Sunday, March 31, 2024

  • Sunday, March 31, 2024
  • Elder of Ziyon

From Naharnet:

The nun stood in front of a group of young students at a Lebanese Christian school and asked them to pray for the "men of the resistance" in southern Lebanon who she said were defending the country.

The men to whom nun Maya Ziadeh was referring are members of the Lebanese Shiite militant group Hezbollah, which has been clashing with Israel across a volatile border for nearly six months, becoming a critical regional player as the Israel-Hamas war persists in Gaza.

A video capturing Ziadeh's comments was widely circulated online earlier this month, outraging some who accused her of "brainwashing" the children and imposing her political views. Others rallied to her support, commending her stance as courageous and honorable.

 Ziadeh called for praying for the "children, people and mothers of the south and ... for the men of the resistance," describing those who fail to do so as "traitors," a characterization that many found troubling, especially given the young age of her audience.   

Blog Baladi reports that she lost her job, and that this is the proper response: 

We should never wish harm on other Lebanese or side with any foreign power over our own, but that doesn’t mean we should agree with each other’s political choices or else be labeled as traitors. No one in his right mind should support a military group ruling the country, imposing its decisions on us all and taking us on deadly adventures without bearing any of the consequences. 
The video shows that she was speaking in front of around 80 children.

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!



From Ian:

Israeli Historian Benny Morris: "Hamas Must Be Destroyed"
Israeli historian Benny Morris, 75, was foremost among the "New Historians" who shook Israel with their revisionist accounts of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Yet in the year 2000, when Prime Minister Ehud Barak and President Bill Clinton offered a two-state solution and Yasser Arafat rejected it, Morris said in an interview, "I thought this was a terrible decision by the Palestinians, and I wrote that."

When the Palestinians, in response to the offer of peace and statehood, then launched a wave of terrorism and suicide bombings unlike any before, Morris disapproved of that, too. "People always forgive the Palestinians, who don't take responsibility," he says. "It's accepted that they are the victim and therefore can do whatever they like."

"As we [Israelis] see it, we are surrounded by the Muslim world, organized in some way by Iran, and the West is turning its back on us. So we see ourselves as the underdog. Now, the Palestinians are the underdog, and the underdog is always right, even if it does the wrong things, like Oct. 7. They were joyous in the West Bank and Gaza when 1,200 Jews were killed and 250 were taken hostage....It was a sick ideology and sick people carrying out murder and rape in the name of that ideology."

Morris stresses the costs of that Palestinian decision. "There was never destruction like what has happened in Gaza over the past five months in any of Israel's wars. Israel conquered the West Bank [in 1967] with almost no houses being destroyed, and the same applies in '56 in Gaza, and the same applies in '48." Probably, Palestinian nationalists "will look back to Oct. 7 as a sort of minor victory over Zionism and disregard the casualties which they paid as a result."

"Not only has each of their big decisions made life worse for their people, but they ensure that each time the idea of a two-state solution is proposed, less of Palestine is offered to them....Each time they're given less of Palestine as a result of being defeated in their efforts to get all of Palestine."

"Israelis today don't want to look at the two-state solution. Most Israelis fear Hamas would take over the West Bank" - a fear amply justified by Hamas' popularity - "and that it would be a springboard for attacks on Israel, as Gaza was."

"The Israeli public, myself included, thinks that we've begun the job and we must finish the job. We must destroy Hamas, and that will include taking Rafah....Hamas must be destroyed after what it did. We can't allow that on our border, in addition to having Hizbullah on our northern border and Iran."
Israel is fighting a humane ground war - just ask experts
Rather than swallowing such easily disprovable claims, it would be better to rely upon the verifiable evidence of experts like John Spencer, the world’s foremost authority on urban warfare. Chair of urban warfare studies at the United State Military Academy at West Point, he served as an infantryman for 25 years, including two combat tours in Iraq. Israel, he says, protects civilians more effectively than anyone else in the history of warfare.

Spencer recently visited Israel and Gaza – including the IDF’s civilian harm mitigation unit – to observe the facts on the ground. “All available evidence shows that Israel has followed the laws of war, legal obligations, best practices in civilian harm mitigation and still found a way to reduce civilian casualties to historically low levels,” he concluded.

Warfighting is an ugly business and soldiers are soldiers. But overall, the IDF’s actions have been deeply humane, Spencer said, moving civilians out of harm’s way to an unprecedented extent and deploying “technologies never used anywhere in the world” to preserve life. This has included 70,000 telephone calls, 13 million text messages and 15 million voicemails warning people to evacuate by designated routes to safe areas.

Giant speakers have been dropped by parachute that begin broadcasting warnings once they touch the ground. Military maps have been handed out and tracking technology has been used to keep people safe. “Ironically, the careful approach Israel has taken may have actually led to more destruction,” Spencer pointed out, since by assisting Hamas it likely prolonged the war.

The credible casualty figures stand testament to these efforts. Gaining exact data is impossible, but the true ratio, Spencer concluded, is about 1 combatant to 1.5 civilians. By comparison, when Britain, the US and other allies destroyed Islamic State in Mosul in 2016-17, the ratio was about 1 to 2.5; and according to the UN and the EU, the global average is 1 to 9. “Given Hamas’s likely inflation of the death count, the real figure could be closer to 1 to 1,” Spencer wrote. “Either way, the number would be historically low for modern urban warfare.”

What madness has possessed us? We would never dream of trusting data from the Kremlin or Islamic State. The statistics coming out of Gaza are obviously bogus. A paper by three distinguished academics, published this week, found that “the casualty figures concerning women and children are statistically impossible”, at one point even involving “the statistical equivalent of the resurrection of over a thousand men”. The 70 per cent figure has been decisively debunked.

Yet this very misinformation is still used by the UN, White House and the media. The BBC even relied upon it to supposedly disprove Israel’s claims to the contrary. “The BBC ‘factcheckers’ and other western media could easily have determined this for themselves, using publicly available information,” the academics lamented.

The illusory truth is all around us. How shameful. It is incumbent on people of conscience to dispel it whenever we can.
Ruthie Blum: Bashing Bibi helps Hamas
In the first place, every move by Netanyahu and his government since that Black Sabbath nearly six months ago has been made with the hostages in mind. Indeed, much of the prosecution of the war in Gaza is based on fear of killing captives in the process of destroying Hamas.

Such a calculation was taken for granted from the very beginning by Israel Defense Forces soldiers, many of whom have fallen in battle, leaving their bereft families begging Netanyahu not to let those heroic deaths be in vain.

Secondly, through a combination of military pressure and the War Cabinet’s willingness to compromise, Netanyahu succeeded in securing the release of 112 hostages—in addition to three others saved by the IDF in rescue operations.

Third, anti-Netanyahu rallies for the “immediate release” of the hostages—as though Bibi has them handcuffed in his basement—serve only to encourage Hamas chief Yahya Sinwar to harden his already untenable stance.

His goal, after all, is remaining in power. You know, to rebuild his subterranean empire and arsenal with which to perform as many repeats of Oct. 7 as possible.

