Sunday, May 07, 2017

From Ian:

Video allegedly shows hunger-strike leader Barghouti sneaking food
The Israeli Prison Service released a video on Sunday purportedly showing Palestinian inmate and hunger strike leader Marwan Barghouti secretly eating a candy bar and other food in the bathroom of his cell on Friday.
Barghouti, a convicted terrorist serving five life sentences, has been leading a large-scale hunger strike among Palestinian prisoners to push for more privileges, ratcheting up tensions with Israel and on the Palestinian street. The strike entered its 21st day Sunday.
The video shows two separate occasions — on April 27 and May 5 — in which Barghouti could be seen apparently unwrapping food in his prison cell and eating it in his toilet stall.
When asked for comment, a prison service spokesperson said: “The video speaks for itself.” (h/t Elder of Lobby/Yenta Press)

ברגותי אוכל בתאו from שירות בתי הסוהר on Vimeo.


Female assailant tries to stab cop in Jerusalem, is shot dead — police
A young female assailant who attempted to stab police officers was shot dead by security forces at the Damascus Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem on Sunday, police said.
None of the officers were injured in the alleged attack attempt.
According to police, the girl approached a group of officers who were standing guard at the gate.
“The terrorist arrived from Sultan Suleiman Street toward the steps of the Damascus Gate. She approached a police and border guard force stationed in the area. She took out a knife and while screaming ‘Allahu Akhbar’ tried to attack them,” the spokesperson said.
“The force responded with determination and professionalism, and neutralized her,” the spokesperson added.
The assailant was not immediately identified, but police said she appeared to be a “Palestinian minor.”
Police recovered her knife, along with a note in which she said goodbye to her family “and signed it with the word ‘martyr,'” police said.

Visit to Israel by Prince Charles scrapped because of FCO 'pandering' to Arab nations
Foreign Office blamed for dumping invitation issued by Rivlin for Prince of Wales to commemorate Balfour in Israel
A planned visit by Prince Charles to Israel to mark the Balfour Declaration later this year has allegedly been scrapped to avoid upsetting Arab nations.
Although the trip was never officially announced, it was rumoured to be under consideration after Israeli president Reuven Rivlin issued an invitation during a meeting with Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson in Jerusalem in March.
Colonel Richard Kemp, a former commander of British forces in Afghanistan, told the Sun the decision was an “insult to British war dead”, and accused the Foreign Office of being behind the decision.
Mr Kemp claimed the FCO were “pandering” to Arab dictators by allegedly blocking the trip.
No Royal has ever been on an state visit to Israel since it was founded in 1948, although there have been official visits to Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Egypt, UAE, Oman, Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya and Qatar.
According to the Sun, the decision was made by the Royal Visits Committee – part of the FCO - and there is no suggestion the Prince of Wales was involved in the cancellation.
The invitation reportedly never reached the office of Prince Charles.
David Collier: Special report: A day of anti-Israel hatred at the University of Warwick
On Thursday, 4th May, I spent the day at the University of Warwick. Warwick forms part of one of my favourite areas of the UK. Close enough to visit from London in a day, and containing both Warwick castle and Shakespeare’s town, Stratford upon-Avon. As is proving to be a recurring theme, the romantic relationship I have with the country of my birth is being torn apart piece by piece. This is my report:
The conference was a full day event. It did not seem to have been long in the planning. Advertising for the event suddenly appeared about two weeks ago and I only saw the event promoted via social media on some university related Facebook pages, and of course, on the pages of the local anti-Israel activist groups.
Logistically , the conference was made up of three panels, three speakers in each and a final ‘keynote’ conversation between a lawyer/activist at an anti-Israel NGO and a Palestinian legal academic. Apart from the final keynote, each academic would present a ‘paper’ and have 15-20 minutes each to speak. Each of the four sessions was chaired by a University of Warwick academic. Fifteen participants in total. ‘Coincidentally’, all four of the chairs (Sara Salem, Alice Panepinto, Teodora Todorova & Nicola Pratt) are all University of Warwick academics who have engaged in anti-Israel activism.
The room was small, attendance peaked at about 45 people. Fifteen participants, alongside a few other organisers. A small number of other Warwick academics were present. Fifteen or so activists from the local Leamington Spa and Warwick Palestine groups also turned up, to have their fetish fed. Perhaps a handful of ‘others’. There was not much of a student presence at all.



