Tuesday, February 11, 2014

From Ian:

Khaled Abu Toameh: Palestinian Authority Human Rights Violations Ignored by Media, West
That Hamas is responsible for human rights violations and assaults on freedom of expression should not come as a surprise to anyone.
But what is surprising is that the Palestinian Authority leadership, which often boasts that Palestinians living under its jurisdiction enjoy freedom of expression and democracy, is continuing to lie not only to its constituents, but also to the Western media and international donors about its human rights record.
The PA has been successful in diverting attention from these problems by putting all the blame on Israel. As far as the PA is concerned, Israel alone is responsible for human rights violations and assaults on freedom of expression and the media.
Evidently, most Western journalists, governments and human rights groups have chosen to endorse the Palestinian Authority's stance that the only evil-doers are the Israelis. And that is precisely why the ICHR report about the anarchy, lawlessness and human rights violations by the PA and Hamas will be completely ignored in the West.
The Palestinian Covenant Refutes the Palestinian Narrative
The Yishuv’s Jewish population in 1917 consisted of people from each of the three sources, but even if they all came from only one of them, the acknowledgement in the Palestine National Covenant that there were Jews there before 1917 disproves the current Palestinian narrative’s claim that the Land has been home “since time immemorial” to a thriving Palestinian culture. If the Jews are from the first source, then they predate the Palestinian arrival. The second source pre-supposes the existence of the first. The third source reflects Ottoman recognition that the Land was underpopulated and in need of a revival; i.e., whatever culture was there could hardly be described as flourishing.
The Palestinian narrative is thus hoist with its own petard: The Palestinian people’s founding document announces that its narrative isn’t true.
A reasonable alternative
In other words, a reasonable alternative will have to involve Arabs moving, not Jews.
It doesn’t have to be all the Arabs. Unlike them, we don’t require an ethnically pure state to live in. But we also don’t have to live alongside creatures committed to violence, as the members of the PLO and Hamas are.
We can hear the screaming of the Left, the Europeans, the academic community and of course the Muslim world all the way over here. How dare we suggest that Arabs might be displaced (of course, the idea that a ‘solution’ involves expelling every last Jew so ‘Palestine’ can be free of contamination is perfectly reasonable to them)! (h/t Bob Knot)



