Thursday, February 28, 2019

From Ian:

Anti-Israel Democrats Defend Past Comments At Anti-Israel Restaurant
Freshman Democratic congresswomen Ilhan Omar (Minn.) and Rashida Tlaib (Mich.) defended their comments on Israel and its influence in the United States on Wednesday night at Busboys and Poets, a restaurant owned by a man who himself has said the United States takes "marching orders from Tel Aviv."

The Washington, D.C., restaurant was filled to capacity for the "Progressive Town Hall," which also included representatives Pramila Jayapal (D., Wash.) and Mark Pocan (D., Wis.), who heads the influential Progressive Caucus in the House. The members were introduced by restaurant owner Andy Shallal, an activist who in addition to arguing that the United States takes orders from Israel has accused the Jewish state of "terrorizing" the Middle East.

Omar, a Somalian-born Muslim from Minnesota, has found herself apologizing for comments she made about Israel that have been deemed anti-Semitic, but on Wednesday night defended her criticism of Israel and said the criticism comes just because of her religion.

"What I am fearful of, because both Rashida and I are Muslim, is that a lot of our Jewish colleagues and constituents go to thinking that everything we say about Israel is anti-Semitic because we are Muslim," Omar said. "It's something designed to end the debate."

"It's almost as if every time we say something that is supposed to be about foreign policy, or advocacy about ending oppression, or the freeing of every human life, we get to be labeled and that ends the discussion," she said. "We end up defending that and nobody gets to have the broader debate about what is happening with Palestine."

Omar Grins After Audience Member Celebrates ‘All About the Benjamins’ Tweet
As Omar was about to speak next, an audience member shouted out, "It is about the Benjamins," a reference to Omar's tweet earlier this month that said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.) wanted to punish her and Tlaib's anti-Israel rhetoric because he was being paid off.

Omar grinned, and Tlaib looked to the side and smiled while taking a drink, seemingly suggesting she agreed with the sentiment, in a moment noted by Jewish Insider.

Omar also tweeted this month that AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobbying group, was paying off politicians to support Israel. She was eventually forced to apologize, although she said this week it was about how she made people feel, not about being anti-Semitic.

Tlaib has suggested pro-Israel politicians have dual loyalties, a classic anti-Semitic canard, and Omar has repeatedly been dogged by anti-Semitic controversies, before and since taking office. She tweeted in 2012 Israel had "hypnotized" the world with its "evil" actions, declared it's amusing to her that the Jewish state is considered a democracy, and supported BDS, which Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) has called anti-Semitism in action.

Top Four Reasons Why Rep. Ilhan Omar is Wrong about AIPAC, Israel and the Palestinians
4. Omar’s “evil doings” of Israel are actually “evil doings” of the Arabs and the Palestinians

The evil doings of Israel that Omar refers to include first and foremost Israel’s supposed refusal to permit a Palestinian state. Yet history shows it is the Arabs and the Palestinians who have stood in the way of a Palestinian state, not Israel. Opportunities for a Palestinian state were rejected by the Palestinians and the Arab states multiple times, including:
  • In 1947 UNGA 181, the so-called Partition Resolution called for creation of a Jewish and an Arab state out of the territory of the British Mandate for Palestine. The Jews accepted the compromise, while the Arabs rejected it and promised to annihilate the Jewish state the moment the British withdrew. While the Palestinians and five Arab states attacked Israel and expected to win easily, in the end the Israelis, at great cost, beat back the invaders and survived the war. The Arab states made no effort to create a Palestinian state in the Mandate territory that they occupied after the war. For example, Jordan’s King Abdullah annexed the West Bank to his kingdom.
  • In 2000 President Clinton hosted Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat and Israeli leader Ehud Barak for intensive talks at Camp David. After grueling negotiations Israel accepted the so-called Clinton parameters, but Arafat and the Palestinians rejected them. The Saudi representative to the talks, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, memorably said “If Arafat does not accept what is available now, it won’t be a tragedy, it will be a crime.”
    But Arafat did turn down the Clinton parameters and instead returned home and triggered the so-called Second Intifadah, which included numerous Palestinian suicide bombings and other terrorist attacks in which over a thousand Israelis were killed.
  • In 2008, after extensive talks, then Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and presented a comprehensive peace plan. Olmert’s plan would have annexed the major Israeli settlements to Israel and in return given equivalent Israeli territory to the Palestinians, would have divided Jerusalem, and also included a partial Palestinian “right of return.” According to The Washington Post’s Jackson Diehl, who had previously covered the region, “Olmert’s peace offer was more generous to the Palestinians than either that of Bush or Bill Clinton; it’s almost impossible to imagine Obama, or any Israeli government, going further.” Despite this, Abbas admitted to Diehl that he walked away.
Rep. Omar has got it exactly backwards. If there have been evil doings against the Palestinians, the perpetrators she should be upset with are the Arab and Palestinian leaders, especially Yasir Arafat and Mahmud Abbas, who did their best to nurture and perpetrate the conflict, rather than ending it on an honorable basis, all at the expense of the ordinary Palestinians Ilhan Omar claims to care about.
Omar on Anti-Semitic Tweets: I Did Not Apologize for Being Anti-Semitic
Commenting on anti-Semitic tweets she wrote earlier this month, Rep. Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.) said she did not apologize for being anti-Semitic during an interview with The Intercept released on Thursday.

"You've since apologized unequivocally for the tweet. You've said rightly that anti-Semitism is real. But just to be clear, I mean we're a few weeks on now, what were you apologizing for? Was it a badly worded tweet that you were apologizing for? Or was it for being anti-Semitic, wittingly or unwittingly?" host Mehdi Hasan asked around the 12:45 mark of the audio at the link above.

"Oh absolutely not," Omar responded. "I apologized for the way that my words made people feel. Oftentimes, you know, we are in places where someone will say something, and they might not know how it makes you feel and it's not acceptable, that once you express to them that this is hurtful, that you have felt attacked by their words, they should acknowledge how you feel, they should speak to that, they should apologize and figure out a way to remedy that situation."

"That's why you apologized?" Hasan asked.

"That's why I apologized," Omar said.

"And is that why you deleted your tweets this week?" Hasan asked. "The chairwoman of the Republican Party is all over Twitter suggesting that was some sort of … bad faith move on your part."

"I mean for a Republican who always makes a bad faith move to call someone out on that is laughable … The reason and the purpose of the apology was to make sure that the people who were hurt felt understood and heard, and leaving the tweets up no longer would be part of that," Omar said.

  • Thursday, February 28, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon

I mentioned on Sunday that four men were sentenced to prison in Libya for forming a Hamas cell there.

