Monday, November 30, 2020

From Ian:

David Collier: ‘the wrong sort of Jew’ – the left’s latest antisemitic conspiracy theory
Last week one tweet by ‘Double Down News’ was shared 2000 times and received 3400 likes. It was an upload of a 9-minute video of Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi from Jewish Voice for Labour. On YouTube, the same video was watched over 120,000 times in 4 days.

Above the video ‘Double Down News‘ used the headline -‘Meet the Wrong Type of Jew, The Media Doesn’t Want You To Know Exists‘. Putting aside the fact that Idrissi and all of her JVL buddies have been given more than their fair share of mainstream media platforms, the underlying accusation here is stark. Zionists control the media. Why else would anti-Zionists not be given a platform? In other words, this is an antisemitic conspiracy theory.

The recent video even starts with Wimborne Idrissi saying she has been called the wrong sort of Jew. Except nowhere in any of the google searches was there any indication Idrissi and co regularly face such an accusation. All of the ‘wrong sort of Jew’ results were of Jews on hard-left websites batting away at an accusation that does not really exist.

They built the straw man and are now busy playing victims as they publicly demolish it.

The video by ‘the wrong sort of Jew.’ In just nine minutes, Naomi Wimborne Idrissi takes the viewer through most of the rancid arguments we have come to recognise in the fight against antisemitism. The pillars of hard-left antisemitic – anti-Zionist discourse.

That Jewish people are weaponising antisemitism and are harming the fight against real antisemitism. Idrissi distorts the truth by implying that the Jewish community is evenly divided. She is well aware that her opinion resides in a fringe minority group. She deals in historical distortion by decontextualising pre-Holocaust anti-Zionism. Raises the antisemitic idea that the treatment of the Palestinians by Israeli forces is comparable to the way Jews were treated by the Nazis. Touches on freedom of speech and truth – which is ludicrous hypocrisy coming from a spin artist who publicly calls for no platforming those she opposes. Tell viewers that media has ‘sidelined and ignored’ left wing Jews because they support Palestine. Which is a blatant lie. Takes ownership for the historical Jewish fights for justice. Finishes off by saying that her group are the decent ones – people who want justice and peace. Which means that 93% of Jews must be indecent and against justice and peace.

A vile cocktail of lies and distortion.
J’accuse: In the shadow of Dreyfus at the European Union
On August 21, it was announced that the employee would be fired on 1 September. She was left with the cancellation of her medical insurance amid the COVID -19 pandemic.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center for over a year has acted in support of a Spanish Jewish employee, tenured since 1996 and now a senior official of the European Commission. In 2013, she was transferred to the EU diplomatic service, European External Action Service (EEAS), to work in the Middle East (Israel and Palestinian Territories).

One of her colleagues informed her that their Division Head allegedly suspected her of spying for the Mossad. She was thus transferred to the Turkish Division, entrusted with counterterrorism files.

According to her lawyers, then began a “slanderous... defamatory... campaign with antisemitic overtones.” She was again suspected of passing information to Turkish representatives. In 2016, she was dismissed “in the interest of this service.” Thus a long and painful process began. The story appeared in last week’s Paris Match weekly (Belgian edition). The author, Frédéric Loore, gave the official an anonymous identity, the nom-de-plume of “Eva.” Loore suggested that his article was fit for the cover of a novel by John Le Carré.

He questioned: “Has the EEAS been infiltrated by a Mossad mole or have some of its managers engaged in harassment on the grounds of antisemitism? Was there a Mata Hari in the ranks of the service in charge of the European Union’s foreign and security policy? Or was it a fabricated plot to get rid of a cumbersome senior civil servant of Jewish descent?”

“Eva” had sought an investigation to find out on what these gratuitous accusations were based. “In the end, it was carried out only to harm me... After six years, they still refuse to tell me who accused me of these facts and on what basis,” the employee said.
Alan Baker: The Audacity of Belgium
In an official announcement by the “Belgian Federal Public Service Foreign Affairs” department, on Nov. 6 the Belgian government voiced its condemnation of the demolition by Israel of structures built illegally and without any planning and zoning approval in parts of the disputed territories administered by Israel. The buildings were constructed with Belgian funding.

According to this official announcement, “Belgium supports such infrastructure projects because they meet urgent needs. They are always carried out in accordance with international humanitarian law … the demolition of infrastructure and housing is contrary to international humanitarian law, in particular, the Fourth Geneva Convention, Israel’s obligations as occupying power, and UN Security Council resolutions.”

Belgium’s heavy involvement in illegal construction in violation of the planning, zoning, and construction regulations and requirements applicable in what the Palestinians and Israelis have denominated as “Area C” is made clear in the announcement:

“Since 2017, at the initiative of Belgium, a group of partner countries affected by similar actions has systematically intervened with the Israeli authorities to ask them to stop the demolitions and to repair the affected projects or to compensate for the damage suffered.”

Belgium’s audacity in demanding compensation is equaled by its blatant disregard of the legal infrastructure agreed upon between Israel and the Palestinians, applicable in the areas in which Belgium is so actively involved in illegal construction.


Israel Advocacy Movement: Israelis and Palestinian clash over Sheikh Jarrah
The pending eviction of the al-Kurd family from Shiekh Jarrah has made headlines for 40 years. In this video, we reveal the truth behind the headlines.
  • Monday, November 30, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

This one is entitled "The Zionist Lobby," showing the entire world is just an attachment to the Zionist keychain.



And this one is "Trump's Legacy," showing Donald Trump hypnotizing the Arab world while the evil religious Jew sneaks away stealing the Dome of the Rock.






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  • Monday, November 30, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
This is an except of a much longer speech by David Ben Gurion to the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine, at the YMCA in Jerusalem, on July 4, 1947.

And now I put the question to you: Who is prepared and able to guarantee that what happened to us in Europe will not happen again? Can human conscience, and we believe that there is a human conscience, free itself of all responsibility for that catastrophe? There is only one safeguard: a Homeland and Statehood! A Homeland, where a Jew can return freely as of right. Statehood, where he can be master of his own destiny. These two things are possible here, and here only. The Jewish people cannot give up, cannot renounce these two fundamental rights, whatever may happen.

The problem of Jewish-Arab relations is not merely the problem of Jews and Arabs in Palestine. It is the problem of the relations of the Jewish and Arab peoples as a whole. Their national aspirations in that broader sense are not only compatible but complementary.

Nobody can seriously claim that a Jewish Palestine could in any way endanger or harm the independence or unity of the Arab race. The area of Western Palestine is less than 1% of the vast territory occupied by the Arab States in the Near East, excluding Egypt. The number of Arabs in this country is less than 3% of the number of Arabs who have gained their political independence. The Arabs in Palestine, even if they were a minority, would still be a part of that large Arab majority in the Middle East. The existence of Arab States to the north, east, and south of Palestine is an automatic guarantee, not only of the civil, religious and political rights of the Arabs in Palestine, but also of their national aspirations.

