Tuesday, January 19, 2016

  • Tuesday, January 19, 2016
From Ian:

Ambassador Shapiro’s Delegitimization Speech
Like the other speakers at the conference, Shapiro condemned the above. Briefly, that is, until getting to the real purpose of his talk: to chastise Israel. Naturally, he did this in perfect Obama pitch, professing his country’s great friendship and alliance with Israel, while calling on the Jewish state to stop causing all the trouble.
These were not his exact words. Shapiro is a professional diplomat, after all. But the language he did use was bad enough.
“Too many attacks on Palestinians lack a vigorous investigation or response by Israeli authorities; too much vigilantism goes unchecked; and at times there seem to be two standards of adherence to the rule of law: one for Israelis and another for Palestinians,” he said, while also condemning “barbaric acts of terrorism” against Israelis.
And then he said his administration is “concerned and perplexed” by Israel’s settlement policy, which raises “honest questions about Israel’s long-term intentions” where a negotiated two-state solution with the Palestinians is concerned.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was right to call Shapiro’s comments “incorrect and unacceptable,” but his response was insufficient. Because what Shapiro did was first to equate Palestinian and Israeli violence, and then to fault “settlement policy” for the daily assault on Israel’s very right to exist. The boycott, divestment and sanctions movement could not have made a better case for delegitimization.
To be fair, Shapiro is not an independent agent. He is an envoy sent to Israel to iterate the official positions of the Obama administration — a government that just signed off on its final capitulation to the Islamic Republic of Iran.
This dangerous act, involving the lifting of sanctions and the transfer of billions of dollars to the mullah-led regime in Tehran, took place after the Iranian navy seized and held captive 10 U.S. sailors; demanded an apology from Washington upon their release; received a hearty “thank you” from Kerry; and then boasted about having caused the American servicemen (and one woman) to weep.
Is it any wonder, then, that the United States, who was treated throughout the negotiations with Iran like a pariah on the one hand and a wimp on the other, would expect Israel to roll over and play dead with the Palestinian Authority?
The answer is no. It is also the reason that Israel must pray for a Republican victory in this year’s U.S. presidential election. If and when that happens, we might be treated to a book by Shapiro, in which he reveals the lies he was forced to spew during his term as ambassador.
Caroline Glick: Israel and the Russian challenge
Obama was undoubtedly relishing the moment as he declared diplomatic victory over his political opponents, but even if he was unhappy about Iran’s behavior he couldn’t have done anything about it.
Obama brags that he was able to reach a nuclear deal where all his predecessors failed. But this hides the main distinction between him and those who came before him.
None of Obama’s predecessors concluded a nuclear deal with Iran because unlike Obama, none of his predecessors were willing to abandon US interests – including the interest of preventing the world’s leading sponsor of terrorism from acquiring nuclear weapons – in order to get a deal. Obama cannot attack Iran’s aggression on the high seas without calling into question the wisdom of his nuclear diplomacy.
He cannot take action against Russia without calling into question his belief that US power in the Middle East is the chief cause of all the region’s problems.
Israel’s military and political leaders are right to be concerned about the implications of Russia’s return to Syria. And it is far from clear that there is a way to credibly minimize the dangers. But, since we’re not going anywhere, we will have to make the best of a bad situation.
Whatever we do, we must reconcile ourselves to the fact that unless the next US president rejects Obama’s entire Middle East policy and shepherds the military and financial resources to abandon it, on Russia, Iran and beyond, Israel will have to fend for itself for the foreseeable future.
Obama’s Make-Believe Peace With Iran Ushers in a Wild 2016 in the Middle East
It’s hardly surprising that during his State of the Union address last week, President Barack Obama made no mention of American sailors detained by the naval command of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. Sure, the president didn’t want a major speech about his achievements at home and abroad overshadowed by some episode the White House believed would be soon resolved by diplomacy. But there’s another reason—no matter what the occasion, the Obama White House systematically looks the other way whenever Iran does something intended to provoke the United States.
