Monday, July 10, 2017

From Ian:

PMW: Interrogation of Palestinian terrorist proves: PA payments motivate terror
Interrogation of Palestinian terrorist proves: PA payments motivate terror
Palestinian terrorist: "I've accumulated large debts... if my son wants a shekel, I have nothing to give him... I decided to do something serious, such as committing murder, something in which I will both kill and die, and then my family will get money (i.e., from the PA) and will live comfortably... If I'm not able to kill soldiers, I'll try settlers, guards - in other words any Israeli target - the important thing is that I will die and they will kill me, so that my children will receive a [PA] allowance and live happily"
[From transcript of Israeli Police interrogation of Palestinian terrorist]
In anticipation of the hearing this coming Wednesday in the US Senate on the Taylor Force Act, which would cut all US funding to the Palestinian Authority until it stops paying salaries to terrorists and allowances to families of terrorist "Martyrs," Palestinian Media Watch is releasing a transcript of the Israeli Police's interrogation of a Palestinian terrorist, which PMW received and translated from the original in Arabic.
The terrorist, Khaled Rajoub, was caught after an unsuccessful attempt to murder Israelis. During interrogation, he explained that his motivation for the planned murder was so he himself would also be killed and his family would then receive monthly payments from the PA. In his own words: "... any Israeli target - the important thing is that I will die and they will kill me, so that my children will receive a [PA] allowance and live happily."
Had Khaled Rajoub been killed by Israel during his terror attack, the PA would have declared him a "Martyr" and this would secure his family a monthly PA lifetime allowance of 2,800 shekels/month: 1,400 base pay, 400 for his wife and 200 for each of 5 children.
Khaled Rajoub's statements show that the PA's financial rewards to terrorists and "Martyrs'" families definitely constitute motivation for terror.
Throughout the interrogation, terrorist Rajoub kept emphasizing his determination to kill Israelis in order to receive PA allowances for his family:
How to Depoliticize Palestinian Refugee Status
In a bold reversal of longstanding Israeli policy, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently called for dismantling the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) and rolling its functions into the United Nations High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR), which handles the rest of the world's refugees. Previously, despite the multitude of failings of UNRWA, Israel has long cooperated with the group and hitherto opposed proposals to shut it down, fearing the humanitarian consequences and resulting instability.
"I regret that UNRWA, to a large degree, by its very existence, perpetuates — and does not solve — the Palestinian refugee problem," Netanyahu said, referring to UNRWA's expansive definition of a "refugee."
The prime minister's call was well-timed: UNRWA just used a picture of a Syrian child as propaganda, suggesting incorrectly she was a Gaza resident, and revelations of Hamas using UNRWA schools as cover for tunnels aimed at kidnapping and murder have flooded the news. While UNRWA was initially intended to resettle refugees, it has since dropped that task from its mission. Indeed, it resists resettlement and has continually changed its definition of a refugee to include people generations removed from the conflict, people who are citizens of new states, and people who are in their internationally recognized home of the West Bank and Gaza. No other organization uses a similar definition.
While the U.S. originally protested UNRWA's evolving definition, in recent years, the State Department has defended UNRWA's current definition. In practice, this means is that while there were about 700,000 refugees in 1950, there will be a projected 6.4 million faux "refugees" in 2020, even though most live normal lives for people in the region. An estimated 2 million are Jordanian citizens. This bizarre definition is purely political, aimed at protecting the so-called "right of return," a novel legal claim that people generations removed from the conflict have the right to return to a country their ancestral leaders tried to destroy.
JPost Editorial: Justice delayed
On January 27, 2013, Kirchner announced she had reached a nonbinding agreement with Iran to set up a “truth commission” that did not call to prosecute the suspects. This was her response to a nearly 300-page report Nisman had submitted to a federal judge two weeks before.
Its 60-page summary was released to the media, accusing Kirchner of “an aggravated cover-up and obstruction of justice regarding the Iranians accused of the AMIA terrorist attack.”
While Argentina simmered with conspiracy theories that blamed everyone else for Nisman’s death – the CIA, Mossad, even MI6 – Kirchner’s website first endorsed the “finding” that it was a suicide. Three days later, she asserted that he had been murdered in a plot to discredit her.
