Monday, July 31, 2023

From Ian:

Declassified protocols indicate Golda Meir considered Palestinian statehood
Former prime minister Golda Meir considered the possibility of the formation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel three years after the Six Day War, protocols published by Haaretz on Monday show, shedding new light on the premier who famously said, “There’s no such thing as Palestinians.”

Last month, the Israel State Archives declassified top secret transcriptions of a meeting Meir held in October 1970 with senior ministers, including defense minister Moshe Dayan and education minister Yigal Allon, in which the possibility of a Palestinian state was discussed.

“It will be necessary to leave the Arabs of Judea and Samaria an option to earn self-determination at a later stage, if and when it suits us,” Meir said at the start of the meeting. “In other words, there will be another country [alongside Israel].”

Meir did say she viewed such a possibility as drastic. She also noted that she did not care what the name of the country would be.

The protocol shows that Meir considered potential political arrangements for a Palestinian state: as a state that is member to a confederation with Israel, Jordan, or both, or as a completely independent country. However, the prime minister seemed troubled by these scenarios, saying that such arrangements would be created in order to destroy Israel.

Interestingly, the meeting took place just weeks following “Black September,” the month-long conflict between the Palestinian Liberation Organization and the Jordanian kingdom that saw the PLO banished to Lebanon and brought to one of its historical low points. Nevertheless, Meir said that “if [PLO chief Yasser Arafat] becomes prime minister of Jordan, we will negotiate with him. Arafat as the head of a terrorist organization — no. But if he becomes head of a government that he’ll represent as a Palestinian, then fine.”

Meir, who throughout her career refused to recognize the Palestinians’ right to self-determination, also said at the meeting that she had become “open-minded on the issue, even though [my mind] closed right after the Six Day War, but I’m ready to reopen my mind and listen if there’s a hint of a hint of a hint of hope of there being a small state in Judea and Samaria, and maybe Gaza.”
The Illegal Palestinian Settlements You've Never Heard Of
This is Part 1 of a 10-part series exposing the underreported joint European and Palestinian program to bypass international law and establish a de facto Palestinian state on Israeli land.

For decades, members of the media, activist groups, academics, international organizations, NGOs and countless politicians have insisted that Jewish settlements in the West Bank are the primary obstacle to peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

These settlements allegedly represent an illegal and inhumane “occupation,” and until they are dismantled and the territory handed over to a Palestinian state, there will be no resolution to the conflict.

Beyond these power broker narratives exists another dimension to the story that is deliberately neglected worldwide.

It is a far more labyrinthine and sinister tale — one of stunning hypocrisy, moral bankruptcy, quasi-legal bureaucracy and colossal abuse of international law that exposes the ideological motivations and bad-faith actors at the core of an Israeli-European alliance supposedly based on “shared democratic values.”

It begins with a little-known 2009 document and ends with the illicit Palestinian takeover of hundreds of thousands of dunams of internationally recognized Israeli land, with direct subsidization and encouragement from the European Union.

In 1993, in Oslo, Norway, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Palestinian terrorist-cum-statesman Yasser Arafat signed the first and only agreement achieved between the Israelis and Palestinians.

Brokered by the U.S. under President Bill Clinton and witnessed by the EU, a critical component of the treaty called Oslo II, also known as the Taba Agreement or the 1995 Interim Agreement, separated the West Bank into three jurisdictions and outlined the specific responsibilities and obligations of its administrators.

Area A would be exclusively controlled, both for civil and security matters, by the Palestinian Authority. Area B would be administered in all civil matters by the PA while the Israeli government would maintain peripheral security jurisdiction, and Area C would be solely administered by Israel.

In other words, Israel’s complete jurisdiction over Area C, which legally includes building permits, zoning, construction, law enforcement and planning, has been recognized by the Palestinian leadership and the world at large for almost three decades.

As stipulated in the agreement, only when direct negotiations determine the permanent fate of the territories occupied by Jordan until 1967 can the Oslo Accords be replaced. Until then, it is the law.

Unlike United Nations General Assembly resolutions, which are non-binding, the Oslo Accords are legally obligatory. Yet on Aug. 23, 2009, 14 years after the signing of Oslo, Salim Fayyad, then the prime minister of the PA, published a blueprint titled, “Palestine: Ending the Occupation, Establishing the State,” in which the Oslo framework was officially abandoned and direct negotiations rejected. Instead, Fayyad explicitly called for the creation of a de-facto Palestinian state in Area C.

By Daled Amos

Well, maybe those are not the exact words that Elon Musk, head of Twitter -- now known as X -- used, but that seems to be the gist of what he said to West -- now known as Ye.

In December, Musk suspended West's Twitter account after the rapper tweeted a swastika interlinked with a Star of David. The head of Twitter called it "incitement to violence."

But that wasn't all that West did. JNS has a fuller list of West's antisemitic comments:

October, CNN reported that several people connected to West said he was “fascinated by Adolf Hitler,” and wanted to name his 2018 album “Hitler.”

o  October, on Tucker Carlson's show then on Fox News, West claimed Trump’s Jewish son-in-law Jared Kushner brokered the Abraham Accords solely in the interest of “making money.”

o  Soon afterward, he tweeted, “I’m a bit sleepy tonight but when I wake up I’m going death con 3 on JEWISH PEOPLE,” adding, “The funny thing is I actually can’t be antisemitic because black people are actually Jew [sic] also You guys have toyed with me and tried to black ball anyone whoever opposes your agenda.”

o  In an interview with Chris Cuomo, West claimed there was a “Jewish underground media mafia” and his “death con 3″ remarks were prompted by “Jewish record labels” that not only “take control” of publishing but of the culture itself. “It’s like modern-day slavery,” he said.

o  In November, West took Holocaust denier and white supremacist Nick Fuentes to Mar-a-Lago to meet  Trump. Fuentes has a history of denying the Holocaust, praising Hitler and making racist remarks about black Americans.

o  Weeks later, in an interview on “InfoWars” with Alex Jones, he said that “Hitler has a lot of redeeming qualities” and that he loves Nazis. He also repeatedly brought out a small net and “Yoo-hoo” chocolate milk to mock Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

So why did Musk do an about-face and allow West back on Twitter? After all, those who supported Musk's original decision to suspend West for his antisemitic incitement are as disappointed and angry as those who originally defended West's inciteful remarks on the basis of "free speech." Now neither side is likely to count Musk as being in their corner.

