Friday, December 20, 2013

From Ian:

Why the Palestinians keep losing
The following axioms of Palestinian Arab behavior guarantee that Israel will have little to worry about from them for the foreseeable future:
1. Honor is more important than life, and lost honor can’t be recovered except by violence.
2. It is always more important to hurt Jews than to help Arabs.
3. It is always a high priority for Arabs to hate other Arabs.
I thought hard about posting this. What if they take my advice? I can’t imagine that they will, though. They have been screwing themselves since the 1920′s; why should they stop now? (h/t NormanF)
‘Palestinian group carried out Lockerbie bombing’
Twenty-five years after Pan Am Flight 103 was blown up over Lockerbie, Scotland, with the loss of all 259 passengers and crew and 11 people on the ground, a former senior member of the Israeli security establishment said he was certain the bombing was carried out by Ahmed Jibril’s Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command.
The Israeli source, who spoke to The Times of Israel on condition of anonymity, said Israel was “listening in” during the months prior to the December 21, 1988 bombing on preparations for what “we thought was a plan to target an Israeli plane” and that it was “clear that Jibril prepared the operation.”
The comments came ahead of Saturday’s 25th anniversary of the worst terrorist attack ever carried out on British territory, and the worst terror attack on American civilians with the exception of 9/11. The anniversary is prompting another slew of conspiracy theories as to who was responsible.
Alan Dershowitz: Is singling out Israel for boycotts anti-Semitic?
There are those who claim that the BDS movement against Israel cannot be anti-Semitic, because it is directed at a country and not at individuals. But by treating Israel as the Jew among nations – singling it out for condemnation when others are far worse by any relevant standard – the advocates of BDS are simply expanding the notion of anti-Semitism beyond the individual to the nation state of the Jewish people. When Nazis condemned “Jewish physics,” “Jewish art” and “Jewish business practices,” they too claimed that they were focusing on Jewish institutions rather than Jewish individuals. That defense won’t work. Treating the Jew among nations precisely the way classic anti-Semites have treated the Jewish people is simply a new adaptation of the oldest of prejudices.
So let the world condemn those who single out the nation state of the Jewish people for the application of a double standard. Let the world understand that bigotry is bigotry whether directed against the Jew among nations or the Jew within nations.
Europe's love-hate relationship with Israel?
Britain, for example, is pushing for closer commercial, academic and research ties with Israel all the time, yet simultaneously condemns “illegal settlements” and “breaches of international law”.
Anti-Israel political mutterings in Whitehall, however, are trumped by the need for economic growth -- with a view to a national election in 2015.
Even the Palestinians have come out in opposition to BDS campaigns. They are happy for settlement produce to be boycotted, but as long as Israel supplies construction materials for the new Palestinian city being built and as long as Israeli Shekels are coming into the Palestinian economy please don’t rock the boat, Mr BDS.
Europe will continue to both love and hate Israel. BDS claims will continue to fuel a degree of underlying anti-Semitism. But as long as Israel continues to outshine the rest of the world technologically, European trade and commerce will continue to beat a path to her door in search of the economic benefits she brings and the brains she has to offer.
Members Flee Academic Group Boycotting Israel, May Form New Group
In an exchange between Penn State’s Bronner and Prof. William A. Jacobson of Cornell Law School, Bronner hinted that alternative organizations for serious scholars in the discipline who want to concentrate on American Studies rather than contemporary politics may be forming.
The loss of membership and the launching of a competitor association, along with the legal challenge to the ASA’s tax-exempt status, may be the only real legacy of the ASA’s boycott of Israel.
University unions in shock move to boycott themselves (satire)
In a shock move America’s largest union of university professors – the Council of Research and Academic Professionals (CRAP) which along with the American Studies Society (ASS), had recently voted in favour of an academic boycott of Israel, has voted to extend the boycott to America and hence will be boycotting itself.
Over 80% of the Union’s members took part in the vote, with a massive 13 voting in favour and only 11 voting against. This came after an impassioned plea by CRAP member Professor Angela Ayers-Davis who said:
(h/t Bob Knot)
Jewish Group ‘Appalled’ by Huffington Post Article, SWC Says it Paints Jews as Warmongers
Both the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) and the American Jewish Committee (AJC) criticized the article, headlined “Saboteur Sen. Launching War Push,” which featured a picture of New Jersey’s Senator Robert Menendez addressing pro-Israel lobby the America-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).
