Friday, July 19, 2013

From Ian:

LATMA: Flock Builder reports from the field and Johan Phlegmat on the EU boycott

Palestinian minister afraid of Ramadan flirting:
The Palestinian Authority minister for religious affairs, Mahmoud al-Habbash, lashed out at his compatriots for preferring the bars and beaches of Tel Aviv to worshipful prayer. Habbash explained [Hebrew] to Israel’s Maariv newspaper:
“On the Ramadan holiday, when we’re supposed to be growing closer to Allah, they obtain permits [to enter Israel] and go to the beach to flirt with immodest women.”
“No one said it’s forbidden to go to the beach or on vacation. We believe it’s possible to pray, fast and believe in Allah while also living normal, enjoyable lives,” he said, but added a caveat: “Everything has a limit. It’s not written anywhere that young people in their 20s are allowed to take advantage of their freedom to go to the bars of Tel Aviv, to dance and drink, to go to the beach and flirt with Jewish or non-Jewish girls, and to do things they will later regret.”
Anne Bayefsky: Expect Samantha Power to continue Obama's disastrous U.N. policy
So where does Samantha Power fit in this sorry state of affairs? In general, Power will parrot the Obama/Rice mantra that it’s all about issuing in “a new era of engagement to the United Nations.”
In fact, Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications and Speechwriting, Ben Rhodes informs us that Power has already been hard at work applying the “engagement” agenda. The specifics reveal a troubling record on Israel, a subject which has become a touchstone for her appointment.
"Antisemitic" British MP Disciplined over anti-Israel Tweet
But a spokesperson for Stand for Peace - a British counter-extremism group - told Arutz Sheva that the decision to suspend Ward "did not go far enough," noting that the period for which he will be "suspended" falls over the summer recess, when parliament is not in session.
"Time after time antisemites are using anti-Israel sentiment as a means to further their agenda. It is with dismay that we note the withdrawing the whip is for the summer recess only.
"If David Ward had made these comments about any other minority, I suspect he would have been expelled from the party."
Irwin Cotler: Why Hezbollah is a terrorist organization
As the late US senator Henry Jackson put it: “The idea that one person’s terrorist is another person’s ‘freedom fighter’ cannot be sanctioned. Freedom fighters don’t blow up buses containing noncombatants; terrorist murderers do. Freedom fighters don’t set out to capture and slaughter schoolchildren; terrorist murders do.... It is a disgrace that democracies would allow the treasured word ‘freedom’ to be associated with acts of terrorists.”
Simply put, and this is something that the EU must act upon, there must be a zero tolerance principle for transnational terrorism just as there is a zero tolerance principle for racism.
Dividing Hezbollah: Canada, Israel and US vs the EU
The rift between the full terror designation favored by the US, Canada, and Israel, and the opposition from the EU, will continue to be a source of friction for counterterrorism experts.
The game changer might very well be Hezbollah’s invasion of Syria to wipe out rebel forces seeking to overthrow the regime of President Bashar Assad. Hezbollah has stoked volatility in the region. Stability in the Middle East remains the chief priority for the EU.
Bulgaria calls for EU to blacklist Hezbollah
Bulgaria’s prime minister has called for a consensus decision by the EU on blacklisting Hezbollah’s military wing.
Speaking Thursday at a memorial ceremony for the victims of last year’s bomb attack at the Burgas airport, in which five Israeli tourists and a bus driver died, Plamen Oresharski said cooperation with all political parties in Lebanon should continue.
Bulgaria, Israel mark Burgas terror attack anniversary
The attack targeted 42 Israeli tourists, causing injuries to 32 people. Bulgaria’s former foreign minister Nikolay Mladenov, who navigated the diplomatic process surrounding the Burgas attack, told The Jerusalem Post that Europe must be “uncompromising” toward terrorists.
“Once it became apparent that people connected to Hezbollah’s military wing organized the attack at Sarafovo Airport, it became inevitable that sanctions will be put in place,” Mladenov wrote in an email.
IDF Blog: A Year after Burgas Tragedy, IDF Officer Remembers Helping Israeli Victims of Terror
One year ago today, a Hezbollah terrorist killed five Israelis and injured 32 others vacationing in the Bulgarian city of Burgas. As the tourists prepared to depart the airport for their hotel, a suicide bomber boarded their tour bus and detonated an explosive. Moments after learning of the attack, the Israel Air Force’s International Squadron deployed to Bulgaria to provide medical care to injured survivors.
The International Squadron, one of the IAF’s most distinguished units, flies missions overseas to provide humanitarian aid to countries requiring medical assistance. Special missions have taken the squadron across the globe – everywhere from Japan and Haiti to Ghana and Mexico. During last year’s rare emergency, the crew flew to a foreign country to care for their own.
Justice Elusive on the Anniversary of AMIA Bombing
Thursday marks the 19th anniversary of the Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina bombing in Buenos Aires, which killed 85 people and wounded many more. What happened that day remains unresolved and Argentine Jewish officials spoke out against the government today for “dealing with Iran in ways they fear will only guarantee more impunity for those responsible,” according to the New York Times.
Nazi-themed cafe sparks uproar in Indonesia
Authorities in central Indonesia will ask a restaurant owner to explain his reasons for opening a Nazi-themed cafe that has sparked controversy among locals and tourists, an official said Thursday.
Soldatenkaffee includes a red wall of Nazi-related memorabilia, including a large flag with the swastika and a giant picture of Adolf Hitler. Its wait staff dresses in SS, or Schutzstaffel, military uniforms, and can be seen posing in front of the cafe on its Facebook page.
IRS in Court Friday, its Documents Prove Z STREET’s Claims
But the 14 IRS documents do reveal, and they do it categorically, and they constitute an admission on the part of the IRS, that the Service was looking at certain “Israel connected” organizations and making a distinction based upon the organization’s political/ideological viewpoint. And that is the very claim made by Z STREET in its lawsuit brought against the IRS in August, 2010, and in which there is a hearing in federal district court in Washington, D.C. this Friday.
New Book Reveals "Long Lost" Holocaust Films
Nearly a dozen “long-lost, rarely seen” Soviet films and scores of screenplays that were never produced about the persecution of Jews during World War II have been revived and are featured in “The Phantom Holocaust: Soviet Cinema and Jewish Catastrophe,” a new book released by Rutgers University Press this week.
“Those films have been pretty much just erased from history, really,” said the book’s author, Olga Gershenson, an associate professor of Judaic and Near Eastern Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, in an interview with RIA Novosti.
Google Israel chief: Waze won't be the last Israeli acquisition
"I am sure that Waze will not be the last acquisition in Israel," said Google Israel, Africa and Greece managing director Meir Brand at the "Globes" MAD (Media Advertising Digital) conference in Tel Aviv today. "They should be saluted. It's an amazing company."
Asked whether Google Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOG) would acquire more Israeli companies, Brand said, "Even if I had the answer, I wouldn’t reply. Israel is incomparable outside of Silicon Valley. There's an amazing world of innovation here. Google likes working in this world."
Arab Valedictorian at Israel’s Technion University is a ‘Stereotype-Buster’
This year’s valedictorian at the Technion University, known as “the MIT of Israel,” would likely displease those intent on framing Israel in the most unflattering of terms, writes Diana Bletter for The Huffington Post.
That’s because the Valedictorian is an Islamic woman named Mais Ali-Saleh who grew up in a small Arab village outside of Nazareth, in Israel’s Galilee. (h/t Zvi)

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