Tuesday, December 22, 2015

From Ian:

The United States and Islam: What Is Going On?
The irony is that no major power in recent history has gone out of its way as has the United States to help, respect, please and, yes, appease Islam. And, yet, no other nation has been a victim of vilification, demonization, and violence on the part of the Islamists as has the U.S.
The politically correct crowd has turned Islam into a new taboo. They brand any criticism of Islam as racist, ethnocentrist or simply vile, all crammed together in the new category of "Islamophobia." Is it Islamophobia to question a religion whose Middle East leaders often preach "Death to America" and hatred for Western values?
More prevalent than Islamophobia is Islamophilia, as leftists treat Muslims as children whose feathers should not be ruffled. The Islamophilia crowd invites Americans and Europeans to sacrifice part of their own freedom in atonement of largely imaginary sins against Muslims in the colonial and imperialist era.
Many Muslims resent the kind of flattery that takes them for idiots at a time that Islam and Muslims badly need to be criticized. The world needs to wake up and ask: What is going on?
Why Western Leaders Refuse to Call Jihadist Terror by Name
Above all, we should never say that upholding Western values like universal human rights, even by force in some cases, is sometimes desperately needed by those many Others who suffer oppression, violence, terror and genocide.
Ask Nadia Murad Basee Taha, a Yazidi woman who recently testified before the UN Security Council about her unimaginably brutal treatment at the hands of the Islamic State. She pleaded with the council to intervene. I doubt that Taha would agree with gender theorist Judith Butler that jihadi movements like, say, Hamas, should be considered part of the “global left.”
Some observers – many in Israel – believe that now that terrorism has struck Paris and California, the West will wake up and realize that democratic values need active defense. But it’s doubtful whether such optimism is warranted. When the democracies’ immune systems are so slow to wake up from their beauty sleep, democracy’s enemies fill the vacuum. When the political left and center are so preoccupied with cleansing their own conscience, the extreme right rises in their stead.
This is true in the international arena, where reactionary powers like Russia and Iran are filling the void that the Obama administration has left in the Middle East. Meanwhile, in domestic politics, people like Marine Le Pen or Donald Trump are poised to reap the sour fruits of public fears.
Those who have been so careful not to criticize the Other because of their inflated fears of being labeled bigots have opened the door to real bigots. It’s doubtful whether they have rendered good services either to themselves or the Others they proclaim so loudly to care about.
PMW findings used to confront PA officials
A delegation of Australian and British politicians visiting Israel and the Palestinian Authority used Palestinian Media Watch's findings to challenge and question PA officials. After confronting the PA officials, Australian MP Glenn Sterle "strongly recommended a briefing from Palestinian Media Watch before any meetings with the PA," The Jerusalem Post reported.
The Australian and British delegation had heard a presentation by PMW director Itamar Marcus, which, among other things, documented the PA's practice of glorifying terrorists who have killed Israeli civilians. After the PMW presentation, the delegation met with PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah and PA Minister of Education Sabri Saidam. The British and Australian delegates confronted and questioned the PA officials about the PA practice of naming schools and sporting events after terrorists and their educating Palestinian children and youth to hate Israelis and Jews.
PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah denied that any schools in the West Bank are named after terrorists, despite the fact that PMW has clearly documented this. Hamdallah even "defend[ed] the practice of 'honoring' terrorist-suicide bombers," Australian MP Glenn Sterle said. Hamdallah had further told the delegation to "check their information." [The Jerusalem Post, Dec. 15, 2015]
After the meeting with the Australian-British delegation, the PA Minister of Education Dr. Sabri Saidam said that he "was surprised by the group's 'explosive, blunt and rude' questions about Palestine's education system." "There was a lot of incitement I would say on behalf of the delegation meaning or implying that the Palestinians are the ones terrorizing Israel," Saidam said. He complained that Australian Federal Industry Minister Christopher Pyne had not discussed education with him but instead about "political difficulties." Minister Saidam stated that Minister Pyne "had a list of questions and they were misinformed." [SBS News, Dec. 16, 2015]

Fred Maroun: Lament for a sick Arab world
Samir Kuntar was Lebanese like me. That is nauseating but true.
The nauseating part is not simply that he was a repugnant criminal. After all, every country has its repugnant criminals. It is that upon his release from Israeli jail, he was given a hero’s welcome by Lebanon, and a year later he received the highest Medal of Honor in Syria.
When I note the hate culture among Palestinians, I am told that it is due to the “occupation”, whatever that means.
