Tuesday, July 05, 2016

From Ian:

Caroline Glick: Moral equivalence has become a moral atrocity
We have reached the point where moral equivalence has become a moral atrocity.
The smart set in the West has insisted for over a generation that Israel and the Palestinians are morally equal. There are extremists, on both sides, they say. Both sides are responsible for the absence of peace.
The first serious outcry against this lie came immediately after the Palestinians began their terrorist war against Israel in September 2000. That war, incited, directed, funded, commanded and celebrated by Yassir Arafat and his henchmen, including his successor Mahmoud Abbas, began two months after Arafat overturned the table at Camp David in response to then prime minister Ehud Barak’s offer to withdraw from 95 percent of Judea and Samaria, all of Gaza and half of Jerusalem to enable the establishment of an independent state of Palestine in the areas.
The areas in question, Barak said, would be handed over to the PLO Jew free. The hundreds of thousands of Jews living in the areas set to become Palestine, would be forcefully evicted from their homes to ensure that the delicate, sensitive Palestinians, wouldn’t be troubled by the Jews with their “dirty feet,” in the words of Abbas.
That, of course, wasn’t enough for Arafat. And it was insufficient not because Barak failed to give him what he demanded. It was insufficient because his demands were insatiable. Arafat was never interested in peace.
As his deputy Faisal Husseini said at the time, the peace process was a “Trojan Horse.”
Its purpose was to get the PLO bases of operation inside of Israeli territory in order to expand its ability to destroy the Jewish state.
This is the reason that despite the fact that the international community has given them more financial assistance than any other people in the history of humanity, the Palestinians have not built a society. They have received tens of billions of dollars in development aid and failed to develop an operating economy.
This failure isn’t due to incompetence or corruption.
It is simply that the Palestinians don’t want those things. They chose not to develop independent institutions.
They do not want to build a state. They have spent the money to transform Palestinian society into the most anti-Semitic society in the world where the vast majority of its people want to kill Jews and destroy Israel. They have transformed Palestinian society into a place where Jews have no right to live – not because of some sort of occupation, but because they are Jews, and Jews, they have been indoctrinated to believe, are an abomination.

PMW: PA, PLO, and Fatah enraged by Israeli UN Ambassador’s election as chairman of UN Legal Committee
Enraged by the election in June of Israel’s UN Ambassador Danny Danon as chairman of the UN Legal Committee, the Palestinian Authority Government Spokesman Yusuf Al-Mahmoud called it “a farce and a shameful and disgraceful thing,” and stated that Israel is a “threat to the peace and security of the region.” [WAFA (official PA news agency), June 14, 2016]
The official PA daily printed a cartoon titled “Israel is chairman of the UN Legal Committee,” showing an Israeli soldier looking through the sights of a machine gun while standing on the scales of justice. [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 16, 2016]
Abbas’ Fatah Movement called the election “a blow to international law.” [Website of Fatah's Information and Culture Commission, June 14, 2016]
Fatah in Lebanon portrayed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a killer of Palestinians as well as of Lady Justice in two cartoons.
In both cartoons, the election of Israel as chair of the UN Legal Committee, which deals with all of the UN’s legal activities and coordinates its fight against terror, was termed “a prize for terror.”
One cartoon (above) shows a figure representing the UN and the world waving Prime Minister Netanyahu’s bloody hands in the air as a sign of victory on the UN podium. At their feet are skulls and bones of Palestinians, one of the skulls is holding a Palestinian flag. [Falestinona, website of Fatah's Information and Culture Commission in Lebanon, June 24, 2016]

Natan Sharansky: Elie Wiesel's Great Mission on Behalf of Soviet Jews
Elie Wiesel understood that the failure to speak out, about both the horrors of the past and the evils of the present, is one of the most effective ways there is to perpetuate suffering and empower those who inflict it.
Wiesel therefore made it his life's mission to ensure that silence would not prevail. First, he took the courageous and painful step of recounting the Holocaust, bringing it to public attention in a way that no one else before him had done. Then he turned his attention to the present, giving voice to the millions of Jews living behind the Iron Curtain.
