Friday, June 24, 2016

From Ian:

Caroline Glick: Obama’s money and Israel’s sovereignty
This week, MK Michael Oren stood up to his boss in the Kulanu party, Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon, to the political Left, including hundreds of retired security brass, and to the IDF General Staff. The former ambassador to Washington urged Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu not to sign the multi-year security assistance deal that US President Barack Obama demands Israel accept.
The problem isn’t the money. By all accounts, Obama’s multi-year military assistance package is generous.
The problem is that in exchange for the expanded military aid, Obama is demanding that Israel surrender its diplomatic and military independence to the White House.
For more than 40 years, every US administration – including the Obama administration – that has sought to harm Israel in any way has hit up against an unmovable obstacle. Whether the White House wanted to enable the UN Security Council to pass an anti-Israel resolution, place an embargo on military exports or bureaucratically slow them down to force Israel to stand down during wartime; whether the White House wanted block expanded trade deals, crowd out Israel’s military industries, or sell game changing weapons systems to Israel’s enemies, the US Congress has always stopped it in its tracks.
Israel-haters in the US speak endlessly about the supposedly all powerful and malign “Israel lobby,” which controls US foreign affairs. But the simple truth is that it wouldn’t matter all that much if AIPAC were to shut down tomorrow. Even without AIPAC, Israel would enjoy the support of Congress.
French anti-racism groups spar over mayor’s support for Palestinian killer
Two French organizations devoted to fighting anti-Semitism clashed publicly over one group’s complaint to police on incitement against a mayor who launched a campaign in support of a Palestinian convicted of murder.
France’s Human Rights League, a nonprofit founded in 1898 to protest the racially motivated conviction for espionage of the French Jewish army captain Alfred Dreyfus, criticized the National Bureau for Vigilance Against Anti-Semitism, or BNVCA, in a statement last week.
The league’s statement said BNVCA behaved like “a spokesperson of the Israeli government” when it filed the complaint against the Communist mayor of the Paris suburb of Stains, Azzédine Taïbi, for his refusal to remove from city hall a banner calling for the release of Marwan Barghouti, who is serving multiple life sentences in Israel for acts of terrorism in which dozens of civilians were murdered.
“Stains is taking action for peace, free Marwan Barghouti, the Palestinian Mandela,” the banner read.
A French judge in March instructed Taïbi to remove the banner or face sanctions, citing previous precedents including the Administrative Court of Montreuil’s injunction in July, which nullified the honorary resident status conferred on Barghouti by another Paris suburb, Aubervilliers. The court said such actions exceed the duties and responsibilities of municipal governments.
But Taïbi refused to comply, prompting BNVCA to file criminal charges against him. According to BNVCA, celebrating Palestinians who murdered Jews risks legitimizing acts of violence against Jews in France, where Islamists have killed eight Jews in two shooting attacks since 2012. The perpetrators of both attacks said they were acting to avenge Palestinians. BNVCA vowed to continue legal efforts to counter the celebration of terrorists in France.
'Palestinians were created to cause trouble for Jews'
A man calling himself Wild Bill described his support for Israel in a video that is going viral.
"We all know that Islam is giving the world a lot of things that will be long remembered. They invented the fine art of skyjacking, suicide bombers and taqiya - the art of lying to infidels," he began.
"They are the only religion to develop a preschool program where the children sing about exterminating Jews and I do believe they are the only ones to demolish two skyscrapers while 3,000 people were still inside. Yes, Islam has a long and proud history of doing things that nobody else does.
"But by far the most creative invention of Islam is the Palestinian: a person who has never been seen before in the modern world who supposedly lived in a nation that never existed. The Palestinian was invented shortly after the nation of Israel sprang into existence as the new name for the traditional home of the Jewish people.
"Now, prior to the invention of the Palestinian, the Arab nations had been lusting for the land of the Jews because the hardworking Jewish people had transformed the desert land into a well-irrigated and beautiful oasis and the Arabs decided they wanted it.

Ben Dror Yemini: A current of lies
Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) exposed this concentric circle of lies; the first circle consists of the lies being spewed by Yehuda Shaul regarding the "poisoning of the wells" in one village.
