Friday, September 21, 2018

From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: The blood of slain Israelis stains many hands
It’s often claimed by Western enemies of Israel that the military actions of the Israel Defense Forces against Hamas in Gaza are disproportionate because such actions kill Arabs while Hamas attacks don’t kill Israelis.

That’s apparently why the Western media ignore the thousands of rockets and aerial firebombs launched from Gaza to kill the residents of southern Israel, reporting instead IDF military action to stop such attacks as the wanton killing of civilians.

When an Israeli actually is murdered by an Arab in cold blood, however, this isn’t reported as wanton killing of the innocent, if he happens to be the wrong sort of Israeli. Then it’s suggested his murder is his own fault.

The killing of American-born Israeli Ari Fuld on Sept. 16 has caused an outpouring of grief in Israel. The impassioned eulogies to him poured out not just because his wife, four children, parents and the rest of his family have been so cruelly bereaved.

It’s because he was a brave and outstanding fighter for Israel and the Jewish people, and admired even by his political opponents on account of his warm nature. He devoted his existence to fighting a great evil to which he has now lost his own life.

The Western media, however, don’t count Ari Fuld as a victim at all because, as a resident of the Judean town of Efrat, he was a “settler.”
Caroline Glick: How Israel defeated the PLO
The so-called “Oslo process,” is really two processes. The first was the Oslo peace process. It began with secret negotiations between Israeli leftists with ties to then-foreign minister Shimon Peres in Oslo, Norway, in 1993. It led to Israel’s recognition of the Palestine Liberation Organization and the establishment of the PLO-controlled Palestinian Authority to run the Palestinian autonomy in Judea, Samaria and Gaza. It also led to a seven-year attempt by Israel to make peace with the PLO.

The peace process, was the brainchild of the Israeli Left. It was predicated on the notion that without the PLO there can be no peace. And without peace, based on territorial concessions, Israel has no hope of surviving, let alone prospering.
The Oslo peace process failed in July 2000 when the PLO rejected peace and statehood.

The failure of the Oslo peace process was followed quickly with the initiation of the Oslo terror war by the PLO-PA and its partners in Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Its goal was to demoralize Israeli society and foment a collapse of Israel’s national will to reject the PLO’s maximalist demands, which in turn would lead to the eventual destruction of Israel.

To a large degree, the Oslo war ended in 2004 when Israel secured its control over the Palestinian population centers in Judea and Samaria and killed Hamas’s senior leadership in Gaza.

The Israeli Left never accepted the failure of the Oslo peace process. And the PLO-PA never abandoned its efforts to destroy Israel – in the name of peace and justice.

The refusal of both the Israeli Left and the PLO-PA to own up to the failure of both Oslo processes, has engendered a strange symbiotic relationship between the two sides. No, of course the Left hasn’t joined or supported the PLO-PA’s terror war. To the contrary. There is little if any distinction in the positions of the Israeli Left and Right on the need to defeat Palestinian terrorism.
Mordechai Kedar: The American government confronts the PA house of cards
In essence, with the moves he has taken against the PLO and PA, Trump is intimating that he has done his part, and now wants to know what Israel is going to do to put the PLO and PA where they deserve to be. Is Israel going to continue giving artificial respiration to these dead bodies? Is Israel going to continue keeping the hallucinatory agreements with terrorists signed by people like Peres and Beilin? Or is it going to join Trump and begin thinking rationally?

The Palestinian issue has direct bearing on the Iranian problem, because Trump is surely asking himself: If Israel, justifiably, is constantly warning about the danger facing it from Iran, how does it allow a terrorist organization to control the mountains overlooking Israel from Dimona and Beer Sheva in the south all the way up the coastal plain to Afula and Beit Shean in the north? Every schoolchild knows that the Palestinian Arabs will launch rockets against Israeli communities as soon as they are able to. Isn't there a contradiction between Israel's vehemence against Iran and its attitude towards the Palestinians? And if Israel creates dangerous situations for itself, why should America act against Iran and the agreements signed with that country?

It seems that the proverbial penny has dropped in Washington and the US government has begun behaving rationally with regard to the delusionary Palestinian State, putting it out to dry economically and ending decades of keeping it alive by artificial means. The Palestinian State can now find its rightful place in the history books as another march of folly.

The only problem is that all this is reversible and a different US government can easily turn back the clock and begin pressuring Israel to leave Judea and Samaria in favor of a judenrein Palestinian Arab state. Israel, therefore, must take advantage of the Trump era by creating a new reality, one that is almost impossible to change or dismiss: Israel must cancel the Oslo Agreements and all the others that followed those Accords, knock down the Palestinian house of cards, send the criminals it brought from Tunisia back to where they came from, starting with Mahmoud Abbas and his sons – and create independent emirates in every Arab city in Judea and Samaria run by local clans and their natural, local leaders.

Israel must remain in the village areas forever and offer Israeli citizenship to those living in those areas who make up about 10% of the Arabs in Judea and Samaria.