In the last several months alone, Iran has at least twice tested ballistic missiles, in violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions. Its military also fired rockets within 1,500 yards of a U.S. aircraft carrier in the Straits of Hormuz. It sentenced, in a secret trial, American journalist Jason Rezaian and imprisoned another Iranian-American national. A few days into the new year, the regime directed Iranian mobs to set fire to two diplomatic missions belonging to longtime U.S. regional partner Saudi Arabia. That was before they ritually humiliated America by taking its sailors into custody, photographing them kneeling on deck with their hands on their heads, and then broadcasting those images throughout the Middle East.
Yet from the White House’s perspective, appearances can be deceiving. Despite photographs showing how the Iranians paraded the U.S. seamen on Iranian TV like circus animals, Secretary of State John Kerry said, “All our indications suggest our sailors were well taken care of.” After the clerical regime directed mobs to attack two of Saudi Arabia’s diplomatic missions in Iran, the administration’s first move was not to condemn Iran but to chastise Riyadh for provoking Iran by executing a Saudi citizen whom Tehran regarded as a protégé. When the Obama Administration moved to sanction Iran for its ballistic missile tests, the Iranians protested, and the administration shelved sanctions, indefinitely.



WATCH: Security forces capture suspect in Otniel terror attack
Security forces arrested a Palestinian minor overnight on suspicion of carrying out the stabbing murder of mother of six Dafna Meir on Sunday in Otniel.
The suspect is a 16-year-old resident of a village near Otniel, and has been taken for questioning, the Shin Bet said.
The arrest came following intelligence and operational activities by the domestic intelligence agency.
On Monday, a Palestinian terrorist stabbed and moderately wounded a 30-year old pregnant woman in the industrial zone of the West Bank settlement of Tekoa.
Monday's victim, Michal Froman, was in a clothing warehouse at the time of the attack.
An armed civilians fired on and shot the attacker, critically wounding him.
Father of Dafna Meir's killer 'proud' of his son
The father of the teenage Arab terrorist who murdered mother of six Dafna Meir in her home on Sunday night has expressed pride over his son's gruesome actions.
Murad Bader Abdullah Adais fatally stabbed Meir at the front door to her house in Otniel, as she valiantly struggled to close the door on him and prevent him from slaughtering three of her children who were with her at the time.
Adais then fled on foot, sparking a major manhunt which resulted in his capture early Tuesday morning.
Speaking to Palestinian media, Adais's father said he was proud of his son for stabbing the unarmed nurse to death.
"I am proud of him," he said, adding that security forces also detained and interrogated several family members during the arrest operation.
Tekoa stabbing victim says attacker wasn’t out to kill her
The pregnant woman who was stabbed by a Palestinian teenager at the Tekoa settlement expressed empathy for her assailant on Tuesday, a day after she was attacked, and said that he did not seem determined to kill her.
Speaking from Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, Michal Froman, who was knifed outside a clothing store, told Army Radio that she was glad the attacker didn’t make a more purposeful effort to end her life.
“Thank God he didn’t keep stabbing me,” she said. “There was no one there to wrestle with him; he could easily have killed me.
“It’s very strange,” she went on. “When I hear about terror attacks in other places I say, ‘May the terrorist’s name be blotted out, and that I hope they kill him.” But during the attack against her, said Froman, the daughter-in-law of the late peace activist Rabbi Menachem Froman, she experienced empathy for the assailant.
“To be stabbed with a knife from from up close is something very personal, and I wondered what he went through, why he’s doing it, what does he want to get out of it? To be one of the martyrs? To be part of something? I don’t know,” she said. “I didn’t wonder why he didn’t kill me because it very much seemed to me that he came to stab and escape, to achieve some purpose that was not to kill me. I don’t know what his story was.”
Terrorist pretended to shop before stabbing woman, witness recalls
Michal Froman, a 30-year-old resident of Tekoa, was at the shop with her young children when she was stabbed, said Chani Gimpel, who was minding the clothing store at the time of the attack.
