Sunday, February 16, 2014

From Ian:

BDS fail: Code Pink uses Israeli web platform for their new website
Code Pink's new website, promoting its Woman's delegation to Gaza was created using Wix. Its a great choice with cloud-based web development, easy templates, and no coding required. It might be the first smart act we've seen from Code Pink in a long time.
They overlooked one crucial thing. Code Pink is one of the leaders of the BDS movement, and Wix is an Israeli company. Ooops. BDS fail.
If you do anything web-based, Israeli tech is hard to avoid. To avoid being a BDS hypocrite, you're going to need to to live like this guy.
Honest BDS Activist Lives Off Grid, Forages, Avoids Medicine (satire)
The New Hampshire native has fashioned a serviceable crossbow that he uses to hunt rabbit, deer, and other game, and lives in an abandoned stone hut overlooking a man-made lake. “I used to go fishing there, but then I found out there’s a Zionist summer camp on the other side, I couldn’t in good conscience benefit from their maintenance of the lake,” he explained, referring to Camp Moshava, which is run by the Tel-Aviv-headquartered religious Zionist youth movement Bnei Akiva.
Despite the hardships, Thorpe eschews all medical care except for basic first aid, since Israeli pharmaceutical companies produce vast amounts of the generic drugs employed by hospitals and health clinics all over the world. “Simply making an appointment to go see a doctor would mean endorsing their use of Israeli technology in the clinic management software, or the hardware in the terminals themselves,” said Thorpe. “And forget about all the imaging technology to detect abnormalities or growths.”
Thorpe hopes his principled stand will inspire others to be more consistent in their activism. “There’s nothing I’d like to see more than all my fellow BDS advocates dying of some treatable disease,” said Thorpe. (h/t Mightier than the Pen)

Being Anti-Israel is Being Anti-Semitic
What’s going on? Why can’t people just all get along?
Oh, hey, here’s some bigger questions: Why aren’t the Irish vilified throughout the world for wanting their own country? Why are the Finlandists not vilified for wanting to be separate from Sweden and Norway? You never hear North Dakota being called an apartheid state. Why not? Don’t you know that at the North Dakota state capitol that they refuse to fly the South Dakota flag? What kind of sadistic neighbors are those North Dakotians?
Then there are those who try to claim that being against the existence of a Jewish nation has nothing to do with being anti-Semitic.
Labour Youth double standard central: Posing with convicted terrorist Bhargouti
Imagine the outrage if somebody were foolish enough to line up for a photo with mass-murderer evil ABB [Breivik].
But for the Labour youth, nothing is impossible, also not to line up for a photo op with a convicted mass murderer as a backdrop.
Lest you thought the Reds have keeled over and have admitted defeat, you should think again. The Unions have already pledged millions to help fund the Labour Party’s way back to power (trampling of course, on the rights of union members who do not support the Labour Party) with all the cronyism and pandering to terrorists outfits that comes with this.
Far Left Israel-Hater Mads Gilbert Joins BDSers Pressuring Neil Young
Mads Gilbert's now stepped into the Israel-demonising limelight yet again in order to lend his ten kroner worth to the BDSers' current campaign to cajole US-based "Crazy Horse" singer Neil Young to cancel his scheduled appearance in Israel in July.
NY Times Transfers Jerusalem Land to Palestinians
A front page story published in The New York Times on Feb. 11 describes an Israeli industrial zone in northern Jerusalem as being, in fact and rightfully, “Palestinian territory” that is occupied by Israel. "Israel opened its first industrial zone in occupied Palestinian territory shortly after the 1967 war, in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Atarot," reporter Jodi Rudoren informs readers.
But Atarot is in sovereign Israeli territory as part of the country’s unified capital. Since the early 1900s, even before the first World War, the neighborhood was owned by Jews, who purchased, settled and worked the land. And although it was occupied by Jordan for 19 years, between 1948 when the Jewish owners were forced out under fire and their homes were razed by the Arab invaders and 1967 when Israel recaptured the territory from the Jordanians, this Jordanian occupation does not make Atarot “Palestinian territory.” Nor do Palestinian claims that the area should be theirs make it factually so.
'Netanyahu, Obama to agree on extension of peace talks'
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. President Barack Obama are expected to agree on a one-year extension of the current Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations at their White House meeting in early March, Deputy Minister Ofir Akunis (Likud) said at a cultural event in Ramat Gan on Saturday.
