Sunday, September 26, 2021

  • Sunday, September 26, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
  • ,

They never think they lose the arguments - they just throw something else at you. 

The USS Liberty is another favorite.

(Here is my debunking of the "dancing Israelis" lie.)

From Ian:

Twenty Years After Durban, What We Still Get Wrong About Left-Wing Antisemitism
Like all intellectual monopolies, postcolonialism denies the validity of other explanations and in its certitude becomes an illiberal and dangerous source of extremism and hate. Of course, the ideology contains a modicum of truth — the horrors of colonialism do explain some of today’s global disparities. The proponents of postcolonialism, however, completely paper over the highly successful Asian countries that were once colonies, and what that says about the long-term impact of colonial rule.

In simplistically dividing the world into oppressors and oppressed, postcolonialism holds successful nations morally culpable and struggling nations morally pure. And in insisting on this perverse binary, the ideology enables the expression of the usual resentment and ill-will toward Jews and Israel, both of which have succeeded in their respective environments.

Talking about the antisemitism at Durban without reference to postcolonialist ideology is like talking about the attacks of Sept. 11 without reference to extreme Islamist ideology. We should have grasped it then. “It’s the ideology, stupid.”

Fast-forward 20 years, and we see the same political dynamic not in a remote international conference of NGOs and diplomats, but in myriad mainstream American institutions, including higher education, K-12 schools, corporations, the law, medicine, nonprofits and even scientific research. Woke ideology is postcolonialism applied to the domestic scene in Western countries, dividing people neatly into victimizers and victims. And just like the post-Durban reckoning, those concerned about the resurgence of antisemitism today largely fail to understand and name the animating ideology.

About five years ago, it became apparent that woke ideology and its concomitant antisemitism, once confined to the margins, was gaining ground. Then a CEO of a national Jewish advocacy organization dedicated to engaging progressives, I wrote that “the growing acceptance of intersectionality arguably poses the most significant … challenge of our time [to the Jewish community]. Ultimately, how popular — and threatening — intersectionality becomes depends on the degree to which the far left … is successful in inculcating its black-and-white worldview … with the mainstream left.”

I thought at the time that Jewish organizations could best protect the community by positioning ourselves as members in good standing of the intersectional club. Such progressive certification would, I and others surmised, prevent the lion’s share of the left from fully embracing antisemitic and anti-Israel perspectives. I thought that these forces had a long way to go before gaining mainstream currency. Boy, was I wrong.
20 years since Durban: Most sickening display of Jew-hate since Nazis
In 2011, 14 countries boycotted, and in 2009 there were 10, as opposed to in 2001, when only Israel and the US walked out.

Erdan considered the growing number of countries boycotting Durban, as well as the fact that not one Western country sent a high-level representative to Durban IV or volunteered to lead a roundtable, as a success for Israel “in labeling it antisemitic and anti-Israel.”

Cooper, however, said Israel should have reached out to Abraham Accords countries, as well as states in Africa, South America and elsewhere, “to gently, politely say, look, great things are happening bilaterally,” but they need to speak up against antisemitism as well.

Diker saw these announcements as a “silver lining” in Durban IV, together with an even larger number of countries accepting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism, by which the Durban Declaration arguably and the NGO declaration certainly would be considered antisemitic.

It is up to the countries that adopted IHRA “to enforce that moral mandate and not allow international organizations such as the UN to upend and uproot and dismantle their own founding charter, which calls for righting against racism of any kind,” Diker added.

Bayefsky sees the boycotts by major democratic countries as an important milestone: “All the democratic members of the UN Security Council are with Israel on this. They have said no to Durban. That’s a big deal. They don’t agree on everything... Israel’s other solid friends and allies stood shoulder to shoulder with Israel on this abomination... saying this demonization of Israel is antisemitism. That message is getting through whether the other side likes it or not. They cannot make the case that calling for the dismantlement of the Jewish state is somehow unrelated to antisemitism.”

Bayefsky also said that the Jewish delegates who pushed back against antisemitism in 2001 are still involved today.

“We have been able to get the team back together, with some of us who were there and others of a younger generation who were not there and understand the danger to the State of Israel and the Jewish people and aren’t prepared to let it go,” she stated.

“We have no intention of lying down and letting the so-called human rights world walk all over us.”

Madrid Assembly Officially Adopts IHRA Definition of Antisemitism
The Madrid Assembly, the local parliament of Spain’s main region, adopted on Friday the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA)’s working definition of antisemitism.

In addition, the Assembly demanded that the country’s national parliament adopt legislation precluding any possible grant or public aid to entities that promote antisemitism as defined by the IHRA, according to pro-Israel advocacy organization Action and Communication on the Middle East (ACOM).

This proposal would effectively exclude public financing of any BDS group or activity in Spain, a nation where BDS has gained popularity in recent years.

The law was supported by the Partido Popular, the ruling party in the Madrid region, led by President of Madrid Isabel Díaz Ayuso, “a strong and committed defender of Israel,” according to ACOM, with the support of the the Socialist Party (center-left) and the VOX Party (conservative).
  • Sunday, September 26, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon

There were some dramatic activities this weekend in Kurdistan.

At the "Conference for Peace and Reclamation," held in Erbil and organized by the New York-based Center for Peace Communications, over 300 participants called for Iraq to join the Abraham Accords and to make peace with Israel, a country it has been officially at war with since 1948.

Reaction was swift. 

Iraq’s federal government on Saturday rejected the conference as an “illegal meeting.”

Today, Iraq started issuing arrest warrants against participants.

Already, one prominent participant, Wisam al Hardan, has disowned the statement he signed, claiming he didn't read it carefully - even though he had written an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal on Friday calling for Iraq to join the Abraham Accords. He is clearly frightened of being arrested and tortured for violating Iraqi laws against "normalization" with Israel.

