Tuesday, May 13, 2014

From Ian:

Michael Lumish: Boko Haram and the Death of Feminism
One would expect that given the outrageous violations of the rights of women among Islamist groups that western feminists would vehemently object to those violations, yet they do not.
Nor, of course, do they tend to stand with Israel which is the only country in the entire Middle East which stands with them.
If western feminists honestly objected to the abuse of women in other parts of the world – and if they honestly believed in universal human rights – then we would see some expression of that objection on places like Daily Kos and the Huffington Post.
Israelis Are On The Ground Assisting In The Search For Nigeria’s Missing Schoolgirls
Israeli security forces are already on the ground in Nigeria, gathering intelligence and assisting in the search for hundreds of schoolgirls who were kidnapped by the extremist Islamist group Boko Haram.
“There are ongoing security ties and cooperation between Israel and Nigeria. In the wake of this crisis, Israel increased its assistance and we have been providing support in any manner possible,” said one military official, who only recently returned from Nigeria. “We have been involved on this from the beginning.”
A Nigerian delegation is also currently in Israel, an official at Israel’s Foreign Ministry said. The official declined to provide information on what exactly they were doing in the country or how Israeli forces were assisting in the search for the girls. Israeli radio commentators have suggested that Israeli commandos could be on the ground in Nigeria, but Israeli officials would not confirm or deny that report.
On Monday morning, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan publicly accepted an Israeli offer of assistance made Sunday by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
King David Hotel Manager Dismisses Newsweek Spying Report – Air Conditioner Vent Too Small for ‘Even a Cat’
Speaking to The Algemeiner, Dror Danini-Forsyth, the hotel’s manager, said, unlike in big U.S. hotels, the air conditioning system in most Israeli hotels, including Jerusalem’s King David, is a set of small vents that heat or cool air in the rooms, rather than being pumped in through a large duct that a man could crawl through, as described in the Newsweek report.
“I can confirm that the story is ridiculous,” Danini-Forsyth said. “There is a small pipe that brings some fresh air into the room, and it is so small that even a cat cannot walk in it.”
The architectural inconsistency would invalidate the anecdote relayed by Stein from an unnamed U.S. Secret Service agent.

Experts Trash Newsweek Spy Claims, Question Source’s Motives
Two well connected Israeli columnists with extensive knowledge of Israel’s intelligence community rebutted the Gore story. Ronen Bergman called the Newsweek report “too unrealistic.” Ron Ben Yishai, who was cited above, attributed the placement of the story to the “vindictiveness” of the American intelligence community. Both columnists suggested that the American intelligence community was motivated to push the story because of the recent rumors that Jonathan Pollard could be released.
Aside from the implausibility of the charges, one of the few sources to be named is Paul Pillar. Pillar achieved some prominence during the George W. Bush administration as a critic of the Iraq War. In addition he has emerged as a vicious critic of Israel. Ari Lieberman catalogued some of Pillar’s attacks on Israel including appearing at “National Summit to Reassess the U.S.-Israel ‘Special Relationship’” earlier this year and contributing to an anti-Semitic blog in 2012 comparing “Israel to Apartheid-era South Africa.” In 2013, Pillar was on a panel at the anti-Israel Jerusalem Center’s annual conference.
In addition to being a source for the Newsweek article, Pillar recently wrote an article titled The Sheldon Primary for the National Interest–a piece about Sheldon Adelson that was critiqued by John Hinderaker at the PowerLine blog. Hinderaker lamented that when they were friends some forty years ago, Pillar “was as honest, as intelligent, as idealistic as anyone of my acquaintance” but that now he had become an “anti-Israel smear merchant.”
Have Kerry and Indyk Pushed Abbas into the Arms of Hamas?
Kerry, Indyk and their staff, even with the best intentions, seem unaware that Muslims cannot ever, under any conditions, cede territory regarded as rightfully belonging to Muslims -- or, more aptly, to Allah -- to non-Muslims.
