Friday, March 01, 2019

From Ian:

Believing in our right to the Land of Israel doesn’t make anyone a fascist
Words delivered at the memorial service for Ariel and Lily Sharon, February 15, 2019.

Many straight lines can pass through two points. We all agree on the future point, the goal we want to reach: a good life in Israel for the Jewish people and for those who tied their fate to ours. What we don’t agree on is the way to arrive at that point. And that’s fine. Some people want to get there from the Right, others believe the best way is to come from the Left, the far Right, or the far Left. They’re all legitimate directions, all straight lines. So we argue, we vote, and we move forward together.

Rows upon rows of headstones stand over the graves of soldiers in the military cemeteries. Not one of them indicates whether the soldier lying silently in the ground below was right- or left-wing, religious or secular, lived in the city or the country. Every option is represented there.

We are surrounded by millions who hate us and want to see us dead, and they couldn’t care less about our political opinions. To them, we’re all the same. And if, heaven forbid, they should succeed, we will all share the same fate.

The problem the extremists on both sides suffer from can be summed up in no more than a few words. Those on the Left, who consider themselves liberal, are indeed liberal – as long as you agree with them. Those on my side sometimes feel they have first-hand knowledge of God’s will, so that anyone who disputes them is automatically an enemy of God.

Believing in our right to the Land of Israel doesn’t make anyone a fascist, and being willing to make do with less of that land doesn’t make anyone a traitor. They are all patriots who love the country, each in their own way.

Who owns West Bank property once owned by Jews?
The question of Jewish property and assets turned over to Arabs in the West Bank after the 1948 Jordanian occupation is a thorny one. The Israeli government has decided to leave this particular can of worms unopened. In this paper, Russell A Shalev concludes that Israel should not fear the repercussions of restituting former Jewish property to its rightful owners. (With thanks: Colin)

A view of Hebron
This paper explored the status of the former Jewish properties in Judea and Samaria that were seized by Jordan in 1948. The Israeli Supreme Court in Valero ruled that the transfer of the property to Jordanian custodianship eliminated any ties between the previous Jewish owner s and the property. Contrary to the Supreme Court's ruling in2011, this paper concluded that Israel legally can, and should, return the property to its former owners,without regards to a comprehensive peace agreement settling all claims between Israel, the Palestinians and the Arab states.This conclusion relies on the following justifications:

•Recognizing confiscated Jewish assets as Jordanian state property would be a violation of the principle of ex injuria jus non oritur, unjust acts cannot create law. The Jordanian seizure was illegal,was the result of Jordanian aggression and unrecognized annexation of the territory, and thus should be seen as invalid.
Jordan cannot enjoy rights to property gained through its illegal invasion in 1948.

The Status of Former Jewish Assets in Judea and Samaria are sui generis, ie.a unique historical and legal phenomenon, and they do not depend on a parallel comprehensive solution to the Palestinian refugee problem.The Palestinians have repeatedly rejected an internationally-accepted solution for the refugee crisis–resettlement in host countries. Instead, they have insisted on the"right of return." The repatriation of thousands of Palestinian Arabs would cause massive disruption and chaos in Israel, upending public order and seriously threatening societal cohesion. By contrast, the return of a small amount of Jewish property owners in Judea and Samaria could hardly be considered a threat to public order, especially considering that Israelis are able to purchase land and build homes over the Green Line.
Read paper in full
Dore Gold Says Countries Should Help Israel Fight "Fake History"
Countries should help Israel fight "fake history" that seeks to disconnect a Jewish - and by extension Christian - connection to Jerusalem, Dore Gold, who heads the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, told the Conservative Political Action Conference near Washington on Thursday. Israel "needs your help to defeat the diplomatic assaults Jerusalem faces today. We need your help to fight the fake history. We need your help to fight for truth."

Gold - a former Israeli ambassador to the UN and director-general of the Foreign Ministry - quoted Yasser Arafat telling former president Bill Clinton that there was never a Temple in Jerusalem, to which Clinton responded, "not only the Jews, but I too, believe that under the surface there are remains of Solomon's temple."

"What is clear today, more than ever, is that the only force that will protect Jerusalem for all the great faiths is the modern State of Israel, which has not forgotten how its enemies sought to forcibly cut its connection with the Holy City in the past."




