Netanyahu derides Paris summit as rigged, ‘last gasp of the past’
The upcoming international peace conference in Paris is a “rigged” effort intended to hurt Israel and its hopes of reaching peace, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday, adding that Jerusalem was not bound by any decision that would be taken there.State Dept. Says It’s Going to Paris Conference to Defend Israel
“It’s a rigged conference, rigged by the Palestinians with French auspices to adopt additional anti-Israel stances. This pushes peace backwards,” he said. “It’s not going to obligate us.”
During a meeting with Norwegian Foreign Minister Børge Brende, the prime minister called the planned conference, scheduled for Sunday, “a relic of the past.”
“It’s a last gasp of the past before the future sets in,” he said.
The conference comes just five days before the inauguration of US President-elect Donald Trump, who is widely expected to take a more friendly approach to the Netanyahu government’s policies.
Netanyahu also called the conference an effort that would “render peace hopeless,” comparing it to a terror attack.
State Department spokesman Mark Toner said Thursday that Secretary of State John Kerry is going to this weekend’s Middle East peace conference in Paris to defend Israel, despite the Obama administration allowing a resolution condemning Israeli settlements to pass through the United Nations Security Council.
Kerry is going to Paris for the conference on what will probably be his last foreign trip as secretary of state.
Associated Press reporter Matt Lee asked Toner if Kerry was going to the conference to protect the Jewish state from an anti-Israel conclusion.
“I think we feel obliged to be there, to be part of the discussions, to help make them into something that we believe is constructive and positively oriented towards getting negotiations back up and running and doesn’t attempt to in any way kind of dictate a solution,” Toner said.
Lee said Toner’s comments sounded odd after the U.S. abstained last month from a U.N. Security Council vote that critics say was anti-Israel, breaking with decades of American policy to defend the Jewish state at the U.N. and veto such measures. Kerry gave a speech on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict days after the vote that criticized Israel on multiple issues, particularly its settlement activity in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
Toner said that the Obama administration stands by its abstention vote.
Report: Draft Paris Agreement Calls Two-State Solution ‘Only Way’ to Ensure Israeli-Palestinian Peace
In a strong message to Israel and the incoming Trump administration, dozens of countries are expected this weekend to reiterate their opposition to Israeli settlements and call for the establishment of a Palestinian state as "the only way" to ensure peace in the region.
France is hosting more than 70 countries on Sunday at a Mideast peace summit, in what will be a final chance for the Obama administration to lay out its positions for the region.
According to a draft statement obtained by The Associated Press on Friday, the conference will urge Israel and the Palestinians "to officially restate their commitment to the two-state solution."
It also will affirm that the international community "will not recognize" changes to Israel's pre-1967 lines without agreement by both sides.
The draft says that participants will affirm "that a negotiated solution with two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security, is the only way to achieve enduring peace."
The last time Arabs ruled eastern Jerusalem and the Old City all but one of the Jewish Quarter’s 35 synagogues was demolished, a fact John Kerry prefers not to mention. Trump's pledge to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv would end the prospect of history repeating itselfObama's Betrayal of Israel
Mahmoud Abbas no doubt likes the idea of reducing Israel’s control over Jerusalem. But neither he nor his successors would ever consent to a John Kerry-type scheme that detached the Old City from Arab-Palestinian rule. President Abbas’ fervently held view is that only a Palestinian-governed Old City can guarantee freedom of worship for all monotheistic religions, Islam, Christianity and Judaism: “It is the right of all religions to perform their religious rituals with total comfort in Jerusalem, our eternal capital.”
Would that it were true. The last time Arabs, in the form of Jordanians, ruled eastern Jerusalem and the Old City – 1949-67 – all but one of the Jewish Quarter’s 35 synagogues was demolished. The centenarian Bernard Lewis, in Notes on a Century, reminds us that Christian Israelis were only permitted to visit the Old City, including the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, once a year on Christmas Day (but not the Orthodox Christmas) – so much for performing non-Islamic religious rituals with “total comfort”. Even more despicable, the “inhabitants of the ancient Jewish Quarter were evicted and even dead Jews were removed from their graves in the ancient cemeteries.”