But a Jewish Palestine, a populous, highly-developed Jewish State has something of great value and importance to offer, not only to the Arabs in Palestine, but to those in the neighbouring countries as well. Even the small beginnings of the Jewish State, where Jews have occupied and developed only a small fraction of the country, have already had a marked effect on the advancement of the population in Palestine. Even now the position of the Arab peasant and farmer in Palestine is superior to that of the Arab peasant and farmer in Arab States. Our national aim cannot be achieved without great constructive work, agricultural, industrial, material and cultural, and this must, by its nature, raise the economic and social standards of all the inhabitants of the country. We cannot fully utilize the water resources of Palestine, which are now being wasted, without providing larger irrigation possibilities for the Arab fellah as well. We cannot introduce modern methods of cultivation without the Arabs learning from that example. We cannot organize Jewish labour and improve conditions of work without similarly organizing the Arab worker and improving his conditions.

As long as the government is in foreign hands, the impact of our development on Arab advancement is small. The theory of holding the balance between Jews and Arabs, which in practice meant curbing and obstructing our work, was not only injurious to us but to the Arabs as well.

One may rightly ask: Why is it that a million Arabs can be safely left in a Jewish State and why should not a million Jews be left in an Arab State? If the Jews and the Arabs who are in Palestine ,were all the Jews and all the Arabs that exist in the world, this would be a very logical and conclusive argument. There would then be no reason whatsoever why one should prefer an Arab to a Jew or a Jew to an Arab, and only numbers would count. But one cannot ignore the fact that both communities living in Palestine are merely fragments of larger communities living outside, and both of them belong to these larger units and their fates are inextricably bound up with the larger units. By depriving the Jews in Palestine of a national home, by preventing them from becoming a majority and attaining statehood, you are depriving not only 600,000 Jews who are here, but also the millions of Jews who are still left in the world, of independence and statehood. In no other place can they have the desire or the prospect of attaining statehood.

In depriving the million Arabs of the same prospect, you do not affect the status of the Arab race at all. An Arab minority in a Jewish State would mean that only a certain number of individual Arabs would not enjoy the privilege of Arab statehood, but it would in no way diminish the independence and position of the free Arab race. The Arab minority in Palestine, being surrounded by Arab States, would remain safe in national association with their race. But a Jewish minority in an Arab State, even with the most ideal paper guarantee, would mean the final extinction of Jewish hope not in Palestine alone, but for the entire Jewish people, for national equality and independence, with all the disastrous consequences so familiar in Jewish history.

The conscience of humanity ought to weigh this: Where is the balance of justice, where is the greater need, where is the greater peril, where is the lesser evil and where is the lesser injustice?

The fate of the Jewish minority in Palestine will not differ from the fate of the Jewish minority in any other country, except that here it might be much worse.




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From Ian:

Lee Smith: Why Iran Is Getting the Bomb
Barack Obama will never forgive Benjamin Netanyahu for being right about the Iran nuclear deal. In his new memoir, Promised Land, Obama writes that the Israeli prime minister’s “vision of himself as the chief defender of the Jewish people against calamity allowed him to justify almost anything that would keep him in power.”

In fact, Netanyahu put his job on the line by doing something few Israeli voters support—he challenged an American president and potentially endangered the U.S.-Israel relationship. In March 2015, he went over Obama’s head to make his case to the representatives of the American people and told Congress that the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) would give Iran a clear path to the bomb. Since many restrictions were due to expire by 2025—the so-called “sunset clauses”—Iran would have an industrial-scale nuclear weapons program in about a decade.

“We’re being told that the only alternative to this bad deal is war,” Netanyahu told Congress. “That’s just not true.”

Netanyahu was right. Donald Trump pulled out of the JCPOA in May 2017 and there was no war. Trump sanctioned the Tehran regime into penury and instead of war, Iranian demonstrators took to the streets to protest against those who’d squandered the country’s wealth by funding international terror.

In January, the president ordered the killing of Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani. Middle East experts warned that he’d woken a sleeping giant and the region would shortly go up in flames—but again, there was no war. In fact, the Trump White House’s clear stance against the world’s leading sponsor of terror made room for peace in the Middle East. In the summer, the Abraham Accords gave Israel new regional partners, with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Sudan all agreeing to normalize relations.

Obama’s Iran deal was the costliest mistake of his presidency for the peoples of the Middle East. The premises on which it was based were proved false. And yet Joe Biden can’t wait to reenter the JCPOA, with Secretary of State-apparent Antony Blinken pledging to keep “non-nuclear sanctions” intact, signaling his clear intention to lift nuclear-related sanctions against Iran.

The only thing that could interfere with such wonderful plans, the press warns, is an impending Trump strike on Iran, which might come any day now. According to The New York Times, Trump asked his cabinet for military options after the U.N. reported that Iran had exceeded its limit of enriched uranium.

Does that mean Trump or Bibi is actually on the verge of attacking Iran? Of course not. On both the American and the Israeli fronts, Trump administration policy was to get American troops out of global hot spots as fast as possible—not start wars. What the war drums means is that the phony communications infrastructure that marketed the Iran deal from 2013-2016 is up and running again.
Richard Kemp: The Killing of a Nuclear Scientist May Save Countless Lives
Under the slogan "Death to America", Iran has been at war with the US, Israel and their Western allies since the Islamic Revolution of 1979, using proxy groups to kill hundreds of Americans in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon and other places; and to launch terror attacks across the Middle East, Europe, the US and Latin America.

Mr Fakhrizadeh was a brigadier general in the IRGC and therefore not only a senior military commander in a country at war with the US and its allies but also a proscribed international terrorist.

Iran will never abandon what it considers its absolute right to become a nuclear-armed state, not under the current regime nor any future regime.... It has lied to the IAEA and the archive even sets out in detail the ways in which it has deceived the inspectors.

Despite claims to the contrary, the JCPOA was never going to prevent a nuclear armed Iran... Its sunset clauses meant that at best the deal might have delayed Tehran's acquisition of nuclear weapons for a few years.... Any return to the JCPOA by a Biden White House, as is being pushed by Mr Brennan and other prospective administration officials, will not see a strengthened deal but more likely an even weaker one.

Mr Brennan and the European supporters of his argument seem to believe that Iran can be contained by appeasement and negotiation rather than military strength and political will. The path advocated by the proponents of appeasement can only lead to infinitely greater bloodshed, violence and suffering than the death of a proscribed terrorist on the streets of Iran.
WSJ($): Another Bold Strike Against Iran
If Tehran's most prized personnel can be killed and its guarded facilities damaged, and it can do little in response, then the clerical regime's haybat, its unchallengeable awe, is degraded for all to see.

For a regime that knows the extent of popular anger against it, that is a perilous situation.

America's will to intervene in the Middle East is declining rapidly, and Israel's position is significantly stronger than it was in 2012, when President Obama began secret negotiations with Tehran in Oman.
  • Monday, November 30, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
As mentioned in my previous post, 122 Arab intellectuals wrote a letter to The Guardian opposing the IHRA working definition of antisemitism

Let's look at their arguments.

