Saturday, February 10, 2024

From Ian:

Seth Mandel: The Global Complicity in Hamas’s Mayhem
The global complicity in Hamas’s brutal reign is quite a thing to behold. Egypt won’t accept even the temporary residency of Palestinian civilians, but it knows that under its nose Hamas leaders mosey in and out of the Sinai. The Qataris only possess leverage in the hostage talks because they are Hamas’s checking account, funding their wayward buddy’s murder habit. Turkey is, for crying out loud, in NATO. And yet Ankara hosts Hamas offices, aids the group financially, gives it diplomatic backing whenever conflict flares up (always at Hamas’s instigation), and even temporarily hosted one of the key planners of the October 7 rampage, Saleh al-Arouri. (Israel eliminated Arouri in Lebanon right around the new year.)

None of this even gets into the support Hamas gets through the various agencies of the United Nations, or from naïve-seeming Western nations, or even the fundraisers on America’s college campuses.

All of which is to say: On this issue, there isn’t much credibility to go around. Israel deserves full support from a chastened community of nations—especially those that will benefit from a Hamas defeat. That includes Egypt, which will sit on its hands while Israel dismantles terror tunnels underneath Egyptian sands. In fact, defeating Hamas will benefit everyone in the region who is threatened by Iranian expansionism. And this certainly includes the Biden administration. Washington’s sudden obsession with taking “irreversible” steps toward the establishment of a Palestinian state cannot even be contemplated so long as Hamas rules a single square foot of land on which such a state would stand.

All these countries’ opinions on Gaza deserved consideration up until the moment October 7 revealed a dearth of clean hands among them. And if the IDF’s operation in Rafah further embarrasses Hamas’s enablers, so be it.
The Master of Israeli Fiction Comments on King David and the “Secret” of the IDF
In 1964, an Israeli journalist asked S.Y. Agnon, a towering figure of 20th-century Hebrew literature, to comment on the fact that the Jewish state was now defended by a Jewish army. Herewith, an excerpt from Jeffrey Saks’s translation of his reply:

I think the army is nothing to play around with, but dabbling in pacifism is a bad business. Regarding our regular pacifists, who bask in their pacifism, the sages have already said, “Whoever shows mercy to the cruel ends up being cruel to the merciful.” I had one of the Shomer HaTzair members visit, from that leftwing youth movement. In response to the opinion he shared with me, I responded that the time when the people of Israel outstretched their necks for slaughter has passed. They claim that an army and war are not fitting for the people of Israel. Is it “fitting” for our enemy to slaughter us and for us to be slaughtered? Regarding the messianic era, it is said, “Nation shall not lift up sword against nation” (Isaiah 2:4)—but to achieve that we must be worthy of the messiah.

I don’t like the military. I would not talk about a Gentile army this way. I am not moved by anything practical or technical. . . . Yet when I witnessed, here in the Talpiot neighborhood [of Jerusalem], the young men in the War of Liberation, how they defended us and how they would come from their posts on Shabbat eves to hear kiddush—then I couldn’t hold back tears.

Israel, which had the insight to make the great and valiant warrior King David into a poet of the Psalms, one who sits and passionately studies the Torah—perhaps this is the secret of our army’s endurance.
Eli Lake: A Brief History of the ‘AsAJew’
The intellectual godfather of the AsAJews is a former professor named Norman Finkelstein. In the 2009 documentary American Radical, Finkelstein says he was proud of the sign he waved at a protest of the Israeli consulate in New York at the start of the 1982 Lebanon War. It read: “This son of survivors of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, Auschwitz, Maijdenek will not be silent. Israeli Nazis Stop the Holocaust in Lebanon.”

One hears this atrocious equation of the Jewish state to the Third Reich all the time today. Forty years ago, though, Finkelstein was a pioneer. Comparing Israel to the Nazis was something one might hear at a Weather Underground meeting or on Egyptian state radio, but not inside the corridors of power. Today, this defamation is a core part of Finkelstein’s performance.

A clip of Finkelstein addressing college students who asked why he compared Zionist students to the architects of the Holocaust has gone viral since October 7. With the pitch of his voice rising into a fury of indignation, he tells a student who is in tears: “Both of my parents were in the Warsaw uprising, and it is precisely because of the lessons they taught me and my two siblings that I will not be silent as Israel commits its crimes against the Palestinians.”

In November 2023, when I debated Finkelstein, he was more subdued. But he still repeatedly referred to the Gaza before October 7 as a concentration camp and said he could not bring himself to condemn Hamas’s massacre for the same reason that many abolitionists would not condemn the Nat Turner slave rebellion before the Civil War.

On the substance, Finkelstein is, of course, dead wrong. There are shopping malls and luxury hotels in Gaza. Billions in humanitarian aid have poured into the Strip since before Israel forcibly withdrew its soldiers and settlers from the land in 2005. And much of that aid has been stolen by Hamas for its war machine. To compare the conditions of Gaza to Auschwitz or Dachau or for that matter a plantation is an act of moral and historical illiteracy.

But leaving these facts aside, we should say that Finkelstein is a gift to the enemies of the Jewish people. After all, a Gentile who traffics in such toxic analogies would be instantly labeled an anti-Semite. But a child of Holocaust survivors? That is something entirely different. What’s more, if Israel is the Nazi state that Finkelstein claims, can you really blame the Palestinians for their blood lust on October 7?

In this sense, Finkelstein is following in the footsteps of Pfefferkorn, who brandished his credential as a former Jew to slander the Talmud, just as Finkelstein brandishes his credential as the son of survivors to slander Israel.

These libels matter. They justify, rationalize, and incite atrocities large and small. Jews do not learn black magic from the study of Talmud, but millions of Europeans believed this lie for centuries. Israel does not target Palestinian children; rather, Hamas endangers them by shooting rockets from schools and mosques. But millions of people around the world believe that Israel does.

The anti-Semites of the Middle Ages needed AsAJews to provide credentials for the lies that justified their pogroms and expulsions. Today, Hamas and its allies in Iran need the AsAJews to persuade the Hague, European governments, and the White House to delegitimize Israel’s right to self-defense.

The silver lining is that, just as in Pfefferkorn’s time, there are righteous Gentiles like Reuchlin. The honor roll includes New York Representative Ritchie Torres, Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton, and many others. But the biggest surprise since October 7 has been Senator John Fetterman of Pennsylvania. He ran as a left-wing populist in 2022 and managed to win his race despite suffering a stroke that diminished his brain’s speech functions. As he has recovered, Fetterman has emerged defiant of the pro-Palestinian activists in his party. In January, he walked past a group of them with a wide grin as he waved a small Israeli flag. When South Africa began its prosecution of Israel in the show trial at the Hague, he told the Orthodox Union, “South Africa oughta sit this one out.”

It is important to know that there is a long tradition of converts who work hard to credential the libels of the enemies of the Jews. But we must also acknowledge the tradition of righteous Gentiles who have debunked them—even if those who advance these slanders testify to these lies “as a Jew.”

Directly beneath UNRWA’s Gaza headquarters, IDF uncovers top secret Hamas data center
Beneath the Gaza Strip headquarters of the controversial United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees, known commonly as UNRWA, the Hamas terror group hid one of its most significant assets, the Israeli military has revealed.

The subterranean data center — complete with an electrical room, industrial battery power banks and living quarters for Hamas terrorists operating the computer servers — was built precisely under the location where Israel would not consider looking initially, let alone target in an airstrike.

The revelation of the server farm comes amid other accusations of UNRWA collusion with the Gaza-ruling terror group and the entanglement of the UN body that provides welfare and humanitarian services for Palestinian refugees from the 1948 and 1967 wars and their descendants.