Wiesel first traveled to the Soviet Union in 1965 as a journalist from Ha'aretz. The book that resulted, The Jews of Silence, was an impassioned plea to Jews around the world to shed their indifference and speak out for those who could not. Wiesel's book became the banner of activists, students and others who would not stay quiet. The history of the Soviet Union would likely be very different had the struggle for Soviet Jewry not come to encompass the kind of outspoken, grass-roots activism that Wiesel encouraged in his book.
Elie Wiesel's humanism, his active concern for the voiceless, hardly stopped with his fellow Jews. He spoke out against massacres in Bosnia, Cambodia and Sudan, and against apartheid in South Africa. He became, as others have said, the conscience of the world.
Yet he did not feel he had to give up his Jewish loyalty or national pride to be a better spokesman for others. To the contrary: It was the tragedy of his people that generated his concern for the world.
Bernard-Henri Lévy: The Humble Nobility of Elie Wiesel
Wiesel’s greatness was to have remained, under all circumstances — one of those humble Jews whom he considered the crown of humanity. His nobility consisted in never forgetting the lesson of the Rebbe of Vizhnitz, even after he had donned the robe of the man of letters, that he bore the burden of those, adorned in caftan and fur hat, who had wanted to be as elegant as the Polish nobles who led the pogroms against them.
And I believe that not a day passed in Wiesel’s long life as a celebrated intellectual, honored by great universities and consulted by presidents, without spending at least an hour poring over a page of the Talmud or the Zohar, knowing that initially he would understand nothing of what he read, but that this was the price of the only true celebration.
This was just what his people had done in Sighet, believing that one day the Messiah would come. And it is what we do today when we grasp that neither Cambodia, nor Darfur, nor the massacres in Syria, nor the need, anywhere on the planet, to drive out the beast that sleeps in man should divert us from the sacred task of saving what we can of memory, meaning and hope.
That is the lesson of Elie Wiesel. May it guide us through a time haunted, more than ever, by crime, distraction and forgetfulness.
The Post-Brexit Future of European-Israeli Relations
It can reasonably be hoped that Israel’s bilateral relations with Britain, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, will be further strengthened, despite the calls that are made by far-left organizations and BDS activists in the UK.
Incidentally, it should be emphasized that the election of Sadiq Khan, a Muslim, as mayor of London has not harmed the Jewish community and has indeed prompted a fascinating and important dialogue with the leaders of the moderate Muslim community.
Meanwhile, extreme left-wing or right-wing organizations must be prevented from exploiting Britain’s exit for ultranationalist, populist, and racist agendas. These are likely to focus at first on Muslim immigrants and foreign minorities, and later on the Jews and, indirectly, on Israel.
In sum, Brexit will give Britain greater diplomatic and economic room to maneuver. London will no longer answer to the whims of Brussels bureaucrats when it comes to Israel and the Palestinian problem. Israel must pursue a wise diplomatic approach, ensuring that it will maintain this valuable asset of Europe.
JPost Editorial: Settlement reasoning

The move also unfairly paints Israel – at least in the eyes of the international community – as the guilty party in the ongoing deadlock in peace negotiations with the Palestinians.
The recently published Quartet report on the diplomatic process wrongly took Israel to task for preventing a peace settlement through its settlement building efforts.
But it also blamed Palestinian incitement and the split in Palestinian leadership between Gaza and the West Bank.
Our job should be to convince the world to focus on the last two reasons, not draw attention to and acknowledge the first. We build in existing Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem, such as Pisgat Ze’ev and Gilo, or in consensus settlement blocs like Gush Etzion and Ariel, not out of a desire to punish Palestinians, but rather out of a real need to supply housing for a fast-growing population. Unlike the vast majority of Western countries, Israel enjoys brisk natural population growth. Indeed, our high fertility rate combined with our high standard of living is one of many signs of Israel’s promising future.
Building housing is not a form of punishment, nor is it a tactic for blocking the creation of a Palestinian state. It is an expression of Israel’s unique connection to this land and a reflection of Israeli society’s remarkable health and vitality.