Speaking of the peace process, Akunis said: "There is no confrontation with the U.S., but there are certainly some fundamental differences of opinion. An Israeli withdrawal to the June 4, 1967, borders would be like a suicidal person jumping off the roof of the Azrieli Towers [a trio of Tel Aviv skyscrapers]. This was never Likud policy -- and will never be."
Abbas: Question of Jews staying in Palestinian state not on table
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas dismissed on Sunday the question of Jews staying in a Palestinian state, saying that settlers cannot be compared to Palestinians who have lived here for thousands of years and that the question cannot even be on the table.
Speaking at a meeting with some 250 left-wing Jewish Israeli students in Ramallah, Abbas claimed that Hamas supports his efforts to achieve peace along his parameters. He stated that 80 percent of the population in Gaza supports the peace process and there would be transparent democratic elections to prove it.
Terrorists Caught Infiltrating into Itamar
On Friday night four terrorists were caught trying to infiltrate into the town of Itamar, in the Shomron.
An IDF lookout saw four suspicious figures approaching the town and sent out a unit to search for the suspects.
Report: Palestinian Authority Paid Out $100 Million to Convicted Terrorists in 2013
A new report prepared and submitted by watchdog Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) to Britain’s Parliament reveals that the Palestinian Authority dolled out over $100 million to convicted terrorists in 2013, Israeli daily Ma’ariv reported. The beneficiaries include current and former criminal detainees held in Israeli prisons.
The report includes rare testimony from a convicted terrorist named ‘Hosni’ who describes in detail the financial windfall that comes with spending time in an Israeli prison.
Judea-Samaria Gas Stations Refuse to Serve PA Vehicles
Fuel stations in Palestinian Authority-controlled areas of Judea and Samaria are refusing to serve PA officials due to a row over unpaid bills.
According to the Bethlehem-based Maan news, the West Bank Union of Gas Station Owners said the PA has not paid its fuel bills for half a year, ratcheting up a debt of $15.7 million.
Egypt said to target Gaza tunnels in new campaign
The independent agency Ma’an cited an unnamed Egyptian security official to the effect that his country’s military had destroyed 10 tunnels and seven homes in Rafah, along the border, on Saturday.
The official said that the houses were used to conceal the tunnels and that they were blown up after the tunnels were destroyed.
Saturday’s activities were part of a larger move to establish a 300- to 500-meter-wide buffer zone in Rafah, he was quoted as saying.
Three reported killed in blast near Taba crossing with Egypt
An explosion ripped through a tourist bus on the Egyptian side of the Taba border crossing with Israel Sunday afternoon, killing five and injuring some 30 passengers.
Four Korean tourists and the Egyptian driver of the bus were killed in the blast, according to Egyptian security officials, while eight others sustained serious wounds. (h/t Yenta Press)
Saudis reportedly to arm Syrian rebels with advanced weaponry
The sophisticated weaponry includes “Chinese man-portable air defense systems, or Manpads, and antitank guided missiles from Russia,” the newspaper reported, citing an Arab diplomat and opposition leaders.
If true, most of the weapons would flow to the south of Syria, where the opposition fighters are more organized. The weapons were already waiting in warehouses in Jordan and Turkey, the report added.
Iran to produce own S-300 anti-aircraft system by 2015, official says
Russia was originally contracted to supply Iran with the S-300 batteries, but the deal was cancelled, reportedly after Israel and other Western nations pressured Moscow.
Iran hopes to complete its version of the S-300, the Bavar 373, by the end of 2015, according to the commander of the Khatam ol-Anbia Air Defense Base, Brig-Gen Farzad Esmayeeli.
Iranian Oil Exports Soar as Sanctions Collapse
Exports of Iranian crude oil jumped to 1.32 million barrels, up from December’s high of 1.06 million barrels, according to data from the International Energy Agency.
The spike in exports—mainly to Japan, China, and India—has helped Iran’s once-ailing economy stabilize and decrease inflation.
Turkish Parliament approves controversial bill tightening up gov't grip on judicial body
Tension in Parliament boiled over again Feb. 15 as the government succeeded in passing a controversial judicial reform package amid fisticuffs and injuries, even as the opposition vowed to take the package directly to the Constitutional Court without waiting for a presidential evaluation.