Caroline Glick: Israel’s Deep State Takes Aim at Netanyahu
Israel’s administrative state is out of control.

The Israeli police’s announcement on Sunday that the department is recommending that Israel’s Attorney General indict Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on charges of bribery and breach of trust is not a testament to the investigators’ bold determination to see that justice is done even among the most powerful.

Rather, it is a testament to the determination of Israel’s “deep state” to unseat a popular and popularly elected leader.

How do we know this? First, the case against Netanyahu – and his wife Sara, whom the police also recommend indicting – makes no sense.

Netanyahu’s alleged crimes relate to decisions he made during his tenure as Minister of Communications. Netanyahu held that portfolio in addition to serving as Prime Minister and Foreign Minister from 2015 through 2017. His allegedly corrupt actions involve the Communications Ministry’s decision to approve the merger of Bezeq – Israel’s telecommunications giant and former monopoly — with YES, Israel’s satellite television provider.

Netanyahu is accused of approving the merger that allegedly gave a billion shekels – or some $300 million – in regulatory and tax breaks to Yes, enriching Bezeq owner Shaul Elovich. Elovich and his wife Iris are friends with Netanyahu and his wife Sara.

Elovich allegedly repaid – that is, bribed – Netanyahu for his allegedly preferential treatment by providing the prime minister and his wife Sara with positive coverage on Israel’s Walla Internet news portal, which is owned by Bezeq.

Neither the “quid” – that is, preferential regulatory and tax treatment – nor the “quo” – positive coverage on a website – stand up to scrutiny.




Khaled Abu Toameh: Palestinians: Marching Backwards as Israel Prepares for Elections
Instead of marching Palestinians towards democracy, the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas have chosen the model of totalitarianism as a way of governing their people. The pro-Abbas demonstrations organized by Fatah in the West Bank are reminiscent of dictatorships in the Arab world that send their loyalists to the streets to voice support for the ruler. The Hamas-sponsored anti-Abbas demonstrations in the Gaza Strip will not solve any of the crises facing the Palestinians there. These protests are Hamas's way of distracting attention from its failure to improve the living conditions of the people living under its repressive regime.

The only way for the Palestinians to move forward is by protesting against their failed leaders in the PA and Hamas. Many Palestinians, however, are afraid to speak out against their rulers in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Why would any Palestinian speak out against Abbas when the PA arrests and harasses those who even dare to post critical remarks on Facebook? Why would any Palestinian in the Gaza Strip criticize Hamas when he or she knows that this would endanger their lives?

On April 9, Israelis will again celebrate democracy by voting in a free and democratic election. The Palestinians, meanwhile, will mark another year of dictatorship and failed leadership, and will continue to dream about heading to any ballot box at all.
Amb. Ron Prosor: Britain Leads the Way in Banning Hizbullah. The Rest of Europe Must Now Follow Suit
Finally, the UK government has designated Hizbullah as the terrorist organization it is. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn objected to the move. He has called Hizbullah "friends" dedicated to "peace and social justice." It demonstrates that commitment to peace by carrying out genocide in Syria on behalf of Assad and destabilizing Yemen and Iraq, as well as Lebanon. And of course by digging attack tunnels under the Israeli border while building up a missile capability capable of reaching far beyond the Middle East.

But within the EU, only the Netherlands and now the UK wholly ban Hizbullah. As Hizbullah carries out its global terror campaign, European countries are its enablers. By turning a blind eye, they allow this network of evil to run its crime empire of drug trafficking and money laundering completely uninterrupted.

The U.S., the Arab League and the Gulf States have long proscribed Hizbullah. Does anyone seriously believe that these countries would have done so if Hizbullah only threatened Israel? Other European states need to follow Britain and get real about Hizbullah
Former IDF Legal Expert: Hamas, Hizbullah "Hide Missiles in Children's Rooms"
Former IDF Deputy Military Advocate General Col. Eli Baron told JNS that an "inconceivable" gap exists between the way that international audiences perceive Israel's military operations and the lengths that Israel's military goes to minimize civilian casualties. "The IDF invests heavily to ensure that all of our operations are in line with international law. In many ways, we are world leaders in this field. We go above and beyond what international law requires. Yet this fact is lost on so many around the world."