Half of Israeli Jews oppose West Bank withdrawal — poll
If a referendum were held today on an Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank excluding major settlement blocs, a majority of Jews, 52 percent, would vote against such a withdrawal, according to a major poll of Israeli public opinion.
Just over one-third of Israeli Jews, or 36%, would support a withdrawal “in principle,” according to the June 2016 Peace Index, a monthly study of Israelis’ views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, among other issues.
The figures are reversed among Arab Israelis, with fully 69% saying they would support a withdrawal “today,” and 24% opposing it.
Across the entire Israeli population, opposition to a withdrawal in the current situation enjoys a plurality of 48% to 41%.
But given a peace agreement between the Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority, the answers shift in favor of withdrawal. Jewish views tilt toward near parity, with 46% opposed to withdrawal and 43% in favor. Among Arabs, support for withdrawal reaches over 76%.
Though the Jewish vote tilts slightly against withdrawal in the case of a peace agreement, Israel’s population overall would favor (49% to 41%) a withdrawal if it were conducted in the context of a peace agreement.
UN chief blasts Israeli construction in Jerusalem
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday criticized the Israeli government's decision to approve the construction of 560 housing units in Maale Adumim, as well as the advancement of plans to build 240 housing units in Jerusalem.
A statement by Ban's spokesman said he “strongly criticizes” the Israeli decision, adding it “raises legitimate questions about Israel’s long-term intentions, which are compounded by continuing statements of some Israeli ministers calling for the annexation of the West Bank.”
The UN chief also reiterated that “settlements are illegal under international law” and urged the Israeli government “to halt and reverse such decisions in the interest of peace and a just final status agreement.”
“The Secretary-General is deeply disappointed that this announcement comes only four days after the Middle East Quartet called on Israel to cease its policy of settlement construction and expansion,” said the statement.
The announcement of the construction was made on Sunday, following yet another wave of deadly terrorist attacks against Israelis in Judea and Samaria.
Analysis: Where Israeli and African interests intersect
When Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Foreign Ministry Director-General Dore Gold talk about a “confluence of interests,” they generally refer to a commonality of interests with the Arab countries in the region that is behind the unprecedented, but discreet, cooperation with them.
That term, however, is also used when explaining why precisely now – nearly 30 years after Yitzhak Shamir was the last sitting prime minister to visit Africa – Israel, as Netanyahu puts it, is returning to Africa, and Africa is returning to Israel.
Interestingly, Shamir's six-day, four country tour took him to western Africa – Togo, Cameroon, Liberia and the Ivory Coast – while Netanyahu's five-day, four-country hop takes him to the east: Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda and Ethiopia.
The main common interest revolves around security issues. Three of the four – Uganda, Kenya and Ethiopia – are facing terrorism from Islamic extremists, and Rwanda is concerned about a spill-over effect.
These countries are afraid that what has happened in Libya, Mali and the Ivory Coast could happen to them as well.
PM in Africa : It is possible to break automatic anti-Israel majority
Breaking the automatic majority against Israel in international forums is one of Jerusalem’s strategic goals, and the current inroads being made into Africa goes a long way in that direction, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday evening.
Netanyahu made his comments aboard the plane flying him 50 minutes from Entebbe to Nairobi for the second day of his five day, four state east Africa swing.
Before leaving Uganda, Netanyahu held a three-hour summit – which he characterized as historic – with the leaders of seven east African nations: Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, Ethiopia, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Tanzania.
These leaders came to the summit “on short notice” out of a respect for Israel, and also an appreciation that Israel is a strategic ally for them. It was worth noting, Netanyahu said, that they were strengthening these ties in broad daylight.
Netanyahu noted that when he drove from Entebbe the five minutes to the presidential palace nearby, some people lined the streets waving Israeli flags and cheering.
Netanyahu said he told the leaders he met that one person held up a sign that read, “Uganda needs Israel.”
Kenya president vows to help Israel strengthen Africa ties
Fourteen years after Israel was booted out, Kenya is backing Israel’s bid to regain observer status at the African Union, the country’s president announced Tuesday.
“We believe that there is need for us as a continent once again to reengage Israel on a more positive basis, with an understanding that our partnership can help make this world that much more secure,” President Uhuru Kenyatta said at a joint press conference with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at Nairobi State House.
