Friday, May 22, 2015

From Ian:

Caroline Glick: The Israeli enablers in action
EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini has some explaining to do.
During Mogherini’s visit this week she spoke loftily of Europe’s concern for peace and desire to play a role in establishing a Palestinian state at peace with Israel. And that was very nice.
But what is the EU doing to promote these admirable goals? How do the millions of euros the EU and its member states shovel annually into the coffers of NGOs who exist to delegitimize Israel advance these goals? The timing of Mogherini’s visit this week was propitious. She came the same week as “Nakba Day,” the day Israel’s enemies mourn its coming into existence 67 years ago.
The concept of the “Nakba,” is an act of political war against the Jewish state. It was invented to deny Israel’s right to exist by propagating the libel that the state was born in sin. The explicit demand at the heart of the “Nakba” narrative is that Israel must be destroyed for justice to be achieved.
The EU generously funds groups that propagate this devastating slander.
A Century of Genocides: Next Trigger-Man, Iran
Seventy years after the fall of Dachau and Auschwitz, Israeli Jews, Christians and Arabs are threatened with a second Holocaust by people who deny the existence of the first Holocaust: Iran's leadership. The West, apparently willing to vote Iran nuclear breakout capability, pays no attention and acts as if Iran's continual threats had no meaning.
The first priority of most Western governments today seems to sign a deal with Iran's Supreme Leader, Ali Hosseini Khamenei, who openly calls for Israel's and America's destruction.
The next priority of many European governments is to entrust a state to the Palestinian Authority and Hamas, a movement that does not hide its genocidal intentions. Political considerations are at work, full time and at open throttle.
Since the Armenian genocide, one hundred years have passed, marked by mass killings, massacres, and genocides. These culminated in the Holocaust, but did not end with it. The Communist killing fields of Cambodia took place during the 1970s. The Rwandan Genocide of the Tutsis was perpetrated just twenty-one years ago.
The twentieth century was appropriately described by historian Robert Conquest as a "ravaged century."
It is urgent that that ethical -- not political or monetary -- considerations receive priority. If not, this will be the second "ravaged century."
Who Can Attack Turkish Ships?
The vessel, the Tuna-1, was approaching Tobruk, a coastal city in Libya where the country's internationally-recognized government is headquartered, to deliver sheetrock cargo loaded in Spain, when it was shelled in international waters, 13 miles away from the Libyan port city. The Tuna-1 was then attacked twice from the air as it tried to leave the area. A Libyan military spokesman told Reuters that the Turkish vessel was bombed "after it was warned not to approach the Libyan city of Derna."
But this time there was no request for an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council; no talks with the EU, NATO, Arab League, OIC, Obama or Merkel. No words flying in the air such as "terrorist state," "piracy," "massacre," "an attack on world peace." No "murderers." No threats to Libyans that "your security is being exposed to great risks." And, naturally, this is not "Turkey's own 9/11."
Instead, the Turkish Foreign Ministry on May 11 issued a weak protest note. It condemned the attack and demanded legal action. It called the attack a violation of international law. All Turkey's Foreign Minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu, could say was that Ankara had sent a frigate off the Libyan coast to escort the Tuna-1 back to Turkish waters.
President Erdogan's reaction to the attack on a civilian Turkish vessel by a foreign army was revealing. He said: "Things would have been different had the Turkish ship carried a Turkish flag." That would be Turkey's wrath on Libya, he simply meant, were the Tuna-1, owned by a Turkish company, not registered in the Cook Islands.
By the way, what flag did the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara carry? Comoros.
Still wondering why Turkey's voice was so loud after the Mavi Marmara incident? For Turkey's Islamists, "what was done" does not matter much. "Who did it" does.

Joel Pollak: With Iran Ship, Obama Reaps What He Sowed in Gaza Flotilla
The international diplomatic and military crisis sparked by Iran’s decision to send an “aid” vessel directly to Yemen–along with an escort of warships–rather than to the international coordinating point in Djibouti was the latest escalation in Iran’s attempt to assert its new dominance as a regional power. Notably, Iran’s tactics mirror those used by Palestinian activists, backed by Turkey, in the 2010 Mavi Marmara incident, when an Islamist “aid” ship challenged the Israeli navy off Gaza.
