Sunday, July 31, 2011

Mideast Media Sampler 07/31/2011

From DG:

1) Who wrote it?

A) Israel’s conservative government is determined to crush a growing push by Palestinians and their supporters for boycotts, disinvestment and sanctions against Israel. Since last year, many Israeli artists and intellectuals, as well international artists, have canceled performances and programs in Israel and the West Bank to protest the settlements. The bill’s sponsor, Zeev Elkin, said his concern was that the calls for a boycott “increasingly have come from within our own midst.”

Friday, July 29, 2011

Is Obama Finally Getting Tougher With Iran?

That is the position of an editorial in the Washington Times: Obama gets tough on Tehran:
The Obama administration is going where no White House has gone before: directly accusing Iran of supporting al Qaeda. This long overdue move to get tough on Tehran deserves to be applauded.

Breivik Is Not A Conservative--Nor Is He Insane

Considering the haste with which the Left jumped to accuse Conservatives of responsibility for Breivik's terrorist attack in Norway, it is no surprise that we see the media again jumping to claim that Breivik is insane.

David Pryce-Jones disagrees, writing that Breivik is in fact More Dangerous Than Insane:
Anders Behring Breivik, the Norwegian mass-murderer, the pundits and psychiatrists are quick to say, is insane. Boris Johnson, the mayor of London and one of the most intelligent men in public life, considers that there is nothing to study in Breivik’s mind. That seems altogether too easy a dismissal.

Video: Latma--The tent protest and the poor, Israel apologizes to everyone

This week, Latma has timely skits on the protests in Israel and Turkey's demand of an apology from Israel for the Mavi Marmara

Here is the video:

Erekat Threatens To Dismantle PA--You Call That A Threat!?

Now there's a question: should the Palestinian Authority be dismantled?

Apparently, some think that is an actual question--take Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, for instance:
Erekat said that if the United States continued to stymie the Palestinian efforts to get a state recognized by the United Nations, the Palestinian Authority should be dismantled.

"[PA President Mahmoud Abbas] should throw the keys in their faces," Erekat said.

Arlene Kushner On: UNRWA, A Palestinian State, Peres, And Hizbollah

From Arlene Kushner:

July 29, 2011
"UNRWA and More"
There's a great deal about UNRWA in the news these days, and I have no doubt that I'll return to this subject again before long.  Now I want, first, to share a link to my latest report on the subject. This is more of a mini-report (my major reports can run 30 or 40 pages) -- an overview, with more information to follow. The subject: UNRWA's connection with Hamas.
In Gaza, members of a Hamas-affiliated group, the Islamic Bloc, go right into UNRWA schools and do programming with the goal of recruiting the next generation of members for Hamas.
Then, an article of mine that has just come out in Middle East Quarterly, which takes a close look at the anti-Israel statements of key UNRWA personnel:
I am sooo tired of Mahmoud Abbas.  So tired of hearing of his conflicting statements and outright lies, and so tired of reporting them to you, when you are likely sooo tired of them. as well.  Thus I will allude only briefly to the two following items:

Muslims In The IDF--It's Not Just The Druse

Recently, while driving by the Israeli settlement of Nokdim (where Avigdor Lieberman lives), I picked up a hitchhiking soldier. We started chatting, and I asked the soldier his name. "Mustafa," he said. "You're a Muslim?" I asked. "Yes," he answered, "from Haifa."
Aryeh Tepper, Minorities in the IDF, in Jewish Ideas Daily, July 27, 2011

And that is how the article begins.

One of the interesting points the article deals with is the different groups of Muslims who serve in the Israeli army:
After all, in the eyes of many Arab Israelis—Palestinians, according to their own self-definition—Ameer and his fellow Muslim soldiers in the IDF are nothing less than traitors.

Obviously, this attitude is not held among all minority groups.

Anne Bayefsky: UN Negotiators in New York Produce New Durban III Outrages

For Immediate Release:
July 28, 2011

Contact:  Anne Bayefsky
(917) 488-1558
UN Negotiators in New York Produce New Durban III Outrages 

This article by Anne Bayefsky appears today on Fox News.

Member states of the U.N. General Assembly are busy hammering out how to slam Israel and restrict human rights like free speech at “Durban III” – the racist “anti-racism” event to be held in New York on Sept. 22.

With the recent pull-outs by the Czech Republic, Italy and the Netherlands added to the previously declared boycotts by the United States, Canada and Israel, negotiations at U.N. Headquarters continued Thursday over how offensive the final declaration of Durban III can become without more countries following suit.

Mideast Media Sampler 07/29/2011

From DG:
1) Pariah

Elder of Ziyon writes about his Twitter exchange with Jeffrey Goldberg. He concludes:

That thread is continuing as I write this, but it is not an avenue that I think is too fruitful. The fear of Israel becoming a pariah state is an important topic, though, and one that I would like to treat fairly - which means, not on Twitter.

As soon as I find the time.
When I read the exchange - and before I reached Elder's conclusion - I was bothered by Goldberg's use of the term "pariah."

Conference: While Six Million Lived


"While Six Million Lived: America and the Jewish Refugee Crisis, 1933-1939" is the title of the ninth national conference of The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies, to be held at Fordham University Law School, 140 West 62 St., New York City, on Sunday, September 18, 2011, from 10 am to 5 pm.