The Arab hate culture goes far beyond Palestinian society, and it is not due to any action by Israel. It consists of idolizing thugs and hating the “enemy”, whether it is the Jews, some Christian or Muslim religious sect, or some other tribe.
Israel is not the problem. Israel is the excuse.
The Importance of Samir Kuntar
Were Kuntar an isolated “extremist” that represented the views of only a tiny minority of Palestinians or Lebanese, it might be possible to dismiss him and his small role in the history of the conflict as painful though insignificant. But the problem with the war against Israel that continues to be waged by its foes and their foreign sympathizers is that far from being an outlier, Kuntar’s views and deeds represented those of most Palestinians if not those of the Lebanese Druze. One needn’t resort to studies of public opinion polls to understand that the cheering mobs that acclaimed Kuntar and the equally depraved killers that were exchanged for Shalit weren’t merely expressing resentment about West Bank settlements or registering an opinion about where Israel’s borders should be drawn. Kuntar was not reviled in the Arab world, as he should have been because his compatriots thought killing Jewish children was the act of a hero, not a vile barbarian.
The point about the conflict with Israel is that, despite the endless sermons about the need for the Jewish state to be more forthcoming in negotiations or to empathize with its enemies, it cannot be resolved only by diplomacy. Israel has repeatedly tried to trade land for peace with the Palestinians and gotten only more terror in return for their efforts. But one needn’t rehearse the history of Israeli offers of statehood and far-reaching territorial withdrawals to understand why they all failed. All you have to do is to ponder why Samir Kuntar could have been treated like a hero while alive or acclaimed as a martyr after his richly-deserved punishment was finally meted out.
The survivors of Kuntar’s victims expressed understandable satisfaction about his fate and hoped that the killers’ many fans understand this long-delayed retribution as a warning that no one should think they can slaughter Jews with impunity. They are right that violence is the only language understood by terrorists. But I don’t hold out much hope that his death will discourage those who might seek to emulate his evil deeds. So long as major portions of the Arab and Muslim worlds hold onto their hate of the Jewish state, many of them will be willing to risk death in order to kill more Jews. It will take a sea change in their culture to convince them to view Kuntar with abhorrence rather than admiration. Until that change occurs, peace will remain an impossible dream.
Dr. Keidar Speaks About Killing of Samir Kuntar

MEMRI: Fatah Central Committee Member In Letter Of Condolences For Samir Kuntar's Death: He Was A 'National Hero'; We Will Continue Struggle Until 'Arab And Palestinian Soil Is Purged'
The following is the translated text of the letter, which was posted on Fatah's official Twitter page.
"In the name of Allah the Compassionate, the Merciful,
"Among the believers are men who have been true to their covenant with Allah, of them some have fulfilled their obligations (i.e. have been martyred), and some of them are still waiting, but they have never changed [their covenant] in the least. [Koran 33:23]."
"To the Honorable Hassan Nasrallah, Allah protect him, greetings [in the name of] Arabhood and our common struggle.
"We received with honor and pride the news about the martyrdom of the national hero, one of your most prominent knights, the leader of the prisoners, the martyr of the Lebanese resistance and of Palestine Samir Quntar, who was martyred in a treacherous [action] last night, a criminal bombing by the planes of the Zionist entity.
Report: Assassinated Arch-Terrorist Samir Kuntar’s Will Calls on Hezbollah to Carefully Plan Revenge Against Israel
A Lebanese satellite TV station affiliated with terror group Hezbollah reported on details of assassinated arch-terrorist Samir Kuntar’s last will and testament, Wall Street Journal correspondent Sam Dagher said on Twitter.
Kuntar’s supposed will was published in Arabic on the website almanar.com, according to Dagher.
In the will, Kuntar, who was assassinated late Saturday night in Syria and buried in Lebanon on Monday, asks that Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah carefully plan the precise time and place to retaliate against Israel, which has been blamed for the strike, rather than responding immediately. He said Israel “deludes itself into thinking that by killing us it can drag the Resistance into a confrontation whose timing and place it chooses.” Kuntar added that Nasrallah is aware of his “responsibility to avoid being dragged into a battle, the timing and place of which have been determined by the enemy.”
Ex-wife of Lebanese terrorist Samir Kuntar says his death was justified
Kifah Kayyal, the divorced Palestinian wife of Lebanese Druse terrorist Samir Kuntar, said on Monday that her ex-husband's murder was justified, according to a report by Memri.
While Hezbollah and Syrian state media have blamed Israel for Kuntar's death claiming he was killed in an Israeli airstrike on Demascus on Saturday, the Israeli government has yet to confirm or deny any involvement in his death.