The “Gaza flotilla,” as it became known, consisted of six ships, including journalists, peace activists, anti-Israel organizers and Islamist radicals. The flotilla sailed from Turkey in an effort to break through an Israeli naval perimeter that had been set up to prevent the smuggling of weapons and other materials that could be used in terror operations. (Humanitarian aid was, and is, sent to Gaza by truck, after inspection by Israeli officials. Egypt imposes similar restrictions on Gaza trade.)
While five of six ships surrendered to the Israeli navy without incident, the sixth resisted violently, attacking and seizing Israeli naval commandoes. In the ensuing fight, nine activists were killed. The incident was a clear provocation by Turkey’s increasingly radical Islamist government, and sought to undermine Israel’s defenses against terror from the Hamas regime in Gaza. But President Barack Obama forced Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to apologize, humiliatingly.
Now, the Iranian regime is using the Mavi Marmara precedent, claiming that its ship “is carrying food, medicine, tents, blankets, reporters, rescue workers and peace activists,” according to Politico and other sources. If so, Iran is violating international law by using civilians for a military purpose. It has since agreed to submit the ship to UN inspections. Regardless, Iran is using tactics once used against Israel to target the U.S.–and used Obama’s position against America.
Ship to Gaza
Another such holiday, akin to a pilgrimage, is the Freedom Flotilla. Every year since 2010 -- meaning that this year marks a five year anniversary -- the worshippers of Palestinianism go to the Mediterranean, but unlike others, who go to Club Med, these people swear by Gaza. Clearly, where the main attraction of a trip to the Mediterranean is typically the sandy beaches, the good weather and the great food, followers of Palestinianism are attracted by terror tunnels, Iranian made missiles and promises of ethnical cleansing of all Jews from the state of Israel.
It is now that sweet time of the year again, when the most religious of the devotees get ready to board their vessels and set sail to Gaza. This year the pilgrimage is called “Freedom Flotilla III” comprising several planned sea voyages, all aptly named “Ship to Gaza” from different ports in Europe, as well as Canada, Turkey, and South Africa according to the website of the organizers.
Some of the most devoted followers of Palestinianism are Scandinavians – a fact worth mentioning, since Scandinavia is one of the least traditionally religious places in the West, Palestinianism thus filling a notable void – and it should therefore come as no surprise that the first ship in the Freedom Flotilla III is from Sweden. Norway helped purchase the ship and has sent a few members from its own sizeable community of Palestinianists.
The trawler, named Marianne of Gothenburg, left its homeport on Thursday. It travelled first to Malmoe, that lovely city in the far south of Sweden, where Jews cannot wear a kippa in the streets out of fear for their personal security. Then it continued to Copenhagen, where it picked up a lonely female populist Danish parliamentarian, scrambling for Muslim votes before the upcoming parliamentary elections.
Sarqah Honig: The bimbo or the basher?
Shaked isn’t the first justice minister to urge reform, just as Friedman wasn’t in his day. There’s no way of predicting exactly what she’ll attempt or how things will evolve. Odds are that she won’t make any headway where the mighty Friedman couldn’t.
It’s not her outlook which should appall us but the blanket a-priori rejection with which the very prospect of reform is met. There should nothing objectionable about contemplating reform.
Instead of treating the courts as untouchable private bailiwicks, the closed judicial guild ought to welcome constructive debate. There can be nothing healthier for our democracy than wholesome deliberation in lieu of the undemocratic power-grab by an unelected self-perpetuating minority that imperiously imposes its political/legal philosophy on the people.
The real nightmare is that Shaked would be foiled, as Friedman was, and that the Paritzkys and Rozins among us would succeed to demonize her in democracy’s name.
It’s the false alarm they seek to inculcate in respectable citizens which, when all is said and done, suffices to mess with our soundest sleep cycles and instigate recurring bouts of night terror. It almost doesn’t matter whether they defame Shaked as Ayelet-the-Nazi-bimbo or Ayelet-the-democracy-basher. These are the incidental details of misrepresentation.
