Thursday, January 18, 2018

From Ian:

Michael Oren: Obama saw Israel as the problem - Trump sees it as the solution
Michael Oren, a former Israeli ambassador to the US now serving as Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister`s Office, praised President Donald Trump’s recent decision to withhold some $65 million in funding for a United Nations agency which supports self-described ‘Palestinian refugees’, effectively cutting the amount of US money to the agency in half.

Earlier this month, the US froze a $125 million grant to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) – representing one-third of all US aid given to the agency every year.

On Tuesday, a State Department official said that the US had released $60 million to UNRWA, but was withholding the other $65 million, adding that the a “fundamental re-examination” of US aid to UNRWA was needed.

"There is a need to undertake a fundamental re-examination of UNRWA, both in the way it operates and the way it is funded," the official said.

On Wednesday, Oren, a former Israeli ambassador to the US, now an MK from the Kulanu party and the Deputy Ministry of the Prime Minister’s Office, spoke with Arutz Sheva about President Trump’s decision and the United Nation’s reaction.

While UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expressed “concern” Tuesday about the American cuts to UNRWA, Oren called Trump’s move “excellent”.

“He [Guterres] is ‘very concerned – well, let him be concerned,” Oren told Arutz Sheva.

“President Trump’s decision to cut funding for UNRWA is an excellent decision, both for us and for the whole Middle East. [UNRWA] is a corrupt and bloated organization that perpetuates a refugee problem that doesn’t exist.”
Einat Wilf: 1967 | As long as the Arab world views Israel as a temporary aberration to be conquered, Israel will stand fas
Given the Arab understanding of Zionism as a temporary historical aberration whose life span is a mere few decades, it made sense for the Palestinians to repeatedly choose to suffer the daily humiliations of living under a military occupation rather than to accept the far greater humiliation of permanent Jewish sovereignty on land they considered exclusively their own. In refusing to end the military occupation by making a permanent peace with Israel, the Arab Palestinians were making a conscious choice that was based on their understanding of Arab history and Islamic ‘justice’. As Arabs and Muslims, the Palestinians were not hapless victims, but rather masters of a historical narrative, at the end of which their resistance and patience would be rewarded with victory, in the form of Zionism’s disappearance. While they might suffer in the interim period, the choice they made was for what they perceived as the far greater good – defeating Zionism and driving away the sovereign Jewish presence from their land.

How to end the occupation: stand fast, stand longer

How can a temporary 50-year military occupation of most of the West Bank by Israel come to an end, if the Muslim, Arab and Palestinian view of history is that 50 years of Israeli occupation matters significantly less than the countdown of the remaining 19 years on the crusader clock? It is necessary to demonstrate to the Muslim-Arab world that their view of history is wrong, and that rather than constituting a second crusader state, Israel is the sovereign state of an indigenous people who have come home. This can only be achieved through Jewish power and persistence over time. And given the vast numerical imbalance between Jews and Arabs, it can only be achieved if those who truly seek peace support the Jewish people in sending the message to the Arab world that the Jewish people are here to stay.

The essence of the conflict between Zionism and the Muslim Arab world is a battle over time, a race of mutual exhaustion. The question that will determine how the conflict is ultimately resolved revolves around who will give up first: will the Zionists give up on their project in the face of unrelenting violent resistance, or will the Muslim Arabs give up on their project of erasing the sovereign Jewish presence in their midst, and finally come to accept it as a part of their history, rather than an affront to it?

Only time will tell.
Caroline Glick: Palestinian Leader’s Anti-American Rant Gives Trump Cause to Cut Funding
So if Abbas isn’t planning to retire, why is he cursing Trump and his senior advisors? Why is he recycling anti-Jewish blood libels from the 12th century and announcing that the deals he signed with Israel and the peace process as a whole are dead?

The simple answer is that Abbas is acting as he is because he is certain that he can. This is how he has always acted. There is nothing new in his speech. And he doesn’t think that he will suffer any consequences for behavior.

Abbas expects President Trump to disregard his statements and continue to bankroll his terror-supporting regime in the name of “the peace process,” or “humanitarian assistance” just as Bush and Obama did.

Abbas gave his speech at start of a two-day conference of the PLO’s Central Committee, which he convened to determine a response to President Trump’s announcement on December 6 that for the first time in nearly seventy years, the U.S. recognizes that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital.

Trump’s Jerusalem declaration placed Abbas and his colleagues in a conundrum. On the one hand, his declaration had no practical implications. Trump signed a waiver delaying the transfer of the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. No immediate plans have made to move the embassy.

Moreover, the State Department insists that there is no practical significance to Trump’s statement. Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Satterfield told reporters the day after Trump’s announcement that his statement does not change U.S. policy barring American citizens born in Jerusalem from listing Israel as their country of birth on their official documents. Indeed, Satterfield refused to answer a question regarding whether Jerusalem is even in Israel.