Fourth, Netanyahu’s brother, Yoni, was killed in the 1976 Entebbe Raid, a commando mission to free more than 100 Israeli and Jewish hostages held by Palestinian and West German hijackers of a flight from Israel to France. To suggest, let alone scream into a megaphone, that he is indifferent to the suffering of those in Hamas clutches is outrageous.

Thankfully, most of the hostage families do not agree with the view or tactics of their activist counterparts. Those who showed up on Saturday were relatives of 20 captives out of a total of 134.

But they came by their methods honestly, so to speak, with a little help from PR hack (aka “political strategist”) Ronen Tzur. Tzur, a veteran “anybody but Bibi” mover and shaker, took it upon himself to head the campaign on behalf of the hostage families.

He tried to use the perch as a platform for his anti-Netanyahu agenda. But his plan ultimately backfired.
  • Sunday, March 31, 2024
  • Elder of Ziyon
While Egypt pretends to support Palestinians, its actions show the opposite.

We already know that Egypt has built a huge wall to keep Gazans from fleeing to Egypt and has rejected any possibility of giving refuge to desperate Gazans who want to leave. But its hate for Palestinians also extends to the patients it has allowed to be treated on Egyptian soil.

Testimonies of Gazans show that patients and their companions are subjected to continuous humiliation and are deprived of the most basic rights. The testimony of "A.K.," who is accompanying her mother to be treated for cancer, explains the severity of these restrictions, as she indicates that she stayed with her mother inside the ambulance on the Egyptian side of the crossing for eight hours before moving to the hospital, which left them extremely exhausted, and when she asked the officials why they used the excuse of sorting out the names of patients.

At her first request to leave the hospital, the security officer was late in coming for two hours, and “when I asked for a security woman to accompany me and not a man, the response was that there were no women, so I asked for a woman working in the hospital to accompany me, and this was approved. But the security man kept walking behind me as if I was a dangerous and unwanted person, and I also felt that I was living in a prison and not a hospital, as the door of the department was locked with a key and we were not allowed to approach it.”

In an interview with Ultra Palestine, another woman who was being treated for an eye injury said that the ambulance was delayed 12 hours before moving from the Rafah crossing towards Cairo, which doubled the feeling of pain in her injured eye.

She added: "After we arrived at the hospital, I asked for a SIM card to communicate with my family, but my request was rejected on the grounds that I did not have a passport. After insisting, security provided me with a special SIM card that only receives calls, and there is no internet service either."

She continued in a tone of amazement, "I do not know what danger a sick woman who sees with only one eye could pose to the security of Egypt, that we are treated like prisoners who go to the hospital to receive treatment." The woman indicated that security prohibited her and her accompanying daughter from leaving the hospital to buy their needs,  which forced her to request some of their special needs from one of her relatives residing in Egypt.

The injured woman says,  “If someone who is not a first-degree relative visits me, security will remain with him at the moment of the visit, and in the event of a first-degree relative visiting me, security limits the duration of the visit to 10 minutes only.”
The only stories I could find about Palestinians in Egyptian hospitals in the Western media are about the heroism of Egyptian doctors, not the policies that keep them imprisoned.

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!



Weapons recovered from Shifa's maternity ward

So far, Israel's surprise raid at Shifa Hospital has been an amazing success. Hundreds of terrorists killed, hundreds more detained, few if any patients hurt by the IDF, incredible intelligence gathered, and caches of weapons found all that prove that Hamas and Islamic Jihad had turned the hospital into a command and control center again. Israel provided photos of the weapons, videos of the battles, even videos of terrorists admitting the hospital was used as their military hub.

CNN's  Nadeen Ebrahim, Sana Noor Haq, Khader Al Za'anoun and Abeer Salman reported about Shifa last Thursday. The article does not even mention the IDF videos, the interrogations or other proofs for its statements, and it gives Palestinian denials of the undeniable equal weight to the IDF statements:

Israeli forces began their most recent operation there on March 18, saying they are conducting “precise operational activities against terrorists” located at Al-Shifa – a statement also echoed in November’s raid.

The IDF had returned in force to Al-Shifa despite Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant in January announcing that the most intensive phase of operations in northern Gaza was complete.

Speaking to his troops in a video shared by the Defense Ministry, Gallant on March 26 hailed the operation, saying the hospital was reached “in a flash” and that Hamas operatives still holed up at the hospital “are considering their future: surrender or death.”

Throughout its 11-day operation, the Israeli military this month said it had detained hundreds of Hamas and Islamic Jihad militants in and around the hospital, killing dozens of others.

Around Al-Shifa, the IDF said in an update Wednesday, “approximately 200 terrorists have been eliminated in the area of the hospital since the beginning of the activity.” The IDF also claimed that “terrorists fired at IDF troops from within and outside of the ER (emergency room) building at the Shifa Hospital.”

CNN is unable to verify these numbers.

Israel has for years claimed that Hamas fighters are sheltering in mosques, hospitals and other civilian places to avoid Israeli attacks. Hamas has repeatedly denied the claims.
Israeli officials have echoed the accusations since October 7, and following their first raid in November escorted CNN into Gaza to see a newly exposed tunnel shaft discovered at the compound of Al-Shifa Hospital.

The evidence did not establish without a doubt that there was a Hamas command center underneath the hospital as Israel had claimed.  

Of course, since CNN's tour, more evidence has been uncovered - US intelligence confirmed that the hospital was used by Hamas and the New York Times reported that the tunnels underneath were much more extensive than what CNN has reported in November. 

The CNN article, by contrast, emphasizes the false ideas that Israel's November raid was a failure, that it nearly destroyed the hospital's infrastructure then, that no evidence was found in November that Shifa was an important terror hub. It ignores the videos of terrorists admitting that everything Israel says about Shifa is true. 

CNN takes pains to cast doubt on literally everything the IDF says. Yet it expresses no such reservations on Hamas claims or any Palestinian claims of torture, patients dying, and other allegations of war crimes by the IDF:
Residents of the area around Al-Shifa told CNN there was heavy firing in the vicinity. One family said their home was shelled, and that children – some still alive – were buried under the rubble.
Unlike IDF statements, those claims are quoted without any caveats or mentions that CNN cannot verify them.

There is only one Palestinian witness who CNN does express doubt about. Buried in the middle of the many paragraphs accusing Israel of war crimes, the article says:

Targeting hospitals in wartime is prohibited under international law, but those standards change if enemy combatants are using the facility to attack an enemy.

One eyewitness said that, on the eve of the raid, they spotted hundreds of Hamas and Islamic Jihad members inside the hospital.

The eyewitness, who spoke to CNN on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals, estimated about 400 to 500 Hamas and Islamic Jihad members and their families arrived at the hospital in mid-March. Some of them appeared to be members of Hamas’ political branch, while others were armed militants.

The eyewitness said some of the militants were carrying guns inside the hospital.

CNN is unable to independently verify the numbers due to lack of reporting access to the strip, and has asked the Gaza health ministry for comment.
Immediately afterwards, the article reverts to quoting Palestinians at length about alleged torture of innocent civilians, doctors who fear for the health of patients still in the hospital without any evidence that they have been affected by the raid, and international condemnation by the World Health Organization. 