So even with Kerry's and Indyk's -- or anyone's -- best efforts, any attempt to coax Abbas into signing a permanent agreement that would undermine this Muslim requirement is futile.
Abbas undoubtedly understood the nature of his engagement with Kerry and Indyk from the outset. He correctly calculated that so long as he continued to negotiate with Israel, the Americans and Europeans would continue to prop him up with political backing and financial support in the mistaken assumption that a solution can be reached.
Looking at the public record of these negotiations, it seems apparent that the more the President and Secretary of State pressured Abbas to accept a final peace agreement with Israel, the more fearful he became that if he were to sign such an agreement, he too would find himself "having tea with Sadat."
U.S. Official’s Statement Justifying Violence Against Israel is No Aberration
On May 2, an unnamed “senior U.S. official” told Israeli journalist Nahum Barnea of Yedioth Ahronoth, “The Palestinians are tired of the status quo. They will get their state in the end—whether through violence or by turning to international organizations.”
The Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported May 5 that the Israeli government believes Martin Indyk, the top American envoy to the collapsed Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, is the anonymous official. Indyk has not issued any denial.
Were the official’s ugly remarks just an isolated slip of the tongue, it would be one thing. But they are darkly reminiscent of similar statements made by Indyk and other Mideast policymakers during the Clinton administration.
Kerry, Abbas to discuss resuming peace talks
US Secretary of State John Kerry will meet Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in London on Wednesday, a Palestinian official said, weeks after Middle East peace talks collapsed.
“The meeting will discuss a possible resumption of negotiations with Israel,” the official told AFP, requesting anonymity.
US Secretary of State Jen Psaki later confirmed the meeting, but denied they would be used to discuss a resumption of talks.
“While the door remains open to a peace process, the purpose of the meeting is to discuss our ongoing relationship with the Palestinians,” she said.
Jimmy Carter hails Palestinian unity deal as opportunity for Israel to forge peace
The Palestinian unity agreement between Hamas and Fatah offers Israel an opportunity to move the peace process forward since any future agreement would incorporate all of the West Bank and Gaza, former president Jimmy Carter argues in an op-ed he wrote for The Washington Post on Tuesday.
“This reconciliation of Palestinian factions and formation of a national unity government is necessary because it would be impossible to implement any peace agreement between Israel and just one portion of the Palestinians,” writes the former president, who helped broker the historic Israel-Egypt peace treaty over 30 years ago.
EU Urges Israelis and Palestinian Authority to Restart Peace Talks
The European Union urged Israelis and Palestinians to restart peace talks.
“The EU urges the parties to use the coming weeks to find the common ground and political strength needed to resume this process and to make the necessary bold decisions,” said an EU statement issued Monday at a meeting of European Union foreign ministers in Brussels.
The EU also warned Israel about settlement construction in the West Bank.
The PA has not fulfilled its obligations
Yet despite such US taxpayer largess to the Palestinians, the United States has gotten little return on its expenditures.
Under current US law, American financial aid to the Palestinians will be stopped once a unity deal is reached with an unrepentant Hamas. Despite this likely cut-off in aid, Abbas’ PA continues to be more interested in peace with Hamas than with Israel. That suggests a far more robust resonance of the Hamas message and ideology than anyone cares to admit.
Under the circumstances, it seems idiotic to expect Israel to continue to negotiate with any Palestinian government that is playing nice with Hamas. Likewise, it seems absurd for the US to continue both to push this process along, and to subsidize the Palestinians in their efforts. The US would do well to stand with Israel, rather than attempt to push her into folly.
The author is a Congressman from Texas.
Foreign Minister Urges Knesset to Make Decision on PA Policy
Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman (Yisrael Beytenu) called on the Israeli government to examine the Shamgar Commission’s rulings Tuesday, in response to continued crisis in the coalition over the possible release of more Palestinian Arab terrorists.