This is the only solution based on local sociological reality. Only this solution can bring stability, growth and peace to the Arab residents of Judea and Samaria, security to Israel. This is the solution to which Trump's steps can lead.

Peter Beinart shows off his 1990s-era thinking in the Forward, which is eager to publish him. Essentially every paragraph betrays his bias, his inability to grasp reality, and his wishful thinking:

Since the 1970s, and certainly since Bill Clinton got Yitzhak Rabin and Yaser Arafat to shake hands on the White House lawn at the beginning of the Oslo Peace Process in 1993, every American president has practiced “dealism.” Every one has dreamed primarily of solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and being remembered as one of history’s great peacemakers.

None has dreamed primarily of being remembered as one of history’s great liberators.

None has described the Israeli-Palestinian conflict primarily as a struggle for rights.

This stands in contrast to the way in which Americans, at least in retrospect, view other conflicts that pitted a population lacking basic freedoms against the state that denied them. Americans don’t generally tell the story of Mahatma Ghandi and Kwame Nkrumah’s struggles against British colonialism, or Martin Luther King’s struggle against white supremacy, or Nelson Mandela’s struggle against apartheid, or the American colonists struggle against “taxation without representation,” as a tale of how the two sides “got to yes.”

The Palestinians aren't the Founding Father or Ghandi or Martin Luther King. They have a autonomous state which is recognized by most countries in the world, a state that has failed - not because of Israel but because their leaders are not interested in building a state, or in securing rights, or in freedom. If they had wanted those things - things that Beinart believes axiomatically they want - they would have a state now. They would have accepted one of the many peace plans that Israel agreed to. They would have actually rescinded support for terror, which Arafat promised to do back in 1993. Beinart still believes Arafat's lies and he still pretends that the Intifada never happened.


Why does Beinart not ever want to discuss their failures and pretend that only Israel is to blame?

This isn't analysis - it is pathology.

Palestinian Arabs do have rights. So do Israelis - the right not to be stabbed, blown up, run over and to live in peace in the Jewish state. That is a right that Peter Beinart doesn't talk about.

Lacking even the minimal moral scaffolding of previous administrations, Trump and Kushner have taken what seems like the shortest path to a deal: They have demanded that the weaker party cave on virtually everything.

Although the details remain hazy, reporting suggests that the Trump peace plan will not create a Palestinian capital in East Jerusalem, will not link Gaza and the West Bank, will not require Israeli troops to leave the Jordan Valley (which comprises roughly 25% of the West Bank), will not require Israel to evacuate settlements and will not allow a single Palestinian refugee to return home.

Any how, exactly, is the "right of return" a prerequisite to Palestinian rights to live in a state of their own? How exactly are the 1967 lines a prerequisite to peace? How is their capital being in Jerusalem a prerequisite to peace and their acquisition of actual human rights - the types of human rights that are actually codified somewhere, not what they claim they are?

The Trump administration is cutting out the bull that Palestinians have been claiming for years, lies that Beinart swallows whole. If they want a state they can have one. But their desire for Jerusalem or "return" or the 1967 lines has nothing to do with freedom and rights - every one of those are designed to ensure that their state is not an endgame but a waystation on the way to the ultimate destruction of Israel, as every poll and every map and every honest interview with Palestinians shows.

But the idiot Beinarts and Kerrys and Obamas of the world refuse to believe it. (I think Clinton gets it, because he saw the rejectionism firsthand.)

In late August, the White House announced it was cutting $200 million in aid to the Palestinians. Then it ended funding for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA). UNRWA mostly provides health and education for Palestinian refugees, some of the poorest and most desperate people on earth. It serves half the people of Gaza, who already live in a territory the UN says may be uninhabitable by 2020.

As a result of Trump’s budget cuts, UNRWA warns that it may soon close more than 700 schools.

Do I have to point out to Beinart that if UNRWA would cut out all Jordanian citizens from its welfare, its budget would be reduced by 40% and there would be no crisis? And that the evil Trump and Kushner want to give Jordan the money directly to educate and provide healthcare to their own citizens, as they should? Or does he pretend that 2 million Jordanian citizens deserve special attention and for the world to fund them, forever - or until Israel is destroyed by "return" which is the very basis of UNRWA's reason for existence and what it teaches in its schools?

Beinart isn't stupid. He knows everything I am writing is true. The question is why he prefers to write these lies that his liberal friends love to pretend are the truth, rather than to actually have the guts and admit that his thinking will not result in peace but in perpetual war. Why does he pretend that Israel is to blame for the failure of Oslo? Why does he not mention terrorism or rockets or Hamas or "pay to slay" or Abbas' rejection of peace plans and frameworks and even direct talks?

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From Ian:

Israel: Russia accepts our take on Syrian downing of plane, coordination goes on
“Improvements” may be made to the Israeli military’s coordination with Russia over its operations in Syria in light of the downing of a Russian spy plane earlier this week, a senior Israeli army official said Friday. For now, he stressed, the deconfliction mechanism used by the two countries to coordinate activities was continuing to function effectively.

