Friday, June 30, 2017

From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: Denial: the Labour Party's antisemitism
David Hirsh’s must-see video, Whitewashed: Antisemitism in the Labour Party (which you can view below) starts with a truly shocking clip of Jeremy Corbyn speaking. Having referred to the profoundly anti-Jewish, murderous terrorist organisations Hezbollah and Hamas as his “friends”, he says (of either or both): “The idea that an organisation that is dedicated towards the good of the Palestinian people and bringing about long term peace and social justice, and political justice, in the whole region should be labelled a terrorist organisation by the British government is a big, big historical mistake”.
Hirsh’s film not only highlights examples of the antisemitism in the Labour party, but observes the appalling way in which Jews who draw attention to this are dismissed as “lying for Israel”. It states what so many on the left deny: that while in theory it is possible to be anti-Zionist but not anti-Jew, in practice the distinction is meaningless.
As one speaker observes, the Labour Party cannot call itself an anti-racist party if it denies the existence of left-wing antisemitism. Through interviews with Jewish people whose evidence to Baroness Chakrabarti’s vacuous “inquiry” into the issue was ignored, it shows how a report that was supposed to point to solutions to anti-Jewish attitudes in the party ended up as just another manifestation of the problem.

Former Senator Joseph Lieberman Speaks To The Daily Wire About The Left’s Anti-Semitism Problem
On Friday, The Daily Wire spoke with former Democratic vice presidential candidate and former Connecticut Senator Joseph Lieberman about the rising tide of anti-Semitism on the Left. Acknowledging the political divisions within the Democratic party itself following a contentious primary election battle between the centrist wing of the party, represented by Hillary Clinton, and the left-wing of the party, represented by Bernie Sanders, Lieberman suggested that the anti-Semitism on the Left is inherently intertwined with controversies surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
“There are areas where there is a rising opposition [to Israel] but it’s not based on reality,” said Lieberman following a panel discussion in Paris about Iran’s expansionist policies.
But to Lieberman, this anti-Israel sentiment remains confined to the political fringes.
“I think America remains, by every public opinion poll I’ve seen, very pro-Israel,” he said.
When asked directly about the Bernie Sanders movement, and its disturbingly anti-Israel sentiments, Lieberman said he was hopeful about the future of the Democratic party’s relationship with Israel, however, it was impossible to deny that “an element” within the party had moved away from the American political establishment’s traditional bipartisan support for the Jewish State.
“I’m concerned about that,” said the former vice presidential candidate. “When I became active in politics the Democratic party [during the Kennedy era]” was very supportive of Israel.
But things have changed, noted Lieberman.
Caroline Glick: Who cares about Jewish unity?
But what was Netanyahu’s alternative? If the American Jewish community flies off the handle and declares war against the government, threatening to blackball the elected leaders of the Jewish state when they adopt measures that while impolite have little substantive effect on their positions, then why should Israel take their views into account? If everything that the government does is terrible, then dialogue is reduced to recrimination. Sitting with progressive Jewish leaders from America means being subjected to a lecture about how terrible Israel is by people who do not live here and are not interested in having a serious discussion about what is actually on the table.
The fact that they are not interested in having that sort of discussion, and that they have no interest in making Israel their home, is demonstrated by their indifference to the real implications of the draft conversion law. Leaders truly invested in the future of both their communities and of their communities’ ties with Israel would be appalled by the retention of monopoly control over conversions by rabbinic authorities who refuse to recognize the difference between children of intermarriage and non-Jews with no relation to Judaism and the Jewish people.
They would insist that religious-Zionist rabbis be reinstated in the state rabbinate, and work avidly to ensure that conversions once approved cannot be overturned.
The real problem here is that while everyone involved speaks of the need for Jewish unity, no one involved in the conversation seems to be motivated to work toward that goal.
Jewish unity isn’t achieved by mutual recrimination.
And it isn’t achieved by one-upmanship. It is achieved through compromise based on mutual respect and love for fellow Jews. Absent that, nothing good will come from negotiations or laws or agreements. Absent that, nothing good will come at all.

  • Friday, June 30, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
I just went through a long article at Al Shabaka, the Palestinian Policy Network, talking about what strategy Palestinians need to use to achieve their goals. It was written by Nadia Hijab and Ingrid Jaradat Gassner.

Hijab is a senior fellow at the Institute for Palestine Studies and Gassner is one of the founders of BDS.

The actual goals are not spelled out, but it becomes pretty clear what they are - destroying Israel, on both sides of the Green Line.
 There is a problem in the debate itself. By focusing on the ultimate settlement and whether it should be one state or two, the discussion too often leapfrogs the need for a process of decolonization as well as reparations for the damage inflicted upon the Palestinians. Decolonization and reparations must be part of the final settlement, whether it is that of a Palestinian state in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) adopted at the Palestinian National Council in 1988 as an expression of the Palestinian right to self-determination, or that of one state in all of the former British Mandate Palestine in which all citizens are equal.
Decolonization is not really defined well, but the goals become clear when the writers speak about the Green Line:

Perhaps at the end of the day a just one-state solution will become a reality, and then there will be no need to insist on holding on to the Green Line to ensure that IHL is applied to the OPT. Until then, however, Palestinians must not give up the sources of strength and power they have today. Otherwise, we risk losing the tools offered by IHL and legitimizing the Israeli settlements instead of advancing our cause.

So talking about a two-state solution is a scam - but it is necessary because they believe that they have solid legal grounds to insist on a state in the territories to begin with, based on pressuring Israel on "occupation". But that isn't the goal - it is a stage.

This is a little more explicit here:
A framework of analysis is strategic if it allows Palestinians to make effective use of their available sources of power in a struggle for decolonization and reparations that pursues a set of clear core goals.  The question that arises at this point is: What are the Palestinians’ core goals? To date, the “goal” has been largely defined as a sovereign state along the 1967 borders with Israel. Yet referring to what is actually a political settlement as a goal confuses the issue. The Palestinian struggle has always been about Palestinian rights in and to the land of Palestine. The original solution adopted by the Palestine Liberation Organization in the 1960s was that of a secular democratic state in all of Palestine. This was followed in 1974 by a decision on an interim solution for a state in any part of Palestine that was freed, and in 1988 by a decision for a state on the 1967 borders. However, the purpose of all these political solutions was to fulfill Palestinian rights in and to the land of Palestine.





