Wednesday, 12 May 2010

RubinReports: Obama's Talk with Mahmoud Abbas: A Recital of U.S. Policy

Obama's Talk with Mahmoud Abbas: A Recital of U.S. Policy

By Barry Rubin

The White House released what it calls a "Readout of the President’s Call with President Abbas of the Palestinian Authority" which summarizes President Barack Obama's telephone conversation with Palestinian Authority (PA) leader Mahmoud Abbas. Let's analyze it.

"The President congratulated President Abbas on the start of Israeli-Palestinian proximity talks."

The U.S. government wants to encourage continued talks and to ensure that nothing should interfere with them continuing. These talks are the administration's main (sole?) "achievement" in foreign policy and woe to he--unless "he" is on the Palestinian side--who jeopardized their continuation.

"He reiterated his strong support for the establishment of an independent, viable Palestinian state living in peace and security with Israel."

This is the basic stance of U.S. presidents going back at least to the Oslo agreements of 17 years ago: the Palestinians get a state, Israel gets security, both get peace. In many ways, the Obama Administration has not changed the framework of U.S. policy as it was under Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. It is the atmospherics that are done quite differently, and often counterproductively.

"The President and President Abbas discussed the need for both parties to negotiate seriously and in good faith, and to move from proximity talks to direct negotiations as soon as possible in order to reach an agreement on permanent status issues."

So the U.S. goal is to get the talks going directly--which is possible--and to obtain a full peace agreement--which isn't. The key question is how much will the Obama administration push in that direction. Will it be satisfied to let the indirect talks go on for many months? I tend to think that the White House isn't going to go all-out for a final-status agreement it knows isn't going to happen. But the effort to make these two transitions--indirect to direct, general talks to negotiations--is going to be the centerpiece of U.S. policy on this issue during the rest of this term.

"The President expressed appreciation for President’s Abbas recent outreach to the Israeli people by appearing on Israeli television...

Abbas's performance in the television interview was conciliatory in terms of style but not very persuasive, especially since Israelis know very well how hostile he is toward Israel in speaking to his own internal audience.

The main problem, though, is that Abbas's message basically came down to saying that Israelis should trust him. Needless to say, this kind of thing has been tried in the past but hasn't worked out very well.

His claim to speak for "all Palestinians," that is including those under Hamas rule in the Gaza Strip, and insistence the two sides would achieve unity was particularly emerging. Incidentally, one of the most interesting aspects of the interview is that Abbas flatly refused to say that he preferred Obama to his predecessor, George W. Bush. That's a point that should inspire some thinking in Washington DC.

"and [Obama] urged that President Abbas do everything he can to prevent acts of incitement or delegitimization of Israel."

This is interesting and could be encouraging. Obama is asking Abbas to do something and that was the right thing to say. But here's the problem: as Abbas engages in incitement, the PA incites, and the PA doesn't interfere with incitement, will Obama say or do something?

After all, we know that if an Israeli construction crew turns over some shovels of dirt for a construction project in east Jerusalem, the United States will scream out protest. But if the PA names squares for terrorists, produces broadcasts delegitimizing Israel, secretly lets terrorists out of jail, and so on, there will not be a peep.

"The President confirmed his intention to hold both sides accountable for actions that undermine trust during the talks."

Both sides? One certainly hopes so but sort of doubts that.

"He said he looks forward to receiving President Abbas at the White House soon."

No doubt he will receive a warmer greeting than the one given to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his last visit.

Any way, that's the thing about official statements. If the government making them actually did what it said things wouldn't be so bad.

RubinReports: Obama's Talk with Mahmoud Abbas: A Recital of U.S. Policy

RubinReports: Hillary Clinton: Pakistan Isn't Helping Against al-Qaida

Hillary Clinton: Pakistan Isn't Helping Against al-Qaida

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By Barry Rubin

Every week or so, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reminds us that the wrong Democrat was elected president in 2008. In these cases, she gets off-script, showing her skepticism about engagement with Iran before it became obvious even in the White House, or expressing the novel idea that U.S. policy should view Israel as a valuable ally.

Now she's addressed legitimate frustration with Pakistan, a country which has received billions in U.S. aid yet barely lifts a finger to help U.S. policy. The Pakistani government pretends to fight terrorism but only the terrorists who directly challenge the regime. There is ample reason to believe that Pakistani intelligence helps the Taliban in Afghanistan, sponsors terrorists who attack India, and does little to help against al-Qaida forces operating within Pakistan and along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.

Remember the bloody attack by Pakistan-based and sponsored terrorists in Mumbai, India? What has the Pakistani regime done about that. People with access to intelligence information say that Chinese flights carrying military equipment--including things that can be used for weapons' of mass destruction--to Iran pass through Pakistan, too.

And take a look at my article HERE on Pakistani public opinion to see just how "allied" this country is with the United States.

So here's what Clinton just explained:

"I'm not saying that they're at the highest levels but I believe that somewhere in this government are people who know where Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda is, where Mullah Omar and the leadership of the Afghan Taliban is and we expect more cooperation to help us bring to justice, capture or kill, those who attacked us on 9/11."

Yes, a country to which the United States is giving full support and billions of dollars is doing little or nothing against those responsible for the September 11 attacks and killing about 3,000 Americans. But this administration doesn't believe in getting tough or putting on pressure against those countries actually giving America trouble. Ah, maybe the Obama administration does understand. After all, if they really regarded Pakistan as an ally, instead of a hostile state, they wouldn't be treating it so well!

RubinReports: Hillary Clinton: Pakistan Isn't Helping Against al-Qaida

Elder of Ziyon: Abbas plays games with the PLO

Abbas plays games with the PLO

The JCPA Hebrew site notices something interesting from Al Quds al Arabi.

Over the weekend there were a number of news outlets that reported:

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas agreed to U.S.-mediated indirect talks with Israel after receiving Palestine Liberation Organization approval that cleared the way for the first negotiations in 17 months.

However, Al Quds al Arabi noticed that the PLO meeting did not have the required quorum. Seven senior members did not attend. According to the PLO's own laws, there was no approval.

That didn't stop serial liar Saeb Erekat from announcing that the PLO approved the talks.

The game, as Pinchas Inbari at JCPA points out, is that Abbas will try to extract major concessions from Israel while pretending to agree to a couple of minor concessions himself - but the PLO will not approve them. At that point it will be too late for Israel to go back on its promises, which will have been publicized widely.

(h/t Daled Amos)

Elder of Ziyon: Abbas plays games with the PLO

Elder of Ziyon: Fatah in unification talks with other terrorists

Fatah in unification talks with other terrorists

From Ma'an:

As independent figures unveiled a new unity plan in Gaza, leaders of the Fatah, and leftist parties held a consultation meeting in Abu Dis on Tuesday afternoon to talk about political harmony.

Representing the leftists were senior officials from the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, with the latter party hosting the meeting at their headquarters in the Palestinian municipality of Jerusalem.

The PFLP is on the State Department's list of foreign terror organizations, as is Fatah's own Al Aqsa Martyr's Brigades and Hamas.