"The principle of distinction in international law...holds that there must be a separation between combatants and civilians. Our adversaries do exactly the opposite. They deliberately disguise their combatants as civilians and launch attacks using human shields to protect their combatants. This gives them greater freedom of operation, and it is also an attempt to get us to harm their civilians, which then gives them points against us in the court of global public opinion. This is how they try to cut down our military advantage."

"Hamas turned private homes into command and control centers. It hid weapons in homes. They had no problem hiding missiles in the basements and rooms of homes with children inside....Hizbullah's arsenal of approximately 120,000 to 130,000 rockets and missiles is mostly concealed in civilian residential buildings in Lebanon, as well as in sites like medical clinics....The enemy uses its civilians to protect their weapons. We use our weapons to protect our civilians."

"The Gaza violence is not the result of civilians who are sick of their situation and go out to demonstrate, but rather, they are incidents organized by a terrorist organization that has been locked in an armed conflict with us for many years."

"Hamas takes full responsibility for it. It pays bus drivers to bring the people, it pays the wounded and the families of the casualties. It sets up camps for them, and I heard it even sets up Wi-Fi connections there. It tells people to burst through the border fence as an objective. It brings tens of thousands of people to the border - some of whom are women, children and the elderly, and hundreds of which are armed Hamas members. They have grenades, explosive devices, firearms and fence-cutting equipment, and they hide behind huge smokescreens created by thousands of tires they burn."

"What would happen if they cut the fence and reached Israeli communities a kilometer or two kilometers away? If we don't stop the mob in time, they will storm houses....Dozens of these people are Hamas terrorists who, once they get the opportunity, will kill Israelis."
UN Human Rights Council Derided as ‘Dangerous Joke’ After Issuing Anti-Israel Report on Gaza Border Violence
A number of prominent Jewish groups disputed on Thursday a UN panel’s finding that Israel may have committed war crimes in its handling of Hamas-orchestrated riots on its southern border with the Gaza Strip last year.

“We strongly reject the latest anti-Israel report released by the United Nations Human Rights Council investigating Israel’s response to the weeks long violent attacks on its border organized and led by the Hamas terrorist organization in Gaza,” Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations Chairman Arthur Stark and Executive Vice Chairman and CEO Malcolm Hoenlein said in a statement. “In its unceasing quest to vilify Israel, the so-called Human Rights Council’s politically motivated and inherently hostile agenda against Israel has once again driven it to new depths of hypocrisy and bias with marked indifference to the lethal exploitation of the people of Gaza by Hamas.”

“No nation in the world, including Israel, can or should stand by and allow an armed invasion of its territory,” Stark and Hoenlein added. “Every nation, including Israel, would and must act to defend its sovereign borders and its population against armed aggression, but not every nation would adhere to rules of engagement and processes of command and control to ensure that norms of international humanitarian law are followed, as Israel does. Today’s report brings shame on the Human Rights Council. In denying Israel’s right to defend its citizens, the UN Human Rights Council becomes a partner in Hamas’s terror.




3 Gazans said wounded by Israeli fire as thousands riot on border
Thousand of Palestinians protested along the Gaza border on Friday with some rioting and clashing with Israeli troops, a day after the United Nations released a report accusing Israel of potential crimes against humanity for its response to the weekly riots.

The Palestinians burned tires and threw explosive devices and rocks at Israeli troops guarding the security fence, according to Army Radio.

Soldiers responded with tear gas and in some instances live fire.

The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza said three Palestinians were moderately wounded during the clashes by Israeli fire.

The riots were part of the “March of Return” protests, which have taken place weekly along the border since last March and have periodically escalated into major flareups between the Israeli military and Gaza-based terror groups.
CAMERA: New York Times Conceals Inconvenient Facts in Coverage of UN Gaza Report
In his story about an anti-Israel report commissioned by the United Nations Human Rights Council, New York Times correspondent Nick Cumming-Bruce substantively misleads readers about Palestinian demands for a “right of return,” ignores widespread international criticism of the UNHRC’s anti-Israel bias, and conceals accounts of gunfire and explosives used by rioters.

