Friday, 29 January 2010

Israel Matzav: Sabbath music video

Sabbath music video

Here's part of Kah Ribon Olam (God is the Master of the Universe) from the Friday night Sabbath songs.

Let's go to the videotape.



Shabbat Shalom everyone.


Israel Matzav: Sabbath music video

Hamas Accuses Israel of Assassinating Arch-Terrorist - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Hamas Accuses Israel of Assassinating Arch-Terrorist - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

The Arutz-Sheva Stories That Others Don't Cover - A7 Exclusive Features - Israel News - Israel National News

The Arutz-Sheva Stories That Others Don't Cover - A7 Exclusive Features - Israel News - Israel National News

Israeli Majority Skeptical About PA's Intentions - Inside Israel - Israel News - Israel National News

Israeli Majority Skeptical About PA's Intentions - Inside Israel - Israel News - Israel National News

Court Allows Arabs/Left's Demonstration at Shimon HaTzaddik - Inside Israel - Israel News - Israel National News

Court Allows Arabs/Left's Demonstration at Shimon HaTzaddik - Inside Israel - Israel News - Israel National News

Obama Hints Israeli Nationalists Hinder Peace - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Obama Hints Israeli Nationalists Hinder Peace - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Yitzhar Rabbi Released after Judge Denies State Appeal - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Yitzhar Rabbi Released after Judge Denies State Appeal - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News

Pollard Asks: Save 'Beit Yehonatan' in Eastern Jerusalem - Inside Israel - Israel News - Israel National News

Pollard Asks: Save 'Beit Yehonatan' in Eastern Jerusalem - Inside Israel - Israel News - Israel National News

Love of the Land: Hamas frightened of Egypt

Hamas frightened of Egypt


Guest Post by Zvi
Elder of Ziyon
28 January '10

Here's how I see this. It's not about the Saudis at all. It's about Egypt.

Hamas knows that if Egypt ever becomes REALLY SERIOUS about hurting Hamas, Hamas is going to be in extremely hot water. Egypt can shut down the tunnels if it wants to do that, both by building as deep and strong a wall as it wants to build, and (if Egypt gets really serious) by arresting or shooting anyone on the Egyptian side who participates in the tunnel "industry."

The Egyptian steel wall sends that signal very clearly. In fact, ever since the news about the steel wall became public, the Hamas leadership appears - to me, at any rate - to have shown increasing signs of panic. I can see why; if it works, then Hamas can't bring in weapons, can't tax the tunnelers and can't smuggle its people in and out. If it works, then Gazans really WILL have a crisis on their hands, and Hamas will be very clearly to blame.

Egypt, for its part, is furious with Hamas for two reasons: 1. Hamas humiliated the Egyptian government when the Egyptians tried to reconcile the factions, and again when Egypt tried to work out an exchange of prisoners between Hamas and Israel. 2. Hamas has kept parading in front of the world its closeness to Iran, at a time when the Egyptians are absolutely apoplectic to find that Hezbollah was planning for terror attacks against the Suez Canal, which is one of Egypt's primary strategic assets, and against other Egyptian targets. As of last week, Egypt's state prosecutor was asking for the death penalty for the terrorists.

(Read full post including Elder's introduction)


Love of the Land: Hamas frightened of Egypt

Love of the Land: Rights Against Safety

Rights Against Safety


Yaacov Lozowick
Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations
28 January "10

My first post this morning favorably compared Jessica Montell of B'tselem with the rank antisemites who congregate at Mondoweiss, CiF and elsewhere. Well, here's some balance: a demonstration of the weakness in the thinking of Israel's radicals - in this case, Hamoked, Center for the Protection of the Individual.

Hamoked is not a very important organization, but it does have some presence. It's thesis is that Israel is unjust to Palestinian individuals and this must be corrected - so far, so reasonable. When you note that they have no problem criticizing the Supreme Court (High Court of Justice, HCJ, which I have recently mentioned as Bagatz) you begin to see that they're well off the mainstream. Israelis criticize the High Court sometimes, but carefully. The Left, rarely. The far Left, however, don't feel inhibited.

The reason I'm mentioning Hamoked is an e-mail they've sent out. It wasn't meant for me, but e-mails have the habit of washing up at strange shores. This one is an attempt to recruit a writer for their website. They've got eight lines of necessary qualifications, most of them just what you'd expect (English and Hebrew writing abilities, legal background, that sort of thing). Yet it's the first qualification which is telling:

מחויבות מוצקה לנושא זכויות אדם, לרבות במצבים של התנגשות בין זכויות אדם לצרכי ביטחון
High commitment to human rights, especially in cases of conflicts between human rights and security issues (needs).

(Read full post)

Love of the Land: Rights Against Safety

Elder of Ziyon: Israel testing UAV "flying ambulance"

Elder of Ziyon: Israel testing UAV "flying ambulance"

Elder of Ziyon: Large IDF graffiti in Gaza

Elder of Ziyon: Large IDF graffiti in Gaza

Elder of Ziyon: Hamas accuses Israel of assassinating co-founder

Elder of Ziyon: Hamas accuses Israel of assassinating co-founder

Elder of Ziyon: Goldstone ignored his own UN-supplied evidence

Elder of Ziyon: Goldstone ignored his own UN-supplied evidence

Israel Matzav: The BBC's walk in the park

The BBC's walk in the park

Earlier this week, I showed you the BBC's walk in the park in Jerusalem. Robin Shepherd has a practically line-by-line take-down of the biased special, which is well worth reading.


Israel Matzav: The BBC's walk in the park

Israel Matzav: Senators urge Obama to sanction Iran

Senators urge Obama to sanction Iran

A bipartisan group of eight US Senators has sent a letter to President Obama urging him that the time has come to sanction Iran.

Senators Evan Bayh (D-IN), Jon Kyl (R-AZ), Joe Lieberman (I-CT), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), John McCain (R-AZ), Robert Casey (D-PA), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Ben Cardin (D-MD), and David Vitter (R-LA) sent a letter to President Obama today, warning that his own year-end deadline for diplomacy with Iran has now expired, and that it is therefore time to impose "crippling sanctions" against the regime. Given continued Chinese obstruction to sanctions imposed at the UN Security Council, the Senators urge the President to make use of existing authorities under U.S. law to pursue "parallel and complementary" measures to increase pressure against Iran. The Senators also pledge their support for the swift passage of new, comprehensive sanctions legislation currently pending before the Senate, which includes sanctions on the sale of refined petroleum to Iran that 76 Senate cosponsors expect the President to promptly use.