The extended time that Israel is taking at Shifa is not evidence that the IDF is trying to keep patients safe while rooting out hundreds of armed terrorists hiding inside the hospital itself but instead as evidence that the IDF doesn't know what it's doing. 

Compare this with how France 24 covered the raid. While the article also denigrates the IDF as well, it quoted experts that confirmed the IDF claims that the raid was a tactical success and that Hamas was using the hospital as a major military hub:

"The actual operation was a tactical success," confirms Veronika Poniscjakova, a specialist in international security issues and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict at the University of Portsmouth in the UK. The Israeli army “let Hamas think that they would attack elsewhere – in the central refugee camps of the Strip – and when Hamas returned to Shifa, the Israelis closed in on them", and took many prisoners, according to Ahron Bregman, a specialist in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict at King's College London.

The Israeli action enabled Israel to recover “extremely valuable intelligence” about their enemy, as suggested by the images and videos of the interrogations that the Israeli army has made public, notes Omri Brinner, an analyst and specialist in Middle East geopolitics at the International Team for the Study of Security (ITSS) in Verona, Italy.

[I]n the current offensive, "the Israelis have been far more sophisticated in the way they are presenting this operation" and "they are using a much more precise way to message to the world that the threat inside the complex is real and credible," says Clive Jones, a specialist in Israel and the Middle East at Durham University in the UK. The army is using drone footage of gun battles and photos of the discovery of weapons caches to "try to convince international opinion that they had legitimate reasons for returning to fight in this hospital", adds Jones.

Israel also needs to prove it has the ability to carry out this type of highly sensitive operation with as few civilian casualties as possible. The precedent of the US-Iraq war in 2003 shows that “as soon as an army leaves an area, insurgents seek to return", says Bregman. This view is shared by other analysts. "We can expect Hamas to do the same thing in other hospitals, but also in schools or refugee camps where there are civilian populations", notes Shahin Modarres, an independent expert on international security and the Middle East.

By taking its time in the Al Shifa operation, the Israeli army is “signaling to Hamas that it will target it even if it harbours in places considered safe havens, such as hospitals, UNRWA compounds, mosques and schools”, says Brinner. At the same time, it's trying to prove to the international community that it knows how to do it” with a level of restraint.
This level of analysis - albeit superficial - is completely lacking in the CNN piece.

This is just one example of how CNN's coverage of the war is undeniably biased against Israel. 

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

Or order from your favorite bookseller, using ISBN 9798985708424. 

Read all about it here!



  • Sunday, March 31, 2024
  • Elder of Ziyon
In Jordan's Al Ghad newspaper, Aladdin Abu Zeina write part 2 of his series "The ideological foundations of genocidal Zionist thought."

Perhaps one of the best references for reading the Jewish theological mind is provided by the prominent Jewish academic, Professor Israel Shahak, in his important book, “Jewish History, Jewish Religion: The Weight of Three Thousand Years” The content of this book gains special importance because it comes from a Jew - an “insider” - who is supposed to escape the accusation of “anti-Jewishness” directed at non-Jewish researchers. But he did not escape the charge of “anti-Semitism” because he fearlessly wrote about the horrific details that the Zionist colonial establishment invokes from the religious texts that Jews must hide from the “gentiles.” For example, Talmud 37 states, “To communicate anything to the goyim (non-Jews) about our religious relations is equivalent to killing all the Jews, for if the goyim knew what we teach about them, they would kill us openly."
Israel Shahak was an antisemite but he didn't make up quotes. Abu Zeina quotes a famously fabricated "Talmud" citation. 

If course, there is no such place as "Talmud 37."

That fake quote is usually attributed to something called "Libbre David 37." It is certainly not part of the Talmud. As far as anyone can tell, no such book was ever written.

The truth is the opposite - Jews are not allowed to lie about the Talmud of Jewish Law, as Rabbi Gil Student pointed out in his extensive debunking of fake Talmud quotes. 

It is probably not the source, but the earliest I could find this fake quote was almost exactly a hundred years ago. 

The May 20, 1924 edition of an anti-religious and antisemitic periodical called The American Standard gave a somewhat more extensive version of this fake quote, and then repeated it on January 1, 1925:

In the January edition, they also quote the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion.

But an earlier source seems to be from a book written in Russian and then translated to French in 1924, titled "Emperor Nicholas I and the Jews -  Essays on the Russian Revolution in its Relations with the Universal Activity of Contemporary Judaism" by Alexander Dmitrievich Netchvolodoff, who headed the Imperial Russian Army and was a proponent of theories of  Judeo-Bolshevism and Judeo-Masonry. He was one of the translators of the first French edition of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. This is possibly where the American Standard got this fake quote, although it may have been around much longer. 

What's old is new again. This book was republished in Russia in 2015 as being relevant to understand the "pro-Israel lobby" in the US. 

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!



Saturday, March 30, 2024

From Ian:

JCPA: The Psychology of Palestinian Distortions and Deceptions
Global opinion has moved from outrage at Hamas on October 7, 2023, to criticism of Israel just months later. How? A Palestinian strategy manipulates perception to distort and present an alternate reality.

While the Hamas of October 7 was a vicious terror organization, the passage of time has shifted perception to “innocent Palestinians” who are “victims,” consistent with the ongoing Palestinian chronicle of victimization used as a central motif in their national narrative.

Facts and accurate information will not always effectively counter misinformation based on previous perceptions created by Palestinian sources. The “primacy effect,” where first impressions persist, plays a psychological role.

Palestinians distort reality by providing material for perceptions that feed a cognitive set that promotes favoring perceived victims who are presented as suffering, with images of casualties, poor housing conditions, lack of food, and emotional distress.

Western thinking that elicits sympathy for victims and absolves them of responsibility feeds into the deception strategy of Palestinian terror.

While contextual reality is the basis for accurate information, Palestinians distort this by using civilians as psychological human shields in a cognitive war.

Countering with the “truth” is likely ineffective unless the “truth” is framed in a context that appeals to the same cognitive framework of “fairness” and victim appeal that Palestinians have been using.

While sterile “counter-narratives” are ineffective, research suggests that adding emotive imagery and personalization can help change perceptions and reality.
Jonathan Tobin: Israel’s global isolation is caused by antisemitism, not bad policies
Sadly, nothing will make Israel be loved by the world. The Jewish state cannot be “rebranded” to associate itself solely with its stellar economy, scientific accomplishments, or the beauty of its scenery or the genius of its people. The only formula for Jewish survival is the one that Zionist statesman and thinker Ze’ev Jabotinsky wrote about in his 1923 essay “The Iron Wall,” in which he preached that only when the Arab world realizes that it can’t defeat the Jews can peace be possible.

It should be remembered that the alliance with the United States, which is Israel’s greatest diplomatic asset, was not a gift given to the Jews by a benevolent American government in 1948. There was no alliance with Washington until after Israel’s victory in the 1967 Six-Day War, when it demonstrated its military strength and acquired the strategic depth that made its survival not quite so precarious.