Israel last month accused 12 staff with the UN Palestinian refugee agency of taking part in the October 7 massacre by Hamas-led terrorists, who killed 1,200 people and took 253 hostages in the murderous rampage.

Since the allegations became public late last month, UNRWA has seen many of its top donor countries announce funding freezes, leading to concerns that the agency could stop operating in Gaza and elsewhere in the Middle East within weeks.

But the IDF’s recent discovery of the Hamas data center while UNRWA is under increased scrutiny appears to be merely a coincidence.

UNRWA’s Gaza headquarters is located in Gaza City’s upscale Rimal neighborhood, an area that the IDF had previously operated in, dismantled the local Hamas battalion and withdrawn its troops from.

At the time of the initial ground offensive in Gaza City, the military had not found or known much about the Hamas data center. But new intelligence, primarily emerging from the Shin Bet interrogations of captured terrorists, helped pinpoint where to dig.

“The IDF was here previously, the first time was to destroy the enemy, but when we were here the last time we collected a lot of intelligence documents and findings, a lot of prisoners, and thanks to this we reached here. Now we carried out a targeted operation to take this capability away,” said the commander of the 401st Armored Brigade, Col. Benny Aharon, while giving a media tour of the tunnel and UN complex on Thursday.

“We had a basis of information, but not enough to be able to dig down 20 meters and find it, we needed a bit more. There’s information we get from prisoners we capture, from computers we find, from documents, maps,” he said.

The IDF in recent weeks has returned to carry out smaller operations in the northern Gaza Strip, after largely destroying Hamas’s fighting capabilities during the early stages of the ground offensive.
These Findings Were Found Within UNRWA Facilities
Acting on ISA intelligence, the forces discovered a tunnel shaft near an UNRWA school, leading to an underground terrorist tunnel beneath UNRWA's main headquarters. The forces found electrical infrastructure inside the tunnel connected to UNRWA's main HQ, suggesting it was supplying the tunnel with electricity—generated by the fuel provided through humanitarian aid.

This 700-meter-long tunnel, 18 meters deep, contained multiple blast doors and various intelligence assets seized by the forces. Intelligence and documents found confirmed the offices' use by Hamas terrorists. Large quantities of weapons, including rifles, ammunition, grenades and explosives, were uncovered hidden in the building's offices.

‘Oh, you knew’: Israel says UNRWA ‘chose to ignore facts’ after Hamas top secret center found under Gaza HQ
The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, known by its acronym COGAT, hits back at UNRWA head Philippe Lazzarini after he claimed the agency “did not know” of a Hamas top secret data center discovered under the Gaza headquarters of the UN body.

“Oh, you knew,” tweets COGAT, in response to Lazzarini’s long post denying any knowledge of the tunnel or the subterranean data center. The UNRWA head claimed that Israel has “not informed UNRWA officially” about the discoveries, and said UN staff left the Gaza headquarters four months ago as Israel launched its military campaign in Gaza, triggered by the October 7 Hamas killing spree.

“Digging a tunnel takes longer than 4 months. We invited senior UN officials to see, and during past meetings with you and other UN officials, we stated Hamas’s use of UNRWA’s headquarters,” COGAT writes.

“You chose to ignore the facts so you can later try and deny them,” it says to Lazzarini.

Israel’s English-language government spokesman Eylon Levy tweets: “They knew, and they didn’t find out from the media. Israeli authorities invited @unrwa leadership to tour the Hamas Server Farm under UNRWA HQ in Gaza City. Lazzarini ignored the invitation.”

The subterranean data center, seen by The Times of Israel’s military correspondent on Thursday, included an electricity room, industrial battery power banks, and living quarters for Hamas terrorists operating the computer servers.

Top Biden aide tells US-Arab leaders he has no confidence in Israeli government
A top White House official said he does not have “any confidence” in the current Israeli government, specifically regarding its readiness to take “meaningful steps” toward the creation of a Palestinian state, The New York Times reported Friday, citing a recording from a meeting between the official and Arab American leaders in Dearborn, Michigan.

US Deputy National Security Adviser Jon Finer reportedly made the comments Thursday during a visit to the city, which has a large Arab-American population. He visited alongside other Biden administration officials, including ex-UN ambassador Samantha Power, to plead the president’s case before a constituency that is crucial for his 2024 reelection bid, but has been outraged by his support for Israel during its war with Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

According to the report, Finer told attendees at the meeting about the Biden administration’s efforts to end the war in Gaza, and to establish formal diplomatic relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia, which, he said, is a crucial step toward Palestinian statehood and would demand all parties to compromise.

“We will have to do things for Saudi Arabia that will be very unpopular in this country and in our Congress,” Finer was quoted as saying. “Will Israel be willing to do the hard thing that’s going to be required of them, which is meaningful steps for the Palestinians on the question of two states? I don’t know if the answer to that is yes. I do not have any confidence in this current government of Israel.”

Finer also called some unnamed Israeli officials “abhorrent” and said the administration should have taken a stronger stand against those who compared “residents of Gaza to animals.”

While he did not name names, the Times report specified that Defense Minister Yoav Gallant was quoted in the first days of the war saying, “We are fighting human animals and we are acting accordingly.”

Gallant was referring to Palestinian terrorists behind the October 7 massacres in Israel and not all residents of Gaza, but his quote has been widely used as ostensible proof of Israeli dehumanization of the Gaza population.

“Out of a desire to sort of focus on solving the problem and not engaging in a rhetorical back-and-forth with people who, in many cases, I think we all find somewhat abhorrent, we did not sufficiently indicate that we totally rejected and disagreed with those sorts of sentiments,” Finer said.

He also expressed regret at the “missteps” the Biden administration has made handling the war, particularly with regard to a perceived lack of concern about the civilian casualties as it refused to back calls for a ceasefire.
Israel recognition? 89% of Arabs say never
A new survey conducted by the Arab Center Washington DC (ACW) in collaboration with The Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies (ACRPS) recorded a significant shift in the Arab public’s approach concerning the recognition of the State of Israel, with an overwhelming number currently standing against normalizing ties with Israel.

The comprehensive poll, which gauged sentiments across 16 Arab countries, underscores a growing resistance against normalization with Israel due to the war in Gaza.

In the survey, 89% of respondents from the Arab world opposed recognizing the Jewish state, marking an increase from previous polls. This figure not only represents a nearly unanimous stance against normalization, it also indicates a 5% rise in opposition compared to the results from the 2022 survey, where 84% stood against recognition.

The poll detailed notable country-specific shifts in public opinion, highlighting a dramatic change in perspective among nations that have historically taken steps toward normalizing relations with Israel.

In Saudi Arabia, opposition surged from 38% in 2022 to 68% in the latest poll. Similarly, Morocco saw an increase from 67% to 78%, and Sudan from 72% to 81%, showcasing a significant hardening of attitudes across diverse Arab societies.

Findings show disillusionment with normalization
These findings signal a profound and growing sentiment within the Arab world, reflecting deep-seated frustrations and disillusionment with the peace process and the broader implications of normalization agreements. The ACW's report emphasizes that, despite diplomatic efforts and political maneuvers, the grassroots opposition to recognizing Israel remains robust and is, in fact, intensifying.

The heightened opposition is especially pronounced in countries that have formal peace agreements with Israel, such as Jordan, Egypt, and Morocco, as well as those like Sudan, which have recently begun normalizing political relations.
Hamas Will Not Accept Israel as Biden Admin Touts 'Two-State Solution'
A senior Hamas terrorist told a Lebanese news outlet, which the allied jihadist group Hezbollah operates, on Thursday that his group would offer “no compromise” on the destruction of Israel, describing the Jewish state as having “no future in the region.”