The second circle was an official Palestinian Foreign Ministry communiqué regarding the "poisoning of wells throughout the West Bank," together with Rabbi Melamed and his council, and claiming that the story was covered on Israeli channel 10.The message included a warning over the expected deaths of thousands of Palestinians, and a condemnation of the silence in the international community on the issue.
The third circle was an official communiqué coming from the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which combined what Shaul was saying and the alleged rabbis of the alleged rabbinical council which allegedly support poisoning Palestinian wells.
If we actually examine the water infrastructure in the West Bank, we see that there has been an infrastructure revolution since 1967.
When Israel first took the West Bank, only four out of 700 towns had running water. By 2004, that number had grown to 643 out of a total of 708 towns with running water in the entirety of the West Bank. And while the water needs of the Jewish areas are greater than those of the Palestinian villages, Israel doesn't need to use water resources such as aquifers as much, while the Palestinians do. The civil administration has caused an incredible revolution for the benefit of the residents there.
There's no need to ask the representatives from Breaking the Silence to tell the whole story—that goes against their agenda. But there's no reason to create a falsehood. There's no reason to take one Jew who cheats and robs, and then turn all Jews into cheaters and robbers.
These methods are distasteful when racists do it against Muslims, and they're distasteful when they're used by anti-Semites against Jews. They are also distasteful when used methodologically by Breaking the Silence activists against the State of Israel. We must strive for a civilized Israel, but there's no need to turn Israel into a monster.
Egyptian Statesman: What Palestinian Refugees?
The Middle East is very richly endowed with unofficial meetings of experts, diplomats and generals from Arab states, Israel and the West. At one of those meetings, a well-known Egyptian statesman sat down to talk with an Israeli acquaintance. The conversation touched on the Palestinian refugees, and this person, who held top positions in the past and still has great influence on the generals in Cairo, lost his cool.
“What refugees are you talking about?” the Egyptian scolded his Israeli interlocutor. The region is flooded with millions of new refugees living under impossible conditions and desperately needing help. These people fled the terrors of war in Syria, Iraq and Yemen, rotting in the desert in the summer and freezing in the winter.
He went on. The tents they get from neighboring states and international relief agencies are insufficient. Giant tent cities have sprouted up everywhere in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. These refugees are the expression of the upheaval in the region.
There was more. Against this backdrop, the Palestinians’ insistence on portraying third-generation refugees, the grandchildren of those who fled or were expelled during the 1948 war, is groundless. Many of these refugees live in stone dwellings with proper infrastructure, continuing to benefit from handouts from the UN Relief and Works Agency. Their leaders use them to perpetuate the Palestinian problem.
Such candid words are very rarely uttered by Arab statesmen. Despite the gloomy tone heard frequently from Israeli analysts – most recently at the Herzliya Conference last week – Israel is one of the only beneficiaries of the great upheaval in the Middle East.
The Mottle Wolfe Show: Brexit – Good for the Jews?
Brian of London from the blog Israellycool joins Mottle to discuss today’s Brexit referendum. Also denial ain’t just a river in the Islamic Republic of Egypt. People are still trying to blame anything other than Islamic terror for the Orlando attack. Plus, Israel offends the EU by suggesting that they are ‘colonialists’.
Are the Palestinians Thinking the Unthinkable?
The basic fact—which many well-meaning people keep missing because it is so unpalatable—is that Palestinians’ giving up the “right of return” is the key to any hope of a deal. The Israeli public won’t accept big concessions for anything short of a formal end to claims. That remains a huge obstacle on the Palestinian side, in part because it is a bargaining chip they don’t want to give up until they are sure they have the “best offer” on the table, but also because many feel the conventional two-state solution approach doesn’t meet their needs. Palestinians in Gaza refugee camps wouldn’t get much from a settlement that leaves them in camps and renounces their “right of return” to the places their ancestors lived in 1947.
Many Palestinians also refuse to make a deal on religious grounds: Muslim lands cannot be ceded to infidels without breaking God’s law. Meanwhile, there are pragmatic worries: Many Palestinians who might be fine with the deal themselves don’t want to get assassinated by people who disagree. The Palestinian leadership is, for all of these reasons, under pressure not to make a deal and especially not to cave on the “right of return.”