Now we can find out how consistent "human rights activists" who are critical of Israel will be.

Will Human Rights Watch, Amnesty and Oxfam condemn these arrests as a gross violation of freedom of expression? Will these group defend the participants and their right to call for peace between Iraq and Israel?

My guess is that they will either be silent, or (if shamed) they will issue a tiny, perfunctory statement of "concern." But you will not find a full throated defense of these participants or a condemnation of Iraq's laws against promoting "Zionist values."

  • Sunday, September 26, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
Arabic media are reporting that Syria is on a charm offensive in the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meetings in New York, trying to re-establish its relationships with its fellow Arab countries.

The irony is that Israel has had a better relationship with many Arab regimes than Syria has.

The Palestinian Authority never severed its relations with Syria in light of its atrocities in its civil war, and Syrian foreign minister Faisal Miqdad met Saturday with Palestinian foreign minister Riyad Al-Maliki, saying that the Palestinian cause "will remain the central issue of the Arab people."

Miqdad also met with his Tunisian and Egyptian counterparts over the weekend. This was the first official contact between Egypt and Syria in ten years.

It is almost jarring to read the word "normalization" in Arab media and have it not referring to Israel. 

  • Sunday, September 26, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon

Mondoweiss has an exclusive, which is being gleefully reproduced in Iranian and Palestinian media:

Retired Army Col. Lawrence Wilkerson is the former chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell who emerged as a leading critic of the neoconservatives. In remarks to Mass Peace Action last June, he made some bracing assertions about Israel that I just saw the other day:

Israel won’t exist as a state in 20 years because it is delegitimizing itself as an apartheid state.
Israel is a “strategic liability of the first order” for the United States and is “the most likely state in the world to take the United States to Armageddon.”
The U.S. ought to tell Israel now to “change swiftly” or it will cease to fund and protect Israel, but the U.S. will not do so.
The neoconservative agenda in the Middle East was “to set the Levant on fire, to keep Israel’s enemies so at one anothers’ throats” that they could not give Israel trouble.

Wilkerson is a fellow at the Quincy Institute and teaches at the College of William and Mary.
It turns out that Wilkerson has said some other stuff over the years that clearly crossed the line from criticism of Israel into antisemitism.

In 2005, he said that the US went to war in Iraq partially for Israel: "'I use the acronym OIL,' he said, 'O for oil, I for Israel and L for the logistical base necessary or deemed necessary by the so-called neocons – and it reeks through all their documents – the logistical base whereby the United States and Israel could dominate that area of the world.'" He added that Ariel Sharon controlled President Bush.

In 2007, Wilkerson claimed that American foreign policy was dominated by "the Jewish lobby" and pointed to Jewish officials like Elliott Abrams, Paul Wolfowitz and Richard Perle for proof.

In 2013, he defended the Syrian regime and claimed that Israel had used chemical weapons in Syria in a "false flag" operation.

In 2018, he wrote an op-ed for the New York Times accusing Jewish billionaires of pushing the US into war with Iran.

In 2019, he claimed that Israel intends to conquer parts of Lebanon and Jordan to create "Greater Israel" to fulfill Biblical prophecies.

Wilkerson is a conspiracy theory nutcase on matters outside Israel and Jews. But because he sasy what he says about Jews, Mondoweiss has elevated this lunatic as a sober realist.

Which tells you all you need to know about Mondoweiss and modern antisemitism.

And if you doubt that Iran's "anti-Zionism" is antisemitic, check out how this story was illustrated by the official Iranian Fars news agency:

Saturday, September 25, 2021

From Ian:

Why the Haters of Israel Are Hypocrites
We are faced today with a very remarkable phenomenon, one in which a group of people have decided that they are not simply the finest and most moral people in the world, but the finest and most moral people who have ever existed. For such people, hypocrisy is inevitable. But the hypocrisy of these self-appointed saints is most acute on the issue of Israel and their hatred of it.

There are innumerable examples of this, but it is worth noting a few of the most blatant:
Imperialism and Colonialism: The claim that Israel is an imperialist and colonialist state is one of the oldest cliches proffered by the saints. Israel, they claim, is an invasion of Palestine by a foreign people who colonized it at the expense of the indigenous population. These invaders must either “go back to Poland” — as the vulgar among them put it — or be exterminated.

We may put aside, for the moment, the complications of the term “indigenous” — no one, after all, is indigenous to anywhere except to the savannas of sub-Saharan Africa. If we must use the saints’ vague definition of the term, however, then we should note that even the most avowedly secular archeologists — who reject most or all of the biblical narrative — agree that the Jewish nation began several thousand years ago as a subset of the indigenous Canaanite tribes of the Levant.

More to the point, however, is the supposedly indigenous Arab presence, which to the saints is a sacred fact. But it is a matter of historical record that the Arabs came much later as foreign imperial conquerors who colonized the region and expelled or forcibly converted the native populations by various coercive means, not the least of which was placing them under an apartheid system. And this holds true not only of the land of Israel, but the entire Middle East and North Africa.

It is clear, then, that by the saints’ own logic, almost the entire Arab population of the Middle East and North Africa ought to be expelled and sent back to their homeland in Saudi Arabia, with the vacated territories returned to the remnants of their native populations. Those of us who are at least vaguely reasonable would not advocate such a thing in a million years, but then again, we are not hypocrites.

Genocide: Our self-appointed saints are, to say the least, extremely fond of accusing Israel of genocide. This blood libel is absurd on its face, but its hypocrisy is equally obvious, because Israel’s most dedicated enemies, sanctified by the saints, have displayed a remarkable weakness for genocide over the past 1,500 years.