The official said an Israeli military delegation had answered Russia’s questions over Monday’s incident, including debunking the false notion that the Israeli jets had hidden behind the Russian plane. Israel also clarified that its attack planes had left the area before the Syrians fired the missile that downed the Russian plane.

He also said Israel notified the Russians ahead of the strike, and not a minute before as Moscow had originally claimed. And he dismissed a pro-Hezbollah newspaper’s claim Friday that Russia had refused to accept Israel’s explanations over the incident, for which Israel firmly blames Syria.

On Thursday, an Israeli delegation led by Air Force chief Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin visited Moscow in order to brief Russian officials on Israel’s initial investigation of the incident, in which a Russian reconnaissance plane, with 15 crew members on board, was shot down by Syrian air defenses following an Israeli missile strike on a Syrian weapons facility on Monday night.

During their meetings in Moscow, Norkin’s delegation told their Russian counterparts that the Syrian military fired more than 20 anti-aircraft missiles in response to the Israeli attack — a comparatively large number for this type of scenario. Four Israeli F-16 fighter jets were said to have taken part in the airstrike.

In addition, the senior military officer said the majority of the surface-to-air missiles fired by the Syrians — including the missile that hit the Russian spy plane — were fired after the Israeli jets had left the area.

“Most of those 20 were fired while all of our planes were already in Israeli airspace and on their way to land. We proved how the Syrians’ reckless anti-air fire was the direct cause of hitting the Russian aircraft,” the officer said.
Syria fired missiles for 40 minutes after Israeli strike, hitting Russian plane
The Israeli report into the downing a Russian plane off the coast of Syria during an Israeli airstrike on Monday runs some 40 pages in English and Russian and shows that Syrian anti-aircraft batteries fired dozens of barrages indiscriminately for 40 minutes after the initial Israeli attack.

In a highly unusual move, the IDF acknowledged the airstrike and released some of the findings of its initial investigation, which concluded that Syrian air defense units fired without aiming and “did not bother to ensure that no Russian planes were in the air.”

The IDF’s initial findings were presented in recent days by top Israeli officials, including the head of its air force, Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin, to their Russian counterparts in Moscow, and both Israel and Russia said Syria, not Israel, was responsible for the downing of the plane, although Moscow has been publicly critical of Israel over the incident.

According to the Israeli report, initially publicized by the Ynet news site, the “deconfliction mechanism,” a coordination system between the IDF and Russian forces meant to prevent friendly fire incidents over Syria, followed the usual procedure before the strike, as it had done in more than 200 attacks over the past two years.

The report says Syria’s military then activated several anti-aircraft batteries deployed throughout the country, firing for over half an hour, long after the Israeli planes had returned to their base. The Syrians fired dozens of missiles of various types, including the SA-5, a large, advanced missile which downed an Israeli plane over the Galilee in February, Ynet reported.

The Israeli delegation pointed out to their Russian counterparts that the fundamental issue — one likely to repeat itself — is the change in Syrian behavior since it hit an Israeli F-16 fighter in February.

Witness says Ari Fuld’s killer deliberately targeted an American
A falafel shop worker who was saved by a mortally wounded Ari Fuld said Friday that the terrorist deliberately targeted the American-Israeli and had repeatedly sought out someone “who spoke English” before launching his stabbing spree.

Security camera footage from the Gush Etzion Junction shopping mall on Sunday shows Fuld, fatally wounded and with blood pouring down his back, chasing and shooting his attacker 17-year-old Khalil Jabarin.

Jabarin was running after his next target, Hila Peretz, a woman who worked in a local falafel store, when Fuld and another Israeli civilian opened fire, preventing the continuation of the attack and moderately injuring the terrorist.

Peretz, who served Jabarin a falafel shortly before the attack, told The Times of Israel on Friday that Jabarin had wanted to target an American. “After he came inside and ordered his falafel, he asked me two separate times if I spoke English,” recalled Peretz.

“I told him ‘no,’ and asked him what it was that he wanted.”

Jabarin did not answer, but the falafel shop worker was convinced that the questions were part of the 17-year-old’s effort to determine his first target.

“It was not as if he didn’t speak Hebrew and had been asking to speak English so he could make his order. We carried out our conversation in Hebrew,” she explained.

“There were other people in the area that he could have targeted first, but he chose Ari,” she said. “But them he didn’t target, he must have wanted an American.”

  • Friday, September 21, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
Hundreds of UNRWA workers in Gaza protested job cuts on Wednesday.

One of the signs they were carrying seems significant:

"UNRWA Termination Means Back to Our Homeland" is a poor English translation of "UNRWA can only fire us when we return to our ancestor's homes in Israel."

When one stays on welfare long enough, it appears to be a human right.

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  • Friday, September 21, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

Every day, articles are written about the horrors of the "occupation." Not only popular articles, but scientific and scholarly papers as well.

And in nearly all of them, they fundamentally misunderstand the basics of history.