Mahmoud Abbas’s promise of peace and mutual respect is entirely bogus. We know through agencies such as Itamar Marcus’ Palestinian Media Watch that the leadership of the Palestinian Authority promotes violence, martyrdom and an anti-Israeli psychosis among the young. The lunacy of Islamic revivalism has reached a point where PA activists are now claiming the Western Wall, the most sacred site for the Jewish population in the Old City, is actually a part of al-Aqsa Mosque.
Tel Aviv was only ever meant to be an interim capital. In 1949, after defeating five Arab armies, the State of Israel established its centre of governance in the neighbourhoods and districts of West Jerusalem. No future Israeli-Palestinian agreement will change that. For the United States – and Australia, Foreign Minister Bishop – to move its embassy to a locale in western Jerusalem would do no more than catch up with the reality of 1949. And, yes, it might also demonstrate “unswerving support for Israel, as the Middle East’s only liberal, pluralist democracy.”
President Obama's decision not to use the US veto in the UN Security Council and to let pass Resolution 2334, effectively sets the boundaries of a future Palestinian state. The resolution declares all of Judea, Samaria and East Jerusalem -- home to the Old City, the Western Wall and the Temple Mount -- the most sacred place in Judaism -- "occupied Palestinian territory," and is a declaration of war against Israel.Thousands rally for Israel in NYC ahead of Paris parley
Resolution 2334 nullified any possibility of further negotiations by giving the Palestinians everything in exchange for nothing -- not even an insincere promise of peace.
The next act is the Orwellian-named "peace conference," to be held in Paris on January 15. It has but one objective: to set the stage to eradicate Israel.
In this new "Dreyfus trial," the accused will be the only Jewish state and the accusers will be the OIC and officials from Islamized, dhimmified, anti-Israel Western states. As in the Dreyfus trial, the verdict has been decided before it even starts. Israel will be considered guilty of all charges and condemned. A draft of the declaration to be published at the end of the conference is already available.
The declaration rejects any Jewish presence beyond the 1949 armistice lines -- thereby instituting apartheid. It also praises the "Arab Peace Initiative," which calls for returning of millions of so-called "refugees" to Israel, thus transforming Israel into an Arab Muslim state where a massacre of Jews could conveniently be organized.
The declaration is most likely meant serve as the basis for a new Security Council resolution on January 17 that would recognize a Palestinian state inside the "1967 borders," and be adopted, thanks to a second US abstention, three days before Obama leaves office. The betrayal of Israel by the Obama administration and by Obama himself would then be complete.
Hundreds of demonstrators gathered outside the Permanent Mission of France to the United Nations in New York on Thursday to express their support for Israel ahead of an international conference on Middle East peace set to be held on Sunday.French Follies
The gathering was sponsored by the North American Coalition for Israel, which is made up of more than 50 organizations.
Under the banner “Shame on the UN,” public figures, clergy members and victims of terrorist attacks gathered together with members of the Jewish community, demanding that the United Nations “immediately cease its unjust targeting of Israel and focus on real issues such as Syrian Genocide and Global Islamic Terror.”
Event organizer Hillary Markowitz of the Amcha organization, told The Jerusalem Post ahead of the rally that it had several goals.
“The UN, [US President Barack] Obama and [Secretary of State John] Kerry have really been attacking Israel,” she said, slamming the recent Security Council resolution against Israel as an “abomination.”
“We are asking the US to stop funding the UN until it does what it’s supposed to do,” she said.
With more than 500,000 Syrian killed in a civil war that rages on, the European Union in turmoil after the Brexit vote, and terrorism markedly on the rise in Europe, diplomats around the world have chosen to focus their attention this week on creating a Palestinian state. Representatives from 70 countries are expected in Paris on Sunday for a planned Mideast peace conference doomed before it starts.74% Republicans, 33% Democrats back Israel over Palestinians — poll
The fact that the meeting is taking place five days before a new administration takes over in Washington — one that appears to be more openly supportive of Israel — and two days before the U.N. Security Council is said to be voting on several anti-Israel resolutions, suggests that the international community is set on increasing the pressure on Israel. That’s no surprise. But since the U.S. abstained on last month’s Security Council resolution condemning Israeli settlements, there is increasing concern that the Obama administration may put forth its ideas on solutions, including borders, at the Paris meeting.
