Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Polls can offer valuable insights on public sentiment. But when pollsters ask leading questions, there are no insights. The public sees only what they were directed to see: poll results that exactly mirror the bias of the poll’s designer. Take for example, a recent poll on judicial reform conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute (IDI), the subject of a Jerusalem Post report: “Two-thirds of Israelis oppose Netanyahu government's judicial reform – poll.”

When the piece came out on February 21, I thought, “Oh, sure,” snorted and went on to read something else. Because I knew it was a bunch of crap. There’s no way that many Israelis oppose judicial reform. Israelis voted for the current government because they want judicial reform. We don’t want the court to have the ability to strike down legislation that reflects the will of the people. It’s undemocratic. It’s overreach. 

Despite my skepticism, not two weeks later, I was prompted to revisit that Jerusalem Post report. My token left-leaning friend had posted a photo of himself on social media getting ready to leave for a judicial reform protest. He was smiling and holding an Israeli flag. I glanced through the comments to get a feel for the pulse of this small group of virtual friends. What points were they arguing? How many were for and how many against? That interested me far more than my left-leaning friend’s joy in joining the “revolution.”

I found that just as in the recent election, my friend’s friends were, by far, in favor of judicial reform. I did note one dissenting voice: that of a writing colleague from my early Times of Israel blogging days. She very politely asserted that most Israelis are opposed to judicial reform, and cited the Jerusalem Post report.

That’s when I went to take a closer look. Not because I was looking for a reason to discredit the JPost piece, but because I became curious about the poll itself: there had to be something wrong with that poll. Because Israelis had voted for judicial reform.

The problem, if the first two paragraphs of the report are anything to go on, appears to be leading language. This definition of leading questions is as good as any other:

Leading questions are survey questions that encourage or guide the respondent towards a desired answer. They are often framed in a particular way to elicit responses that confirm preconceived notions, and are favorable to the surveyor – even though this may ultimately sway or tamper with the survey data.

Here’s that first part of the JPost piece (emphasis added):

66% of Israelis agree that Israel’s High Court of Justice should be able to strike down laws that are contrary to the nation’s Basic Laws, a survey carried out by IDI’s Viterbi Family Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research found. Furthermore, the survey found that 63% agree that the current system requiring concurrence between MKs and justices for judicial appointments is appropriate.

The language is quite clearly culled from the IDI report on the poll, which begins very much the same (emphasis added):

66% of Israelis: Supreme Court should have power to strike down laws that are incompatible with Israel’s Basic Laws | On Judicial Selection Committee: 63% Support Current Principle Requiring Agreement between Politicians and Justices.

In both cases, there’s an implied threat to the language—if we don’t stop judicial reform, the High Court will lose its ability to curb the rash, illegal actions of the rogue Netanyahu/Smotrich/Ben Gvir government. This, the respondent is given to understand, would be bad, even disastrous.

More leading language from the IDI poll, here and below.

Well, most people are nice, and they want to please the nice poll people. So they say what they think the pollsters want to hear—even if they voted for and still believe in judicial reform. People like to comply. And that is the purpose of leading language and leading questions. Someone (or even a great many someones) are led to say something, but that something may or may not be true.

In a letter to Politico in 2007, the late MK Dick Leonard related the following anecdote:

On a famous occasion in 1970s, when Britain was about to join the European Economic Community (EEC), a survey by a leading polling organisation used a split sample, one half of the respondents being asked the following question: “France, Germany, Italy, Holland, Belgium and Luxembourg approved their membership of the EEC by a vote of their national parliaments. Do you think Britain should do the same?”

The other half were asked: “Ireland, Denmark and Norway are voting in a referendum to decide whether to join the EEC. Do you think Britain should do the same?”

Each half of the sample produced an overwhelming yes vote. It is because of this example that reputable polls long ago ceased to use leading questions and that is why I doubt the validity of the poll conducted on behalf of O’Brien’s organisation.

It’s a dirty and cowardly trick: the pollster elicits the desired answer with the specific intent of generating false numbers to be sensationalized in the news and in the bowels of social media. It’s not even about swaying those who sit on the fence, undecided.

It’s disinformation. And it’s born of exploiting people’s niceness; their desire to be kind, to accommodate, whenever possible, their fellow human beings.

Some people, of course, are swayed into changing course or becoming apologetic when the issue snowballs out of control. Those people would include, for example, Noa Tishby, and Miriam Adelson.

In reality, however, it doesn’t change a thing. Judicial reform was a key issue during the election campaign, and the final tally reflects the current will and voice of the people, vox populi. Israel voted for a right-wing government, and they want right-wing policy. They don’t want to be overruled by the side that LOST.

The side that the people did not vote for.

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!



Haaretz has a truly bizarre op-ed from a prominent rabbi, Daniel Landes, who should know better.
Some sort of compromise might be offered at some point by the Israeli government coalition’s minions to stop the unprecedented upheaval we in Israel are living through: mass streets protests, the hemorrhaging of high-tech investment money and pilots and other military reservists refusing on moral grounds to show up for reserve duty.

While over half of the country yearns for an end to our ever-growing, overwhelming existential anxiety, compromise offers must be greeted with skepticism.

Such admonition can seem surprising since we are used to compromise – pesharah – as a Jewish response to legal conflict.

But pay attention, the Talmudic enterprise also contains a warning: compromise is often not the answer.

...But then the question remained as to whether the court itself should invite a judicially mediated pesharah.

Many rabbis not only rejected that idea, but they explicitly forbade it. Evidently, the court was reserved for attempting to achieve absolute truth and was not the place for getting people to “just agree,” which would imply a tampering with rectitude to solve the situation.

Pesharah, compromise, was labeled as bitzu'a, signaling a truncated judgment, or even connoting a kind of swindle or profit. And thus they applied the verse (Ps. 10:3): "One who praises the compromiser despises God."
Clearly, Landes knows the Jewish arguments for compromise, but he argues that in some cases it is absolutely wrong. And somehow he determines that a compromise on judicial reform is in that category, seemingly because there is "profit" to the Israeli Right by such a compromise and profit, he claims, invalidates the reasons to want compromise.

