Tuesday, July 31, 2018

From Ian:

More horror than heroism: Ahed Tamimi
My sweet-natured daughter Malki, brimming with empathy and generosity toward others, always with a smile on her face, was 15 when she was murdered in the Sbarro pizzeria massacre 17 years ago this week.

The experience of losing her, of trying to re-balance my life and my family’s and of trying to make sense of the reactions of other people, has shaped much of what I believe about terrorism.

We know who plotted the Sbarro barbarism. It was not Ahed Tamimi. But when her clan, the Tamimis of Nabi Saleh, get together to celebrate it, as we know they do, she is an enthusiastic participant.

In a village where almost everyone is related by blood and (yes, and) marriage, Ahed is a cousin of one of the attack’s perpetrators, Ahlam Tamimi, in multiple ways. Ahlam now lives free in Jordan. She boasts that she chose the site for the explosion, seeking to kill as many Jewish children as possible, and that she planted the human bomb. Via social media, public speeches and (for five years) her own TV program, she urges others to follow her lead.

When Ahlam married Nizar Tamimi – also a murderer from the village – a few months after both walked free in the Gilad Shalit prisoner-exchange deal, Ahed was there to dance and gaze adoringly at the bride.

But neither her gaze nor her ideas are the problem – it’s what others do with them.

Ahed’s parents make a living from propagandizing against Israel. They fashioned and groomed Ahed, leveraging her blondness, pushing her into staged conflicts with Israeli soldiers from when she was 10, deliberately putting her at real risk on a weekly basis for years – long before she had the ability to discern what was being done to her.

Syrian activists: 'Ahed Tamimi lucky not to be imprisoned by Assad'
“Israel released Ahed Tamimi full of health and without a scratch,” wrote Syrian activist and photographer Yasser Wardh, contrasting her leaving prison “while thousands of Palestinians are killed in prisons of the Assad regime.”

Nedal al-Amari, a journalist from Deraa, also contrasted the brutality of the Syrian regime with Tamimi’s treatment. “The difference between Israel and Bashar al-Assad. Ahed Tamimi lucky girl because it was in Israel’s prisons, not Assad’s prisons.”

Dozens of similar tweets in Arabic mentioned her alleged “9 kilos” weight gain. “She was not tortured. She was not raped. Her weight increased by nearly 9 kilos. Her hair and face are more beautiful,” wrote Mahdi Majeed.

Iman Kais, who has 100,000 followers on Twitter, also contrasted Tamimi’s experience with Arab prisons. “She says she learned to love life, whereas those imprisoned in our Arab countries can reach a stage where they wish their mother didn’t give birth to them.”

Many tweeted photos of Tamimi next to a dead Syrian woman, trying to draw attention to the difference. “If people in Deraa and the south were detained by the Zionist occupation and they come out 9 kilos more, instead of arrested by the Assad occupation every day a list of the souls of the martyrs, more than 3,000 now,” one wrote. This was a reference to the thousands of names of those murdered in Assad’s prisons. The regime has recently released lists of those who have disappeared or been killed in the last seven years, many of whom died in prison.
Ahed Tamimi to be honored by Nelson Mandela’s grandson
Nelson Mandela’s grandson, Mandla Mandela will invite Palestinian teenager Ahed Tamimi to South Africa to receive a special reward “for bravery, resistance and being a symbol of hope for millions.”

Tamimi, who was jailed for eight months after being videoed provoking and slapping an IDF soldier last year, was released on Sunday.

According to several South African media outlets and the Afro-Palestine Newswire Service, Mandla made the comments during a celebration to commemorate his late grandfather’s 100th birthday. He reportedly promised Tamimi that he will “continue to support and rally others to join in the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions [BDS] campaign to isolate Apartheid Israel until Palestine is free.”

Mandla then saluted Tamimi as “a symbol of Palestinian resistance.”

Many of South Africa’s leaders, including the country’s President Cyril Ramaphosa, have been vocal about the incarceration of Tamimi.

Earlier this year, Ramaphosa, during a response to questions following his state of the nation address, called for the speedy release of Tamimi.

“At this moment, we wish to express our deepest concern about the continued imprisonment of Palestinian children in Israeli jails,” he said in reference to Tamimi. The comment received thunderous applause in the country’s parliament.