Osama Hamdan, the top Hamas representative in Lebanon, threatened all who support the existence of Israel, telling Hezbollah’s al-Manar news, “Whoever counts on it or attaches their future to it will lose.”

Hamdan’s comments echo the ideological provisions of the Hamas terrorist charter and statements made since 2023 by officials in Iran, the world’s premier state sponsor of terrorism and a top Hamas financier. The opposition among jihadist groups to Israel existing in peace presents a significant obstacle to the foreign policy of leftist American President Joe Biden, whose officials have been repeating, with increasing frequency and urgency, the need for an alleged “two-state solution” in which a sovereign “Palestine” is established alongside Israel. Those proposing two states have not offered any clarity on who would govern such a state — an issue of particular concern given that Hamas is the government of the “Palestinian” territory of Gaza.

Hamdan’s remarks, as sympathetic observers online translated, included a condemnation of the United States as well, accusing Washington, DC, of being “responsible for all the conflicts taking place in the region.”

Hamas leaders have done little to obscure their objective of destroying the state of Israel since their invasion and mass murder spree on October 7. The occasion was the deadliest terrorist attack in the history of the country, killing an estimated 1,200 people and resulting in the abduction of about 250 others, of which about half have been liberated. Hamas terrorists engaged in door-to-door mass killings in residential communities, in some cases executing all members of a family, sometimes in their beds, and on other occasions torturing, gang-raping, and mutilating victims. Hamas refers to the terrorist attack as the “al-Quds flood” and celebrates it as a battle victory.
Washington Says It Will Not Back Expanded IDF Operations in Rafah
Medics reported that Israeli airstrikes overnight in Gaza’s Rafah claimed the lives of 17 individuals on Saturday.

The attacks come as tensions escalate, with over a million Palestinians densely packed into the border city, awaiting a potential full-scale offensive amid widespread destruction across the enclave and limited avenues of escape.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office announced plans for military action, aiming to evacuate Rafah’s population and dismantle four Hamas battalions allegedly stationed in the area.

Unlike previous conflicts where civilians were urged to seek refuge in southern Gaza, the current situation presents a dilemma as there are no relatively unscathed areas left, leaving residents with nowhere to flee. Aid agencies have warned of the potential for a significant loss of civilian lives should an assault on Rafah occur.

Reports from Gaza City indicate intensified fighting on Saturday, with residents reporting clashes amid the ongoing hostilities.

An Israeli official, speaking on condition of anonymity to Reuters, disclosed plans to coordinate the relocation of Rafah residents northward in anticipation of potential military action. However, Egypt has stated its refusal to permit mass displacement of Palestinians into its territory,.
Israel said worried US could slap sanctions on MKs, soldiers, settlers in West Bank
If Israel does not give the United States a satisfactory explanation for alleged “gross violations of human rights” in the West Bank within 60 days, sanctions triggered by the so-called Leahy laws could hit ministers, parliamentarians, settlers and soldiers, the Kan public broadcaster reported Friday, citing an internal Foreign Ministry memorandum.

The memorandum was reportedly drafted by representatives from the Foreign Ministry and Israel Defense Forces’ Military Advocate Corps to whom US State Department officials have in recent weeks expressed the Biden administration’s concern that certain IDF units operating in the West Bank have perpetrated alleged violations of human rights while using arms supplied by the US.

Absent a sufficient Israeli response, the units might be subject to sanctions under the Leahy laws, a pair of US statutory provisions prohibiting assistance to foreign military units given “credible information that such unit has committed a gross violation of human rights.”

According to the Kan report, such sanctions could affect IDF troops, as well as members of Knesset, ministers, settlers in the West Bank suspected of involvement in the violations, and banks that don’t comply with the sanctions.

Kan diplomatic correspondent Suleiman Maswadeh described the Israeli officials as “very, very worried” about the possibility of American sanctions, which they intend to discuss in the coming week.
Believe It or Nuts: the UN Counts Jews Visiting the Temple Mount as ‘Settler Violence’
Hakol Hayehudi reporter Elchanan Groner on Thursday presented a UN Excel sheet depicting Jewish visits to the Temple Mount as violent incidents.

As can clearly be seen for this batch from 2019, the Incident Description is always, “Israeli settlers and other groups, accompanied by Israeli forces, entered and toured the yards of Al Aqsa Mosque compound.” The source is always “other” or UNRWA, and the region is described as “West Bank.”

Last week, Ynet’s Amit Segal quoted Dr. Michael Wolfowicz, a criminology researcher at the Hebrew University’s Faculty of Law, who examined the UN reports of 5,656 incidents of settler violence against “Palestinians” between 2016 and 2022.

Dr. Wolfowicz discovered that 1,600 incidents occurred in Jerusalem, predominantly concerning Jews accessing the Temple Mount or confrontations between police and Muslims engaging in violent behavior in the vicinity.

2,500 incidents encompassing property damage or assault, including instances such as a terrorist attack where a PA Arab assailant targeted Jews and was subsequently subdued.

Meanwhile, according to the IDF, between 2019 and 2022, there were 25,257 instances of PA Arab assaults on Jewish settlers in Judea and Samaria (without Jerusalem), with more than 20,000 incidents of stone-throwing, about 4,000 Molotov cocktails, about 400 shooting attacks, and more than 50 stabbing attacks. And the annual figure rose much higher in 2023. However, according to the UN reports on the same period, there were only 1,935 Arab-on-Jew assaults in Judea, Samaria, and Jerusalem.

It turns out that many of these Arab-on-Jew attacks were recorded by the UN as… “settler violence.”
Netanyahu said to believe Israel has 1 month to finish Rafah operation amid global ire
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly believes that given international pressure, Israel only has one month left to complete its upcoming operation in Rafah, aimed at dismantling the Hamas terror group’s remaining operative battalions in Gaza.

According to a Channel 12 news report on Friday evening, the prime minister recently told the small war cabinet that the operation in Gaza’s southernmost city, where more than half of the coastal enclave’s 2.3 million residents are sheltering, will need to be completed before the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which begins around March 10.

The assessment was reportedly made during a discussion about the pending Rafah operation, during which IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi told Netanyahu that the Israel Defense Forces was ready to operate, but that it needed the government to first decide what it wanted to do with the displaced Gazans sheltering there.

The report came as US President Joe Biden was coming under growing domestic pressure to push Israel on a ceasefire in its war with Hamas, now in its fourth month, though he and other US officials have continued to stand behind Israel’s right to defend itself against the terror group.

However, the US has expressed increasing concern over the civilian death toll, suffering and humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip, and the lack of clarity from Israel regarding the “day after” in Gaza.

The IDF chief of staff was also quoted by Channel 12 as saying that the military also needs to know the government’s plans for the Philadelphi Route, the 14-kilometer security road along Gaza’s border with Egypt.

The latter issue needs to be resolved to maintain cooperation with Egypt, given Cairo’s concerns about any Israeli operation along the border and amid fears that Palestinians fleeing Rafah could try and cross into Egypt. Channel 12 claimed that Netanyahu has dragged his feet on reaching decisions on either issue.

IDF kills senior Hamas official in Rafah; security chiefs visit Khan Younis
The Israel Defense Forces and Shin Bet said an airstrike was carried out on Saturday in the southern Gaza city of Rafah, killing a senior Hamas police official along with two other operatives.

