Thursday, July 07, 2016

From Ian:

The End of Palestinian Nationalism
When a movement devolves into a death cult, it’s time to rethink our assumptions
The Palestinian genius for nay-saying is well-documented, but what’s at play here is something new, something that transcends the dull boundaries of international negotiations and seeps into the hearts and minds of the young. Once the essential No that has guided Palestinian policy for decades has been turned inward, it could find no other outlet but destruction and no better target than the Jews next door. Anti-Semitism has something to do with fanning this derangement, but it is not its essence; neither are pure yearnings for an independent Palestinian homeland. The revolt we’re seeing now is more profound, more ontological in nature: It’s the revolt of an educated and relatively well-off generation—note how many of the stabbers have come, like Tarayrah, from comfortable and stable families—that looks for meaning and honor and sacrifice and can find it nowhere in the vastly compromised world outside, succumbing instead to the all-consuming fire of utter annihilation. We’ve seen this tide rise before under similar circumstances, and we’ll see it rise again.
It’s easy to argue that Tarayrah and his fellow pogromists are merely youth pushed into murder by the constant torrent of incitement prevalent in every corner of Palestinian culture; this is true, but it eerily assumes, like the looniest moralists do when they argue that violent video games or gangster rap will inevitably lead to shootouts in the streets of suburban Connecticut, that adolescents are spongy creatures incapable of doing much more than soaking violence and spurting out violence in kind. It’s even easier to continue to blame that mythical horned beast, the Occupation, as if there was no other reason for young Palestinians to feel hopeless—like, say, the fact that their own government is one of the world’s most repressive and corrupt—and as if hopelessness necessarily translated into taking knives to the throats of slumbering children. If we abandon these simplicities, and acknowledge instead that what bedevils Palestinian society is a much more wicked problem, we’re left to make some uneasy decisions of our own.
First, we should realize that we must approach a death cult differently than we would a healthy national movement. The latter calls out for compromise. It rewards negotiations, and it reassures its foes by offering indications, real and symbolic, that future reconciliation is likely and at hand. This is why we often forgive it its missteps, and are willing to look away even when it occasionally unleashes bloody hell, as even the most well-tempered and responsible national movements sometimes do. The former, however, has no appetite for anything but destruction, and measures its triumphs with the crude arithmetic of body counts and death tolls. It cannot be reasoned with. It can only be forcefully stopped. Until it is, any attempt to pretend that Palestinian nationalism is still viable is simply grotesque.
This should come as little surprise to any serious student of national movements throughout history. Reread Herder’s remark that, in a certain sense, every form of human perfection is first and foremost national in spirit, and reflect again on the Treaty of Westphalia, which sliced Europe into nation-states erected on the basis of self-determination and committed to diplomatic congress as a means of resolving disputes. Then go forth and observe the myriad national movements that failed miserably to live up to this new spirit of creative nationalism. Ask the Moravians or the Transnistrians about their efforts at self-determination, and that’s just one small corner in Europe. The world is thick with failed national movements that, for one reason or another, saw their dreams disintegrate into violence, or irrelevance, or both. Sadly, the Palestinians now join them. This will have many implications, for Palestinians and Israelis alike, but if history is any guide, the only way to counter a No is with an equal or greater Yes, a spirit that meets death by loudly and enthusiastically affirming life.

PMW: Jews do the satans' work on earth - Fatah TV cartoon for kids
In honor of Ramadan, Fatah TV broadcast a cartoon series for young children that presents Jews as the representatives of several satans, fighting battles for these satans, and doing their work on earth. The educational message to Palestinian children is that the satans are scheming to fight and destroy Muhammad, and in order to succeed in this, they use the Jews to fight Muhammad.
The series shows the satans (who oppose Muhammad) being upset that the Jewish tribes left Medina without fighting Muhammad, thus enabling Muhammad an unopposed victory. One of the satans then plants the idea in the minds of the Jews to organize all the tribes to fight against Muhammad so that the Jews can regain their prestige. This plan succeeds because the satan knows "the burning hate and loathing of Muhammad and his supporters, that fills the hearts of the Jews."
Finally, viewers are taught that Muhammad was preparing for battle by digging trenches to protect himself from the Jews, even though he already had a treaty with them because, as one Muslim explains: "Since when do Jews keep their treaties?"
