Saturday, November 24, 2018

  • Saturday, November 24, 2018
From Ian:

Hamas and Fatah unmasked
Abbas was similarly blindsided by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s visit to Oman, and Minister of Culture and Sports Miri Regev’s visit to Abu Dhabi for the world judo championships.

The recent almost-war with Hamas taught us a lot about the terror regime. It also taught us a lot about Hamas’s rival, Fatah, and the Palestinian Authority it controls in Ramallah. Israel’s most urgent task is to understand the implications of what we now know.

The first thing we learned about Hamas is that its control over Gaza is all encompassing.

This week, the media published the communications between Hamas forces during their battle with IDF Special Forces in Gaza on November 11. From those communications we learned that Hamas forces detected the vehicle carrying the Israeli forces very quickly. While they didn’t know who was in the vehicle, they knew the vehicle was suspicious and dispatched a force to intercept it.

Hamas’s ability to detect the vehicle and act swiftly to intercept it demonstrated the terror regime’s ability to use both technological and physical assets to maintain its control over Gaza in a manner reminiscent of the Stasi in East Germany.

THE ALMOST-WAR with Hamas last week also taught us that contrary to the longstanding assessment of the IDF’s General Staff, Hamas is not at all interested in reaching a long-term ceasefire with Israel and therefore there is no point in trying to negotiate one.

For the past several months, various experts inside the Israeli government and military and in foreign countries have claimed that Hamas’s leadership in Gaza is split between two factions.
Top Historian Simon Schama: Remember the Expulsion of Jews From Arab Countries
Prominent historian Simon Schama on Friday called for commemorating the expulsion of over 800,000 Jews from Arab countries that followed the creation of the State of Israel in 1948.

“This is so important — 800,000 Jewish refugees — When exactly next week is the day of commemoration of THEIR naqba?” Schama asked, using the Arabic word for “catastrophe” commonly used to describe the experience of Arab refugees during Israel’s 1948 War of Independence.

Schama’s acclaimed recent book and TV series, “A History of the Jews,” includes a detailed account of the uprooting of Jewish communities from North Africa to Yemen, in which he contrasts the silence around this question with the attention given to the Palestinian issue.

November 30 — a week from today — is marked in Israel as an official commemoration of the expulsion of the Jews from the Arab countries and, later, from Iran. It falls, symbolically, one day after the anniversary of the UN resolution in favor of partitioning Palestine into Jewish and Arab states, which is officially commemorated by the UN as an “International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.”

The November 30 commemoration in Israel has been held since 2014, when it was formally established in legislation passed by the Knesset.

Many Jewish organizations in the US and around the world also remember the expulsions on the same day.

Jewish leaders call for new editions of the Bible and the Koran to carry trigger warnings highlighting anti-Semitic passages
Jewish leaders are calling for new editions of the Bible and Koran to carry warning messages which highlight anti-Semitic passages in the holy texts.

The recommendations have been made in a new document called ‘An End to Antisemitism! A Catalogue of Policies to Combat Antisemitism’.

It was produced following an international conference organised by the European Jewish Congress, at which academics gathered to discuss how prejudice and discrimination can be tackled.

Among the policies mentioned in the document was the idea of warning messages in holy texts, a topic discussed in a chapter entitled 'recommendations regarding Religious Groups and Institutions'.

The document reads: 'Translations of the New Testament, the Qur’an and other Christian or Muslim literatures need marginal glosses, and introductions that emphasize continuity with Jewish heritage of both Christianity and Islam and warn readers about antisemitic passages in them.

'While some efforts have been made in this direction in the case of Christianity, these efforts need to be extended and made consistent in both religions.' (h/t jzaik)

Iran’s Rouhani calls Israel a ‘cancerous tumor’ established by West
Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani on Saturday called Israel a “cancerous tumor” established by Western countries to advance their interests in the Middle East.

