Wednesday, February 28, 2018

  • Wednesday, February 28, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
Some more Jewish humor for Purim:

In the 1970's, a Russian school inspector is questioning the children. He points to one of the boys and says, "Who is your father?" 
The boy replies, "The Soviet Union." 
He then asks, "Who is your mother?" 
"The communist party," came the reply. 
"And what do you want to be when you grow up?" 
"I want to be a Stankhanovite worker for the glory of the state and the party." 
The inspector then points to one of the girls and asks, "Who is your father?" 
The girl answers, "The Soviet Union." 
"Who is your mother?" 
"The communist party." 
"And what do you want to be when you grow up?" 
"A heroine of the Soviet Union raising lots of children for the state and party." 
The inspector looks round and sees a Jewish boy tucked away at the back trying to look inconspicuous. He points and says, "What's your name?" 
The boy replies, "Mendel Abramovitch." 
"Who is your father?" 
"The Soviet Union." 
"Who is your mother?" 
"The communist party." 
"And what do you want to be when you grow up?" 
Mendel replies, "An orphan."

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From Ian:

Free Speech Hypocrites
Supporters of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel frequently complain about a “Palestinian exception” to free speech. Never mind that whole, albeit small, segments of the academy are openly committed to the view that Israel is America’s accomplice in crimes of imperialism. People who criticize Israel, they say are not allowed to speak—often they make this point at university-sponsored events, or during “Israeli Apartheid Week,” a yearly ritual on many American campuses.

The claim, to be sure, refutes itself. But it is nonetheless heartening that an article in InsideHigherEd, a mainstream higher education website with no dog in the hunt, recognized that it is pro-Israel speakers who are uncommonly subject to disruption by—you guessed it—“pro-Palestinian” activists. Just last Thursday, at the University of Virginia, a panel of Israeli military reservists was interrupted by a group “shouting anti-Israel slogans through a megaphone, preventing the speakers from being heard.” Rabbi Jake Rubin, executive director of UVA’s Brody Jewish Center, which sponsored the panel, invited the protesters to stay and ask questions, but the “protesting students refused to do so and continued to shout at the speakers, making it impossible for the event to proceed as planned,” until the police arrived.

As Scott Jaschik, the author of the report and co-editor of InsideHigherEd, observed, this is hardly an isolated incident. He detailed seven instances of disruption, and he could have named many more. For example, he described a 2016 incident at UC-Irvine in which “protesters disrupted a screening of a film Beneath the Helmet, about the lives of five Israeli soldiers. The protest involved shouting that made it impossible for people to hear the film.” But he did not describe another incident at UC-Irvine in 2017, also featuring Israeli reservists, which earned the school’s chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine two years of probation.

Anti-normalization—in this case the attempt to render Zionism unspeakable—is the raison d’etre of the BDS movement, and shutting down speakers is one of its primary techniques. Before activists looked to shut down genuine white nationalists, like Richard Spencer, BDS was shouting down people like Bassam Eid, a Palestinian whose primary thought crime is denying that Israel is demonic. I guess there is a Palestinian exception to free speech after all.
Farrakhan Rails Against Jews, Israel and the U.S. Government in Wide-Ranging Saviours' Day Speech
On February 25th, Nation of Islam’s longtime leader Louis Farrakhan spoke at the Wintrust Arena in Chicago. As in previous Saviours’ Day speeches, Farrakhan used the opportunity to rail against the Jews, Israel and the U.S. government.

Before Farrakhan’s keynote address, fellow Nation of Islam principals Ava Muhammad, Nuri Muhammad and Ishmael Muhammad shared remarks. In a short speech, Ava Muhammad warned the crowd that the end of days is imminent, and they should heed the words of Farrakhan:

“If we think we can act crazy. If we think we can be plagues in our own community. If we think we can make mockery of the servant. If we think we can run away from Minister Farrakhan because you’re afraid of white people. Or if you think you can be used as a mouthpiece of the slander of the Jewish controlled media think again. Because while Allah’s whipping their behind he will ask you, did you hear my reminder calling you?”

Nuri Muhammad made a financial appeal, and announced that a $5000 donation from longtime Farrakhan ally and music producer Russell Simmons. Ishmael Muhammad, meanwhile, alleged that the Nation of Islam and Farrakhan are “miracles,” since many have tried to stop them:

“If God was not with him and the Nation of Islam we could not have survived the constant and ever increasing assault of the United States government and those who say they are Jews, but are of the Synagogue of Satan.”

One of the issues with remembering Amalek, one of the key commandments connected to the Purim holiday, is identifying who they are, today. How can you know absolutely that someone is part of the evil nation of Amalek? Because we're not only commanded to remember them, but to obliterate every trace of them.

A new video may not tell us all the answers, but it does give us a lot of food for thought by tying the recent history of the Holocaust and the Nazis, to the story of Purim, 24 centuries earlier, in Persia.

Of course, genocide is genocide, no matter when it is attempted. In Germany or Persia, modern day Iran. The irony is that the same actors are still trying to wipe out the Jews. In Iran, they say it straight out. In Germany, they're paying the big bucks to organizations dedicated to eliminating the Jewish State.

Same difference.

While it would be easy to just enjoy the festivities of Purim without worrying about its deeper meaning, it pays to keep in mind that the Jews, all of them, fasted for Esther's success in foiling Haman's evil plan. They worked hard to examine their character flaws and repent. The Jews pulled together as a nation to do this one thing together.

And apparently, the result of Jews pulling together to repent was so powerful that it had repercussions at the Nuremberg Trials, 24 centuries later. Which makes it a good day for drinking. (I'm a bourbon girl myself.)

Happy Purim!

(h/t Sarah Leah Silverman)

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Holy SepulcherJerusalem, February 28 - The Prince of Peace was treated at a supernal medical facility this afternoon after aggravating his stigmata by slapping his forehead in consternation in response to religious leaders at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher closing the facility to protest impending legislation that would subject properties sold by the Church to taxes.

Jesus Christ, 2023, was admitted to Mercy Hospital today for follow-up acre and observation, following what witnesses called a massive facepalm movement that the Son of God performed in reaction to the decision. Archangel Raphael told reporters the risk of infection remains present, but for now the Messiah is comfortable and in good spirits.

Christ bears holes in his hands from a crucifixion he underwent in his thirties, wounds that he withstood in the process of dying to save humanity from its sinfulness. The Church of the Holy Sepulcher marks the traditional site of his burial, a grave from which he emerged three days later. Long accustomed to being invoked in Christian teachings as an embodiment of forbearance, Jesus was seen on Wednesday to read headlines describing the decision by the various Sepulcher facility religious officials to shutter the place to pilgrims, and to hit his forehead with his hand so hard that the stigmata reopened. A bloodied Christ was seen being loaded into an ambulance by heavenly paramedics.