Violence
The article downplays the degree of violence at the riots when stating only that “some demonstrators attempted to storm the fence” while “others rolled burning tires…, pulled away razor wire, released flaming kites or threw rocks.” Even the UNHRC report admits that a Palestinian militant “fired a rifle towards the Israeli side of the separation fence.” And the Times has previously reported on accounts of explosives and grenades being used against Israelis:

Eight of the dead, the army said, were armed Hamas militants in civilian clothes who tried to storm the fence in northern Gaza and attacked Israeli forces with grenades and pipe bombs before being killed in a shootout. A photograph showed what the military said was an Israeli battalion commander’s armored vehicle pockmarked with Kalashnikov fire. Another three militants were killed while laying an explosive device in the south, the army said.

The article’s substantive errors of omission tilt the scales to promote the idea of Israeli guilt and Palestinian innocence. The use of guns and explosives, the ultimate goal of demands for a “right of return,” and the UN Human Rights Council’s history of bias all matter. That, apparently, is why the New York Times didn’t include them in its report.
UN rights council ignores Venezuela, attacks Israel
Confronted by UN Watch's Hillel Neuer on her refusal to address hunger in Venezuela, UNHRC "right to food expert" Hilal Elver said "there were two sides." In barely coherent English, Elver tried to explain herself: “Coming to Venezuela, the NGOs that raised these issues must know very well that Human Rights Council cannot, or the Special Rapporteurs, cannot go anywhere if the governments are not cooperating. So we sent several of letters to ask mission visit but we did not response. This doesn’t mean that we will not look at, we will not do anything, actually, we are doing a lot of investigation but the issue is too complicated. There are two sides of this conflict, as usual in many other conflicts, and we want to be objective rather than geopolitical interest. So we try to make as much as possible collect the information and Make the right step to make better work for Venezuelan people, rather than some kind of interest of the taking over the government from one side to another.”


Dr. Mordechai Kedar: "Deal of the century" or a plan doomed to failure?
Kushner explained that the "deal of the century" connects economic and political spheres. In his opinion, a lessening of the tensions between Palestinian Arabs and Israelis will stimulate Palestinian economic opportunities, limited up to now by the absence of peace. He is convinced that the economic impact will be felt not only by the Israelis and Palestinians but by the entire region.

"I think that this is a conflict that has been used for many years to rile up extremism. For the last 70 years the unifying principle of the region has been unifying against Israel, but now what we are seeing in this region is that a lot of the unifying principles are the leaders’ love of their people and the leaders’ desire for their people to live a better life."

Citing Iran in particular, he called it the "biggest threat in this region," adding that "everywhere we look where there is destabilisation, where there is terror, where there is rockets, it’s all coming from Iran and their proxies. They are funding a lot of militias, they are funding a lot of terror and that creates instability in the region, which creates refugees, which creates less economic opportunity and that’s really hurting the region."

One important thing that can be learned from Kushner's words is that the Americans are working on a "peace plan" based on the way Americans, not Middle Eastern people, think. For example, take the repeated references to economic issues, leading to the feeling that Americans think they can solve the Israel-Arab conflict by using money, economic success and the good life, which is exactly how America views the world.

So what's the problem? The deal of the century's main flaw is that it is based on the assumption that in 2019, Middle Eastern culture is not the same as it was a century ago, and that the region's nations as well as their rulers, are prepared to accept Israel as a legitimate national entity with the a priori right to exist as a Jewish state or the state of the Jewish people – if Israel gives up Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, the Jordan Valley and the settlements. The problem is that this premise is totally wrong, and even those nations who made peace with us do not recognize the Jewish people's right to a state of its own.
Can Middle East Peace Be Bought?
Senior U.S. presidential adviser Jared Kushner is visiting the Middle East with a special emphasis on wealthy Arab states, where he is soliciting investment that he hopes will be the seed money for a new era of peace. But the Palestinian Authority has made it clear that it won't negotiate and there's no reason to expect that PA leader Mahmoud Abbas is capable of saying yes to any deal.

The administration's assumption that Arab nations have the power to either persuade or bribe the Palestinians into giving up their century-old war on Zionism is mistaken. The Palestinians continue to view peace as a zero sum game in which any recognition of the legitimacy of a Jewish state, no matter where its borders may be drawn, is a defeat for their cause. If the Palestinians wanted to settle for a two-state solution, then they would have already accepted one of the previous Israeli offers.