Brian Thomas: Quilliam’s “Former Extremist” Adam Deen Still Supports the Jihad Against Israel
The video of Tommy [Robinson] going into Quilliam’s offices to ask what evidence they have to back up the outrageous claim that he is a white supremacist has gone viral. It lead to a 12-minute segment on the BBC’s flagship Daily Politics show on Thursday between Tommy and Quilliam’s Chief Executive, Haras Rafiq. Veteran journalist Tim Marshall, who weighs in at the end of the segment, had a lot of sympathy for Tommy Robinson’s framing of the debate in class terms: because of Tommy’s “working class voice” and background, people don’t take what he’s saying seriously. He castigated Tommy mildly for barging into the office, but he reprimanded Quilliam’s chief executive:
“Your guys need a bit of media training, don’t put your hand in the camera.”
So who was the primary challenger of Tommy at the Quilliam office, the one who appears to have physically man handled and even broken a camera?
Adam Deen is his name, and we know from his Quilliam biography that he used to associate with Islamic “extremists.” He joined Quilliam in November 2015, but claims to have begun his journey away from aggresive caliphate Islam some years before:
It would appear that Adam had stopped working with MPACUK on their “peaceful” Jihad and formed his own organisation by 2011. But he brought their Israel-hating views came with him. By 2014, when Israel was forced to respond to a massive increase in rocket fire from Gaza coincident with the kidnapping and murder of three Jewish children, Adam was quite a busy tweeter:



New campus blood libel: Israel responsible for U.S. police shootings of blacks
The lack of factual basis for blaming Israel for U.S. police shootings also has not stopped anti-Israel groups who operate on campuses, like the misleadingly named “Jewish Voice for Peace,” from claiming Israel is responsible. Indeed, JVP issued a Passover Haggadah supplement for “ending U.S.-Israel police exchanges,” as Prof. Miriam Elman documented:
JVP’s new campaign, unveiled and discussed during sessions and workshops at their national conference in Chicago last weeked, is “Deadly Exchanges: Ending US-Israel Police Exchanges, Reclaiming Safety.”
It features prominently as a supplement to JVP’s Haggadah (titled “Leaving Mitzrayim,” or in English, Leaving Egypt).
This latest project plans to target the “exchange programs” between American police forces and Israel’s military and security experts.
According to JVP’s deputy director Stephanie Fox, the exchanges enable the IDF to share its “worst practices” like “torture, surveillance and spying which is all brought to bear against Palestinians.” Having completed the training sessions, back home U.S. law enforcement officials adopt these practices to use against American “people of color”.
The problem is that there’s not a shred of evidence for any of this.
The reality, as noted by Prof. Mark Levine (a harsh critic of Israel), is that the history of militarized policing in the U.S. is complex and multifaceted—and has nothing to do with Israel.

We are now seeing the fruit of this tactic on campuses.
UC Santa Cruz Students Occupy Building, Shout Anti-Semitic Slurs, Admin Caves In to Demands
As we reported in an earlier post, the Afrikan Black Student Alliance took over a building at UC Santa Cruz this week and issued a specific set of demands, including mandatory diversity training for other students, repainting of Rosa Parks house and housing guarantees for “ALL African Black Caribbean identified students.”
Along the way, some of those students shouted anti-Israel and anti-Semitic slurs.
Buried at the bottom of the Santa Cruz Sentinel report is this curious tidbit:
In addition, during the rally that preceded the occupation of Kerr Hall on Tuesday at Quarry Plaza, members of the Afrikan Black Student Alliance verbally attacked Jewish students, according to Santa Cruz Hillel Director Sarah Cohen Domont.
“Our students were, on three separate instances, subjected to protesters yelling, (expletives and anti-Semitic insults) and one of our Israeli flags was torn down,” wrote Cohen Domont in a public statement. “The ABSA called for protesters to stand in solidarity with their Palestinian brothers and sisters.”
Tuesday was Israel Independence Day. Santa Cruz Hillel and its “pro-Israel partners” had gathered in Quarry Plaza to celebrate.
