Saturday, 9 January 2010

Israel Matzav: Code Pink founder delivered letter to Obama from Hamas?

Code Pink founder delivered letter to Obama from Hamas?

Did radical leftist Code Pink founder Jodie Evans deliver a letter to President Obumbler in June? Consider this:

The [White House visitor] logs show that a ‘Jodie Evans’ met with Buffy Wicks, the Deputy Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement (OPE) on June 19, 2009. The meeting came just days after Evans’ group, Code Pink, visited the terrorist group Hamas in Gaza from May 28th to June 14th and was given a letter by Hamas to deliver to President Barack Obama.

On December 30th, the Obama administration released 25,000 records of visitors to the White House complex from the latter half of September. Mixed in those records were visits from other dates, including two by ‘Jodie Evans’ in June.

One visit is listed as a two-person meeting with Buffy Wicks in Room 146 in the Old Executive Office Building (OEOB). The meeting was scheduled at 19:02, June 16th for 10:30, June 19th by Ashley Baia, Staff Assistant with OPE. The meeting end time is recorded in the default setting of 23:59 for that day.

The record slots are blank for arrival, departure and cancellation notations, as are many of the records for visitors. There is no record of who was the second person in the meeting between ‘Jodie Evans’ and Buffy Wicks.

Hmmm.

Jodie Evans was in Gaza this past week along with the other 'internationals.'


Israel Matzav: Code Pink founder delivered letter to Obama from Hamas?

Israel Matzav: 67% of Israeli Jews want new Operation Cast Lead

67% of Israeli Jews want new Operation Cast Lead

Ehud Olmert should have cleaned up Gaza last year while he had the chance. This is from a survey of 510 Israeli Jews that was released on Friday.

#6 The Palestinians continue to build tunnels between Gaza and Israel, that could be used for attacks against Israeli civilians and soldiers. What do you think should be done about this situation?

Continue the current policy according to which they are added to the target bank and from time to time we respond by bombing chosen targets in response to firing attacks from Gaza or launch a military campaign to eradicate the tunnels and then declare a policy according to which tunnel construction will no longer be tolerated in the future?

20% Put the tunnels in the IDF “target bank” and respond from time to time with the bombing of chosen targets in light of attacks

67% Launch a military campaign to eradicate the tunnels and then declare a policy according to which tunnel construction will no longer be tolerated in the future

13% Other replies/don’t know

The rest of the survey shows that our current Prime Minister has managed to convince most Israelis that he doesn't plan to give the country away. Read the whole thing.

Israel Matzav: 67% of Israeli Jews want new Operation Cast Lead

Israel Matzav: Two Idiots may not Patrol Hebron

Two Idiots may not Patrol Hebron

Israel may not extend the mandate of the 'Temporary International Presence in Hebron' (or as it's known here Two Idiots Patrolling Hebron) when it expires at the end of January. If so, the move is long overdue.

Jerusalem reportedly feels the force is one-sided in its criticism of Israel, and believes that the TIPH is assisting human rights groups in the West Bank to compile anti-Israel reports.

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman reportedly appointed his deputy, Danny Ayalon, to look into the issue. Ayalon toured Hebron on Thursday, visiting the TIPH headquarters and speaking with officers and soldiers serving in the force. Norway, Switzerland, Sweden, Turkey and Denmark send representatives to serve in the TIPH.

The Jerusalem Post could not confirm the report.

Foreign Ministry officials accused TIPH personnel of relaying false reports against IDF soldiers and Jewish settlers, while completely ignoring the violent acts by Palestinians against the Jewish residents. "They just vilify Israel," the radio station quoted a Foreign Ministry source as saying.

The source added that another reason Israel was considering changing the current framework was that the Palestinian Authority, which in the past had cooperated with Israel and the TIPH, recently stopped its cooperation.

If you search those five countries on this blog, you will find that with the exception of Denmark, they have all been recently involved in extreme anti-Israel acts.

TIPH was set up in 1994.

Israel Matzav: Two Idiots may not Patrol Hebron

Israel Matzav: Egypt gets mad at Hamas and its supporters

Egypt gets mad at Hamas and its supporters

On Friday, Egypt deported moonbat George Galloway and declared him persona non grata, which means he's not likely to be coming back to Gaza anytime soon. That's because the persona non grata declaration means that he can't come back to Egypt and hopefully Israel isn't stupid enough to let him in either (we can hope).

Meanwhile, across Egypt, Muslim Imams used their Friday sermons to launch attacks on Hamas, which may have been at the Egyptian government's request.

One, at a Cairo mosque, asked the gunman what he would tell his God "tomorrow." Another said that Egypt had sacrificed thousands for Palestine.

Yet another blamed Hamas for the ongoing besiegement of Gaza at the hands of Israel, saying its leaders wished to stay in power "even at the cost of the starvation and expulsion of their people." He added that the Palestinian gunman would go to hell if he does not repent.

The report quoted a source in Egypt's Ministry of Awqaf, which is in charge of religious endowments, who said the string of attacks on Hamas was coordinated by the Egyptian government. Officials in Cairo denied this.

Meanwhile, the rest of the 'activists' who were with Galloway left Egypt on Saturday, despite Egyptian threats to arrest six of them for inciting the riots in El Arish earlier this week.

I wonder if the morons from Neturei Karta who spent last Sabbath in Gaza (a story I did not report) left Egypt on the Sabbath.

Haaretz reports that Egypt will no longer allow convoys to travel across its space to Gaza.

[Egyptian foreign minister Ahmad] Aboul Gheit told government newspaper Al-Ahram that members of one convoy led by British MP George Galloway committed "criminal" acts on Egyptian soil on their way to Gaza.

"Egypt will no longer allow convoys, regardless of their origin or who is organizing them, from crossing its territory," Abul Gheit said, according to AFP.

"Members of the [Viva Palestina] convoy committed hostile acts, even criminal ones, on Egyptian territory," the foreign minister added without elaborating.

Seven protesters were arrested during Tuesday's clashes, but police swapped them for four policemen held by the activists.

A prosecutor in El-Arish later issued warrants for the arrest of seven activists, including two Britons and an American woman.

Aboul Gheit said that, from now on, aid to Gaza must be handed over to the Red Crescent at El-Arish who will turn it over to the Palestinian chapter of the Muslim relief organization in Gaza.

Heh.

Israel Matzav: Egypt gets mad at Hamas and its supporters

Israel Matzav: Good news: 'Thousands' from terror sponsoring nations to get US citizenship

Good news: 'Thousands' from terror sponsoring nations to get US citizenship

I can't think of a worse way to shoot yourself in the foot.