Kuntar's ex-wife believes that regardless of who killed him, her ex-husband's murder was justified because his intention was not to fight against Israel but to harm Syrians and the Palestinian people.
"Kuntar and Hezbollah are on the Arab land of Syria not in order to fight Israel, the Zionist enemy, or any aggression," she said in an interview with the Saudi al-Arabia Network.
"They are there to fight the Syrian people and the Palestinian people. We show no solidarity with murderers. Murders should be killed," she added.

IsraellyCool: Richard Silverstein Defends Arch Terrorist Samir Kuntar’s Honor
We now see the latest example of this. With Israel offing arch terrorist Samir Kuntar, I am absolutely not surprised Silverstein found a way to minimize his crimes.
Yesterday, Israel murdered Samir Kuntar, a Hezbollah militant involved with a terror attack that killed three Israeli civilians in 1979. Until he was freed in a prisoner exchange in 2008, he’d been the longest-serving security prisoner in Israeli jails.
Notice from the outset he accuses Israel of “murdering” Kuntar. It is already clear what side he is taking. And he cannot bring himself to call Kuntar a “terrorist” but rather a “militant.”
In the years following the original attack, Kuntar became the embodiment of the bloodthirsty terrorist, supposedly personally bashing in the head of a little girl with a rifle butt. At least this is the story they told. But this narrative, like so many spun by Israeli military-intelligence circles, and lapped up so eagerly by an adoring Israeli media, is largely fiction.
According to Aviv Sela, a noted Israeli psychologist who served in that capacity for years with the police and Shabak, Kuntar did not kill the girl or her father. Instead, he claims he had left the boat to help his comrades who’d been attacked by Israeli security forces. The firing that killed the Israelis came via friendly (Israeli) fire and not the Palestinians. As with so many ugly facts Israel tries to conceal in such circumstances, it creates comfortable narratives that obscure the truth.

For a start, the man’s name is Zvi Sela, not Aviv. The fact Silverstein cannot even get his name right is indicative of his regard for facts and truth.
UN chief condemns rocket fire on northern Israel
Following a request from Israel’s UN ambassador, Danny Danon, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday condemned the rocket fire from Lebanon on northern Israel a day earlier.
In a statement, Ban said he is “greatly concerned over yesterday’s firing of rockets within UNIFIL’s area of operations from the area of Al-Hinniyah, in the vicinity of Tyr, towards Israel, which is a serious violation of resolution 1701 (2006).”
“The Secretary-General notes the retaliatory mortar attacks by the Israel Defense Forces in Lebanon in the area of Zibqin. UNIFIL is investigating the circumstances of the incident in cooperation with the Lebanese Armed Forces and the Israel Defense Forces,” said the statement.
The statement also said that Ban “condemns any and all violations of resolution 1701 (2006) and urges all concerned to exercise maximum restraint and cooperate with UNIFIL in order to prevent an escalation. The parties must fully adhere to resolution 1701 (2006) and respect the cessation of hostilities.”
“The United Nations is committed to continuing to work with the parties to ensure that the calm that has prevailed in southern Lebanon continues to be sustained,” stressed the UN chief.
Omission and equivalence in BBC News report on rockets from Lebanon
Israel later responded to the attacks with artillery fire.
The BBC News website reported on the incident in an article carrying a headline implying equivalence between missile attacks aimed at civilian targets and retaliatory fire against the initiators of the attacks – “Fire traded over Israel-Lebanon border after militant’s death“. Notably, the headline once again uses the term “militant” to describe the murderer of four Israelis in 1979.
The very brief and superficial description of the incident found in that December 20th report failed to provide readers with any information about who launched the attacks which sparked the incident – but did name the responding party. The fact that the missiles were aimed at civilian communities and the ensuing dash by Israeli citizens for cover was apparently not considered newsworthy.
 Ask the Guardian why it chose photo depicting a ‘child-friendly’ child-killing terrorist (Update)
Though the caption doesn’t note this, the photo of Kuntar with his arms around two children was taken shortly after his release in 2008.
We should note that the Guardian article itself does note how the four-year old Einat was brutally murdered, thus making editors’ decision to illustrate the story with a photo of a ‘child-friendly’ Kuntar especially curious.
We suggest emailing the Guardian’s readers’ editor to politely inquire about their decision to use this particular photo.
UPDATE: The Guardian responded to UK Media Watch, informing us that they replaced the photo.