She said the attacker, later identified as Othman Muhammad Sha’alan, 15, came in shortly after 10 a.m., when she opened the store, in an industrial area on the edge of the settlement, southeast of Jerusalem.
“I was immediately suspicious of him, because of the way he was acting,” she told The Times of Israel. “He had his hands in his pockets and was wandering around the store asking the prices of different items. He had a very thick Arabic accent.”
Officials said the attacker sneaked into the settlement via a hole in a fence and then made his way to the nearby store, inside a warehouse.
“I don’t know why, but in the pit of my stomach I knew something wasn’t right,” Gimpel said.
Gimpel asked Sha’alan what he was doing at the store and backed away from him and told the other two women to do the same.
Disarmed, Tekoa stabber was shot in leg as he lashed out at captors
The Palestinian teenager suspected of stabbing an Israeli woman in the West Bank settlement of Tekoa Tuesday was shot in the leg when he tried to attack his captors, eye-witnesses and officials said after the attack. One said that the suspect, who had been disarmed and was in his underwear, tried to grab the gun of one of the civilians who was detaining him.
The 15-year-old Palestinian, Othman Muhammad Sha’alan, entered the settlement through a hole in the perimeter fence — according to some accounts he made the hole himself — around 10 a.m. on Tuesday. At 10:17, Tekoa’s private security team received a call saying a woman had been stabbed near the community’s second-hand clothing warehouse, according to a document obtained by The Times of Israel.
Sha’alan had entered the warehouse and stabbed Michal Froman, 30. She later said he had drawn a knife and seemed distressed and that she approached him because she wanted to help him.
Froman, who is approximately five months pregnant, was moderately injured. As passers-by rushed to assist her, Sha’alan fled for the hole in the fence from which he had entered.
IDF arrests two Palestinians carrying guns
Israel Defense Forces soldiers on Tuesday arrested two Palestinians whom they spotted toting guns near a Jewish settlement in the northern West Bank.
An IDF patrol identified the pair in the area of the Palestinian village of Akraba, near the trans-Samaria highway and the settlement of Migdalim.
The soldiers gave chase and the suspects were eventually apprehended and taken in for questioning.
Netanyahu vows to destroy home of Otniel teen terrorist
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed Tuesday that Israel would demolish the home of the Palestinian teen terrorist who stabbed to death an Israeli mother-of-six in the West Bank settlement of Otniel on Sunday.
“We will fight our enemies, and destroy the home of the terrorist and cancel the work permits [of his family members],” Netanyahu said after visiting the grieving family of Dafna Meir, who was killed at the entrance to her home in front of her teenage daughter.
The suspect in the attack, named as Morad Bader Abdullah Adais, 16, was arrested by security forces overnight Monday in the village of Beit Amra, some three kilometers (1.8 miles) from the scene of the attack.
Adais is suspected of entering Meir’s home and killing her before fleeing on foot. Three of Meir’s six children were home when she was killed, and one, 17-year-old Renana, gave security forces a description of the terrorist.
Bradley Burston: The Word 'Terrorism' Gives Monsters Too Much Credit. This Is Murder.
Maybe, after all this killing and crippling and making of orphans, it's time we got real.
Maybe, after all this denial and finger pointing and exploitation of tragedy for political gain, the moment has finally come to stop pretending.
We, all of us, no matter what our politics, our nationality, our faith, all give terrorists too much credit.
Starting with those of us in the news media.
Maybe it's time to recognize how terrorism warps us. To recognize that that's what terrorism is for.
After 18 hours in which a woman was slaughtered in her own home in front of her children, and another woman, who was pregnant, was stabbed with a knife that pierced her lung, maybe it's time to call the monsters who do things like this by their proper name: murderers. Merriam-Webster tells us that terrorism is "the use of violent acts to frighten the people in an area as a way of trying to achieve a political goal."
Merriam-Webster is giving the terrorist too much credit.
French PM: Attacks in France, Israel show we are ‘in world war’
Listing terrorist attacks in Israel along with attacks by the Islamic State, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said they showed “we are in a world war.”