On the other hand, simply by recognizing the basic fact that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital and has been Israel’s capital for nearly 70 years, Trump broke with the longstanding U.S. policy of denying observable reality in relation to Israel in order to advance “peace” between Israel and its Arab neighbors. (h/t Elder of Lobby)
Jerusalem Post Columnist Caroline Glick Joins Breitbart News
Caroline Glick, the conservative American-Israeli columnist renowned for her powerful criticisms of the Middle East peace process, has joined Breitbart News.

Glick, the long-serving senior contributing editor and chief columnist for the Jerusalem Post, is one of the world’s most widely-read commentators on Israel and international affairs. She also writes about American politics from a staunchly pro-Israel perspective.

She is the author of several books — including, most recently, The Israeli Solution: A One State Plan for Peace in the Middle East (2014), which calls for Israel to annex the West Bank.

Glick, a graduate of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and a veteran of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), was Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s Assistant Foreign Policy Advisor in 1997 and 1998. In 2003, she covered the Iraq War from the front lines as a journalist embedded with the U.S. Army’s 3rd Infantry Division, and was the first Israeli journalist to report from liberated Baghdad.

She is also the adjunct senior fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs at the Center for Security Policy in Washington, DC. A recipient of several major journalism awards, Glick travels around the world to advise policymakers about issues relating to global security.

PMW: Palestinian “Martyr” actively sought his own death: “I have decided to die as a Martyr”

EOZ Dec 20: Did Ibrahim Abu Thurayeh want to die so his family would get "martyr" money? (UPDATE)

Since his death on 15. Dec. 2017, Ibrahim Abu Thuraya, a 29-year-old former member of the PA Presidential Security Force 17 who lost both his legs and moved around in a wheelchair, has become another Palestinian “Martyr” and hero.

After his death, the Palestinian and international media were quick to blame Israel. However, interviews given by his brother and mother after his death suggest a different conclusion: That Abu Thuraya had decided and actively sought to die.

While the exact circumstances of Abu Thuraya’s death remain unclear, his brother and mother have explained that he parted with them the day before his death, telling them he was “sick of life” and had “decided to die as a Martyr.”

Abu Thuraya’s brother: “Two days ago [Dec. 14, 2017], when my brother sat to eat with us, he said to me: ‘Forgive me, this is the last night that you will see me. You too, mother, forgive me. You too, my brothers, forgive me.’ He kissed my father’s hand and foot and said to him: ‘Forgive me, if I behaved badly to you, forgive me. This is it. This is the last night you are seeing me. My father, I have decided to die as a Martyr (Shahid) because I am sick of life. This is it, I have no legs left, nothing is left. This is it, I want to die and rest from [this] life.’”
[Ruptly (RT), Dec. 16, 2017]

Fatah official posts song by Fatah youth movement honoring terrorist murderers

PMW: Female Palestinian students’ “role model” is terrorist who led murder of 37
An interview with the coordinator of the Fatah committee for women at the Palestinian universities provided another glimpse into Palestinian education of youth. Madeline Manna - the female coordinator of the committee that is named "Sisters of Dalal" after the female terrorist who led the murder of 37 Israeli civilians - explained that Dalal Mughrabi is a "role model" of female "leadership" for the female Palestinian students:

Official PA TV host: "Let's recall the self-sacrificing operation (i.e., terror attack) carried out by heroic leader and Martyr Dalal Mughrabi who is considered an example of the Palestinian women's struggle."
Madeline Manna, Coordinator, Fatah university committee Sisters of Dalal: "In the Palestinian universities, especially in the Fatah Shabiba [Student Movement], the female student committees were named after Martyr Dalal Mughrabi - Sisters of Dalal - after the Martyr who was the commander of 11 men. We learn leadership from her, and that women always lead... Dalal Mughrabi is a role model, like other heroic female Martyrs in Palestine. We draw willpower and determination from her, and perseverance and [the will to] continue this struggle."
[Official PA TV, Palestine This Morning, Jan. 1, 2018]

Dalal Mughrabi led the most lethal terror attack in Israel's history, known as the Coastal Road massacre, in 1978, when she and other Fatah terrorists hijacked a bus on Israel's Coastal Highway, murdering 37 civilians, 12 of them children, and wounding over 70.

Abbas Speech
Stories I’d Like to See: Religious Leaders Calling Out Abbas’ Biblical Revisionism
So how do Palestinians, Israelis, Jews, Muslims and Christians feel about claims that:

• The Palestinians are descendants of Abraham.
• The Palestinians are descendants of Canaanites (and Natufians).
• The Palestinians predated the Canaanites.
• Jesus was a Palestinian.
• A Jewish temple never existed on the Temple Mount.