Kushner is right to think that an effort to promote economic development is a prerequisite for hope for a future solution. But the Palestinian governments of both the West Bank and Gaza actively discourage any effort or enterprise that is not controlled by them. The failure of former PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, an American-educated technocrat, illustrated just how difficult it is to encourage good government in a political culture where terror is still lauded.

As the PA and Hamas have both made clear, any peace plan that is predicated on the Palestinians giving up their war against Israel for a better economy is going to be dead on arrival. The process of transforming the territories economically is not something that can be added on as a sweetener to a deal the Palestinians are not ready to make.
U.S. Envoy Slams PA for “Disparaging” Peace Efforts
Jason Greenblatt, the United States Special Representative for International Negotiations, on Thursday, slammed a senior Palestinian official for sabotaging the Trump administration’s peace initiative.

Greenblatt wrote on Twitter that Saeb Erekat, the Secretary-General of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s Executive Committee, had characterized efforts to broker a lasting peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians as “an apartheid system with ghettos for Palestinians.”

The envoy blasted Erekat for disparaging a peace deal which has not get been revealed to relevant parties. “Saeb, regretfully you continue to deceive your people – you know nothing about the contents of our plan,” Greenblatt said.

“Your speculation is not helpful and to the contrary, it harms the Palestinian people and the prospects for peace. What exactly do you hope to achieve with this speculation?” he asked.

Greenblatt cited a comment by Erekat in which the Palestinian official suggested that “Hamas and all those calling on President Abbas to resign and the PLO to dissolve itself are tools being used to implement the deal of the century …”

The envoy dismissed the comment as conspiracy theory devoid of evidence. “Saeb- We aren’t working w/ Hamas. You know that,” Greenblatt tweeted.
Netanyahu: We're turning Israel into a rising global power
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara, on Friday morning hosted Liberian President George Manneh Weah and his wife Clar at the Prime Minister's Residence for breakfast.

"My wife and I are delighted to have you, Mr. President, and your wife, in Israel," Netanyahu said. "Liberia and Israel have a wonderful friendship. I visited your country recently. You are now visiting Israel and Jerusalem."

"We have common traditions and a common desire to see a better future for our people, and this visit, I’m sure, will enhance it. Aside from the fact that I’ve been a longtime admirer of a great athlete who is now a great leader."

Following the visit, Netanyahu said, "This morning I had a special pleasure. My wife and I hosted George Weah and his wife."

"Today George Weah is the President of Liberia but you might remember him as one of the greatest football players of all time, a wonderful man who loves Israel.
Putin, Netanyahu Find Common Ground in Moscow
Russian President Vladimir Putin hosted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Moscow on Wednesday for the first time since Syria accidentally shot down a Russian reconnaissance plane in September 2018, killing 15 Russian airmen. Putin said, "We have been planning this meeting for some time. Life moves forward and requires consultations at the top level."

The issue of Iran - its regional ambitions and proxies in Syria and Lebanon - has dominated all of the 11 times the two leaders have met since 2015. The Israelis reportedly brought updated maps of Iranian positions in Syria to show the Russians.

Netanyahu invited Putin to the opening of a special Jerusalem monument devoted to the victims of the siege of Leningrad during World War II. The 872-day military blockade undertaken by Nazi Germany against the Russian city - today Putin's native St. Petersburg - led to the death of 630,000-1,500,000 people, mostly from starvation. The Israeli initiative to build a monument to this event was greatly appreciated by Russia and Putin accepted the invitation.
Casino magnate and Netanyahu backer Adelson has cancer, in ‘dire’ health
Casino magnate and GOP donor Sheldon Adelson is being treated for cancer and has not been at his company’s offices in Las Vegas since around Christmas Day.

Adelson’s poor health was revealed earlier this week by one of his company’s attorneys during a court hearing in a years-old case brought by a Hong Kong businessman.

The founder and CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corp. did not participate in the casino operator’s conference call with analysts and investors following its earnings report in January.

In a statement Thursday, the company said Adelson, 85, had non-Hodgkin lymphoma and was unable to work full-time because of the side effects from medication he is taking.

“These side effects have restricted his availability to travel or keep regular office hours,” the statement said. “They have not, however, prevented him from fulfilling his duties as chairman and CEO.”
With Netanyahu indictment cast, what happens now? Not much (pending a hearing)
After two years of investigations, police recommendations, legal deliberations and ad hominem accusations against various senior law enforcement officials, the indictment of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is signed. Getting it sealed and delivered could take years.