Valls made the statement Monday at a Paris hotel in an address before approximately 350 listeners, mostly from the Jewish community, during an event organized by CRIF, the umbrella group of French Jewish communities.
In explaining the reasons for the existence of a terrorist threat in France, he noted “upheaval in the Arab world” and “the reality in certain neighborhoods in France, where young people are being radicalized.”
“There are more and more terrorist attacks all over the world. In France, Burkina Faso, in Jakarta, in Israel, it keeps happening and it shows we need to learn to live with it,” Valls said.
Asked whether the government was doing enough to protect French Jews from attacks following the slaying of four in January 2015 at a kosher supermarket, Valls said: “Yes, we are doing 100 percent, employing all measures, and we will continue to do so, but the risk is not negligible.”
Red Cross: Palestinian paramedics did not refuse to treat Israelis after terror attack
An internal probe conducted by the International Committee of the Red Cross found that its Palestinian affiliate did not refuse to treat two Israeli victims who were shot in a November terror attack after allegations emerged that the pair had died after not receiving proper medical care from the organization, AFP reported Monday.
Rabbi Ya’akov Litman, 40, and his son Netanel, 18, were shot to death by Palestinian terrorists outside Otniel south of Hebron on November 13 while driving to a Shabbat pre-celebration wedding party when a gunmen opened fire on their vehicle.
Five other family members – Litman’s wife, three daughters aged 5, 9, and 11, and a 16-year-old son – suffered minor wounds in the attack.
Following the deadly incident, Litman's wife claimed that the Palestinian Red Crescent Society refused to treat her husband and son when they arrived at the scene, leading to accusations that the organization had failed to remain neutral, AFP added.
In addition, Dvir Litman, 16, who was lightly wounded by the Palestinian gunmen had complained about the ambulance's actions in an emergency call he made to Magen David Adom to report the attack.
Leading U.S. Papers Downplay, Ignore Stabbings of Israeli Women
On Jan. 17, 2016, Morad Bader Abdullah Adais, a 16-year-old Palestinian, murdered Dafna Meir in her home, located in the West Bank settlement of Otniel. Meir, a 40-year-old mother of four, foster mother of two and nurse in the neurosurgery ward at Beersheva’s Soroka Hospital, fought the terrorist at her front door, trying to protect if not herself then some of her children who were at home (“Days before murder of Otneil mother of six: ‘Sometimes it feels like Russian Roulette,’” Jerusalem Post, Jan. 18).
Stabbed repeatedly, she died in front of her teenaged daughter, whose screams may have frightened the killer. Unable to remove his knife from Meir’s body, he fled.
Leading American newspapers including The New York Times, Washington Post and Los Angeles Times downplayed or ignored the fatal attack, which stands out from the last four months of Palestinian violence against Israelis given that the target was a woman in her own home, murdered with the especially personal method of stabbing, with some of her children at the scene.
Guardian wants to be certain you know: Israeli terror victim was a “SETTLER”!
Yesterday, early evening Israeli time, the Guardian‘s Jerusalem correspondent Peter Beaumont reported on two Palestinian terror attacks since Sunday. The first incident, on Sunday evening, involved a fatal attack on a 39-year-old woman in Otniel in the West Bank. The second, on Monday, involved the stabbing of a pregnant woman in Tekoa.
Here’s the original headline, per the Guardian’s tweet of the article.
"Palestinian with knife attacks female Israeli settler in West Bank Settlement"

The headline was subsequently changed to “Palestinian with knife attacks Israeli woman in West Bank settlement”.
Before the change, some derivation of the word “settlement” or “settler” was used no less than eight times between the headline, strap line photo caption and first two paragraphs of the article.
Of course, this isn’t merely a random word count.
Israel employs double legal standard in West Bank, US envoy charges
The comments — coming on the day that an Israeli mother-of-six killed by a Palestinian terrorist was laid to rest, and a pregnant woman was injured in a second attack– drew a harsh response from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office, who called the remarks “unacceptable and incorrect.”