The specific charges were that the four had acquired and shipped arms to Hamas from Libya through the Sinai and then through tunnels to Gaza.

Hamas is not denying that they are members. They merely say that they should be released because they "have never entered into any of Libya's internal affairs, and did not tamper with its security."

Which is pretty much an admission that they were smuggling weapons.

Their families say Libya should release them because there is fear that they will be extradited to Israel, which seems highly improbable.

Islamic Jihad issued a statement today supporting them, saying "Resistance is not a crime, it is an honor and pride for all those who support it."

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.

 Vic Rosenthal's Weekly Column

When people see a strong horse and a weak horse, by nature they will like the strong horse. – Osama bin Laden

All courses of action are risky, so prudence is not in avoiding danger (it's impossible), but calculating risk and acting decisively. Make mistakes of ambition and not mistakes of sloth. Develop the strength to do bold things, not the strength to suffer. – Niccolò Machiavelli

It’s probably not an exaggeration to say that anti-Jewish expression of all kinds – ordinary Jew-hatred, antisemitic violence, and anti-Zionism – throughout the world are at their highest levels since the end of the Second World War.

Theodor Herzl and others thought that the normalization of the Jewish people – the change from “rootless cosmopolitans” living in other peoples’ homelands to a settled people in its own land – would bring about an end to the phenomenon of Jew-hatred.

It did not. People didn’t hate Jews any less, and the Jewish state simply provided another focus for hatred and another target for violent antisemitism.

It was also thought that if the traumatic events of the Holocaust and their historical roots in Jew-hatred were known throughout the world, there would be a wave of moral revulsion that would put an end to antisemitism. In simple terms, 1) Jew-hatred leads to mass murder, 2) mass murder is bad, 3) therefore, Jew-hatred is bad. So Holocaust museums were built, educational programs mandated, films made, and so forth.

This may have had some temporary effect, at least on overt expressions of Jew-hatred, which became socially unacceptable for a time. But it did not change hearts, and now, some years later, even the effect on overt expressions of hatred has dissipated.

For those who like to put the entire blame for the Holocaust on Hitler, the Nazis, or even Germany, I note that many British officials acted – before, during, and after the war – as though they would rather see Jews dead than in Palestine. Similar observations apply to the actions of US President Roosevelt, who had to be dragged kicking and screaming to do the minimum possible on behalf of Hitler’s victims. I don’t know or care what was in the hearts of these people, but they were aware of the Holocaust and their actions were deliberate.

Jew-hatred, both the individual kind and the kind that expresses itself as hatred of the Jewish state, is dangerous to the continued survival of the Jewish people. Indeed, many of its practitioners are acting consciously with the destruction of our people as a goal. They know what they are doing and are effectively using modern technology and psychological techniques to attack us.

As Jews, we have two general options: we can acquiesce to the disappearance of the Jews as a distinct people through a combination of violent oppression and suicidal assimilation, or we can try to preserve it.

I take it as a given that the Jewish people should survive as a people, and I place my obligation to the Jewish people ahead of my obligation to humankind in general, just as I prioritize my family over the other inhabitants of my neighborhood. These are moral axioms, first premises; if you don’t agree with me, I have no further arguments to convince you of them (and probably you should stop reading).

I wish to present a general framework for the preservation of the Jewish people. I am not proposing specific tactics, or even overall strategies – just some general principles, inspired by the writings of Ze’ev Jabotinsky, Kenneth Levin, Niccolò Machiavelli, and others: I call it the Strong Jew Doctrine. I introduced the concept here, and it has application both in the schoolyards and college campuses of the West, and on the battlefields of the Middle East.

It’s based on the idea that honor, respect, and deterrence are critical for survival, and these properties – which actually inhere in those that meet and confront us, friends and enemies – depend on our use of power or our hesitance to do so.

The Jewish people have both gained and lost from their diaspora experience; but during centuries as a powerless minority, it developed an inferiority complex which interferes with its use of power, now that we have it. Over the years, Jews became accustomed to trying to buy safety with money, negotiating from a position of weakness, depending on the protection of others, and developing the capability to suffer. These strategies sometimes succeed in saving our skins and sometimes not, but they worked against obtaining the respect of others, especially our enemies. They reinforced the antisemitic conception of the Jew as weak, sneaky, and contemptible – and as someone it is permissible to attack.

We don’t have to use those methods anymore. Today we are a people with an economically and militarily powerful homeland.

When challenged, whether by a neighborhood antisemite, the UN, or Hezbollah, a Jew or a Jewish state should respond in a way that takes into account not only meeting the particular challenge, but also maximizing the respect and deterrence that accrues as a result of our actions (our enemies, in particular, should experience fear and be deterred from future attacks). In this way, we not only hurt our enemies, but become the “strong horse.” The objective should be to obtain respect, not pity.

Sometimes what we must do to maximize respect is not consistent with European understandings of humanistic morality or international law. These are hard decisions, and there is no definitive general answer. Is it more important to avoid being accused of war crimes – which will happen regardless of what we do – or to reduce the risks faced by our ground troops in urban combat? This very question regularly comes up when the IDF is forced to enter Gaza or Arab towns in Judea/Samaria, and the army bends over backwards in the humanitarian direction. We would reduce the number of violent confrontations and our own casualties if we acted more aggressively when they did occur.

Here are some principles that either derive from or are consistent with the Strong Jew Doctrine, along with some examples of their application in personal and geopolitical situations:

1.      Self-reliance is better than dependence. Accepting American military aid may seem to be advantageous for Israel, but we can do without it, it makes us dependent on an unreliable partner, and has numerous other deleterious effects.

2.      It’s good to have passive defenses against aggression, but only an active response can provide a non-temporary solution. You can prevent a bully from hitting you by keeping your guard up, but you can only make him stop by hitting him back. Iron dome can protect a city, but it doesn’t motivate the enemy to stop firing rockets (indeed, it encourages him to fire more rockets in an attempt to overwhelm the system).

3.      Never pay tribute or ransom. Some Israeli “security” officials argue that improving the humanitarian situation in Gaza or helping the PA meet payrolls helps prevent conflicts. Wrong: paying our enemies or introducing aid of any kind frees up funds for military purposes and sends a message of weakness. They are enemies.

4.      Take revenge when appropriate. We live in the Middle East. Allowing members of other tribes to kill our people and to receive relatively mild penalties send the message that killing us is permissible. Allowing the PA to pay terrorists in our prisons encourages terrorism.

5.      Restraint is not an indicator of strength. It is often the opposite. Letting Hamas burn southern Israel sends the message that we are too weak to stop them.