Caroline Glick: The Stakes in Syria Continue to Rise
The threat that Iran will choose to initiate a devastating war in the Middle East, from its perch in Syria, continues to rise.

Last Thursday, forces wearing Syrian military uniforms along the Syrian side of the border with Israel at Quneitra in the Golan Heights hoisted the Syrian flag at the border crossing. It was the first time the regime had asserted its control over the border zone since 2014.

The regime’s reconquest of southwestern Syria, along the borders with Jordan and Israel, in recent weeks has been accompanied by repeated penetration of Israeli territory by projectiles from Syria.

Last Tuesday, Israel shot down a Syrian Air Force Sukhoi 22 that crossed into its territory. Last Wednesday, so-called Islamic State (ISIS) forces in southern Syria shot two missiles into Israel that fell into the Sea of Galilee just a few dozen yards from beachgoers. The Israeli navy located one of the missiles, but is still looking for the other one, which reportedly failed to detonate.

Israel deployed its David’s Sling ballistic missile defense system for the first time this week against projectiles launched from Syria. The system failed to intercept a Syrian missile, which was eventually shot down by a Patriot missile battery.

Aside from the ISIS missiles, which Israeli security officials believe were shot to pull Israel into the Syrian civil war, military officials believe that the other penetrations of Israeli territory from Syria were errant events caused by navigation and firing errors, and Israel’s close proximity to battle areas.
Royal Navy Rescued Manchester Islamic State Bomber from Libya Civil War
Britain’s Royal Navy rescued from Libya the Islamic State suicide bomber who killed 22 at a concert in Manchester last year, bringing him from the war zone back to the UK, after he had been flagged as a potential threat.

Salman Abedi was born to Libyan asylum seeker parents in the south of Manchester, before returning to his ancestral homeland to allegedly engage in militant activity.

On the 22nd of May 2017, he would murder 22 at the Manchester Arena venue in his home city, many of them young children and girls, as they attended a pop concert. More than 200 were injured.

It has now emerged, reports the Daily Mail, that in 2014 Abedi, his brother Hashem, and around 100 more British citizens were evacuated from Tripoli by HMS Enterprise as the security situation in Libya deteriorated.

They were taken to Malta before returning to the UK on a flight into Manchester. His brother is now imprisoned in Libya in connection with the Manchester attack.

A Whitehall source told the newspaper: “For this man to have committed such an atrocity on UK soil after we rescued him from Libya was an act of utter betrayal.”
Family of Palestinian Youth Who Murdered an Israeli Father of Two the Latest to Benefit From the PA’s Pay for Slay Program
Last Friday, Yotam Ovadia wanted to do something nice for his wife. Cooking a surprise romantic dinner, he thought, would be a wonderful way to spend Shabbat. He bought all the ingredients, and stored them at his parents house nearby. Then, in the evening, he told his wife, Tal, that he was going out for a bit and will return soon.

He never did. Walking in the streets of his community, he ran into Muhammad Tarek Dar Yusuf, a 17-year-old Palestinian from a nearby village. Yusuf wrestled Ovadia to the ground, and then, producing a long knife, stabbed him in the head, the heart, the neck, and the lungs. Passersby managed to shoot and kill Yusuf, but Tal, running out, saw her husband and realized he wasn’t going to make it. He passed away a short while later.

But while Ovadia’s family mourns, Yusuf’s has cause to celebrate. According to Palestinian Media Watch, the Palestinian Authority’s official daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, declared Yusuf a martyr, a designation that comes with a hefty financial reward: Yusuf’s family will receive a one-time bonus of $1,643, followed by a monthly salary for life of $383, more than half the average Palestinian’s salary. According to the PA’s ghoulish pay-for-slay program, had Yusuf been successful in his quest to kill more Jews on his rampage, he would’ve earned his family more money, as Mahmoud Abbas’s government incentivizes murder by increasing the financial compensation to the families of terrorists for each Jew slaughtered.