Are Jewish, Muslim and Christian leaders willing to explain the theological and political impact of these assertions? And on a different level, if one’s religious belief can’t be reconciled with a national narrative, what does that say about individual identity? I don’t have any answers.

But there are plenty of questions.

starQuestions for the rabbis: Is there any reason for Jews to feel threatened by these claims? Do comments like these have an impact on interfaith dialogue, and if so, what? What do these kinds of comments mean for the Reform and Conservative rabbis who are generally more supportive of the Palestinians than their Orthodox counterparts? Do they see view Abbas’ comments as overall helpful or hurtful for peace efforts? Does Jewish law’s prohibition on Jews visiting the Temple Mount strengthen Palestinian claims on the holy site?

crescentQuestions for the imams: What exactly does Islam say about God’s promise of the land to Abraham’s descendants? What does Islam say about who Palestinians descended from, and what difference does it make? Does Islam in general — and Palestinians specifically — feel threatened by Jewish descent from Abraham? Is the idea of Palestinian descent from the Canaanites a long-standing Arab idea, or a relatively new assertion in response to modern Zionism? How does Hamas relate to the issue of Palestinian Canaanite identity? Can Muslim clergy in the West Bank or Gaza freely discuss these questions? In terms of of the battle within Islam between extremists and moderates, where do these claims fit in? Islam historically accepted the existence of Jewish temples on the Temple Mount — why has that changed?

crossQuestions for the priests: Is there any reason for Christians to feel threatened by these comments? What does the church have to say about claims that Jesus was a Palestinian and the implication that he was of Canaanite descent? Do Christians feel threatened by the competing Jewish and Muslim claims to the Temple Mount? How do Christians relate to Palestinian Temple denial? It’s been reported that there’s a rift between Christians in the US and the Mideast over the Trump administration’s stance on Jerusalem — particularly that Palestinian Christians are being forced to choose between their religious and national identities. Are Abbas’ comments also forcing Palestinian Christians to make a similar choice? Do Christians around the world have a responsibility to call out Abbas if Palestinian Christians don’t have the freedom to speak out?
Abbas lies about Mizrahi history and aliya
In response to President Trump's decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital, Palestinan Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas made a bombshell speech on 11 January to the PLO Central Council. Many commentators have condemned his outrageous comments - among other things, asserting that Israel is a colonialist project that has nothing to do with Judaism and that the Jews of Europe preferred to stay and face slaughter in the Nazi Holocaust rather than emigrate to Palestine.

Mahmoud Abbas: outrageous

This blog will focus on Abbas's astonishing claims concerning Mizrahi Jews:
"When they occupied 78% of Palestine, they were only 650,000 Jews. What were they to do? They said: We need Jews. But the Jews refused to come. Ben-Gurion did not want to bring the Jews of the East."

This is a re-statement of the propaganda canard that Israel needed the Mizrahi Jews to populate the land and as a source of cheap labour.
"He (Ben-Gurion) would say: 'I hate them. They look like Arabs. They look like Arabs, and I don't want them. It will take three or four generations for anything to come of them. I don't want them.'

This fabricated quote by Ben-Gurion contradicts genuine statements he made, such as : "there is no reason to think that Jews from North Africa, Turkey, Egypt, Iran or Aden are fundamentally different from those of Lithuania, Galicia and America. They have deep inside that pioneering spirit..."
Haley takes PA to task after 'hateful' comments by Abbas
In her first official reaction to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas's fiery speech this week, US Envoy to the UN Nikki Haley said Washington is "not going to pay to be abused."

Speaking during a wide-ranging interview with Voice of America's Greta Van Susteren, Haley took the PA to task. "Don’t think that you can sit there and say hateful things about us and turn around and write you a check. It’s wrong in every turn," she said.

Abbas effectively threw in the towel over the weekend, offering a scathing speech targeting the US administration generally and President Donald Trump personally by dismissing their peace effort and calling for his “house to be destroyed.”

“Damn your money!” Abbas declared.

Israeli politicians and Jewish American groups decried the speech as a racist diatribe that revealed Abbas’s true colors. The speech included conspiracy theories and fundamental questioning of the existence and justification for a Jewish state. Abbas also reiterated his position that the US could no longer be seen as a fair broker in future peace talks.

"We’re not going to reward bad behavior," Haley said. "Here you’ve got the Palestinians who are basically saying they’re going to cut the US out of the peace process. They’re saying they no longer want to have anything to do with us. They go and take us to the United Nations and try, basically, are very hostile in what they say and what they do. We’re not going to pay to be abused. It doesn’t make sense."
Palestinians: Abbas's Big Bluff - Again
In his desperation, Abbas hurls abuse and in all directions. He has resorted to his old-new strategy of warning us that if his demands are not met, World War III will break out. Abbas would like us to believe that the Palestinian issue should remain at the center of the world's attention -- otherwise, there will be bloodshed and violence on the streets of most countries.