CNN quoted a report from The Wall Street Journal, that there will still be limits on the Twitter account. Going forward, West will be unable to monetize his account -- no ads will be allowed to appear next to his tweets. According to CNN, "it’s not clear whether West submitted an appeal, or if something else prompted his account’s reactivation." Yet according to Haaretz, quoting from that same Wall Street Journal article:

X reinstated Ye's account after receiving reassurances that he wouldn't use the platform to share antisemitic or otherwise harmful language, the report said, citing a person familiar with the matter.
Haaretz even claimed in their headline, "Musk Restores Kanye West's Account After Promise Not to Post Antisemitic Content Again." [emphasis added]

Even so, what about an apology? Kanye West has already demonstrated that his apologies lack regret and are worthless.

Back in October, when he was on Piers Morgan Uncensored, West did say:
I will say I’m sorry for the people that I hurt with the ‘death con’ [comments]. I feel like I caused hurt and confusion. And I’m sorry for the families of the people that had nothing to do with the trauma that I had been through, and that I used my platform where you say hurt people hurt people. I was hurt.
But this was after Morgan asked:

When you insult the Jewish people and say you’re going ‘death con 3’ on the Jewish people, that is as racist as anything you say you’ve been through. Racism is racism and you know that I think. Don’t you?

And West replied:
Absolutely not.
West continued:
Yeah, obviously, that’s why I said it. Yes, I fought fire with fire. I’m not here to get hosed down. It’s a different type of freedom fighter.

By way of comparison, in 2009, Kanye West embarrassed Taylor Swift on the stage of the MTV Video Music Awards. Then, 4 years after having apologized, West claimed that he regretted the apology and only made it because he felt pressured.

So again, why would Musk allow West back on Twitter?

CNN may be hinting at a possible reason in the headline to their article:

Elon Musk reactivates Kanye West’s Twitter account following X rebrand [emphasis added]

Has Musk discovered that allowing hate speech can be a good business decision? Consider: according to CNN

Twitter’s Violent Speech Policy prohibits inciting and glorifying violence, wishing harm on other people, and threatening others. But it makes some exceptions, including for “figures of speech, satire, or artistic expression when the context is expressing a viewpoint rather than instigating actionable violence or harm.”

We've already seen how unreliable Universities are when it comes to preserving free speech.
What can we really expect if the flip side -- hate speech -- becomes good business? 

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From Ian:

JPost Editorial: Israel-Saudi normalization may be well worth the price
According to Times columnist Thomas Friedman, who is considered close to Biden, among the elements involved in a Saudi-Israeli deal are an official Israeli promise not to annex the West Bank; Israeli commitments not to establish any more settlements, expand the boundaries of existing ones, or legalize illegal outposts; and the transfer of some Palestinian-populated territory in Area C of the West Bank to Palestinian Authority control.

According to Friedman, Riyadh is seeking a NATO-like mutual security treaty that would obligate the US to come to its defense if the kingdom is attacked; a civilian nuclear program monitored and backed by the US; and the ability to purchase more advanced weaponry from Washington such as missile defense systems that could be used by the Saudis to counter Iran’s missile arsenal.

In exchange, the US wants the Saudis to offer a large aid package to Palestinian institutions in the West Bank, significantly roll back their growing relationship with China, and help bring an end to the civil war in Yemen, according to Friedman, who stressed that such a deal could take months to negotiate and is still “a long shot, at best.”

On the domestic Israeli front, Friedman speculated that Netanyahu could be forced to abandon the far-right members in his cabinet who would oppose these terms and instead align himself with centrist political forces in the opposition.

Netanyahu, for his part, has come out strongly in favor of normalization with Saudi Arabia, calling it one of the top priorities of his government. In an interview with Sky News in early June, for example, Netanyahu called a Saudi-Israeli deal “a quantum leap forward” that would change history.

Describing Saudi Arabia as the most influential country both in the Arab and Muslim worlds, Netanyahu said, “It would fashion, I think, the possibility of ending the Arab-Israeli conflict. And I think that would also help us solve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.”

Pursuing a deal with Saudi Arabia would allow the prime minister to focus on his stated policy agenda and his pledge to expand the Abraham Accords, rather than being bogged down by the debate over his government’s contentious judicial reform.

While Israel’s decision makers would need to seriously weigh the implications of any potential concessions, if normalization with Saudi Arabia means putting the controversial judicial reform on the back burner due to political and diplomatic constraints, that may be a price well worth paying.
Can Netanyahu and Biden buy a ticket to ride on an Israeli-Saudi peace line?
Biden has little choice here if he is legacy shopping in the Middle East. Former US president Donald Trump touted his ability to make the “Deal of the Century” by finalizing a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians, only to leave office having failed to do so.

The Biden administration has mostly shelved his peace map, the international community never adopted it, and the Palestinians outright rejected it.

Time, however, has clarified the sustaining power of Trump’s footprint in the peace process through the Abraham Accords, which he brokered. The agreement of four Arab countries to normalize ties with Israel, despite the absence of Israeli-Palestinian peace, breathed life into Netanyahu’s long-held belief that Israel must first forge a relationship with Arab states before finalizing an arrangement with the Palestinians.

Now, it’s the only game in town. If Biden wants a win in the Middle East prior to the 2024 elections, he has to purchase a ticket on the train whose tracks lead to Riyadh, assuming he has congressional backing.

The possibility of a win here, particularly as Iran and China seek to strengthen their ties with Saudi Arabia, far outweighs any concerns about Israeli democracy, particularly when Saudi Arabia falls far behind the Jewish state on that score. It would also give Biden’s re-election campaign a boost, though his tenure in power is not necessarily dependent on it.