The State Department is planning to welcome thousands of immigrants from terror-watch list countries into the United States this year through a "diversity visa" lottery -- a giant legal loophole some lawmakers say is a "serious national security threat" that has gone unchecked for years.

Ostensibly designed to increase ethnic diversity among immigrants, the program invites in thousands of poorly educated laborers with few job skills -- and that's only the beginning of its problems, according to lawmakers and government investigations.

"There are a lot of holes in this program in terms of security and in terms of fraud," said Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., who has written legislation aimed at killing the lottery.

Now, in the wake of the botched Christmas Day terror attack that emerged from Nigeria and Yemen, members of Congress are worried the system could be vulnerable to radicals looking to "play" the visa lottery as a means of reaching the U.S.

...

Among the winners for 2010 are:

Nigeria: 6,006
Iran: 2,773
Algeria: 1,957
Sudan: 1,084
Afghanistan: 345
Cuba: 298
Somalia: 229
Lebanon: 181
Libya: 152
Iraq: 142
Saudi Arabia: 104
Syria: 98
Yemen: 72

What could go wrong?


Israel Matzav: Good news: 'Thousands' from terror sponsoring nations to get US citizenship

Israel Matzav: Israel fumes over US praise for Abu Bluff, Fayyad

Israel fumes over US praise for Abu Bluff, Fayyad

Shavua tov, a good week to everyone.

Israel is said to be fuming over praise given to Abu Bluff and Salam Fayyad in US Special Envoy George Mitchell's interview with Charlie Rose on the Bloomberg network earlier this week.

Twice during the interview, on the Charlie Rose show, Mitchell called Fayyad an "impressive leader" and said that he and Abbas represented "strong and effective leadership for the Palestinian people."

Israel, in direct calls from the Prime Minister's Office to the White House and the State Department, has complained about both men.

The complaint against Abbas had to do with his sponsorship in late December of a ceremony celebrating the 50th birthday of Dalal Mughrabi, the terrorist who directed the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre, the worst terrorist attack in the country's history, where gunmen hijacked a bus and murdered 37 people, including 10 children. Mughrabi was killed during the attack.

On her recent birthday, the governor of Ramallah named a town square after her. A huge banner at the ceremony read, "Under the auspices of President Mahmoud Abbas, The Political and National Education Authority Ceremony on the anniversary of the birth of the bride of the cosmos, the shahida [martyr] Dalal Mughrabi."

Israel's complaint against Fayyad stemmed from his visit to the families of the three slain terrorists suspected of killing Chai near Shavei Shomron three weeks ago. The three men were killed by IDF soldiers on a raid meant to apprehend them.

Fayyad, according to what Israel told the Americans, referred to the men as martyrs.

Mitchell doesn't get it. Then again, he apparently didn't get it about Northern Ireland either. And he was considered so brilliant for that one.

The 'peace process' is in good hands. What could go wrong?

More on this story here.

Israel Matzav: Israel fumes over US praise for Abu Bluff, Fayyad

Israel Matzav: Prove it!

Prove it!

Prime Minister Netanyahu has told Hamas that he will show no more flexibility in talks to release kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Shalit.

Netanyahu reportedly stressed that his point man in talks to free the captured soldier, Hagai Hadas, would be given no more wiggle room beyond the mandate he has received.

"The prime minister insists that dangerous terrorists, as well as those who committed murder by their own hands, will not be released to locations from which they will endanger the lives of Israeli citizens," the officials said.

Negotiations between Israel and Hamas are still ongoing. On Tuesday the German mediator working on the prisoner exchange deal was in the Gaza Strip to hear the Islamist group's response to Israel's latest proposal.

Is Israel done conceding in the Shalit talks? I'll believe it when I see it.

Israel Matzav: Prove it!

Israel Matzav: Stupid Jews: Israel agrees to compensate the UN for Gaza

Stupid Jews: Israel agrees to compensate the UN for Gaza

Haaretz reports that the Israeli government has agreed to compensate the United Nations for damages sustained to its buildings while they were being used by terrorists to hide out during Operation Cast Lead.

Israel has agreed in principle to reimburse losses the United Nations suffered during Israel's three-week offensive in the Gaza Strip last winter,a UN spokesman said on Thursday.

Spokesman Martin Nesirky declined to give a figure or other details of the accord. A UN inquiry last year put the cost of damage to UN property in Gaza during the conflict at over $11 million, almost all of it caused by Israeli forces.

Israel said damage to UN premises was caused unintentionally when its troops responded to Palestinian fire and argued that Hamas operatives fought in, or near UN-protected buildings during the fighting.


Israel, however, agreed to consider a UN compensation request sent in July.

Another UN official who asked not to be identified said $10.5 million was "the figure that has been bandied about, but nothing has been finalized."

"Agreement has been reached in principle on the terms of an arrangement under which Israel would make a payment to the United Nations," Nesirky told reporters.

No UN personnel were injured during Operation Cast Lead. The bulk of the damage was sustained by UNRWA, the organization that is dedicated to making sure that 'Palestinians' remain 'refugees' in perpetuity.

The main damage to UN property in Gaza came on Jan. 15 when Israeli shells hit a compound of the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), badly damaging a warehouse and training center. Several UN-run schools were hit in other strikes.

Anyone want to explain why Israel should waste $11 million to placate the UN? Stupid Jews....

Israel Matzav: Stupid Jews: Israel agrees to compensate the UN for Gaza

Israel Matzav: Why I'm supporting Scott Brown for the US Senate

Why I'm supporting Scott Brown for the US Senate

I haven't voted in Massachusetts since the early 1980's; although I continued to vote absentee in Massachusetts throughout college and my two years in yeshiva, when I got married at the end of my first year of law school, I moved my voting residence to New York and eventually to New Jersey. I still vote in New Jersey in Federal elections.

As many of you undoubtedly know already, there's a special election in Massachusetts on January 19 to fill the US Senate seat that was vacated by the death of Senator Ted Kennedy. The election is especially important because if the Republican, Scott Brown, wins, the Democrats will presumably lose their filibuster majority in the Senate (they have 60 seats now). This could be important on a whole slew of issues.

If I'm going to go backing a candidate in a US election from Israel, I want to know that s/he supports Israel. Otherwise, I can just sit a US election out and no one is the wiser. I've been following Scott on Twitter for a couple of weeks, but haven't really seen a lot of talk about Israel. I looked online to see what Scott Brown's position on Israel was, and just about all I found was this.

