Friday, November 29, 2013

Raymond Ibrahim: Egypt's Latest Fatwas from Salafis and Brotherhood

The following by Raymond Ibrahim is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Middle East Quarterly Winter 2014: The Two-State Delusion

The following by Mordechai Nisan is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

The Two-State Delusion

by Mordechai Nisan
Middle East Quarterly
Winter 2014

Arlene Kushner: Obama's Iran Deal Is So Bad, It Has United Democrats and Republicans Against It

From Arlene Kushner:
November 26, 2013


That Barack Obama has betrayed Israel, the Sunni Arab nations, and his own people is, to my thinking, beyond question. He has capitulated to a dangerous terrorist state.

The media are full of comments and analyses about what he has done, why he has done it, and what comes next.  I will attempt to summarize what is important here, and you will find links to key articles below. But to share all of the various analyses and viewpoints at length would require a book rather than a posting.

I do not pretend, not for a second, that I am sanguine about any of what is going on.  This is an infuriating, and exceedingly agitating business.

As to why he did what he did...

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

David P. Goldman on the Irreversible Decline of Iran

The following by David P. Goldman is resposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

Monday, November 25, 2013

Mideast Media Sampler 11/25/13: Iran Agreement Should Enforce The One Iran Broke The First Time

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

History’s Lesson of the Additional Protocol

Iranian FM Mohammad Javad Zarif: Mission Accomplished
Credit: Legal Insurrection Photo: KaFaDoKyA News / YouTube

In Saturday night’s P5 + 1 deal with Iran, Iran agreed to submit an “additional protocol” of more intrusive IAEA inspections of its nuclear program.

In his statement hailing the P5 + 1 deal with Iran President Obama referenced the 2003 deal:
For the first time in nearly a decade, we have halted the progress of the Iranian nuclear program, and key parts of the program will be rolled back. Iran has committed to halting certain levels of enrichment and neutralizing part of its stockpiles.
Diplomats and journalists cite the 2003 agreement as a precedent for current negotiations with Iran. For one thing it was the first nuclear agreement between Iran and the West. Furthermore, Iran’s lead negotiator then was Hassan Rouhani, now Iran’s president.

While that may have been the first nuclear deal reached with Iran; the lessons from it may not be ones that the cheerleaders for the P5 + 1 deal have in mind.

Daniel Pipes On The Growing Awareness in Europe Of The Challenge Of Islam

The following by Daniel Pipes is reposted here with permission:

Anti-Islam Trumps Islam in the West

by Daniel Pipes
November 24, 2013

Sunday, November 24, 2013

TIP Conference Call with Danielle Pletka Reveals The Pitfalls of the Nuclear Deal With Iran

Danielle Pletka, vice president for foreign and defense policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), was on a conference call this afternoon, sponsored by The Israel Project.

She discussed the 6 month deal just agreed to with Iran in Geneva -- what the agreement contains and what it actually means.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Raymond Ibrahim: 'Largest Massacre of Christians in Syria' Ignored

The following by Raymond Ibrahim is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Assad Ends 2013 Much Better Than When He Started

The following by Jonathan Spyer is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Turkey Dealing With Increased Drug Trafficking from Iran

The following by Behsat Ekici and Ali Unlu is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

Increased Drug Trafficking from Iran
Ankara's Challenges

by Behsat Ekici and Ali Unlu
Middle East Quarterly
Fall 2013, pp. 41-48

The Failure To Topple Syria's Assad and the Decline of US Power in the Middle East

The following by Eyal Zisser is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

The Failure of U.S. Policy toward Damascus

by Eyal Zisser
Middle East Quarterly
Fall 2013, pp. 59-65 (view PDF)

Monday, November 18, 2013

Mideast Media Sampler 11/18/13: The Truth About The History of Lydda/Lod

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

Thomas Friedman: The Incredible Shrinking Columnist

Thomas Friedman
Readers should not be buying what Thomas Friedman is selling.
Credit: Legal Insurrection -- Photo: AspenInstitute / YouTube

The featured image of Thomas Friedman above comes from a talk he gave about many of the marvels of modern technology. At the beginning he says that you have “every bit of knowledge available to you” from Google. It’s a bit of an overstatement, but his point is essentially correct.

