Wednesday, September 26, 2018

From Ian:

The Palestinians' Three No's: What They Mean
When Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad talk about "paying a political price," they are referring to demands that the Palestinian terrorist groups lay down their weapons, halt terrorist attacks on Israel, and abandon their dream of eliminating Israel. These are terms, of course, to which no Palestinian terrorist group could ever afford to agree.

Accepting such conditions would make them look bad in the eyes of their supporters, who would then accuse them of betraying the Arabs and Muslims by failing to fulfill their promise of destroying Israel. As far as these groups are concerned, keeping their weapons is tremendously more important than improving the living conditions of the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

To be clear: when the Palestinian terrorist groups talk about "resistance," they are referring to terror attacks on Israel. These include suicide bombings, launching rockets towards Israel, and hurling explosive devices and firebombs at Israeli soldiers and civilians. These groups do not believe in any form of peaceful and non-violent protests. For them, there is only one realistic option to achieve their goal of destroying Israel: the armed struggle.

Why are the Palestinian terrorist groups conducting indirect talks with Israel to reach a new truce agreement in the Gaza Strip under the auspices of Egypt and the UN? The answer is simple. They want a truce, or period of calm, so that they can continue preparing for the next war against Israel without having to worry about Israeli military operations.

PMW: Fatah TV host anticipates taking Israelis hostage to "release our captives"
Commemorating the anniversary of the capture of 8 Israeli soldiers and holding them hostage in Lebanon in 1982, until Israel released 5,900 Palestinian and Arab terrorists from Israeli prisons, a Fatah TV host expressed his wish for a similar "operation" to "release our captives" - i.e., terrorists and murderers sitting in Israeli prisons.

Interviewing Fatah Deputy Chairman Mahmoud Al-Aloul about the taking of Israelis as hostages in the 1980s, Muwaffaq Matar, host at the Fatah-run Awdah TV, described the 8 Israeli captives as "the hens that would lay golden eggs," because they were exchanged for Palestinian prisoners.

Fatah Deputy Chairman Mahmoud Al-Aloul: "They [Fatah fighters] shouted at them [Israeli soldiers] to lay down their weapons... There were six of them. The guys arranged them in one row, took their weapons from them, and ordered them to raise their hands... The two [additional Israeli] soldiers who were behind the hill advanced... laid their weapons on the ground, and raised their hands..."
Fatah-run Awdah TV host Muwaffaq Matar: "We had... 'the hens that would lay golden eggs'... the captives through whom, or through the exchange of whom, about 5,000 Palestinian prisoners were released... We think that this Palestinian wisdom... the Palestinian fighter will undoubtedly bring a new victory and a new quality operation one day. The conditions might have changed, and the means might change, but this hope and this promise will release our prisoners."
[Official Fatah Facebook page, Sept. 4, 2018]
Israel’s Nationality Law, UN Resolution 181, and the Arab List
Ever since 1988, when after 40 years of rejection, the PLO feigned acceptance of UN General Assembly Resolution 181 on the partition of mandatory Palestine into Jewish and Arab states, the resolution has been the document used most frequently by Palestinians to underscore two of their major claims — the right to statehood within borders that were larger by far than those envisaged by the Oslo “peace” process, and the supposed Palestinian “right of return.”

For these reasons, Resolution 181 holds center stage in one of the PLO’s most famous documents — the Palestinian declaration of independence, which was approved by the Palestine National Council (PNC), the PLO’s legislative body, in Algiers in 1988.

It can be self-defeating to cite documents without having read them. And the Palestinians learned this in their attempts to mobilize Resolution 181 behind the Palestinian cause.

One major contradiction concerns Jerusalem. According to the partition resolution, Jerusalem was to be governed by an international regime that was separate from both the Jewish and Arab states. This, of course, directly contradicts the vision of Jerusalem as the Palestinian state’s future capital. (For this and other reasons, the document is never quoted by Israeli officials either.)

Even more blatant is this contradiction: the traditional PLO stance is to reject the existence of Israel as a Jewish state (or the state of the Jewish People), but the partition of Mandatory Palestine was to have been between a Jewish state and an Arab one. It was unproblematic at the time to define the future state with a Jewish majority as the “Jewish state.” The drafters of the document took it for granted that the Jewish state was to be the state of the Jewish people, which may be one of the reasons why the Arab states uniformly rejected the document and its contents.