Netanyahu, on the other hand, can’t afford to walk away from a Saudi deal, which would for him be one of his crowning achievements and one which he has long sought.

Depending on the demands of such an agreement, however, he also might not be able to finalize the deal. This is particularly true if Netanyahu is asked to meet some of the gestures to the Palestinians laid out in Friedman’s article, such as promising never to apply sovereignty to West Bank settlements.

He can agree to an additional delay, but he would lose his coalition were he to make such a pledge.

The trick here will be to find a gesture to the Palestinians that Netanyahu can meet while keeping his coalition intact, given its many members who dismiss the idea of Palestinian statehood and want to annex all of Area C of the West Bank.

The possibility of a deal, therefore, appears so slim that Channel 11 on Sunday night floated the idea of a two-phased Israeli-Saudi process, in which the two countries would have low-level diplomatic ties without full-fledged normalization.

Or Netanyahu could switch gears. This is particularly true now that he has secured passage of legislation that narrows the court’s ability to tackle governmental corruption by eliminating the reasonableness clause.

Netanyahu could, Friedman speculated, use the possibility of a Saudi deal to swap out the more extreme elements of his coalition with more moderate ones.

Moderate opposition politicians opposed to joining Netanyahu might sing a different tune once an agreement is actually on the table.

It is nice to speculate about how a Saudi peace deal might also put a monkey wrench in Israel’s judicial reform process. But if Netanyahu is lucky, he won’t have to buy a ticket on this train. Washington will purchase one for him, and all he’ll have to do is go along for the ride.
Saudi peace raises pressure for Israeli concessions to Palestinians
As the US intensifies its efforts to bring about peace between Israel and Saudi Arabia, pressure for Jerusalem to make concessions to the Palestinians has also grown in recent days.

Israeli-Saudi normalization has long been conditional on some kind of tangible progress on the Israeli-Palestinian front. As The Jerusalem Post has reported in recent months, Riyadh is looking for a greater concession than Jerusalem made in conjunction with the 2020 Abraham Accords, when Israel agreed to drop its plan to apply sovereignty to West Bank settlements and normalized relations with the United Arab Emirates.

The Saudis are looking for concrete steps toward Palestinian statehood. Merely a commitment not to annex settlements for the next four years would not suffice for the prominent Gulf state, Israel Hayom reported multiple diplomatic sources as saying on Monday.

The Biden administration has also been pushing Israel to do more for the Palestinians. This is in order to gain domestic support for its normalization push, an American diplomatic source said, confirming reporting on Kan.

The elements that the Saudis seek from the US in the framework of such a deal, such as weapons sales, a mutual defense treaty, a civilian nuclear program, and economic benefits, would be a tough sell to Democrats, who have spoken out on human rights issues in the kingdom, especially after the murder of US-based Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Washington is also pushing for the deal to be completed by the end of 2023, in order to avoid a prolonged fight in Congress about the benefits for the Saudis during an election year.
Last week I reported that Gazans planned a major anti-Hamas rally on Sunday, July 30. I also noted that this news was essentially censored from all Palestinian Arabic media, even Hamas' archrival Fatah did not report on these plans.

A lot of what happens in Gaza is simply not reported by the media.

Thankfully, Gazans publish their own videos and photos on Telegram and similar social media, and the indomitable Imshin has put together a thread showing the demonstrations on Sunday - and Hamas' brutal repression of them. 

Here is her thread. And Western media is essentially complicit in Hamas' censorship and repression by adhering to terrorist directives not to report things that make them look bad.

1/ This afternoon there were demonstrations against Hamas all over Gaza Strip.
This is Khan Younes.

2/ This afternoon there were demonstrations against Hamas all over Gaza Strip.
This is Nuseirat "refugee camp".

4/ Then the guns came...

5/ And the shooting at demonstrators started.

 More footage of dispersing anti-Hamas demonstrations in Gaza.

 Demonstrators injured by Hamas "security" thugs.

More demonstrators injured by Hamas this afternoon.
These are brothers Salama and Rami Barbakh whose father was killed by Hamas in the past.


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From Naharnet on Sunday:

Clashes renewed Sunday in the Ain al-Helweh Palestinian refugee camp near Sidon between the secular Fatah Movement and hardline Islamist groups.

TV networks said the fighting resumed after a senior Fatah commander was killed in an ambush.

An Islamist had been killed and six people including children had been injured in overnight clashes in the camp.

Key Sidon highways were closed to traffic on Sunday as stray bullets and shells landed in various areas of the major southern Lebanese city.

Clashes between rival groups are common in Ain al-Helweh, which is home to more than 54,000 registered Palestinian refugees who have been joined in recent years by thousands of Palestinians fleeing the conflict in Syria.

By long-standing convention, the Lebanese Army does not enter Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon, leaving the factions themselves to handle security.

That has created lawless areas in many camps, and Ain al-Helweh has gained notoriety as a refuge for extremists and fugitives.

The Palestinian Authority and its sycophants claim that they would take care of law and order, but Israel's raids of Palestinian areas makes the PA security forces look weak and they lose respect of the populace, which is what cause many armed militias to arrive on the scene to fill the vacuum. If only Israel would leave Area A alone, the claim goes, the Palestinian Authority would be able to enforce law and order.

Ain el-Hilweh is a social experiment that proves this thesis false.

Lebanese troops do not enter. All security is provided by Palestinians. This is the situation that Palestinians want to see in PA-controlled areas - no outsiders, and security provided exclusively by Palestinians.

The result? They cannot govern themselves effectively. They cannot live in peace with each other. They regularly endanger their own people. Two UNRWA schools were damaged and children have been injured in the fighting;UNRWA is suspending all services and operations so the people will suffer even more.

This is how Palestinians treat each other without any outside interference. 

And they cannot use the excuse of being in dire straits - which they are - because that should make a people want to work together even more, not use deadly force on each other. 

If you want to see what a Palestinian state would look like, look at Ain el-Hilweh.  

