Wednesday, October 19, 2022

10/19 Links Pt1: Australia’s flip-flop diplomacy on Jerusalem as Israel's capital; A Eulogy for the Iran Nuclear Deal; PA Govt. Still Pays Terrorists as US Aid Dollars Flow

From Ian:

JPost Editorial: Australia’s flip-flop diplomacy on Jerusalem as Israel's capital
Huh? The status of west Jerusalem needs to be resolved in negotiations?
If west Jerusalem is not sovereign Israel, does this mean that Canberra believes that the city should, as stipulated by the 1947 partition plan, eventually be a corpus separatum under a permanent international regime? Western Jerusalem, as Australia and the rest of the world fully know, will always remain a part of Israel, and no serious peace proposal has ever suggested otherwise.

The move was hailed by the Palestinian Authority. Of course it was, since it reinforces the rejectionist tendency amid the Palestinians and strengthens their destructive illusion that if they just wait long enough, and pressure hard enough, they will have their demands met with no concessions needed on their part.

What exactly has the PA done of late to merit such an Australian prize? Should the PA be rewarded for having its prime minister Mohammed Shtayyeh fan the flames of violence by going to Jenin – as he did on Sunday – to praise Palestinian “martyrs”?

Then there was the way the decision was taken. On Monday, The Guardian newspaper reported that Canberra’s recognition of west Jerusalem was deleted from the Australian foreign ministry’s website. The foreign ministry issued a flat denial that there was a change of policy, yet a few hours later reversed itself and announced exactly that change of policy.

Prime Minister Yair Lapid was spot on when he said, “In light of the way in which this decision was made in Australia, as a hasty response to an incorrect report in the media, we can only hope that the Australian government manages other matters more seriously and professionally.” For Israel, there are a couple of important takeaways from the whole episode

First, Jerusalem should prepare for the possibility that Australia might recognize a Palestinian state. If this sounds far-fetched, consider the following: Three years ago, the Australian Labour Party called for a walk back of Morrison’s Jerusalem decision as well as for the next Labour government to recognize “Palestine” as a state. If the party followed through on one of those pledges, why think they may not do the same on the other?

Secondly, Canberra’s flip-flop should lead to a greater appreciation in Jerusalem of US president Joe Biden’s decision to not act like the Australians and reverse his predecessor’s decision to move the embassy, even though Biden himself was opposed to the Jerusalem embassy move. Biden did something that Albanese in Australia was unable to do: Stand up to a minority voice in his party pushing an anti-Israel agenda that can only weaken ties with Israel.
Australian premier defends Jerusalem walkback, but says it ‘could have been done better’
The Australian prime minister said on Wednesday that his government’s reversal of its recognition of western Jerusalem as the capital of Israel could have been handled better, but defended the move, saying it had returned Australia to the international mainstream.

“Some things can always be done better,” said Anthony Albanese after Canberra’s announcement of the decision drew criticism and led to a fallout with Jerusalem.

However, he went on to state that the Labor Party, which he leads, opposed the 2018 decision by then-Prime Minister Scott Morrison to recognize western Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in the first place. He accused the previous government of hypocrisy, noting that even after the recognition, Morrison’s administration failed to move the Australian embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
Australia keeps Palestinian Jerusalem capital hope after Israel reversal
Australia’s policy towards Palestinian hopes for a capital in Jerusalem appeared to remain intact on Wednesday, a day after it reversed its recognition of western Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

“In December 2018, Australia acknowledged the aspirations of the Palestinian people for a future state with its capital in East Jerusalem,” the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) website read after it announced that it was reversing its December 2018 policy change pertaining to Israel.

DFAT also deleted calls for democracy and good governance by the Palestinian Authority from its website, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

What happened with Australia and Jerusalem?
Earlier this week, Australia’s Foreign Minister Penny Wong denied that the excision of Australia’s recognition of western Jerusalem as Israel’s capital from the DFAT website indicated a policy change, only to say the opposite the following day without warning.

“Jerusalem is a final status issue that should be resolved as part of any peace negotiations…This reverses the [former prime minister Scott] Morrison Government’s recognition of West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel,” Wong stated.

Decision takes both Jlem and Australian Jewish community by surprise - Adv. Arsen Ostrovsky

Australian government's West Jerusalem decision is a 'slap in the face': Israeli MP
Israeli MP Sharren Haskel says the Albanese government’s announcement that it will reverse Australia’s recognition of West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is a “slap in the face”.

“To be honest, doesn’t matter what anyone tells us, Jerusalem’s always been our cultural, traditional, our religious centre,” Ms Haskel told Sky News host Peta Credlin.

“It’s part of our identity and will forever be the centre and the capital of our country and part of our hearts.

“This is extremely disappointing.”

Ms Haskel said it was more disappointing that the announcement came amid a Jewish holiday, during which they celebrate Jerusalem.

UK church leaders have no right to block embassy move to Jerusalem - opinion
If history has taught us anything, it is that mixing religion with politics is generally a very bad idea. After the Crusades, the Hundred Years’ War, and the Islamic State group, one would think that leading church figures would have gotten the message. Yet two leading Christian clerics in the UK are pressuring Prime Minister Liz Truss as she mulls a political matter of no religious concern to them. For more stories from The Media Line go to

Cardinal Vincent Nichols, president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, sent a letter to Liz Truss, England’s new prime minister, asking her not to relocate the British Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Israel’s capital, as she had indicated she might do. Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, the chief cleric in the Church of England, followed suit in a newspaper interview.