The DFLP dropped off the list in 1999 because of the "absence of terrorist activity, as defined by relevant law...during the past two years." But they enthusiastically participated in Hamas' Operation Oil Stain, later called the Battle of the Criterion, known to the West as Operation Cast Lead.

Birds of a feather....

If the policy of the State Department is to drop terrorist groups that haven't done any attacks for two years, then what terror attacks have I missed from Kach/Kahane Chai, which is still on the list?

Imagine the outcry if the State Department decided to remove the lone Jewish group from that list using their own criteria!

Elder of Ziyon: Fatah in unification talks with other terrorists

Elder of Ziyon: Ancient "Palestine" in Syria?

Ancient "Palestine" in Syria?

From JPost:

The great kingdom of 'Palestine' once existed within Syrian and Turkish boundaries, Professor J.P Dessel of the University of Tennessee claimed in a statement released on Tuesday.

The professor, who is a member of the Tell Tayinat archeological digs in Turkey, and who presided at the Haifa University Ancient East Research Conference, asserted that the commonwealth was located between the cities of Aleppo, Hama and Antakya and the Turkish-Syrian border in the 12th and 11th centuries BC.

The significance of this find, which was being discussed in a special meeting, is that the ancient Philistine empire was not limited to the lands of Canaan.

Following the collapse of the Hittite dynasty in the 13th century BC, smaller states sprung up in areas that were previously under Hittite rule, one of which was Palestine. In his lecture, Dessel explained that this was concluded from new-found evidence which was unearthed in the Tell Tayinat excavations.

Hittite hieroglyphics were found on the Antakya site reading "Palestine." Similar hieroglyphics were found in the cities of Aleppo and Hama.

"This is a significant discovery which shows that the Philistines did not just hold land in Israel, but in Syria as well," Haifa University Professor Gershon Glil, the conference coordinator, said.

Since "Palestine" was a word made up by the Romans some 1400 years after this kingdom supposedly existed, either the Hittites had clairvoyance or our esteemed archaeologists are making a basic mistake of mixing up Philistines and "Palestine." Of course, Philistines were not Arabs and have nothing to do with the people who call themselves "Palestinian" today.

I couldn't possibly consider the idea that a professor would purposefully mislead people for political purposes by saying "Palestine" when he really mean "Philistina." No, of course not.

But, as Gentile Warrior points out, if Palestinian Arabs want to claim parts of Syria as their ancient land, are the Syrians going to stop their illegal occupation of "Palestine"?

Elder of Ziyon: Ancient "Palestine" in Syria?

Elder of Ziyon: Real organ theft in Egypt

Real organ theft in Egypt

Here are cases of real organ theft:

An Egyptian doctor, operating on a five-month old baby for a hernia, has been accused of stealing the baby's left testicle.

When confronted, he said he did it for scientific research.

Another Egyptian doctor has been accused to stealing the kidney of another patient in order to make it available for the doctor's younger brother.

Elder of Ziyon: Real organ theft in Egypt

Elder of Ziyon: Egypt seizes more Hamas arms, explosives

Egypt seizes more Hamas arms, explosives

Ma'an (Arabic only) reports that Egyptian authorities have seized two more caches of arms and explosives near the Rafah border with Gaza.

One cache, which included anti-tank mines, was discovered in a graveyard some 3 km from the border. The other was found in a nearby warehouse, and Egyptian authorities have been increasing monitoring of Sinai warehouses.

These sorts of stories have not been making it into the English-language media very often, although they are regular events.

Elder of Ziyon: Egypt seizes more Hamas arms, explosives

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Elder of Ziyon: Threatened Arab boycott upsets Europeans

Threatened Arab boycott upsets Europeans

From Ha'aretz:

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman on Tuesday said he plans to attend the Mediterranean Union summit in Barcelona next month, despite threats that Arab states would boycott if he is present at the meeting, Israel Radio reported.

Arab countries are threatening to boycott the June meeting of leaders of Mediterranean countries if Lieberman attends.

The threat to boycott the Barcelona summit, which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is also scheduled to attend, was initiated by Egypt and Syria. They have informed both their Spanish hosts and France, which co-chairs the sponsoring organization, the Union for the Mediterranean, that Arab leaders will stay away if Lieberman shows up.

The Union for the Mediterranean was established in July 2008 by French President Nicolas Sarkozy in an effort to promote economic, scientific and cultural projects among countries bordering the Mediterranean. Egypt co-chairs the organization with France. The summit was scheduled for June 8 in Barcelona by virtue of Spain's rotating presidency of the European Union.

Netanyahu has already confirmed his attendance, and Lieberman had been expected to join him.

European diplomats told Haaretz that the threat to boycott the summit constitutes an intensification of the boycott Arab countries have imposed on contact with the Israeli foreign minister, given that Netanyahu, not Lieberman, is heading the Israeli delegation. They added that there is disappointment and even anger in Europe over the Arab countries' stance.

Senior Israeli officials confirmed the threat of a boycott. "The Arabs are not prepared to be in the same room with Lieberman, or to take the risk that they would have to be photographed with him or shake his hand," said one.

The feeling at the Foreign Ministry is that the Arab threat could lead to the summit either being canceled entirely or convening at a lower level, with officials of ambassadorial rank only. If this is the result, it would be seen as a humiliation not only for Spain and France, but for the European Union as a whole.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

Elder of Ziyon: Threatened Arab boycott upsets Europeans

Elder of Ziyon: Porn movies being shot in house owned by Bin Ladens

Porn movies being shot in house owned by Bin Ladens

From the Daily Star (UK):

OSAMA bin Laden’s family is making a fortune in America renting out a $26million Bel Air mansion to adult movie makers.

At least five porn films have been made in the nine-bed, ten-bathroom luxury home once owned by Wizard Of Oz producer Arthur Freed.

Neighbours in one of the world’s most glam gated communities include Liz Taylor and Avril Lavigne.

But they will not have seen Ibrahim Muhammad bin Laden, an older brother of the al-Qaida leader, who is named as owner of the luxury Bel Air Road property in land registry files.

He and his family fled America after the 9/11 terror attacks.

Records reveal Ibrahim to be the third owner of the Mediterranean-style home since the death in 1973 of triple Oscar winner Freed, who also produced 50s classics Singin’ In The Rain and Show Boat.

The films now being made there include last year’s porn flick Educating Alli, starring Alektra Blue.

It was one of at least five hardcore DVDs shot there by porn studio Wicked Pictures.

When will we be seeing jihadi porn?

Elder of Ziyon: Porn movies being shot in house owned by Bin Ladens

Elder of Ziyon: A brief guide to some Palestinian Arab surnames

A brief guide to some Palestinian Arab surnames

Here are some popular Palestinian Arab surnames, and their meaning in English:

al-Masri - the Egyptian
al-Mughrabi - the Moroccan
al-Djazair - the Algerian
al-Yamani - the Yemeni
al-Afghani - the Afghan
al-Turki - the Turk
al-Hindi - the Indian
al-Hourani - the Hauranite (from southern Syria)
al-Kurdi - the Kurd

I have yet to hear of anyone with the surname "al-Filastini."