“This is something that Kenya will continue to push, to see how Israel can regain her observer position at the African Union. I believe that this is not just good for Kenya. It is good for Africa. It is good for global peace. It is good for partnership,” said the president.
Strengthened Israel-African cooperation is important for both sides, Kenyatta went on, adding that while some countries on the continent have had tense relations with the Jewish state, current global challenges obligate African countries to reassess their position.
In first, Somalia's president recently met with Israeli PM
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently met with the president of Somalia in a first high-level contact between the two countries, a source close to the Somali leader told The Times of Israel.
Israel does not have diplomatic relations with the East African nation, which has a population of some 11 million. Somalia, a mostly Sunni Muslim country and a member of the Arab League, has never recognized the State of Israel.
Two weeks ago, a report on the Caasimada Online, a news website operated by journalists opposed to the Somali regime, stated that President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and three other Somali officials came to Tel Aviv on a short visit and met there with Netanyahu and other Israeli officials.
A senior official close to Mohamud confirmed to The Times of Israel that the meeting took place, though the official could not say whether it was held in Tel Aviv.
Another meeting between the two leaders is planned for the near future, the senior official said.
In first, Tanzania to open embassy in Israel
Tanzania told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday that the East African country would be opening an embassy in Israel for the first time.
Foreign Minister Augustine Mahiga gave Netanyahu a letter from Tanzanian President John Magufuli in which Dodoma’s intention to establish a permanent envoy was expressed.
Bilateral ties between Israel and Tanzania were severed following the 1973 Yom Kippur War. Relations were reestablished in 1995, but Israel still conducts its relations with Tanzania via Nairobi in Kenya. Tanzania has reportedly expressed interest in reopening a mission in Israel multiple times in recent years.
Netanyahu was taking part in a multilateral meeting in Entebbe, Uganda, with the presidents of Uganda, Kenya, South Sudan and Zambia, Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, and Mahiga.
Odd couple Israel and Egypt enjoying ‘best times ever’
Blast walls, sandbags, and guards with machine pistols manning checkpoints ring the Israeli diplomatic compound in the leafy Cairo suburb of Maadi.
But inside the Embassy, which doubles as Ambassador Haim Koren’s residence, you’d hardly notice any of the animosity traditionally felt by the Egyptian masses, for all the upbeat assessments of the future.
On a recent night at the compound, some two dozen Egyptians came for an iftar dinner, the traditional breaking of the fast during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which ends Tuesday. But the vast majority of them — including a cook wearing a Star of David T-shirt — were embassy employees.
“This is one of the best times we’ve ever had” in terms of cooperation between governments, said Koren, a veteran diplomat and fluent Arabic speaker posted here since 2014. “There’s good cooperation between the armies, we have understandings about the Sinai Peninsula, and basically, we see (eye-to-eye) on development of the region.”
The beginning of the end of the Abbas era
Here is a name that most of us have not heard in quite a while: Ahmed Qurei, also known as Abu Alaa. However improbably, he is currently the hottest of the possible successors to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen).
Abu Alaa, a former PA prime minister (2003-6), is not even a member of Fatah’s leadership — its Central Committee. Yet he is widely touted in Ramallah as a temporary appointee (the operative word here being “temporary”), acceptable to the upper echelon of Fatah and the PLO. One of his key advantages: He’ll turn 80 in March (Abbas is 81), and wouldn’t likely fill the post for long, enabling a longer-term leader to emerge from the still mostly covert battles over the succession that Fatah’s highest-ranking members are waging.
Formally, if the Palestinian president should be unable to continue in office, the speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council (parliament) is supposed to take his place for 60 days until general elections are held. But the speaker of the parliament is Sheikh Aziz Dweik, a member of Hamas. Formally, for that matter, parliament is supposed to confirm the speaker’s appointment to office every year. But parliament has not actually convened for nine years.
These little hiccups have produced an alternative plan: With the speaker a non-starter to fill in for Abbas, the thinking in Ramallah right now is that the PLO chairman could hold the fort until elections are held. (Which could be a very long time, since Israel would almost certainly oppose both Hamas participation in elections and any voting in East Jerusalem, without either of which the Palestinians would probably not go ahead.)