Failed Campus Reporting — The Absence of Facts
On Monday, Cornell University’s Hillel hosted Lilah Lavan in celebration of Israel’s Yom Ha’atzmaut (Independence Day). The festivities included Israeli food and music sponsored by Hillel and other pro-Israel organizations on campus.
Amidst the celebrations, the Cornell chapter of SJP (Students for Justice in Palestine) disrupted the event and held a “die-in.” Some SJP members held a banner that read “Celebrating 69 years of genocide,” while the rest lay down on the floor in protest of the supposed “genocide.”
The claim of genocide in relation to Israel is a vile lie and does not correspond with the facts. One such fact (of many) — the Palestinian population growth rate in the Palestinian territories is 2.4% per year, 33% higher than Israel's population growth rate, as footnoted below. SJP’s protest had no grounding in fact and was aimed at targeting students who support Israel.
“What I’m saying is that it is a little odd that you’re here to attend an event and everybody is getting ready to pull out a flag,” a policeman guarding the entrance told protesters. “We’re not saying you can’t protest, you’re just going to do it outside because you are not going to disrupt the event.”
BBC’s Knell tells audiences that convicted terrorists are ‘political prisoners’
When some mostly Fatah-linked Palestinians serving sentences in Israeli prisons began a hunger strike on April 17th, the BBC produced three reports on that story on consecutive days. As was noted here at the time:
“…in all three of the reports, readers find (not for the first time) amplification of the PLO’s narrative concerning Palestinian prisoners – as promoted, for example, in a PLO ‘media brief’ from June 2015. [emphasis added]
Report 1: “Palestinians regard the detainees as political prisoners. Many have been convicted of attacks against Israelis and other offences.”
Report 2: “Palestinians say the detainees are political prisoners, while Israel describes them as “terrorists”” (photo caption)
“Palestinians regard the detainees as political prisoners. Many have been convicted of attacks against Israelis and other offences.”
Report 3: “Palestinians regard the detainees as political prisoners. Many have been convicted of attacks against Israelis.”
The idea that people who have been convicted of perpetrating acts of terrorism are ‘political prisoners’ is rejected in Europe and we certainly do not see the BBC promoting the notion that people imprisoned in the UK for terror related offences may be defined in such terms.”

On May 2nd the BBC went one step further. Apparently not content with the above uncritical and unqualified amplification of the partisan narrative of the PLO, Jerusalem bureau correspondent Yolande Knell dispensed with the nicety “Palestinians regard”, electing to describe convicted terrorists as “political prisoners” in her (and hence the BBC’s) own words.
Inaccuracies and omissions in BBC News reporting on Abbas White House visit
Audience understanding of the frequently covered ‘Middle East peace process’ would of course be well served by further reporting on this issue.
In contrast to other media reports on the Trump-Abbas meeting, this article fails to inform BBC audiences of Mahmoud Abbas’ egregious claim that “we are raising our youth, our children, our grandchildren on a culture of peace”.
The article also includes the insert titled “What is the two-state solution?” that has appeared in a number of BBC News website articles published since late December 2016.
'Can a corrupt, antisemitic Palestinian Authority leadership be a partner?'
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's political ally, Energy and Water Minister Yuval Steinitz called Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas "anti-Semitic" in an address at Sunday's Jerusalem Post Conference in New York.
Steinitz said Trump's upcoming visit to Jerusalem was a golden opportunity to strengthen the alliance of Israel and the US. But he warned Trump against relying on Abbas.
"An anti-Semitic leader is no partner for peace," Steinitz said. "We always hope to achieve peace and security with our neighbors. But I question whether Abbas can be trusted as a partner to achieve peace and security. Can a corrupt, dysfunctional, anti-Semitic Palestinian Authority become a partner to achieve peace?"
Abbas must terminate anti-Jewish and anti-Israel sentiment in the Palestinian Authority's education system, Steinitz stressed.
As the situation stands today, Steinitz continued, Palestinian children are taught that Jews are "horrible creatures" and "should be gotten rid of."
Israeli Intelligence Minister Urges Formal US-Israel Understanding Over Iranian Threat, Calls for Recognition of Jewish State’s Sovereignty in Golan
Israel’s intelligence minister has called for a new US-Israeli security understanding over the extensive presence in Syria of Iranian forces.