One particular effective use of Google is fact checking writers like Friedman, who make unsubstantiated claims. In Friedman’s case, it happens quite a bit. He has a habit of taking great sounding ideas and turning them into columns. But that doesn’t mean that he’s right. Often he leaves out critical information.

This week Friedman did this once again.

The Realignment of the Middle East In Response to the Iranian Threat

The following by Jonathan Spyer is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

Anne Bayefsky: Duplicity as the UN Secretary-General Visits Auschwitz

For Immediate Release:
November 18, 2013
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Duplicity as the UN Secretary-General Visits Auschwitz

This article by Anne Bayefsky originally appeared on The Jerusalem Post.

Today, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will pay a visit to Auschwitz where he will make a show of concern for the demonization of Jews in the past century. However, at the very same time his UN staff is actively discriminating against Jews at UN Headquarters in the here and now.

On Friday, November 15, 2013, an official UN-accredited Jewish non-governmental organization had its security clearance to attend an open UN meeting in New York revoked at the behest of the UN Division for Palestinian Rights.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Video: Hot Mic Catches UN Interpreter Saying Anti-Israel Votes Are 'A Bit Much'

UN Watch notes Hot mic catches UN interpreter saying anti-Israel votes are ‘a bit much’:
UN Interpeter (unaware her mic was on): “I mean, I think when you have five statements, not five, like a total of ten resolutions on Israel and Palestine, there’s gotta be something, c’est un peu trop, non? [It’s a bit much, no?] I mean I know… There’s other really bad shit happening, but no one says anything, about the other stuff.”

Here is the video:

Arlene Kushner: Political Issues Obscure Legal Issues of the Israeli Settlements

From Arlene Kushner:
November 13, 2013

We Have Legal Rights!

It never ends: one crisis, one issue after another.  Perhaps you are familiar with the curse: "May you live in interesting times."
Yesterday, Housing Minister Uri Ariel (Habayit Hayehudi) announced plans for "evaluating potential" for 24,000 housing units in Judea and Samaria.  Please be clear on this: it was not, as some news sources had it, announcement of concrete plans for those 24,000 units.  It was initiation of a process to look into building in several places in Judea and Samaria. (Most controversial: 1.200 projected units in E1, an area between Ma'aleh Adumim and Jerusalem.) Some might have materialized, some might not have.  But even in cases where potential was positively assessed, it would have been a long time (years) until anything was built.  This sort of process goes on all the time.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Video: Obama's March To War

Here is a new ECI (Emergency Committee for Israel) TV ad on Obama and Iran:
As the Obama administration continues its push for a deal with Iran, today the Emergency Committee for Israel released a one-minute TV ad titled "Obama's March to War."

Airing multiple times this week and next on CNN, MSNBC, and FoxNews, the spot shows why Americans and our allies have reason to doubt President Obama's promises on Iran.
Here is the video:

Mideast Media Sampler 11/14/13: Kerry Pushing Diplomacy Over (Under and Around) Iran Sanctions

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

 Any Agreement is Better than No Agreement?

John Kerry
John Kerry pushing diplomacy over sanctions -- over, under and around.
Credit: Legal Insurrection -- Photo: Mike Fredd / YouTube

Let’s review some of the administration’s diplomatic activity over the past week.

Lee Smith:
Haaretz reports that the administration misled Israel regarding the terms of the proposed interim agreement with Iran over its nuclear weapons program. One senior Israeli official explained that on Wednesday Israel had seen an outline that the Israelis “didn’t love but could live with.” Thursday morning French and British officials, and not the White House, told the Israelis that the terms had changed and were much more favorable than what they’d been shown previously. “Suddenly it changed to something much worse that included a much more significant lifting of sanctions,” said the Israeli official. “The feeling was that the Americans are much more eager to reach an agreement than the Iranians.”

