Thursday, August 31, 2023

From Ian:

Rabbi Leo Dee: Our Arab neighbors are being abused by their own governments – they need our help
I have recently been reading Natan Sharansky’s excellent autobiography, “Never Alone,” where he recounts how Communist Russia used demonization of the United States as a technique to justify its abuse of the human rights of its citizens. Because of this experience, Sharansky has been the consistent voice of common sense in peace negotiations with Israel's Arab neighbors, urging that peace cannot be made with nations that abuse the human rights of their own citizens. His logic: the abusive regime will always need an external “enemy” in order to continue its subjugation of its own population – just like the Turpins. And in the case of the Arabs, that enemy is Israel.

There are few nations as abusive to their own citizens as the 12 Arab nations that surround us in the Middle East, including the Hamas regime in Gaza and the Palestinian Authority within our borders. According to Freedom House, the international standard for monitoring human rights, we are surrounded by some of the most abusive nations in the world. Syria, on our northern border, has a human rights score of 1%, the lowest on this planet. And it is terrifying to consider that over half a million people have been massacred there by the government and civil war in the past 10 years.

Iran has a score of 13% with women and gays being persecuted daily while dissidents are rounded up and never seen again. And so, too, for the other Arab countries in the Middle East.

The Palestinian Authority has a score of 22% and Gaza 11% signaling societies where citizens are not free to protest about their leaders, nor vote in free elections. Israel, meanwhile, scores 77% for human rights. Not the 90% of the US or the 80%+ of the UK, but certainly free and democratic.

We are currently witnessing the ability of the Israeli populace to campaign publicly about the government and we should be proud of that. Out of the 100 million Muslims in our region, the only Muslims who are “free” are Israel’s 2 million Arab citizens.

As Sharansky points out in his book, human rights abuse is not just an internal issue for those unfortunate citizens, but a global threat to peace. The Cold War, that stretched from 1947 until the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991, almost led the world to nuclear obliteration.

Today, the threat of a nuclear Iran, with its abusive human rights record, is real and imminent. In fact, if one were to consider the current threat of nuclear weapons in the hands of Russia, China and North Korea, one might reconsider allowing nations with no human rights from acquiring technology for “nuclear power."
Bassam Tawil: Human Rights Watch's Jihad Against Israel
[T]he report fails to mention that during this period Israel has faced a massive wave of terrorism sponsored and funded by the Iranian regime and its Palestinian terror proxies, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ).

One of the cases "investigated" by HRW is that of Mahmoud al-Sadi, 17, reportedly killed by Israeli security forces as he walked to school near the Jenin refugee camp in the northern West Bank on November 21, 2022. Notably, the HRW report does not mention why Israeli troops had entered the refugee camp.

The Jenin Battalion terrorists, who are heavily armed, are mostly affiliated with Palestinian Islamic Jihad, an extremist Islamist organization responsible for countless terrorist attacks that have killed and injured hundreds of Israelis in the past few decades. There is no mention of this militia or its activities in the HRW report. Evidently, HRW does not want to the facts to spoil its effort to slander Israelis by depicting them as child-killers.

While HRW presents al-Sadi as an unarmed teenage boy, Palestinians posted a photo of him carrying a M-16 rifle. Apparently, for HRW such photos, where Palestinian teenagers are featured brandishing weapons and dressed in military outfits, are irrelevant because they do not serve its anti-Israeli propaganda.

Bizarrely, HRW does admit that the remaining three "children" allegedly killed by Israel were involved in terrorist attacks. Yet, as far as HRW is concerned, Israeli soldiers or police have no right to defend themselves when they are attacked with stones, Molotov cocktails, and fireworks. Why? According to the logic of HRW, the perpetrators are "only" teenagers.

Does HRW really expect Israeli soldiers and policemen to ask someone who shoots or throws a Molotov cocktail at them how old they are before firing back to defend themselves?

Instead of denouncing the Palestinians for using children as combatants, HRW is condemning Israel for defending itself against terrorism.
‘Israel Lobby’ Author Takes Cash from ‘Putin-Approved’ Think Tank
The realist scholar John Mearsheimer, best known for his tome The Israel Lobby, has a curious acknowledgment in the preface of his latest book, How States Think: The Rationality of Foreign Policy.

Mearsheimer expresses gratitude to the Valdai Discussion Club for a grant that funded his research. What is the Valdai Discussion Group? The Moscow-based think tank, which has been described as a "Putin-approved" organization, hosts the Russian equivalent of Davos, gathering global elites to hear the latest talking points from the Kremlin.

The Valdai Discussion Club, which says its goal is to "promote dialogue between Russian and international intellectual elite," is staffed by former Russian state media figures and regularly hosts Russian president Vladimir Putin, as well as other high-ranking government officials. The group was founded by the Russian International Affairs Council, a think tank launched by Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Mearsheimer is a University of Chicago professor and the co-author of The Israel Lobby, a 2007 book that argues pro-Israel forces in the United States control American foreign policy, to the country's detriment.

Mearsheimer's grant from the Valdai Discussion Club is notable given his contention that one particular foreign government exerts too much influence in the United States. In The Israel Lobby, published in 2007, Mearsheimer argued that pro-Israel forces in the United States control American foreign policy, to the country's detriment. He has since been a mainstay in the anti-Israel advocacy world, even endorsing the work of an alleged "Hitler apologist and Holocaust revisionist."

But Russia appears to be more than just another nation-state for Mearsheimer, a non-resident fellow at the anti-interventionist Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft. His work blaming the West for Russia's aggression toward Ukraine has been highly influential in the United States. After Russia invaded Ukraine without provocation last year, Mearsheimer's 2014 Foreign Affairs paper, "Why the Ukraine Crisis Is the West’s Fault," was widely cited by those who sought to limit U.S. involvement in the war. Updated versions of his argument—that NATO's expansion into Russia's sphere of influence directly caused the invasion—appeared in Foreign Affairs, the Economist, and the New Yorker and were favorably cited in left-leaning publications like Current Affairs, the Nation, and the Atlantic.

Mearsheimer has long enjoyed ties to the Valdai Discussion Club and participated in its annual gatherings that take aim at American leadership across the globe. Mearsheimer, for instance, traveled to Sochi in 2016 to hob-knob with Russian oligarchs at the Discussion Club’s yearly confab, which featured Putin as a speaker that year.

During the conference, Mearsheimer argued that the United States had "foolishly driven Russia in the arms of the Chinese."

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The UN Security Council passed a resolution extending the mandate of UNIFIL in southern Lebanon for another year.