Elder of Ziyon: A brief guide to some Palestinian Arab surnames

Elder of Ziyon: Here are the semi-naked women of Al Aqsa!

Here are the semi-naked women of Al Aqsa!

Two weeks ago I mentioned that the Al Aqsa Heritage Foundation was complaining about Zionist desecrating part of the Al Aqsa compound (actually, south of the Temple Mount) with noisy concerts and semi-naked women. The story was picked up by other Arab media outlets as well.

It turns out that they published pictures of these unspeakable desecrations on their website. Prepare to be shocked!

If you squint very hard and liberally use your imagination, you can almost see the half-naked women. It helps if you are foaming at the mouth at the time with anger.

By the way, there is an Arab school on the Temple Mount itself where Muslim kids play ball on the holiest site in the world. Jews walking respectfully around the site of the Temple is an unspeakable desecration, but kids playing games are fine - since they are Muslim.

Elder of Ziyon: Here are the semi-naked women of Al Aqsa!

Elder of Ziyon: PalArab paranoia personified

PalArab paranoia personified

Dipping my toes into the cesspool of ultra-left publications, I see an article written by a "Dr. Salim Nazzal" about the "naqba." It is similar to articles of this type written hundreds of times before, by Israel-haters to their receptive audiences, where fact-checking is unheard of in the face of their Truth.

This paragraph stood out for its sheer idiocy:

In the behavior psychology theory we learnt that in order to understand what a group (Zionists in this case) are doing now, we have to know what they had previously planned to do. Such actions are goal directed behavior and can only be accounted for if we know who set the goal, and for what purpose.

The answer is simple; Zionist Jews said clearly that they planned while they were still in their Eastern European homelands to murder and expel Palestinians, while the native Palestinians were not even aware of what these Zionist Jews were planning.

Since Dr. Nazzal is acting as a amateur psychologist for all Zionists, I will do the same to him (as I suspect that my qualifications are at least as relevant as his.)

The idea that Zionism is a movement that is, foremost, meant to murder and expel natives from their land is a perfect example of Palestinian Arab paranoia.

The World Health Organization says that a person has a paranoid personality disorder if he displays three of the following attributes:

1. excessive sensitivity to setbacks and rebuffs;
2. tendency to bear grudges persistently, i.e. refusal to forgive insults and injuries or slights;
3. suspiciousness and a pervasive tendency to distort experience by misconstruing the neutral or friendly actions of others as hostile or contemptuous;
4. a combative and tenacious sense of personal rights out of keeping with the actual situation;
5. recurrent suspicions, without justification, regarding sexual fidelity of spouse or sexual partner;
6. tendency to experience excessive self-importance, manifest in a persistent self-referential attitude;
7. preoccupation with unsubstantiated "conspiratorial" explanations of events both immediate to the patient and in the world at large.
All of the bolded items are prevalent in Palestinian Arab society, and the essay by Dr. Nizzal is a prime example of this condition. (Number 5 may or may not be prevalent, but that is not relevant here.)

While I think that these criteria broadly describe the Palestinian Arab public, in Dr. Nizzal's case it also applies particularly to him. In another essay he wrote for Palestine Think Tank he betrays his own personal paranoia, which may be tragic from a mental health perspective but I must confess I find it amusing.

At the beginning I got “strange” e-mails which hinted towards assassination and the like. The Zionist character in these e-mails was obvious. I simply paid no attention. I know Zionists fear the voice of the victims.

The intimidation e-mails never stopped. And each time I changed my e-mail they continued to try to intimidate me in the new e-mail and sent viruses almost all the time my computer is on.

The same thing happened regarding my phone and my cell phone, where I used to get unknown phone calls at night very often. I had to change them and keep their numbers secret. My lawyer advised me to keep all suspicious e-mails as evidence for the police in case my lawyer takes the case to court.

Last summer I went with my family to Cyprus to spend one week vacation. I found out that they are following me even there. I did not believe myself unless I was sure of that. When we came home to Norway I found that the roses in the garden were cut and thrown on the ground, and a tree was half cut by a knife to be easily seen. Under the tree there was a lighter which I had never seen before. The lighter was obviously put there as a symbol of fire.

I informed the Norwegian police, and the Norwegian intelligence service. I also informed the academic circles, and the media in Norway and the world stating clearing that Zionists were behind this. I made it clear that if they aim to stop my voice they will for sure fail. My voice is the voice of the children I saw with their bodies torn out by the Israeli F16. My voice is the voice of all Palestinians who long to go back home and to be free and to live in peace. My voice is trying to convey the story of my nation who did no wrong to anybody, but who paid heavily with 61 years of the pain of exile, 41 years of occupation and injustice.

One month ago I decided to stop writing articles because I needed time to work on a book. I am a historian in the first place and not a political analyst. But I was anxious that if I stopped writing they might think they had scared me.

Here we have it all - the feeling of self-importance, the delusions that Zionists care so much about this bozo that they are spending all their time harassing him with phony phone calls and computer viruses and following him on vacation.

The guy is nuts, but he - an educated man! - represents an entire culture that shares the same paranoid delusions.

The fact that Palestine Think Tank publishes these delusions as if they are real shows how "normal" this kind of thinking is considered in PalArab circles.

Elder of Ziyon: PalArab paranoia personified

Elder of Ziyon: Islamists unsuccessful in banning Elton John from Morocco

Islamists unsuccessful in banning Elton John from Morocco

From AFP:

Morocco's main Islamist opposition party has called for gay singer Elton John to be banned from performing at a festival in Rabat later this month, a party leader said Friday.

"We categorically reject the appearance of this singer because there is a risk of encouraging homosexuality in Morocco," the head of the Justice and Development Party (PJD) parliamentary group, Mustapha Ramid, told AFP.

"The problem is not with the singer himself but the image he has in society," another leading party member, Lahcen Daoudi, added.

"Moroccan society has a negative perception of this singer and we must take it into consideration."

Unlike in Egypt, where the musicians union were the ones who decided to ban him, these Moroccan Islamists were not successful:

[Elton John will perform in] Morocco this month despite calls from the country's main Islamic party for the gay star to be banned, organizers said Monday.

Artistic director Aziz Daki told AFP that cancelling the concert on the grounds of John's homosexuality would "undermine the respect of privacy" and "breach certain values that the international Mawazine festival is based on."

I heard that the Islamists tried to compromise with the singer, asking him to change the lyrics to "Saturday Night's Alright for Jihad."

They already liked "Rocket Man."

Elder of Ziyon: Islamists unsuccessful in banning Elton John from Morocco

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Ammunition Hill

Ammunition Hill

According to the Jewish calender, tomorrow will be the 43rd anniversary of the unification of Jerusalem. Which means that tonight is the 43rd anniversary of the battle on Givat Hatachmoshet, Ammunition Hill.