Israel Katz, Israel’s Minister for Transportation and Intelligence, issued a five point plan based on growing Israeli concern with the regional threat posed by Iran, as well as Hezbollah and other terrorist groups.
Speaking at a New York conference hosted by the Jerusalem Post, Katz’s plan began with a call on the US to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which Israel retained following its victory in the June 1967 War. The Golan, Katz said, is an “indivisible part of the State of Israel.”
The US and Israel would also oppose a “permanent Iranian military presence in Syria and Lebanon.” Iranian troops, along with their Hezbollah and Iraqi Shi’a proxies, have been the key factor, along with Russia, in stabilizing the embattled regime of Bashar al Assad in Damascus.
That opposition, Katz said, would be grounded on punishing sanctions upon Iran “until it stops supporting Hezbollah and other terrorist organizations in the region.”
“This is the missing piece in the (July 2015) nuclear agreement signed with Iran,” Katz declared. “Iran is the biggest supporter of terrorism in the world and must be stopped.”
Vowing to stand by Israel, German president says ties will withstand spat
German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier visited the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial on Sunday, declaring that Germany has an obligation to stand by Israel due to its Nazi past and saying ties were strong enough to endure “turbulence.”
Steinmeier’s visit, his first to Israel since becoming president in March and first to any country in that capacity outside Europe, comes after a recent row between Germany’s foreign minister and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
During a wreath-laying ceremony at Yad Vashem’s Hall of Remembrance, Steinmeier said Germany’s responsibility for the Holocaust meant supporting Israel.
“We Germans brought upon ourselves incomprehensible blame. At this place the memory becomes pain, mourning and shame. By taking responsibility for what happened we stand by Israel and [together] work for a common future,” the Hebrew-language Ynet news site quoted him as saying.
Visiting Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, Steinmeier said ties were solid enough to withstand recent tensions and Rivlin said Israel cannot be considered an occupying force since the land belongs to the Jewish people.
Is the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization still relevant in 2017?
The underground Jewish group feared the UN would accept Bernadotte’s recommendation that Palestine and Transjordan be reformed as “a Union, comprising two Members, one Arab and one Jewish,” each controlling its own affairs, including foreign relations.
In fact, the Ben-Gurion government had already rejected it, in favor of the count’s second proposal of two independent states. The Lehi regarded Bernadotte as an agent of the hated British and their Arab allies, failing to appreciate his bid for peace in the Middle East.
His second proposal, delivered shortly before his murder, included two principles that still apply today: “A Jewish State called Israel exists in Palestine and there are no sound reasons for assuming that it will not continue to do so,” and, “The boundaries of this new State must finally be fixed either by formal agreement between the parties concerned or failing that, by the United Nations.”
It was widely alleged that Lehi leader Yitzhak Yezernitsky, later known as prime minister Yitzhak Shamir, had ordered the murder, but no suspect was ever prosecuted.
The statute of limitations for the murder expired in 1971.
While UNTSO headquarters was eventually established in the prime Jerusalem location of Armon Hatziv, spectacularly overlooking the City of David and the Temple Mount, it initially was located in Cairo before moving to Haifa. During its long tenure on the expansive Jerusalem site, UNTSO has supplied peacekeepers to real areas of conflict, such as Lebanon and Syria, where their record speaks for itself.
In addition, UNTSO has military observers on the Golan Heights and in Sinai. They will no doubt join the world in celebrating the upcoming International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers on May 29, UNTSO’s 60th anniversary.
It is time for Israel to acknowledge the total lack of necessity in UNTSO’s presence in Jerusalem, where there is no truce to supervise and real estate is at a premium in a country desperately short of housing.
UN can’t be evicted from Jerusalem, Foreign Ministry said set to tell ministers
The Foreign Ministry is reportedly set to warn the cabinet that a minister’s demand to shutter the United Nations headquarters in Jerusalem, in protest of a recent agency resolution that denies Israeli sovereignty over the capital city, would violate international law.
Senior ministry officials will brief the cabinet on Sunday regarding the demand, which was made by Culture and Sports Minister Miri Regev last week, the Haaretz daily reported.
“The professional opinion that will be presented is that Israel is signatory to an agreement with the UN and other international conventions under which the UN headquarters is granted diplomatic immunity,” a senior official was quoted as saying. “There are agreements in place that cannot be violated.