6.      Use collective punishments when appropriate. Polls consistently show that the majority of residents of Gaza and the PA support violence against Israel. Many towns in the PA are dominated by clans associated with Fatah or Hamas. They provide direct support for terrorists. Why shouldn’t they pay a price?

7.      Reprisals should always be disproportionate. When a bully hits you, hit him back harder. As Machiavelli recommended, when you have to hurt someone, hurt him so badly that he will not be able to get revenge.

8.      Messaging should emphasize our strength, not our victimhood. Reports of terror attacks should stress that all the terrorists were eliminated on the spot (and they should be!), not how painful the attack was for us.

9.      Never make threats that we are not prepared to carry out.

It may seem paradoxical, but the more aggressive we are, the less Jew-hatred there will be. People and nations give lip service to meekness, but honor comes from boldness and exercise of power. At the end of the day, it’s the strong horse that gets respect.

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.
From Ian:

The Palestinians' Automatic "No" to Peace
The Palestinian issue—once at the heart of Arab political discourse in our region—has been pushed to the margins. Mahmoud Abbas might still be able to extract a promise out of the elderly Saudi king not to go "behind the Palestinians' backs," but the entire world knows about the business his son conducts with Israel. The Arab world has a hard time understanding what the Palestinians want, and why they allow themselves to continue managing their affairs in such a failed manner.

"If you want to free all of Palestine—ahlan wasahlan ('welcome'), but you need to unite. If you want a state alongside Israel, why do you keep saying 'no' again and again when offered one?" one Egyptian TV anchor wondered.

Since automatic Palestinian refusal is a given, what exactly motivates Jared Kushner, Trump's point man on the peace process? Is he still hoping the Palestinians change their minds when they learn the details of the plan? Probably not. He didn't even bother giving an interview to a Palestinian media outlet, and instead directed his comments to the Arab world, mostly the Gulf nations (Sky Arabic, to which he gave the interview, is funded by the United Arab Emirates). In other words: he's thinking about the day after the Palestinian "no," when Arab countries could come to them and say: "You once again rejected a generous proposal, we won't remain hostages to your intransigence."

It seems farfetched, but work preparing the Arab street for relations with Israel that could be defined as "on the scale of normalization" has been going on for a few years.

"If the Palestinian leadership used the money donated by the Arabs since 1948 for Palestine, it would've already built 50 cities like Tel Aviv, 40 cities like Dubai and 30 cities like Riyadh," tweeted an Iraqi journalist this week —and got a shower of likes.

PMW: PA will cut all Palestinian salaries, except for terrorists and their families
Impending PA financial crisis follows Abbas decision to not accept Israeli transfers of approx. 670 million shekels/month after Israel decided to deduct 41 million shekels/month from PA tax money equivalent to the amount PA pays terrorist prisoners

“PA Minister of Finance announced that the [PA] government will pay the salaries of the public employees on time, but they are likely to be partial, other than the pension stipends and the allowances of the families of the Martyrs, the wounded, and the prisoners, which will be paid in full.”

PA TV: “Our Martyrs and prisoners (i.e., terrorists and murderers) are the source of our glory and pride. They are more honorable than all of us.”

PA Prime Minister: “The payment of the money to the prisoners and Martyrs' families is our responsibility, not a gift or grant but rather an inseparable part of the social contract between the state and its citizens.”

PA Minister of Finance: “There is an official decision... not to accept the tax money if even a single penny is missing from it."

In The Forward (where else?), Peter Beinart offers a defense of anti-Zionism, saying that it is wrong to associate it with antisemitism. "Anti-Zionism is not inherently anti-Semitic — and claiming it is uses Jewish suffering to erase the Palestinian experience," he claims.

The entire article is an attempt to thread the needle to find boundary cases where it might theoretically be possible to be against Israel but love Jews, or vice versa. Look at Satmar! What about antisemite Richard Spencer who calls himself a "White Zionist"?

The article is sickening and offensive. To understand why, let's imagine a similar article about racism in America.

It is possible that someone might want to hang a Confederate flag without being racist. It is possible that a black man who is habitually stopped by white police officers was a victim of honest mistakes every time. It is possible that gerrymandering election districts around neighborhoods primarily of one race has nothing to do with racism. It is possible that white people who don't want black people in their neighborhoods are only concerned with property values. Hell, it is possible that some plantation owners in the South loved their slaves and treated them as members of the family!

Peter Beinart is the Confederate flag defender of Judaism.

Does knowing that there is a possibility that the offensive acts being done might be innocent make black people feel any better? No, all of those arguments, in the aggregate, are disgusting justifications for racism. And the victims know this very well, despite the theoretical arguments..

When the UN has an obsession with slamming Israel more than any other nation, sure it is possible that it has nothing to do with Jews. When professional academic organizations choose to boycott Israel and only Israel, sure it is possible that they all coincidentally believe that the Jewish state is their highest human rights priority. When artists play in China and Russia and Lebanon without a peep from anyone, but receive death threats for wanting to play in Israel, sure it might be an oversight. And when BDS activists say that everyone should boycott only Jewish bands from Israel and not Arab bands from Israel, or that Jewish owned businesses in Judea and Samaria should be sanctioned but not those owned by Israeli Arabs, or that only Jewish Israelis who move across the Green Line are considered "settlers" but not Israeli Arabs, I suppose maybe someone can come up with some reason why that isn't antisemitic.

But in the aggregate, it is obvious what the reality is. There are only two possible reasons to explain the obsessiveness that so many have towards Israel - either it is the worst human rights violator on the planet, or the attackers are acting on their latent Jew-hatred and justifying it, just like any bigot justifies their behavior as being righteous.

Israel is not the worst human rights violator in the planet. It isn't in the bottom hundred.

Jews who identify with Judaism, in general, know in their gut that these obsessive attacks on Israel are fueled by Jew-hatred, just as blacks know when they are being targeted that there is an underlying racism that can explain the many, many examples of discrimination theyexperience. This is true no matter how many Beinart-types try to show that each individual act might be looked at, if you squint hard enough, as being innocent.

Beinart only allows that a small number of anti-Zionists are antisemitic, like Farrakhan or David Duke. This is also an insult. Anyone who would want to minimize racism would be rightly questioned as to his or her true agenda, and when Peter Beinart wants to minimize left-wing antisemitism he should be questioned as well - why do you believe that Jews should shut up about their feeling attacked, consistently, daily, in the media under the guise of "anti-Zionism"? Other kinds of bigotry are amplified by the Left and the benefit of the doubt is given to the victims.