Between 1949 and 1967, while Jerusalem was divided between Israel and Jordan, there was an Israeli enclave about a mile to the east of the border, in the Jordanian part of town. This was Mount Scopus, with the campus of the Hebrew university and Haddassh hospital. There was an agreement whereby every two weeks 200 Israelis would cross Jordanian territory to the enclave, and sit there until the next group replaced them two weeks later.

Throughout the whole period everyone knew that sooner or later the war would resume, and that when that happened Israel would try to reconnect the mountain with the city. To prevent this the Jordanians built a series of fortifications in that mile, and its centerpiece was Amunition Hill, an apt name borrowed from the days after the British conquered the city in 1917 and General Allenby stored his army's ammunition there.

The picture shows the 1949 lines, to which I've marked Ammunition Hill in red, and just for the context, Shaikh Jarrah in green. From the one to the other would be a four minute walk if it weren't for the highway of route 1 which takes some time to cross.

On the night between June 5th and 6th 1967 the paratroopers, backed by a few tanks, made their attack, directly on the Jordanian fortifications. The section of the battle on Ammunition Hill raged from about 2am to 5:30, early next morning. It was face to face combat, between the best forces each side had. 71 Jordanians were killed, and 35 Israelis: most of the defenders died, as did a quarter of the attackers.

A story I heard not long afterward told that in the early morning the IDF troops gathered the fallen Jordanians into a pit and covered it, with a makeshift sign that read "Here lie 71 brave Jordanian soldiers".

A few hours later the paratroopers were at the Kotel.

In 1968 the military band of Central Command (Pikud Merkaz) recorded a song about the battle. It's not the best music we've got, and the lyrics are more dramatic than profound, but it has stuck in the communal memory and everyone can sing its refrain and snatches of the story. The final narrative line: "I don't know why I was given a medal, all I wanted to do was to get home in one piece" has acquired mythical stature, though often overlaid with irony and irreverence.

Hebrew lyrics
English translation
"It was then the morning of the second day of the war in Jerusalem. The horizon paled in the east. We were at the climax of the battle on Ammunition Hill. We'd been fighting there for three hours. A fierce battle was under way. Fatal. The Jordanians fought stubbornly. It was a position fortified in an exceptional manner. At a certain point in the fight there remained next to me only four soldiers. We went up there with a force of two platoons. I didn't know where the others were because the connection with Dudik, the platoon commander, was cut off still at the beginning of the battle. At that moment I thought that everyone had been killed."

At two, two-thirty
We entered through the stony terrain
To the field of fire and mines
Of Ammunition Hill

Against bunkers which were fortified
And 120mm mortars
A hundred and some boys
On Ammunition Hill

The pillar of dawn had not yet risen
Half a platoon lay in blood
But we were already there at least
On Ammunition Hill

Among the walls and the mines
We left only the medics
And we ran ahead without our senses
Towards Ammunition Hill

"At that same moment a grenade was thrown from outside. Miraculously we weren't hit. I was afraid the Jordanians would throw more grenades. Someone had to run from above and cover. I didn't have time to ask who would volunteer. I sent Eitan. Eitan didn't hesitate for a moment. He climbed up and began to fire his machine gun. Sometimes he would overtake me and I'd have to yell to him to remain in line with me. That's how we crossed some 30 meters. Eitan would cover from above and we would clear the bunkers from within, until he was hit in the head and fell inside."

We went down into the trenches
Into the pits and channels
And towards the death in the tunnels
Of Ammunition Hill

And no one asked where to
Whoever went first fell
One needed lots of luck
On Ammunition Hill

Whoever fell was dragged to the back
In order not to disrupt the movement forward
Until fell the next in line
On Ammunition Hill

Perhaps we were lions
But whoever wanted still to live
Should not have been
On Ammunition Hill

"We decided to try blowing up their bunker with a bazooka. The bazooka made a few scratches in the concrete. We decided to try with explosive material. I waited above them until the guy came back with the explosives. He would throw me package after package, and I would lay them one by one at the entrance of their bunker. They had a system of their own: first they threw a grenade, afterwards they fired a volley, and then they rested. Between volley and grenade, I would approach the entrance of their bunker and place the explosives. I triggered the explosives and moved away as far as I could. I had four meters in which to move because also behind me were [Arab] Legionnaires. I don't know why I received a commendation, I simply wanted to get home safely."

At seven, seven-twenty
To the police school
Were gathered all those who remained
From Ammunition Hill

Smoke arose from the hill
The sun in the east rose higher
We returned to the city, seven
From Ammunition Hill

We returned to the city, seven
Smoke arose from the hill
The sun in the east rose higher
On Ammunition Hill

On fortified bunkers
And on our brothers, men
Who remained there aged 20
On Ammunition Hill

The You Tube video I've embedded was taken on the hill, which stands still as it did that morning, a memorial to the soldiers who died taking Jerusalem.

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Ammunition Hill

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Great Minds, Great Mistakes

Great Minds, Great Mistakes

It's a story of a professor and his student, of a Nazi and a persecuted Jew, of forgiveness that shouldn't have been offered - or perhaps, it's merely about hormones. Even if it was the hormones of Martin Heidegger and Hannah Arendt. Richard Cohen has some interesting thoughts:

Taken together, this is a thoroughly frightening couple -- two of the 20th century's great philosophers, their genius contradicted by their inexplicably appalling lives: One embraced Nazism, the other excused him for doing so. In one critical area, they were no different than a goon and his gal. By way of caution, there ought to be statues of them in every city square, and billboards of them looking down on the naive who think, as Alan Greenspan once romantically did of financial markets, that man is rational.

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Great Minds, Great Mistakes

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: The Very Long Tail of the Attack on Times Square

The Very Long Tail of the Attack on Times Square

Angering the Americans, no matter who their president is, can't be a good idea.

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: The Very Long Tail of the Attack on Times Square

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Africa's Despair

Africa's Despair

There are much worse problems in the world than hung parliaments in the UK, rioting tax evaders in Greece, nasty Israelis and their frightening neighbors, and even polluted marshes in Louisiana. Problems to make you weep.

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Africa's Despair

Torat HaRav Aviner: Ha-Tikvah



[Am Ve-Artzo vol. 2, pp. 251-252 - translated by Rabbi Gil Student]

Question: There is a custom in the Diaspora, in order to show unity with the State of Israel, to sing Ha-Tikvah on Israel Independence Day and Jerusalem Reunification Day, and at weddings and bar mitzvah parties, together with the anthem for that country.
I remember, however, when I studied in Israel that we never sang "Ha-Tikvah" on Israel Independence Day but, rather, "Shir Ha-Ma'alot" with the tune for "Ha-Tikvah".
Some say that it is a disgrace to the Nation of Israel that there is no reference to G-d in its national anthem even though many other countries praise G-d, such as Britain's "G-d Save the Queen".
I heard an opinion to replace the word "Chofshi" (free) [towards the end of "Ha-Tikvah"] with the word "Kodshi" (holy), thereby hinting to G-d without separating oneself from the general population, since no one can hear this difference while singing...
Answer: It is true that there is no mention of G-d in "Hatikvah." There is, however, nothing against G-d either and there is national value in it. Therefore, there is certainly no prohibition against singing this anthem. We definitely have more important songs of faith in G-d and also in nationalism, like "Shir Ha-Ma'alot" and "Shir Ha-Emunah" that Rav Kook wrote. If the entire community is singing "Ha-Tikvah," however, one should not separate from them but should join them, since through this they are demonstrating their connection to the Land and State of Israel, which is a big obligation, even though there are better ways of doing it. There is therefore no need to change "Chofshi" to "Kodshi," since being free is also something of value. There is a mitzvah that this Land [of Israel] should be under our rule and not that of another nation, as the Ramban wrote, so there is certainly a mitzvah to be free in our Land...