Had Yusuf been captured and imprisoned rather than shot and killed, he might’ve taken comfort in a letter signed by 35 members of Congress and sent late last week to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Beginning with a call “to promote the protection and proper treatment of children on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” the letter—spearheaded by Representatives Jan Schakowsky, David Price, Steve Cohen, and John Yarmuth, all Democrats—soon hits its real target, taking issue with Israel’s detention of minors like Yusuf who have attempted or perpetrated deadly attacks against civilians. “We encourage the State Department to stress the importance of ensuring proper treatment of Palestinian children in Israeli detention,” read the letter, “and address this matter in the Department’s next report on global human rights.”

Israel questioned Adam stabber 2 years ago over Facebook posts, family says
A teenage Palestinian terrorist who carried out a fatal stabbing attack in a West Bank settlement last Thursday was summoned by an Israeli intelligence service two years ago over Facebook posts, family members said this week.

Seventeen-year-old Mohammed Yousef of Kobar stabbed three Israelis in Adam, killing Yotam Ovadia, 31, and wounding the other two before he was shot dead.

“He and his father were summoned to a meeting with the Israeli intelligence services after he made a few posts on Facebook about the situation here,” Khalid Yousef, an uncle of Muhammed, said in an interview in Kobar on Sunday.

Yahya Yousef, Muhammed’s brother, confirmed Khalid’s comment.

Khalid and Yahya did not say which intelligence service summoned Muhammed.
Parks rangers in southern Israel watch life's work turn to ash
World Ranger Day, an international day of recognition for the men and women who guard national parks and forests all over the world, was no celebration for the rangers working in the northern and western Negev, where many thousands of acres of woodland, fields, and nature preserves have been laid to waste by the burning balloons and kites that Palestinians in Gaza float over the border fence, seeking to cause as much damage to Israeli property as possible.

"The threat here is daily – it's like a terrorist attack, you don't know where it will happen. You always have this feeling of uncertainty about how many [burning] balloons will arrive and where, and nature is paying the price," says Hanan Levavi, who for the past five years has been working as the Israel Nature and Parks Authority's chief ranger for the northern Negev. His job places him on the front lines of the fight against arson terrorism in the form of fire kites and balloons that Palestinians fly over the Gaza border fence, hoping to cause as many fires as possible in Israel.

Recently, rangers in Gaza-adjacent communities have been forced to join the effort to check the immense damage caused by the terrorist arson from Gaza. Some sites have been particularly hard hit: 80% of the foliage in Be'eri Forest has been burned down; 56% of the Nir'am Reserve is scorched black, and a third of the Karmia Reserve has gone up in flames. In total, over 11,000 dunams (2,700 acres) of nature preserves have been lost to the fires.

Levavi says that in the past four months, fires caused by the burning balloons and kites have broken out daily in the Be'eri area.

"It ranges from 10 [separate] fires to 50 on the bad days. It's inconceivable. All the land is burned up. There's nowhere for wild animals to hide," the ranger says.
IDF Message to Gaza: Hamas Sends You Every Week to Die on the Fence
“Hamas sends you every week to die on the fence, in order to use you as a human shield,” is the message of a video posted on the Facebook page in Arabic of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, directed at Gaza residents.

The video shows Hamas policemen beating Arab women violently and destroying the homes of residents of the Gaza Strip. It also shows a 32-year-old man who took his own life after Hamas members beat him and broke his stall in the market.

The video was created by Col. Iyad Sarhan, Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories for the Gaza Strip, who assumed his post in February. Earlier in July, Col. Sarhan told Gaza residents on Facebook that Hamas is responsible for the closing of the Kerem Shalom Crossing. “The heavy price you are paying is the result of the balloon and kite terror; yes, we absolutely consider these incidents terrorism, and because of that our response will be harsh,” he posted.

In his latest video, Col. Sarhan says: “Hamas does not care about the residents of Gaza when it sends them again and again to the fence, and uses them as human shields, Hamas does not protect Gaza residents, Hamas exploits them!”

“Hamas sends you every week to die on the fence, to use you as a human shield, instead of investing money in workplaces, electricity and water, it exploits you and attacks you in violent ways,” Col. Sarhan says.