Should anyone take Abbas's threats seriously? The answer is simple: No.

The war to destroy Israel is still in full force. The Palestinians have not brought up a new generation that recognizes Israel's right to exist; on the contrary, they have brought up a generation that believes in jihad and death, one that denies any Biblical Jewish history or links to the Holy Land.
Abbas, you can’t have your cake and eat it, too
President Donald Trump recently tweeted a clear, long overdue message to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas: you can’t have it both ways.

Offended by Trump’s December speech, which clearly left Jerusalem’s final boundaries to be negotiated by both sides, Abbas overreacted with trademark false accusations, and a huffy rebuttal of the US role as peace broker.

Like the proverbial farmer sawing off a tree limb but forgetting he’s sitting on it, Abbas overlooked the billions in US aid funneled to the PA since the mid-’90s, which last year alone totaled more than $730 million in all sectors – economic and humanitarian, security and justice, and UNRWA. Abbas’s tantrum backfired. It’s payback time.

Trump recently tweeted: “We pay the Palestinians hundreds of millions of dollars a year and get no appreciation or respect. They don’t even want to negotiate a long overdue peace treaty with Israel. So why should we make any of these massive future payments to them?” It’s about time America balanced these books.
Mahmoud Abbas' Latest Antisemitic Anti-Peace Rant

Abbas attacks US Ambassadors David Friedman and Nikki Haley

Abbas curses Trump: “May your house be destroyed”

Abbas: “I Blacked Out, Did I Miss Anything?” (satire)
Tuesday Morning, a bleary-eyed, Mahmoud Abbas, stumbled out of his bedroom in his home in Ramallah, and asked, “I blacked out most of Monday, did I miss anything?” Monday saw the PA president go off on a fiery two-hour rant in which he lashed out at everyone from US President Trump to (surprise surprise) the Jews.

A shocked Abbas explained: “It started with a few shots at lunch, you know, to steady my nerves, but then, before you know it, I’m at the open bar, and then I’m waking up in my own bed with a whopper of a headache and everyone is like: “you said some crazy ass shit yesterday’ “

Among other things, President Abbas alleged that “Israel has imported frightening amounts of drugs in order to destroy our younger generation.” and that it “is a colonialist project that has nothing to do with Jews.”

In a statement to The Mideast Beast, Abbas said “Honest to Allah, I don’t remember jack-shit after lunchtime” and that “luckily the New York Times, and other Western Media were nice enough to leave out the racist parts, that would have been embarrassing.” He was also relieved to hear that, although he had said of American contributions to the PA: “To hell with your money!”, the PA was still cashing American checks to pay terrorists’ salaries as usual.
Washington’s New Approach to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
The Trump administration’s approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict represents what some Mideast experts and Israel advocates are describing as a paradigm shift in Washington, DC — because Trump is acknowledging that Palestinian rejectionism lies at the root of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

The purported paradigm shift comes as the current Palestinian leadership is rejecting American involvement in the peace process. Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas said on Sunday that President Trump “took Jerusalem off the table” through the recent US recognition of that city as Israel’s capital. Abbas declared: “We won’t take orders from anyone. We told Trump we will never accept his [peace] plan. His deal of the century is the slap in the face of the century, and we will not accept it.”

The PA leader vowed that he would never give up on efforts to declare a Palestinian capital in Jerusalem, and described Israel as “a colonial project that has nothing to do with Judaism.”

Abbas was responding not only to Trump’s policy change on Jerusalem, but to the American leader’s recent tweet questioning US financial assistance to the PA. Trump had asked: “With the Palestinians no longer willing to talk peace, why should we make any of these massive future payments to them?”

In the 25 years since Israel and the Palestinians signed the Oslo Accords on the White House lawn, Palestinian terror attacks have killed more than 1,600 Israelis and injured thousands more. The most recent Israeli victim was 35-year-old father of six, Raziel Shevah, who was killed in a drive-by shooting near his home on January 9.

Illustrating a recent shift in American rhetoric on such incidents, US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman tweeted the following after the attack: “Hamas praises the killers and PA laws will provide them financial rewards. Look no further to why there is no peace.”
Netanyahu clarifies remarks on US Embassy in Jerusalem after Trump denial
Netanyahu, according to Israeli reporters traveling with him on a trip to India, said on Wednesday: "My solid assessment is that it will go much faster than you think - within a year from now."

Asked about Netanyahu’s comment, Trump told Reuters in an interview that was not the case. "By the end of the year? We’re talking about different scenarios - I mean obviously that would be on a temporary basis. We’re not really looking at that. That's no."

The Israeli official, responding to Trump's remarks, said: "The president and the prime minister are not saying anything different."