New ‘Israeli Lives Matter’ Campaign to Memorialize Individuals Killed in Palestinian Terror Attacks
A new campaign launched last week will seek to memorialize each and every individual killed in Palestinian terrorist attacks in Israel over the past 15 years.
A Facebook page called “Israeli Lives Matter” — which has already garnered thousands of followers — was opened as part of the campaign, under the direction of the World Zionist Organization’s Department for Zionist Operations.
Each day, the page features a different victim of the ongoing terror wave in Israel, along with biographical information and details about the attacks in which they were murdered. American student Ezra Schwartz, who was studying in Israel when he was killed last month, and Israeli couple Eitam and Naama Henkin are among the terror victims eulogized on the Facebook page.
“The real story of Israel is the story of its people — their passion, their achievements, their aspirations, and, unfortunately, their deaths,” Dr. David Breakstone, head of the WZO’s Department for Zionist Operations, told The Algemeiner. “By putting a face to those who have been sacrificed on the altar of Zionism, ‘Israeli Lives Matter’ will help humanize the tragedy of the ongoing refusal of our enemies to accept our existence, while simultaneously paying homage to the victims of the conflict.”
From Boston to Beit Shemesh, slain Ezra Schwartz honored with service and sports
Jewish communities around the world are marking the one-month commemoration of 18-year-old Ezra Schwartz’s burial following his murder by Palestinian terrorists on November 19.
Schwartz was gunned down while performing volunteer projects near Efrat, south of Jerusalem. The teen’s murder has spurred hundreds of Jews to commit to volunteering and Jewish learning, with many announcing their intentions on social media. Others are donating to Jewish organizations that played a role in Schwartz’s life, including his summer camp and yeshiva in Israel.
Beloved by four siblings, many cousins, and countless friends, Schwartz’s sudden loss led some of them to focus on causes already favored by the slain teen, who moved to Israel for a pre-college gap year at the end of summer.
According to Yeshiva Ashreinu in Beit Shemesh, where Schwartz was enrolled at the time of the attack, members of the Schwartz family who live in Israel will participate in a Friday morning “epic wiffle tournament” for charity at Jerusalem’s Sacher Park. Wiffle ball had been a particular passion for Schwartz, as mentioned by several eulogists during his funeral in Sharon, Massachusetts.
Soldiers arrest knife-wielding Palestinian woman in Hebron
Border Police on Tuesday arrested a Palestinian woman in Hebron after she threatened to stab them with a knife.
The woman approached a security checkpoint near the Tomb of the Patriarchs in the West Bank city, pulled out the knife, and threatened the officers on duty, police said in a statement.
Officers overpowered the woman and arrested her. There were no injuries in the incident.
Police later said she was 27 years old.
Call on Palestinian Arabs to carry out 'rage protests'
Palestinian Arabs on Monday were encouraged to escalate the current terror wave against Israelis, in the form of a “Day of Rage” on Tuesday and Friday of this week.
In joint statement issued by a group of Palestinian organizations and which was carried by the official news agency of the Palestinian Authority (PA), the Palestinian masses were called to carry out “protests of rage” following Friday prayers in the PA-controlled territories and in the capitals of Arab countries.
The Palestinian organizations claimed that the "Israeli occupation" is illegal in all territories, including Jerusalem, and they urged the leadership of the Palestinian Authority to turn to the International Court of Justice, the UN Security Council and the UN General Assembly and demand they pass resolutions against Israel.
The PA was also called in the statement to renounce all the agreements signed with Israel and to support placing Israeli leaders on trial for "war crimes". The PA was also urged to support the international boycott movement against Israel.
Terrorist confesses, mother demands death penalty
Devorah Gonen attended on Monday a court hearing of the Arab terrorist who murdered her son, Danny, near Dolev in June.
The 25-year-old Lod resident was shot dead by Mohammed Abu-Shahin after he and his friend returned from a visit to the Ein Buvin spring. Four other terrorists were also implicated in the attack.
Gonen, who has been closely following the trial, told Arutz Sheva that Abu-Shahin had confessed to the murder and the next court hearing will be held in three months.
"The court read the verdict to the terrorist," she said. "After the reading, the terrorist admitted his guilt on all the counts."
The charges against Abu-Shahin include trading in war equipment, weapons manufacturing and possession, membership in a terrorist cell and, of course, murder.
Obama Cannot Hide His Resentment
The New York Times performed a service for the White House late last week, but only after it had delivered a deceptively withering appraisal of the president’s dim view of the American people.