Presenting Jews as agents of the satans who do evil on earth is a part of the PA's religious ideology, although the PA claims to the international community that their conflict with Israel is only territorial. Mahmoud Abbas' advisor on Islam recently stressed that the Palestinian Authority ideology is to see the conflict with Israel as a conflict with Satan. Israel, Mahmoud Al-Habbash taught, is "Satan's project":
Fatah TV cartoon: Jews sided with satans to fight Muhammad and the Muslims

Palestinian Authority Pays Terrorists and Their Families $140 Million a Year
The Palestinian Authority spends roughly 10 percent of its annual budget paying terrorists who attack Israelis and supporting their families, according to expert testimony to congressional lawmakers.
Yigal Carmon, the president and founder of the Middle East Media Research Institute, told the House Foreign Affairs Committee Wednesday that the Palestinian Authority is investing $137.8 million this year in salaries to terrorists jailed in Israel and payments to the families of imprisoned terrorists or suicide bombers, in violation of the Oslo peace accords with Israel.
Wednesday’s hearing took place following a months-long wave of violent attacks waged by Palestinians on Israelis in the West Bank. Last week, a Palestinian attacker broke into a home in the West Bank and stabbed to death a 13-year-old Israeli-American girl in her sleep.
There have been 250 such attacks or attempted attacks by Palestinians on Israelis since October 2015, according to the report of the Middle East Quartet—comprised of the United States, Russia, the European Union, and the United Nations—issued last week. The assaults have killed at least 30 Israelis and resulted in dozens of Palestinians being killed by Israeli police.
Official Palestinian Authority media have glorified perpetrators of these terrorist attacks. Bashar Masalha, a Palestinian who stabbed U.S. Army veteran Taylor Force to death and wounded several others in March, was hailed on official media outlets as a “martyr” at the time of his funeral.
MEMRI President Yigal Carmon's Testimony To House Committee On Foreign Affairs
Palestinian Authority Support For Imprisoned, Released, And Wounded Terrorists And Families Of 'Martyrs'
The following is written testimony submitted to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, July 6, 2016, by Yigal Carmon, President and Founder, The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Washington, D.C.
Mr. Chairman, Ranking Members, and Members of the Committee,
My testimony today is dedicated to a persistent problem: the financial and other support given by the Palestinian Authority (PA) to those who have continued their terrorist activities after the Oslo Accords, in which Yasser Arafat made a commitment, on behalf of the Palestinian people, to stop all terrorist activity.
By providing this support, the PA is encouraging terrorism in violation of its Oslo commitment.
Furthermore, the PA has been using money granted by donor countries for this purpose, and by doing so, has made them complicit in encouraging terrorism as well.
The details of this support, which I will cite in my testimony, may sound somewhat tedious, and I apologize for this in advance. They are taken both from the Palestinian media and from official PA records, available online.
MEMRI, as you may know, has been monitoring and analyzing the Middle East media for nearly 20 years. My testimony today is based not only on an analysis of the PA 2016 budget, but on years of research.

Brett Stephens: Terrorism Is Terrorism Whether It Involves Gays In Orlando, Travelers in Turkey--Or a Young Jewish Girl Whose Throat Is Slit in the West Bank
Stephens has no patience (nor do I) for those who claim that terrorism aimed at Israelis, especially at "settlers," is somehow different than terrorist acts committed elsewhere:
It’s depressing to think that the only way the world might understand the truth about terrorism is to have some experience of it. Still, it’s worth stressing that terrorism is not the continuation of politics but the negation of it, and that the murder of a 13-year-old “settler” has no more a rationale than what ISIS did in Orlando, Istanbul and Dhaka. Terrorism can be defeated, but only once that lesson is learned.
I'd like to think that, sooner rather than later, the world will figure that out. At the moment, however, there is next to no indication that that epiphany is anywhere on the horizon. Indeed, current thinking holds that terrorism in Israel is a problem that's solvable--if only the Israelis would buckle down and give the Palestinians what they want; no--what they deserve. The reality that Israel is in the crosshairs of jihadi terrorism because of what it is (i.e. Jewish) and where it is (i.e. on land claimed in perpetuity for Allah, "Al Quds" included) doesn't enter into it.