The full text of the letter is here. Don't hold your breath waiting for President Obumbler to act on it.


Israel Matzav: Senators urge Obama to sanction Iran

Israel Matzav: Israel killed top Hamas official in Dubai?

Israel killed top Hamas official in Dubai?

Well it sure took them long enough to figure that out.

Israel has assassinated a senior Hamas military commander, an official in the Palestinian Islamist group said on Friday.

Mahmoud al-Mabhouh was killed in Dubai on January 20, Izzat al-Rishq told Reuters in the Syrian capital Damascus.

Hmmm.

UPDATE 4:07 PM

Interesting details on who this mamzer was.

Hamas sources said that Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, who was killed in Dubai on January 20, was one of the founders of the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades and was the one behind the abduction of soldiers Avi Sasportas and Ilan Sa'adon in the First Intifada.

According to Hamas reports, the information appeared in its statement following al-Mabhouh's death last Wednesday. "He planned many heroic operations against the occupation," the statement noted. Earlier, a Hamas official claimed that Israel had assassinated al-Mabhouh.

Hmmm.

UPDATE 4:21 PM

Sounds like the mamzer died painfully.

The brother of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, who was killed in Dubai last week, told Haaretz on Friday that he was certain that Israel was behind the assassination, and that Israel had tried before to kill his brother.

Fayek al-Mabhouh said that the medical team that examined his brother determined that the latter had died following a massive electric shock sustained to the head, and also found evidence of strangulation.

Immediately after his body was found, his brother said, the family was notified of the ensuing autopsy, and blood samples were sent to France for further investigation. After the tests were complete, the body was transferred to Damascus, where al-Mabhouh's wife and four children reside.

It's a pity that Avi Sassportas and Ilan Sa'adon weren't able to have a hand in avenging their deaths. Notice no mention of virgins. I wonder why. Probably because where this guy's going there's nothing but hot oil.

Fayek went on to say that his brother, who would have turned 50 in two weeks, had been involved in Jihad activity for Hamas for many years. He said that several attempts had been made on his life before.

Al-Mabhouh traveled with no security or body guards, his brother added, explaining that he had taken other precautions. "Some six months ago, he was poisoned," his brother said. "He was unconscious for 36 hours."

The family has set up a mourners' tent at the Jabaliya refugee camp.

Three words: Target rich environment. Heh.


Israel Matzav: Israel killed top Hamas official in Dubai?

Israel Matzav: Surprise! Abu Bluff wants all of Jerusalem

Surprise! Abu Bluff wants all of Jerusalem

It shouldn't surprise anyone that 'moderate' 'Palestinian' President Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen wants all of Jerusalem for his state reichlet's capital.

Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas said Thursday that the PA would not be satisfied with the Jerusalem area village of Abu Dis as the capital of a PA state – an idea that many politicians on the left have touted – but that the PA demanded all of eastern Jerusalem, including all of the Old City, as its capital. In an interview with a Russian TV station broadcasting in Arabic, Abbas said that he did not believe it was necessary to physically divide Jerusalem, and that arrangements could be made to allow free passage between the Israel and PA controlled areas of the city, but that "it must be clear what belongs to the Palestinians, and what belongs to Israel," he said.

Regarding Israel's demand that the PA recognize it as a Jewish state, Abbas said that this was only mentioned in the original UN partition plan, hinting that Israel would have to agree to that plan if it wanted such recognition.

The original UN partition plan, which was accepted by the Jews but not by the Arabs, would have left Jerusalem an 'international city' and would have left Israel without an airport, among other charming differences.

What could go wrong?


Israel Matzav: Surprise! Abu Bluff wants all of Jerusalem

Israel Matzav: Obama's State of the Union: Foreign what?

Obama's State of the Union: Foreign what?

Writing in London's Telegraph, Niles Gardiner complains that President Obama gave scant mention to foreign policy in his 77-minute State of the Union address on Wednesday night.

But the scant attention paid in the State of the Union speech to US leadership was pitiful and frankly rather pathetic. The war in Afghanistan, which will soon involve a hundred thousand American troops, merited barely a paragraph. There was no mention of victory over the enemy, just a reiteration of the president’s pledge to begin a withdrawal in July 2011. Needless to say there was nothing in the speech about the importance of international alliances, and no recognition whatsoever of the sacrifices made by Great Britain and other NATO allies alongside the United States on the battlefields of Afghanistan. For Barack Obama the Special Relationship means nothing, and tonight’s address further confirmed this.

Significantly, the global war against al-Qaeda was hardly mentioned, and there were no measures outlined to enhance US security at a time of mounting threats from Islamist terrorists. Terrorism is a top issue for American voters, but President Obama displayed what can only be described as a stunning indifference towards the defence of the homeland.

The Iranian nuclear threat, likely to be the biggest foreign policy issue of 2010, was given just two lines in the speech, with a half-hearted warning of “growing consequences” for Tehran, with no details given at all. There were no words of support for Iranian protestors who have been murdered, tortured and beaten in large numbers by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s thuggish security forces, and no sign at all that the president cared about their plight. Nor was there any condemnation of the brutality of the Iranian regime, as well as its blatant sponsorship of terrorism in Iraq and Afghanistan.

As the example of Iran showed, the advance of freedom and liberty across the world in the face of tyranny was not even a footnote in the president’s speech. I cannot think of a US president in modern times who has attached less importance to human rights issues. For the hundreds of millions of people across the world, from Burma to Sudan to Zimbabwe, clamouring to be free of oppression, there was not a shred of hope offered in Barack Obama’s address.

Max Boot had similar complaints.

Not surprisingly, given how little room he devoted to foreign affairs, the State of the Union address was more remarkable for what he didn’t say than for what he did. This was his message on Afghanistan: “We are increasing our troops and training Afghan Security Forces so they can begin to take the lead in July of 2011, and our troops can begin to come home.” Really? That’s why he sent an additional 30,000 troops to Afghanistan, bringing our troop total eventually to some 100,000 — so they can come home? If that was the goal, why not keep them in the United States? Obviously there are pressing reasons why the lives of these soldiers are being risked in combat, but Obama did not spell them out. He should have, because his West Point address raised more questions than it answered about what end-state the U.S. is seeking and what specific policies should be enacted to achieve it. But he did nothing to dispel that confusion, which is prevalent among U.S. commanders on the ground, as well as among both our allies and enemies in the region.