While Shapiro praised the the progress made in the investigation of the deadly arson attack on a Palestinian family by suspected Jewish extremists — a far-right wing Jewish extremist was this month charged with the murder of the Dawabsha family in Duma last July — he asserted that too often Israel turns a blind eye to settler violence against Palestinians.
“Too many attacks on Palestinians lack a vigorous investigation or response by Israeli authorities; too much vigilantism goes unchecked; and at times there seem to be two standards of adherence to the rule of law: one for Israelis and another for Palestinians,” Shapiro said at the INSS security conference in Tel Aviv.
Shapiro went on describe the US administration as “concerned and perplexed” by Israel’s settlement policy which he said raised “honest questions about Israel’s long-term intentions.”
“This government and previous Israeli governments have repeatedly expressed support for a negotiated settlement that would involve mutual recognition and separation,” he said. “Yet separation will become more and more difficult” if Israel continues to expand settlements, Shapiro said.
PM slams US envoy for criticizing Israel policy in Judea and Samaria
His comments drew a sharp condemnation from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
"The ambassador's comments, on a day when a mother of six is being buried and a pregnant woman is stabbed, are unacceptable and untrue," Netanyahu said, referring to the two attacks by Palestinian terrorists this week that killed Dafna Meir in Otniel and injured Michal Froman in Tekoa.
"Israel enforces the law on Israelis and Palestinians. The one responsible for the diplomatic stalemate is the Palestinian Authority, which continues to incite and refuses to negotiate," Netanyahu said.
EU softens statement, but lays line between Israel and settlements
The European Union reiterated Monday that it would continue to differentiate between Israel proper and the settlements, yet stopped short of explicitly calling for a “distinction.”
Affirming an earlier decision to require certain products made in settlements be labeled as such, foreign ministers from the bloc’s 28 member states declared that the EU remains “committed to ensure continued, full and effective implementation of existing EU legislation and bilateral arrangements applicable to settlements products.”
The statement drew harsh condemnation from Israeli political leaders, even as the country’s diplomatic corps touted its successful effort in lobbying for the softened language.
The European leaders further vowed to “ensure that — in line with international law — all agreements between the State of Israel and the EU must unequivocally and explicitly indicate their inapplicability to the territories occupied by Israel in 1967.”
However, the foreign ministers emphasized that this stance “does not constitute a boycott of Israel which the EU strongly opposes.”
In the wake of an earlier EU decision to enact a labeling program for settlement products, Israeli ministers had said the move was tantamount to a boycott, with some charging it was a form of classic European anti-Semitism.
Erekat hails EU's 'anti-settlement' resolution
The Palestinian Authority (PA) welcomed on Monday evening the European Union’s (EU) passing of the resolution which stipulates that any agreements signed with Israel will not apply to Judea and Samaria.
The PA’s chief negotiator Saeb Erekat said the EU decision was "a step forward towards accountability", but also called on the EU to take immediate steps and ban products from Judea and Samaria.
“The decision is a positive step forward. Israeli settlements are illegal under international law and constitute an obstacle to peace,” he said, adding, “This decision is a message to the Israeli government that no matter how hard it tries, the apartheid regime that exists in Palestine will not be recognized by anyone.”
Soros-Linked Human Rights Group Calls on Businesses to Boycott Israel
A leading U.S.-based human rights organization linked to Hillary Clinton supporter George Soros is planning to release a report this week that will call on businesses to sever relations with any company operated by Israeli Jews in the West Bank, according to an advance copy of the report provided to the Washington Free Beacon.
Human Rights Watch, which has been substantially funded by Soros and long accused of harboring an anti-Israel bias, will publish on Tuesday a 163-page report purporting to document how so-called “settlement businesses” harm Palestinians, according to an advance copy of the report set to be released Tuesday and provided independently to the Free Beacon.
Pro-Israel critics of the report describe it as biased and part of a larger effort by Israel’s critics to mainstream support of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, or BDS, which had been used by Israel’s detractors to wage economic warfare on the Jewish state.