Israel

Israel has made enormous sacrifices in an attempt to secure peace – including unilateral withdrawal from Gaza. I support a two-state solution that reaffirms Israel’s right to exist and provides the Palestinians with a place of their own where both sides can live in peace and security. As our closest ally in the Middle East, Israel lives every day under the threat of terror yet shares with America a dedication to democratic ideals, a respect for faith, and a commitment to peace in the region. Until a lasting peace is achieved, I support the security barrier erected by Israel which has proven successful in protecting Israeli civilians from terrorist attacks.

That seemed to be good news and bad news, if you believe, as I do, that by giving the 'Palestinians' a 'place of their own' between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea, you've cut out Israel's heart and left it insecure and missing part of its soul. On the other hand, in most of the rest of the World, if you say you oppose the 'two-state solution,' it means you don't want Israel to exist, so maybe it would be expecting too much to find my own position on Brown's site. Almost no one outside of Israel even considers the possibility that Israel should be the only state from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean (that's the fault of successive Israeli governments since 1992, but that's not a topic for now). The rest of the statement looked okay, but I had no way of gauging what's behind it.

On Iran, Brown sounded much better:

Iran

I support the bi-partisan Iran sanctions bill and believe that until Ahmadinejad gives up his nuclear ambitions he should be isolated from the rest of the world. With its reckless pursuit of nuclear weapons, Iran represents the biggest threat to Israel. Ahmadinejad is a Holocaust denier who has threatened to wipe Israel off the map. Meeting with him confers legitimacy when the only correct response is to treat him as an outcast. A personal meeting with Ahmadinejad, as suggested by my opponent, would embolden him and be used as a propaganda tool to strengthen his position.

Both of those positions are far better than Brown's opponent, Martha Coakley. Here's what she says about Israel.

Martha knows that a stable Middle East is critical to ensuring the development of freedom and civil rights for those living in the region and for the security of America. The war in Iraq, continued violence in Israel and Palestine, and Iran's nuclear ambitions, are serious problems. As Senator, Martha will dedicate herself to keeping America safe and developing ways for the people of the Middle East to live peacefully and prosper.

Supporting Israel

Israel is one of our most important allies. Martha has traveled to Israel and has seen firsthand how important this democratic nation is in the region. In Washington, Martha will work to make sure Israel's safety and security remain our priority.

Martha supports a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Martha knows that a safe and secure Israel is part of the foundation of a stable Middle East, and thus America's national security. In Washington, Martha will help continue the ongoing and gravely important work of developing a workable two-state solution so we all finally know peace in that region.

Anyone who refers to the non-existent country of 'Palestine' has already lost a lot of points in my book. Note that Israel is 'one of our most important allies' as opposed to Brown who calls it 'our closest ally.' And the reference to 'Martha has traveled to Israel' is ten years old.

Then there's Martha Coakley on Iran:

Responding to the Threat of a Nuclear Iran

Martha takes seriously the possibility of Iran becoming a nuclear state. Martha understands that a nuclear Iran threatens the security of America and the entire Middle East.

In Washington, Martha will do everything in her power to ensure that Iran does not, under any circumstances, develop nuclear weapons. Martha knows that America and our allies must remain vigilant against a nuclear Iran. Iran must have a transparent civilian nuclear program that allows for inspections and appropriate safeguards. In Washington, Martha will push for continued international cooperation in holding Iran accountable to its promises to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

In order for America to ensure its own safety and security, we must be able to connect directly with the country. As Senator, Martha will support bilateral talks with Iran and work to forge ongoing diplomatic engagement. While Martha supports direct negotiations with Iran, she supports appropriate sanctions against Iran for its refusal to halt uranium enrichment.

Bilateral talks with Ahmadinejad and Khameni are not the way to go. Sanctions don't come up until the last sentence, and it's not clear whether she favors or opposes the House sanctions bill, which is to come before the Senate the day of the Massachusetts special election. No country has a natural right to a 'civilian nuclear program,' especially not one whose motives are in such serious doubt. I'm not comfortable with Coakley's positions on Iran. You shouldn't be either.

There's an interview with Scott Brown in the Jewish Advocate, Boston's largest weekly Jewish newspaper (Hat Tip: Solomonia via Twitter - actually a re-tweet from Kesher Talk). The Advocate says Brown took a 'hard line' on Israel. As you will see from the questions, the Advocate is a pretty Left-leaning paper. Here's some of what Brown said:

Q: Speaking of existing agreements, Israel previously agreed to stop building more settlements. The Obama administration pressed Israel to halt any more settlement activity. Are settlements an obstacle to achieving a two-state solution?

Well certainly, but Israel also has the right to live in its lands without having another country dictate terms before you get to the bargaining table. Whether it's close settlements or not build, you can't be giving away cards before you get to the bargaining table. ... I find it offensive that [Obama is] setting the terms before even sitting down at the table. ... I think that Israel had done more than enough in terms of extending the olive branch to get people to the bargaining table.

Q: Israel's security barrier in the West Bank and its incursion into the Gaza Strip both achieved their aims, measured by the reduction in suicide bombings inside Israel and rocket fire from Gaza. Yet both have been condemned as violating Palestinians' rights. Are Israel's methods excessive?

A: Well, when it comes to your survival, I don't know, what's excessive? When you have people lobbing missiles into your bedrooms, you need to establish security measures to protect your kids, your families. ... And don't forget. when you have Hamas lobbing missiles from hospitals and schools, you're at an unfair disadvantage. Israel and the United States, we follow the Geneva Conventions and the protocols and the laws of war.

...

Q: How concerned are you that Iran is close to acquiring a nuclear weapon? Do you believe economic sanctions can halt the Iranian program? If not, should other measures be considered, or should the world, and Israel, find a way to coexist with a nuclear Iran?

That's scary. Well, first of all there's a couple of things happening. Ahmadinejad ... Martha Coakley wants to have one-on-one negotiations with him. She would go there. That's ridiculous. You don't want to legitimize his regime and give it a propaganda tool. She'd be the only one who wants to do that. Not even President Obama wants to do that. Low-level negotiations are great, but they're obviously playing the cat and mouse game. ...

They're at 28 percent unemployment. Their cash reserves are almost gone. So if there is any type of economic threat right now, that can work ... it would shut their industry down cold. ...

Everyone knows that Israel has the right to protect itself. The option to attack Iran is always there. You don't even need to mention it.