Iran’s leaders frequently condemn Israel and predict its demise, but Rouhani, a relative moderate, rarely employs such rhetoric.

Addressing an annual Islamic Unity Conference on Saturday, Rouhani said “one of the ominous results of World War II was the formation of a cancerous tumor in the region.” He went on to refer to Israel as a “fake regime” set up by Western countries.

Iran supports terror groups like Lebanese Hezbollah and Palestinian Hamas that are pledged to Israel’s destruction.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has long identified Iran as Israel’s greatest threat, pointing to its nuclear program, calls for Israel’s destruction and support of anti-Israel terrorist groups.

The Iranian Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, routinely calls Israel a “cancer” of the region that must be removed.

Rouhani on Saturday said the United States cultivates close ties with “regional Muslim nations” to protect Israel, an apparent reference to Iran’s regional rival Saudi Arabia and the kingdom’s Sunni Arab allies. He said bowing to American pressure amounts to “treason.”
Netanyahu, after ‘cancer’ jibe: Israel will defend itself from ‘murderous’ Iran
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday hit back against President Hassan Rouhani after the Iranian leader called Israel a “cancerous tumor” established by Western countries to advance their interests in the Middle East.

“Israel knows very well how to defend itself from the murderous Iranian regime,” said Netanyahu, in a statement.

“Rouhani’s slander, which calls for the destruction of Israel, proves yet again why the nations of the world need to join in the sanctions against the Iranian terrorist regime which threatens them,” charged the prime minister.

Iran’s leaders frequently condemn Israel and predict its demise, but Rouhani, a relative moderate, rarely employs such rhetoric.

Addressing an annual Islamic Unity Conference on Saturday, Rouhani said, “One of the ominous results of World War II was the formation of a cancerous tumor in the region.” He went on to refer to Israel as a “fake regime” set up by Western countries.

Iran supports terror groups like Lebanese Hezbollah and Palestinian Hamas that are pledged to Israel’s destruction.

Netanyahu has long identified Iran as Israel’s greatest threat, pointing to its nuclear program, calls for Israel’s destruction and support of anti-Israel terrorist groups.
Iran's great nuclear deception
The Iranians documented everything: the equipment, the construction of secret plants and sites, the experiments, detailed presentations on the project's progress, goals and stages, and even themselves, during nuclear experiments.

The bottom line is clear: it was a mega-scam, a state-level deception, in which senior Iranian officials and hundreds of others have taken part for years.

For two decades, Iran denied having a military nuclear program. But the contents of the safes tell a different story, a completely different and undeniable account: for years, Iran has been engaged in a covert nuclear project aimed at producing five nuclear bombs, with a yield of 10 kilotons each. And this was only stage one.

According to a Western intelligence source, "over the years, we have seen all sorts of programs, but we have not always understood their overall context. Until we saw these documents, we didn't really understand how projects that were part of AMAD (the secret project's code name—RB) were translated into secret projects under the Ministry of Defense, or open projects with a hidden agenda within SPAND (the later, public name, of the project—RB). The material Israel had obtained solved these mysteries."

"The sweeping Iranian denial "is really comical at this point," the source added.

The documents don't just expose the Iranians' deceit. It also demonstrates the weakness of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), which Iran signed and the IAEA failed to enforce.

The archives show that under the UN agency's nose—despite repeat warnings, the information obtained by the Mossad and other espionage agencies, and media exposés—Iran has succeeded in conducting a secret military nuclear program over a long period of time (and Israel claims Tehran continues to do so even today).

Iran continues to deny everything even now; claiming the entire story of the seized archive is fabricated and serves an Israeli-American agenda aimed at canceling the nuclear agreement. This response was to be expected. What might have been less predictable is the lukewarm international response to the material uncovered in the Israeli operation.