“The only way to remove them is if they choose to leave voluntarily,” the unnamed official said.
U.N. holds lavish NGO forum in Saudi Arabia while rights activists languish in prison
A foundation run by the Saudi royal family hosted a U.N. global forum for non-governmental organizations in Riyadh last week, on the theme of “Youth and their Social Impact,” even as young bloggers and human rights activists like Raif Badawi languish in prison for the crime of advocating freedom in Saudi Arabia. Speakers included UNESCO chief Irina Bokova, Olympic gold medalist Carl Lewis, and Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
Regrettably, UNESCO, the U.N. agency for education, science, and culture, mentioned nowhere at its 7th International Forum of NGO, or on the conference website, that Saudi Arabia prohibits independent NGOs and arrests, jails and even sometimes flogs human rights activists.
Women attending the forum were instructed to “wear an Abaya, which is a long robe, usually black, that covers most of their body.”
The UNESCO gathering was sponsored by the wealthy MiSK Foundation, a Saudi charity, “even though,” said Hillel Neuer, executive director of the Geneva-based UN Watch, “that it is headed by Deputy Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, the Saudi minister of defence who has overseen the bombing of Yemen that has killed 10,000 civilians and wounded 40,000 civilians, along with a naval blockade that has diverted ships carrying life-saving medical supplies, with 20 million Yemenis now in need of humanitarian assistance, and seven million facing starvation.”
“We know that the U.N. must operate in many countries, but the world body was under no obligation to award a false badge of international legitimacy to one of the world’s worst regimes when it comes to crushing independent human rights organizations and jailing innocent activists,” Neuer added.
Swedish UN Association head slams Saudi selection
Alexsander Gabelic, chairman of the Swedish United Nations Association, has sharply criticised the election of Saudi Arabia to the UN Womens' Rights Commission.
"I'm not happy with it. It's the wrong signal that so many member states voted ' yes' to Saudi Arabia," he told Radio Sweden.
On Tuesday Foreign Minister Margot Wallström refused to say whether Sweden was one of the 47 countries that voted in favour of Saudi Arabia, or one of the seven who abstained.
Gabelic agreed that it was "the normal practice" for UN votes on such appointments to be kept secret, but he said there was nonetheless nothing stopping countries revealing their vote, as Belgium's Prime Minister Charles Michel has on the Saudi selection.
"There would be no sanctions if you were doing like Belgium," he said. "That could be some starting point for other countries to act jointly. Countries like Sweden should start to think 'how can we make this more open?' There should not be support for countries which violate human rights".
OAS should call for U.N. emergency session on Venezuela atrocities; UN Watch submits draft resolution
The Swiss human rights group UN Watch today submitted a draft U.N. resolution on the crisis in Venezuela to members of the Organization of American States, and the U.S. and EU, and called on them to convene an emergency special session of the 47-nation U.N. Human Rights Council which should consider suspending the Maduro government from its membership.
“We are witnessing state-sponsored atrocities, and one of the most grave human rights situations in the history of Venezuela,” said Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch, a non-governmental organization accredited in special consultative status with the world body.
A police crackdown arrested hundreds and killed dozens. Rage against Maduro’s regime exploded this past week when he called for a new constitution, the latest in a series of a power grabs. Demonstrators have overwhelmed city streets. The violence deepens a months-long crisis marked by spiraling crime, chronic food and medicine shortages, and economic collapse.
“We call on Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, and other OAS member states, to work in concert with the U.S. and the EU to convene an emergency special session of the U.N. Human Rights Council, which only requires 16 signatures.”
“To jumpstart the discussion, we have circulated a draft resolution for member states to consider for adoption at the session, including a clause calling to suspend Venezuela’s Maduro regime from the Council,” said Neuer.
Israeli intelligence minister urges Trump to recognize Golan sovereignty
The Golan Heights are an indivisible part of Israel and the Trump administration should recognize that in light of the civil war in Syria, Transportation and Intelligence Minister Israel Katz said Sunday.
Katz made the remarks at the Jerusalem Post Annual Conference in New York.
Katz proposed that the governments in Jerusalem and Washington reach a five-pointed understanding on the issue of the Syrian civil war and the implications it has on Israel's security.