It probably won't surprise most of you after reading that interview (and I urge you to read it all) that I'm supporting Scott Brown for the US Senate. I went through this whole post so that my trolls (you know who you are) won't say that I'm automatically supporting the Republican without a rational basis. But having prepared this post, I am much more comfortable with my choice than I would have been otherwise.

Even if you're not in Massachusetts, you can support Scott Brown by making phone calls on his behalf and (for those of you who can) by donating money. Go here to learn more.

Here's Scott's most recent campaign ad, obviously shot last Friday outside Fenway Park before the Bruins played the Flyers in the annual New Year's Day outdoor game.

Let's go to the videotape.

I still have lots of friends and some readers in the Boston area. I urge you all to vote for Scott Brown on January 19.

P.S. For the record, I oppose Obamacare too. Aside from the fact that I believe it's bad for America (and I've lived under a socialized medical system that is much better than Obamacare for the last 15 years), under the Senate version of the bill, there's a penalty imposed on any American citizen who doesn't have an American health care plan. That penalty, which would have to be paid when I file my income tax return, would also be imposed on American expatriates like me, even though I already have health insurance in Israel, where I live, and even though I have to pay for special health insurance every time I come to the US. Foul, foul, foul.

Israel Matzav: Why I'm supporting Scott Brown for the US Senate

Israel Matzav: Barak loosens 'West Bank settlement freeze'

Barak loosens 'West Bank settlement freeze'

Defense Minister Ehud Barak has loosened some of the restrictions on changes to existing Jewish homes in Judea and Samaria.

Defense officials said that language in the order had been changed to allow council heads to issue permits for renovations, as long as it did not allow additional apartment units to be added to a building, but simply modified existing ones.

Council heads can also issue permits for changes in building plans in structures that are already under construction, but the same restriction against additional apartment units applies.

Permits can be granted for infrastructure work within the populated areas of a settlement, but not around its perimeter.

In addition, planning work for additional construction in settlements can continue, but those plans will not be authorized during the moratorium.

Efrat Council chairman Oded Raviv [should be Ravivi. CiJ] immediately attacked the change, which he said was only cosmetic in nature.

David Ha'ivri, executive director of the Shomron Liaison office, said the change showed that certain aspects of the moratorium were illegitimate.

Without seeing the precise language of the order (for example, can I add a room onto an existing house), it's hard to say whether Barak's change is substantively relevant. But what is relevant here - and it's good news - is that either Barak is feeling pressure to modify the order, or that the government is waking up to the fact that the freeze is only harming Israelis and not pushing 'negotiations' ahead, or both. And any one of those three possibilities is good news.


Israel Matzav: Barak loosens 'West Bank settlement freeze'

Israel Matzav: Mumbai Chabad House threatened again

Mumbai Chabad House threatened again

The Mumbai Chabad House, at which six Jews including Chabad emissary Rabbi Gavriel Holzberg (pictured) and his wife Rivka HY"D (may God avenge their blood) were murdered last year, has been threatened by terrorists again.

The handwritten letter was received recently at the site where an attack more than a year ago killed six Jews, including Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries Rabbi Gavriel and Rivkah Holtzberg, who ran the center, according to Ynet.

It read, in part, "Israel is dogs. We will strike again -- heil, Hitler," and was accompanied by a photo of Adolf Hitler, the news site reported.

Chabad's Nariman House was one of 10 Mumbai sites under siege during a three-day attack that began on Nov. 26, 2008 by an Islamist Pakistani group that left 166 dead and hundreds injured.

The letter was turned over to Israeli authorities in India, Ynet reported. Indian security officials also were notified.

But I'm sure this is all about giving the 'Palestinians' a 'state.'

/sarc

Israel Matzav: Mumbai Chabad House threatened again

Israel Matzav: Iran posts banned web site list

Iran posts banned web site list

Iran has posted a list of banned websites, which has been published in several Tehran newspapers.

They said the list, drawn up by a "committee of experts," bans any site that contains pornography, prostitution, sexual deviation or anything considered to be "contrary to the morals of society" in the Islamic republic.

Websites containing material "contrary to security and social peace" as well as those seen by the authorities as "hostile to government officials and institutions" bound to lead to "crimes" are also banned.

According to the list published in several Tehran newspapers, anyone found guilty of using such websites could be jailed for several years in line with a law on Internet "offences" passed in parliament more than a year ago.

Internet users are also prohibited from posting articles that violate "religious values," that "insult Islam and other recognised world religions, saints and prophets," the reports said.

You mean they can't post articles that insult Jooos? That's a good one. No wonder Ahmadinejad is afraid of a mouse (see picture above).

I wonder if Bezeq helped them draw up the list.

Heh.

Israel Matzav: Iran posts banned web site list

Israel Matzav: Khameni's family fled to Russia?

Khameni's family fled to Russia?

Quoting Iranian student leaders, Arutz Sheva is reporting that Ayatollah Ali Khameni's family has fled to Russia.

Pro-democracy activists in Iran reported Wednesday that family members of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei have been secretly flown to Russia. The move was allegedly prompted by concerns over continuing anti-regime protests and resistance.

The Iranian Students Solidarity organization, representing tens of thousands of students in Tehran and other major cities, claims that contacts within the regime leaked the information to them. According to these sources, members of Khamenei's family, including his daughter-in-law and grandson, have been evacuated to Russia in a private plane. In their secret trip, the Khamenei family members were accompanied by special security personnel assigned to maintain their safety.

The pro-democracy organization further claims, quoting the same alleged regime contacts, that Khamenei dispatched a close confidante to Russia to explore the possibility of the Russians hosting the Khamenei family. According to the student solidarity movement sources, the emissary met with various Russian officials, including President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. The source added that Putin's wife offered the Supreme Leader's relatives an estate near Moscow to "accommodate [them] for as long as it is necessary," according to an Iranian Students Solidarity statement.

The trip to Russia allegedly took place in the wake of violent clashes between regime forces and protesters on December 28.

Hmmm.

Israel Matzav: Khameni's family fled to Russia?

Israel Matzav: Welcome to Dalal al-Mughrabi square

Welcome to Dalal al-Mughrabi square

In another move that's bound to bring about a peaceful settlement between Israel and the 'Palestinians,' 'moderate' 'Palestinian' President Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen participated this week in the naming of Dalal al-Mughrabi square in beautiful downtown Ramallah. A mere birthday party isn't good enough for Dalal. She has to have a square named after her to perpetuate her memory among the 'Palestinian people.'

