Friday, November 30, 2018

From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: The lethal error in appeasing Iran
The Europeans’ eagerness to continue to trade with Iran is disgusting. The United States lists Iran as the world’s principal state sponsor of terrorism. The regime has been in a state of self-declared war against the West since it took power in 1979. It regularly denies the Holocaust and re-states its intention to wipe Israel off the map.

It is funding, arming and training Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon, where more than 120,000 Iranian rockets are pointing at Israel; it supports the Bashar Assad regime in Syria, where there are now Iranian troops on Israel’s border; it is supporting the Houthis in the civil war in Yemen in order to attain unrivalled dominance in the region.

So it should simply be unconscionable to trade with Iran. Yet the Europeans are bending every sinew to continue to do so.

The behavior of France and Germany in spearheading the subversion of U.S. sanctions is particularly odious. France’s President Emmanuel Macron, the E.U. fanatic who by his own account is a cross between Napoleon and Jupiter and has taken to lecturing the world about the supposed evils of nationalism, runs a country in which Jews are being regularly attacked and murdered by Muslims.

His foreign ministry has said there is no doubt that Iran’s intelligence ministry was behind a foiled attack last June on an Iranian opposition group in Paris. Yet Macron opposes U.S. sanctions on the grounds that this would not improve regional stability. Instead, he is busy trying to enable the continued flow of money to prop up the Iranian regime. Is this what he means by improving regional stability?

Germany’s hypocrisy is stomach-turning. In 2008, its chancellor, Angela Merkel, came to Israel to say: “The Shoah fills us Germans with shame. I bow before the victims. I bow before the survivors and before all those who helped them survive.” Germany, she said, would always stand by Israel’s side; and she singled out Iran as the greatest threat to its security.

Yet although her foreign office condemned Rouhani’s remarks “in the strongest possible terms,” Merkel is now Europe’s principal champion of his regime.

In the words of Dr. Josef Schuster, president of the country’s Central Council of Jews: “It seems paradoxical that Germany—as a country that is said to have learned from its horrendous past and which has a strong commitment to fight anti-Semitism—is one of the strongest economic partners of a regime that is blatantly denying the Holocaust and abusing human rights on a daily basis. Any trade with Iran means a benefit for radical and terrorist forces, and a hazard and destabilization for the region.”

As Benjamin Weinthal recently wrote in Tablet magazine, the explanation may not lie merely in Germany’s huge export trade with Iran, worth $3.42 billion last year. It may also be a pathological refusal to forgive Israel for the Holocaust, as demonstrated by its preoccupation with turning Israel into a punching bag.

Germany’s pious memorializing of the Holocaust, he suggested, “can be a way for German politicians to inoculate themselves against criticism for their unwillingness to confront the lethal anti-Semitic Islamic regime in Tehran.”

Syrian regime and allies downplay 'airstrikes' after wild night in Damascus
On Thursday night social media accounts that follow Syria lit up with reports of airstrikes south of Damascus. SANA, the Damascus state media, claimed that “air defenses of the Syrian Arab Army responded to an aggression on the southern region” and had prevented the attack from achieving objectives. However Syrian state media and allies of the Syrian regime have downplayed the incident in the twelve hours after it happened. From wild claims that the air defenses had down rockets and even a plane, Syria’s allies now appear to want to sweep the incident under the carpet. This may be to protect the regime from embarrassment.

A variety of social media accounts that support the Syrian government were active Thursday night, but many now seem disinterested in the aftermath. This is also true of Iranian media, which supports Syria, and media that tends to be pro-Hezbollah. On Thursday night some of these outlets, such as Al Mayadeen, showed images purportedly of air defenses over Damascus. Reports began around ten in the evening and continued for more than an hour. By midnight it was all over and what appeared to be a serious incident had gone quiet. Most of these reports followed the message from Damascus. “Our air defenses met hostile targets over the area of Al-Kiswah” and had intercepted the attack.

What’s particularly interesting is that none of the media sought to point fingers at who the aggressor was. In the past the Syrian regime has blamed Israel and the US. One of the only major accounts that have kept on the story is Sputnik News in Arabic, a Russian channel. Russia supports the Syrian regime. On Friday Sputnik claimed that shrapnel from Syrian air defenses was found on the Golan Heights. It based its report on an announcement from Israel. Sputnik also noted that Syrian air defense had used the S-200, not the more advanced S-300 system that Russia supplied to Syria in October and which the Syrians are still being trained to use. Sputnik also reported that Syrian officials told them the S-300 was not used.