That belief in Israel’s dominance was also what impelled some Arab states to give up the fight leading to peace deals like the 2020 Abraham Accords. However, if Hamas is allowed to emerge from the war it started by breaching Israel’s defenses not only alive but crowned as the victor, antisemites will not merely be encouraged. They will think that for all of its strength and accomplishments, the Jewish state that Jabotinsky envisioned lacks that iron wall that it still needs.

Those who care about Israel must take these lessons to heart and realize that the only solution to its current situation is for Jerusalem to ignore its critics and push through to victory, no matter how difficult that might be in terms of its military and diplomatic challenges. Only by clearly beating the Hamas criminals, as well as their many supporters and enablers, can circumstances ease a little. Anything less and a nightmare scenario envisioned by antisemitic foes—in which Israel truly becomes a pariah state—will be the inevitable result.
Lawmakers urge sanctions on International Court of Justice president
A bipartisan group of House lawmakers urged the State Department on Thursday to consider placing sanctions on the recently elected president of the International Court of Justice over his alleged anti-Israel bias if he does not recuse himself from the two Israel-related cases before the court.

“Judge [Nawaf] Salam’s clear and well-documented record of bias against the Jewish state and persistent violations of the ICJ charter make it abundantly clear that he will not be a fair and neutral arbiter in these cases,” nine lawmakers said in a letter to Secretary of State Tony Blinken on Thursday, calling the Lebanese jurist “wholly unfit” to hear the cases.

Salam, the letter notes, was Lebanon’s ambassador to the United Nations for a decade, during which time he voted against Israel on numerous issues and posted statements criticizing Israel. It also notes that he finished second in Lebanon’s prime ministership elections in 2019 and 2022, while he was on the court, which the letter describes as another breach of ICJ rules, although it acknowledges he was never a formally declared candidate.

The lawmakers said Salam is violating the charter by refusing to recuse himself from the Israel-related cases. They said his continued participation in ICJ rulings on Israel “underscor[es] the need for further action to secure Judge Salam’s recusal in compliance with the ICJ charter.” They called on the administration to restrict his travel to the U.S. and explore other sanctions if he does not recuse himself.

The letter also criticizes the ICJ cases against Israel more broadly, warning “one or more politically-motivated rulings against Israel will set a precedent that poses an international challenge to all states’ legitimate defense against terrorism” and threaten potential prospects for peace.

The letter was signed by Reps. Ronny Jackson (R-TX), Brad Sherman (D-CA), Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA), Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), Keith Self (R-TX), Andrew Garbarino (R-NY), Bill Posey (R-FL), Neal Dunn (R-FL) and Anthony D’Esposito (R-NY).

Friday, March 29, 2024

From Ian:

If the West abandons Israel, we all lose
In one sense, of course, the posturing by European and American politicians makes no difference to the war, since the Israeli government and people have so far shown little inclination to buckle, despite the international opprobrium. When Starmer declared that the fighting must ‘stop now’ in February, he might as well have said ‘stop the world, I want to get off’. But such political posturing does increase Israel’s isolation in a hostile world.

More immediately, the impending abandonment of Israel really does matter here in the UK, Europe and the West. It signals that our leaders are giving up on the fight to defend democracy and freedom at home, and to resist the rising tide of anti-Semitism.

In the immediate aftermath of 7 October, the British Jewish playwright Tom Stoppard issued a cautionary warning that: ‘Before we take up a position on what’s happening now, we should consider whether this is a fight over territory or a struggle between civilisation and barbarism.’

Six months later, that is even more true. This remains a fundamental struggle between civilisation and barbarism. Not a ‘fight over territory’ or any two-state solutions. It is an existential battle about the survival of the only Western-style democracy in the Middle East – and the ability of Western society to defend its values against Islamist and allied barbarians who are not only within the gates of the citadel, but also projecting their pro-genocide message on to the Palace of Westminster. The unholy alliance of Islamist and left-wing anti-Semitism, united by their hatred for Western society, is the threat we face at home.

Anybody who wants to defend our democratic civilisation, warts and all, needs to stand foursquare with the Israeli people, and to remind the world of who they are fighting against and what they are fighting for. As spineless Western leaders risk losing the life-and-death war over there, and the struggle for democratic values at home, our message needs to be: No Surrender.
Jeff Jacoby: 'Israel Alone' What The Economist unwittingly gets right about the Jewish state
Last week’s cover story of the Economist, titled “Israel Alone,” is filled with dire predictions about the country being “locked in the bleakest trajectory of its 75-year existence,” about it facing growing “isolation,” and about Israelis being “in denial” about their situation. These predictions were, of course, accompanied by little understanding of Israeli society, the Middle East, or the situation in Gaza. Jeff Jacoby observes that the Jewish state is far from being without allies. Yet for all the article’s flaws, Jacoby suggests there is some truth to its central thesis:
The pioneers of modern Zionism were convinced that only in a country of their own could Jews finally achieve the normality denied them for so long—the normality other peoples take for granted.

But they were wrong. Israel has never been regarded as a “normal” country.

What the Economist proclaims on its cover, the Biblical prophet Balaam, a non-Jew, proclaimed in the book of Numbers. Attempting to execrate the Israelites, he intoned: “Lo, it is a people that dwells alone/ And shall not be reckoned among the nations.” In that singular description—a people that dwells alone—is encapsulated an essential reality of the long, long history of the Jews. Sometimes for better, sometimes for worse, the Jewish people—and the reborn Jewish state—are fundamentally alone, unlike the “normal” peoples and nations with whom they share the planet. Israel can never be just another country, like Belgium or Thailand. The Jewish state is alone; and that is both its blessing and its curse.
Jonathan Chait: Does the Left Think Young Left-Wing Protesters Matter or Not? Demanding Biden heed the campus left means accepting scrutiny of its ideas.
This week, Salma Hamamy, president of the main pro-Palestinian student group at the University of Michigan, shared (and then deleted) a social-media message stating, “Until my last breath, I will utter death to every single individual who supports the Zionist state. Death and more. Death and worse.” (The University sent an email denouncing the message.)

While she may be an undergrad, Hamamy is hardly anonymous. She was one of four undergraduates to receive the University of Michigan’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Spirit Award honoring students “who best exemplify the leadership and extraordinary vision of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.” The Michigan Daily endorsed her campaign for student-council president. State, national, and international newspapers have quoted her warning Biden to change course and citing her as an example of the kind of progressive Democrats have to placate.

Last month, the New York Times jointly profiled her and a pro-Israel activist in a story presenting both as searching for common humanity. “As dusk neared, they walked alone to a nearby campus building and sat together on a bench. Maybe this would be a chance to recognize one another’s humanity,” the Times reported. “He needed to know why anti-Israel protesters had not forcefully condemned the deaths of Israeli civilians.”

I think that mystery has been cleared up.

No serious person is proposing that Biden go all the way to denouncing Israel as an illegitimate settler-colonist entity. There is room to debate degrees of movement within his stance. The point is that the amount of attention that’s been devoted to presenting left-wing pro-Palestinian activists as a powerful and even potentially decisive faction in national politics implies the need for a proportionate level of scrutiny of their ideas. To insist these activists only matter when you are touting their influence, and then to deny their power when they receive scrutiny, is a tactic posing as an ideal.
  • Friday, March 29, 2024
  • Elder of Ziyon

NPR's Daniel Estrin interviewed former Israeli hostage Luis Har,  a 71-year-old accountant, about his 129 days of captivity in Gaza. He was freed in February by an Israeli special forces raid.