Dalal al-Mughrabi was the perpetrator of the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre in which 37 civilians, including 12 children and US citizen Gail Rubin, were murdered. Honoring her and making her into a hero is apparently just fine with the Obama administration. It's certainly not an 'obstacle to peace.'

What could go wrong?


Israel Matzav: Welcome to Dalal al-Mughrabi square

Israel Matzav: The Abdulmutallab intelligence failure

The Abdulmutallab intelligence failure

Writing in Haaretz, Yossi Melman has some key details about Umar Farouk Abdulmuttalab that make clear why the type of questioning that goes on at Ben Gurion Airport would have been the only way to stop him.

The new machines are meant to discover changes on the surface of the skin, things placed next to the body that protrude. What Abdulmutallab did was both simple and clever: The substances were not against his skin, but inside a double lining in his underpants, thickened about a half centimeter for this purpose. No X-ray machine would be able to disclose this; only an invasive search would.

...

In practice, Abdulmutallab's attempt to secret the explosives on his body was an almost exact replica of two previous terror acts. A few months ago, a Yemenite terrorist hid explosives in his anus and set them off when he approached the Saudi Arabian deputy interior minister. In November 2001, the Briton Richard Reid (known as "the shoe bomber") boarded a plane for Miami in Paris. Reid, and Abdulmutallab eight years later, carried the same substances on their bodies: TATP and PETN, which are easy to prepare, and especially sensitive to changes in weather, and to shaking or friction - qualities which made them especially beloved by Hamas and Islamic Jihad suicide bombers as far back as the 1990s. Each one of the two substances by itself is not dangerous, but when combined (no need for a detonator), they are deadly. They ignite and explode. Reid hid them in his shoes and tried to set them off with matches hidden in his socks, but which did not ignite because they were damp. Abdulmutallab tried to mix them using a syringe.

Melman also discusses some of the things that should have tipped intelligence off to Abdulmutallab long before he boarded a Northwest Airlines jet in Amsterdam.

According to information which has reached Haaretz, Abdulmutallab arrived in Ghana a few weeks before he set out on his fatal mission. His operators gave him underwear with a double lining, to create concealed compartment containing the dangerous substances, and cash. He used the money in Accra, Ghana's capital, to buy a plane ticket to Lagos, and from there to Amsterdam and Detroit. He paid $2,800 in cash for the entire journey, almost three times the price of a regular ticket.

There is a direct flight from Accra to New York, but he did not take it. The assumption is that his operators collected information and received the impression that Delta security checks in Accra were good, and the chance of getting caught there high. So they chose a flight with Nigerian Eagle Airlines to Lagos, where Abdulmutallab had about a two-hour layover before boarding the flight to Amsterdam. He also could have flown directly from Lagos to the United Staes, but apparently his handlers decided that the chance of him being caught was again too high.

...

The focus on tracking down intelligence errors is important. The questions asked in this context are how Abdulmutallab was granted a visa to the United States, and why the warning his father gave to the American embassy in Lagos that his son had become an extremist was not taken seriously, along with information from British intelligence. But these questions miss another important aspect of the case: The failure is mainly that of the security system at the Amsterdam airport and of Delta-Northwest Airlines. Even if intelligence fails, security should locate the terrorist.

Loose security is apparently why Abdulmutallab's handlers selected Delta-Northwest and Amsterdam airport. Most American airlines, on most of their international flights, use the profiling system, the security method employed by the Israeli security services: identifying a potential terrorist according to parameters set in advance (ethnicity, age, gender, purpose of visit and so on). The system includes a thorough questioning which attempts to locate potentially dangerous people according to certain indicators.

Abdulmutallab had these in abundance: A young Muslim who bought an expensive ticket at the last minute, and flew to the United States with only hand luggage. He did not take a direct flight, but instead chose one with two stopovers. He did not apply for a U.S. visa in his home country, but did so earlier, in London. All of these signs should have made him suspicious, but the security personnel were negligent in carrying out their task and allowed him to board the plane.

Remind me not to fly through Amsterdam and not to fly Northwest/Delta except from Ben Gurion.

At The New Republic, Phillip Crowley notes the similarities between this incident and one in Saudi Arabia last month and says that the US was warned.

Prince Nayaf himself flew to Washington to warn Obama administration officials about this new underwear bomb threat, according to Newsweek—which also recently disclosed a joint report produced by the National Counterterrorism Center, in conjunction with the Department of Homeland Security and the CIA, on the threat of both underwear and butt bombs. That report had both good and bad news about the alarming concept of explosive Al Qaeda asses. On the downside, the report found that even full-body-image scanners at airports might not detect anally stashed explosives. The upside is that much of the blast from such a rear-end bomb would be absorbed by the terrorist’s body—perhaps enough of the explosion that the airplane would not crash.

But don’t exhale just yet. It stands to reason that a terrorist who wants to down a plane needs only to smuggle his PETN onboard, much like a drug mule with a cocaine-stuffed rectum. After that, he can excuse himself to the lavatory and extract his cargo, then return to his seat to detonate the explosive outside his body.

And Washington is being run by a bunch of incompetent fools who think there's no such thing as terrorism ('man-caused disasters') and no war on it.


Israel Matzav: The Abdulmutallab intelligence failure

Israel Matzav: Unbelievably anti-Semitic C-Span clip

Unbelievably anti-Semitic C-Span clip

This is an unbelievably anti-Semitic clip containing an interview with Michael Scheuer, former head of the CIA's Bin Laden unit. Just unbelievable.

To go to the videotape, click here (Hat Tip: The David Project via Twitter).

Israel Matzav: Unbelievably anti-Semitic C-Span clip

Israel Matzav: 'Peaceful Palestinian' arrested for anti-Semitic plane rampage

'Peaceful Palestinian' arrested for anti-Semitic plane rampage

A Detroit-bound Northwest Airlines jet was forced to turn around and return to the gate at Miami International Airport on Thursday after a 'peaceful Palestinian' started ranting and raving that he wanted to kill Jews.

Mansor Mohammad Asad, 43, of Ohio, was arrested Wednesday night, according to a police department statement. Asad was charged with threats against a public servant, disorderly conduct and resisting an officer without violence.

But the FBI claims that this has nothing to do with terrorism and the AP report linked above does not mention the fact that he is a Muslim and only mentions that he claimed to be a 'Palestinian.' I got those facts here and here, respectively.

Asad also had three Muslim companions who were taken off the plane with him, but apparently have not been charged with anything.