1. The fight against antisemitism must be deployed within the frame of international law and human rights. It should be part and parcel of the fight against all forms of racism and xenophobia, including Islamophobia, and anti-Arab and anti-Palestinian racism. The aim of this struggle is to guarantee freedom and emancipation for all oppressed groups. It is deeply distorted when geared towards the defence of an oppressive and predatory state.
This is doubletalk. The socialists who advance this argument divide the world into "oppressor" and "oppressed," and Jews end up on the "oppressor" side - both because of their perceived "whiteness" and because of how they look at Israel, as the "oppressive and predatory state." So the very framework that is supposed to protect Jews is being used by the Arabs and socialists to attack Jews who believe that Jews are a people and a nation. 

2. There is a huge difference between a condition where Jews are singled out, oppressed and suppressed as a minority by antisemitic regimes or groups, and a condition where the self-determination of a Jewish population in Palestine/Israel has been implemented in the form of an ethnic exclusivist and territorially expansionist state. As it currently exists, the state of Israel is based on uprooting the vast majority of the natives – what Palestinians and Arabs refer to as the Nakba – and on subjugating those natives who still live on the territory of historical Palestine as either second-class citizens or people under occupation, denying them their right to self-determination.
Arabs misdefining Zionism is as offensive as Arabs misdefining antisemitism. Zionism is not based on "subjugating" anyone, and Zionism views Jews as the natives of the land. Israel is not "an ethnic exclusivist and territorially expansionist state." 

If Arabs need to lie to justify their anti-Zionist arguments, that indicates that their arguments are based on a far more fundamental hate. Which itself shows that the IHRA working definition is quite accurate.

3. The IHRA definition of antisemitism and the related legal measures adopted in several countries have been deployed mostly against leftwing and human rights groups supporting Palestinian rights and the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign, sidelining the very real threat to Jews coming from rightwing white nationalist movements in Europe and the US. The portrayal of the BDS campaign as antisemitic is a gross distortion of what is fundamentally a legitimate non-violent means of struggle for Palestinian rights.
This is because one does not need an updated definition of antisemitism to fight against neo-Nazi and white supremacist antisemitism. The entire purpose is to identify and call out antisemitism that is hiding behind the facade of anti-Zionism - which is that this letter justifies.

4. The IHRA definition’s statement that an example of antisemitism is “Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, eg, by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavour” is quite odd. It does not bother to recognise that under international law, the current state of Israel has been an occupying power for over half a century, as recognised by the governments of countries where the IHRA definition is being upheld. It does not bother to consider whether this right includes the right to create a Jewish majority by way of ethnic cleansing and whether it should be balanced against the rights of the Palestinian people. Furthermore, the IHRA definition potentially discards as antisemitic all non-Zionist visions of the future of the Israeli state, such as the advocacy of a binational state or a secular democratic one that represents all its citizens equally. Genuine support for the principle of a people’s right to self-determination cannot exclude the Palestinian nation, nor any other.
There is nothing odd about saying that singling out the Jewish state as uniquely racist or evil is antisemitic. The assertion that Zionism is inherently racist, or that it demands ethnic cleansing, or that it excludes Palestinian rights is an absurd lie - yesterday was the anniversary of Palestinians rejecting a state that the UN suggested for them in 1947. 

This paragraph shows exactly why anti-Zionism is antisemitism - because it treats Jewish nationalism as uniquely exclusivist when it is exactly the same as any other nationalism.

5. We believe that no right to self-determination should include the right to uproot another people and prevent them from returning to their land, or any other means of securing a demographic majority within the state. The demand by Palestinians for their right of return to the land from which they themselves, their parents and grandparents were expelled cannot be construed as antisemitic. The fact that such a demand creates anxieties among Israelis does not prove that it is unjust, nor that it is antisemitic. It is a right recognised by international law as represented in United Nations general assembly resolution 194 of 1948.
The history of the "right to return" shows quite definitively that its purpose is to destroy the Jewish state, not to provide rights for Palestinians. As early as October, 1949, Egypt’s foreign minister Muhammad Salah al-Din said, “…in demanding the return of the Palestinian refugees, the Arabs mean their return as masters, not slaves; or to put it quite clearly – the intention is the extermination of Israel.” In 1960 Egypt’s Nasser said, “If the refugees return to Israel, Israel will cease to exist.” Prime Minister of Lebanon Abdullah el-Yafi stated in 1966, “The day on which the Arabs’ hope for the return of the refugees to Palestine is realized will be the day of Israel’s extermination.” If Arabs cared about Palestinian human rights they would insist that Palestinians be given full rights in their host countries while they are there - but these hypocrites writing this letter don't say that.  (The last sentence is a lie as well, as we have documented many times.)

There is one more point that applies to this and to the other arguments: the bizarre assumption that it is impossible to support Palestinian rights without calling the Jewish state racist or Nazi or evil. That is not only an insult to anyone's intelligence - it is an insult to the Palestinian Arab cause itself.

6. To level the charge of antisemitism against anyone who regards the existing state of Israel as racist, notwithstanding the actual institutional and constitutional discrimination upon which it is based, amounts to granting Israel absolute impunity. Israel can thus deport its Palestinian citizens, or revoke their citizenship or deny them the right to vote, and still be immune from the accusation of racism. The IHRA definition and the way it has been deployed prohibit any discussion of the Israeli state as based on ethno-religious discrimination. It thus contravenes elementary justice and basic norms of human rights and international law.
This is a straw man. Beyond that, the IHRA example was that "the State of Israel is a racist endeavor" which is much different from saying that some things it does can be construed as racist, since that would fall under the exception of "criticism of Israel similar to that leveled against any other country cannot be regarded as antisemitic." So, yes, if Israel would decide to deport Arabs for no reason, criticizing it is not antisemitic - and I would be the first to criticize it.

7. We believe that justice requires the full support of Palestinians’ right to self-determination, including the demand to end the internationally acknowledged occupation of their territories and the statelessness and deprivation of Palestinian refugees. The suppression of Palestinian rights in the IHRA definition betrays an attitude upholding Jewish privilege in Palestine instead of Jewish rights, and Jewish supremacy over Palestinians instead of Jewish safety. We believe that human values and rights are indivisible and that the fight against antisemitism should go hand in hand with the struggle on behalf of all oppressed peoples and groups for dignity, equality and emancipation.
"Jewish privilege"? "Jewish supremacy"? Wow - the argument against using the IHRA definition embraces antisemitic tropes! 

Which is hardly surprising. Because as this letter shows, Arab anti-Zionism is based on antisemitism, and the only argument they really have is to redefine antisemitism to exclude Arabs and Leftists from the charge. 




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  • Monday, November 30, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
The Guardian published a letter from 122 Arab academics, journalists and "intellectuals" arguing against using the IHRA working definition of antisemitism because they want to distinguish between anti-Zionism and antisemitism.

Instead of demolishing the letter point by point, let's look at the history of today's anti-Zionism and see how it is indistinguishable from antisemitism.

There are four main strains of anti-Zionism that have popped up ever since modern Zionism emerged. The only three that remain are based on antisemitism.

The four strains are traditional antisemitism extended to anti-Zionism, Jewish anti-Zionism, socialist anti-Zionism and Arab anti-Zionism.