Even a brief examination is sufficient proof of this. We may note, for example, Muhammad’s annihilation of the Jews of the Hijaz; the slow whittling of Egypt’s native Coptic or North Africa’s Berber populations down to a tiny minority; Turkey’s near-annihilation of the Armenians and the Anatolian Greeks; the slow-motion genocide that was the Ottoman Empire’s enthusiastic trade in both European and African slaves; Saddam Hussein’s murderous assault on the Kurds; and ISIS’s recent slaughter of Iraq’s Yazidis.

More to the point, however, is the fact that many Arabs and Muslims are currently threatening another genocide, this time against Israel’s Jewish population. And our self-appointed saints not only refuse to say a word against any of this, but in many cases whitewash, erase, or even openly collaborate with it.
The war on terror sacrificed thousands of lives to avoid tough political decisions
Our various enemies were correct in assuming that our political leaders lacked the will to make the necessary decisions. Where they erred was in assuming too much and pushing too far. The Japanese made that mistake in Pearl Harbor, the Soviets in Berlin, and Al Qaeda on 9/11. The Jihadists haven’t made one final mistake yet, but history suggests that they will.

America, to its friends and enemies, and to its own patriots, can be an infuriating mix of weakness and strength, idealism and corruption, division and unity. And it’s never entirely clear, even to us, when the tipping point that turns one into the other will unexpectedly arrive.

The great tragedy of the aftermath of September 11 is that our leaders proved willing to sacrifice soldiers, but not the dream of a democratic world order, and instead sacrificed lives to that dream. They took the road that was easiest for them and hardest for so many military men.

The War on Terror only became a forever war because we failed to confront two of the three pillars from which the enemy draws its strength. After two decades, we’ve seen the limitations of a military option that is not combined with foreign policy and immigration decisions that would cut off the true economic and demographic sources of the enemy’s strength.

Until our leaders are ready to make the hard choices and our people are ready to elect those who will, the forever wars will go on, not just in distant countries, but in the streets of our own cities.

We have failed to identify the enemy. And until we do, we can never win.
In the end, House Iron Dome fracas only showed Israel support not going anywhere
Just nine congress members voted against the bill — eight of them Democrats and one Republican — amounting to less than two percent of the entire House of Representatives.

The small number didn’t even include all of the Squad. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who spearheaded the effort to have the Iron Dome funding removed from the government spending bill, chose to abstain, along with one other progressive colleague, Rep. Hank Johnson.

In a lengthy letter to supporters on Friday, she attacked her party’s leadership for jamming the vote through, while insisting that Israel did not deserve or need additional no-questions-asked funding for Iron Dome — and yet, she still voted to abstain, apparently fearful of further crossing pro-Israel constituents and lobbyists.

The bill even won support from some frequent Israel critics.

Rep. Betty McCollum, who has introduced legislation aimed at restricting aid to Israel and has regularly called out the Jewish state over settlement building and treatment of the Palestinians, voted in the same column as Reps. Ted Deutch and Ted Cruz.

And at a press conference introducing legislation to keep the two-state solution alive — which included provisions referring to the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip as territories illegally occupied by Israel — Reps. Andy Levin, Alan Lowenthal, Sara Jacobs and Peter Welch each proudly announced their plans to vote in favor of the Iron Dome funding later that day.

As for the aforementioned Two State Solution Act, the progressive group Levin leads can only dream of receiving the kind of wall-to-wall backing for that legislation enjoyed by those moderate Democrats who pushed for the standalone Iron Dome funding bill.

In the end, traditional pro-Israel stances still reign supreme on Capitol Hill. Those looking to criticize the Israeli government or advocate for Palestinian sovereignty undoubtedly have more of a voice than they once did, but that doesn’t translate into legislative power: Even after another Gaza war further polarized the American debate on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, fewer than 2% of House representatives cast a vote against robust support for the Jewish state.

In her letter to constituents Friday, Ocasio-Cortez questioned why the House leadership had rushed the Iron Dome funding bill through “without any of the usually-necessary committee debate, markup, or regular order.”

Procedural complaints notwithstanding, the answer to her query is, in essence, simple: In Washington, as polarized as it might be, support for Israel’s security remains an issue that’s not up for discussion.

Friday, September 24, 2021

From Ian:

Lyn Julius: When will the ‘happy dhimmi’ myth be discredited?
Colonial rule is considered by Western supporters of the myth to have disrupted this happy relationship. In practice, the colonial powers “liberated” non-Muslim minorities from their dhimmi status and granted them better education and security.

Israel became tarred with the brush of imperialism after the Suez Crisis in 1956 when Israel joined forces with Britain and France to invade Egypt. Further politicization followed when Israel became an “occupying” power after the Six-Day War in 1967. Beginning in the 1950s, Western intellectuals were so bewitched by Third Worldism that when Tunisian-Jewish writer Albert Memmi moved to France, he was astonished to have been almost congratulated by left-wingers for having been born in a country where racism did not exist.

Dhimmi-denial was mirrored in the attitudes of white Southerners who thought of themselves as upholding Christian values and even “high civilization.” After losing the cause of slavery in the American Civil War, they went to considerable lengths to praise slavery’s “benevolent features.” The master-slave relationship, they said, was amicable: “The only bonds were those of tender understanding, trust and loyalty.”

Pollack and Norwood argue that the “happy darkey” myth provided Southerners with a foundation to justify their “lost cause,” just as Arabs use the “happy dhimmi” to challenge Israel’s legitimacy.

Nowadays, as statues associated with slavery are being torn down, and any connection with slavery, however tenuous, is enough to make historical figures into non-persons, the “happy darkey” myth is thoroughly discredited.

How much longer will we have to wait until the “happy dhimmi” myth is consigned to the dustbin of history?
Abe Greenwald: Systemic Wokeness - Review of 'The Authoritarian Moment' by Ben Shapiro
Institution after institution has caved before this strategy and thereby been renormalized. Shapiro goes into great detail, offering separate analyses of the renormalizations happening in government, media, science, education, and the workplace. Given that he wrote the book during the COVID-19 pandemic, his section on the renormalization of science lands with a fierce immediacy.