The profit he defines is not monetary, but social - Haredim will continue to avoid army service, as they have since Israel was led by Labor; religious Zionists can build more communities in Judea and Samaria (ditto), and so forth.

For some reason he doesn't mention the "profit" to the Left of keeping the High Court as powerful as it is. Nor does he admit that pretty much everyone agrees that the judicial system in Israel has too much power, the only disagreement is how much it should have.

The crazy part is that this is not an issue for halacha (Jewish law) to begin with. It is political. Both sides have good points, neither has the monopoly on truth. The biggest danger to Israel isn't judicial reform, but the insane political split that this fairly complex argument that perhaps only 5% of Israelis (and far fewer American Jews) understand had prompted. 

Both sides have used this issue as an excuse for hardening their positions, for demonizing their opponents, and for splitting the nation. 

And this rabbi - who surely knows more about Judaism than I do - is arguing that such a split is Judaically preferable to any victory, even a partial victory, by his political opponents!

No, that is not the Judaism that I know.  

Moment Magazine asked a question of various rabbis recently: "Is Political Compromise a Jewish Value?" Nearly al the rabbis agreed, of course, political compromise is indeed a Jewish value!

Rabbi Yitz Greenberg (Modern Orthodox)

Political (also economic and social) compromise is prized in Jewish tradition. The Talmud states that a mediated settlement—that is, one in which both sides feel they have gotten some of their just due—is a better outcome than a strict judgment that hands a victory to one side (Sanhedrin 6b). Without compromise, the overruled side may feel alienated and left out. This undermines the will to live together that enables a stable, functioning, productive society (just as the breakdown of bipartisanship and mutual respect between liberals and conservatives in America today threatens the viability of our democracy)....Over the course of history, the covenantal halacha often prescribed not the ideal behavior but the best possible policy that kept people working together. 
Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein (Orthodox):

There are times when compromise or appeasement is a desecration of God’s name, and other cases where a refusal to compromise brings disaster. There’s no formula, other than blunt honesty as to whether the decision to compromise reflects the honor of heaven rather than a personal agenda.
Rabbi Haim Ovadia (Sephardic):
I personally believe that compromise in any field, not just political, is a Jewish virtue, though any proof I provide could be contested. Many classic sources suggest that compromise is the ideal path when there is a dispute. ...When we insist on doing things our way against others’ will, we may win, but the others will be left with a sense of bitterness and animosity which could easily be later aroused. When we compromise, we may make more people happy, and that, I believe, is a Jewish virtue.
Rabbi Levi Shemtov (Chabad):
Political compromise, unlike religious compromise, is usually a wonderful thing.

While compromising halachic standards—even to address pressing needs—has almost always led to adoption of the more lax standard, and must therefore be avoided whenever possible, personal or political compromise, especially for the sake of peace, has always been lauded by the Torah and even by G-d.
Lately, conviviality is in short supply, particularly in the political arena. Whether in public policy, business, marriage or relationships generally, calming down and taking a respectful look at the other side is virtuous, even if you continue to disagree.

The country, the world and all of us would significantly benefit from seeing our leaders talk to instead of at each other, as was prevalent only a few decades ago. Don’t compromise who you are, but let who you are be one who is open to appropriate dialogue and compromise. It ultimately brings you greater strength.
Is Rabbi Daniel Landes motivated by what is best for the Jewish people and Israel, or by narrow political considerations?

The fact that he calls the people who are discussing compromise from the Right "minions" seems to indicate the latter. And that is very disappointing from a person who founded an institution, YASHRUT, that is  meant to "build civil discourse through a theology of integrity, justice, and tolerance."

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:

PMW: Should the PA pay monthly salaries to teachers or terrorists?
The teachers in the Palestinian Authority are striking because the PA is not paying their full wages and has reneged on promises it made to them in 2022. As a result, according to different reports, over a million Palestinian children have not had school since the strike started on 5th of February, 2023.

Instead of paying the salaries of the teachers, the PA prioritizes to pay hundreds of millions of shekels to terrorists. As Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas says, time after time: “Even if I’m left with one penny, I’ll pay it to the families of the Martyrs, to the prisoners, and to the wounded.”

Referring to the strike, Muwaffaq Matar, Fatah Revolutionary Council member and regular columnist for the official PA daily summarized the PA approach – Blame Israel!

According to Matar, the teachers’ strike is due to the implementation of the Israeli Anti Pay-for-Slay law, the law that penalizes the PA for paying huge monthly cash rewards to terrorists:
“The wheels of educational life are put on strike now and then, under the headline of ‘the right to strike’ or abstaining from providing services to the citizens for particular periods of time until the realization of material (monetary) demands [parentheses in source]. This is even though everyone knows that all the public sector ([PA] government) employees [parentheses in source] are suffering as a result of how the occupation authorities are stealing the Palestinian tax money, which is the backbone of the PA government employees’ salaries, and as a result of the deduction of hundreds of millions of [Israeli] shekels in order to dissuade the national Palestinian leadership from providing allowances to the prisoners and the Martyrs’ relatives.”
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 14, 2023]

Trying to present a positive spin, Matar then added that hardships were caused out of the Abbas’ “loyalty” to the terrorists:
“Out of loyalty to them, [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas has promised that their allowances will be at the top of the table of allowances and salaries, until the last [Jordanian] dinar in the treasury of the PA and the PLO.”
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 14, 2023]

Palestinians see US aid as ‘opportunity to promote terrorism’
An Israeli nonprofit that studies Palestinian society has found a troubling possible linkage between U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority and the scope of terrorist attacks against Israelis.

Palestinian Media Watch released a study this week that analyzed statistics taken from periodic reports published by the U.S. Congressional Research Service, from 2011 (the year the nonprofit exposed the P.A.’s terror-rewarding pay-for-slay policy) through 2022.