Right-wing antisemites were, and are, naturally anti-Zionist. Hitler's Mein Kampf contained a number of anti-Zionist passages. Modern neo-Nazis liberally quote left-wing anti-Zionists. Their hate for Israel is animated by their hate for Jews.

Jewish anti-Zionism (outside the fringe Neturei Karta) really only existed before the establishment of the modern state of Israel. They opposed the establishment of a Jewish state for various political, philosophical, religious and practical reasons, but once Israel was reborn nearly all of their arguments became moot. 

Today's Jewish anti-Zionism is nearly all socialist anti-Zionism, which is the most prevalent kind in the West today. It's origins are purely antisemitic. I recently wrote about antisemitism behind the Iron Curtain in the 1970s, where the charges against "Zionism" were identical to Protocols of the Elders of Zion propaganda that the Nazis used. There is no difference between the socialist antisemitism of the 20th century and today's socialist "anti-Zionism" except that today's socialists hide it better and use antisemitism as a means to attack the Right. Still,  there is very little literature from the Left criticizing the more blatant antisemitism of their philosophical forebears, which shows that they really aren't against antisemitism as they claim - their core arguments against Zionism have not changed since the 1950s. 

The style of anti-Zionism relevant to this letter is Arab anti-Zionism. 

The Arab opposition to Zionism was based fully on the disgust at the idea of Jews who were looked upon as weak, pathetic second-class citizens and dhimmis in the Arab world rising and taking political power and controlling land in the Middle East. 

Arabs were not opposed to non-Arab Ottomans controlling the region, and they opposed European control but were generally able to accept it as a de facto admission that Christian Europe was too powerful to oppose. 

But Jews? That was wholly unacceptable. And it is because they were Jews not taking their proper place as obedient, controlled minorities who had little recourse when Arabs decided to attack as they did every once in a while. 

It is absurd to separate Arab anti-Zionism from antisemitism. I just wrote about how Jordan banned Jews - not Zionists, but Jews - from visiting any Jewish holy sites the entire time they were under Arab control. 

This is hardly the only example. Antisemitism was so entwined with Arab anti-Zionism in the 1950s and 1960s that no one took seriously the occasional Arab objections that they didn't hate Jews. 

Here is a summary of official antisemitic propaganda in the Arab world from Middle East Review in 1961.




Here's another example of how Arabs viewed the remaining Jews in their countries after the Six Day War as assumed to be ungrateful enemies and not regular citizens:



There was no distinction made or even attempted between Jews and Zionists. Only in response to Western distaste at the obvious Jew-hatred did Arab nations start to tone down that part of their hate in public.

But the history of Arab anti-Zionism is that it is based on Jew-hatred. 

So this letter to The Guardian is meant to whitewash the history of Arab Jew-hate as the motivating factor behind Arab antisemitism. It takes some of the socialist arguments that they have no problem with Jews, but it is rewriting history.

The proof is obvious: neither today's Arab anti-Zionists nor the socialist anti-Zionists are willing to condemn the antisemitism of their predecessors. Antisemitism is inherent to those philosophies. 

Today's apologetics don't change that. 




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  • Monday, November 30, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
It is not well known that during Jordan's illegal annexation of the West Bank, they banned Jews from visiting the Western Wall and other Jewish sacred shrines.

Not Israelis - but Jews.


All of Jerusalem is holy to three religions—Christian, Jewish and Moslem, and some of the religious sites in and around the Holy City are shared by two or even all three of the religions.
....

For the Jews, the holiest place is the Wailing Wall, where —until excluded after the Arab-Israeli war of 1948 — they lamented the destruction of the great Herodian temple of 40 B.C.

...
Another holy site shared by the three religions is the tomb of the patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, which is situated at Hebron, south of Jerusalem. Christians and Moslems still go to the big mosque in Hebron to pay their respects to the patriarchs. Since the Arab-Israeli war it, too, has not been accessible to the Jews.

...

Somewhat in dispute is the Tomb of Rachel, the wife of Jacob. According to tradition, Rachel died here in childbirth and Jacob erected a memorial over her grave.

Still visible is the place on the wall where the Ten Commandments and prayer shawls were believed to have been hung. The Jews have not been permitted to visit the tomb since 1948.

The following month, this was reiterated:
The head of the largest organization of Orthodox rabbis in the country appealed to President Johnson tonight to use his influence in the United Nations to get permission for Jews to worship at the Wailing Wall in the old section of Jerusalem occupied bv Jordan.

Specifically, Rabbi Abraham N. AvRutick, president of the Rabbinical Council of America, urged both the Federal Government and the United Nations to enforce a provision in the Jordan‐Israel armistice agreement “which affirms the Jewish right to access to the Wailing Wall, and to all sacred Jewish sites and shrines in old Jerusalem.”
...
The rabbi also cited the Israeli practice of permitting Christians to go through the Mandelbaum Gate on sacred Christian holidays to visit holy sites in Jordan.

Rabbi AvRutick voiced regret that Jews were denied the same privilege in Jordan. He listed various sacred Jewish religious shrines, adding that “no Jew has been permitted to visit the graveside of his parents on the Mount of Olives in old Jerusalem.”

See also here, where the Agudath Israel organization in the US petitioned the UN to allow Jews to visit the Kotel, the Tomb of the Patriarchs, Rachel's Tomb and other holy places.

The Jordanians were zealous in barring Jews from visiting the holy places in the Old City. One amazing example happened in 1959, when a member of Canada's Parliament was not allowed to visit the Old City along with his fellow MPs because he was Jewish:
A member of the Canadian House of Commons was denied permission yesterday by the Jordanian authorities to enter the Jordan-held Old City of Jerusalem to inspect the Holy Places because he was a Jew.

Leon D. Crestohl, of Montreal, who is a member of the nine-man Canadian parliamentary delegation currently visiting Israel, was barred by the Jordanians when he sought to accompany the delegation on a tour of the Holy Places. Mr. Crestohl urged his fellow delegation members to make the tour without him.

“I am delighted that my colleagues have enjoyed a pilgrimage to the Holy Places,” he said later, “but I am disappointed that I was denied the same privilege to visit the Jewish Holy Places to which all faiths enjoy a recognized form of access according to the armistice agreements.”
Not only was a member of Canada's Parliament banned because he was Jewish, but the government of Canada did not even condemn Jordan's official antisemitism - and neither did Crestohl. 

There is only one exception I am aware of, when Jordan allowed Jews to come over for twelve hours in 1957, as I wrote in this post from 2010. Jews who had used to live in the Old City were so loud in their crying over the many destroyed synagogues that is caused an incident and Jordan shut the doors again.

This was state-sanctioned antisemitism, and Jordan made no apologies for it. In fact, it was ready and willing to create international incidents to defend its right to discriminate against Jews. 

To think that today's anti-Zionism is any different from the antisemitism that spawned it is just gaslighting.





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Sunday, November 29, 2020

  • Sunday, November 29, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
We haven't heard from Kuwait's Al Jarida newspaper in a while, but it has a long history of reporting spectacular scoops from Israel.

With only one problem - they are all completely made-up.