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Mideast Media Sampler 11/12/13: New York Times and Washington Post Cover for Kerry's Iran Failure

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

John Kerry’s MSM Cheerleaders

John Kerry on Meet The Press -- among friends. Photo: Legal Insurrection
(newsnation6 / YouTube)

I almost feel bad for Secretary of State, John Kerry. This really has been a brutal few days for him.

Daniel Pipes: The Silver Lining of Obama's Weak America

The following by Daniel Pipes is reposted here with permission:

The Silver Lining of Obama's Weak America

by Daniel Pipes
The Washington Times
November 12, 2013

N.B.: Washington Times title: "A silver lining to 'leading from behind'"
That the socialist French government of François Hollande just blocked a bad deal with Tehran, emerging as the hero of the Geneva negotiations, is on one level a huge surprise. But it also follows logically from the passivity of the Obama administration.

François Hollande
French president François Hollande, with a new sense of seriousness.
American foreign policy is in unprecedented free-fall, with a feckless and distracted White House barely paying attention to the outside world, and when it does, acting in an inconsistent, weak, and fantasticalmanner. If one were to discern something so grand as an Obama Doctrine, it would read: "Snub friends, coddle opponents, devalue American interests, seek consensus, and act unpredictably."
Along with many other critics, I rue this state of affairs. But the French action demonstrates that it does have a silver lining.
From World War II until Obama waltzed in, the U.S. government had established a pattern of taking the lead in international affairs and then getting criticized for doing so. Three examples: In Vietnam, Americans felt the need to convince their South Vietnamese ally to resist North Vietnam and the Vietcong. During much of the Cold War, they pressured allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to resist Soviet pressure. During the 1990s, they urged Middle Eastern states to contain and punish Saddam Hussein.
In each case, Americans rushed ahead on their own, then beseeched allies to work together against a common enemy, a completely illogical pattern. The nearby and weak Vietnamese, Europeans, and Arabs should have feared Hanoi, Moscow, and Baghdad more than the distant and strong Americans. The locals should have been begging the Yankees to protect them. Why was this persistently not the case?
Because the U.S. government, persuaded of its superior vision and greater morality, repeated the same mistake: seeing allies as slow-moving and confused hindrances more than as full-fledged partners, it brushed them aside and assumed main responsibilities. With rare exceptions (Israel, and France to a lesser extent), the American adult unthinkingly infantilized its smaller allies.
This had the untoward consequence of leaving those allies with an awareness of their own irrelevance. Sensing that their actions hardly mattered, they indulged in political immaturity. Not responsible for their own destinies, they felt free to engage in anti-Americanism as well as other dysfunctional behaviors, such as corruption in Vietnam, passivity in NATO, and greed in the Middle East. Mogens Glistrup, a Danish politician, embodied this problem, proposing in 1972 that Danes save both taxes and lives by disbanding their military and replacing it with an answering machine in the Ministry of Defense that would play a single message in Russian: "We capitulate!"
Mogens Glistrup
Mogens Glistrup, the most unserious European politician of them all.
Barack Obama's approach pulls the United States back from its customary adult role and has it join the children. Responding to crises on a case-by-case basis and preferring to act in consultation with other governments, he prefers "leading from behind" and to be just one of the pack, as though he were prime minister of Belgium rather than president of the United States.
Ironically, this weakness has the salutary effect of slapping allies hard across the face and waking them to the fact that Washington has too long coddled them. Jaundiced allies like Canada,
Saudi Arabia, and Japan are waking to the reality that they cannot take pot-shots at Uncle Sam, assured in the knowledge that he will save them from themselves. They now see that their actions count, a sobering new experience. For example, Turkish leaders are trying to light a fire under the administration to get it to intervene in the Syrian civil war.
John Kerry
John Kerry, the worst American secretary of state ever?
Thus does Obama's ineptitude have the potential to turn reluctant, self-absorbed partners into more serious, mature actors. At the same time, his incompetence promises to change the U.S. reputation from overbearing nanny to much-appreciated colleague, along the way reducing ire directed at Americans.
Of course, a weak foreign policy presents the danger of catastrophe (such as facilitating an Iranian nuclear breakout or not deterring a Chinese act of aggression that leads to war), so this silver lining is just that, a small recompense for a much larger grey cloud. It's not something to be preferred. Still, should two conditions be fulfilled – no disaster on Obama's watch and a successor who reasserts American strength and will – it just might be that Americans and their allies look back on this period as a necessary one with a positive legacy.
Mr. Pipes ( is president of the Middle East Forum. © 2013 by Daniel Pipes. All rights reserved.