Daniel Shapiro: How to make Russia back off in the Middle East
The US should convey directly to Russia and make clear in its public statements that it supports Israel’s legitimate campaign in Syria to prevent Iran from installing weapons to attack Israel, and opposes Russia providing the S-300 to Syria. A solidarity visit to Israel by a senior US defense official is in order.

The United States should encourage a chorus of other countries to join in condemning Iranian military adventures in Syria. This week’s UN Security Council session that Trump will chair presents an excellent opportunity, although lingering disputes over the US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal make it harder.

Trump made one positive move recently, indicating a reversal of his position that US troops would leave eastern Syria imminently. As the counter-ISIS campaign nears completion, those troops still help prevent Iranian access to portions of Syria it could use to ship and base weapons. If Israel is constrained, US forces may yet be called upon to conduct more kinetic actions against Iranian weapons.

Finally, the administration and Congress should accelerate, through advance appropriations, the $5 billion in missile-defense funding promised Israel over the next decade in the 2016 memorandum of understanding. That will help ensure Israel is equipped to defend itself from the most dangerous Iranian weapons in Syria.

Last week’s incident was a warning that Syria can get even worse. The US should act to contain the damage, defend our ally and keep Russian reactions and Iranian ambitions in check.
Trump: 'We're with Israel 100%'
US President Donald Trump met Wednesday with Prime Minister Netanyahu on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.

Trump said the move of the US embassy to Jerusalem was something which "I guess was controversial, but it's turned out to be very positive in many ways," he said, also noting "a lot of progress is being made in many other areas."

He expressed his support for "everything Israel is doing as far as their defense is concerned."

"[The Israelis] are aggressive, and they have no choice but to be aggressive. It's a very difficult part of the world. So I just want to let Benjamin and all of the people know that we are with you, we are with Israel 100%."

Responding to a question on the issue, Trump estimated his peace plan could be presented "over the next two to three to four months."

"I really believe something will happen. It is a dream of mine to be able to get that done prior to the end of my first term," he said.

Trump to Netanyahu: ‘I like’ two-state solution, want peace in ‘my first term’
US President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he favors the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, indicated it will be at the heart of his administration’s peace plan, and insisted the Palestinians were eager to come to the negotiating table.

“I like the two-state solution,” Trump told reporters at a press gaggle with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meeting in New York. “That’s what I think works best. I don’t even have to speak to anybody, that’s my feeling.”

He pointed to Netanyahu, seated next to him, and added, “You may have a different feeling. I don’t think so, but that’s mine.” Netanyahu did not respond.

The comments appeared to mark a shift in favor of the two-state option for the US president, who in February 2017, at his first bilateral meeting with Netanyahu at the White House, sounded more skeptical about establishing a Palestinian state alongside Israel.

“I’m looking at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both parties like,” the US president said at a press conference at the time, standing alongside Netanyahu. “I can live with either one.”

Recent reports have also indicated that the White House has been looking at a possible confederation between the West Bank and Jordan, and possibly Israel.
Exclusive to Jewish Press: Danon Shares his Thoughts on Trump’s Speech and #No2Antisemitism
Later in the day, Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon sat down with The Jewish Press to share some thoughts. “I’m impressed with President’s Trump’s speech,” said Danon, “and very proud of his strong support of Israel”

“The fact that he named Iran as a major threat to Israel, and said he’ll do whatever he can to protect Israel, was very meaningful to us,” continued Danon, “We Israelis have spoken about it many times but when the American President speaks about it people listen.”

He added that it’s natural for Americans and Israeli’s to stand together. “We have a lot in common, I see it every day when I walk the halls with Ambassador Haley. We share the same lives, the same challenges, even the same enemies. Just last week Iranian officials were making ridiculous accusations against the United states and Israel.”

“It required bravery for Trump to mention Embassy move,” Danon stated, “Israel has a true friend in the White House. And we’re very grateful for that.”

Not surprisingly, the Ambassador’s response to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s speech later in the day was less kind. In his speech Rouhani, President of the Islamic Republic of Iran since succeeding Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in 2013, pledged to fight terrorism and Arctic warming, and assigned blame for most, if not all, of global suffering to the United States and Israel.