He identifies two dominant elements in the current corruption of science: the Ultracrepidarian Problem and the Bleedover Effect. “The Ultracrepidarian Problem widens the boundaries of science beyond the applicable,” Shapiro writes. This happened, for example, when scientists came out en masse proclaiming racism a public-health emergency. By contrast, “the Bleedover Effect narrows the boundaries of science to the ‘acceptable.’” Such was the case when, in 2018, the American Medical Association renounced any definition of sex that referred to “immutable biological traits identifiable by or before birth.” Doctors, according to the renormalized AMA, “assign” sex. (Shapiro is never caught wanting for real-word events to bolster his arguments.)

Through the power and reach of American institutions, the radical left has managed to foist its oppressive agenda on the country in what seems like an overnight coup. But it merely feels as if it happened overnight. Shapiro lays out a valuable account of the revolutionary groundwork, a century in the making, that went into the establishment of the new dispensation. The American left, in his telling, has historically oscillated between dreams of utopia and a hunger for revolution. “But the two impulses are in conflict,” he writes. It was Barack Obama who finally tied the two together “by embracing the power of government—and acting as a community organizer within the system itself, declaring himself the revolutionary representative of the dispossessed, empowered with the levers of the state in order to destroy and reconstitute the state on their behalf.” This insight perhaps best explains Joe Biden’s clunky “Build Back Better” slogan. What the revolution has destroyed, the Biden administration will rebuild—along utopian lines.

Shapiro is famous, in part, for a rapid-fire speaking style that enables him to pack years of analysis into a single TV appearance. He manages something analogous in The Authoritarian Moment, conveying a door stopper’s worth of information in fewer than 250 pages (not counting notes). He is infamous on the left, however, as an emblem of right-wing nastiness. But that misunderstanding of Shapiro points to a paradox that gets at why the left truly detest him. He is a cool-headed and surgical expositor of complicated ideas—so cool-headed and surgical that his targets can only take their wounds for the work of a monster. He in fact models an alternative to political nastiness. What is his oft-repeated catch phrase—“Facts don’t care about your feelings”—but an admonition against excessive emotionality in discourse? In The Authoritarian Moment, Shapiro paints with a fine brush and makes a clear distinction between liberals (who respect free speech) and leftists (who do not). He throws powerful rhetorical bombs, but they’re smart bombs. “To be politically incorrect means to say that which requires saying,” he writes, “not to be a generic, run-of-the-mill jackass.”

The Authoritarian Moment says very much that requires saying. Shapiro is beloved—indeed, he is a phenom—among young conservatives because he can articulate the multitude of frustrations that most others can only groan or rage about. And he can do it more concisely than any human being alive. But, more than that, he dissects the actual mechanics of the current crackdown in a way that is undeniable. His new book is, in short, an argument-winner. Shapiro maintains that if conservatives and liberals are to resist the new reality, they must undo in reverse order the three-step authoritarian takeover. This means that they will finally have to win more arguments than they currently do. The Authoritarian Moment is, then, a vital step toward genuine normalcy.
Melanie Phillips: Review of The Legacy - My novel "weaves the true stories of our collective and tragic Jewish history"
Irene Lancaster has written a glowing review of my novel The Legacy in the magazine Christian Today. I am most grateful, and reproduce it here.

Review in Christian Today
Many would say that War and Peace, Tolstoy’s epic 1860s chronicle of the earlier Napoleonic invasion of Tzarist Russia, experienced through the lives and loves of a number of individuals, is his greatest novel – maybe even the greatest novel ever written.

At exactly the same time, that very English genius, George Eliot (real name Mary Ann Evans), was writing what she herself considered to be her greatest novel, Romola, based on Florentine Renaissance history also seen through the private lives and loves of a number of individuals.

Both these books are, as you might expect, immensely difficult to read. The mind and heart are expected to concentrate on two disparate subjects simultaneously – with individual loves and the great events of world history panning out before us both in parallel and in tandem.

Not every reader succeeds in this endeavour and ends up having to choose one aspect as against the other, simply in order to get through the book. Not really what the respective authors – giants of the novelistic genre – would have wished of their readers.

It is therefore something of a miracle that England’s greatest Jewish journalist, Melanie Phillips (now living in Israel), has managed to pull off this exacting feat in her very first novel, entitled The Legacy.
  • Friday, September 24, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
Author Ahmed Khaled Mustafa wrote a book called "Antichristos" in 2015. It became a best seller in Egypt and elsewhere. 

It is pure Jew-hatred.

The book is summarized here.
The writer Ahmed Khaled Mustafa intended his novel to be a true historical document that combines facts and fiction in a beautiful narrative form. The novel centers on Bobby Frank, a wealthy Jewish character who belongs to a class of ultra-rich Jews, who is killed in mysterious circumstances by two young Jewish men from the same neighborhood....

This novel tells historical events related to Judaism and Freemasonry and their control of the world.  Roxelana the Jewish woman who was in the palace of Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent and her success in threatening the Ottoman Empire internally, as well as the story of Harut and Marut and their planning of Judaism on the world and their ability to control the minds of young people. 

The writer used in his novel a set of images and non-exaggerated metaphors that serve the ideas that the writer wants to reach the reader, including what the writer described to the Jews, as he said: “The Jews are beings that must be disposed of immediately, revolting and malicious worms and cursed forever. of them all their books and we burn, we must expel them all from our country. "

Antichristos is a dialectical narrative that contributes to unveiling the cover of Judaism, which tries to destroy all those who oppose it, regardless of their affiliation, even if they are Jews themselves.
Mustafa's Wikipedia page in Arabic doesn't mention a whiff of controversy over writing this book. It has a 4.5 star rating in Amazon.