Who is the current PLO chairman? Well, that would be Abbas, kind of. He actually announced his resignation from the post last summer.
Palestinian Authority said to sever ties with the Quartet
The Palestinian Authority has decided to cut ties with the Middle East Quartet, Arab media reported on Tuesday.
The London-based pan-Arab newspaper Al Hayat reported that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas decided to stop working with the Quartet — the United States, European Union, Russia and the United Nations — following a series of disappointments in Ramallah in the group’s work.
Abbas reportedly informed the central committees of both the Palestinian Liberation Organization and his party Fatah of the decision. The decision was confirmed to the paper by Fatah Central Committee member Mohammed Ashtiya.
The Quartet on Friday released a long-awaited report on the peace process, which, for the first time in a major international forum, cited Palestinian incitement against Israel as a major obstacle to ending the conflict.
The report accused Hamas and Fatah of encouraging terror attacks against Israelis. It also criticized Israel’s settlement building, and its demolition of Palestinian homes and confiscation of land, saying those policies were “steadily eroding the viability of the two-state solution.”
PLO secretary general Saeb Erekat, who is also the lead Palestinian negotiator, expressed disappointment that the report criticized both sides rather than only Israel.
PreOccupiedTerritory: What Is This Idea Of ‘Asylum’ For Refugees Of Which You Speak? by UNRWA (satire)
Essentially, refugees – especially Palestinian refugees – are not people. They are tools. Useful tools, with utility far beyond the mere provision of excuses to the kleptocratic Palestinian leadership not to settle for anything less than the destruction of Israel, demographically or otherwise, to keep rejecting peace proposals. Their utility is evident in the way they are exploited by the leaders of neighboring countries, where their presence, the reminder of a great historical injustice, serves as a convenient distraction from domestic problems and a channeling of popular dissatisfaction in the direction of an external foe.
But they also provide the basis for a vast bureaucracy funded by international donations, and cushy jobs for antisemites with plausible deniablity. That alone demonstrates the folly of thinking refugees of any sort should be able to escape their status as such. If the refugees are absorbed into other societies and create new lives for themselves and their families, who will employ all of our staff? They have no other marketable skills. The entire notion of asylum for refugees, principally Palestinian refugees, is predicated on ignoring the needs of these bureaucrats for a decent living and an opportunity to rub shoulders with international bigwigs. Did you even think before you suggested it?
Now, we hear rumors that there is another UN agency tasked with handling refugees, the kind that are not Palestinian, and that said agency resettles one hundred percent of those refugees. If that’s true – and we are not certain that it is, given our aversion to facts that make us look bad – then that agency must be shut down at once.
Primarily because it probably competes with us for funding.
Israeli Foreign Ministry: 40 Dead, More Than 500 Wounded, Since Start of Palestinian Terror Surge Last September
The surge in Palestinian terrorism that began last September and has been continuing virtually without let-up is the direct result of incitement by radical Islamists and terrorists calling on youth to murder Jews, according to a report released on Sunday by the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA).
According to the report, which cites research conducted by the Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center and the Shin Bet (Israeli Security Agency), “Since 13 September 2015, 40 people have been killed in terrorist attacks and 511 people (including 4 Palestinians) injured. There have been 155 stabbing attacks (including 76 attempted attacks), 96 shootings, 45 vehicular (ramming) attacks and one vehicle (bus) bombing.”
The MFA said that the above “is part of the PA’s strategy of ‘popular resistance’ (i.e., popular terrorism) adopted by the PA and Fatah at the Sixth Fatah conference in August 2009. Statements by Fatah, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad spokespersons have described the attacks as ‘heroic actions’ and ‘the natural response to Israel’s crimes.’”
The following is a partial list – in chronological order, beginning with the most recent — of the major terrorist attacks against Israelis since September 13, 2015. According to the MFA, it does not include most of the daily riots, rock-and Molotov cocktail-throwing in which no one was hurt:
Born hours after the burial, a new baby named after Hallel Ariel
Michal and Dovi Gellar of Haspin have raised six children, ranging from their 18-year-old first-born son to their 6-year-old daughter. While they initially had thought that six was enough, they changed their minds after Operation Protective Edge and decided to add another life to the family.