Nor, predictably, did he offer any objective in Iraq beyond “responsibly leaving Iraq to its people.” He did say something commendable — “We will support the Iraqi government as they hold elections, and continue to partner with the Iraqi people to promote regional peace and prosperity.” But he said nothing more about the promise of Iraqi democracy, which so many Americans and Iraqis have sacrificed so much to bring about. Instead he reiterated his top objective, which is heading for the exits: “But make no mistake: this war is ending, and all of our troops are coming home.”

He then went on to plug his pet project — the utopian goal of eliminating nuclear weapons. He claimed without any evidence that “these diplomatic efforts have also strengthened our hand in dealing with those nations that insist on violating international agreements in pursuit of these weapons.” He suggested that North Korea “now faces increased isolation” — hard to imagine given that, if Pyongyang were any more isolated from the rest of the world, it would be located on the moon. He also claimed that Iran is getting “more isolated” and will face “growing consequences” that remain unspecified. The Green Movement in Iran, which offers the best chance of ending Iran’s nuclear program by overthrowing its despotic regime, got barely a mention — squeezed in between the (praiseworthy) effort to help Haiti and a puzzling reference to American advocacy on behalf of “the young man denied a job by corruption in Guinea.” Is corruption in Guinea really on a par as an American foreign-policy priority with Tehran’s repression of human rights and support for terrorism and nuclear proliferation?

Rather than offer any specific support for Iranian democrats or call for the overthrow of their oppressors, Obama devoted far more time to promoting “our incredible diversity” at home — including an effort to repeal the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, which may make sense but is sure to bring him into conflict with substantial numbers of the soldiers under his command.

I know - you're all looking at the silver lining in the cloud and saying "at least nothing about Israel." Well, not really. On Thursday, Obama was in Tampa for a townhall meeting and the first question out of the chute was

Last night in your State of the Union address, you spoke of America's support for human rights. Then, why have we not condemned Israel and Egypt's human rights violations against the occupied Palestinian people and yet we continue to support financially with billions of dollars coming from our tax dollars?

Obama blamed internal politics both in Israel and the Palestinian territories for constraining peace diplomacy. He cited problems faced by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who the president said "is making some effort to move a little bit further than his coalition wants to go."

Netanyahu's right-leaning government includes pro-settler parties strongly opposed to ceding occupied land to the Palestinians for a future state.

Obama said Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas "genuinely wants peace" but has to deal with Hamas, a militant group that refuses to recognize Israel's right to exist...

Poor Bibi is constrained by the majority of Israelis voting in a democratic election and Abu Bluff, who has no interest in peace, is constrained by Hamas. What could go wrong?


Israel Matzav: Obama's State of the Union: Foreign what?

Israel Matzav: Hamas 54 Congressman has large Jewish constitutency

Hamas 54 Congressman has large Jewish constitutency

Earlier this week, I wrote about the Hamas 54, the 54 Democratic congressmen who wrote a letter to President Obama urging him to pressure Israel to lift the 'blockade' on Gaza to allow terrorists to enter and leave and to import weapons and ammunition.

Reader Mom's Teach informs me that one of the Congressman who signed the letter is Elijah Cummings (D-Md) whose Baltimore district is heavily Jewish. Cummings, who has been in Congress since 1996, has attracted between 73% and 98% of the vote each time he has run.

Anyone in Baltimore up for some change?


Israel Matzav: Hamas 54 Congressman has large Jewish constitutency

Israel Matzav: 'Israeli Arab' MK shocked at Auschwitz

'Israeli Arab' MK shocked at Auschwitz

'Israeli Arab' MK Mohamed Barakeh, leader of the mixed, Leftist Arab-Jewish Hadash party, was visibly shocked upon visiting the Auschwitz death camp on Wednesday.

Hadash Chairman MK Mohammad Barakeh, whose decision to join the delegation has sparked an uproar in recent weeks had trouble concealing his shock upon visiting the extermination camp.

"I knew exactly where I was going," He said and added, "But being here, faced with the embodiment of human evil on the one hand, and the unperceivable misery of the victims on the other hand, things take on a different meaning. Everything is mixed into a human catastrophe."

Barakeh also commented on the piles of children's shoes displayed at the museum and said, "Any such shoe was once worn by a baby. Children are a nationality of their own, a nationality of innocence, and I cannot grasp how human beings could do such an atrocious thing."

Perhaps a visit to Auschwitz ought to be made mandatory for all MK's. Another MK on the trip is Comrade Yuli Tamir (Labor), who, as Education Minister, approved the introduction of references to the 'naqba' (catastrophe) of Israel's formation into school textbooks (since reversed by the current government).

Israel Matzav: 'Israeli Arab' MK shocked at Auschwitz

Israel Matzav: 1% of Israeli Jews: Peace possible with 'Palestinians'

1% of Israeli Jews: Peace possible with 'Palestinians'

And you thought Barack Obama had no support in this country.

Only 1% of Israeli Jews believe that peace is possible with the 'Palestinians' according to a poll taken for the Knesset Channel.
The vast majority – 79% - of Israelis believe that the possibility of achieving a peace agreement with the Palestinians is next to zero. The poll, conducted by the Panels organization for the Knesset Channel, said that only 1% of Israelis believed that there was a "good chance" peace with the Palestinian Authority could be achieved.

A similar number – 76% - believe that the current Palestinian leadership is not even interested in achieving peace with Israel, while only 17% believe that it is. The poll was released Thursday afternoon by the Knesset channel.
And to think that someone interviewed me this afternoon (more when it's up online) and asked whether I really believed that 67% of Israeli Jews wanted the IDF to go back into Gaza.

Maybe Jews aren't so stupid after all. At least not Israeli Jews.


Israel Matzav: 1% of Israeli Jews: Peace possible with 'Palestinians'

Israel Matzav: Goldstone's double standard on intent

Goldstone's double standard on intent

JPost publishes Alan Dershowitz's condensed summary of his 49-page magnum opus on the Goldstone Report. Here's part of what the Post published.

THE CENTRAL issue that distinguishes the conclusions the Goldstone Report reached regarding Israel, on the one hand, and Hamas, on the other, is intentionality. The report finds that the most serious accusation against Israel, namely the killing of civilians, was intentional (and deliberately planned at the highest levels). The report also finds that the most serious accusations made against Hamas, namely that their combatants wore civilian clothing to shield themselves from attack, mingled among the civilian populations and used civilians as human shields, was unintentional. These issues are, of course, closely related.