Greater Men have Tried
Greater men than you have tried to make, to force, peace on the Middle East. I promise you, you will fail too. You will fail because you are not addressing the root cause of the problem. You, like so many before you, take the easy way out. Blame Israel. It is so easy to do, and so stupid.
I could speak to you of history – a history longer and greater than you can imagine. I could speak to you of injustices – yes, our land is filled with the graves of those murdered for the unjust reason that they lived here, or traveled abroad, or ate in the wrong restaurant, or took the wrong bus.
I could speak to you of justice – of a population exchange similar to those that have taken place throughout history as nations settle between war and peace. They left their lands to go there, most voluntarily so that their invading brothers would have a clear path as they pushed the Jews into the sea. And our people, who left their homes and possessions in Arab lands, most forced, not voluntarily, and came here.
Forcing ‘Peace’ on Israel is a Terrible Mistake
When the Arab armies of Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, and Syria attacked Israel in May 1948, it was not to liberate the Palestinian people, but to capture the region for themselves. Like the British, Ottomans, Romans, Greeks, Persians, and Babylonians before them, the goal was conquest, not liberation.
The Arab despot that “drove the Jews into the sea” would be the ultimate unifier of the Arab people. Not only would he gain the popular support of the Arab street, but he would also occupy the territory needed to geographically unify the Arab states, linking Egypt, with Syria, Iraq, and Jordan.
Palestinian envoy to peace talks rebuffs Livni: We won't recognize Israel as a Jewish state
The Palestinian Authority reiterated Monday its refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
The announcement came in response to statements attributed to Justice Minister Tzipi Livni to the effect that the PA is ready to recognize Israel as a Jewish state. (h/t Yenta Press)
PA minister claims Western Wall as Palestinian land
"There will not be peace without putting an end to the Israeli occupation that began in 1967. Every piece of land that Israel conquered then belongs to the Palestinians," claimed Habbash.
Habbash added that "all the holy places, including the Aksa mosque and the Western Wall" rightfully belong to the Palestinian Authority and must be returned as well. (h/t Norman F)
'Even the Koran Claims Israel Belongs to the Jews'
Middle Eastern affairs professor Nissim Dana spoke to Arutz Sheva Monday about his upcoming book, To Whom Does This Land Belong?: New Insights into the Koran, and revealed that Islam absolutely does not have a claim to the Land of Israel - even by its own standards.
The Professor explained that the new book, published by the Bialik Institute and Ariel University, reveals several more insights into the Koran that remain unknown to the average Muslim and even some Muslim religious leaders.
Dana noted that top Islamic figures, such as Sheikh Yusuf Al Qaradawi, have embarked on a fierce campaign to separate the Jewish people from their rightful homeland and claim that Muslims have a sacred right to the Land of Israel.
Arab land claims; are they valid?
Disputed lands which Arabs (and NGOs) have recently claimed in places like Ofra/ Amona, Migron and Ulpana/Bet El were deemed abandoned and ownerless by the state. This was consistent with Ottoman and British-mandate law: if the person who originally registered the land died intestate (without heirs) and the land was never used, the land reverted to the state. Therefore, Jews were allowed to build there – legally.
After Jews established communities and received government support – thus de facto permission – Arabs filed ownership claims with the Civil Administration. Although evidence for these claims was unverified and false, the Minhal and Military Advocate General (MAG) mistakenly certified that the lands belonged to Arab claimants. Based on such improper and invalid procedures, Peace Now and Yesh Din took Arab claims to Israel’s High Court.
Oldest Star Discovered; Palestinians: We Were There First (satire)
Canberra, Australia, February 11 – Astronomers in Australia have discovered what they say is the oldest star known so far, prompting Palestinian officials to claim their ancestors inhabited that star long before any Jews came along.
Scientists mapping the southern sky identified SMSS J031300.36-670839.3, as the oldest observed star so far, based on its spectrum of color, which indicated only a tiny presence of iron. The quantity of iron in the universe increases over time as more and more stars produce it when they exhaust their hydrogen. SMSS J031300.36-670839.3 has only trace amounts of the element, indicating its senior status. Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat asserted yesterday that his family moved to SMSS J031300.36-670839.3 eons ago. SMSS J031300.36-670839.3 is located about 6,000 light years away in the Milky Way, the same galaxy as Earth. (h/t Mightier than the Pen)
Mediterranean energy finds ‘game changers’ in renewed Cyprus peace drive
Nicos Anastasiades, the Greek-Cypriot leader, and his Turkish-Cypriot counterpart Dervis Eroglu are to unveil a road map for the renewed UN-brokered talks, finally agreed on last week after protracted haggling over the text delayed a relaunch originally earmarked for November.
The breakthrough, according to experts, was triggered by the changed dynamics in the region created by the island’s untapped gas and oil riches offshore and a huge natural gas find in waters off neighboring Israel.
Christian IDF Recruits Say Arab MK Acting 'Like a Mafia Member
Sha'adi Halul, the spokesman for the Forum of Christian IDF Soldiers, filed a request to the Attorney General's Office asking for the removal of immunity for MK Hanin Zoabi (Balad).
The request, which was submitted by legal representative for the forum Attorney Uri Shenhar, calls out Zoabi for turning to Halul in a Knesset Committee meeting last week and calling him a "coward" who "can't walk the streets of Nazareth and Kfar Kana and present his position" and threatened him, saying that if "you go through the streets of Nazareth and say what you want - they will give you a proper response."
The request notes that the remarks could constitute a threat, and can be perceived as incitement to violence - even murder. In addition, the Forum notes that statements less offensive than these have been brought before the court for trial and have had the offenders' immunity stripped - but not Zoabi.
IAF attacks Gaza in response to rocket fire
The Israeli Air Force attacked targets in the Gaza Strip overnight Monday after two rockets launched from the Hamas-controlled territory landed in the southern part of the country earlier in the day.
The two targets, a hidden rocket launcher in the central Gaza Strip and a terrorist target in the northern part of the territory, were hit in pinpoint strikes by Israeli planes.
Palestinian sources said the first raid targeted a training camp of the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, near the Nuseirat refugee camp in the center of the Gaza Strip.