Part of the article:
During the rescue raid, the Israeli military said it carried out large-scale airstrikes as a diversion to provide cover to the special forces. Palestinian men, women and children were killed - more than 70, according to Gaza health officials. I asked Luis Har about it. 
Har:  I don't know. It's not my business. The military can answer you. I see that most of the people there are Hamas. They don't intend to pet us and to love us, and I have no mercy toward them at the moment.
Yes, an NPR journalist is asking a former hostage whether he thinks it is fair that he is free now because of the supposed death toll.

Har is now getting help from a psychologist, NPR reports. 

Essentially, Estrin berated a senior citizen to make him feel guilty that his freedom is at the expense of women and children.  And he got his answer - this soulless Jew doesn't give a damn. 

There is no independent evidence that any women and children were killed in Rafah that day.

The reports that women and children were among the killed in the air raids comes from the health ministry which comes from Hamas.

UN-OCHA describes major airstrikes and always includes women and children when they are known or reported. Their descriptions from February 12 in Rafah at the time of the rescue in early morning - 8 different strikes in different areas of Rafah -  do not mention any women and children among the 55 they counted:

The following are among the deadliest incidents reported on 12 February:
At about 6:00, 15 Palestinians, including children, were reportedly killed, and several others injured, when a residential building in southern Deir al Balah was struck.
At about 1:50, 11 Palestinians were reportedly killed, and tens of others injured, when a residential building in the Yibna area of southern Rafah, was struck.
At about 1:55, five Palestinians were reportedly killed, and tens other injured, when a residential building in Tal Asl Sultan area, in western Rafah, was struck.
At about 2:00, seven Palestinians were reportedly killed, and tens of others injured, when a residential building near Al Falah Mosque, in northern Rafah, was struck.
At about 2:00, five Palestinians were reportedly killed, and tens of others were injured, when a residential building in Al Adis area, in northeastern Rafah, was struck.
At about 2:00, five Palestinians were reportedly killed, and tens of others injured, when a residential building in Ash Shouka area, in southern Rafah, was struck.
At about 2:10, seven Palestinians were reportedly killed, and tens of others injured, when a residential building in An Nasser area, in southern Rafah, was struck.
At about 2:40, five Palestinians were reportedly killed, and tens of others injured, when a residential building in Al Junina area, in southern Rafah, was struck.
Aat about 2:45, ten Palestinians were reportedly killed, and tens of others injured, when a residential building in Bader area, in southern Rafah, was struck.

The day after they report women and children killed in airstrikes, and the days before they do as well. It is actually unusual for so many airstrikes in a row not to mention women and children (or journalists or health workers) as being killed in UN-OCHA's reporting. This indicates that OCHA's original reports from the scenes did not include anyone but adult males, and Hamas added the women and children afterwards when reporters asked them. 

It looks like Hamas juiced up the information to add women and children "victims" when they realized that these raids accompanied the rescue, which was an embarrassment for them.

(h/t Irene)

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!



From Ian:

Biden Has No Israel Policy
To believe that a ceasefire would lead to a nonviolent Palestinian state and Israeli-Saudi normalization is to succumb to delusion. A ceasefire would leave Hamas's remaining brigades intact, emboldening its leadership and its followers in the West Bank, Lebanon, and elsewhere. A ceasefire would tempt Hezbollah to escalate its simmering conflict with Israel. A ceasefire would strengthen Iran and its proxies, including the Houthis. There is one way to restore security, reduce tensions, and promote regional integration: Allow Israel to prove its strength by ending Hamas as a coherent military force.

That answer might not satisfy the columnists who visit Biden in the Oval Office, flattering him with tall tales of historic achievements if only he bullies Israel into letting Hamas escape. It is no doubt easier to believe, as Biden and his national security adviser Jake Sullivan do, that there are no tradeoffs and that the dangers of radical Islamist movements can be wished away by reciting the mantra of a "foreign policy for the middle class."

And yet, by privileging domestic politics over serious policy, Biden has found himself, Commander-like, chasing his own tail. Biden says he supports Israel, while desperately trying to appease the anti-Israel vote in Michigan. He promises severe consequences for Iran, its militias, and the Houthis, while granting Iran a $10 billion sanctions waiver and looking elsewhere as soon as proxy violence tapers off. He voices his frustration with Netanyahu, while saying nothing as Hamas leaders visit with the Ayatollah Khamenei in Tehran.

"In balancing U.S. interests and priorities," writes my AEI colleague Danielle Pletka, "the White House and its allies in Europe will face two options: engage in a region ever more dominated by Iran and its proxies, or cede Iranian dominance, replete with a lethal nuclear weapons program. The choice should be obvious." If only it were obvious to Biden and the anti-Bibi Democrats, whose dislike of Israel's elected leader is blinding them to geopolitical reality. Absent a directed, sustained, and articulated policy of no daylight between the United States and Israel, the rift between America and her ally will widen and the world will grow more dangerous. Such is life with President Biden, amid a darkening international scene that, alas, has not changed one bit.
Pompeo rips US decision at UN, says it ‘thrilled’ Hamas
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday criticized the Biden administration’s decision to abstain from a vote on a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for a cease-fire in Gaza, saying it “thrilled” Hamas.

“Hamas, when they saw the abstention, were thrilled,” Pompeo said on Fox News’s “The Story” with anchor Martha MacCallum.

“The Chinese Communist Party? Happier than heck. The Russians? Happier than heck. The Iranians? Absolutely beyond themselves, thrilled that the United States of America refused to stand up for its ally.”

“I think that’s so telling,” Pompeo continued. “That’s very risky, for every American, when you see the United States walk away from its long-term strategic ally and friend in the Middle East.”

The U.N. Security Council on Monday passed its first resolution calling for a cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war, but the U.S. abstained. It called for an immediate cease-fire during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and for the immediate release of all hostages being held by Hamas.

The U.S. abstention appeared to have angered Israel, with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu canceling a government delegation’s visit to Washington shortly after the vote. In a statement, the prime minister’s office said the abstention was “a clear departure from the consistent position of the United States at the Security Council since the beginning of the war.”

“The United States has abandoned its policy in the UN today,” the statement reads. “In light of the change in the US position, Prime Minister Netanyahu decided that the delegation will remain in Israel.”
Is Biden normalizing Hamas?
The crisis between the White House and Israel continues to escalate. The State Department reacted angrily to Israeli statements that the U.N. Security Council resolution demanding a ceasefire had undermined negotiations to release Israeli hostages held by Hamas, calling the Israeli statement “inaccurate in almost every respect.” President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken took umbrage at Israel’s response after the U.S. abstention allowed the resolution’s passage without explicitly linking a ceasefire to the release of hostages.

Israel is right, however, but should not be surprised. Biden approached the 2020 elections by arguing the adults would be back in charge, but his team’s true legacy is normalizing Hamas in a way once unthinkable.

