Tuesday, December 17, 2013

From Ian:

Caroline Glick: Kerry forces Israel’s moment of decision
There was a ghoulish creepiness to US Secretary of State John Kerry’s visit to Israel last week. Here we were, beset by the greatest winter storm in a hundred years. All roads to Jerusalem were sealed off. Tens of thousands of Jerusalemites and residents of surrounding areas were locked down in their houses, without power, heat, telephone service or water.
And all of the sudden, out of nowhere, Kerry appeared. As Hamas-ruled Gazans begged the supposedly hated IDF to come and save them from the floods, and as Israel took over rescue operations for stranded Palestinians living under the rule of the PLO ’s gangster kleptocracy in Judea and Samaria, here was Kerry, telling us that we’d better accept the deal he plans to present us next month, or face the wrath of the US and Europe, and suffer another Palestinian terror war.
Michele Bachmann: Israel must never be betrayed
Israel has always been a beacon of hope and the best chance for peace in the Middle East. Secretary Kerry misses the positive humanity of Jews and Arabs living side by side, working together, and making a life together. This is a present reality, that can and should be encouraged to improve.
While Israelis have reason to question the commitment of the Obama administration, they should never doubt the strong bipartisan contingent of support for Israel in the United States Congress, and the constituents we represent.
John Kerry’s frequent failure program
According to various press reports, Kerry put forward a proposal under which Israel would forgo sovereignty over the Jordan Valley and instead maintain a security presence in the area for 10 to 15 years, one that would ostensibly be bolstered by various technological gizmos designed to enhance border defense.
Of all the dumb and dangerous designs to emerge from the depths of the US State Department, Kerry’s latest scheme is one of the more dreadful duds in recent memory.
To begin with, take a quick glance at a map and you will see that the Jordan Valley effectively serves as Israel’s buffer to the east, a line of defense against any potential threat emanating from over the horizon.
Foreign Troops Won’t Solve Peace Tangle
But the key to the problem isn’t so much the technical difficulties of a scheme or the fact that a war-weary American public isn’t likely to be enthusiastic about placing U.S. troops in harm’s way in the West Bank or to be more pro-active about keeping the peace there than are peacekeepers elsewhere in the region. Rather, it is the same basic problem that has always been the greatest obstacle to peace: the Palestinian refusal to give up their war on Israel rather than merely accepting a temporary truce that would allow them to continue the conflict on more favorable terms in the future. Until a sea change in Palestinian political culture occurs that enables leaders like Abbas to sign a peace deal without fear of losing power to more radical factions like Hamas, Kerry’s plans will remain irrelevant details.(h/t Norman F)
EU vows 'unprecedented' aid to Israel, Palestinians for peace deal
The EU’s foreign ministers, who often fill their periodic conclusions on the “Middle East peace process” with vinegar toward Israel, decided this month to add some honey, promising unparalleled support for Israel and the Palestinians if a peace accord is signed.
“The EU will provide an unprecedented package of European political, economic and security support to both parties in the context of a final status agreement,” the conclusions read at the end of Monday’s monthly meeting of 28 EU foreign ministers in Brussels.
The 'refugee' diversion
When people speak about the millions of "refugees" who will return to their homes, it is obvious that no type of peace accord can be reached which is based on one state for the Jewish people and a Palestinian state. However, if people would correctly only discuss the tens of thousands of actual refugees, all over the age of 65, the question would then receive its proper proportions and a solution to the problem could be rationally discussed.
As long as negotiations are ongoing and no final-status deal has yet been signed, it would behoove at least the Israeli side to refrain from using the Palestinian term with all its inherent meanings and connotations, instead using the accurate term, "descendants," who are not the same as refugees. (h/t NormanF)
Mahmoud Abbas: I Refuse to Allow 'Israelis' into 'Palestine'
The PLO official also stated that Abbas has thrown a wrench into discussions by stating that he will not allow any "Israelis" onto Palestinian Authority lands in the event of a two-state solution - including, ostensibly, Israeli Arabs. According to al-Hadi, Abbas has lumped all Israeli Arabs with Israeli Jews, and has expressed hatred against both as a group.