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From Ian:

Major (res.) Eyal Harel, don’t blame the system
[This was NOT translated from the Hebrew edition to the English one at Haaretz (Which is fake news by omission) - Guess why. (h/t Yenta Press)]
An IDF officer answers claims by a fellow (Breaking The Silence) officer: My name is Eran Ben Yaakov, and I am a major in reserve duty. Eyal Harel has served under my command in most of the incidents he describes ("What Really Happens in the World's Most Moral Army", Haaretz,June 19). He was a platoon commander in the engineering company in which I served as deputy commander. In the absence of the company’s commander, I was also the de facto commander of Girit outpost during a large part of the period in question. Later I was appointed commander of the company, and Harel was my deputy during the Second Lebanon War in 2006. Overall, we served together in reserve duty for nearly a decade. I read Harel’s words with sorrow, not only because he distorts the truth, but also because he does so in order to portray himself as a victim, full of regret and yet not responsible for his own actions. But this is not the case. I know him to be a good, virtuous and disciplined person.
But, in my opinion, his decisions as a commander weren’t always the best, and it angers me that he blames the system.
Regarding the incident in which a body appeared at Gaza’s shore near Rafah (an Egyptian soldier murdered [in Egypt] drifted to the shore), I was next to Harel when he fired into the air in order to drive the crowd away. I didn’t give him the order. He
did it of his own volition, and I scolded him for it was unnecessary. I wasn’t present at the second incident, but according to soldiers who were there, that was an unneeded shooting as well. No one pushed him into this. (h/t Yenta Press)
Abbas's Lies and Palestinian Child Victims
Hamas and human rights groups hold Abbas personally responsible for the deaths of the children and the possible deaths of other patients in need of urgent medical treatment not available in Gaza Strip hospitals. One human rights group went so far as to call for the International Criminal Court in The Hague to launch an investigation against Abbas.
In a move of mind-bending irony, we are witnessing a Palestinian president waging war not only against Hamas, but also against the two million Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip -- while Israel continues to provide the Palestinians living under Hamas with humanitarian aid.
That is the standard operating procedure of the man who lied straight to the face of President Donald Trump, by claiming that he had stopped incitement against Israel and was promoting a "culture of peace" among his people. Will the last sick Palestinian child please stand up?
PA to again allow Gazan patients to be treated in Israeli hospitals
The Palestinian Authority will reportedly once again allow patients from the Gaza Strip to be treated in Israel after three babies died on Tuesday in the enclave controlled by the Hamas terror group.
Following an international outcry over the deaths, the Palestinian Health Ministry will on Sunday increase the number of permits it issues for Gaza residents to receive medical care in Israel, the Haaretz newspaper reported on Friday.
The Palestinian Authority has severely cut back on medical aid to the Gaza Strip as part of a series of tough measures aimed at forcing Hamas to cede control of the coastal enclave, including reducing the amount of electricity it provides the Strip and slashing PA salaries to Gaza residents.
The Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry blamed the Palestinian Authority for the deaths of the three babies, all less than a year old, saying Ramallah has refused to grant permits for them to be treated in Israel.
To leave Gaza and travel to Israel for medical treatment, or to receive treatment in the West Bank or abroad, Gazans must first get confirmation from the PA that it will pay for the treatments.

  • Friday, June 30, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon

J-Street sent out an action alert:

THE US SHOULDN'T BLOCK PALESTINIANS FROM UN JOBS JUST BECAUSE THEY'RE PALESTINIAN

Tell Amb. Nikki Haley to reverse her discriminatory policy against Palestinians at the United Nations.

The world was stunned in February when Ambassador Nikki Haley made it clear she was blocking the appointment of former Palestinian Prime Minister Salaam Fayyad to a United Nations post solely because he was Palestinian.

Under questioning from Rep. David Price this week, Amb. Haley took it a step further, outrageously pledging to block any Palestinian from serving in senior United Nations positions, no matter their qualifications. It's an indefensible, discriminatory policy.

Haley's aim to combat the anti-Israel bias of some UN bodies is admirable. But it won't be accomplished by imposing anti-Palestinian policies. It certainly won't be accomplished by shutting out widely respected Palestinians like Fayyad who have dedicated themselves to the cause of Israeli-Palestinian peace.
Since the PLO started to join world bodies, it has consistently used its position to do only one thing: bash Israel.

It has used UNESCO for years to deny Jewish heritage and history in the Middle East. It has tried to hijack refugee conferences, conferences on children, Human Rights Day,  and conferences on women - all to pursue an anti-Israel agenda.

It gets farcical. The "State of Palestine" has used its position to bash Israel at climate conferences and even a recent conference dedicated to saving the world's oceans. It has nothing positive to add to these venues - they are merely excuses to find more ammunition against Israel.

As far as I can tell, this is 100% consistent. The entire point of gaining recognition as a state in international forums is to add new platforms to attack Israel.

Nikki Haley is entirely correct. Palestinians haven't done a thing to prove that they are worthy of being treated like a real nation. On the contrary, everything they do is negative - all attempts to delegitimize another nation.

If they start actually working hard at ocean conferences or climate conferences together with other delegates to work towards policies that affect the entire world, that would be one thing. But they don't. They parachute in, make their anti-Israel statements, try as hard as they can to cajole Arab countries to add anti-Israel text in the final statements, and they leave. I have no doubt that real diplomats, who are too diplomatic to say this out loud, are sick and tired of having important issues being pushed aside for the Palestinian ego and non-stop effort to erase Israel.

J-Street here shows that they share the PLO agenda of bashing Israel at every opportunity - in the name of "peace."





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  • Friday, June 30, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon


From Albawaba:
“Saudis support naturalization” with Israel. This, the surprising hashtag that has been trending on Twitter in the Gulf state over the last few days.

Saudi Arabia currently has no diplomatic ties with Israel, which it does not recognize, and anti-Israeli sentiment has typically been widespread in the kingdom.

This much is evident from the majority of the responses to the hashtag, which directed vitriol towards any such naturalization-backing Saudis.

Still, and rather unexpectedly, some did use the tag to express their backing for dialogue and the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two Middle Eastern states. [For example]

There is no shame in peace, dialogue and agreement. In the end, it is what all peoples and nations want and is the best choice for all.