There were some points of contention during the debates. The major issue was that the original proposed language from France copied language from last year's resolution that Hezbollah and Lebanon opposed that gives freedom of movement to UNIFIL and allows it to travel without coordination with the Lebanese Armed Forces. This is of course necessary for UNIFIL to be able to restrict Hezbollah activities there. As the US UN Ambassador Linda said after the vote:

We know UNIFIL has been unable to access a range of troubling sites across the Blue Line, including illegal firing ranges, Green Without Borders sites, rocket launch sites, and tunnel sites. It is clear the main purpose of these sites is to facilitate Hizballah’s operations in southern Lebanon along the Blue Line. This constrains the Mission from fully achieving the directives set forth in the mandate and hinders the Mission’s ability to reduce the likelihood of conflict.
The political drama between China and Russia, taking Hezbollah's side, and the US and UAE taking the anti-Hezbollah side, was interesting:

A key point of contention was language introduced by resolution 2650 saying that, pursuant to the Agreement on the Status of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (SOFA), which was signed between Lebanon and the UN in 1995, “UNIFIL does not require prior authorization or permission to undertake its mandated tasks” and that it “is authorized to conduct its operation independently”. 

...During the negotiations, China and Russia apparently supported Lebanon’s position and requested the removal of language introduced in resolution 2650 on UNIFIL not needing prior authorisation to undertake its tasks and demanding that the parties guarantee UNIFIL’s freedom of movement, “including by allowing announced and unannounced patrols”. These members demanded the replacement of this text with language saying that “UNIFIL shall benefit from freedom of movement in coordination with the government of Lebanon”. While recognising that coordination between UNIFIL and the LAF is a valuable factor, it seems that the penholder and several other members held the view that coordination is not a precondition for UNIFIL to carry out its mandated functions.

The draft resolution placed in blue on 29 August attempted to bridge these diverging positions. Although it retained language reaffirming that, pursuant to the SOFA, UNIFIL does not require prior authorisation to undertake its tasks and that it is authorised to conduct its operations independently, the phrase “while continuing to coordinate with the Government of Lebanon, as per the SOFA” was added and the reference to “announced and unannounced patrols” was removed. However, it seems that the UAE was particularly unhappy with these changes, apparently leading France to reinsert the language on “announced and unannounced patrols” in the revised draft resolution put in blue yesterday. The reference to coordination with the Lebanese government “as per the SOFA” still appears in the revised text.
So the UAE was more hawkish on Hezbollah than France was. Good to know.

Northern Ghajar is Syrian territory, not Lebanese, and Israel intended to withdraw but then the Syrian civil war broke out. Also the residents do not want to have their town divided again. Most are Israeli citizens.

But then the UAE turned around and tried to insert language condemning Israel for "occupying" a tiny part of southern Lebanon:
The first draft text included a new preambular reference “expressing concern at the continued occupation of northern Ghajar,” a village which straddles the Blue Line, “and an adjacent area north of the Blue Line”. This is in addition to operative language already contained in resolution 2650 urging Israel to expedite the withdrawal of its army from northern Ghajar. Although the UAE proposed “condemning” the occupation, it appears that this change was not made, while the term “occupation” was replaced by “the continued Israeli presence” to accommodate the US’ position on this issue.

Following requests by some members—including China, Russia, and the UAE—both references to northern Ghajar were changed during the negotiations to “northern Ghajar and an adjacent area north of the Blue Line, in the outskirts of the town of Al-Mari”, to reflect more closely the language preferred by Lebanon to refer to this area. While this language still appeared in the draft that was put in blue on 29 August, the reference to “the outskirts of the town of Al-Mari” was removed from the amended draft that was put in blue yesterday in a likely concession to the US, which had consistently opposed this language during the negotiations.
The UAE is pushing its weight at the Security Council. 

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From Ian:

MEMRI: Signs Of Possible War In September-October
Lately there have been growing indications that a war against Israel may break out in September or October 2023. The trigger may be spiraling violent clashes resulting in many casualties, or the use of new weapons leading to many fatalities on the Israeli side, in the face of which Israel will be unable to suffice with its regular counterterrorism measures.[1] While neither Hamas nor Hizbullah are eager to start a comprehensive confrontation with Israel,[2] such a confrontation could result from an uncontrolled deterioration on the ground or from the use of new and unusually deadly weapons by these movements.

The following are some of the factors pointing to the possibility of a war breaking out in the coming months:

1. Growing Provocations By Hizbullah On Israel's Northern Border
In the recent months, Hizbullah has repeatedly instigated increasingly bold provocations on the border. These included setting up tents in the Har Dov area, inside Israeli territory;[3] dismantling surveillance cameras along the border fence near Fatima Gate,[4] and firing an anti-tank missile into Israel.[5] In addition, Hizbullah, which does not recognize the Blue Line as the international border between Lebanon and Israel, has recently made a new territorial claim, demanding that Israel give Lebanon sovereignty over the northern Rosh Hanikra railway tunnel, likewise in Israeli territory.[6] At the same time, it also demands to curtail UNIFIL's freedom of action in South Lebanon. [7]

2. Adoption Of Gaza Fighting Methods By Islamist Terrorist Organizations In The West Bank, Such As The Firing Of Rockets And Excavation Of Command-And-Control Tunnels
The Palestinian terror organizations, especially Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), seek to change the mode of operation against Israel in the West Bank by duplicating the fighting methods used by the terrorists in Gaza.[8] This is manifest in the firing of rockets from the West Bank into Israel, the excavation of "command-and-control tunnels" in the West Bank (though not, as yet, tunnels infiltrating Israeli localities), and in military cooperation between different terror organizations, following the example of the Joint War Room in Gaza. There has also been an increase in efforts by Iran and Hizbullah to smuggle weapons into the West Bank, similar to the smuggling of weapons into Gaza.[9] PIJ secretary-general Ziad Al-Nakhaleh said that, during his June 2023 meeting with Iranian Leader Ali Khamenei, the latter had "reiterated [the need to] develop the arming of the West Bank and the resistance there." Nakhaleh added: "We, as Palestinians and as resistance forces and movements, understand the importance of arming the West Bank, but this requires efforts by the Palestinians themselves, and also the assistance of our brothers in the Islamic Republic of Iran."[10]

3. Possibility Of Clashes In Al-Aqsa During The Jewish Holidays In September, Potentially Sparking Violence Outside Jerusalem As Well
During the Jewish holidays in September and October, Jews are likely to visit the Al-Aqsa compound, as happens every year. Hamas and Hizbullah spokesmen have stressed that this could lead to a regional war. Saleh Al-'Arouri, deputy chairman of Hamas' Political Bureau and head of the movement's military wing in the West Bank, said in an interview with the Al-Mayadeen channel: "There are some in the [Israeli] cabinet who are contemplating measures like taking over and dividing the Al-Aqsa mosque, and carrying out assassinations." These people, he added, "know that this may lead to regional war." He recalled statements made by Hizbullah secretary-general Hassan Nasrallah, that "any attack on the Al-Aqsa mosque or on Jerusalem will prompt a regional war." [11]
Avi Abelow: The Palestinian Authority is an enemy entity
We have the most right-wing, proudly Jewish, sovereignty-in-Judea & Samaria-supportive government we ever will have, and even this government can't do anything to stop the terror war against us and the illegal Palestinian Authority land grab in Area C of Judea & Samaria.