In the article, the publication attacked Senate leaders who backed a bill which calls for new sanctions against Iran in response to the country’s nuclear program. The bill threatens “to push the United States toward war with Iran,” the paper claimed.
David Ward, MP sponsors almost comical anti-Israel motion in House of Commons
The following motion, sponsored by Israel hater Jeremy Corbyn and David Ward (whose animosity towards Jews, and not merely Israelis, is well documented) and signed by 41 other MPs (including George Galloway), in the House of Commons is an almost comical example of the anti-Israel double standards often employed by a vocal minority of British politicians.
It seems that Ward and Corbyn woke up in the morning, and shuffled off to Westminster determined to convince their fellow MPs that Israel – which, per Freedom House, ”enjoys the freest press in the region” – urgently needed to be condemned for their record on press freedom.
Un Watch: Australia condemns UN official’s ‘disgraceful’ comments on Israel
UN Watch applauds Australia for joining Canada in condemning the “disgraceful” comments this week by UN official Richard Falk. Australian Ambassador to Israel Dave Sharma stated on Twitter (see below) that he was “appalled” by Falk’s comments calling Israel “genocidal.” But the PLO defended Falk today.
PA promotes murder as positive act at cultural event
At a Palestinian Authority event under the auspices of Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, with the participation of the Minister of Culture, the Palestinian Authority portrayed murder as a positive act.
The event started with PA Minister of Culture Anwar Abu Aisha honoring a number of released terrorist murderers by inviting them on stage and awarding them PA plaques of honor. Palestinian Media Watch has documented that the PA uses cultural events to honor terrorists.
PA glorifies murder in play under auspices of Mahmoud Abbas

Abbas guards intervene in confrontation between senior Palestinians
Jamal Abu al-Rab, a parliamentarian, and Jibril Rajoub, a top Fatah official and a former major general in the security forces, were among VIPs at a Ramallah hotel, welcoming Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi on a visit.
Abu al-Rab - a former militant leader from the Fatah-aligned al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades in the city of Jenin, widely known by the nom de guerre "Hitler" - slapped Rajoub in the face, witnesses said.
Al-Rab then fled and Rajoub summoned his armed guards to pursue him, said witnesses. Al-Rab sought refuge in the parliament building and Abbas's forces formed a cordon around it, sources told Reuters on condition of anonymity.
Haniyeh Invites Abbas to Discuss Unity Government
Hamas’s Prime Minister in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, on Thursday invited Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas to a meeting to discuss the formation of a unity government, reports the Ma’an news agency.
Abbas heads the Fatah movement, a longtime rival of Hamas. The two movements have been at odds since 2007, when Hamas violently took control of Gaza, setting up its own government there and cracking down on Fatah officials who reside in the territory.
Iran stages war games as nuclear talks resume
The Iranian Air Force was set to launch large-scale drills Friday, as part of “annual exercises aimed at testing indigenous air defense systems, improving the units’ combat readiness and displaying the country’s military might and achievement,” according to a report in Iran’s semi-official Fars news agency.
The drills involve “different types of interceptor fighters, bomber fighters, transport aircraft and reconnaissance planes,” the air force’s deputy commander, Brig.-Gen. Alireza Barkhor, told Fars.
White House vows to veto new Iran sanctions bill
If Iran sanctions legislation introduced Thursday were to pass Congressional hurdles, President Barack Obama would veto it, White House Spokesman Jay Carney told reporters. Speaking an hour after senators announced the bipartisan Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act, Carney slammed the legislation, describing it as potentially “damaging and destructive to the diplomatic effort.”
France Throws Doubt on Whether Iran Committed to Genuine Nuclear Concessions
"We have to implement honestly the first phase,” Mr. Fabius said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. “Then my main concern is the second phase. It is unclear if the Iranians will accept to definitively abandon any capacity of getting a weapon or only agree to interrupt the nuclear program.”