Torat HaRav Aviner: Ha-Tikvah

Torat HaRav Aviner: I Do Not Insult

I Do Not Insult


I have problems with my husband. His behavior is inappropriate in many areas, so I point it out. We got married in order not to keep everything inside and obviously to help one another improve. But I point it out in a non-insulting way.
When we were first married, I did say it in an insulting way, and he called me a witch and he was kind of right. I then learned not to point it out in front of other people, even if he said something stupid or acted in an inappropriate matter. I also learned not to say anything when I am angry. I noticed that when I did this, I did not speak about what happened. I was frustrated and just tried to prove I was correct. I now wait until I calm down. And before I say anything, I make it clear to myself that the goal is to build a shared life together.
I also try to give him the benefit of the doubt. Many times I scolded him only to find out that I did not see the whole picture. I now try to see if I can understand the situation in a different way, perhaps I am taking things out of context. Only if I am unable to give him the benefit of the doubt do I say anything – gently.

Torat HaRav Aviner: I Do Not Insult

Eretz Avot: One Jerusalem Forever!

One Jerusalem Forever!

On the 28th of Iyar 5727 (June 7, 1967), the dream became a reality. With fire and blood, Jerusalem fell and with fire and blood Jerusalem arose again. Finally, the 2000 year old prayer of "Next Year in Jerusalem" had been answered. Jerusalem, the centre of the Jewish people, which had been cut off from Israel when it was re-established in 1948, was reunited. The pledge made by our ancestors by the rivers of Babylon as they were marched off into captivity, of "If I forget thee, O Jerusalem!" was fulfilled by their descendants in the Israeli Defense Force.

Jerusalem is the very heart of the Jewish people. Since King David first conquered Jerusalem and made it into his eternal capital, Jerusalem has occupied a foremost place in the souls and essence of the Jewish people. Jerusalem is mentioned over 700 times in the Tanach. It was here that King Solomon built the First Temple which stood for 410 years, where the returnees from captivity in Babylon built the Second Temple and where we await the rebuilding of the Third Temple, may it be speedily in our days. At a time when London was barely a forest clearing and Rome was only a collection of villages on the Tiber, Jerusalem was already in Jewish hands, seat of the Jewish kings. Long before Paul preached his gospel or Islam swept across the world, Jerusalem was already firmly implanted in the Jewish conscious for thousands of years.

When the wicked Romans cruelly suppressed the Jewish revolt in 70 CE, they razed Jerusalem and destroyed the Temple. They drove the remaining Jews from the land and renamed it 'Palestinae', after Israel bitter biblical enemies. Victoriously, they marched the spoils of the Temple throughout the streets of Rome and minted coins declaring triumphantly "Judea Capta"- Judea is defeated. On the site of the destroyed city of Jerusalem, they built a pagan city dedicated to the idols of Rome. The Caesar and his legions were certain that the pesky capital of Jews, which had caused them so much pain and unrest, would never rise again.

Despite this, the Jew never forgot Jerusalem. In all of the lands of his dispersion, whether in Warsaw or Marakesh, Baghdad or the Pale of Settlement, like a magnet the Jew was drawn towards Jerusalem three times a day and lifted his eyes in prayer, beseeching the Almighty: "And to Your city Jerusalem return in mercy and dwell in it as You have spoken". In the middle of the night, Jews arose in lamentation and mourning over the destruction of their Temple and their holy city. Every single year, the Yom Kippur fast and the Passover seder would end with the solemn vow and fervent hope of "Next year in Jerusalem!". The Jew may have been in Iran or Lithuania, Yemen or France but his heart resided in Jerusalem.

In 1948, when G-d saw fit to return sovereignty to His people over His land, the Jordanians attacked Israel and occupied the eastern portion of Jerusalem. They marched every single Jew out of the Old City and proceeded to dynamite and desecrate every synagogue and study hall. The Jordanians used the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives as latrines and used the Western Wall as a garbage dump. Jews were denied access to their holy places for these 19 years.

On the 28th of Iyar, 5727, after being attacked by three combined Arab armies dedicated to "throwing the Jews into the sea", the Israeli army liberated Jerusalem from its Jordanian occupiers. Israeli paratroopers stormed the city and secured it. The earth-shattering call came out: "The Temple Mount is in our hands!" The Chief IDF rabbi blew the Shofar and recited the shehecheyanu blessing as tears poured down the faces of even the most secular soldier as he kissed the stones of the Kotel, realizing the historical significance of the moment. Jerusalem, despoiled and abused by Babylonians, Greeks, Romans, Crusaders, Mamluks, Turks and Arabs, had returned to its owners, the Jewish people. Never again would Jerusalem be empty of Jews. The Temple Mount is in our hands! Jerusalem is in our hands!

Today there is talk in the international community of the partitioning and division of Jerusalem. There is strong pressure to once again wrest the city from Jewish hands. However, the promise made by our ancestors in Babylon remains valid, "if I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand lose its cunning; let my tongue cling to my palate if I do not raise Jerusalem above my greatest joy." We today are guardians of this vow. One united Jewish Jerusalem forever. All of the forces in the entire world will never again separate us from Jerusalem. Jerusalem is the heart of the Jewish people. It is from Jerusalem that we derive our strength and our existence.

"And it shall be at the end of the days, that the mountain of the Lord's house shall be firmly established at the top of the mountains, and it shall be raised above the hills, and all the nations shall stream to it. And many peoples shall go, and they shall say, "Come, let us go up to the Lord's mount, to the house of the God of Jacob, and let Him teach us of His ways, and we will go in His paths," for out of Zion shall the Torah come forth, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem." May we speedily see the fulfillment of the words of the prophet Yishayahu in our days.

Eretz Avot: One Jerusalem Forever!

