Tuesday, August 27, 2013

  • Tuesday, August 27, 2013
From Ian:

An Open Letter From the AJC to Ban Ki-Moon
In fact, you yourself have acknowledged, publicly and privately in the past, that there is discrimination against Israel at the UN. And it is in violation of the noble UN Charter, which assures the equal rights of all member states, big and small.
Mr. Secretary-General, as an organization whose link to the UN began at the founding conference in San Francisco in 1945, we count on your voice, and your moral authority, to be heard in condemning the systemic singling out and unfair treatment of Israel, a UN member state in good standing since 1949.
Back to the future
Israeli-Palestinian peace talks have resumed – but over time it will, once again, become clear that a full resolution to the conflict, including Palestinian statehood, is not in the cards. The reasons are plentiful and self-evident; not only is the very concept of separate Palestinian nationhood, (as historians of the Palestinian national movement themselves have admitted) largely contrived and recent Palestinian Arabs are a fundamentally tribal and clannish society whose separate parts often have closer ties with Arab societies and families in other countries than with their supposed compatriots.
Nor has the record since the Oslo agreements 20 years ago relating to Palestinian governance been very encouraging. To be fair, the Palestinian Authority has faced numerous, not easily surmountable obstacles – both from the outside and self-made – but on the whole, it is hard to be very sanguine about the chances of such an artificial, demographically challenged, economically, politically and territorially constrained entity to become anything but another failed Middle East state (especially if it will have to absorb hundreds of thousands of “returning” refugees).
Palestinian State in Jordan 'Inevitable'
Zahran did not pull any punches Sunday afternoon, speaking at a conference entitled "Two States for Two People, on Two Sides of the Jordan River." Deriding the Jordanian ruling elite as "Armani-wearing, English-speaking autocrats" he called on all parties to consider a radically different track to the current peace initiatives based off of a "Two State Solution" which would see a Palestinian Authority-run state in Judea and Samaria.
The conference was held at Jerusalem's Menachem Begin Heritage Center, and organized by Professors for a Strong Israel, with the goal of fostering debate over alternatives to the "Two State Solution" which is currently on the table.
Zahran was the sole Palestinian Arab representative, but claimed to represent the "secular Palestinian majority" in Jordan, where between 60-80% identify as Palestinian, and which he believes hold the key to ending his people's conflict with Israel.
Palestinians don’t care if ‘soldiers felt threatened’
The sense that one gets from this, and from the official denial by the State Department that negotiations were canceled, is that somebody on the Palestinian side wanted to create the impression that the PA called off a session of negotiations that never existed. However, both sides were extremely careful not to divulge any information as to when the next round of talks would take place, while acknowledging that negotiations would, in fact, continue.
The real issue isn’t whether or not the talks will continue. The real issue is that there has been a Palestinian reawakening “on the ground.” The number of current terror alerts from the West Bank attests to this — the figures have recently risen dramatically, after a period of relative quiet. On the one hand, the IDF and Shin Bet have stepped up their efforts to prevent terror attacks from being carried out; on the other hand, it should be noted that when operations take place in areas such as the refugee camps, there is significant risk of a larger-than-usual flare-up.
The Real West Bank Terror War
The prevailing narrative of the incidents alluded to in the preceding paragraph follow this line in which the presence of Israeli forces in Palestinian areas is not merely a provocation but a standing argument for the need to force the Jewish state to pull back to the 1967 lines. But the problem with this narrative is that it is based on a lie. Incidents like the one that occurred today in Qalandia that resulted in three Palestinian deaths and last week’s confrontation in Jenin do illustrate the problem with the peace process, but it is not the one that the liberal mainstream media and the international press think it is. The idea that Israel is staging these attacks to undermine the talks is false. The fact that the IDF is forced to enter built-up areas in order to track down terrorist suspects shows just how unreliable the Palestinian Authority is as a peace partner. Moreover, the willingness of mobs in these towns to rally to defend suspects and attack the IDF with gunfire and rocks is testimony to how deeply rooted support for terror operations is in a Palestinian population that we are told is ready for an end to the conflict.
IDF Backs Soldiers in Kalandiya Incident
The IDF said Monday evening that it was backing the soldiers who were involved in an incident in Kalandiya, north of Jerusalem, on Monday morning, in which three Palestinian Authority Arabs were shot dead.
An investigation into the incident found that during the late night hours on Sunday night, a Border Police force entered Kalanidya for the purpose of arresting a wanted Tanzim terrorist who deals with weapons trading.
Kalandia Rioter Previously Released in Shalit Deal
Yunis Jahjouh, 22, was killed along with Rubeen Abed Fares and Jihad Aslan. He was 19 at the time of the "Shalit Deal," which saw more than 1,000 terrorists released from Israeli prisons.
Border Police had entered Kalandia to an individual for suspected terrorist activities. Over a thousand Palestinian Arabs started rioting, and throwing rocks and stones at the Israeli personnel.
UNWRA reports worker, Rubin Zayed, was one of three Palestinians killed in Kalandiya clashes
It reported that a second UNRWA state member, a sanitation laborer, was shot in the leg during the clashes.