It found that when aid to the P.A. dropped, such as during the Trump administration, attacks against Israelis also decreased. However, when such aid was high, such as during the Obama and Biden administrations, more Israelis were killed.

There are three sources of U.S. aid to the P.A.: the Economic Support Fund, the Bureau of International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement Affairs, and U.S. aid to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).

Between 2009 and 2017, the Obama administration provided the P.A. with $6.4 billion in aid. In that time, 140 Israelis and foreigners residing in Israel were killed in terrorist attacks, an average of 17.5 a year.

Over the next four years, the Trump administration gradually decreased aid to the Palestinians to as little as $670 million. Within that time period, 42 Israelis and foreigners were killed in Palestinian terrorist attacks, an average of 10.5 people a year.

Since the Biden administration took office in January 2021, the P.A. has received a billion dollars in aid. In that time, 46 Israelis and foreigners have been killed, an average of 23 a year. In January and February this year, when U.S. aid to the P.A. continued unabated, 14 Israelis and foreigners were killed in Palestinian terrorist attacks.

Maurice Hirsch, head of Legal Strategies at Palestinian Media Watch, said, “The correlation is also annual. In a year when extensive economic aid to the Palestinians flows, the number of attacks increases, and vice versa. The Palestinians interpret American support, as far as it is expressed in financial aid, as approval for terrorism and the murder of Israelis.

“U.S. support is ostensibly dedicated to promoting peace, but in practice, the Palestinians see its support as an opportunity to promote terrorism. While U.S. aid to the Palestinians flows freely, Palestinian terrorists feel empowered and kill Israelis. Only when the U.S. demonstrates moral clarity and stops the aid, the Palestinians will understand that terrorism does not pay,” he said.
‘There Are Still Some People You Need to Burn’: UN Teachers in Gaza Praise Terrorists, Hitler on Social Media, New Report Says
Teachers and staff working at Palestinian schools funded by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) regularly incite antisemitism, terrorism, and hate on social media, according to a new report released Tuesday by Impact-se and UN Watch, two nonprofits that research educational content in the Palestinian Territories.

The report, titled “UNRWA Education: Reform or Regression,” cited over 200 examples of UNRWA teachers promoting hateful content on social media, including a Syrian math teacher’s praising a March 2022 terrorist attack in Israel that claimed four lives, a Lebanese teacher’s calling the architect of several attacks a “martyr” and “noblest of souls,” and a Syrian UNRWA employee’s sharing on social media a photograph of Hitler, which she captioned, “there are still some people you need to burn.”

The problem exists alongside incitement in UNRWA school curriculum, the report continued, showing photographs of a school in Gaza teaching students that Dalal Mughrabi, who coordinated in 1978 the Coastal Road Massacre, which killed 38 Israelis, including thirteen children, is a “hero” and “the fighting leader.”

It also cited an UNRWA textbook used in the Al-Maghazi Middle School for Boys in Gaza that contains fictional stories of Israelis murdering Palestinians. In what Impact-se and UN Watch described as a “graphic text,” a Palestinian boy watches a “fountain of blood bursting” from his father’s chest after he is shot by an IDF officer for “being late to shore.” Fifth graders at Al-Maghazi are also taught that martyrdom and jihad represent “the most important meanings of life.”

The Algemeiner asked UNRWA to comment on the report’s findings, but it did not immediately respond.

The agency, established by the United Nations in 1949, according to its website, has a “zero tolerance” policy on “hate speech and incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence” and has repeatedly denied claims to the contrary. It receives over a billion dollars from donor states across the world, with the United States and the European Union (EU) alone contributing $511.5 million in 2021, a sum that, lawmakers across the Atlantic have said, is essentially awarded without any guarantee that UNRWA will expunge antisemitism in its curricula and bring its schools in line with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s standards.

IfNotNow tweeted on Sunday, "BREAKING: 13 Jewish IfNotNow activists were just attacked by security at the Israel Bonds Conference as they prayed Maariv to protest the visit by genocidal Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, who called for a Palestinian town to be wiped out."

The video doesn't show them praying Ma'ariv. It shows them singing one of their favorite songs, "Lo Yisa Goy."

They love the song because the translated lyrics mean, "Nation shall not take up sword against nation; they shall never again know war. "

The verse is from Isaiah 2:4, where the prophecy describes Messianic times. 

But what does it say before this part?
In the days to come, The Mount of the LORD’s House shall stand firm above the mountains and tower above the hills; and all the nations shall gaze on it with joy..And the many peoples shall go and say, "Come, Let us go up to the Mount of the LORD, to the House of the God of Jacob; that He may instruct us in His ways, and that we may walk in His paths. For the Torah shall come forth from Zion, the word of the LORD from Jerusalem."
Before there can be the peace described in the song, the world must recognize that the Lord of Israel is the true God and the Temple will have to be rebuilt - on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. 


I don't think that IfNotNow's Palestinian friends want them to sing that message. 

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!



Yesterday, Palestinian prime minister Mohamed Shtayyeh spoke to a crowd of supposed Harvard students in Ramallah. (I find it hard to believe that 300 Harvard students traveled to Ramallah with no other articles about them.) 

In his speech, he claimed that "the occupation earns more than 50 billion dollars annually from our occupied lands."

I had never heard this number before, and I was curious as to where he got it from. 

The closest I could find was a study released last December by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development that claims that "the contribution to the economy of Israel of settlements in Area C and occupied East Jerusalem is estimated at an average of $30 billion per year."

If that is Shtayyeh's source, then he's exaggerating by only 67%, which is pretty good for a Palestinian official.

But how did the UNCTAD study come up with its estimates?  Pretty much by magic.

Since 2016, UNCTAD has prepared about one report a year on the cost of the "occupation" to the Palestinian economy, using different methods each time and trying to out-do previous reports using increasingly sketchy methods.  This one is a doozy.