David Singer: Quartet and Two-State Solution Sink into Political Oblivion
The Quartet – America, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations – has effectively consigned any negotiated two-state solution to political oblivion with its latest Report.
Two statements in the Report stymie any resumption of negotiations – stalled since April 2014.
The Quartet – the most powerful and influential mediator in history – became totally irrelevant after it was restructured in July 2015. This latest Report will become yet another historical document attesting to the failure to achieve the two-state solution as envisaged by the Oslo Accords and the Bush Roadmap.
The time has surely arrived for trilateral negotiations to be commenced between Israel, Jordan and Egypt to allocate sovereignty in Judea and Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza between their respective sovereign States.
Time for the out-of-tune Quartet to bow out and give this Trio the world stage.
The Nameless Good Samaritans
In a New York Times account published later, another Palestinian doctor who arrived later at the scene took credit for giving the two wounded children medical assistance. He identified himself as Dr. Ali Shroukh. That story expounded upon the idea that other Palestinians warned him to leave the scene as soon as possible since, they supposedly said, he would be set upon by Israelis arriving at the scene or arrested as a suspect by the authorities (though why anyone would think a person rendering assistance to terror victims would be have been of the terrorists wasn’t explained).
But what was missing from either story were the names of the Palestinians who were the first ones to help. You would think the Arab media would be besieging these people in an effort to show the world a positive image of Palestinians. It’s no mystery why that didn’t happen. Palestinian terrorists who kill Jews and Israelis are honored as heroes by the official Palestinian media and paid pensions by the Palestinian Authority that is supposedly run by “moderates.” Violence against Jews, especially those who live in the West Bank, is considered not just understandable but behavior that should be lauded. There are no shows on Palestinian TV about those who put aside the century-old war of two peoples over one land but there are regular shows honoring the sort of people who created the carnage that was visited upon the Marks. Helping Jews in need is treated as treason by mainstream Palestinian political culture, not an example of true heroism.
There has been a conscious effort on the part of many journalists stationed in Israel to portray settlers as just as, if not more hateful than Palestinian terrorists. And, true to form, reporting from the emotional funeral of Rabbi Mark noted that there were some who cried out for “revenge.” Significantly, the Marks children asked anyone who spoke in that manner to leave. The same thing happened when someone posted an insulting remark about Arabs on Facebook, Chavi Mark’s sister criticized anyone who would generalize rather than understanding that those who committed the crime were terrorists and the guilt belongs to them and not all Palestinians.
Such sentiments are mainstream opinion even among settlers, a fact that is borne out by the fact that, although the Western media hypes every reported instance of settler violence, such attacks are statistically rare. That is especially true when that total is compared to the numerous Palestinian attacks on Jews that occur literally every day, though not all end in fatalities.
It is to be hoped that Dr. Shroukh does not suffer retaliation from the same people that killed Rabbi Mark or other Palestinians that cheer the current wave of violence. If his behavior were not the exception that proves the rule, the long war between Jews and Arabs might be resolved by compromises about borders. When it is possible for every Arab who assisted Jewish terror victims to come forward without fear or retaliation and Palestinian media treats the killers of Rabbi Mark as shameful criminals, then we will know that the time is ripe for peace.
PreOccupiedTerritory: Mandatory Sentence For Treating Injured Jews Reduced To Lynching (satire)
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas signed an order today that sets a new, lighter mandatory punishment for people convicted of tendering medical aid to Jews, ordaining that such convicts be put to death by lynching instead of imprisonment in a Palestinian jail.
Following reports of Palestinians who helped several Israelis wounded in a shooting attack near Hebron last week that also killed a father of 10, Palestinian social media buzzed with rumors of the identities of those who provided the aid. Israeli media interviewed the individuals in questions under a cloak of anonymity, as helping Israelis in such a manner runs afoul of Palestinian practice and mores. To forestall social unrest and increase the likelihood that the criminals turn themselves in, Abbas reduced the mandatory sentence for the crime.
Analysts see the move as an encouraging sign of emerging liberal values in Palestinian society. “You would never see Israel reduce a sentence to lynching,” noted Jacob Burns of Amnesty International. “They present themselves as a liberal, Western society, the Palestinians have made a huge stride here that Israel would never make.”