On Saturday night at Poriya Medical Center near Tiberias, their seventh child was born: Carmi Hallel, named after 13-year-old Hallel Ariel who was murdered in her sleep last week and was buried a few hours before the newest Gellar's birth.
Her mother, Michal, said, "We decided to name our daughter Hallel ("praise") because we had such a magical, natural delivery, and of course in honor of Hallel Ariel. The late Hallel was a good friend of our niece, and, and we're good friends of the family.
Watchdog: Pressure on Canadian Paper Leading to Amendment of Headline About Slaughter of 13-Year-Old Kiryat Arba Girl Serves as Warning Against Double Standards in Israel Coverage
The pressure on a major Canadian newspaper to amend the headline of its story about last week’s slaughter of a 13-year-old Israeli girl serves as a warning against the application of double standards when it comes to reportage on the Jewish state and Palestinian terrorism, a media analyst told The Algemeiner on Monday
Simon Plosker, managing editor of the watchdog organization HonestReporting, was referring to a National Post report on Thursday — originally published under a different headline in the Washington Post -titled: “Palestinian fatally stabs sleeping Israeli girl in West Bank settlement in what Israel calls a terrorist attack.”
It was the phrase “in what Israel calls a terrorist attack” with which Plosker took issue — as though there was a question about whether the butchering of the girl at the hands of a Palestinian terrorist was, indeed, an act of terror.
“There should be no doubt in anyone’s mind that the brutal murder of Hallel Yaffa Ariel was anything less than a terrorist attack. It’s bad enough that most of the media still refuses to use the word ‘terrorism’ to describe ideologically driven incitement fueled violence against Israelis,” Plosker said. “If this isn’t a clear-cut case of terrorism, then what is?”
Following an active campaign by the watchdog group calling to change the headline, the National Post amended its headline
Palestinian woman tries to stab IDF soldier, is shot
Israeli soldiers shot a Palestinian woman as she attempted to stab one of them at a bus stop near the West Bank settlement of Ariel on Tuesday evening, the army said.
None of the soldiers was hurt in the incident.
The extent of the woman’s injuries was not immediately clear.
She received medical treatment at the scene before being taken to a nearby hospital for further treatment, a military spokesperson said.
A video filmed by a driver passing by the scene showed a woman on the ground wearing what appears to be a hijab bleeding from her torso next to the highway, surrounded by soldiers.
Terrorists behind TA attack planned train massacre
The three terrorists indicted for the deadly shooting attack at Tel Aviv's Sarona Market last month had allegedly first planned a train massacre, but changed their plans due to security procedures at train stations.
Their original plans were detailed in the indictment, filed at the Tel Aviv District Court Monday against cousins Muhammad and Khalid Muhamra, both 21, and their friend Younis Zayn, 22. The cousins carried out the shooting attack while Zayn served as an accomplice in its planning, apparently because he was in financial debt, which, the cousins said, would have prevented him from becoming a martyr, according to Muslim beliefs.
All three terrorists are from the Palestinian village of Yatta, near the city of Hebron in Judea. They were indicted on four charges of murder and a series of attempted murder charges.
Prosecutor Tamar Anis stated at the opening of the indictment that the accused had decided to carry out the attack last July, after the firebombing of the Dawabsha family home in Duma, suspected to have been carried out by Jewish extremists.
While planning, they also gathered knives, preparing for the possibility that their weapons would fail during the attack. They also bought rat poison in which to dip the knives, increasing the severity of the injuries they would be able to inflict.
Israeli Judge Rules: Chants Of ‘Allahu Akbar’ At Jews On Temple Mount Is Illegal
Cries of “Allahu Akbar” directed at Jews on the Temple Mount are illegal and constitutes disturbing the peace, the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court ruled.
“Israel’s past experience has shown that the chant is often used in contexts outside of prayer. Accompanying riots and occasionally leading to terrorism and violence,” the presiding judge, Shmuel Herbest, told the Hebrew language NRG news site.