That doesn't stop the paper from being quoted in mainstream media, including Israeli media, as if a made-up story is worth reporting on. As if this newspaper has better connections in the Israeli intelligence community than....Israeli newspapers.

The latest "scoop" that came over the weekend was that Israel supposedly failed to assassinate Hassan Nasrallah, in an operation called "Plan B." The supposed operation also was sai to target a bunch of people in Iraq.

In this case, the "scoop" supposedly came from Iranian sources, not Israeli - like a similar story that Al Jarida published over the summer that the Mossad had failed in a very similar assassination attempt against Nasrallah's son.

It still amazes me that the media often reports these stories straight without mentioning that Al Jarida and Kuwaiti media altogether has a track record of lying.





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From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: The Prospective Return of Global Appeasement
This week, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo criticized Biden’s prospective team for living in a “fantasy world.” He said, “They led from behind, they appeased. I hope they will choose a different course.”

Biden’s choice as ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, who was an assistant Secretary of State under Obama, declared this week that multilateralism and diplomacy were back.

In response, Pompeo snapped that the Trump administration had developed “coalitions that actually deliver real results and reflect the reality on the ground,” and that America’s best interests were not served by “multilateralism for the sake of hanging out with your buddies at a cool cocktail party.”

Opponents of appeasement are often called warmongers. Winston Churchill, who during the 1930s fruitlessly warned that Hitler’s aggression needed to be curbed, was dismissed as such until his country realized almost too late that Hitler had Britain in his sights, as well as half of Europe.

The fact that Biden’s team consists of so many Obama-era retreads is causing concern among those Americans who understand the harm Obama inflicted upon their nation’s foundational principles.

They are no less concerned that Biden would essentially continue Obama’s strategy to reduce America’s standing in the world and thus weaken both the United States and the West that it leads.

It was a strategy that, under Obama, empowered those bent upon evil. Rational people everywhere, in the developing world no less than the West, should shudder at its prospective return in America.
Pompeo Passes Torch to Biden Admin Touting a Fundamentally Realigned Globe
These policies make sense to Israel and their Gulf partners, Pompeo said.

"It fits with their understanding of the risk to their people," Pompeo said. "So whether it’s in the Gulf states or Israel, I think they have come to appreciate that the policies that this administration put in place are the ones that are best for them, for their relationship and partnership with the United States of America."

"I’m confident more will follow," Pompeo said of other Arab nations likely to make peace with Israel.

The peace accords also are a sign of deeper U.S. ties with Israel’s traditional enemies, Pompeo said. The UAE, for example, is in line to receive more than $20 billion in U.S. weapons, including 50 F-35 Lighting II aircraft, MQ-9B drones, and advanced munitions systems—a massive military package that only would have been approved for Israel in years past.

While Pompeo was assailed in the media for stepping foot in disputed areas of Israel, peace talks with Arab nations continued. The BBC, for instance, wrote, "Trumplomacy: Mike Pompeo eyes history on Israel swansong trip." The article accused Pompeo of inflaming Palestinian leaders and positioning himself as a contender in the 2024 presidential election.

Asked about these critics, Pompeo described the reports as "longing for a time that is based on fantasy, when in fact, I think the world has moved away from that understanding that the lefties at the BBC hold so dearly."

Pompeo said he is not focusing on what is to come next year, but spending his final months in office ensuring President Donald Trump’s "America First" policies continue to challenge the conventional foreign policy establishment.

"We didn’t spend any time talking about what the—what might happen in January of next year," Pompeo said. "We spent a lot of time thinking about what we ought to do in November of this year and how we ought to continue—collectively, not just the United States, but continue collectively—to increase security in the region and get an even broader coalition."


Why Is the Palestinian Authority Donating to U.S. Universities?
The Palestinian Authority (PA) seems to have no shortage of funds to pay terrorists in Israeli jails and the families of suicide bombers. In 2019, the PA distributed approximately $148 million to prisoners, a 3 percent increase from 2018. Meanwhile, the PA lacks funds to combat the coronavirus and has cut salaries to government employees, including teachers (who are paid less than the terrorists), and other civil servants. Palestinians and Americans might, therefore, be surprised to learn that the PA has money to spare to donate to American universities.

A new study that I compiled for the American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise found that U.S. institutions received more than $10 billion in foreign gifts from Arab sources from 1981 to October 2020. While it is not surprising the wealthy Gulf countries were responsible for the lion’s share, it was startling to see the non-existent “State of Palestine” made nine gifts worth $4.5 million in the last four years. While the amount may sound relatively trivial, the impact can be exponential.

The universities that received gifts from “The State of Palestine” may feel obligated to report the money as the donors wish, but doing so in this case compromises their integrity by legitimizing the Palestinian claim to being a state, one that is not accepted by the United States government. Since no such state exists, the record should say Palestinian Authority. Furthermore, given that the PA relies largely on foreign aid to subsist and is in dire financial straits, questions arise as to where it came up with this money, why it chose to spend it in the United States, and whether the Palestinian public is aware of how its money is being used.

Until 2020, the Department of Education (DoE) did not report how foreign gifts were used by universities and, even now, many are not explained. Of the 259 PA gifts listing a purpose, roughly 177 were for some type of financial aid for Arab students. Only one of the foreign gifts was identified with a political purpose — a $643,000 contribution to Brown in 2020 from “The State of Palestine” to provide support for a professorship in Palestinian Studies within its Center for Middle East Studies.
Here are a couple of cartoons and graphics I posted on Twitter last week.
















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  • Sunday, November 29, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
Sometimes the absence of news is news.

The official Palestinian Wafa news agency didn't even cover the story of the assassination of Iranian defense official and nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh.

Wafa covers every phone call that Mahmoud Abbas makes or receives, but there was no statement by him or any other Palestinian official denouncing Fakhrizadeh's death or using it as a reason to paint Israel as a lawless aggressor, the way that Syria, Hezbollah, Hamas and others are. 

The UN and even the EU issued a statement condemning the hit. Of course so did Hamas and Islamic Jihad. 

The silence of the PLO is very interesting.

The reason seems to be that the PLO and Fatah  are assuming that the US supported the hit. They do not want to make any waves before Joe Biden is sworn in as President; they certainly don't want to do anything to upset Trump between now and January 20 which can affect their relations with the US.
 




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  • Sunday, November 29, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
Today, November 29,  is the UN-designated International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

The irony is unreal.

The day was chosen because it is the anniversary of the UN Partition resolution that called for two states in British Mandate Palestine - a Jewish state and an Arab state.

If Arabs had accepted the partition, the Arab State would be much larger than today's West Bank and Gaza.

Everything you need to know about that day, and about the last 73 years, can be seen in the Palestine Post of December 1, 1947, reporting on the day after the partition vote.

Jews celebrated:


David Ben Gurion pledged that Arabs would be fully equal citizens in the Jewish state:




Arab leaders declared November 29 to be a "Day of Mourning":


The Arab terrorists wasted no time in starting what would become the War of Independence, killing Jews in multiple attacks within hours of the declaration.




The actual Arabs in Palestine did not like how their supposed leaders and hotheads were inciting for war. They had no problem with the Jews.