This was a major climb-down from Thursday night when the same news channel had tweeted reports that Syrian air defense intercepted four cruise missiles and a jet that was involved in the attack. By Friday morning, all those reports had stopped. Iranian media also did not report heavily on the incident. Tasnim entirely ignored it. Fars News did the same. PressTV claimed Syria had downed targets over Damascus. However PressTV also made sure to emphasize that it was unclear if the S-300 had been used and noted that a “military source [in Syria] did not specify the targets but dismissed reports that an Israeli plane had been downed.”
Army finds pieces of Syrian missile in Golan field after alleged Israeli strikes
Israeli troops on the Golan Heights on Friday found a number of fragments of a Syrian surface-to-air missile that was fired during an alleged Israeli airstrike on Iranian and Hezbollah targets in Syria the night before.

According to the Israel Defense Forces, the remnants of the missile were found in an open field on the Golan heights. The pieces have been taken in for further examination by the military and the police, the army said.

Also on Friday, the Syria Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said it identified several of the sites hit in what it said was an Israeli bombardment that lasted “for an hour.”

The Israeli military refused to comment on the raid, but denied a report in Russian media that an Israeli plane had been shot down. The Syrian military claimed its air defenses shot down all incoming “hostile targets” late Thursday. However, many security analysts believe Syria often falsely claims to have intercepted missiles that successfully penetrated its air defenses.

According to the director of the Syria Observatory for Human Rights, Rami Abdel Rahman, the Israeli bombardment hit two positions in the south of Damascus province, including an area believed to be an Iranian weapons depot near the capital.



Tehran-Beirut cargo flight sparks concerns Iran arming Hezbollah more easily
An Iranian cargo plane allegedly transporting advanced weaponry to the Hezbollah terror group was spotted flying directly from Tehran to Beirut on Thursday morning, hours before Israel allegedly conducted airstrikes on pro-Iranian targets in Syria.

Israeli and American security officials have long claimed that Iran has been supplying Lebanon’s Hezbollah with advanced munitions by shipping them through ostensibly civilian airlines, including the one that flew into Lebanon on Thursday: Fars Air Qeshm.

However, these cargo planes typically unload their materiel in Syria or stop there en route to Beirut, rather than flying directly into Lebanon, where Hezbollah is based.

According to publicly available flight data, Fars Air Qeshm flight No. QFZ-9964 left Tehran shortly after 8:00 a.m., flew over Iraq, cut northwest into Syria and then landed in Beirut’s Rafik Hariri International Airport some two hours later.

Later, the Boeing 747 jet flew to Doha in Qatar before returning to Tehran.

On Thursday evening, the Israel Defense Forces indicated that the plane had been carrying weapons into Beirut.

Without specifically mentioning the flight, the army’s Arabic-language spokesperson Lt. Col. Avichay Adraee tweeted that Lebanon should stop allowing Iranian planes to bring war materiel into the country, along with a black-and-white satellite photograph of Rafik Hariri International Airport.
Iran, facing off against Israel in Syria, now sending arms directly to Lebanon
Airstrikes in southern Syria on Thursday attributed to Israel were not necessarily indicative of the renewal of what were once routine Israeli attacks on Syrian territory, but rather a likely exception to the new rules imposed by Russia on the region.

Israel has almost completely halted these strikes over the last two-and-a-half months, since Syrian anti-aircraft fire — responding to an Israeli strike in Latakia — accidentally shot down a Russian reconnaissance plane, killing all 15 servicemen aboard in an incident Moscow has blamed on the Israeli military.

Since then, it turns out a number of things have happened simultaneously.

First, Russia sent a clear message to Israel regarding its anger over the strikes on Iranian-linked targets, including by dispatching S-300 aerial defense systems to Syria to complicate further such strikes.

Israel appeared to take the hint, with the number of airstrikes dropping considerably.

If Israel was in fact behind the extensive attack in Syria late on Thursday, it can be assumed the target of the strikes posed a clear-cut threat to Israel and that additionally, crucially, the existence of these targets in Syrian territory was not to the satisfaction of the Russians either.
US says seized weapons show that Iran is a regional threat
US officials on Thursday displayed military equipment they said confirms that Iran is increasingly supplying weapons to militants across the Middle East and is continuing its missile program unabated.