The main target of the strike was Ahmed Al-Yaaqoubi, who the IDF and Shin Bet said was responsible for security arrangements of senior Hamas officials and served as a senior officer in the Rafah district’s secret police department.

Iman Rantisi, a Hamas military operative and senior official in the terror group’s general security investigations department, was also killed, as was another officer in the Rafah district’s secret police department.

Footage released by the IDF showed the airstrike on the car in Rafah.

The airstrikes in Rafah come as the IDF prepares for a ground invasion of the city, where more than a million displaced Palestinians are sheltering. The looming invasion of Rafah, which is adjacent to the border between the Gaza Strip and Egypt, has left Egypt wary of the possibility that Gazans will be pushed into the country as they flee from the war.

Egypt warned Israel once again on Saturday that any mass displacement of Palestinians into its territory would put the Israeli-Egyptian decades-long peace agreement and close security ties at risk.

Top Hamas official in Lebanon survives alleged Israeli strike; 3 others killed
A senior Hamas member targeted in an alleged Israeli airstrike in Lebanon 40 kilometers from the Israeli border survived the attack Saturday, a Palestinian security official told AFP, as rockets continued to target Israeli northern communities.

Two other people were killed in the strike in Lebanon, including one Hezbollah operative.

Lebanon’s state-run National News Agency said an Israeli drone struck a car in the coastal town of Jadra, about 40 kilometers (25 miles) from the border.

The target of the alleged Israeli airstrike was Basel Salah, a Hamas operative charged with recruiting and managing members of the terror group, including in the West Bank, The Times of Israel learned.

The Hamas unit Salah was a member of was headed by Azzam Al-Aqraa, who was killed in the alleged Israeli strike in Beirut last month that also killed the terror group’s deputy leader Saleh al-Arouri.

Salah, whose condition is unknown but who is believed to have been injured in Saturday’s strike, was allegedly involved in recruiting Hamas members for years, even amid the war in Gaza.

The strike took place deeper into Lebanese territory than the usual exchanges of fire between Hamas ally Hezbollah and the Israeli military, which have been mostly limited to the border region.

There was no immediate comment from the Israeli military.

Report: Egypt warns Israel Rafah offensive may lead to suspension of peace treaty
Egypt and Saudi Arabia have added their voices to a rising tide of criticism of a planned Israeli ground offensive in the Gaza Strip’s southern city of Rafah, after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu indicated that such a campaign was forthcoming.

Netanyahu announced Friday that he had ordered the Israeli military to present the cabinet with a plan to both evacuate the city’s civilian population — augmented by over one million refugees from the strip’s north and center — and destroy Hamas’s remaining battalions in the area.

According to Netanyahu, an assault on Rafah is critical to completing Israel’s stated war aim of dismantling Hamas. Earlier in the week, the premier rejected Hamas’s “delusional” terms for a hostage deal, which included a full withdrawal of Israeli troops from the Strip and the release of hundreds of terrorists serving life sentences.

“There is limited space and great risk in putting Rafah under further military escalation due to the growing number of Palestinians there,” Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said on Saturday during a press briefing, warning that an escalation would have “dire consequences.”

The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that Egyptian officials warned the decades-long peace treaty between Egypt and Israel could be suspended if Israel Defense Forces’ troops enter Rafah, or if any of Rafah’s refugees are forced southward into the Sinai Peninsula.

In addition, Saudi Arabia — which has already conditioned normalization with Israel on an end to hostilities and steps toward the establishment of a Palestinian state — issued a statement Saturday warning of “the extremely dangerous repercussions of storming and targeting the city of Rafah in the Gaza Strip,” given the city being “the last refuge for hundreds of thousands of people.”

Reuters reported that in an effort to forestall a massive influx of refugees, Egypt has over the past two weeks stationed some 40 tanks near its border with Gaza, after having reinforced the border wall since the beginning of hostilities, both structurally and with surveillance equipment.

Qatar Says Hamas ‘Promises’ Hostages Received Medicines, But Offers no proof
In a recent development, Qatar has informed both Israel and France that Hamas has purportedly agreed to ensure that hostages receive the essential medicines delivered to them in the Gaza Strip.

Last month, Qatar facilitated the transfer of these crucial drugs to Gaza following a comprehensive list compiled with input from the hostages’ respective doctors. The medications in question are deemed “vital,” primarily aimed at addressing chronic illnesses among the hostages.

This development comes amidst ongoing efforts to address the welfare and medical needs of the hostages held in Gaza, with international stakeholders closely monitoring the situation for further updates.

The Israel Guys: Iran Leverages Secret AI Cyber WARFARE to Defeat ISRAEL
A new report surfaces this week detailing Iran’s secret war against the state of Israel using cutting edge AI cyber tools. We’re going to get into that, and Israel begins a new stage of the war in Gaza

Douglas Murray speaks on theatre 'bullied' into cancelling his event
Author Douglas Murray says he does not think “anyone is safe in modern Britain” after his event at the Apollo Theatre in London was moved due to protests and venue staff suffering leaked addresses and abuse.

“I was meant to be speaking at the Apollo Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue in the heart of the west end, 1,000 people were turning out and the theatre was bullied into cancelling the event on the day,” Mr Murray told Sky News Australia host Rita Panahi.

“The event was moved to a synagogue which was the only place the police could protect.

“Some of the staff were threatened … the staff said they wouldn’t turn up to work so then more people were brought in from another theatre and they had their addresses leaked.

“They were apparently threatened and intimidated in turn and they too refused to turn up.”

Former US intelligence officer on the Israel-Hamas War: Malcolm Nance | Visegrad24 Podcast
Visegrad24 presents an in-depth series covering the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict. This comprehensive series features on-the-ground interviews, bringing firsthand insights from a diverse range of voices, including politicians, professors, journalists, experts and influencers.

Our guest today: Malcolm Nance, global counter-terrorism expert, former U.S. intelligence officer and Ukrainian Legionnaire.

00:00 - Introduction
02:14 - Oct. 7th intelligence failure
05:55 - Strategic goal of Hamas
07:22 - Hamas arrogance
10:15 - Full-scale war in Gaza
14:09 - American support for Israel
18:09 - Russia and the war in Gaza
20:48 - Political gridlock in the U.S.
23:15 - How to rescue the hostages
26:06 - Iranian support for Hamas
28:32 - Hamas and Islamist terrorism
31:52 - Fighting against an ideology
34:44 - Hamas expansion in West Bank?
36:08 - Israel and the Arab Peninsula
38:28 - US vs the Houthis

‘Stranger Things’ star Brett Gelman says book signing canceled over antisemitism, anti-Israel intimidation
“Stranger Things” star Brett Gelman has had two stops on his book tour vanish.

Bookstores in California and Illinois scuttled scheduled events featuring the 47-year-old comedian due to harassment and intimidation from antisemitic and anti-Israel protesters, he alleges.

The Jewish actor will no longer have the chance to promote his fiction debut at Book Passage in San Francisco and The Book Stall in Winnetka. Gelman had been set to appear at the venues as part of a four-city tour for his forthcoming short story collection, “The Terrifying Realm of the Possible: Nearly True Stories.“

“The bookstores canceled because of protester intimidation,” Gelman, who portrayed Murray Bauman on the Netflix hit, told The Post. “I didn’t get a lot of specifics … [but] I definitely believe it’s because of my vocal support of Israel and because of the fact that I’m Jewish. I think that this is a completely antisemitic act.”

Gelman, who learned of the cancellations through his rep, said he now fears for his safety, but won’t be threatened into silence. Two other planned appearances on the book tour – New York on March 18 and West Hollywood on March 27 – remain unchanged as of Friday.