Scholars will unveil their new research on opportunities for rescue of European Jewry in the years leading up to the Holocaust: Prof. David Wyman on the 1930s search for havens; Dr. Rafael Medoff on FDR, racism, and immigration; Prof. Stephen Norwood on relations between American universities and the Nazis; Prof. Laurel Leff on the U.S. medical community and Jewish refugee doctors; and a panel of prominent cartoonists discussing political cartoons in the U.S. press in the 1930s. Plus a special tribute to the residents of the Virgin Islands for their offer of haven in 1939, with remarks by Virgin Islands Congresswoman Donna Christensen. Registration $25; $15 for students. Includes a kosher box lunch. To register, call 202-434-8994 or visit and click on "Donate" on the home page.

See the flyer:

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Hillary Clinton: Please, Please Let Us Waste US Taxpayer $$ On Incompetent Governments And Terrorists!

The net effect of these and other restrictions in the bill would be debilitating to my efforts to carry out a considered foreign policy and diplomacy, and to use foreign assistance strategically to that end.
Hillary Clinton in letter to House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.)

Clinton is referring to would limit US funding of corrupt governments and those which incorporate terrorist groups--and Clinton is threatening to veto that bill:
Clinton also said the bill would ban economic assistance to governments that don't meet anti-corruption criteria, which she said "has the potential to affect a staggering number of needy aid recipients."

Video: Holocaust historians debate: Could more Jews have been saved?

From the joint Wyman Institute-Yad Vashem Parley marking formation of activist Bergson Group reveals stark differences -- even 70 years later.

The debate centers on the Bergson Group and whether their achievements have be exaggerated.

Back in 2007, Rafael Medoff--director of The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies--wrote an article about The Bergson Group vs The Holocaust - And Jewish Leaders vs. Bergson and Mordechai Twerskey--who narrates the video--wrote an article yesterday on Historians debate: Could more Jews have been saved?

Here is the video:

Is Abbas Trying To Incite A Third Intifada?

Abbas is proposing a third Intifada:
Abbas, addressing a Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) meeting, reiterated his decision to seek full U.N. membership for a state of Palestine alongside Israel, a diplomatic move resulting from paralysis in the U.S.-backed peace process.

"In this coming period, we want mass action, organised and coordinated in every place," Abbas said. "This is a chance to raise our voices in front of the world and say that we want our rights."

Obama Administration Unsuccessful So Far To Buy Israeli Opinion

An article in Haaretz today reports: U.S. report recommends ending loan guarantees to Israel at end of 2011

Besides the fact that another article from Haarezt reports Israel doesn't see U.S. limiting loan guarantee--I thought this part was interest
The Tel Aviv embassy faces intense challenges, generated by Israel's current government, negative public opinion toward President Obama, a sensitive political environment and a vibrant media scene, the report says. 
It finds that the embassy's annual public relations budget, intended to influence public opinion in Israel, is about $7 million a year, or roughly NIS 25 million.
Gee, I wonder if the US embassy tries this in the Arab countries in the Middle East...

Video: Palestinian Refugees - Human Rights Denied In Arab Countries

“The fact that there are these refugees is the direct consequence of the act of the Arab states in opposing partition and the Jewish state. The Arab states agreed upon this policy unanimously and they must share in the solution of the problem." – Emile Ghoury, secretary of the Palestinian Arab Higher Committee.
Beirut Telegraph 9/6/1948.
The London Telegraph, 8.48)


The most potent factor [in the flight of Palestinians] was the announcements made over the air by the Arab-Palestinian Higher Executive, urging all Haifa Arabs to quit... It was clearly intimated that Arabs who remained in Haifa and accepted Jewish protection would be regarded as renegades." --
London Economist Oct. 2, 1948

The fact the Arab countries are responsible for the Arab refugees has not resulted in their taking responsibility for the enormous suffering they caused as described in this video by FreeMiddleEast

Palestinian Refugees: An ongoing human rights scandal. Join the call for an end to the Palestinian refugee crisis. A betrayal artificially created by Middle Eastern governments for over 60 years.

Here is the video:

Book For Kids: "How To Build Your Own Country"--Hey Abbas, Are You Listening?

My 11 year old daughter has this book and is already holding elections for president--running against her 3 year old brother in a tight race.

Someone should really get a copy to Abbas as soon as possible and the best part of this book is that it does not require you to go to the UN!

According to the description of "How to Build Your Own Country":

Palestinian Authority: We Will Pay Terrorists As Long As US Taxpayers Provide The Cash

Palestinian Media Watch presented a report to members of Congress on how the Palestinian Authority squanders the donations they ask from other countries--using it to pay Palestinian terrorists in Israeli prisons

Here is a summary of that report, followed by an embedded copy of the report itself.

PA Pays Monthly Salaries to Terrorists - Essential Facts

1. New PA law enacts payment of monthly salaries to terrorists in Israeli prisons:
A law signed and published in the official Palestinian Authority Registry in April 2011 puts all Palestinians and Israeli Arabs imprisoned in Israel for terror crimes on the PA payroll to receive a monthly salary from the PA. [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, April 15, 2011] This new law called PA Government Resolution of 2010, numbers 21 and 23, formalizes what has long been a PA practice.

Mideast Media Sampler 07/28/2011

From DG:
1) About that compassionate release

I could find no editorial in the New York Times from the time that Megrahi was released, however it ran two op-eds, both favoring his release, one by Garrison Keillor:

Killings in Norway Spotlight New York Times in U.S.