Buy the EoZ book, PROTOCOLS: Exposing Modern Antisemitism  today at Amazon!

Or order from your favorite bookseller, using ISBN 9798985708424. 

Read all about it here!



Sunday, July 30, 2023

From Ian:

Seth Frantzman: What are Israel's upcoming diplomatic challenges, opportunities?
IDF Chief of General Staff Herzi Halevi recently discussed the importance of “our responsibility for readiness and unity.” He noted that “the IDF’s purpose has not changed over the course of the past 75 years – to defend the State of Israel, ensure its existence, and achieve victory in times of war. The IDF was established in a time of crisis, out of a necessity to ensure the existence of the State of Israel. This need has not changed to this day. The strength of the IDF lies in the quality of its service members, its high level of readiness for war, and its internal and external unity.”

Ahead of Tisha Be’av, Halevi noted that “these days, almost 2,000 years after the destruction of the Second Temple, the IDF is strong thanks to its people, its capabilities, and above all, thanks to its values – the values of the IDF Code of Conduct, according to which we operate and will continue to operate in the future. We don’t have other service members, and we don’t have another IDF.”

“It is never too late to correct this,” he continued. “We must mend this situation, for there is no other way, without internal and external unity. This is all of our responsibility, and first and foremost it is my personal responsibility as chief of general staff. This is the only way we can maintain the IDF’s purpose: to protect the country and ensure its existence.”

As the Middle East works toward integration, and Gulf states do unprecedented outreach, there is a lot of opportunity for Israel. However, in the middle of it all is Iran, seeking to spoil these opportunities.

Tehran has been seeking to destabilize the West Bank via support for terror groups in Jenin, knowing that West Bank clashes can harm Israel’s ties in the Gulf. Moreover, Iran has been encouraging Hezbollah to increase tensions on the northern border.

In Iraq and Syria, Iran continues to threaten the US. Iran also works with Russia and Turkey to try to support the Syrian regime.

Thus, Iran plays both sides. It seeks closer ties with the Gulf and does outreach to Egypt, while also hoping to use Syria, Lebanon, and the West Bank to destabilize and threaten Israel.

Tehran, for instance, announced a new naval missile on July 24, also announcing that it could make a deal with the US via Qatar or Oman. Iran, therefore, uses the carrot-and-stick approach. It is up to Israel to neutralize the stick and ensure that its partners don’t run to grab the Iranian carrot.

These are the challenges – and opportunities – confronting Israel externally as it looks toward the months ahead.
UN bodies receive millions from ‘terror charities’
The United Nations has a terrorism problem.

Last month, its Security Council refused to designate as a global terrorist the architect behind the 2008 Mumbai attacks, which killed 170 people.

Just over two weeks ago, the UN’s Special Rapporteur Francesca Albanese, who has previously appeared on the Hezbollah-affiliated Al Mayadeen channel, issued a report that was praised by the terrorist group Hamas.

Until today, the UN has actively failed to define terrorism, affording terrorists impunity on a daily basis. Not only does the UN have a problem identifying terrorism when it is right in front of them, but in some cases the UN has even partnered with terrorism-affiliated groups.

Over the last year, four United Nations agencies have partnered with and accepted $7 million from the terrorism-affiliated NGO Qatar Charity. According to the Counter Extremism Project (that maintains databases on extremist groups, their ideology, leaders, history, financing, violent activities, tactics, and rhetoric), the Qatar Charity is a member charity of the Union of Good network.

The Union of Good umbrella organization was banned by the US Treasury in 2008 because of its status as “an organization created by Hamas leadership to transfer funds to [Hamas]” during the Second Intifada. Hamas is on the US State Department list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations.

“Terrorist groups such as Hamas continue to exploit charities to radicalize vulnerable communities and cultivate support for their violent activities,” said then-US undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, Stuart Levey, at the time. The Qatar Charity has been banned by five Middle Eastern countries.
'First the Saturday people, then.."
A thriller by Bruce Portnoy that spans the US and Israel begins with a car crash and is all too real today. Review.

An old Jewish adage says that "every delay is for the good." I was reminded of that while reading the book "First the Saturday people, and then the…" by Bruce Portnoy, published in 2015 to excellent reviews. Had I read it then, I would have considered this page-turning thriller taking place in the Midwest and Israel a good read, but might also have seen it as another far-fetched fantasy on what an author imagines goes on behind the scenes in international undercover intelligence operations, another impossible spy story that would make a great action film.

However, events since the book was written make those political intrigues eerily believable, so that reading it now is all "for the good" as the adage says, and therefore, recommended.

From its riveting beginning, the book begins to unravel a story with layer upon layer of reality, starting with a husband whose wife is critically injured and daughter killed in an accident he thinks his drinking has caused and her father's wheeler-dealer American-Jewish way of handling the situation. But that, while engrossingly interesting, is only the surface.

Page by page, the layers unfold. Readers need to pay attention to who is narrating each chapter as the scenes follow one fast upon another. Wofl's guilt is not so simple. His wife, an ordinary teacher active in organizations helping Israel as far as he knew, was involved in something far deeper, and the car crash was not as clear as it seemed to be to Wolf and his father in law. It turns out that she was corresponding with the son of a Lebanese diplomat who discovered that a large scale catastrophe to take place in Israel had been carefully planned by Iran. Disaster was imminent, on a scale that would inexorably lead to the destruction of the Jewish State. So Israeli powers work behind the scenes to keep Wolf out of jail despite his vengeful father-in-law's attempts to sway the results, but they can't keep him from wanting to stay in the picture.

Events expand from there, with a second-generation American, a Christian Arab and retired FBI agent who has a sense of justice equal to Wolf's, fueled by his granddaughter's innocent question about what he did to stop the Holocaust, joining him in trying to prevent it from happening. While investigating and in constant danger, the two candidly discuss their views on Israel's existential vulnerability amid the Palestinian Arab narrative, an issue that is brought to the fore in other parts of the book in a clear and forthright manner, making it more than just a thriller.
  • Sunday, July 30, 2023
  • Elder of Ziyon
Mrs. Elder and I are on vacation, so I will not be posting, tweeting or making memes and comics as much as usual for the next week.