One edition of the book has this cover, just in case you weren't sure what it says about Jews.

The book was so popular that Mustafa recently released a sequel, Antichristos II.

From Ian:

Josh Hammer: The Moral Perverseness of Democrats' Foreign Policy Priorities
In the aftermath of President Joe Biden's disastrously executed withdrawal from the Afghan backwater, that would have translated to $400 million directly subsidizing the Taliban. That's the same Taliban-run Afghan government that, as FBI Director Christopher Wray admitted to Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) during a Senate hearing earlier this week, counts eponymous Haqqani network member Siraj Haqqani as its interior minister. Haqqani remains wanted by the FBI, and there is a $10 million bounty for his capture. Some Democrats would apparently rather fund Haqqani's government than protect innocent Jewish, Arab and Christian lives in the Holy Land using state-of-the-art missile defense technology. Indeed, many Democrats would presumably still rather send amorphous "humanitarian aid" to Afghanistan which, due to ubiquitous venality, would of course just subsidize the Taliban, than fund the inherently defensive Iron Dome system.

That is, quite simply, perverse.

But at this point, it also should not be surprising. For years during the Obama administration, Democrats embarked on a broader Middle East-centric foreign policy realignment crusade by which the U.S. would create distance between itself and its formerly staunch Israeli and Sunni Arab allies, and cozy up to Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood. Years later, the purported rationale for such a realignment remains unclear. The Iranian regime is the world's leading state sponsor of jihad, and regime propagandists quite literally chant "Death to America" in the streets of Tehran. The Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen, for whom the Biden administration nixed in February the Trump administration's previously affixed "terrorist" label, have as their official slogan: "Allah is Greater, Death to America, Death to Israel, Curse on the Jews, Victory to Islam." They sound like nice people.

Democratic Party foreign policy is in complete shambles right now. Much of that intellectual descent goes back to the Obama, and even the Clinton, administrations. But it has rapidly accelerated in recent years, as the tail that is Ocasio-Cortez's Jew-hating "Squad" has come to lead the dog that is the broader Democratic Party apparatus. Unapologetic anti-Semites and anti-American zealots, sadly, are now steering one of America's two leading political parties. That is now an inescapable truth.
Melanie Phillips: The Democrats' Iron Dome fiasco, and what it means
Those baying for Israel's blood deny that this singling out of Israel for demonization is essentially the same kind of deranged treatment meted out to the Jews through the ages.

Instead, more and more on the left – tragically, including many Jews – now nod along to the evil and patently ludicrous charges against Israel of apartheid, ethnic cleansing and war crimes.

When Israelis are murdered in the disputed territories of the "West Bank," the silence from the human-rights-obsessed, "anti-racist" left is deafening. These murders are simply ignored because, to supporters of "Palestinian rights," these Jewish victims are simply to be written out of the script of humanity.

Even to "moderate" Israel supporters on the left, there are good Israelis and bad Israelis; good Jews and bad Jews. The bad ones are deemed bad because they fight their enemies; the good ones are deemed good because they cave in to them.

The result is a vast increase in attacks on Jews, with students on campus increasingly hiding their Jewish identity.

So what should Israel and its supporters do in response?

Israel's new ambassador to the United States, Brig. Gen. Michael Herzog, has rightly said: "We are in the midst of a war of consciousness, and the State of Israel has to develop new, strong and profound tools to deal with this challenge."

In fact, Israel has never responded adequately to this great crisis of Western thought. This is partly the result of Israel's epic and endemic governmental incompetence.

But it's also because of Israel's deeply felt belief that trying to make Israel's case to Britain and Europe, where Jew-hatred has been ingrained for centuries, is a hopeless task – while (with the exception of former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who understood that Israel had to appeal directly to the American public) it could take American support for granted.

Now it needs to revisit that last assumption as a matter of urgency. Yet at this most critical juncture, Israel has saddled itself with a feeble governing coalition that appears to believe that a plastic spoon should be brought to a gunfight.
Israel has an obligation to defend itself
The most common refrain from strong Israel supporters was: “Israel has a right to defend itself.” The people making those statements thought they were helping Israel, but they were not.

Of course Israel has a right to defend itself. Why wouldn’t it? By even mentioning the “right,” you are welcoming a debate whether Israel does or does not have a “right” to defend itself.

It is time for the pro-Israel and I daresay pro-America crowd to permanently change the lexicon. “Israel has an obligation to defend itself and its citizens.”

The most basic expectation that a citizen of any country has is the expectation to safety and security. This is an obligation of the state to its citizens, not a right, not an option. It is a non-negotiable obligation.

When a nation does not fulfill its obligation, it questions its ability to succeed as a state. To win a war, you must choose the correct battlefield.

This week it became clear that the Democratic Party is currently negotiating Israel’s surrender as their very right to exist has been called into question, and those willing to fight to extinguish it cared more than those who purport to defend it.

The cause is not lost, and strong bipartisan support for Israel is important to Israel, but it is even more important to America.

Combine this week’s capitulation with America’s disastrous retreat from Afghanistan – with Americans and allies left behind with zero repercussions for anyone in the administration or Congress – and we have a glaring lack of understanding of a country’s obligations to its citizens.
  • Friday, September 24, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon

A new Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research poll has been released, and it shows yet again that Palestinians support terror against Israelis.

When asked about support for specific policy choices where they could choose more than one policy, 54% supported return to armed confrontations and intifada.

When asked about their preferred way out of the current status quo, only 28% said “reaching a peace agreement with Israel” a plurality of 39% prefer waging “an armed struggle against the Israeli occupation.”

When asked what they think is "the most effective means of ending the Israeli occupation," a huge plurality of  48% chose armed struggle, compared to 28% who prefer negotiations.