Consider former Secretary of State John Kerry, who technically joined the White House as an unconfirmed environment czar but really acted as a foreign policy adviser on par with Blinken. Kerry has a soft spot for Hamas. Just weeks into President Barack Obama’s administration, for example, Kerry became the first U.S. lawmaker to visit Gaza since Hamas took control in a bloody coup against its Palestinian coalition partners. Kerry not only met with officials but also brought back messages and proposals, essentially becoming Hamas’s mailman. He legitimized a pariah group.

The Biden team also hired Rob Malley, Blinken’s chum and confidant, despite Malley’s long-standing ties to Hamas. Such ties were extensive enough that they were too much, at least initially, when Obama was assembling his team. Malley, whose father worked for the PLO and whose mother worked for Algerian militants, is now under investigation for alleged leaks of classified material to the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Top White House officials also appear tolerant of, if not sympathetic to, Hamas. Yale Law School has been a feeder for both the Obama and Biden administrations. It is a chummy place, dedicated more to building networks among future leaders than the practical study of law.
  • Friday, March 29, 2024
  • Elder of Ziyon

This week there were several critical articles about how the IDF is using facial recognition in Gaza to identify terrorists.

The New York Times wrote:

Within minutes of walking through an Israeli military checkpoint along Gaza’s central highway on Nov. 19, the Palestinian poet Mosab Abu Toha was asked to step out of the crowd. He put down his 3-year-old son, whom he was carrying, and sat in front of a military jeep.

Half an hour later, Mr. Abu Toha heard his name called. Then he was blindfolded and led away for interrogation.

“I had no idea what was happening or how they could suddenly know my full legal name,” said the 31-year-old, who added that he had no ties to the militant group Hamas and had been trying to leave Gaza for Egypt.

It turned out Mr. Abu Toha had walked into the range of cameras embedded with facial recognition technology, according to three Israeli intelligence officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity. After his face was scanned and he was identified, an artificial intelligence program found that the poet was on an Israeli list of wanted persons, they said.

Mr. Abu Toha is one of hundreds of Palestinians who have been picked out by a previously undisclosed Israeli facial recognition program that was started in Gaza late last year. The expansive and experimental effort is being used to conduct mass surveillance there, collecting and cataloging the faces of Palestinians without their knowledge or consent, according to Israeli intelligence officers, military officials and soldiers.

The technology was initially used in Gaza to search for Israelis who were taken hostage by Hamas during the Oct. 7 cross-border raids, the intelligence officials said. After Israel embarked on a ground offensive in Gaza, it increasingly turned to the program to root out anyone with ties to Hamas or other militant groups. At times, the technology wrongly flagged civilians as wanted Hamas militants, one officer said.

The thrust of the article is that these high-tech methods are being abused used to detain people. But when you read the details of the case, the mistake was not with the software:

 Mr. Abu Toha, the Palestinian poet, was named as a Hamas operative by someone in the northern Gaza town of Beit Lahia, where he lived with his family, the Israeli intelligence officers said. The officers said there was no specific intelligence attached to his file explaining a connection to Hamas.  

This is a known problem whenever there is a war: enemies of innocent people inform on them to get a military power to harass (or even kill) them. It is just like people in the US "swatting" those they hate, making fake calls to the police about a dangerous situation at their homes. 

Of course the IDF should have methods to identify and minimize these issues, but in the course of a war where every piece of intelligence could be critically important, there will be mistakes. To its credit, as soon as the IDF realized the mistake they released Abu Toha. 

The facial recognition system was not at fault. It was  a procedural problem with deciding which intel to put into the system. The old adage "garbage in, garbage out" is about the data, not the technology.

Too many people think of technology as magic and scary. It isn't. As long as the technology itself is making no decisions autonomously - which is against IDF  regulations on artificial intelligence - they are just tools to do what people are doing already, just much faster.

Remember the "playing cards" that the US Army gave its soldiers in 2003 during the Iraq war to help identify wanted people? Facial recognition is the exact same thing - just on a larger scale and much more automated. It isn't more or less immoral. It isn't magic. 

There is no moral (or, as far as I can tell, legal)  difference between a soldier at a checkpoint stopping and looking at everyone's face and a computer doing it. But the computer can allow people to pass much more quickly, and it can compare their faces with thousands of wanted people instead of dozens.

And, crucially, the computer is less likely to make mistakes than humans are. 

Just as with humans, any new procedure needs to be tweaked and improved as more is learned about it. If mass surveillance is considered an invasion of privacy or some violation of international or Israeli law, beyond what soldiers do already, the High Court will decide. Mistakes will be made by both humans and computers, but computer mistakes can be corrected much faster 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!



  • Friday, March 29, 2024
  • Elder of Ziyon

Yesterday, I mocked Jewish Voice for Peace's rabbi Lynn Gottlieb for writing that Haman should have undergone sensitivity training to erase his antisemitism. 

Her stupidity brings up a much more important question, though: what is the effectiveness of diversity and anti-prejudice training in actually reducing bigotry? And, specifically, what is the effectiveness of education meant to reduce antisemitism?

The answers are depressing. Billions of dollars are being poured into programs that seem to do little to reduce bigotry. 

And no one seems to have any idea how to reduce antisemitism.

A seminal 2009 paper by Elizabeth Levy Paluck and Donald P. Green on prejudice reduction determined that there was no evidence at that point that any of the anti-prejudice programs were effective.

Diversity training was only one of the methods analyzed, and at that time there were no studies that showed that it works, at all:
Several areas of prejudice reduction are in need of research and theory. Although antibias, multicultural, and moral education are popular approaches, they have not been examined with a great deal of rigor, and many applications are theoretically ungrounded. Spending on corporate diversity training in the United States alone costs an estimated $8 billion annually (cited in Hansen 2003), and yet the impact of diversity training remains largely unknown (Paluck 2006a).
....In terms of size, breadth, and vitality, the prejudice literature has few rivals. Thousands of researchers from an array of disciplines have addressed the meaning, measurement, and expression of prejudice. The result is a literature teeming with ideas about the causes of prejudice. In quantitative terms, the literature on prejudice reduction is vast, but a survey of this literature reveals a paucity of research that supports internally valid inferences and externally valid generalization.
This paper had a large impact. Studies since then attempted to use more structured methodologies to measure the success or failure of anti-bias programs. A number of papers appeared to show that some of these methods were effective in reducing bias. Yet the same authors of the 2009 paper did a meta-analysis of the research in 2021, and determined that the seeming effectiveness was more a result of publication bias than actual evidence. 

Publication bias occurs when the direction or strength of a study's outcome influences whether it is published or not. When academic journals are reluctant to publish research papers that report statistically insignificant treatment effects, studies that produce weak or null effects may remain invisible to the academic community.