Had there been a scintilla of religious or moral basis for such criticism, then the messages to Prime Minister Truss would have been completely appropriate. There is none, however, and the two clerics know it.

Since the 1967 Six Day War, the city of Jerusalem was reunited under Israeli control. Ever since then, Christians have enjoyed undisturbed full access to their holy sites. The Israeli authorities are even called in to restore calm when conflicts between different Christian groups flair up from time to time. Under Israeli jurisdiction, there has been nothing like the desecration of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem in 2002 by Palestinian gunmen.

Cardinal Nichols chose to cross over and weigh in the world of politics: “A relocation of the UK Embassy would be seriously damaging to any possibility of lasting peace in the region and to the international reputation of the United Kingdom.”

This is very difficult to accept. Has the corrupt Palestinian Authority – whose pay-to-slay-Jews policy rewards murderers of Jews with stipends for the terrorists and families, which never passed a law protecting the religious rights of Christians, whose media whip up hysteria with the big lie that Al-Aqsa Mosque is under attack by Jews on every Jewish holiday – ever shown any real commitment to peace with its Jewish neighbors? The truth is that the US move of its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem had virtually no impact and neither will the UK’s move.
An Open Letter to Archbishop Justin Welby
Coming from a church leader, your warning has ominous overtones. In Nazi Germany theologians promoted an Aryan Jesus and a dejudaized Bible ('The Aryan Jesus: Christian Theologians and the Bible in Nazi Germany' – Susan Herschel). Is this any different from trying to promote a non-Jewish international Jerusalem? How can that serve the purposes of peace? Peace is possible only where there is truth.

It seems like a subtle move to delegitimize Israel. In the Bible, Zion, a synonym for Jerusalem, is also used interchangeably for the Jewish people and the land of Israel as a whole. Allow me to quote our late founder Mother Basilea Schlink in her book 'Israel, My Chosen People':"The covenant of God with Abraham and His people does not speak of a possession and inheritance in heaven; rather, it refers to the land of Canaan, which God Himself has granted Israel in the covenant He made with her as a people living on earth. All the biblical prophecies about the regathering of dispersed Israel declare that she shall be brought back to her own country, the land of her fathers, the land of Canaan, which was promised to Abraham. There 'the Lord will inherit Judah as his portion in the holy land, and will again choose Jerusalem' (Zechariah 2:12 RSV, emphasis added).”

If we as the British people fail to honour Israel by doing them the courtesy of acknowledging their ancient capital city, are we not acting against the express will of God? Will this not indeed bring His curse upon us as a nation? We read God's pledge to Abraham: "I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse" (Genesis 12:3 NIV-UK). In some Bible translations "curses you" is rendered as "dishonours you or treats you with contempt”. So in God’s eyes dishonouring Israel or treating her people with contempt amounts to a curse and will bring a curse upon ourselves.

I belong to a community that grew out of a movement of repentance in Germany at the end of WW2. With hindsight, many of the future members saw a clear connection between failing God’s people Israel in their time of need and the bombing of German cities.

I write with deep regret. Surely no one watching the late Queen's funeral will forget your sermon, which was truly outstanding. Nor has the Jewish community been remiss in expressing their gratitude for her life-long dedication for the good of our people. In 1991 HM Queen Elizabeth gave royal assent, over opposition of the House of Lords, for a bill enabling the prosecution of Nazi criminals who had illegally found refuge in Britain

Given the obvious sympathy of the royal family for the Jewish people, I can't help wondering at the implications of your warning about transferring the embassy. Such a warning surely places our new King in an uncomfortable position as nominal head of the Anglican Church.

Respectfully yours
Sister Anastasia Kennedy, Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary, Darmstadt, Germany
PreOccupiedTerritory: Palestinians Warn UK Embassy Move Will Bring Violence, As If Anyone Could Tell Difference (satire)
Leaders of various Palestinian factions threatened today that if British Prime Minister Liz Truss orders her country’s diplomatic representatives in Israel to make Jerusalem their headquarters in recognition of the city as Israel’s capital, as she has indicated is her intention, Palestinians will conduct attacks of various kinds, an admonishment that led several prominent experts to wonder how the materialization of such a threat would differ from the current situation in which Palestinians conduct attacks of various kinds on anyone who disagrees with them.

Truss indicated to incumbent Prime Minister Yair Lapid last month at the United Nations General Assembly that she will instruct her government to examine the feasibility of transferring the Tel Aviv embassy to Jerusalem, signaling acceptance of Israel’s designation of the contested city as its capital. Palestinian leaders in both Gaza and Ramallah warned to expect an explosion of violence if such a move goes forward. Political and security analysts expressed confusion over the meaning of those warnings, given the constant violence that characterizes Palestinian behavior in the first place.

“Like, how would we know if that happened?” wondered Michael Doran, a former White House staffer under George W. Bush. “The baseline for Palestinian activity involves levels of aggressive and violent activities already far beyond what any citizen of the UK would encounter with any regularity, especially since the conflict with the IRA all but ended. How are the British supposed to weigh such threats? For one thing, they tend to react the same to a broken umbrella as to a car bombing, which is to say, with little more than an ‘Oh, dear.’ For another, Palestinian threats have become part of the background noise, part of the scenery, like pigeons crapping all over everything and everyone in Trafalgar Square, not worth the trouble. I remain… unconvinced of the effectiveness of this Palestinian strategy.”
The Israel-Lebanon Gas Deal and U.S. Guarantees
The Israel-Lebanon gas deal is said to include an American guarantee to protect Israeli interests should Lebanon and Hizbullah violate it. However, the U.S. openly acknowledges the agreement may be problematic down the road. In a background briefing by the White House on Tuesday, a senior administration official stated, "We expect that there may be other difficult moments as we implement this agreement moving forward."