I'll probably only post as much as most bloggers do normally 😊


Buy the EoZ book, PROTOCOLS: Exposing Modern Antisemitism  today at Amazon!

Or order from your favorite bookseller, using ISBN 9798985708424. 

Read all about it here!



A new poll from the Palestinian Center for Policy and  Survey Research of both Israelis and Palestinians finds that while both sides have hardened their positions towards the other, the Palestinians are far more rejecting of any framework that allows Jews to have any rights in the land.

An absurd 84% of Palestinians say that "the suffering of Palestinians is unique throughout the human history." Clearly no one teaches history in Palestinian schools. (80% of Israeli Jews say this about Jews, but they have a couple of thousand years of evidence behind that opinion. The worst event in Palestinian history wouldn't make it into the top 10 of the worst things in Jewish history.)

90% of Palestinians say "Since Palestinians are the victims of ongoing suffering, it is their moral right to do anything in order to survive." To Palestinians, "anything" means even the most immoral crimes against humanity. While 68% of Israelis felt the same way about Jews, I am certain that they interpreted the question differently than Palestinians do: Jews would not include genocide against others in that "anything," but I am fairly sure that Palestinians do.

The moral divide is stark in the responses to the question of whether each group wants to promote good relations with the other. Most Israelis do; the vast majority of Palestinians do not.

Israelis want to co-exist with Palestinians; Palestinians do not want to co-exist with Israelis. How much more obvious can it be that Palestinians do not support any sort of peace with Israeli Jews?

The Palestinians' idea of their "vital goals" is also something instructive - and largely unreported. While 36% said an Israeli withdrawal to the 1949 armistice lines and a Palestinian state were vital goal, nearly as many said the "right of return" of Palestinians to the hated Israel is a "vital goal" - meaning they don't want their own people to live in their own state, and would prefer that they are used as a means to destroy the Jewish state.

But beyond that, 19% said that building a state based on "religious values"  was a vital goal - more than double the mere 9% who said that democracy is a vital goal. Meaning that more than twice as many Palestinians want a state based on the Quran than one based on democratic values.
These extremist, rejectionist positions are always swept under the rug in Western reporting and "expert analysis," which still claims that most Palestinians want a two state solution. 

Buy the EoZ book, PROTOCOLS: Exposing Modern Antisemitism  today at Amazon!

Or order from your favorite bookseller, using ISBN 9798985708424. 

Read all about it here!



Friday, July 28, 2023

From Ian:

Caroline Glick: Present, past and the Tenth of Av
So, 18 years after the Tenth of Av 5765, the main question that must be answered is why? Why did Sharon order the operation? Why did the left want it so badly?

These questions speak directly to our situation today. In regards to the left, the answer was given by leading writers both before and immediately after the expulsions. And it had nothing to do with security. It had to do with the same issues at the heart of the left’s protests today.

Six weeks before the expulsions, Haaretz ran an editorial explaining their rationale.

“The disengagement of Israeli policy from its religious fuel is the real disengagement currently on the agenda. On the day after the disengagement, religious Zionism’s status will be different. The real question is not how many mortar shells will fall, or who will guard the Philadelphi Route [connecting Gaza with Egypt], or whether Palestinians will dance on the roofs of [the village] Ganei Tal. The real question is who sets the national agenda.”

In other words, Haaretz, speaking for the left, declared it was reasonable to undermine Israel’s national security to maintain the left’s power to set national policy. The best means to preserve that power, the Israeli newspaper argued, was by destroying religious Zionism through a program of expulsion and demonization.

Haaretz’s editorial board wasn’t alone. Opinion-makers from Dan Margalit and Ari Shavit to Yair Lapid jumped on the anti-religious bandwagon using their prominent positions in the media to gin up hatred for the 8,500 Jews of Gaza and their supporters.

Margalit called for the imposition of a numerus clausus against religious Zionists serving in the IDF. Strict limits, he wrote, must be placed on the number of religious Israelis permitted to serve as officers.

Lapid insisted that the Jews of Gaza weren’t his brothers and he wouldn’t have a problem going to war against them.

Shavit wrote the Jews of Gaza deserved no protection from the IDF because as far as he was concerned, they weren’t even Israelis.

So, for the left, religious Zionists—and regular Zionists, for that matter—were their enemy, not the Palestinians shooting their mortars at Israel. The goal of the expulsions was to defeat them in order to preserve the left’s power to dictate national policy.

And what of Sharon? The answer to the riddle of what motivated him leads us again to precisely the point we stand at today.

Just ahead of the 2003 elections, a prosecutor named Liora Glatt-Berkowitz leaked to Haaretz that Sharon and his sons were under investigation for bribery. When she was caught, Glatt-Berkowitz said she had hoped to swing the elections to the left by publishing the information.

Most of the people involved in executing the expulsion plan who weren’t part of Sharon’s inner circle agree that the bribery investigation convinced Sharon to take the step he knew would devastate Israel’s security. Sharon understood that the prosecution and the courts were dominated by hard-left ideologues. To convince them to go easy on him and his sons, he adopted their policies and helped them to destroy their enemies: his voters.

Moshe Ya’alon was IDF Chief of General Staff when Sharon announced the withdrawal and expulsion plan. Ya’alon is now one of the leaders of the left’s anti-government insurrection. But he saw things far differently in the past.

In his 2009 memoir, Ya’alon wrote, “I have no doubt Sharon’s decision derived from external considerations. When he found himself in personal distress because of the criminal investigations against him … Sharon decided to turn the tables and take a dramatic step that blatantly contradicted his worldview and didn’t jibe with his grasp of reality.”