Analysis: Target of IDF strike is key link in Gaza-Sinai radical Salafi terror network
According to intelligence data, Kharti played a central role in setting up the terrorist infrastructure in Sinai, which has been firing rockets at Eilat sporadically in recent months, including the most recent rocket attack, launched on January 31, and intercepted by the Iron Dome anti-rocket battery.
In Gaza, Kharti is a member of the Popular Resistance Committees, but he apparently wears more than one hat. In Sinai, he is affiliated with the al-Qaida- inspired Ansar Beit Al-Maqdes group, which has been targeting both Israel and Egyptian security forces.
The border region where Gaza, Israel and Egypt meet is where Kharti is believed to have been most active, and he is a firm believer in the radical Salafi ideology, a doctrine that calls for the establishment of an Islamic caliphate and rejects all other political systems.
Reports: Hamas at Ease With Moves by Fatah Rivals to Boost Ties With Iran
The Palestinian Hamas faction is content to let its rivals in the Fatah faction reach out to Iran – despite a decades-old proxy relationship between Hamas and its Iranian sponsors - according to a report published last week by Al Monitor. Hamas officials who spoke to the outlet emphasized that any rapprochement between the two sides should be seen as Fatah altering its long-held stance opposing Iranian influence, and that in any case “the road to a true rapprochement between Ramallah and Tehran is still long.”
Financial Crisis? PA Planning Airport and Railway
Despite complaining of a financial crisis, the Palestinian Authority (PA) is working on several new transportation related projects in the areas under its control - and is even seeking to expand into areas under Israeli control.
The Bethlehem-based Ma’an news agency reported on Monday that the PA’s Ministry of Transport has been working with Egypt to prepare plans for an airport in the areas of Judea and Samaria under its control and for a seaport and railway line in Gaza.
17-year-old suicide bomber a "brave hero," says PA Governor of Ramallah
The Palestinian Authority continues to glorify suicide terrorists who murdered civilians, as Palestinian Media Watch has documented.
At a ceremony last week, Governor of Ramallah Laila Ghannam called suicide bomber Ayyat Al-Akhras - at age 17, the youngest female Palestinian suicide bomber - and other terrorists "brave heroes." Ayyat Al-Akhras was a terrorist who detonated her suicide vest at a supermarket, murdering two. Other dignitaries present at the ceremony included PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, PA Mufti Muhammad Hussein and PA Minister of Agriculture Walid Assaf.
Governor of Ramallah: 17-year-old suicide bomber is "hero"


Iran claims new generation of 15-times-faster centrifuges
Iran’s nuclear chief declared that his country has developed a new generation of centrifuges 15 times more powerful than those currently being used to enrich uranium, and said it might resume enrichment to 60% if necessary.
“We unveiled a new generation of centrifuges that surprised the Westerners,” said Ali Akbar Salehi on Monday. “This new machine is 15 times more powerful than the previous generation,” he claimed, according to Iran’s state broadcaster IRIB.
Salehi added that the development did not violate the November 24 Geneva interim agreement between Iran and six world powers that has imposed curbs on Tehran’s nuclear drive. “We successfully argued that this was allowed within the research and development article in the agreement,” Salehi said.
White House Draws Red Line on Iranian Ballistic Missile Program
The White House on Monday pushed back against Iran’s efforts to set a “red line” preventing negotiations over its contested ballistic missile program, which has been permitted to continue undeterred under the recently signed interim nuclear accord.
One of Iran’s top nuclear negotiators stated early Monday that Iran would under no circumstances negotiate with the West on its ballistic missile program. These remarks were accompanied by the announcement that Tehran had successfully test fired two ballistic missiles, which are the preferred delivery system for nuclear arms.
“The defense-related issues are a red line for Iran,” Abbas Araqchi, Iran’s senior negotiator and its deputy foreign minister, was quoted as saying on Monday, just a week before talks are set to resume. “We will not allow such issues to be discussed in future talks.”
Iran says it has tested fragmentation missile
Iran said Monday it has “successfully tested” two missiles on the eve of the 35th anniversary of its Islamic revolution, the official IRNA news agency reported.
Iran’s ballistic missile programme has long been a source of concern for Western nations because it is capable of striking its arch-foe Israel.
“The new generation of ballistic missile with a fragmentation warhead, and a Bina laser-guided surface-to-surface and air-to-surface missile, have been successfully tested,” Defence Minister Hossein Dehgan said.
Iran TV Showcases Military Capabilities, Seals Report with Vow to "Trample on the U.S."


Egypt: Islamist group blows up gas pipeline in Sinai
Egyptian security officials say suspected al-Qaeda-inspired saboteurs have blown up a natural gas pipeline in the restive Sinai Peninsula.
The officials say the explosion took place early Tuesday in a desert area south of el-Arish, the provincial capital of North Sinai. The pipeline carries natural gas to Jordan and feeds heavy industry factories in central Sinai.
Suicide Bomb Trainer in Iraq Accidentally Blows Up His Class (NOT Satire)
If there were such a thing, it would probably be rule No. 1 in the teaching manual for instructors of aspiring suicide bombers: Don’t give lessons with live explosives.
In what represented a cautionary tale for terrorist teachers, and a cause of dark humor for ordinary Iraqis, a commander at a secluded terrorist training camp north of Baghdad unwittingly used a belt packed with explosives while conducting a demonstration early Monday for a group of militants, killing himself and 21 other members of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, army and police officials said. (h/t MtTB)


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