The report comes as Israel battles a European Union effort to label any Israeli products produced in disputed areas. The Israeli government maintains that the effort to single out Israel for special designation is dangerous. Other critics say it is reminiscent of efforts by the Nazis to boycott and label Jewish businesses in Germany.
Human Rights Watch, which has long been viewed as overly critical when it comes to Israel, claims that Palestinians who work at Israeli companies based in the West Bank are being exploited by their Jewish employers.
Egypt revokes citizenship of IDF soldier
Egyptian Acting Prime Minister, Sherif Ismail, revoked the Egyptian citizenship of an Egyptian Jew who immigrated to Israel, because she served in the IDF. His office released a statement that said, Dena Ovadia, who has already been released from her IDF service, joined a foreign military without requesting permission from the Egyptian Defense Minister. Therefore her Egyptian citizenship has been revoked.
Ovadia, who is currently 24, immigrated to Israel from Alexandria ten years ago. She came together with her family and served in the IDF spokesperson’s unit. She is currently an Israeli citizen.
Army radio reported that an Egyptian journalist by the name of Ahmed Mussa, who is one of the more well known journalists for the “Al-Ahram” newspaper praised the Egyptian Prime Minister’s decision on live television network of Sada Al-Balad. He reportedly attacked Ovadia and Israel harshly.
“She is currently part of the Zionist regime, which is a racist regime that kills our nation the Palestinians. It is a regime that still conquers land and steals it.”
Khaled Abu Toameh: PA security forces warn of permeation of ISIS ideology; Laud Israel-PA-US cooperation
A senior Palestinian security official has warned against the spread of radical Islamist groups such as Daesh (Islamic State), saying the Palestinian Authority was working with Israel, the US and others to prevent anarchy, violence and terrorism.
Majed Faraj, head of the PA’s general Intelligence Service in the West Bank, said that if Islamic State and other extremist groups decide to fight Israel, they will find sympathy in the Arab street.
He said that the Palestinian security forces have foiled 200 attacks against Israelis since the beginning of the current wave of terrorism last October.
Faraj, in an interview with Defense News’ Barbara Opall-Rome, claimed that more than 90 percent of Palestinians reject the extremism of Islamic State, Al-Qaeda and the Nusra Front. He said that rejection was largely thanks to the efforts made by PA President Mahmoud Abbas.
“Now the number of Palestinians supporting them is very marginal, and this is a success of Abu Mazen (Abbas),” Faraj said. “But if Daesh or other extremist groups decide to fight Israel, they will find sympathy in the Arab street.”
Hamas Ups Rhetoric Against Islamic State Loyalist Group In Gaza
Hamas has pledged to crush the Army of Islam, a Gaza-based Salafi group that has openly threatened Hamas and labelled it heretical and its policies “anti-Islamic.”
Earlier this month, the group released a video accusing Hamas of straying from the path of Islam and enforcing “man-made” laws against Allah’s will.
Breitbart Jerusalem reported that the video’s release was part of the Army of Islam’s bid to become the Islamic State’s sole representative in Palestine.
Reacting to the video, a Hamas official told Breitbart Jerusalem on Sunday: “Any attempt to destabilize the Gaza Strip or disturb the peace, either by carrying out bombings or by disseminating transgressive ideologies that may paint it as a bastion of IS, will be met with a decisive response.”
PreOccupiedTerritory: High Winds In Gaza As Israel Activates Giant Fans On Border (satire)
Dust and air pollution reached much higher levels than normal today after Israel turned on gigantic fans pointed across the border at this coastal territory, local sources are reporting.
Winds in excess of 50 kilometers per hour kicked up dust and sand from the nearby desert on Monday, a phenomenon that local residents are attributing to batteries of fans that Israel has placed all along the boundary with the Gaza Strip in order to wreak havoc with people’s lives and the territory’s ecosystem. While no photographs exist of these massive machines all along the relatively flat landscape, their existence is accepted without question. The resulting windstorm and air pollution poses health risks for the elderly and infirm, young children, pregnant women, and those with heart or respiratory disorders.