Why? Because this government is not making the one policy change necessary to allow the IDF to end the terror war against us. What is that one thing? To finally implement a policy based on reality, recognizing that the Palestinian Authority is an enemy entity for its non-stop support of terror to kill Jews and destroy the Jewish state of Israel.

That is the one change necessary.

Once that change is made, Israel would stop transferring money to the Palestinian Authority, and calling upon world governments to stop funding the Palestinian Authority. Without this funding, the Palestinian Authority would have no money to continue funding the terror war against us.

In addition, the IDF would no longer go after individual terrorists, which achieves nothing, rather, the IDF would be given the order to take down the whole senior leadership of all terror organizations, including the Palestinian Authority, and remove all weapons in the hands of terrorists in Judea & Samaria.

I know it is a pipe dream, and the world would scream bloody murder at Israel for implementing such a policy, but this simple truth must be repeated loud and clear for at least the Jewish people to wake up to the dangerous deception we live with day after day. Only after we repeat this message enough will our "leaders" stop ignoring this reality and demand this step as well.

As we approach the 30th anniversary of the signing of the Oslo accords, it is imperative that this fact no longer be ignored.

The Palestinian Authority is our enemy and it is an absolute travesty that it is not treated as such.
Seth Mandel: An Iran disaster of Biden's own making
Princeton University’s announcement that it has hired President Joe Biden’s senior Iran envoy Robert Malley is full of praise for Malley’s career experience, and it notes that Malley is spending time this fall at the school while he is “on leave” from the State Department. In what I’m sure is an innocent oversight, the press release neglects to explain why Malley is suddenly on leave and available to spend a semester or more at Princeton in the midst of the administration’s ongoing negotiations with Iran.

Malley has lost his security clearance and has reportedly been under FBI investigation for mishandling classified information.

The Biden administration has lied repeatedly, to members of Congress of both parties and other State Department officials, about Malley’s transgressions, so the Princeton announcement is useful. The Biden White House has forced the public to play Kremlinology, reading scraps of information to attempt to piece together what on earth its secretive, borderline-paranoiac government is doing.

The administration — and I’ll explain why in a bit — is unbothered by Malley’s lapses. It kept him on his tasks after he lost his security clearance and even after it could no longer hide his clearance suspension.

Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) of the foreign relations committee and ally of President Biden, told CBS last month he had not been briefed and that “there is a lot of concern and interest in Congress on that committee and others about the status of any potential negotiation with Iran."

He continued, "The Iranians are providing the Russians critical drones and munitions for their aggression in Ukraine. I think that puts even greater tension on any possible conversations between the United States, our regional allies, and Iran. And I do think we need a briefing to update the members of Congress.”

Princeton’s decision to pick up Malley’s paycheck until the government is allowed to pay him again is an interesting move. The university is acting as an arm of the Biden administration while making a mockery of both the FBI investigation and national security more broadly, though the latter is perfectly in character.

Why isn’t the White House the least bit bothered by the national security implications of Malley’s actions?
It isn't only in newspapers that one can see naked Jew-hatred in Jordan.

It is in their parliament, too.

MEMRI, for example, translated some of the more antisemitic statements spoken in Jordan's parliament in 2021:
 Suleiman Abu Yahya:"The Jews, Allah's curses upon them, are described in the Quran as the slayers of the prophets....The Jews are cowards. The diapers that the Israeli soldiers wear attest to that. May Allah curse them and their diapers."

Safaa Momani: "We must annul all the accords and agreements, because the Jews are the slayers of the prophets, who have betrayed all the pacts and contracts. From the beginning of time, they had no respect for treaties. They violated their pact with the Prophet Muhammad, so why do we expect them to abide by their promises? All our agreements with them should be annulled."

Salamah Al-Bluwi: "What happened and is happening in occupied Palestine constitutes a war crime by the criminal Zionists, the sons of apes and pigs, Allah's curses and curses by the Prophet Muhammad upon them. ..Our conflict with the Jews is of a historical, religious nature. The Jews do not abide by any agreement, contract, or pact."

In Jordan's parliament on Wednesday, former MP Saleh Abdul Karim Al-Armouti continued this tradition.

He directed a series of questions to Prime Minister Bishr Al-Khasawneh about "Jewish and Zionist tourism" in Jordan.

All the questions pre-suppose Jewish plots against Jordan being implemented by tourists and others. 

Here are his questions:

1. How many Jews have come to Jordan during the past three years, what are the reasons for the visit and what are the areas they visited?

2. Is it true that there are groups of Zionists who come to Jordan with foreign nationalities, as well as Israelis, who begin long rounds of hiking in the southern regions of Aqaba, passing through Ma’an, Tafilah, Karak, and Madaba, cities, deserts, and valleys? What do these groups do during their trips? Does the government monitor these groups and their movements, and stand up to the goals and objectives behind them?

3. Is it true that there are Jewish plots that were transferred from Iraq to Jordan and from Jordan to the Zionist entity in occupied Palestine, and who are the middlemen who conducted these operations if they took place in the past years, and through what channels, and what are the connections between this issue and the Zionist entity’s embassy in Amman?

4. Are there antiquity traders in Jordan who search and buy what is called “ancient Jewish gold”, is there “ancient Jewish gold” in Jordan at all or is the Zionist entity burying ancient Hebrew antiquities in Jordanian land for dishonorable and illegal goals and purposes?

5. Does the enemy’s embassy in Amman smuggle antiquities, and what are the means it uses to smuggle these antiquities, if any, and does the government check, monitor, and monitor the mail issued by the embassy that travels across the border, and are the embassy cars that travel across the border merely cars carrying passengers or are they doing illegal acts?

6. Does the government know that there is a Jordanian photography association that has prepared a competition celebrating the city of Madaba called Mosaic Land? Does the government know that the Jordanian photography association has made the Jewish Nakhshtan erected on Mount Nebo an emblem of the Jordanian city of Madaba?

7.- Does the government know that Nakhshtan is a Hebrew word taken from "Nakhash" which means snake in Hebrew?

8. Does the government know what prompted the group of Franciscans who control Mount Nebo to construct that huge, ugly Jewish Nakhshtan monument?

9. Does the government know that the first act of the Franciscans was to change the Arabic name of Mount Naba to the Hebrew name “Nebo” and does the government know that planting that Jewish symbol Nakhshtan, especially on the top of Mount Naba’a/Nebo overlooking occupied Jerusalem, is a challenge to the feelings of people and Jordanians?

