conducting military operations there.
According to the report, one Free Syrian Army officer claimed that tensions between the Russians and Iranians have been mounting, due to near-daily casualties incurred by the latter, purportedly as a result of the former’s pushing for increased ground operations. The officer said he learned of this while eavesdropping on their communications.
Reports have also been circulating that the commander of the IRGC-Quds Force, Qassem Soleimani, was seriously wounded during a battle in Aleppo.
In addition, citing Iranian media sources, Al Arabiya reported recently that four IRGC members were “erroneously” killed in a Russian airstrike this week.
Chicago Tribune Editorial: No Sanctions Relief Until Iran Explains Nuclear Past
Although Secretary of State John Kerry emphasized in April that Iran must fully account for its nuclear past, saying “It will be done,” the editorial noted that he has since backtracked and now claims “that the U.S. already knows enough about Iran’s past work and never expected a full confession.”
The editorial also pointed to Iran’s recent ballistic missile launches as reasons to be skeptical of the Islamic Republic’s commitment to abide by its obligations under the nuclear deal.
The U.S. and its negotiating partners on the nuclear agreement will get one chance to establish that the terms and conditions are solid, concrete, that Iran will be expected to strictly comply. Otherwise, this will start with the tacit understanding that routine noncompliance will be tolerated. Iran will get the signal that it can stonewall inspectors who seek to enforce the deal over the next decade.
The lifting of economic sanctions should be paused until Iran completely answers those questions about its practice nuclear work.
This information is vital. Without it, the West can’t accurately gauge Iran’s breakout capability — that is, how fast Iran could build a bomb if it decided to scrap the deal.