“I mean, I won’t be surprised if they encounter the same type of intimidation, but I hope those two venues don’t feel it’s necessary to cancel the events,” Gelman said.

Business owner reveals torrent of abuse and cancellations after feminist writer Clementine Ford exposed personal details of members of a pro-Jewish WhatsApp chat
A small business owner whose personal details were exposed in the 'doxxing' of hundreds of Jewish creatives involved in a private WhatsApp group said she fears for her family's safety amid a deluge of abusive messages.

The names of almost 600 Jewish writers, artists, musicians and academics who were part of a private WhatsApp group set up in the wake of the October 7 Hamas terrorist attacks were leaked by high-profile pro-Palestine activists, including feminist author Clementine Ford who published a link to the list, on Thursday.

The so-called 'doxxing' - a term used to describe the publication of private or identifying information - has prompted a wave of abuse towards those named in the list.

Daily Mail Australia spoke to one business owner identified in the leak who said the group was initially set-up in response to a wave of anti-Semitism in Australia prompted by the fall-out of the Israel-Gaza war.

But the business owner, who this publication is not naming to protect her identity, said she left the group after only three days.

Despite this, her name and business were identified in Thursday's leak and she has since been receiving dozens of abusive messages.

'We started getting prank calls, abusive emails and comments left on our social media pages,' she said.

'We've had to delete our Instagram account and have even decided to change the name of our business.

'Two clients have already cancelled their bookings and demanded refunds. It will probably further impact our clientele because no one wants to be associated with anyone involved in controversy, even if we've done nothing wrong.'

The business owner said she was afraid the abuse might escalate and was worried for the physical safety of her two young children.

NYC Druze restaurant vandalized for public Israel support multiple times
A Druze restaurant, "Gazala’s," based in New York City, has been victim to multiple vandalism attacks due to the owner’s support for Israel, according to multiple media reports published throughout the week.

Gazala Halabi, the owner of the restaurant, told the source, Side Dish, that “Free Palestine” had been graffitied onto her restaurant’s bathroom on Monday and that this was the second such incident.

The New York Post stated that the restaurant displays both the Israeli and Druze flags at the front of the building. Halabi claimed the flags had led to pro-Palestinian customers avoiding the restaurant or storming out when they noticed Israel on the menu’s map.

Gazala’s has served hummus and other traditional Middle Eastern and Druze foods since 2007. The NYP wrote that it is thought to be the only Druze restaurant in New York.

Halabi was born in Haifa and was visiting family in Israel on October 7 when Hamas launched its mass terror attack against Israel that took the lives of over 1200 people.

“It’s like someone entering your home,” said Halabi, the NYP reported. “How dare they! If you want to fight, go fight in Gaza. Not here.

“I’m wondering what other countries would do if terrorists came and killed and kidnapped their people, including babies and children. The world needs to understand that.

“The whole country was going crazy. It felt like September 11 all over again. You couldn’t think. I was in shock, like the rest of the country."

Review-Bombing for Gaza
Politically driven negativity directed toward Jewish authors with views ranging from pro-Israel to neutral has resulted in another unfortunate phenomenon: blacklisting. “I know that I’m on a list with other Jewish authors on TikTok,” says Barr, referring to the myriad calls to boycott, including actual lists and petitions, that have flooded the social media platform—as well as Instagram and X (formerly Twitter). The ways writers end up on the lists range from tweeting about hostages, to including a character serving in the IDF in one of their books, to not publicly wanting to liberate Palestine, to who knows what else.

Among those singled out, one can find well-known authors like J.K. Rowling, Taylor Jenkins Reid (whose 2017 bestseller, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, is being adapted for Netflix) popular fantasy writer Rebbeca Yarros, and the author of the Percy Jackson series, Rick Riordan.

In response to blacklisting campaigns, a group of female Jewish writers have founded Artists Against Antisemitism, extending an open invitation to all creatives to join. “It literally came together around Oct. 15, in an Instagram chat of six authors,” Barr recalls. “Within days, that group of six turned into 35 authors, turned into 100 volunteers.” The group promptly held an auction, raising over $100,000 for Project Shema, an organization battling antisemitism.

“Had the events of Oct. 7th not happened, I probably would not have been part of an activist author Jewish group,” says Zibby Owens, one of the group’s founders. “But circumstances change.” But being part of the action, according to Owens, was uplifting. “I think it’s wonderful that so many authors have found each other at a time that can feel very isolating,” she says, adding that gathering and collaborating with other Jewish authors while “focusing on something that has clear action steps in a very uncertain time” was extremely valuable.

For Jenny Mollen Biggs, the project has become a revelation: “It’s been amazing, because I think, in the past, authors, especially women’s fiction, have tended to be pretty territorial,” she says. But now, the difficult atmosphere had “awoken something else” in fellow Jewish authors: solidarity and comradery. “It’s like, oh, yeah, I should blurb that girl’s book. I should help her out—it happens to just fall under the Judaism thing, right now,” Mollen says candidly. “I’ve seen people that haven’t always been so generous in the past really put themselves out there for other authors. And I love seeing that.”

With the hostages still in Gaza and the war still unfolding, it doesn’t look like the tension surrounding the topic of Israel—and the authors who support it in their fiction or on their social media captions—is going to die down anytime soon. As Artists Against Antisemitism is preparing for another function in the near future, Lisa Barr is doubling down on patience—and a sense of proportion. “I worry about my family, friends and colleagues in Israel 24/7—what is going on there is unfathomable,” she says. “What I am dealing with as an author is small potatoes. As a mother, and as a Holocaust survivor’s daughter, I will never be silent.”
Jewish PSAC members file human rights complaint against union
Jewish members of the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) are taking their union to Canada’s human rights tribunal, accusing their leadership of creating a “culture of discrimination and harassment” in the wake of the Oct. 7 Israel terror attacks.

Announced Friday morning in a press release from the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA,) fourteen separate complaints were lodged against PSAC on Friday with the Canadian Human Rights Commission — alleging the union used the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks to commence a campaign “promoting unbalanced and biased views against Israel,” and creating what the complaint describes as a hostile environment for Jewish workers.

“The union’s role is to negotiate better employment and working conditions for the membership — I’m asserting that this union has exceeded its mandate significantly,” said Daniel Lublin, Founding Partner of Whitten & Lublin Employment Lawyers and one of two lawyers representing the complainants.

While he maintains unions are free to be lobbyists, Lublin said such advocacy should be limited to improving working conditions.

“The union’s agenda, which we say is an anti-Israel/anti-Jewish agenda, is not something that improves working conditions for the membership,” he told the National Post.

“We believe that the union has exceeded its mandate in delving into what’s obviously a very contentious political, religious and international issue that really isn’t related to why people pay union dues.”

In December, the National Post published a series of articles documenting the backlash triggered by PSAC’s $50,000 donation to two Gaza-based charities — a move that sparked anger amongst Jewish and non-Jewish members.

That initiative saw two $25,000 donations of union money to the Palestinian Red Crescent and the now-disgraced United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) — a contentious organization recently rocked by allegations that agency employees took part in the Oct. 7 attacks that saw thousands of innocent Israelis murdered, kidnapped and sexually assaulted by Hamas terrorists.

Doctor who resigned from UBC over antisemitism: ‘We need to depoliticize medicine’
Medical education in Canada has become politicized and tolerant of antisemitism, Dr. Ted Rosenberg told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday in a conversation about the rising antisemitism in his field that led to his decision to resign from his role as clinical assistant professor at the University of British Columbia.

Rosenberg ended his 30-year position at UBC over what he said was the administration’s refusal to recognize and address the conditions on campus that left Jewish students and faculty feeling unsafe.