Jeffrey Goldberg: 'Look ... It's My Name on This': Obama Defends the Iran Nuclear Deal
On Tuesday afternoon, as President Obama was bringing an occasionally contentious but often illuminating hour-long conversation about the Middle East to an end, I brought up a persistent worry. “A majority of American Jews want to support the Iran deal,” I said, “but a lot of people are anxiety-ridden about this, as am I.” Like many Jews—and also, by the way, many non-Jews—I believe that it is prudent to keep nuclear weapons out of the hands of anti-Semitic regimes. Obama, who earlier in the discussion had explicitly labeled the supreme leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, an anti-Semite, responded with an argument I had not heard him make before.
“Look, 20 years from now, I’m still going to be around, God willing. If Iran has a nuclear weapon, it’s my name on this,” he said, referring to the apparently almost-finished nuclear agreement between Iran and a group of world powers led by the United States. “I think it’s fair to say that in addition to our profound national-security interests, I have a personal interest in locking this down.”
The president—the self-confident, self-contained, coolly rational president—appears to have his own anxieties about the nuclear talks. Which isn’t a bad thing.
Obama Atlantic interview And 5 important observations
#1. "Prime Minister Netanyahu said a Palestinian state would not happen under his watch"
This is the SAME thing Mr. Obama HIMSELF said last week (Al Arabiya 15 May 2015): "And what I think at this point, realistically, we can do is to try to rebuild trust -- not through a big overarching deal, which I don't think is probably possible in the next year, given the makeup of the Netanyahu government, given the challenges I think that exist for President Abbas."
#2. The gaping flaws indicated by Iran in the developing Iran nuclear deal require a 5 second attention span to raise - Goldberg declines to mention any of them:
a. Inspection regime to exclude any serious inspection of Iranian military sites that may conceal nuclear program.
b. Inspection regime inside nuclear facilities to exclude live monitoring (prohibit video feeds that might provide images of Iranian nuclear scientists)
c. Ongoing development and construction of advanced centrifuges to slash break-out time permitted.
d. Ongoing development, construction and even deployment of delivery systems for nuclear weapons permitted.
Obama: US must criticize Israel if it is to defend it
President Barack Obama defended his fierce criticism of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the wake of the March elections in Israel, arguing that such criticism lends him credibility when defending the Jewish state in international arenas, and rejected attempts to equate his censure of the Israeli government with anti-Semitism.
Obama, in a wide-ranging interview with Jeffrey Goldberg in The Atlantic, said that his criticism of Netanyahu, who on election day warned in a frantic video that Israel’s Arab citizens were streaming to the polls “in droves,” related to the very “nature of the friendship between the United States and Israel.” He also said that comments such as Netanyahu’s have “foreign-policy consequences.”
That criticism, which rattled the already fraught relationship between the two governments, was due to Netanyahu straying from “the very language of the Israeli Declaration of Independence, which explicitly states that all people regardless of race or religion are full participants in the democracy,” said Obama, who also took Netanyahu to task for asserting in the run-up to the election that there would be no Palestinian state on his watch.
In interview, Obama tries to set terms for US-Israel ties
Obama’s interview was at times defensive, arguing that criticism of Israel’s policies did not constitute a lack of support for Israel and the Jewish people as a whole — and, for that matter, that he was not “bifurcating” the American Jewish community. Obama’s opponents have pointed to his pursuit of an Iranian nuclear deal as linked to his very public run-ins with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over topics that include both Iran, the two-state solution, and the status of Israeli Arabs.
Obama complained that “there has been a very concerted effort on the part of some political forces to equate being pro-Israel, and hence being supportive of the Jewish people, with a rubber stamp on a particular set of policies coming out of the Israeli government.”
“If you are questioning settlement policy, that indicates you’re anti-Israeli, or that indicates you’re anti-Jewish. If you express compassion or empathy towards Palestinian youth, who are dealing with checkpoints or restrictions on their ability to travel, then you are suspect in terms of your support of Israel. If you are willing to get into public disagreements with the Israeli government, then the notion is that you are being anti-Israel, and by extension, anti-Jewish,” he continued. “I completely reject that.”
Obama’s argument echoed those made by leftist groups like J Street. If this was a trial balloon for Friday’s speech, the argument is unlikely to win over many beyond the already-converted – who have been making this argument themselves for almost a decade.