A telltale sign of publication bias is a strong positive relationship between reported effects and their standard errors, because smaller studies, which tend to generate larger standard errors, must produce larger effect estimates in order to achieve significance at the 0.05 level. Our collection of studies displays a powerful relationship of this kind, even when we focus solely on lab experiments (N = 301): Lab studies that generate precise results tend to show less prejudice reduction than smaller studies that typically generate results with large standard errors. A linear regression of all effect sizes on standard error shows a distressing positive relationship (see the Supplemental Appendix for a graphical depiction) in which the intercept is close to zero, suggesting that a study large enough to generate a standard error of approximately zero would, on average, produce no change in prejudice at all. In other words, if the current collection of studies had been conducted on a much larger scale, our analysis would have shown no reduction in prejudice.
This is a very important point. If people undertake a study that shows that anti-bias training is ineffective, they are less likely to submit it for publication and journals are less likely to publish them. So other meta-analyses that appear to show effectiveness of training without accounting for publication bias appear to show that it works when there is no real evidence.

What about antisemitism reduction? Not surprisingly, the amount of evidence that any of it works is even lower.

A 2004 paper notes that antisemitism at the time was at an all-time low in America, and suggested that Holocaust education in schools could be a contributing factor, but did not have any means to prove that theory. Since antisemitism in America has now reached the highest levels in sixty years, it is clear that Holocaust education that many schools teach did not impact it at all. 

In fact, other literature finds no correlation between exposure to Holocaust education and a reduction in antisemitism. Dara Horn suggests that Holocaust education might actually increase antisemitism

The progressive Left represented by Lynn Gottlieb believes that fighting antisemitism is just a small component of a more general fight against all bias of all types. A little thought about the current state of diversity training shows that the opposite is the case: too much of diversity training is based on an "oppressor vs. oppressed" model that invariably places Jews on the oppressor side, and therefore people to be despised along with everyone who is not considered a person of color.

Over the past few months we have seen firsthand that Western antisemitism is being largely driven by the highly educated people who embrace DEI programs and other progressive concepts, the same people who proudly say they are anti-Zionist but deny they are antisemitic. The links between hatred of Israel and hatred of Jews are more obvious every day. But diversity training would deny the relationship between the two at the outset and, if anything, stoke modern antisemitism by associating "white" Jews with oppression of "people of color" Palestinians.

One widely believed assumption is that antisemitism correlates with lower education levels altogether. However, the opposite is the case. Carefully created surveys show the opposite - more educated people tend to be more likely to use double standards against Jews.  

That paper concludes that no amount of education is likely to affect antisemitic attitudes. 
As Harvard Professor and Yiddish scholar, Ruth Wisse (2017), has argued, anti-Semitism has not thrived because of ignorance, but because it “forms part of a political movement and serves a political purpose.” Those political causes making use of anti-Semitism are increasingly favored by the well-educated in this country. Countering the anti-Semitism of the well-educated will be a political and moral struggle, not one that addressed by conventional approaches and conceptions of education.
If anti-bias education cannot counter antisemitism, and in fact can make it worse, then what can be done? 

I can't say. But I strongly suspect that the failure of all of these massive programs is because of an underlying misconception of what morality itself is. Marxism is immoral but it is being positioned as the ultimate good; moral concepts like the importance of the family and religion are denigrated. Morality has been supplanted by self-righteousness and virtue signaling. This new immorality as morality erases the lines between men and women while creating and enforcing differences between black and white people. Entire groups of people are considered to be irredeemably guilty by virtue of their skin color or religion. 

The resurgence of antisemitism in the West is not only about Jews. It is a reflection of a much deeper problem in society itself tied to a breakdown of basic moral concepts that have been universally recognized for centuries. And as long as the critical institutions like education are controlled by people who have fundamentally immoral worldviews, Jews are only the first casualty. 

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

Or order from your favorite bookseller, using ISBN 9798985708424. 

Read all about it here!



  • Friday, March 29, 2024
  • Elder of Ziyon
Khaled Hassan, a terrorism researcher, tweeted about a (now deleted) post by an Egyptian TV series that mentions how Palestinians in Gaza want to go to Egypt, and comments where Egyptians say how much they hate Palestinians. 

Amer Zahr, a Palestinian-American comedian and apparent adjunct law professor for some school he doesn't mention on his LinkedIn (University of Detroit Mercy School of Law.)  tweeted in response, "you must know that palestinians don’t want to go to egypt. it’s the israelis that want to send them to egypt."

This is a myth that Palestinians outside Gaza tell each other and the world all the time. For example, Sky News Arabia had an article in December about how Gazans prefer to live under bombardment of bombs than to flee to Egypt. 

But the Palestinians in Gaza tell a different story, one that news media has only rarely covered.

I've previously discussed the GoFundMe campaigns I had seen where many Gazans try to raise money to brible Egyptian official to allow them to take the bus through Rafah to Egypt. GoFundMe limits the number of fundraisers it lists per query to 1000, so it is not easy to figure out how many Gazans in total have turned to the crowdfunding platform to raise money to leave Gaza. But I created several queries and removed duplicates, so I can say with confidence that there are far more than 4,000 campaigns on that platform to raise money to leave Gaza, most of them representing families with four or more members. 

That means over 15,000 Gazans whose names anyone can look up. And I only looked at those that said "evacuate Gaza," "escape from Gaza" or "leave Gaza" with minor variants. (There could easily be double or triple the numbers this method uncovered, but I can only see 1,000 results for each query.) 

Most of the fundraising requests  are sponsored by friends and relatives outside of Gaza; some are probably scams, and perhaps some families have more than one sponsor. But in general the 15,000 number seems a bare minimum that probably represents far more.  

Yet people who pretend to support Palestinians deny that anyone wants to leave and they prefer that thousands of people trying to escape stay in a war zone.

Not one NGO I could find  - HRW, Amnesty, Gisha, Oxfam, UNICEF, B'tselem - has said a negative word about Egypt's and Jordan's adamant refusal to allow anyone to leave except serious medical cases. Most of those NGOs speak up for other refugees having the right to flee, even other refugees who want to go to Egypt, but not a word about Gazans.

People who claim to care about human rights are actively denying the right of Gazans to leave if they want to. And if pressed, they justify this by falsely claiming that Palestinians in Gaza don't want to leave.

This is similar to the myth that Arabs still say, claiming that Palestinians who live in Arab countries do not want to become citizens of those countries.. Of course they do - they took every chance they have had to become citizens. Most Hamas leaders have Egyptian citizenship and most Fatah leaders have Jordanian citizenship. 

Why are these refugees treated differently by NGOs from every other refugee group? Why did they support Iraqi and Somali and Sudanese and Syrian refugees, but not Palestinians?  

Because it might peripherally help Israel in its war against Hamas. When Hamas is deprived of human shields, it is also deprived of a public relations victory. And "human rights groups" don't give a damn about Jewish lives in danger from allowing Hamas to survive.

Journalists really need to ask each of these NGOs for their official position on whether Gazans who want to should have the right to escape Gaza. Because that will expose their hypocrisy - and might save thousands of lives.

(h/t Dan)

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!



Thursday, March 28, 2024

From Ian:

Martin Kramer: Islam: 1,400 years embattled
In September 1973, Egypt’s leaders were looking for a name for their plan to launch a surprise attack against Israeli forces across the Suez Canal. According to the Egyptian chief of staff, Saad El Shazly, they wanted “something more inspirational than our planning title, The High Minarets.” Once the assault was set for October 6, falling in Ramadan, “Operation Badr named itself.”