"The Son of God assures you all he is well and that his stay at Mercy Hospital is a mere precaution," declared a spokesangel. "He apologizes for the scare it may have given anyone, and appreciates everyone's concern."

The angel declined to disclose Christ's opinion on the church leadership's decision, but a supernal source speaking on condition of anonymity asserted Jesus remains upset at the stupidity and hypocrisy of the move. "It's a good thing there are no fig trees around right now," mused the source. "That glare could wither anything. The Lamb of God has been demanding clarification from various patriarchs, bishops, and just anyone, really, since early this afternoon, asking what makes them think closing the church is a good idea. He thinks it will backfire and alienate worshipers while accomplishing nothing and fomenting antisemitism, especially given the rhetoric they're using on the subject."

A second source shared unconfirmed rumors that the Son and Father held an urgent set of conversations to discuss the feasibility of having the Church of the Holy Sepulcher destroyed by rampaging heathens for at least the third time.

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From Ian:

Ben Rhodes and the Democratic Guilt Complex on Russia and Iran
When you’re good at something, you should never do it for free. That’s perhaps why Barack Obama’s former deputy national security advisor, Ben Rhodes, is gearing up to politicize national security issues once again in a professional capacity.

On Tuesday, Rhodes revealed his intention to join former Obama administration officials, Hillary Clinton staffers, and a handful of career civil servants to form “National Security Action,” a 501(c)(4) that will not endorse candidates but will campaign against them. You can probably guess who this organization’s primary target will be. “We’re a temporary organization,” Rhodes told the Washington Post. “Our hope is to be out of business in three years.”

We’ll dispense with the fiction that the conduct of American affairs abroad should be exempt from the petty squabbling that typifies the political process at home. Politics does not and never has stopped at the water’s edge. When it comes to national security, the current administration deserves its share of criticism. The Trump administration spent its first year ceding the turf war in Syria to other competing great powers, and the conditions in the region have only worsened. Similarly, and as former Obama administration officials won’t let you forget, the Trump administration has not done nearly enough to deter Moscow from intervening in the American political process again. Even National Security Agency Director Michael Rogers recently confirmed that the Russian regime has not “paid a price that is sufficient to change their behavior.” What’s more, Rogers has not been directed by the president to “disrupt Russian cyber threats where they originate.”

These are all urgent national-security threats about which every American should be concerned, and polls suggest that they are. Unfortunately for those who take these and other national-security threats seriously, Rhodes and company are among the least credible advocates for their cause.
‘Ambassador Samantha Power Lied to My Face About Syria,’ by Kassem Eid
In A Problem From Hell, Samantha Power explains how the U.S. administration tried to cover up the genocide in Bosnia by instead labeling it a “civil war.” Yet she and President Obama escaped responsibility for the documented and proven war crimes committed in Syria under the Assad regime’s brutal campaign. If Ambassador Power was telling the truth, she should have resigned just as she chided diplomats at the State Department for not resigning during the genocide in Bosnia.

The Assad regime taught us in schools that there was no Holocaust and hid the truth of the crematoriums and the concentration camps where millions of Jews were brutally killed. But the Obama administration also refused to act on—or reveal—direct eyewitness testimony it received of the crematorium in Saydnaya Prison in Syria, where an estimated 100,000 people were brutally killed and then burned to ashes to hide the truth. I’d begged the U.S. administration during my meetings at the State Department back in 2014 to investigate the Saydnaya Prison and Qasioun mountain because my fellow activists in those areas had repeatedly told me since 2012 how they smelled the awful stench of burning flesh. But all I got were empty promises. If a bunch of Syrian activists knew about the crematorium, there’s no doubt in my mind that Obama knew about it from intelligence reports. I strongly suspect he made sure those reports weren’t made public to avoid having to take action against Assad. It was the Trump administration that finally showed the world this reality last year and publicized the truth that Samantha Power, Ben Rhodes, and President Obama tried to hide.

Ms. Power and Mr. Rhodes have been going around the country as activists for the truth, decrying “fake news” and dishonesty, which they say is creating an alternative reality. At the same time, it was these two who during the Obama administration created an alternate universe to hide the genocide in Syria. Rhodes is experienced in creative writing, and he used his skills after he was appointed to be deputy national security adviser by President Obama to write an alternative universe to hide the truth of the Syrian genocide and the Iran deal. It should boggle the mind how these two, who were so instrumental in pushing disinformation to mislead the American people, could in any way be activists for the truth.

In the summer of 2014, a defector from the Assad regime codenamed “Caesar” came to Washington, D.C., after he managed to escape from Syria with thousands of photographs of Syrians who were systematically tortured to death by the Assad regime. Caesar’s collection of photographs was yet another indisputable proof of the ongoing genocide in Syria. Caesar met with Ambassador Power, who shed a tear when Caesar described the horrors he had witnessed during his career as an Assad regime military photographer. Caesar also gave Ms. Power a handwritten note to deliver to President Obama, but he never received any response. I also requested a meeting with President Obama as a survivor of the war crimes in Syria on multiple occasions, through the White House, the State Department, and Ambassador Power, but all of my requests were also denied. Neither Ambassador Power nor President Obama wanted to acknowledge the truth.

Ambassador Power, Ben Rhodes, and President Obama owe an apology to the Syrian and the American people for covering up the evidence of war crimes and genocide in Syria and twisting facts to serve their political agenda and public image.
Trump, and only Trump, stands between us and them
We got lucky. But luck does not last forever. Neither will Trump. Our luck runs out unless we come up with someone who can fill his shoes – and it is not too early to realize this.

Yes we pray for the fullness of his time in office, but Congress can still go either way, and if it goes the wrong way, things could get difficult, even for Trump.

Without him…let’s face it…there is nothing but void. The Democrats? Not a chance. That party is pro-BDS and anti-Israel, and the worst is yet to come under Tom Perez, Ellison and Corey Booker -- if ever they get their hands on the Senate, the House and/or the White House. There is no Trump there; not even a Truman.

Farrakhan --- him you will find.

Even among Republicans there is no Trump outside of Trump. No GOP leader – though far preferable to any Democrat – comes to mind as his successor.

None over the horizon or from the list of GOP candidates he defeated would have come out so forcefully, fearlessly and courageously on Israel’s side.