And then there's this little tidbit:

Naturally, the excuses have already started.

Asad's son, Mickey Asad, who was not traveling with his father, told The Miami Herald his father has bipolar disorder. He told the Associated Press the elder Asad had been in and out of mental institutions when he was younger.

``It's not what it's made out to be,'' Mickey Asad told The Herald. ``I don't know, someone had to have pushed his buttons. I don't know, I couldn't explain honestly. Of course he's not a terrorist.''

Yeah, and neither is the Ft. Hood killer.

Asad is 43, which means his son is probably a teenager. Real reliable source for an excuse. Of course he's not a terrorist.

/sarc

/Your daily argument for profiling.

UPDATE 10:22 AM

Pamela has video of Asad's court appearance in Florida on Thursday. The guy is a moron. He apparently has been treated for mental illness. The good news is that since he bragged to the judge that he has money, he has to HIRE a lawyer. And the better news is that the judge seems to get it.

Israel Matzav: 'Peaceful Palestinian' arrested for anti-Semitic plane rampage

Love of the Land: Stuck in Oslo with George Mitchell

Stuck in Oslo with George Mitchell


Noah Pollak
Contentions/Commentary
08 January '10

Yes, the man has an impossible job. But making himself complicit in the Palestinian Authority’s desire to have it both ways on terrorism — talk up PA security cooperation in English but celebrate terrorism in Arabic — isn’t going to make it any easier.

As I wrote a couple of days ago, one of the Obama administration’s diplomatic rules appears to be that the Palestinians will never be publicly criticized. Israel, of course, gets publicly criticized by the administration on a near weekly basis. Predictably, this has given the PA room to engage in its favorite double game.

Over the past couple of weeks, the PA leadership has repeatedly lauded Fatah terrorists and their acts of murder. Mahmoud Abbas and Salam Fayyad have personally engaged in the celebrations. This finally provoked the Israeli PM’s office to protest to the Americans that:

(Read full post)

Love of the Land: Stuck in Oslo with George Mitchell

Love of the Land: Israel's opening to China

Israel's opening to China


Caroline Glick
carolineglick.com
09 January '10

The growing power of the UN-based international community is one of the gravest emerging threats to Israel's national security.

This threat stems from two sources. First, the UN-led system of global governance is working to redefine international law by on the one hand whitewashing war crimes by states associated with the majority, and on the other hand rendering it illegal for unpopular countries to take action to protect themselves against aggression. Second, and most important, Israel has become the scapegoat of the UN-led international community. The 57-member Islamic bloc has built an automatic majority for its unrelenting and ever-escalating assaults on Israel's right to exist.

The new - and false - interpretation of international law gives every General Assembly resolution the weight of binding Security Council resolutions and international treaties. Among this new "legal" regime's most dangerous features is its bid to overturn state sovereignty by subjecting leading citizens of weak states to politically-motivated criminal prosecutions under the rubric of universal jurisdiction.

With Israel's right to exist - let alone to defend itself - being denied in an avalanche of General Assembly and Human Rights Council resolutions, the acceptance of universal jurisdiction is a short step away from turning every Jewish citizen of Israel into an international outlaw.

THIS ESCALATING threat is already hurting Israel's ability to carry out routine relations with foreign countries. Just last week the IDF was compelled to cancel plans to send a delegation of its officers to England for a joint conference on asymmetric warfare after British authorities were unable to promise that their guests from the IDF wouldn't be arrested over spurious war crimes allegations during their stay.


Love of the Land: Israel's opening to China

Love of the Land: America's War Strategy

America's War Strategy


Mark Siverberg
Hudson New York
08 January '10

During World War II, it would have been unthinkable for the Allies to have stopped at the German border and begun stabilizing France after its liberation in 1944 before destroying the Third Reich and de-Nazifying Germany. Similarly, the stabilization of the Middle East can only be accomplished after the mullahs are brought down and Iran has been de-Islamified.

If the American people have grown weary of war, it is because the average American is tired of waging futile wars predicated on a failed strategy. If we are being asked to sacrifice blood and treasure, we have the right to demand victory, and a military strategy based on containment can never defeat an enemy determined to wage a war of conquest.

According to Israeli intelligence sources, US president Barack Obama has given Iran another year’s grace beyond December 31, 2009 as an inducement to cease its quest for a nuclear weapon. The inducements he is offering (delaying the production of the super bunker-buster bomb and delaying the implementation of the just passed House economic sanctions bill) would effectively free Iran from the threat of severe economic sanctions and the bombardment of its subterranean nuclear facilities. If true, it will all be over by then: Tehran will have attained “the bomb” plus the means of delivery, and a nuclear shield under which to export its Islamic revolution.

This dangerous pandering to a regime ideologically committed to establishing a global Islamic caliphate is symptomatic of a greater problem that has dogged American war strategy for decades. The Obama administration fails to realize (as the Western powers failed to realize in 1938 when confronted by Nazi aggression) that the road to stabilizing the Palestinian territories, Iraq, Lebanon, Afghanistan, Somalia, Yemen, and virtually the entire Middle East runs through Tehran. The United States has not yet learned that a nation cannot stop an aggressive enemy bent on conquest unless and until that enemy has been removed and its infrastructures eradicated.

(Read full article)

Foreign Policy Analyst, Ariel Center for Policy Research


Love of the Land: America's War Strategy

Love of the Land: A sheer blindfold for show

A sheer blindfold for show


Sarah Honig
Another Tack/JPost
07 January '10

Last week's High Court decision to open Route 443 to both Jewish and Arab traffic generated lots of squawk. However, another decision, only months earlier, to forbid "mixed" traffic failed to excite much interest. The petitions in both cases were nearly identical, yet the rulings appear completely contradictory. One common denominator, though, does stand out - both decisions are detrimental to Jews. No way can the High Court of Justice be accused of inconsistency - not even when it blatantly applies diametrically different logic to different litigants.

Nearly a decade ago the IDF banned residents of settlements like Dolev and Talmon from using the highway that bypasses Beitunya - a village near Ramallah with quite a murderous record. The second intifada raged then and the defense establishment reckoned that, for their own safety, it would be better for Jews not to make their way to Jerusalem via a route adjacent to hostile hamlets. The joker in the pack is that the road in question is a detour ordained directly after the advent of Osloite bliss to deliberately keep Jews from chafing against their new "peace partners."