Unless the victims are Jews.

Is 100% of anti-Zionism antisemitic? Maybe not. But 98% is, and pretending that the 2% is the majority is unconscionable and ultimately an apologia for today's brand of Jew-hatred.

The obsessive attacks on Israel are indicative of a much bigger problem, and that problem isn't that Israel deserves to be attacked way out of proportion to any real or imagined crimes it has done. The problem is exactly antisemitism pretending to be mere anti-Zionism - an antisemitism that can be loudly and proudly defended thanks to people like Peter Beinart who can provide a Jewish cover for the underlying hate that animates it.


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.
by Daled Amos

One of the most controversial issues surrounding how UNRWA does business is its fast-and-loose definition of refugees, which has kept expanding over the years.

When UN General Assembly Resolution 393 was passed on December 2, 1950, endorsing UNRWA's purpose, it clearly stated:
[T]he reintegration of the refugees into the economic life of the Near East, either by repatriation or resettlement, is essential in preparation for the time when international assistance is no longer available, and for the realization of conditions of peace and stability in the area
UNRWA's job was to either repatriate refugees, where possible -- or to resettle them elsewhere, with the realization and acknowledgment that the money was not going to last forever.

But that goal was only good for about 10 years.

These days, UNRWA is no longer in the business of resettling refugees.
And they seem to think the money can, and should, keep flowing forever.


UNRWA's Self-Declared Flexibility

On the issue of finding homes for refugees, Lance Bartholomeusz, former head of the International Law Division of UNRWA admits that "this part of the mandate probably ended by 1960 when reference to 'reintegration' was dropped from General Assembly resolutions relating to UNRWA, reflecting some acknowledgment that this objective had been defeated."

Considering how integral the job of finding homes for the refugees was to the mandate of UNRWA, one might have thought that UNRWA would disappear at that point.

But in The Mandate of UNRWA at Sixty, Bartholomeusz described how UNRWA has continued to change its focus:
For almost sixty years, in response to developments in the region, the General Assembly has mandated the Agency to engage in a rich and evolving variety of activities, for many purposes and for several classes of beneficiaries. The Assembly has provided UNRWA with a flexible mandate designed to facilitate, rather than restrict, the Agency's ability to act as and when the Commissioner-General [of UNRWA], in consultation with the Advisory Commission as appropriate, sees fit. [emphasis added]
As we know, over the years, UNRWA has defined those "classes of beneficiaries" rather loosely, to the extent that UNRWA has taken upon itself the ability to extend refugee status from one generation to the next, significantly multiplying the number of refugees it claims to be responsible for. Also, UNRWA has been criticized for the 'stickiness' of the refugee status, which is retained even when the refugee becomes a citizen in another country.

Citizen or Refugee -- But Not Both

James G. Lindsay, who served as lawyer and general counsel with UNRWA from 2000 to 2007, criticizes UNRWA for the ease with which it doles out and retains refugee status.

In 2012, Lindsay wrote about Reforming UNRWA in an article that appeared on Middle East Forum. He takes issue with the UNRWA unique position that Palestinian Arab refugees who become citizens of another country, retain their refugee status on the UNRWA rolls:
Under UNRWA's operational definition, Palestine refugees are people whose normal place of residence was Palestine between June 1946 and May 1948, who lost both their homes and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli conflict.

The UNRWA definition makes no mention of citizenship, and UNRWA makes no effort to de-register persons who were formerly refugees but are now citizens of a state. As such, UNRWA is the only refugee organization in the world that considers citizens of a state to be refugees, and there are many of these oxymoronic "citizen-refugees" on UNRWA rolls. [emphasis]
Lindsay is consistent in this critique of UNRWA.

Two years later in the Winter 2014-2015 edition of Justice, the magazine of the International Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists, Lindsay writes UNRWA: Still UN-Fixed, and he is damning in pointing out UNRWA's failure:
[UNRWA] never addresses the fact that there is no basis whatsoever in international law for its practice of “referring to” persons who have acquired a new nationality as “refugees.” This indefensible practice is not an oversight on UNRWA’s part—even some commentators sympathetic to UNRWA have admitted that citizens under the protection of their state of citizenship are not refugees. Instead, knowing that it is impossible to make a credible argument that citizens are “refugees,” UNRWA simply does not address the issue. [page 18]

Generations of Refugees 

However, Lindsay has tempered his critique of UNRWA when it comes to refugee status passing on from generation to generation. He is willing to compare UNRWA with UNHCR, the UN refugee agency which looks after all of the other refugees.


Back in his 2012 article, Lindsay wrote that UNRWA's refugee definition includes all the descendants of male refugees and takes this liberty despite the fact that the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees is silent on the matter of refugees' descendants.

But not everyone is silent.

Lindsay himself points out that standards for refugee status are laid out in the UNHCR publication, "Procedural Standards for Refugee Status Determination under UNHCR's Mandate." There, family members of a refugee are eligible for "Derivative Refugee Status." In other words, family members of refugees may be entitled to derive benefits by virtue of their familial connection to a refugee. However -- as Lindsay himself writes:
"they are not refugees themselves, through whom derivative refugee status may be claimed".
Here Lindsay makes clear that one derivative refugee cannot generate another derivative refugee -- which means that there is no basis for the UNRWA policy to allow refugee status to be passed on from generation to generation has no basis.

But fast forward 2 years later.

Does the UNHCR Standard of Refugee Status Support UNRWA Policy?

In the later 2014 article in Justice, on page 18, in the section "Descendants of Refugees," Lindsay refers to critics such as himself who have argued that UNRWA's policy of granting refugee status to grandchildren and later descendants is contrary to the standard applied by UNHCR.

But then he argues that the UNRWA definition of refugee status is comparable to UNHCR's, based on Unit 5 of the UNHCR's above-mentioned "Procedural Standards":
However, as UNRWA and its supporters argue, UNHCR does refer to the dependents of a refugee as being eligible for “derivative refugee status” and does state that persons with derivative refugee status enjoy “the same rights and entitlements as other recognized refugees .”

Based on the concept of persons with derivative refugee status having the same rights and entitlements as other refugees, one could argue, as UNRWA does, that a person with derivative refugee status has the right to have his or her own dependents receive derivative refugee status.