It relies on a method of estimating economic activity based on satellite images of areas at nighttime, Night Time Luminosity (NTL), a method that economists use to estimate GDP in poor countries where there is little hard economic data. It looks at how well lit up an area is at night to estimate its economic activity.

UNCTAD is using this NTL method to estimate the GDP of the Jewish localities in Area C.

For all the fancy graphs in the UNCTAD paper, it has nothing to do with reality.

First of all, NTL has been shown to be accurate only with respect to large urban areas, not to rural areas. This makes sense because large urban areas have industries that would directly correlate with economic activity.

Anyone who has driven through Area C in Judea and Samaria can see that there is very little industry there. The Jewish towns and villages are mostly commuter neighborhoods where most people have jobs within the Green Line and travel there every day. 

NTL methodology works in urban areas because it assumes that people live near where they work. Most of the large Jewish "settlements" are suburbs of Jerusalem. They should be considered part of a municipal Jerusalem, but UNCTAD looks at them as a separate "West Bank" with a completely separate economy. 

It is probable that UNCTAD knows this because it shows this image of the territories to indicate "settlement" economic activity, but it doesn't show how the main light sources are all surrounding the Jerusalem metropolitan area.

Here's a nighttime satellite map of Israel, with Jerusalem the large area on the right.

UNCTAD, by pretending that the economy of the "West Bank" is independent from Israel, is basing its statistics on a false premise.

But it's mandate is to come up with new ways to demonize Israel and make it look like it is destroying the Palestinian economy, so this is consistent with its anti-Israel mission.

Moreover, the Jewish towns across the Green Line must be highly illuminated - because of security! Palestinians regularly try to enter those areas to kill Jews. UNCTAD now uses the lights that are necessary for Jews to avoid being slaughtered as a tool to attack Israel. 

Neat trick, huh?

A significant part of the Palestinian economy is dependent on jobs in Israel, which pay more than double the average salaries of Palestinians within Areas A and B. But UNCTAD has never done a study of how a Palestinian state, which would presumably be totally separated from Israel because it would almost certainly be considered an enemy state, would make it difficult for Palestinians to reach their jobs in Israel would affect their economy. Instead, it creates a pseudo-scientific metric that is a complete fantasy.

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!



In 1948, Egypt dropped flyers to Jews in the Negev in an attempt at psychological warfare.

At 4:00 PM on May 15, 1948, Egyptian planes dropped leaflets in Hebrew on the Jewish communities in the Negev.

An actual flyer has just been published in Arabic media. They note that this flyer was a major failure, as the propagandists had no idea of how Jews think - so they wrote as if they were Muslim, including two quotes from the Quran.

In the name of God, the most gracious, the most merciful

God  said: 'And if they incline to peace, incline to it, and put your trust in God. Indeed, He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing.'

With these sacred words from the Qur'an, I address the inhabitants of the settlements (in the Negev), and pledge to treat them according to these sacred words. Our aim is to bring about quiet among you, provided that you act in peace, to save your lives, your property and your children.

Our goal is not to start a war. Only in the case of resistance, which will be useless, and will not last long, and will result in the demolition of the stores and food you have.

So we call on all residents to quietly lay down their arms, to raise a white flag. And that you hand over all the ammunition from mines and every combat means, and collect them in one place without destroying them.

Please execute these commands within one hour of the arrival of this post.

After an hour anyone who does not comply with these orders will be considered an enemy and will want to fight.

God said: 'When he attacks you, attack him. And know that God is on the side of the righteous. --Quran

God honors truthtellers.
I didn't know about this. But I did see that Israel also dropped flyers on the Syrian border in May 1948 as well, and they might have been more effective:

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!



Tuesday, March 14, 2023

From Ian:

Pro-Israel Groups Call for Sanctions on Morningstar for Blacklisting Companies That Aid the Jewish State
Advocacy groups are pressing state government officials to sanction financial ratings giant Morningstar for promoting divestment from companies that help the Israeli government combat Palestinian suicide bombers.

Morningstar subsidiary Sustainalytics "treats Israel differently from all other nations," according to two pro-Israel community organizations, Christians United for Israel and the Orthodox Union. The organizations are urging the State Financial Officers Foundation, which represents officials in charge of implementing state laws against the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, to cancel lucrative contracts and investments in Morningstar.

Morningstar has been battling accusations that it fuels the BDS movement by downgrading companies that work with Israel, particularly in its security sector, making them less attractive to potential investors. The pro-Israel groups say the financial ratings giant has not made good on its promises to address those concerns and implement reforms, according to a copy of the letter obtained by the Washington Free Beacon. The Free Beacon reported in February, for example, that the company is still blacklisting several firms that help Israel combat Palestinian terrorism. Those actions, the groups say, "constitute a clear violation of state laws prohibiting contracts with and/or investment in firms that boycott Israel."

"It's time for Morningstar to choose boycotts of Israel or state investments and contracts," the groups write.

The groups also want to ease concerns that Morningstar could retaliate against the states by using its ratings systems to downgrade 529 accounts, an investment portfolio used to help pay for college education.

"Given that Morningstar already uses its ratings to advance a political agenda, we recognize and respect the concern the company might retaliate against states that faithfully implement their anti-BDS laws. For instance, by downgrading the ratings of state 529 accounts," the groups write. "Rest assured, we will urge attorneys general around the country to hold Morningstar accountable should such underhanded tactics be employed."
MSNBC’s Ali Velshi Lamely Nods Along As Former PLO Adviser Diana Buttu Spouts Lies
Despite being, or perhaps thanks to her background as an ex-adviser to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Diana Buttu has managed to carve herself out a respectable career as an academic and a media rent-a-quote on all things Israel-related.

Unsurprisingly, Buttu rarely has anything nice (or accurate) to say about the Jewish state.

And her recent appearance on Ali Velshi’s MSNBC talk show was no different.