Most historians believe that the destruction of the Second Temple wasn’t inevitable initially. The Jews couldn’t beat the Romans in a frontal battle. But they had sufficient stores of food in Jerusalem to withstand years of siege, during which they could perhaps exhaust the Romans through attrition. The destruction became inevitable, however, when a tiny group of fanatics called the Sicarii burned all the stores of food. The Sicarii wrongly believed that the Jews could defeat the Romans, but the only way to get them to do so was to leave them with no choice other than to fight. Hence, they burned the food.

The question in Israel now is who are today’s Sicarri? The left insists that the Netanyahu government is because it insists on implementing the judicial reform agenda it ran on. The right insists that the leftist elite burning the country in a bid to preserve its power and privilege protected by the judicial system are the Sicarri.

By preserving the memory of the events of the Tenth of Av 5765, we find the answer to the question regarding the Ninth of Av. Jews who want to prevent the destruction of the Third Commonwealth— the State of Israel—must remember that time and that day, and live by its lessons.
President Biden can show his support for Israel by staying silent
The rationale most frequently provided by the White House for the president’s interest is fear that Israel’s democracy will be weakened by speedy parliamentary approval of a law on a vital issue without any support from the opposition, thereby loosening the common bonds between our two great democracies.

But this explanation doesn’t really hold water. It has certainly not been an issue in the past. For example, I don’t recall President Clinton warning Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin 30 years ago not to press forward with the Oslo Accord, Israel’s historic but highly controversial peace agreement with the Palestine Liberation Organization, which was only approved (via a no-confidence motion) with 61 votes in the 120-member Knesset — a much narrower margin than the judicial reform vote. (I supported the Oslo Accords, by the way, and still do.)

And here at home, passing important legislation without opposition consensus is not much of an issue either. The White House seems quite at ease with Vice President Kamala Harris tying the historical record by so far casting 31 tie-breaking votes in the Senate, including on the administration’s signature achievement, the Inflation Reduction Act.

Democracies sometimes get things done by narrow margins. That’s how our system — and Israel’s — works.

Perhaps President Biden waded into the Israeli political morass in response to pleas from Israelis themselves, maybe even from some current Israeli government officials who despaired of their own ability to affect the course of their domestic crisis. If so, this wouldn’t be the first time Israelis looked to Washington to solve their internal problems. Here, the history is clear even if the lesson usually goes unheeded — it’s not a good idea for either side to wade into the domestic politics of the other. As often as not, well-intentioned intervention can trigger new, bigger problems.

To be sure, there is an important national security rationale for U.S. interest in Israel’s judicial legislation: that Israel’s adversaries not misread dissent for division and miscalculate into conflict. Indeed, there is a legitimate fear that the leaders of Iran, Hezbollah or Hamas see protests by Israeli military reservists, including the vow of many air force pilots to refuse to report for duty, as chinks in the Jewish state’s armor and decide the moment is ripe to put Israel to the test.

But, in this case, the proper response is not for Washington to warn Israel’s government that a parliamentary vote risks the foundational “shared values” of the U.S.-Israel relationship, inadvertently fueling its enemies’ warped rationale for adventurism. Rather, the right approach is to affirm the strength and constancy of American support for Israel, regardless of how it sorts out its constitutional housekeeping.
Biden's Legacy: The Axis of Tyrannies
[T]he weak and possibly compromised administration of U.S. President Joe Biden appears to have enabled and empowered the autocrats of China, Russia, Iran and North Korea, all of whom seem to be working overtime to create a new authoritarian world order with themselves at the helm.

Iran, which has already declared a new world order, is, even beyond its accelerating nuclear weapons program, swiftly trying to reshape the world militarily and geopolitically wherever Western nations appear to be losing power. The Iranian regime also appears to be wasting no time indoctrinating it citizens with anti-Western and anti-American points of view.

Since the Biden Administration assumed office in 2021, its vacuum of leadership in the Middle East has led to the increasing influence of China and Iran in the region; the decision by the Gulf nations to dodge the US and tilt towards China, and even to the China-brokered deal between Saudi Arabia and Iran that further sidelines the U.S.

"The Chinese have a strategy they've been following. We kind of wander around from day to day." – Former National Security Adviser John R. Bolton, WABC 770 radio, March 12, 2023.

In November 2022, Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei vowed, "Death to America will happen. In the new order I am talking about America will no longer have any important role." The Iranian regime, now that it is aligned with Putin's Russia and the Chinese Communist Party, would probably be delighted to conquer the US.

As the Biden Administration has unfortunately created a leadership vacuum throughout the world, its apparent risk-paralysis and feeble leadership seem quickly to be leading to a new world order led by the Axis of Tyrannies: China, Russia and Iran, with North Korea heading up the rear.
From Ian:

Collection: Ending U.S. Aid to Israel
The publication on July 16, 2023, of an article by Jacob Siegel and Liel Leibovitz calling for an end to U.S. aid to Israel opened a fresh debate over a topic dominated by outdated assumptions and emotional entreaties. To deepen the conversation, Tablet invited a group that includes a retired IDF general, U.S. Senators and members of Congress, former Middle East diplomats, and writers from various political persuasions to offer their thoughts on the issue. Their articles, and more from Tablet’s archive, are collected here.
Caroline Glick: Time to Stop Toeing the Line
At the height of Operation Protective Edge, Israel’s seven-week war with Hamas in the summer of 2014, then President Barack Obama imposed an embargo on a shipment of Hellfire missiles to Israel after the Pentagon approved the transfer.

A senior Obama administration told the The Wall Street Journal at the time that Israel could no longer expect automatic resupply of critical munitions in wartime. The decision to embargo the Hellfire missiles, the official averred, amounted to “the United States saying ‘the buck stops here. Wait a second … It’s not OK anymore.’”

The embargo was spurred by an IDF artillery round that fell on a United Nations school Hamas was using as a missile launching site. As is its wont, Hamas placed civilians at the site to serve as human shields.

The Hellfire embargo was meant to teach Israel a lesson.

But what lesson? If the administration wanted Israel to minimize civilian casualties, Obama should have been happy to supply Israel with more Hellfire missiles. Unlike regular artillery shells, the precision guided Hellfire missiles minimize civilian casualties.