Arens, you're wrong about the law
A few notable personalities from the Right are joining the wave of condemnation of Basic Law: Israel as the Nation-State of the Jewish People, namely former Defense Minister Moshe Arens and MK Benny Begin. In doing so, they are legitimizing those who wish us harm and who are using the "racist" nation-state law as proof that the Israeli government seeks to implement "discrimination" and "apartheid."

The main reason they were foaming at the mouth was that the law makes no mention of the equal status and rights of the non-Jewish minorities in Israel, particularly those who serve in the IDF and the other branches of the security establishment. Of course, they are talking about the Druze and the Bedouin. This is a mistake; the nation-state law contains nothing that is designed to minimize the acknowledgment of minorities' contributions to the state and its defense.

The nation-state law is intended to define the country's national identity and anchor it constitutionally. It does not address how the government is run, which is a weighty issue, but one that is unrelated to national identity. Starting in the middle of the last century, many countries made radical changes to their forms of government without it affecting their national make-up. That is what happened in Japan, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Greece, and Argentina. Did the regime changes there also revolutionize their citizens' national identities?

Many of the people who criticize the nation-state law cling nostalgically to the Declaration of Independence and point it out as an appropriate, fitting inspiration for the wording of the law. They forget that although the Declaration of Independence mentions the civil rights of all the citizens in the state, for nearly two decades after it was signed, the Arab minority was under a police regime that seriously limited its liberty and civil rights.

Perhaps we should also mention that in the Declaration of Independence, the word "right" appears 10 times, nine of which refer to the rights of Jews and the Jewish people as a group and a nation. Only once is the word "right" mentioned in the context of civil rights for all citizens.
The Secret Reason Arabs Reject the Jewish Nation-State Law
Some Israeli Arab leaders speak disparagingly about Israel for publicity. They know that no newspaper would ever mention them if they were dealing with issues such as sewage or a shortage of classrooms in Arab schools. If they say something bad about Israel or provoke the Jews, however, they will certainly receive a headline in the press.

Israeli Arab leaders can incite against Israel as much as they wish. Their slander will not change the reality that Israel is the only thriving democracy in the Middle East, and treats its minorities with respect. While minorities are being persecuted and murdered in Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Iraq, Libya and other Arab and Islamic countries, the Arab citizens of Israel are being integrated into the state. They hold high positions in the Supreme Court, the Foreign Ministry, the health sector and even the Israel Police. The majority of the Arabs in Israel can work anywhere they wish, they can travel anywhere in the country, and they will continue to enjoy all the privileges, benefits and freedoms that Jewish citizens do.

Some Israeli Arab leaders want Israel to give up its wish to be a Jewish homeland because they are hoping that one day Jews will become a minority in their own country. For far too long, they have been inciting their constituents against Israel and Jews. If these leaders are so unhappy in Israel, perhaps they would consider moving to Ramallah or the Gaza Strip or any Arab country. Perhaps they would care to resign from the Knesset. Why do they refrain from doing so? Because it is in the Jewish homeland, supposedly so harmful to them, that they and their children can live and thrive.
Majority of Israeli Jews support Nation-State Law, polls determine
A small majority of Jewish Israelis believe the Knesset was correct in passing the Jewish Nation-State Law, two polls found Tuesday.

A Panels Research poll taken for the Walla! News website found that 58% of Israelis support the new law, 34% oppose it and eight percent had no opinion. The poll found that those defining themselves as right-wing or centrist were more likely to back the bill and self-defined leftists were more likely to oppose it.

The monthly Peace Index poll of the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University found that 52.3 percent of Jewish Israelis believe it was important to pass the law at this time, but only 7.3% of Arabs agrees.

Among Jews, 39.7% think it was not important to pass the law now, and eight percent did know or refused to answer. Among Israeli Arabs 83.8% believe it was not important, and 8.9% did not know or declined to respond.

Asked whether guaranteeing equality for all Israeli citizens should be in the law, 59.6% of Jews and 72.5% of Arabs said yes, 29.7% of Jews and 20.8% of Arabs said no, and 10.7% of Jews and 6.6% of Arabs declined to respond or said they did not know.