In the six-minute segment, Buttu was given a free pass to spout a litany of distortions, half-truths and outright lies — and was not once challenged for doing so by news anchor Velshi.

Introducing her as the former legal adviser to PA President Mahmoud Abbas (whose own canceling of Palestinian elections and seemingly perpetual leadership in the 19th year of his 4-year term is legally dubious at best), Velshi asks Buttu to comment on the political turmoil currently roiling Israel.

Taking aim at several far-right politicians in the Israeli government, Buttu claimed that it is not just them but the entire government whose “only platform is to just try to build and expand settlements and to attack Palestinians.”

Buttu’s claim is blatant hyperbole, particularly when Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s own stated government’s priorities are taken into account: stymying Iran’s nuclear program, developing infrastructure including a high-speed railway, and ending the Arab-Israeli conflict. Not to mention the controversial judicial reforms and the resultant political crisis that has consumed the government’s first months.

Continuing her inaccurate summary of the Israeli legislative agenda, Buttu goes on to accuse politicians of being preoccupied with continuing the “ethnic cleansing process” — a libel so egregious and verifiably wrong that there should have been some pushback from Velshi.
MSNBC Platforms Notorious Liar Who Unsurprisingly Uses MSNBC to Lie
Repeated Israeli peace offers have involved very limited amounts of West Bank territory going to Israel in exchange for Israel swapping some land on its side of the 1949 armistice line. For example, in the 2007 Annapolis talks, then-Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s proposal involved the Jewish state taking every major Israeli settlement bloc, which amounted to just 5.9% of the West Bank territory, in exchange for a similar amount of Israeli territory being given to the proposed Palestinian state.

Buttu’s claims are even undermined by the admission of another former PLO actor, Saeb Erakat. Reflecting on a later peace offer by Olmert in 2008, Erakat told Al Jazeera TV:
Olmert, who talked today about his proposal to [Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas], offered the 1967 borders, but said: ‘We will take 6.5% of the West Bank, and give in return 5.8% from the 1948 lands, and the 0.7% will constitute the safe passage [between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip], and East Jerusalem will be the capital, but there is a problem with the Haram and with what they called the Holy Basin.’ [Abbas] too answered with defiance, saying: ‘I am not in a marketplace or a bazaar. I came to demarcate the borders of Palestine – the June 4, 1967 borders – without detracting a single inch, and without detracting a single stone from Jerusalem, or from the holy Christian and Muslim places.’ This is why the Palestinian negotiators did not sign.

In other words, the problem was not that Israelis are “living on approximately 60% of the West Bank land” as Buttu claims, or even just the 4-6% making up the settlement blocs; it’s Jews living on any land in the West Bank.

A map depicting a peace proposal by then Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

In this regard, it’s worth noting that while earlier in the interview Buttu accused Israel of engaging in an “ethnic cleansing process,” it’s the Palestinian Authority that has actually made ethnic cleansing its goal. Not only did its leader reject any land swaps in pursuit of peace and a two-state solution, but Abbas made clear several years later, “In a final resolution, we would not see the presence of a single Israeli, civilian or soldier, on our lands.”

Indeed, Buttu herself echoed this position during the interview, stating “the two-state solution is only possible if there is a political decision to take the settlers out of the West Bank,” territory which has already been ethnically cleansed of Jews once in modern history during the Jordanian capture and occupation of the land.

By bringing on someone with such a record of outlandish lies, and by refusing to either push back with the facts or bring on an opposing perspective that could have countered Buttu’s falsehoods and calls to ethnically cleanse the land of Jews a second time, MSNBC once again shows contempt for credibility and accuracy.
UN Watch: PLO's Diana Buttu goes SPEECHLESS in Al Jazeera debate with Hillel Neuer
Al Jazeera tries to silence UN Watch's Hillel Neuer, but even a bit of truth managed to throw ex-PLO lawyer Diana Buttu & Human Rights Watch's Bill van Esveld on the defensive. July 24, 2014
One of my most popular series.

(h/t Dov Morel via Shai Corfas)

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 Bassem Yassin in Sawaleif:

The brutal actions of the Jews in #Palestine indicate that the personality of the Jew is still a prisoner of the Holocaust, and locked in the mentality of the castle. A sick, bipolar personality, fluctuating between moods of superiority and oppression. Actors who are good at marketing themselves, according to the seasons. Sometimes they mourn in front of the Wailing Wall, and at other times they rant that they are God's chosen people. You see them for their malice, they turned Judaism from a heavenly religion into a political identity.

The Jews found what they were looking for in a soft land - Palestine - to build a state, where they took all aggressive means to embody their dream. They were helped by the absolute support of Britain - and the absolute absence of the Arabs . The Jew was rejected by the whole world, and there was international contempt for his hateful personality that was, practiced it in Palestine.

The Jewish psychologist Freud said about Judaism: The God of the Jews, “Yahweh,” is violent and evil, and promised them a fertile land (Palestine) and the annihilation of its people. As for the Jewish philosopher Spinoza, he said: "The divine revelation inspired them to abandon paganism and materialism, but the Jewish community remained disobedient, inclined to usury and aggression."

 The Holy Qur’an was the deepest, most comprehensive, and most creative, in dissecting the sick, fluctuating, dialectical Jewish personality, as it said: “They forgot God, so He made them forget themselves.” A priori the Jew does not believe in resurrection or reckoning. This is what pushes him to disassociate himself from values ​​and principles and renounce morals, because he does not hope for a reward from God or punishment in the Hereafter. With the spread of the lack of modesty in the Jewish community, modesty in the Jewish society has become an exception. Women are investment projects, Hollywood is king. They own pornographic films, they control usurious banks.