Report: US Ensuring Construction Freeze in Jerusalem - Politics & Gov't - Israel News - Israel National News

Report: US Ensuring Construction Freeze in Jerusalem - Politics & Gov't - Israel News - Israel National News

46 Yesha Structures Threatened with Demolition - Inside Israel - Israel News - Israel National News

46 Yesha Structures Threatened with Demolition - Inside Israel - Israel News - Israel National News

Iran Upset over Yaalon's Remarks that Israel Can Strike - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Iran Upset over Yaalon's Remarks that Israel Can Strike - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Turk Student at Hebrew U Arrested for Aiding Banned Arab Group - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Turk Student at Hebrew U Arrested for Aiding Banned Arab Group - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

PM Urged to Place Temple Mount on Heritage List - Jewish World - Israel News - Israel National News

PM Urged to Place Temple Mount on Heritage List - Jewish World - Israel News - Israel National News

Former FBI Agent Echoes Obama's 'Blood and Treasure' Remark - Politics & Gov't - Israel News - Israel National News

Former FBI Agent Echoes Obama's 'Blood and Treasure' Remark - Politics & Gov't - Israel News - Israel National News

Suspected Spy for Hizbullah Heads Anti-Israeli NGO - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Suspected Spy for Hizbullah Heads Anti-Israeli NGO - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Hollywood Newspeak: Islamists Good, Americans Bad, It's a Bum (W)Rap :: The Phyllis Chesler Organization

Hollywood Newspeak: Islamists Good, Americans Bad, It's a Bum (W)Rap :: The Phyllis Chesler Organization

Chesler Chronicles » Demonized for Failing to Attack Conservative Christians

Chesler Chronicles » Demonized for Failing to Attack Conservative Christians

Monday, 10 May 2010

Israel Matzav: Defense expert: Iron Dome is a scam

Defense expert: Iron Dome is a scam

A defense expert has slammed the IDF for exaggerating claims about the effectiveness of the Iron Dome anti-missile system.

Former IAF fighter pilot, military analyst and proffessor at Tel Aviv University, Reuven Pedatzur, recently slammed the IDF for misleading the public about the effectiveness of the new Iron Dome anti-missile system, as swell as the older Arrow system.

“The Iron Dome is a scam. The flight-time of a Kassam rocket to Sderot is 14 seconds, while the time the Iron Dome needs to identify a target and fire some 15 seconds. This means it can’t defend against anything fired from fewer than five kilometers; but it probably couldn’t defend against anything fired from 15 km either. Since each Iron Dome missile costs about $100,000 and each Kassam $5, all the Palestinians need to do is build and launch a ton of rockets and hit our pocketbook.”

“There are also enough simple countermeasures that can be deployed to make the effectiveness of the Arrow basically zero,” he added.

That's funny. I said the same thing two years ago and argued that they should buy an American system that was already deployable back then.

Israel Matzav: Defense expert: Iron Dome is a scam

Elder of Ziyon: Al Azhar leader rejects PalArab sheikh call to visit J'lem

Al Azhar leader rejects PalArab sheikh call to visit J'lem

Al Masry al-Youm reports that the habitually lying, inciting and Jew-hating Sheikh Tayser Tamimi of Jerusalem has called on Arab Muslim and Christian leaders to visit Jerusalem to combat nefarious Zionist plans to Judaize the Jewish capital city.

Tamimi even added a new accusation: the Jews are now using chemicals to eat away at the walls of the Al Aqsa mosque, causing it to disintegrate from the inside!

(I wonder who the collaborators are that painted the walls of the mosque with this caustic chemical.)

Anyway, Ahmed Al-Tayeb, new head of the prestigious Al Azhar university, rejected Tamimi's call out of hand:

I refuse to visit Jerusalem and the Aqsa Mosque at the moment and I call on Muslims not to visit and obtain an Israelivisa, because that means supporting Israeli occupation and the recognition of its legitimacy.

The irony that an Egyptian sheikh is saying he knows what is better for Palestinian Arabs than the PalArabs themselves is seemingly lost.

Elder of Ziyon: Al Azhar leader rejects PalArab sheikh call to visit J'lem

Love of the Land: Is Manhigut Yehudit leaving the Likud?

Is Manhigut Yehudit leaving the Likud?

Moshe Feiglin
Manhigut Yehudit
26 Iyar, 5770
10 May '10

Translated from the article on Ma'ariv's NRG website

The media buzz surrounding Manhigut Yehudit's future in the Likud caught me by surprise. We had planned to keep the brainstorming process after last Thursday's Likud vote an internal affair - with only Manhigut Yehudit activists engaging in the debate. True, we knew that deliberations taking place among tens or hundreds of people would not be secret for long, but we did not estimate the great surge of public interest that the question of our future in the Likud would awaken. It seems that the stake that Manhigut Yehudit has planted in Israel's politics and collective consciousness is deeper than what we had assessed. When we move that stake just a bit, we create waves both inside and outside Israeli politics - surprising those in the eye of the storm.

Some people erroneously believe that our deliberations over Manhigut Yehudit's future in the Likud are the result of political failure, or because we failed in our attempt to prevent the Likud Central Committee from adopting Netanyahu's proposal, or because the Prime Minister has waged an all-out war against me. That is simply not true. If all that I was looking for was a place in the Knesset, I could have achieved my goal directly and with relative ease. It is not pleasant to be engaged in an ongoing political battle against forces larger and stronger than me; it is not pleasant when the chairman of my political home schemes with the High Court "judges" to remove me from the Knesset slot to which I was elected last year or to prevent elections altogether, as he has done now. I am way outside my comfort zone - but that is apparently the proof that we are on the right track.

As a result of last Thursday's vote, the Likud has redefined itself. It can no longer be considered the ruling party of the National Camp. Instead, it has become the ruling party of one man - in the service of the Left. The political alliance that has been formed between the chairman of the Likud (who also happens to be the Prime Minister of Israel) and the justice system allowed him to retroactively change the rules of the game to his advantage and to effectively sever the Likud from its members. From that point and on, nothing stands in the way of the Prime Minister as he charges ahead with his plans to partition Jerusalem.

Not one member of the small, rightist Knesset parties was anywhere near the arena on which the battle for Jerusalem took place last Thursday. Manhigut Yehudit, the movement that "always fails" made the prime minister sweat and deny the claims that the real story behind the Likud vote was Netanyahu's plans to divide Jerusalem.

(Read full article)

Love of the Land: Is Manhigut Yehudit leaving the Likud?

Generalizations about Culture and Antisemitism

Generalizations about Culture and Antisemitism

Rob isn't happy with the reviews of the Anthony Julius book I linked to yesterday. (Goldblog has even read the book, and speaks highly of it today). He makes three comments, one aimed at me:

3. Yaacov, please try not to make big sweeping comments about the UK. There is something childish about looking at the world through a prism of we-win-you-lose, we're-up-you're-down.

He could be right about me, of course, but I think not. Here are some thoughts abut the matter of culture, personal actions and responsibility, and generalizations.

1. The decisions of the individual are always that: decisions of an individual. Living in a society infused with hatred, or love, or indifference or whatever can never be a justification or condemnation of what a person does. If everyone thinks a certain way, the individual still has the obligation to think for themselves and to do what's right. This is a moral position, but also a description of history. No matter what the situation, there are always some people who can think for themselves, even if they're a small minority, and their existence proves that others could have thought similarly. Even in deeply antisemitic societies there are always some who don't succumb.

2. Culture matters. It's no coincidence that antisemitism insists on re-appearing (or never disappearing) in some cultures, while other have always been immune or grow so over time. (Europe, China and the USA respectively). The culture we live in informs us in myriad ways, and it's not easy to see through those influences. We don't need the new Julius book to know that detestation of the Jews is deeply embedded in much of European culture, including of course in England (though the book apparently describes this exceptionally well).