Last week, Times reporter Peter Baker published a revealing anecdote about Barack Obama that he had let slip in a meeting with opinion columnists. “Mr. Obama indicated that he did not see enough cable television to fully appreciate the anxiety after the attacks in Paris and San Bernardino,” the Times report read, “and made clear that he plans to step up his public arguments.” This revelation went off like a bombshell. The president’s robotic lack of empathy shocks the conscience. Like an android getting acquainted with the nuances of human emotion, Obama was taken aback by the mourning over the premature termination of members of the species and the ensuing apprehension that often accompanies the proliferation of foreign threats.
That should have been the story, but the Times scrubbed the revelation from its online report with no editorial note. The paper later insisted that it had done so due to spatial constraints, but the text it added to that same dispatch was longer than that which it deleted. Rather than spend the weekend taking stock of the lifelike computational device sitting behind the Resolute Desk, the nation’s talking heads exhausted themselves discussing New York Times’ editorial policy and the nature of background briefings. The White House must have been thrilled.
Belgium arrests, then releases, five suspects in Paris attacks
Police in Belgium on Monday released five people who were arrested as part of the investigation into last month's Paris terror attacks, CNN reported.
Police arrested two brothers and a third person Sunday in Brussels based on phone records, the prosecutor's office said.
Two more people were arrested Monday morning in Laeken. Police said no guns or explosives were found in either case. All five were released Monday, the prosecutor's office said, according to CNN.
It remains unclear why they were arrested or released.
Belgian police have conducted several raids in the country, particularly in the Molenbeek district of Brussels where the terrorists are believed to have come from, following the Paris attacks.
Belgium's security services were on the defensive after the attacks when they were accused of blunders, infighting and worrying leniency towards radicalism that let the perpetrators of the Paris attacks slip under the radar.
ISIS as a symptom
If ISIS was eliminated, the ideology will still be there and this is the point that everybody seems to ignore.
An article was published on Arutz Sheva on 12 November 2015 by Dr. Mordechai Kedar titled: “There is no radical Islam and there is also no moderate Islam”. As a matter of fact, from a political point of view, there is - and the difference is very simple to define:
Radical Islam wants to eliminate everything that is not radical Islam while moderate Islam wants to eliminate only Israel and Judaism.
Therefore those who consider themselves part of moderate Islam will be very quick to upload photos onto social media saying “Not in my name” when an Islamic terrorist act is committed against Western citizens. but will quickly justify (or deny) terrorism against Jews.
In reality, it is the same issue: People shouting Allahu Akbar are killing people who don’t shout Allahu Akbar and until the world stops continuing to ignore this and for as long as it continues to differentiate between terrorism in Israel and in the West, we are far from defeating Islamic terrorism.
Australia warns: ISIS is eyeing Indonesia for 'caliphate'
The Islamic State (ISIS) group is working to boost its presence in Indonesia with dreams of creating a "distant caliphate" in the world's most populous Muslim-majority country, Australia warned on Tuesday, according to AFP.
Australian Attorney-General George Brandis, who spent Monday in meetings between Indonesian and Australian ministers, police chiefs and security officials, said it constituted a threat to Australian and Western interests.
"ISIS has ambitions to elevate its presence and level of activity in Indonesia, either directly or through surrogates," he was quoted as having told The Australian newspaper.
"You've heard the expression the 'distant caliphate'? ISIS has a declared intention to establish caliphates beyond the Middle East, provincial caliphates in effect. It has identified Indonesia as a location of its ambitions," warned Brandis.
ISIS Recruitment Video Features Bill Clinton and Barack Obama not Donald Trump
During Sunday night's Democrat debate, presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton made the outrageous statement that Donald Trump was featured in ISIS recruiting videos. The lie was swiftly debunked, but what is perhaps most ironic is the fact that there is an ISIS recruitment video currently making the rounds that features, of all people, former president Bill Clinton and current president Barack Obama.
The ISIS recruiting video which was reportedly released in late-November, is dubbed "No Respite" and clearly showcases how the Islamic State views itself.
There are multiple versions of the video in various languages. The English version targets U.S. military strategy and also notes racial tensions at play across the country.
Obama’s Dangerous Syrian Charade
Last Friday the world was treated to another example of Secretary of State John Kerry declaring a diplomatic victory. But unlike the Iran nuclear deal, even the Obama administration’s reliable media cheering section isn’t shouting hosanna about the conclusion of an agreement to end the civil war in Syria. The unanimous vote in the United Nations Security Council might be interpreted as a sign that the international community is finally getting serious about ending the conflict. Yet this deal, which serves as the linchpin for President Obama’s formula for defeating ISIS, is widely considered to have very little if any chance of success isn’t likely to do much good. To the contrary, far from being just another one of Kerry’s naïve exercises, the consequences of the diplomatic charade at the UN are serious.