The other shortcomings for which they became famous throughout history are their breach of covenants and reversal of covenants: “Because of their breach of their covenant, we cursed them and made their hearts hard.” And they reap its fruits. The Arabs of normalization emerged...And here is Israel working on what comes after peace, from expanding on the ground, and seizing water, gas and commercial markets along the Gulf. Therefore, we remind the normalized Arabs, of Ben Gvir’s sayings about Al-Aqsa, and what is mentioned in their lying Talmud: “God admitted his mistake by declaring the destruction of the Temple.”

Peace treaties have dissolved, leaving only a stench of them. The two-state solution is rejected by the Jew, because the structure of the Jew is built on the rejection of the other, and the complete lack of coexistence. The famous psychoanalyst Shinkel  says in this regard. "The Jews refuse to merge with others.” In the Holy Qur’an, God Almighty says in Surat Al-Ahzab: “And He sent down those who supported them among the People of the Book from their fortresses – their fortresses – but in Surat Al-Hashr, God Almighty says in His greatness: “They do not fight you all except in fortified villages or from behind Walls “...and this is definitive evidence of the isolation of the Jews. Likewise, in Europe, they lived alone, residing in their own ghettos, and lanes bearing their names, so it is not a fortiori the impossibility of their coexistence with the Palestinians, in one geographical spot?! We discover that the Jew is a mine of lies. And the establishment of Israel is a big lie that should not continue, otherwise future generations will curse us in our graves. 
He hits all the popular antisemitic themes: Jews as liars, who fake their victimhood, breakers of covenants, aggressors, supremacists, who control the banks and Hollywood.

This is mainstream. And the media keeps ignoring it.

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:

EU action in Palestinian conflict encourages terror, Israel tells Italy
Italy must help sway the European Union to stop activities related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that encourage violence, Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen told his Italian counterpart Antonio Tajani when they met in Jerusalem on Monday night.

“I asked my friend .. Tajani to act to prevent European intervention in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, as such activity often encourages incitement and terrorism,” Cohen said.

It was a reference to the EU support, including by Italy, of Palestinian development in Area C, a section of the West Bank that the EU believes will be part of the boundaries of a future Palestinian state. Most politicians in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government hold that it should be part of Israel’s final borders.

EU activity in Area C has sparked tension between the European bloc and Israel.

Neither politician mentioned a push by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu when he was in Italy last week to sway Rome to recognize Jerusalem as its capital.

Cohen also asked Tajani to help sway the EU to avoid attempts to influence internal Israeli politics.

It was a veiled reference to the turmoil surrounding the government's push for judicial reform. The EU is concerned that the overhaul plan could weaken Israeli democracy.

Italian FM shares concerns regarding escalating tensions
Tajani said he was worried by the escalating Israeli-Palestinian violence. He condemned any terror attack, such as those in which Israelis were killed.

Italy, he said, is ready to advance any initiative that would bring Israeli and Palestinians back to the negotiating table to make peace.

The Italian minister later met in Ramallah with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who stressed the importance of halting "unilateral actions and adherence to signed agreements [with Israel]."

He also met with PA Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, who called on Italy to recognize the Palestinian state and pressure Israel to abide by the signed agreements with the Palestinians.
Josep Borrel: EU high representative for foreign affairs: Honesty can advance peace in the middle east - opinion
Too many people are dying every week in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories, and millions are living in fear and hopelessness. The world’s response has been too many statements and too little action. That must change. We in the European Union and the wider international community need to do more.

We know that people around the world expect us to stand and work for peace, justice and international law everywhere. But to act successfully we first must be honest with each other and ourselves.

Being honest means acknowledging that extremism is rising on both sides. Indiscriminate attacks and violence are taking many Israeli lives. Violence on the part of Israeli settlers in the West Bank is increasingly threatening Palestinian lives and livelihoods – almost always with impunity.

Moreover, Israeli military operations frequently cause civilian Palestinian deaths, often without effective accountability; illegal settlements are expanding on occupied land; and the delicate status quo concerning holy sites is eroding. While Israelis can rely on a strong state and army, Palestinians have no such recourse.

This vast inequality in the ability to control one’s destiny is visible at every roadside checkpoint. All these facts are obstacles to peace.

To be sure, different actors within Europe often react differently to events in the region. But this does not prevent the EU from acting.

We have all been alarmed by recent developments, and we all share the same ultimate goal: to see a safe, secure, globally recognized State of Israel live in peace alongside a safe, secure, globally recognized state of Palestine. This solution would allow both sides to enjoy freedom, prosperity and peaceful relations with their neighbors.

Our own interests are also at stake. We want peace because ending the conflict would be much better for international security. We want peace because we acknowledge the right of both Israel and Palestine to exist, and because we stand for the principle of international law everywhere.
War in Europe and Peace in the Middle East Heralds Economic Opportunity for Israel
The confluence of the war in Ukraine, Israel’s extraction of offshore natural gas, and the improvement of Jerusalem’s ties with Turkey and several Arab countries is bringing new possibilities for the Jewish state, as Elai Rettig explains:

Ever since the discovery of major offshore gas deposits in 2009 and 2010, Israel has been struggling to secure major export deals to Europe. . . . Israel has yet to find buyers for about two-thirds of the gas it has earmarked for export and has seen its bidding rounds for new gas exploration licenses repeatedly fail.

This could change following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which caused a major price hike for imported gas in Europe and a new desire among EU policymakers to secure non-Russian gas supplies even at higher cost, especially liquified natural gas (LNG). . . . Israeli and regional investors are hopeful that LNG will be the next chapter for the eastern Mediterranean gas export market, ridding it of the geopolitics of pipelines.

In addition to raising natural-gas prices, the war in Ukraine is causing a major shift in global oil-transit routes, putting the eastern Mediterranean, and particularly Israel, right in the middle. . . . This reconfiguration of global oil routes can reignite and even expand Israel’s role as a transit and storage destination for Europe-bound oil.