“You can call it a sort of prison reform measure,” agreed Ken Roth of Human Rights Watch. “Since the Palestinian prison system needs work, this kind of order, which prevents a few more people from having to undergo that, is a small but necessary step. This is the kind of initiative that justifies hundreds of millions of dollars per year in aid to the Palestinians.”
Palestinian Protest of Quartet Report Should Ring Alarm Bells
The Palestinian Authority’s objections to the latest report issued by the Quartet—the foursome comprising the UN, EU, United States and Russia that tries to mediate peace talks—should serve as a wake-up call for the international community about the petulance of Palestinian diplomacy and the strong undercurrent of rejectionism that grounds it. The Palestinians are furious that the report, released last Friday, failed to meet their expectations, having allegedly sought “to equalize the responsibilities between a people under occupation and a foreign military occupier,” as Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat claimed. If the world intends to nudge the Palestinians along the road to statehood, it needs to take seriously their refusal to assume responsibility and the leadership’s violent allergy to criticism.
What was in the Quartet report that so enraged the Palestinians? The document is hardly a pro-Israel message sheet. It fingers Israeli settlement construction—by which it also means building homes in eastern Jerusalem—as one of the main trends “severely undermining hopes for peace,” accuses Israel at length of “denying Palestinian development,” and says Israel’s restrictions to prevent Hamas acquiring war materiel are contributing to “humanitarian aid dependency.” Moreover, the tone is hardly friendly: Whenever the Quartet notes a positive step by Israel, it is immediately followed by a reservation and further criticism.
But crucially, the report is also scathing on the matter of Palestinian violence and specifically the question of incitement to violence and hatred. The report notes that Palestinian terrorists are “often glorified publicly as ‘heroic martyrs,’” that images of them with slogans encouraging violence are in wide circulation, that “some members of Fatah” have vocally supported and encouraged violence, that Fatah’s official social media has depicted these attackers favorably, and that Palestinian Authority leaders have failed to “consistently and clearly condemn specific terrorist attacks”—even naming “streets, squares and schools” after the perpetrators of terrorist attacks.
The fact that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is furious about the Quartet recommendations is yet further proof, if any were needed, of his total belligerence.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas marked Eid al-Fitr -- the end of Ramadan -- by making a ritual pilgrimage on Wednesday to a very holy site among his people: the grave of former PLO chief Yasser Arafat.
It was a fitting occasion for the PA leader to pay respects to his predecessor, a mass murderer whose greatest achievement was persuading the world that he had changed his stripes. Though Arafat's vision all along was to annihilate the Jewish state in stages -- which caused his internal rivals to consider him too moderate -- the West took his acquiescence to negotiate and sign the Oslo Accords to be a turning point.
Between the signing of Oslo I in 1993 on the White House lawn and Oslo II at Taba in 1995, the archterrorist was even awarded a joint Nobel Peace Prize with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Foreign Minister Shimon Peres in 1994.
At the Camp David summit in 2000, aimed at actually achieving the "peace" for which he had won the most prestigious global award, Arafat first blew up the talks with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and subsequently launched a five-year suicide bombing war against innocent Israelis.
Abbas never enjoyed the kind of popularity at home and abroad in which Arafat basked. But he is made of the same cloth, in spite of sporting a suit and tie, rather than a keffiyeh and phony medal-studded army fatigues.
Kenya, like Israel, dismisses report of foiled plot to assassinate Netanyahu
Kenyan officials joined their Israeli counterparts Thursday in dismissing a report in a Kuwaiti daily that claimed Kenyan security authorities foiled an attempt to assassinate Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his trip to Kenya earlier this week.
“An attempted assassination can’t be secret. It has to be something visible, and to my knowledge there was absolutely nothing of the sort,” Kenya’s Interior Ministry spokesman Mwenda Njoka told The Associated Press.
“I’m not aware, and there was no such thing at all. Those are lies,” added Kenya’s Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet.
In Jerusalem, the Prime Minister’s office earlier dismissed the report as “absolute nonsense.”
The Kuwaiti paper, Al-Jarida, quoted an anonymous, ostensibly well-placed source saying that the Kenyan authorities ordered a change in the route taken by Netanyahu and his delegation from Nairobi airport to their hotel on Tuesday. An explosive device was found on the original route, and two were suspects arrested, the report said, adding that the Kenyan authorities had placed a gag order on further details of the alleged incident.