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said last month the embassy move was "probably no earlier than three years out, and that’s pretty ambitious," a time frame that administration officials have attributed to the logistics of finding and securing a site as well as arranging housing for diplomats.
Jewish group: Spy case shows Germany must act against Iran
Germany's Jewish community says raids against suspected Iranian agents show Berlin needs to take a tougher line toward Tehran.

German authorities have searched premises linked to 10 people suspected of conducting espionage activity on behalf of Iranian intelligence. Prosecutors, however, have refused to confirm reports the suspects are linked to the elite Quds Force of Iran's Revolutionary Guard, responsible for operations outside Iran.

Last week Berlin summoned Iranian Ambassador to Germany Ali Majedi to warn Tehran against spying on individuals and groups with close ties to Israel, calling such acts an unacceptable breach of German law.

The Central Council of Jews said Wednesday that if the suspects are scouting Jewish and Israeli targets in Germany "this mustn't be left unpunished."
Trial of Burgas bombing suspects begins
Two men allegedly linked to the Hezbollah terrorist organization went on trial in absentia in Bulgaria on Wednesday over a deadly bomb attack on Israeli tourists in Burgas in July of 2012.

The explosion outside Burgas airport's terminal building tore through a tourist bus bound for the popular beach resorts of the nearby Black Sea.

Five Israelis, the vehicle's Bulgarian driver, and the terrorist alleged to have planted the device, Franco-Lebanese national Mohamad Hassan El-Husseini, were killed.

It remains unclear whether Husseini intended to die in the blast or if the device went off by accident.

Bulgarian authorities identified the attacker's alleged accomplices as two Lebanese men with links to the Lebanese Hezbollah terrorist group, named as Australian passport holder Meliad Farah and Canadian citizen Hassan El Hajj Hassan.

Bulgarian authorities believe the suspects fled to Lebanon after the attack and even filed an extradition request to the Lebanese government but their exact whereabouts remain unknown.
Revealed: How close did Israel come to counterattacking Iraq in 1991?
Israel’s defense minister during the 1991 Gulf War, Moshe Arens, approved a counterattack on Iraq in 1991 after it fired Scud missiles at Israel.

However, Defense Ministry records newly declassified on Thursday regarding Arens also indicated that his plans were delayed by then US secretary of defense Dick Cheney, who played for time.

The new records, which include interviews with Arens and with then IDF chief-of-staff Dan Shomron, also appear to reveal that behind Arens’ back, Shomron opposed the counterattack when discussing it with then prime minister Yitzhak Shamir.

It was previously known that then US President George H.W. Bush pressured Shamir not to respond to Iraqi Scud attacks, for fear that an Israeli intervention would scuttle the broad anti-Iraq coalition Bush had assembled.

The coalition included a number of Arab countries standing with the US for the first time, and was viewed as a coup by Bush, both for fighting against Iraq and for strategic influence in the region post-war.
Pence visit exposes dilemma facing Egypt, Jordan over Jerusalem recognition
US Vice President Mike Pence’s upcoming visit to the Middle East comes at a time of intensely publicized friction between his administration and the Palestinian leadership, posing a dilemma for his Arab hosts — Egypt’s president and Jordan’s king — on how to safeguard their vital ties with Washington without appearing to ignore Palestinian misgivings.

Both countries are heavily dependent on US military and economic aid, and talks with a senior Trump administration official like Pence offer them an opportunity to strengthen those ties.

It’s a tall order given that Pence is visiting at a time of rising anti-US sentiments in the region, stoked by President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The city is home to major holy sites to all three monotheistic religions and its Israeli-annexed eastern sector is sought by the Palestinians as the capital of a future state.

Egypt’s elder statesman, Amr Moussa, warned Arab leaders against altering their longstanding objective: a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital. In a jarring article published recently, the former foreign minister and Arab league chief warned that making concessions on the Palestinian issue would be a “gross strategic mistake.”
Israeli leaders applaud operation targeting terrorists behind rabbi’s murder
Israeli leaders praised the work of security forces Thursday after a pre-dawn operation in Jenin killed a Palestinian terrorist believed to be behind last week’s fatal shooting of Israeli rabbi Raziel Shevach.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, currently on a trip to India, hailed the troops and warned any would-be terrorists that Israel would be on their tail.

“We will reach anyone who tries to harm the citizens of Israel and the State of Israel and we will bring them to justice,” the prime minister said.

In the Jenin firefight, Israeli forces killed one Palestinian terrorist, captured another and were still in pursuit of a third, a Border Police spokesman told The Times of Israel.

Hours later, the spokesman said the forces were still scanning the area for the third terrorist and that the operation was still ongoing.
2 Special Ops officers wounded, terrorist killed in Jenin gunfight
Two Yamam counter-terrorism fighters were wounded, one Palestinian terrorist was killed and another captured after an exchange of gunfire overnight Wednesday in the West Bank city of Jenin, following the January 9 murder of Rabbi Raziel Shevach.