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit’s announcement Thursday afternoon that he intends to press charges against Netanyahu in three separate cases — three times for fraud and breach of trust, and once for bribery — is only the beginning of what promises to be a drawn out process that is likely to dominate the headlines for years.

Vowing not to step down or plead out, Netanyahu is widely expected to try to drag the legal process out for as long as possible.

Other senior politicians in similar situations have quit. Former prime minister Ehud Olmert, for example, stepped down in 2008 even before the attorney general announced his intention to indict him. Netanyahu, on the other hand, has vowed to stay on, though with elections on the horizon, his political future may be up in the air.

Theoretically, Netanyahu could immediately suspend himself, saying he is taking time off to clear his name and to let the Israeli people go to the polls on April 9 without having to ponder whether they want to re-elect someone who may go to trial over criminal charges. That’s indeed what virtually all opposition parties demanded on Thursday (though his right-wing partners backed him entirely).
Netanyahu: “I Can’t Make Sure Israel Stays a Democracy Unless You Make Sure I’ve Been in Charge of it For Twenty Percent of its Existence” (satire)
Today, incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made a statement directed at his electorate on the topic of his possible reelection. While most news agencies were focused on the Prime Minister’s apparent renege on his previous commitment to a two state solution with the Palestinians, we were more interested in something he alluded to later on.

“I find that the best way to enshrine democracy is to become a de facto monarch,” Netanyahu said in his speech. Netanyahu currently ranks as Israel’s second longest serving Prime Minister (9 years), behind only David ben Gurion (13 years). If he wins this election and serves for the full five year maximum, he could take the number one spot from ol’ Davey G.

This means that if voters make Netanyahu Prime Minister again, it’s possible that by the time he retires, he will have been in charge of the Jewish State for one out of every five years of the country’s existence. “Well, you know what they say,” said Netanyahu, “Once you go Prime, everything’s sublime. I could get used to this, now I see why all those Arab leaders hang on for so long.”
American nonprofit launches petition to keep Netanyahu away from AIPAC
Americans for Peace Now (APN) on Wednesday launched a petition calling on American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) to “condemn and disinvite” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from its March conference.

The petition was launched the day before Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit announced his intention to indict the prime minister for bribery, pending a hearing. It kicked off on the heels of Netanyahu’s decision to publicly go to bat for the extremist Otzma Yehudit Party.

In order to get Otzma Yehudit to join the Bayit Yehudi-National Union slate for the next Knesset – now known as the Union of Right-Wing Parties (URP) – Netanyahu made an unprecedented offer to Bayit Yehudi. Not only did he promise them cabinet seats, which is standard in putting together a coalition, but he offered the party a seat on the Likud list, which Deputy Defense Minister Eli Ben-Dahan now fills.

The petition states that Netanyahu has “forged an alliance with racists. AIPAC should condemn him, not make him a featured speaker at its policy conference.”

According to APN, speaking at AIPAC provides the PM with what Israelis perceive as “the seal of approval of pro-Israel Americans just before elections.” Elections are April 9.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren slams Israeli corruption with Netanyahu's indictment
"Corruption—in Israel, in the US, or anywhere else—is a cancer that threatens democracy," Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Democratic presidential candidate wrote on her Twitter account late Thursday night.

Her statement was made in the wake of Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit's announcement on Thursday that he has intent to indict - pending a hearing - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for bribery.

"We need to fight back," her tweet continued. "And we can start by having the courage to call it out wherever it occurs. Even among our allies. Especially here at home."

Warren also had choice words specifically directed against Netanyahu: "First embracing right-wing extremism. Now manipulating a free press, accepting bribes, and trading government favors," Warren tweeted. "The allegations against Prime Minister Netanyahu are serious and cut to the heart of a functioning democracy."

Warren is no stranger to deception herself. The Massachusetts Democrat claimed that she had Native American ancestry multiple times early in her career, which ultimately proved to be false.
Former Argentine president cleared of meddling in AMIA terror bombing case
A court absolved former President Carlos Menem on Thursday of charges he tried to interfere with the investigation into Argentina’s deadliest terrorist incident — the bombing of a Jewish center in 1994 that killed 85 people.