They did so despite critics of government policy in the Gulf state risking hefty prison sentences. That in itself is a hint at a softening of attitudes with regards to Israel in Saudi Arabia, where there is evidence to suggest a potential shift in government policy towards Tel Aviv.
The hashtag was not that popular, but the underlying sea change in Saudi attitudes towards Israel is evident.
John R. Bradley wrote in The Spectator that Trump’s Middle East trip had highlighted his “championing” of a “new geopolitical reality”.
In this new reality, Bradley suggested, Saudi policy may be refocused to consider “Iran, not Israel [...as its] regional enemy.”
His evidence? He points to Israeli Channel 2’s interview earlier this month with a Saudi political analyst in Jeddah, which received no backlash from the authorities, indicating, he suggests, tacit Saudi approval.
Bradley goes further, describing the interview as “just the opening salvo of an orchestrated, pro-Israel propaganda campaign.”
This “campaign”, according to Bradley, has so far witnessed the publishing of an “unprecedented” column in government-monitored Saudi daily which suggested that “there was no reason for Arabs to ‘unjustifiably demonise’” Israel.
Elsewhere, The Wall Street Journal has also reported a secret Saudi-Israeli deal to support Syrian rebels, while The Times has suggested that the two nations are engaged in talks over potential economic ties, a claim denied by Riyadh. 
Iran and its allies are very worried about this. Al Manar, a Hezbollah newspaper, this week disparaged Saudi Arabia by pointing out that one of their Grand Muftis, when asked about whether Arabs are allowed to make peace with Israel in the 1990s, issued a fatwa  that it was OK depending on the specifics and if it would benefit the Arab country. (And if the Jews are too powerful to be defeated militarily.)

The Iranians now realize that the old playbook of  using "Zionist" as an insult to bully people to do what you want no longer works. Iran is trying to save face by saying that the Saudis have been pro-Israel for decades and there is nothing new in their Zionist position - implying that Iranian policies are not the reason for the Saudi softening of its attitude towards Israel.

(h/t Yoel, Ibn Boutros)



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  • Friday, June 30, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon


Ma'an English reports it this way:

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that a Palestinian shot towards Israeli soldiers during a dawn raid in Jenin, before dropping his weapon and fleeing.
No Israelis were injured in the incident, the spokesperson said, adding that the army recovered the weapon on the scene.
The spokesperson added that the soldiers were targeted as they were undertaking an operation to remove a memorial stone commemorating Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) leader Khalid Nazzal.
Nazzal, who was assassinated by Israeli intelligence in 1986, was a leader in a deadly hostage operation in the northern Israeli town of Tarshiha-Maalot in 1974, during which some 29 people were killed.
The Jenin municipality had removed the memorial a week earlier, but placed it back a day later following local uproar, as Palestinian residents perceived the removal as capitulation to Israeli accusations that the monument would incite to anti-Israeli violence.
Following the restitution of the plaque, the Israeli army informed the Palestinian Authority (PA) that it would carry out a raid to remove the stone once again.
Ma'an Arabic has a different way of reporting, calling Nazzal a "martyr" in its headline.

What neither story mentions is that the majority of victims were teenage children staying overnight in the Netiv Meir elementary school in Ma'alot.

Even Ma'an's English article sees nothing wrong with a monument to a mass murderer, saying that Israel only claims that such honors incite violence and Palestinians disagree and say that the "occupation" is what causes them to be violent. (Of course, Ma'alot is within the Green Line.)

The idea of honoring a terrorist responsible for the murder of 22 children (including a four year old boy) is not even a subject of debate in Palestinian media. It is obvious hat Nazzal is a hero deserving of honor, and the only bad guys are Israelis who are offended by this.




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Thursday, June 29, 2017

From Ian:

Anti-Semitism without anti-Semites
This kind of logic results in a German court ruling that throwing Molotov cocktails at a German synagogue is an acceptable expression of protest. It is not anti-Semitism, but rather a legitimate criticism of Israel's policies! In German, this is simply called Israelkritik -- not a critique of any specific policy by whatever government is in power at the time, but rather of Israel in general. In practice, it would be very easy to go from this to completely rejecting the existence of Israel, or, in other words, to anti-Zionism, or to rejecting the Jews' right to self-determination and a state, or to anti-Semitism.
Germany, with the help of authorities in the Israeli and Jewish Left, goes out of its way to assert that Israelkritik should be seen not as a variant of anti-Semitism but merely as another legitimate form of criticism. Does the same kind of legitimate criticism, of similar dimensions, exist toward any another Middle Eastern country, not to mention the Palestinian Authority? No. Israel is getting special treatment in this regard.
If Germany ever stops denying its anti-Semitism and finally acknowledges that anti-Semitism is still alive and well, under the guise of strong anti-Israel sentiments, the problem may begin to be resolved. But Germany prefers to ignore the problem. The German obsession with projecting their anti-Semitism onto the State of Israel has turned Germany's relationship with Israel into a neurotic one, preventing positive development.
Furthermore, this obsession poses a threat to Germany, itself. The reason Muslims today feel free to display unbridled anti-Semitic violence is not just their upbringing but the fact that they are acting out what many Germans privately believe. This violence is bound to ultimately target Germans, too, because the radical Islamists don't distinguish between Jews and Christians. (h/t Elder of Lobby)
Fathom: Aaron Aaronsohn, the NILI intelligence network and the Balfour Declaration
Intelligence in World War One
Jewish patriots joined the armed forces of Britain, France and Germany and saw combat on both sides of the divide. There was no Jewish international unity in World War One – contrary to what emerged in World War Two. The Jewish ‘issue’ and its resolution seemed almost absent from the international agenda.
From the outset of World War One intelligence-gathering became critically important to all sides. The Ottoman Empire naturally had in place a vast system of control over potentially disloyal elements within the territories under its rule. London and Paris were jockeying to succeed Istanbul and its ally Berlin, whose basic goal was to ensure its interests the strategic south-eastern flank under Ottoman rule. On the other side of the divide Britain and France, and later the US, sought to cultivate support within areas under Ottoman control in anticipation of the ultimate fall of the Empire at the end of the war.
What was required was reliable military information concerning the Ottomans and their allies, detailed local knowledge of the areas under Ottoman rule, a list of high-level contacts with local players (such as Princes, Sheiks, Tribes etc.), and an intimate understanding of the conflicting interests between them. It also required identifying local players with combat capabilities and the provision of on-the-spot strategic and military guidance for them. All of this could only be handled by intelligence services and seasoned intelligence officers with experience in the field.
The most prominent was T.E. Lawrence from Great Britain – ‘Lawrence of Arabia’. But he was not alone; there was Curt Prufer from Berlin, who rose to prominence in World War One and spent part of his time in Jerusalem and who was active on many fronts; and there was William Yale from the Standard Oil Company of New York, who doubled up as an intelligence officer. There was also Edouard Bremond of France, who primarily operated in the Arabian Peninsula. (h/t Elder of Lobby)
Seth Frantzman: The Palestinian mufti’s intersectionality with the Nazis
When these left-wing groups talk about “intersectionality” the reality of the “intersection” is that it always intersects at Israel and “Zionism.” Always “anti-Zionism.”
Anti-Islamism? No. They never oppose Islamist extremism. Not even ISIS.
They talk about racism, but groups that commit genocide against Kurds, like Saddam Hussein did, are not rejected. Iraqi flags are welcome. Bashar Assad and his murderous regime are fine, along with Syria’s allies in Iran and Hezbollah. And the mufti is also acceptable.
There is an intersection between the mufti and his Nazi camp visits and today’s hatred of Israel and Jewish symbols. The intersection is that we turn a blind eye to the mufti’s disgusting racist politics, excusing it and even hiding his collaboration, while refusing to demand Palestinian nationalism reject him. At the same time, for too long the cause of “anti-Zionism” has been allowed to infiltrate every organization involved in liberal and progressive activism, such that Jewish symbols are not even allowed, as activists claim they cannot tell the difference between those symbols and Israel.
Every other religion and state in the world is accepted, no other symbol is thus conflated. They can tell the difference between 1,000 other symbols and flags, except for one. This is today’s tragic intersection.
Just as in 1942 the mufti found willing collaborators throughout Europe, hatred of Jews and Israel finds willing collaborators today.