3. Cultures are not monolithic. At the precise moment in the late 19th century when antisemitism was taking off in Germany, there was a group of Germans who set themselves the goal of combating it with all rational tools. (They failed). Societies are complicated things. This doesn't negate the previous point about how culture informs and forms us, it merely adds that sometime this can go in more than one direction simultaneously.

4. Antisemitism is an emotion, not a rational thought system. Cultures are good at inculcating emotions.
Originally posted byYaacov Lozowick's Ruminations

Israel Matzav: Video: Ambassador Oren addresses Evangelical Christians

Israel Matzav: Video: Ambassador Oren addresses Evangelical Christians

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Israeli settlements in an Eventual Soveriegn Palestine

Israeli settlements in an Eventual Soveriegn Palestine

Victor has been having a discussion withHussein Ibish about Israeli settlers remaining in Palestine once there is such a state. (If there is, might be more accurate, though I'm certainly in favor if it can be done). Surprisingly, or perhaps not, Ibish and Victor both seem to agree that leaving settlers to be citizens of the Palestinians state would be a fine thing.

I'm theoretically agnostic, but practically against. Were there ever to be a free and democratic Palestine that operated along, say, Belgian lines, or Danish ones: fine, let there be some Jews there, too. But there's no chance of there being such a state anytime this century, as far as I can see, so it's not relevant. Bar that possibility, what's much more likely is just another Arab state. Can anyone imagine Jews living freely in an Arab state, as they can in the UK, or even post-junta Argentina? No? I didn't think so.

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Israeli settlements in an Eventual Soveriegn Palestine

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Ameer Makhoul, What Little we Know

Ameer Makhoul, What Little we Know

The gag order was lifted (it wasn't in place very long anyway, this time), and we now know that the police say they're investigating suspicions that Ameer Makhoul and Dr. Omar Said, two Israeli citizens, have been spying for Hezbollah.

Since the gag order gave our enemies a few days in which to spew bile, let's see what to make of this story.

1. There is nothing to say about the specific case. The investigation is underway, and the only people who see the entire picture are the investigators - and they' aren't telling. So of everything you'll be hearing in the next few days about the mens' innocence or guilt or the motives of the authorities in investigating, roughly 100% (give or take) will be hot air, speculation, malice, disinformation and similar unseemly phenomenon. The politicians, the journalists, even the bloggers: none of them know what they're talking about. Which of course won't stop them from talking. They already are (linked above)

Makhoul's brother Assam, a former MK for Hadash, said the family had no details of the investigation but they suspected authorities had singled out the activist because of his campaigns against the government's "racist and discriminatory polices" against Israeli Arabs.

2. There is one flimsy indicator about the allegations, and it comes from a lawyer
Hussein Abu Hasin, a lawyer who has handled several cases of spying charges, told Haaretz that espionage laws in Israel were so wide-ranging that an internet chat or telephone conversation with anyone in an 'enemy state' could lead to prosecution.
I don't know if this fellow has any information or not, but his line of defense is interesting: not that the suspects didn't do anything, but rather that they did but the law is pernicious. Well, yes: but it's still the law, and most people manage to live their lives without breaking it.

3. Since we don't know about this case, are there any precedents to inform us? Yes. Israel is a country at war, and its enemies try to collect information about it, and over the years there have been quite a number of Israeli citizens who helped them do so. These have included career officers (Jews and Arabs), scientists spying for the USSR, a Jewish officer who spied for the Syrians, a fellow who spied for Iran, and various others who spied for Hamas and Hezbollah. This is no indicator of the present case, but it does disprove the knee-jerk responses about how if an Arab has been arrested it must be ethnic persecution and a threat to democracy.

4. The Shabak, the police and anyone else involved in these investigations have a proven record of mostly doing their job well. Countless Israelis owe their lives to their proven ability to thwart conspiracies to harm people. That doesn't prove they've got it right in this case, but it does tell us something about anyone using the "If it's the Shin Bet they must be evil" line. Coming from people who live far away this line is ridiculous. Coming from people who live here, it's also ungrateful.

5. This morning we were repeatedly told that this evening there would be a mass demonstration against the gag order and the anti-Arab machinations of the Israelis. (See the Haaretz article above). Well, no. When the time came, there were all of 300 demonstrators (the demonstration was on Zionism Boulevard in Haifa). I'm not certain what this means, such a small demonstration, but it could be an indication that: a. Once the story was out, many Palestinian Israelis decided the story might have enough truth to it to limit their anger and need to demonstrate; b. Perhaps the "Israeli Arab street" isn't as radical as its representatives and the media wish us to believe; C. Haaretz got it wrong (again), and the demonstration was never going to be large.

Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations: Ameer Makhoul, What Little we Know

Love of the Land: What 'really excites them' is Israel

What 'really excites them' is Israel

Petra Marquardt-Bigman
The Warped Mirror/JPost
09 May '10

In late April, The New Republic (TNR) published a widely-quoted report that investigated accusations of blatant anti-Israel bias in the work of Human Rights Watch (HRW). A month earlier, The Sunday Times featured a similar article, to which HRW apparently responded by demanding a number of clarifications and corrections that in turn were challenged in the comment section by a researcher from NGO Monitor.

In terms of their substance, both reports contain too many interesting findings to summarize adequately here. However, one point that can perhaps serve to illustrate the overall picture that emerges from them is the fact that both reports include statements that openly acknowledge HRW's bias against Israel. The TNR article quotes a board member of HRW admitting: "I think we tend to go where there's action and where we're going to get reaction [...] We seek the limelight - that's part of what we do. And so, Israel's sort of like low-hanging fruit."

The Sunday Times article quotes an anonymous human rights expert working for an organization in Washington, who argues that one consideration in deciding what issues to focus on is "how it's going to be used politically in Washington"; according to this person, there is also the question of whom HRW considers as "a bad guy that they are interested in highlighting", and finally, he offers the observation: "Let's face it, the thing that really excites them is Israel."

Both quotes point to the enormous role publicity plays for HRW - in other words, HRW relies on the media to amplify its message, and the organization knows all too well what sells in the media. In this context, it is fascinating to read a recently published paper entitled "A media eclipse: Israel-Palestine and the world's forgotten conflicts".

The author, Noah Bernstein, can certainly not be accused of showing any bias in favor of Israel; instead, it is clear that he is motivated by a passionate and idealistic concern for human rights. His well-researched article starts out by starkly contrasting the media coverage of two simultaneous conflicts:

(Read full article)

Love of the Land: What 'really excites them' is Israel

Love of the Land: The Decline And Fall of Walt & Mearsheimer

The Decline And Fall of Walt & Mearsheimer

08 May '10

Stick a fork in Walt and Mearsheimer: They’re done.

And no, I’m not saying their respective careers are over. I’m saying that the “Walt & Mearsheimer Israel Lobby Road Show” is sputtering on fumes. Hey, they had a good run: four years, plus they pocketed a few hundred thousand dollars along the way. But they are now, in a word, irrelevant.