The ruling harked back to an incident five years ago in which Sahar Ghazzawi fought a policeman off and broke his radio when he was escorted off the premises for yelling “Allahu Akbar” at a group of Jews on the flashpoint holy site.
Ghazzawi defended himself with the claim that he was not shouting at the Jews, rather he was saying the phrase as part of his religious ritual. He added that he struggled with the policeman because the latter refused his requests to go to the bathroom.
However, a witness testified that Ghazzawi’s chant was not a prayer but a way of goading Jews visiting the site. The report added that Ghazzawi may have been paid by the Islamist group Amarat al-Aqsa to visit the Temple Mount regularly in order to discourage Jews from coming.
Swiss, French fighter jets scramble in El Al plane bomb hoax
Switzerland and France scrambled military jets on Tuesday to accompany an El Al flight as it passed through their airspace after US authorities received a telephone bomb threat about a possible explosive stashed aboard the plane.
The threat turned out to be a hoax, El Al officials said.
El Al flight LY002, which took off from New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport late Monday local time, landed safely at Ben Gurion Airport Tuesday afternoon.
The passengers were not told of the threat while the plane — a 747 with some 380 on board — was in the air, and only learned of it on landing in Israel. Families were informed of developments as the plane made its way across Europe, and many were on hand at the airport to receive the passengers.
Israeli woman gets 22 months for trying to join Islamic State
The Haifa District Court on Tuesday sentenced an Israeli-Arab mother of five to 22 months in prison for trying to join the Islamic State group in Syria, where she wanted to teach jihadist ideology to new recruits.
Iman Ahmed Mohamed Kanjou, 44, a teacher from the northern city of Shfaram, was convicted in a plea bargain of contacting an enemy agent and illegally leaving the country. She was also given a year’s suspended sentence and ordered to pay a fine of NIS 30,000 ($7,750).
Kanjou traveled to Turkey without the knowledge of her husband, an imam in their home city.
After months of interest in IS during which she contacted a representative of the jihadist terror group via Facebook, Kanjou traveled to Turkey in August 2015 with the intention of crossing the border into Syria and joining the jihadists. Kanjou had told the IS representative she could teach ideology to new recruits.
The trip was financed by her father, who accompanied her on the journey with the intention of also entering Syria, and was made without the knowledge of her family at home. Her husband, unaware of her plans, reported her disappearance to police.
Turkish aid ship arrives in Gaza after stop in Israel
Turkish aid arrived in Gaza on Monday via Israel, as part of the reconciliation agreement between Turkey and Israel, AFP reported.
Turkish and Palestinian officials welcomed 10 truckloads of supplies, including food parcels, toys and children's clothing and shoes as they reached the impoverished territory in time for the Muslim Eid celebrations on Wednesday marking the end of Ramadan fasting, according to the report.
"These are the first Turkish aid trucks into Gaza," Mustafa Sarnic, Turkey's ambassador to the Palestinian Authority, told a press conference near the Kerem Shalom crossing with Israel.
"Turkey will continue its efforts to help the residents of the Gaza Strip and to help solve the water and power crisis," he added.
The Panama-flagged Lady Leyla container ship docked at southern Israel's Ashdod port on Sunday after sailing from Turkey.
Its contents were unloaded, inspected and sent on to the Hamas-run Gaza Strip.
Youssef Ibrahim, the Hamas deputy minister of social affairs, said the 11,000-ton shipment would be distributed to those most in need by his ministry along with the Turkish and Palestinian Red Crescent societies.
It was due to be the first of many, he added.
"These 10 trucks are part of 400 trucks of Turkish aid for Gaza."
'Hamas smuggling money to West Bank for terror, building tunnels under mosques in Gaza'
The arrest of two Gazans with terror financing cash hidden in their shoes eventually enabled Israel to gain valuable new intelligence on the underground network of tunnels Hamas and Islamic Jihad are digging in Gaza.
Security forces announced on Tuesday that they had nabbed two Gazans over the course of June, for trying to smuggle terror financing cash from the Strip to Hamas in the West Bank.