  • Thursday, June 29, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon


The paranoia of Jews taking over lands in Egypt has reached a new high.

Egypt's Al Wafd reports that at an ancient Jewish cemetery in Cairo a group of real estate agents were spotted laying concrete foundations for buildings.

Supposedly, Jews had contracted these people to build these structures and sell them.

Residents called the police about this Jewish plot, and the alleged foundations were then supposedly destroyed.

And the world is a little safer now.

(h/t Ibn Boutros)




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 Vic Rosenthal's Weekly Column


Israelis are good at Viewing With Alarm. And today’s newspaper is full of things to be alarmed about, all the way from the 130,000 missiles aimed at us and controlled by a regime that announces every day that we will soon be destroyed (and has set up a countdown clock to emphasize that), through the millions of Euros spent each day by supposedly civilized European governments to empower barbarians who want to kill us (and who try every day), including the Iranian buildup close to our border in the Syrian Golan heights, and finishing up with the newly paved road built by PA Arabs to bypass the (still unfinished) security fence for the purpose of smuggling weapons, drugs and terrorists across the Green Line. 

We’ve been viewing some of these with alarm for years, but have done little about them. Why do we allow these things – and so many others – to fester until they become crises?

Why did we allow Hezbollah forces to rearm and creep almost up to the border in violation of UNSC resolution 1701?

Why is the security barrier in Judea/Samaria unfinished?

Why don’t we stop the flow of money from the EU to illegal Palestinian building and subversive Israeli NGOs?

Why does Hezbollah now have so many rockets when they had only a few thousand left after the 2006 war?

Why was Hamas allowed to rebuild its attack tunnels after the 2014 war?

These and other similar questions all have similar answers: because it’s hard, expensive or complicated, or because powerful interests here or abroad oppose it. 

But these chickens will come home to roost, many of them on the same day, the day that Iran decides that it and its proxies are no longer too busy in Syria and Iraq to fulfill its national commitment to wipe us off the map, and we find ourselves in a multi-front war. And what were small problems that could have been dealt with one by one become components of an existentially dangerous complex. Nevertheless, we can prevail if we take control of the situation instead of simply reacting to events.

If you think that there is a good probability that war with Iran/Lebanon/Syria can be avoided, I would like to hear the scenario. Today – and a great deal of thanks is due to Barak Obama for this – the Iranian project to control the region and its resources is progressing rapidly and with little opposition. Iranian forces and proxies will soon link up at the Iraq-Syria border, creating a corridor for supplying game-changing weapons to Hezbollah in Lebanon and for threatening Jordan and even Jerusalem. In a very short time, Iran will have a nuclear umbrella under which to shelter its aggression. If nobody is willing to challenge the regime now, will they be more likely to do so then?

Analogies abound. Like Hezbollah, Germany after WWI rearmed itself in violation of international law. Could Hitler have been stopped more easily in 1936, when he remilitarized the Rhineland, than in 1939? Almost certainly. But nobody stopped him, and they didn’t stop him from taking Czechoslovakia in 1938 either.

There often appear to be good reasons for not doing anything about a threat. North Korea developed nuclear weapons over a period of decades, and manipulated the US into paying it to not do what it did anyway. The risk from Pyongyang’s conventional artillery aimed at the South was often cited as the reason for not taking stronger action. But it’s hard to believe that a power like the US could not find a creative way to neutralize that threat. And now the danger is nuclear.

War is a horrible thing for everyone involved, and starting a war of aggression is a crime. But wars of self-defense are a necessary evil, and it is the obligation of every regime to defend its population. There is no more primordial function of a government than that. 

When you are certain that you will be attacked, you can wait for the attack and defend yourself, or you can preemptively attack your enemy (Sanhedrin 72a). Both options have advantages: it requires more firepower to attack an entrenched force than for one to defend itself. But a preemptive attack can benefit from the element of surprise, especially if the enemy is unprepared. A preemptive attack takes place at the time and under the conditions preferred by the attacker. And – this is very important for a country with little strategic depth like Israel – a preemptive attack puts the war on the enemy’s territory, not among your own population.

It’s likely that the Jewish state will never be the popular favorite in international circles. The longer a war continues, the easier it is for the international community to force Israel to stop fighting before its objectives are realized. So the best way for Israel to fight is to launch a sudden, massive preemptive attack that will destroy the enemy’s military capability before international opposition can mobilize itself to force an end to the war.

Although a preemptive attack would result in more civilian casualties on the enemy side, waiting to be attacked would shift the burden to our own people. The choice here is clear.

For some years, however, Israel has avoided preemptively attacking its enemies. One reason is that she has been at the mercy of the US for supplies. If Israel is perceived as the aggressor, she could be cut off from receiving resupply of materials it buys and otherwise punished. Thus Henry Kissinger told Moshe Dayan that Israel would “not have received as much as a nail from the United States” if it had launched preemptive attacks in 1973.

The presence of Russian forces in the region which could intervene quickly is another factor that has to be taken into account.

But winning the coming war with Iran and its proxies may depend on preemption, due to the large number of missiles possessed by Hezbollah, Hezbollah’s improved training and quality of weapons, and the number of fronts that might become active. Analysts have pointed to the ability of Hezbollah to make incursions into Israeli territory, something that could be devastating to our small country. So Israeli planners should think about how to manage a preemptive war even without assistance from the US – what should be stockpiled, and how to strike massive enough blows to end the war as quickly as possible.

In the very near future, Israel will face one of the greatest military challenges in her history. It will take determined action to survive. It will especially take planning, the same kind of meticulous planning that gave us one of the most successful preemptive air attacks in history, Operation Focus, which destroyed the Arab air forces on the ground in 1967. But if we don’t do it now, when will we do it?

The chances of curing cancer improve when it is caught early. And if you are going to perform surgery, you need to cut out the main tumor, not just its metastases. As the previous king of Saudi Arabia said, when you are attacked by a snake, you need to cut off its head, not its tail.