We are fortunate that The New York Times, as usual, was quick to defend us against the threat of encroaching Conservatism--this time by revealing that in his manifesto, terrorist Anders Breivik refers to Conservatives, with all of the obvious implications.

But now Anne Coulter reveals that as it turns out, The Old Gray Lady was just being modest in not reporting that New York Times Reader Kills Dozens in Norway:
The New York Times wasted no time in jumping to conclusions about Anders Behring Breivik, the Norwegian who staged two deadly attacks in Oslo last weekend, claiming in the first two paragraphs of one story that he was a "gun-loving," "right-wing," "fundamentalist Christian," opposed to "multiculturalism."

Barry Rubin: Palestinian “Moderate” (He Is In Relative Terms) Shows Why Real Peace is Impossible At Present

by Barry Rubin
Nabil Shaath has given a fascinating and insightful interview that is well worth analyzing. But first let’s take a look at who Shaath is.

Supposedly, he is the archetypal Palestinian moderate. There was a time when the Western media ridiculed the Israeli declaration that he was a secret Fatah member. When Israel agreed to negotiate with non-PLO Palestinians, the PLO put his name forward although it knew, of course, that he was no such thing. Peace processors ridiculed Israel’s refusal to accept him.

Since 1994, he has held several high positions. He has been credibly accused, by Fatah militants who criticized Yasir Arafat’s corruption, of taking a lot of Palestinian Authority money for himself and his family.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Are Iran And Turkey Squaring Off Against Each Other On Syria?

An article on Fox News reports that Iran Warns Turkey to Butt Out of Syria.

That in itself is no big surprise. After all, Turkey has been warning Syria that it was going to have to respond to the protesters' demands for peace and democracy.

Nor is it any surprise that Iran would come out in defense of Syria--the country that helps Iran provide weapons to Hezbollah in Lebanon. Besides, how many friends does Persian Iran have in the Arab world?

Still, take a look at a recently published article in the weekly magazine Sobh’eh Sadegh--controlled the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. The article, “Iran’s Serious Stance in the Face of Syrian Events" warns Turkey against the stance it is taking against Syria, at a time that Iran stands behind the Assad regime.

Iran's warning to Turkey is clear:

Walking Out On Wagner

[T]he decision of the Israel Chamber Orchestra sadly represents an act of moral failure and a disgraceful abandonment of solidarity with those who suffered unspeakable horrors by the purveyors of Wagner's banner.
Elan Steinberg, vice president of the American Gathering of Holocaust Survivors and their Descendants

All you have to do is read the first few paragraphs of the Wikipedia article on him to realize the quantity and quality of Wagner's prodigious work:
Wilhelm Richard Wagner (22 May 1813 – 13 February 1883) was a German composer, conductor, theatre director and essayist, primarily known for his operas (or "music dramas", as they were later called). Wagner's compositions, particularly those of his later period, are notable for their complex texture, rich harmonies and orchestration, and the elaborate use of leitmotifs: musical themes associated with individual characters, places, ideas or plot elements. Unlike most other opera composers, Wagner wrote both the music and libretto for every one of his stage works.

Looking For Israel-Lebanon Peace At The Hellfest Music Festival

I suppose peace has to start somewhere--so it may as well be with a Lebanese dancer holding a Lebanese flag next to an Israeli flag at the Hellfest music festival in France last month.

Two Ways US Taxes Help Support Palestinian Terrorism

Back in 2008, I wrote about how Andy McCarthy noticed our taxpayers money that goes to the PA finds its way back to the US:
Earlier this week, I noted with relief that the administration had announced it would not intervene in federal court on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, which is complaining about a $174 million judgment against it (and the PLO) for the terrorist murder of an American citizen. But of course, the president's virtually simultaneous decision to pay Fatah an extra $150M over Congress’s objection will just about make the PA whole — in the unlikely event they ever actually make any effort to pay the American victims. Thus, if it wasn't clear enough already, U.S. taxpayers are now also paying the fines imposed on Palestinians for their acts of terrorism against Americans. [emphasis his]
But not to worry: now the US helps out Palestinian terrorists even more directly: U.S. Pays Salaries to Palestinian Terrorists:

Mideast Media Sampler 07/27/2011

From DG:
1) Thank you for your sympathy during this dark time, but those people who want to kill you, they're not really so bad

One of the more shocking aftermaths of Friday's terrorism in Norway is the response of Norway's ambassador to Israel, Svein Sevje. Ambassador Sejve told Ma'ariv:

Svein Sevje said in an Israeli newspaper interview Tuesday that while the Norwergian bomb and gun rampages that killed 76 people and Palestinian attacks should both be considered morally unacceptable, he wanted to "outline the similarity and the difference in the two cases."
Palestinians, the ambassador told Maariv, "are doing this because of a defined goal that is related to the Israeli occupation. There are elements of revenge against Israel and hatred of Israel. To this you can add the religious element to  their actions."

Let's Give Breivik And Bin Laden Equal Time

The point has been made, here as well as elsewhere, about the hypocrisy of those on the Left who decried the assumptions of the Right that Islamist extremists were behind the Norway terrorist attack, when they jumped to accuse Palin, the Tea Party and others of being the inspiration for the Giffords shooting.