The Syrian peace deal was four and a half years in the making. But the discussion as to how this was achieved after years of stalemate tells us all we need to know about why it won’t work.
The United States has been working on trying to arrange a deal to end the fighting in Syria since civil war broke out in the aftermath of the Arab Spring protests. The Syrian people were sick of living under the brutal tyranny of the Bashar Assad regime. But with the West unwilling to do anything more than voice encouragement for those who put forward a non-extremist alternative to Assad that meant that the Damascus government — aided by its Iranian and Russian allies — was free to repress protesters and rebels with bloody methods. Russia vetoed every previous attempt at peacemaking.
As they did in the Iran nuclear talks, “success” was only achieved once Obama and Kerry finally gave in on two key points. They conceded Iran a seat at the table over Syria granting legitimacy to Tehran’s military intervention in the war via its Revolutionary Guard volunteers and Hezbollah terrorist mercenaries. Even more importantly, the U.S., which had been talking about the need for Assad to go, also waved the white flag on forcing the dictator out.
Saudis Try to Fill America’s Vacuum
With much fanfare, Saudi Arabia last week announced a coalition of 34 Islamic countries that are poised to fight terror. Sounds good. But on closer examination, the coalition appears to be as substantial as a bowl of ice cream left out in the scorching heat of the Arabian desert.
Of the 34 countries that supposedly comprise this coalition, Pakistan and Lebanon stepped forward to say they had never agreed to join. Indonesia said it is still deciding whether to join and Malaysia ruled out any military role. But a state known as “Palestine” is on the list: Is that the Fatah-controlled West Bank or the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip? Either way, “Palestine” has been deeply implicated in sponsoring the very terrorism that this coalition purports to fight.
The same might be said of Saudi Arabia, which has spread around the world the Wahhabi ideology that has inspired so many terrorists. There is little doubt that Saudi Arabia genuinely wants to fight Islamist terrorist organizations that it sees as a threat to the Kingdom, but that doesn’t stop suspicions that it is tacitly cooperating with other terrorist organizations, such as the Nusra Front in Syria and al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, which it sees as the lesser evil against Iranian-backed proxies (Bashar Assad and the Houthis, respectively).
It is deeply amusing to see, among the other countries on the list, Somalia, Libya, and Yemen, which, in reality, have no functioning state at all. How can they join an international terrorism coalition if they can’t control their own territory? Other states, such as Egypt, Nigeria, and Tunisia are too busy fighting terrorism at home to contribute anything to others’ efforts. Of course, entirely missing from the list are the Shiite-dominated Islamic states — Syria, Iraq, Iran — which Saudi Arabia sees as the enemy of the Sunni bloc. But, hey, at least the Comoros are on the list. That will inspire fear in ISIS HQ.
Hamas activity in Turkey an obstacle to Ankara-Jerusalem reconciliation
According to the PMO statement, one of the points agreed upon was that Hamas terrorist Saleh al-Arouri would not be allowed back into Turkey, and that his operations there would end. But, the Post has learned, the issue is not only about Arouri, but also about Hamas offices in Turkey in general.
Hamas head Khaled Mashaal held talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday, and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu on Sunday.
A Hamas source told the London based Al-Quds Al-Arabi newspaper on Monday that Arouri left Turkey several months ago following intensive American and Israeli pressure. The source said Arouri was now shuttling between Qatar and Lebanon.
“He decided to leave Turkey voluntarily so as not to embarrass Turkey, which was facing big pressure from Israel and the US administration,” the source said, adding that Turkey has not imposed restraints on Hamas activities or their officials living in the country. He also denied that Turkey banned Arouri from entering the country.
Arouri, considered by Jerusalem to be behind the kidnapping and murder of the three youth in Gush Etzion in 2014, was deported from the West Bank to Turkey in 2010, and according to Israel set up a command post in Turkey, manned in part by Hamas terrorists released in the deal for Gilad Schalit.
Elliott Abrams: Kerry’s Severe Damage to American Human Rights Policy
This is not really a story about Iran, or Oman. It is story of how Kerry interfered in what is supposed to be, and almost always is, a fair and conscientious process. The damage is immense, and not only to the process by which the State Department makes judgments about the human rights situation around the world–as Congress requires it do by law. The damage is not only to our country’s efforts to stop “trafficking in persons” and the terrible abuses that accompany that activity. These efforts have resulted in real achievements in many countries, and Kerry should be ashamed to interfere with them.