At a military hangar in Washington, Brian Hook, the US special representative for Iran, showed reporters a collection of guns, rockets, drones and other gear. Some of these had been intercepted in the Strait of Hormuz en route to Shia fighters in the region while others had been seized by the Saudis in Yemen, the Pentagon said.

Hook showed images of a Sayyad-2 surface-to-air missiles with the words “The Hunter Missile” in Farsi on its side, which he said was intercepted in Yemen by Saudi Arabia this year.

The advanced weapon, Hook said, was exported to aid the Houthi rebels, marking a violation of a UN resolution ban on exporting weaponry to the besieged country.
A Surface to Air Missile (Sayyad 2C) is displayed with a sign that reads “On Loan Fromm Saudi Arabia” at the Iranian Materiel Display (IMD) at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling, in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. The presentation displays weapons and fragments of weapons seized in Afghanistan, Bahrain and Yemen that the US said are evidence Iran is a “grave and escalating threat” that must be stopped. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

“The conspicuous Farsi markings are Iran’s way of saying they don’t mind being caught violating US resolutions,” Hook said. He added that the material shows Tehran’s “relentless commitment to put even more weapons into even more of hands of even more of its proxies.”
Hook also showed reporters a display that included anti-tank missile systems that Iran was exporting to Yemen and Afghanistan, which he said revealed that the Islamic Republic’s intention to “undermine regional instability has expanded.”
David Singer: Jordan-Israel Peace Agenda Trumps PLO-UN War Agenda
Abbas has instead sought to advance the PLO’s stated aim to destroy both Israel and Jordan by using the United Nations as the Trojan horse to initially try to impose the creation of a second Arab state in former Palestine – in addition to Jordan – over Israel’s objections.

The UN General Assembly recognition of the fictitious and non-existent “State of Palestine” as Chair of the 144 nation G77 bloc at the United Nations for 2019 indicates the lack of credibility and integrity to which an acquiescent and fawning United Nations is prepared to sink in supporting the PLO’s agenda.

Trump’s plan could represent the last chance to resolve the Jewish-Arab conflict peacefully. Should Jordan and Israel simultaneously agree to negotiate on its final terms – then the prospect of Trump actually pulling off “the deal of the century” becomes realistically achievable.

Redefining the boundary between two countries sharing a signed peace treaty is infinitely easier to achieve than creating a potentially-hostile third state between them that seeks both their destruction.
Jordan-Israel negotiations offer hope for an enduring peace.

The PLO-UN flight into fantasy promises war, chaos and upheaval.

In the crane nation, Israel builds its future without a partner for peace
The Star of David might be on the flag and the menorah and olive branch on the crest but the crane is the real emblem of Israel. Everywhere you go, giant steel jibs signpost a country under permanent development.

There are cranes over Tel Aviv, over Jerusalem, over Sderot — where they’re putting up houses at a rate that must tempt the odd Hamas rocket technician to throw in the towel.

There’s even one stretching over the Western Wall plaza right now. If the moshiach turns up any time soon looking to rebuild a temple, he’ll be spoiled for choice on contractors.

Earlier this month, I visited Israel for the first time as a guest of the government, mostly because I could no longer justify writing so extensively about a country I’d never set foot in.

As a Zionist of the non-Jewish variety, I worried that going would break the spell. They say you should never meet your heroes and maybe that rule applied to countries too.

But there are two Israels — the Israel that’s developing, innovating and inventing and another country, Bibination, the Israel that has grown sluggish about a resolution to the Palestinian conflict and testy towards those who point it out.
'International consensus' on Jerusalem is baseless
Canadian legal scholar Dr. Jacques Gauthier has devoted 20 years to the thorny question of the ownership of Jerusalem, and has concluded that Israel has unquestionable sovereignty not only over the whole city, but over Judea and Samaria as well.

On Aug. 20, 1980, the United Nations Security Council passed Resolution 478, which condemned a law passed three weeks earlier by the Knesset declaring Jerusalem Israel's "complete and united" capital.