If it were to turn out that there was no evidence that Hamas ever operated from civilians areas, and that the IDF knew this, then the allegation that the IDF, by firing into civilian areas, deliberately intended to kill Palestinian civilians, would be strengthened. But if it were to turn out that the IDF reasonably believed that Hamas fighters were deliberately using civilians as shields, then this fact would weaken the claim that the IDF had no military purpose in firing into civilian areas. Moreover, if Hamas did use human shields then the deaths of Palestinian civilians would be more justly attributable to Hamas then to Israel.

Since intentionality, or lack thereof, was so important to the report's conclusions, it would seem essential that the report would apply the same evidentiary standards, rules and criteria in determining the intent of Israel and in determining the intent of Hamas.

Yet a careful review of the report makes it crystal clear that its writers applied totally different standards, rules and criteria in evaluating the intent of the parties to the conflict. The report resolved doubts against Israel in concluding that its leaders intended to kill civilians, while resolving doubts in favor of Hamas in concluding that it did not intend to use Palestinian civilians as human shields.

Moreover, when it had precisely the same sort of evidence in relation to both sides - for example, statements by leaders prior to the commencement of the operation - it attributed significant weight to the Israeli statements, while entirely discounting comparable Hamas statements. This sort of evidentiary bias, though subtle, permeates the entire report.

You'd think Goldstone was out to get us or something (he was).

Read the whole thing.


Israel Matzav: Goldstone's double standard on intent

Israel Matzav: Dangerous to criticize Jews?

Dangerous to criticize Jews?

Jeffrey Goldberg takes a look at some of the terrible things that happen to people who criticize Jews and Israel supporters (Hat Tip: Jennifer Rubin).

Just look at what has happened to other critics who have gone where angels fear to tread and criticized Israel. Take, for example, Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer, the authors of "The Israel Lobby." Walt, as many of you know, is in hiding in Holland, under round-the-clock protection of the Dutch police, after the chief rabbi of Wellesley, Mass., issued a fatwa calling for his assassination. Mearsheimer, of course, lost his job at the University of Chicago and was physically assaulted by a group of Hadassah ladies in what became known as the "Grapefruit Spoon Attack of 2009." Now he teaches political science at a community college in Hayden Lake, Idaho, under police guard.


Israel Matzav: Dangerous to criticize Jews?

Israel Matzav: How the IDF trained for Haiti

How the IDF trained for Haiti

Lenny Ben David explains how his old IDF unit trained for its mission in Haiti.

First, let’s look at the background of the IDF team in Haiti. That was my unit. As an IDF reservist, I served as a medic on the medical rescue team, and we trained hard working with the engineers who lifted slabs of cement while we practiced inserting infusions and assisting doctors performing emergency operations in the dark, dusty conditions. Over the years, the unit was dispatched to natural catastrophes in diverse places such as Turkey, India, and Mexico City, and assisted in rescue efforts after the terrorist bombing of the American Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya, in 1998.

The unit was originally formed after the first Lebanon war when an explosion in November 1983 pancaked a seven-story building in Tyre used by Israeli forces. Seventy-five Israeli soldiers were beneath the rubble, and the IDF was unequipped to rescue them. (Within a year, Hezbollah car bombs in Beirut brought down American and French barracks, killing some 300 soldiers.)

In my unit’s case, we were training for a contingency that we prayed would never come: Scud missiles raining down on Israeli cities. During the Gulf War 19 years ago, my unit was mobilized for the month-long war and bivouacked in an ambulance center. Whenever the sirens wailed, we threw on our chemical warfare gear and ran to the ambulances. Basically, our mission was: “If it’s bleeding, tie a tourniquet; if it’s breathing, stick it with atropine (to treat nerve gas), and then ‘scoop and run’ the victims to the hospital.” Our “front” was the Jerusalem area. No missiles fell in our sector, but 40 did fall, mostly on residential areas of Tel Aviv and Haifa. I will never forget the sense of terror while climbing into my ambulance and watching a Scud pass over my head as it headed toward Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport.

At home my wife responded to the sirens, scurrying the children into the shelter while putting gas masks on the older children and bundling the baby into a special sealed plastic coop. One son, who was in Jerusalem’s Old City at the time of one attack, recalls to this day the whistles and yelps of joy by Palestinians celebrating the fall of Saddam’s missiles on Israel.

...

The search and rescue unit was created to respond to attacks upon Israel’s homefront. They train for World Trade Center-type attacks on Israeli cities, or for a major earthquake, or an Iranian nuclear device that could deliver devastation on the scale of Haiti’s earthquake to hundreds of thousands of Israelis.

War may be the cruelest of man’s creations, but the IDF has harnessed its medical rescue unit for peace. If only it could be mobilized permanently for that purpose.



Israel Matzav: How the IDF trained for Haiti

Israel Matzav: NYU debate on 'special relationship' between US and Israel

NYU debate on 'special relationship' between US and Israel

A debate is being held at NYU on February 9 regarding the question of whether the United States should continue its 'special relationship' with Israel. Here is a poster publicizing the event.

But if this section of the publicity brief is any indication, the debate may not be a fair fight:

The hope among many governments has long been that an American administration would eventually impose such a peace on the two sides. This view seemed to underpin President Obama's landmark speech in Cairo last summer in which he sought to reach out to the Arab world by speaking of his sympathy for Palestinian "suffering" and the "humiliation" of occupation. In a major policy declaration, he also rejected the legitimacy of Israeli settlement in the West Bank saying: "It is time for the settlements to stop."

Obama's inability to shift Israeli policy on the issue has lost him credibility on both sides. Meanwhile Mahmoud Abbas, America's most important Palestinian ally, has been severely wounded by the US after he was persuaded to withdraw support for a UN report that accused Israel of war crimes during its winter offensive in Gaza. Facing uproar and fury from within his own party, Mr Abbas had to back down.

Now, at least, it is not Israeli policy that Obama is (apparently) trying to shift. Obama is trying to get the 'Palestinians' to come to the negotiating table. And the 'fury' at Abu Bluff over Goldstone (which I have also seen portrayed as the Israelis' doing and not as the Americans' doing) has long since died down. If Abu Bluff was ever wounded by his handling of Goldstone, he has long since recovered. It's his own weakness and unwillingness to compromise that has kept him away from the negotiating table.

Shmuel Rosner has more comments here.