10. Who is the body now that takes care of the religious affairs of the monastery in that mountain? Is it a national body from the people of the country, or are they strangers from outside the country?

11. Does the government have the intention to cancel this Jewish-Zionist symbol that provokes the feelings of Muslims and Christians and transgresses all higher values ​​and morals, and which is also sed as a symbol for one of our cities that we are proud of?
And please accept respect,,,
Attorney Attorney
Saleh Abdul Karim Al Armouti

The last few questions appear to be referring to the "Brazen Serpent" sculpture on the summit of Mount Nebo, which is meant to symbolize the copper snake on a pole that Moses crafted and the Israelites who suffered snakebites would look at it and live, together with a Christian cross. The Franciscans own the site of an ancient Byzantine church on the mountain. 

This is the kind of Jew-hatred that one sees literally every day in Jordanian media. Wore than Iraq, worse than Algeria, worse than Lebanon, worse than Egypt, worse than Syria. 

(h/t Ibn Boutros)

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Akiva Bigman in Mida writes that Ehud Barak had been planning to bring Benjamin Netanyahu down via mass protests long before the judicial reform issue was brought up.
Ehud Barak is a central figure in the protest movement against judicial reform. If you have been following the media, you may get the impression that although he is adamantly against Netanyahu and judicial reform, he is merely providing commentary and interpreting events. The reality is the opposite. Do not be deceived by his age or because he is a former prime minister and supposed elder statesman. At 81 years old, Barak is one of the main architects behind the current mass demonstrations. Yet, his involvement goes deeper. Barak is not only orchestrating today’s mass demonstrations, he has been integral in forming the anti-Bibi movement over the past seven years.

Recently, a chilling video of a Zoom conversation was circulated in which Barak describes a scenario of how he will return to power. He mentions that he has a friend, a historian, who told to him that he will become Prime Minister again when there are “bodies floating in the Yarkon river” of Jews murdered in a civil war. Barak immediately said that this should never happen. Yet, that he would mention such a grotesque idea, a truly horrifying scenario is disturbing. Moreover, this comment was made to a forum whose whole raison d’être is to get rid of Netanyahu and explore ideas on how to implement such a plan. Perhaps this was a slip of the tongue, or maybe it was said by someone whose purpose in orchestrating these protests is about his own return to power.

Nonetheless, the Zoom conversation video containing the “bodies in the Yarkon river” comment actually occurred in 2020 during the Corona pandemic, years before judicial reform became a legislative issue. Meaning, the notion that it is specifically judicial reform that is bothering Barak, or the people he is guiding, is bogus. And the fact that Barak was having conversations with those who raised the idea of mass civil disobedience only serves to reinforce Barak’s role in guiding these protests.  

Barak's words in the 2020 video sure sounds like a blueprint for the protests happening today, especially using the word "democracy" as a slogan. 

But he had been saying the same thing since 2016:

These are Barak’s words at the Herzliya conference, pay attention to the recurring motifs that he still talks about today:

“We have been led for more than a year by a prime minister and a government that is weak, limp and all talk, even according to senior members of its coalition, deceitful and extremist, that fails repeatedly, in guaranteeing security, undermining the fabric of democracy in Israel, failing in managing diplomatic relations with the United States and in stabilizing Israel’s position in the world… Here, I call on the government to come to its senses and immediately get back on track. If you don’t do that, we will all have to get up from our comfortable and less comfortable seats – and overthrow it, through a popular protest and through the voter’s ballot – before it’s too late.”

These are the components of Ehud Barak’s second political comeback: de-legitimization of the government, a deep animus towards Bibi and therefore the slogan ‘anything-but-Bibi’, and mass demonstrations.

Bigman's article goes on to bring  other evidence to bolster this thesis.

Could this be true?

I am reading a pre-release edition of "(In)sighrs: Thirty Year of Peacemaking in the Oslo Process" by Gidi Grinstein. Grinstein was the secretary and youngest member of the Israeli delegation at Camp David in 2000 and his book is an account of the negotiations at the time. He worked for the Barak government during his premiership and famously used the Heimlich maneuver when Barak was choking at Camp David. 

 Grinstein loves Ehud Barak. He was "blown away" by Barak's speeches. He describes him as "the smartest man in the room" who manages to break down complex problems into a "matrix" of small tasks. He describes Barak's political brilliance in building a coalition as well as in his ambitious attempts to accomplish three things in a short time period - a peace deal with Syria, withdrawal from Lebanon whether negotiated or unilateral, and then peace with the PLO, all before Clinton would leave office. 

But, whether Grinstein realizes it or not, Barak comes off as a jerk in this book. His "matrix" of things to be done were all in his head and he wouldn't share his strategy or plans with anyone. On the contrary, Barak would instruct his PLO negotiating team to continue their work even as he sabotaged their progress because he wanted to work on the other tracks first. Grinstein admits this: chief negotiator Dr. Oded Eran was a serious expert who led the team, but he was a "pawn in Barak's masterplan" whose hands were politically tied by Barak, and Barak then built his own secret negotiating team, completely leaving Eran out of the loop.

This was hardly the only example where Barak would throw people under the bus because he thought he was the only one brilliant enough to see the big picture - and to maintain his power. There was no chain of command in Barak's government, and the only possible result in such a system is chaos. Grinstein himself admits that one day Barak asked him to leak information to the New York Times, bypassing his boss, and leaving him in an uncomfortable position. Official positions were circumvented by Barak's personal backchannels. No one knew their real roles.  Everyone working for Barak was a chess piece for his ambition, not a human being. Barak comes off as a paranoid, power-mad Machiavellian far more than the wise peacemaker Grinstein tries to position him as. 

The theory that Ehud Barak is the force behind the protests today in a bid to regain power, when he cannot hope to do so by democratic means, is entirely consistent with the Ehud Barak described in a book that adores him. 

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On Thursday, the UN published a document titled, "Study on the Legality of the Israeli Occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Including East Jerusalem."

It is 107 pages of tendentious and one-sided arguments all intended to declare Israeli actions since 1967 to be illegal. There are counterarguments to each of their arguments - but they don't let the readers know that.

However, the entire basis of the paper is bogus. Turn to page 18, which declares its "methodology.":

The study takes it as a starting point that the Palestinian territory – i.e., the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip – was occupied by Israel in 1967, in the course of an international armed conflict. 
Setting aside Gaza for now, the question is - when did that territory become "Palestinian?"

Looking at newspaper articles in the years after the Six Day War, the West Bank was usually described as "occupied Jordan."

Here are two articles from 1972, the first about how militant Arabs threatened fellow Arabs running for office in the first elections in the West Bank after the war:

When, exactly, did the territory turn from "occupied Jordan" into "occupied Palestinian territory"? 

It never happened. The world just went along with Palestinian propaganda and eventually believed it. 