If Israeli courts expel the illegal Arab squatters in Sheikh Jarrah, 60% say that Hamas should respond with rockets towards Israeli civilian population centers.

More evidence of Palestinian preference for violence:  46% believe the lesson that the Palestinians should learn from what happened in Afghanistan is that they should strengthen terror groups ("the forces of armed resistance.")

This is all very damning. It destroys the narrative that Western media try to create. Which is why you won't read about it in AP or the New York Times. 

  • Friday, September 24, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
There was some great news this week that didn't get much attention. 

In June, Seattle councilmember Kshama Sawant introduced a bill to end all cooperation with Israeli law enforcement, under the banner "End Deadly Exchange," the monicker used by Israel haters for US police training with their Israeli counterparts. 

The “End Deadly Exchange” campaign was joined by about 60 community groups, many of them virulently anti-Israel. These included the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Northwest BDS Coalition, the Rachel Corrie Foundation, Jewish Voice for Peace and IfNotNow. It was also supported by the teachers’ union for the Seattle public schools. They heavily lobbied  City Council; with dozens of supporters calling and meeting with councilmembers in support of the bill, officially called CB120142.

Jewish and Zionist groups, while not as well organized, did their own lobbying against the bill, meeting with councilmembers. These included the ADL, StandWithUs, the American Jewish Committee and the local Jewish Federation.

The bill was amended a number of times and finally came up for review in the City Council meeting this past Monday - hours before the Sukkot holiday.

Most of the speakers calling in supported the bill - and many identified themselves as Jewish.

Even so, the Jewish lobbying paid off. 

Seattle's City Council, representing one of the most far Left cities in the US, whose members are comprised of 8 Democrats and one Socialist (Sawant), voted against the anti-Israel bill, by a 5-4 vote. 

This shows that pro-Israel groups can respectfully make their voices heard and convince officials to understand the ramifications of these attempts to hijack local issues. 

The haters, on the other hand, showed their true ugliness when they lost, accusing the City Council of being more loyal to Israel than to Seattle residents. 

 The modern antisemites showed yet again that they are nothing but bullies who don't give a damn about human rights unless they can use it as a weapon,

It is notable that this happened soon after similarly "progressive" Burlington, VT withdrew its own local anti-Israel legislation.

The good guys can win even in as hostile environments as Seattle and Burlington. Facts can win out over propaganda. It isn't easy but these two victories show that things aren't as dire as they sometimes seem.

The New York Times reported on the drama on the House floor yesterday this way:
Minutes before the vote closed, Ocasio-Cortez tearfully huddled with her allies before switching her vote to “present.” The tableau underscored how wrenching the vote was for even outspoken progressives, who have been caught between their principles and the still powerful pro-Israel voices in their party, such as influential lobbyists and rabbis. (A spokesman for Ocasio-Cortez declined to comment on her change of position.)
The phrase "such as influential lobbyists and rabbis" was later excised. It can still be seen as of this writing in the wire service version of the story here (archived).

According to the newspaper of record, the progressives wanting to strip Israelis of defense against Hamas rockets and who falsely single out Israel as the world's only "apartheid state" have "principles" - while those who are appalled at their immorality and their pandering to terrorists are in the service of an all-powerful Jewish lobby.

This same bias can be seen throughout the article, although not as explicitly:
The back and forth was the latest flare-up in a long-simmering feud between an energized new generation of progressive Democrats — many of them people of color — that has demanded an end to conditions-free aid to Israel and others in the party who argue that the United States must not waver in its backing for Israel’s right to defend itself. 
The reporter writes of an admirable new generation of Israel haters fighting a valiant battle against the stodgy, old white supporters of the Jewish lobby.

Also, the idea that aid to Israel is "conditions free" is simply a lie by those energetic progressives.

The article also gives equal coverage to the 8 Democrats who opposed the bill compared to the 215 that opposed it. 

Rashida Tlaib's anti-Israel screed is reported straight:
“I will not support an effort to enable war crimes and human rights abuses and violence,” Representative Rashida Tlaib, Democrat of Michigan, said on Thursday. “We cannot be talking only about Israelis’ need for safety at a time when Palestinians are living under a violent apartheid system and are dying from what Human Rights Watch has said are war crimes.”
Rep. Ted Deutsch's response, however, is that of an angry white man:
In an angry speech, Representative Ted Deutch, Democrat of Florida, said he would not allow “one of my colleagues to stand on the floor of the House of Representatives and label the Jewish democratic state of Israel an apartheid state.”

“To falsely characterize the state of Israel is consistent with those who advocate for the dismantling of the one Jewish state in the world,” he said. “When there is no place on the map for one Jewish state, that’s antisemitism, and I reject that.”
The bill is also characterized as being orchestrated by all-powerful Israel against the moral progressives:
His maneuver appeared to be intended to calm Israeli officials, who had watched with alarm as the fight unfolded on Capitol Hill and had closely followed previous efforts by young, liberal lawmakers to cut off U.S. military aid to Israel.
Yet some of Israel's most strident critics in Congress are older and white - Mark Pocan (57) and Betty McCollum (67), for two. And some of Israel's most enthusiastic liberal supporters are young and people of color, such as Alma Hernandez and Ritchie Torres. 

None of them ae quoted in this article because that would violate the narrative of old white men in thrall to the Jewish lobby against young, dynamic, principled progressives of color who want to change things for the better.

Thursday, September 23, 2021

From Ian:

UN should bar future Durban debacles
Durban IV, held this year on Sept. 22 and marking the 20th anniversary of the World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance turned out to be a debacle. This was expected.

But the lies that it propagated, like those of its predecessors, did not begin in 2001, with the first such gathering in South Africa. The world should have seen what was coming back in 1975 when the "Zionism is racism" mantra was introduced with the passage of UN General Assembly Resolution 3379.