Finally, Europe’s energy challenges are creating a major push towards alternative energy solutions in both Europe and the Arab Gulf states, offering Israel a major role as a leader in clean-tech innovation. On the European side, while the energy crisis is causing a rise in demand for oil, gas, and coal in the short term, it is also encouraging further investment in solar, wind, and even nuclear alternatives to increase independence from Russian imports over the longer term. . . . An additional market for Israeli innovation can be found in the Arab Gulf states as they look for solutions to decrease domestic demand for oil and gas through alternative energy systems.

By Daled Amos

On Friday, we learned that thanks to China, two enemies, Iran and Saudi Arabia, have decided to bury the hatchet -- and not in each other. Aside from reopening their embassies in each other's countries, Iran will be taking a step towards releasing the isolation that surrounds it, while Saudi Arabia will no longer be victimized by Houthi attacks.

At least, those are the hypothetical benefits, if this new agreement holds.

Meanwhile, there are all kinds of opinions about the agreement and what it means for the parties involved, for the region in general and for the US. 

Naturally, there are those that see this development as an unmitigated disaster:

On the other hand, according to Hussein Ibish, Senior Resident Scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, this is just Saudi Arabia pursuing different options, so this agreement does not rule out the possibility of the Saudis pursuing normalization with Israel somewhere down the line. This is a thought that Jonathan Schanzer of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies agrees with. He sees this as a play by Saudi Arabia to pressure the US to provide the security guarantees it is looking for.

And just where does this leave Israel?

According to Daniel Shapiro, former US ambassador to Israel, this deal should not make Israel panic. He writes that the UAE, Israel's major partner in the Abraham Accords, does not see itself as a partner in a military coalition against Iran and is pursuing its own diplomatic relations with them. The UAE even reopened its own embassy in Tehran last year.

Unlike the Abraham Accords, this is not an alliance of the 2 countries. To a degree, it is symbolic, which does not take away from the fact it has drawn everyone's attention, and has implications for the new kind of role that China is asserting for itself.

The Wall Street Journal suggests that the Saudis actually are not interested in the Abraham Accords as the path towards normalizing relations with Israel. 

Saudi-Israel normalization would be a new initiative by Riyadh to pave the way for major Islamic nations like Indonesia and Malaysia to establish relations with the Jewish state. In exchange, the crown prince wants the U.S. to declare Saudi Arabia a strategic ally, provide Riyadh reliable access to American arms, and support his plans to enrich uranium and develop its own fuel production... 

In another article, The Wall Street Journal argues that while the new deal with Iran might not signal the end of any prospect of Saudi Arabia joining the Accords, at the very least it puts a major damper on critical cooperation between the Saudis and Israel:

Some collaborations could be out of the question now. For example, if Israel were to attack an Iranian nuclear facility—as many suspect it might one day—it would require permission to use Saudi airspace, a far less likely scenario now that it has renewed diplomatic relations with Iran.

But another angle to this new agreement between the Saudis and Iran is how the Palestinian Arabs see it. After all, one of the benefits of the Abraham Accords was that it was supposed to drive home the point that the Arab world has moved beyond the Palestinian issue. This new agreement certainly revives their hopes that Iran will be able to turn this around.

More than that, the praise that Palestinian terrorists heap on this new agreement makes it sound as if the Palestinian Arabs see the Iran-Saudi agreement as their own personal Abraham Accords.

The Palestinian Authority issued a statement that

The Palestinian Presidency appreciates the Chinese role that contributed to reaching the agreement. We hope that the agreement will lead to stability and enhance the positive atmosphere in the region

Tayseer Khaled, a senior official of the PLO’s Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, said he hoped the pact would be 

a major step towards addressing the economic, political and security challenges facing the Middle East.

Khalil al-Haya, a member of the Hamas political bureau, referred to the agreement as an “important step towards uniting the ranks of the Muslim community” and would

strengthen security and understanding between Arab and Islamic countries and help achieve stability in the region.

This is the kind of phrasing that we heard used to describe the Abraham Accords -- and for good reason. The Accords are a real, and successful, attempt to forge ties not only in opposition to a common threat, but also to create a friendly bond on an economic and social level between countries on both the government level and between the people of Israel and the Arab World.

But to describe this agreement as providing
Positive atmosphere?

China has succeeded in getting a leading exporter of terror to put a leash on one of its terror proxies in exchange for a reduction in its isolation in the Arab world. It is not even clear if that goal itself is within reach. As it is, there are those who see the agreement on the Saudi side as nothing more than an attempt to get more out of the US.

There really is no comparison between the Abraham Accords and the Un-Abraham Accords which China has brought about to establish its status as a player in the region. And that is something that China might find out for itself if it expects to exercise control over Iran.

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!



In 2007, Amnesty International wrote a 5-page report describing the institutionalized and legal discrimination against Palestinian Arabs in Lebanon. 

It ended off with these recommendations for the Lebanese government:

To this end, the Lebanese authorities should: 
 urgently repeal or revise all laws and policies that directly discriminate against Palestinian refugees;  
 take immediate steps to improve conditions in the camps and gatherings; 
 register all non-ID Palestinian refugees under Lebanese jurisdiction without delay; 
 end the discrimination facing Palestinians in the labour market; 
 ensure that adequate health care is available to all; 
 ensure that all children have equal access to education.  
That report, 16 years ago, was the last time that Amnesty dedicated a report to the plight of Palestinians in Lebanon. 

Nothing has changed since then. The discriminatory laws are still in place, Palestinians still cannot own land, they still are banned from many jobs, they still have no access to Lebanese health care, babies born are not given citizenship. 

By any definition, including Amnesty's own definition, this is apartheid against Palestinians in Lebanon. But Amnesty never calls it such, and it has not considered this issue worth a follow-up report since the first decade of the century.