There are a lot of “nevers” out there—the Palestinians will never this or that, the Likudniks will never such and so. But many of the supposed red lines are more flexible than people assume. There were old “nevers,” too: Egypt would never, Jordan would never, Arafat wouldn’t ever…. Often enough, these “nevers” become self-defeating and immobilizing false-truths. Circumstances change and the parameters of what people will do change with them. But the key remains the same, and it’s sort of depressing: Both sides will only take risks for peace if the status quo becomes more painful than the changed circumstances they anticipate, and they can only turn a set of piers into a bridge with the help of a third party. That third party used to be and probably remains the United States.
Nothing in this part of the world is going to clear up in a hurry, but the lack of the usual strident reaction to any suggestion that Palestinian negotiators should “never” put off-the-table questions on the table is, as far as it goes, an encouraging sign.
Mordechai Kedar: New trends on the Palestinian street
Another US-European dynamic was set in motion recently in an attempt to reawaken the Israel-Palestine issue by means of an international conference, whose mandate is to restart the peace process and establish two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side on the west of the Jordan.
The French are at the forefront of this effort and that fact gives rise to several questions, for example: Why the French - and why now? How will the Israelis and Palestinians view the idea? The answer to the first question is obvious. A good many French politicians fear the Islamic terror that has hit France hard over the past three years: Toulouse, Paris, Hypercacher, Charlie Hebdo, the Batkalan pub, Stade de France Stadium and three restaurants. The French government hopes that Jihadists will see France in a different light if they help establish a Palestinian State - and leave the country alone.
Another factor motivating the French members of parliament and other nations to support establishing a Palestinian Arab state is the growing number of Muslim voters in Europe and the politicians' feeling that the road to their ever-islamicizing electoral districts must be paved with the fulfillment of voter expectations – to wit, the advancement of the Palestinian Arab state.
This is of a matter of grave significance. The Europeans insist Israel must accept a Palestinian Arab state in Judea and Samaria, one likely to become another Hamas stronghold in addition to Gaza, solely due to electoral considerations - and possibly in order to enhance European security by helping to calm the Jihadists who roam freely throughout the continent.
Elliott Abrams: Obama’s Hypocrisy Highlighted in Push to Undermine Israel’s Qualitative Military Edge (INTERVIEW)
Despite claims by Barack Obama that his support for Israel has been greater than that of all presidents throughout American history, a possible White House decision that would undermine Israel’s qualitative military edge (QME) — highlights his hypocrisy, a prominent foreign policy expert told The Algemeiner on Thursday.
Elliott Abrams — senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, and former national security adviser to President George W. Bush — was reacting to reports that Obama is seeking to stop subsidizing Israel’s defense sector.
More specifically, according to a column by Eli Lake in Bloomberg View on Wednesday, the president wants to remove the “offshore procurement” provision that has been unique to Israel’s aid package. Israel, Lake wrote, “is not only the greatest beneficiary of US defense assistance, but also the only one allowed to spend a portion of that assistance on weapons and equipment from its own industry. Everyone else has to buy American.” Israeli and American officials say, according to Lake, that “Obama would like to phase out the agreement that allows Israel to spend 26 percent of US annual aid at home” — something that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been objecting to as a renewal of the package is being discussed.
“In one respect this is surprising,” Lake said. “Obama and his supporters like to tout US military aid to Israel as an act of the president’s unprecedented generosity. The US has given Israel nearly $24 billion under Obama, more than any other US president. At the same time, Obama’s insistence on ending the US subsidy for Israeli defense items reflects a growing unease among many US defense companies that America’s cold war client state is now a competitor in the international arms market.”
EU Hopes for Israel-Palestinian Talks Fall Flat
It would have been the highest-level meeting between Israeli and Palestinian officials since U.S.-led peace talks collapsed but, in the end, European officials were unable to orchestrate a meeting between Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
European Union officials had said as late as Wednesday evening they were still hoping to bring the two men –who were both visiting Brussels this week – together, as EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini continued her push to defuse tensions and start talking again.
But, on Thursday, Mr. Rivlin said his Palestinian counterpart would not agree to talks in person.
“I find it strange that President Mahmoud Abbas… refused again and again to meet with Israeli leaders,” he said. “We can talk directly and find a way to build confidence… We will not be able to build trust between us if we don’t begin to speak directly.”