Israel Matzav: NYU debate on 'special relationship' between US and Israel

Love of the Land: Gambling with Israeli Lives

Gambling with Israeli Lives


Jennifer Rubin
Contentions/Commentary
28 January '10

On January 21, some 54 Democratic congressmen — many familiar names in the never-have-a-good-word-or-positive-vote-for-Israel club — sent a letter to the president imploring him to force the lifting of “the blockade imposed by Israel and Egypt” on Gaza. (As Matt Brooks of the Republican Jewish Coalition points out, it’s troubling to see Rep. Joe Sestak, who is a candidate for U.S. Senate, also on the signatory list.) Citing the great suffering of the people of Gaza, they call for the resumption of access to a long list of materials for the Hamas-controlled territory.

And what if in lifting the blockade once again bombs and armaments flow to Gaza? What about the ordeal of those trapped in hellish conditions thanks to the Hamas overlords who use the misery of children and the deaths of innocents to increase their bargaining power? The congressmen don’t say. Or perhaps the rearmament of Gaza-based terrorists is a price they are willing to pay in order to strut before the “international community.”

Now what’s interesting is the extent of the overlap between the pro-Gaza blockade lifters and the roster of J Street–supported congressmen. The following appear on both the Gaza letter and the recently released J Street list:

(Read full post)


Love of the Land: Gambling with Israeli Lives

Love of the Land: Thinking About Israel’s Appeasement Option

Thinking About Israel’s Appeasement Option


Dr. Aaron Lerner
IMRA
Weekly Commentary
28 January '10

IDF brass recently re-launched a campaign with Israeli journalists promoting
withdrawal from the Golan in order to avoid the casualties the Jewish State
could expect to suffer should Syria attack.

Granted, there are people in the IDF who religiously believe (that’s
“believe” rather than “think” – because this is a matter of “faith” rather
than “logic”) that withdrawing from the Golan in and of itself would secure
Israel’s northern border since Syria would never attack if it had the Golan
back.

But is there a logic to withdrawal even if you recognize that there are
countless conceivable scenarios under which Syria would opt to strike Israel
even after a beautifully moving signing ceremony on the White House lawn
followed by a complete Israeli withdrawal from every last centimeter of the
Golan?

Here are some explanations:

There are gizmos on the drawing boards that would significantly reduce
Israel’s casualties in the event of a conflict with Syria. So it is best to
postpone conflict until the gizmos are deployed by leaving the Golan.

Israel would be in a considerably better diplomatic situation being attacked
by Syria after signing a peace agreement and handing over the Golan than if
Syria attacked in order to “liberate” the Golan.

Postponement of conflict in and of itself is worthwhile.

But there are problems with these arguments.

(Read full post)


Love of the Land: Thinking About Israel’s Appeasement Option

Love of the Land: ECLJ: Goldstone Report's Criticism of Israel Flawed, Biased, Unwarranted

ECLJ: Goldstone Report's Criticism of Israel Flawed, Biased, Unwarranted


American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ)
26 January '10

(Strasbourg, France) - The European Centre for Law and Justice (ECLJ) - the international affiliate of the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) - today filed a comprehensive response with the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) challenging the objectivity of the UNHRC-sponsored Goldstone Report on Israel's Operation Cast Lead in Gaza last year.

The UNHRC authorized a Fact-Finding Mission with a resolution that called for an investigation of “all violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law by the occupying Power, Israel, against the Palestinian people throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territory, particularly in the occupied Gaza Strip, due to the current aggression...”

The Goldstone Report accuses Israelis of war crimes and encourages states and the International Criminal Court (ICC) to exercise universal jurisdiction to prosecute the Israelis. Last January, the Palestinian Authority filed a “Declaration recognizing the Jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court” - attempting to accede to the ICC despite not meeting the statutory prerequisite of statehood for doing so.

The ECLJ today filed its Written Statement and supporting Memorandum on its analysis of the Goldstone Report with the U.N. Human Rights Council and will file the documents with the U.N. Security Council in the weeks ahead.

The Written Statement is posted here. And the Memorandum is posted here.

(Read full article)


Love of the Land: ECLJ: Goldstone Report's Criticism of Israel Flawed, Biased, Unwarranted

Love of the Land: Sanction What?

Sanction What?


Jon
Divest This!
26 January '10

While this site has been pretty busy tracking the failures of Divestment and the success of counter-Boycott, the S of BDS (“sanctions”) seems to have gotten short shrift. Partly, this is because no institution that could apply sanctions (economic or otherwise) against Israel is even remotely considering doing so. But it’s also because an analysis of what sanctions could include leads to some discomforting facts for BDS advocates.

The holy grail of the “Israel is Always Guilty” crowd would be the US ending financial support for the Jewish state. Before divestment became such a fad, ending US military and economic aid to the Jewish state was considered top priority since – according to Israel’s critics – US military aid was the only thing that gave Israel an edge over its neighbors and US economic aid was all that kept Israel from financial ruin.

This analysis ignores the fact that Israel’s most impressive period of nation building, between its founding in 1948 through the late 1960s, was during a period when Israel received little to no aid (financial or military) from the US. During this period Israel managed (without Uncle Sam’s help) to build its national institutions, integrate millions of citizens (including over a million Jews expelled from the Arab world), and win three major wars in ’48, ’56 and ’67.

(Read full article)

Love of the Land: Sanction What?

A Soldier's Mother: The Gift of Peace

A Soldier's Mother: The Gift of Peace

Life in Israel: El Al's latest advertisement

El Al's latest advertisement

The Jewish mind knows how to take advantage of every situation. This is El Al's latest ad... in the post-"tefillin bomber" era



(Hat Tip: INN)


Life in Israel: El Al's latest advertisement

Love of the Land: Power Struggle Means Lights Out For Gaza

Power Struggle Means Lights Out For Gaza


Honest Reporting/Backspin
28 January '10

The latest Hamas-Fatah squabbling gives new meaning to Gaza's power struggles. Cuts in EU aid for Israeli fuel used in Gaza's power plant leave Palestinian leaders bickering over how to make up the shortfall.

I don't expect the crisis to be resolved before the power plant shuts down some time today, which would leave the strip without juice for 48 hours. This AP report pretty much sums up what you need to know:

The current crisis emerged when the European Union, one of the biggest donors to the Palestinian Authority, decided to scale back aid, including payment of fuel for the power plant.


(Read full post)

Love of the Land: Power Struggle Means Lights Out For Gaza

Israel Matzav: Overnight music video

Overnight music video

Here's a medley of Jerusalem songs by Mordechai Ben David at the 14th annual HASC concert.

Let's go to the videotape.


Israel Matzav: Overnight music video

Israel Matzav: IAF seeking 'microsatellites'

IAF seeking 'microsatellites'

At a conference in Herzliya on Wednesday, IAF commander Ido Nechushtan said that the IAF is seeking specialized 'microsatellites.'