The joint Shin Bet, Israel Police Southern District, and IDF operation resulted in the arrest on June 16 of Faiz Atar, born in 1951, from Bet Lahia in Gaza, who had a permit to enter Israel to conduct trade.
The suspect was taken into custody at the Tarkumia crossing between Israel and the West Bank.
The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) said the suspect hid cash in his shoes for Hamas, and smuggled tens of thousands of Euros to operatives in the West Bank.
As the investigation continued, the domestic intelligence agency gleaned valuable information on Atar's family in Gaza and their activities on behalf of Hamas, including tunnel digging.
Report: Russia to deliver second shipment of S-300 system to Iran
The Russian newspaper Izvestia reported on Monday that Russia is expected to deliver a second shipment of its S-300 air defense missile system to Iran.
The report, which relies on an interview with the director of Russia's Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation, Alexander Pumin, was published a few days after Farzad Esmaili, commander of Iran's Air Defense Base, said that he expected the system to become operational by the end of the year.
The S-300, first deployed by the Soviet Union in 1979 during the Cold War, has the capability to track and intercept multiple aircraft and ballistic missiles simultaneously at ranges of hundreds of kilometers. It is one of the most potent air defense weapons in the world.
Russia canceled a contract to deliver S-300s to Iran in 2010 under pressure from the West, but Russia lifted that ban early last year in the wake of the signing of an interim nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers.
Compassion Fatigue
Here we go again. The tragedy in Bangladesh and the tragedy in Istanbul have gotten the reverse-racists back from out of the woodwork calling the rest of us monsters for not mourning enough over the innocent dead. Why are we having all this wailing for Orlando and not for Dhaka?
Well, first off, there’s proximity. In the EU, Paris and Brussels are the center of the area. Most people in Europe have heard of Paris and Brussels, and most of us who can afford it have either been to those places or want to see them eventually. The media getting there is easy because it’s already there. One just has corporate shell out a few thousand bucks and the entire crew is flying to the scene in a matter of minutes.
Same thing with Orlando, “over here” is always more important than “over there.”
Secondly, and most important are the numbers. There is a a regional war going on in the Middle East; A civil war going on in Syria, an ISIS invasion of Iraq, a gratuitous Turkish war with the Kurds, etcetera, in which hundreds of thousands of people have died and millions of refugees are flooding Europe’s borders every day.
 Suicide bombers hit three Saudi cities on penultimate day of Ramadan
Suicide bombers struck three cities across Saudi Arabia on Monday, in an apparently coordinated campaign of attacks as Saudis prepared to break their fast on the penultimate day of the holy month of Ramadan.
The explosions targeting US diplomats, Shi'ite worshippers and a security headquarters at a mosque in the holy city of Medina follow days of mass killings claimed by the Islamic State group, in Turkey, Bangladesh and Iraq. The attacks all seem to have been timed to coincide with the approach of Eid al-Fitr, the holiday that celebrates the end of the fast.
A Saudi security official said an attacker parked a car near the US consulate in Jeddah before detonating the device. The official said the government was checking the reports of blasts in Qatif and Medina.
In the only one of the three attacks that appeared to have caused many casualties, a suicide bomber detonated a bomb near the security headquarters of the Prophet's Mosque in Medina, the second-holiest site in Islam.
Saudi-owned al-Arabiya television said an initial death toll from the Medina blast included three suicide bombers and two security forces officers.
Algeria reportedly cancels soccer match against Ghana because of Israeli coach
The warm relations between Algeria and the Palestinian people which are based on a shared narrative of struggle against Western colonialism are now reportedly pushing the Algerians to carry out anti-Israel moves.
According to the Algerian media, a friendly soccer match that was scheduled to take place in Algeria in September between the local national team and Ghana was canceled in order to prevent the arrival of Ghana's Israeli coach, Avraham Grant, to the Arab country.
Ayman Gada, an Algerian journalist, wrote on his Facebook page on Monday: "The Algerian national team canceled the friendly match with Ghana because it refused to host Ghana's Israeli coach, Avraham Grant."
In light of the frequent pageants of solidarity with Palestinians that have been taking place in Algeria recently, the Algerian soccer association feared that Grant's arrival to Ghana might infuriate the Algerian population.

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