Since the Islamic Revolution, Iran has been involved in some of the most extensive terrorist activity around the globe. Before Kirchner announced the Iran agreement, Nisman’s staff had produced a 500-page report on Hezbollah and Iran’s terrorist infiltration in Latin America.
Jewish community leader Waldo Wolff eulogized Nisman for his 20-year crusade to provide justice to the victims of the AMIA bombing. His death, “and the macabre plot around his death,” Wolff told the mourners, allowed us “to see what actually lies underneath them: the dark labyrinth of power hidden in the most open parts of our society.”
Twenty-three years after the AMIA attack, it is not too late to bring Iran to justice. The 85 slain and the more than 300 who were wounded deserve this, but it is also an important message that even as time passes, crimes are not forgotten.
Terrorists will be hunted down and pay for their actions.

JPost Editorial: Hebron Ties and Lies
The 1929 Palestinian pogroms orchestrated against the Jews of Hebron by the rabid Jew- hater and Nazism admirer, Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini, left over 60 men, women and children dead and dozens more injured. In 1936, the British evacuated the remaining Jews ahead of a Palestinian uprising. Only after Israel’s victory in the Six Day War could Jews return to Hebron to live.
All of this information and more is readily available.
Yet a UNESCO report disingenuously blames Israel for its own failure to recommend an alternative to the Palestinian proposal. Why? Have UNESCO officials not heard of the Bible, Google or Wikipedia? The vote by the UN’s cultural organization to declare Hebron a Palestinian World Heritage site in danger had nothing to do with education, science or culture. It is, instead, a form of propaganda. Rewriting history hinders and further complicates efforts to address the very real problems now preventing a political solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
And this works both ways. Dwelling on Jews’ undeniable ties to the land of Israel and to places like Hebron and Jerusalem does little to solve the present-day conflict.
Jews’ right to a sovereign state in their historical homeland is inalienable. But that does not help in the pragmatic, here-and-now endeavor to find a way for Jews and Palestinians to live together.
Admittedly, denying Jews’ ties to the Temple Mount or to Hebron is a symptom of a deeper hatred, possibly based on envy. Muslims know that these sites and others would have no holiness for their faithful if they were not first and foremost places with deep spiritual, historical and religious resonance for Jews.
It is a shame that UNESCO became an accomplice to this diplomatic sabotage.
When nothing is sacred, UNESCO ruling comes as no surprise
The decision made by the Heritage Committee of the United Nations' Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on Friday to declare the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron a Palestinian World Heritage Site sparked reactions ranging from fury to laughter in Israel, and rightfully so. The Jewish connection to the Cave of the Patriarchs is thousands of years old and began many years before Islam was born.
The Bible, followed by Jewish tradition, talks about three places our forefathers bought for a full price. The Cave of the Patriarchs and the field in which it is located were purchased by Abraham for 400 silver shekels from Ephron the Hittite.
The plot where Joseph was buried in Nablus was bought by Jacob from the masters of the land for 100 pieces of silver. The site on which the Temple was built was purchased by King David from Araunah the Jebusite for 600 pieces of gold.
Throughout the generations, Jews attributed a great importance to these places. While the entire Land of Israel was promised to the people of Israel, from the Mediterranean Sea to the Jordan River, these three places have always been considered special. These are the places that all the people of Israel allegedly inherited.
German UNESCO Ambassador Assailed Over Ceremonial Linkage Between Holocaust and Palestinians
The ceremonial tribute to the Palestinians took place after the Cuban delegate to the meeting complained that the Israeli ambassador had violated procedure by calling for a minute’s silence for the victims of the Nazi Holocaust.
Most of the delegations assented to the Cuban appeal — among those who rose for the silence was German Ambassador Stefan Krawielicki. On Monday, Dr. Shimon Samuels — the international director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) who is attending the meeting in Krakow — told The Algemeiner of his “outrage” at the “German amalgam drawn between 6 million murdered Jews of Europe and the ‘Palestinians.'”