Rafael Defense Systems Ltd. and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) teamed up in 2005 to develop lightweight micro-satellites that could be launched aboard a missile from an F-15 fighter jet and orbit the earth.

Israel already conducts missile defense interception tests with Rafael's Blue Sparrow missile that is fired from an F-15 into space and then reenters the atmosphere, impersonating a ballistic missile.

Micro-satellites, officials said, would provide the IDF with a new level of versatility and enable it to launch satellites for specific missions while leaving its main space assets - the Ofek 5, Ofek 7, and TecSar - for intelligence-gathering and strategic operations.

Hmmm.


Israel Matzav: IAF seeking 'microsatellites'

Israel Matzav: Hamas claims it didn't shoot at civilians, even Human Rights Watch disagrees

Hamas claims it didn't shoot at civilians, even Human Rights Watch disagrees

Hamas has 'investigated' itself and the other 'Palestinian' terror groups in Gaza and concluded that they did not target Israeli civilians when shooting rockets from Gaza.

But Hamas, which along with other armed groups has launched thousands of makeshift rockets into southern Israel in recent years, said a committee it appointed to follow up on the report found no intention to harm civilians.

"The committee worked around the clock to uncover the facts, despite the certainty that there were no violations of international humanitarian law or international human rights law that amount to war crimes," said the committee head, Hamas justice minister Mohammed Faraj al-Ghul.

"The Palestinian government has on more than one occasion called on armed Palestinian groups to avoid targeting civilians," said the report by Hamas, which has claimed scores of deadly suicide bombings against Israeli civilians.

"(The armed groups) struck military targets and avoided civilian targets, and any accusations related to this concern errant fire."

That was even too much for Human Rights Watch.

"Hamas' claim that rockets were intended to hit Israeli military targets and only accidentally harmed civilians is belied by the facts," the New York-based group said.

HRW issued its statement after the Islamist rulers of the Gaza Strip said its investigations of allegations in a UN report on the Gaza war found that they and other Palestinian armed groups "struck military targets and avoided civilian targets."

HRW pointed out that most of the rocket attacks on Israel hit civilian areas. "Civilians were the target," the rights group said, adding that "deliberately targeting civilians is a war crime."

The UN report into the 22-day Gaza offensive published in September also said the firing of the hard-to-aim rockets at southern Israel deliberately targeted civilians and could constitute a crime against humanity.

It's not just that the rockets hit civilians areas. They targeted civilians areas. The proof is here.


Israel Matzav: Hamas claims it didn't shoot at civilians, even Human Rights Watch disagrees

Israel Matzav: 'Palestinians' afraid Netanyahu wants to cut a deal?

'Palestinians' afraid Netanyahu wants to cut a deal?

Sever Plocker on why the 'Palestinians' refuse to negotiate with Netanyahu.

The difficulty to explain the current Palestinian position has reached all the way to the White House. Those who carefully read the full Obama interview with Time Magazine realize that he has lost patience with the Palestinians’ elusive conduct. Officials around Obama have spoken harshly: They charged that the Palestinians humiliated the president and screwed up his policy.

What prompts the Palestinian leadership to adopt such stubborn refusal and shun the initiative of a US Administration that may be the most convenient for them? The Palestinians do not wish to negotiate with Netanyahu because they perceive him as a practical politician seeking practical solutions; this is the kind of mess the current Palestinian leadership wishes to stay away from. It doesn’t even want to get close to it.

Palestinian leaders did not mind talks with former PM Olmert, because they knew he had no mandate to finalize any deal, and certainly not a “final-status agreement” which the talks focused on. They in fact liked the futile talks and arguments. Yet when the possibility of a practical agreement first came up and they had to respond to it, they left the talks and did not return.

In the backdrop to the talks with Olmert and Livni was the Bush Administration, which the entire Arab world loved to hate, and whose involvement could be used to explain the failure. Yet with Obama and Bibi negotiations can take a different path. Both of them are politicians who seek results and who are unwilling to waste time on verbal and ideological quarrels.

I disagree. The reason that the 'Palestinians' are not talking to Netanyahu is that they know he will not offer them 100% of what they seek. And they haven't prepared their 'people' for anything else.


Israel Matzav: 'Palestinians' afraid Netanyahu wants to cut a deal?

Israel Matzav: Gaza is coming to you

Gaza is coming to you

Don't want to visit Gaza? Fear not. Soon, says terrorism expert Matt Levitt, Gaza may be coming to you.

Groups such as Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and the al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade weave Palestinian nationalism and radical Islamism together but limit their operations to the Israeli-Palestinian front. Now, under the influence of more worldly jihadists, some Palestinian fighters are signing up for groups inspired by al Qaeda, fighting not for Palestine but for the whole Muslim umma.

Al Qaeda-inspired jihadist groups in Gaza have maintained a local operational focus on Israel and Gaza, but have tied their attacks to global issues like the Danish cartoon crisis or the incarceration of a jihadist ideologue in Britain. The fear among U.S. and Israeli intelligence is that such a "glocal" ideology is serving as a bridge between Palestinian nationalism and al Qaeda's global jihadist ideology. The former theoretically allows for a two-state solution; the latter requires adherents to wage violent jihad against all infidels and apostates until the creation of an Islamic state.

Hamas in Gaza -- by engaging in secular politics, failing to institute sharia law, and cracking down on fellow Palestinians who attack Israel or threaten its rule -- has created a vacuum that global jihadist groups, often populated by disgruntled Hamas operatives, have been keen to fill. Even so, membership in Gaza's global jihadist groups is estimated to be in the low hundreds. But while their capabilities are limited, they think big. In July 2008, Israeli intelligence successfully thwarted a plot against former British Prime Minister Tony Blair by one such group.

What could go wrong?


Israel Matzav: Gaza is coming to you

Israel Matzav: Video: Mayanot Israel flash mob at Mamilla Mall

Video: Mayanot Israel flash mob at Mamilla Mall

A reader asked me to post this video as publicity for them. The mall where this was shot is a brand new mall right outside the Old City of Jerusalem and it has a stunning and very expensive hotel attached to it (got to get Mrs. Carl to find a Chinese auction to enter to win a night there). And the mall has two hours of free parking so it doesn't cost you NIS 95 to park there for the day as I paid in Tel Aviv today (those are New York rates!). Here's their publicity pitch:

Mayanot brought over 300 Taglit Birthright-Israel participants and friends together into the beautiful open-air mall next to Jerusalems Old City, for this fun and unique event.