By embargoing the Hellfire missiles, Obama was ensuring that all things being equal, more civilians would die. And that was the point. By denying Israel access to Hellfire missiles in the middle of a war, Obama was forcing Israel to choose between fighting Hamas with “dumb” artillery rounds at the cost of more civilian casualties and more U.S. and international condemnation, or standing down.

Under the circumstances, the IDF General Staff might have been expected to reevaluate the desirability of maintaining Israel’s dependence on U.S. military assistance over time. But no such reassessment took place then, or since. Over the five decades since the U.S. transformed Israel into a U.S. client state through military aid, the handful of senior IDF officers who opposed the aid found themselves denied promotions, marginalized, and out of the IDF.

To be sure, U.S. military assistance to Israel has a lot to recommend it. $3.8 billion annually in free U.S. military platforms and munitions is a lot of money. True, it’s less than a sixth of Israel’s military budget and Israel would survive without it. But it’s still a lot of money.
Richard Goldberg: American Military Aid to Israel Serves Both Countries Well
As disagreements between the Biden administration and Netanyahu government boil over, the inclination by some supporters of Israel to search for policy solutions that free Israel from a perceived yolk of dangerous U.S. foreign policy is often well-intentioned, even if their solution is misguided. Jerusalem is indeed frustrated with a White House that treats the democratically elected leader of Israel with disdain while offering the world’s state sponsor of terrorism, Iran, billions of dollars in cash. Not to mention the unprecedented meddling by an American president in Israel’s domestic politics at a moment of great social upheaval.

But tension between a left-wing American president and a right-wing Israeli government is a phenomenon observed across three decades—from Clinton to Obama to Biden. And each time it’s been the Congress that steps into the breach, appropriating assistance to Israel and using the power of the purse to defeat hostile executive policies whenever possible.

It’s also understandable for supporters of Israel to grow frustrated with members of Congress who work against Israel’s security interests every day—stabbing Israel in the back by supporting sanctions relief for Iran, condoning Palestinian pay-for-slay and defending U.N.-sponsored antisemitism—only to get a kosher seal of approval from pro-Israel institutions so long as they vote “yes” on foreign aid to Israel. But cutting off that aid is not the appropriate response to that outrage since it would stab Israel through the heart, not just the back, and leave it even more vulnerable to Iran. The more thoughtful response would be to defend aid to Israel and then use the American political system to hold accountable at the ballot box those who endanger both America and Israel’s security.

The trend inside the Democratic Party should not be ignored. The threat that one day someone like AOC might be House speaker or someone like Chris Van Hollen, Chris Murphy or Bernie Sanders might be Senate majority leader has likely already prompted contingency planning in Jerusalem—not just for the risk posed to U.S. assistance but to the broader bilateral relationship. But right now, they’re not in charge of congressional appropriations—and the Democratic president, despite all his flawed Middle East policies that undermine Israel’s security and his constant meddling in Israel’s domestic politics, still pushes his party to support robust military aid to Israel.

There may yet come a day when the threats, requirements, and Israeli budget allow for a tapering of foreign assistance without harming our mutual national security interests. That day is not today. Iran is on the verge of enriching uranium to 90% weapons-grade, Hezbollah has tens of thousands of rockets and a growing arsenal of precision guided munitions in Lebanon, and Tehran’s proxies are trying to take over the West Bank. Cutting off American military aid to Israel would be a strategic disaster for both countries.
Dennis Ross: The Wrong Message at the Wrong Time
When authors as diverse as Nicholas Kristof, Jacob Siegel, and Liel Leibovitz all write about ending U.S. military assistance to Israel, it is noteworthy.

Writing in Tablet, Siegel and Leibovitz are convinced that the aid gives the U.S. a veto over Israeli actions, makes money for U.S. weapons manufacturers, and feeds the commonly held fiction among Israeli critics that Israel is handed a blank check. This last point, Leibovitz and Siegel legitimately argue, is not only untrue but serves the purposes of those who accuse advocates for Israel in the U.S. of serving Israel’s interest at the expense of America’s. The dual loyalty implication is not subtle and has long been an anti-Semitic trope. Siegel and Leibovitz see ending military assistance to Israel as a way of taking away this argument. Although valuable, for them that is a secondary reason for ending the military assistance. Siegel and Leibovitz believe Israel will be better off without it: It will reduce American leverage on Israel, mean Israel’s hands won’t be tied by Washington, and permit Israel to benefit from being “able to shop on the open market” and no longer be tied to U.S. equipment and its cost overruns and technical problems.

Kristof’s perspective, appearing a few days later in The New York Times, is different. He looks at the high costs of $3.8 billion a year in military assistance to Israel as being unnecessary because it is a country that is no longer poor and has a per capita income greater than Japan and a number of the Western European members of NATO. Moreover, he looks at how that money could be used to help poor countries like Niger desperately in need of assistance. To be fair, Kristof is talking about beginning a discussion and not abruptly cutting our military assistance to Israel, but clearly the aim is to get there.

The intent of Siegel, Leibovitz, or Kristof may not be to contribute to those who are increasingly critical of Israel—and who would love to see the U.S. apply real pressure on it by cutting off military assistance and ending political support for it. But that will surely be the effect of their articles. Yes, even those who are generally supporters of Israel may favor applying pressure at a time when Israel’s government includes messianic nationalists and ultrareligious parties—and is pushing an agenda that many Israelis believe is threatening to the democratic identity of the country. These Israelis, and their supporters in the U.S., want to show that the costs of the Netanyahu government’s policies are high, and are taking a terrible toll on support for Israel in America and internationally. The Knesset’s recent adoption of the law revoking the reasonability provision in court rulings will only add to this impulse.