Why do I say this? Several reasons, starting with Mearsheimer’s most recent speech. This was not the victory speech of an academic who believed he had influenced policy or won hearts and minds. This was a tacit admission of defeat; an expressed belief that if everyone sits back and does nothing, events will right themselves.

To briefly summarize Mearsheimer’s “solution” for the Middle East problem: Israel—enabled by the “Afrikaner” Jews in the United States who control the Israel Lobby—will inevitably become a full-fledged Apartheid state. Of course, the full-scope of this brutality will be covered-up by the Lobby-controlled mainstream media (such as, he says, the Washington Post and the New York Times). However, thanks to that wondrous panacea, “the Internet,” everyone will see Israel for what it actually is. At that point, the scales will fall from the eyes of the majority of Jews—who currently fall into the category of the “undecided”—and they will join the ranks of the “Righteous Jews.” And, lo, the Righteous Jews shall defeat the power of the Afrikaner Jews, the Lobby’s power will be broken, and peace shall reign in the Holy Land.

There’s a certain Evangelical quality about it: a mass conversion of Jews ushering in a new era. (All that’s missing is a formal baptism.) But that’s the gist of Mearsheimer’s “plan of action”—do nothing, and wait long enough for the Jews to discover their inner righteousness.

Like I said, hardly a victory speech.

(Read full post)

Love of the Land: The Decline And Fall of Walt & Mearsheimer

Love of the Land: Farcical Proximity Talks#links#links#links

Farcical Proximity Talks

Jennifer Rubin
10 May '10

The “peace process” is underway, George Mitchell boasts. But the first “achievement” reveals how inane the entire exercise is. This report explains that the State Department crows that “Israel had pledged not to build in the Ramat Shlomo neighborhood of East Jerusalem for two years.” But wait:

Sources close to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded to the American announcement later Sunday, confirming that the housing project intended for the Ramat Shlomo neighborhood would not be built in the coming two years. The sources added that even when the Ramat Shlomo crisis first erupted, when the housing project was announced just as U.S. Vice President Joe Biden was visiting Israel, Israel told the U.S. administration that the project was only in very initial stages and construction would not begin for at least two years.

So what was the cause of an international incident is now touted as a success. That’s the Orwellian world of peace talks. And the PA’s contribution? They promise not to incite violence. Hmm. Will they rename Dalal Mughrabi square after someone who did not slaughter 38 Israeli civilians? Will we hear a call to end the days of rage? For now, each party pretends something is happening. Meanwhile, the “achievements” remain ephemeral, their only purpose being to secure further employment for George Mitchell.

(Read full post)

Love of the Land: Farcical Proximity Talks

Love of the Land: Lebanese president won't ask Hizballah to disarm

Lebanese president won't ask Hizballah to disarm

Thank you very much!

Jihad Watch
09 May '10

He won't ask them, let alone order them, as he should. His explanation is that it would not be appropriate at a time of heightened tension between Lebanon and Israel, but why the elevated level of tension in the first place? That stems from Hizballah's ongoing existence as an Iranian- and Syrian- supported state-within-a-state that, at this point, is probably all but better armed than the Lebanese government. Hizballebanon Update. "Sleiman says he won't ask Hizbullah to disarm," from the Daily Star, May 10:

BEIRUT: Lebanese President Michel Sleiman said the government cannot ask Hizbullah to give up its arms at a time of heightened Israeli tension and before agreement on a national defense strategy was reached.

Israeli allegations last month that Syria had transferred long-range Scud missiles to Hizbullah fuelled security concerns, although Lebanon and Syria both denied the charge, while Hizbullah's leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah has refused to comment.

Hizbullah is on the United States' terrorism blacklist, but it is also part of the Lebanese government. Syria says it only gives Hizbullah political backing and that Israel may be using the accusation as a pretext for a military strike.

Israel launched a 34-day war against Lebanon in the summer of 2006 during which the powerful group fired thousands of mostly short-range rockets against Israel."To demand now, in this regional atmosphere full of dangers and the drumbeats of war that Israel is banging everyday, and before we reach an agreement on a national defense strategy to protect Lebanon, we cannot and must not tell the resistance ... 'Give us your weapons and put it under the state's command,'" Sleiman was quoted as saying in the Ad-Diyar newspaper on Saturday.

(Read full post)

Love of the Land: Lebanese president won't ask Hizballah to disarm

Love of the Land: Where Does Goldstone Fit in Mearsheimer’s List?

Where Does Goldstone Fit in Mearsheimer’s List?

Emanuele Ottolenghi
09 May '10

So here’s a question for John Mearsheimer. As Noah Pollak pointed out not so long ago, John Mearsheimer classified Jews into three categories — new Afrikaner Jews, righteous Jews, and the “great ambivalent in the middle.” In his useful lists, he included one Judge Richard Goldstone among the noble ones. And so, in light of the revelations about Judge Goldstone to which Jennifer Rubin referred earlier on today, one is left to wonder. Where would Mearsheimer now put Goldstone — among the “New Afrikaner” or the “Righteous”? Maybe we should create a separate category — Old Afrikaner but Righteous? Good Ol’ Afrikaner?

Is he a Righteous Afrikaner because he bashes Israel after having hung a few Africans — the bashing makes him righteous, the hanging makes him Afrikaner?

(Read full post)

Love of the Land: Where Does Goldstone Fit in Mearsheimer’s List?

Love of the Land: Observation: Defining “Trust Undermining” Palestinian Action

Observation: Defining “Trust Undermining” Palestinian Action

Dr. Aaron Lerner
09 May '10

“As both parties know, if either takes significant actions during the proximity talks that we judge would seriously undermine trust, we will respond to hold them accountable and ensure that negotiations continue.”

Statement on Special Envoy George Mitchell's Trip
The State Department
Washington, DC
May 9, 2010

What constitutes Palestinian serious "trust undermining?

Just the amorphous "incitement"?

Well, what confidence can Israel have of Palestinian intentions when they continue taking a leading role in:

1. Efforts to keep Israel out of various international bodies such as the OECD.

2. Initiatives to condemn Israel in various international forums.

3. Promoting various economic sanctions against Israel.

4. Supporting and encouraging the harassment of Israeli official on campuses around the world.

And here’s one that the United States itself is guilty in aiding, abetting and encouraging: the absolutely stunning and appalling official Palestinian demand that every Palestinian held by Israel for terror activities – regardless of what they did (e.g. no matter how heinous the crime) or when they did it (including a minute ago) should be set free. That’s “set free”. Not handed over to the PA justice system. Set free. Period.

And the list goes on.

Question: Will the United States consider any of the above “trust undermining” or will President Obama’s and Secretary of State Clinton’s determination to give the Palestinians a passing grade come what may cause them to ignore all of this?

Better question: Will Prime Minister Netanyahu’s team limit its complaints regarding Palestinian behavior to Palestinian incitement and essentially give the Palestinians a free pass for everything else that they do that undermines trust?

Love of the Land: Observation: Defining “Trust Undermining” Palestinian Action
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