The long and the short of it is that the road constructed to protect Jews from terrorist predations was closed to Jews - to protect them from terrorist predations. Some 6,000 residents of the Binyamin region's westerly section were therefore forced to get to Jerusalem by travelling in the opposite direction. What should have been a half-hour car ride was prolonged to at least an hour-and-a-half. Instead of going eastward, they were forced to travel west and then south via a convoluted course to Modi'in, from whence they enter Route 443 and, at long last, turn east toward the capital. A 10-kilometer drive was effectively quadrupled.

(Read full article)


Love of the Land: A sheer blindfold for show

Love of the Land: Who or what are we fighting?

Who or what are we fighting?


FresnoZionism
08 January '10

“It is not that Islam has been hijacked, rather different forces are fighting over control of the steering wheel.” — Barry Rubin


For the first time — as far as I can tell — in recorded history, a war is raging in which one side does not know the identity of its enemy.


This war has been underway since at least the 1990’s and pits the US and other Western democracies against various groups whose ideology is Radical Islamism. It is not a ‘war on terror’ — which is a tactic, not an opponent — and certainly not ‘overseas contingency operations’, an expression that Orwell would have been proud to invent. But on the other hand neither is it a ‘clash of civilizations’ and the enemy is not Islam.


What exactly is Radical Islamism, how is it related to Islam, why do Islamists employ the tactic of terrorism, why are we fighting, and what can be done to defeat it?


Important questions, and it appears that the previous and present US administrations lacked and continue to lack answers.


The following is a short but incisive discussion of these questions. It should be required reading in Washington. — ed.

***

Radical Islamism: An Introductory Primer
By Barry Rubin


A young American named Ramy Zamzam, arrested in Pakistan for trying to fight alongside the Taliban, responded in an interview with the Associated Press: “We are not terrorists. We are jihadists, and jihad is not terrorism.”


What he says is well worth bearing in mind in order to understand the great conflict of our era. First and foremost, Jihadism or radical Islamism is far more than mere terrorism. It is a revolutionary movement in every sense of the word. It seeks to overthrow existing regimes and replace them with governments that will transform society into a nightmarishly repressive system.


And so one might put it this way: Revolutionary Islamism is the main strategic problem in the world today. Terrorism is the main tactical problem.

Read the rest here


Love of the Land: Who or what are we fighting?

Love of the Land: Holocaust projection

Holocaust projection


Soccer Dad
Yourish.com
07 January '10
Posted before Shabbat

Genocide is a messy business. Usually it involves a lot of killing. Also, as evidence that genocide occurred there will be an extreme drop in population.

For example:

The Jewish communities of eastern Europe were devastated. In 1933, Poland had the largest Jewish population in Europe, numbering over three million. By 1950, the Jewish population of Poland was reduced to about 45,000.


However an increase in population would be proof that no genocide was taking place. For example:

The population of the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip has passed 1.4 million people, an increase of nearly 40 percent over the past 10 years, an official Palestinian census said.


While conditions for the Palestinians in Gaza may not be pleasant, there’s certainly no genocide going on there. Rather than a 90% drop in population, the Palestinian population has increased over the past decade.

However, math won’t stop some people from imputing the worst to the Jewish state. Helena Cobban, the new executive director of Council for the National Interest writes (CNI):

From the point of view of victims it may or may not matter too much. Being killed, or having the foundations of the life of the group you belong to quite systematically destroyed, is certainly bad enough, with or without the additional genocidal intention on the part of the perpetrator. (Ask the survivors of various horrendous massacres in the Democratic republic of Congo or elsewhere about that.)




Love of the Land: Holocaust projection

Love of the Land: Why no 'Viva Somalia?'

Why no 'Viva Somalia?'


JPost Editorial
07 January '10
Posted before Shabbat

What could be worse than being forgotten in the rubble of war? As The New York Times reported this week, Gazans feel forsaken. The constant flow of humanitarian aid is staving off hunger and disease, but a pall of listlessness besets the Strip.

It is so dreary that B'Tselem, an Israeli-staffed organization that's funded mostly by European governments and American foundations, has distributed video cameras to 18 young people just to get them out and about.

They make really cool videos about all sorts of subjects - such as smuggling laundry detergent through tunnels between Gaza and Sinai; resisting the "occupation" by singing hip hop music; there's also one about a girls' soccer team.

The videos have found their way onto Ynet, a popular Hebrew news Web site.

THERE'S A revealing comparison to be made between the "siege" of Gaza and what is happening in Somalia, where the World Food Program this week was forced to abandon one million tormented people because Islamist gunmen have made it impossible for its staff to operate.

The al-Shabab accuses the WFP of being spies for the infidels and has murdered a number of aid workers. The extremists are enraged that the WFP will not pay protection money. Overall, 3 million Somalis depend on WFP relief, but the plight of 285,000 acutely malnourished children is especially heart-rending.

(Read full editorial)


Love of the Land: Why no 'Viva Somalia?'

Love of the Land: Salam Fayyad Says (Yes or No?) to Jews Living in a Palestinian State

Salam Fayyad Says (Yes or No?) to Jews Living in a Palestinian State


by Daniel Pipes
danielpipes.org
05 July '09
updated 06 January '10
Posted before Shabbat

(Daniel Pipes follows Fayyad's devolution to the 05 January '10 update at the end of the article. We can now say that Fayyad has clarified his intentions. Y.)

I have long argued that the presence of Jews living on the West Bank does not present a problem to a resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, for a true resolution would allow them to live peaceably in a Palestinian state. We'll know the conflict has ended, I like to say, when the Jews of Hebron have no more need for security than the Arabs of Nazareth.

So, I read with considerable interest that Salam Fayyad, who calls himself the prime minister of the Palestinian Authority (a title I do not use, by the way), said roughly the same thing at a meeting of the Aspen Institute's Aspen Ideas Festival on July 4.

According to "Palestinian prime minister: Jews would be welcome in future state" by Brent Gardner-Smith in the Aspen Daily News, former CIA director James Woolsey noted that a million Arabs in Israel account for one-sixth of the Israeli population and that they "generally they enjoy the guarantees that Americans look for in the Bill of Rights." He went on to ask:

(Read full article)


Love of the Land: Salam Fayyad Says (Yes or No?) to Jews Living in a Palestinian State

Love of the Land: Op-Ed: If I Forget Thee… Tears in North Carolina (Visiting Jonathan Pollard)

Op-Ed: If I Forget Thee… Tears in North Carolina (Visiting Jonathan Pollard)


Chaskel Bennett
YWN
06 January '10
Posted before Shabbat

(Chaskel Bennett - YWN) Last week I was invited to join a delegation led by Rabbi Pesach Lerner, the Executive Vice President of the National Council of Young Israel, and Rav Yaakov Shapiro Shlita, the Rosh Yeshiva of Mercaz HaRav Kook in Yerushalayim, to visit Jonathan Pollard in the Butner Correctional facility located in rural North Carolina. I accepted the invitation, glad to have the opportunity to encourage Jonathan with the knowledge that many of his fellow Jews think about him often. I did not anticipate that it would be Jonathan who would teach me what it really means to care about our brethren. I had never met him previously and found him to be surprisingly personable and engaging. Jonathan is understandably distressed by the betrayal he feels from most members of successive Israeli governments and the United States legal system. But, after spending over two hours with him, it is obvious that his ahavas yisroel and love for Eretz Yisroel is firmly intact.