European officials acknowledged that Mr. Rivlin had offered to sit down with his Palestinian counterpart but that Mr. Abbas had refused. “I suggest you talk to the Palestinians about their reasons,” said one official.
The Palestinian mission to the EU did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Elliott Abrams: Abbas Spurns Rivlin’s Hand–and Peace
Abbas and Rivlin both spoke to the European Parliament, where Abbas demonstrated yet again how close to signing a peace deal he is. He reported that Israel had cut off water to the West Bank for Ramadan in order to harm Palestinians, a charge the Palestinian Ministry of Information continues to repeat.
The most remarkable line was this one: “The Palestinian people have experienced mass murder on an historic scale and unparalleled attacks under the eyes and ears of the international community, which gives Israel immunity. The Palestinians are going through dark days and live under the tyranny and racism of the occupation. Just a week ago, several rabbis in Israel asked their government to poison the water in order to kill the Palestinians.”
Poisoning the wells: this medieval libel against Jews still lives, we see, in the Palestinian president’s rhetoric. And as to “mass murder,” there is plenty of it in his neighborhood, not least in Syria where perhaps 500,000 Muslims have been murdered. Among them are Palestinians, who lived there in camps. But of all that he had of course nothing to say.
Abbas has benefitted greatly by comparison to his predecessor, Yasser Arafat, and Arafat’s record of corruption and terror. But the Palestinian Authority under Abbas is compiling its own record of corruption, and while Abbas continues to denounce terror in every speech, his Palestinian Authority continues to honor and celebrate terrorists who kill Israelis. Abbas lacks charisma and he wears a suit and tie, unlike Arafat, but those qualities should not be mistaken for any intention ever to sign a peace deal.
How Dare Europe Applaud a Blood-Libeler?
What his apologists fail to see, however, is that if, by some miracle, the two-state solution were to be realized by its fantasists, Abbas would instantly be thrown into the dumpster of history in every respect.The only thing unclear about “the day after” is whether his corpse or his irrelevance will come first.
In other words, Abbas has nothing to gain and everything to lose in any peace deal with Israel. He knows better than anyone that his status as a leader on the world stage depends precisely on the absence of Palestinian statehood. Yes, it is this that drives his every move and all his lies. Key among these lies are the two fictions he reiterates from every podium, including the one he occupied in Brussels on Thursday. One is that Middle East stability rests on resolving the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. The other is that Israel, being responsible for the predicament in the first place, bears the burden of repairing the damage.
It therefore infuriates him every time the Israeli government urges him to come to the negotiating table, leading him to spin any overture from Jerusalem to his own advantage. His latest such act was to snub Israeli President Reuven Rivlin’s invitation to meet in the European capital.
None of this is the least bit new. In fact, at this point, it is so obvious as to be boring. In any case, most Israelis are too busy trying to avoid being stabbed, shot or hit with Molotov cocktails to listen to Abbas’ blather. Our blood is actually being spilled. We don’t need libels or lip-service to highlight that reality.
But why does anyone else still treat Abbas as a man of integrity and stature? How could hundreds of EU Parliament members applaud his vile speech, when faced with the truth about Islamist terrorism? Where do they come off believing a single word he says?
By now, what any sane representative of a free country should grasp is that it is not Palestinian wells being poisoned, but rather the hearts and minds of the Palestinian people.
Israel accuses Abbas of peddling lies, promoting blood libels
Israel excoriated Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday, saying he was peddling lies and promoting blood libels after the he told European lawmakers in Brussels that terrorism worldwide would be eradicated if only Israel withdrew from the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
Abbas also pleaded with EU lawmakers to save Palestinians from Israeli “provocations,” including what he said were calls by rabbis to poison Palestinians’ water — repeating a debunked hoax story.
“Abbas showed his true colors in Brussels. Someone who refuses to meet with the [Israeli] president [Reuven Rivlin] and with Prime Minister [Benjamin] Netanyahu for direct negotiations, and someone who promotes blood libels in the European parliament, is lying when he claims his hand is outstretched in peace,” the Prime Minister’s Office said in a statement.
“Israel waits for the day Abbas stops peddling lies and inciting [against Israel]. Until then, Israel will continue to defend itself against Palestinian incitement, which fuels terror,” the statement said.