Besides recognizing Israeli sovereignty in the Golan Heights, Katz called for joint opposition to a permanent Iranian military presence in Syria and Lebanon, further sanctions against Iran until it stops supporting regional terror organizations, and enhancing paralyzing sanctions on Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah.
"There will not be stability in the region until Iran is pushed back, and weapons transfers are stopped," he added.
Consul General Dayan Nuclear deal is bad, but Iran complying is worse
The nuclear deal is bad, but Iran complying with the deal is worse, Dani Dayan, Consul General of Israel in New York, said at The Jerusalem Post Annual Conference on Sunday.
Dayan explained that should Iran comply with the nuclear agreement the country will eventually obtain nuclear weapons, as the agreement only slows progress.
He stressed that Iran is a foremost security threat and that the United States and Israel see "eye to eye" on the dangers of Iran and the deficiencies of the nuclear agreement.
Dayan also addressed the delicate situation in Syria, stating that he is "extremely proud" of Israeli humanitarian support in Syria. "Israel is a light onto the nations," he declared.
"Israeli men and women endanger their lives in order to help Syrians, not even considering the fact that it is an enemy state," Consul General Dani Dayan stated at The Jerusalem Post Annual Conference Sunday.
Trump aide Gorka pushes back against accusations of antisemitism
A senior foreign policy adviser to US President Donald Trump pushed back on Sunday against reports suggesting he has ties to proto-fascist groups in Hungary dating back to his young adulthood.
Sebastian Gorka, a deputy assistant to the president, told The Jerusalem Post's annual conference in New York that claims he and his fellow White House colleagues Steve Bannon and Stephen Miller harbor antisemitic views are politically motivated, driven by those on the political Left aligned with movements hostile to Israel.
"I have spent my life fighting against totalitarian ideologies, and so has my father," Gorka said. "For me, jihadis are linked to fascists because they are totalitarians – and that is why I am proud to work for this administration."
Gorka has been the subject of a series of investigative reports published by the Forward, a Jewish American newspaper, which document his alleged associations with Vitézi Rend, a neo-Nazi group. The paper also uncovered camera footage of Gorka defending the actions of the Hungarian Guard, a militia serving the nation's far-right Jobbik Party, itself accused of neo-Nazism.
But the newspaper has not uncovered "one sentence that is antisemitic or anti-Israel" uttered by Gorka himself, he charged.
Reigniting old dispute, ministers okay new ‘Jewish State’ bill
Ministers gave their go-ahead Sunday to a controversial and long-debated proposal to officially define Israel as a Jewish nation-state.
The Ministerial Committee for Legislation voted unanimously in favor of throwing coalition support behind Likud MK Avi Dichter’s Jewish State bill, which, for the first time in Israeli law, would enshrine Israel as “the national home of the Jewish people.” If passed in the Knesset, the law would become one of the so-called Basic Laws, which like a constitution guide Israel’s legal system and are more difficult to repeal than regular laws.
Judaism is already mentioned throughout the country’s laws, and religious authorities control many aspects of life, including marriage. But the 11 existing Basic Laws deal mostly with state institutions like the Knesset, the courts or the presidency, while Basic Law: Human Dignity and Liberty defines Israel’s democratic character. The nation-state bill, proponents say, would put Jewish values and democratic values on equal footing.
​”This is a small step for the Jewish State bill, which establishes that Israel is and will be a Jewish and democratic state, and it’s a big step toward defining our identity, not only in the eyes of the world but primarily for ourselves, Israelis. To be a free people in our land,” Dichter said in response to the decision.
In false alarm, rocket sirens sound in Gaza border towns
Rocket sirens sounded Sunday morning in the Eshkol region along the border with the Gaza Strip, in what the army said was a false alarm.
The IDF did not immediately indicate what tripped the warning system, and was investigating the incident.
Recent months have seen sporadic rocket attacks from Salafist groups in the Gaza Strip and the Islamic State affiliate in the Sinai.
The most recent attack was on April 10, the eve of Passover, from the Sinai, in which a greenhouse was hit by a rocket. In March, two projectiles were launched at southern Israeli cities from Gaza. No one was injured in any of the attacks.
Hamas, the terror group that rules Gaza, has largely refrained from firing rockets into Israel since it fought a devastating war with Israel in 2014. Recent rocket launches have often been ascribed to radical Salafist groups in the Strip.