"The Shamgar Commission’s conclusions are a systematic treatise to how to act in this situation,” Liberman noted, “and everyone agreed at the time that there should be certain policy guidelines.”
“All of this releasing terrorists started when we made the administrative decision to exchange our captives for terrorists,” he continued. “Whenever we released terrorists to Hamas control in Gaza, we had to make a similar ‘gesture’ to [PA Chairman Mahmoud] Abbas so as not to weaken our relationship with him.”
Mark Twain's Lessons for the Ages
When Mark Twain visited Israel after the Civil War in 1867 he was witness to a very different country that now exists.
In his writings about his travels throughout Israel entitled, "Innocents abroad" - published in 1869 - he described the desolation of the Holy Land as follows: "No landscape exists that is more tiresome to the eye than that which bounds the approaches to Jerusalem. Jerusalem is mournful, dreary, and lifeless. Palestine sits in sackloth and ashes".
In Twain's own inimical words about the Arabs in Israel he describes "its minuscule Arab presence, making use of virtually none of the available land for the people's own meager needs, could hardly be considered a serious counter to the claim of millions of Jews the world over to a State of their own."
Protests in Norway as Peres Visits
Several protests took place in Norway as President Shimon Peres visited Oslo. About 15 people who gathered outside the royal palace tried to interfere with the visit but were dispersed by police, who arrested one of them.
Outside the parliamentary building, about 250 protesters from leftist organizations demonstrated and demanded the release of Palestinian Arabs being held in Israeli jails. Voice of Israel public radio said that the protest was quiet.
The local press has devoted much attention to the visit. The high circulation Aftenposten noted that Peres will likely invite King Harald to a return visit, thus placing him in an uncomfortable situation, in view of the growing criticism of Israel in Norway.
Liberman Denies King David's Tomb Transfer
The Knesset Committee for Foreign Affairs discussed the controversy surrounding a possible transfer of King David's Tomb to the Vatican on Tuesday, after an emotional protest Monday night outside the holy site.
During the debate, MK Meir Porush (UTJ) turned to Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman and asked whether or not the rumors were true. Apparently, Liberman denied the reports.
"The Foreign Minister replied emphatically that there is no substance to the rumors that Israel going to hand over parts of David's Tomb to the Vatican during the Pope's visit," a statement from Porush's office said.
Improvised Bomb Lobbed at IDF; 11 Terrorists Arrested
A terror attack was narrowly averted in the early hours of Tuesday morning, news site 0404 reports, after a terrorist lobbed an improvised bomb at IDF soldiers near Jenin. No injuries were reported.
IDF forces conducted a raid in the Jenin area overnight, arresting 11 terrorists. Security forces also confiscated improvised weapons at the scene; an investigation has been launched over the arrests.
Jenin is a hotbed of terrorism.
Guarding Israel's Shores: the Navy's Surveillance Unit

PMW: Israel's creation is "the greatest crime known to humanity" writes official PA daily op-ed (May 13, 2014)
Last week the official PA daily wrote:
"Sixty-six years ago, a monstrosity was born, which grew over the ruins of an entire people, which had been expelled from its land and homeland, and its name became Israel. This monstrosity has an army that defeated the armies of the region in six days or less, and it has a language whose letters were put together without patterns and without meaning, and which is abnormal, lacking rules or order. It has a flag with two stripes, and in the middle a stolen star... The Zionist gangs invaded the land of Palestine and expelled its residents before the eyes and ears of the world - which didn't lift a finger - and specifically the powers at the time, which gave the Zionist gangs cover and eased their despicable mission, and afforded them all means of assistance. This was a crime unprecedented in history... The occupation of Palestine was the greatest crime known to humanity. Since that time, the Palestinian people has been confronting these gangs using all the means and methods at its disposal, to regain the stolen right, waiting for the long-awaited day..." [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 7, 2014]
Israel Electric Corp to Sue Palestinian Authority
The IEC filed suit at the Jerusalem District Court on Thursday against the Jerusalem District Electric Company for a total of 531 million shekels ($153 million/111 million euros), a company statement said.