In his speech earlier Thursday, Abbas cited recent criticisms of the current Israeli leadership by former defense minister Moshe Ya’alon and former prime minister Ehud Barak in condemning Israel’s “never-ending provocations” and “fascist policies.”
UN Ambassador: 'Abbas revealed his true colors'
Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon reacted to the Chairman of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas’s refusal to meet with President Reuven Rivlin in Brussels.
"Mahmoud Abbas has revealed his true colors to the international community as the one who is constantly rejecting peace. Instead of agreeing to meet President Rivlin, or accepting Prime Minister Netanyahu’s repeated offers to begin direct negotiations, Abbas continues to incite against Israel," he said.
The ambassador continued: "His lies that Israel is committing 'mass murder' of Palestinians, and his representative's comparison between the Jewish state and the Nazi regime are examples of the incitement spread by the Palestinian Authority."
Ambassador Danon is in Israel for the upcoming official visit by Secretary General Ban Ki-moon this coming Monday. During his visit to Israel the Secretary General will meet with the Prime Minister and the President to discuss the various diplomatic initiatives regarding the Middle East and the global fight against terrorism.
ADL Slams Abbas for Using “Age-Old Anti-Semitic Stereotypes” in Address to EU
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ debunked allegation that “certain rabbis in Israel” issued a call to poison Palestinian wells is “reminiscent of age-old anti-Semitic stereotypes,” Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, said in a statement released Thursday.
Abbas repeated the discredited charge, propagated by the PA’s Foreign Ministry earlier this week, while addressing the European Union’s Parliament.
“President Abbas reportedly came to Europe to talk peace. Instead, he interspersed claims of an interest in reconciliation with Israel with base allegations against the Jewish state, which are reminiscent of age-old anti-Semitic stereotypes. Unfortunately, conspiratorial incitement by the Palestinian Authority is not new. His charges of an Israeli effort to poison Palestinian water, and claims of Israel serving as the root of terrorism worldwide, are particularly disturbing and significant,” Greentblatt said.
Greenblatt also criticized the EU Parliament for failing to respond to Abbas’ remarks, noting “that President Abbas’ speech was met with a standing ovation by the parliamentarians present. As the international community, particularly European leadership, grows increasingly active in trying to promote an Israeli-Palestinian agreement, they must forcefully and publicly reject such offensive and dangerous incitement. How can Israel see Europe as an honest broker when its elected officials applaud a speech laden with lies and mischaracterizations?”
Abbas's blood libel 'a reminder why we have no lasting peace’
The European Jewish Congress (EJC) has called on European leaders to condemn Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ speech to the European Parliament, in which he claimed that Israeli rabbis called to poison Palestinian water and that global terrorism will end if the Israel-Palestinian conflict is resolved.
“It is unconscionable that a foreign leader proudly states a blood libel in the European Parliament and he receives a standing ovation,” said Dr. Moshe Kantor, President of the EJC.
“If a far-Right politician would have made similar comments they would have been correctly discredited, but Abbas is feted like a hero and this double-standard allows him to evade scrutiny in the international arena and the negotiations table.”
Dr. Kantor further stated that President Reuven Rivlin, with the help of European leaders, attempted to arrange a meeting with Abbas while the two were in Brussels. “[Abbas’] avoidance of an EU-backed meeting with Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin demonstrates once again that he remains one of the greatest obstacles between a lasting peace between Israel and the Palestinians,” he said.
“Additionally, Abbas’ blaming Israel for global terrorism sets off dog whistles for anti-Semites and conspiracy theorists around the world. In one short speech, Abbas reminded the world that he has no interest in peace, continues to incite against Jews and Israel and uses the understandable fear of terrorism to rail against Israel and score political points.”
“The only question that remains is about the reaction of the international community to such a malicious and malevolent speech,” Kantor concluded.
2 injured in likely car-ramming attack in West Bank; suspect killed
The Israeli army on Friday said a Palestinian woman crashed her car into an Israeli vehicle in a likely car-ramming attack in the West Bank.
A soldier who was nearby shot the driver, killing her, the military said, describing the incident as an “apparent” terror attack.