According to Police Spokesman Micky Rosenfeld, Yamam, the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) and IDF troops from the Menashe regional division located the terrorist cell believed to be responsible for Shevach’s murder.

“Shortly after midnight we surrounded the area and cordoned it off, Yamam units moved in, and shots were fired,” said Rosenfeld Thursday morning.

“In the gun battle that took place, two Yamam officers were wounded – one seriously and one lightly – and one of the terrorists was shot and killed, while the second terrorist was captured.”

Rosenfeld said both Yamam fighters were flown to an undisclosed hospital.

Police confirmed that the terrorist who was shot and killed was responsible for the killing of Shevach. The second suspect is being questioned, while several other suspects were detained for questioning.
IsraellyCool: The Killing of Ahmed Jarrar (Or How Easy It is to Manipulate the Truth)
Last night, the IDF killed this palestinian man, Ahmed Jarrar.

Naturally, there are those who are furious Israel killed this well-dressed, respectable looking, happy young man, just like we killed father.

By the way, this was his father Nasser Jarrar.

If this is all you knew, you’d perhaps be thinking Israel was really the bad guy, killing a crippled man and then years later his good son.

Now for the full story.

Young Ahmed was one of the cold-blooded murderers of Rabbi Raziel Shevach (may his memory be a blessing, whose picture, unlike that of Ahmed’s, does not lie as to his true character)

As for his father, he was a senior Hamashole who was involved in plotting a series of suicide attacks in Israel, including a plan to bring down a high-rise building.

He lost his legs and an arm after suffering from a premature explodation – although the usual suspects will tell you it was Israel’s fault.
After Jenin shootout, Hamas blasts PA-Israel security coordination
Hamas spokesmen on Thursday lashed out at security coordination between Israel and the Palestinian Authority after Israeli security forces killed a Palestinian who allegedly was involved in a drive-by shooting attack last week that claimed the life of a rabbi.

Late Wednesday evening, in a firefight in Jenin in the northern West Bank, Israeli security forces killed a Palestinian suspected of being involved in the shooting of Rabbi Razviel Shevach in the Nablus area, the Border Police said.

Hamas Spokesman Abdel Latif al-Qanou said in a statement posted on Facebook, that the incident "could not have happened without information sharing and damned security coordination,” adding that security relationship between Israel and the PA should “be ended.”

Neither the PA nor Israel has said that they worked together in pursuing suspects behind Shevach’s death. However, the PA security forces and Israel are known to cooperate in the West Bank to prevent attacks against Israelis.

Last weekend, a Palestinian security official told The Jerusalem Post that the PA security forces “are constantly trying to prevent attacks like the one that took place in the Nablus area.”

Hamas Spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri also slammed security cooperation, referring to it as “criminal.”

In the sand around Gaza, Israel and Hamas dig in a literal race to the bottom
Five meters (16 feet) below the ground, about 200 meters (650 feet) inside Israeli territory, lies the entrance to a cramped tunnel whose destruction in October upped the tension around the Gaza Strip, sparking mortar and rocket attacks as well as frequent riots along the security fence surrounding the coastal enclave.

On Thursday, the military allowed journalists to visit the tunnel, which was dug by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group, as well as two construction sites where workers were drilling deep underground to create the reinforced, sensor-laden concrete walls of a massive underground barrier that is meant to surround the Gaza Strip and put an end to the subterranean terror threat once and for all.

In the coming weeks and months, as construction progresses, the military expects to find and destroy several more attack tunnels that enter Israeli territory from Gaza. The subterranean wall it is building will deny Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and other Gaza-based terrorist groups what is arguably the only strategic weapon they currently possess, a fact that he said is slowly dawning on them.

“It’s just a matter of them becoming aware of it,” the official said.

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad attack tunnel began in the Gaza city of Khan Younis, a little over one kilometer (0.6 miles) away from the border with Israel. According to the IDF official, it was dug at a rate of 10 to 20 meters (33 to 66 feet) per day by workers who operated in shifts and had a maximum depth of 28 meters (91 feet).

The tunnel itself wasn’t much to behold. The floor was littered with empty soda bottles and plastic sacks that once held dirt. Jagged pieces of rebar jutted out of the walls. The top of this six-foot-tall reporter’s head brushed against the ceiling. But to the residents of nearby Kibbutz Kissufim, some two kilometers (1.2 miles) away, it could have spelled disaster.
IDF reveals new details about Islamic Jihad terror tunnel
New details have been revealed about the cross-border Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terror tunnel destroyed by the IDF in late October.

The tunnel, which infiltrated about 200 meters into southern Israel and was located only two kilometers from the community of Kissufim, is believed by the IDF to have been intended to be used to attack Kissufim and/or abduct Israeli soldiers.