The question gets starker when we realize that Jordan's annexation of the West Bank in 1949 was illegal, and almost no nations recognized it. It was never legally Jordanian territory.

So the West Bank was never "occupied Jordan." It was part of the British Mandate of Palestine, the same mandate that promised the land to be the Jewish state. Not a Palestinian homeland - only a Jewish homeland.

This is international law, that has never been abrogated. Israel has a superior legal right to Judea and Samaria than anyone else. Israel's characterization of the territory as "disputed" was probably a mistake - it should have always claimed it all. But "disputed" is accurate, "occupied" is not.

Which is why the Mandate is never mentioned, and the "methodology" deliberately omits it, pretending that the territory is "occupied Palestinian territory" without ever saying when, legally, it became "Palestinian."

The paper spends a lot of time on the argument that the Mandate system provided a "sacred trust" for the rights of self-determination of the peoples in the territories. But as the Palestine Mandate document above shows, only the Jewish people were given that right under the Palestine Mandate. And the reason is as simple as it is unpalatable to the UN's legal "experts" - in 1920, no one considered that there existed an Arab "Palestinian people." The Arabs of Palestine who were speaking of nationalism wanted to become part of Syria, their interest in an independent state only arose (with very few exceptions) after the West drew the borders of British Mandate Palestine and unity with Syria was no longer an option. 

To apply the League of Nations Mandate language to apply to the self determination of a people who didn't exist as a people at the time - who didn't even consider themselves a people - is the height of deception.

The next part of the "methodology" is even more absurd:n"The study also takes it as a starting point that Israel continues to occupy the Gaza Strip."

Before Israel's withdrawal from Gaza, no legal expert had ever said that an occupation is possible without soldiers physically on the ground controlling the territory.

For example, see the definition in the 1972 Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms:

Military occupiers are obligated, under international law, to set up a court system, to ensure that cities are governed and continue to run, to set up an entire bureaucracy to run the territory. That is impossible without "boots on the ground," the informal definition of occupation for over a hundred years. 

Israel does not control Gaza. It cannot stop rockets or mortars, weapons manufacturing or military exercises. Israel cannot create a military court system - which is required under the rules of occupation. It cannot arrest anyone. 

The second sentence makes it quite clear that Area A in the West Bank is not "occupied" even if one accepts that somehow the West Bank is "Palestinian territory."

As with all other legal analyses when it comes to Israel, this paper was intended from the outset to determine that Israel's actions and "occupation" are illegal. It set the ground rules to ensure that pesky arguments like the League of Nations Mandate or the accepted definitions of occupation pre-2005 not even be brought up. (When JFK blockaded Cuba, did the US "occupy" Cuba?)

This isn't international law. It is twisting international law against only one state - coincidentally, the only Jewish state. 

And that is only the beginning of the problems with this document. But since the methodology itself is based on lies, that ensures that the rest of the document built on this foundation of lies is invalid as well. 

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!



Wednesday, August 30, 2023

From Ian:

30 Years Ago, Israel’s Left Illegally Established a Palestinian State with the Oslo Accords
A secret cabinet meeting was held on August 30, 1993, 30 years ago to the date. You can read the protocol here. It included Rabin, Peres, several Labor ministers, Shulamit Aloni and Yossi Sarid from Meretz, which had peaked in the 1992 election, with 12 MKs. It also included a gifted newcomer from a religious Sephardi party: Aryeh Deri.

Deri later recalled: “At 6 PM, I received a message that there was a government meeting at 8 PM and that I should come if I wanted to see the Oslo agreements, which no one knew then what they were.”

According to Haim Ramon, who held the Health Services portfolio in Rabin’s government, not only the citizens of Israel were shocked, but also the army. “This agreement was made behind the army’s back,” said Ramon. “Military personnel were not involved in this agreement, unlike their involvement in all the agreements until then and since. They got to read the agreement almost at the same time the ministers did.”

Deri recalled, “Ehud Barak, who was the Chief of Staff at the time, sat next to me and during the entire meeting was telling me quietly that the agreement was dangerous, that there are holes in it bigger than Swiss cheese, and that it would harm the security of the state.”

Some of Barak’s vehement objections are omitted from the protocol as “top secret,” to be released for publication in 90 years. That’s 60 years today… Comments made by Binyamin “Fuad” Ben-Eliezer, who was Housing Minister in Rabin’s government, but had served as the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, were also censored for 90 years.

Barak’s comments that were not removed included an astute observation of just how difficult it would be for the IDF to prevent the rise of a terrorist infrastructure in Judea, Samaria, and the Gaza Strip should the PLO’s cooperation not be as enthusiastic as Rabin was expecting it to be.

“When we have information about wanted persons in Jabaliya or about the preparation for an attack taking place inside one of the refugee camps, it won’t be easy to take effective action against it,” Chief of Staff Barak told the meeting. “There’s always a danger that the field ranks in the Palestinian police will leak or be infiltrated with sources from among the perpetrators of the attack.”

It’s amusing that the people who shot him down during the meeting, namely the folks from Meretz, would later become his biggest partners in his attempt to bring down the Netanyahu government using sabotage and street violence.

Rabin opened the meeting by saying this is not a simple agreement, representing one of two alternatives his government was facing: withdrawal from the “Syrian” territories in the Golan, or the “West Bank.” Of the two, the “Palestinian” option was more likely, especially since the Clinton White House had taken it up with vigor, to the point where the Americans had become the go-between for both sides.

Rabin said he also supported the “Palestinian” option because the Syrians were demanding a complete withdrawal, whereas the PLO would settle for a partial return of “occupied” lands. Rabin made clear that he saw no security value in the Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria. As far as he was concerned, they were political ventures, and so their viability had to be measured based on their current political value, which included their full or partial removal.

As far as Rabin was concerned, it all came down to PLO Chairman Arafat’s ability to deliver security within the Palestinian Authority, especially his ability to control Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Foreign Minister Peres then shared his surprise that the PLO did not insist on uprooting the settlements. Having to attempt that would have presented an impossible situation, morally and physically. He suggested that in that context, it was for the better that the peace talks with Syria had not been concluded, because the Syrians would have demanded a return of everything, and then the “Palestinians” would have insisted on the same demand.
Oslo protocols declassified: Rabin doubted Palestinian elections
Rabin told the cabinet that in his eyes, the first test of the Accords would be if the PLO could control Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Rabin additionally noted that "the rise of Hamas in particular and radical Islam in general in the Arab world is a problem. I think we are seeing this rise among the Palestinians as well. I believe that, in most of the elections in the territories today, Hamas is rising."

When asked if there was an assessment of what would happen in the elections for the Palestinian National Council, Rabin responded "I have no way of knowing, because the problem is who will threaten more, who will be with guns near the polling stations, and who will count the votes."