In Obama's Middle East there's only one problem -- Netanyahu
Speaking with The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg this week, Obama went out of his way to castigate Netanyahu over an election day video message, in which he warned that "Arab voters are coming out in droves." Even though the Israeli premier has already apologized for making this remark, Obama once again attacked him, preaching that Netanyahu's message ran "contrary to the very language of the Israeli Declaration of Independence" and warning of "foreign policy consequences."
Khamenei's latest rhetorical gems, however, did not give Obama any pause. As usual, Khamenei's comments always escape scrutiny in Obama's world. In other words, Iran may continue being a rogue state that sponsors terrorism and propagates anti-Semitism. It can continue to destabilize Sunni Arab states and show its contempt toward American values and at the same time be completely trustworthy, because it is obviously a rational actor. The world can strike a deal with Iran with its eyes wide shut. But Netanyahu? That is something else. As far as Obama is concerned, he has been blacklisted. He will not be invited back to the White House, at least not anytime soon.
Finally! The root cause behind the Middle East's many problems has been identified. It is not Iran, which is about to ink a deal with the West; it is not the Islamic State group, which is supposedly on the run, No! The real problem is Israel's elected premier. Go democracy!
Likud MK says Obama's criticism of Netanyahu has 'a bit of hypocrisy'
A confidante of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused US President Barack Obama on Friday of exhibiting “an iota of hypocrisy” in criticizing the premier for remarks made during the recent election campaign which were perceived as racist.
In an interview with Israel Radio on Friday, Likud MK Tzachi Hanegbi was asked to comment on Obama’s comments to The Atlantic published Thursday.
“It’s astonishing that President Obama didn’t see fit to criticize countries like Iran, which regularly executes people, or Turkey, where journalists who write things critical of their government are sent to jail,” Hanegbi said.
The Likud lawmaker and coalition chairman said that Obama’s statements “causes discomfort and unease and bears an iota of hypocrisy.”
IsraellyCool: Loving Israel To Death?
Jeffrey Goldberg and US President Barack Obama are at it again. Reading Goldberg’s latest Obama PR piece feels like watching a conversation between someone on a good acid trip and someone else on a bad acid trip. (Goldberg, full of angst and worry but still detached from reality, is the one on the bad trip.) Indeed, it is hard to imagine any other explanation for Goldberg’s comparison of Obama to any one of 50 rabbis that Goldberg claims to have spoken to recently.
In the current installment — and I assume there are still more to come before 2017 — we get some insight into the President’s own definition of anti-Semitism. Obama, the man who put a de facto arms embargo on Israel in the middle of a defensive war, says that if you are not anti-Semitic, “then you should be able to align yourself with Israel where its security is at stake.”
If you are not anti-Semitic, continues the man who threatened to withhold the US veto at the OIC-controlled bad joke that is called the UN, “you should be able to align yourself with Israel when it comes to making sure that it is not held to a double standard in international fora.”
The man who spent six solid weeks lambasting the Israeli Prime Minister for having the gall to accept an invitation from the Speaker of the US House of Representatives then said, if you are not anti-Semitic, “you should align yourself with Israel when it comes to making sure that it is not isolated.”
'Obama is Meddling in Israeli Internal Affairs'
Tourism Minister Yariv Levin (Likud) responded sharply after US President Barack Obama continued his condemnation of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's pre-election comments, in which he said a Palestinian state would not be established on his watch and warned of massive Arab voter turnout.
Striking back at Obama's criticism of Netanyahu's remarks, Levin said, "we have much appreciation and respect for the president of the United States, but there's no place for statements which constitute interfering in the internal affairs of Israel."
The minister continued, "the time has come for leaders of the West to open their eyes and take care of the true problems threatening world peace, with radical Islam at the forefront, and stop the incessant preoccupation with the state of Israel, which is the only democracy in the region and is struggling practically alone for the future of the free world."
Obama to address Jewish congregation on anti-Semitism
Obama was to speak to Congregation Adas Israel on Friday in observance of Jewish American Heritage Month. The appearance coincides with Solidarity Shabbat, devoted to showing unity by political leaders in Europe and North America against anti-Semitism.