A dozen other people also were acquitted of that charge.

The ruling by the three-judge panel came in a trial ordered in August 2015 on allegations that Menem and other officials tried to divert attention in the bombing investigation away from a Syrian businessman who was a Menem family friend.

“In these three years there was not a single element that could justify an illicit act on the part of the former president,” Menem’s lawyer, Omar Daer, told reporters after the sentence was delivered. “He feels relieved.”

A group of relatives of victims of the bombing at the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association criticized the finding.

“It is more than clear, and the evidence proves it, that the Menem government knew that the attack would happen and did absolutely nothing to avoid it, much less to clarify it,” said the group, Active Memory. “He is and will be one of the principals responsible for impunity in the AMIA case.”
If India and Pakistan go to war, Israeli weapons could be decisive
As India and Pakistan contemplate their next moves amid rising tensions, airstrikes and the downing of an Indian warplane, Israeli weapons could play a decisive role in a future war. India has become a key defense partner for Israel in recent years with Israeli technology playing a major role in India’s modernization programs for its large armed forces.

India-Israel trade has been booming in recent years, reaching $6b. in 2012-2013. A variety of major Israeli defense companies have sought a place in the Indian market. These include Israel Aerospace Industries, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, Israel Military Industries and Elbit. This legacy of defense purchases has increased in the last decades. In 2003, IMI signed a $20m. deal to supply tank shells to India. New Delhi also purchased Tavor rifles. Total arms sales from 2001 to 2006 were $15b. according to UPI.

By 2017, India represented up to 49% of Israel’s arms export market, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research arms transfer report for 2017. In January 2018, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu traveled to India to reciprocate Narendra Modi’s state visit in July 2017. Defense talks were an important aspect of these trips.

Everything has not gone smoothly as the trade expanded. For example, India canceled a $500m. deal it had signed in 2016 to buy anti-tank missiles. India banned mDefense talks were an important aspect of these trips.

Everything has not gone smoothly as trade expanded. For example, India canceled a $500m. deal it had signed in 2016 to buy anti-tank missiles. India banned many deals with IAI and Rafael between 2006 and 2018. It also banned IMI in 2009, although a report said IMI returned to the Indian market in 2014.

The Indian Air Force struck at terrorists based in Pakistan on February 26 using the Israeli-developed SPICE kit for bombs, according to Indian media. According to Flight Global, the Spice 1000 precision-guided bombs were supplied to India for 36 Dassault Rafales, along with Spice 250 which were to be used for India’s Tejas jets. This was part of a larger evaluation by India of Rafael Advanced Defense systems, including its Python 5, I-Derby ER air to air missiles and Litening 5 targeting pod. India was also exploring Rafael’s BNET secure radio solutions. The value of these deals, according to a 2016 article, was up to $500m. This would have also seen India’s Sukhoi-30 fighters outfitted with 164 Litening pods.


St. Petersburg Choir Sings about Bombing America: On a Nuclear Submarine with 100-Megaton Bombs
On February 23, the concert choir of St. Petersburg sang a song titled "On the Wages of Servicemen" in St. Isaac's Cathedral. The song, which was written in 1980 by Andrei Kozlovsky and is about a nuclear submarine preparing to bomb America, was sung during a celebration of Defender of the Fatherland Day. It went: "On a submarine with a nuclear motor – yes, with a dozen 100-megaton bombs… I called to the gunner: 'Set the target to Washington city'… In the skies is my friend Vovochka… and his hatches aren't empty… I'm sorry, America… Five hundred years ago, you were discovered in vain… Burn in half the land of adversary!" The choir's performance came amidst tensions between Russia and the U.S. surrounding American withdrawal from the INF Treaty after accusing Russia of violating the agreement. This video was uploaded to the Internet on February 25, 2019 and the performance went viral among Russian social media users.




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Aussie Dave: "King of the auto-translation."
The Israel Situation:The Elder manages to write so many great, investigative posts that I am often looking to him for important news on the PalArab (his term for Palestinian Arab) side of things."
Tikun Olam: "Either you are carelessly ignorant or a willful liar and distorter of the truth. Either way, it makes you one mean SOB."
Mondoweiss commenter: "For virulent pro-Zionism (and plain straightforward lies of course) there is nothing much to beat it."
Didi Remez: "Leading wingnut"

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