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Arlene Kushner: Would A US Deal With Iran Prevent An Israeli Attack?

(Note: Scroll down for topic of an agreement preventing an Israeli attack)

From Arlene Kushner:
November 11, 2013

A Letter to Kerry from Alan Baker

Alan Baker has a long and impressive list of credentials: He is an international lawyer; former Ambassador of Israel to Canada; member of the Levy Committee; Director, Institute for Contemporary Affairs, Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs; Director, International Action Division, The Legal Forum for Israel.
On November 8, Baker sent a letter to Kerry in response to Kerry's statement about the settlements.
I reproduce it here in its entirety and urge you to share it widely. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

From January 2011: Steven J. Rosen on Obama's Refusal To Pressure Palestinians on Peace With Israel

The following by Steven J. Rosen is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

Mideast Media Sampler 11/11/13: Media on Iran Deal Ignores Iran Role In Syria and Global Terror

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

 Media focuses on politics of Geneva negotiations, not why the Mullah regime is a threat.

Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif
CNN Christiane Amanpour interviews Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif.
Photo: L. N TIDINGS / YouTube

Over the past few days the reporting from Geneva changed from anticipation of an imminent deal to a final “no deal.” Or “no deal” for now.

The New York Times reported Talks With Iran Fail to Produce a Nuclear Agreement. As almost all reporting on the P5+1 talks with Iran go, it gives the credit to (or places the blame on) France for the failure of the two sides to reach an agreement.

Arlene Kushner: Has Obama Capitulated to Iran?

From Arlene Kushner:
November 10, 2013

Where Are the American People?

Either they're asleep, or on numbing narcotics, or have decided they just don't give a damn any longer what happens in the world -- so that the fact that their president is surrendering America's proud and exceedingly important international role is just fine with them. 

Please! do not write to me explaining what happened to America. The above is rhetorical flourish by way of introduction to what I am seeing.  I cannot fix America, and whether Americans are asleep or on something, the result is the same: America's proud and important role in the world is being swiftly abandoned.  I grieve for this.  The implications are terrifying.   

And the bottom line here, of course, is that the president of the United States is destroying America.  I think Americans have yet to face the profound consequences of what is being wrought.


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Message to Obama: Keep Kerry Home!

The following by Efraim Inbar is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

Kerry: Stay Home

by Efraim Inbar
Israel Hayom
November 10, 2013

Efraim Inbar
Efraim Inbar
US Secretary of State John Kerry warned of a return to Palestinian violence and Israel's isolation if the faltering peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians ultimately fail. This is a typical leftist Pavlovian response to the impasse in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations that is now over a decade old. Such thinking primarily reflects the frustration that the optimistic evaluations that the conflict can be ended quickly remain unfulfilled. Unfortunately, Kerry's remarks tell the Palestinians to hold on to their maximalist positions. This reflects an inability to grasp the intricacies of protracted intractable ethnic conflict and a misguided American policy.
There is definitely a possibility that the Palestinians, in particular the radical forces, will recur to violence. In reality these forces try to kill Israelis all the time, and a dearth of terrorist attacks in recent years can only be attributed to the work of the Israeli security forces. Yet the likelihood of massive organized violence by the Palestinian Authority (PA) is small. Rocking the boat endangers too many vested interests of the Palestinian ruling class. The PA leadership has probably registered the heavy price paid by the Palestinians during their terrorist campaign at the beginning of the twenty-first century, as a result of Israeli countermeasures.

Mideast Media Sampler 11/8/13: Polonium, Balonium

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

 — Yasser, that’s a conspiracy theory.