"Basically, for me, Gaza is a case test for the ability of those who support peace and support the PLO to deal with Hamas. Will it go in this direction or in other directions - I estimate, it mainly in this direction, but there is no certainty. There is a good chance," said Rabin. "But the IDF exists. There is a closure on Gaza from all directions, no one can enter or leave without our consent, not from the sea, not from the Egyptian border, not from the territory of Israel."

The prime minister admitted that the main worrying point of the deal is that it included a lot of commitments from the Israeli side, but very few commitments from the Palestinian side. Rabin added that the Palestinians were formulating some kind of statement that they would stop violent actions, but added that the exact formulation remained unclear.

Then foreign minister Shimon Peres stressed that the deal needed to succeed both politically and economically and explained that he and Rabin had asked European and American institutions to begin heavily investing in Palestinians in the territories.

Peres warned, "there is a possibility that the whole PLO business will fall apart and there will be a kind of Hamas-like Iran here."

"We also need to be careful. There is no certainty that they will last, with all the rebellions, with all the begging, with all the pressures and all the things that exist. I say this is a very serious matter. I simply do not see an alternative in the Arab street, with all the shortcomings there are, that is better than the current coalition that exists."

Peres stressed that the Israeli negotiating team had not given up an inch of territory. "We did not remove a single settlement, we preserved the unity of Jerusalem, we ensured Israel's security."
Guardian op-ed fails miserably in effort to malign Israel
Pogrund has offered nothing in the way of actual evidence that Israel has become – or is becoming – an apartheid state, and he’s provided no concrete examples of what has changed in the country since 2017, when he stated unequivocally that “South African apartheid rigidly enforced racial laws. Israel is not remotely comparable“.

So, what has changed in the past six years?

First, a few radically anti-Israel NGOs published legally, factually and politically flawed reports accusing Israel of apartheid – ideologically motivated conclusions in search of evidence that, in effect, argued that Zionism, by its very nature, is racist. These ‘reports’ have served to embolden those who reject Israel’s right to exist within any borders, and have given succor to mainstream ‘journalists‘ who have never hidden their visceral animosity towards the Jewish state.

The other change relates to the contentious debates both in Israel and the diaspora concerning Israel’s new government. But, without minimising the legitimate concerns about judicial reform and the presence of two extremists in the coalition, by the standard that Pogrund himself set for such a debate, there’s been no move towards anything resembling an apartheid reality.

Israel is still a multi-ethnic, multi-racial democracy that’s, by far, the most progressive nation in in the Middle East; where its Arab minority has the right to vote and enjoys full citizenship; where the rights of the media and individual free expression are protected; where Arabs and Muslims serve in every sector of society, including in the Knesset and in the nation’s highest court; and where – as Pogrund himself showed – no codified racial segregation of any kind exists.

However, despite the fact that the apartheid charge is easily undermined with minimal critical scrutiny, we know with something approaching metaphysical certainty that media outlets like the Guardian will continue to wield the smear amidst their ongoing campaign of maligning Israel and its diaspora Jewish supporters.
There are no anti-Arab 'apartheid' roads in the West Bank
There are those who falsely claim that travel in Israel is restricted for the Arabs of Judea and Samaria. But that is not the reality.

Judea and Samaria contains close to 2,500 km. of roads for intercity traffic – and travel between communities – of which 1,600 km. are located in Area C.

Arabs of Judea and Samaria can use all the roads, including those in Area C, apart from those that provide access inside Jewish communities and security zones controlled by the IDF, which comprises only 3% of the area.

Adversely, Israelis are permitted to drive in Area C, but entry into Area A constitutes a criminal offense. It therefore follows that almost 35% of the region’s roads are off limits for Jewish Israeli (meaning Jewish) traffic.

The ban on Israeli traffic can be construed as racist, seeing that an equal ban is not enforced when it comes to Israeli Arab citizens. In fact, their entry is encouraged by state authorities in order to strengthen the economy of the cities under Palestinian Authority rule.

To use a personal example: Route 57 extends from my community of Avnei Hefetz to Elon Moreh. It passes through the city of Shechem and skirts by Joseph’s Tomb. For security reasons, travel on this road is prohibited for Jews, and I have to take a long detour to Elon Moreh via Route 60, which adds a lot of travel time until I reach my destination.

The same applies to residents of Gush Dolev and Talmonim, in the Mateh Binyamin district, who need to get to the Binyamin Regional Council offices. They have to detour through Jerusalem instead of traveling a direct route past the outskirts of Ramallah and through Beit El.

Bottom line: Travel restrictions apply primarily to the Jewish-Israeli demographic.

Vivek Ramaswamy is a chameleon. He said he’d cut aid to Israel, then retracted the statement when it proved unpopular. This waffling on an issue near and dear to the hearts of 58% of American Jews leaves at least some of them scratching their heads and wondering: Is Vivek Ramaswamy good or bad for the Jews?

For some it’s enough to know that right out the gate, Ramaswamy is talking Jews and money, a subject that never bodes well for the Jews. The presidential hopeful staked out his position moreover, in a discussion with Russell Brand on Rumble. Brand has been known to feature anti-Israel Jews and celebrities in his videos. He once gave a platform to Hungarian Holocaust Survivor Dr. Gabor Maté, who used the opportunity to rain vitriolic untruths about Israel upon his listeners for a full 18 minutes, describing the most vicious—and fictitious—Israeli war crimes. In one whopper among the many, Maté asserts that the Israeli expression “mowing the lawn” refers to mowing down the innocent people of Gaza.

In actuality, the expression “mowing the lawn” refers to the need for the regular elimination of terror cells and rocket launchers in order to protect the innocent people of Israel. Israeli civilians have been the target of hundreds of thousands of rocket attacks emanating from Gaza. The IDF specifically chooses to manage the situation in Gaza, rather than carpet-bomb the place, in order to avoid civilian casualties, there.

In his introduction, Brand gave the Israel-hating Maté, whom he calls a “modern-day shaman” an impassioned and sympathetic introduction:

“[Maté] had this to say about the situation in Israel now. It’s one of the most beautiful, profound, and effective things I’ve ever seen anybody say about this conflict, and I fail to see how anybody could . . . I think anyone who sees it will be deeply moved by Gabor Maté’s wisdom and truth.”

The sympathetic platform that served the anti-Israel Maté is the same platform Ramaswamy chose for airing his views on ending U.S. aid to Israel, at the very start of his presidential campaign. According to a report in the JC, in his interview with Brand, Ramaswamy implied that Israel receives special treatment by the United States:

A US presidential candidate has said that Israel should not be receiving more aid than its neighbours and promised to cut back US funding to the Jewish state.