Following the launch of the Israel-Hamas war after the Gazan terrorist group carried out a pogrom in southern Israel, over 220 UBC medical students signed a petition demanding that the administration call for a ceasefire.

“We truly believe that calling for a ceasefire is the correct thing for UBC to do and will fall on the right side of history,” said the letter, adding that while they did not condone Hamas’s actions or antisemitism, taking such a stance would “send a strong message of support for Palestinian civilians who are being killed in collective punishment through the indiscriminate bombing of Gaza.”

Not willing to sign the petition
Rosenberg said the petition that portrayed Israel as a “settler colonial state” was “historically inaccurate” and that its publication led to polarization on campus. He related how a Jewish resident in pediatrics who would not sign it was lambasted on social media by students and faculty. He knew a victim who was murdered at the Supernova festival

He knew a victim who was murdered at the Supernova festival, and reportedly attempted to appeal to department heads and the medical department’s Office of Respectful Environments, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (REDI), but his appeal was apparently dismissed because the bullying occurred off campus and after hours.
Doctor who said Hammersmith would be better without Jews not racist, GMC finds
A doctor who said Hammersmith would be better if it was “Jew free” was found not to be racist but “comfortable with discriminatory language” by the General Medical Council’s independent tribunal.

Dr Dimitrios Psaroudakis, a consultant gynaecologist, has been suspended by the doctors’ regulator for three months after making dozens of racially offensive, sexist and derogatory remarks about colleagues and patients.

The Harley Street fertility consultant was reprimanded for messages he sent to a colleague, known as Ms A, during his time at the Evewell fertility clinic between 2020 and 2022.

An independent panel heard how Dr Psaroudakis made repeated references to Jewish colleagues as “yews” - because of his accent - and used this as “shorthand” when he messaged Ms A.

He also called his Jewish colleagues “big nose”, “leprechaun”, “alky” and “s*** for brains”, while messaging on the company’s IT systems before his resignation in September 2022.

He suggested Hammersmith, London, would be improved if it were “yew free”, and regularly referred to the clinic as “the temple”.

‘Racially offensive’ term
The Medical Practitioners’ Tribunal Service (MPTS), which runs independent hearings for the GMC, concluded that the term “yew” was “racially offensive”.
FDD: Texas A&M to Close Qatar Campus
Latest Developments
Texas A&M University announced on February 8 that it will close its campus in Qatar by 2028. “The Board has decided that the core mission of Texas A&M should be advanced primarily within Texas and the United States,” the chairman of the university’s Board of Regents stated. The Board also cited “heightened instability in the Middle East” as a reason to close Texas A&M’s Doha campus.

Texas A&M partnered with the Qatar Foundation (QF) in 2003 to open a satellite campus in Doha, Qatar. The Qatar Foundation, which is backed by the Qatari royal family, claimed that Texas A&M’s decision to shut its Qatar campus was the result of a “disinformation campaign aimed at harming the interest of QF.” The Qatar Foundation said it was “deeply disappointing” that Texas A&M had “fallen victim to such a campaign and allowed politics to infiltrate its decision-making process.”

Expert Analysis
“Given legitimate national security concerns, not to mention the abhorrence of any partnership with a state sponsor of Hamas, the university is finally making the right decision to distance itself from Qatar. The question now is whether other universities like Northwestern — a school partnering with Qatar and Al-Jazeera — will follow suit. Schools that receive federal money should not be taking contributions from or otherwise partnering with Qatar.” — Richard Goldberg, FDD Senior Advisor

“Georgetown, Northwestern, Carnegie Melon, Weill Cornell, and VA Commonwealth University should all follow in the footsteps of Texas A&M, shut down their campuses in Doha, and sever their ties with the Qatar Foundation, a government agency. It is high time that these universities stop letting Qatar — the biggest sponsor of terrorist groups in the region, including Hamas — use their hard-earned academic reputation in education washing Doha’s image.” — Hussain Abdul-Hussain, FDD Research Fellow

Education City
Texas A&M’s Doha campus is part of the QF’s Education City, a 12-square kilometer campus housing multiple academic centers and institutions. In addition to Texas A&M, five American universities operate campuses in Education City: Georgetown, Northwestern, Carnegie Mellon, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Weill Cornell Medicine.

Academic collaboration with Qatar — and the presence of American universities in Doha — raises national security concerns given Qatar’s ties to Hamas, the Taliban, and other terrorist organizations. In January 2024, the Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy released a report warning that Qatar had received ownership rights to sensitive nuclear technology and weapons manufacturing research through its partnership with Texas A&M.

Canadian universities cancel speeches over speaker's Hamas atrocities 'celebration'
Concordia and Carleton universities have apparently cancelled speaking engagements featuring Sami Hamdi, a British political commentator, over his comments celebrating Hamas atrocities during the terror group’s Oct. 7 attacks on Israel.

Hamdi spoke at Western University on Thursday and is scheduled to meet with students at the University of Toronto, Mississauga, on Sunday. Neither university’s Muslim Students Association responded to the National Post’s request for comment prior to publication.

At Carleton and Concordia, however, officials have cancelled his speeches, according to The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA). Concordia confirmed the cancellation, but Carleton had not responded by deadline.

Ten days after the Oct. 7 atrocities, Hamdi spoke at an event where he told an audience to “celebrate the victory” of the Hamas massacre while holding back tears. “Allah has shown the world that no normalization can erase the Palestinian cause. When everybody thought it was finished, it is roaring. How many of you felt it in your hearts when you got the news that it happened? How many of you felt the euphoria? Allahu Akbari!”

Hamdi also argued that widespread accounts of sexual assault committed by Hamas on Oct. 7 were lies. “Netanyahu had to make a lie about rape,” the journalist said in his speech.

“Our assessment revealed that this individual has made remarks that include celebrating violence,” Fiona Downey, a spokesperson for Concordia university, told the Post on Friday evening. “Based on this assessment we concluded that this event would create a climate of intimidation which we will not allow.”

In November, Concordia was the site of heightened protests after pro-Palestinian activists reportedly called a Jewish student a “kyke” while Professor Yanise Arab, a lecturer at Université de Montréal, told another to “go back to Poland, sharmouta.” Police were eventually dispatched to quell the demonstration.

Hamdi is in the midst of a multi-campus tour sponsored by the Canadian Muslim Public Affairs Council speaking about Palestinian advocacy. The group urged Carleton to reverse course, calling it a “shocking decision (that) smacks of bias and censorship against Palestinian voices.”
UK university rabbi goes into hiding after death threats over wartime IDF service
The Jewish chaplain at the University of Leeds was forced into hiding with his family after receiving numerous death threats over his service as a reservist in the Israel Defense Forces, the UK’s Daily Mail reported Friday.

Rabbi Zecharia Deutsch, a rabbinical emissary serving as the Jewish chaplain of several British universities since 2021, returned to Israel to serve in the IDF during the war in Gaza. Since resuming his chaplaincy in January, he has received multiple messages and phone calls threatening violence against him, his wife Nava, and their two children.

The threats, reported by the Daily Mail to be in the “hundreds”, were graphic and profane, and led local police to transfer the Deutsch family to a safe location, amid a worrying rise in antisemitism in the United Kingdom, both on and off campus, following Israel’s war on Hamas.

The war was triggered by Hamas’s brutal October 7 onslaught, which saw thousands of Hamas-led terrorists storm southern Israel to kill some 1,200 people, mainly civilians, and take 253 hostages of all ages, while committing numerous atrocities and weaponizing sexual violence on a mass scale.