In a letter to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Samuels stated that “on July 4, following the egregious passage of a resolution to obliterate Jewish sovereignty or even affinity to Jerusalem, the Israeli ambassador to UNESCO, Carmel Shama Hacohen, requested a moment of silence to the memory of the victims of the Nazis. German Ambassador Stefan Krawielicki stood among most others in the hall.”
The letter continued, “At the bidding of the Cuban ambassador, a second moment of silence was then held in support of ‘the Palestinians.’ Ambassador Krawielicki stood once again.”
“We are horrified at this amalgam between the millions of defenseless Jews gassed and shot — among them 1.5 million children — by the Nazis and their associates across Europe on the one hand,” Samuels wrote. “On the other, Palestinians, who rejoice when their terrorists murder Jews — among them children.”
“To link the Holocaust, in any way, to so-called ‘Palestinian victims,’ thus casting Israelis as Nazis, is a form of Holocaust revisionism illegal under German law,” Samuels declared.
Jewish property owners blocked from entering homes
Israeli security forces on Sunday night blocked Jews from entering the "Machpelah House" and "Rachel and Leah House" in Hevron, both of which were bought by Jews several years ago.
The decision to move into the properties was made in response to UNESCO's decision that the Cave of the Patriarchs (Mearat Hamachpela) is an "endangered Palestinian site" and after the Military Appeals Committee decided to order the Registration Committee to renew the process, abandoned approximately 18 months ago, of registering the property under the name of its Jewish owners.
The Appeals Committee concluded that the Registration Committee ignored original or notarized documents sent to them. They also noted a list of mistakes made by the Registration Committee which led to the file being closed.
Appeals Committee member Professor Haim Zandberg and two other committee members wrote in a notice that the Registration Committee should reopen the file and re-examine the documents and whether the properties can be registered under the Jewish owners' names.
Hizbullah Mouthpiece Presents “Israel’s Options in the Face of the Resistance”
Editor Ibrahim al-Amin:
How are things going to develop now that there is a clear connection between the Lebanese, Syrian, Iraqi and Iranian arenas? We are not dealing only with the military activity but with activities related to strategic and economic matters.
Bearing all the above in mind, is it possible that Israel can directly confront Hizbullah in Lebanon while it is fully aware that it doesn’t control what will happen the day after the beginning of hostilities. Israel perfectly knows that all the drills and maneuvers undertaken to protect the domestic front will be of no use in controlling traffic in the area of Gush Dan [central coastal area of Israel] hours after the beginning of a total confrontation? Will the leaders of Israel be candid enough to tell their public what will be the fate of the electric grid, transportation networks, airports, sea ports, state headquarters and its infrastructure? Does the enemy really grasp “the rain of rockets” that will fall in the midst of summer?
What can Israel do in Syria except wait for a renewed American attempt to impose facts on the ground which will force Russia and Iran to draw new red lines that meet Israel’s interests? Even if this were to happen, who can say that this will influence the Resistance and its course of action? Is Israel aware that with each day that passes without a war it will be losing more of its deterrence while the Resistance will continue its expansion? In any case, Israel is tied to American efforts. With this background, it is interesting to note the declarations published by the enemy [Israel] and by its supporters, Western and Arab, relating to big changes that will occur in the region as a result of what is happening in the Gulf. In any case, it is important to remember that since the first Gulf War until today, the Resistance Axis [meaning Iran and its satellites] did not initiate any action in the Arabian Peninsula, even in Yemen. The Axis waged a defensive war only. However, if a decision is made to change course and wage an offensive war, then one could expect only one thing from the enemy: the choice of collective suicide.
Despite Ceasefire Deal, Iranian Stronghold in Syrian Golan Still Possible
From an Israeli perspective, the ceasefire agreement in southwestern Syria, which goes into effect at noon Sunday, is a positive development—but not positive enough.
The agreement freezes the situation in the areas controlled by the Syrian regime, the areas controlled by militias operating on behalf of Iran and Hezbollah, and of course the areas controlled by the rebels, preventing the Iranian-backed militias and Hezbollah from advancing towards the Iraqi border. For now, as a result, the Iranians and their proxies are unable to create a land corridor connecting Tehran and Beirut and flanking Jordan and Israel.