“Rouhani is financing global terrorism, and is trying to preach about morality,” Danon said. He added that had it not been for Tehran’s financial support, Hamas could never have dug terror tunnels into Israel, and Hezbollah would not have been able to stockpile weapons.
Haley Slams Portrayal of U.N. Laughter at Trump: ‘The Media Has Got This So Wrong’
United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley said the media had it "so wrong" in its portrayal of some laughter during President Donald Trump's speech to the U.N. General Assembly as a sign of global disrespect.

On the Trump-friendly program "Fox & Friends" on Wednesday, co-host Ainsley Earhardt effusively praised Haley's leadership at the U.N. and asked her to explain the moment that went viral and was widely interpreted as negative for Trump.

"I know you were in the room when the laugh happened," Earhardt said. "Sometimes the media can portray it as one thing, and it's not that at all. What was it like, and why that reaction?"

"The media has got this so wrong," Haley said. "I deal with these leaders every single day. I know exactly how they think. Do they love America? No. Do they respect America? Now they do. When he said that, they love how honest he is, and it's not diplomatic, and they find it funny. When he goes and he is very truthful, they kind of were taken aback by it."

Haley went on to say other leaders were falling over themselves to take photos with him and appreciated his honesty.

"There's a respect there," she said. "I saw that the media was trying to make it something disrespectful. That's not what it was. They love to be with him."

Opposition leader Livni urges Abbas to reopen talks with the US
Opposition leader MK Tzipi Livni met Tuesday night with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on the sidelines of the United Nations, urging him to reopen diplomatic channels with the US for the sake of reaching a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Livni, who was staying in the same hotel as Abbas during the ongoing annual UN General Assembly in New York, was criticized by some Israeli lawmakers for meeting with Abbas, who has refused to sit down with Israeli or US government officials over stagnant peace talks.

Livni said in a statement she told Abbas that the PA “needs to mobilize to solve the problem in Gaza, and that instead of attacking the US, should return to talks with it.”

She also told the Palestinian leader that most of the Israeli public supports the principle of peace built on two nation states living alongside each other, but was opposed to unilateral moves planned by the Palestinians to sue for recognition and take Israel to international court over war crimes claims.

“Seclusion, unilateral moves against Israel, and breaking of the tools [for dialogue] will be a source of weeping for generations to come,” she cautioned.
Sisi calls for resumption of Israel-PA talks
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi on Tuesday called for a resumption of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) in order to solve their longstanding conflict.

Speaking at the UN General Assembly, Sisi said, “We cannot talk about the peaceful settlement of disputes as a founding principle of the United Nations and indicator of its credibility, without citing the Palestinian cause. It stands as a perfect example of the failure of the international system to find a just solution to the conflict, based on international legitimacy and United Nations resolutions, that guarantees the establishment of a Palestinian State with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

“The terms of reference of this just solution and the determinants of a final settlement are well known,” he continued. “There is no time to waste on such a debate. What is required is the political will to resume negotiations and achieve a settlement in accordance with these determinants.”

The Egyptian President added that “the Arabs are still stretching out their hands in peace. Our peoples deserve to turn this tragic page in history, and the Palestinian people deserve to exercise their legitimate rights.”

Sisi, whose country became the first Arab country to sign a peace treaty with Israel in 1979, has in the past urged Israelis and Palestinian Arabs to take advantage the opportunity and resume peace talks. He has also stressed that his country was serious about pushing those talks forward.
Palestinian FM: We Will Join International Organizations and If the U.S. Quits, That's Fine with Us
Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al-Maliki was interviewed on Palestine TV on September 15. Al-Maliki said that Paraguay's moving of its embassy back to Tel Aviv was an important "slap" in the face of the American administration. He said that Palestine filed a complaint against the U.S. to the ICC for moving its embassy to Jerusalem, which he said is Palestinian land. Referring to a U.S. Congress resolution saying that the U.S. will leave any international organization joined by the Palestinians, Al-Maliki said that Palestine will "work towards joining all these organizations in order to make sure that the U.S. isolates itself."