JDECO is a private company which purchases electricity from Israel to supply to Palestinian Arab neighborhoods in Jerusalem as well as the Palestinian Authority (PA).
The IEC decided to sue after "intensive contact" with JDECO and PA officials in Ramallah failed to reach a breakthrough.
As well as supplying electricity via JDECO, Israel also caters to the PA and Gaza - despite political tensions between them, the PA's incitement campaign against Israel, and Hamas's frequent threats of genocide against Israelis.
Palestinian Arab Journalist Calls for End to 'Honor Killings'
A 29 year-old Palestinian Arab mother of three was murdered north of Jerusalem on Monday. The husband, a Qalandiya resident, turned himself in to the Palestinian Authority (PA) police.
In the Palestinian Arab magazine Al Hayaam published Saturday, journalist Omar Hilmi Al-Harol called to "cease killing women."
Al-Harol indicated that the phenomenon of murdering women for 'honor killings' is not a new phenomenon in the Arab and Islamic world, but that its roots are deep within the Koran - and not a new phenomenon in the Arab and Islamic, but its roots lie in the Quran as a means of dealing with adulterers.
Egyptian Pop Star Chaaboula to Sing ‘I Hate Israel’ at Morocco World Music Festival Featuring Alicia Keys, Justin Timberlake
Rahim had another hit song, Hey Arab Leaders, in which he accused the U.S. and Israel of masterminding the 9-11 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York.
On Sunday, Rabbi Abraham Cooper of The Simon Wiesenthal Center, told The Algemeiner that he hoped the other international musicians at the festival used their stage time to promote peace, rather than hatred.
“Remember that Alicia Keys delivered a message of peace last summer in Tel Aviv, despite the BDSers hypocritical hysteria,” Rabbi Cooper said referring to anti-Israel ‘boycott, divestment and sanctions’ activists who tried to pressure Keys to cancel her performance. “I hope she and the other western talent urge the organizers to make the festival a hate-free zone and that they counter the anti-Israel hate with their music.”
Libel in popular Egyptian song: Israel planned the September 11 attacks

Turkish FM: Jerusalemites ‘suffer’ under occupation
Jerusalem, which holds a common heritage for all of humanity, should be open to all, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said Monday, slamming Israeli restrictions on West Bank and Gaza Arabs from entering the city. He also said Jerusalem has been suffering under occupation since 1949, the year the War of Independence ended and Israel signed armistice agreements with its immediate neighbors.
Giving the opening address at a UN-backed conference in Ankara on the question of Jerusalem, Davutoğlu said that “protection of Jerusalem is not only a political responsibility… [It] is a duty to mankind’s conscience and history.
“The cultural heritage in Jerusalem is too deep-rooted to degrade it to only one religion and ethnicity. It is our obligation to protect this culture,” he added.
Jennifer Rubin: Will Iran become North Korea?
However, well aware that the Obama administration is desperate to avoid the umpteenth foreign policy failure and to fend off calls for harsher action, Israeli officials and many U.S. lawmakers and experts suspect that there will be some deal papering over the vast gulf between the sides. Iran then will be that much closer to obtaining its nuclear weapons capability with the cloud of economic sanctions or military strike greatly diminished.
It is therefore not surprising that on a visit to Japan, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu explicitly makes the comparison between North Korea and Iran: “We’re both democratic, progress, technological societies. You face North Korea, which is a rogue regime with nuclear weapons. We face the possibility of Iran, which is a rogue regime that wants to have nuclear weapons. They’re cooperating between them, and we should cooperate between us.”
Iran, IAEA Talks at Standstill
Diplomatic sources told Reuters last Friday that the IAEA was seeking further clarification from Iran about the most sensitive of those steps, concerning fast-acting detonators that can have both military and civilian applications.
How Iran responds to questions about its development and need of this type of equipment is seen as an important test of its willingness to cooperate fully with the IAEA investigation.