Fatah-Hamas conflict deepens
The conflict between Fatah-associated Palestinian Authority leaders in Ramallah and Hamas leadership in Gaza continues to escalate.
On Saturday, Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas signed an order exempting residents of Gaza from paying taxes.
The purpose of this order was to put pressure on Hamas leadership, who need the money received from local residents.
Following Abbas' order, Hamas Treasurer Youssuf Al-Kieli announced that Abbas' order was illegal and therefore would not be implemented.
According to Al-Kieli, these types of orders, when signed by Abbas, must first be approved by the Palestinian Legislative Committee. The current order did not receive such approval and is therefore invalid.
IsraellyCool: Palestinians Make More Boaring Accusations Against Israel
Palestinians are once again claiming that “settlers” deliberately release wild boars to attack farmers and villagers. Zionist Death BoarsTM if you will.
A ten-year-old Palestinian girl was hospitalized Friday night after a wild boar attacked her in the town of al-Yamun northwest of Jenin in the northern occupied West Bank, with locals saying the incident was a result of Israeli settlers deliberately releasing wild boars in the area.
Palestinian medical sources said that the child, Alaa Kamil Hoshiya, was bit on her hand and was also suffering from shock.
According to locals, the girl was attacked in al-Khirbeh area of al-Yamun.
Palestinians say they have been dealing with an ongoing wild boar problem in the occupied West Bank, claiming that extremist Israeli settlers have brought boars and released them near Palestinian areas to attack farmers and villagers as a way to keep them off their land.
New leader, same old Hamas, with Gazans now firmly in control
Saturday’s announcement by Hamas’s political bureau chief Khaled Mashaal that Ismail Haniyeh had been chosen as his successor was seen by Palestinians as anything but a surprising or dramatic move.
The decision had been expected for months, with two viable contenders in the race: Moussa Abu Marzouk, Mashaal’s deputy and one of the terror group’s leaders abroad, and Haniyeh, another of Mashaal’s deputies who has for years remained in the Gaza Strip.
The most significant aspect of Haniyeh’s appointment is the Gazan takeover of the group’s center of power.
For 21 years the political bureau was headed by Mashaal, a native of the relatively prosperous and well known West Bank village of Silwad. Throughout those years Mashaal operated from overseas hotels and luxury apartments in Damascus, Qatar and Jordan.
In rare sign of amity, top Fatah official salutes new Hamas head
A senior official from Fatah telephoned to offer his congratulations to the newly appointed leader of rival Palestinian party Hamas, the organization said Sunday, in an unusual display of harmony between the warring rival groups.
Fatah Central Committee member Jibril Rajoub called to speak personally with Ismail Haniyeh after the latter was made leader of the Hamas terror group the day before, according to the official Hamas website.
The site said Rajoub offered Haniyeh his congratulations.
Hamas rules the Gaza Strip while the Palestinian Authority, dominated by President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party, controls the West Bank. The two groups had a violent falling out in 2007 as Hamas fighters ousted Fatah from the Gaza Strip. Several attempts at reconciliation have failed since.
Rajoub, a confidant of Abbas who also heads the official Palestinian soccer body, talked with Haniyeh about ways to bridge the deepening divide between Fatah and Hamas in order to unite the Palestinian people, the official Hamas website reported.
IS decapitates father, two sons in Sinai border town
The decapitated bodies of a father and his two sons recently kidnapped by Islamic militants were found on Saturday lying in the street in the northern Sinai town of Rafah, according to security officials and witnesses — the latest grotesque act of brutality in the country’s long-running insurgency.
They said the mother of the two siblings was killed last week by members of the Islamic State group when they raided the family home in the village of Yamit, west of Rafah, and kidnapped the three men they suspect of being collaborators.
The three decapitated bodies found Saturday were taken to hospital, where they were identified and prepared for burial, according to the officials and witnesses, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media and feared reprisals, respectively.
IS is spearheading an insurgency in northern Sinai, where there has recently been an uptick in the abduction and killing of suspected informants. The brutal killings are meant to serve as a deterrent to would-be collaborators.
Pentagon Looks at New Evidence of Military Cooperation Between Iran and North Korea
The Pentagon says that a submarine used in the failed underwater launch of a cruise missile this week by Iran, draws attention to Iran’s military cooperation with North Korea, Fox News reported Friday.