Several PIJ terrorists worked around the clock except on Friday, digging in shifts. They were able to dig between 10 to 20 meters a day, at a depth of 26 meters below ground aided by electricity, oxygen tanks and water to avoid suffocation. The terrorists did not try to hide the sand which they removed, creating large sand dunes on the Gazan side.

The tunnel was detected using newly implemented advanced technology and was destroyed in a controlled explosion inside Israeli territory but it remains open on the Gazan side, guarded by Hamas terrorists.

During the 2014 war, several soldiers were killed by Hamas terrorists when they emerged from the numerous tunnels they dug into Israel, surprising the IDF and leaving the residents of border communities concerned of possible tunnels beneath their homes. By the time of the last ceasefire, the IDF said it had destroyed 32 tunnels that crossed under the border.

At least six tunnels have been destroyed since the end of the operation, four of which were destroyed since October alone.
After neutralizing tunnels, IDF faces a new threat
Since then, the IDF tried to come up with a response in different ways, but the accomplished results can only be seen now through different steps that were taken simultaneously: The first is the underground obstacle being built around the 65-kilometer border fence. The cost of each kilometer of the obstacle is estimated at around NIS 40 million (roughly $12 million)—a total of about NIS 3 billion—and was expected to be completed during 2016, to provide hermetic defense and cut off every tunnel crossing the fence.

The second step is the classified technological solution which costs around NIS 1.2 billion. Only few people are privy to the secrets of how this classified method works. The reports about it are very limited too, to prevent Hamas from finding out about the method that has made it possible to successfully detect tunnels on Israeli territory—leading to a change in the number of tunnels uncovered recently—as well as their route within the Gaza Strip later on.

The third method is the improved intelligence gathering ability on tunnels excavated on the other side, making it possible to locate the tunnel openings. Furthermore, the Air Force has developed a new ability to accurately neutralize tunnels using ammunition dropped from the air. And there you have it: A solution to a problem which seemed intractable only three-and-a-half years ago.

The results, which are impressive on a global scale, prove that when a decision is made and when the required resources are allotted for its implementation, “the Israeli genius and the Jewish mind found a solution,” as Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Major-General Yoav Mordechai said Sunday.

That’s exactly what was done in the previous decade with the Iron Dome system, which was initiated by then-Defense Minister Amir Peretz against the Hamas rockets—a problem the IDF’s top echelon considered unsolvable at the time.

Now, the defense establishment should start preparing for the next threat, the heavyweight Borkan mortar shells Hezbollah has armed itself with, which have a range of about 5 kilometers but can carry 200 to 500 kilograms of lethal explosives. Since they could cause enormous damage to bases and communities within that range, we should deal with this threat should now rather than wait for the next war and the report that will follow.
Hamas: Iran Is Only Country That Supports Palestinian ‘Resistance’
The Middle East Media Research Institute reports that the Hamas terror group’s deputy political bureau chief, Saleh al-Arouri, told the Lebanese Al-Quds television network that Iran is the only country providing military support to Hamas to fight the “Israeli entity.”

“On the one hand, there are countries that support Israel, and conspire with it day in and day out, and sacrifice Jerusalem and the holy places, and on the other hand, we have [Iran] which provides aid against the Israeli entity,” said Arouri.

“Who supported the resistance in Lebanon until it drove out the Israeli entity? It was Iran. Who supports the resistance in Gaza and Palestine? Iran,” he added. “Our relations with Iran are based on the fact that Iran is the most hostile country in the world toward the Zionist entity. Iran is the only country that says that this entity is cancerous. This is Iran’s official position….The aid Iran provides to the resistance is not merely symbolic. This is real aid, which is essential for the resistance to continue and be effective.”
US cracking down on Hezbollah and narcoterror
US Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the creation of a new task force to investigate drug trafficking by Hezbollah in the United States. The task force is called the Hezbollah Financing and Narcoterrorism Team.

At first glance, the move looks political – especially considering the media coverage the announcement received. Much of the coverage suggests that the Obama administration scuttled an investigation into Hezbollah in an effort to make nice to Iran. Media coverage, and many pundits, also suggest that the previous administration rationalized that by not ruffling the feathers of Hezbollah, which is one of Iran’s indisputable minions, Iran would be happier with the United States and actively continue negotiations on nuclear affairs and follow through with the nuclear agreement.

There certainly is a political angle here, but there is much more than political machination at stake.

The purpose of the new task force is not just to find out or explain what happened in the past. Its purpose is to shut down any current and future narcoterror related activity, by Hezbollah, from passing through the United States. The beauty of Hezbollah’s narcoterror activities – from their point of view is that they figured out how to use the United States as a thoroughfare for their narcotics money laundering trade.