When asked whether the bill’s downgrading of Arabic as an official language was right or wrong, 88.3% of Arabs said no and just six percent said yes, while 5.8% said they did not know or declined to respond. Among Jews, 51.2% supported the decision, 39.6% opposed it, and 9.1% refused to answer or said they did not know.
New York Times’ Myths About Israel as a Jewish State
In any debate, opinions must be based on factual reality, not myths: a professional obligation the New York Times ignored when it published an opinion piece by Palestinian-Israeli writer Sayed Kashua.

This month Israel passed the “Nation State Law,” which among other things, officially declares that Israel is the nation state of the Jewish people. This law has generated support, opposition and legitimate debate both at home and abroad.

Here are a five myths written by Kashua along with the basic the fact checking the NYT should have done in the first place.

Myth #1: “[Israel is] a country where Jews enjoy rights that others don’t have.”

Fact: While Israel struggles with the same tensions as any ethnically diverse democracy, all citizens have equal rights under law.

Myth #2: “A state in which Judaism is the only national expression permissible by law will, by definition, reject any minority member who wishes to be part of it…”

Fact: It is unclear to which “definition” Kashua is referring, but many countries have an official religion, ethnicity, or people-hood without rejecting minorities: such as Norway, Sweden, France, Germany, Japan and many more.
If Rivlin signs in Arabic, does that mean Jewish nation-state law isn’t binding?
Don’t know about you, but I’m having little visions of President Reuven Rivlin practicing signing his name in Arabic.

What am I talking about?

The president, unhappy like so many of us with the new Jewish nation-state law, is reported to have said that he will fulfill his legal obligation to sign the legislation into law but will do so in Arabic — as a symbolic act of solidarity with Israel’s non-Jewish minority, many of whom are protesting that the law discriminates against them.

Asked by The Times of Israel whether the president is indeed going to affix his John Hancock in a language that the new law demotes from official to merely “special,” the office of the president on Tuesday refused to confirm or deny the claim.

So now I’m wondering whether, if Rivlin does indeed sign his name in Arabic, this might leave the law — already being challenged in the Supreme Court — vulnerable to a further legal threat.

How so?

Well, if Arabic is no longer an official language of Israel, and the president’s final, formal approval of the legislation is written in this non-official lettering, would that mean that the law is not, in fact, legally binding? Is it not on the books if the president’s approval is affixed in a merely “special” rather than an official language?
Catholic Church in Jerusalem slams nation-state law, urges Christians to protest
The Latin Patriarchate in Jerusalem on Monday issued a statement slamming the newly passed nation-state law, which it called discriminatory, and said it violated both Israeli and international law.

The Patriarchate, which represents the Roman Catholic Church in the Holy Land, called on all Christians in Israel to protest the law that reserves the right to national-self determination exclusively for Israel’s Jewish citizens.

“The law fails to provide any constitutional guarantees for the rights of the indigenous and other minorities living in the country,” a Patriarchate statement said. “Palestinian citizens of Israel, constituting 20 percent are flagrantly excluded from the law.”

The law, passed earlier this month, has roiled the country, amid mounting criticism of provisions that many decry as exclusionary toward minority groups. Supporters of the law see it as necessary to balance Israel’s Jewish and democratic characters, as well as enshrine into law the country’s status as a Jewish state.

“It is beyond conception that a Law with constitutional effect ignores an entire segment of the population as if its members never existed,” the church said. “It sends an unequivocal signal to the Palestinian citizens of Israel, to the effect that in this country they are not at home.”
Shiloh Musings: Improved US-Israel Relations Under Trump
Then over the decades, with rare exceptions, things went from bad to worse culminating in the Obama-Kerry condemnation of Israel in the United Nations barely days before Donald Trump was inaugurated as President of the United States of America.

Over the decades, like an emotionally damaged abused child, the State of Israel consistently treated the United States as a beloved friend, insisting that there was no better ally.

Israel accepted the insulting policy of the Americans leading the world in locating its embassy far from Jerusalem. No other country has had the international community veto its Capital City.

Finally, only under Donald Trump has the United States moved its Embassy to Jerusalem and stated very clearly that Israel has the right, like any other country, to chose its Capital. Also, Trump appointed the most pro-Israel and pro-Jewish Rights in all of the Land of Israel David Friedman to be his Ambassador to Israel.