When Iran used a “midget” submarine for the underwater launch of a Jask – 2 cruise missile this week, U.S. Defense Department officials said that it was based on the North Korean Yono design. This was seen as further evidence that the two nations are sharing military technology.
Also, a number of Iranian missiles have designs that appear to be based on North Korean designs, including a ballistic missile tested by Iran in January of this year.
Furthermore, a ballistic missile, tested by Iran last summer, is believed to be based on the design of the North Korean Musudan missile. The Musudan is the most advanced missile that Pyongyang has tested successfully.
A number of Iranian missiles have designs that appear to be based on North Korean designs, including a ballistic missile tested by Iran in January of this year. A ballistic missile tested by Iran last summer is believed to be based on the design of the North Korean Musudan missile. The Musudan is the most advanced missile that Pyongyan has tested successfully.
Defense experts say that North Korea’s Taepodong missile resembles Iran’s Shahab missile.
Report: Iran gives $600 million to Hezbollah
Hezbollah has created an independent economy within Lebanon, which includes instatutions, education, and businesses - from $600 million worth of Iranian aid, Saudi Arabian newspaper Al-Youm reported on April 25.
As a result of US sanctions on Iran, the aid was transferred almost completely in hard cash, and is being used for the terror group's institutions and salaries paid to its terrorists and their families.
Al-Youm reports that according to a Hezbollah deserter, Hezbollah circumvents legal channels by laundering money sent by the mafia to Lebanon.
The article also mentioned several other places from which Hezbollah receives money. These include: millions of dollars in annual donations, received from Shiite businessmen abroad; charity taxes; profit from Shiite websites in Iraq; and money received from Shiite imams in Iraq and abroad.
Sunni Saudi Arabia is considered to be Hezbollah and Iran's greatest enemies, and its official newspaper often reports against Iran and Hezbollah.
A plan to recover property stolen from Jews during the Holocaust
Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin has addressed a meeting on the issue of returning the properties stolen by the Nazis during the Holocaust.
Also speaking at the meeting at the president’s home was Minister for Social Equality Gamliel, Director General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Yuval Rotem, Chairman of the Jewish Agency, Natan Sharansky, and Chair of the World Jewish Restitution Organisation (WJRO) Executive Committee, Abraham Biderman.
The ambassador to Israel from Germany, Dr. Clemens von Goetze; Ambassador of the European Union, Lars Faaborg– Andersen, Deputy Ambassador of the United Kingdom, Tony Kay and representatives of the Embassies of the USA, and France together with the French Government’s Special French Envoy for Restitution, Francois Croquette attended.
“There can be no true justice, in the face of such terrible evil, such inhuman acts,” began the President, and asked, “What justice, can we bring to the children left in the snow their whole families murdered in front of their eyes? What justice can we bring after the murder of six million people? We cannot bring them back.”
The President stressed, “We have risen from the ashes. The Jewish people has a home, and an army to protect them. We have a strong economy, and Jewish culture flourishes. But no, the scars of the Holocaust, of the Shoah, can never be totally healed.”
For the first time, Auschwitz guides to teach about Jews’ ‘spiritual resistance’
Building a clandestine sukkah; putting on phylacteries; seeking rabbinic counsel. Despite the risk of immediate death if caught, spiritual resistance — large and small — ran strong among religious Jews in the Nazi concentration camps.
Yet, for more than 70 years, the ways in which so many men and women fought to practice their faith under such dire circumstances has gone largely untold — an omission particularly felt during tours of Auschwitz-Birkenau.
“Holocaust history has to a large extent has been about what occurred to the Jews. When focusing on the individual devastated by genocide, by default it becomes a perpetrator history. When you talk about what happened to the victim, the human story gets sublimated,” said Dr. Henri Lustiger-Thaler, chief curator of the Amud Aish Memorial Museum in Brooklyn, New York, and professor of social science at Ramapo College in New Jersey.
Indeed, much of what people learn while visiting the concentration and extermination camps is rather clinical: Piles of suitcases, carefully labeled with names and addresses, heaps of shorn locks. Such artifacts are necessary to help tell the story of the Holocaust, but can divert a greater share of attention to what the Nazis did rather than how Jewish prisoners reacted.



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