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From Ian:

PMW: PA libel: Israel uses drugs in war against Palestinians
Discussing the war on drugs in Jerusalem, a Palestinian Authority TV host stated that Israel is deliberately targeting young Palestinians with drugs. The Palestinian coordinator of a UNDP-sponsored campaign against drugs, Isaam Jweihan, endorsed this PA libel, stating that Israel uses drugs as "an unconventional weapon" to "empty Jerusalem of Arabs:"
PA TV host: “Jerusalem is probably the Palestinian district that suffers the most from drugs, [because] the occupation mainly targets young age groups in Jerusalem...”
Coordinator of the Project of the War on Drugs in Jerusalem, Issam Jweihan: “A war is being waged [by Israel] against Jerusalem. This is an unconventional war in which unconventional weapons are being used. The goal of the war is clear - to Judaize the city and empty it of its [Arab] residents. They are using unconventional weapons. The weapon that brings the best results for the Israelis is drugs.”
[Official PA TV, Palestine This Morning, June 21, 2017]
Palestinian Media Watch has documented this drug libel numerous times, and it is even being voiced by close associates of PA Chairman Abbas. Imad Hamato, who Abbas recently appointed to head a system of Islamic schools and who is also the host of a weekly PA TV program teaching Islam, has similarly taught that “Israel’s... war against the Arabs and Muslims is through sex mania... drugs... to destroy... our children’s values”:
PA TV spreads libel accusing Israel of spreading drugs among young Palestinians


IsraellyCool: WATCH: Arab-Palestinian Leader Anwar Nusseibeh: Palestine Was Really Just Part of Syria
Arab-Palestinian Leader Anwar Nusseibeh was no friend of Israel, but in the documentary Pillar of Fire (which I posted about yesterday here), he admitted that right after World War I, there was no separate “palestinian” identity – they were just part of Syria.
Arab-Palestinian Leader Anwar Nusseibeh: Palestine Was Really Just Part of Syria



  • Thursday, June 29, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon


“Drive them out. Drive out the terrorists. Drive out the extremists. Drive them out of your places of worship. Drive them out of your communities. Drive them out of your holy land and drive them out of this Earth.”
Donald Trump to Arab world leaders in Riyadh, May 21, 2017


While Trump is trying to get his message about terrorism and extremism across to the Arab world, it is not clear that he is addressing the right audience. For example, Saudi Arabia serves as the home of extremist Wahhabism.

Then there is Jordan, whose king recently visited the White House.

photo
King Abdullah II. Credit: Wikipedia

Jordan's King Abdullah appears to have a different priority when it comes to "extremism". Just last year King Abdullah proclaimed
Jordan will fight Israeli aggression, which is manifested by the incursion of extremist Israelis into the mosque compound. [emphasis added]
It's not so clear that Jordan and the US really seeing eye to eye on this -- especially when you take a look at the murderers of Americans who seek asylum in Jordan.

Jordan Frees the Murderer of an American After 5 Years


In 1994 Mohammad Abequa murdered his wife in New Jersey and then escaped to Jordan. At the time, President Clinton, Attorney General Janet Reno and New Jersey's US representatives and senators all pleaded with King Hussein to return Abequa for trial. Jordan refused. There was no extradition treaty between the two countries. However, Jordan did agree to put Abequa on trial, where he was found guilty of murder. Although the punishment of death by hanging was available, he was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment. Five years later -- Abequa was released.

Why?

He convinced the court that the murder was an honor killing because his wife, who was in the middle of a divorce with him, was seeing someone else, and that was a reason for leniency.

An Extradition Treaty Is Signed -- And Used


Around the same time, there was a case of a terrorist who fled to Jordan -- and was returned to the US because of an extradition treaty between the two countries. That was the first attack on the World Trade Center in 1993, when a bomb in a van was exploded in the garage of the building. Not only was Eyad Ismoil, a Jordanian national, returned to the US in 1995, the agents came to Jordan to pick him up on Jordanian soil.

photo


That is from over 20 years ago -- but some things do not change.

What Extradition Treaty?


Just last year, on November 4, three US soldiers were murdered after coming under fire from a Jordanian soldier as they were entering a Jordanian military base. For months, the Jordanian government lied in order to dodge responsibility. First they claimed that the US soldiers failed to stop at the gate. Then they claimed there had been an “accidental discharge” by the weapon of one of the soldiers. Then the Jordanians claimed there had been a loud noise that caused the Jordanian soldier to shoot. In each case, the available video of the attack not only disproved their story, it also indicated that other soldiers were involved in the attack as well.

Finally, just this month, the Jordanian government has charged the soldier with murder. Based on past experience, it remains to be seen whether justice really will be meted out.

One reason to be doubtful is a statement by the father of one of the murdered soldiers, “I would prefer the U.S. had an extradition in place, but that's not the case."

Now You See It, Now You Don't


While that Jordanian soldier will be tried for murder, another murderer, the terrorist Ahlam Tamimi who masterminded the Sbarro Massacre, has found asylum in Jordan and until recently even had her own TV show. Without acknowledging the treaty was already implemented, Jordan now claims the extradition treaty is null and void because it was never approved by the parliament.

In addition, it has been reported the Jordanian courts have claimed that their constitution does not allow for the extradition of Jordanian nationals.

The Facts About Jordanian Extradition


Let's start with what the Jordanian Constitution actually does say.

According to Article 9, "No Jordanian may be deported from the territory of the Kingdom" -- that does exclude nationals from being extradited, because this article deals with deportation, not extradition.

According to Article 21:
(i) Political refugees shall not be extradited on account of their political principles or their defence of freedom
(ii) International agreements and laws shall regulate the extradition of ordinary criminals
According to President Clinton, at the time the extradition treaty was signed:
The Treaty further represents an important step in combating terrorism by excluding from the scope of the political offense exception serious offenses typically committed by terrorists
Was Clinton wrong? Can Article 21 be construed as protecting Tamimi?

Stephen Flatow warns
If the Jordanian government is claiming that its constitution forbids extraditing Tamimi, it has to claim that the Sbarro massacre was a “political” crime.
Is that the kind of extremist view that Jordan holds?

According to a law article, Challenges to International Law Enforcement Cooperation for the United States in the Middle East and North Africa: Extradition and Its Alternatives, the US-Jordanian extradition treaty
contains a dual criminality clause to permit the extradition for any offense that is a crime and punishable by a prison sentence of more than one year in both countries.
[p. 486]
On the issue of extraditing Jordanian nationals:
Unlike the other two treaties [with Egypt and Iraq], the Parties cannot invoke nationality as a basis to refuse extradition. Neither U.S. nor Jordanian law bars the extradition of nationals. Though clearly the most legally flexible of the three treaties, the U.S. government reports that the treaty has been used only once since it entered into force. [p. 487; emphasis added]
Also a Congressional Report confirms that
in recent years many of our treaties have included language that explicitly bars each party from denying extradition on nationality grounds in some or all circumstances.
A footnote to this paragraph gives a list of the countries in this category -- and includes Jordan.