An Israeli couple was hurt in the incident, which happened near the entrance to the West Bank settlement of Kiryat Arba, at the Elias junction.
The two Israelis, who are in their 50s, were lightly injured, according to the Magen David Adom emergency service.
They were taken to Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center where they will stay through the weekend for observation, the hospital said.
The army said it was continuing to investigate the incident.
Most Israelis Unhappy With Government’s Handling of Palestinian Terror Wave, Poll Finds
A majority of Israelis are unhappy with the government’s handling of the ongoing wave of Palestinian terrorism, a poll published this week by Israel’s Channel 1 found.
Since last fall, 32 Israelis and two US tourists have been killed in Palestinian terrorist attacks across Israel.
Seventy-two percent of respondents expressed dissatisfaction with how the government has dealt with the terror wave, with only 23% saying the government was doing an adequate job confronting the phenomenon.
In addition, 78% of respondents said they were dissatisfied with the government’s economic conduct, while a mere 19% expressed satisfaction.
According to the poll, if Knesset elections were held today, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party would drop from 30 to 22 seats, but still remain the largest party in the Knesset. Meanwhile, Isaac Herzog’s Zionist Union party would plummet from 24 to 9 seats, while Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party would rise from 11 to 20 seats, making it the new second-largest party. Jewish Home and the Joint Arab List would receive 13 seats apiece, while a theoretical new centrist party led by former Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon would get 10.
More than 22 million click on Netanyahu social media response to Orlando massacre
A “masterclass in responding to tragedy” is how the Financial Times characterized Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's video statement on the Orland tragedy that went viral and was viewed by more than 22 million people.
Sam Leith, the author of ‘You Talkin to Me?' Rhetoric from Aristotle to Obama, pointed in the British paper this week to Netanyahu's video as a classic example of how to respond to tragedy.
In addition to being seen by more than 22 million people, the 2:29 minute video of Netanyahu talking behind his desk about the June 12 terror attack garnered more than 583,000 likes, and was shared 667,243 times. It was by far the most watched video statement ever put out by Netanyahu, with the short videos his office posts from time to time generally attracting between 20,000 – 30,000 viewers.
We Stand Together with the LGBT Community as One

FBI investigators say they have found no evidence that Orlando shooter had gay lovers
On Tuesday, Univision aired a report in which “Miguel,” a man wearing a disguise to conceal his identity, alleged he had sex with Mateen after meeting him on the gay dating app, Grindr. He said Mateen had sex with other men too, including a threesome with a Puerto Rican who allegedly told Mateen, after having had unprotected sex with him, that he was HIV positive.
But investigators do not consider the man’s account credible, according to one senior law enforcement official with access to the investigation.
In seeking to verify the reports, federal agents have culled Mateen's electronic devices, including a laptop computer and cellphone, as well as electronic communications of those who made the claims, law enforcement officials said.
So far, they have found no photographs, no text messages, no smartphone apps, no gay pornography and no cell-tower location data to suggest that Mateen — who was twice married to women and had a young son — conducted a secret gay life, the officials said.
The FBI is continuing to explore Mateen’s past, but investigators now believe the men who made the claims are not credible, or confused Mateen with someone else. (h/t Alexi)
Erdan shutters PA-funded Israeli TV channel for 6 months
Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan (Likud) on Thursday signed an order to bar the Palestinian Authority-funded Musawa television channel from operating in Israel for six months.
Erdan decided to shut down the Israel-based channel — formerly known as Palestine 48 — after learning it was operating on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, a statement said.
In July 2015, the minister ordered the Palestine 48 channel to stop operating for six months, arguing the television station was not authorized for broadcasting in Israel. The station subsequently changed its name to the Musawa Channel, Erdan said.
The Musawa Channel’s content is produced in Nazareth, in northern Israel, and sent to the West Bank city of Ramallah for editing, in an arrangement, according to Erdan, which has not been authorized. The Palestinian Authority sponsors the TV channel.
“I will not allow any harm to come to Israel’s sovereignty or give a foothold to the PA within the country,” said Erdan.