On Jerusalem, Trump stood up against the world and the world rallied round to him…or is beginning to…since there is no choice…since there is only one United States and only one President Donald Trump. For now, that’s good. It’s terrific. There’s been nothing like him in the recent past.

It’s the future we need to worry about, a day when Trump will be gone with no friend in sight for America or for Israel.

Dear Voters – California has put us on notice.

  • Wednesday, February 28, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
A tweet by Avi Mayer:

Over 23,000 of al-Kasim's followers voted in this poll.

Obviously, it is not a scientific poll, and there would be bias towards al-Kasim's own opinions if they are pro-Israel (I have no idea if they are.) But it is still astonishing that Arabs prefer Israel over their fellow Muslims by such a margin..

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  • Wednesday, February 28, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

There is an amazing page at the US Consulate General in Jerusalem site:

American Corner Gaza

The American Corner in Gaza is located in Al-Azhar University in Gaza City, Gaza. The American Corner in Gaza was launched in May 2006.

Purpose of the American Corner

The goal of the American Corner is to share the story of the United States with friends, maintain an open dialogue on issues of mutual concern, and build bridges of understanding. Through the American Corner in Gaza, the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem and the Palestinian people are able to share information, experiences, and events. The Consulate and American Corner-Gaza’s very active director work closely together to develop a range of cultural, academic, and capacity-building programs to host at the American Corner. Since its opening in May 2006, the U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem has provided a wide collection of American books, movies, and posters, as well as IT equipment, to the American Corner in Gaza.


In 2008 American Corner Gaza held 21 events. These events included DVCs on a wide variety of topics, including non-violent approaches to conflict resolution, the Civil Rights Movement, Arab-American activism, the 2008 Elections, and a discussion and jam session with the American Jazz legend Branford Marsalis. The American Corner in Gaza also offered English Language classes for non-English majors and a video-based, conversational English language and American culture class for English majors, Poetry readings, Movie-screenings, Presentations and discussions led by alumni of US programs, and a series of in-house lectures on American literature, as well as a Ramadan Iftar and a Jeopardy-style U.S election game.

Somehow, after hearing American poetry and jazz and learning about non-violent approaches to conflict resolutions, Gaza still descended into the hellhole it is now where violence is considered the best way to solve any issue.

What were the goals of this American Corner? What exactly was it meant to do?

And the Jerusalem consulate does very similar programs throughout the West Bank. What does it accomplish? Who gets converted to American style thinking? Where is even one "success" story?

It is more than a little bizarre.

(h/t Irene)

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  • Wednesday, February 28, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

Asharq al Awsat that French diplomats have leaked parts of the peace plan that Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt supposedly are drafting for the White House.

According to the leaks, Washington  intends to present its plan within the framework of an international conference held in one of the Arab capitals, most likely in Egypt, with Israel attending.

The plan supposedly says that Washington and other countries can recognize the state of Palestine and do not exclude East Jerusalem as its capital if Jerusalem is under some sort of "international jurisdiction."

The plan is supposed to provide for Palestinians in Arab countries to be naturalized citizens and be compensated, but there would be no "right of return."

There would be a sovereign, demilitarized Palestinian state, but not on the 1967 lines. The Jordan Valley would remain under Israeli control. Some settlements would be dismantled.

The plan did not say anything about larger settlements far from the Green Line.

In return, the PA will have additional security and administrative powers in Areas A and B, and Washington plans to raise $40 billion "not to buy Palestinian acceptance but to help build state and Palestinian institutions."

Border security in the Gaza Strip will be assigned to the Egyptian side, according to the leaked plan.

This plan is largely in line with Israeli demands for peace, and seems unlikely to get any traction unless the US convinces Arab governments and the EU to support it, which seems unlikely since it violates a number of Palestinian red lines and EU positions.

The news story says that an Arab ministerial delegation which recently visited Brussels and met with its European counterparts has been briefed on this information. The Arab ministerial delegation included the foreign ministers of Egypt, Jordan, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Morocco and the PA, as well as the Secretary General of the Arab League, as we reported previously.

It is possible that the leak was engineered to elicit Palestinian anger and to quash it ahead of any conference.

Something like this, if true, would be a long shot under any circumstances, and it would require incredible diplomatic finesse that seems unlikely to come from this administration.

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Tuesday, February 27, 2018

  • Tuesday, February 27, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon
Just saw this on a Hebrew website:

Two officers lost their personal weapons one day.

After searching and not finding them, they decide to judge each other.

They arrange a room with a flag to serve as a courtroom, and start the trial.
The first officer who serves as a judge asks the other, "Do you plead guilty?"

"I do," replies the "defendant."

"If so," says the judge, "I will give you a severe rebuke on your personal file."

They change roles and the officer who is tried becomes a judge.

The second officer "judge" asks, "Do you plead guilty?"

"I do" replies the other officer.

"If so," the judge says, "I am sentencing you to three years' imprisonment."

"How can that be?" asks the defendant. "After all, you got only a rebuke."

The judge answers, "Yes, but this is the second time it has happened in your unit ..."

While it is funny, the joke's very existence proves the morality of the IDF, where it is expected that losing a weapon would bring one to court, and where multiple offenses per unit are considered serious.

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From Ian:

How the Left Became its Own Worst Enemy – Part I
One subtle shift has been the emergence of political correctness, a form of Cultural Marxism (the theory that culture more than politics drives inequality between races and classes in Western societies). Political correctness started as a reasonable exercise to protect vulnerable members of society -- blacks, women, Jews, gays, the disabled -- from offensive speech and action but ended as a modern totalitarianism that blocks free speech and open debate on just about everything.

Today's youth, particularly on university campuses, have adopted ways of thinking and behaving that contradict all the ideas that were the fundamentals of classic liberalism. There are many examples, but the one that stands out above the rest is support for radical Islam and hard-line Muslims.

The most famous instance in the UK was Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn's embrace of members of the terror outfits Hamas and Hezbollah, which he described as his "friends". It took him until the summer of 2016 to say that he regretted his engagement with the terrorists.

In several European countries, including France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and parts of Italy, governments have banned fully or in part the wearing of the Islamic veil; above all, the niqab and burqa, the full-face forms. One might have thought that Western feminists would be in the vanguard of such movements, as it could not be clearer that Islamic law oppresses women far more than ever happened in the West. A British Muslim physician, Qanta Ahmed, and Yasmin Alibhai-Brown have openly and repeatedly called for the abolition of all forms of veiling. Muslim women reformers across entire the Islamic world have called for an end to veils of all kinds.[1] In Iran this year, young women have been demonstrating on the streets without their compulsory hijabs, and at least 29 have been arrested as the regime clamps down again.
Joe Rogan Experience #1084 - Douglas Murray (NSFW)

Caroline Glick: What America Can Learn from Israeli Gun Laws
When mass shootings take plan in the U.S., commentators routinely raise Israel as a case study to prove that guns in the hands of citizens save lives.