Noting that once sanctions are lifted, “they won’t be easily reimposed,” the editorial concluded that the urgency isn’t to move forward on the deal, but “to demand that Iran deliver on its promises to come clean.”
Iranian National Security Official: No Active Centrifuges Out of Commission
An Iranian lawmaker said on Sunday that none of the country’s active centrifuges has been decommissioned, the Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA) reported.
According to the report, Alaeddin Boroujerdi, head of the Iranian parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, said that the 6,000 centrifuges that were decommissioned “never received gas.”
He also addressed articles 3 and 4 of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s letter on the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, saying they would not go into effect until the International Atomic Energy Agency closes its probe into the past and present Possible Military Dimensions (PMD) of Iran’s nuclear program.
Israel Weighs Purchase of Special Aircraft to Maintain Edge Over Iran Proxy Hezbollah
Israel is weighing the purchase of a fleet of vertical-landing aircraft, to maintain its edge over Hezbollah, the Israeli news site Walla reported on Sunday.
The planes under consideration are Lockheed Martin’s Short Takeoff, Vertical Landing (STOVL) F-35Bs.
Unlike other variants of the F-35 Lightning II, the F-35B — originally designed to replace the United States Marine Corps’ Harrier Jets — does not require a long strip of runway for take-off, and can land vertically, like a helicopter.
The F-35B would enable Israeli pilots to continue carrying out missions, even if their air bases and landing strips are targeted and put out of commission. With terrorist organization Hezbollah’s continued acquisition of advanced, highly accurate, long-range missiles from Iran, this is increasingly becoming a realistic threat, according to Walla.
PreOccupiedTerritory: Comment on Study: Hanukkah Shows Jews Hate Olives, Proves They Felled Trees (satire)
A new report by the Balestinian Academy for Linking Despised Enemies to Reprehensible Deviance And Spiteful Heinousness (BALDERDASH) claims conclusive proof that Jews are always behind the destruction of Palestinian farmers’ olive trees, using as evidence the Jewish practice of diligently burning the product of those trees during the Hanukkah festival.
An article the Journal of BALDERDASH this week lays out the evidence for the claim, including extensive photographic and video to demonstrate the obvious animosity Jews exhibit toward olive oil. By extension, say the journal authors, the phenomenon of Palestinian olive trees being cut down, torched, or otherwise vandalized can easily be pinned on the same Jews, whose culture clearly trains them to destroy anything related to the olive. Accusations of Jews cutting down Palestinian olive trees are raised frequently, but often lack actual evidence, and occur at times when it is considered unlikely for religiously observant Jews to be the culprits, such as on the Jewish Sabbath. The study authors contend that the antipathy for olives trumps the concern for actual adherence to Jewish law, making all the accusations credible again.
Jews practice the ritual burning of olive oil in increasing quantities each night over the course of the eight-day festival each year. While many light wax candles, or, more rarely, with fats other than olive oil, the latter remains the preferred fuel for the Hanukkah lights. “Indeed, the so-called miracle in the made-up Jewish temple is supposed to recall a candelabrum that burned olive oil every single day,” said the article. “It is common knowledge among Palestinian scholars that there never was a Jewish temple anywhere, and that the candelabrum on the Arch of Titus in Rome, for example, was made up. Nevertheless, even in their made-up lore, the Jews could not hide their hate for the olive.”
In Light Of Jordanians Joining Terrorist Organizations, Calls In Jordan To Reform Curricula
An issue that concerns Jordanian society lately is the phenomenon of young Jordanians joining the terrorist organizations that are fighting in Syria and Iraq, especially the Islamic State (ISIS). In October, it was reported that the son of Jordanian MP Mazen Al-Dhalaein had carried out a suicide bombing in Syria after leaving medical school and joining ISIS. In November, the media reported on two further cases: a young woman in her twenties who tried to join the organization but was caught by the authorities in Turkey and returned to Jordan, and a young Jordanian who joined ISIS and later defected and came back home. According to unofficial statistics, about 4,000 young Jordanians have so far joined the armed organizations in Syria and Iraq, a figure that places Jordan second only to Tunisia in the number of citizens who have joined these organizations.
As a result, in the recent year, Jordanian op-eds, especially in the independent daily Al-Ghad, have dealt extensively with the possible roots of the phenomenon, asking what makes young Jordanians susceptible to extremist ideology, and stressing in particular the role of the Jordanian education system in this. Articles called to reform the education system and the curricula, arguing that the curricula repress all freedom of thought and creativity, and, even worse, promote extremism and hatred toward the other.
Recently, following the November 13, 2015 terror attack in Paris, criticism in the Jordanian press became even more forceful, with many articles stressing that the struggle against terrorism cannot be waged on the security level alone, but must also involve educational reform. The articles advocated purging the school curricula of ideas that aggrandize death, promote extremism and accuse others of heresy.
Israel seeking to change new Jordan policy on visas
Jordan is tightening regulations on granting visas to visit the country, after the Foreign Ministry began investigating complaints by religious Israelis that Jordanian authorities were making it difficult for them to enter the country. Beginning January 1, any visitor from the Israeli side who wants to cross into the country via one of the land crossings from Israel will have to ask for a visa in advance, and pay $60 for the privilege.
Currently, visas are granted at the border, and are free. Free passage between the countries is one of the basic tenets of the Israel-Jordan peace accord. The Foreign Ministry is seeking to convince Jordan to suspend the rule for Israeli citizens, imposing it only on tourists who cross into Jordan.
The Foreign Ministry said last week that it is investigating several incidents in which Jordanian authorities have denied entry to the country for observant Jews, the latest last Wednesday evening, when Jews who were wearing kippahs and their religious garb were told they could not enter the country. In the wake of the incident, the Jordanian ambassador to Israel was asked to provide explanations at the Foreign Ministry Thursday
The incident echoed others in the recent past in which Jordan has refused entry to religious Jews who were carrying tefilin, phylacteries, with them. They were told that they had to leave them at the border if they wanted to enter the country. In the past Jordan has said that the reason was that they were afraid of unrest.
Khaled Abu Toameh: Hamas leader calls for renewed Iran ties
Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar on Saturday called on Iran to restore its relations with his movement.
Zahar’s appeal came in a statement marking the 28th anniversary of the founding of Hamas.
Thousands of Palestinians participated in rallies that were held in the Gaza Strip over the weekend on this occasion.
Relations between the two sides have been tense since the beginning of the conflict in Syria in 2011. Hamas’s refusal to support the regime of President Bashar Assad, Iran’s major ally in the region, has angered Tehran, prompting it to cut off its financial and military aid to the Gaza-based movement.
Hamas celebrates 28 years of terror in Gaza
The Hamas terror group held a parade to celebrate 28 years of terror. Much fun was had by all.
There was face painting
Fun costumes
Cute girls
Fun activities for the kids
And healthy snacks.
Over in Nablus, like minded participants from the PFLP Terror group played "Burn the Jew'
Does anyone still believe we have a partner for peace?
 Public Art in Gaza
Public art is often a reflection of a societies values.
Mural in Gaza glorifying the murderers of Jews
New monument to the stabbing intifada, again glorifying attacks on Jews
What message does the public art of Gaza give us?
'Our relations with Turkey are at the point of their deepest crisis in history'
Russia’s ambassador to Turkey laid out the conditions for improved relations, which include apologizing for shooting down its fighter jet, punishing those responsible, and paying for damages, Turkish media reported on Monday.
“Unless these expectations of ours are met, other statements made by Turkey will not yield any results,” said Andrey Karlov, in an interview with the Turkish Cumhuriyet daily and reported by Today’s Zaman.
“Our relations [with Turkey] are at the point of their deepest crisis in history. Let me express with sadness that the history of our relations has been divided into two [periods]: Before Nov. 24, [and] after Nov. 24th,” he said.
Ties between Moscow and Ankara have sharply deteriorated since the downing of the Russian jet on Nov. 24, a move described by Putin as "a dastardly stab in the back."
Erdogan talks of positive impact of improved Turkey-Israel ties
In the midst of a deep crisis with Russia, Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan – known for a series of anti-Israel and anti-Semitic comments in the past – made his first conciliatory statement toward Israel in years on Monday, saying that normalization of relations would have a positive impact on the region.
“This normalization process has a lot to offer to us, to Israel, to Palestine and also to the region,” the Turkish daily Habertürk quoted Erdoğan as saying on a return trip from Turkmenistan. “The region needs this.”
According to the Turkish daily Hurriyet, which quoted the Haberturk reported, Erdoğan said there were still obstacles to mending ties with Israel that went into a tailspin following the 2010 Mavi Marmara incident.
At the time Erdogan put three condition on a normalization of ties: at Israeli apology, compensation, and a lifting of the blockade of Gaza.
Israel lukewarm to Erdogan overture: ‘Ball is in Turkey’s court’
Foreign Ministry Director General Dore Gold issued a laconic statement in support of “stable” relations.
“Israel has always sought stable relations with Turkey and is constantly looking for ways how to get there,” Gold said.
Meanwhile, an unnamed senior official quoted by the Ynet news site was even less welcoming.
“The ball is in Turkey’s court. We’ve apologized, and we’re willing to pay money. [Erdogan] shouldn’t be silly about insisting on ending the blockade of Gaza, because Turkey knows this isn’t happening, and we don’t intend to pay any more for normalizing relations.”
Erdogan appeared to make a case for renewing strong ties between the two regional powers. “There is so much that we, Israel, Palestine and the region can gain from such a normalization process. The region is in need of this,” Erdogan said in the Yeni Safak report.
In first, Turkish Jews light public menorah
For the first time in the history of modern Turkey, a public Hanukkah lighting ceremony was held Sunday night in Istanbul.
The event was organized by the municipality, and attended by the Turkish chief rabbi and members of the Jewish community, according to Turkey’s Jewish Şalom newspaper.
Government representatives were also present at the candle-lighting, which coincided with the eighth and final night of the Jewish Festival of Lights.
A video of the ceremony, held outside the scenic Ortakoy Mosque on the European side of the Bosphorus, showed the eight-branched candelabra set to be lit as the Muslim call to pray rang out. Pictures from the event posted on social media showed Turkish girls in headscarves standing beside the Jewish holiday lamp.
Arab Director of Jerusalem’s Islamic Museum Removes Muslim Weapons Exhibit; Says ‘Make Art, Not War’
With Palestinian attacks against Israelis being a daily occurrence, the Arab-Israeli director of Jerusalem’s L.A. Mayer Institute for Islamic Art has placed an exhibit of Muslim weapons in storage, the Israeli site nrg reported on Sunday.
The extensive exhibit, which took up a large room, included collections of swords, spears, daggers and a variety of guns – some of which were decorated with passages of the Quran in flowery calligraphy. The highlight of the display was a rare 8-foot rifle from the 17th century.
Today, the room is void of these items. In their place are paintings of 19th century Palestine by Scottish artist David Roberts.
All the war-like displays are now in storage.
“I don’t believe in weapons,” museum director Nadim Shiban told nrg, adding that his message is, “Talk art, not war.”
According to nrg, Shiban’s appointment in August 2014 as head of the museum that has graced the capital’s Talbiyeh neighborhood — across the street from the Jerusalem Theater and around the corner from the President’s Residence – caused media “sensationalism.”

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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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The Jerusalem Report:"A seemingly indefatigable one-man operation, armed only with a computer, chutzpa and stamina."

Algemeiner: "Fiercely intelligent and erudite"

Omri: "Elder is one of the best established and most respected members of the jblogosphere..."
Atheist Jew:"Elder of Ziyon probably had the greatest impression on me..."
Soccer Dad: "He undertakes the important task of making sure that his readers learn from history."
AbbaGav: "A truly exceptional blog..."
Judeopundit: "[A] venerable blog-pioneer and beloved patriarchal figure...his blog is indispensable."
Oleh Musings: "The most comprehensive Zionist blog I have seen."
Carl in Jerusalem: "...probably the most under-recognized blog in the JBlogsphere as far as I am concerned."
Aussie Dave: "King of the auto-translation."
The Israel Situation:The Elder manages to write so many great, investigative posts that I am often looking to him for important news on the PalArab (his term for Palestinian Arab) side of things."
Tikun Olam: "Either you are carelessly ignorant or a willful liar and distorter of the truth. Either way, it makes you one mean SOB."
Mondoweiss commenter: "For virulent pro-Zionism (and plain straightforward lies of course) there is nothing much to beat it."
Didi Remez: "Leading wingnut"

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