Furthermore, the ceasefire will stop the “spillover” fire into the Golan Heights and Jordan from the battles between the Syrian army and the rebels. Both Israel and Jordan respond to any spillover incident, and a continuation of this situation could lead to a general flare-up in the region. A ceasefire will end the spillover fire and reduce the risk of escalation.
The third advantage of the ceasefire reached between Russia and the United States is easing the humanitarian situation in the Syrian Golan and the situation of refugees on the Jordanian-Syrian border.
Ruthie Blum: A whole new ballgame
US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman delivered a speech this week that made the unbearably hot and humid weather feel like a breath of fresh air. At the annual Fourth of July celebration, held Monday evening at his official residence in Herzliya, Friedman not only reiterated his personal faith in Judaism and the Jewish People, but stressed America’s “unbreakable bond” with the Jewish state.
The bond Friedman was referring to had become so fragile during former US president Barack Obama’s two terms in office that it became the punchline of a joke made in 2014 by comedian Jay Leno. Obama, Leno quipped, knows just how unbreakable the US-Israel bond it is, “since he’s been trying to break it for years.”
It was not only Friedman’s address that was crafted to convey the loud and clear message that the new administration in Washington is going to behave differently – that it is and will continue to be unequivocally and unflinchingly on Israel’s side. The fact that he was the first US ambassador to invite settler leaders to the event, and proudly pose for photographs with them, spoke volumes.
Friedman began by recounting that the first time he hosted a party in Israel was at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, when he was 13.
“As the son of a rabbi of modest means, I can assure you that my bar mitzva party bore absolutely no resemblance to the party that we are attending here tonight,” he said. “But the spirit... is exactly the same. It is the spirit of patriotic Americans committed to increasing the ties and enhancing the relationship between the United States and the State of Israel. That’s what my family stood for 45 years ago, and that’s still who we are today.”
UN Watch: UN investigator of Israel ‘did not hear any demand’ to also examine PA, Hamas
Finally, I would like to ask a question addressed to the Special Rapporteur on Palestine, Mr. Lynk, about concerns you and others have expressed over the ongoing protection gap inherent in the mandate.
When you were appointed last year, you adverted to concerns that Palestinian victims of human rights violations committed by the Palestinian Authority and Hamas enjoy no protection under your mandate, which is focused exclusively on actions by Israel. You were quoted in Canada’s Globe and Mail newspaper as saying that you would be “open to looking at expanding the job.”
Are you still open to granting vital protection to victims of the Palestinian Authority and Hamas – be they bloggers, journalists, women, religious minorities, LGBT — who regularly suffer gross violations of human rights from those governing authorities in the West Bank and Gaza?
Given that efforts were made by several of your predecessors, including Mr. Falk in 2008 and Mr. Halinen in the 1990s, to end the protection gap of your mandate, have you asked the Council yet to make those changes? Thank you.
Response to UN Watch by Michael Lynk, Special Rapporteur on “Israel’s Violations” in Palestine
  • I have not been asked this question since the beginning of my mandate last May. I thank you for the opportunity to address it.
  • When I met with Palestinian NGOs in Oman, I did not hear the demand for the expansion of the mandate.
  • Yet my mind remains open regarding expanding the mandate to include alleged violations by the Palestinian Authority and Hamas.
  • I would like to meet with the representative of UN Watch after this meeting to strategize how this might be done.
Rwanda’s Kagame visiting as Israel looks to boost Africa ties
Rawandan President Paul Kagame began a two-day visit to Israel on Monday for talks focused on boosting cooperation for the future, but also touching on the two nations’ common experience in the past overcoming the horrors of genocide.
“We are two nations who understand the horror of genocide, and we must show what humanity can achieve with cooperation and understanding,” President Reuven Rivlin told Kagame at the presidential residence in Jerusalem.
“We know that Rwanda is now going to be member of the UN Human Rights Council. This is a body which is always against Israel, so we welcome all those who are prepared to speak for us,” Rivlin said
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who was also present, praised Rawanda for its stance on Israel.