Rioters attack Israeli security forces, BBC reports ‘confrontation’
That “large crowd” apparently numbered around fifteen hundred rioters - as was noted in earlier versions of the BBC report but omitted in later ones. Some idea of the type of “rocks” used to attack the Border Policemen who – as BBC readers only learn in the eighth paragraph – were in the process of trying to arrest a terror suspect, can be gained from this video apparently filmed by onlookers.
The banality of Lisa Goldman’s Israel-bashing
Peter Beinart’s Open Zion website claims to “foster an open and unafraid conversation about Israel, Palestine, and the Jewish future.” The “unafraid” apparently reflects the popular canard that it is somehow dangerous to criticize Israel, but the site’s offerings tend to prove that most Open Zion contributors – among them avowed anti-Zionists like Yousef Munayyer – are indeed “unafraid” to depict the Jewish state in the worst possible light.
There is no doubt that Open Zion’s incoming senior editor Lisa Goldman also qualifies as absolutely “unafraid.” Indeed, her writings prove that she is not only “unafraid” to make a living by criticizing Israel, but that she is also completely “unafraid” to openly promote glaring double standards.
Daphne Anson: Falk Down Under: A Stern Warning
The Israel-bashing crowd Down Under are evidently delighted at the prospect of having the notorious Israel-demonising Richard Falk among them.
As this page shows, Professor Falk is coming to Canberra as a keynote speaker at the "Human Rights in Palestine" conference scheduled for 11-12 September, which is sponsored by the Australian National University and the British Academy.
Also set to address the conference are Professors Hanan Ashrawi and Jeff Halper, and Dr Sara Roy. Master of ceremoniies will be Sydney Morning Herald journalist Paul McGeogh,
British Academy Supporting Racist Lecturer Condemned by UK
Sept. 11 Canberra conference to feature top 9/11 conspiracy theorist, UN Watch urges British Academy to pull support for Richard Falk's Australia event.
Richard Falk: Egyptians supporting Sisi are Islamophobes, may even be thinking genocide
Now even Muslims can be Islamphobes!
Israel backers hit by web ‘witch hunt’
Antisemitic abuse aimed at Israel advocates should receive the same level of public scrutiny as high-profile Twitter incidents, experts and victims have said.
The use of email and social media sites to propagate abuse has become so severe that pro-Israel campaigners have feared for their safety and been forced to call police.
One victim this week likened the campaign against pro-Israel voices to a “McCarthyite witch hunt” and said a “network of abusers” operated on social media.
A spokesman for the Community Security Trust, which monitors antisemitism, compared the abuse to the threats to rape and bomb women on Twitter last month. He confirmed that CST had provided a number of victims with specific protection measures and safety advice.
New Oil Field Could Yield Rich Returns for Israel
A newly discovered field off Israel's coast may have a significant amount of light crude oil – the kind of oil that international producers use to make most of the world's gasoline. The Shemen company informed the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange Monday that the Yam 3 field, where drilling has been going on for several months, shows signs of light crude under the sea bed, at a depth of about 5,500 meters.
Israel’s ‘Irreversible’ acquired by ABC
The pilot episode will be developed by series co-creator Segahl Avin, a co-executive producer of the US series, along with Peter Tolan, according to the Deadline Hollywood website. The cast has yet to be announced. “Bilti Hafich,” which has been on since January, was renewed for a second season.
It is about a young couple and the changes that occur after the birth of their first daughter.
IDF Blog: How the IDF Prepares Israeli Schools for Emergencies
The Home Front Command prepares schools and businesses across the country from all of Israel’s communities for emergency situations
Cpl. Nestia Golubovsky finds herself in a different part of Israel every week. This Civil Emergency Instructor travels around the country to teach schoolchildren how to prepare for an emergency, and how to stay safe if they find themselves in an emergency situation. Today, she’s at a local elementary school in Kfar Qara, an Israeli Arab village in the north.
Israeli designer creates 'bomb-proof' backpack for kids
The backpack, according to the Daily Mail, has been designed to act as a basic personal shelter in the event of an emergency or terror strike.
One simply has to pull the side straps and yellow strings from the hood if they hear an air raid siren, and lie flat on the floor.
The backpack, which costs around £300 (1,683 shekels), is then supposed to fully protect the brain, heart, liver and kidneys from the impact and fallout of an explosion, with 19-layer Kevlar fabric at its core.
Promise of psoriasis cure on the horizon
About four million Americans suffer from psoriasis, a chronic autoimmune skin disease that causes patches of inflamed, silvery-white scabs. There is no cure for the condition, but Israeli researchers believe they may be on the road to formulating a groundbreaking drug candidate that could finally do the job.
As described in the journal Chemistry and Biology by the team from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU), their study in collaboration with Israel’s Teva Pharmaceutical Industries showed that inhibiting the immune system protein Interleukin 17 (IL-17) could be the key to controlling the skin disease.
Israel ranks 4th globally in health care efficiency
In a new ranking of countries with the most efficient health care, Israel came in fourth, while the US ranked — behind Iran — in 46th position.
The data was compiled by Bloomberg, and countries were ranked based on three criteria: life expectancy; relative per capita cost of health care (percentage of GDP per capita); and the absolute per capita cost of health care.
Syria's wounded treated in Israel



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