Who Needs an Extradition Treaty Anyway?


An interesting wrinkle in introduced by the French extradition treaty with Jordan.

According to Article 5:
Extradition des nationaux

1. L'extradition n'est pas accordée si la personne réclamée a la nationalité de la Partie requise. La nationalité est déterminée à la date de la commission de l'infraction pour laquelle l'extradition est demandée.
2. Si la demande d'extradition est refusée uniquement sur la base de la nationalité de la personne réclamée, la Partie requérante peut demander que l'affaire soit soumise aux autorités de la Partie requise afin que des poursuites puissent être exercées, s'il y a lieu. A cet effet, les documents, rapports et éléments de preuve relatifs à l'infraction sont transmis conformément à l'article 2. La Partie requise informe dans les meilleurs délais la Partie requérante de la suite réservée à sa demande.
Google translates this as:
Extradition of nationals

1. Extradition shall not be granted if the person claimed is a national of the requested Party. Nationality shall be determined on the date of the commission of the offense for which extradition is requested.
2. If the request for extradition is refused solely on the basis of the nationality of the person sought, the requesting Party may request that the case be submitted to the authorities of the requested Party for the purpose of prosecution if There. To that end, documents, reports and evidence relating to the offense shall be transmitted in accordance with article 2. The requested Party shall inform the requesting Party as soon as possible of the action taken on its request.
But what is interesting is that according to the French embassy in Washington in response to an email:
The extradition convention between France and Jordan has been signed on July 20, 2011 and entered into force on August 1, 2015. The decree was publicized in the Official Journal on October 21, 2015. The convention is still into force.

There is also a convention of mutual assistance in matters of criminal justice which was signed on July 20, 2011, entered into force on August 1, 2015 and published to the Official Journal on January 30, 2016.
Despite the fact that the treaty was signed in 2011 and did not take effect till 2015, Jordan extradited a suspected terrorist, Fateh Kamel to France over 10 years before there was an extradition treaty:
Kamel had been tracked down by Jean-Louis Bruguière, the French terrorism magistrate. Bruguière found him in early 1999 in Jordan. The French judge persuaded Jordanian officials to arrest Kamel and extradite him on charges of abetting terrorism on French soil. [emphasis added]
Granted that Kamel was not a Jordanian national, the fact remains that Jordan was not squeamish about extraditing without any formal treaty in place.

Taking into account that:
o  Jordan has shown flexibility in extraditing accused terrorists without an extradition treaty in place
o  The Jordanian Constitution allows for the extradition of Jordanian nationals
o  Jordan has an extradition treaty with the US, which despite claims that it was never approved by Parliament, was implemented in 1995
-- taking these facts into account, the Jordanian soldier should be extradited to the US to be tried for murder.

More than that, the terrorist Ahlam Tamimi, who has openly admitted and even bragged about the Sbarro Massacre, should no longer be shielded by the Jordan where she is free to continue inciting the murder of Israelis, but instead should be extradited to the US in accordance with the indictment that has been issued.

Source: Twitter


When Trumps talks about driving the terrorists out, he should be paying extra attention to Jordan.



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  • Thursday, June 29, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon


Michael Bolton performed in Lebanon on Wednesday night at the Jounieh Summer Festival.

Lebanon has literally passed laws to ensure that Palestinians can't own land, can't get many jobs, can't go to university and can't build even within their overcrowded camps.

Some two thirds of Lebanese Palestinians live under the poverty line.

Lebanon built a wall around one of those camps, complete with watchtowers. Lebanese police don't get involved as rival terror groups shoot at each other in these camps, often with fatal results both to each other and to residents there.

Lebanon had rejected the idea of granting citizenship to hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who have lived there for decades. Nor do their children have any rights.

Lebanon accepts hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees - but turns back any who are Palestinian.

By any objective measure, Lebanon is a far worse place for Palestinians to live than the West Bank is.

Yet no one went on Bolton's  Facebook page and demanded that he cancel the concert in solidarity with the Palestinians who are being oppressed, by law, every day in Lebanon.

Roger Waters didn't issue any public statements calling for Bolton to think about the situation of the Palestinians in Lebanon and show how much he cared by publicizing Lebanon's crimes.

No supposed pro-Palestinian group created any Twitter hashtags protesting Bolton's appearance or calling on everyone to boycott him because he decided to show such insensitivity to the Palestinian people.

Electronic Intifada didn't publish any articles about how awful it is that Lebanon can continue to repress its Palestinian population with impunity and artists aren't showing proper respect for them.

No "human rights activists" threatened to disrupt Bolton's future concerts because of his clear support for a government that is anti-Palestinian.

No one was offended that Bolton entered the stage carrying a Lebanese flag, a flag under which many Palestinians have been killed over the years and under which they are being discriminated against today..




Even though Palestinians are treated like garbage in Lebanon, artists like Bolton perform there every year without a peep of protest.

What possible reason is there that the "pro-Palestinian" crowd never organizes any actions against Lebanon?

I can only think of one reason.






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  • Thursday, June 29, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Times of Israel has a fairly decent overview of the history of prayer at the Western Wall. But it has an unfortunate headline:


One has to read the article carefully to find out the reason why:

Under the Ottoman Empire, restrictions were again imposed on the Jews by 1705, including the inability to create permanent fixtures such as partitions — or even tables and benches — at the Western Wall, though they were still able to worship there. In 1840 Ibrahim Pasha wrote an edict forbidding Jews from paving a path to the Western Wall. The firman, or decree, also told Jews not to speak or pray loudly or keep books in the area.
Every synagogue on the planet included a partition between men and women until the 19th century. It is disingenuous to point to the history of the Kotel as evidence in the current controversy over non-Orthodox prayer there.

However, for those who want egalitarian prayer who are are nostalgic for the old days when the Kotel had no partition, there is a simple solution.

Today, at this very moment, there is a Kotel that is spiritually superior to the current Kotel - and which has no partition

The "Little Western Wall" (Kotel HaKatan)  is situated north of the Kotel, much closer to the spot of the "Holy of Holies" in the original Temple.

Israeli authorities, like the Ottomans and British before them with the more famous Kotel, do not allow a partition to be placed there. No chairs or prayer books are there either.

If the non-Orthodox are burning in their desire to pray at the Kotel with men and women together, they can do it today, under protection of Israeli police who have a strong presence there.