“Everyone knows, a priori,” that the conflict “can only be resolved by the parties themselves, no matter how many nations travel to Paris for the conference you are hosting,” AJC CEO David Harris wrote in an open letter to French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault this week. Harris pointed out that the conference is going forward even though Israel opposes the idea, Washington is undergoing a changing of the guard, and the French are less-than-honest brokers, given their votes against Israel in the Security Council and at a World Health Organization General Assembly in May when it “voted in favor of a measure that bizarrely singled out Israel by name as the only country in the world accused of undermining ‘mental, physical and environmental health.’”
The difference between the proportion of Republicans and Democrats who sympathize with Israel over the Palestinians is the largest it has been in surveys dating to 1978, according to a new report.Terror victims applaud Tillerson’s criticism of Palestinian leaders, urge concrete steps
While 74 percent of Republicans sympathize more with Israel than the Palestinians, the number is 33% for Democrats, according to a Pew Research Center survey conducted Jan. 4-9 and published Thursday.
Eleven percent of Republicans sympathize with the Palestinians over Israel, and 15% sympathize with neither, both sides or did not express a view. Among Democrats, those numbers were 31% and 35%, respectively.
The findings represent the first time in surveys conducted by Pew that Democrats were about as likely to sympathize with the Palestinians as with Israel. Among “liberal Democrats,” 38% of respondents sympathized more with the Palestinians while 26% sympathized more with Israel.
The proportion of Republicans sympathizing more with Israel has risen since 1978 while it has fallen for Democrats. In that year, 49% of Republicans and 44% of Democrats sympathized more with the Jewish state, according to data from the Chicago Council on Foreign Relations obtained by Pew.
American victims of Palestinian terrorism are applauding Secretary of State-designate Rex Tillerson’s criticism of the Palestinian Authority (PA) and are urging him to press the PA to take specific anti-terror steps.Ted Cruz and Lindsey Graham Unveil Bill to Defund UN
During his Senate confirmation hearing Jan. 11, Tillerson said that while the PA has renounced terrorism, "it's one thing to renounce it and another thing to take serious actions to prevent it." He also said Palestinian leaders have to do "something to at least interrupt or prevent [terrorism]" before there can be "any productive discussion around [Israeli] settlements.”
Sarri Singer, who was seriously wounded in a June 2003 Jerusalem bus bombing, told JNS.org she is “encouraged” by Tillerson’s focus on the need for concrete Palestinian actions. She urged Tillerson to press the PA to honor the 36 requests Israel has submitted for the extradition of Palestinian terrorists. “And those terrorists who were involved in attacks that harmed Americans should be handed over to the United States for prosecution,” she added.
Singer, who is the daughter of New Jersey State Senator Robert W. Singer, is the founder of “Strength to Strength,” an organization that brings together terror victims from around the world to deal with the trauma they suffered.
Senators Ted Cruz and Lindsey Graham hit the morning television circuit Thursday to unveil their new bill to defund the United Nations.Mayors of Efrat and Maale Adumim Invited to Trump’s Inauguration Ceremony
Standing shoulder to shoulder and smiling, the two national security-minded lawmakers appeared on MSNBC’s Morning Joe and Fox News’ Fox and Friends to detail a plan that would block taxpayer dollars from funding the corrupt international body.
In citing last month’s egregious anti-Israel UN Security Resolutions as a major source of dismay in the senate, they drew a clear ideological line in the sand between the Obama administration and Congress.
"Twenty-two percent of the money to fund the U.N. comes from the American taxpayer. I don't think it's a good investment for the American taxpayer to give money to an organization that condemns the only democracy in the Middle East," Graham said Thursday.
Cruz first revealed his intention to pull US assets out of the UN in December, shortly after President Obama directed UN Ambassador Samantha Power to abstain from a vote that declared the Jewish Quarter, the Western Wall, and the Old City of Jerusalem illegally-occupied territory.