Bibi’s Outreach—and Ours
Benjamin Netanyahu’s current diplomatic mission to Africa demonstrates Israel’s determination to renew ties with some of its most natural allies. It was in Africa that the Jewish people were first enslaved, and it was in Africa that they were first freed. That ancient legacy of slavery— coupled with years of marginalization and oppression through ghettos, expulsions, forced conversions, pogroms, and finally the Holocaust—created a natural bond between black and Jewish communities, whose narratives are inextricably linked.
But today’s generation of black American activists—whose efforts are now heavily funneled through the Black Lives Matter movement—tend to identify with the Palestinian, as opposed to the Israeli, narrative. They should be identifying with both.
The rallying cry of “from Ferguson to Gaza”—meant to draw the comparison between the racially rooted tensions in Ferguson and Israel’s ongoing conflict with Hamas—is but a single drop in the ocean of the so-called “intersectional politics” often employed in modern criticism of Israel. Notice that we never hear “From Ferguson to Sderot” or “From Ferguson to Kiryat Arba”—the town where 13-year-old Hallel Ariel was stabbed in her sleep last week.
Intersectional activists essentially argue that all forms of oppression are connected. In their view, then, anyone who finds the shooting of unarmed individuals to be both a tragedy and a grave injustice must also advocate that Israel withdraw to 1967 borders, or disappear altogether.
Intersectionality simplifies every scenario into a binary of oppressor and oppressed. The oppressed must always stand together, and Israel’s military superiority relegates it to the sphere of the oppressor, thus conferring support from minorities around the world onto the Palestinian plight.
It wasn’t always this way. Jewish and black civil-rights activists once understood the bond, and Jewish involvement in the civil-rights movement was extensive from the very beginning. Jewish Americans were involved in the formative years of the NAACP, participated in the freedom rides, the march on Washington, and organized lobbying efforts to strengthen the Civil Rights Act. One of the greatest of civil-rights leaders, Bayard Rustin, was a friend of and contributor to COMMENTARY.
Israel wins Ethiopian support for African Union 'observer' role Global Agenda
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's push for Israel to be granted "observer status" at the African Union gained the backing of continental heavyweight Ethiopia on Thursday.
"Israel is working very hard in many African countries. There is no reason to deny this observer position to Israel," said Ethiopia's Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn as Netanyahu began the last leg of this week's four-nation Africa tour.
The position of observer is granted to some non-African countries who wish to engage with the AU, follow proceedings and address its gatherings. Israel had been an observer at the AU's predecessor organization but its status was not renewed at the AU's founding in 2002.
The 54-member organisation, headquartered in Addis Ababa, would be an important diplomatic ally for Israel, as is Ethiopia which begins a two-year tenure as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council in 2017.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has used his country's AU observer status since 2013 to attend AU summits, spread anti-Israel propaganda and shore up diplomatic support in his attacks on the State of Israel.
Pre-war, Blair quizzed Bush on response if Iraq struck Israel
Blair also offers Bush advice on communications strategy, suggesting that a “media and communications War Room” be set up in both countries. He suggests a unified messaging strategy, a policy discouraging interviews, and “continually” focusing on Saddam’s nature.
The message should be this, Blair says: “He’s bad; we’re good; he’s going to lose; we’re going to win.”
In another pre-invasion note, the British prime minister asks Bush about “military questions:” if there is sound planning for how to react if Saddam uses weapons of mass destruction against the United States or the Iraqi people; if he attacks Israel; if he destroys Iraq’s oil wells; or how to keep rival groups inside Iraq apart.
As a handwritten addendum to this list, Blair asks if there has been planning for “avoiding civilian casualties.”
Blair also asks Bush about post-invasion plans: “What happens immediately: a new Iraqi government or US run?” and “What type of Iraqi government are we aiming for medium term?”
In later undated notes and letters released in the report, as the reconstruction of Iraq proves far more difficult than had been anticipated, Blair warns Bush that Islamic extremists have a coherent political strategy linked to their military objectives, allowing them to capitalize on anti-Western sentiments throughout the Islamic world.