Jews who feel like they are being disenfranchised by the political controversy over the Kotel plaza - those who feel that they cannot properly pray without men and women being together, or without their families with them - can, with a small amount of effort, go to a spiritually superior place and pray to God in whatever language and with whatever type of service they want. They can organize men's and women's prayer groups three times a day.  They can effectively take over a holier spot than the Kotel.

But if they are more interested in making noise than actually praying - if they want to rile up the non-Orthodox and split the Jewish community - if they don't give a damn about the actual point of prayer to God and instead want to pit American liberal Jews against the Orthodox....

They can choose to do exactly what they are doing today.





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Wednesday, June 28, 2017

From Ian:

Major Documentary on UK Labour Party Antisemitism Premieres in London
Some of the UK’s leading Jewish intellectuals gathered with Labour Party parliamentarians at London’s JW3 Jewish community center on Monday night for the public launch of a major documentary on the issue of antisemitism in the Labour Party.
Read The Algemeiner’s review of “Whitewashed: Antisemitism in the Labour Party”
Among those speaking at the first screening of “Whitewashed” — based on the testimonies of loyal Labour Party members and supporters who submitted evidence to the party’s internal inquiry into antisemitism in 2016 — was award-winning British Jewish novelist Howard Jacobson, whose books include The Finkler Question, a satire on modern British antisemitism.
Jacobson noted that the author of the party’s internal report, civil rights activist Shami Chakrabarti, was quickly elevated to the House of Lords, the British parliament’s upper chamber, after submitting her findings.
Holding up his middle finger, Jacobson said he felt “that was what [Labour Party leader Jeremy] Corbyn was saying to all of us who complained.”
“Corbyn has never yet said ‘antisemitism’ without also saying ‘all racism,’ as though he has to apologize to everybody else before he can apologize for antisemitism,” Jacobson continued.
Three Labour MPs — John Mann, Louise Ellman and Joan Ryan — were present for the screening of the documentary and the discussion afterwards, which took place between Jacobson and academic David Hirsh, who narrated the film, the Jewish Chronicle reported. (h/t Jewess)
Whitewashed: Anti-Semitism in the Labour Party


Melanie Phillips: BRITAIN UNITED AGAINST TERRORISM AND HATE? IT’S A LIE
As reported here, a study by the University of Oslo has found that most anti-Jewish violence in France, Sweden, Germany and the UK is committed by Muslim extremists. This is all the more striking considering that Muslims currently make up only relatively small proportions of the populations of these countries.
Scarcely less notable (though no surprise to some of us) is that left-wing violence was the next largest category of anti-Jewish attacks, with right-wing violence trailing into insignificance. Only in Germany were right-wing attacks more numerous than left-wing ones, and then by a relatively small margin.
Last weekend, London hosted an al Quds-day rally. Al Quds-day was introduced to the world in 1979 by the Islamic Republic of Iran “in opposition to the existence of Israel”. The day itself is therefore innately anti-Israel and anti-Jew.
The good news was that the number of marchers, estimated at around 250, was lower than in previous years. Better still, they were stopped from claiming the streets as their own by brave and determined Jewish resistance activists. These faced them down by effectively saying, as the anti-fascists had said of Oswald Mosley’s marchers in London’s East End in the 1930s: “They shall not pass”; and they brought the Islamo-fascists to an unexpected halt.
The bad news was that those marchers were carrying the flag of Hezbollah, the Iran-backed genocidal terror organisation, and screamed vile anti-Israel and anti-Jewish incitement. This took place under the noses of the police who were reportedly following guidance, in accordance with British government policy, that distinguishes the “political” wing of Hezbollah from its terrorist activities.
David Collier: Avi Shlaim, the foolish old man and the adoring church goers
It is the 27th June 2017. I have just returned from an event at St James’s Church, an Anglican church in Piccadilly, London. It has a history of anti-Israel activism. Tonight Avi Shlaim was speaking at the ‘Embrace Annual Lecture’. The official subject was to ‘explore Britain’s historical and current relationship with Palestine’. The main drumbeat provided another anti-Israel festival. This one was delivered with the impeccable presentation and captivating tones of Avi Shlaim.
This event wouldn’t have gone ahead without an anti-Israel under-current. The main purpose of the evening was to raise funds for ‘Palestinian refugees’, wherever they may be. When it came to the fund raising speech, we were even told that some ‘Palestinians’ in Akko (Israel) are living in what is basically a refugee camp. With this level of distortion trying to send church goers reaching for their wallets, a little balance would have been a very distracting and self-destructive strategy. It was simply not going to happen.
Hidden dangers
But I find events like this far more dangerous, far more damaging, than a university hate-fest or Al Quds day march. At a university, the hate is in your face, out in the open. Everyone knows the score. Here in the church it is very different. The hate is hidden, insidious and dealt out with a smile. Avi Shlaim starts speaking, and with a CV like his, who would doubt his words. A packed crowd of about three hundred and fifty, are about to feed from the poison tree, believing it to be hand-picked, freshly squeezed, fruit juice. The type of fruit juice the people in this church would buy in Waitrose.
Avi Shlaim and the missing pages
Shlaim recounts a history that is entirely devoid of balance and actual context. It isn’t that Avi is factually wrong about the nuts and bolts of the conflict, nor is it that Avi Shlaim is deliberately deceptive. Shlaim is simply building his understandings on assumptions that are fundamentally flawed. It doesn’t matter how much he reads, or what data is placed on the page, Avi Shlaim will not be able to order it properly. For as long as he fails to address the basic mistaken concepts driving his ideas, he will remain forever wrong.

The egalitarian prayer space, Robinson's Arch, Western Wall.
I've been writing about the Western Wall controversy and Women of the Wall since 2013, when I was still a starry-eyed blogger for the Times of Israel. Back then, I summed it up as follows:

"The question is: whose freedom of religion is in question here? Is it the freedom of the Women of the Wall to worship in any manner they so please, or is it the freedom of the Haredim to continue to worship as they always have at the Wall, for decades, that is the bone of contention? Because the two are mutually exclusive and this is something that is overlooked by a majority of people: the fact that by granting one group its freedom to worship, you take away that same freedom for the other group."

Well, since that pretty much does sum it up, I've said all I have to say about the Women of the Wall and the Wall itself so that pretty much, it's been effectively crossed off my list, a non-issue, a dead issue, somewhat like the dead girl in Love Story:

“What can you say about a twenty-five year old girl who died? That she was beautiful and brilliant. That she loved Mozart and Bach. The Beatles. And me.”



(Did anyone really need Erich Segal to write another word after that tell-all intro?)