UK wants to recognize Palestine despite occupying territories worldwide
Britain, after all, is the last country in a position to demand that others give up territory for the simple reason that it continues to hold onto disputed lands literally across the globe.

Indeed, from Europe to South America to the Middle East to the South Pole, there is hardly a part of the world in which the UK isn’t involved in a dispute over territory that it refuses to yield for the sake of peace.

In its own backyard, Britain continues to occupy Northern Ireland and has staunchly refused to give up sovereignty.

On the southern coast of Spain, there is the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar, which the Spanish government has long sought to recover. Spain’s Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares has said that Gibraltar is a “vitally important issue” in his country’s foreign policy. But London has steadfastly insisted that it will not forgo control.

Thousands of miles away across the Atlantic lie the Falkland Islands, which are claimed by Argentina. Although they are of little economic value and are home to more penguins than people, Britain fought a war with Argentina over the islands in 1982 which left 900 people dead.

Speaking of penguins, the British have even staked a claim to a large chunk of Antarctica amounting to more than 1.7 million square kilometers of the South Pole. The United States and many other nations refuse to recognize the UK claim to portions of the polar desert, but that has not deterred the Brits from insisting that those portions belong to them.

Closer to home are the British-occupied parts of Cyprus. Although the UK granted the island independence in 1960 after 82 years of colonial rule, it persists in clinging to 254 of Cypriot territory in the form of the Akrotiri and Dhekelia military bases, which are under British sovereignty, much to the chagrin of many locals.

But perhaps the greatest example of all is the one that is the least known: the Chagos Archipelago, a chain of 60 islands in the Indian Ocean about 500 km. south of the Maldives.

Britain has occupied the Chagos since 1814, and Mauritius claims the islands as its own.

But that did not prevent the UK from forcibly uprooting and expelling the 2,000 Chagossians, as the locals were known, between 1967 and 1971 to make way for a military base intended to be leased to the US.
Why are Britain's police asking the public for anti-Israel war crime accusations?
Boris Johnson, mentioning a recent report of police removing posters of Israeli hostages held by Hamas, described the Counter-Terrorism Command’s campaign as “a worrying politicization of the Met Police.” At the time, Scotland Yard had defended the two police officers seen tearing down the posters, claiming they had been acting to defuse local tensions.

Gideon Falter, the chief executive of the Campaign Against Anti-Semitism, said: “At a time when protesters are marching in London every week wearing Hamas-style headbands, shouting genocidal chants, calling for jihad against the Jewish state, and inciting violent intifada with apparent impunity, the Met is concerned with acts of terrorism and allegations of war crimes halfway around the world…Britain’s cities have become no-go zones for Jews. Where are the Met’s posters addressing that unacceptable reality?”

A spokesman for the Met Police is reported as saying that the force had a duty to assist the ICC. “Under the terms of the 1998 Rome Statute, our war crimes team is obliged to support any investigations opened by the ICC that could involve British subjects” and said the posters were put up to meet that obligation. The ICC opened an investigation in 2019 into alleged war crimes in Israel and Palestine. It could be argued that supporting ICC investigations carries no obligation to indulge in a proactive campaign calculated to elicit a wave of anti-Israel and antisemitic sentiment.

As if to demonstrate its evenhandedness, the Met spokesman added that the Counter-Terrorism Command “also continues to gather direct information and evidence relating to the terrorist attack in Israel on October 7, in support of the UK coronial investigations into British nationals who were killed during those attacks.”

As for identifying potential “terrorism offending” during the course of the weekly pro-Palestinian marches in London and other major cities, the Met spokesman said the force was “working round the clock” to identify such offenses and has set up a task force to investigate potential crimes committed online and during protests. The Telegraph reports that in total, about 150 cases are being investigated. About 30 are linked directly to alleged offenses committed during London protests. The problem is that it took sustained pressure from a variety of sources to waken the Met up to the need to take any action at all.

Despite its best endeavors, the Met’s attempts to justify mounting this campaign are unconvincing. There can be little justification for encouraging Israel’s enemies – individuals or organizations – to offer the police testimony alleging terrorism, war crimes, or crimes against humanity. It is legitimate to ask what sort of unbiased assessment is likely to be made of the material acquired by the British police, or will they simply send everything, lock, stock and barrel, to the ICC for them to sort? Will any attempt be made to verify the charges made? If a selection is to be made before material is dispatched to the ICC, who will undertake this? Another pertinent question is whether the Met intends to seek a response or explanation from Israeli sources for the wilder charges, or will it perhaps adjudge that its responsibility begins and ends with seeking allegations of criminality and passing them to the ICC?

This eager effort to gather testimony charging Israel with criminality sits uneasily with the police’s initial failure to arrest pro-Palestinian demonstrators clearly voicing antisemitic and genocidal slogans during the marches, held every Saturday starting on October 14. The claimed impartiality of the British police hangs in the balance.

South Africa's government is guilty of hypocrisy against Israel
Under the ANC, South Africa became one of the most dangerous countries for women, leading the world rating in rape statistics, domestic violence incidents, and murders.

In researching material for this article, I came across statistics that truly shocked me.

In a three-month period in late 2023, there were 7,000 murders and 13,000 rapes in South Africa. This, according to South Africa’s News24.

While South Africa is pursuing Israel on genocide charges, there is an ongoing genocide in South Africa of white farmers. This, according to The Spectator.

As for South African claims that Israel is committing genocide against the Palestinian people in Gaza, since Israel left the Strip in 2005 the Gazan population increased from 1.3 million in 2005 to 2.3 million in 2023.

Even life expectancy is higher in Gaza than it is in South Africa. In that regard, South Africa is 120th on a list of 177 countries. Palestine is 102nd, according to the UN Development Program’s human development index. People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

As for its dalliance with terror, South Africa was sanctioned in 2023 as being the African headquarters for terror financing, resulting in the country’s being gray-listed for failure to adhere to tariff-finance laws.

Yet this is the government that welcomes Hamas terrorists, uses South African tax revenue to fund the Palestine Embassy in South Africa, and is prosecuting Israel on genocide charges on behalf of the Hamas genocidal terror regime in Gaza.

The quadruple hypocrisy of the ANC government is that it turns its racist blind eye to the genocide of its own minority white farmers; fails to deal with the massive murder and rape of its own people; refuses to condemn Hamas for their murder of Africans and Asians, let alone over a thousand Jews; yet has the gall to represent Hamas, the most heinous mass murderers of Jews since the Holocaust, to prosecute the Jewish nation with a crime that was introduced into law as a result of the Holocaust.

South Africans and Africa deserve better.

If Israel is at fault, it is in not making its own application to the ICJ prosecuting Hamas on genocide charges.

Israel should, based on the overwhelming evidence, have indicted Hamas for the crime the Jewish state now faces.

Instead, Israel, after it presents its defense, will have to rely on the judgment of members of the ICJ bench representing countries that have long held the same jaundiced political positions as South Africa.
Moroccan hash dealers boycott Israeli drug smugglers in support of Gaza - report
Hashish dealers in Morocco have stopped supplying Israeli smugglers with hashish due to the ongoing war in Gaza, according to a Friday N12 report.

It is unclear exactly when the boycott began. However, the report stated that criminal organizations have already lost "tens of millions of shekels" since the boycott began.

Moroccan hash is sought after worldwide as a high-quality premium product, with estimates putting the trade's yearly value in the billions, making it one of Morocco's most valuable industries after tourism and phosphate exports.

The majority of Morocco's cannabis is grown and processed into hashish in the al-Rif region in the north of the country.