Join the fun in Israel this summer on your free ten-day trip with Taglit-Birthright Israel: MAYANOT.

Apply now at http://www.mayanotisrael.com and enjoy a high quality Israel experience that includes ten days jam-packed with activities and attractions with young Israelis and participants from diverse backgrounds.

Special shout out to Dave Lindenbaum and Jesse Friedberg for "My Shawarma" - you can download this song now:

http://cdbaby.com/cd/dlindenbaum

No one took me to Israel for ten days for free when I was a kid.

Get ready to rock - this is NOT one of my overnight videos. Let's go to the videotape.


Israel Matzav: Video: Mayanot Israel flash mob at Mamilla Mall

Israel Matzav: More anti-Semitism from Sweden

More anti-Semitism from Sweden

Sorry traffic has been slow today - I went to a seminar in Tel Aviv so that I can try to make a living.

Remember Malmo, Sweden? Remember Gaza in Malmo? Remember the Davis Cup match with no spectators? I'd like you to meet Ilmar Reepalu, the apparently Swedish-born, non-Muslim Mayor of Malmo. In honor of Holocaust Memorial Day this week, Mr. Reepalu has given an interview with a Swedish newspaper called Skanskan.

The interview is in Swedish, but reader Erik J has been kind enough to send me a translation of some pertinent parts, and I'm sure you will all not be surprised to hear that Mr. Reepalu fits right into the country of Aftonbladet and Carl Bildt.

Did You know that the mayor of Malmö, Sweden - Yes that Malmo, Israel, tennis - in an interview on Holocaust memorial day said the following:

"We don´t accept neither zionism nor antisemitism. They are both extremes that pose them selves above other groups and regard those [groups] as inferior."

(The quote in Swedish: Vi accepterar varken sionism http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifeller antisemitism. Det är ytterligheter som sätter sig över andra grupper och anser att de är mindre värda.]

He also stated that in his view, the jewish congregation and jews as individuals have a responsibility for what others think of them:

"I would have wished for the jewish congregation [in Malmo] to take a stand against Israels violations of the civilian population of Gaza. In stead they choose to hold a demonstration at Stortorget [a big square in Malmo] that could send the wrong signal."

[Quote in swedish: Jag skulle önska att judiska församlingen tog avstånd från Israels kränkningar av civilbefolkningen i Gaza. I stället väljer man att hålla en demonstration på Stortorget, som kan sända fel signaler.

Wherever he is buried Raoul Wallenberg must be rolling over in his grave.

Israel Matzav: More anti-Semitism from Sweden

Israel Matzav: Jerusalem from the Sky

Jerusalem from the Sky

Mrs. Carl sent me some great photos of Jerusalem that were taken from the sky (a rarity since our airport here has not operated since 2000).

Here's one of the photos. You can find the rest of them here.



Israel Matzav: Jerusalem from the Sky

Israel Matzav: US to file sanctions plan against Iran with UN this week?

US to file sanctions plan against Iran with UN this week?

Will the Obama administration finally present a concrete plan for sanctions against Iran to the United Nations?

US officials are telling The Associated Press that the Obama administration could circulate an outline of possible tough new sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program as early as this week at the United Nations.

The proposed measures would target elements the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps under fresh penalties as well financial institutions under existing UN sanctions resolutions. The officials say the measures are being finalized and prepared for debate in the UN Security Council.

Hmmm.

Israel Matzav: US to file sanctions plan against Iran with UN this week?

DoubleTapper: IDF Women

IDF Women


On Duty or Off Duty
Everyone Loves IDF Women















DoubleTapper: IDF Women

Rights Against Safety

Rights Against Safety

My first post this morning favorably compared Jessica Montell of B'tselem with the rank antisemites who congregate at Mondoweiss, CiF and elsewhere. Well, here's some balance: a demonstration of the weakness in the thinking of Israel's radicals - in this case, Hamoked, Center for the Protection of the Individual.

Hamoked is not a very important organization, but it does have some presence. It's thesis is that Israel is unjust to Palestinian individuals and this must be corrected - so far, so reasonable. When you note that they have no problem criticizing the Supreme Court (High Court of Justice, HCJ, which I have recently mentioned as Bagatz) you begin to see that they're well off the mainstream. Israelis criticize the High Court sometimes, but carefully. The Left, rarely. The far Left, however, don't feel inhibited.

The reason I'm mentioning Hamoked is an e-mail they've sent out. It wasn't meant for me, but e-mails have the habit of washing up at strange shores. This one is an attempt to recruit a writer for their website. They've got eight lines of necessary qualifications, most of them just what you'd expect (English and Hebrew writing abilities, legal background, that sort of thing). Yet it's the first qualification which is telling:
מחויבות מוצקה לנושא זכויות אדם, לרבות במצבים של התנגשות בין זכויות אדם לצרכי ביטחון
High commitment to human rights, especially in cases of conflicts between human rights and security issues.

If you accept that the right to life is the highest right possible, that's a strange requirement. A higher commitment to human rights than to the defense of the top human right. Which isn't to say that there can never be a conflict between contradictory rights, and it's not even to say that there can never be cases where the security professionals fail to balance the varying considerations in a satisfactory way. There can be, which is why an organization such as Hamoked is legitimate, even necessary. Who watches the watchmen is always a legitimate issue.

But that's not what the ad requires. It seeks only people who automatically assume that rights are distinct from, and more important than, considerations of security. This, in a country surrounded by enemies with a century-old track record of eagerness to harm civilians.

Odd, isn't it.
Originally posted by Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations

A Small and Weak Country

A Small and Weak Country

What happens to a small and weak country, when it tries to move in a direction the neighbors don't like, and it must rely on its powerful friends to protect it?

It's not a nice place to be. Ask Georgia.

Better to be not weak, and not dependent on friends, no matter how nice they are. Ask Israel.
Originally posted by Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations

Choosing a Speech

Choosing a Speech

Once I finally found time this morning I had to choose. There were two speeches in the US yesterday, I could most likely find both on You-Tube: but which to prefer?

To be honest, it wasn't much of a dilemma.The fellow on the West Coast is much the more cool of the two, and also has a proven record of (sometimes) changing things in the world; the fellow on the East Coast has indeed given a handful of important speeches in his day, and if this was of that class I'd surely hear about it sooner or later. So I went to the one by Jobs, not the one about jobs.