A case in point:  In 2016 a research article called "Attitudes of Palestinian medical students on the geopolitical barriers to accessing hospitals for clinical training: a qualitative study" was published. The abstract says "Our findings suggest that medical students living and studying in the occupied Palestinian territories receive sub-optimal training due to ambiguous permit rules, barriers at checkpoints, and the psychological burden of the process. These results highlight the impact that military occupation has on the education and quality of life of Palestinian medical students in a setting in which there is regular violence and many health indicators are already poor."

There was a flurry of articles earlier this year about Israel's permit system that restricts where Palestinians are allowed to go in Israel.  "Security bans are the hidden centerpiece of a permit system that Palestinians consider the ultimate tool of control in Israel’s half-century-old military occupation."

What practically no one mentions is that there were virtually no controls on where Palestinian Arabs could travel in Israel before 1991, when the permit system was instituted - as a result of the first intifada and the deaths of hundreds.

None of Israel's critics would suggest that there was no "occupation" between 1967 and 1991.

The fact is that the permit system is a response to Palestinian terror, not a consequence of "occupation." Israel gave Palestinian Arabs the freedom of movement that they claim as a right - and that freedom resulted in brutality and murders.

Similarly, the security barrier and other restrictions were enacted in response to even more Palestinian terror in the 2000s.

Why do these scholarly papers as well as popular articles ignore the context of the current restrictions, and instead blame "occupation?" Israel has shown that if there wasn't violence, the borders could be virtually open.

I've spoken to long-time Jewish residents of the West Bank who told me they could buy challahs for Shabbat in Ramallah, where they were brought in from Angel Bakery in Israel, before the first intifada. Jews and Arabs could have had freedom of movement in both directions if it wasn't for Palestinian terror.

It isn't "occupation" that causes Israel to stop Palestinians from freely coming to Israel and Jews from freely visiting Arab cities. It is terror.


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  • Friday, September 21, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

From Egypt Today last month:

 A world peace forum will be held in Saint Catherine city in South Sinai in September, said Awqaf Minister Mohamed Mokhtar Gomaa on Sunday.

Gomaa made the announcement following a meeting with South Sinai Governor Khaled Fouda.

They agreed to organize the gathering to promote tourism in general and religious tourism in particular, said Gomaa.

The annual forum is a religious message of peace to the whole world, he added.

The minister reiterated that terrorism has no relation with all religions.
This sounds great.

But the organizers want to also invite Jews, and that is not so easy.

Ahmed Mustafa, representative of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, met with the Committee on Religious Affairs and Endowments in the House of Representatives to discuss the preparations for the forum Forum, where he suggested inviting Jews to participate.

He may have been referring only to the few remaining Egyptian Jews, but that is not clear - the point of the peace forum is to encourage tourism.

In response, Major General Khaled Fouda, Governor of South Sinai, responded that before any Jews would be allowed to visit he would have to coordinate matters with the security authorities to ensure the safety of all the participants.

Members of other religions do not cause security concerns to the authorities - but Jews do. Not because the Jews are going to disrupt the conference, but because Muslims might cause problems if Jews are allowed there.

Jew-hatred in Egypt is so prevalent that the idea of inviting Jews to an interfaith conference is not a simple matter.

And unless Jews feel as safe in Egypt as non-Jews, there can never be real peace, no matter how many "peace forums" are held.

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Thursday, September 20, 2018

From Ian:

MEMRI: Senior Palestinian Journalist: Arafat Told Me He Went Along With Oslo Accords Because It Would Make 'The Jews... Leave Palestine Like Rats Abandoning A Sinking Ship'
To mark the 25th anniversary of the Oslo Accords, Palestinian journalist Abd Al-Bari Atwan, editor of the online newspaper Rai Al-Yawm, revealed in an article that the late Palestinian Authority (PA) president and PLO leader Yasser Arafat had told him in confidence that he did not believe in the Oslo Accords path but that he was going along with it because it was an opportunity "to bring the PLO and the resistance back to Palestine" and to drive out the Jews "like rats abandoning a sinking ship." Atwan also noted in his article that Arafat had cooperated with, funded, and armed members of Hamas, and had coordinated with Hizbullah to dispatch ships bringing weapons to the Gaza coast. Arafat, he added, paid for this with his life, because he had "caused the outbreak of the armed Second Intifada and brought weapons from everywhere possible."

The following are excerpts from Atwan's article, which was published on September 13, 2018:
"A quarter of a century ago today, the PLO leadership and the Palestinian people walked into the biggest trap in modern Arab history, set for them by the Israelis and their Western allies and some Arabs [as well]. They walked into it with their eyes open, believing the lie of peace and of the establishment of an independent Palestinian state – a lie exposed later by the facts on the ground.

"We were three friends of a minority that doubted the credibility of this celebration of mendacity and self-deception, and publicly opposed it. The first was the great poet and author Mahmoud Darwish; the second was [PLO Executive Committee member] Abdallah Hourani, and the third was this writer. Darwish quit the PLO Executive Committee, and Hourani followed him. I found no way to express my opposition to this mistake except for penning an editorial for the paper I edited at the time [the London-based Al-Quds Al-Arabi] on the subject of the situation in Somalia, for publication on the morning of the day of the signing [of the Oslo Accords], when there would be handshakes and smiles on the White House lawn...