“We see how you stand up for Israel in international forums, and you already expressed a simple principle that we did which is that bilateral relationships should be reflected in multilateral forums. There is a dissonance between us and a few other nations still,” Netanyahu said.
WATCH: UK Urged to Work with Israel in the Fight Against Terrorism
A new campaign has been launched to drive closer links between the UK and Israel in the global battle against terrorism. The initiative is a contrary response to the claim by London Mayor Sadiq Khan that the threat of terror attacks are “part and parcel of living in a great city.”
United Against Terror is the work of the Israel Britain Alliance (IBA). It contrasts the tactics of terrorists in recent attacks in Manchester and London, to those perpetrated by Palestinian attackers on a regular basis in the Jewish State.
Michael McCann, IBA Director, believes the similarities in global attacks by terrorists means intelligence can be shared: He said:
“In recent months our country has been hit by a suicide bomb, car rammings and knife attacks. Barbaric attacks on innocent people. The sadly reality is that Israel has faced these types of attacks for years and as a result it has a great deal of experience in both preventing attacks and dealing with the consequences.
“Our country can learn from Israel’s experience and work together to thwart attacks and minimise the risks to the public.”

“But history sometimes reveals that what many of us would see as obvious actions are not taken and that’s why our campaign is focussed on these issues and directed at MPs and the Home Office,” he continued.
This is not the first time UK police and counter-terrorism agencies have been urged to look to Israel and learn from its existential battle against Palestinian terrorism.

'Yoni was a natural leader - always at the head of his troops'
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, his wife Sara Netanyahu, and their sons Yair and Avner participated in a memorial ceremony on Mt. Herzl Sunday in memory of the brother of the Prime Minister, Yoni Netanyahu.
Lieutenant Colonel Yoni Netanyahu was killed in action by a sniper's bullet while commanding the elite Sayeret Matkal commando unit during the rescue mission Operation Thunderbolt, in which over 100 Jewish hostages were rescued from Arab terrorists at the Entebbe Airport in Uganda on July 4, 1976.
The memorial ceremony was attended by Yoni's other brother Ido Netanyahu and his family, ministers, MKs, as well as current and former IDF commanders. The Prime Minister and his brother Ido said kaddish for Yoni at the gravesite.
Maj. Gen. (Res.) Amiram Levin spoke at the memorial service and said that the soldiers who served under Yoni loved and admired him. "We, the officers and the commanders, looked up to him very much. Yoni took command of the Sayeret Matkal commando unit in 1975, after he had proved himself and had excelled in battle in the Golan Heights during the Yom Kippur War."

IDF soldier wounded in car ramming attack, assailant killed
An IDF soldier was wounded when a car driven by a Palestinian man rammed into him near Tekoa, in the West Bank, on Monday afternoon. The assailant was shot and later died of his injuries, after trying to stab a few soldiers as he fled the car, the IDF spokesperson’ unit said.
The soldier was lightly injured and taken to Jerusalem’s Shaare Tzedek hospital, with injuries to his right thigh.
“When we arrived at the scene we saw an approximately 20-year-old young man, who was fully conscious. He sustained blows to his upper and lower extremities as the result of being hit by the vehicle,” said MDA paramedic Zachi Yahav.
Since October 2015 Palestinians have stabbed, run over and shot Israeli soldiers and civilians, including some tourists, in a wave of violence in the West Bank and Israel. While the violence has since decreased since its peak in the winter of 2016 when there were almost daily attacks, there have been several deadly attacks in recent months.
Israeli Military Introduces Plan to Prevent PTSD Among Soldiers
The IDF on Thursday introduced a new plan that aims to bolster combat soldiers’ mental resilience and reduce the risk of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
The plan includes the use of special software developed as part of a collaboration between the IDF and Yair Bar-Haim, a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Tel Aviv University.
The study concluded that people who experience a traumatic situation when they are more alert to dangers are more resistant to PTSD. The findings have prompted the military to devise ways to improve combat soldiers’ alertness by training them to more actively look out for threats. This includes the use of a special attention-training software the IDF plans to use according to operational priorities, meaning soldiers deployed in frontline sectors would be the first to use it, with auxiliary and support units following suit.