Jordanian Archaeologist Mohammad Waheeb Al-Husseini: The Jews Have No Historic Right to the Land
Jordanian Professor of Archaeology Mohammad Waheeb Al-Husseini said that the Zionist movement was aiming, in the long run, "to rule the world, not just Palestine, with Jerusalem as its point of departure." Al-Husseini, who is on the staff of the The Queen Rania Faculty of Tourism and Heritage of the Hashemite University of Jordan, said that archaeologists "have reached a dead end" and that throughout history, "the [Israelites] did not have any independence, which would enable us to say that they had a kingdom, a temple, or anything." Israel "has no historic right to the land," he said in the interview, which aired on the Palestinian Authority's TV channel on September 2, 2018.

South Africa now says envoy’s return to Israel is not permanent
South Africa’s ambassador to Israel has not permanently returned to Israel and will leave for his country again shortly, the Foreign Ministry in Pretoria said Monday, one day after it was reported that he had quietly reassumed his position four months after being recalled to protest deaths at the Gaza border this summer.

This despite a letter, purportedly by South Africa’s embassy, that had festively announced Ambassador Sisa Ngombane’s return some days ago.

Ngombane is “still recalled for consultations and has not resumed his duties as an Ambassador for South Africa in Israel,” Pretoria said in a statement.

“Ambassador Ngombane traveled to Israel to deal with urgent family and personal issues. He is expected to return to South Africa as soon as these are completed,” the statement explained.

“The conditions that prompted the recall of our Ambassador to Israel for consultations in Pretoria have not changed. Any change in status in our diplomatic relations with the State of Israel will be communicated by the Department after due consultations with the President of South Africa.”
PMW: Palestinian Archbishop: Don't participate in Jerusalem municipal elections
The Palestinian Authority continues to discourage Arabs living in Jerusalem from participating in Israel's upcoming Jerusalem municipal elections. Rather than encourage Jerusalem Arabs to seek influence in Jerusalem, the PA publicized the message of the head of the Greek Orthodox Church's Sebastia Patriarchate, Archbishop Atallah Hanna, calling on Jerusalem Arabs to boycott the elections. This follows the PA Fatwa Council's prohibition on running and voting in the October elections, which Palestinian Media Watch has reported on.

Hanna warned that the participation of Jerusalem Arabs who have submitted their candidacy to the elections "will be exploited in the media for the promotion of what is called 'the democratic state [of Israel]'":

"[Hanna said:] 'The correct national position is that these elections must be boycotted, both in terms of submitting candidacy and in terms of voting.' Archbishop Hanna demanded that those who want to submit candidacy in these elections change their decision, because their presence will be exploited in the media for the promotion of what is called 'the democratic state [of Israel].'" [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 12, 2018]

The PA and its leaders, including the Archbishop, repeatedly publicize its false accusation that Israel is "an apartheid state" that denies rights to Arabs in Israel. Elections with free participation by Jerusalem Arabs - both as candidates and as voters - is naturally a contradiction of this PA narrative and not good for their PR.
Three imprisoned in Lebanon as Israeli spies
Three Lebanese citizens have been sentenced to prison and hard labor after being found guilty of spying for Israel.

Hasan Salemeh, Karam Idris and Kamal Hasan were sentenced Tuesday by Lebanon’s Military Tribunal chaired by Brig.-Gen. Hussein Abdallah after they were found guilty of providing Israel with intelligence about Hezbollah’s military arsenal and operations as well as images of strategic locations in Lebanon.

The men are also alleged to have accepted payment from Israel in order to start a revolt in Lebanon against Hezbollah.

The three men, who were reportedly spying for Israel since 2015, were said to be in possession of Israeli wireless communication devices at the time of their arrest last October.

The three were also stripped of their civil rights as Lebanese citizens.

Lebanon’s Al-Akhbar newspaper reported that the three were led by a Lebanese citizen who is currently in Israel and that they confessed to having contacted Israelis on several occasions. Hassan allegedly admitted to meeting Israeli officials, including IDF Arabic-Language Spokesman Maj. Avichai Adaree, as well as a Mossad operative.
Head of Hizbullah's Al-Manar TV Receives Award Honoring the Network's "Martyrs" at Italian Event
On September 24, Al-Manar TV reported that its General Director, Ibrahim Farhat, participated in the Marzani International Awards Conference for Journalism and Literature held in Benevento, Italy on September 15-16. According to the report, the conference, sponsored by the Italian Parliament and Foreign Ministry, honored Al-Manar TV journalists who were "martyred" in the Syrian city of Maaloula. Ibrahim Farhat attended the conference alongside European Parliament member Massimo Paolucci, Tunisian consul Leila El Houssi, and the mayor of San Giorgio del Sannio, Mario Pepe.