Israel, with its long and painful history of contending with terrorism, is rich with examples that prove this contention. In recent years, armed citizens have stopped dozens of terrorists. In some cases, those citizens acted when cowardly police officers shrank from danger.

For instance, on March 6, 2008, a terrorist disguised as a delivery man entered the Merkaz Harav seminary in Jerusalem with an assault rifle hidden in a television box. He opened fire on students studying in the library.

Two beat cops arrived on the scene but failed to enter the building to stop the killing.

In the event, a seminary student armed with a handgun, and an off duty infantry officer who lived in the neighborhood, heard the shots and ran to the seminary. The student, a young rabbi, was armed with a handgun; the officer was carrying his assault rifle. Both men ignored the police officers who told them not to go inside. They entered the building and killed the terrorist, ending the massacre. By the time they arrived, eight students, including five high school students, had been killed, while eight more were wounded.

The most recent Palestinian terror campaign, which lasted more or less from October 2015 through April 2016, showed the need for an armed citizenry. In two major attacks in Tel Aviv, the terrorists, armed with rifles were able to kill at will for several minutes because none of the civilians at the sites of the attacks were armed.

In contrast, terror attacks in Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria, which took place during the same period, were repeatedly stopped at their outset by armed civilians who ran to the scene within moments.

In response to the public outcry, Public Security Minister Glad Erdan slightly loosened restrictions on eligibility for gun licenses and encouraged citizens with gun licenses to carry their weapons wherever they go.

Erdan’s move to loosen restrictions on eligibility for gun permits shone a light on an aspect of Israeli life of which foreigners are largely unaware.

  • Tuesday, February 27, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

While the Palestinian Authority is saying that it does not want anyone to cooperate with Israelis (except for anti-Israel activities,) the IDF's COGAT continues to offer services for Palestinian Arabs:

Last week, 22 Palestinian medical experts underwent 5 days of advanced training under the supervision of the Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Israel. The Palestinian medical experts acquired experience in the field of patient care, explanations regarding hyperbaric medicine and received lectures by senior physicians. This project was a joint initiative of the Training Unit of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Health Coordinator in the Civil Administration, Dalia Bassa.

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  • Tuesday, February 27, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

The Palestinian Ministry of Education and Higher Education issued a 250 page Strategic Plan, in English, last year.

When they talk about how awful it is that Israel forces Arab schools in Jerusalem to use the Israeli curriculum, they include this horrible fact:

The Israeli occupation authorities constantly aim to erase the Palestinian identity in Jerusalem. They also do their utmost to change the reality of the city and fabricate its history and origin by censuring [sic] the Palestinian curricula and depriving Palestinian students of their right of access to their Palestinian curricula in its original form, as other Palestinian students. In addition, Israel has done everything possible to separate the Jerusalemite students from the rest of the Palestinian students. In implementing these policies, Israel has taken the following measures:
5) Distributing the censured [sic]  textbooks to the municipality and private schools free of charge whereas each package is sold for Jewish students for (NIS 1200-1500); an example of their political intentions towards Palestinian students in Jerusalem. 
Yes, saving Palestinian students in Jerusalem some $400 each - costing the Israeli government millions of dollars - is an example of Israeli evil!

By the way, if the Palestinians are so upset over losing their "right" to study their anti-Israel curriculum, they can always set up private after school programs to study their fake history and culture to counteract the evil Zionist narrative.

Teachers and students would certainly volunteer for such a project, and NGOs would happily pay for it.
I wonder why it doesn't happen?

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From Ian:

PLO declares economic war on the United States
Saleh Rafat, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s (PLO) Executive Committee, on Sunday said that the committee would convene in the coming days to discuss the latest developments on the Palestinian issue and to follow the implementation of the decisions of the PLO Central Council, which called for the severing of ties with Israel.

In an interview with Voice of Palestine Radio, Rafat backed an appeal by the Palestinian Authority (PA) to the International Criminal Court in The Hague which would demand that a legal investigation be launched against Israel for its "crimes" against the Palestinian people. He also backed the idea of "Palestine" joining 22 more international organizations.

He called on Arab countries not to agree to the American administration's peace plan which will be presented soon, to withdraw their investments from the U.S., to boycott American products, and to adhere to previous summit resolutions that cut off ties with any country that recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Rafat called for the continuation of the "mass demonstrations of anger" in “Palestine” and the Diaspora in order to deal with the American position that is biased in favor of Israel.

The PA officially joined the ICC on April 1, 2015, and immediately filed a series of legal complaints with the court. In addition to claiming that Israel committed war crimes during the 2014 Gaza war, it also claimed that Israeli “settlements” are “an ongoing war crime”
PMW: PA Mufti warns of “disasters of wars,” if US embassy is moved
After the announcement by the US State Department last week that the US embassy will be moved to Jerusalem on May 14, 2018, the Palestinian Authority's Grand Mufti warned that such a move will lead to "disasters of wars" in the entire world, as it is perceived as an "attack" on all Muslims:

"He [the Mufti] explained that the transfer of the American embassy to Jerusalem, if it is carried out, will not be an attack on the Palestinians alone, but rather a blatant attack on the Arabs and Muslims throughout the world, ...and that it will not serve peace and security in the region, but rather bring upon it disasters of wars, anarchy, and instability." [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 26, 2018]

He further implicitly encouraged Palestinians and Muslims to use violence and seek Martyrdom, stating that they will "sacrifice all that is dear to them":
"[The Mufti] added that the residents of Jerusalem and all of the Palestinians, Arabs, and Muslims will not submit to this blatant attack, and will sacrifice all that is dear to them in order to confront the American stubbornness."

The PA Ministry of Foreign Affairs called the embassy move "a direct aggression towards our people," regarding it as "a provocative declaration and a blow to the sensibilities of the Arabs and Muslims." [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 26, 2018]

MEMRI: PLO Fatah Faction Gives Apartment To Family Of Terrorist Who Murdered An Israeli
Palestinian media are reporting that the PLO faction Fatah in the Jenin area had given an apartment to the family of Ahmad Nassar Jarrar, 22, commander of the Hamas squad that murdered Rabbi Raziel Shevach on January 9, 2018 near the Havat Gilad junction in the West Bank. Jarrar was killed by Israeli troops a month later, in a February 6, 2018 raid.