The heads of Moetzet Yesha – The Council of Judea and Samaria, received an invitation to President Donald Trump’s inauguration ceremony in Washington D.C., according to a report in Makor Rishon. The invitation was passed on to them via the Chamber of Commerce of Orthodox Jews (US), who are connected to Trump’s special advisor Jason D. Greenblatt.New Zealand's Foreign Minister defends UN vote
The settlement council will most likely be represented at the inauguration by Mayor of Efrat, Oded Revivi, who also heads the foreign desk for Moetzet Yesha, and Beni Kashriel, the Mayor of Maale Adumim.
In addition, several other people connected to Jewish life in Judea and Samaria have been invited, but according to the report, they prefer not to publicize their invitations.
This is the first time that settlement leaders have been invited to a presidential inauguration.
New Zealand’s Foreign Minister on Thursday defended his country’s vote in favor of the anti-Israel UN Resolution 2334, insisting the vote was consistent with New Zealand’s policy toward Israeli “settlements”.South African parties tussle over senior politician’s Israel trip
New Zealand was one of the four co-sponsors of the resolution adopted last month by the UN Security Council. The resolution passed with a majority of 14-0, with the United States abstaining and thus allowing it to be adopted.
Reports following the vote suggested that New Zealand promoted the resolution and voted in favor of it due to pressure from the British government.
In an op-ed published Thursday in the New Zealand Herald and quoted by JTA, Foreign Minister Murray McCullay wrote, “For the whole of New Zealand's two-year term on the Security Council, the Secretary-General and his Special Coordinator have expressed alarm that the forces of incitement and violence and the relentless progress of the settlement program were undermining the two-state solution.”
McCullay continued, “At the heart of this whole debate is whether we will see a future in which two states, Israel and Palestine, live side by side in peace and security. This two-state solution has been the accepted basis for resolving the Palestinian question for many decades now, enshrined in various negotiated accords and UN Security Council resolutions, and the focus for several unsuccessful attempts to broker final agreement between the parties.”
South Africa’s two main political party traded barbs on Thursday over the visit oto Israel of the country’s opposition leader, with the ruling African National Congress party accusing its rival of supporting Israeli “apartheid.”Hamas praises South African PM’s stance against Israel visits
Mmusi Maimane, who heads the Democratic Alliance party, arrived in the country earlier this week on what officials called a private visit focused on fostering business ties. Accompanied by three senior DA lawmakers, he met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, opposition leader Isaac Herzog and other Israeli officials.
The delegation was also scheduled to meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, but the meeting was canceled due to scheduling difficulties. Maimane did meet with PA officials and Palestinian human rights activists in Ramallah and Rawabi.
“The ANC notes the anger and joins fellow South Africans in condemning the visit by the DA’s Mmusi Maimane to Israel and to Israel’s prime minister,” the party said in a statement released Thursday evening. “At a time when the world is increasingly standing up against Israel’s illegal settlements, including the United Nations Security Council, it is a pity that the DA is endorsing the Israeli regime instead of condemning its violations of international law.”
Palestinian terror group Hamas said Thursday that it “values” the recent statement by South African President Jacob Zuma discouraging travel to Israel, even as the head of the country’s opposition party visited Israel.Syria calls on UN to ‘punish’ Israel over airport attack
“Hamas values the stance of South African President Jacob Zuma, who called for citizens of his country not to visit the Zionist entity, showing solidarity with the Palestinian people,” the group, which rules the Gaza Strip, said in a statement.
Zuma, the leader of the ruling African National Congress party, reiterated on Sunday Pretoria’s longstanding travel directive urging senior South African officials against visiting Israel, an announcement that came days before Mmusi Maimane, who heads the opposition Democratic Alliance party, met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem on Wednesday.
Syria on Friday called on the international community to “punish” Israel for an apparent missile attack on a major military airport west of Damascus, and accused the US, Britain and France of supporting the assault.Amnesty International slams Israel for Kalansuwa house demolitions
The Syrian Foreign Ministry condemned the missile attack in two letters to the UN secretary-general and the president of the UN Security Council, saying such an attack would not have occurred had it not been for the “direct support from the outgoing American administration and French and British leaderships.”
The ministry said the Israeli assault on the Mezzeh military airport comes as part of a series of periodic Israel attacks that started with Syria’s war in March 2011. It called on the international community to “punish the Israeli aggressor.”
The attack was the third such incident recently, according to the Syrian government.