The Truth About Settlement Growth
And this entails real costs for Israel. First, Israel has a desperate shortage of affordable housing within commuting distance of the center of the country, where most of the jobs are. Indeed, when young people who have left or are considering leaving Israel are asked why, their number-one answer is the lack of affordable housing. But since the major settlement blocs are all in commuting distance of the center, more construction there would significantly ease this shortage. Consequently, seven years of near-zero settlement construction have done serious damage to an essential Israeli interest.
Second, as journalist Nadav Shragai correctly noted last week, Palestinians interpret Israel’s failure to build as proof that Israelis have little attachment to the land. And if they aren’t attached to the West Bank–the Jewish people’s historical, cultural and religious heartland–then they surely aren’t attached to pre-1967 Israel, which has shallower Jewish roots, the Palestinian thinking goes. This, in turn, encourages the Palestinian belief that there’s no need to make peace with Israel, because it will disappear on its own in another few decades–an opinion held, astoundingly, by over 85 percent of Palestinians.
Finally, Israel’s fear of building in the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem reinforces the international narrative that this is occupied Palestinian territory rather than disputed territory to which Israel has a valid claim. For someone unfamiliar with either the facts behind Israel’s claim or Jewish psychoses about upsetting non-Jews, it’s quite reasonable to conclude that Israel wouldn’t act so fearfully and guiltily about building there if it really believed its own claim to the territory. And someone who thinks Israel is a thief occupying stolen Palestinian lands will naturally be more anti-Israel than someone who understands it is offering to cede its own land for the sake of peace.
Perhaps all these prices would nevertheless be worth paying if the virtual freeze on settlement construction were buying Israel international support. But instead, Israel is being internationally castigated as if it actually were engaged in massive settlement construction.
State Dept. Blasts Israeli Settlements, Obama Still Silent On Murder of American Girl In Israeli Settlement
As Palestinian terrorists viciously slaughter innocent women and children for the apparent crime of being Jewish, President Obama’s morally bankrupt administration has gone on the offensive against the Jewish State of Israel, blasting Israelis for their “settlement” building activities in Judea and Samaria (West Bank and Gaza). On Thursday, the State Department issued a stark rebuke against the Israeli government for its proposal to construct new residential units in Jerusalem and the Maale Adumim district. Israel announced the new building news on Sunday.
“If it’s true, this report would be the latest step in what seems to be a systematic process of land seizures, settlement expansions, and legalizations of outposts that is fundamentally undermining the prospects for a two-state solution,” stated State Dept. spokesman John Kirby. “We oppose steps like these, which we believe are counterproductive to the cause of peace. In general, we’re deeply concerned about settlement construction and expansion in East Jerusalem and the West Bank.”
Shamelessly, Kirby blamed Israel for “undermining” some mythical peace process, or imminent two-state solution, that no previous US administration has been able to secure. Despite all the huffing and the puffing, the State Department’s main negotiators, including Secretary of State John Kerry, are ill-equipped to mediate a solution to the decades-long conflict that would appease both the Palestinians and Israelis.
But that didn’t stop Kirby from symbolically prosecuting Israel just days after a 17-year-old Palestinian terrorist broke into the bedroom of a 13-year-old Israeli girl with dual American citizenship and viciously stabbed her to death in cold-blood as she slept in her twin-size bed.
President Obama has yet to comment on the brutal execution or offer condolences to the family of the victim.
Instead, he opted to deploy his minions to throw Israel under the bus, yet again.
Israelis Respond to Terror with 'Inside Israel' (h/t IsraellyCool)

House demolition okayed for Palestinian who aided fatal attack on Border Police officer
The High Court of Justice on Thursday rejected a petition against Israel's slated demolition of the West Bank home belonging to a Palestinian man accused of assisting in the terror shooting that killed Border Police officer Hadar Cohen, 19, in Jerusalem in February.
Cohen was killed and another female officer critically wounded in the attack carried out by three Arab terrorists wielding machine guns, pipe bombs and knives.
The court confirmed the demolition, after rejecting the appeal filed by the father of Bilal Ahmed Abu Zeid, the Palestinian who is accused of providing weapons and transportation to the three terrorists in the attack.
Following the attack, the IDF and civil administration mapped out the home of Abu Zeid for demolition in Kabatiya in the Jenin area.