Worse yet, what Kerry has done is to tell all human rights abusers that our process is or can be fixed– if he cares enough to interfere. So, of course, it is logical that henceforth countries will be increasingly angry at our human rights criticism, because they will no longer believe it is done out of conscience and cannot be changed by political pressure. The pressures to undermine the process will grow, within the State Department and in foreign capitals. The Department does numerous congressionally-required human rights reports, on religious freedom, trafficking in persons, womens’ rights, and more. And all of them are now damaged because the independence and fairness of the judgments being made has been undermined.
Palestine: Not a state, but already a failure
Basic services such as electricity are provided by Israel who amazingly provides repair services whilst Hamas shoots at its service technicians. Specialist medical services such as operations on children requiring heart surgery and Syrian war injuries are also donated by Israel in Israeli hospitals.
Whilst the leaders of this imaginary state work towards a world-wide propaganda effort to legitimize those who call themselves Palestinians it should be remembered that they were originally mostly Arab economic migrants from Egypt, Algeria, Africa and much of the Middle East. Only a minority are refugees from the wars with Israel now living in cities labelled as refugee camps, complete with multi-storey buildings going up to house those who are benefiting from corruption.
During the British rule of this whole area, the Jews were labelled Palestinians and the Arabs – simply Arabs. It was Arafat who began labelling Arabs with the name “Palestinians.”
It would have been a nice idea if it their state was real and if their intentions were peaceful. It may still happen if the 21 surrounding Arab nations take a small piece of their own vacant land to house these unfortunate people somewhere else, or if Egypt would take back their 1.6 million in Gaza. But then, conflict against the Jews is nothing new. We are quite used to it.
The United Nations may have begun its own demise with the decision to give support to a failed state that has no hope of ever existing.
Greek parliament backs Palestine recognition
Greece’s parliament approved a resolution on Tuesday calling on the government to recognize the state of Palestine, in a special session attended by the visiting Palestinian Authority president.
All Greece’s parliamentary parties voted in favor of the move, the assembly’s president Nikos Voutsis said.
It urges the Greek government to “promote appropriate procedures for the recognition of a Palestinian state and every diplomatic effort for the resumption of discussions for peace” in the region, Voutsis added.
Prime Minister Alexis Tspiras announced Monday after talks with PA President Mahmoud Abbas that Greece would no longer refer on official documents to the Palestinian Authority, but rather to Palestine.
Abbas says PA to start issuing 'State of Palestine' passports in 2016
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said in Athens on Monday that his national authority was going to issue State of Palestine passports within 2016.
"Regarding the issue of a passport under the name Palestine State, we are about to proceed to the passport replacement and the issuance of a new passport within one year or even less. We have already changed all documents issued by ministries and public services and they now bear the name 'State of Palestine'. We no longer accept from anybody to use the name Palestinian Authority," Abbas told a joint news conference after meeting with Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras.
Abbas is on a two-day official visit in Athens during which the Greek parliament is set to recognize the "state of Palestine" in a non-binding parliamentary vote planned for Tuesday.
Communal Refrigerator in Haaretz’s Break Room Now a Metaphor For the Conflict (satire)
The Break Room in Haaretz’s South Tel Aviv Headquarters has become a microcosm for the Arab-Israeli Conflict, with its Day Shift and Night Shifts unable to come to a peaceful solution about who is allowed to Occupyutlilize their refrigerator. Things recently got so bad that a “Two Refrigerators for Two Shifts” policy was enacted by John, an outside mediator from Massachusetts brought in by the Editorial Board. The Daily Freier spoke to traumatized Haaretz intern Zoe D. about the ongoing tragedy.
“So when I moved here from Canada for this position I was so excited. Like a dream come true.” explained Zoe. “But I quickly realized that the Break Room was spinning out of control. At first we had one fridge. But that didn’t work out. Night shift kept accusing Day Shift of “dispossessing” their food. It was just nuts. Let me give you another example. As Day Shift, Amira is allowed to put her things in our fridge, but she insists on keeping her food in the Night Shift Refrigerator. She tells everyone that their fridge is more “authentic”. But get this…. I hear that last year Night Shift removed her hummus spread and pita from the top shelf…and she turned around and blamed Day Shift. Then yesterday she told me that as an overseas intern, my food was committing a crime. What the hell?”