Obama is expected to use the opportunity to try to calm the waters over the impending nuclear deal with Iran and his administration’s frosty relationship with the Netanyahu government.
In an interview with The Atlantic magazine this week, Obama said extremism in the Middle East and the emergence of overt anti-Semitism in Europe have made Jews fearful just one generation removed from the Holocaust.
But he also criticized politicians who denounce anyone who questions Israeli government policies as being anti-Jewish. He said: “I completely reject that.”
Obama: Most US Jews Still Support Me
US President Barack Obama defended his policies regarding Iran in an interview with Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic published Thursday, and claimed that most US Jews still support him.
There’s “not really a bifurcation with respect to the attitudes of the Jewish American community about me,” he said, when asked about his billionaire Sheldon Adelson and other critics in the US Jewish community. “I consistently received overwhelming majority support from the Jewish community, and even after all the publicity around the recent differences that I’ve had with Prime Minister Netanyahu, the majority of the Jewish American community still supports me, and supports me strongly.”
Obama explained that his criticisms of Israel reflect his high expectations from the Jewish state, and his concern that Israel may be straying from the moral path of its founders, and risking its long-term survival as a Jewish and democratic state.
Wary Israel watches latest UN bid to force it to come clean on nukes
Official Israel was on Thursday maintaining a stony silence, but insiders said they were concerned that the Obama administration might not block new efforts by a UN conference to force Israel to come clean on its nuclear capabilities as a step toward a nuclear-free Middle East.
The United States has sent a top official to Israel to discuss the question of a Middle East free of nuclear weapons, a central issue of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference that is set to adopt its closing resolutions on Friday.
At the previous conference, in 2010, to Israel’s dismay, the Obama administration signed onto the final document which called for a conference of all Middle Eastern states to move forward on a 1995 proposal for a nuclear-free Mideast and which urged Israel to sign the NPT treaty and place “all its nuclear facilities under comprehensive IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) safeguards.” Later, though, President Barack Obama and his then national security adviser James Jones denounced efforts to single out Israel.
Joe Lieberman: Next president will bring warmer Israel ties
Former US Sen. Joseph Lieberman, in an interview with JTA in Jerusalem, surmised that the next US administration would be friendlier with Israel than the current one. He also expressed concern over America’s nuclear negotiations with Iran, saying they are “going in a bad direction,” and urged Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to embrace the long-shelved Arab Peace Initiative.
Lieberman, an Orthodox Jew and the Democrats’ vice presidential candidate in 2000, predicted that if the 2016 presidential election were held today, a higher percentage of Jewish Americans would vote Republican than in past races. But he noted that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the party’s front-runner for the Democratic nod, could reverse that trend through vocal support of Israel.
“I think there will be a friend of Israel in the White House,” he said, noting that both Clinton and the leading Republican candidates all have pro-Israel records. “It will be a new beginning, a new opportunity. Is it going to be better than it has been under President Obama? Probably, yeah.”
Joe Lieberman: 'US heading for temporary solution to Iran nuclear threat'
Former US senator Joe Lieberman says negotiations with Iran are heading toward a very bad agreement. “The goal was to end the Iranian nuclear program in return for the end of economic sanctions... Now it looks like we’re heading toward the permanent end of economic sanctions and the temporary dialing back of Iran’s nuclear program.”
Lieberman says the move by Congress to give itself power to review any final deal with Iran is “very unusual,” but he sides with it unequivocally.
The four-term senator from Connecticut and 2000 vice-presidential nominee is in Israel to accept Bar-Ilan University’s Guardian of Zion Award from the university’s Ingeborg Rennert Center for Jerusalem Studies.
In an interview Thursday morning before his acceptance speech at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, Lieberman said that this is the best time in history for the Jews: “We are really a fortunate and blessed generation to be alive when the State of Israel has been recreated and re-established in its ancient homeland.”
Obama: Just Because Iran Is Anti-Semitic Doesn’t Make It Irrational
In a recent interview with The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, an interlocutor so highly regarded by this administration that he manages to coax incendiary quotes out of White House officials with near metronomic regularity, Obama appeared to let his guard down a bit. On the subject of Iran and its nuclear ambitions, Goldberg noted that the president has in the past argued, “quite eloquently in fact,” that the Islamic Republic officially subscribes to a particularly virulent strain of anti-Semitism. The destruction of the state of Israel is official Iranian policy. That is an end that Tehran works arduously toward as a state sponsor of terrorism, and it is a goal that it might achieve should it develop one or more fissionable devices.