"President Arafat was isolated from most of the Arabs, particularly in the Gulf countries, because he had supported Iraq during its invasion of Kuwait... The Gulf countries, Egypt, and Syria were hostile to him, and he was being pressured by several lobbies, some of them Palestinian financiers and some of them Arabs, as well as some Europeans. He maintained that the Oslo track, whose architect was [current PA President] Mahmoud Abbas, could protect the PLO, extricate it from its isolation, bring it back into the international arena and plant in it the first seeds of the Palestinian state.
PMW: Belgium cuts PA funding based on PMW report
In response to PMW's report that the Palestinian Authority had named two schools after terrorist Dalal Mughrabi, Belgium reacted promptly by severing all financial support to the PA Ministry of Education. PMW exposed that Belgium had forced the PA to rename a school funded by the Belgian government due to it being named after a terrorist, but on the very same day the PA had named two other schools in the same neighborhood after the same terrorist.

In response to the PA's mockery of Belgium, the Belgium Ministry of Development Cooperation has cancelled all funding of PA schools until no schools are named after terrorists, not only those funded by Belgium.

The Belgian Ministry of Development Cooperation announced that:
"Belgium regrets the naming of the two other schools, which were not built with Belgian funds. The glorification of terrorism or perpetrators of terrorist acts is not acceptable under any circumstances. Our country has repeatedly conveyed the Belgian position to the Palestinian Ministry of Education.
As long as terrorism is glorified through school names, Belgium cannot continue to cooperate with the Palestinian Ministry of Education and budgets for school building will be suspended."
[Joods Actueel, Sept. 4, 2018]

In September 2017, Palestinian Media Watch published a special report exposing that the PA Ministry of Education systematically name schools after terrorists and has named at least 32 schools after terrorists and 3 after Nazi collaborators. 41 school names glorify "Martyrs" and "Martyrdom".

PMW also reported that one of the schools named after Dalal Mughrabi, a terrorist who led the murder of 37 civilians, was built using money from the Belgium government. Initially the school was named "The Beit Awaa School," and subsequently was renamed the "Dalal Mughrabi Elementary School" without the Belgium donors being notified.

The government of Belgium immediately condemned the use of its funding for the purpose of glorifying terrorists, and demanded that the name of the school it had funded be changed.

  • Thursday, September 20, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
From Al Jazeera:

On the Gregorian calendar (so named after Pope Gregory XIII) this September, two of the holiest Jewish and Islamic high holidays coincide. On September 10, Jews around the world began their high holidays by commemorating Rosh Hashana which continues for 10 days until September 19, Yom Kippur. It is on that day that Muslims in general, and Shia in particular, commemorate the sacred day of Tasu'a and then a day later - Ashoura - the 9th and 10th of the Islamic month of Muharram respectively.

Both the Jewish and Islamic calendars are lunar while the Gregorian calendar on which they are being cast is solar. The lunar calendar is 11 days shorter than the solar and for that reason, though stable on their own respective calendars, Jewish and Islamic holidays appear to "roam" aimlessly on the Christian calendar. 
With the major difference that the Jewish calendar adds "leap months" to keep holidays in the proper seasons and Islam doesn't.

 Both Jewish and Muslim observers have noticed this proximity between Yom Kippur and Ashoura. On the occasion of the two holidays coinciding in 2016, Rabbi Allen S Maller noted how "both holy days occur on the 10th day of the month, Muharram for Muslims and Tishri for Jews."

The similarities, correspondences and affinities of such aspects of Islam and Judaism are only strange or bizarre to those who have fallen into the trap of falsely projecting the Zionist colonial adventurism in Palestine backwards onto history and positing an entrenched hostility between Jews and Muslims.

Like Christianity, Islam is deeply influenced by Judaism and has an even stronger proximity to its theological monotheism. This is not a matter of opinion or ideological position. It is a matter of historical fact.
Um, yes, as one of those Zionists I have mentioned the way that Islam has co-opted Jewish traditions, laws and holy places many, many times.

 The infamous statement of former US president Barack Obama that "The Middle East is going through a transformation that will play out for a generation, rooted in conflicts that date back millennia," is typical of the ahistorical gibberish that manufactures hostility between Islam and Judaism, and perforce between Jews and Muslims. By making such declarations, Obama projects his own criminal role in prolonging the Palestinian suffering under Zionist occupation to some distant past that never was. 
Islamic antipathy to Jews and Judaism indeed goes back since the dawn of Islam, as the cries of "Khaybar" that happen today show quite well.

Zionism is the condition of Jewish alienation from Judaism, precisely in the way militant Islamism is the condition of self-alienation for Muslims.
I love how Al Jazeera finds Muslims to explain the truth about Judaism to its readers.

Muslim antisemitism predates Zionism, both on the personal and theological levels. This article is what is revisionist.