Netanyahu asks Ethiopia to help free Israelis held in Gaza
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday met with his Ethiopian counterpart in Addis Ababa and asked him for assistance in securing the release of Avraham Mengistu, an Ethiopian Israeli held captive by Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
Mengistu, who entered the Gaza Strip in September 2014, is one of two Israelis held captive by Hamas, which also holds the bodies of two Israeli soldiers killed during Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014. Mengistu’s family and the families of the two soldiers have protested outside Netanyahu’s Jerusalem residence demanding action to ensure Avraham’s release and the return of the soldier’s bodies.
“We always raise the issue of our citizens at various opportunities, including here, of course,” Netanyahu told reporters after meeting with Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn.
New bill would strip benefits from terrorists in Israeli jails
Draft legislation submitted to the Knesset for its first reading Wednesday would strip Palestinian security prisoners of all privileges that are not required under international law.
The proposal by Yisrael Beytenu MK Oded Forer as the family of a fallen Israeli soldier whose remains Hamas is holding in Gaza demanded the government cancel recent improvements to jail conditions for prisoners from the terror group.
Under Forer’s proposal, Palestinian prisoners convicted on terror charges would not be allowed visitors or to receive photographs, Channel 2 reported Wednesday. Moreover, prisoners would be barred from having televisions or video consoles in their cells, receiving money from outside sources into their bank account, purchasing anything at the canteen, and pursuing a higher education from prison.
“The time has come for terrorists in prison to stop the day camp and start living like they’re in prison,” Forer said in a statement.
“It cannot be that while terror victims and their families pay such a heavy price and live with such great suffering, the terrorists who put them in that position play computer games in prison and enjoy educational and recreational activities,” he added.
EXCLUSIVE - Hamas Arrests Six Islamic State Jihadists Who Planned to Set Up Cell in Gaza
Hamas arrested six jihadi fighters this week shortly after their return to their native Gaza after fighting for the Islamic State in Egypt. They planned to establish an IS cell in Gaza, a top Hamas official told Breitbart Jerusalem.
The six, who returned to Gaza separately, were arrested following an intelligence operation conducted by Hamas, which has since interrogated them in a bid to accumulate data about Waliyat Sinai, IS’s affiliate in Egypt, including about its forces and arsenal, the official said.
A great deal of the interrogators’ attention was paid to the whereabouts of dozens of Gazans who have enlisted with Waliyat Sinai, as well as the militia’s logistical, recruitment, and communications infrastructure – namely, the methods by which fighters are smuggled out of the Strip under Hamas’ nose.
In recent months, in the wake of relentless Egyptian pressure, Hamas has tried to tap into the jihadists’ cross-border communication networks. Hamas was alarmed to realize that some of the recruits were former loyalists, including several high-ranking operatives.
Children pose as Hamas operatives atop Temple Mount
During Eid al-Fitr celebrations at the Temple Mount on Wednesday, several children were dressed as Hamas operatives, with their faces covered and toy guns in their hands.
Eid al-Fitr marks the end of the fasting month of Ramadan.
Festivities were held at the holy site by the Islamic Movement, which also set up a giant sign, reading: "The prisoners are our mission. Patience; following the limitations, victory will come." The sign was intended to bless Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails for the holiday and to remind them that they will remain at the top of the Islamic Movement's agenda.
Maor Zemach, who heads the organization Lach Yerushalayim ("For You, Jerusalem"), said: "The phenomenon of children dressed as Hamas terrorists on the Temple Mount is unacceptable; it leads to incitement and harms the delicate fabric of life in Jerusalem.
"This is the cynical use of small children for the purpose of incitement and the encouragement of violence. I call on Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan to fight phenomena of this type as well as the harm done to Israeli sovereignty on the Temple Mount."

Dennis Ross: Preserving the JCPOA Means Sending Iran the Right Deterrent Signals
With that in mind, the next administration should toughen U.S. declaratory policy so that Iran understands the consequences of violating its commitment not to seek, acquire, or develop nuclear weapons. Indeed, it is essential that both Tehran and the international community become accustomed to the reality that pursuing a weapon in violation of the JCPOA will trigger force, not sanctions -- given the size and character of Iran's nuclear infrastructure, that is probably the only way to dissuade it from dashing toward a weapon ten to fifteen years down the road.
U.S. officials should also press to make sure the procurement channel operates the way it was intended to -- otherwise, they will lose insight into Iranian activities that may make a weapons capability more likely over time. If Tehran continues to resist what is required, Washington should impose a clear price. The basic mindset on compliance must be "fulfill the obligation or face a penalty."
Finally, while the JCPOA addressed only the nuclear issue, efforts to bolster deterrence would be more credible if the United States also increased the cost of Iran's threatening and destabilizing behavior in the region, which has hardly changed since the deal was signed. Here, Washington should be guided by the same logic that got the Iranians to the table on the nuclear issue: raising the price for not altering their behavior, but still leaving them a way out. This means addressing Tehran's actions vis-a-vis Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Palestinian terrorist groups. Iran can have a place in a regional security system, but not if it threatens its neighbors and seeks domination. The high cost of sanctions is what produced some semblance of movement in Iranian policy, in the form of Rouhani's election. So if Washington wants to bolster deterrence and strengthen Rouhani's camp, it must make the adventurist policies of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps and their elite Qods Force too costly for Iran.
It is not too late for the JCPOA to fulfill the promises the Obama administration has made about it. But the next administration will need to bolster deterrence if the deal's critics are to be proven wrong.
Why Is Iran Still Testing Ballistic Missiles?
New evidence of Iran’s confrontational behavior emerged earlier this summer when it came out that its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) conducted another series of ballistic missile tests in late April. This was the eighth such test since the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the formal name of the nuclear agreement, went into effect in July 2015.
According to Iran’s Tasnim news agency, Iran test-launched a missile with a range of about 2,000 kilometers and said to be accurate to within eight meters; enough to reach Israel and any other country in the area.
As White House spokesman Josh Earnest continued to maintain that the government was “still trying to get to the bottom of what exactly transpired” rather than condemn the act, Iran’s defense minister rushed to deny that such a long range missile was even tested, though he did stress that Iran was constantly working to build its defensive capabilities, including its missile arsenal. Iran also made clear that the missiles being tested were conventional, and not designed for nuclear warheads, as some in the U.S., Europe, and Israel warned. “Iran’s missile and defense capabilities are not open to negotiation,” Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif stressed.
But if the White House is proceeding with restraint, some in Congress are talking tough. Ted Cruz, the hawkish senator from Texas and one-time presidential hopeful, wasted no time writing an op-ed in The New York Times. Cruz cited a litany of Iranian offenses and aggressions since the nuclear deal went into place. He called for a more aggressive policy to counter the mullahs in Tehran, encouraging his colleagues in Congress to sufficiently support Israel’s missile defense programs. This view was echoed by other congressional Republicans, who are already preparing new sanctions. This includes House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce, who said in March that “Iran is making a mockery of President Obama’s vow to confront Iran’s dangerous and illicit acts.”
Germany's Merkel says Iran violating UN missile regulations
German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated on Thursday that Iran has run afoul of UN Security Council regulations to stop its illicit military rocket program. Her comments follow a startling report from Germany’s domestic intelligence agency, which stated in its late June report that Iran has continued to seek illegal nuclear technology.
Chancellor Angel Merkel said in the Bundestag Iran "continued unabated to develop its rocket program in conflict with the relevant provisions of the UN Security Council.”
Merkel said that NATO's anti-missile system targets Iran's rocket program and was "developed purely for defense."
A defensive missile shield is in place in Romania and a second shield is set to be deployed in Poland. The NATO
anti-rocket systems have created tensions with Russia's leader Vladimir Putin.
Isis releases new kill list with 1,700 names targeting members of US churches and Jewish synagogues
The Islamic State's (Isis) so-called hacking arm, the United Cyber Caliphate (UCC), has released a new kill list with over 1,700 entries, targeting members of Christian churches and Jewish synagogues in the US. The list, like others released in the past, calls on pro-Daesh supporters to "kill them all" and "slay them", in efforts to promote more lone-wolf attacks in the West.
Intelligence analyst group SITE said the list was first published on 3 July, but was deleted shortly after its publication. On 5 July, the list was back online with 25 additional links, each of which was on a different server, the Italian publication Velino reported.
It is still unclear as to how the list was compiled and whether specific religious organisations have been targeted. A separate, yet related report by WSMV, highlights that the FBI has been notifying some residents in the Nashville area, alerting them about having been included in the kill list.

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