Fatah representatives noted that the donation of the apartment constituted fulfilment of the national obligation to the family of a martyr who had sacrificed his life for Palestine and whose home the occupation had razed. Jarrar's mother and brother thanked Fatah for its support.

The following are translated excerpts from reports on the matter in the Palestinian media, and expressions of esteem for the martyrs by Palestinian Authority (PA) officials.

Fatah Jenin: This Is The Fulfillment Of A National Obligation Towards Families Of The Martyrs

On February 24, the Palestinian official news agency Wafa reported: "The Fatah movement in the Jenin region has given a fully furnished apartment to the family of the martyr Ahmad Nassar Jarrar...

"Fatah Jenin secretary Nour Al-Din Abu Al-Rab told Wafa that the donation of the apartment to the Jarrar family was aimed at underlining that the Fatah movement was fulfilling the national duty towards the families of the martyrs whose homes were razed by the Israeli occupation. He noted that the apartment was fully furnished and praised the part played by all those who had contributed to this national task that, he said, proved that our people is united and consolidated and does not forget its martyrs who gave their lives for Palestine.

"The martyr's mother, on her part, praised Fatah for providing her family with an apartment after the occupation destroyed their home."

On its official Facebook page, Fatah posted a video showing Jarrar's mother thanking Fatah for its support of the family.

  • Tuesday, February 27, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

It doesn't get more ironic than this:

The Cairo-based Arab League on Monday condemned the decision by the Israeli municipality in Jerusalem on collecting property taxes on UN buildings and churches.
In a statement, the League's Assistant Secretary-General and Head of the Palestinian and Arab Occupied Territories Sector Saeed Abu Al considered the Israeli move as an "unprecedented aggression" on Jerusalem's churches and an escalation against the holy city and its residents.
The Israeli authorities, through this decision, seek to cancel the conventions signed with Vatican decades ago and to change deliberately and systematically the legal and historic status of the city, he said.
This "dangerous unprecedented move" deprives Jerusalem's churches from carrying out their duties, he noted.
He urged the international community to assume its responsibilities and press Israel to stop its illegal actions against both Christians and Muslims in the holy city and to rescind the taxes decision.

The Arab League statement also included this: "These steps clearly aim at the historic Christian presence in the city of Jerusalem, which is an essential part of the history of the Holy City and its historical, human, religious and civilizational heritage, which reflects the values ​​of interfaith coexistence in its fullest form."

Yes, Arab nations, virtually all of which say that Islam is their official religion, are complaining about a lack of coexistence in Israel.

There is not a single church in Saudi Arabia. The percentage of Christians in the Middle East has plummeted from 20% to 5% over the past century. Christians are routinely persecuted in Egypt, the Palestinian territories, Iraq and elsewhere, and they are fleeing from virtually every Arab country including Lebanon.

The Arab League preaching to Israel on coexistence is pretty bizarre.

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  • Tuesday, February 27, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

EU High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini released a joint press statement with Ayman Al Safadi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Jordan.

Some of her statements are problematic, to say the least.

Today we will focus on how to bring the Middle East Peace Process forward. We will have the opportunity to listen to your views that coincides largely with our views. The European Union has been very clear in its position and very much united.
It sounds like she is saying that the EU and Arabs all largely agree on what is needed for peace. It is only those pesky Israelis who are against peace.

Let me say, today in particular, one word on the closure yesterday of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem in protest to certain Israeli steps planned or announced. We hope that a solution can be found quickly. Jerusalem is a holy city to the three monotheistic religions. This special status and character of the city must be preserved and respected by all. And I am saying this, in particular, standing next to you, as His Majesty [Abdullah II] King of Jordan has a very special role - a very appreciated role - when it comes to the Holy Places in Jerusalem. He knows that he can always count on our full support. And I think that the developments yesterday showed that there is a special attention we need to pay to this aspect.
This is truly outrageous.

Remind me again of what Jordan's history with preserving access to the holy places in Jerusalem is? Oh, yeah - Jordan didn't allow any Jews - not Israelis, but Jews - to visit the Jewish holy places in Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Hebron and elsewhere for 19 years. Jordan destroyed 50 synagogues. Jordan desecrated the oldest and largest Jewish cemetery in the world.

Even today, Jordan denies all Jewish rights in Jerusalem. 

Jordan's record in Jerusalem and the West Bank in preserving religious rights is not just flawed, but abysmal. Yet Mogherini is praising Jordan's monarch for - what, exactly?  Denying that Jews have any rights to the Old City of Jerusalem?

And under Israeli rule, there are more Muslims living in Jerusalem than ever before. There are far more Muslims visiting the Al Aqsa Mosque than ever visited under Jordanian or Ottoman rule.There are far more Christian pilgrims in Jerusalem than ever before.  Israel has uncovered and preserved  Muslim archaeological treasures while the Jordanian Waqf has continuously destroyed priceless Jewish artifacts. 

It is beyond disgusting that an EU official implies that Jordan would be better at preserving Jerusalem's religious heritage than Israel is, against all facts, history and logic.

The words might have been couched diplomatically, but there is a sickening rot not far under the surface of Federica Mogherini and the EU.

(h/t Irene)

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  • Tuesday, February 27, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

Iran today announced the Israel Hourglass Festival, a planned annual gathering and contest to countdown to Israel's destruction within 25 years, as Ayatollah Khamenei has predicted.

The festival’s press conference was held on Tuesday in Tehran, during which the main agenda and objectives of the festival were explained by the organizers.

Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, the Secretary-General of the International Conference on Supporting Palestinian Intifada and an international advisor to Iran’s Parliament Speaker, told the press conference that the “Hourglass Festival” is a symbol of the imminent collapse of the Zionist regime of Israel, as predicted by the Leader of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei.

He emphasized that fighting Israel is part of Iran’s national security because if the country fails to overcome the Zionists near their borders, it will have to fight against them in Tehran where they are assassination Iranian scientists and citizens.

Asked about the Islamic Republic’s plan to realize the victory of Palestinians over the Israeli regime, he said Iran is not the only one responsible for supporting the Palestinian cause, and all Muslim states must play their role in this regard.

He said he cannot publicize the Islamic Republic’s plan to realize the Leader’s prediction that the Israeli regime will collapse within 25 years, but it will definitely happen.
It is essentially a contest for people to submit anti-Israel videos, posters, cartoons,  mobile apps, mobile and web-based games, social media and websites, where they will be publicly displayed in Tehran in April.