Nobel prize winning terrorist Yasir Arafat, carried by his admirers.
 Photo: MOXNEWSd0tC0M / YouTube 

The New York Times reports Swiss Report Supports Theory Arafat Was Poisoned. Now, of course, the New York Times isn’t the only news outlet to be reporting this. But is it news?

When someone makes an incredible claim, it is the job of the news media to investigate it and challenge it if necessary. The claim Arafat was poisoned with polonium ignores a very important detail, as Brian Thomas writes:

Daniel Pipes: Obama Turns on Israel

The following by Daniel Pipes is reposted here with permission:

Obama Turns on Israel

by Daniel Pipes
National Review Online, The Corner
November 8, 2013
Barack Obama's March 2013 trip to Israel had a too-good-to-be-true feel about it. While barely pressuring on Israel, he instructed Palestinians not to set preconditions for negotiations and admonished them to "recognize that Israel will be a Jewish state." It felt out of character, suggesting a price to be paid later.
Well, that price has now, eight months later, been revealed and it has two components.

Friday, November 08, 2013

Arlene Kushner: John Kerry Incites Palestinians Against Israel

From Arlene Kushner:
November 8, 2013


I'm talking about John Kerry, and actually, he's crossed it twice.
I had no time to write today, with Levy Report work and a very early Shabbat. But I must write, ever so briefly, because people must know about this.
Yesterday, Kerry, who is here, gave a TV interview.  And this is what he said (emphasis added):
"The alternative to getting back to the talks is the potential of chaos. Does Israel want a third intifada?" 
I repeat: Does Israel want a third intifada?
This is a form of intimidation and blackmail: Israel, make additional concessions to the PA, or face the consequences of violence.

Arlene Kushner From November 6: Kerry's Middle East Peace Talks Falling Apart

From Arlene Kushner:
November 6, 2013

Did I Say a "Tangle"

"A Tangled Affair," actually.  Yesterday.  I've rethought this and decided "morass" might be a better term for what Israel is dealing with in her relations with the PA, and with the US.

This is one of those political sagas that is going to go on, and on, and on.  So, I'll attempt to be brief here, as I provide an update on some of the matters I touched upon yesterday.  Tomorrow there may be another story.

First, please note, Secretary of State Kerry is here and laid a wreath at Rabin Square (in commemoration of the 18 years since Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated). At the ceremony, he declared that he will stand by Israel "every step of the way."

Touches your heart, doesn't it?  No?  Maybe it gives you heartburn?


Kerry likely does not know that Rabin, who signed on to the Oslo Accords with considerable reluctance, made it clear before he died that he was not for a full Palestinian state, but something lesser, some sort of autonomy.  Those of you who saw the signing ceremony on the White House lawn on TV may remember Rabin's moment of hesitation - disgust, actually - before he girded himself to take Arafat's hand.


Thursday, November 07, 2013

Raymond Ibrahim: Exploiting Christian Persecution to Demonize Israel

The following by Raymond Ibrahim is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

Mideast Media Sampler 11/7/13: Media Determined To Campaign On Behalf of Iran

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

The Op-Ed Campaign for a Nuclear Agreement with Iran

Mark Fitzpatrick
International Institute for Strategic Studies Director for Disarmament Mark
Fitzpatrick describing Possible Nuclear Weapons Research at Iran's Parchin
Military Complex.  Credit: Legal Insurrection / JewishNewsOne (video)

There is a campaign in the United States favoring a nuclear deal with Iran.

We have seen in it the news pages of the New York Times.

It’s been noted that Thomas Erdbrink, the Tehran bureau chief of the New York Times is making efforts to portray Iran as a changed country since the election of President Hassan Rouhani, whether the evidence supports it or not.