Michael Rubin draws attention to two other double standards--one of them the Breivik/bin Laden double standard:

Barry Rubin: Norway Terror Attack: Lessons and Illusions

Once one gets beyond the polemics and clichés, there is a huge amount that could be learned from an honest discussion about the mass murders in Norway. Let’s look at some of them.

An editorial in the New York Daily News contains both valid points and dangerous silliness. It begins:
In his ravings, Anders Behring Breivik, confessed murdered of 76 people, repeats a familiar refrain: He killed to save his country, his continent and Western civilization itself from an attempted takeover by Islam.

The New York Times Gets Caught Editing Inconvenient Facts Out Of A "Pro-Palestinian" Story

At Pajamas Media, David Gerstman writes about The ‘Erase’ to Condemn Israel:

Israel’s parliament has passed a law against encouraging boycotts on Israel. Naturally, the parliamentary debate and the text of the bill itself were in Hebrew. Thus, the American news media get to explain what’s in the bill, why it was passed, and what it means. That’s where the problem arises. It also leads to an Internet age trick that tells volumes about how the American media operates nowadays. First, the background, then the rather shocking trick.
Fairly typical of coverage is the New York Times article by Isabel Kershner, headlined “Israel Bans Boycotts Against the State.” It casts the central conflict around the bill in these terms:
Critics and civil rights groups denounced the new law as antidemocratic and a flagrant assault on the freedom of expression and protest. The law’s defenders said it was a necessary tool in Israel’s fight against what they called its global delegitimization.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Syrian Protests Have Hezbollah In A Quandary

The unprecedented revolt threatening the government in Syria has placed key ally Hezbollah in a tight spot and prompted the Lebanese militant group to adopt a more measured attitude.

Hezbollah's margin of maneuver is currently very limited because the strategic Iran-Syria-Hezbollah axis is threatened by the revolt and this forces the group to act prudently
Paris-based Middle East expert Agnes Levallois, quoted in Daily Star, Hezbollah on edge in face of Syria revolt

Prudent is not a word I would ordinarily use to describe Hezbollah, but it might apply here. Hezbollah has apparently been caught off-guard by the protests in Syria, after apparently assuming that the Syrian regime would deal with it quickly.

Iran: Bringing The Arab Spring To...Peru?

Iran's Majlis speaker noted that the growing wave of Islamic Awakening has now spread all across the world, and US authorities cannot avert popular uprisings or dissuade people from pursuing their demands.
Iranian PressTV, 'West cannot divert Islamic Awakening'

OK, but who knew that the Arab Spring spread all the way to Peru!?

Iran sure does get around, doesn't it--you can always count on Iran to go wherever the terrorists are:

Barry Rubin: Escape from the Planet of the Airlines

With four suitcases, a guitar, three carry-ons and three cats (snarling at each other, well, Josie wasn’t snarling but the other two were) we were about to set off for Reagan Airport on the way back to Israel. The taxi was already outside.

Suddenly our wonderful travel agent, Ruth Sopher–if there is a travel agent medal of honor she earned it– called to warn us that our flight had been cancelled to NY. She pondered sending us through Atlanta to Tel Aviv but finally I asked about Baltimore airport and she found a flight.

So after a two-hour delay we set off–being sure to leave early–and went the 30 miles or so to the airport in a hard rain and heavy traffic. We got three trolleys (cost $15), packed everyone and everything aboard, stood in a long line (one woman who had apparently been on the same original flight flipped out and started screaming at the poor employee who was trying to explain to her that he’d moved her ahead of 30 other people). We got to the front–one of our bags was too heavy and we had to move stuff around and then pay $70 extra and got our ticket and advanced.

New Pro-Israel Blog: Free Palestine Now (Not Your Father's Pro-Israel Blog)

There is a new blog that you should take a look at: Free Palestine Now

Thus far featuring posts:

Despite Illegal Drugs And Counterfeit Money, Hamas Still Can't Make Ends Meet

Of course, no one is surprised that Abbas and his friends are suffering from an economic crisis. After all, the corruption and incompetence of the PA is well known.

Hezbollah has also been in the news because of its finances. Hezbollah has lost $1.4billion and can rely less and less on their sugar daddies in Iran.

And now it turns out that Hamas is feeling the economic crunch as well:

Gaza: Misuse of Weapons Kills Girl and Child--Injures 11 Others

Palestinian Centre for Human Rights
Press Release

Ref: 72/2011
Date: 24 July 2011
Time: 10:15 GMT

The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) is gravely concerned over the recurrence of incidents relating to violations of the right to life in the past two weeks due to the misuse of weapons and assaults on the rule of law in the Gaza Strip.  PCHR calls upon the government in Gaza to take necessary measures to ensure the non-recurrence of such incidents.

Arlene Kushner On: PA's UN Bid, Ahmed Tibi, The Apology And The Bell

From Arlene Kushner

July 25, 2011
"Zig and Zag"

Before I touch on this theme, I want to return just for a moment to the issue of perks for terrorists in our prisons.  It made the news a few days ago that Marwan Barghouti -- who is in the Hadarim prison, west of Netanya -- called for a million-person march of Palestinian Arabs when the UN vote on a state was taking place. I pondered then -- and a reader wrote to ask the same question -- how it was that he could get out the word this way and make headlines.  Barghouti is serving five life sentences and should never be heard from again.

Pigeonholing Anders Breivik: What He Is And What He Isn't

In the rush to put a label on the terrorist Anders Breivik, the loudest voices have been those of the Left wing, who are determined to pin the Conservative label on every act of violence.