Dozens of MPs fought during the tense 20-hour debate on a law to reshape the Supreme Council of Judges and Prosecutors (HSYK), and insults flew back and forth between the parties, while one opposition lawmaker was hospitalized following an attack by a Justice and Development Party (AKP) deputy.
Pakistan plans to sell JF-17 Thunder combat jets to Saudi Arabia
Pakistan today said it is looking to sell JF-17 Thunder combat jets and trainer aircraft to Saudi Arabia, but rejected reports it was in talks with the oil-rich nation for nuclear cooperation. Saudi Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud is scheduled to visit Pakistan during February 15-17. The visit is expected to focus on deeper security and defence cooperation between the two sides.
Foreign Office spokesperson Tasnim Aslam told a weekly news briefing that defence cooperation would figure in the Crown Prince’s interactions and that Pakistan was eyeing Saudi Arabia as a market for military gear. “Certainly, defence cooperation would figure in the talks. The army chief would be calling him separately,” she said.
Portugal may open gates for descendants of expelled Jews
Portugal is preparing legislation that would grant citizenship to descendants of Jews expelled from the country in the 15th century, Lisbon’s tourism minister said, in an echo of a similar move recently announced by Spain.
Portuguese Minister of Tourism Adolfo Musquite Nunes, who visited Israel this month to promote his country as a vacation destination, told a Portuguese news station Saturday night that the final version of the legislation, which has already passed one reading in the Portuguese parliament, would be ready in the summer.
Google buys Israeli security start-up SlickLogin
SlickLogin, an early-stage start-up, has been working on a system to utilize sound to make logins easier. The company launched at TechCrunch Disrupt last year, and uses a low-frequency sound generated by an app to log into web sites. Users hold up their phones to a computer or laptop’s microphone and play the sound, and are able to log in to secure sites.
The company’s founders – Or Zelig (CEO), Eran Galili (CTO), and Ori Kabeli (VP R&D) told TechCrunch that the system was secure, and that recording the sound from a phone wouldn’t do a hacker any good, because the sounds change depending on location, time of day, etc. The system could be easily implemented on a web site using just a few lines of code, they added.
Israel Shows California No Need to Fret About Water Desalination
North of San Diego, Israel’s IDE Technologies Ltd. is helping to build what it says will be the largest seawater desalination plant in the Western Hemisphere. The facility, when finished in 2016, will be able to provide 50 million gallons of potable water a day. Three smaller plants already operate in California, and 15 more have been proposed.
“This is the one supply that San Diego County is investing in that is truly drought-proof,” said Peter MacLaggan, senior vice president of privately held Poseidon Resources Corp., which is developing the $922 million plant with IDE. “It does cost more, but it has some reliability benefits that are very important to the regional economy.”
The Israeli Army: the next great tech incubator?
A whole crop of successful new entrepreneurs is coming out of Israel. The latest wave started last summer, with the news that Google paid $1.1 billion for the cutesy mapping-and-traffic app Waze. There's the Israeli-Canadian team that just won the Global Startup Challenge. There's the rise of Israeli venture firms, from Tel Aviv to Palo Alto. There's an incubator just for Israeli entrepreneurs in the Silicon Valley. And there's the 52 percent spike in demand for web developers that Israel — and its $243 billion economy — saw in 2013.
Move aside, MIT, Stanford and Y Combinator — even IT and Tsinghua. It looks like the best entrepreneurial incubator in the world might actually be created via conscription … the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF).
Army vet from Down Under rises up to IDF challenge
Joe Rasmussen, 22, a lone soldier who immigrated to Israel from Australia, will soon conclude his basic training with the Nahal infantry brigade. This would not be interesting where it not for the fact that Rasmussen has already completed basic training -- in the Australian army, where he served for over a year.
"When I was 17, I enlisted in the Australian army and served as a combat soldier in an infantry unit," said Rasmussen, whose family lives in Queensland, in northeast Australia. "After 13 months of service I debated what to do and decided to request my release and sign up for a Birthright trip to Israel."
This trip changed the course of his life, prompting Rasmussen to decide to move to Israel, which he did over a year ago. He now lives on Kibbutz Kfar Hamaccabi in northern Israel.


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