It is by no means an exaggeration to say that stopping Hezbollah’s narcoterror network will enhance safety in the United States and further secure the larger Western world. An added benefit of shuttering Hezbollah’s money laundering drug activity is that Israel’s security will be significantly improved.

By now it should be abundantly clear to all, as it should have been to the Obama administration, that the profits gained from the hundreds of millions of drug trade dollars Hezbollah receives goes directly into their military coffers. It is that money that engines the murderous terror machine that attacks Israel over its northern border.
MEMRI: The Popular Uprising In Iran 2017-2018: Lessons Learned By The Regime

The Iranian regime is attributing the December 2017-January 2018 popular uprising in the country to two main factors. One is the public's access to the West-based Internet, and the other is the involvement of Iran's enemies, who seek to bring down the Islamic revolutionary regime.

Regime Officials Blame Uprising On Access To The Internet

In addition to the regime's claim that it was the public's access to the West-based Internet that provoked and fanned the flames of the uprising, prominent spokesmen in the ideological camp, such as Ali Jafari, commander of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), and the Kayhan daily, the regime mouthpiece, blamed the government of President Hassan Rohani for the widespread Internet access (Iran has some 80 million residents and approximately 40 million smartphones) and for the lack of control over the Internet.[1]

At a January 3, 2018 press conference, IRGC commander Jafari explained: "The atmosphere of the Internet was not good at all, and some lost control of this atmosphere because of their interests, or because of negligence... The enemies rode quickly over the Internet, with 3,000 new forces, and reached the arena in order to create fitna [civil strife]... They began creating channels on the Internet... The lack of control over the Internet – which is run from outside Iran – and the negligence of those [in the government who are] responsible for control of this [online] atmosphere have exacerbated the rioting. But when we took control of the Internet, we witnessed a decrease in the creation of fitna."[2]

On January 4, 2018, Iranian Prosecutor-General Mohammad Jafar Montazeri said: "It is difficult to live without technology and social media, but these technologies must be directed. The Internet is considered to be a source of damage that destroys homes and creates many problems for families and young people, and, unfortunately, no effort is being made to direct it. If we do not think of a solution for the Internet, and for the foreigners' plots, a harsh future awaits us. We must block the active channels that aim to destroy society's morality, to denigrate the sacred values, and to destroy society's security."[3]
Europe's Betrayal of the Iranian People
The alliance between Saudi Arabia and the United States seems intended to contain the Iranian regime, and not, as falsely advertised by President Barack Obama, to prevent a nuclear program.

Leaders of Western Europe know exactly what the mullahs' regime is, and what its goals and activities are. They know it is the world's main sponsor of Islamic terrorism. They know the disastrous state of Iran's society and economy, but they prefer to play deaf and dumb. All they think about, it seems, are the contracts they sign with the mullahs to get more money. They do not care about the suffering of Iranians; the chaos, massacres and destruction caused by the regime. They know that the nuclear deal is constantly violated by the self-policing regime, and that a nuclear bomb is in the making. They are aware that the regime has close ties with North Korea, and that both are global threats.

The EU's chief diplomat, Federica Mogherini, has hypocritically called "all parties concerned to abstain from violence", as if there were a moral equivalence between unarmed protesters and killer militias with weapons of war. Meanwhile, in Iranian prisons, protesters were being arrested and tortured to death.

Leaders of Western Europe like to boast how they respect human rights, yet they are the ones trampling on them.
How Not to Cover Iran
The more popular anti-Trump angle is to claim that support for the protesters is futile. “Experts say President Trump’s tweets won’t help Iranians,” said NBC correspondent Matt Bradley in late December. The New York Times op-ed page, in its headline for a piece by former Obama State Department official Philip Gordon, told Trump to “be quiet.” But it was clear from the article that Gordon’s real concern wasn’t the protesters. It was preserving the nuclear deal. “If Mr. Trump blows up the deal and re-imposes sanctions,” he wrote, “he will not be doing the opposition a favor but instead giving Iranians a reason to rally to—rather than work against—the government they might otherwise despise.”

CBS journalist Major Garrett must have been referring to Gordon and other former Obama aides during the December 31 Face the Nation, when he told Lindsey Graham, “Some have said that would be the wrong thing to do because that would give the regime an enemy to point at us again.” A December 31 Los Angeles Times piece made the same point: “Iran’s leaders already are casting Trump’s increasingly effusive expressions of support for the demonstrators as opportunistic meddling and are painting the demonstrators as foreign pawns, adopting a strategy that some analysts say could jeopardize the legitimacy of the protests.” True. On the other hand, I say those analysts are full of baloney. Who’s to decide?

Not the people of Iran, apparently, who are denied agency by both their rulers and a Western chattering class more committed to the defense of President Obama’s legacy than the spread of democracy and freedom.

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.


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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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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