An official with the Hamas-run Ministry of Health said the Zionist pollution is expected to last into the night, before rainstorms wash away the hazardous dust. “This happens quite often,” said Ahmad Azahattir, Assistant Deputy Undersecretary of Bureaucracy Reduction at the ministry. “Israel turns on the huge fan array, we get wind, and rain comes along soon afterwards. Then they open their dams and flood us.”
Such flooding is an almost annual occurrence in Gaza, where poorly maintained or nonexistent drainage systems fail to channel the water directly or efficiently into the Mediterranean. Like the fans, the dams Israel uses have never been identified, but it is common knowledge in Gaza and among certain foreign journalists that Israel is the default party to blame for all misfortunes prior to corroborating such blame with evidence, if at all.
IS ‘massacre’ in east Syria said to kill 300 civilians
An Islamic State group attack Saturday in the eastern Syrian city of Deir Ezzor killed at least 85 civilians and 50 regime forces, a monitor said, with state media denouncing a “massacre.”
Syria’s state news agency SANA, quoting residents, said “around 300 civilians” were killed in the onslaught.
If confirmed it would be one of the highest tolls for a single day in Syria’s nearly five-year war.
The bloodshed in Deir Ezzor came as regime forces battled IS in the northern province of Aleppo, killing at least 16 jihadists, and as air strikes hit the IS stronghold of Raqa.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said IS had advanced into the northern tip of Deir Ezzor city and captured the northern suburb of Al-Baghaliyeh.
MEMRI: Russian Media Outlets Compare U.S. To Nazi Germany, Describe Battle Over Syria As Today’s Stalingrad
The Pravda.Ru and NEO (New Eastern Outlook) websites are part of a network of Russian media outlets in English. In two virulently anti-American articles published on these sites, the writers draw a comparison between the U.S. and Nazi Germany, describing the battle over Syria as the Stalingrad of our times.
In the first article, the writer employs the propaganda tactic of speaking in the name of Americans, taking the blame for the U.S.'s allegedly Nazi behavior using such phrases as "we describe", "we want," "our many distant conquests" and "our foreign policy."
The following are excerpts from the articles:
'Christmas 2015: Will Syria & Iraq Become Washington’s Stalingrad?'
The first article, titled "Christmas 2015: Will Syria & Iraq Become Washington’s Stalingrad?", by Ronald Holland,says:
Syrian jihadist rockets hit Turkish school
At least one person was killed and another seriously wounded Monday when a rocket fired from a jihadist-controlled area in Syria slammed into a schoolyard in a Turkish border town, officials said.
A female school cleaner was killed and a schoolgirl required an operation for her injuries in the strike on the town of Kilis just north of the border with Syria, the local governor’s office said.
The town was hit by a total of three rockets, two of which fell into an open area while one more hit the yard, it said.
The rocket fire “came from Syria”, it added, without giving further details. Reports said two more were lightly wounded.
Earlier reports had described the fire as mortar shells but later Turkish media reports described the objects as Katyusha-type rockets.
Life before the Taliban: Fascinating photos show short skirts, flash cars and no burkas before Afghanistan plunged into hell
These fascinating photographs from Afghanistan in the 1960s are a far cry from the war-torn images in the news today.
The eye-opening collection was captured by university professor Dr Bill Podlich from Arizona, who swapped life in America to travel to Kabul with his wife, Margaret, and two teenage daughters, Jan and Peg.
Using his Kodachrome film, his images show a peaceful Afghanistan making strides towards a more liberal and Westernised lifestyle - a stark contrast to harrowing sights seen during Taliban regime.
The idyllic images were captured in 1967, when the teacher teemed up with Unesco to work in the Higher Teachers College of Kabul.
As well as building a relationship with the Afghans he encountered, the amateur photographer set out to document their way of life.
Serene images include men relaxing outside with a picnic, boys playing in the Kabul river in the sun and girls smiling during lessons.
Others show colourful marketplaces, gardens alive with colourful flowers and even a giggling boy decorating cakes.
While many feature happy Afghans, there are many of the Podlich family peacefully enjoying their time living in the country.


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