This 17th of Ramadan marks 1,400 years since the battle of Badr (624), the first military confrontation between the Muslims and their opponents—in this case, the grandees of the Prophet Muhammad’s own tribe of Quraysh. He had fled their persecution in Mecca less than two years earlier (the hijra, 622), along with his followers, in order to regroup and recruit in Medina, to the north.

At Badr, southwest of Medina, Muhammad led a contingent of 313 Muslims, outnumbered three to one, to a decisive victory over the polytheists of Mecca. The Muslims killed many, took others prisoner for ransom, and secured much booty. Angels supposedly helped out. It’s considered a turning point in the fortunes of nascent Islam, demonstrating Muhammad’s skills as a commander as well as the divine favor enjoyed by the believers.

Badr received its most memorable cinematic treatment in the 1976 epic The Message, starring Anthony Quinn and bankrolled in good part by the then-dictator of Libya, Mu‘ammar Qadhafi (watch here). The movie roughly adhered to the traditional accounts of the battle: the preliminary duels by champions, the general melee, the cut-and-thrust, and the spirit of Muslim triumph. (Quinn didn’t play Muhammad, who couldn’t be depicted on film; he played Hamza, Muhammad’s companion and uncle. Ali, the Prophet’s son-in-law and later caliph, also couldn’t be depicted; the double-pointed sword on screen is wielded by him, but you won’t see him.)

Badr did much to signal the character of Islam going forward. Bernard Lewis, historian of Islam (and my mentor), summarized that character in theses words:
The founder of Christianity died on the cross, and his followers endured as a persecuted minority for centuries…. Muhammad did not die on the cross. As well as a Prophet, he was a soldier and a statesman, the head of a state and the founder of an empire, and his followers were sustained by a belief in the manifestation of divine approval through success and victory. Islam was associated with power from the very beginning, from the first formative years of the Prophet and his immediate successors.

Thus did Islam find its validation in military success, which became its hallmark for a millennium. Its first decisive victory occurred at Badr, during Ramadan of the second year of the hijra, corresponding to March 624.
Victor Davis Hanson: Gaza: Truths Behind All the Lies
“Occupied Gaza.” Prior to October 7, there were roughly two million Arab citizens of Israel but no Jewish citizens in Gaza. Gazans in 2006 voted in Hamas to rule them. It summarily executed its Palestinian Authority rivals. Hamas cancelled all future scheduled elections. It established a dictatorship and diverted hundreds of billions of dollars in international aid to build a vast underground labyrinth of military installations.

So Gaza has been occupied by Hamas, not Israel, for two decades.

“Collateral Damage.” Hamas began the war by deliberately targeting civilians. It massacred them on October 7 when it invaded Israel during a time of peace and holidays. It sent more than 7,000 rockets into Israeli cities for the sole purpose of killing noncombatants. It has no vocabulary for the collateral damage of Israeli civilians, since it believes any Jewish death under any circumstances is cause for celebration.

Hamas places its terrorist centers beneath and inside hospitals, schools, and mosques. Why? Israel is assumed to have more reservations about collaterally hitting Gaza civilians than Hamas does exposing them as human shields.

“Disproportionate.” We are told Israel wrongly uses disproportionate force to retaliate in Gaza. But it does so because no nation can win a war without disproportionate violence that hurts the enemy more than it is hurt by the enemy.

The U.S. incinerated German and Japanese cities with disproportionate force to end a war both Axis powers started. The American military in Iraq nearly leveled Fallujah and Mosul by disproportional force to root out Islamic gunmen hiding among innocents. Hamas has objections to disproportionate violence—but only when it is achieved by Israel and not Hamas.

“Two-state solution.” Prior to October 7, there was a de facto three-state solution, given that Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza were all separate states ruled by their own governments, two of which were illegitimate without scheduled elections.

It was not Israel, but the people of Gaza and the West Bank who institutionalized the “from river to the sea” agenda of destroying its neighbor.

Israel would have been content to live next to an autonomous Arab Gaza and West Bank that did not seek to destroy Israel in their multigenerational efforts to form their own “one-state solution.”
Brendan O'Neill: The Lord Haw-Haws of Hamas
Lord Haw-Haw was the nickname given to William Joyce and others who broadcast Nazi propaganda in the UK during the Second World War. The Lord Haw-Haws of Hamas haven’t reached quite that level. They haven’t set up underground radio stations devoted to reading out loud every Hamas press release. But, consciously or otherwise, they do Hamas’s bidding. Spread its propaganda, hawk its lies. The activist class and much of the supposedly liberal media treat Hamas claims as good coin while being showily sceptical of everything Israel says. To such an extent that even the obvious fiction of organised rape on hospital wards was swiftly believed.

It happens over and over again. When al-Ahli Hospital was bombed last year, much of the media parroted the Hamas line that Israel did it. It later transpired that it might have been a misfired rocket from Islamic Jihad. When Hamas says more than ‘30,000 Palestinians’ have been killed, the media repeats it like a mantra. It doesn’t stop to ask not only whether the numbers are reliable, but also how many of the dead are Hamas terrorists. The idea that Israel has ‘murdered 30,000 Palestinians’ is a fiction, another war lie, essentially. The truth is that Israel is at war with Hamas, and thus it has slain many Hamas members, and in the process, as in every war in history, civilians have sadly died, too. It is rare indeed to hear such truths from the West’s Smart Set whose flapping hate for Israel has driven them into the arms of Hamas.

Some on the woke left have gone further than spewing the Hamas line – they’ve openly celebrated Hamas’s crimes. A ‘day of celebration’ is how one British left-winger described Hamas’s racist butchery of 7 October. A Cornell professor said he found Hamas’s pogrom ‘exhilarating’. A lecturer at the University of California, Irvine said Hamas’s attack had exposed ‘the Zionists’ for the ‘bloodthirsty animals that they are’. At George Washington University, ‘Glory to our martyrs’ was projected on to a wall. And there you had it: right-on campuses that spent the past two decades fearmongering about ‘rape culture’ were now cheering on mass rape.

This week’s fabricated story about rape at al-Shifa Hospital raises a chilling question: why are some quick to believe accusations of rape made by Palestinians and equally quick to discount and deny accusations of rape made by Israelis? Some of the same people who ate up the fake story about IDF rapists were dismissive of the far more substantiated reports about Hamas using rape as a weapon of war on 7 October. ‘If there was rape and sexual violence committed, we don’t see this on the footage’, they said in the aftermath of that racist pogrom. No one wants to hear this question, I know, but we have to ask it: why do they have to see a Jewish woman being raped before they’ll believe it happened?

‘Believe women’, many on the left said for years. They’ve changed their tune. Now it’s ‘Believe Palestinian women but not Israeli women’. Now it’s ‘Believe some women’. Now it’s ‘Believe it when Israelis are accused of rape but not when Israelis say they’ve suffered rape’. Actually, it’s worse. In lapping up Hamas’s claims, in embracing every horror story Hamas hawks about the Jewish State, the woke left has adopted a whole new rallying cry: ‘Believe fascists.’


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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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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