“You have argued,” Goldberg queried, “that people who subscribe to an anti-Semitic worldview, who explain the world through the prism of anti-Semitic ideology, are not rational, are not built for success, are not grounded in a reality that you and I might understand. And yet, you’ve also argued that the regime in Tehran—a regime you’ve described as anti-Semitic, among other problems that they have—is practical, and is responsive to incentive, and shows signs of rationality.”
The president’s amiable interrogator noted politely that he could not square these two entirely antithetical concepts. Goldberg then asked, with all due deference, if the president might help him to reconcile this contradiction. Obama’s unconvincing response demonstrated clearly that, if any party in this conversation suffered from some cognitive shortcomings, it was not Goldberg.
Iran Gives a Obama a Lesson in Negotiating
That leaves us wondering whether the president is prepared to risk his long sought after deal in order to obtain the terms that he has said make it viable. With only weeks to go before the self-imposed deadline of June 30 to get the pact on paper, the question would seem to be which of the two Khamenei or Obama will blink. But the answer is not so clear-cut as that. The Iranians are clearly baiting Obama but are also sending out signals they will accept a “compromise.”
That’s the upshot of an Associated Press report about comments from French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius about the Iran deal. Fabius said the Iranians are currently offering the West a deal on inspections that would allow the UN to visit a site of a suspected violation of the deal’s terms but only after a 24-day notice being given. Needless to say, such a waiting period is almost as bad as no inspections at all. Indeed, even if the Iranians go down a bit from 24 to a lower number, anything other than the right to rigorous surprise inspections is a lock-solid guarantee of cheating by the Islamist regime. But by publicly staking such an absurd stand on the issue, the Grand Ayatollah has set up Obama for a compromise that will undermine the entire foundation of the agreement.
So while Obama is defending his partners in a new Middle East entente as being rational anti-Semites, his Iranian counterpart is demonstrating a degree of diplomatic skill far above that of the president. Having spent the last two years undressing the president in public as his demands for an end to their nuclear program has given way to an agreement that at best, enshrines Tehran as a threshold nuclear power, Khamenei is now pushing Obama to the brink knowing full well that the president will never give up his legacy-making agreement if Iran doesn’t agree to his terms. Obama told Goldberg that he knows that if Iran gets a bomb, it will have his name on it even if it is 20 years from now. Sadly, that inscription is being written in the final weeks of talks as the Iranians give Obama one last lesson in how to negotiate.
Study: Iran Sanctions Relief Will Benefit Supreme Leader & Revolutionary Guards, not Moderates
Ottolenghi and Ghasseminejad came to their conclusion by using the stock market valuations of Iranian companies to estimate how much of Iran’s economy is controlled by Khamenei and the IRGC.
While it is true that in 2005, the Supreme Leader launched a large privatization drive, mandating the government to sell most state-owned industries, the program did not exactly empower the country’s fledgling private sector. Its main beneficiaries were foundations controlled by the Islamic Republic’s deep state, including the military, especially the Revolutionary Guards and Khamenei. One can speculate about how dominant the economic position of these entities in the Iranian economy is. But there is no question that the IRGC, owing to this “privatization,” has gained significant influence over Iran’s economy and its political system….
We have been tracking the intervention of military foundations—both the Guard Corps’ and the armed forces’—into Iran’s stock market (the Tehran Stock Exchange) since 2011. Military-controlled companies are mostly concentrated in strategic sectors such as oil, mining, telecommunications, petrochemicals, automotive, banking and construction.
As of April, the portfolio of military foundations consisted of twenty-six publicly-traded firms with a market value of 17.5 billion dollars—almost 20 percent of Tehran’s Stock Exchange market value. The Supreme Leader’s business empire accounts for an estimated additional 5 percent through three foundations he controls: Setad Ejraiye, the Foundation of the Oppressed and Disabled (or Mostazafan Foundation) and Rey Group. We estimate that together, they control one fourth of the stock exchange.