Mr. Fabius played a central role in toughening terms of the first deal with Iran. His warning that world powers risked being drawn into a “fool’s game” by Iran nearly derailed the talks in November. Mr. Fabius said Western powers need to focus their efforts on how to deprive Iran of “breakout capacity,” the ability to restart a bomb-making program from dormant nuclear sites and make a quick dash to a weapon before world powers can react. “What is at stake is to ensure that there is no breakout capacity,” Mr. Fabius said.
'Iran has nuclear fuel reserve to last four years'
Iran has a reserve of nuclear fuel that would last four years, the head of the country's Atom Energy Organization said, as technical talks continued in Vienna Friday on the implementation of a deal meant to freeze the Islamic Republic's nuclear program for six months.
Ali Akbar Salehi stressed on Thursday that Tehran will not be losing anything in the November 24 interim deal, meant to allow a window to negotiate a permanent agreement in the nuclear dispute between Iran and world powers.
Iran Rejects UN Condemnation, Says it is 'Biased'
According to the report, Iran’s foreign ministry said that the resolution was biased.
The resolution, which was approved Wednesday with 86 votes in favor, expressed concern over serious ongoing abuses in Iran, but also acknowledged pledges by Iran's new president, Hassan Rouhani, on human rights issues such as eliminating discrimination against women and members of ethnic minorities and promoting freedom of expression and opinion.
UK Foreign Office Slams Khamenei’s Twitter Support for Holocaust Denier: ‘We Deplore the Tweet’
The UK Foreign Office slammed Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei for offensive online behavior, with a harshly worded statement, after The Algemeiner on Tuesday published an article on the Twitter account believed to be run by his office, tweeting support for a noted French anti-Semite and Muslim convert, Roger Garaudy, whose books have been banned as hate speech.
Russia blocks UN action against Syria air attacks
Russia objected to a proposed UN Security Council statement expressing outrage at Syrian government airstrikes, especially this week’s indiscriminate use of heavy weapons in Aleppo that have killed more than 100 people, UN diplomats said Thursday.
The statement, proposed by the United States, required approval from all 15 council members.
Syria: Horrific Abuse in Secret Al Qaeda Prisons
Syrians are being tortured and killed in secret prisons run by an Al Qaeda affiliated group, Amnesty International has warned in its latest report.
The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), which has seized control of territory in northern Syria, has reportedly committed horrific abuses in its prisons in the region.
Sources told Amnesty that some of those imprisoned by ISIS are as young as eight years old. Witnesses reported seeing teenagers being tortured, including a 14-year-old boy who was given 90 lashes during an interrogation.
German town strips Hitler of honorary citizenship
A Bavarian town council voted unanimously to strip Adolf Hitler of honorary citizenship bestowed 80 years ago, after an outcry prompted by their decision last week not to adopt a resolution denouncing the 1933 decision.
The issue came up after an archivist discovered documents showing both Hitler and the president who appointed him, Paul von Hindenburg, had been given honorary citizenship of Dietramszell.
Cologne museum to return Nazi-looted artwork
The city of Cologne agreed to return six valuable drawings looted by the Nazis from a Jewish art collector.
The drawings will be restituted from the Ludwig Museum to the heirs of Alfred Flechtheim, the German museum said Wednesday. They will remain on public display in the museum, according to Mel Urbach, one of the attorneys representing the heirs.
Israeli Medical Innovation Will Help Broken Bones Heal Faster
Israeli biotech firm Regencure is working on a special “wrapping paper” that, when applied to fractures, will hasten the process of healing, the NoCamels website reported Thursday.
The RegenCure product, the company says, consists of a strong, flexible membrane that can be shaped into any geometrical shape to provide complete containment of the damaged bone, preventing cells and soft tissue from penetrating but allowing fluids in, a process that the company says is crucial to the healing process.
Tour group to use Google Glass to broadcast Israel to friends abroad
What with school, work, and other commitments, not everyone can manage a trip to Israel. But with the arrival of Google Glass, anyone can take a virtual trip to the Jewish state.
In fact, that is exactly what is set to take place next week, as seven families arrive in Israel as part of a mission sponsored by the Jewish Federations of North America. The families hail from Seattle, New York, New Jersey and Washington, DC, and all will come equipped with Google Glass, the search company’s wearable computer that lets users interact with the web without the aid of a keyboard or mouse.
Using Glass, members of the mission will be able to broadcast their experience so those connected to them back home can share in their adventures.

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