Indeed, Durban was and remains a most regrettable creation of the United Nations.

It is high time for the United Nations to reject useless distractions from its mission of promoting humanity and peace. It must simply prohibit this hateful commemorative event from happening again.

If member countries want to hold a festival of hate, they should do so without the blessing or the name of the United Nations. To go through this dishonest exercise of announcing something in the name of fighting racism, which prompts at least 20 Western countries correctly to boycott it, while others attend under political pressure, is ridiculous.

The United Nations should just save itself the embarrassment of having its name attached to this fiasco. The countries firmly committed to Durban are those that have called for Israel's destruction. Many of them commiserate with Iran.

The 20 dark years of the Durban conference
On Sept. 22, 2021, an event marking the 20th anniversary of the Durban Conference will be held in New York as part of the annual UN General Assembly, but unfortunately, nothing has changed for the better in the last twenty years. They are the same wolves in sheep's clothing.

This year, too, when 31 [now 36] countries show support for Israel and are boycotting the event because of its antisemitic stench even more so than in previous conferences – it is not a real sign of progress. I do not believe for a moment that these countries tend to favor the State of Israel or are sympathetic to Jews wherever they are.

You can buy some fake smiles with money, but the world will not turn over and change as a result of it. It is impossible to solve the phenomenon of age-old antisemitism at conferences.

It is possible to gather from conference to conference, but other than money and publicity to promote political agendas or to mark that we have done something about it, no real benefit will come out from such events.

The only condition for change is the self-awareness of the people of Israel and a new attitude about our destiny. The Jewish people were founded from a collection of representatives from different peoples, a composition of different elements, equally committed to unity and love of others.

Antisemitism is resentment of us by the nations of the world. They feel Jews hold the secret for a better future but that we are not opening the pipe for that goodness to flow to all the peoples. Subconsciously, the world expects us Jews to connect with each other, to be united and reach a strong feeling of love for others. If we act in this way, we will be a light unto the nations, we will spread light and not darkness, love instead of hatred. Only in this way will we eradicate the hostilities against us.
UN commemorates controversial Durban summit with no apparent mention of Israel
The Foreign Ministry released a statement denouncing the conference as the commemoration began.

“The original Durban Conference, a UN-hosted event, became the worst international manifestation of antisemitism since WWII,” it said. “Inflammatory speeches, discriminatory texts and a pro-Hitler march that took place outside the halls were only part of the ugliness displayed in 2001.

“The ‘World Conference on Racism’ actually ended up encouraging it, including through the parallel NGO forum, which displayed caricatures of Jews with hooked noses and fangs dripping with blood, clutching money.”

“Twenty years later, some of the same organizations have waged a BDS campaign against the only democracy in the Middle East, but they have failed,” the ministry added, referring to the Israel boycott movement.

“The halls of the #UNGA are empty, and with good cause,” tweeted Foreign Ministry Director-General Alon Ushpiz along with a Foreign Ministry list of boycotting countries. “Honorable men and women will not dignify this antisemitic event with their presence.”

The United States still faults “the anti-Israel and antisemitic underpinnings of the Durban process and has longstanding freedom of expression concerns” with the results, UN Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said in a statement on Wednesday explaining her country’s decision not to participate in the anniversary meeting.

Thomas-Greenfield, who is African American, said that combating racism is a top priority for her and for the Biden administration. She said that the US would continue working on the issue in “more inclusive” settings, without detailing what she meant.

The US decision drew criticism from the American Civil Liberties Union, one of the nation’s most prominent rights groups.

The boycott “sends the wrong message to the global community regarding the US commitment to fight all forms of racism and racial injustice everywhere,” ACLU Human Rights Program director Jamil Dakwar said.

US House Approves $1 Billion Standalone Bill to Replenish Israel’s Iron Dome Missile Defense
The US House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a $1 billion bill to replenish Israel’s defensive shield against rocket attacks on Thursday, also known as the Iron Dome missile system. The measure — which passed by a final tally of 420 to 9, with two members voting present — will now move to consideration in the Senate. The House voted on the standalone legislation after funding for the Iron Dome was removed from a broader spending bill. Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid praised the results of the vote, saying that it “reaffirms the special relations between our two countries, rooted in shared values and strategic interests.” “Upon my urging, House leadership has committed to bringing a standalone bill to the floor to replenish the Iron Dome missile defense system,” said Congresswoman Kathy Manning (D-NC) ahead of the debate on the House floor. “We will pass this bill with the support of the majority of my colleagues and reiterate our ironclad support for our ally, Israel.”
  • Thursday, September 23, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
From Politico:

Rep. ANDY LEVIN (D-Mich.) wants a two-state solution to be official U.S. policy, and new legislation he’ll propose tomorrow sets out a pathway to make that arrangement a reality.

If Congress passes and President JOE BIDEN signs the “Two-State Solution Act,” American policy on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will formally state…

— “[that] only the outcome of a two-state solution can both ensure the state of Israel’s survival as a democratic state and a national home for the Jewish people and fulfill the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people for a state of their own.”
— “that the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza are occupied territories and should be referred to as such consistently in official United States policies, communications, and documents.”
— “that the establishment of Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories is inconsistent with international law.”
— “that settlement expansion, demolitions of Palestinian homes, revocations of residency permits, and forced evictions of Palestinian civilians by Israel impede the establishment of a Palestinian state and violate the human rights of the Palestinian people.”
So the Western Wall and the Jewish Quarter are "occupied territories" and any Jews who decide on their own live in any part of Jerusalem across the Green Line are violating international law. 

And Gaza, which is not legally occupied by any definition, is considered occupied by Israel. 