With the Rosh Yeshiva from Merkaz Harav guiding the conversation, Jonathan painfully expressed that some of his most difficult and deeply emotional moments over the past several years in prison, had taken place during the Gaza disengagement and the Merkaz Harav massacres. I looked at Jonathan in astonishment. Before me was a man who by any standard has personally suffered far more than most, yet he was in turmoil over the difficulties and challenges facing his fellow Jew. That he has spent thousands of hours in solitary confinement and has been subjected to horrendous conditions over the course of his twenty five years in various prisons seemed not to be his main concern. Is it possible that despite a quarter century of mental and physical deprivation, Jonathan gets what is truly important and we don’t?

In our visit, we witnessed Jonathan teach by example, how to conquer personal torments and burdens and immerse oneself in the sugya (lesson) of noseh b’ol im chaveiro (which loosely translates to “sharing the burden of a fellow Jew”). Jonathan is overwhelmed with concern for the former members of Gush Katif, and fears for the soldiers who may be ordered to remove their parents and families from their homes in Yehuda and Shomron. The plight of the “Hesder boys,” not the plight of “Jonathan Pollard,” seems to consume him.

(Read full article)

Love of the Land: Op-Ed: If I Forget Thee… Tears in North Carolina (Visiting Jonathan Pollard)

Love of the Land: PATV honors first female suicide terrorist while Abbas glorifies six most recent terrorists

PATV honors first female suicide terrorist while Abbas glorifies six most recent terrorists


Picture of Wafa Idris with text: “the Shahida (Martyr) Wafa Idris”

Itamar Marcus/Nan Jacques Zilberdik
Palestinian Media Watch (
PMW)
05 January '10
Posted before Shabbat

Wafa Idris, the first Palestinian female suicide terrorist, was honored as a "Shahida" - holy Martyr - in a new Fatah promotional music video broadcast this week on Palestinian Authority TV. Idris killed one Israeli and wounded 150 in her suicide bombing in 2002.

This picture of Wafa Idris with the text "The Shahida (Martyr) Wafa Ali Idris" appears in the new PA TV music video, which blends scenes and pictures paying tribute to the PLO, Fatah, Yasser Arafat and PA and Fatah Chairman Mahmoud Abbas. PA TV is under the control of Abbas's office.

(
Read full post)

Love of the Land: PATV honors first female suicide terrorist while Abbas glorifies six most recent terrorists

Love of the Land: Terrorists Step Up Attacks on Israel as Peace Talks Begin

Terrorists Step Up Attacks on Israel as Peace Talks Begin


Meanwhile, Israel Tests New Anti-Rocket System

The Israel Project (TIP)
07 January '10
Posted before Shabbat

Palestinian terrorists have stepped up attacks on Israel just as diplomatic efforts to restart peace talks get underway in the Middle East and the United States. In addition to mortar shells fired at Israel from Gaza today (Jan. 7), 10 bombs likely planted by Iran-backed Hezbollah were found yesterday by UNIFIL forces in southern Lebanon, and recently an Israeli man was killed in a shooting attack in the West Bank.[1]

In the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, terrorists who seek to destroy Israel have typically launched attacks during efforts for peace and a two-state solution. The new flurry of peace efforts began on Dec. 29, when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu traveled to Cairo to meet with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to discuss how to resume negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. And Friday (Jan. 8), the Egyptian foreign minister, the Egyptian intelligence chief and Jordan’s foreign minister hope to move the peace process forward when they meet Obama administration officials in Washington.[2]

Recent Terrorist Activity

• The Popular Resistance Committees terrorist group fired at least 10 mortar shells today (Jan. 7) into southern Israel from the Gaza Strip. Three of the shells exploded close to the Kerem Shalom goods crossing, a major conduit for humanitarian aid transferred daily from Israel into Gaza.[3] As a result of the attacks, the Ministry of Defense was forced to close the crossing as dozens of aid trucks waited on the Israeli side to enter Gaza.[4]

(Read full article)

Love of the Land: Terrorists Step Up Attacks on Israel as Peace Talks Begin

Love of the Land: Interesting George Mitchell Interview

Interesting George Mitchell Interview


Steve Rosen
Middle East Forum (MEF)
07 January '10

Mideast Envoy George Mitchell made some interesting observations in an interview with Charlie Rose.

Obama's Demand for a Settlement Freeze

Charlie Rose: The New York Times editorial [says] that the past year has not been successful because the administration stressed a settlement freeze....By focusing on a settlement freeze, which Israelis were unlikely to agree to, you created disappointment from the beginning, because it was an unachievable objective.

George Mitchell: If you want to get 60 percent, do you begin by asking for 60 percent?

Charlie Rose: No. You ask for a hundred.

George Mitchell: Oh, there you go, Charlie. You've already figured out negotiations. So what we got was -- what we got was a moratorium, ten months, far less than what was requested, but more significant than any action taken by any previous government of Israel for the 40 years that the settlement enterprise has existed, ten months of no new starts in the West Bank, less than what we asked, much, much greater than any prior government has done. And we think over time it's going to make a significant difference on the ground.

Getting Talks Started

Charlie Rose: You hope to accomplish this in two years. The moratorium is for ten months....That gives you an incentive to say to the parties ...better get something done before the moratorium ends because I don't know if we can get it again.

George Mitchell: Charlie, will you come with me on my next visit and make that little spiel? Because it might sound better coming from you. I have made it several times....We have suggested to the Israelis .. a series of steps and actions that they could take that would encourage President Abbas to enter the—

Charlie Rose: So why can't you tell me what they are, that's my question.

George Mitchell: Well because I want to discuss it with them before I discuss it you.

(Read full article)

Love of the Land: Interesting George Mitchell Interview
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...