The subjects of the submissions to the festival are:
Why down with Israel?
The Quds-occupier regime (Israel) and human rights;
The Quds-occupier regime (Israel) and oppression;
How did the Quds-occupier regime (Israel) form?
The Quds-occupier regime (Israel) and Islamophobia;
The Quds-occupier regime (Israel) and terrorism promotion;
Zionist child- killing regime;
The Quds-occupier regime (Israel) would not survive the next 25 years;
Israel, a cancerous tumor;
Israel, a fake, racist and colonialist regime

Note that Hossein Amir-Abdollahian says that Israel's destruction is not merely a prediction but an active plan by Iran.

There is a large countdown clock in Tehran showing the supposed number of days Israel has left before it is destroyed in 2040, since Khamenei made his prediction in 2015.

It is unclear why the festival shows 25 years instead of 22 years to adjust for the original timeframe. Maybe it isn't as catchy,  and this festival is all about creating memes.

One other part about the announcement that is interesting
The organizers will work with 2,400 anti-Israel NGOs in Europe, North America, Latin America, and Eastern Asia to promote the festival across the world, Qomi said.
2400 anti-Israel NGOs? That's more than one NGO for every 3000 Israeli Jews.

I'm curious if Iran is counting Amnesty, Human Rights Watch, B'Tselem and Oxfam in their count of anti-Israel NGOs.

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Monday, February 26, 2018

From Ian:

Israel is the Ultimate Anti-Imperialist State
In his recent anti-Semitic rant, PLO leader Mahmoud Abbas repeated the lie that Israel is a “colonial project”. This is part and parcel of a long Muslim Arab tradition to wipe out the Middle East’s indigenous pre-Islamic civilizations.

Imagine if mainstream voices in the 21st century demanded that all non-German Europeans ”integrate into proper Europe” by embracing German culture, language, identity and the Lutheran religion. In a post-Second World War Europe, it would be rightly considered unacceptable supremacist racism. By contrast, many “liberal” Jew-haters demand that Israel “integrates into the proper Middle East” in the name of “peace” by letting itself be swallowed up by the surrounding Muslim Arab world.

In an era of Western post-colonial guilt, the Middle East is often presented as a hapless victim of former European imperialism. This myth was successfully promoted by the late Arabist Edward Said and his influential propaganda book “Orientalism”, which was enthusiastically embraced by numerous Middle East departments at Western university campuses.

It is a frequently ignored fact that former European imperialism in the Middle East was preceded by Islamist imperialism. In his book Islamic Imperialism: A history, professor Efraim Karsh, documents the long and violent history of Islamic imperialism. At its height, Islamist imperialism carved out a giant Muslim empire stretching from Spain in the West to India in the East. This once mighty empire eventually fragmented and the last Muslim empire collapsed with the end of Ottoman rule in 1917.

However, Islamist imperialism largely succeeded in wiping out pre-Islamic indigenous civilizations by imposing Islam and Arabic as the new norm across the Middle East and North Africa. The Jews were one of the few indigenous nations that managed to survive Islamic imperialism and maintain a separate identity and culture.

For centuries, Jews were the ultimate “other” in a predominantly Christian Europe. Today, the reborn Jewish state is the ultimate “other” in a predominantly Muslim Arab Middle East. Persians, Turks, Kurds and Berbers have largely embraced Islam but maintain separate cultural and linguistic identities from the surrounding Arab majority.

Ancient Christian and Zoroastrian communities are oppressed and threatened under Islamic rule. Israel stands out as the only remaining independent non-Arab and non-Muslim state in the wider Middle East region.

Anti-Jewish history revisionists often claim that Israel is a “foreign body” in a “Muslim Arab” region. In reality, the reborn Jewish state is the only remaining viable and indigenous fragment that survived the onslaught of Islamic imperialism.
The New Israel Fund Harms Israel, Yet Still Gets Support
A fundamental component of all strands of Judaism is supporting Israel as the Jewish state. Whether one believes in Orthodox or Reform Judaism, follows Shabbat, etc., believing that Israel should be the Jewish homeland is something that all Jews must believe in.

That’s why I don’t understand how American Jews can support the New Israel Fund (NIF) — an organization that harms Israel on many fronts. The latest development is a joint press release from Adalah (which received more than $2 million from the NIF from 2008-2016) and Hamoked (which received more than $700K during the same period). The press release claimed that, “it is illegal upon international law to impose upon East Jerusalem residents an obligation of loyalty to the occupying power.”

As the press release notes, these organizations sent a comprehensive letter to the Interior Ministry “detailing their grave concerns regarding a newly-proposed bill to amend the Entry into Israel Law. This new bill will allow the revocation of residency status of East Jerusalem Palestinians on three possible grounds: for ‘breach of loyalty’; in cases where the status was granted on the basis of false information; and in cases where ‘an individual committed a criminal act’ in the view of the Interior Ministry.”

The new bill was drafted following the Israeli Supreme Court’s decision in September 2017 denying the revocation of permanent residency of four Palestinian parliamentarians from East Jerusalem — on the grounds of “breach of loyalty.”

These organizations argued that East Jerusalem is considered occupied territory under international humanitarian law (IHL), and that its Palestinian residents are a protected civilian population. The groups claim, therefore, that it is illegal under IHL to impose upon them an obligation of loyalty to the “occupying” power — let alone to deny them permanent residency status on this basis.

The lowdown on Israel’s foes
HOLDING aloft Alex Ryvchin’s new book, The Anti-Israel Agenda: Inside the Political War on the Jewish State, Colonel Richard Kemp, one of its contributors, referenced Benjamin Netanyahu’s Munich speech in commending the collected essays to attendees at its Victorian launch.

Kemp described Netanyahu’s February 18 appearance at the Munich Security Conference, where the Israeli PM held up a piece of an Iranian drone fired on Israel from Syria, warning the Jewish State’s enemies not to “test Israel’s resolve”.

Waving the book, the visiting Briton exclaimed, “That is also a weapon — that is a weapon you need to arm yourself in your fight to defend the State of Israel.”

The former chief of command for British forces in Afghanistan, whose testimony before the UN Human Rights Council probing the 2014 Israel-Gaza war is detailed in Ryvchin’s new work, paid tribute to the Ukrainian-born Australian writer and lawyer, who is the public affairs director of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ).

Liberal and Labor MPs, including Michael Sukkar (Deakin), Michael Danby (Melbourne Ports), Tim Wilson (Goldstein), and Victorian senators Kimberley Kitching and James Patterson, were on hand for the launch, co-hosted by ECAJ, the Jewish Community Council of Victoria, the Zionist Federation of Australia and Zionism Victoria.

Sukkar described Israel as “the frontline of freedom in the world … yet there’s no nation probably on the earth that’s under a greater existential threat … works such as what we’re launching tonight … are so important in pointing that out”.