Vivek Ramaswamy, a long-shot Republican candidate for the president, said during an interview with Russell Brand on the right-wing social network Rumble that any additional funding Israel receives currently would be redundant. He said: “Come 2028, that additional aid won’t be necessary in order to still have the kind of stability that we’d actually have in the Middle East by having Israel more integrated in with its partners,”

While Ramaswamy admitted that the close relationship between the US and Israel had benefited both countries, he added: "There’s no North Star commitment to any one country, other than the United States of America.”

Twelve days later, Ramaswamy reversed himself. From the Free Beacon:

Facing backlash for his proposal to halt U.S. funding to the Jewish state by 2028, Vivek Ramaswamy’s campaign now says he does not support cutting military funding to Israel unless the country "tells the U.S. that it no longer needs the aid."

The fact-check section on Ramaswamy’s website was updated Monday to say that he "won’t cut aid to Israel until Israel tells the U.S. that it no longer needs the aid."

"That’s what Vivek actually said, so don’t believe the opponents’ lies that he wants to cut aid to Israel—which makes zero sense as a foreign policy priority any time in the foreseeable future," said Ramaswamy’s campaign.

The statement is a reversal from the candidate’s promise earlier this month that "come 2028, that additional aid won’t be necessary." It is also the clearest sign yet that he supports continuing the funding, which accounts for roughly $3 billion annually and which Israel primarily spends on the U.S. defense industry.

The shift comes as Ramaswamy has come under fire from pro-Israel leaders and his Republican primary opponent Nikki Haley, who said during last week's debate that Ramaswamy was "completely wrong to call for ending America's special bond with Israel."

Ramaswamy hit back at Haley, a fellow Indian-American, in the campaign statement, writing "Keep lying, Nimarata Randhawa." Haley’s maiden name was Randhawa prior to her marriage to Michael Haley in 1996. Her first name is "Nimarata," although she goes by her middle name "Nikki."

His campaign said he would "also partner with Israel to ensure that Iran never acquires nuclear capabilities." He described Israel’s current affiliation with the United States as a "client relationship" and said his policies would turn it into a "true friendship."

Ramaswamy’s conflicting answers on aid to Israel have irked both supporters and opponents of the Jewish state.

Aside from Ramaswamy’s flip-flop on Israel, there are other troubling factors for Jews to consider in assessing the potential threat of a Vivek Ramaswamy in the White House. Ramaswamy boasts that he was a “key member” of Jewish leadership society Shabtai, during his time at Yale Law School. Originally called “Eliezer” and then “Chai Society,” Shabtai is both secret and exclusive (emphasis added):

Meet Eliezer, the secret Yale society that's hiding in plain sight. The "secret" lies in the private networking and intimate bonding among a cohesive, self-selecting, truly diverse membership. A list of who belongs to Eliezer exists, but the contents are strictly off the record. Everything is word of mouth and by invitation only, not to exclude but to include the most interesting Yalies from over the walls of Yale's various courtyards: college, graduate schools and faculty.

Founded in the fall of 1996 by Rabbi Shmully Hecht, Ben Karp, Cory Booker and Michael Alexander as an intellectual salon and Jewish leadership society, the group that started out as a social club for would-be and current leaders of the Yale community has blossomed into an organization recognized the world over, yet with a decidedly secular twist. "There was no question that Eliezer was a Jewish association," says New York Times critic at large Edward Rothstein, a member of the society, "but also no question that along with its elements of religious observance and allusion, the aura was nonsectarian intellectual."

It's not just a "secular twist" when so many members of this Jewish society, including Ramaswamy, are not Jewish. But even among the Jewish participants, Shabtai’s “truly diverse membership” is just that. There is respected rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, and truth-seeking, antisemitism-fighting Bari Weiss. But then there are the other Shabtai participants, who, like Maté, feel compelled to lie and spew hate about Israel, for example William Schabas, Norman Finkelstein, Jeremy Ben-Ami, Richard Blumenthal, and Peter Beinart. The roster of antisemitic participants in this “Jewish leadership society” is long and distressing, and because of Shabtai’s veil of secrecy, we have no way to gauge the extent of interactions between members.

Then again, Ramaswamy’s Shabtai membership may just help us to clarify and further refine our original question: Would it be good or bad or the Jews to have a U.S. president who hangs out with the likes of Peter Beinart and William Schabas—or even one who nods his head at the things they say? What impact might these Shabtai participants have had on Ramaswamy in determining his stance on U.S. aid to Israel?

On the other hand, many staunch supporters of Israel have reservations about continuing to take America’s money. For one thing, if Israel were to stop accepting U.S. aid, no one could rightfully say that Jews control America’s the purse strings. Of course, haters like Gabor Maté would say it anyway, and continue to lie through their teeth about Israel.

Also, U.S. aid represents only a small fraction of Israel’s defense budget. Many say Israel can do without that money. “Israel clearly could survive without U.S. assistance, which constitutes just 3 percent of its state budget today and less than 1 percent of its GDP, a fraction of its value when it began," says Charles Freilich, a former Israeli deputy national security adviser writing for the left-wing fifth-column-rag Haaretz.

Michael Oren, formerly Israel’s ambassador to the U.S., cites other figures to show that American aid is less important to Israel today than it once was “Back in 1985, American aid represented nearly one-half of Israel’s defense budget. Today, it accounts for only 19%.”

Another issue to consider in being for or against American military aid for Israel, is that while antisemites demonize Israel for “sponging” off of America, the truth is that America is the main beneficiary of U.S. aid to Israel. More from Oren (emphasis added):

Though now taken for granted, American defense aid for Israel began belatedly and grew in fits and starts. Throughout its first two decades, while assisting Israel economically, the United States refused to sell Israel any arms, much less aid it militarily. A breakthrough occurred during the Kennedy administration, which sold Hawk anti-aircraft missiles to Israel, followed by President Lyndon Johnson, who allowed it to purchase Patton tanks and Skyhawk aircraft. Even then, Israel fought the 1967 Six-Day War with French weaponry—AMX tanks and Dassault Mystère fighters, plus some American army surplus—but in the process proved its worth as a potent Cold War ally. The result was an inchoate U.S.-Israel strategic alliance that burgeoned during Israel’s War of Attrition (1967-1970) with Soviet-backed Egypt and then in the Yom Kippur War of 1973. In Operation Nickel Grass, the United States replenished Israel’s battlefield losses with some 55,000 tons of military equipment.

The material was paid for, not donated. Outright military aid to Israel would only be offered in 1979, after the Camp David Accords with Egypt, when President Carter earmarked roughly $3 billion for Israel. The grant, though, was spread out over several years and used to reimburse Israel for the airbases it evacuated in Sinai. Not until the mid-1980s, in the Reagan years, did Israel receive an average of $1.8 billion per year, increased by the Clinton administration to $2.4 billion. In large measure, the money offset the phasing-out of American economic grants to Israel as well as the massive sale of American arms to Arab countries. Still, the amount grew to just over $3 billion in 2008 with the start of President George W. Bush’s 10-year memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. In addition to the MOU annuity, Israel also sought “plus ups”—congressional grants for missile defense and other one-time expenditures, amounting to hundreds of millions of dollars. In time, this would make Israel the largest single recipient of American military aid since World War II, a total of more than $150 billion.