Amnesty would briefly mention Arab discrimination against Palestinians in their annual reports on every country.  From their annual report on 2014:
Thousands of Palestinian long-term refugees continued to live in camps and informal gatherings in Lebanon, often in deprived conditions. They faced discriminatory laws and regulations, for example denying them the right to inherit property, the right to work in around 20 professions, and other basic rights. 
And for 2019:
Lebanon also continued to host tens of thousands of long-term Palestinian refugees, who remained subject to discriminatory laws excluding them from owning or inheriting property, accessing public education and health services, and working in at least 36 professions. At least 3,000 Palestinian refugees who do not hold official identity documents faced further restrictions, denying them the right to register births, marriages and deaths.


 Over 470,000 Palestinian refugees were registered with the UN Relief and Works Agency, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, including 29,000 Palestinian refugees from Syria. The 180,000 of them estimated to be still living in the country remained subject to discriminatory laws, excluding them from owning or inheriting property, accessing public education and health services and from working in at least 36 professions.

But when you look at the Lebanon entry of Amnesty's latest annual report, covering 2021, there is not a word about discrimination and mistreatment of Palestinians in Lebanon.

Nothing has changed. The overcrowded camps are still there, the discriminatory laws are still there. Amnesty's decision not to mention that which had been in every annual report until now must be deliberate. 

Perhaps it was a mere clerical error, an oversight, a regrettable mistake?

Let's look at Amnesty's annual reports on Jordan concerning the non-citizen Palestinians who live there.

On 14 October, the Ministry of Labour raised from 11 to 39 the number of professions barred to non-Jordanian nationals seeking employment. Among them were long-term Palestinian refugees not holding Jordanian citizenship, most of whom were from the Gaza Strip; they continued to be denied other basic rights and services, too.
Palestinian refugees from the Gaza Strip continued to be excluded from basic rights and services as they do not have Jordanian citizenship.
But in the latest 2021 report, there is not a word about Jordanian discrimination against hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who are not citizens. And they are still suffering from the same discrimination they were the year and decades before.

Why would Amnesty excise any mention of Arab human rights abuses against Palestinians in its 2021 report when they were mentioned in previous reports, and their situation has not gotten any better?

Here's why.

Amnesty released its 2021 annual report in March, 2022. This was shortly after Amnesty issued its report falsely accusing Israel of "apartheid" against Palestinians. 

As soon as Amnesty issued its anti-Israel report, in which it had invested so many hours and so much money, it removed any mention of Jordan and Lebanon treating their Palestinian residents far worse than Israel does!

This is unlikely to be a coincidence. Amnesty's libel against Israel would have been diluted by their mentioning how Arab nations officially discriminate against Palestinians who have lived within their borders for decades. They did not want people to point to their own reports showing that Arabs really are guilty of apartheid against Palestinians, with discriminatory laws aimed specifically at them.   2022 was the year that Amnesty dedicated to attacking Israel - even creating T-shirts and swag and encouraging "stunts" to get publicity for their crusade.

Amnesty is not soberly reporting on accusations of Israeli human rights abuses. It is enthusiastically promoting an anti-Israel campaign. Mentioning that their fellow Arabs treat Palestinians worse than "racist, Jewish supremacist" Israel would damage that message. 

So they erased all human rights abuses against Palestinians that they couldn't blame on Israel. 

Which proves that Amnesty is not the impartial arbiter of human rights it pretends to be. At least when it comes to the Middle East, it is an anti-Israel propaganda outlet. It happily throws Palestinians in Lebanon and Jordan under the bus. To them, demonizing Israel is a far more important mission than mere human rights.


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!



Palestinians cannot stand not being the biggest victims in history. 

Rasha Abdullah Salameh, a Jordanian of Palestinian descent, describes her anger at visiting a Holocaust museum in Skokie, IL.

I was walking in the heavy autumn rain in the US state of Illinois, in the year 2017, heading towards the Skokie area specifically. ; to visit the “Holocaust” museum; To get acquainted with the way in which the oppressor presents, currently, his old grievance.

My fury was growing every minute; It is not only grief over a human tragedy that a normal sane person would not accept, but also anger at the concealment of the second part of the story. The Jews in charge of the museum, which was established in 2009, do not mention that they emerged from their darkness, thirsting for blood, and inflicting more than the Holocaust, suffocation in gas chambers, and execution by firing squad, on the Palestinians, until this moment, and with the most horrible means that can be imagined as well, of harassment, usurpation of rights, falsification of history, and the enjoyment of sniping the lives of unarmed civilians and fedayeen defending their land.

I was also furious at the absence of the Palestinian narrative on the world stage. I was walking around the museum at the time, wondering why the Palestinians did not establish international museums that matched in the power of their narration and the ingenuity of narration tools what the Jews erected in several international cities, under the name of “Holocaust” museums.

The ornate Jewish tales have been greatly exaggerated. They claim a number of victims exceeding 6 million Jews, with an almost complete absence of historical sources on which it was relied upon, and with an absolute absence of the complementary narrative, which is the occupation of Palestine, the displacement of its people, the massacres of its inhabitants, and the infliction of torture on them that exceeds what the Nazis did.
I've noted before about how while Israelis and Jews usually try to look at things from others' perspectives, and often empathize with their enemies, but Palestinians (and most Arabs) simply cannot do that. Anything that humanizes Jews, anything that can cause sympathy for Jews in ay way, must be strenuously opposed. Jews must be demonized, dehumanized, and framed as the ultimate evil. 

In 2010, Brookings had a poll of Arabs that asked about whether they ever empathize with Jews or Israeli victims of terror. The results were - hardly ever.

Normal humans have empathy.  Palestinians simply do not have that ability. 

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!



EoZ Book:"Protocols: Exposing Modern Antisemitism"


EoZTV Podcast

Podcast URL

Subscribe in podnovaSubscribe with FeedlyAdd to netvibes
addtomyyahoo4Subscribe with SubToMe

search eoz





For $18 donation

Sample Text

EoZ's Most Popular Posts in recent years


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 18 years and 38,000 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.


Donate to fight for Israel!

Monthly subscription:
Payment options

One time donation:

subscribe via email

Follow EoZ on Twitter!

Interesting Blogs

Blog Archive