  • Monday, February 26, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

The 16-day old strike by hospital janitorial staff that has closed at least one hospital in Gaza has been suspended as the workers are negotiating with the Palestinian Authority to pay them. But if the negotiations don't work out over the next two weeks, they will strike again.

Meanwhile, all government employees, including at schools, went on strike today to protest their own non-payment of salaries and benefits. All government institutions in Gaza are shut down today.

And so are public schools.

The protesters are noting that it has been months since the supposed reconciliation agreement between Hamas and the PA, where Mahmoud Abbas' government promised to take over the Hamas-run institutions, but things are worse now than they were before.

Also, UNRWA contract workers. mostly engineers, are protesting a decision not to renew their contracts. So they are shutting down UNRWA facilities in Gaza as well.

But the only Gaza news that wire services will report is the news that includes the word "Israel."

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  • Monday, February 26, 2018
  • Elder of Ziyon

As the world looks on in horror at the Syrian regime's merciless attacks on people in eastern Ghouta, which has claimed the lives of hundreds and accusations of Syrian use of poison gas, the regime is claiming that they are simply attacking bloodthirsty Zionist terrorists.

A Syrian apologist named Afraa Dagher wrote in conspiracy site Global Research last week:

Over 30,000 terrorists are located in this area which is one of the most dangerous terrorist strongholds in Syria, along with Idlib. Eastern Ghouta’s terrorist enclave presents an even graver danger than those in Idlib due to its proximity to the capital. This has been made all the more worrying as Damascus has always been the penultimate target of the original enemies of Syria, the western alliance and Israel.

Al-Ghouta is now home to factions of radical Islamists whose slogan is: ‘we are coming to slaughter you’. ...

The pain theses terrorists cause to our people everyday, could simply not be the product of a Syrian mind, it could only be a Zionist mind that could conceive of such a systematic plot to kill Syrians and destroy their lives. Syrians realise that a covert “Israeli” hand is behind the attacks on Damascus, a city that is not only Syria’s capital, but whose location is perilously close to the border of the occupier entity. Indeed, some of “Israel’s” covert actions are unmasked as blatant when Israeli missiles are fired at Damascus in tandem with Islamist missiles from al-Ghoutha.

Finally our Syrian Arab Army has to stop these terrorists – these armed terrorists who have every kind of advanced weapon, medicines and equipment that most regular Syrians no longer have. Sometimes these weapons were smuggled to them via the soft Turkish border and at other times via “Israel”.
 All the while, the Godfather of the terrorists, Israel has used its media machine to defend the terrorists saying President Assad decided to end the “rebellion” in al-Ghouta. Israeli media has claimed that these terrorists are “rebels” who are ‘innocently’ bombing our children because those children are in so-called “pro-regime” schools. It’s no wonder, as “Israel” continues to pursue its age old dream of creating a buffer zone in southern Syria controlled by the al-Nusra front terrorist group.

At the same time, western mainstream media rely on the White Helmets, a group aligned with the al-Nusra jihadists of al-Ghoutha telling lies that it is their hospitals which are flowing with blood. These are the same people who staged and propagated the discredited “chemical attack” in al-Ghouta in 2013. Indeed, Israeli media always simultaneously publishes the same fake stories coming  from the pro-jihad White Helmets.

As a Syrian, we in Syria recognize that every missile against our children, every attack against our homeland is an “Israeli one”, whether by “Israeli” planes and missiles or by terrorist groups covertly working with “Israel” in order to pursue “Israel’s” longtime goal of destroying Syria, irrespective of whether such groups call themselves al-Qaeda, al-Nusra, ISIS etc – all the while US coalition airstrikes kill our soldiers and civilians in Deir ez-Zor and Raqqa just as they killed Iraqis in Mosul. This is the reality for a people besieged on all sides.
Syria still thinks that blaming Israel is the way to unify Arabs against their enemies. (Iran still clings to that idea as well.)

But more and more Arabs are publicly acknowledging that this thinking has only contributed to their own problems. Jordan Times has an op-ed that says:
Today, extremists in the Middle East put on explosive vests and blow themselves up in houses of worship of other sects. To end this tragedy, perhaps we should start thinking of our conflicts not as a scourge inflicted upon us by the omnipotent Imperialist-Zionist conspiracies, but as problems of our making, which should be solved through reason.
 The author is Western-educated, of course. This kind of actual thinking needs to be put into Arab schools and universities if any real progress is to be made in the Middle East.

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From Ian:

Dr. Mordechai Kedar: Hamas: Full steam ahead to nowhere
The Arab nationalist movements have sunk into the deep morass of despotism. Not one of them has managed to establish and maintain a democratic nation-state on the lines of Israel. The Zionist movement succeeded exactly where the Arab nationalist movements failed, and the Hamas movement was supposed to offer an alternative religious ethos that could unfurl its flag over all the tribal and religious groups living in "Falestin": Muslims, Christians, Cherkassim, Achmadim. The religious movement failed dismally, one of the reasons being its inability to abandon the principle of Jihad long enough to join up with the PLO and establish a Palestinian Arab state alongside Israel until the time is ripe to destroy the Jewish State. Hamas does not see a way to accept the Jewish states' existence, even on a temporary basis, and is obligated to maintain a constant state of war with Israel. Let me emphasize: not an active war but a state of war. Waging a war would lead to the destruction of Gaza and topple the heads of the Hamas leaders, while a state of war gives them justification for the sad state the movement and the Gaza Strip have reached. The residents of Gaza are the albatross hanging on the neck of Hamas, weighing it down as it tries in vain to navigate a stormy sea.

The situation in Gaza provides another proof, for anyone who is still in need of one, of the inability of an Islamic movement to establish and maintain a modern state that can live in peace with its neighbors and tolerate ideologies that differ from its own.

The schism dividing the PLO and Hamas is a cultural divide expressed by means of political conflict. There is no way to create unity or a true, long-lasting reconciliation between the two groups, so that anyone counting on one unified Palestinian Arab state had better align his expectations with bitter Middle East reality, widely different from what we have become accustomed to in Europe, America and Australia.

The PLO failed because the secular nationalist ideology that does so well in Europe, cannot make a go of it in the Middle East. It has failed in every country that tried to base its existence on that kind of ideology – Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Sudan are the exemplars. The Hamas movement is a failure because fundamentalist Islam cannot maintain a modern state with European democratic standards based on human laws. Turkey, while returning to Islam since the nineties, is also distancing itself more and more from the accepted Western model of a constitutional democracy.