J.E. Dyer writes about Anders Breivik, post-modern Crusader specifically about the man whom the Left is so eager to paint as a Conservative.

Not only a Conservative, but a Christian Conservative.

A Christian?

Mideast Media Sampler 07/26/2011

From DG:
1) The Times on Norway

There are no words strong enough to condemn the massacres in Norway committed by Anders Behring Breivik. He is an evil man.

Still there's something troubling about the coverage of this evil by the New York Times.

The title of the news report says a lot, Killings in Norway Spotlight Anti-Muslim Thought in U.S.

BBC Promotes 'Radical' Preacher In Documentary


Monday 25 July 2011

 07873833322 –

A recent BBC documentary on the Life of Mohammed, the Prophet of Islam, has featured a known ‘radical’ preacher, Abdur-Raheem Green.

Green, a convert to Islam, is known for appearing at campuses across the country, infamously stating that society pressures ‘our daughters to get degrees, to become doctors or engineers’

Monday, July 25, 2011

Barry Rubin: NATO Allies, Egyptian “Democracy” Become Main Weapons’ Suppliers for Hamas

As I predicted in early February, it is now clear that Egypt no longer tries seriously to stop weapons and terrorists and money from flowing into the Hamas arsenals in the Gaza Strip. Western newspaper headline statements by the military that it will keep the treaty with Israel but Egypt is already an ally of Hamas.

UNRWA Having Problems--Prefers Palestinians Focus On Israel

UNRWA seems to be having problems--and the Arabs are blaming them:
The UN agency for Palestinian refugees was forced to close its offices in Gaza City last week as protesters blockaded its entrances, angry at the slashing of UNRWA's emergency programs.

Demonstrators physically blocked the entrances of the agency's offices with large vehicles after UNRWA removed tens of thousands of Palestinian refugees from its food distribution list.
So what is a cash-strapped UN agency to do? Blame Israel, of course--as UNRWA spokesman Chris Gunness makes clear:

Video: 10 Unknown West Bank Facts

From Stand With Us:
In only 2-minutes you'll learn the history of the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) that you have probably never heard.

Iran Thinks Arab Spring Is Swell, As Long As It's Not In Iran

Iran's rhetoric is reaching a crescendo again, but the what are they saying.

Here we go again, as Iran praises the Arab Spring which it has made a point of quashing in their own country:
Iran's Majlis speaker noted that the growing wave of Islamic Awakening has now spread all across the world, and US authorities cannot avert popular uprisings or dissuade people from pursuing their demands.

Barry Rubin: The Very Low Value of International Guarantees; The Very Low Standards of the "International Community"

This post was written by Barry Rubin -- and is reposted here with his permission.

By Barry Rubin

Israel is constantly urged to put its trust in the international community, an idea that hasn't worked out too well in the past. Now the UN special envoy for Lebanon has given another reason why Israel shouldn't take risks and make concessions based on the hope of support from international guarantees.

While he did about the best he could given his situation, Michael Williams, the British diplomat working for the UN in this job, said the UN-sponsored ceasefire that ended the Hizballah-Israel war in 2006 is holding up "very well."

Norway: New York Times Swings And Misses

From the very start, you know the New York Times is going after the Right wing: Killings in Norway Spotlight Anti-Muslim Thought in U.S.

That's right--forget about any lesson to be learned in Norway from the terror attacks.
Let's see what it allows to say about the Right wing in the US:
The man accused of the killing spree in Norway was deeply influenced by a small group of American bloggers and writers who have warned for years about the threat from Islam, lacing his 1,500-page manifesto with quotations from them, as well as copying multiple passages from the tract of the Unabomber.

Hamas And The Salafists: When Terrorists Are Terrorized

[R]ecent events, including the kidnapping and killing of an Italian activist by a local Salafist cell and the Salafists’ repeated defiance of Hamas’ restrictions on rocket fire against Israel, have highlighted the
precarious and tense state of relations between the Hamas government and the violent Salafist groups operating within the Strip.
Benedetta Berti, Hamas’ Internal Challenge: The Political and Ideological Impact of Violent Salafist Groups in Gaza

I suppose it is difficult to feel any sympathy for Hamas and their problems with the Salafists--but I just can't help feeling there must be a Yiddish expression that sums up the whole thing.

While the Salafists are normally peaceful, during the past 6 years or so, new Salafist cells have emerged that are anything but:

Mideast Media Sampler 07/25/2011

From DG:
1) " More widely and accurately understood"

From an interview of Alan Solow by Shmuel Rosner (h/t my father)

2. Is it possible that this isn't just about PR, but rather that the President pursues policies that some Jewish voters don't feel comfortable with? Do you see some sections of Jewish voters that you have no chance of convincing because of such policies - other than those Jewish voters who did not support President Obama to begin with?

Norway Terrorist Attack, Giffords Shooting, Bring Out The Worst In The Left

The same Left that jumped to blame the shooting of Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords on terrorist groups such as Fox News, Right wing bloggers and Tea Party activists--now demands an apology from the Right Wing for daring to consider that those nice Islamist Jihadists had anything to do with the Norway terrorist attack.

Elder of Ziyon detects A bit of hypocrisy by Glenn Greenwald, who praises one particular article that:
expertly traces and sets forth exactly how the "Muslims-did-it" myth was manufactured and then disseminated yesterday to the worldwide media, which predictably repeated it with little skepticism.