In a statement carried on the official news agency SANA, the Syrian military said several missiles were launched just after midnight from an area near Lake Tiberias.
The missiles fell in the vicinity of the Mezzeh military airport on the western edge of the Syrian capital. The statement did not say whether there were any casualties.
Amnesty International's Israel branch on Thursday sharply criticized the demolition of eleven buildings on Tuesday in Kalansuwa, saying that police behaved violently and that the operation was prompted by "flawed political motives."John Bolton: Previous Candidates Promised to Move U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, Trump ‘Is Going to Do It’
Police did not directly respond to the allegation, while a government official denied there was any motive other than enforcing the law
Eleven buildings, including homes and homes under construction, were destroyed by government bulldozers accompanied by hundreds of police in one of the biggest demolition operations in the Arab sector in recent years. The demolitions came nearly a month after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was quoted in media reports as calling for heightened demolitions of illegal structures in Arab towns, apparently to counterbalance the expected demolition of the illegal Amona settlement outpost in the West Bank.
Netanyahu wrote on Facebook after the demolitions."I am not deterred by the criticism and as I have directed we are continuing to implement equal enforcement in Israel." Arab leaders condemned the demolitions, blaming planning authorities for the absence of a detailed plan that would enable more legal building in Kalansuwa and arguing that because of this residents are forced to build on their own land without permits.
On Thursday’s Breitbart News Daily, SiriusXM host Raheem Kassam asked former U.N. ambassador John Bolton if the long-promised relocation of the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem will finally happen under the Trump administration.US embassy Jerusalem move ‘assault’ on Muslims, says mufti
“Yes, I think it is,” Bolton replied. “I think Trump was serious about it when he said it. I think in David Friedman, who he’s nominated or will be nominating to be U.S. ambassador to Israel, he’s got somebody committed to it.”
“I think there are good substantive reasons for the United States to move its embassy there, in much the same way it was a good thing for Donald Trump to take the congratulatory call from Taiwanese president Tsai Ing-wen,” he said. “People should not tell the United States, certainly not its President, who he can talk to. They should not tell the United States where we place our embassy. There are a whole range of things we have limited ourselves to suit foreigners that really impairs the United States.”
“I really think there’s one other thing for Trump here, and it will show that he is not a typical politician. He said he was going to move the embassy, like almost every other presidential candidate, as you correctly pointed out, for several decades,” Bolton told Kassam. “Others have been elected, they haven’t done it. He’s going to do it.”
Jerusalem’s Grand Mufti on Friday branded plans by President-elect Donald Trump to move the US Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem an “assault” on Muslims across the globe.Official report determines: 71 of 80 fires investigated were set on purpose by arsonists
“The pledge to move the embassy is not just an assault against Palestinians but against Arabs and Muslims, who will not remain silent,” Muhammad Hussein said in a sermon at the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem’s Old City.
On Tuesday, Palestinian leaders called for Friday prayers at mosques across the Middle East this week to protest Trump’s campaign pledge.
Meanwhile, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has asked Russian President Vladimir Putin to help stop the United States moving its embassy to Jerusalem, a top Palestinian official said Friday.
Saeb Erekat said he had passed on the message from Abbas to Putin during a visit to Moscow during which he met Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
About a month and a half after the lethal wave of fires that blazed across Israel has passed, a report conducted by the investigations department of the Israeli national Fire Services Authority and released on Friday officially determines: out of the 80 fires that were investigated by the authority, 71 were set on purpose by arsonists.Meet The ‘Afro-Palestinians’
Ruling out other possible causes for the fires such as accidents or negligence, the report claims that the majority of the fires were set by arsonists who were motivated by criminal, ideological motives. Only a small number of the fires are still classified by the authority as "suspected arson."
The report provides details regarding the circumstances of the largest fires that were set in November 2016, citing the means with which the arsonists committed their crimes.
Assoiated Press have a very interesting and revealing report about Jerusalem’s “Afro Palestinians.”Gazans take to streets to protest electricity crisis
Others came with The Arab Salvation Army, an army of volunteers that fought on the Arab side in the 1948 war surrounding Israel’s creation.
“We are originally Nubians from Aswan,” in southern Egypt, said 30 year-old Hanan Bersi.