Head of the IDF Technological and Logistics Directorate Maj. Gen. Aharon Haliwa reviewed the software in January. He also appropriated special resources to promote the plan.
As part of the training, soldiers using the software will be shown different motifs in images and words, and will be trained to quickly identify threatening motifs.
Family of fallen soldier held by Hamas launches campaign for policy change
The family of a fallen IDF soldier whose remains are held by the Hamas terror group in the Gaza Strip launched a campaign Sunday calling on the government to change its tactics and increase pressure on Hamas.
The campaign comes amid media reports of progress in negotiations between Israel and Hamas via Egyptian mediators to reach a deal for a prisoner swap. Both sides have played down the extent of the progress.
A 2:40 minute video clip titled “Changing the Equation” explains the goal of the Courage Project, which calls for a shift in policy to secure the return of two Israeli soldiers, Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin, believed to have been killed in the 2014 war in Gaza and their remains held by the Hamas rulers of the Strip.
In addition, three Israeli civilians are believed to have entered Gaza and to be held by Hamas.
They are Avraham Abera Mengistu, an Israeli Jew of Ethiopian descent, and two Muslim Bedouins, Hisham al-Sayed and Juma Ibrahim Abu Ghanima.
Hamas team reportedly in Cairo for prisoner swap talks
A Hamas delegation led by the deputy commander of the group’s military wing, Marwan Issa, is reportedly in Cairo to hold talks on a possible prisoner exchange with Israel.
Countering Israeli denials, an unnamed Palestinian source told the London-based Arabic Al-Hiyat newspaper reported Monday that negotiations have “come a long way.”
Hamas, an Islamist terror group, is believed to be holding three Israeli men who crossed into the coastal territory of their own accord: Avraham Mengistu and Hisham al-Sayed, as well as Juma Ibrahim Abu Ghanima, whose presence in Gaza is unconfirmed. Mengistu is an Israeli Jew of Ethiopian descent, while al-Sayed and Ghanima are Bedouins. All three Israeli civilians are all said to be mentally unstable.
Hamas also holds the bodies of IDF soldiers Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin, who the army determined were killed in action in the 2014 Gaza war.
Defense Ministry to shell out NIS 1.5 billion on gas field security ships
The Defense Ministry announced a NIS 1.5 billion ($420 million) deal on Sunday to outfit the Israeli Navy with maritime systems to protect the country’s gas fields and shipping lanes.
This is in addition to the purchase of four Sa’ar-6 warships that are meant to guard Israel’s economic waters in the Mediterranean Sea.
The NIS 1.5 billion budget will go to missile defense batteries, electronic warfare, navigation systems, command and control centers, communication gear and other naval systems, the Defense Ministry said in a statement.
In recent days, two agreements were reached with Israeli companies for some of the systems, while the rest of the individual deals are expected to be reached by year’s end, the ministry said.
Police detain 6, among them Netanyahu associates, in submarine fraud investigation
Police detained six people for questioning on Monday morning, including a number of former senior public officials, suspected of corruption in the potentially fraudulent purchase of naval vessels from Germany.
The suspects were brought in as part of an ongoing investigation into the so-called “Case 3000,” or the “submarine affair,” in which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s personal lawyer David Shimron is suspected of attempting to sway multi-billion-shekel deals in favor of the German shipbuilder ThyssenKryupp, which he represented in Israel.
The six were questioned under caution over suspicions of fraud, bribery, tax evasion and money laundering, the Israel Police and the Tax Authority said in a joint statement.
“At the time of the events under question, some of the suspects were public servants and some worked in the private sector,” the statement said.
A source close to the investigation who asked not to be named told The Times of Israel that some of the suspects were personal associates of the prime minister. Hebrew media speculated that Shimron was among those being questioned.
Culture minister slams New Israel Fund for 'inciting terrorism'
Following a report in Israel Hayom on Sunday, Culture and Sports Minister Miri Regev intends to discuss government funding of the left-wing non-profit organization the New Israel Fund in a scheduled meeting with Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit next week.
According to the report, an NIF-run website publicized an event at which participants expressed support for Palestinian security prisoners and their recent hunger strike.