That last day of November, 1947, is a microcosm of the entire 73 years since. The Jews remain enthusiastic that they have a state, want Arabs in Israel to be treated equally and still want to be on friendly terms with the Arab world. The people who claim to represent the Palestinian Arabs continue to make decisions that hurt the actual people they pretend to be defending. Those people remain silenced. And there is no shortage of Arabs who look for any excuse to justify attacking Jews.






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Saturday, November 28, 2020

From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: The prospective return of global appeasement
Under former President Barack Obama’s 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, which at best would delay its ability to build nuclear weapons by only a few years, billions of dollars poured into Tehran while the regime steadily increased its power across the region and continued to ramp up its terrorist activities.

Only when Trump took America out of the deal and reimposed sanctions did the regime start to totter and hopes began to grow that it might implode without the need for war.

Under successive American presidents, whether or not they were well-disposed towards Israel, Palestinian appeasement took the form of an endless peace process.

In order to keep the Palestinians in this process, the United States, United Kingdom and European Union refused to bring up anything that would cause them to walk out.

This meant ignoring their incitement to violence, their incendiary anti-Semitism and their declared aim of using a Palestinian state as means of destroying Israel in stages. The result of this surrender to blackmail was not peace, but endless Palestinian attacks against Israel through terrorism, murder and war.

When Trump ended this lethal appeasement strategy and instead moved the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem as a defiant statement of the Jews’ right to the land, the foreign-policy establishment confidently asserted that this would cause the region to go up in flames.

Not only did this not happen, with no one other than the Palestinians and their acolytes turning a hair, but the Gulf states started to normalize relations with Israel. This ended the Palestinian veto on peace and advanced the prospect of an end to the Arab war against Israel more than at any time since the 1920s.

But now these gains may be put into reverse. Biden’s nominee for Secretary of State is Antony Blinken, the Jewish stepson of a U.N. lawyer and the ultimate foreign-policy establishment insider.

Blinken served as President Bill Clinton’s chief foreign-policy speechwriter, a national security adviser to Biden and deputy to Secretary of State John Kerry. He is said to be a centrist who won’t make aid to Israel conditional on its policy choices, will keep the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem and will support Israel at the United Nations.

But the label “centrist” means he is a liberal universalist, and thus committed to policies that ultimately rest upon the appeasement of evil people.


John Podhoretz: Trump’s leaving Biden a Christmas gift of Middle East peace — will Joe throw it in the trash?
First, there is a general sense among all Democrats that anything and everything Trump has touched is corrupted and diseased and must be discarded.

The Abraham Accords are in part an outgrowth of the Trump administration’s clear tilt toward Israel from the moment it took ­office and the move of the American embassy to Jerusalem. That may alone may render the accords suspect in Obamian eyes.

At the same time, Biden now presides over a Democratic Party whose antipathy toward Israel is growing, as represented by the left-wing activists in the House who have made their loathing of the Jewish state a key element of their Squad’s cheerleading. Ironically, the Squad is committed to a Palestinian cause that its Arab sponsors have now largely abandoned.

The Arab signatories have grown tired of, and uninterested in, the Palestinian cause, and they seem eager to move on and deal with the world as it is. As they change course, the Democratic Party writ large may be eager to take up the cudgels of Palestinian nationalism more openly than ever before.

Perhaps even more painful for the Biden team, the ultimate success of the accords would be a history-making achievement for two leaders detested by the administration in which they served — Netanyahu, the subject of some of the ugliest score-settling jabs in ­Obama’s new memoir, and MBS, who has more than earned the ­opprobrium of all civilized people due to his apparent role in the literal dismemberment of his critic Jamal Khashoggi.

A Middle East in which Israel and Arab states find they can live together, trade together and move into the 21st century in a normal way is an international blessing. The Biden team doesn’t have to do anything but reap the fruits of this new reality. It’s the easiest thing in the world. Let’s see if they screw it up.
UNSC Resolution 242 at Fifty
Other factors explain the novelty of 242 as well, especially the impulse to “learn lessons” from previous rounds of postwar diplomacy and the inevitable over-learning that such an impulse generates. None of the four factors discussed above — multiple fronts, multiple players on one front, short duration, and inauspicious timing in the global order — is unique in its own right, but the combination of all four is. And the Six-Day War was not merely a unique war but a war in a unique conflict.

The wording of the resolution ignores the existence of a Palestinian national movement with real claims on the land, even while acknowledging their genuine historical grievance at the result of a previous war. And it ignores entirely that the very existence of Israel is at the center of the conflict of which the recent war was just one episode.

The standard model might work where the dispute is about land or resources or even holy sites and refugees. But when one side regards accepting the very existence of the other as an insufferable concession, any diplomatic process that makes overly ambitious demands (full peace instead of a truce) with no clear benchmarks (territorial compromises to be negotiated by all parties) among competing belligerents with vastly different interests is doomed to fail. When it leaves no room for any party or combination of parties to alter a status quo in any meaningful way by the adoption of half-measures, it has the inevitable result of cementing a reality of semi-permanent occupation.

The semi-permanent occupation has been reasonably tolerable for the Arab states that lost the war, allowing them to pursue their own means for disengaging from a conflict they had no hope of winning. But it has been a catastrophe for the Israelis and Palestinians themselves, who still find their very national existence questioned and threatened in a way nations in other conflicts, even bitter conflicts, do not.
  • Saturday, November 28, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
The last three paragraphs of a Reuters article on the assassination of  Iranian nuclear engineer Mohsen Fakhrizadeh:

The NCRI said in the report that Fakhrizadeh was born in 1958 in the Shi’ite Muslim holy city of Qom, was a deputy defence minister and a Revolutionary Guards brigadier-general, held a nuclear engineering doctorate and taught at Iran’s University of Imam Hussein.

A high-ranking Iranian source described Fakhrizadeh to Reuters in 2014 as “an asset and an expert” dedicated to Iran’s technological progress and enjoying the full support of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The source added that Fakhrizadeh had three passports and travelled a lot, including in Asia, to obtain “the latest information” from abroad, but would not elaborate. Western security sources say Iran was long adept in obtaining nuclear materials and know-how from the international black market.
Even though most articles stress his nuclear scientist credentials, there is very little talk about how he was both a nuclear science expert and a key member of Iran's defense department.

This was only admitted after his assassination by Ayatollah Khamenei himself:



This is a tacit admission that Iran has - today - an active nuclear weapons program. The army wouldn't be involved in peaceful nuclear power research. 

Those who are upset over this assassination are those who want to see Israel destroyed by an Iranian nuclear bomb.

(h/t Nevet)



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Friday, November 27, 2020

From Ian:

Natan Sharansky and the Meaning of Freedom
Natan Sharansky has been a computer scientist, a chess player, a refusenik, a dissident, a political prisoner, a party leader, a government minister, a nonprofit executive, and a bestselling author. He never expected to be a school counselor.

But the coronavirus dashes expectations. In early March, when the virus began to appear in Jewish communities outside New York City, Sharansky found himself online, in an unaccustomed position. He began to share with students and parents whose schools were closed how he had coped during years in confinement.