Vandals Paint Palestinian Flags Over Israeli UNESCO World Heritage Site
Vandals defaced a UNESCO archaeological site in southern Israel by painting Palestinian flags and nationalistic slogans on the stones, Israeli news site NRG reported on Wednesday.
Inspectors from the Israel Antiquities Authority and the Israel Nature and Parks Authority filed a complaint on Wednesday with the Dimona police department over the vandalism at the ruins of the ancient city of Haluza, a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the Negev desert.
“After the police give us the permission, we’ll start to clean up the site and restore it,” said Amiram Cohen, the NPA’s inspector for the western Negev region.
The incident was discovered earlier this week when images of the painted flags at Haluza were uploaded to the vandalizing group’s website, and were discovered by Cohen.
IDF Blog: Could the Iron Dome Protect You One Day?
Last summer, approximately 9 out of 10 rockets fired at civilian centers were intercepted by the Iron Dome, evidencing its astounding success. Should the global network of terror reach your doorstep, would you want that same kind of protection? Coordination among Israel and our allied countries could lead to these technologies protecting you in the near future.
This week, the USA, Canada, Netherlands, Germany, Britain, Poland, Italy and Greece sent their top air force commanders to Israel to learn about the air defense technologies behind the Iron Dome’s successful rocket-interception rate. The conference was spurred as a response to an increase in global terror. Given the threats on Israel’s border and its strategic location, the IDF is constantly in need of developing technology that can ensure the safety of its civilians.
Could the Iron Dome Protect You One Day?

MEMRI: Fatah On 67th Nakba Anniversary: We Will Continue Struggle Until Refugees' Right Of Return To Their Homes Is Realized
The Palestinian commemoration of the 67th anniversary of the Nakba, which fell on May 15, 2015, included rallies featuring speeches by Fatah and Palestinian Authority (PA) officials, in which they stressed that they were continuing to pursue the Palestinian refugees' individual and collective right of return, which they said can never be relinquished. In his speech, PA President Mahmoud 'Abbas called for a just and agreed-upon solution to the refugee problem, promising that the nonviolent popular resistance activity would continue. Fatah issued a statement calling for refugee return, noting that this right was sacred, and Palestinian officials said that this right is passed down through the generations and will not disappear even after the Palestinian state is established. Rallies and marches marking the Nakba were held across the PA; during some, clashes broke out between Palestinians and Israeli military forces.
The following report summarizes the Nakba Day activities and their coverage in Fatah and PA media.
MEMRI: Fatah Official Nabil Sha'ath Visits Jaffa On Occasion Of Nakba Day: 'Hebron, Acre, Bethlehem, Beersheba And Nazareth – They Are All My Cities'
In an article published in the Palestinian daily Al-Quds on the occasion of Nakba Day (May 15, 2015), Fatah Central Committee member and former PA chief negotiator Nabil Sha'ath described a visit he made to Jaffa, the city of his childhood. Sha'ath toured the city and visited places he remembers from his childhood, including his family home, his school and the school at which his father taught. In the article he stressed the vividness of his memories of the city, and the connection he feels to all the Palestinian cities, both those in the Palestinian territories and those in Israel. He said that the city of his childhood will remain in his heart and his mind until the Palestinians achieve their independence and realize their right to return to their homes. He also said that the Palestinians have proposed to the Israelis two solutions for achieving peace: a single democratic state for both peoples, or two independent states with the Palestinians having the right to return to the towns and villages from which we were removed – but the Israelis refused.
A correspondent for the London daily Al-Hayat who accompanied Sha'ath on his visit later wrote in the daily that "what worries Sha'ath more than anything today is the efforts of Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to 'steal' Palestine's history, after he has already stolen its present. [Sha'ath] said: 'They want to steal the Palestine of today and the Palestine of yesterday. They want to steal our heritage, by means of what they call the Jewish state.'"
The following are excerpts from Nabil Sha'ath's article:
Khaled Abu Toameh: Gaza unemployment world's highest as 60% of youth find themselves jobless
Blockades and war have strangled the Gaza Strip’s economy and the unemployment rate is now the highest in the world, according to a report published Friday by the World Bank.