The event took place at the Jaffa Theater in honor of former MK Basel Ghattas, who was convicted of smuggling mobile phones to Palestinian prisoners and began serving his two-year sentence at the beginning of the month. It was advertised by the website 50 Out, which is funded and operated by the NIF.
"This is proof of what I've been saying, that various theaters [in Israel] provide a platform for incitement to terrorism and to attack the symbols of the state as a Jewish state," Regev said.
"It's not the New Israel Fund, it's a fund that wants a new Israel -- an Israel that provides a platform for encouraging and glorifying terrorists.
PreOccupiedTerritory: Palestinians Cry ‘Apartheid’ Over Election Of Jew To Lead Israeli Labor (satire)
Following the election of a yet another Israeli Jew as the new chairman of the country’s Labor Party, Palestinian leaders accused both the party and wider Israeli society of maintaining ethnic segregation aimed at denying Palestinians political and civil rights.
Saeb Erekat, a Fatah official loyal to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas who has served as the chief negotiator with Israel, spoke to reporters Tuesday night at the presidential compound in Ramallah, and characterized the selection of two Jews in a runoff to lead Labor as South-Africa-style Apartheid.
“Labor, the largest party that bills itself as favoring a negotiated two-state solution, the party that glories in its role in the Oslo peace process, has never chosen anyone but a Jew to lead it,” charged Erekat. “The racist ethos of the party, and the racism of the society it thus exposes, demonstrate where the fault lies in the failure of effort after effort to achieve a final-status agreement.”
Erekat called for international pressure on Israel and its political parties. “It is clear that without drastic measures from the international community we will forever be subject to the Apartheid occupation,” he pronounced. “Not a single Palestinian has ever been permitted to submit candidacy for Labor, let alone run for high political office in Israel on the party’s ticket.”
Jerusalem youths represent 'Palestine' at taekwondo match
Young Arab athletes from east Jerusalem compete in Tunisia, honor PLO leaders and terrorists at memorial • Zionist NGO head: It makes no sense for Arabs to hold Israeli ID cards while representing Palestinian Authority and slandering Israel.
A group of Arab youths from the Silwan neighborhood in east Jerusalem competed in a recent taekwondo tournament in Tunisia, representing "Palestine" rather than Israel.
The delegation, which returned to Israel last Saturday, was sent by al-Bustan Center for Cultural Silwan, an Arab NGO active in east Jerusalem. The organization posted pictures of the trip, revealing that besides representing "Palestine" in the taekwondo tournament, the young athletes visited a Tunisian memorial devoted to Palestinian Liberation Organization operations and leaders, principally the late founder Yasser Arafat.
Clad in shirts emblazoned with the Palestinian flag, the athletes paid their respects to Arafat. One picture shows several of the youths praying in front of Arafat's portrait, and one athlete was photographed proudly saluting the portrait.
West Bank gets Israeli power boost as Gaza endures energy crisis
On the northernmost edge of the West Bank, Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah and Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz on Monday observed the signing of a new agreement to power the first-ever Palestinian-owned piece of electricity infrastructure.
The agreement, which established a mechanism for the Palestinian Electric Company, a PA-owned company, to purchase electricity from the Israel Electric Company, will provide electricity to a Palestinian power substation in Jalameh, a village outside of Jenin.
The substation, newly completed after three years of construction, aims to address power shortages in Jenin and its environs, which has long experienced an estimated 20 MW shortage. According to the deal, the PEC will purchase 60 MW of electricity from the IEC, which it will supply to homes through the substation. At full capacity, the substation can provide a total of 135 MW.
There are plans to build three similar substations in Ramallah, Nablus, and Hebron by the end of 2018.
While the substations fundamentally seek to increase electricity to the West Bank, they also are part of an effort to make the PA more energy independent. They will be fully operated by the PEC.
Israel and the PA agreed in September 2016 that Israel would transfer the West Bank’s electricity infrastructure to the PA. Both sides have already agreed the four substations will be under the PA’s control, but are still negotiating over the details of other infrastructure in the territory.
Hamas prepares for 'liberation of Palestine'
Hamas held a mass rally in Gaza days ago in protest of the PA's policy of punitive measures against Hamas authorities that attempt to force it to dismantle the Executive Committee, which is actually the de facto Hamas administration in the Gaza Strip.
Pictures of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu were burned during the rally.
Musheir al-Masri, a Gaza Hamas leader, said in his speech at the rally that Abbas was fully responsible for the dangerous consequences of his alliance with the "enemy" and the "crime" of the siege on the Gaza Strip and would pay the price for his "stupid" moves.
According to him, the siege on Gaza is not only implemented by the "Zionist enemy" but also by those who support the political process and engage in security coordination with the "enemy". He promised his listeners that Hamas would liberate all of the "land of Palestine from the filth of the robbers."
Dahlan’s grand plans for Gaza’s revival threaten to sideline Abbas
And herein lies the main problem with Dahlan’s proposal — at this stage it is only supported by the Hamas leadership in Gaza, not the Hamas kingpins elsewhere.
Many senior officials outside Gaza fear Dahlan will do to Hamas what Sissi did as army chief to then-president Muhammad Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood in the summer of 2013 — initiate a coup and remove Hamas from power. Dahlan, according to senior members of the organization based in Qatar, Lebanon and the West Bank, was and remains hostile to Hamas, with which he shares a long and bloody history.
It should be noted that Dahlan does have a plan on how to end this blood feud, which dates back to Hamas’s takeover of the Strip in 2007. Dahlan is promoting a reconciliation committee to provide compensation to the families of the victims of the internal power struggle, similar to the tribal customs of the Bedouin. The funding for such stipends would also come from the UAE — $50 million that would hopefully help grease the wheels of reconciliation.
And so in the coming days and months it seems likely the Hamas leadership will continue to debate whether to accept the proposal. During this time the reconciliation committee will complete its plan for compensation for those affected by the 2007 coup; Samir Mashrawi, a close associate of Dahlan, is expected to return to the Strip; and the Rafah Crossing will be reopened.
And perhaps, Abbas will give in to the pressure exerted on him by Egypt and make peace, reluctantly, with Dahlan.
Hamas leader claims PA cut 37 Hamas lawmakers salaries
The Palestinian Authority cut the salaries of 37 Hamas-affiliated lawmakers in the West Bank, senior Hamas official Ahmad Bahr said on Sunday.
“The Finance Ministry in Ramallah informed 37 representatives of the Change and Reform bloc [Hamas] of the cutting of their salaries and confirmed to them that they won’t receive their salaries this month,” Bahr, who is based in the Gaza Strip, said in a statement.
The PA Finance Ministry spokesman did not respond to multiple phone calls. Nayef Rajoub, a Hamas-backed lawmaker in the West Bank, confirmed Bahr’s account to Al-Risalah, a newspaper closely connected to Hamas.
Lawmakers have been receiving monthly salaries even though the Palestinian Legislative Council, the PA parliament, has not operated since 2007.
Cruz to Push for More Action to Secure Release of U.S. Hostages in Iran
Sen. Ted Cruz (R., Texas) next week plans to introduce a bill calling for both the unconditional, safe return of several U.S. citizens and permanent legal residents imprisoned in Iran and also the creation of a multi-national task force to try to secure their release, according to a Senate source.
Cruz's measure will mirror a bipartisan House resolution sponsored by Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R., Fla.), Ted Poe (R., Texas), Nita Lowey (D., N.Y.), and Ted Deutch (D., Fla.). That version calls on the Trump administration to make securing the release of at least six U.S. hostages the "highest of priorities."
It also urges the United States and its allies who also have citizens detained in Iran to create a multi-national task force to leverage resources and share information in an attempt to win the prisoners' freedom.
Iran has over the last several months jailed several dual-nationals of other western nations, including the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Canada.
The move comes in the wake of stepped up efforts by several families of prisoners held in Iran to try to secure the release of their loved ones. The families feel a new sense of urgency after the death late last month of Otto Warmbier. Warmbier, a University of Virginia student held in North Korea for a year and a half, was released in mid-June only to die just days later from complications his family believes were the result of his detainment.

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