Russian electronic warfare system arrives in Syria — report
Russian electronic warfare equipment intended to disrupt airstrikes has arrived in Syria as Moscow moves rapidly to boost air defenses for its ally Damascus, according to Russian media reports Tuesday.

After a Russian plane was shot down by Syrian air defenses last week as they tried to repel an Israeli airstrike, Moscow said it would provide Syria with its advanced S-300 missile system as well as send jamming technology to the region, a move that has alarmed Israel and the US.

According to the Moscow-based Izvestia daily newspaper, the electronic warfare equipment arrived at Hmeimim Air Base near Latakia on Monday, aboard Il-76 transport aircraft. The paper cited sources familiar with the delivery.

Without detailing exactly what was sent, the sources noted that the systems were intended to disrupt airborne radar, aircraft communication and controls and satellite navigation systems used in attack jets, drones and guided munitions.

Operators will be able to project a protective “radioelectonic dome” over hundreds of kilometers over Syria and along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, the report said.

Hmeimim is the main air base used by Russian forces in Syria supporting the regime in its battle to end the country’s civil war. It is the base at which the Ilyushin Il-20 plane was attempting to land when it was brought down by the Syrian defenses, killing all 15 crewmen.
MEMRI: Israel's Eradication – An Ideological And Practical Goal Of Iran's Islamic Revolution Regime
Since its establishment in 1979, the regime of the Islamic Revolution in Iran has made the eradication of Israel the focus of its ideology, expressing and emphasizing it openly in declarations. However, this aspiration has never been confined to declarations. The Islamic revolutionary regime has invested tremendous, years-long, yet indirect military efforts towards actualizing it. These efforts have included, inter alia, providing ongoing funding and weapons to Hizbullah, training it as a fighting force and equipping it with over 120,000 missiles for use against Israel; [1] and helping Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad by providing funding, training, and weapons, including missiles – and on occasion having them operate in accordance with Iran's needs.

The Islamic revolutionary regime likewise works to maximize the indoctrination and mobilization of the Iranian public towards this goal. For example, the last Friday of Ramadan is designated "Qods [Jerusalem] Day," both inside and outside Iran; the event is marked by emphasizing the goal of eradicating Israel, on the ideological and the practical levels, in conferences, marches, and other public events.

This report will focus on both the ideological aspect and the declarative aspect – i.e. in statements by regime spokesmen – of the Islamic revolutionary regime's firm intent to eradicate the State of Israel.

Khamenei On The Eradication Of Israel Either By Referendum Or By Military Means

The vast majority of Iranian regime spokesmen's declarations of the intent to eradicate Israel – from Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to the lowest level – have focused on doing so by military means via the resistance movements, with Iranian support. However, on occasion, following Western pressure, this blunt and straightforward version of the goal of eliminating Israel is refined into a more sophisticated version, the main thrust of which is eliminating Israel as a state by means of an ostensibly democratic vote by those referred to by Khamenei as "the true Palestinians" – all Palestinians, Christians and Muslims alike, both inside and outside Israel, as well as Israeli Jews who were present in British Mandatory Palestine prior to 1948. Various expressions of the concept of eliminating Israel via referendum emerged as early as the first years of the 2000s, as did declarations regarding a straightforward military elimination of Israel.
Trump says upcoming sanctions on Iran 'tougher than ever before'
US President Donald Trump warned Iran on Wednesday that his administration will soon go beyond previous sanctions regimes by imposing the "toughest" financial penalties ever designed.

Chairing a session of the UN Security Council on nonproliferation in New York, the president continued his rhetorical broadside of the Islamic Republic for a second day after undressing Tehran the day before in a speech to the General Assembly.

"The Iranian regime exports violence, terror and turmoil. It illicitly procures sensitive items to advance its ballistic missile program," Trump said, calling on international partners to pressure Iran to end its missile work. The president once again criticized a nuclear deal with Iran endorsed by the council three years ago as a "horrible, one-sided deal allowed Iran to continue its path to a bomb and gave Iran a financial lifeline when they needed it the most."
Netanyahu before UN meeting: Israel will continue operations in Syria against Iran, September 26, 2018 (GPO)

Trump withdrew the US from the deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, back in May, freeing his administration to reimpose nuclear-related sanctions on Iran that had been lifted by the deal. Those sanctions were once considered the toughest of their kind and targeted Iran's oil and gas sector, its access to the dollar, to automobiles and aviation parts and its ability to conduct foreign transactions.