Friedman paid a shiva/condolence call, to the bereaved family of otam Ovadia, who was murdered near his home in Adam. Apparently, this, too broke with previous practice, because Adam is in land liberated in the 1967 Six Days War.

We are very happy with Trump's policies towards Israel! It's about time there's a real friend in the White House!
Arab Israeli poet given 5-month sentence for poems deemed incitement
An Israeli court on Thursday sentenced an Arab Israeli poet to five months in prison following her conviction for incitement to violence over poems and social media posts she wrote during a wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence.

The Nazareth Magistrate’s Court also gave Dareen Tatour an additional six-month suspended term. Due to to time already served, she is expected to spend two further months behind bars.

After the sentencing Tatour, 36, said she was not surprised and did not expect justice, Haaretz reported. She added that the court process was “political to begin with” and that she was being imprisoned “because I’m a Palestinian.”

A resident of the Galilee village of Reineh, near Nazareth, Tatour was arrested in October 2015 and released after three months in detention to house arrest.

She was convicted in May of this year, with the court declaring she was guilty of supporting a terror group due to her poem “Resist My People, Resist.” She has said her poem was not a call to violence.
IDF teams participate in Russia’s 2018 International Army Games
Israel will be participating in Russia’s International Army Games for the second year in a row, sending delegations the games which will also see the participation of teams from Iran and Syria.

The games were opened by Russian Defense Minister Gen. Sergei Shoigu in Patriot Park on Saturday and will last until August 11. Participating are 189 teams from 32 countries, including for the first time personnel from Algeria, Vietnam, Sudan, Myanmar, Pakistan and the Philippines.

The games will be held at 24 training grounds in seven different countries: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Islamic Republic of Iran, Kazakhstan, China and Russia.

Russia has been holding its annual military Olympics for the past four years with armies from around the world competing in professional fields such as tank biathlon, paratroopers, military medicine, military police, logistics and aerial maneuvering.

The 2018 program consists of 28 contests, including the tank biathlon, fighter jet maneuvering contest, a Seaborne Assault contest, a Depth competition held in Iran as well as smaller competitions like falcon hunting, military medical relay race and service dog race.
Khaled Abu Toameh: Palestinian fatwa bans participation in Jerusalem election
The Palestinian Islamic religious authorities on Monday issued a fatwa (religious decree) banning Arab residents of Jerusalem from participating in the upcoming Jerusalem municipal election.

The fatwa, which was issued by the east Jerusalem- based Supreme Council of Fatwa, said that the Arab residents were prohibited from voting or running in the election.

The council said that since 1967, Israel has never ceased its efforts to drive the Arab residents of Jerusalem to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the entire city. It claimed that the country has always tried to tempt the Arabs to take part in the municipal election, while also “blackmailing them by decreasing municipal services and demolishing [illegally constructed] houses” in Arab neighborhoods.

“The council sees that participation in the municipal election, either by voting or presenting candidacy, is religiously forbidden.

“The disadvantages of participating in the election are bigger and greater than any other gained interests,” it added.

The council warned that participation in the election would assist Israel in its effort to “Judaize” Jerusalem and “change its historical and religious features. The occupied city of Jerusalem is an Arab and Islamic city.”
PA TV quiz erases Israel

MEMRI: Jordanian MP Who Planned To Join Gaza Flotilla Longed To Die A Martyr During It
In a July 17, 2018 speech in the Jordanian parliament, attorney Yahya Al-Saud, who chairs the parliament's Palestine Committee, announced that he intended to join the "Freedom Flotilla" protesting conditions in the Gaza Strip that had set out from Denmark in mid-May 2018. He added that he hoped to die a martyr on the voyage. Al-Saud had previously participated in the 2015 Freedom Flotilla.

On July 29, one of the flotilla's two vessels was stopped and boarded by the Israeli Navy and towed to Ashdod, Israel.

Al-Saud's expression of his desire for martyrdom was welcomed by the chairman of the lower house of the Jordanian parliament, and in an op-ed in the Jordanian establishment daily Al-Rai by Jihad Abu-Baidar, chairman of the Jordan Press Association's Civil Liberties Committee.

About a week after declaring his intent to join the flotilla in his speech, Al-Saud stated that he would not be participating, citing health reasons, and added that he aimed to organize another flotilla.