The U.N. resolution said that declaring all of Jerusalem the capital of Israel was in violation of international law, canceled the validity of any steps by Israel as an "occupying power" to change the character of the "holy city of Jerusalem," and called on all countries that maintained embassies in Jerusalem to relocate them. The law passed by a margin of 14 votes and without the U.S. exercising its veto.

The resolution forms the basis of the "international consensus" that keeps most of the countries that have diplomatic ties with Israel from moving their embassies back to Jerusalem.

But Dr. Jacques Gauthier, a Canadian expert in international law, says there is a problem with that consensus: He says it is a blatant violation of the international law on which it is supposedly based.

Gauthier devoted his doctoral thesis to the issue of ownership and legal rights over Jerusalem. He has devoted 20 years to investigating the complicated legal questions and has made many visits to the city, as well as to other places where historic decisions were made that anchored in law Israel's legal right to sovereignty over all of Jerusalem, as well as Judea and Samaria.

"To understand it, one must go back to historical events that led to the Jewish people being granted the rights [over Jerusalem]," Gauthier tells Israel Hayom.
U.N.: Israelis, Palestinians must reaffirm 2 states based on ’67 lines
Israeli and Palestinian leaders must recognize a two-state resolution to the Israeli based on the pre-1967 lines with east Jerusalem as its capital, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Wednesday.

“I call on all actors, and first and foremost the leadership of Israel and the Palestinian Authority, to take bold steps and restore faith in the promise of Resolution 181, of two states living side-by-side in peace and security, fulfilling the legitimate national aspirations of both peoples, with borders based on the 1967 lines and Jerusalem as the capital of both states – East Jerusalem being the capital of the Palestinian state,” Guterres said.

He spoke at a meeting of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People that was held in advance of the day that UN holds is International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

It marks the 71st anniversary of the US passage of Resolution 181, which called for independent Jewish and Arab states on territory that had been under British control since the end of World War I. At the time it was accepted by Jews and rejected by the Arabs.

Guterres said that the UN had created the day of solidarity 40 years ago to remind people of the unfinished task of resolving the Palestinian issue.
U.N. to disavow Jewish ties to Jerusalem, call for Golan withdrawal
The United Nations General Assembly is set to disavow Israeli sovereignty over Jerusalem and ignore Jewish ties to its most holy site, the Temple Mount in a highly publicized debate set to take place in New York late Thursday.

UN member states are also expected to call on Israel to withdraw from the Golan Heights and boycott settlement activity.

According to the text of the Jerusalem resolution, likely to be voted Friday, the UN will call for “respect for the historic status quo at the holy places of Jerusalem, including the Haram al-Sharif, in word and in practice.”

The resolution also states that “any actions taken by Israel, the occupying Power, to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration on the Holy City of Jerusalem are illegal and therefore null and void and have no validity whatsoever.

Finally the text calls “upon Israel to immediately cease all such illegal and unilateral measures.”

The text on settlement boycott, calls on member states, “Not to render aid or assistance to illegal settlement activities, including not to provide Israel with any assistance to be used specifically in connection with settlements in the occupied territories, in line with Security Council resolution 465(1980).

It’s expected that during the meeting that starts Thursday and is likely to run into Friday that some six pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel resolutions will be passed.(h/t Yerushalimey)
The Ambassadors Series: Former Israeli Ambassador Discusses the Evolving U.S.-Israel Relationship
Hudson Institute hosted the Honorable Dore Gold, former Director General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State of Israel, Ambassador of Israel to the United Nations, and now the president of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, for a discussion on the current state of U.S.-Israel relations. The conversation was moderated by Hudson’s Ravenel B. Curry III Distinguished Fellow in Strategy and Statesmanship Walter Russell Mead.

U.S.-Israel relations are characterized by long-standing strategic cooperation, and deep political, military, economic and social bonds. Israel’s security and stability in the Middle East remain critical for U.S. interests. President Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and relocation of the U.S. embassy has strengthened relations between the two nations. At a time of renewed geopolitical competition between global powers, particularly between the U.S. and Russia, revisiting the U.S.-Israel partnership and its impact on regional stability is crucial.


Europe agrees to back UN resolution condemning Hamas terror group
The European Union agreed to support a US-sponsored United Nations General Assembly resolution condemning Hamas, following negotiations with Washington, diplomats said Thursday.

The draft resolution will likely be voted on in the United Nations General Assembly on Monday, an official in Israel’s mission to the UN told The Times of Israel on Thursday.

After the US agreed to make some changes to the initial draft, the EU on Thursday agreed to support the text. All 28 EU member states are expected to vote in favor.

“All 28 members will support the US text,” a European diplomat told AFP.

If adopted, the resolution would be the first General Assembly vote to condemn the Palestinian terrorist group. The EU’s support dramatically increases its chances of passing, though it is unclear whether it will guarantee the needed simple majority among the UN’s 193 member states.

Earlier this week, European diplomats said there were disagreements on the proposed US text, notably including references to UN resolutions and to the two-state solution.

The Europeans had asked, and the Americans agreed, to insert a clause that states that a future Israeli-Palestinian peace deal should be “in accordance with international law, and bearing in mind relevant UN resolutions.”
UN members, Condemn Hamas Now!
Hamas has killed and wounded thousands of innocent people in hundreds of terror attacks targeting Israeli civilians, but NOT A SINGLE UN RESOLUTION has been passed, condemning Hamas. We call the UN to hold Hamas accountable for its terrorist actions once and for all and to condemn it NOW!


In sudden U-turn, Trump fights to keep some Palestinian aid alive
For two years, the Trump administration has unabashedly slashed US aid to the Palestinians. Now, amid signs it may finally roll out its long-awaited Middle East peace plan, the administration is scrambling to save what little remaining Palestinian assistance it provides.

The striking turnabout is the result of the belated realization that an obscure new law will likely force the US to terminate all aid to the Palestinian Authority, including security assistance supported by Israel, by the end of January. Eliminating such aid, which totaled $61 million this year even as other assistance was being cut, would deal a blow to Palestinian-Israeli security cooperation that both sides value. The law would also require the Jerusalem offices of the US Agency for International Development to close.

To avert that possibility and remove a potentially lethal complication to the promised peace plan, the administration is rushing to find a solution. It will dispatch Army Lt. Gen. Eric Wendt, who serves as US security coordinator for Israel and the Palestinian Authority, to Congress in the coming days to urge lawmakers to come up with a fix to the law, known as the Anti-Terrorism Clarification Act of 2018, to allow the aid to continue.

Congressional aides said they expect Wendt and other officials to start making the case next week in the hope of securing a fix in the short time it has left in session this year. The House and Senate are set to adjourn on Dec. 13 and Dec. 14, respectively. If that fails, officials said they expect to redouble their efforts when the new Congress convenes in January.

The State Department, to whom Wendt reports, declined to comment on the effort but acknowledged the problem.
Frankfurt deputy mayor announces that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel
The powerful deputy mayor and city treasurer of the German city of Frankfurt announced at a pro-Israel conference that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel and urged Chancellor Angela Merkel’s administration to cut ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Rogel Rachman, an Israeli diplomat at the Berlin embassy, tweeted on Sunday: “Uwe Becker, mayor of Frankfurt in the Israel Congress: ‘Jerusalem is the capital of Israel.”’

Uwe Becker, a prominent Christian Democratic Union (CDU) politician, took a position in sharp contrast to his party’s chancellor and her government. The Jerusalem Post reported exclusively in November that Chancellor Angela Merkel urged Romania’s President Klaus Iohannis to not relocate his country’s embassy to Jerusalem. Merkel, from the CDU, is believed to have launched a campaign to convince European heads of state to keep their embassies in Tel Aviv. Merkel declines to say if Jerusalem is the capital of the Jewish state.

Becker said, “We must freeze relations with Iran until it accepts the right of Israel to exist.”

Becker has established his pro-Israel credentials with strong actions against rising antisemitism, including the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign in Germany. Becker has termed BDS “deeply antisemitic,” saying it uses “the same language that National Socialists once employed to say ‘Don’t buy from Jews.’” He played a key role in securing language in the CDU platform that rejects BDS.
Police suspect terrorism as Jordanian assaults 2 Israeli co-workers in Eilat
A Jordanian national employed at the Eilat port in southern Israel was arrested Friday on suspicion of attacking two Israeli co-workers with a hammer.

The two Israelis were badly wounded in the assault, police said.

The Jordanian man was arrested following the incident. Several hours later police said an initial probe had increased suspicions that the attack was a nationalistically motivated terror act.

The suspect was handed over to the Shin Bet internal security service for further questioning.

In addition to the injured Israelis, who were brought to the city’s Yoseftal Hospital with head injuries, another Jordan worker who tried to restrain the attacker was lightly hurt.
Comprehensive Report Debunks 'Peaceful' Gaza Protests
In a comprehensive report, NGO Monitor, a project of the Institute for NGO Research, issued a submission to the United Nations Human Rights Council Commission of Inquiry (COI) detailing the events of the protests launched by Hamas from Gaza that have threatened Israeli sovereignty for months, and it’s a damning portrait of the Palestinian effort to ultimately topple the state of Israel. NGO Monitor also documented in detail human rights violations such as the use of explosives, Molotov cocktails, guns, rockets, and incendiary kites, as well as incitement and attempts to infiltrate through the border fence.

Some of the many quotes from Palestinian leaders indicating they sought the destruction of Israel: March 30, 2018: Hamas leader Yahya Al-Senawar stated, “The march of return will continue until the temporary borders are uprooted.” May 17, 2018: Mahmoud al-Zahar, a Hamas leader, stated, “When we talk about ‘peaceful resistance,’ we are deceiving the public. This is a peaceful resistance bolstered by a military force and by security agencies, and enjoying tremendous popular support.” May 24, 2018: Khaled al-Batsh, a senior official of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, praised protestors, stating, “we will move our popular march toward the Israeli villages surrounding Gaza by cutting wire and other units operating in the settlements surrounding Gaza.”

And there was this: Al-Aqsa TV featured footage of the “Fence Cutters’ Unit. One of the members stated that “today, we cut the Zionist enemy’s main barbed-wire fence on the Gaza border...today we shall enter our occupied lands, and ignite a revolution against the Zionist enemy, in order to proclaim, loud and clear, that this enemy is destined for perdition, and that what was taken by force will be regained by force alone. We are about to liberate our blessed Palestinian land, which was plundered from us by the enemy by force, and from which the enemy will be driven out by force alone.”
10,000 Palestinians protest along Gaza border, 18 said wounded by IDF fire
Some 10,000 Palestinians protested along the Gaza border fence on Friday, with some burning tires and throwing rocks and firebombs at soldiers who responded with tear gas and occasional live fire.

The Hamas-run Gaza heath ministry said 18 people were wounded by live fire.

This was the third week in a row that Hamas security forces kept most demonstrators away from the fence following a ceasefire with Israel after a major flareup two weeks ago.

The IDF said Palestinians had not managed to breach the border fence and there were no injuries reported among Israeli forces.

Since March, Palestinians have been holding weekly “March of Return” protests on the border, which Israel has accused Gaza’s Hamas rulers of using to carry out attacks on troops and attempt to breach the security fence. Hamas, an Islamist terror group, seeks to destroy Israel.
Turkey changes US Embassy street name to Malcolm X
Turkey on Thursday changed the name of the street on which the new US Embassy will be located after the American black Muslim civil rights campaigner, Malcolm X.

The new American embassy is still being built in the Cukurambar district in Ankara, on what was formerly called 1478 Street. Construction contractors BL Harbert have said the new complex is expected to be finished by 2020.

The renaming comes after the Ankara city council’s decision last month to change the name to Malcolm X Street.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised the late campaigner’s daughters that the name of Malcolm X would “live on” in the Turkish capital.

Municipality workers changed the signs of the street on Thursday morning, as frenetic activity continued on the site.
Black Muslim leader Malcolm X is shown addressing rally in Harlem, New York on June 29, 1963. (AP Photo)

Malcolm X, one of the most influential African Americans in history, was an outspoken Muslim advocate of the rights of blacks and remains a hero today to many blacks and followers of Islam.
PreOccupiedTerritory: EU: Turkey Not Antisemitic Enough To Join (satire)
Officials in the European Customs Union shared concerns today that the Republic of Turkey lacks one of the principal qualifications for the membership in the union it seeks: a certain threshold of anti-Jewish rhetoric and behavior.

Representatives of the various organs of the European Union told reporters that Turkey’s application faces rejection because while Erdogan’s administration has a hand in Syrian violence, the entry of terrorist elements into Europe, political repression, and other demonstrations of suitability for inclusion in the European community, the country’s lackluster pursuit of antisemitic policies portends ill for its membership bid.

Speaking to journalists at a press conference outside the European Parliament building, the officials acknowledged Turkey’s support for anti-Israel terrorists, but noted that such policies fall far short of the behavior expected of a European Union member in good standing.

“Harboring Hamas operatives and endorsing a run of Israel’s Gaza blockade are well and good, but, I hate to say it, lame,” admitted a French delegate. “That’s amateurish. When’s the last time Turkey had a riot that threatened the country’s Jews? That’s the kind of indication we’re looking for, and frankly, it’s nowhere to be seen.”
Why did Lebanon's security chief praise terrorism during a counter-terror speech?
Lebanon’s General Security director praised terrorism during a conference that was supposed to discuss the defeat of terrorism in the Middle East and Africa. Speaking to representatives from a dozen African countries Maj.-Gen. Abbas Ibrahim reportedly praised Hezbollah’s “resistance” and distinguished its terrorism from other forms of terror.

The two-day event was titled “Defeat of Terrorism in the Region and its Impact on Africa” and was attended by African delegates from a swath of countries affected by terrorism in the Sahel region of Africa. That includes Nigeria, Niger, Burkina Faso and the Central African Republic. Diplomats from Tunisia, Oman, Egypt and Russia also attended according to the website Arab News. Ibrahim runs Lebanon’s General Security directorate, which makes him the “eyes and ears” of Lebanon according to and gives his agency power over a variety of local and foreign threats to Lebanon.

He has praised Hezbollah’s “resistance” in the past and was appointed in 2011 with influence by Amal, a Shi’ite party. At the conference, according to multiple reports at Lebanese websites Aliwaa.com and Aljoumhouria, he distinguished between two types of terrorism.

“Terrorism that terrorizes your enemy, and this is not only your right but your duty,” Ibrahim said. “Then there is [the second kind of] terrorism that intimidates innocent people.” The second kind he said was the “lowest level of moral decline and ideological decline.”

He said that Lebanon supports the “resistance,” which is a reference to Hezbollah and that “we are with our resistance and terrorism.” He claimed that even if others call that terrorism it was a source of pride.
German/French entities may be sanctioned for busting Iran sanctions, U.S. envoy says
The US government will contemplate sanctions against French and German entities that seek to evade sanctions on Iran’s clerical regime, US Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday.

“The US will consider sanctions on those entities participating in these tactics,” said Grenell, adding that the French and German activities “would not be a smart move.”

Grenell’s strong statements were in response to a Monday Wall Street Journal article, which reported that “France and Germany have joined forces to rescue a European effort to create a payments channel to keep trade flowing with Iran, defying US attempts to take the air out of the plan.”

The WSJ article cited senior diplomats as the sources for the French and German strategy to circumvent US sanctions.

The US government classifies Iran as the leading state sponsor of terrorism.
Special Report: How Iran Spreads Disinformation Around the World
Website Nile Net Online promises Egyptians “true news” from its offices in the heart of Cairo’s Tahrir Square, “to expand the scope of freedom of expression in the Arab world.”

Its views on America do not chime with those of Egypt’s state media, which celebrate Donald Trump’s warm relations with Cairo. In one recent article, Nile Net Online derided the American president as a “low-level theater actor” who “turned America into a laughing stock” after he attacked Iran in a speech at the United Nations.

Until recently, Nile Net Online had more than 115,000 page-followers across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. But its contact telephone numbers, including one listed as 0123456789, don’t work. A Facebook map showing its location dropped a pin onto the middle of the street, rather than any building. And regulars at the square, including a newspaper stallholder and a policeman, say they have never heard of the website.

The reason: Nile Net Online is part of an influence operation based in Tehran.

It’s one of more than 70 websites found by Reuters which push Iranian propaganda to 15 countries, in an operation that cybersecurity experts, social media firms and journalists are only starting to uncover. The sites found by Reuters are visited by more than half a million people a month, and have been promoted by social media accounts with more than a million followers.

The sites underline how political actors worldwide are increasingly circulating distorted or false information online to influence public opinion. The discoveries follow allegations that Russian disinformation campaigns have swayed voters in the United States and Europe. Advisers to Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, and the army in Myanmar, are also among those using social media to distribute propaganda and attack their enemies. Moscow has denied the charges; Riyadh and Yangon have not commented.




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