But *sigh* since the Wall is in the news, and since so many people have gotten their dander up misinterpreting the most recent decision by the Israeli Knesset to keep the entrance to the egalitarian prayer section at the wall where it is, and to keep the prayer section under the same management, I thought it might be useful for me to use this forum to tell the truth about the Wall, the controversy, and egalitarian prayer, once again.

Here's the main thing you need to know:

Egalitarian prayer services are already held at the Wall, at a section of the Wall known as Robinson's Arch. In fact, these mixed prayer services have been held at Robinson's Arch for the past 15 years.


Author Caroline Glick explains the whole tempest in a teapot, but the gist is as I've stated above: THERE ALREADY IS AN EGALITARIAN PRAYER SPACE AT THE WALL. And in fact, the decision to put off honoring the resolution means the current section will be expanded and improved. 

In short: no one is denying anyone the joys of mixed prayer at the Kotel.

But you'd never know these simple truths from reading the media. The Jewish Telegraphic Agency, (JTA), a news agency similar to Reuters that outlets like the Times of Israel depend upon for stories, told a bold lie in the very first line of its piece on the Knesset decision:

"Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Cabinet has frozen a government decision to create an official egalitarian prayer section at the Western Wall."

Nope. Not true. There ALREADY IS AN OFFICIAL EGALITARIAN PRAYER SECTION AT THE WESTERN WALL. The Knesset just decided not to hand management over to a different body and to keep the entrance in the same spot. But I said that already, didn't I?

*yawn*

The follow-up story, filled with imprecations by American Jewish leaders against the Israeli government, something that would have been unheard of when I was a young girl growing up in Pittsburgh in the 60's and 70's, similarly paints a false picture.

"They’ve tried strongly worded statements. They’ve tried private meetings with the prime minister. They’ve tried negotiations, protest and prayer."

(Reminds me of that old television commercial, "You've trying rubbing it out, and scrubbing it out, and still that dirty ring.")

The article continues:

"But for the past five years, despite broad internal consensus and consistent pressure, the American Jewish establishment has been unable to persuade Israel’s government to create an equitable space for non-Orthodox prayer at the Western Wall."

Um. NO. Again. There ALREADY IS A PERFECTLY NICE EGALITARIAN PRAYER SECTION AT THE WESTERN WALL. The implementation of the resolution would not have changed that fact. The fact that the resolution has not been implemented will not prevent expansion and improvements to the egalitarian prayer section.

So how is the Israeli media portraying this contretemps? It's the fault of the evil Haredim! Which it kinda is, except the "evil" is an unhelpful characterization. They're lobbying for what is important to them. Isn't that their right? They're protecting their interests. I don't blame them one bit for that.

There's comic relief, at least, in the headline of this piece in the Jewish Press: "Kotel Stays Divided, If You Don’t Like It Make Aliyah and Change Government."

There was nothing funny at all, on the other hand, about this video by the Israel Religious Action Center (IRAC) which is essentially a hit piece on Netanyahu in which Netanyahu is accused of saying one thing in Hebrew and another thing in English. This is an incredible chutzpa because it's a riff on what Israel has been saying about the PA all along: they say one thing in Arabic, and another thing in English, and whenever we say it, the left sticks its fingers in its ears. Like for instance when PA leaders say in Arabic: "Kill the Jews" and in English, "We just ADORE peace!"


The thing that's getting lost in the sauce here: Netanyahu was hamstrung. The only way to keep his government together and maintain stability was to placate the demands of the Haredi parties not to implement the resolution. Bibi had no choice in the matter and anyway: There ALREADY IS AN OFFICIAL EGALITARIAN PRAYER SECTION AT THE WESTERN WALL which will continue to be improved and expanded.

No one has lost any rights here. That is the missing part of the stories I am reading. According to Zev Stub, of Janglo, who referenced Haaretz, around 100,000 Conservative and Reform worshipers pray at the egalitarian prayer space every year, or some 275 per day. Stub was there Monday morning and witnessed with his own eyes, three different groups of people celebrating happy occasions at Robinson's Arch.

Yes. Freedom of religion is a thing in Israel. It's real.

But you'd never know that from reading Ruth Eglash and William Booth in the Washington Post:

"Israel’s government on Sunday nixed an ambitious plan approved last year to allow mixed-gender religious services at the Western Wall, Judaism’s holiest prayer site, angering many American Jews, who said they felt insulted and abandoned by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s ruling coalition."

NO, NO, NO. This is a bald faced LIE. The plan isn't to allow mixed-gender religious services at the Western Wall, because THERE ALREADY IS AN OFFICIAL EGALITARIAN PRAYER SECTION AT THE WESTERN WALL.

Also, the Western Wall is not Judaism's holiest prayer site. That would be the TEMPLE MOUNT. Now you know that Eglash and Booth know this. They know it well. They are both based in Jerusalem for many years.

They get around the truth, Eglash and Booth, by calling the Wall the holiest "prayer site" because if Jews pray on the Temple Mount, their actual holiest site, they get ARRESTED and BANNED from the area for future visits. Unlike the Muslims, who are allowed to flock to the holiest site of the Jewish people, to pray in the mosque they built on the holiest site of the Jewish people on Ramadan, in the hundreds of thousands, as Elder has detailed HERE. Freedom of religion for thee and not for me! Unlike the mixed-gender prayer services at the Western Wall.

So American Jews feel insulted and abandoned by Bibi's "ruling coalition?" It's only because they haven't a clue that he has no choice. That he is Israel's stability and that he can't have his government fall for some American whim which essentially has no impact on egalitarian prayer at the Wall since THERE ALREADY IS AN EGALITARIAN PRAYER SECTION AT THE WESTERN WALL.

Bibi is being criticized from within and from without over basically nothing at all. The Board of Governors of the Jewish Agency said it would be "changing its entire agenda for the remaining two days of its meetings in Jerusalem, in order to address the ramifications of these decisions." The same press release noted that, "The scheduled dinner with the participation of the Prime Minister has been canceled,"

Bad boy, Bibi. Bad. *slaps hand*

Natan Sharansky, who serves as Chairman of the Executive of the Jewish Agency, said, “I must express my deep disappointment at today’s decision by the Government of Israel to suspend the implementation of its own decision to establish a dignified space for egalitarian prayer at the Western Wall.”

Reading that, any American Jew might be forgiven for thinking that there is currently no space provided for egalitarian prayer at the Western Wall. But Sharansky didn't actually say that. He said, "a dignified space," which means that the people doing the complaining want to be in charge of the space rather than continue to let the Western Wall Heritage Foundation manage things as they have since 1988, when the Israeli government tasked them with the duty of overseeing all things Wall.  

In other words, these very American groups doing the complaining, want to wrest control from Israel over this Jewish holy site located in, um, ISRAEL.

I rest my case.

Nothing to see here. Run along.





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