In that case, the differences between UNRWA and UNHCR in the matter of refugee status passing to descendants would not be as great as the critics have suggested.
So according to Lindsay, based on UNHCR standards, UNRWA has a basis for its policy based on 2 claims:
o  Derivative refugees have the same rights as actual refugees
o  Derivative refugees, like actual refugees, can pass that status on to their descendants
Regarding that first claim, the statement that derivative refugees enjoy “the same rights and entitlements as other recognized refugees” is not absolute. In correspondence with Avi Bell, law professor at the University of San Diego School of Law and at Bar-Ilan University's Faculty of Law, he pointed out that, for example, the right to non-refoulement, the practice of not forcing refugees to return to a country where they are liable to be subjected to persecution, applies only to actual refugees and does not apply to parents, spouses, children or grandchildren.

In addressing the second claim, it is helpful to take a look at the arguments offered by Uri Akavia, a researcher at Kohelet Policy Forum, whose background paper "Is UNRWA’s hereditary refugee status for Palestinians unique?" came out just last month. Akavia counters Lindsay's claim of similarity between UNRWA and UNHCR definition of refugees and posits that there is a distinction: while UNHCR grants refugee services to derivative refugees, refugee status is another matter entirely:
It is not automatic - it is based on a case-by-case review of whether the actual situation merits it. When it does, UNHCR gives certain services to the children of refugees. UNHCR does not automatically add the children and grandchildren of refugees to the count of refugees and does not automatically define them as refugees. Even if a child of refugees is given refugee services, the grandchild will not be eligible for status or services. UNRWA, on the other hand, automatically grants such children refugee status, resulting in exponential growth of refugee numbers.
I emailed Uri Akavia for more background for the basis of what he wrote. In his response, he pointed to the same section 5 of UNHRC's "Procedural Standards" that Lindsay refers to.

First of all, any comparison between refugees and derivative refugees has to deal with the implications of the word "derivative," which clearly set the two apart.

According to Section 5.2.1 General Principles (of Derivative Refugee Status):
Recognition of refugee status in their own right affords family members/dependants better protection as their status will not automatically be affected by a subsequent cancellation, revocation or cessation of the refugee status of the individual from whom they derive refugee status (hereinafter “Refugee Status Applicant”). [emphasis added]
In other words, the two kinds of refugee status are not the same. Actual refugee status gives "better protection" by its very nature because derivative refugee status by definition depends on maintaining the ties to the refugee from whose status the derivative status is derived.

What happens if that tie is dissolved?

The end of that section does make clear that despite that dependence on the status of the original refugee, the breakup of the family does not automatically dissolve the status of the derivative refugee:
While, as a general rule, family members should retain their derivative refugee status notwithstanding the dissolution of the family through divorce, separation or death or the fact that a child reaches the age of majority [age 18], careful consideration should be given to the personal circumstances of the family members to determine whether retention of status is appropriate in a particular case or whether retention of status would be merely for reasons of personal convenience. [emphasis added]
Each refugee is evaluated on a case by case basis. The derivative status is not automatically voided, but neither does it automatically continue either.

The very fact that reaching the age of 18 triggers re-consideration of the status of a derivative refugee by itself raises doubts about the whole idea of automatically passing along refugee status from generation to generation.

So it is not surprising that the limit on perpetuating derivative refugee status is clearly spelled out on the same page of this UNHCR document:
As a general rule, a person cannot acquire derivative refugee status solely on the basis of a family/ dependency relationship with a person who has derivative refugee status.
According to UNHCR itself, a person who is a 'derivative refugee' himself cannot pass this status to other family members who are in turn dependent on him.

And that is why there are no 3rd generation refugees treated by UNHCR.

This contradicts James Lindsay's claim of a close correlation between UNHCR and UNRWA definition of refugees. It shows that just as in UNRWA's policy of continuing refugee status for citizens, here in the case of perpetuating refugee status from generation to generation we are dealing with a fabrication that has no basis in international law.

Here's a thought.

If UNRWA really wants to base policy on UNHCR, it could take a look at Article 1, F of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. There, it touches on when not to apply refugee status:
The provisions of this Convention shall not apply to any person with respect to whom there are serious reasons for considering that:

(a) he has committed a crime against peace, a war crime, or a crime against humanity, as defined in the international instruments drawn up to make provision in respect of such crimes;
Now that would be a good place to start.

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  • Thursday, February 28, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon

The UN Human Rights Council has issued a report about Israel's conduct during the weekly riots in Gaza. Unsurprisingly, it cherry picks facts and assumes the lies of terrorist supporters are the truth.

The bias and lack of fact checking can be seen in the press release about the report:

“The onus is now on Israel to investigate every protest-related killing and injury, promptly, impartially and independently in accordance with international standards, to determine whether war crimes or crimes against humanity were committed, with a view to holding accountable those found responsible”, said Santiago Canton. “We also urge the organisers, the demonstrators, and the de facto authorities in Gaza, to ensure that the Great March of Return is entirely peaceful, as it is intended to be.”

“The Commission finds that these protests were a call for help from a population in despair”, Santiago Canton reminded.
 The very title "Great March of Return" shows that the reason for the riots is the destruction of Israel by flooding it with hostile enemies, and any mention of the blockade of Gaza is peripheral at best to the events there. Most of the population that shows up stays far away from the border and they treat this as a social event, as Hamas buses them there. But the ones who approach the border are generally doing so at the behest of Hamas with the specific aim of generating "martyrs" and injuries for public relations purposes.

Of course none of hundreds of people interviewed by the UN - as we have seen in the past, often with Hamas members watching - will admit that Hamas bears any responsibility for the deaths.

Likewise, of course the Commission, which says that it investigated every single death, does not mention that some 80% of those killed were affiliated with terror groups and about one third were direct members of the military, not civilians under any definition. Yet the Commission does admit that at least 29 of those killed were members of specific military groups. It doesn't bother to explain how such a high percentage of those killed, even according to their own statistics, would be military in what they consider a primarily civilian demonstration.

The Commission, whose members have no military expertise, is not equipped to rule on the military dimensions of the threat to Israeli forces and civilians by a breach in the fence, which was one of the focuses of the weekly riots for the first several months. However, the Israeli government did respond, from a legal perspective, as to the specific terms of engagement it uses and why. NGO Monitor, in its extensive submission to the Commission that was roundly ignored, translated the relevant sections of the Israeli court submission in a case brought by NGOs that claimed the IDF was violating international law and guilty of war crimes as the UNHRC is suggesting.

5. The factual basis of these petitions is, with all due respect, defective and lacking, both in terms of the content of the open-fire regulations and in terms of the nature and essence of the events under discussion, and is inconsistent with the actual situation. On this basis, the petitioners draw faulty legal conclusions, first and foremost with regards to classifying the events as supposedly “distinctly civil events”; however, as an examination of the actual situation shows, the events under discussion are part of the armed confrontation between a terror organization – Hamas – and Israel.

6. At the crux of the matter, open fire instructions given by the security forces in regards to the [border] barrier zone are consistent with Israeli law, international law, and rulings of the Honorable Court.

13. The distance between the two parts of the barrier [along the Gaza border] changes according to the topographical circumstances and ranges between 20 and 80 meters only. As such, a Palestinian that [crosses the first part] will arrive within a few seconds to the iron fence that is in Israeli territory.

14. Since its establishment, the barrier is designed to protect Israeli citizens and security forces from various threats, with an emphasis on infiltration of terrorists from Gaza into Israel. The barrier is located just hundreds of meters away from a number of Israeli towns and just dozens of meters away from IDF forces. Therefore, a breach poses, definitely from the riotous mob, a danger to both the citizens of Israel and to the soldiers.

18a. In this context, it should be emphasized that due to vulnerabilities in the barrier and the security significance of a breakthrough by a hostile Palestinian mob, the threat of the breakthrough creates, at times, a tangible, proximate danger to the lives and bodily integrity of both civilians and soldiers. And if this threat [infiltration] were to be realized, eliminating the danger (which at this stage would become immediate) would necessitate the use of live ammunition on a larger scale.

83. In this context, the respondents believe that the petitioners make light of the tangible, proximate, severe danger posed by rioting masses… The position of the respondents is that, the danger posed by a rioting mass of thousands of people is tens of times greater than that posed by a single person or a small group of people. Moreover, this danger becomes instantaneously immediate when the
masses reach their target, and preventing [the danger] at this later stage will require, from a tactical perspective, large scale live fire which the respondents are trying to prevent. 
The UNHRC commission doesn't even mention these points, let alone respond to them. It just makes assumptions that somehow the IDF has better means to protect Israeli citizens without saying what exactly those means are.

As is always the case with UNHRC reports about Israel, this is a hit job masquerading as a sober analysis.

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Wednesday, February 27, 2019

From Ian:

Disdain For Jews Is The Sinew Of Identity Politics
Omar’s anti-Semitism drew endorsements from white supremacist David Duke and Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan. If there is one thing white supremacists and black nationalists share, it is hatred of Jews.

Women's March co-president Tamika Mallory, a vocal supporter of Farrakhan's, naturally added to Omar's defense, parroting Farrakhan's specious indictment of Jews as being responsible for the slave trade.

Jews provide a convenient focal point for the American Left's hate. And progressive Jews, given a choice between their leftist politics and their fading Jewish identity, have joined the Hamas chorus, lending a twisted credibility to hackneyed tropes that have resulted in inquisitions, crusader massacres, pogroms, and the Holocaust.

Max Berger, co-founder of the anti-Zionist IfNotNow, calls on his fellow Jews to stand with Omar against AIPAC, which Omar alleges buys votes from her fellow members of Congress.

Berger and Omar are obsessed with AIPAC, using old tropes of Jews and money. But somehow the various Arab lobbies, including the powerful Saudi and Emirates lobbies, escape their concern.

For all of Omar’s trafficking in allegations of Israeli apartheid, there is actually an empirical measurement of racism among states. Muslim states tend to be racist and xenophobic.

But Omar's accusations bear no relation to facts — as fellow traveler Ocasio-Cortez has said, if you are morally correct, the facts don't matter.

Neither do they matter to those who seek to mobilize a mass movement built on hatred as the sinew that ties it all together. In this pursuit, both Omar and her progressive accomplices are of one mind. Jews should take note, for those who do not pay attention to history are known to repeat it.
Douglas Murray: Must We Really Be Careful What We Do Lest We Offend Extremists?
What is striking and controversial are the repeated interventions into the debate made by the government's own 'extremism commissioner', Sara Khan. Over recent years Khan has been a hugely admirable figure. The founder and leader of the women's group 'Inspire', Khan has shown a generation of British people – including, most importantly, young Muslim women – that it is possible to be resilient against the fanatics in their faith and also to argue for the rights of women. She has been an unarguable force for good, and has had to withstand appalling pressure from Islamist groups in the UK.

"It is, I think, completely misconceived to suggest that we should change our foreign policy because it might cause some people to take up arms against us. That's a form of blackmail...." — Michael Howard, former Conservative party leader

In 2006 a small group of peers, MPs and Islamist groups sent an open letter to the then-Labour government. The signatories included the subsequently jailed Lord Ahmed of Rotherham, the subsequently disgraced (over expenses fraud) Baroness Uddin and the then-MP, now Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. This letter suggested to the UK government of the day that British foreign policy "risks putting civilians at increased risk both in the UK and abroad." This is a commonly heard argument of course, and is especially commonly heard from various extremist groups.

Melanie Phillips: Poland v Israel round two, Labour party antisemitism
Please join me here as I discuss with Avi Abelow of Israel Unwired the latest developments in our crazy world. On our agenda this week: well, afraid it’s pretty much wall-to-wall antisemitism. There’s a lot of it about, alas.

We first of all discuss the row that blew up between Israel and Poland over remarks, made first by Israel’s prime minister Netanyahu and then by its new foreign minister Israel Katz, drawing attention to the complicity of Polish people with the Nazi persecution of the Jews.

As I wrote here, the Polish government tries reprehensibly to conceal the fact that there were Polish anti-Jewish programs before, during and after the Holocaust. But Poland today is warmly disposed towards Israel and its friendship is valuable.

As I say in this discussion, the way for Israel to handle this delicate situation (the second time this row has erupted) is surely to be both fair and unsparing: to insist that the Polish government is wrong to try to sanitise its country’s history of anti-Jewish hatred, while acknowledging that the Nazis slaughtered thousands of Poles too and that many Poles risked their lives to save Jews from the Nazis.

Avi and I then go on to discuss the crisis over antisemitism in Britain’s Labour party from which nine MPs have now departed, either partly or wholly in revulsion at the leadership’s continued refusal to deal with this scourge.

  • Wednesday, February 27, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon

Hamas announced the death of Mohammed Ibrahim Qadih, 24, after suffering a heart attack while working in a "resistance tunnel."

Heart attacks are pretty rare for 24 year olds. It is possible that Hamas wanted to get rid of him and found a way to do it.

Ma'an reported that he died from an accident, not a heart attack. So something is not quite right with this story.

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Our weekly column from the humor site PreOccupied Territory

Check out their Facebook page.

By Gree Vance, Professor of Literature, Bumblethuck College

The Cat in the Hat Comes BackNew York, February 27 - Theodore Seuss Geisel earned numerous plaudits for his children's books, but a new examination of one of his better-known works reveals a dark undercurrent of racism, Islamophobia, and support of ethnic cleansing of Palestinians by colonialist Europeans under the pretext of Jewish self-determination.

Other scholars have already provided academic treatment of the first book in the series, The Cat in The Hat (1957), notable among them: Uppjørs (1977), who perceived Freudian themes; Dissin-Terry (1980), who explored the recurring motif of Eurocentric anthropomorphism in gestalt as symbolized by the fish, the nameless mother figure, and the large red box; and the deconstructionist feminist modalities as brought to bear on the text and imagery by Blecch (1996). None of these, however, gave thorough treatment of the sequel The Cat in the Hat Comes Back (1958), and none of them touched on the glaring use of Zionist, colonialist, anti-Palestinian, Islamophobic, and Jewish-supremacist in the latter work. This article aims to fill that void.

Seuss's name itself provides the first indication of intersectional problematics qua problematics, in that the author consciously uses a German surname coupled with the honorific "Dr.," a term that invites association with the established Jewish reverence for practice in the medial field; Seuss thus a priori plants in the unsuspecting reader's mind - it is a children's book - the notion that doctors, especially Jewish ones, should be trusted, effectively ignoring those doctors involved in the harvesting of Palestinian organs.

In general, The Cat in the Hat Comes Back traffics in classic racist assumptions, chief among them the notion that white, as represented by the snow, must remain free of color, represented by the bathtub ring. Disaster, in this Zionist racist view, occurs when the snow takes on color, as the European colonialist Zionists try to "cleanse" Palestine of peoples of color and only barely tolerate the Jews of color among them.

Each of the devices the characters employ in turn to effect this cleansing reflects a historical or ongoing motif in oppression of Palestinians: the bathtub, a reference to the Baath Party of Iraq under Saddam Hussein and of Syria under the Assad family, oft-cited justifications for Zionist supremacist militarism; mother's white dress, yet another example of feminine whiteness needing protection from other races, but also the appropriation of Palestinian dress and other elements of indigenous Palestinian culture such as falafel and hummus; the wall, which references both the racist Apartheid separation barrier and the claim that Jews have any rights to the al-Buraq wall surrounding Haram al-Sharif, calling the latter the "Temple Mount" and the wall the "Western Wall" of a fabled non-Khazarian structure of ancient irrelevance; Dad's $10 shoes, a dual reference to the control Jews exert over the world economy and the known Mossad tactic of stealing Palestinian activists' footwear; and the rug in the hall, which serves as a metaphor for Zionist ambitions to seize all the lands of the region, including Iran, the home of Persian rugs.

The indoctrination and justification of ethnic cleansing continues with the "stain" transferred to the bed, an endorsement of the dehumanizing of Palestinian women inherent in IDF soldiers refusing to rape them; then, when he Zionists alone cannot effect the cleansing they aim to achieve, they must rope in other outsiders such as the US, represented by the 26 little cats whose efforts only bring further mayhem, and whose efforts to commit genocide prove unsuccessful as the oppressed Palestinian population of color continues to multiply.

In the end, much like the Zionists of our world, the characters in the book can only preserve whiteness by annihilating enemies in a cataclysmic blow, reminiscent of Israel's nuclear weapons and its ongoing efforts to prevent peace-loving countries such as Iran from attaining.

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From Ian:

Palestinians and the Disastrous Politics of Rage
Palestinian victimhood knows no reconciliation with Israel because central to identity politics is the conviction that permanent victim status must be maintained.

Palestinian identity politics hamstrings Palestinian aspirations for a better life. Grassroots criticism of the Palestinian leadership is disallowed because it threatens the collective Palestinian identity.

Failing to establish the institutions of a functioning state, Palestinian leaders turn to globetrotting in a look-busy-while-doing-nothing action plan of self-righteousness. They insist the world must come and save them.

Palestinians pluck the chords of European colonial guilt in order to receive generous aid, discouraging Palestinian self-agency and personal responsibility.

Palestinians routinely call for "days of rage," where the rage is an end in itself that fuels an identity predicated on victimhood.

The narrative of victimization loosens moral standards. When a Palestinian murders a Jew, it is explained and excused as "a natural outcome of the occupation." Ironically, Palestinians ignore just how racist their own narrative of victimization really is.

To maintain that any Israeli Jew is a fair target for murder simply because he is an Israeli Jew - is racist. To maintain that any Palestinian has license to murder simply because he is Palestinian - is racist.

Palestinian leaders will "keep the conversation going" about reconciliation interminably because of the capital they accrue with world leaders by doing so.

CAMERA Op-Ed: The Rise of Fatah, Fifty Years On
February 4, 2019 marked an important, albeit unheralded, date: the fiftieth anniversary of the ascension of Fatah in Palestinian politics. On Feb. 4, 1969, the movement’s founder, the Egyptian-born Yasser Arafat, was appointed chair of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). For most of the half century since, Fatah has dominated Palestinian affairs—with fateful consequences for the Middle East and beyond.

Arafat, his biographer Barry Rubin wrote, “succeeded at creating and remaining the leader of the globe’s longest-running revolutionary movement.” Yet both he and Fatah would also lead “his people into more disasters and defeats than any counterpart.”

It was a swift, but uneven, rise for both.

Arafat and about fifteen others founded Fatah on Oct. 10, 1959 in a private home in Kuwait. At the time, Arafat was an engineer working for Kuwait’s Department of Public Works. Most of his compatriots were young Palestinian students or workers employed in the country, which was then experiencing an oil boom and economic growth. They called themselves Harakat al-Tahrir al-Filastiniyya (Palestinian Liberation Movement), whose acronym reversed spells Fatah, which means “conquest.”

Arafat himself was deeply influenced by his time at King Fuad University in Cairo, where he received military training from Muslim Brotherhood members who were active on the campus. Arafat, Rubin records, would later seek “to play down his connections with the Brotherhood since it posed political problems” for him in future dealings with Arab nations that viewed the organization as a threat.

But the Muslim Brotherhood nevertheless influenced his ideology. Arafat and Fatah’s role models “did not come from Arab nationalist leaders or thinkers” like the Syrian or Iraqi Ba’athists or Egypt’s Gamal Abdel Nasser, “but from the struggle of the early Muslims for whom only total victory over infidels and Crusaders was acceptable.” Indeed, as Rubin pointed out, Arafat’s chosen nom de guerre was Abu Ammar—in honor of a man the Palestinian leader described as “the first martyr of Islam.”
Caroline Glick vs. Donald Trump
Continuing his meet the candidate series, Gil Hoffman interviews New Right Knesset candidate and former Jerusalem Post columnist Caroline Glick.

Two years after she was the keynote speaker at an influential pro-Trump rally in Jerusalem, Glick vows to “absolutely” be the opposition who stops the plan by pressuring Netanyahu to reject it.

She says she will be in the Knesset to prevent “the partition of Jerusalem and giving 90% of Judea and Samaria to terrorists,” because the plan is a “danger” and “antithetical to the US’s national security interests almost as much as it is to Israel’s.”

As a Knesset member, she promises to send that message to the Trump administration. Gil also reveals how he got the scoop on a rabbi who compared the views of an Israeli political party to Nazism.

  • Wednesday, February 27, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon

Since the "woke" crowd is so attuned to antisemitic dog whistles, what do they think about this one?

"Enemies of humanity, i.e. intl’ capitalists and Zionists"? Can it get any more blatant?

But I don't expect many European intellectuals or progressive Americans to be too upset over this antisemitic tweet from a world leader with half a million followers in English.

Because they want to be allied with him.

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  • Wednesday, February 27, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon

Arab and Muslim media, especially Palestinian media, routinely deny that there were ever any Jewish Temples on the Temple Mount.

This academic paper by  Milka Levy-Rubin about why the Dome of the Rock was built to begin with gives copious amounts of proof that show that the Muslims who built the Dome chose the site precisely because of its association with the two Temples.

The main point of the paper, published by the Bulletin of SOAS at the University of London in 2017, is that the Dome of the Rock was meant to be a rebuilding of the Temple of Solomon which would fulfill the need by Muslims to have their own significant holy  place in their conquered lands that could compete with the Hagia Sophia church in Constantinople which claimed to have surpassed in beauty of Solomon’s temple.

Whether she proves this or not is not the point here. She does bring lots of proof from early Muslim literature on the Dome of the Rock that leaves no doubt that Muslims understood the importance of the site and chose it because of its history and holiness to Jews.

Most scholars now agree that the initial motivation behind the Muslim sanctification of the Temple Mount and the building of the Muslim religious monuments on it was the return to the sanctified place of the Jewish Temple. Hence the use of terms such as Bayt al-Maqdis (Hebrew Beit Ha-Miqdash), a term used for both the temple itself and the city of Jerusalem, and Haykal (Hebrew – Heykhal), the search for the Rock of Bayt al-Maqdis and its sanctification and the Muslim tradition regarding the active participation of the Jewish convert Kaʿb al-Ahḅ ār, or, in a later Jewish tradition, the Jews themselves, in locating the sacred spot. The fact that they were building “The Temple of God” (naos Theou) is mentioned also by Anastasius the Sinaite, a contemporary Christian source writing at the time of the building of the Dome.

More importantly, in ʿAbd al-Malik’s Dome of the Rock the rituals themselves seem initially to have been related to Jewish Temple rituals, including the special attire worn by the performers of the ceremonies, the assignment of a special status to Mondays and Thursdays, days of special importance in Jewish liturgy, purification before the rituals, the mode in which incense was used, the call for prayer and more.  Although this was short-lived, it was nonetheless the obvious reason for choosing this site. Based on artistic features corroborated by Islamic sources, some scholars, such as Soucek and Shani, claim in fact that it is specifically the Solomonic temple that was being reconstructed in the building of the Dome of the Rock.

As noted by Livne-Kafri, Muslim sources convey the pain of the Jews over the destruction of the Temple and hopes for its resurrection by Muslims. Many of these are found especially in the Fadạ̄ ʾīl Bayt al-Maqdis (Praises of Jerusalem) literature, now recognized as representing early traditions from the second half of the seventh and the eighth century CE. While these traditions have been preserved only in the compilations of al-Wāsiti (d. 1019) and ̣ al-Musharraf b. al-Murajjā (d. c. 1055), Kister discovered that many of them are found in the commentary on the Quran by Muqātil b. Sulaymān (d. 768).

Moreover, both were careful to note the chain of transmission of the traditions, choosing also to include in their collections Isrāʾīliyyāt, i.e. traditions received from Jews and converts, which were often criticized and omitted in other sources.

Muslim identification with the Jews regarding the Temple Mount is manifest in a rare tradition, which divulges the initial ties to Jewish sentiment, before its dissociation:

From Kaʿb al-Ahḅ ār, it is written in one of the holy books: “Ayrūshalāyim, which means Jerusalem (Bayt al-Maqdis), and the Rock which is called the Temple (al-haykal). I shall send to you my servant ʿAbd al-Malik, who will build you and adorn you. I shall surely restore to Bayt al-Maqdis its first kingdom, and I shall crown it with gold and silver and gems. And I shall surely send to you my creatures. And I shall surely place my throne of glory on the Rock, since I am the sovereign God, and David is the King of the Children of Israel”.  

Note the use of the name Ayrūshalayim in its Biblical form, with a translation of the name, and the lām and nūn al-taʾākīd, laying stress on the verbs, and giving it a prophetic aura. The last sentence has clear Jewish connotations. In fact, according to this tradition the temple will be reinstated by ʿAbd al-Malik after which God will once again place his throne of glory there.

The mention of David, the king of the children of Israel here, leaves no doubt that the aim is to restore the ancient Jewish Temple.

This rare tradition exposing the initial connection to Jewish tradition, which was identified as one of the Isrāʾīliyyāt, was later adapted and censured, leaving out David and the Children of Israel.

The idea that God’s throne was located on the rock is an ancient Jewish idea. The Ark of the Covenant was conceived as God’s throne or footstool and Jeremiah prophesies that the whole of Jerusalem will replace the ark as God’s throne (Jer. 3: 16–7). Jewish legend speaks about the “lower throne” which is found underneath the “heavenly throne” and in fact reaches all the way up to it.81 This tradition resonates in Muslim literature as well. Ibn al-Murajjā cites the convert Kaʿb al-Ahḅ ār: “It is said in the Torah that [Allah] said to the Rock of Bayt al-Maqdis: you are my lowest throne and from you I ascended to heaven...”.  Rosen-Ayalon and Shani claim that the inside of the Dome itself in fact attempts to portray the setting of God’s throne. This idea goes hand-in-hand with many other features attributed to the sakhra ̣ or to bayt al-maqdis in Muslim tradition which originate in Jewish tradition.
Muslims have always known that the Temple Mount is the site of the Jewish Temples. The Arabic words to refer to the area - Bayt al-Maqdis and Haykal - are directly taken from the Hebrew descriptions of the Temple.

Only in this generation are Muslims being taught otherwise - for purely political and antisemitic reasons.

(h//t Yoel)

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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 19 years and 40,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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