The report is to be presented to the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee (AHLC), a forum of donors to the Palestinian Authority, at the bi-annual meeting in Brussels on May 27.
The report estimates that the Gaza Strip’s GDP would have been about four times higher than it currently is if it weren’t for the conflicts and the multiple restrictions.
It also states that the 2007 blockade has shaved around 50 percent off Gaza’s GDP, causing welfare losses of up to 28%.
Why the Palestinians’ Gun Culture Should Concern Us
The PA’s territory is awash in guns. Tribal clans have them, terrorists have them, criminals have them. Guns are an acceptable feature of Palestinian life.
Even though the PA regime has one of the largest per capita police forces in the world, the PA police make no serious effort to confiscate the guns. The PA makes no effort to discourage this gun culture. On the contrary, the PA’s schools and media teach young Palestinians that those who use guns—to kill Jews—are heroes and martyrs.
It’s bad enough that Palestinian society is already rife with such attitudes. Now try to imagine what would happen if the Obama administration and the United Nations force Israel to accept the creation of an independent, sovereign “Palestine.” Israel would be faced with an entire state rooted in a culture of guns and violence. For real peace, that culture must be transformed—not next year, but now.
WATCH: Hezbollah song in honor of Jihad Mughniyeh seeks to whip up backing for Syria war effort
Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shi’ite group, is deploying a new weapon in its propaganda campaign aimed at persuading its followers to wage battle in Syria - a song dedicated to the memory of Jihad Mughniyeh, the son of the late commander Imad Mughniyeh.
Jihad Mughniyeh was one of six fighters who died in an alleged Israeli air strike on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights earlier this year. An Iranian general was also killed in the attack.
Imad Mughniyeh was Hezbollah’s military commander who was killed by a car bomb planted in his vehicle in Damascus in 2008. It is widely assumed that Israel’s Mossad was behind the killing.
Hezbollah has been embroiled in the Syrian civil war, sacrificing fighters to help Bashar Assad fend off a rebellion launched by oppositionists and Sunni Islamists.
According to a report which appeared Saturday in the Saudi newspaper Okaz, an unprecedented number of Hezbollah fighters have been killed during fighting in the Qalamoun border region along the Lebanese-Syrian border, but the organization has sought to cover up its losses.
Tunis Museum Suspect Seen Arriving In Sicily
Photographs have emerged showing a Moroccan man accused of involvement in the attack on Tunisia's Bardo Museum arriving in Sicily on a boat carrying hundreds of illegal migrants.
The images were captured on 17 February and show Touil Abdelmajid, 22, smiling alongside fellow migrants on an Italian navy ship at Porto Empedocle harbour in Sicily.
Abdelmajid was arrested near Milan on Tuesday on suspicion of helping to organise and carry out the 18 March attack in Tunis which killed 21 tourists.
Moroccan citizen Touil Abdelmajid gestures as he arrives with migrants on the Italian navy ship Orione at Porto Empedocle harbour in Sicily
The case has led to debate over how Italian authorities managed to lose track of Abdelmajid for almost three months after he arrived in Sicily.
Conspiracy Books Led Bin Laden to Question His Own Involvement in 9/11 (satire)
After reading several books touting conspiracy theories, former al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden spent his last days in his compound in Pakistan questioning not only the U.S. government’s version of 9/11 but his own role in the 2001 attacks, newly released documents show.
Among the books bin Laden kept in his Abbottabad compound was David Ray Griffin’s “The New Pearl Harbor,” which claims that the Twin Towers were not brought down by planes and that 9/11 was a “False Flag” operation carried out by the U.S. government.
“All this time I was thinking I was this terrorist mastermind who brought the West to its knees with my brilliant plan,” the former al Qaeda leader and current fish food du jour reportedly admitted to several close friends and wives. “To find out I had nothing to do with it is pretty embarrassing. Like, I’ve literally been hiding in caves, then cooped up in a shitty, though impenetrable, compound for no reason.”
Bin Laden said he was pretty sure that he remembered ordering, planning and funding the attacks on the World Trade Center, Pentagon and U.S. Capitol building but could not explain the collapse of World Trade Center 7 or President Bush’s refusal to stop reading “The Pet Goat” to a class of elementary students.


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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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