The report corroborates statements Abbas made earlier this year in Cairo, where he also claimed that he would not tolerate "any Israeli - civilian or soldier - on [Palestinian Authority] lands." While the two-state solution would effectively make a Palestinian State "Judenrein" - a Nazi Germany term meaning "free of Jews" - Israel would still allow Israeli Arabs full citizenship if they so desired.
Quote of Note: Auni Bey Abdul-Hadi (1937)
Between 1936 and 1939 the Arabs of the British Mandate of Jerusalem went on a rampage that became known as the “Arab revolt.” The Mufti of Jerusalem, Amin el-Husseini, cried to the heavens that the Jews were destroying the al-Aqsa Mosque and agitated his easily agitated people into bloody rampages that lasted for years. The British, seeking to calm the situation, initiated the Peel Commission which recommended a division of the land between Arabs and Jews in order to ease tensions and create peace between the vast Arab majority and the tiny Jewish minority in the Middle East.
During their investigations they met with Syrian Arab leader, Auni Bey Abdul-Hadi, who told them:
"There is no such country as Palestine. ‘Palestine’ is a term the Zionists invented. There is no Palestine in the Bible. Our country was for centuries part of Syria. ‘Palestine’ is alien to us. It is the Zionists who introduced it."
US Military Chiefs Advised Against Judea-Samaria Pullout in '67
The heads of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff were of the opinion, shortly after the 1967 Six Day War, that Israel cannot afford to give up Judea and Samaria, for strategic reasons.
A declassified document obtained exclusively by Mark Langfan for Arutz Sheva reveals that the military opinion of the US military leadership after the war is in line with that of present-day nationalist Israelis who say that Israel must not, under any circumstances, relinquish control of the Jordan Valley. In fact, the map drawn by the Joint Chiefs shows Israel keeping a swathe of land that stretches from the Jordan River in the east, all the way up to the center of the mountainous ridge in Judea and Samaria in the west.
And they should feel assured, without any equivocation, we will always be proudly standing together with them, in their corner, side by side.
Khaled Abu Toameh: A Slap in the Face for Anti-Israel BDS Movement
The claim that Abbas does not represent the Palestinian "consensus" regarding a boycott of Israel is inaccurate. In fact, many Palestinians seem to share Abbas's view, which supports a boycott only of settlement products.
That is why many Palestinians continue to do business with Israelis on a daily business. That is also why, despite the BDS campaign, Palestinians and Israelis continue to hold joint seminars and conferences in Israel and different parts of the world.
In wake of Abbas's statements, the BDS movement should reconsider its strategy. Calls for boycotting any party do not contribute to the cause of peace. Abbas's stance against the BDS should also serve as a wake-up call to its supporters, especially those who are not Palestinians, that negative campaigns only serve to promote hatred and extremism in the region.
UN Watch: Israel is ‘genocidal,’ says UN’s Richard Falk in TV interview
Falk uses his imprimatur as a UN official to make the grievously false accusation that Israel is acting with “genocidal intent” and perpetrating a “Holocaust.”
If Israel really is “genocidal,” it only follows logically that Falk will justify violence against Israelis, as he did in a recent blog post, berating “demands by Israel that Palestinians renounce violence” while Israel “sustains a structure of occupation and oppression.”
It’s time for the the U.S. to at least attempt to remove the 9/11 conspiracy theorist and Hamas supporter from his post—and to eliminate his prejudicial and outdated Human Rights Council mandate.
Supreme Court Justice Elyakim Rubinstein: Free Pollard
Supreme Court Justice Elyakim Rubinstein became the latest voice for the release of Jonathan Pollard last Wednesday, in a panel discussion held at the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS).
The panel discussion, entitled "Legality and Legitimacy," included esteemed legal advocate Alan Dershowitz, who Rubinstein praised for his work on the Pollard case. "He was an early critic of the harsh sentencing of Jonathan Pollard, in a period when few Jews or Jewish organizations would have said anything," he related. "They wouldn't speak of the guilt, only of the 'sentencing'."
Alan Dershowitz retiring from Harvard Law School
Alan Dershowitz, one of the country’s most prominent lawyers and a passionate advocate for Israel, is retiring from Harvard Law School.
Dershowitz, 75, who is known for taking on high-profile and often unpopular causes and clients, has taught at Harvard Law for half a century. His retirement becomes official at the end of the week.