Israel's Gas Discovery: Lebanon May Be The Least Of The Problems

Trillions of cubic feet of natural gas have been discovered in several titanic fields off Israel's coastline. They promise both an abundance of domestic energy, as much as 200 years' worth by some estimates, and the possibility of the country's becoming a major energy exporter. The total value of the gas is currently worth close to a half-trillion dollars. On the macro level, and from the point of view of ensuring the country's national security, the prospective boon is almost unimaginably beneficial. The question, as always, is what is entailed in realizing it, and how to mitigate any attendant social and political costs.
Alex Joffe, Fueling Israel's Future, July 21, 2011

Only in Israel could the prospect of extracting trillions of cubic feet of natural gas have a downside.

Alex Joffe, a research scholar with the Institute for Jewish and Community Research, writes that there is an array of different problems posed by the prospect of Israel taking advantage of its new gas find:

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Can Erdogan Become A Friend Of Israel? 11 Reasons Say No

In describing why Apologizing to Turkey Would Undermine Israel’s Interests Twice Over, Evelyn Gordon gives some background on how Erdogan has been undermining Israel:

Islamist Extremists Argue In Favor Of The Jewish State Of Israel!

Let's face it: not only are Islamists in Great Britain providing arguments for the continued existence of Israel--these Islamists are giving arguments for the Jewish state of Israel:
"In the last 50 years, the United Kingdom has transformed beyond recognition. What was once a predominantly Christian country has now been overwhelmed by a rising Muslim population, which seeks to preserve its Islamic identity, and protect itself from the satanic values of the tyrannical British government.

Barry Rubin: Thinking About the Terrorist Murders in Norway

I don’t think this terrorist attack in Norway was a jihadist conspiracy nor is this guy a secret Islamist terrorist. He is clearly right-wing and anti-Muslim, lashing out against forces (the government and Labor Party) who he holds responsible for the growing “Islamization” or multiculturalism in Norway. The evidence also indicates, by the way, that he was not motivated by Christian religious sentiment. He looks at Christianity as an outsider.

Should we argue that such people don’t exist? Should we argue that hatred of Muslims cannot provoke terrorism? Should we claim that you cannot be a “right-wing terrorist” just as one can be a “left-wing terrorist?” Of course not.

Barry Rubin: What Went Wrong: Analyzing How the Left Hijacked Liberalism and the Democratic Party

It is remarkable how little serious research and analysis there has been about the political earthquake that has shaken American politics out of all recognition.

Earthquake? That’s a serious understatement. The situation is more akin to the scariest scenarios of global climate change analysts: large areas of land have disappeared under water, formerly productive farmland has been turned into desert, and so on.

Arlene Kushner on Durban Boycott, Annexing Judea And Samaria

From Arlene Kushner:

July 23, 2011
Motzei Shabbat (After Shabbat) 
"Slow Progress" 
Before discussing news tonight, I want to share information about a group in Jerusalem called "Keep Jerusalem-Im Eshkachech" which is dedicated to sharing information about the importance of a Jerusalem united under Israeli sovereignty. 

Mideast Media Sampler 07/24/2011

From DG:
1) More regrets for Durban III

Anne Bayefsky reports that Czechoslovakia has decided that it will not participate in the Durban III "anti-racism" conference this fall. (via memeorandum)

The Czech Republic’s move comes three days after U.N. negotiators quietly circulated a draft of the final declaration that will be adopted at the conclusion of Durban III. Although the writing had been on the wall for a very long time, the alarm bells could no longer be ignored. The “political declaration” focuses particularly on what it calls “victims of racism.” And the Durban Declaration emanating from South Africa names only one state victimizer – Israel. The Palestinian people are listed as victims of racism.

The Zionism-is-racism mantra, the Durban formula being its most recent incarnation, has been circulating around the U.N. for decades. It is the cornerstone of the effort to delegitimize the Jewish state and invoke lethal politics when other weaponry falls short. These days, the campaign is headquartered in a working group of the U.N. General Assembly that is tasked with squaring the circle: reaffirming the contemptible message of the Durban Declaration under a veil of human rights gibberish. 
Britain and France are still going.

Anne Bayefsky: Italy And Netherlands Join Czechs In Durban Boycott

For Immediate Release:
July 23, 2011

Contact:  Anne Bayefsky
(917) 488-1558

Italy and The Netherlands Join Canada, Israel,
U.S. and the Czech Republic in Boycotting UN's Durban III 
Italy and The Netherlands announced over the weekend that they will not take part in the notorious United Nations Durban III meeting scheduled for September 22, 2011 in New York City.

Anne Bayefsky: Czechs Pull Out of Durban III

For Immediate Release:
July 23, 2011

Contact:  Anne Bayefsky
(917) 488-1558

Czechs Pull Out of Durban III - Where are other Democracies? 

This article by Anne Bayefsky appears today on The Weekly Standard.
On Friday, the Czech Republic became the latest country to pull out of the upcoming U.N. “anti-racism” extravaganza known as Durban III. Canada, Israel, and the United States have already given thumbs down to the event, which the U.N. is bringing to U.S. shores on September 22, 2011. While Americans will be mourning the 10th anniversary of 9/11, the United Nations in New York will be “commemorating” the 10th anniversary of the first Durban conference – an outpouring of intolerance and xenophobia.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Gerald Steinberg: BDS And Limited Boycotts--A Distinction Without A Difference?