"No one can guarantee that opportunities for the future of Israel, for the security of Israel, and for the economic prosperity of Lebanon will still be there at a different time. And if there's any questions in the future of disagreement...the United States has assured both parties that it would use its best efforts through diplomatic means to see if it could help facilitate."

But can Israel trust such guarantees. After the Israel-Lebanon War of 2006, the UNIFIL international force deployed in southern Lebanon following the Israeli withdrawal with a mandate "to ensure that its area of operations is not utilized for hostile activities of any kind." Yet despite UNIFIL's presence, Hizbullah has deployed over 150,000 missiles pointed at Israeli population centers, many of them long-range and precision-guided.

Former U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman tweeted Wednesday that "All Israel is getting is a 'guarantee' from the U.S. What does that say, what is the nature of America's commitment, and why is that good for Israel or America? Remember, Bush's letter to Sharon was ripped up by HRC [Hillary Rodham Clinton] and the Budapest Memorandum was worthless." In 2004, then-Prime Minister Ariel Sharon received a letter from President George W. Bush recognizing Israel's right to build in long-standing Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem and in "settlement blocs" crucial for Israel's security.

Friedman also cited the "worthless" 1994 Budapest Memorandum, which committed "to respect the independence and sovereignty and the existing borders of Ukraine." This guarantee, signed by the U.S., UK and Russia, persuaded the Ukrainian government in Kyiv to give up the world's third largest nuclear arsenal.

‘We Don’t Know Who is Alive’: Concern Mounts for Jews Living in Russian-Occupied Ukraine
Under a haze of early morning cigarette smoke, two Jewish men from Ukrainian cities in areas occupied by Russia were discussing how much they miss their parents. Neither had seen them for months and in the brief exchanges that they have had with them, they could only say so much without fear of putting them in danger.

“We can’t talk about the war,” says Moshe, who is from Kherson, a city in southern Ukraine that has been occupied by Russian troops since early in the war. “I don’t want to make things difficult for her. I think that people are listening in.”

When Russia invaded Ukraine in February, Jewish families in southern and eastern Ukraine faced a difficult choice: flee and become refugees or stay put and protect their homes. Many broke up, as elderly parents refused to or could not leave their hometowns, while their children left with the retreating Ukrainians or took steps to escape the Russian occupation and find themselves back in Ukraine.

“She doesn’t want to leave. It is not because the Russians are there now that she wants to stay,” Moshe says, clearly nervous about giving away too much information to a stranger. “She wants to stay because it is her home.”

Moshe had come to Vinnytsia, a town in western Ukraine, for work two weeks before the invasion. Beside him was Igor from Berdyansk, a town on the Sea of Azov, who smuggled himself across Ukrainian lines after the Russians occupied the city. His decision to leave came after friends were arrested on suspicion of being pro-Ukrainian partisans.

“They occupied the city on March 5,” he says. “I was able to break out in April. They completely shut down the city for a week after they entered the city looking for soldiers and partisans. They were sending people to prison, or rather, that was the good way.”

He, too, left his parents behind. “I speak to them when I can,” he said. “There is not always signal.”

Veering Further Left, Lapid Bans Jewish Prayer on Temple Mount
In an interview with the Arabic-language channel Hala TV, Prime Minister Yair Lapid embraced wholeheartedly the Arab terminology regarding the Temple Mount––the site of two Jewish temples––when he announced: “We are not changing the status quo at Al Aqsa.”

Lapid is notorious for not being the brightest candle in the Menorah, and if you check, you’ll find numerous YouTube clips featuring him claiming the astronomer Copernicus was an ancient Greek (he was an early Renaissance-era Pole), and insisting Rosinante was Don Quixote’s lover (it was his horse). So, he probably wasn’t even aware of his faux pas. But when the Arabs say “Al Aqsa,” they don’t refer to the mosque at the edge of the sacred compound, they mean the entire compound, and so, right off the bat, Shulamit Lapid’s slower child erased 3,000 years of Jewish history and didn’t even know it.

“We will secure the religious rights of Muslims in Al Aqsa,” Lapid continued. “It’s our duty as a government to offer the freedom of worship to any Muslim who wants to pray in Al Aqsa,” adding that his government maintains ongoing communication with Jordan and the Jordanian Waqf agency that runs the site, to make sure Muslims are not denied their God-given rights of worship.

As to Jews, remember them? “We permit the entry of Jews, but we don’t permit Jewish prayers on the Temple Mount (he got it right this time – DI). They ascend and are under supervision to make sure the status quo is not broken.”

“The status quo will not be broken,” he concluded resolutely.
‘The US is Pressing the PA to Increase Security Coordination With Israel’
The United States is applying pressure on the Palestinian Authority to increase security coordination with Israel, as part of a larger effort to reduce violence in Judea and Samaria, commonly known as the West Bank, a former Israeli defense official tells JNS.

A senior P.A. delegation arrived in Washington in early October, headed by Hussein al-Sheikh, secretary-general of the PLO Executive Committee. The delegation met with senior American officials including National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and focused on finding new ways to ease economic conditions for Palestinian civilians, reopening the U.S. consulate in east Jerusalem and reopening the PLO’s office in Washington, according to Col. (res.) David Hacham, a senior research associate at the MirYam Institute and a former advisor on Arab affairs to seven Israeli defense ministers.