Hamas Is ISIS’s Deadly New Best Friend
Hamas has a new ally in the Middle East. The ISIS affiliate in the Sinai Peninsula, known as ISIS Sinai Province or simply Sinai Province, is helping Hamas smuggle arms and other supplies into the Gaza Strip from Egypt. This new relationship is one of the many unforeseen consequences of the Arab Spring and the growing instability in the Middle East, bringing a fresh threat to America’s Egyptian and Israeli allies. It’s also more evidence of Iran’s ambition to become a regional hegemon.
Hamas and Sinai Province are coordinating in a number of ways. Hamas is purchasing arms from the ISIS affiliate and giving the group military training (specifically on the use of antitank missiles). Hamas has also provided medical care for ISIS fighters in Gaza. Sinai Province occupies the territory where entrances to the smuggling tunnels to Gaza are located, thus making the ISIS affiliate a necessary strategic ally for Hamas. The two groups have also coordinated on attacks in the north of the Sinai Peninsula near the border with Israel, according to Egyptian officials. Hamas, of course, denies any such relationship.
There’s more to this story than just the convenience of right time, right place. Hamas and ISIS have found their way to one another in the wake of the Arab Spring and a rearranging of allies and allegiances. To understand how we’ve gotten here, we need to sift through the chain reaction sparked by the instability that followed the Arab Spring.
Hezbollah MP urges kidnapping Israeli civilians in next war
A member of parliament from the political arm of Lebanese terror group Hezbollah called for Israeli communities to be captured and civilians taken hostage in any future war with Israel.
Speaking on Hezbollah’s al-Manar TV, MP Walid Sukkarieh said that in addition to the group’s missile arsenal — said to number in the tens of thousands — an offensive to seize northern Israeli communities should be employed to prevent Israel from retaliating and implementing its “Dahiyeh Doctrine,” a military strategy that advocates the use of disproportionate force against a militant entity by destroying civilian infrastructure.
The strategy, named after a suburb of Beirut, was implemented in the Second Lebanon War in 2006 to level whole buildings in the Hezbollah stronghold using sustained airstrikes. The doctrine was first mentioned in 2008 by the then head of the IDF’s northern division and current IDF chief of staff, Gadi Eisenkot, who warned that Israel would reapply the strategy in every village in Lebanon from which Israel is attacked.
Israel is preparing to mark the 10-year anniversary of the 34-day war next month.

MEMRI: Criticism of Hizbullah on the Rise among Shi'ites in Lebanon over Involvement in Syria
Over the past two years, Lebanese Shi'ite voices have emerged every so often to criticize and express resentment against Hizbullah over its military involvement in Syria. Beginning in August 2012, anti-Hizbullah Lebanese Shi'ites implicitly criticized Hizbullah in the Lebanese press for its joining the fighting in Syria. The Hizbullah-affiliated media have sharply condemned this criticism, even accusing these Shi'ites of treason and calling them "Shi'ites of the U.S. Embassy." Gradually, even among the pro-Hizbullah Shi'ite public, particularly the families of members who have died in fighting, criticism has emerged of Hizbullah's military involvement in Syria; there have even been media reports of fissures within the organization in this matter. A Lebanese Shi'ite journalist who described herself a supporter of the resistance even wrote in a recent article that Hizbullah was an "immoral, murderous" organization.
These voices from the Shi'ite public, and the reports of young Shi'ites unmotivated to join Hizbullah's ranks, reflect a lack of confidence in the organization, and indicate that its status has been damaged among a public that has traditionally supported it.
In these circumstances, it is apparent that Hizbullah's Shi'ite opponents, both politicians and journalists, are feeling safer to express their views. Following the very high number of civilian casualties in Syria in the fighting for control of Aleppo and its environs between the two sides – the Assad regime, Hizbullah, and other militias versus the rebels – a new wave of criticism from Hizbullah's opponents has crested.
Various reports and testimony, as well as speeches by Hizbullah secretary-general Hassan Nasrallah, have indicated that even the Shi'ite public in Lebanon that has traditionally supported Hizbullah is now less convinced of the rightness of its path in Syria, and is perhaps also despairing because, while no end to the war is in sight, more and more dead and wounded Hizbullah fighters are returning to Lebanon; according to media reports, some 1,500 have already been killed. One report even stated that young Shi'ites – including sons of Hizbullah officials – are fleeing to Europe for fear that they will be recruited to fight.