But Trump said his team is preparing additional sanctions on top of those.

"The United States will pursue additional sanctions tougher than ever before to counter the full range of Iran's malign conduct," he told the council, warning companies of "severe consequences" if they fail to comply.
Haley Blasts Kerry for ‘Anti-American’ Meetings With Iranians
United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley on Wednesday criticized former Secretary of State John Kerry for his secret meetings with the Iranian regime about the nuclear deal.

The Trump administration pulled out of the Iran nuclear agreement in May, saying it was fundamentally flawed and slapping sanctions back on the Iranian regime. This undid one of the Obama administration's signature achievements, and Kerry has responded by engaging in rogue diplomacy with the Iranians to salvage the deal.

"What Secretary Kerry did was not only disrespectful, it was hurtful to America," Haley told Fox News. "When we are sitting there trying to get Iran to come to the table in a way that they understand that the ballistic missile testing has to stop, the support of terrorism has to stop, they have to quit selling arms to the Houthis–to have another American go in and say, ‘Don’t worry about it,' that absolutely is anti-American."

Kerry said he met Iranian Former Minister Javad Zarif in Norway, Munich, and other international forums.

At stake is the cash flow the Iranians have benefitted from thanks to the deal. Leaders of European nations in the deal have stayed in, but U.S. sanctions are pushing against the Iranians’ interests, and Haley said Kerry was anti-American for trying to convince the Iranians that the U.S. will eventually back down.

Haley said Kerry's actions were "hurtful to the American people" and added that if "Secretary Kerry was secretary of state, he would not want anyone doing that."

Iran Says Trump Should Stop Interfering in Middle East If He Wants Cheap Oil
US President Donald Trump should stop interfering in the Middle East if he wants the price of oil to stop rising, Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh was quoted as saying on Wednesday.

“Mr. Trump is trying to seriously reduce exports of Iran’s oil and also ensure the price of oil does not go up, but these two cannot happen together,” Zanganeh said, according to the Iranian Students’ News Agency.

“If he wants the price of oil not to go up and the market not to get destabilized, he should stop unwarranted and disruptive interference in the Middle East and not be an obstacle to the production and export of Iran’s oil.”

Trump, not the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, is behind the recent rise in prices, Zanganeh said.

“Trump blames OPEC for what he has created and caused: the rise of the price of oil and disturbance in the market.”

OPEC members do not have the capacity to increase production, Zanganeh said.
Macron rejects Trump’s call to isolate Iran, urges dialogue
French President Emmanuel Macron said Tuesday that Iran should be allowed to keep selling oil and urged dialogue as he rejected a US push to isolate the Tehran regime.

Speaking to reporters after addressing the United Nations General Assembly, Macron said that Iranian sales would bring down the price of oil — a professed concern of US President Donald Trump.

“It would be good for the price of oil for Iran to be able to sell it. It’s good for peace and it’s good for the shape of the international price of oil,” Macron said.

France and other European powers are setting up a way to allow businesses to keep doing business in Iran in hopes of avoiding sanctions by the United States, which has withdrawn from the 2015 nuclear deal.

Addressing world leaders shortly after Trump, the French president credited the accord with curbing the nuclear program of Iran.
Pompeo accuses EU of ‘solidifying Iran’s ranking’ as top state sponsor of terror
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo denounced Tuesday a European Union plan to set up a way to preserve business with Iran and avoid renewed American sanctions.

Addressing the United Against a Nuclear Iran pressure group being held near the annual UN General Assembly, Pompeo said he was “disturbed and indeed deeply disappointed” by Monday’s announcement from remaining members of an international nuclear deal.

“This is one of the most counterproductive measures imaginable for regional peace and security,” Pompeo said, accusing the European Union of “solidifying Iran’s ranking as the number-one state sponsor of terrorism.”

“I imagine the corrupt ayatollahs and IGRC were laughing this morning,” Pompeo added at the event in New York, referring to the elite Revolutionary Guards, in a speech that was interrupted several times by anti-war protesters.

