Saturday, 20 February 2010

Detective Comics Covers - 10 (# 132 to 146) - BATMAN

Israel Matzav: J Street founder's Obama payoff

J Street founder's Obama payoff

President Obama has named J Street co-founder Alan Solomont, who was also the Treasurer of the Democratic National Committee during the Clinton administration, the new United States ambassador to Spain. The appointment is subject to confirmation by the US Senate (Hat Tip: Rick Moran).

The nomination continues Obama's pattern of rewarding major players in financing his campaign -- which broke every presidential fund-raising record in the book -- with plum diplomatic posts.

Solomont, a long-time Democratic money man, bundled at least $500,000 in contributions for Obama, and Solomont and his family gave nearly $230,000 themselves to candidates in the 2008 election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

He is a Weston investor-philanthropist who runs Solomont Bailis Ventures and serves on several boards, including Boston Medical Center, the Kennedy Library, and the Corporation for National and Community Service, which oversees AmeriCorps and other national service programs.

Obama pledged during the campaign to reduce the number of political appointees and boost the number of career diplomats serving as American envoys abroad, but his selections so far have been heavy on major fund-raisers for coveted posts, including the ambassadorships in London, Paris, and Tokyo.

By the way, if you read down to the biographies of that article, you will see that he also served on the board of the New Israel Fund.

What could go wrong?

Israel Matzav: J Street founder's Obama payoff

Detective Comics Covers - 9 (# 117 to 131) - BATMAN

Detective Comics Covers - 8 (# 102 to 116) - BATMAN

Israel Matzav: J Street's new 'pro-Israel' partners

J Street's new 'pro-Israel' partners

J Street continues to define down the meaning of "pro-Israel." Last Sunday, I reported that J Street was bringing five members of the Hamas 54 to Israel. When they got here, Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon refused to meet with them. Now, Martin Solomon reports that the J Street mission is being carried out in cooperation with Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP), one of the leading organizations advocating BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) against Israel (Hat Tip: Noah Pollak).

Read the whole thing. J Street deserves to be ostracized by the entire Jewish community. They are indeed the enemy from within.

Israel Matzav: J Street's new 'pro-Israel' partners

Love of the Land: The Fatah fairy tale

The Fatah fairy tale

Israel's is the only government that can force the rest of the world to recognize that Abbas is not an ally.

Caroline Glick
Column One
20 February '10

Fahmi Shabaneh is an odd candidate for dissident status. Shabaneh is a Jerusalemite who joined the Palestinian Authority’s General Intelligence Service in 1994.

Working for PA head Mahmoud Abbas and GIS commander Tawfik Tirawi, Shabaneh was tasked with investigating Arab Jerusalemites suspected of selling land to Jews. Such sales are a capital offense in the PA. Since 1994 scores of Arabs have been the victims of extrajudicial executions after having been fingered by the likes of Shabaneh.

A few years ago, Abbas and Tirawi gave Shabaneh a new assignment. They put him in charge of a unit responsible for investigating corrupt activities carried out by PA officials. They probably assumed a team player like Shabaneh understood what he was supposed to do.

Just as Abbas’s predecessor, Yasser Arafat, reportedly had full dossiers on all of his underlings and used damning information to keep them loyal to him, so Abbas probably believed that Shabaneh’s information was his to use or ignore as he saw fit.

For a while, Abbas’s faith was well-placed. Shabaneh collected massive amounts of information on senior PA officials detailing their illegal activities. These activities included the theft of hundreds of millions of dollars in international aid; illegal seizure of land and homes; and monetary and sexual extortion of their fellow Palestinians.

Over time, Shabaneh became disillusioned with his boss. Abbas appointed him to his job around the time he was elected PA head in 2005. Abbas ran on an anti-corruption platform. Shabaneh’s information demonstrated that Abbas presided over a criminal syndicate posing as a government. And yet rather than arrest his corrupt, criminal associates, Abbas promoted them.

Abbas continued promoting his corrupt colleagues even after Hamas’s 2006 electoral victory. That win owed to a significant degree to the widespread public revulsion with Fatah’s rampant corruption.

(Read full article)

Love of the Land: The Fatah fairy tale

Israel Matzav: Artists4Israel paints Israel!

Artists4Israel paints Israel!

If you see this on Twitter, please retweet. If you're a blogger, please link to the itinerary and/or the home page.

Artists4Israel is coming to paint Israel from April 24 to May 2. They will be in Sderot, Kiryat Gat, Tel Aviv, Herzliya and Jerusalem (inside scoop: I suggested they should go to Tzfat as well and they said that they are going to run another trip later in the year that will focus on the north).

The web page with the itinerary for this particular trip is here. The home page is here. We're looking forward to seeing you!

Israel Matzav: Artists4Israel paints Israel!~

Love of the Land: Re: A Dubai Victory

Re: A Dubai Victory

Max Boot
19 February '10

I’m with Noah Pollak. I fail to see how the rub-out of Hamas leader Muhammad al-Mabhouh in Dubai was a debacle and embarrassment for Israel, as so widely proclaimed. That is the premise of this Wall Street Journal article by Israeli analyst Ronen Bergman. He calls the mission “a diplomatic nightmare for Israel”: “The sovereignty of Dubai was violated, and the passports of four European countries were used for the purpose of committing a crime. Several rows Israel can ill-afford are currently brewing with England, Germany and France.”

True, but those rows will blow over. There is a certain ritualistic, not to say hypocritical, aspect to these controversies — since there is little doubt that intelligence operatives of all the countries involved use false passports on occasion. Sometimes even — gasp – they use false passports purportedly issued by other countries. Were Mossad agents supposed to show up in Dubai using Israeli passports?

The bigger point is that Israeli operatives succeeded in killing a dangerous foe and made a clean getaway. Even their identities remain unknown, despite the posting of surveillance video.

(Read full post)

Love of the Land: Re: A Dubai Victory
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