The conclusion all this leads to is completely clear: There is neither a religious or secular basis for establishing a Palestinian Arab state. The only solution is the natural base of Middle Eastern society: The tribe. Only emirates in Judea and Samaria based on local families, - like those in the Gulf emirates – can operate legitimately in this region.
Melanie Phillips: The UK Needs Another Churchill to Confront Iran
Recently, there have been extraordinary scenes in cinemas throughout the United Kingdom. People have leapt to their feet in standing ovations, and grown men have been weeping. The source of the emotion? The wartime speeches of Winston Churchill in the movie, The Darkest Hour.

It’s not just because of Gary Oldman’s tremendous performance as the former prime minister. No — the movie has touched something very deep in the British psyche: the call to summon all one’s courage and resolution to defend their nation.

Showing how the UK’s previous prime minister, Neville Chamberlain, vainly tried to appease Adolf Hitler, the movie illustrates the catastrophic error of trying to compromise with a regime whose agenda brooks no compromise.

During the 1930s, the United Kingdom didn’t acknowledge this until it was almost too late. Churchill — the lone voice warning that the county needed to re-arm to deal with the Nazi threat — was scorned as a warmonger. People didn’t seem to realize that the choice before them was not between war and peace, but between war from a position of strength and war from a position of weakness.

When Hitler invaded Czechoslovakia in March of 1939, Chamberlain’s response was to return from meeting the German dictator in Munich and announce “peace in our time.” Only when Hitler invaded Poland in September of that year did Britain finally go to war.

Victory over fascism was accordingly a close-run thing. But the point is that Britain launched a pre-emptive strike. It realized that the attack on Poland showed Hitler posed a direct threat to its own nation, and that it needed to destroy that threat before the Nazis got any closer.

Palestinians: Israel is One Big Settlement
Let us be clear about this: When Palestinians -- and some of their supporters in the international community, including Europe -- say that they want an end to the "occupation," they mean they want to see an end to Israel's existence, full stop. They do not want to throw the Jews out of their homes in the settlements; rather, they want Jews to be expelled from the whole country.

The conflict, as far as the Palestinians are concerned, did not begin in 1967, when east Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza Strip came under Israeli control. In the eyes of the Palestinians, all Jews are "settlers" and "colonialists." All the land, they argue, stretching from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, is Muslim-owned land, and no Muslim is entitled to give up any part of it to a non-Muslim. For the Palestinians, accepting Israel's "right to exist" with Jews is seen as an act of treason.

What is really bothering the Palestinians is that Israel, with Jews, exists, period. The Palestinians want all of Jerusalem. They want all of "Palestine." They want Israel removed from the planet. It is time to listen carefully to what the Palestinians are saying -- in Arabic -- to understand that the conflict is not about Jerusalem and not about settlements.

Every year or so, I’ll notice a fight breaking out in the Jewish press regarding whether or not we are winning or losing the fight against BDS.

Most recently, the UK’s columnist Liron Velleman and US Commentary contributor Jonathan Tobin talked about the decrease in Israel Apartheid Week activities in the US and abroad, as well as the lack of success BDS has had in slowing Israel’s rapidly expanding economy and growing diplomatic ties across the world (including the Arab world).  This was met with harsh rebuke by Jack Saltzberg, founder of The Israel Group, who pointed out that BDS is unconcerned with causing Israel actual economic harm, but is instead embarked on a project to turn the next generation against the Jewish state through propaganda facilitated by boycott and divestment campaigns.

Both sides in this debate rely mostly on anecdotal information, although the accumulation of anecdotes (such as number of Apartheid Week activities or student government divestment votes – or votes won or lost) can indicate trends.

Given how much of my earlier work was based on embedding the BDSFail meme into discussion of this topic, I have seen these same arguments again and again (with this piece contrasting various measures of Israel’s success with the failures of BDS tending to draw the most criticism from Israel supporters fearful that a “BDS is a failure” storyline might cause us to miss what the boycotters are actually up to).

While I have tremendous respect for all of these writers and the arguments they are making, they are similar to previous sides taken in similar debates in that they focus too narrowly on a tactic (BDS) without analyzing the wider framework into which that tactic fits.

Before BDS (a brand that came into vogue in the mid-2000s), there was simply “divestment” (the name of campaigns that started with the 2001 “anti-racism” conference in Durban).  And before divestment there were campaigns to get the US to end its financial support for the Jewish state.  Before those, there were calls to get schools, churches and governments to pass motions condemning Israel for this or that alleged crime.  Woven into all these projects was the strategic goal of branding Israel as the successor to Apartheid South Africa.

This strategic goal was and is part of a wider project.  For if Israel = Apartheid in the minds of enough people, then its demise would be considered not sad and evil, but wonderful and good.  And if the ultimate goal of those pushing this propaganda campaign is to see the Jewish state destroyed (which it is), then BDS can be seen as the propaganda arm of a wider military strategy, with militaries and terror groups allied with Israel’s national enemies assigned the role of carrying out the actual violence for which anti-Israel propaganda provides cover.

What this means is that we cannot judge the success or failure of anti-Israel movements by looking at just this student council vote or that state anti-BDS legislation (or even the number of them increasing or decreasing over time).  For anti-Israel agitation has been with us since before the BDS acronym was invented, and will continue – organized around different tactics – if the Israel haters drop boycott and divestment tactics altogether.

While part of the reason behind a slow-down in BDS activity can be chalked up to our side’s successful efforts to organize resistance to it, there are also geopolitical reasons for why we find ourselves where we are today.  Most notably, the chaos in the Arab world and growing understanding by Sunni nations of the threat of Iran means traditional supporters of every aspect of the global anti-Israel crusade (such as Saudi Arabia) are losing interest in both the Palestinians and those that support them.    

Also, whatever you think about chaotic US politics, there is clearly a difference in how the current administration treats Israel and the Middle East vs. the last occupant of the White House.

As outlined here, one has to understand the field of battle before understanding whether one is winning or losing on the ground.  And, despite where conflicts are taking place, the actual battlefield is not the chambers of student or municipal government.  Rather, those skirmishes are part of a wider plan to damage or destroy the walls (physical, military, economic, diplomatic and emotional) that protect the Jewish state from harm
This means we need to determine if the siege warfare Israel’s strategy for survival is based on is working or not.  If it is, then we should continue to support anything that makes Israel’s position stronger while weakening her enemies.  If it’s not, then we should find out where the cracks are in the Jewish nation’s defensive barriers and put our effort into patching them and shoring up protective barriers in hope that those who began this war (Israel’s enemies – the only ones that can end it) eventually come to their senses.


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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 19 years and 40,000 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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