This is absurd and counterfactual. It limits the human rights of Jews to their own holy places. It does not concede that Israel has any legal rights across an arbitrary line that was never meant to be a border. 

Levin claims that he is pushing this bill because he cares so much about Israel, but the actual contents show otherwise.

Does Levin make any demands on Palestinians? Nope. He explains what he has in mind.

— Products made in the Palestinian territories should be marked as made in “West Bank/Gaza,” “West Bank/Gaza Strip,” or “West Bank and Gaza” — not “Israel,” “Made in Israel,” or “Occupied Territories-Israel.”
— No funds, defense articles or defense services the United States sends to Israel may be used to annex more Palestinian territory or violate “internationally recognized” human rights.
— The secretary of State and U.S. Agency for International Development administrator may authorize grants to private, nonprofit and other organizations to support human rights, democracy and the rule of law in the Palestinian territories.
— The United States should reopen its consulate in Jerusalem to engage with Palestinians and allow the reopening of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s mission in Washington, D.C.
— The United States should encourage the Palestinians to reform their so-called “pay to slay” practice of providing financial benefits to imprisoned or dead breadwinners, which leaders say is their welfare program.
All demands and legal requirements are for Israel - and none for Palestinians. They are merely to be "encouraged" to stop pay-for-slay, with no consequences when they ignore the US.

How is this even-handed? How can this bring peace?

All it does it encourage more Palestinian intransigence, because it only pressures Israel with no similar demands on Palestinians. 

It assumes that Palestinians deserve to be rewarded for their terror and refusal to negotiate. 

It sends the exact wrong message to the world. 

From Ian:

The Palestinian assault on Jewish history and heritage
If anyone still has doubts about the Palestinian Authority’s determination to erase all traces of Israel’s ancient Jewish heritage, an important new report should lay to rest any such uncertainties.

The 65-page document, entitled “National Heritage Survey” and published by the Shilo Forum and the Shomrim al HaNetzach (“Preserving the Eternal”) organization, examined a selection of 365 of the most important national and cultural Jewish archaeological and historical sites in Judea and Samaria.

The findings are nothing less than shocking and infuriating and require immediate attention from Israel’s government.

Simply put, hundreds of cherished Jewish sites in the Land of Israel which survived 2,000 years of Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Crusader, Mameluke and Ottoman occupation are being systematically destroyed right under our noses by the Palestinians.

The report, which has not received the widespread attention it deserves in the Israeli and international press, found that 289 sites, representing a whopping 80% of those surveyed, have been damaged or destroyed.

These include sites dating back to biblical times, as well as those from the Second Temple, Herodian and Hasmonean periods.
Alan M. Dershowitz: The Squalid "Squad" Is Trying to Destroy Bipartisan Support for Israel
The fact that the Squad picked on the Iron Dome to make its stand against Israel is significant. The Iron Dome is a system developed jointly by the United States and Israel that is purely defensive. It does not kill, injure, or threaten anyone. It only protects civilians against war crimes committed by terrorist groups that direct lethal rockets against innocent civilians.

The fact that the Squad would try to deny Israel the right to defend its civilians speaks volumes about the lack of morality and decency among Squad members and their allies.

It follows from this effort that the Squad will oppose any and all aid to Israel, including protecting its innocent civilians against Iran's nuclear threat. The obvious goal of Squad members is to deny Israel the right to defend itself against aggression. At least one of its members has denied that Israel has the right to exist.

These bigoted actions directly violate the platform of the Democratic Party (as well as that of the Republican Party). The Democratic Party must decide whether it will become captive to its most extreme wing or whether it will marginalize these radicals who are not only anti-Israel but, in many ways, anti-American. They are intolerant of dissent and due process for those who disagree with them. They are anti-police, anti-military, and anti-free market economy.

The time has come, indeed it is long past, for the Democratic leadership to stand strong against the anti-American, anti-Israel and anti-decency squalid Squad. The leadership can no longer stand idly by the bigotry of their members. If they persist in tolerating the intolerable, they will lose the support of the all-important mainstream voters.

Understanding the Enemy
IDF Lt.-Col. (ret.) Dr. Anat Berko is a criminologist, former Knesset member, and a world-renowned expert on terrorism, whose research focuses on suicide bombers and their handlers. Over the course of 20 years, she met with Palestinian terrorists, including senior Hamas figures such as the group's founder, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin. "The personal relationships that I built with them led to deep insights," she said. "I come from an Iraqi family, I understand Arab culture from the inside."

Q: What is the recurring pattern in the inner world of security prisoners?
Berko: "They are...people who are rooted in a collective society, while we conduct ourselves as individuals. The issue of masculinity is very important to them, and they don't see incarceration as a blow to their status, as criminal prisoners do, but as something that reinforces their status in the eyes of society - something for which they receive recognition as future leaders."

"In their society, they are seen as normative people....They are essentially conformists, since acts of terrorism are not seen as something wrong [in Palestinian society]. Even inside the prison walls, they don't feel isolated, unlike criminal prisoners. Security prisoners feel safe in prison since they are jailed in certain affiliation groups, according to the terrorist organization to which they belong, so that they have social support from the inside, and public support from the outside."

Q: Is there a possibility of rehabilitating Palestinian prisoners?
Berko: "They don't express remorse; in my opinion, there's no potential of rehabilitating them because, from their perspective, they didn't do anything wrong or forbidden. Their society empowers them for what they did."

"Palestinian security prisoners...receive medical care that isn't included in the [Israeli] healthcare basket....There are security prisoners with serious illnesses who get imprisoned only so they can receive certain medications, or others who get imprisoned so they can study quietly for their matriculation exams. The life of Hamas leader in Gaza Yahya Sinwar, for example, was saved thanks to brain surgery he had when he was a prisoner [in Israel]. If he had been in Gaza, he wouldn't be alive today."


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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 14 years and 30,000 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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