Understandable, perhaps, but is cutting military assistance the right tool for that? No, it is not. Siegel, Leibovitz and Kristoff generally act as if cutting off assistance would have little or no effect on the way the Iranians and Hezbollah would read the situation and American support for Israel. Already, the turmoil in Israel is being read by both as a sign of Israeli weakness, with Hezbollah’s actions over the last few months ranging from having an operative carry out a terrorist act in Megiddo to permitting Hamas to fire rockets from southern Lebanon to increasingly provocative acts along the border, demonstrating that Hassan Nasrallah is becoming far less risk-averse. Cut off American assistance now, or say we will plan to do so, and the Iranians and Hezbollah will up the ante and make a conflict far more likely. Does Israel need a multifront conflict? Would that serve America’s interests?

Our weekly column from the humor site PreOccupied Territory.

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Jerusalem, July 27 - A motorist on one of the city's busiest arteries signaled to the vehicle operator ahead of him to proceed swiftly, now that the red signal at the intersection had turned green, to help ensure that both automobiles reach the next intersection in less time, and spend the time saved waiting for that light to change, as well.

Gadi Yitzhaki, 50, driving a black Skoda Octavia, honked at the Honda Accord in front of him on Ben-Tzvi Boulevard early this afternoon, and in doing so communicated the importance of accelerating at once, to get stuck sooner at the following traffic light.

"Time is a precious resource," he explained to his passenger. "And other people's time is even more precious. You have permission to use your own time as you please, but not other people's time. That means doing everything you can not to waste other people's time. You can't just wait after the light turns green, not even a little. It's not your time to decide what to do with. People need to get places, and you're in the way. You have a responsibility."

The driver in front of Yitzhaki appeared to understand the message. She released her brake and proceeded apace toward the next red light, where both cars, among others, sat for a further 40 seconds before that light, as well, turned green. This time, however, Yitzhaki had maneuvered to the the lead position in the adjacent lane, and was able to start moving again without waiting for others.

To do so, Yitzhaki sped up to overtake the Honda and reach the next intersection a full 3.8 seconds before the other car, where both waited. He voiced satisfaction at his time efficiency.

"Not everyone knows how to maximize resources," he boasted. "I pride myself on not wasting seconds between tasks. That's where so many people lose track, don't understand 'where the time has gone.' It just takes a second or two to knock you off track if you're not focused on keeping things going as they should. I've worked for a long time to shave off those seconds between tasks, and it keeps my efficiency at its peak."

Yitzhaki then launched into a diatribe against cyclists who "think they own the road and should show more respect, especially for drivers going much faster," at least two of whom made it from the previous traffic light to this current one in time to wait in front of his Skoda.

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From Ian:

At UN meeting, Erdan dismisses Palestinian ‘right of return’
Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations had a blunt message for the Security Council on Thursday during its quarterly open debate on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“Let me be clear: There is no ‘right of return.’ You all know this,” Gilad Erdan told the council, which he accused of perpetuating the Palestinian refugee issue.

“The demand of returning millions of descendants of refugees is a demand to obliterate the Jewish people’s right to self-determination,” he added. “This will never happen.”

The meeting marked the council’s 14th this year on the Israel-Palestinian file. Ordinarily, it meets monthly under this single agenda item.

Erdan blasted the United Nations and Secretary-General António Guterres, in particular, for criticism of Israeli counterterrorism operations in Jenin earlier this month. All 12 casualties were confirmed terrorists.

“The fact that the secretary-general chose to condemn Israel, a law-abiding democracy, as opposed to the bloodthirsty Palestinian terrorists seeking to murder innocent Israelis, is a disgrace,” Erdan said. “Such remarks only embolden the terrorists.”

Part of the international body’s critique of Israel centered on damage in what the United Nations calls a “refugee camp.” Erdan mocked that label.

“How can it be that after so many decades there are still refugee camps inside Palestinian cities?” posed Erdan. “Have you ever stopped to ask yourselves why the descendants of Palestinian refugees are still living in refugee camps? Why have they not been integrated into Palestinian society?”

“We are talking about camps in Palestinian cities,” he added.

Israel tells ICJ it lacks authority to debate conflict, says talks are only solution
Israel this week submitted a formal opinion to the International Court of Justice in The Hague, stating that it has no authority to conduct its probe into the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, according to a Thursday report.

Jerusalem said that the court was not the place to adjudicate the conflict, and that instead direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority were needed, the unsourced Kan news report said.

The National Security Council said in response to the Kan report that it along with the Foreign Ministry were working to convince friendly countries to submit opinions to the ICJ to back Israel’s stance.

“Israel’s position is that the process conducted has no authority and that all disputes with the PA should be resolved in negotiations between the sides,” the council said.

“We will continue to fight the lies of the Palestinians and delegitimization attempts against Israel,” said Foreign Ministry Eli Cohen. “I thank our friends around the world who submitted positions to the court and to most of the member states of the United Nations, which from the start did not lend a hand and did not support the Palestinian initiative that seeks to abuse the International Court of Justice in The Hague in order to promote a unilateral agenda against Israel.”

Kan noted that the official response to the ICJ contradicted declared government policy that it would not cooperate with The Hague, as well as the fact that the current hardline, right-wing coalition is uninterested in peace negotiations with the Palestinians.

Under pressure from Jerusalem, the United States also submitted a response to The Hague backing Israel’s position, the report said.

In February, the court announced a timeline for the start of the probe, setting a July 25 deadline for submitting written statements in the case, and an October deadline for comments on those statements, after receiving the UN General Assembly’s formal request to weigh in on the conflict.

The ICJ is the top United Nations court for mediating disputes between countries. Its rulings influence public opinion and legal processes but it has no enforcement mechanism. The court is separate from the International Criminal Court, which is also in The Hague.

The UN General Assembly in December passed a resolution pushed by the Palestinians asking the court for an “advisory opinion” on Israel’s “prolonged occupation, settlement and annexation of Palestinian territory.” It also called for an investigation into Israeli measures “aimed at altering the demographic composition, character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem” and charged that Israel has adopted “discriminatory legislation and measures.”

The General Assembly made the request to the court after the UN Human Rights Council’s Commission of Inquiry recommended that it do so. The latter panel is overwhelmingly critical of the Jewish state and its reports almost entirely ignore Palestinian terrorism and violence and largely place the blame on Israel for the conflict.


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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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