Some still have their ancestors’ identification documents, like Ibrahim Firawi, whose grandfather came from Sudan’s western region of Darfur.
“We have documents and letters, and even tried to contact the Sudanese Embassy in Jordan to help connect us with family in Sudan,” he said. Showing off his father’s old passport, he said he has not been able to track down any of his relatives.
Historic Palestine was a crossroads for different cultures, and some Palestinians trace back their roots to a range of non-Arab groups, from Kurds to Indians and Afghans. Afro-Palestinians were denied Jordanian citizenship after the 1967 war, as they were not seen as Palestinians.
Notice how they are not indigineous to this area at all, yet consider themselves “palestinian.” Just because they choose to identify themselves in this way.
Which is pretty much the deal with all those who call themselves palestinian.
Thousands of Gazans took the streets on Thursday evening to protest the ongoing electricity crisis in the small coastal enclave, as seen in photos and videos posted on social media.Hamas Holds AP Journalist at Gunpoint, Beats AFP Photographer for Covering Major Protest
The protesters gathered at the Jabalia refugee camp and marched to a nearby building of the Gaza Electric Company, where Hamas authorities shot bullets into the air and attempted to disperse the protesters, according to Ma'an, a Palestinian news outlet.
Gazans have suffered over the past several days from an enormous electricity shortage with most households receiving three to four hours of electricity a day, down from the average of seven to eight hours over the past year.
Gaza’s current electricity infrastructure has the ability to provide for only less than half of the strip’s electricity needs.
Walking down the streets of Jabalia, the protestors chanted a number of slogans, calling on authorities to resolve the electricity crisis.
“We want electricity, we want electricity,” protesters yelled.
Hamas blocked journalists from filming a major protest against power cuts in the northern Gaza Strip on Thursday, detaining an Associated Press journalist at gunpoint and badly beating an Agence France-Presse photographer who refused to relinquish his camera.PreOccupiedtTerritory: Military Court Convicts David Of Murder For Killing Disarmed, Wounded Goliath (satire)
The journalists sought to cover a demonstration against chronic electricity shortages in Gaza, which the AP described as “one of the largest unauthorized protests in the territory since the Islamic militant group took power a decade ago.”
“Hamas forces blocked journalists from filming the gathering, and an Associated Press journalist was briefly detained at gunpoint until he handed over his mobile phones to plainclothes security men,” the AP reported.
According to the Foreign Press Association, the Hamas men “stuck a pistol in his chest and verbally threatened the reporter until he agreed to give them the phones.”
In its statement, the association added that “an AFP photographer was badly beaten to the head by uniformed policemen [and] required medical care after he had refused to give up his camera. The memory card of his camera was confiscated and he was placed under arrest. He was subsequently released and the memory card was returned.”
A panel of military judges voted to convict Israelite military personality David, son of Jesse, on First-Degree Murder charges after the latter beheaded a Philistine fighter despite the Philistine lying helpless on the ground.
Justice Maya Heller read the verdict out this morning in proceedings that followed a fraught period among the Israelites, given the security situation and the widespread, grassroots opposition to prosecuting any Israelite soldier for taking measures to defend himself and his people, regardless of the prevailing Rules of Engagement.
David incapacitated the Philistine champion Goliath with a slingshot stone to the forehead, striking him from a distance and embedding the stone in Goliath’s skull. The Philistine in his heavy armor fell and no longer presented a threat to David or the rest of the Israelite military camp, but David nevertheless beheaded the incapacitated enemy warrior, in violation of the Rules of Engagement.
A grassroots movement sprang up that called for the charges to be dropped, and vociferous demonstrations took place at which populist rhetoric railed against the military and political leadership for sending a soldier into battle to defend the nation, then betraying him by putting him on trial for that defense.
At the reading of the verdict, Colonel Heller spent two hours reading aloud from a scroll and refuting, one by one, each of the arguments put forth by the defense during the trial. Advocates for David called the move excessive, and criticized Israelite media for making the family of the slain Goliath into the victims of the incident. “The man was trying to kill us, and David saved us from him – now all of a sudden Goliath’s the victim?” challenged Azaria, an activist. “This is a travesty.”