Zoe continued her recollection of recent events. “So last week John the mediator brought in from America said that if Day Shift and Night Shift couldn’t figure this out, he would impose a compromise, but that’s exactly what Night Shift wants, isn’t it?”
Hamas trying to smuggle contraband through Israel
This fight against Hamas has two objective limitations. Following Operation Protective Edge, Israel committed to help reconstruct the Gaza Strip, which led to a dramatic increase in the number of trucks allowed into the Strip. If before the operation 300 trucks were allowed into the Strip every day, now 850 trucks are let in daily. Over the past year, 150,000 trucks went through Kerem Shalom, compared to 70,000 in 2014. This, in itself, is quite a difficult security challenge.
The second limitation is in the fact the lion's share of the contraband stopped at the crossing has dual use: Both civilian and military. So Hamas is looking for ploys and tricks. When Israel limited the amount of cement allowed in, which is being used for the construction of tunnels, Hamas started importing wood as an alternative. When Israel figured out what the wood was being used for, Hamas started importing boards of hard plastic for the same purpose. Israel figured that out too, and is waiting to see what Hamas will come up with next. This is where intelligence comes into play: Israel must figure out where and which materials Hamas is missing for its rockets production line and its tunnels. Based on that, the employees at the border crossing are told what to expect, which materials could pop up in the next smuggling trick.
In order to still allow for the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip, every order of construction materials is being examined by a team of engineers. They examine whether the amounts ordered make sense. Theoretically, supervisors from international organizations are supposed to ensure the construction materials are going to the right places. But intelligence agencies are also monitoring the civil projects in order to stop a significant spillover of materials to Hamas.
In one instance, Hamas was able to smuggle fabrics used to make military uniforms from Israel to Gaza. These fabrics were later smuggled to ISIS in the Sinai. So it's safe to assume that if fabrics were smuggled in that manner, other materials were too.
Algerian troops march singing ‘kill the Jews’
Most jody calls involve a few hoorahs, a clever rhyme and a healthy dose of braggadocio. But a video of the Algerian National Gendarmerie in marching drills shows the troops chanting about killing, slaughtering and skinning Jews.
The troops march in formation to an Arabic jody call, responding to turn to lines shouted by an officer.
“Oh, Arabs… sons of Arabs… march on… and turn your guns towards the Jews… in order to kill them… slaughter them… and skin them,” they alternate saying.
The clip was posted online on November 1, Algerian Revolution Day, and was recently translated to English by the Middle East Media Research Institute. It didn’t specify when the clip was filmed.
“Long live our free Algeria,” they sing. “Its land will belong to the Muslims forever.”
PreOccupiedTerritory: S-400 Missiles Keep Santa Away From Mideast (satire)
A spokesman for Santa Claus informed children in the Eastern Mediterranean region that he will be forced to avoid the area this year because of the Russian surface-to-air missile batteries that have been deployed in Syria.
On behalf of Santa and his team of reindeer, spokesman Kristoff Kringle placed ads and arranged for announcements to be made from Turkey to Iraq, as well as parts of the Palestinian Territories, that ensuring the safety of Saint Nicholas and his draft team was the top priority, and as such, they would not fly anywhere near the range of the advanced S-400 systems. As such, Syria, Lebanon, and eastern Turkey will not be on this year’s gift-distribution route. In addition, the precise requirements of scheduling and planning meant that other locations in the region will also be omitted, such as Jordan and some areas of Israel and the Palestinian Territories. The announcement also appeared on Santa’s Facebook page.
Kringle stressed that the saint would still make efforts to deliver gifts to the children of those areas by other means. “If there is one area of the globe where Christian children need encouragement, it’s the Middle East,” he noted. “The only place in the region where the Christian population is actually thriving is Israel. The rest of the place is a mess, with genocide, persecution, suppression, and intimidation. Those kids need some Christmas cheer, and we will try to engineer it for them some other way.” He did not elaborate, but an anonymous elf in Mr. Kringle’s entourage suggested similar means to those employed by Israel in the recent assassination by aircraft-fired missiles of the arch-terrorist Samir Kuntar, a feat which might have required circumventing the S-400’s radar.
Experts say that until the deployment of the S-400, Santa Claus could handily evade anti-aircraft measures in place in Syria, and that the open secret of his contacts in the Israeli military eased his passage through airspace there. But the more formidable new system poses unacceptable risks. “Everyone remembers when Turkey almost shot down Prancer and Dancer two years ago,” said aviation consultant Gary Powers. “Only their speed saved them. The S-400 is much more dangerous.”

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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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