An Israeli involved in the drug trade living in Morocco told N12 that the export of hashish is a key part of the Moroccan economy and that without it, their economy would collapse.

He explained the majority is sold to dealers in Europe, but "At best, only a few hundred kilograms of Moroccan hashish reach Israel. The price of a kilogram of Moroccan hashish can reach NIS 300,000 in Israel. The demand for it in Israel is crazy because it is very high quality, clean, and strong."

Moroccan hash was regularly smuggled into Israel before the war, with several criminal organizations involved in the trade, the report noted. Local Israeli smugglers were regularly employed by these groups, some of them even Yeshiva students.
Iran asks FIFA to ‘completely suspend’ Israel from all soccer events over Gaza war
Iran’s soccer federation said Saturday it has asked world football’s governing body, FIFA, to suspend Israel’s federation over the country’s war in Gaza.

In an announcement posted on the Iranian football federation’s website, Iran asked FIFA to “completely suspend” the Israeli federation “from all activities related to football.”

The request also asks for “immediate and serious measures” by FIFA and its member associations “to prevent the continuation” of the Israeli “crimes and provide food, drinking water, medicinal and medical supplies to innocent people and civilians.”

Iranian FM: Any major escalation in Lebanon will mark Netanyahu’s ‘last day’
Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian warned Israel against taking any steps towards a broader war against its proxy, the Hezbollah terror group in Lebanon, saying that would be Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s “last day.”

At a news conference with his Lebanese counterpart Abdallah Bou Habib in Beirut, he also said Iran saw a political solution as the only way to end the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

“Iran and Lebanon confirm that war is not the solution and that we absolutely never sought to expand it,” Amir-Abdollahian said.

He also said Tehran was in talks with Saudi Arabia on a political solution to hostilities in Gaza.

Hamas this week proposed a ceasefire of four and a half months, during which remaining hostages held by Hamas would go free, Israel would withdraw its troops from Gaza, and an agreement would be reached on an end to the war. It also demand the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners serving life sentences in Israeli jails for terror attacks.

Netanyahu called the Hamas terms “delusional” and vowed to fight on. But Amir-Abdollahian said Hamas was presenting ideas based on a “realistic view,” and that they should be widely backed to end the war.

Report: Iran recruiting British Muslims on Middle East pilgrimages to spy on UK Jews
The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps is recruiting British Muslims on pilgrimages to Iran and Iraq to spy on Jews and Jewish targets in the United Kingdom, according to a Friday report citing Israeli and UK officials.

According to the report in the UK’s Daily Mail newspaper, IRGC recruiters have been approaching Shiite Muslims visiting religious sites in the Middle East and asking them to “gather information on prominent British Jews or targets such as synagogues.”

The agents are also reportedly asked to spy on Iranian dissidents based in the UK.

An unnamed source quoted in the report said, “We do not know the scale of Iranian agents inside Europe and the UK, but all it takes is for one to slip through the net.”

Another expert, Kasra Aarabi, of the United Against Nuclear Iran think tank, was quoted by the Daily Mail as saying that the recruiters usually focus on hiring British Shias who originated from Pakistan, Iraq and Lebanon rather than British Iranians “who are usually secular and oppose the Ayatollah regime.”

According to the report, British Muslims visiting the holy Iraqi city of Karbala in September to commemorate Arbaeen, one of the largest religious gatherings in the world, were approached to spy for Iran.

Ozzy Osbourne says ‘antisemitic’ Kanye West stole his music for new track
Rock star Ozzy Osbourne has lashed out at rapper Kanye West calling him an ‘antisemite’ in a dispute over the use of a sample in one of West’s song.

In a post on Twitter/X, Osbourne said that he denied West permission to use a sample of a 1983 version of a Black Sabbath song, but found out the rapper had used it anyway.

He wrote: “Kanye West asked permission to sample a section of a 1983 live performance of “Iron Man” from the us festival without vocals & was refused permission because he is an antisemite and has caused untold heartache to many. He went ahead and used the sample anyway at his album listening party last night. I want no association with this man!

In an interview last year, Ozzy’s wife Sharon, told the Jewish Chronicle: “Judaism is the only religion I have, and the only one with which I feel comfortable.”

West’s listening party where the Osbourne sample was played allegedly got shown down after West performed the words: “And I’m still crazy, bipolar, antisemite. And I’m still the king.”

Sharon Osbourne says Kanye West 'f****d with the wrong Jew' by using Ozzy sample - but rapper hits BACK and pokes fun at pair's halloween costumes
Sharon Osbourne joined her husband Ozzy Osbourne in calling out Kanye West for using an unauthorized sample of a Black Sabbath song.

The drama began after the British rock star said he wants 'no association' with West, who has a long history of making antisemitic comments, following a listening party for the rapper's upcoming Vultures album, which features a snippet of Ozzy's band's hit War Pigs.

Sharon, whose father Don Arden was Jewish, said that the couple fired off a cease and desist to Kanye, per her interview with TMZ on Friday.

'Kanye f****d with the wrong Jew this time,' she added.

The former host of The Talk clarified that Kanye's team requested permission to use the sample three weeks ago. However, her husband, who typically approves such requests, responded with a firm 'absolutely not'.

Warren Buffett, Shimon Peres laud benevolent couple in ‘Who Are the Marcuses?’
Ellen Marcus had no idea how rich her simple, unassuming, Holocaust refugee parents, Howard and Lottie Marcus, were until their estate planner told her. She shared the climactic story of that discovery, in addition to their life, their interest in water resources in Israel and throughout the Middle East, and their eventual donation of $500 million to Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Beersheva, the largest philanthropic donation to Israel in the history of the Jewish state.

“They felt that solving the Middle East’s water problem may lead to peace,” said their daughter.

She talked about the legacy of her parents following a Feb. 6 screening of the 90-minute documentary made about her parents, “Who Are the Marcuses?” at the Marlene Meyerson Jewish Community Center in New York City, in partnership with Americans for Ben-Gurion University, attended by about 100 people.

The film was directed by Matthew Mishory with cinematographer Michael Marius Pessah.

Young dentist Hans (“Howard”) and his wife, Lottie, who were proud Germans, recognized the warning signs in 1933 when he was barred by Nazi guards in April 1933 from entering the building that housed his office. They fled to Naples, Italy, where Ellen Marcus recounted just how dire their situation was. “This wasn’t in the film—he had to sleep in a tub or on the couch of his waiting room. He varied his diet—milk with bread and bread with milk,” she said, tongue in cheek.

He also suffered from tuberculosis and typhus, both incurable at the time, she said.

When a dental patient who worked for the British consul general was unwilling to help him escape Mussolini’s Italy for England, another patient who worked for the American consul general’s office creatively completed paperwork that allowed the couple to relocate to the United States, despite strict restrictions on immigration.

Once there, Lottie began working at a Jewish investment firm, and the two befriended, Ben Graham, known as the father of value investing and the author of The Intelligent Investor. He recommended contacting one of his mentees—a young investor named Warren Buffett, who worked for him in 1954 before returning to Omaha, Neb., to start what would become Berkshire Hathaway, the multinational conglomerate holding company.

The film refers to the Marcuses’ “buy and hold ’em for life” approach to investing in the stock market. Over time, their initial modest investment grew to stock holdings worth approximately $200 million. Stalwart supporters of Israel, the couple eventually decided to invest their fortune in water technology and research by donating to BGU.

Howard died at the age of 104 in 2014; Lottie died in 2015 at the age of 99. BGU announced the large endowment from the Marcus estate in June 2016. By the time the stocks were transferred to the university, their value had risen to $500 million.

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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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