“It’s important to note that this was the first official visit to the United States by the Palestinian Authority since 2017, when PA President Mahmoud Abbas placed a boycott on the Trump administration after it recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel,” he said.

Hacham noted the dramatic increase in Palestinian violence targeting Israelis in recent days, following months of steady attacks, stating, “This begs the question of whether we are about to enter a new intifada. As someone who spent years in Gaza during the First Intifada and then as an adviser to defense ministers during the Second, I can say unequivocally that recent events in Judea and Samaria do not point to the outbreak of a third intifada.”
Inside storyBiden-promised plan to operate Allenby crossing 24/7 faces new hurdle
Israel’s already-delayed plan to begin operating the border crossing between the West Bank and Jordan 24/7 — as promised to the Biden administration — has hit yet another hurdle.

When US President Joe Biden was in Israel last July, the White House announced that on September 30, Israel would begin the nonstop operation of Allenby — a key component of a package aimed at improving Palestinian livelihood in the absence of a diplomatic initiative for a two-state solution.

But the White House announcement was not made in full coordination with the Transportation Ministry, which along with the Moroccan Foreign Ministry has also been working to get Allenby running at all hours, according to an official familiar with the matter.

The Transportation Ministry subsequently notified the Biden administration that it didn’t have enough staff to begin the full-time operation of Allenby by September 30.

It instead suggested that it roll out a pilot program on October 24, after the end of the Jewish holiday period.

The trial would last several days and test the Airports Authority’s ability to run Allenby full-time, given that it will require hiring additional staff and reassigning employees from other crossings.
Why Throwing Rocks at Cars in Israel is a Terror Attack
Australia has officially said that they do not recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, a little bit on why rock throwings should be considered as terror attacks here in Israel, more terrorism in Samaria and a speech that shows Yair Lapid’s true colors.

Palestinian Government Still Pays Terrorists as US Aid Dollars Flow
The Palestinian government is still paying imprisoned terrorists stipends and inciting violence against Israel, even as the Biden administration provides nearly half a billion dollars in American taxpayer funds to the government, according to a non-public State Department report recently furnished to Congress.

The Palestinian Authority, which committed to stop these acts to receive new tranches of U.S. aid money, "continued payments to Palestinian prisoners who had committed acts of terrorism, as well as the families of so-called ‘martyrs’ who died while committing acts of terrorism," according to the report, a copy of which was reviewed by the Washington Free Beacon. Official Palestinian government media organizations and social media accounts also "broadcast or published content praising or celebrating acts of violence."

Details from the State Department report are likely to fuel congressional opposition to the Biden administration’s renewed funding of the Palestinian Authority, which almost immediately resumed when the Democratic administration entered office. U.S. aid was slashed by the Trump administration due to the Palestinian Authority’s support for terrorism, as well as a bipartisan U.S. law mandating that American aid be frozen until the Palestinian government ends its terrorist payment policy, also known as "pay-to-slay." That law, the Taylor Force Act, was passed in 2018 and banned the State Department from allocating aid to the Palestinian government until it could certify that payments to terrorists and incitement against Israel ceased.

A State Department spokesman said the administration opposes the Palestinian pay-to-slay program and has repeatedly pressed the Palestinian Authority to stop it. The official also said all U.S. aid is allocated consistent with the law.

Joe Truzman: Gaza-Based Factions Claim to Have Presence in the West Bank
Over the last several weeks, Gaza-based factions Mujahideen Brigades and the Popular Resistance Movement (PRM) have issued statements claiming they have established a presence in the West Bank amid a surge in shooting attacks against Israel Defense Forces (IDF) troops and Israeli citizens.

On Sep. 14, Mujahideen Brigades announced its presence in the West Bank and claimed several attacks on IDF sites at Mount Gerizim, the Deir Sharaf and the Hawara checkpoint.

“We announce our adoption of several operations carried out by a group of heroes from the Mujahideen Brigades in Nablus,” the statement said.

The claim was supported by documentation purportedly showing a Mujahideen Brigades fighter shooting at the Hawara checkpoint in Nablus. However, the video was heavily censored and did not show the checkpoint coming under fire.

In the following weeks, the organization made five more claims of attacks against Israeli military sites in the West Bank. Evidence supporting their claims was also published, but much like the Sep. 14 video, they did not clearly demonstrate IDF positions being attacked.

On Oct. 8, the PRM – an offshoot of the Popular Resistance Committees – announced it established a presence and carried out attacks in the West Bank in response to IDF operations.

“We announce, with God’s blessing and success, the launch of the first jihadi actions of the al-Nasser Salah al-Din Brigades [PRM] in the occupied West Bank from the city of Jenin, which today repelled the Zionist aggression with valor of its brave sons and men who did not accept submissiveness or humiliation and succumb to the enemy and its dictates,” the statement said.