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 Vic Rosenthal's Weekly Column

I’ve been spending a great deal of time lately reflecting on the meaning and importance of Zionism. One reason is that I’m writing a book on the subject, but there is also the news. And this past week, the news included the atrocious murder of a dedicated Zionist, Ari Fuld.

People like to say that he was murdered because he was a Jew. That is only part of the story: he was murdered specifically because he was a Jew living in Eretz Israel. I’m sure his murderer hated Jews in general, but what really infuriates them is Jews living in the ancient homeland of the Jewish people.

I am not saying that Jew-haters wouldn’t murder Jews if there were no Jewish state. Obviously, they did so throughout the long period of exile. But the existence and flourishing of the state represents the victory of the Jews over their enemies, and the frustration of the desire to rid the world of our people drives Amalek and his friends wild, to the point that they will die themselves to achieve their aims.

Recently I read a dumb article by a smart guy, Anshel Pfeffer, who said that Zionism had ended 70 years ago with the founding of the state. “Despite the –ism in its name, Zionism was not an ideology, it was a program,” a program that was completed in 1948. You can’t be a Zionist any more, he said, although you can argue interminably about the shape and nature of the state.

He is obviously, trivially, wrong. Zionism is both an ideology and a program, and while the program has changed over the years from establishing the state to protecting and preserving it, the ideology is still around, and is still hotly disputed both by Jews and others.

The minimal propositions of Zionist ideology are 1) that the preservation of the Jewish people is desirable, 2) that this requires the existence of a sovereign Jewish state, and 3) that the Jewish people have a historical, legal, and moral right to said state in Eretz Israel. You can add to these, but you can’t take anything away.

“Zionist” has become an ugly epithet in some quarters. Look it up in the Internet’s “Urban dictionary” and you’ll find that it refers to a “race supremacist, colonialist, extremist.” Ask Al Jazeera’s “Palestine Remix” propaganda generator and you find that Zionism is “A colonial movement supporting the establishment by any means necessary of a national state for Jews in historic Palestine.” UK Labour Party star Jeremy Corbyn famously saidthat “Zionists… don’t understand English irony.” And “Palestinian feminist” Linda Sarsour believes that it is impossible for someone to be both a Zionist and a feminist.

Zionism has nothing to do with race (or gender!), and the Jewish state came into being as an act of anti-colonialism, not the opposite. Needless to say – I wish it were truly needless – Zionism does not assert that Jews are superior to non-Jews, that Jews ought to dominate or exploit non-Jews, or that the religious concept of “chosen people” refers to anything other than the Jewish burden of observing the mitzvot of Torah. And believe me, Jews understand irony better than most folks.

The recently-created Palestinian people have an ideology and a program too. Their ideology derives from that of the 7th century Arab conquerors/bandits, and it states that Eretz Israel (and a whole lot of other places) belong to them in perpetuity, and that they have a right to occupy our land, take our property, kill our men, rape our women, and enslave our children. The program varies in detail depending on which Palestinian faction you ask, but it clearly conflicts with the Zionist program.

But the Palestinians are not the only ones opposed to the ideology of Zionism, although they are among the most honest about it. Some of the less honest anti-Zionists are to be found among American Reform Jews, who claim to be Zionists and to care about the preservation of the Jewish people and their state, but actually hold an ideology that denies fundamental aspects of Zionism.

The Reform ideology has matured since 1885, when the movement in America was founded. At that time, its platform was sharply anti-Zionist, stating “We consider ourselves no longer a nation, but a religious community, and therefore expect neither a return to Palestine, nor a sacrificial worship under the sons of Aaron, nor the restoration of any of the laws concerning the Jewish state.” Today’s platform pays lip service to their love and support for the State of Israel, but they have not significantly changed their ethical system based on “tikkun olam,” a Kabbalistic concept which they have redefined as a universalist, liberal, humanistic vision. Insofar as this system often places the welfare of other groups, including Palestinian Arabs, ahead of that of the Jewish people – and often even aligns the movement with the anti-Zionist Left – it contradicts the Zionist idea of protecting the Jewish people and their state.

In particular, Reform movement officials and rabbis often call for a “two-state solution” despite their lack of understanding the security concerns involved. Reform ideology and closeness to the political Left led directly to the creation of J Street, a supposedly Zionist lobbying group which has nevertheless systematically lobbied against the interests of the State of Israel, and the even more extreme “If Not Now” organization which puts on propaganda performances such as saying Kaddish for Palestinians killed in conflicts with Israel.

Ari Fuld was a traditional kind of hero, who saved at least one person’s life by chasing down and shooting the terrorist with his last ounce of strength. He was also a less dramatic sort of hero by devoting his life to activism on behalf of the Jewish state, and on behalf of its right to possess all of its historic homeland in Judea and Samaria. Ari, the son of a rabbi from Queens NY, came to Israel 27 years ago and served as a combat soldier in the IDF. In addition to tireless efforts as an advocate for Israel on social media and as a speaker, he worked for an organization that brought donated supplies to IDF soldiers wherever they were. He was liked and respected even by his political opponents.