The following article by Gerald Steinberg appears on Bitter Lemons, and is reposted here with permission.

Gerald M. Steinberg
July 21, 2011

Since independence in 1948, Israel has been confronted by boycott campaigns, beginning with the Arab League's extensive embargo that continues in many countries. The objective of this form of warfare was and remains the rejection of the sovereign Jewish nation-state, regardless of boundaries.

In 2001, the Non-Governmental Organizations Forum of the United Nation's Durban "World Conference against Racism" expanded this campaign in the form of the BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) movement. The NGOs at Durban, including global powers such as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, adopted a final declaration, sponsored by Palestinians and written during a preparatory conference in Tehran, calling for "the imposition of mandatory and comprehensive sanctions and embargoes, the full cessation of all links (diplomatic, economic, social, aid, military cooperation, and training) between all states and Israel".

Barry Rubin: Syria: New Phase, How Long Will the Assad Regime Last?

Barry Rubin's posts now appear on Pajamas Media:
The new line of discussion on Syria is not whether the regime of President (dictator) Bashar al-Assad will survive but how long it will be before it falls. Of course, no one can know for sure but Israeli assessments have turned around to predict the downfall of the Syrian regime.

Every day there are massive demonstrations throughout the country, despite the killing of peaceful protesters. There are now credible confirmations of large-scale defections from Syria’s army.

There are two main defenders of the regime left: the Iranian and U.S. governments. Tehran’s policy is understandable; the Obama Administration’s isn’t.
Continue reading Syria: New Phase, How Long Will the Assad Regime Last?

Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). His latest book is Israel: An Introduction, to be published by Yale University Press later this year. You can read more of Barry Rubin's posts at Rubin Reportsand now on his new blog, Rubin Reports, on Pajamas Media

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"The Plague That Will Not Go Away"

The Plague That Will Not Go Away

by Elwood McQuaid

A grisly discovery was made in Norwich, England, recently. Seventeen Jewish skeletons, apparently from the same family, were found at the bottom of a medieval well. Archaeologists theorize they were forced down the well by pogromists because they refused to convert to Christianity.

Ironically, according to a report by Italian journalist Giulio Meotti, the skeletons’ DNA was linked to the five members of the Udi Fogel family of Itamar, Israel, who were savagely stabbed to death in their beds by Palestinian jihadists on March 11. Ten centuries have passed between the atrocities, but the “plague” is still with us—the attempt to find a “final solution to the Jewish problem”; but now it focuses on the destruction of Israel.

As a Christian who fully supports the Jewish people’s legitimate right to their homeland of Eretz Yisrael, I was appalled to read that well-known Italian priest Mario Cornioli flippantly declared, “What is Itamar? An illegal Israeli colony built on stolen land.”

Elliot Abrams On "The Settlement Obsession"

In a book review, Elliot Abrams writes about The Settlement Obsession: Both Israel and the United States Miss the Obstacles to Peace.

To summarize some of the points he makes in this long article, Abrams begins with a point that is well established: Obama's mistake in being the first to make the freezing of Israeli settlements a precondition to peace talks:
On taking office in 2009, U.S. President Barack Obama put Israeli settlements at the center of U.S. policy in the Middle East. In Washington's view, a complete construction freeze in the West Bank and East Jerusalem became not only desirable but also a prerequisite to Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations. Previous U.S. administrations of both parties had never taken such a stance, and in fact, there had been years of negotiations (not least at Camp David in 2000 and after the Annapolis meeting in 2007) while Israeli settlement activity continued. But the Obama administration stuck to its demand, and when Israel refused to freeze construction, 2009 and much of 2010 went by without negotiations. This only changed in November 2010, when the White House abandoned the entire approach and began to search for a new one.

New Tension With Israel: Lebanon Enlists Iran's Help With Oil And Gas Exploration

Considering that Hezbollah is Iran's puppet, it should not be such a surprise, but it is only going to cause more problems for Israel:
Cabinet seeks Iran’s oil know-how

The Cabinet approved Wednesday a key Memorandum of Understanding between Lebanon’s Energy and Water Resources Ministry and Iran’s Petroleum Ministry in the field of energy, as President Michel Sleiman called on the government to address socio-economic needs.

Barry Rubin: Fouad Ajami: A Genuine Arab Hero

Barry Rubin's posts now appear on Pajamas Media:
You want to know what's wrong with the study and analysis of the Middle East in the West in a single sentence? Ok, here it is:

Edward Said is treated like a guru and hero; Fouad Ajami isn't.

Said never took the slightest risk and lived a life of greatest privilege. He was lionized by the intellectual elite. His work was taught in universities and shaped the worldview of a generation of professors and students.

Video: Latma--The Non-Political Tent City And Arab MKs Circle The Wagons

Here is this week's fix of Latma.

Survey: What Do Arabs In Gaza and Judea / Samaria Really Think?

Below is a survey done for The Israel Project of the Arabs living in Judea / Samaria and Gaza.

Among the findings:
Arabs in Judea/Samaria think things are headed in the right direction, 50-41%
Arabs in Gaza think things are going in the wrong direction 34-59%

Highest priorities of the new unity government [top 4]:

Mideast Media Sampler 07/22/2011

From DG:
1) Take me to your leader

The headline is misleading: Jailed Palestinian Leader Urges Rallies for Independence

He's a leader? He was jailed? He's for independence? How awful! The "reporting" begins.
A Palestinian leader jailed by Israel is urging Palestinians at home and abroad to stage mass rallies in September to support a bid to gain U.N. membership for an independent Palestine.