Abbas’ advisor on Islam: Jews are “humanoids… apes and pigs”
Broadcast of Friday prayers and a sermon by PA Supreme Shari’ah Judge Mahmoud Al-Habbash at a mosque in Ramallah

PA Supreme Shari’ah Judge and Abbas’ advisor Mahmoud Al-Habbash: The collective [Muslim] duty that is obligated today is the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque (i.e., the Temple Mount)… The supreme [duty] is that it be returned, liberated, defended, and purified from the defilement of the occupation and the theft… The minimal duty is at least to visit [the mosque], to awaken to it, so that it will not be abandoned as prey in the hands of the grazing herds of humanoids (i.e., Jews on the Temple Mount), of people or creatures that Allah created in the form of humans, and He said of them: “Shall I inform you of [what is] worse than that as penalty from Allah? [It is that of] those whom Allah has cursed and with whom He became angry and made of them apes and pigs.” [Quran 5:60]… [We Muslims must take care of the mosque] instead of the Al-Aqsa Mosque continuing to be the prey of humanoids who claim that they have a right to it and that they have sovereignty over it, and that [they] have religious and historical rights to it.”
[Official PA TV, Sept. 30, 2022]

Mahmoud Al-Habbash also serves as Chairman of the Supreme Council for Shari'ah Justice and PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ Advisor on Religious Affairs and Islamic Relations.

Palestinian writer wrote to turn children into “self-sacrificing fighters”
Palestinian poet Harun Hashem Al-Rashid: “I wrote for children, in order to develop within them the spirit-”

Official PA TV host: “The spirit of nationalism.”

Harun Hashem Al-Rashid: “’Our land, our land, our Jihad is for its sake. Our death as Martyrs is for its sake. Our land, our land, the Carmel (i.e., area in northern Israel) that is dripping with perfume, the banana, the pine, and the blossoming orange.’ I wrote all of this even for children, in order to develop within them the feeling of affiliation. These children grew up and became men. They became fighters. They became self-sacrificing fighters.”
[Official PA TV, Folk Songs, Sept. 15, 2022]

The program showed archive footage of an interview with Palestinian poet Harun Hashem Al-Rashid, who died in 2020.

PMW: Family proudly celebrates young terrorist’s Martyrdom-death instead of his matriculation
The word “Shahada” in Arabic means both “martyrdom-death” and “certificate.” This dual meaning makes for a chilling play on words when Palestinian teens about to graduate and receive their matriculation certificate instead decide to become terrorists and get themselves killed – “achieve Martyrdom” in Palestinian terms - while attacking Israelis.

When a 19-year-old Palestinian youth recently got killed while shooting at Israeli soldiers, his brother stressed that instead of celebrating his “matriculation certificate” (Shahada), the family celebrated his Martyrdom (Shahada), which made them feel proud: It “raised their heads as high as possible”:
Official PA TV host: “Great masses accompanied [the funeral of] Martyr Ahmed Daraghmeh (i.e., terrorist, shot at Israeli soldiers), 19 … who ascended [to Heaven] while being present in Jenin after occupation forces invaded it…”

Brother of terrorist Ahmed Daraghmeh: “We wanted to celebrate his matriculation certificate (i.e., Shahada in Arabic), but he gave us a Martyrdom (i.e., also Shahada) that raised our heads up high, raised our heads as high as possible, Allah be praised… We wanted to celebrate [the matriculation certificate], but Allah be praised, we celebrated you. And here all the people and all the young people are around you. They want to celebrate you and accompany you [to your wedding] Allah be praised.”
[Official PA TV, Palestine This Morning, Oct. 9, 2022]

In fact, Palestinian Media Watch has exposed that the Palestinian Authority has openly stressed the value of Palestinian youth achieving the “Martydom-Shahada” as compared to the “matriculation certificate-Shahada.” Both the PA’s official daily and news agency have described “death as a Martyr” as being “the path to excellence and greatness” in comparison to achieving good matriculation exam results.

Islamic tradition teaches that a Martyr marries 72 Virgins in Paradise and therefore the Martyr’s funeral is considered his wedding procession.

Mother and sister of Molotov thrower: He wanted to be a Martyr
Sister of terrorist Fayez Damdoum: “His name is Fayez (i.e., “victor/achiever” in Arabic), and he achieved Paradise… Every day he would say that he wants to be like Ibrahim [Al-Nabulsi] (i.e., terrorist)… By Allah, he always said that he wants to act like Ibrahim. He wants do better than Ibrahim Al-Nabulsi. He wants to die as a Martyr and make a great celebration that the entire town will talk about…

Mother of terrorist Fayez Damdoum: [He is] a ransom for the sake of the homeland, for Palestine, for the soil of the land. May Allah be satisfied with him… Every day he would tell me he wants to be a Martyr.
[Official PA TV News, Oct. 1, 2022]

Fayez Damdoum – 17-year-old Palestinian terrorist who attempted to throw Molotov cocktails at Israeli security forces during violent riots in Al-Eizariya, near Jerusalem, on Oct. 1, 2022. The forces shot and killed Damdoum in self-defense.

Ibrahim Al-Nabulsi – Palestinian terrorist and member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades (Fatah’s military wing) who was responsible for a series of shooting attacks targeting Israeli soldiers. Al-Nabulsi resisted arrest and shot at Israeli soldiers who returned fire and killed him in Nablus on Aug. 9, 2022. Al-Nabulsi was a member of a Fatah terror cell that was attacked while planning an imminent attack on Feb. 8, 2022; while Al-Nabulsi escaped, three other members of the cell were shot and killed: Adham Mabrouka Al-Shishani, Muhammad Al-Dakhil, and Ashraf Mubaslat.

Hamas ‘sending Palestinian students to Malaysia for cyber warfare training’
Hamas is sending Palestinian students to Malaysia for cyber-warfare training and operations, Israeli media reported on Tuesday.