The New York Times in a profile of Lakhdar Brahimi, the UN envoy to Syria, doesn’t once mention Iran. When an Iranian general, Qasem Solemeini is described as the effective ruler of Syria if not the most powerful man in the Middle East, the oversight is inexcusable. The only reason to obscure Iran’s involvement in Syria is in support of a narrative that Iran is no threat to the world in general.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Daniel Pipes on How Cyprus Oil and Gas Reserves Drag It Into Middle East Maelstrom

The following from Daniel Pipes is reposted here with permission:

Arlene Kushner: More Proof Obama Is Not An Ally Of Israel

From:Arlene Kushner
November 5, 2013

A Tangled Affair

When I returned to my postings recently after a two-week hiatus, I joked about not being sure what "normal" was. Well, I have since discovered that there is no "normal" for me right now, and that -- with the on-going attention to be devoted to the Levy Report Campaign -- it will be necessary for me to post less frequently than has been my custom for some time now.  First things first...
That said, what I want to look at here are some of the facts, rumors and speculations circling around the "negotiations," and the positions of our prime minister.  Prepare for a convoluted ride:  
When the terrorist prisoners were released some days ago, Netanyahu -- in the face of enormous national protest -- insisted that he had to do this because we had promised (as part of the deal for entering negotiations), and because it was ultimately in our best interest.  Minister of Defense Ya'alon made a statement about security that echoed the "best interest" theme.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Don't Forget About Syria's Alliance With North Korea

The following by Jonathan Spyer is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

Press Release: MK Shimon Ohayon to European Officials: “Don’t Let Anti-Semites Define Hate.”

The following press release was sent to the media:

MK Shimon Ohayon to European Officials:
“Don’t Let Anti-Semites Define Hate.”

(Tuesday, 5th November) – Member of Knesset Dr. Shimon Ohayon met today in the Knesset with a series of groups from European Union, including a delegation of Members of the European Parliament and the EU Deputy Ambassador to Israel.

Among the topics discussed were the rise in Antisemitism in Europe, especially in light of the soon to be released survey by the EU’s Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) which shows a significant rise in Antisemitism over the last five years.

Mideast Media Sampler 11/04/2013: Abbas -- One Man’s Axe Murderer is Another’s Hero

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

Prisoners/Settlements Hyprocrisy in Middle East Reporting

EoZ _ one mans terrorist

As we’ve noted earlier, much of the media is obsessed with settlements, intent on portraying them as the main obstacle to peace. There’s a tendency on the other side to take one of the most outrageous examples of Palestinian behavior and dismiss it.

Monday, November 04, 2013

Jonathan Spyer: Sisi to Egyptian Islamists: Surrender or Die

The following by Jonathan Spyer is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

Mideast Media Sampler 11/3/13: Media Perpetuates Myth of Israeli Settlements Blocking Peace

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

 – The focus on settlements as obstacles to peace is a recent invention

Road sign
Israel sign for entry to Area A in Palestinian control. Credit: Legal Insurrection

To read through recent news reports one could assume that the biggest obstacle to Palestinian Israeli peace are “settlements.”

To cement that impression the New York Times published an article, 1,500 Units to Be Added in Settlement, Israel Says. The caption of a photograph directly beneath the headline reads:
A Palestinian construction worker at a building site on Wednesday in the Ramat Shlomo settlement in East Jerusalem.
If there is an official “East Jerusalem,” I am unaware of it, but perhaps the paper meant “east Jerusalem.” However if you read down a few paragraphs you learn:

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Daniel Pipes: Global Ramifications of the Anti-Muslim Brotherhood Campaign in Egypt

The following by Daniel Pipes is reposted here with permission:

Friday, November 01, 2013

MEQ Fall 2006: David Bukay: The Religious Foundations of Suicide Bombings

The following by David Bukay is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

by David Bukay
Middle East Quarterly
Fall 2006, pp. 27-36

Arlene Kushner: Israel Should Have Rebuffed Obama Pressure To Release Palestinian Terrorists

From Arlene Kushner:
October 31, 2013

Not Remotely Acceptable

It's infuriating when agents outside of Israel act against Israel.  But there is something uniquely distressing about damage we do to ourselves.  This is what I'm seeing now -- and feel compelled to write about.  The current situation is not only unacceptable, it's intolerable.
First, there is the prisoner release that took place this week.  Ostensibly, because we "promised" at the beginning of the negotiations.  It was the lure to bring the PA to the table. 
No one in Israeli officialdom, it seems, ever confronts the question of why the PA would need an enticement to come negotiate in order to secure the state they keep claiming they want. They should be running to talk.