"At first, it seemed absurd, even obscene," Sharansky writes in his latest book, Never Alone, coauthored with the historian Gil Troy. "How could my experience of playing chess in my head in my punishment cell compare to being cooped up in gadget-filled homes wired to the internet—with computer chess—especially because this isolation is imposed to protect people, not break them?"

What Sharansky realized is that the costs of lockdowns do not depend on the reasons behind them. The sudden and seemingly arbitrary interruption of individual plans, movements, and relationships causes psychological harm. Sharansky recorded a brief YouTube video for the Jewish Agency—you can watch it here—offering his five tips for quarantine. Recognize the importance of your choices and behavior, Sharansky advised. Understand that some things are beyond your control. Keep laughing. Enjoy your hobbies. Consider yourself part of a larger cause.

"Surprisingly," Sharansky writes, "this short clip went viral, reaching so many people all over the world within a few days that it made me wonder why even bother writing this book." His reaction was another example of his droll and often self-deprecating wit. The video, however helpful it may be, does not match the power and wisdom of Never Alone. Part autobiography, part meditation on Jewish community, the book ties together the themes of Sharansky’s earlier work, from his prison memoir, Fear No Evil (1988), to his defense of cultural particularity, Defending Identity (2008). It is a moving story of emancipation and connection, of freedom and meaning.

Sharansky was born in 1948 in the Ukrainian city of Stalino. His given name was Anatoly. His parents were educated professionals who downplayed their Jewish identity. They did not want to risk political and social reprisal. "The only real Jewish experience I had was facing anti-Semitism," he writes. The precocious youth spent his early years playing chess. He learned to navigate a Soviet system that maintained its rule through fear. He became captive to doublethink. He repeated official lies and myths not because it was the right thing to do, but because it was the safe thing to do.


Caroline Glick: Justice (and anti-Semitism) you shall pursue
Over the past week or so we have been witnessing the emergence of a new sort of anti-Semitism in the Democratic Party. The new form of Jew-hatred is a combination of anti-Zionism and identity politics. It is convoluted and hard to follow. But contradictions and all, it has arrived. And Jewish Americans, sensing the partisan disposition, are adapting themselves accordingly.

The first place to look for the new Jew-hatred is in Joe Biden's appointments. Most of the attention this week has been focused on Biden's senior appointments. Biden appointed Tony Blinken, who is Jewish, to serve as his secretary of state. As John Kerry's deputy, Blinken played a major role in crafting the nuclear deal with Iran which, while billed as a non-proliferation agreement, gave the world's greatest state sponsor of terrorism an open path to a nuclear arsenal. Like his former boss, Blinken is faithful to the view that the Palestinians are the strategic nerve center of the Middle East. Without their agreement, it is impossible – or if possible, wrong – for Arab states to make peace with Israel.

Blinken is considered an establishment figure rather than an ideologue. But since he is a Jew, party ideologues view him as suspect. For instance, Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib responded to the news of his appointment with an anti-Semitic tweet. Responding to socialist Senator Bernie Sanders' praise for Blinken's appointment, Tlaib averred, "So long as he doesn't suppress my First Amendment right to speak out against Netanyahu's racist and inhumane policies."

Two other appointments announced this week certainly were more to Tlaib's liking.

Biden appointed Reema Dodin, a Palestinian American to serve as the deputy director of the White House Office of Legislative Affairs. As the pro-Israel website Elder of Zion reported, in 2002, as a student at the University of California Berkeley, Dodin was the head of the Muslim Brotherhood-aligned Muslim Students Association. In that capacity, she gave a speech at a church in Lodi, California where she justified suicide bombers. In her words at the time, "The suicide bombers were the last resort of a desperate people."

After her remarks were reported by Fox News, the Biden campaign issued a defensive response. Notably, the campaign made no effort to either deny or distance itself from Dodin's justification for the mass murder of Israelis by Palestinian terrorists. Instead, the campaign response read, "Reema is the first to tell you she has grown from her youth in her approach to pushing for change."

In other words, Dodin continues to justify the mass murder of Jews. But now that she's a grown-up, she presents it differently.
  • Friday, November 27, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
Business Insider wrote an article about  Israel's assassination of an Al Qaeda official in Tehran. Originally it said:



EoZ contributor Tomer Ilan noticed the highlighted statement - it is incorrect.

He wrote to BI informing them that Al Qaeda did attack Israelis with a 2008 attack on the Israeli embassy in Mauritania and 2002 Mombasa attacks against Israeli targets. (Since then he also found a third attack, the 2009 murder of Yafim Weinstein.)

Commendably, Business Insider corrected the article:



Tomer wonders if the initial claim that AQ never attacked Israel came from some common Arab memes, like these:








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From Ian:

Iran's nuclear program chief Mohsen Fakhrizadeh assassinated
Head of Iran's nuclear program Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, 59, was assassinated in Damavand, east of Tehran, local Iranian news reported on Friday.

Iran later confirmed the reports. "The nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was assassinated today by terrorists," the Iranian Defense Ministry wrote in a statement, while not blaming any specific entity for the incident.

However, Iran's foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif later stated on Twitter that "serious indication" pointed to Israeli involvement and urged the international community to condemn the attack.

Pictures from the scene show two vehicles, one blown up and one shot at from the front. Several local reports in Iran indicated that a suicide bomber was involved in the attack, but that has not yet been confirmed.

The Prime Minister's Office and the Pentagon have yet to comment on the reports.

A military adviser to Iran's supreme leader Ali Khamenei accused Israel for trying to provoke "a full-blown" war by killing Fakhrizadeh.


Warning from the past comes back to haunt Iran’s top nuclear scientist
“Remember that name” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned in 2018 of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, who many referred to as the “father” of Iran’s nuclear weapons project.

But over the course of two years, no one remembered that name. Save for a few, including those who assassinated him on a busy street in Damavand, east of the capital of Tehran, on Friday.

Netanyahu made the comment when he divulged that Israel had obtained 100,000 files from Iran’s secret nuclear archives. He said that Fakhrizadeh, a brigadier general in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps and a professor of physics at the Guard’s Imam Hussein University, played a central role in the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program.

Though he had been sidelined for several years, Fakhirzadeh returned to drive Iran’s nuclear program, Project Amad, specifically to develop nuclear warheads for the multitudes of ballistic missiles the Islamic republic already possesses.

While Iran was forced to shelve Project Amad in 2003, it continued with its nuclear ambitions and Western intelligence sources even revealed that in 2013 Fakhrizadeh had attended a North Korean nuclear weapons test.
By Daled Amos

Dov Lipman, who served as a member of Israel's 19th Knesset, writes about Obama’s revisionist ‘Promised Land’ -- a scathing review of the errors and outright misleading claims in Obama's new book.

After recounting -- and debunking -- numerous falsehoods, Lipman concludes:
I have no problem with criticism of Israel. We can debate the issues in intellectually honest discussions, and in the end, we may have to agree to disagree about Israel’s policies. But no one should accept a book that is filled with historical inaccuracies that invariably lead innocent and unknowing readers to reach false conclusions. Such a devastating book has real-life ramifications and consequences.