President Donald Trump pulled out of an agreement negotiated under his predecessor Barack Obama for Iran to curtail its nuclear program sharply in exchange for sanctions relief.

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, speaking late Monday alongside Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, said that the agreement was in the global interest and pointed to UN inspectors’ findings that Iran is in compliance.
Angela Merkel’s Ugly Romance With the Iranian Regime
In a remarkable comment that was ignored by the German media last month, the president of the country’s roughly 100,000-member Central Council of Jews suggested that Germany has failed to internalize the lessons of the Holocaust. According to Dr. Josef Schuster, Angela Merkel’s flourishing trade with a regime in Tehran that is both the leading state sponsor of terrorism in the world and also the world’s top sponsor of lethal anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial, is incompatible with the spirit of the Federal Republic’s own foundational commitments, and with the laws of a country where Holocaust denial is a crime punishable by up to five years in prison.

To understand Schuster’s frustration and disappointment with German society, it is worth citing his critique: “It seems paradoxical that Germany—as a country that is said to have learned from its horrendous past and which has a strong commitment to fight anti-Semitism—is one of the strongest economic partners of a regime [Tehran] that is blatantly denying the Holocaust and abusing human rights on a daily basis. Besides, Germany has included Israel’s security as a part of its raison d’être. As a matter of course this should exclude doing business with a fanatic dictatorship that is calling for Israel’s destruction, pursuing nuclear weapons and financing terror organizations around the world.”

Schuster called for “an immediate halt to any economic relations with Iran. Any trade with Iran means a benefit for radical and terrorist forces, and a hazard and destabilization for the region.”

Yet Merkel, the leader of the Christian Democratic Union, and her foreign minister, Heiko Maas, of the Social Democratic Party, rejected Schuster’s plea, and are now working overtime to circumvent U.S. sanctions on the Islamic Republic of Iran. Maas, who claimed earlier this year that he entered politics “because of Auschwitz,” argued for an alternative method to facilitate financial transfers to the radical clerical regime in Tehran, to bypass a United States plan to re-institute the ban on Iran’s use of the SWIFT system.
Merkel to be awarded honorary doctorate while in Israel
German Chancellor Angela Merkel is to receive an honorary doctorate from Haifa University during her upcoming visit to Israel in early October.

President of the University of Haifa Prof. Ron Robin stated that throughout her life, Dr. Merkel has demonstrated "exemplary standards of excellence, wisdom and humanity." He added that it is a great privilege for Haifa University to honor her in such a way.

In office since 2005, which inspired some Germans to nick name her mutti (mummy), Merkel broke new ground in German politics and society.

She is the first women to serve as chancellor, first woman to lead the Christian Democratic Union, and the first modern German leader to enjoy a successful academic career before taking on the responsibilities of political life.

Her unique style of leadership, which Haifa University describes as "grounded in principles of equality, freedom and human rights" led her to accept refugees into Germany, a decision that sparked an intense internal debate within the country, as well as insisting Greece must remain in the EU following that country's economic collapse in 2007.

Merkel is also a supporter of strong ties between modern Germany and the State of Israel. She has been invited to Israel several times and, in 2008, convened a special meeting of the German government in Israel in honor of Israel's 60th Independence Day.
Erdogan vows Turkey to continue buying Iranian oil despite U.S. sanctions
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey will continue to buy natural gas from Iran in line with its long-term supply contract despite Trump's threats to punish countries doing business with Iran.

"We need to be realistic... Am I supposed to let people freeze in winter? ... Nobody should be offended. How can I heat my people's homes if we stop purchasing Iran's natural gas?" he said.

Trump pulled the United States out of a 2015 multinational nuclear deal with Iran and in August Washington reimposed sanctions on Tehran, lifted in 2016 under the pact. US sanctions on Iran’s energy sector are set to be re-imposed in November.

In an effort to boost the economy and attract investors, Erdogan will travel on September 28 to Germany, a country that is home to millions of Turks.

"We want to completely leave behind all the problems and to create a warm environment between Turkey and Germany just like it used to be," Erdogan said, adding that he will meet Chancellor Angela Merkel during his visit.

Erdogan also said it was impossible for Syrian peace efforts to continue with President Bashar Assad in power.

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