According to the Kan News report, Hamas recruited tens of Palestinian youths for training in Malaysia in recent years, with some remaining in the country to conduct cyber operations for the terrorist group.

Hamas is also setting up bases of training in other east Asian countries, including the Philippines, according to the report.

In 2018, Hamas engineer Fadi Muhammad al-Batash was shot dead in Malaysia. He was an expert in attack-drone and rocket systems.

According to Kan, Hamas has been active in Malaysia for almost a decade. Last week, the terror group unveiled its cyber unit at a Gaza Strip ceremony.

Earlier this week, Malaysian police said it had rescued Palestinian man captured by a group of locals who had been engaged by the Mossad. The alleged kidnappers, shackled and in single file, were paraded before the cameras as authorities brought them to the Kuala Lumpur Magistrate’s Court on Oct. 14.

MEMRI: Qataris, Pro-Qatar Twitter Users Launch Campaign Condemning Denmark For Planning To Highlight Qatar’s Human Rights Violations During FIFA World Cup
In response to the wave of criticism to Qatar’s violations of human rights, namely on migrant workers who constructed the facilities in which Qatar will host the players and soccer fans during next month’s FIFA World Cup competition in Doha, Qatar, Qatari citizens as well pro-Qatar Arabs launched an online campaign condemning the Denmark whose uniform sponsor, Hummel announced that the players will wear a monochromatic uniform that pays tribute to the migrant workers who died during pre-tournament construction. In its statement regarding the World Cup uniforms for the Denmark national team, sportswear company Hummel said: “This shirt carries with it a message. We don't wish to be visible during a tournament that has cost thousands of people their lives. We support the Danish national team all the way, but that isn't the same as supporting Qatar as a host nation.”[1]Qatar’s official response was delivered by the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC), the FIFA 2022 World Cup organizer which issued a statement saying “we whole-heartedly reject the trivialising of our genuine commitment to protect the health and safety of the 30,000 workers who built FIFA World Cup stadiums and other tournament projects. That same commitment now extends to 150,000 workers across various tournament services and 40,000 workers in the hospitality sector.”[2] Under the hashtag, Denmark National Team is not Welcome [in Qatar,] the campaign participants denied that any violations have been committed against migrant workers and focused their criticism at Denmark which they accused of mistreating its own migrants populations, disrespecting Islam and Muslims while others have even called for the banning of the Danish national team from entering Qatar and suggesting the legal actions should be carried against Denmark instead of just launching a hashtag in Arabic.

Condemning Demark, Dr. Elham Bader Al-Sada, a Qatari journalist and political analyst posted a tweet in English on September 30, 2022, under the hashtag “Denmark national team is not welcome [in Qatar]” saying: “Denmark should be ashamed before accusing others of violating human rights for these two reasons and the photos only. Denmark has one of the highest rates of femicide in Europe. Hate crimes related to race or religion rose 27% between 2020 and 2021.”[3]

Along the same line, Qatari Twitter user Ahmad Al-Qawbari wrote to his 21.7 thousand users that: “The workers in Qatar live a decent life and better than the life of the Syrian refugees in Denmark who are suffering there and consider it an unsafe country. The Danish Parliament passed a bill called the jewelry bill which allows the government to confiscate refugees’ properties whose value exceeds $1000.”[4]

In a tweet in English, Qatari national and Twitter user Saad Al-Dosari wrote to his 10.5 thousand followers on September 30, 2022: “The last speakers for human rights are the Europeans and the Americans, History will not forget your occupation of African & Asia countries ,killing their people and using them as your slaves .so shut your mouth & your (sic) not welcome to Qatar.”[5]
A Eulogy for the Iran Nuclear Deal
While the Iranian regime is shaken by a protest movement fueled by those who’ve never known a life other than that controlled by the mullahs and their henchmen in the Revolutionary Guard, it is worth reflecting on the wrongheadedness and abject stupidity of the advocates for normalization with this grotesque regime.

The late, great Irving Kristol once quipped that a neoconservative is a liberal who has been mugged by reality. It looks like President Joe Biden and the normalization crowd just ran into the Ayatollah in a dark alley and had to empty their pockets.

How else to explain the recent change in tone from the administration and its allies? White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters Monday, "The door for diplomacy will always remain open, but as of now we don’t see a deal coming together anytime soon." Those remarks followed Iran envoy Robert Malley’s indication that a return to the 2015 nuclear deal is not on the agenda right now.

Shocker. Biden and the Europeans have pretended for nearly two years that this gang of terrorists could be brought to heel through diplomacy. Backed by the scientific consensus of elite liberal opinion, the policy heavyweights in the Biden administration were certain that the same regime that murders teenage girls in Tehran was capable of hashing out a deal in Vienna on uranium enrichment levels—and keeping its word.

Imagine what the world would look like now if the Biden administration had gotten its wish. Billions of dollars in cash flowing to Iran as the ayatollahs simultaneously sell hundreds of millions, if not billions, in weapons to Russia for use against Ukraine.

Jean-Pierre, the White House flack, also assured reporters Monday that the White House "will continue to confront Iran’s behavior in the region." What, exactly, is the evidence of that? Furthermore, it would be nice to know what the White House plans to do about Iran’s malign behavior beyond the region, as the country now fuels the conflict in Ukraine.
Iran is killing Ukrainians — why is Biden still courting them?
But heeding those calls has three very serious downsides for Biden.