Liberal American Jews were probably no less horrified by the brutal murder of Ari Fuld than Israelis (at least, insofar as they knew about it – coverage of Palestinian terrorism in foreign media is sparse and biased). But they should know that by legitimizing the terrorists in any way – by taking the position that the conflict is about Palestinian “rights,” by maintaining that the presence of Jewish communities across the Green line is illegitimate, by repeating the atrocity propaganda about Israel’s actions in self-defense, or by supporting organizations like the New Israel Fund that finance anti-Zionist causes – they are helping drive the terrorists’ knives into the backs of Jews like Ari Fuld.

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From Ian:

Kevin Williamson: If Palestinian Leaders Want Peace, They Should Stop Making War
Citing a routine by the comedian Bob Newhart in which a psychiatrist responds to a patient’s description of her self-destructive behaviors with the advice “Stop it!,” Kevin Williamson suggests that the Israel-Palestinian conflict will come to an end only when and if Palestinian leaders decide to stop engaging in, supporting, and funding terrorism:

A peace plan isn’t peace. Peace negotiations aren’t peace. Nobel Peace Prizes aren’t peace, either, though they were handed out after the Oslo Accords. Peace is peace.

And war is war: there were 169 Palestinian suicide attacks between 1993 [when the Oslo Accords were signed] and 2016, targeting shopping malls, bus depots, [and] the streets of downtown Jerusalem. In 2014 alone, there were 4,500 rocket and mortar attacks on Israelis. The Palestinians still proudly celebrate their stunning military victory over a pregnant woman, seven children, and five other civilians eating pizza at the Battle of Sbarro. There is constant violence on the Gaza border, and balloons and kites now are used to deliver incendiary devices into Israeli cities. There are practically no diplomatic relationships between the Israeli government and the Palestinian government, partly because the Palestinians have two competing governments run by two competing terrorist organizations: Fatah in the West bank and Hamas in Gaza. . . .

The conflict in Israel might be settled in a million different ways, but Palestinian powers reject 999,999 of those possibilities in favor of the one outcome that the Israelis cannot accept: the elimination of the Jewish state as such. To the extent that the Palestinian powers have the consent of the people they purport to rule, this is what is being consented to: war and more war, misery and more misery, with the Palestinians themselves suffering some of the worst of it. But the Israelis cannot make peace with people who will not make peace with them. They can only do what they have tried to do: protect themselves and look for harm-reduction opportunities.

[For the time being], the Israeli state exists, and the Palestinian state, thank goodness, does not, being as it is barely more than a dangerous hypothesis. A state is a weapon as fearsome as a nuclear missile, and one can guess what the Palestinians would try to do with one, if they had one that worked.

Human Rights Council Challenged Over Killing of Israeli-American: ‘Why Is The UN Silent?’
U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman described Fuld as “a passionate defender of Israel and an American patriot. He represented the best of both countries and will be deeply missed.”

Palestinian terrorist groups lauded the killing of what they called a “settler” – a reference to the fact Fuld lived in Efrat, a community located in territory disputed between Israel and the Palestinians.

During a session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, U.N. Watch executive director Hillel Neuer drew attention to the killing.

“I want to ask the United Nations and this council: Why has no official of this body condemned the murder?” he asked.

“Why is the U.N. silent when Hamas and Islamic Jihad – supported by Iran which just spoke here in this room – praised the murder?”

“Why were they silent when the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, the military wing of Fatah which belongs to the P.A. – which sits here – welcomed the attack, stressing the necessity of ‘resistance’?”

The P.A. “prisoner affairs commission” has confirmed that the family of Fuld’s killer, Yusef Jabarin, will receive a monthly stipend of around $390, with the sum increasing if he remains in prison for a number of years.

Jason Greenblatt, President Trump’s special representative for international negotiations, called news of the payment “outrageous.”

“Some people are complaining about U.S. cutting funds to the Palestinian Authority,” he tweeted. “But the P.A. continues to pay terrorists – in this case the terrorist who on Sunday murdered in cold-blood Ari Fuld, an Israeli-American father of four.”
Hillel Neuer at UNHRC: "Why are you silent on murder of Ari Fuld by Palestinian terrorist?
UN Watch's Hillel Neuer took the floor at the UN Human Rights Council, and asked: “Why are you silent after a Palestinian terrorist stabbed to death American-Israeli citizen Ari Fuld? Why won't you condemn the PA for incentivizing the murder of Jews by paying rewards to the families of terrorists?"

  • Thursday, September 20, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

Ma'an and other Palestinian media outlets published what appeared to be a press release from the Palestinian Ministry of Education:

The Ministry of Education and Higher Education (MoEHE) condemned the attack on the Ramallah Secondary School for Boys by a group of young people who are outlawed, stressing its categorical rejection of any attack on any educational institution and the entire educational process, especially the Palestinian teacher.
The Ministry considered in a press statement today that any attack on education is an attack on Palestine, and will constitute a major issue for the ministry. The ministry will enforce the maximum punishment, follow up on the aggressors and take protective measures to ensure that this situation is not repeated.
The ministry said in a statement that the Minister of Education and Higher Education d. Sabri Sidem and Undersecretary of the Ministry d. Ozer Saleh and Governor of Ramallah and Al-Bireh d. Laila Ghannam, the police and the Directorate of Education visited the school, where they met the teaching staff and followed up the details of the event, and then went to the hospital to check on the safety of teachers and students who were injured in the attack.
So some group of people attacked a school and injured teachers and students.