It is terribly disappointing. I surely would have expected truth, accuracy and fairness from Barack Obama, America’s 44th president. But the falsehoods and inaccuracies in this memoir only feed the theory that Obama was, in fact, anti-Israel. Now, through A Promised Land, he seeks to convince others to join him. [emphasis added]
Rather than review the list of falsehoods and inaccuracies, I just want to note why we should not be surprised by Obama's attack on Israel in his book.

On the one hand, we should recall Obama's attempt to recast the narrative of Israel's history as just a response to the Holocaust. 

In May 2008, presidential candidate Barack Obama told The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg how the Holocaust is the justification for the Jewish State of Israel:
I know that that there are those who would argue that in some ways America has become a safe refuge for the Jewish people, but if you’ve gone through the Holocaust, then that does not offer the same sense of confidence and security as the idea that the Jewish people can take care of themselves no matter what happens. That makes it a fundamentally just idea.
Never mind the 3,000-year-old Jewish ties to the land.

America's strong bonds with Israel are well known. This bond is unbreakable. It is based upon cultural and historical ties, and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied. [emphasis added]
Sure, the Holocaust cannot be denied (if only!), but the Jewish historical, cultural and indigenous ties -- well, that is another matter.

This pales in comparison to Obama' rewriting of Israel's history in his new book.

But I want to concentrate on something else -- on why we should have known about Obama's disregard for Israel before he became president.

In June 2008, while at a Florida synagogue to reassure Jewish voters of his commitment to Israel, Obama was asked about his association with Rashid Khalidi.

Obama responded:
You mentioned Rashid Khalidi, who is a professor at Columbia. I do know him because he talked at the University of Chicago and he is Palestinian, and I do know him and I have had conversations with him.

He is not one of my advisers, he is not one of my foreign policy people, his kids went to the lab school where my kids go as well.

He is a respected scholar although he vehemently disagrees a lot of Israel policy."

Obama, with his wife and Khalidi
Obama, with his wife and Khalidi



Two evasions are worth noting.

First of all, Obama claims he knows Khalidi from the University of Chicago and through the school where their children go.

The truth, however, is that Obama and Khalidi were very good friends -- not casual acquaintances.

An article in The LA Times, 2 months before Obama's appearance at that synagogue, reports about a party Obama attended in honor of Rashid Khalidi upon his moving to New York to teach at Columbia University:
A special tribute came from Khalidi's friend and frequent dinner companion, the young state Sen. Barack Obama. Speaking to the crowd, Obama reminisced about meals prepared by Khalidi's wife, Mona, and conversations that had challenged his thinking.

His many talks with the Khalidis, Obama said, had been "consistent reminders to me of my own blind spots and my own biases. . . . It's for that reason that I'm hoping that, for many years to come, we continue that conversation -- a conversation that is necessary not just around Mona and Rashid's dinner table," but around "this entire world."

...And yet the warm embrace Obama gave to Khalidi, and words like those at the professor's going-away party, have left some Palestinian American leaders believing that Obama is more receptive to their viewpoint than he is willing to say.

Their belief is not drawn from Obama's speeches or campaign literature, but from comments that some say Obama made in private and from his association with the Palestinian American community in his hometown of Chicago, including his presence at events where anger at Israeli and U.S. Middle East policy was freely expressed. [emphasis added]
Obama could have answered honestly that Khalidi was a friend with whom he had little contact after his move to New York and that Khalidi was an Arab friend just as he had Jewish friends.

Instead, Obama was dishonest and misleading.

This article by Mona Charen which appeared in The National Review in June 2008 might explain why:
For a true friend, Obama also chose peculiar associates. He was quite friendly with Rashid Khalidi, a former director of the official press agency for the Palestine Liberation Organization (and now a professor at Columbia). Khalidi, who has called Israel an "apartheid" state and who defends the right of Palestinians to use violence against Israel, founded a group called the Arab American Action Network. When Obama served as a director of the Woods Fund in 2001 and 2002, the foundation donated $75,000 to the AAAN, for projects like an "oral history" project on the "Nakbah," which translates as "catastrophe," and is the name Palestinians use for the birth of Israel. Khalidi held a fundraiser for Obama when the latter ran for Congress in 2000 [emphasis added]
We should note in passing who else Obama worked with at the Woods Fund. Aaron Klein wrote in February 2008: Obama Worked With Terrorist
Obama served on the Wood's Fund board alongside William C. Ayers, a member of the Weathermen terrorist group which sought to overthrow of [sic] the U.S. government and took responsibility for bombing the U.S. Capitol in 1971.

Ayers, who still serves on the Woods Fund board, contributed $200 to Obama's senatorial campaign fund and has served on panels with Obama at numerous public speaking engagements. Ayers admitted to involvement in the bombings of U.S. governmental buildings in the 1970s. He is a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago. [emphasis added]
Speaking of associating with terrorists, note that Mona Charen refers to Khalidi as "a former director of the official press agency for the Palestine Liberation Organization."

Khalidi has denied this.


“If the Israelis had any brains they could neutralize Palestinian irredentism just by giving back the West Bank,” asserted Rashid Khalidy, an American-educated Palestinian who teaches political science at the American University of Beirut and also works for the P.L.O. “It would split us.”
There is proof of Khalidi working for the PLO in The Washington Post too. Here is a letter by Thomas W. Lippman -- a former diplomatic, national security, and Middle East correspondent for the Washington Post
The Post's defense of Rashid Khalidi ["An 'Idiot Wind,' " editorial, Oct. 31] was generally commendable, but in fairness to Sen. John McCain, it should be noted that Mr. Khalidi was indeed "a PLO spokesman."

In the early years of the Lebanese civil war, Mr. Khalidi was the Beirut-based spokesman for the Palestine Liberation Organization, and his office was a stop on the daily rounds of journalists covering that conflict. As we used to say in the pre-electronic newspaper business: Check the clips.

THOMAS W. LIPPMAN

The Middle East Institute

Washington

All of this was ignored back then.

The LA Times, which had video of what was actually said at that party for Khalidi, never released the tape. They claimed it would reveal the identity of the person who gave them the tape.
But neither would they release a transcript.

Did Khalidi really provide Obama "consistent reminders to me of my own blind spots and my own biases," as he claimed -- or merely reinforce them?

Even in his book, Obama still glosses over Khalidi's past and his connection with him, according to this quote from the book by Middle East Eye:
"They [Jewish supporters] attributed these whisper campaigns not to any particular position I’d taken (my backing of a two-state solution and opposition to Israeli settlements were identical to the positions of the other candidates) but rather to my expressions of concern for ordinary Palestinians; my friendships with certain critics of Israeli policy, including an activist and Middle East scholar named Rashid Khalidi; and the fact that, as Ben [Rhodes] bluntly put it, 'You’re a Black man with a Muslim name who lived in the same neighborhood as Louis Farrakhan and went to Jeremiah Wright's church.'”
With the publication of this book, we see that Obama's anti-Israel work did not end with pushing for UN Resolution 2334.
Now, Obama will spread his hate and ignorance directly to his readers.



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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.

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The EU's hypocritical use of "international law" that only applies to Israel

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