First, it will cause turmoil in his own party. The president courted the progressives in the 2020 election by endorsing their view that a peaceful accommodation on Iran was easily within reach. If Biden were to return American policy to the grooves fashioned by Trump, he would generate fierce opposition from the most dynamic element on the left.

Second, a policy of “maximum pressure” could easily lead to a hot conflict with Iran. With war raging in Europe, and tensions rising with China over Taiwan, the last thing that Biden’s Pentagon needs right now is a military escalation in the Middle East.

Third, “maximum pressure” would remove Iranian oil from the market. Technically, the Biden administration has kept the sanctions on Iran. In reality, however, it has offered sanctions relief, through lax enforcement, especially of oil sales to China. As the recent fight with Saudi Arabia demonstrates, the president is very sensitive to any step that will raise energy prices.

To be sure, that sensitivity stems from domestic political concerns, but the energy crisis in Europe also weighs on Biden’s mind, because it threatens to break the will of those nations. If prices peak during the winter, key allies such as Germany might clamor for concessions to Putin.

This brings us back to Saudi Arabia and the progressive agenda. Tapping into the vast reserves of oil and natural gas in the United States would be one of the simplest and most effective ways to lower the price of energy globally. Biden, however, must honor a tacit deal with progressives to retard the development of American fossil fuel industries.

If he breaks the deal and runs roughshod over the progressives, he loses votes. But if he fights with the Saudis, he keeps his political base happy.

For these reasons, the Biden team treats our Saudi ally like an enemy and our Iranian enemy like a potential friend.
Iranian Shahed-136 Drones Increase Russian Strike Capacity and Lethality in Ukraine
Russia has conducted dozens of strikes against civilian and critical infrastructure targets across Ukraine over the past week, including with the Shahed-136 loitering munition. While the Shahed-136 is unlikely to change the overall direction of the conflict, it has increased Russia’s long-range strike capacity as Moscow’s traditional missile stocks dwindle. It also provides some additional capability and capacity against frontline Ukrainian positions, likely offering greater lethality than Russia’s indigenously produced loitering munitions.

Moscow is behind the curve in developing drones and is now racing to catch up. While the Russian military fields various UAVs for combat and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) roles, insufficient capacity has undermined Russia’s war effort in Ukraine. To help redress this weakness, Moscow turned to Tehran, which began pouring resources into its drone program in the 1980s and has since emerged as a regional UAV power and serial proliferator.

Back in July, the White House warned that Iran was “preparing to provide Russia with up to several hundred UAVs, including weapons-capable UAVs, on an expedited timeline.” Declassified U.S. intelligence indicated Tehran showcased various drones to Russian delegations in June and early July and began training Russian operators later that month. In mid-August, Russian cargo aircraft allegedly began picking up scores of Iranian drones, while Tehran dispatched advisors to Russia, and allegedly even into occupied Ukrainian territories, to help the Russians get going. The Russians reportedly began testing the Shahed-136 in Ukraine in August, and visual evidence of its employment in Ukraine first surfaced in mid-September.

In addition to the Shahed-136, Russia has also employed its smaller cousin, the Shahed-131, along with the Mohajer-6 unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV). U.S. and allied officials initially indicated Moscow was interested primarily in Iran’s Shahed-191 and Shahed-129 UCAVs. So far, neither has been visually confirmed to be in Russia’s possession, although a Ukrainian military report indicated Russia had received the Shahed-129. Unlike with Russia’s indigenously produced drones, Moscow is not releasing propaganda videos starring its new Iranian-supplied arsenal, so open sources may not present a full picture of which systems Russia has received or how it is using them.
Seth Frantzman: Has Iran's decision to supply drones to Russia destroyed their Western lobby?
One could ask tough questions about why the Moscow-Tehran role in massacring Syrians did not get the same awareness in the West, but the overall trajectory now is that Iran has painted itself into a Russian corner.

Some questions remain about Iran’s supply of drones. Is it supplying the drones themselves or merely the blueprints and technology? Will Russia buy more drones? Will this lead to other defense procurements by Russia, using Iran to make weapons it can use on the cheap to massacre Ukrainians? Will Iran’s supply of drones and maybe missiles in the future mean that it has fewer supplies to send to Hezbollah and other terrorist groups?

Either way, the importance of Iran’s transfer of drones to Russia is that its threat is now global, and many countries that might have preferred some kind of accommodation with the Islamic Republic now understand that the Moscow-Tehran axis is a growing threat and that both countries are harming civilians in Ukraine. This has weakened Iran’s ability to lobby the West and likely harmed the ability of its leaders to get greeted with a red carpet anytime in the near future.

In short, Iran’s flirtation with Moscow has harmed its reputation more than many of its attacks on countries across the Middle East. Tehran may not have realized that its impunity was being reduced via Moscow; it thought that Russia had helped shield it from sanctions and that it had even helped it in the Iran-deal era.

Now, it sees how helping Moscow has eroded its ability to work with the West. Countries that once wanted to trade with Tehran are now very displeased with the drone exports, and countries such as Ukraine and its friends are now very skeptical of Iran and angered by its abuses.

This is a major shift from just a few years ago, when it could pretend it was a victim of US sanctions. The victim has become the perpetrator, and Iran cannot open the doors it used to in the West.
UN Watch: Resolution to Expel Iran Regime from UN Women’s Commission
The following Draft Resolution has now been proposed by United Nations Watch, a Swiss non-governmental organization in special consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), calling for that body to expel the Islamic Republic of Iran from the UN Commission on the Status of Women.