But there are practically no news stories of the actual attack! 

Ma'an doesn't bother to give any background. We have no idea that the motivation was for the attack, how many were injured, how many were involved, how many were arrested, what day this happened - nothing.

What kind of reporting is this? The type that the Palestinian Authority allows. because making its own people look irrational and violent is something that is simply not halal.

Obviously a story like this cannot be hidden as Palestinians are aware when people are injured and hospitalized. But before this press release from the Education Ministry, there was a near total news blackout on this incident.

(I did find a local Ramallah news outlet that mentioned that 7 were arrested and that the incident happened on Wednesday, when the police used pepper spray and "electric sticks" at the scene, after the General Union of Palestinian Teachers issued a press release. Still nothing about motivation.)

At first glance the Palestinian media seems to be free - Hamas media attacks Fatah, Fatah media attacks Hamas, Ma'an pretends to be independent. But in reality nothing gets reported unless the authorities allow it to be reported, and even "independent" Ma'an often publishes articles from the official Wafa news agency verbatim, without any reporting whatsoever.

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
  • Thursday, September 20, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

There are a couple of major differences between the annual US State Department report on terrorism in the West Bank and Gaza this year compared to other years.

Here is that section:

The West Bank and Gaza

Overview: The Palestinian Authority (PA) continued its counterterrorism and law enforcement efforts in the West Bank, where Hamas, PIJ, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine remained present. The PA Security Forces (PASF) constrained the ability of those organizations to conduct attacks, including through arrests of Hamas members planning attacks against Israelis. Per Oslo-era agreements, the PA exercised varying degrees of authority over the West Bank. Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) and Shin Bet arrested members of terrorist organizations operating in the West Bank.

The United States assisted the PA’s counterterrorism efforts by providing training, equipment, and infrastructure support to the PASF. U.S. training and support assisted in the PA’s continued development of professional, self-sufficient, and capable security forces. The United States also assisted the PA with criminal justice investigations and prosecutions of terrorist financing and terrorist-related activity.

Palestinians committed acts of violence and terrorism in the West Bank in 2017. The heightened period of violence from October 2015 to April 2016 decreased in 2017. However, Palestinians continued to commit stabbings, shootings, and vehicular attacks against Israelis.

Israelis, including settlers, committed acts of violence, including “price tag” attacks (property crimes and violent acts by extremist Jewish individuals and groups against Palestinians) in the West Bank in 2017.

Hamas maintained security control of Gaza. Several militant groups launched rocket attacks against Israel from Gaza. The primary limitation on PA counterterrorism efforts in Gaza remained Hamas’ control of the area and the resulting inability of the PASF to operate there.

The PA and PLO continued to provide “martyr payments” to the families of Palestinian individuals killed carrying out a terrorist act. The PA and PLO also provided payments to Palestinians in Israeli prisons, including those convicted of acts of terrorism against Israelis. Israeli government officials criticized this practice as incentivizing acts of terror. These payments and separate canteen stipends that the Israeli government allows for prisoners were first initiated by the PLO in 1965 and have continued under the PA since the Oslo Accords with Israel.

2017 Terrorist Incidents:

In January, four Israeli soldiers were killed and approximately 13 others wounded when a Palestinian man used a heavy truck for a vehicular attack in Jerusalem. Soldiers and a civilian who were at the scene shot and killed the attacker.
In July, a Palestinian resident of a nearby village stabbed and killed three Israeli civilians in their family home in the West Bank Israeli settlement of Halamish. Another member of the family sustained injuries. Police and IDF arrested the attacker after an off-duty soldier shot and wounded him.
In September, a Palestinian man from the West Bank village of Beit Surik shot and killed an Israeli Border Police officer and two Israeli security guards outside the West Bank settlement of Har Adar, northwest of Jerusalem. Israeli security officials shot and killed the attacker at the scene.

"Martyr payments" have never been mentioned before in these reports as a factor influencing Palestinian terrorism. This is a significant addition and one that is long overdue.

Under the Obama administration, Israeli "price tag" attacks were given more attention than  Palestinian terror attacks on Israelis that resulted in far more fatalities. In 2015, 81 words were used in a paragraph mentioning the deaths of 16 Israelis, and 180 words in the paragraph about Israeli "price tag" attacks that killed 2 Palestinians. Last year's report, covering 2016 when Obama was still president but issued under the Trump administration, also gave more space for "price tag" attacks - resulting in zero fatalities -  than for the attacks by Palestinians who attacked Israelis, killing 5.

In another notable change from last year, "Jerusalem" is no longer lumped in under the "West Bank and Gaza" section header as it had been in the past.

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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 12 years and over 25,000 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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