Croatian player to miss World Cup over pro-Nazi chant
FIFA has banned Croatia defender Josip Simunic for 10 games — including the entire World Cup — for leading fans in a pro-Nazi chant after the team qualified for the tournament in Brazil.
Simunic invoked a World War II-era slogan used by Croatia’s then-puppet regime following a 2-0 playoff victory against Iceland last month.
French Court Convicts ‘L’Antisémite’ Director
In other instances the proceedings have been entirely predictable. As the waves lap against the beach and the seasons wax and wane, so has a French court found the Cameroonian actor, comedian, and recidivist bigot Dieudonné M’bala M’bala guilty of defamation, libel, and incitement to hatred and racial discrimination. Dieudonné, whose grotesque directorial debut L’Antisémite I wrote about for Tablet last year, has recently added yet another perverse accomplishment to his overlong list: he may or may not have invented the ‘Quenelle’—a reverse body Hitler salute now becoming all the rage amongst French youth—but he is certainly the man most responsible for popularizing the gesture. (The French army is now in the midst of the unseemly business of disciplining soldiers who flashed the gesture to worshippers at synagogues they had been stationed to guard.)
Italian Leader Justifies Hitler With Jewish Conspiracy
Andrea Zunino, the protest leader of the Pitchfork Movement which is leading current anti-government protests in Italy, gave an interview to the Italian La Repubblica.
In his interview, Zunino espoused classic tropes of Jewish global domination. He remarked "we want the government to resign. We want the sovereignty of Italy, which is the slave of bankers like the Rothschilds. It's curious that five or six of the richest people in the world are Jewish."
Report: First Israeli Natural Gas Export Deal May Be With Jordanian Company
In what would be the first deal to export Israel’s newly found natural gas, the owners of the Tamar field, may be selling energy directly to the Arab Potash Company, in Jordan, The Wall Street Journal reported.
The deal would be Israel’s first ever energy export, and could open the door to larger deals with Jordan or Egypt in the future, Israel’s Globes business daily said on Monday.
An Israeli start-up’s solution for the ‘customer service blues’
All too often, a foray into a “help” conversation with a representative of a retailer, manufacturer, or utility is anything but helpful. With so many companies outsourcing and offloading their customer service to third parties – often halfway around the world – customers often feel more confused after a conversation with a help representative than they did before they sought assistance with their problem.
To that end, Israeli start-up CallVU has developed a system where a help seeker can actually see what the person on the other end of the phone is talking about. Designed for mobile phone users, CallVU integrates the direct contact of a phone conversation with the clarity of images on a web site. And last month, the company won a major start-up competition.
Spanish ruling party submits bill on Jewish return
Spain’s ruling party has submitted a bill proposing to put in place a procedure for granting Spanish citizenship to descendants of expelled Sephardi Jews, a Spanish news agency reported.
The bill by the Popular Party proposes to naturalize applicants irrespective of their country of residence and without requiring them to relinquish any other nationalities they may already possess, according to a report Friday by the Servimedia news agency.
In the bill, the party “recalls that [the exiled] tenaciously adhered with reverence to its Spanish customs and roots through which they zealously preserved not only their love of Spain but also their traditions, culture and language,” Servimedia reported.
World malaria experts look to Israel’s past for future solutions
The mosquito-borne parasites that cause malaria were wiped out in Israel several years before the state’s founding in 1948. So why did leading malaria experts choose Jerusalem as the place to meet last week to formulate a new strategy for African nations?
Because the tactics that proved successful here in the 1920 and 1930s, coupled with new technologies, could be exactly what sub-Saharan Africa needs to address its malaria epidemic, which causes the death of a child every 30 seconds. Some 250 million people worldwide are infected by the parasite.
In first, Sheba doctors save Syrian refugee boy's life
A 4-year-old Syrian refugee from the besieged city of Homs underwent surgery recently at the Sheba Medical Center in Tel Hashomer, the first time a Syrian has been operated on at the pediatric cardiology ward.
The boy, Mohammed Hamudi, was born with a rare heart condition, reversed ventricles. A surgical team led by Dr. Dudi Mishali operated on Hamudi, who arrived in Israel accompanied by his father. The surgeons managed to implant a pacemaker in the boy's heart with a long-lasting battery, probably saving his life.

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