Next steps needed are for a member state of ECOSOC to formally introduce the resolution. We have approached Secretary of State Antony Blinken to request that the U.S. introduce the resolution. Other democracies on the 54-nation body include Austria, Belgium, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Italy, Japan, Korea, Latvia, New Zealand, Portugal, UK and USA.
Draft Resolution

Terminating the Membership of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the Commission on the Status of Women

The Economic and Social Council,

Guided by the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenants on Human Rights and other relevant international human rights instruments,

Expressing grave concern at the reports of gross and systematic violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international human rights law by the Islamic Republic of Iran, recognizing the strong expressions of concern in statements by the Secretary-General, the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Special Procedures and the Committee on the Rights of the Child,

Recalling General Assembly resolution 76/178 of 16 December 2021 and all previous resolutions of the General Assembly on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, and regretting the lack of cooperation of the Islamic Republic of Iran with the requests of the Assembly made in those resolutions,

Recalling the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women,

Recalling further the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women,

Expressing grave concern about the continuing gross and systematic violation of the human rights of women and girls in Iran by the authorities,
Iranian climber who competed without hijab gets hero's welcome at home
Iranian competitive climber Elnaz Rekabi received a hero's welcome on her return to Tehran early Wednesday, after competing in South Korea without wearing a mandatory headscarf required of female athletes from the Islamic Republic.

Rekabi's decision not to wear the hijab while competing Sunday comes as protests sparked by the Sept. 16 death in custody of a 22-year-old woman have entered a fifth week. Mahsa Amini was detained by the country's morality police over her clothing — and her death has seen women removing their mandatory hijabs in public.

The demonstrations, drawing school-age children, oil workers and others to the street in over 100 cities, represent the most-serious challenge to Iran's theocracy since the mass protests surrounding its disputed 2009 presidential election.

Supporters and Farsi-language media outside of Iran have worried about Rekabi's safety after she choose to compete without the hijab.

An Instagram post Tuesday on an account attributed to Rekabi described her not wearing a hijab as "unintentional," though it wasn't immediately clear whether she wrote the post or what condition she was in at the time. The Iranian government routinely pressures activists at home and abroad, often airing what rights group describe as coerced confessions on state television.

Video shared online showed large crowds gathered early Wednesday at Imam Khomeini International Airport outside of Tehran, the sanctioned nation's main gateway out of the country. The videos, corresponding to known features of the airport, showed crowds chanting the 33-year-old Rekabi's name and calling her a hero.

Barnes Praises Khamenei, Hopes to Be ‘Dennis Rodman’ of the Assad Regime
Mandela Barnes, the Democratic Senate candidate in Wisconsin, praised Iran’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei for supporting Black Lives Matter, said he wanted to be the "Dennis Rodman" of the Assad regime, and used his Twitter account to defend some of the world’s most notorious dictators and repressive regimes.

On Jan. 1, 2015, Barnes applauded a Twitter post by Khamenei that slammed the U.S. government over slavery.

"The issue of US govt oppression against blacks is a 100s year-old issue," wrote Khamenei, adding the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter.

Barnes "liked" Khamenei’s post on Twitter and responded to the Iranian leader: "The first tweet of 2015 from @khamenei_ir is #BlackLivesMatter. Let that sink in. May This be a most wonderful year for you and yours."

Barnes’s social media posts could raise questions about the candidate’s willingness to align himself with anti-American and undemocratic leaders. The news comes as Barnes, the Wisconsin lieutenant governor and former state legislator, has faced criticism over his repeated appearances on RT, a Russian state-run news network that the U.S. State Department has described as "propaganda support for the Kremlin's foreign policy objectives."

Barnes also wrote several posts opposing any U.S. effort to oust Syrian president Bashar al-Assad in 2013, while the embattled dictator was massacring his own people and using chemical weapons.

"I'd like to pull a Rodman next. I should have hopped that fence to Syria when I had the chance," wrote Barnes on April 9, 2013, a few weeks after Assad’s regime carried out a deadly Sarin gas attack against its opposition.

Songs, lyrics of Israeli performer used in Iranian protests against Islamic regime
Iranian protesters are using the songs of Israeli actress, singer-songwriter Liraz Charhi in their rallies and videos against the Islamic Republic: “Until when will we be silent, until when will we keep our head down?”

While Charhi stars as a Mossad spy in the Israeli TV series “Tehran,” she continues to build up her musical repertoire among Iranians. Though artistic cooperation with Israel or Israeli citizens is a punishable offense in Iran, Charhi has collaborated with Iranian artists on three albums since 2018.

Charhi’s first two albums feature the contributions of anonymous Iranian musicians, who recorded their parts remotely. The first, “Naz,” would become popular among the Iranian people after its release in 2018.

“Very quickly I received videos of women dancing in underground parties, and removing their chador [a Muslim-culture cloth that covers the head and upper body] and dancing to these songs,” Charhi told Israel’s Channel 12.

For her most recent album, “Roya” – which means “fantasy” in Persian – the Israeli artist met with four Iranian musicians in Istanbul earlier this year, the first time collaborating in person. Turkey is one of the few countries that Iranians can travel to without a visa. The artists went to Istanbul on the condition that they would not have their names or characteristics made public, but the meeting was significant both for them and for Charhi. “I waited all my life to meet my friends and family from Iran; the fact that you weren’t afraid and were brave is … wow,” Charhi said upon the musicians’ arrival.

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