The following report will review Al-Saud's statements and reactions to them in Jordan:
JCPA: Video: If Iran Leaves the Nuclear Deal, It Can Have Enough Material for a Bomb in Six Months
The purpose of the nuclear deal in the eyes of the Iranians is to allow Iran to have a nuclear arsenal in 15 years. The archives of the Iranian nuclear program that Israel acquired prove that it was a military program. The documents show that they were ordered by the leadership to produce five nuclear bombs in the first stage.

Notably, it was Israeli intelligence, not the IAEA, which found the trove of documents. This shows that there is no real monitoring of the agreement by IAEA. There is no access by the IAEA monitoring teams to the scientists. In addition, now that Iran controls another country that is not subject to any kind of monitoring - Syria - they can take their scientists, move them into Syria, and do whatever they like there. There's no limitation on what they can do outside of Iran.

The Obama administration said that under this agreement, it is going to take them a year before they are going to have enough fissile material for a first bomb. Yet the Iranians are now saying that within two weeks they can come back to production of 20%-enriched uranium. The Iranians had 19,000 centrifuges, 13,000 of which were put in Hall B in Natanz, which is two meters away from where they were before. They were not dismantled. They were disassembled, so they can put them all together within no time and have 19,000 centrifuges working.

The only question becomes whether it will take them six or seven months before they have enough fissile material for a bomb. They have already started developing more advanced centrifuges that will shorten the time even more.

MEMRI: IRGC Qods Force Commander Qasem Soleimani: Trump's Rhetoric Is That Of A Casino; You May Start The War, But We Will Determine Its End; We Are Near You In Places That You Can't Even Imagine, We Are A Nation Of Martyrdom
In response to U.S. President Trump's recent tweet to Iranian President Rouhani, IRGC Qods Force Commander General Qasem Soleimani warned "Trump the gambler" that "you may start the war, but we will be the ones to determine its end." In a speech delivered on July 26, 2018, in the city of Hamedan, Iran, General Soleimani said that Trump's rhetoric was "that of a bartender or a casino manager" and warned him that "we are near you in places that you can't even imagine. We are a nation of martyrdom." His speech aired on Iran's Channel 5.

"Mr. Trump The Gambler... Know That We Are Near You, In Places That Don't Come To Your Mind... In Places That You Can't Even Imagine"

Qasem Soleimani: "The U.S. president, in response to statements by our president, made some idiotic comments on Twitter. It is beneath the dignity of the president of the great Islamic country of Iran to respond, so I will respond, as a soldier of our nation. You threaten us with a measure that the world has not seen before. First of all, it has been over a year since Trump became U.S. president, but that man's rhetoric is still that of a casino, of a bar. He talks to the world in the style of a bartender or a casino manager. When he talks to China, to Russia, to Europe, or to anyone in the world, one feels that a gambler is talking.
Iran Sues U.S. to Stop Imposition of Trump’s New Sanctions
U.S. officials are fighting against a recently filed lawsuit by Iran in the International Court of Justice, or ICJ, that seeks to block the imposition of harsh new sanctions on Iran by the Trump administration, according to multiple U.S. officials who spoke to the Washington Free Beacon.

Iranian officials launched a formal complaint with the ICJ, a legal body established by the United Nations to adjudicate disagreements between member nations, against the United States earlier this month, alleging the reimposition of harsh new sanctions on Iran by the Trump administration violates international treaties created as a result of the landmark nuclear agreement.

Iran's lawsuit is reportedly gaining traction at the ICJ, which sent an official letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo earlier this week urging him and the Trump administration to hold off on new sanctions amid an economic collapse in Iran that has ignited popular protests across the country.

Iranian officials lauded the latest development at the ICJ and lashed out at the Trump administration in public comments in which they formally rejected the U.S. president's offers for a direct meeting. The war of words follows a tense few weeks between Trump and Iranian officials, which have sparked fears of a new regional war.

Trump administration officials working on the ICJ lawsuit told the Free Beacon Monday afternoon that Iran's claims are baseless. Senior U.S. officials are now working to ensure the lawsuit is tossed from the court.
Report: Iran Illicitly Financing War in Yemen Using German Companies
The Islamic Republic of Iran is using German companies to disguise their illicit support for Shiite militia forces in the fight against the internationally recognized government of Yemen, Benjamin Weinthal reported in The Jerusalem Post on Friday.