It was a fine show, obviously. But this new Thingy he introduced: what's it for? It doesn't make phone calls. I can't blog from it. I can read books on it, they say - but I've got shelves full of unread books already, and each visit to Amazon makes that predicament worse. How is a new gadget going to solve the real problem, lack of time? It's the very best viewer for surfing the Web, he tells me. OK, I certainly spend far too much time on the Web.The thing is, much of what I spend time doing is somehow interactive. I read and respond. I read, download and later process. I collect stuff and blog about it, or integrate into other things I'm doing, using other software tools such as scrupulously weren't mentioned in the speech yesterday. Not "apps", whatever they are; I mean real programs. I do lots of thinking while leaning on software, and lot's of talking about it, too; he never mentioned the possibility of doing a presentation from his new toy, and anyway, why would it be better than the toys I've already got. And what's this i-affectation, anyway? iPod, iPhone, iPad: enough already. Better to go back to apples.

Did I choose to watch the wrong speech, pray tell?
Originally posted by Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations

Seen in Jerusalem

Seen in Jerusalem

Three scenes:

I've pointed out repeatedly in the past that Israeli hospitals disprove all the stereotypes about ethnic relations in this country. Well, yesterday I spent a few hours at one of our local colleges (not the university). A three-building campus chock full of young people busy learning so as to do better in life. I saw religious Jews, including many head-covered married young women; secular Arabs (in jeans), secular Jews (in jeans), and religious Arabs (more severe head-cover than the married Jews); I heard Hebrew, Arabic, Russian, French, and American; and the halls were even more crowded than necessary because small roving teams of art or photography students seemed to be engaged in some project which called for them to be filming life between classes. The teams seemed to be as multi-ethnic as everyone else in the halls.

This morning I sat for a bit in a hallway at one of our medical centers (not a hospital) waiting for some document. Behind a counter were two young women, one secular (jeans...) and the other haredi, head cover and all (a wig. Young married haredi women, unlike young married mdern orthodox women, eschew hats, scarfs, kerchiefs and so on, and stick with the appearance of natural hair. See if you can figure out that one). By and by a 40-ish doctor came out of his office and started chatting with the Haredi woman:
Dr: I hear they're sending you to some course?
Haredi woman, grinning: Yes! I'm going to study administration!
Dr: And what will you do with it once you've studied?
She: Maybe I'll run this department.
Dr: Or another department, elsewhere. Lily took that course, and now she runs the branch in French Hill.
She: And then, who knows, maybe I'll run this entire organization [which is large. What the Americans would call an HMO].
Dr. Well, I don't think they'll let you run it, that's a slot that a physician will always fill, but you could be the top administrator, would that be good enough?
She: Yes, that's a goal I'd aim at.

Third story: Earlier today in one of the warrens of 19-century vintage small apartments and narrow alleys, south of Jaffa street. No cars can get in here, and very few pedestrians pass through. Two very old men are sitting in the perfect winter sun that Jerusalem sometime has in January, one talking animatedly and his friend leaning towards him and listening earnestly. As I pass -
I've never raised my hand at her. But if you listen to her, I've ruined the family, I'm the cause of all evil, everything's my fault. So I said to her, You know what? I'm a bad man, my intentions were always to ....
That's all I can tell you about him.
Originally posted by Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations

Being Antisemitic is Hard Work

Being Antisemitic is Hard Work

Jessica Montell, boss of B'tselem, has written Mondoweis to say that she's not certain there was an explicit Israeli intention to harm the populace of Gaza, but that an independent investigation would tell us more than we presently know. And of course, intention or not, Israel did all sorts of awful things in Gaza.

The readers of Mondoweiss don't like this line of reasoning, ultimately saying that no Israeli investigation will ever tell the truth, and Montell herself is too Israeli for their taste, and too squeamish (I'm paraphrasing).

I've got my issues with Montell and her small corner of Israeli society. Yet they are rational, facts matter to them, and they wish Israel would do better according to their lights. While the result of their actions is too often to supply false fodder to Israel's enemies, that's not their putative goal.

This means there are fundamental differences between them and the Mondoweiss part of humanity. The Mondoweiss gang imbibes a diet of untruths, outright lies, warped interpretations and malice. It's not possible to argue with them, because their assumptions, methods and frames of references are constructed so as to strengthen their opinions, irrespective of reality. They're so far out that a radical Israeli such as Montell is ultimately unacceptable to them, since she does care about facts, and does think that Israel can be saved from itself. The Mondoweiss gang don't think Israel can be saved from anything because in their minds, Israel is the problem. The root cause of Israel's evil is that Israel is evil.

The Mondoweiss community puts daily efforts into maintaining their edifice of malice. They've got a detailed narrative of Israeli evil, and they're constantly tinkering with it, bolstering it, adding new layers, incorporating events as they happen (or rather, incorporating a false version as reality does something else). They work hard at it. For these people, hating the Jewish state isn't a passing interest or an idle whim. It's a passion; it's a collective effort; it's a cult.
Originally posted by Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations

Love of the Land: Ending the illusion of peace in our time

Ending the illusion of peace in our time


Isi Leibler
Candidly Speaking from Jerusalem
28 January '10

It is high time that we ceased indulging in theatrics and spoke the truth. We all desperately yearn for peace, and the vast majority of us do not wish to rule over Arabs. If we could convince ourselves that our neighbors would commit to peaceful coexistence, we would make major sacrifices. But alas, the prospects for a comprehensive settlement in the near future are virtually zero.

Since the Oslo Accords, we have remained in a state of denial, refusing to reconcile with the reality that the duplicitous Palestinian leaders, then Yasser Arafat and today Mahmoud Abbas, rather than seeking to create an independent state, were utilizing terror and diplomacy to dismember the Jewish state in stages. We ignored the relevance of Arafat’s repeated call to his people to heed the passage in the Koran relating to the prophet Muhammad consummating the Al Hudaibiya Treaty with the Koreishi Jews and subsequently reneging and killing them. The message clearly signaled that agreements with Jews and non-Muslims may be violated.



Our passion to achieve peace blinded successive governments into accepting the false premise that Palestinian leaders were peace partners, and repeatedly chant the idiotic mantra that the peace process was irreversible and that “peace in our time” was achievable. This cost the lives of thousands in terror attacks and generated successive wars. In conveying this charade to the world at large, we encouraged the false belief that our conflict with the Arabs was a struggle between two peoples to divide land. We maintained this nonsense even after Arafat and Abbas rebuffed Ehud Barak and Ehud Olmert, who had offered them virtually all the territory previously occupied by Jordan and Egypt.

(Read full article)

Love of the Land: Ending the illusion of peace in our time
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