Terror Task Force Chair: Obama Limiting Airstrikes on Islamic State to Protect Environment
The Obama administration has the capability to take out the vast oil infrastructure that fuels and funds the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), the richest terrorist group in modern history, but chooses not to, suggests the chairman of the Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare.
Environmental concerns limit the number of strikes President Barack Obama authorizes against certain ISIS oil targets, declared Rep. Robert Pittenger (R-NC), the task force chairman, in an interview with Breitbart News.
“I’m told the President did not want to take out the [ISIS oil] trucks because there are some concerns with the environment,” said Pittenger, who also serves as the vice-chair of the Bipartisan Task Force to Investigate Terrorism Financing.
Although the U.S. military has struck ISIS oil assets, including refineries and tanker trucks used to transport oil, more can be done, proclaimed the North Carolina Republican.
“They’ve [Obama administration] started taking out some of the [truck] convoys,” said Pittenger. “I’m still frustrated over them saying it’s hard to see the convoys when they’re on the open terrain. It’s a bit disingenous to me to say they can’t take trucks out, they can take them out. We’ve taken out some refineries. What’s the problem?”
Eli Lake: Oh. So That's Why Boeing Wanted the Iran Deal.
Almost a year after the Iran nuclear deal, we're getting a clearer picture of the coalition of activists who fought for the agreement, sparring with the "warmongers" in Congress.
It is a broad coalition. There are, of course, the peace activists and arms-control experts, who were vocal in support of the deal. There were also quieter members of this campaign, like the corporation that makes the B-52 bomber and the V-22 Osprey.
The Daily Beast's Betsy Woodruff reports that a former Boeing vice president and senior State Department official, Thomas Pickering, lobbied hard for the Iran deal while cashing checks as a consultant for the aerospace giant. Yet when Pickering wrote op-eds and signed public letters urging approval of the Iran agreement, he often neglected to mention his previous and ongoing connections to Boeing.
Now it's obvious why Boeing would have wanted the Iran deal. This week the corporation announced that it had reached a $25 billion deal to sell airliners to Iran, a move that was welcomed Tuesday by the State Department spokesman.
Close watchers of the Iran debate understood that the lifting of sanctions on Iran would potentially allow major U.S. companies like Boeing back into the Iran market. But this is not how the White House and its allies sold the Iran deal last summer. One of their sharpest arguments was that the Iran agreement was a way to avoid a war that opponents of the agreement wanted. As I reported last month, this was not an accident. The nonprofit known as the Ploughshares Fund gave money to a network of advocates and experts and urged them to paint opponents of Iran diplomacy as "pro-war," as early as 2011.
Iran’s Use of Civilian Planes to Arm Assad Could Jeopardize $25B Boeing Deal
The $25 billion aircraft deal that Boeing recently struck with Iran could be jeopardized by Tehran’s continued support of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, the Associated Press (AP) reported Thursday.
Boeing’s jets will be sold to the state-owned Iran Air, which was sanctioned by the Treasury Department in 2011 partially due to its transport of “potentially dangerous Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC)-related cargo” and “missile or rocket components” to Syria. A Western intelligence report seen by Reuters in 2012 noted that Iran continued using civilian aircraft to transport large amounts of arms and personnel to aid Assad.
In the wake of the nuclear deal, the Obama administration dropped sanctions against Iran Air, even though U.S. officials gave no indication that the airline’s behavior had changed. In fact, Emanuele Ottolenghi, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies who tracks Iranian flights, noted that the airline flew to Damascus earlier this month, possibly to transport troops and materiel to Assad.
Turk sentenced for Erdogan-Gollum gag
A Turkish man was given a suspended prison sentence for posting pictures on the internet comparing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to the bug-eyed character Gollum from the Lord of the Rings saga.
Rifat Çetin was given a suspended year in prison for five years and also lost parental custodian rights, The Guardian reported on Thursday, citing Turkish media.
He was found guilty of insulting the president with three images he posted on Facebook in 2014 showing Erdogan juxtaposed with Gollum.
Cetin said he will appeal the sentence as at the time the photos were published, Erdogan was prime minister and not the president.
According to The Guardian over 1,800 people have been accused of insulting the president, a crime that carries a sentence of up to four years behind bars. Among the accused are cartoonists and a former Miss Turkey.

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