Based on interviews with U.S. Treasury Department officials, Time Magazine revealed last week that, “The IRGC had then printed counterfeit Yemeni banknotes potentially worth hundreds of millions of dollars and used the bogus rials to fund its proxy war against the beleaguered pro-US government in the capital of Sanaa. German companies were being used as a cover by the Iranians to finance the world’s worst humanitarian conflict.”

Time added: “For several years, Iran’s elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) had been using German front companies to buy advanced printing machinery, watermarked paper and specialty inks in violation of European export controls.”

The Jerusalem Post previously reported on German intelligence reports, which revealed extensive links between the Islamic Republic and German-based companies, including using front companies to engage in illicit procurement of nuclear and missile technology in Germany during 2017. A German intelligence report from the city-state of Hamburg charged in July that Iran’s regime is continuing to seek weapons of mass destruction.

According to Time: “The evidence, uncovered by U.S. illicit-finance investigators, was meant to sway the Germans, but not just in hopes of countering Iran’s moves on the southern tip of the Arabian Peninsula” but also “to convince Berlin that Tehran cannot be trusted and that the Germans should join the Trump Administration in imposing economy-crippling sanctions on Iran.”
Trump says he is willing to talk to Iran's leader without preconditions
US President Donald Trump said on Monday he would be willing to meet Iran's leader without preconditions to discuss how to improve ties after he pulled the United States out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, saying, "If they want to meet, we'll meet."

"I'd meet with anybody. I believe in meetings," especially in cases where war is at stake, Trump said at a White House news conference when asked whether he was willing to meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

In response, Iran said the way back to talks was for the United States to return to the nuclear deal between Iran and six major powers that Trump exited in May.

"Respecting the Iranian nation's rights, reducing hostilities and returning to the nuclear deal are steps that can be taken to pave the bumpy road of talks between Iran and America," Hamid Aboutalebi, an adviser to Rouhani, tweeted on Tuesday.

Washington aims to force Tehran to end its nuclear program and its support of militant groups in the Middle East, where Iran is involved in proxy wars from Yemen to Syria.
As Iran rebuffs US talks, Rouhani says Europe must save nuke deal
Iranian officials reacted skeptically on Tuesday to US President Donald Trump’s comments that he’s willing to negotiate with Tehran, with the country’s president saying it was up to Europe to save the nuclear deal after Washington’s “illegal” withdrawal.

Officials said if Trump wants talks, he needs to rejoin the international nuclear deal he unilaterally pulled out of earlier this year.

Trump on Monday said he’d meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani “anytime” if the Iranian leader were willing.

In his first public remarks after the comment, Rouhani did not mention Trump at all but instead stressed the need for the other nations involved in the nuclear deal to forge ahead with their pledges of trying to salvage it.

“Now, after the US illegal withdrawal from the nuclear deal, the ball is in Europe’s court in the limited time that has been left,” he said, according to Iranian state-run media.

“Today we are at a very critical point in history regarding the nuclear deal, and Europe’s transparent measures to compensate for the United States’ unlawful withdrawal from it are very important for the Iranian nation,” he said after talks with new British Ambassador Rob Macaire.
Obama Urges Trump Not to Meet Iran without Preconcessions (satire)
With US President Donald Trump saying he would meet with Iran’s leaders “whenever they want,” former President Barack Obama is urging his successor not to sit down with the ayatollahs without first making a number of significant preconcessions.

“The key to negotiating a successful Iran deal is to not come to the table until you’ve given in on at least one key point, ensuring that you’ve reduced your leverage and weakened your bargaining position,” Obama told reporters. “Heck, we promised Iran they could enrich uranium before they even knew negotiations had started.”

Trump, however, promised to force Iran to agree to a much better deal than Obama did three years ago.

“Obama’s Iran deal was a terrible, terrible deal, believe me,” Trump told The Mideast Beast. “I will not let Ayatollah Khamenei build a nuke until he’s personally agreed to a joint photo op.”

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