But that number is also misleading. The aid comes in the form of foreign military funding (FMF) designed to facilitate the foreign military sales (FMS) of American military equipment. This means that nearly three-quarters of the aid is spent in the United States, as a subsidy for the domestic arms industry, creating tens of thousands of jobs. Thanks to that money, the Israel Defense Forces have become the world’s most American-equipped army, with the largest fleets of F-16 and F-35 jets outside of the United States. For companies such as General Dynamics and Lockheed-Martin, there can be no better advertisement for their fighters than their use by Israel’s famed air force. And while Israel’s critics in the United States often claim that it receives the greatest amount of American aid, in fact Germany, Japan, and South Korea get many times more. Their allotments, though, are not characterized as aid but as items in the U.S. defense budget.

Another former ambassador, Yoram Ettinger, says that U.S. aid to Israel is an investment:

The U.S. does not give foreign aid to Israel, the U.S. makes an annual investment in Israel, one that provides the American taxpayer a return on investment of several hundred percent . . .

. . . While Israel is a grateful recipient of several hundred U.S. military systems, it also serves as a battle-tested, cost-effective laboratory for the U.S. defense and aerospace industries, which employ—directly and indirectly—3.5 million Americans. Moreover, the Israel Defense Forces serve as a laboratory for the U.S. military itself, which enhances U.S. performance on the battlefield.

By serving as such a laboratory, Israel enhances the economy, national security and homeland security of the United States.

For example, the Israeli Air Force flies the U.S. company Lockheed-Martin’s F-16 and F-35 combat aircraft. This provides both Lockheed-Martin and the U.S. Air Force with invaluable information on operations, maintenance and repairs.  This information is then used to manufacture a multitude of upgrades for next-generation aircraft.

The F-16 itself has been improved by several hundred Israeli-driven upgrades, including to the cockpit, fire control, wings and fuel tanks. This has spared Lockheed-Martin 10-20 years of research and development—which would have cost billions of dollars. It also enhances the company’s global competitiveness, increases its multi-billion-dollar exports and expands its employment base. Similar advantages are enjoyed by Boeing, the manufacturer of the F-15, which is also flown and upgraded by the Israeli Air Force.

Indeed, Israel is the Triple-A store for Lockheed-Martin, Boeing, Raytheon, G.D., Northrop Grumman, L3Harris Technologies, G.E., Oshkosh, Honeywell and many other U.S. defense and aerospace companies. This enhances the image of these companies abroad and multiplies their export markets, because other countries assume that if Israel—with its unique national security challenges—uses these companies’ products, they must be of high quality.

And of course there’s the matter of allies keeping tabs on each other and also the sharing intelligence. Says Ettinger, “[The] benefits [of U.S. aid to Israel] extend to the realm of intelligence. According to a former head of U.S. Air Force Intelligence, Gen. George Keegan, the U.S. would have to establish five CIAs in order to procure the intelligence provided by Israel. The annual budget of the CIA is around $15 billion.”

Even those Israelis who feel that Israel would be better off not taking any more U.S. aid, admit that there is a difference between want and need. They may not want the aid, and may resent what people say about Israel taking that aid. But that aid is a reflection of U.S. Israel relations, a tangible representation of a firm alliance between these two countries. 

American politicians who want to cut aid, are generally not well-disposed to maintaining a collegial relationship with Israel. They prefer to withhold aid to keep Israel in line, or use it as a cudgel with which they can bludgeon Israel and make it behave. As Michael Oren writes, “Asked during the 2020 presidential race whether they would use American aid as leverage to pry diplomatic concessions from Israel, Democratic candidates Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Beto O’Rouke, and Pete Buttigieg all replied ‘yes.’ Asked by Israeli journalist Zvika Klein why young American Jews protest against Israel rather than Iran or Syria, Peter Beinart explained, ‘As Americans, we don’t provide $3 billion in military aid to Iran or Syria … without us, Israel couldn’t do everything it does.’”

Ramaswamy calls Israel a “client state” unable to stand on its own feet without the beneficence of the American people. That doesn’t sound as though he has an informed or realistic opinion about U.S. aid to Israel. Rather, it sounds as though he looks down his nose at Israel. He's patronizing.

In his desire to cut off the money pipeline to Israel, Vivek Ramaswamy is no different and certainly no better than the above-referenced Dems, radicals, and self-hating Jew-hating Jews. The difference is that Ramaswamy has now hedged his bets and couched his comments by putting the onus on Israel to end the aid, as per the per the quote from his website, “He ‘won’t cut aid to Israel until Israel tells the U.S. that it no longer needs the aid.’"

Does this mean that as president, Ramaswamy would strong-arm Israel to forfeit the aid until the Jewish State cries “Uncle?” In light of the benefits America accrues from the aid it “gives” to Israel, the idea is repugnant. Israel is not America’s whipping boy.

Ramaswamy gives the impression of being a wet-behind-the-ears smart-aleck upstart. He has been rude to Nikki Haley, and refers to U.S. ally Israel as a “client state.” Vivek has little--read no--chance of becoming the Republican nominee. Vivek Ramaswamy can however, still do damage to perceptions of Israel, and more generally, to the Jewish people.

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!



After the clashed between Palestinain Authority and terrorist forces in Tulkarm this morning, the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades - which are associate with Fatah - issued what appears to be an unprecedented, direct challenge to their supposed leader, Mahmoud Abbas, president of the PA who is the head of the Fatah party.

The Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the military wing of the Fatah movement, ...said in a statement published on its Telegram channel: 

"Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades calls on the leaders of the Fatah movement and the brigades in the regions, cities and villages to announce clearly and explicitly their rejection of the treacherous practices against our heroes, to reactivate all military groups, and to hold accountable those involved in betraying the commandments of our martyrs and prisoners.

"We have always called on the authority to stop the arresting and pursuing the resistance fighters, and we affirmed our clear commitment not to deviate from the compass and not to pay attention to the treacherous acts of some of the leaders of the authority, and we called for reform. 

"Any project that shackles the resistance is treachery. Our project is confrontation with the occupation in a long-term manner until it is defeated."

The Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades issued a decision in its statement that it prevents the entry of the authority and its devices into the Tulkarm camp, "and that the answer will be bullets, and the entry of the devices will be dealt with as we deal with the occupation." 

They are effectively annexing the Tulkarm camp from the Palestinian Authority and barring entry of the PA security forces.

That is a direct and real challenge to the PA - from Fatah itself. 

Your move, Abbas. 

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!




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