Iran says it has already implemented the seven steps – including access to two uranium sites – but the sources said the IAEA still wanted more information about so-called Explosive Bridge Wire (EBW) detonators.
New UN report shows how Iran evades sanctions
A confidential new report by a U.N. panel highlights Iran's methods of evading sanctions -- from concealing titanium tubes inside steel pipes to using its petrochemical industry as a cover to obtain items for a heavy-water nuclear reactor.
The latest report by the U.N. Panel of Experts, which monitors compliance with the Security Council's sanctions regime on Iran, said Iran's attempts to illicitly procure materials for its disputed nuclear and missile programs may have slowed down as it pursues talks on a long-term deal with world powers.
But the experts' report, which reached the Security Council's Iran sanctions committee days ahead of a new round of talks between Iran and six world powers in Vienna, said an alternative explanation could be that Iran had merely learned how to outsmart security and intelligence services in acquiring sensitive components and materials.
A Reminder of How Iran Treats Its Jewish Citizens
May 9th marked the 35th anniversary of the “execution” of Iranian-Jewish businessman Habib Elghanian. This prominent figure in Iran’s Jewish community was dragged from his home, brought before a “revolutionary court,” and executed by firing squad all in the same night. The “crimes” of which he was accused included fundraising for Israel and “friendship with the enemies of God.”
This state-sponsored murder of a prominent Jew, and the huge publicity given to it by the new regime headed by the Ayatollah Khomeini, marked the start of the vicious persecution of Iran’s religious minorities, first and foremost among them the Jews.
Many Jews had been perceptive enough to leave as soon as the Shah was overthrown, but Elghanian had refused to do so – believing that ethnic minorities would be fairly treated by the revolutionaries.
Iran State-Media Columnist: Nazi Germany 'No More Evil' than US, UK, Jews During WWII
PressTV’s Brandon Martinez vented his disgust that many were upset following revelations a California school had assigned 8th grade students to discuss whether the Holocaust was a made-up story “for political and monetary gain.”
The author, who frequently promotes anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and Holocaust denial, aired his Iran regime-approved grievances against the "Zionist Jews."
“Zionists have unleashed their fury upon the school district’s administrators for daring to allow any debate on the sacred [Holocaust],” Martinez writes.
The columnist continues, arguing the “Evil Nazi” portrayal is a false depiction. In fact, he contends, the Nazi was “no more evil than the Allied powers, no more racist than Britain or America or [the] Zionist Jews themselves” during World War II.
Sunni Muslim States Forming 'Arab NATO
The Sunni Muslim Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), led by Saudi Arabia, appears to be forming an “Arab NATO” military alliance according to Stratfor Intelligence. The alliance would initially include Morocco and Jordan, but over time it would probably also seek to include the North African states of Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, and Egypt.
As Iran, Iraq, and their allies are “ascendant and the United States [is] pulling back its involvement in the region,” Stratfor believes the Arab states want to expand their military capabilities. Threatened by the rise of a new Shiite Muslim Persian Empire, Sunni Muslims appear to be forming a military alliance that, like the historic Caliphate, would stretch from the Atlantic to Iraq.
‘Religion Of Peace’ Involved In At Least 27 Current Armed Conflicts (satire)
Of the dozens of armed conflicts taking place around the world, groups self-identifying as adherents of the Religion of Peace are participants in more than 25 of them, ranging from train-station-stabbing-attack Uighur separatists in China to the schoolgirl-kidnapping Boko Haram militia of Nigeria. Their peaceful methods are on display whether the conflict is raging between rival factions in a multi-party civil war, such as in Iraq, or between an embattled central government and Islamic rebels, as in Egypt.
In some cases, as in Syria, both are the case at once, highlighting the peace-loving nature of the fighters who torture and behead prisoners and dissenters. A favorite activity to promote peace involves the abduction of foreigners, especially journalists, so that the victims’ lives can be used for peaceful extortion.


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