In a letter published Wednesday in Palestinian media, Marwan Barghouti calls for "millions" of Palestinians to demonstrate peacefully in Palestinian communities, Arab and Muslim nations and international capitals. 
In the first two paragraphs Barghouti is a "leader jailed by Israel" apparently for some arbitrary reason.

It is only in the third paragraph that we learn:

Video: False Claims Of Palestinian Genocide Hide The Arab Genocide

The following video is 2 years old, but gives the numbers on the Arab vs Arab mass murders.
Bottom line: The "Religion of Peace" has some explaining to do:

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Barry Rubin: The Freedom-Loving Rebels Become Reactionary Oppressors

Barry Rubin's posts now appear on Pajamas Media:
“You say you got a real solution
Well, you know
We’d all love to see the plan….
But when you want money
for people with minds that hate
All I can tell is brother you have to wait ”

–”Revolution,” The Beatles

One of the best ways to understand our current mess in intellectual life is through what I call the three option situation. In the past, something has been unfair (position one). What should be done according to democracy and Enlightenment values is to correct it by fairness (position two). But instead the dominant ideology wants to make it unfair in the opposite direction (position three). Thus, the situation remains arguably just as bad instead of being made better. The dominant idea of justice is merely to switch victims rather than try to make nobody a victim.

If Abbas Won't Come To Netanyahu, Netanyahu Will Come To Al Arabiyah

Israel has gone into tailspin in its likely futile efforts to stop the Palestinians from tabling their request for recognition. Mr. Netanyahu’s Al Arabiya interview constitutes a missed opportunity to put forward a bold proposal that would give Palestine Authority president Mahmoud Abbas reason to return to the negotiating table instead of going to the General Assembly. There was nothing in his remarks that would give Mr. Abbas pause.
Al Arabiya, Netanyahu cautiously supports Syrian revolt but leaves Palestinians empty handed, July 20, 2011

It may be questionable as to its impact, but Netanyahu has been interviewed by Ar Arabiya.

According to Ofir Gendelman, Israel's first official Arabic-language spokesperson, Netanyahu's first interview with an Arab newspaper is in response to the Arab diplomatic initiative to gain recognition of statehood from the UN in September.

Iran's Turn: They Will Impose Sanctions On US For Human Rights Violations

Iran is responsible for stoning women, killing unarmed civilians and supports Hezbollah which murdered Rafik Hariri and is involved in the illegal trafficking of drugs.

But that's OK--Iran claims it is going to expose US crimes:
An Iranian lawmaker says the decision of the country's Majlis (parliament) to impose sanctions on 26 US officials over human rights violations will help expose US crimes.

Will Arabs Displaced From Arab Countries Have A Right Of Return?

Since 2003 an estimated four million Iraqis have fled their homes, the largest exodus since Israel’s creation in 1948. Deepening violence and sectarian strife have led to the internal displacement of many Iraqis and have driven others out of the country, largely to Syria and Jordan, but also to Lebanon, Egypt, Turkey and the Gulf.
New York Times, For Refugees, a Frustrating Feeling of Permanence, July 20, 2011

So what is going to happen to all of these Muslim refugees?

Conference: Applying Israeli Sovereignty Over Judea And Samaria

Back in June, I posted a piece by Arlene Kushner about the mini-conference: The Preferred Option: Israeli Sovereignty Over Judea & Samaria. The speakers were Yoram Ettinger, Danny Dayan,

Is Lebanon Claim On Israel's Gas Reserves Less Than Meets The Eye

Lebanon doesn't seem to thing so--Lebanon is complaining on more than just the question of maritime borders:
The Lebanese newspaper The Daily Star reported Wednesday that MP Muhammad Qabbain, head of the country’s parliament’s Public Works, Transport, Energy and Water Committee, said the county “can lodge a complaint saying that Israel’s actions threaten international peace and security.

Barry Rubin: Take Lebanon for Example (Hizballah Did): There’s Something About a New York Times Editorial…

Barry Rubin's posts now appear on Pajamas Media:
…that truly embodies the spirit of the era. And in this era the mainstream spirit is to ignore reality and construct a fantasyland. Case in point (as Rod Serling used to say on The Twilight Zone), an editorial entitled “The Long Pursuit of Justice in Lebanon.” The editorial deals with the fact that four Hizballah figures, one of them very senior, have been indicted by the international tribunal for their involvement in assassinating former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

The editorial is six paragraphs long. It tells us that Hizballah is:

Mideast Media Sampler 07/21/2011

From DG:
1) I anxiously await the New York Times editorial bemoaning the decline of democracy in Ecuador

President Rafael Correa of Ecuador, an ally of Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, just won a criminal libel judgment against a newspaper editor.

ZOA Files Complaint Against Rutgers For Hostile Environment For Jewish Students

July 20, 2011
Contact Morton A. Klein at: 212-481-1500 
ZOA to OCR:  Protect Jewish Students’ Rights Under Title VI 
The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) today filed a complaint against Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, with the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights because of a hostile anti-Semitic campus environment.  The complaint, based on troubling reports from Jewish students, describes in detail the anti-Semitic harassment, intimidation and discrimination that Jewish students have been subjected to at Rutgers, in violation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, including the following: