Monday, May 31, 2021

From Ian:

Israel did everything it could for peace and was rejected - opinion
That brings us to the distortions. First, when in the history of the world was the side that was attacked with more than 4,000 rockets pressured to stop its own military operation, acknowledged as accurately hitting Hamas targets and not so many civilians by no less than the head of the UN Relief and Works Agency, the obsolete and hate-mongering UN Palestinian refugee organization, after just 11 days? How long did the US carry out military operations in Iraq, killing hundreds of thousands, with little pressure from the world to stop, and little or no evidence that anyone there actually attacked the US? Israel appears to be in a whole new category of nations with its own very special set of rules. But we knew that.

And most importantly: What are the Palestinians supposed to contribute to this? After all, they’re getting either a state or a piece of an Arab-majority confederation or unlimited aid. Where, in all these formulas, is the place where the Palestinians actually have to do something? If you have concluded that I am a charter member of the Oslo-disappointed crowd, you’re right. Oslo was not a complete failure – it saved the lives of many Israeli soldiers and civilians – but it didn’t produce peace.

I still believe that, for the sake of Israel as well as the Palestinians, a two-state solution is best. But I have despaired of ever seeing it negotiated. I have written here that one day it might be imposed. Otherwise, we will continue with the current situation, including a flare-up every few years, and that will be our reality. There is no magic formula of Israeli moves to change that.

It’s a bad neighborhood. As an Israeli, I call it part of the price we must pay for the privilege of living in the Holy Land.
PMW: The PA met 80 times with the ICC – mocking and violating conditions for US funding
Whereas the United States has made statements promising renewed financial support to the Palestinian Authority, the PA is ineligible for US funding. According to US law to be eligible for funding from the Economic Support Fund (ESF), the PA must not “initiate” or “actively support” any International Criminal Court investigation “that subjects Israeli nationals to an investigation for alleged crimes against Palestinians.”

Palestinian Media Watch can now report that this week, the Head of the PA Attorney’s Office for International Legal Cooperation Jamil Sajadiyeh admitted that the PA, ignoring the above US condition, is very actively supporting investigations against Israelis at the ICC:
“Around 80 meetings have been held between Palestine and the ICC, of course with the office of [ICC] General Prosecutor [Fatou Bensouda]. There are nearly 60 cases and letters that have been submitted, all of them telling about the Israeli violations. Monthly reports are being submitted to the ICC via the general prosecutor through the [PA] Ministry of Foreign Affairs.”

[Official PA TV, Palestine This Morning, May 25, 2021]

Sajadiyeh also revealed that the PA is doing this under the instructions of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas himself:
“Palestine has submitted all it can [to the ICC] in order to carry out these investigations. We are [working] according to the instructions of His Honor [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] and all the relevant parties.”

[Official PA TV, Palestine This Morning, May 25, 2021]

PA Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh also openly confirmed this week in an English language interview that the PA has been in contact with the ICC and “submitted files”:
Shtayyeh: “The ICC is a peaceful international court for criminals… and we decided to join… The issue of ICC is something that’s now totally out of our hands, it’s just in the hands of the ICC. Of course, we did join it and we did submit files. The Israelis should know and they should take us serious.”

[Facebook page of PA Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh, May 29, 2021]

United States law is very clear. The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2014 passed in January 2014 under the Obama administration prohibited Economic Support Fund (ESF) aid if the PA “initiate an International Criminal Court judicially authorized investigation, or actively support such an investigation, that subjects Israeli nationals to an investigation for alleged crimes against Palestinians.” The same provision has been adopted every year since, most recently as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, passed in December 2020.

JINSA PodCast: Israel-Gaza War: Assessing the Legality of the Recent Conflict
The international community continues to erroneously accuse Israel of war crimes in the recent conflict with Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza, evincing a serious misunderstanding of international law in both the media and policy realm. Despite Israel’s demonstrated and historical compliance with the Law of Armed Conflict (LOAC)—and Hamas’ repeated and flagrant violations—the accusations persist. Professor Geoffrey Corn, formerly the U.S. Army’s Senior Law of War expert and current Distinguished Fellow at JINSA, and IDF Colonel (ret.) Eli Bar-On, former Deputy Military Advocate General of the IDF, discuss the legal parameters of the latest conflict between Hamas and the Israel Defense Forces, offering insight into the purpose of LOAC and the importance of respecting it, rather than misconstruing it.

Dani Dayan: Real Peace Depends on Recognizing Israel's Right to Exist
President Biden recently described in a nutshell the entire Middle East peace process: "Let's get something straight here. Until the region says unequivocally, they acknowledge the right of Israel to exist as an independent Jewish state, there will be no peace." He articulated a principle that is too often overlooked: Achieving peace will require a sincere and genuine internalization by everyone in the region, including the Palestinian national movement, of Israel's legitimacy as a Jewish state.

But many Palestinians seem to see themselves as having the exclusive right to the land. Hence, they do not want to compromise. In an interview with Israel Radio in 2017, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres casually mentioned that it is "completely clear that the Temple that the Romans destroyed in Jerusalem was a Jewish temple." Shortly thereafter, the Palestinian Minister for Jerusalem Affairs said Guterres "must issue an apology to the Palestinian people."

Simply recognizing that Israel is strong may be enough for a truce, but not for genuine peace. The day Palestinians accept Israel's right to exist as the legitimate homeland of the Jewish people, a real peace process will begin.
Tzipi Livni: We Cannot, and Should Not, Give Hamas Legitimacy
National conflicts cannot be resolved by wars and violence, but only by a political resolution, leadership and compromise. A religious conflict is not a conflict over rights, but a fight against the right of others to live by their faith. For religious ideologists, there is no compromise.

Hamas is a radical Islamic terror organization that is fighting not to establish a Palestinian state but against the existence of Jewish "infidels" living in Israel. In 2006 the international Quartet set forward parameters for Hamas that included acceptance of previous peace agreements between Israel and the Palestinians, commitment to nonviolence, and recognition of Israel. Hamas refused.

Had Hamas adopted these principles, the lives of the residents of Gaza might today look different, and Gaza could flourish. But for Hamas, ending the conflict is something to which it will never agree. Without accepting these conditions, there's no hope for peace with Hamas; therefore, we cannot, and should not, give it legitimacy.

There is no doubt, as President Biden rightfully expressed, that a country has the right to defend itself. In this case, we must defend ourselves against terror by a group that does not accept our very existence. Criticizing any government policy is legitimate, but denying the right of a country to defend its citizens is not.

We must cooperate and support everything that strengthens pragmatism and weakens extremists. The solution must reflect both sides' legitimate rights, aspirations and interests, with compromises that allow us both to fulfill our legitimate national aspirations and live side-by-side in peace and security.
My mother was born in Sheikh Jarrah in 1921
As the Sheikh Jarrah case awaits the court's decision, many voices can be heard asserting that Israeli Jews are "colonizing" the Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrakh and that Israel is trying to "Judaize" Jerusalem. My family’s history undermines those claims and suggests that the accusations are but another attempt to eradicate the history of a Jewish community.

My mom, Miriam, was born in 1921 in the Shimon Ha’Tzadik neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrakh., The Jewish presence in Sheikh Jarrah centered on the tomb of Shimon HaTzadik, one of the last members of the Great Assembly, the governing body of the Jewish people after the Babylonian Exile.

According to the Babylonian Talmud, Shimon HaTzadik met with Alexander the Great when the Macedonian army passed through the Land of Israel and convinced him not to destroy the Second Temple. For years Jews made pilgrimages to his tomb in Sheikh Jarrah, a practice documented in travel literature. In 1876, the cave and the adjoining land, planted with 80 ancient olive trees, were purchased by the Jews for 15,000 francs. Dozens of Jewish families built homes on the property.

The Turkish Ottoman census of 1905, counted 97 Jewish families living there. In spite of the so-called “Arab revolt” of the 1930’s when some Jewish families were uprooted, it remained a Jewish neighborhood until 1948 when the Jewish residents were driven out by the Jordanian army which overran the area and their homes were occupied by Arabs.

In the 1880’s, when Jerusalem was a majority Jewish city (going back to the 1848 Ottoman Turk census), terror and threats were a daily part of life for all Jewish inhabitants as they have been since. My mom’s mother, Sarah, was a teenager in 1911, when her father Chaim Eisenbach, saved the life of Rabbi Rachmastrivka at the Western Wall, by shielding his bloodied body from murderous Arab attackers. Chaim Eisenbach walked with a limp thereafter and Sarah never recovered from seeing this fearless and devoted man return home beaten to a pulp.

When Sarah married my grandfather Shimon Gotlieb, they moved in 1919 to the Shimon Ha’Tzadik neighborhood. Shimon’s family traced back to the Shlah HaKadosh who arrived in Palestine in 1621. My mom’s parents were terrified by marauding mobs of Arabs in various Jerusalem neighborhoods including the Western Wall and the Machane Yehuda marketplace. They left Jerusalem in 1927, trying to escape from anti-Jewish violence. The rest of my mom’s family remained and live in Jerusalem to this very day.
What Does ‘Justice for Sarah Halimi’ Mean?
Justice, in the strictly legal sense of that word, has already been denied to her in France. The only other possible judicial avenues at this point are the European Court of Human Rights, which is a long shot, or putting Traoré on trial in Israel under the Jewish state’s own antisemitism law, as some people have rather hopefully suggested; however, the French categorically don’t do extraditions.

At a recent online rally for Sarah Halimi, her son, Yonatan, delivered a stark message to French Jews. “My mother always taught us to take responsibility. … It is very difficult for us that today, the justice system, the authorities did not assume their own responsibility,” he stated, adding, “each of us should guarantee his own security because, unfortunately, security in France is not assured.”

Some might interpret that last line as a call for more communal self-defense; others might hear in it a cry for more aliyah to Israel; and still others might take it as a mere statement of fact. After all, less than a year after Sarah Halimi was murdered, another Jewish woman living alone in Paris — 85-year-old Holocaust survivor Mireille Knoll — was robbed, stabbed to death, and then burned by two young men who preyed on her based on the conviction that Jews, because they are rich and mean with their pennies, always have plenty of cash squirreled away in their homes.

France is in no position to guarantee that another atrocity of this kind won’t happen again. Neither, frankly, is any other European country. True, because of Sarah Halimi’s terrible ordeal, it’s unlikely that a future killer in France will be able to turn a drug habit into legal good fortune — and that is to be welcomed. However, as far the law is concerned, that may be all the justice there is.
French Judiciary Frees Extremist Antisemitic Murderer
The murderer, under the influence of an illicit substance, was immediately sent to a mental institution, not to prison. Who decided that? Usually, a person arrested after a crime and found to be "under the influence" is arrested, placed in a cell to sober up, then charged by a judge. Why was this case not treated the same way?

Judge Ihouelou repeatedly violated the most basic rules of her profession by behaving in a strikingly biased way. First, she refused to allow any reconstruction of the crime. She ruled that reconstructing the crime would be "traumatic" for the criminal. She also refused to meet the lawyers of the victim's sister and children to hear what they had to say.

How could a Court of Appeal validate an investigation in which a reconstruction of the crime never took place; in which the lawyers for the family were never heard, and at the end of which, the decision was rendered solely on the basis of a psychiatric report written months after the facts; based mainly on the statements of a murderer, and contradicted by another psychiatric report?

"[T]his affair... is also the illustration for those who might still need it, of the vital utility of Israel so that justice is done to the Jews all over the world.... due to the failure of French justice". — Raphaël Nisand French radio commentator, Tribune Juive, April 25, 2021.

A verdict based on an "acute delirium" leading to no longer being responsible for one's actions is medically unacceptable, because cannabis does not induce delirium, but only suspends inhibitions. "The murderer," he wrote, "clearly discerned the reference text which could guide his action, and far from creating confusion in him, cannabis only helped to lift ordinary inhibitions. The poison did not alter his behavior and his judgment, it magnified them". — Charles Melman, renowned French psychiatrist and founder of the International Freudian Association, Tribune Juive, May 5, 2021.
Hamas Changed the Rules of the Gaza Game
The rocket volley that was launched on Jerusalem was a blunt and conscious violation of the status quo in Gaza for the past year and a half. The fighting came as quality of life in Gaza was continually improving and after Israel promoted many moves designed to ensure civilian stability - from issuing traders exit permits, through promoting exports, to expanding its fishing zone and providing broad assistance to help eradicate Covid-19.

Hamas' attack attests to how it perceives the status quo: nebulous understandings from which it can opt in and out according to its whims. The Israeli side had worked strenuously to preserve the arrangement to guarantee long-lasting peace in the Strip.

Hamas was under the impression that Israel was too afraid to undercut the status quo and that after several days of fighting it could return back to square one or even secure further concessions. However, Hamas found itself paying a much heavier toll than it had originally expected.

Now, as the dust settles, Israel faces a dilemma - reverting to the status quo ante or changing the rules of the game. A swift reversion to the conditions that existed before the operation would signal to Hamas that its aggression does not entail any consequences. Given the non-binding nature in which Hamas perceives ceasefire agreements, Israel may also need to adopt a similar approach.
Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah coordinated Gaza fighting in joint war room — report
Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Hezbollah coordinated with Hamas on the recent fighting in Gaza between Palestinian terrorists and Israel, according to the editor-in-chief of a Lebanese daily affiliated with Hezbollah.

Ibrahim Al-Amine, editor of the pro-Hezbollah Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar, told Hezbollah’s Al-Manar network over the weekend that during the 11-days of fighting in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, officers from the IRGC, Hamas and Hezbollah set up a joint military operations center in Beirut.

The commander of the IRGC’s overseas Quds Force, Esmail Ghaani, visited the operations center twice during the military hostilities, according to Al-Amine.

The newspaper editor claimed Hezbollah sent weapons and ammunition to Gaza and “moved a number of Palestinian resistance officers out of the Strip during the aggression,” according to Al-Manar.

Palestinian factions were also provided with data on the movements of Israeli forces, Al-Amine asserted, asserting drones were used to prevent Israel from springing an “ambush” on terror operatives along the border.

He also said if Israel “expanded its aggression, the entire axis of resistance would have confronted it,” referring to Iran and its regional proxies.
Airstrikes on Gaza Tunnels Reduced Long-Range Missile Fire
Hamas' command, control, and war-fighting capabilities were based in its "Metro" underground tunnel network beneath Gaza, a senior IDF officer in the Southern Command explained. "As soon as we began attacking the Metro in a certain area, we saw immediately that Hamas was no longer able to fire long-range missiles from that area, and was no longer able to launch synchronized attacks from there on Israel. After each section of the Metro was attacked, we saw the difference immediately, and how this reduced the quantity, the ability, and the effectiveness of their operations."

"The underground was their brain, and we've now taken this from them. They also understand that whoever enters these tunnels must take into account that they are a death trap. Already by the second night we saw the change. They immediately changed their method of operation and moved their management of the war above ground, which enabled us to take advantage of the opportunity to target their commanders.... Hamas now faces a dilemma regarding whether to rebuild the tunnels. They were sure these were protected areas."
Did a Hidden Hamas Weapons Cache Cause Deadly Gaza Explosion?
Israeli airstrikes targeted underground tunnels used by Hamas on Al-Wahda Street in Gaza City on May 16. An Israeli military official said the attack only struck the street and not any nearby buildings, but in the resulting explosion, three apartment buildings collapsed and 48 people died, according to Gaza's Health Ministry, making it one of the deadliest hours of the recent conflict.

The official said that something located above the tunnels that the military didn't know about "caused a different and much bigger explosion," collapsing the buildings. The official said there was no warning to the buildings' residents because Israel had carried out strikes on other similar tunnels without impacting the homes above them.

Azzam Al-Kolak, who lived on the top floor of one of the buildings, said engineers who visited the site told him the building dropped some 40 feet below street level.
Egypt’s Intelligence Chief Holds Truce Talks With Hamas in Gaza
Egypt’s intelligence chief met Hamas leaders in Gaza on Monday to try to bolster a ceasefire between the Palestinian militant group and Israel and to discuss reconstruction plans following the recent hostilities, Egyptian and Palestinian officials said.

The visit was the first by an Egyptian intelligence chief to the enclave since the early 2000s.

“The discussion is focused on ways to cement the calm and Gaza reconstruction plans following the recent Israeli aggression,” said a Hamas official, who asked not to be named.

Hamas officials, led by Gaza chief Yehya Al-Sinwar, would urge Cairo to pressure Israel to stop “its assaults against our people in Jerusalem and Sheikh Jarrah,” he said.

Eleven days of fighting between Israel and Hamas erupted on May 10 amid Palestinian anger at Israeli police raids around the al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem and plans to evict Palestinians from the Sheikh Jarrah district of the city to make way for Jewish settlers.

Gaza medical officials said 253 Palestinians were killed during the fighting. Palestinian rockets and missiles killed 13 people in Israel.

Large posters of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Egyptian flags decorated streets across the enclave to greet intelligence chief Abbas Kamel. Hundreds of people lined up outside the entrance to Gaza waving Egyptian flags as his motorcade drove by.
Sinwar: Hamas ready for expedited prisoner swap negotiations with Israel
Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar hinted on Monday that his group was close to reaching a prisoner exchange agreement with Israel. “There is a real opportunity to achieve progress” regarding a prisoner exchange agreement with Israel, Sinwar told reporters in Gaza City after meeting with the head of the Egyptian General Intelligence Service Abbas Kamel.

Hamas is ready to hold indirect negotiations with Israel to reach a prisoner swap, Sinwar said.

“We are confident that we are able to extract our rights,” he added. “I want to tell you something. Remember the number 1,111. What are the details of this number? I can’t say at this moment. But you need to remember this number well.”

Sinwar was apparently referring to the number of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel that his group is demanding in return for two Israeli civilians and the bodies of two IDF soldiers held by the Gaza-based terrorist group.

Sinwar said that efforts to reach a prisoner exchange agreement had witnessed “movements” in the past, but were stopped due to the unstable political situation in Israel after the last general elections.
Marwan Barghouti expected to be part of any prisoner exchange
Abbas Kamel, the director of Egypt’s General Intelligence Service, met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem on Sunday amid Cairo’s efforts to solidify the Hamas-Israel truce it brokered 10 days ago.

From there, Kamel headed north to Ramallah for talks with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and senior PA officials.

Palestinian sources in Ramallah who were in the meeting told The Media Line on condition of anonymity that Kamel was working to expand the scope of his negotiations with Hamas officials to include a “mega deal” that involved the return of the bodies of Israeli soldiers and of Israelis held by Hamas.

“The Egyptians are insisting on an all-encompassing deal that includes the reconstruction of Gaza, for the return of Israelis held by Hamas,” said the source.

Hamas in the past has said any prisoner exchange must include Palestinian leader Marwan Barghouti.

Barghouti, an influential Fatah leader, is serving five life sentences plus 40 years in an Israeli prison, after being convicted of responsibility for the killings of four Israelis and a Greek Orthodox priest during the Second Intifada, or Palestinian uprising, of 2000-2005.
2 Palestinians charged with terrorism for rock attack that injured baby
Prosecutors on Monday filed terror charges against two Palestinian men for throwing rocks at a car during clashes in Jerusalem earlier this month, lightly injuring a 7-month-old Jewish baby, who was struck in the head.

The suspects, residents of East Jerusalem’s A-Tur neighborhood ages 18 and 20, were indicted on suspicion of a terrorist act of aggravated sabotage, a terrorist act of throwing a rock at a vehicle, and intentionally damaging a car for racist motives.

Police announced the arrest of the two last week and prosecutors requested they remain in custody until the end of the legal proceedings.

According to the indictment, the baby was in the car with her parents as they drove from the Mount of Olives to Mount Scopus on the morning of May 10, when the father had to slow down while driving through A-Tur due to traffic.

The family was spotted by the suspects, who the indictment alleges then pelted the car with rocks “out of a nationalistic-ideological and racist motive.”

The rocks broke the windshield and one of them struck the baby in the head.
Four Jews charged with terrorism after allegedly stabbing Arab in Jerusalem
Prosecutors filed terrorism charges on Sunday against four Jewish men accused of stabbing an Arab man in a Jerusalem market two weeks ago, seriously wounding him.

The victim, 25, was at his place of work — a burger restaurant in the Mahane Yehuda market — when he was stabbed ten times by his assailants. He was rushed to Shaare Zedek Medical Center in the city, where doctors found that a knife wielded by one of his assailants had torn open his lung and liver.

He was eventually released in good condition. His family did not wish to speak to the press, a spokesperson for the hospital said at the time.

The identities of the stabbing victim’s assailants, who are in their late twenties and early thirties, are under a gag order. Israeli police regularly obtain court orders to bar the publication of suspects’ identity in cases they deem sensitive.

Three of the defendants were arrested by the Shin Bet security service and the police in a joint operation, the Shin Bet said in a statement a week and a half ago. They were afterwards charged with terror and attempted murder. The fourth was charged with terror and deliberate grievous bodily harm.
Security officer stabbed in south by man who entered Israel from Gaza
A Palestinian man armed with a knife entered Israel from the Gaza Strip and stabbed a security guard, lightly injuring him, outside an Israeli town near the enclave on Sunday night in a suspected terror attack, Israeli authorities said.

The Israel Defense Forces said early Monday that it was investigating the case, specifically how the man crossed into Israel from Gaza without being stopped.

Though Palestinians regularly attempt to cross into Israel from Gaza, it is highly uncommon for them to make it so far into Israeli territory without being seen and detained by Israeli troops.

According to the IDF, the assailant was spotted by community security officers as he was walking along the road near the Sdeh Avraham community in the Hevel Eshkol area of southern Israel, near the borders with Gaza and Egypt.

When they approached him, the man took out a knife and stabbed one of the security officers. The other officer at the scene shot the assailant, injuring him, according to police.

The wounded security officer, who was unarmed as he had been barred from carrying a gun, was taken to a nearby hospital for medical treatment. The suspected assailant was reportedly shot dead. The IDF said he had been “neutralized.”
IDF: 'Rolling Stone' article is slanderous
Along with “beautiful female soldiers lip-syncing to Dua Lipa’s ‘Levitating’ or marching in fatigues and doing dances to military music,” the Rolling Stone feature used the example of influencer Natalia Fadeev as being a “thirst trap.”

Like most Israelis, Fadeev is an IDF reservist and has uploaded pro-Israel content to her personal Instagram page. But being a reservist in a Border Police unit does not make her an active soldier. The IDF cannot control what she posts on her account.

“There’s no law against a woman posting on her social media of her in a bikini, but it’s not something that is promoted or organized by the IDF,” the senior officer said. “It’s not something that we sponsor or support; it’s not something that is shared or retweeted by our pages.” He said he “stands behind every piece of content” uploaded to official IDF accounts.

Private accounts, on the other hand, are another story. Such accounts are not monitored or regulated by the IDF, the senior officer said, adding: “It’s not our business and nothing we control.”

The IDF has had its fair share of controversies in which soldiers, both female and male, have uploaded pictures of themselves half naked or in underwear holding their weapons.

Those pictures, though, were uploaded on private accounts, not on official military channels.

“We are not using women or men in any unfitting circumstances; that’s very easily proven,” the senior officer said.

A search of IDF social-media channels on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, Snapchat and Twitter did not find photos of half-naked female soldiers with weapons.

This is not to promote any propaganda by either side. But in the era of the Me Too movement, it is surprising to see such a big international magazine publish an article in which a female journalist accuses an entire military of sexual harassment.

That is especially clear since some easy fact-checking on social media shows it is not the case.
Financial Times legitmises 'Al-Aqsa Mosque is in danger' libel
First, the FT journalist fails to note that the Temple Mount was closed to Jews for nearly three weeks, beginning in early May, in order to lessen the chances of Palestinian violence. So, the “increase” in Jews visiting in reality merely refers to a number greater than zero.

Additionally, note how the Palestinian “claim” that those Jews visiting Judaism’s holiest site are “extremists” who want to destroy al-Aqsa and build a Third Temple on the site, and the mosque director’s warning that the “settler’s” visit to the site are “provocations”, goes unchallenged by the journalist, who evidently doesn’t find it peculiar that peaceful visits by Jews to the holy site are seen as a threat.

The fact is that various forms of the “Al-Aqsa is in danger” libel has been used by Palestinian extremists to incite violence against Jews for nearly one-hundred years – that is, it precedes, by over four decades, Israeli control of the site. To this day, official Palestinian Authority leaders, and their government controlled media outlets, consistently peddle such lies, often characterising any Jewish presence whatsoever at the Temple Mount/al-Aqsa Mosque compound as a “defilement” and “invasion”.

The cry that the al-Aqsa Mosque is endangered by Jews is nothing less than an antisemitic conspiracy theory, and the FT’s uncritical amplification of the most recent charge reflects a larger pattern of Western commentators framing Palestinian pathologies as legitimate grievances.
Haaretz Corrects Erroneous Reference to Jewish Prayer on Temple Mount
The Hebrew version of Nir Hasson’s article, in both print and online, does not contain the misinformation regarding Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount. It more accurately states (CAMERA’s translation):
According to Palestinian sources in the city, this was the case a few years ago when activists from the Al-Murabitun movement would protest Jews going up to the Temple Mount.

In response to communication from CAMERA, Haaretz issued a “stealth” correction to the English digital article, removing the erroneous reference to Jewish prayer, but not appending a note to the article alerting readers to the change. A correction did not appear in the print edition. The amended article now refers to “the Al-Murabitun movement, a group of demonstrators who used to protest when Jews visited the Temple Mount.”

Haaretz had previously corrected the same errors, which had likewise appeared only in the English edition and not the parallel Hebrew articles, in 2013. For additional instances in which misinformation which had not appeared in the Hebrew edition was introduced into Haaretz‘s English coverage, see “Haaretz, Lost in Translation.”

Both the Hebrew and English versions of Hasson’s story mischaracterizee the Al-Murabitun’s activity as “protest.” In fact, as reported by Cohen, the Morabiton harassed and intimidated Jewish visitors, by crowding them into tight spaces and at times using physical violence against them. Haaretz did not clarify the nature of the Al-Murabitun’s activity.
Deutsche Welle Corrects Hamas Doesn’t Accept Two States
Furthermore, it states: “There is no alternative to a fully sovereign Palestinian State on the entire national Palestinian soil, with Jerusalem as its capital.”

In response to communication from CAMERA, Deutsche Welle editors commendably and forthrightly corrected the article in both English and German. The amended article now more accurately reports:
Hamas had said in a 2017 paper that it could foresee a national discussion about a Palestinian state based on the borders that were in place before the Six-Day War in 1967. But the very same paper also said there was no alternative to a fully sovereign state spanning the entirety of Palestinian territory, with Jerusalem as the capital. The latter would practically rule out coexistence with Israel.

(Of course, as Haniyeh made clear, and as the organization’s policy document explicitly states, by “Palestinian territory,” Hamas means “from the River Jordan in the east of the Mediterranean in the west, and from Ras Al-Naqurah [Rosh Hanikra] in the north to Umm Al-Rashrash [Eilat] in the south.” Though Deutsche Welle’s amended text does not spell out the point that Hamas considers all of Israel to be “Palestinian territory,” the added sentence about the implausibility of coexistence under Hamas’ position provides critical context.)

In addition, the following note alerting readers to the change was appended to the bottom of the article:
This article was changed on May 28, 2021, to include mention of a 2017 paper in which Hamas took a position on creation of a Palestinian state. It has been translated from German by Jon Shelton.

PLO, PA, and Fatah officials call for more riots to defend Al-Aqsa against Israel’s “satanic plans”

Fatah official encourages violence: “It is fitting to throw rocks at the greatest satan” – Israel

Seth Frantzman: How did Iran target a secret CIA site in Iraq?
Targeting US drones in Iraq using Iranian drones may be a sort of new drone "world order", so to speak, taking place in the Middle East, especially if Iran knew this hangar was used for surveillance droned that might one day be used against its own forces in Iraq. The region, as it were, is now rapidly approaching a kind of cross between The Terminator, Robocop and Skynet, as machines are doing the fighting and people are just watching computer screens – though we may not be there quite yet.

At the very least the US needs to be concerned that Iran is collecting intelligence on its covert and secure sites, its hangars and other systems in Iraq, and that Iran’s vastly expanding precision missile and drone technology could be used more in the future.

The drones give Iran some plausible deniability because they can be launched by Iranian proxies. However, the gyroscopes and other systems on the drones link them to Iran, at least in the past.

It should be noted that a drone mysteriously entered Israeli airspace on May 18 and was shot down by Israel. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu later said it came from Syria or Iraq. A drone damaged a hangar in Asad base in Iraq on May 8. The Erbil attack was on April 14. These attacks may all be linked and have an address in Iran.


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