The reactions ranged from claims the material was "old news" to assertions it does not uncover any "smoking guns" to prove Iran is currently violating the nuclear agreement.
Russian FM: We Are Ready to Host Israeli-Palestinian Meeting and Act as Peace Mediator
Russia would be ready to host a meeting between Israeli and Palestinian officials and act as a peace mediator, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Friday.

Lavrov was speaking to reporters during a two-day trip to Rome.

“It is impossible to create stability in the Middle East, including in Libya and Iraq, without a solution to the oldest regional problem, the Palestinian problem,” Lavrov asserted.

“We support the need for a resumption of direct talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians,” he added. “We confirm again our offer from several years ago to host a meeting between the Israeli and Palestinian leaders in Russia without any preconditions.”

Lavrov’s comments came amid reports that the unveiling of the Trump administration’s long-awaited Middle East peace plan was being delayed due to Israeli concerns about its timing.

The Palestinian Authority cut off almost all contact with the Trump administration following last December’s announcement of US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and the subsequent moving of the American embassy there from Tel Aviv.

In recent years, Russia has taken on a more active role in the Middle East — most notably in Syria, where in 2015 it intervened militarily to bolster the regime of dictator Bashar Assad, which was then battling for survival against an array of rebel groups.
In Belligerent Statement, PA Calls ‘Occupied’ Jerusalem ‘Symbol of the Existence and Survival’ of Palestinian People
The Palestinian Authority (PA) issued a belligerent statement on Friday, calling “occupied Arab Jerusalem” the “capital of Palestine and symbol of the existence and survival of the Palestinian people,” the Hebrew news site Mako reported.

The statement followed reports this week that the Trump administration was delaying the unveiling of its long-awaited peace proposal due to Israeli concerns about its timing.

The PA also accused the “occupation authorities” of preventing the free movement of some of its top officials, asserting this was part of “ongoing aggression” by Israel against the Palestinians.

In the PA’s view, the only potential resolution to the conflict with Israel was the “enforcement of international laws that will bring an end to the occupation and spread justice, peace and stability in the region and the world.”
US Dept. of Justice Denies Pollard Request to Move to Israel
The U.S. Department of Justice will not allow former Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard to serve the remainder of his parole probation in Israel, according to multiple reports late Wednesday emanating from the United States.

The DOJ denied the request submitted by Pollard’s attorney on October 1 — although the denial only became public this week — due to the “seriousness of the offense” and “serious law enforcement concerns.”

Pollard was arrested in 1985, convicted and then sentenced in 1987 to life in prison on a single count of passing classified information to an ally, Israel. He was released on “mandatory parole” in 2015 after serving two-thirds of the sentence.

However, Pollard is still living with severe, unprecedented restrictions such as a house arrest that includes a 7:00 pm to 7:00 am curfew, travel restrictions that limit him solely to parts of Manhattan — where he lives — during the daytime hours, round-the-clock wearing of a GPS monitoring system (which forces him to violate the Sabbath and Jewish holidays), and free monitoring and inspection of his computers and of any employer who might hire him.
Technology and conventional warfare merge under Israeli eyes
Last week the Iron Dome faced off against the largest number of rockets ever fired by Hamas in a single 24-hour period. It performed impressively, stopping more than 100 of the 460 fired, targeting those headed for populated areas and letting others fall harmlessly.

I had a front-row seat next to Kfar Aza. Years ago, due to the threat of Qassam rockets and mortars, we wouldn’t have felt so secure, so close to Gaza and danger. But instead, a theater of war played out around us at night, with dozens of little yellow dots, the rockets from Gaza, reaching skyward, and the white light of the Iron Dome Tamir interceptors searching them out.

Integrated with sirens, the whole system is a marvel of modern war. It’s also a unique defensive system for a particular threat.
Israel is a pioneer in these kinds of systems, especially those that are increasingly filling gaps and niches between the tactical level and larger level. Recently, I visited two companies that are pioneering technologies in this field.

One of them is called CONTROP Precision Technologies, a privately owned company that specializes in what it calls “development and production of electro-optical and precision motion control systems and surveillance, defense and homeland security applications.” The other company, RADA Electronic Industries, specializes in design, development and production of defense electronics, especially tactical land radars.
Clashes break out as IDF forces raid Palestinian wedding in Hebron
Soldiers from the IDF’s Golani Brigade raided a wedding in the West Bank city of Hebron on Friday, looking for illegal weapons, Army Radio reported.

During the raid, clashes broke out with the guests who threw stones at the troops, who responded with riot dispersal means, the report said. No IDF soldiers were hurt and it was not immediately clear if there were injuries on the Palestinian side.

The soldiers found a rifle and ammunition, which had been intended to be used in a terror attack, the radio report said.

Troops routinely carry out raids in the West Bank looking for weapons and terror suspects; however, raiding a crowded wedding is rare.

Hebron, home to the Tomb of the Patriarchs, is a frequent flashpoint city where a few hundred heavily guarded Jewish settlers live in close proximity to tens of thousands of Palestinians.
Hamas on hunt for ‘collaborators’ after Israeli special forces operation in Gaza
Palestinian terror group Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip, is reportedly on the hunt for suspects it believes may have aided the Israeli special forces in a raid nearly two weeks ago, and is specifically looking for a small van spotted in surveillance footage, according to a Saturday report in the Lebanese newspaper al-Akhbar.

The van is alleged to have been used by the Israeli forces or those who are suspected of helping them, dubbed “collaborators,” according to the report.

On November 11, a group of Israeli soldiers was discovered deep in southern Gaza during an operation that went awry, resulting in a deadly clash that left one senior IDF officer and seven Palestinian fighters dead. The incident touched off a day of fierce rocket fire from the Strip and retaliatory Israeli airstrikes.

A Hamas official said earlier this week that the forces appeared to have been attempting to install equipment that would make it easier for Israel to eavesdrop on Palestinians in the coastal enclave.

“The Zionist enemy tried to achieve a major security breakthrough. It apparently tried to install equipment and build something that would make it easy for it to kill, hack and abduct,” deputy Hamas chief in Gaza Khalil al-Hayya told the Hamas-affiliated Al-Aqsa TV last week.

The Saturday al-Akhbar report cited a Hamas official saying the group seized some parts of the Israeli spying equipment the forces had been trying to install, which he said was similar to equipment previously seized from a “spying cell” in May.

Hamas was particularly proud of having published photographs on Thursday of what it claimed were Israeli special forces personnel who were involved in last week’s raid, according to the Lebanese report, which called it a “blow” to the Israeli military censor.
Hamas fears Israeli special forces operating base inside Gaza — Israeli TV
Gaza’s Hamas rulers are in some disarray after their chance discovery of Israeli special forces in a raid last week, and fear that elite Israel troops have been operating for an unknown length of time under their noses in the Strip, including running a base, an Israeli TV report said Friday.

According to the Hadashot news report, which it said was broadcast under the careful scrutiny of the Israeli military censor, Hamas is struggling to figure out exactly what the IDF team was doing in Gaza. The November 11 raid, which went awry when the undercover troops were exposed, ended in a shootout and the deaths of one Israeli soldier and seven Hamas gunmen.

Hamas forces have been carrying out random searches and setting up roadblocks in recent days as they try to find more details of what Israel has been up to in the Strip, the TV report said.

Hamas believes the Israeli troops in the incident crossed into Gaza at an official crossing point, where they would have shown identity papers of some kind, the TV report said. It indicated that Hamas believes Israeli special forces maintained a military base in a house in Gaza operating under the guise of a charity, Hadashot news reported.

The report came a day after Hamas published the photographs of what it claimed were Israeli special forces personnel who were involved in last week’s raid.
IS in Sinai seizes Iranian weapons shipment bound for Hamas — report
The Islamic State affiliate in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula has seized a weapons shipment that included a number of Kornet missiles, the Russian-made advanced anti-tank laser-guided weapon system. The shipment was making its way from Iran to Palestinian terror group Hamas in the Gaza Strip, according to a report in the Kuwaiti newspaper al-Jarida.

A security source in Kuwait told the paper that the shipment is the largest seized by IS and included other GPS-guided weaponry. The source said a local IS commander was refusing to cooperate with Hamas and transfer the weapons, as cited by Hebrew-language news site Walla.

Earlier this month, as part of widening tensions that threatened to spill into another all-out war between Hamas and Israel, terrorists in Gaza fired a Kornet missile at an Israeli bus near the border, seriously injuring an IDF soldier who was on board at the time. Dozens of other soldiers had previously been on the bus and exited moments before the missile struck.

The fighting, which saw hundreds of rockets from Gaza rain down on southern Israeli cities, ended after Egypt brokered a ceasefire agreement.

Iran, an arch-foe of Israel, has supported Palestinian factions in the Gaza Strip, most notably Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Its ties with Hamas, previously close, have thawed in recent months, following years of tensions that began at the onset of the Syrian civil war in 2011 when Hamas criticized Syrian President Bashar Assad, a close ally of Iran.
Syria's Druze reject Assad's call to serve
Nearly eight years into the Syrian war, Selim still refuses to perform his military service, just like many fellow Druze from Sweida province rejecting the regime's conscription call.

"I don't want to get involved in the Syrian bloodbath," said the 27-year-old, who gave a pseudonym for fear of reprisals.

The Sweida region south of Damascus is the Syrian heartland of the country's Druze minority which follows a secretive offshoot of Islam.

After the anti-government protests that sparked Syria's war in 2011, the Druze obtained a de facto exemption from military service in exchange for their tacit support of the regime.

Last week however, President Bashar al-Assad urged the minority, which accounted for around three percent of Syria's pre-war population, to send its young men to the army.

After rotating out some very long-serving conscripts, the regime is looking for fresh blood to beef up its ranks and exercise real control over the swathes of land it reconquered from insurgents and jihadists.(h/t Zvi)
New congressional democrats take on Israel and Netanyahu
The Democratic faction in the House is surely expected to raise hell for Trump’s presidency. Nancy Pelosi, who is expected to continue as Speaker of the House, made it clear that the Democrats would not succumb to Trump's bullying tweets and would challenge his divisive and inciting attitudes. Most of the Democratic anger, if not rage, will be directed against Trump’s domestic policies: immigration, gun control, Medicare and his efforts to stop the Mueller investigation.

But some of the anti-Trump wave may well be leveled at his foreign policy, including his one-sided moves in favor of Israel and against the Palestinians: cutting funds to UNRWA and hospitals in East Jerusalem, the relocation of the US Embassy to West Jerusalem and his, so far, empty promise to ignite Israeli-Palestinian peace talks to achieve “the deal of the century.”

In other words, borrowing from an old saying, “If America sneezes, Israel may catch cold.” Although Trump has shown no signs of softening his bellicose language, he may reach the conclusion that he has no choice but to work together with a hostile Congress, to make compromises, and here and there to throw some crumbs to his opponents, including a small Israeli bone.

If he does so and it is a big “if,” the ramifications for the Israeli government would be minor. Most Israel watchers and experts, including the pro-Israel lobbies of AIPAC and J-Street, point out that the anti-Israel (or, at least, not pro-Israel) elements in the Democratic Party are still a tiny minority.

They pose no real challenge to the old guard and establishment, which is still very supportive of Israel, even if they occasionally criticize some of the policies of the Netanyahu government.
London group with alleged ties to Hamas cooks chicken soup with local Jews
Dozens of British Jews cooked chicken soup for homeless people with volunteers from a Muslim group that is banned in Israel over alleged ties to Hamas.

At least 1,000 bowls of soup, which used a traditional Jewish recipe and halal meat, were prepared at the East London Mosque on Sunday, the East London Advertiser reported. The drive was part of Mitzvah Day, a Jewish communal initiative that encourages social action and that started in the United Kingdom 13 years ago.

According to the BBC, the London-based Muslim Aid group helped organize the event, where its volunteers wore its logo on green shirts. In 2008, Ehud Barak, who was then Israel’s defense minister, outlawed the group in Israel, citing unspecified ties to Hamas.

Their Jewish partners at the event were from the New Stoke Newington Shul, a Masorti or Conservative synagogue. Last year, the government of Bangladesh also banned some activities of the group, citing the use of their resources for promoting “radicalism.”

Similar charges leveled against the group in Britain were found by authorities to be unfounded in a 2014 inquiry led by the United Kingdom’s Charity Commission.

Campaign 4 Truth, a hawkish Jewish group from London, said in a statement it found the event “questionable” in light of the allegations by Israel against Muslim Aid, “in a climate when Israel faces an existential threat from Iran proxies Hamas and Hezbollah.”
Argentina soccer fans chant ‘kill Jews to make soap’ at team with Jewish roots
Home team soccer fans in Argentina chanted about “killing the Jews to make soap” during a match with a team historically associated with the Jewish community and rioted when the visitors won.

Atlanta, a professional Argentine team founded more than a century ago in a Jewish neighborhood, played All Boys at their stadium in Buenos Aires on Thursday.

All Boys fans chanted the anti-Semitic slogan as they waved Palestinian flags and T-shirts bearing Iranian symbols.

Atlanta won the match, 3-2, triggering violence by the All Boys fans. Some spectators entered the locker area for cover until police arranged for them to exit the stadium safely.

All Boys fans also assaulted police, destroying property at the stadium and attacked police cars outside.
Famous Paris Synagogue Joins Dramatic Visual Protest for Religious Freedom Around World
The world-famous Great Synagogue in Paris was among the French capital’s iconic religious symbols to be lit up entirely in red on Thursday, in a show of solidarity with the 60 percent of the world’s inhabitants who live without religious freedom.

Alongside the Sacré-Cœur Cathedral, the Russian Orthodox Cathedral and the Paris Great Mosque, the “Grande Synagogue,” on the Rue de la Victoire, was bathed in red light on Thursday evening to mark the publication of the 2018 report on global religious freedom by Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), a Rome-based Catholic organization.

Thursday’s display of red light in Paris — symbolizing the color of the blood that is shared by followers of every religious faith, organizers explained — was repeated at other famous European churches, including Westminster Cathedral in London and the Sagrada Familia Cathedral in Barcelona.

The ACN report, which surveyed 196 countries, noted major violations of religious freedom in 38 of them — home to 60 percent of the world’s population. Among their number are some 500 million Christians who have experienced persecution and violence in Iraq, Egypt, Turkey, Iran and many other Muslim nations.

“Sadly, there are more and more infringements of this basic human right of religious freedom, which affect all religions,” said George Marlin, chairman of ACN’s American branch, in a statement supporting the report. “Though, by far, most of the victims of religious persecution are Christians.”
Dutch Christian boatmaker aims to sail his exact replica of Noah’s Ark to Israel
For two years, the world’s only seaworthy life-size replica of Noah’s Ark has been wowing passengers traveling along Holland’s Maas River.

Built according to the specifications detailed in the Hebrew Bible, the 390-foot-long vessel towers to a height of 75 feet. It boasts enough wood to fell 12,000 trees. And its distinct form dominates the coastline of the small town hosting it deep in southern Holland’s so-called Bible Belt.

Dwarfing even some modern-day cruise ships, the ark instantly became an international tourist attraction when it was completed in 2012 after four years of construction.

But the man who built it, the devout Christian businessman Johan Huibers, can’t wait to take the mammoth to Israel — a country whose problems and successes, he said, are always on his mind.

“My preferred destination for the ark is Israel,” Huibers, 60, told JTA earlier this month on the forward deck, which features a life-size statue of a giraffe.
Israelis discover promising treatment for aggressive brain tumors
A new treatment for aggressive brain tumors (glioblastoma) shows great promise, according to a report by Israeli scientists that was published recently in the journal Nucleic Acids Research.

Glioblastoma is a serious and incurable brain cancer. Patients receiving this diagnosis typically have 11 to 20 months to live. One of the main difficulties in treating this cancer is that its cells quickly build up a resistance to chemotherapy.

A team headed by Prof. Rotem Karni and PhD student Maxim Mogilevsky at Hebrew University’s Institute for Medical Research-Israel Canada (IMRIC) designed a molecule that inhibits glioblastoma tumor growth by regulating the proteins it produces.

Karni explained that the MKNK2 gene produces two different protein products through a process called “RNA alternative splicing.” These proteins have two opposing functions: MNK2a inhibits cancer growth, whereas MNK2b supports cancer growth.

Karni’s new molecule shifts the splicing of MKNK2 so that production of the tumor-stimulating protein decreases, while production of the tumor-suppressing protein increases. As a result, cancerous tumors decrease or die.

“Not only can this breakthrough molecule kill tumor cells on its own, it has the power to help former chemotherapy-resistant cells become chemotherapy-sensitive once again,” said Karni.
Former NBC correspondent’s new novel is a love letter to the Jewish homeland
Thirty-four pages into “Promised Land” one character turns to another and says, “I’m building the country, Peter is defending it.” If Martin Fletcher’s newest novel could be distilled into one sentence, this would be it.

The first of a planned trilogy, “Promised Land” tells the story of Israel’s early years through brothers Peter and Arie Nesher, and Tamara, the Egyptian-Jewish refugee whom they both love.

The novel opens in March 1937 in Munich, Germany as Peter’s parents prepare to send him to the United States to live with a family in Ohio.

After serving in the United States Army during World War II, Peter moves to Israel, joins the Mossad and eventually becomes a top agent. Meanwhile, his brother Arie, having survived Auschwitz, also makes his way to Israel where he reunites with Peter and becomes a business tycoon.

Part love triangle, part political history, part love letter to Israel, Fletcher’s novel takes readers from the days when Neve Tzedek was just a mishmash of houses, and telephones were virtually nonexistent. Readers bear witness to the 1956 Suez Crisis, the opening of new highways, the end of food rationing, and the 1967 Six Day War.

“The reason I wrote the book was I wanted people to think ‘Wow, this is a great place worth supporting, with all of its faults,’” Fletcher said over coffee in a small café in the quaint Connecticut town of Ridgefield.
Incredible black and white photograph shows smiling Jewish children as they escaped Nazi Germany on their way to Britain before the outbreak of the Second World War
Eighty years after they first arrived in Britain having escaped atrocities in Germany – men and women retraced the tracks of the Kindertransport through the UK on Friday.

An astonishing black and white photograph showing a carriage full of smiling faces was revealed on the journey, of the Jewish children not fully comprehending the terror they so narrowly escaped, shortly before the outbreak of World War Two.

December 1, marks eight decades since the 196 Jewish children were rescued and brought to safety in Britain

Among them on the journey which took a day, was Leslie Baruch Brent, 93.

Mr Brent who boarded the train in Berlin and features in the photograph.

He told The Daily Mirror: 'We landed after a very stormy night, everyone except me was sick.

'We were all unslept, unkempt, unwashed and bewildered. We were in the same clothes, I had only eaten the ­sandwiches my mother gave me.

'I brought underclothes, carefully labelled with my name which my mother had stitched, a couple of extra shirts and an extra sweater, handkerchiefs, a book or two, and a tiny little teddy bear.'

'My mother was making sure I was smart. I arrived here in (a cravat).

'I've always preferred them.'

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


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