Mon, 18 Nov 2013 - 12:01 AM
Sat, 16 Nov 2013 - 1:01 AM
Sun, 14 Apr 2013 - 6:00 PM
Fri, 05 Apr 2013 - 7:00 PM
Daniel Pipes: Happy Israel
Listen up, anti-Zionists and anti-Semites, Palestinians and Islamists, extreme right- and left-wingers: You are fighting a losing battle; the Jewish state is prevailing. As Inbar rightly concludes, "Time seems to be on Israel's side." Give up and find some other country to torment. France's 1st gay married couple to attend TA Pride
The first gay couple to be legally wed in France will spend the upcoming weekend in Tel Aviv and will attend the city's Gay Pride Parade as part of their Honeymoon celebrations, a Tel Aviv Municipality spokesperson announced Thursday.
Vincent Autin and Bruno Boileau were invited by Tel Aviv's Global & Tourism Company. Tel Aviv promotes gay rights as a pluralistic city and is happy to host the newly-wed couple, wishing them a big "mazal tov," the statement read. CAMERA: Where's the Coverage? Gaza Youth Flee TO Israel
Surprising, then, that Al Monitor reports young men from Gaza are fleeing TO Israel, seeking the opportunities available in the Jewish state. Yes, fleeing to Israel, even knowing that they might be apprehended and detained. The Secret Military Unit Behind Israel’s Stunning Six Day War Victory
One of the key factors which led to the success of the military operation in general, and the air strikes in particular, was the collection of data and information by Israel’s intelligence units in the years which preceded the war. One of the most intriguing episodes revealed here for the first time is related to unit 504 (then 154) of the Military Intelligence. The unit was and still is responsible for detecting, recruiting, and running agents – a tradecraft known as “humint”. IDF Blog: 6 Photos From the 6-Day War You’ve Never Seen Before
In the Six-Day War (June 5-10, 1967), the IDF fought some of the defining battles of Israeli history and of the 20th Century. But what happened during preparation beforehand, and during those six days in between the battles? These are the people who fought for Israel’s freedom – some famous, some not – and six very heartfelt moments that happened behind the headlines. Terror victim's father demands Norway take action against PA salaries to terrorists
Israeli Arnold Roth is on his way to Parliament to tell a story of terror. His daughter Malki never made it past her 15th year because a Palestinian suicide bomber blew himself up in this pizza restaurant in Jerusalem in 2001. The person responsible for making the bomb - Abdullah Barghouti - is now in Israeli prison. Palestine honors hundreds of Palestinian prisoners, including many terrorists, with a monthly salary. Abdullah Barghouti receives every month 10,000 [Norwegian] kroners from Palestine. CAMERA: What the Media Won't Tell You About Palestinian Prisoners
All too often, mainstream media outlets have whitewashed the terrorist acts and violent crimes of Palestinian prisoners by failing to mention the crimes at all or by falsely minimizing the degree of violence. In some cases, media outlets euphemistically refer to prisoners incarcerated since before 1994 as "political prisoners," covering up the atrocities they carried out. CAMERA is the first to publish a detailed list (below), obtained from Israel's Ministry of Justice, of 118 pre-Oslo Palestinian prisoners, including their names and violent crimes. IDF Blog: 8 weapon seizures you didn’t hear about from May 2013
Every day of the year, the IDF works towards preventing terror and keeping the citizens of Israel safe. In May, IDF forces seized a large number of illegal weapons and apprehended the would-be terrorists in possession of them. Thanks to the work of the IDF, here are 8 weapon seizures you didn’t hear about from the month of May. Arab Stone-Throwing Attacks on Jews are Daily Occurrence in East Jerusalem
Israel Defense Forces Maj. Gen. Kobi Dudian of the Jerusalem District Police told the Knesset’s Internal Affairs and Environment Committee on Wednesday that 207 stone-throwing perpetrators have been arrested in eastern Jerusalem in 2013, the majority of whom were minors, and that only 47 of them were detained, pending the conclusion of the legal proceedings against them. Group of teens attacks rabbi in Germany
A group of youths attacked a rabbi on Sunday evening in Offenbach, a city near Franfurt.
Six to eight “Mediterranean looking“ youths attacked the 39-year-old Rabbi Mendel Gurewitz. The youths pushed the rabbi and called him a “shitty Jew. ZOA Opposes Samantha Power's Nomination as UN Ambassador
“As her own words show, Ms. Power indulges in astonishing false equivalence between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA). She clearly has difficulty in appreciating the distinction between a law-based, free society and democracy like Israel that is defending itself from those who seek its elimination, and a terror-sponsoring, terrorist-glorifying, violence-inculcating PA that has neither signed peace with Israel nor recognized Israel as a Jewish state,” he said. Melanie Phillips: A perfect match
And despite her advocacy of attack or invasion to prevent threatened genocides, she has sneered at concerns about the race to build a nuclear bomb by Iran, which has repeatedly threatened genocide against the Jews of Israel, as a figment of the war-mongering Republican imagination.
Samantha Power and the UN are thus a perfect match. SodaStream Continues Uptick,Take That! BDSM Advocates
SodaStream is an Israeli company which has shaken up the soft drink business. Because its competitors are Coke and Pepsi, it has to take its business seriously. But because it is made in Israel, of course the organized world of Israel haters and those who support them have targeted SodaStream for boycotts and other economic mayhem.
But that is okay, because despite the efforts of the BDSM – anti-Israel economic and political warfare movement of Boycotts of, Divestment from and Sanctions Against Israel – to strangle SodaStream, the company’s profits just keep on growing. Divestment from Israel Resolution Defeated at UC Santa Cruz
“We are pleased that a divestment resolution was once again defeated, this time at UC Santa Cruz. We applaud UCSC’s student senate for recognizing the complexity of the conflict and the bigotry in this resolution… Hopefully, next year, students who are obsessed with condemning Israel while they cover up the terrorism of Palestinian groups like Hamas, will consider more constructive actions and resolutions,” said Roz Rothstein, CEO of the pro-Israel education group StandWithUs. Keshet, Northern Pictures launch Australian joint venture
Israeli producer-distributor Keshet International is teaming up former Fox Networks Group president David Haslingden to launch a local production outfit, Keshet Australia.
The company will be jointly owned by Keshet International and Haslingden’s indie Northern Pictures, and will bring the Israeli producer’s slate of 50 scripted and unscripted TV properties to the Australian and New Zealand markets. Grow cooperation with us, says Indian pol during Israel visit
Add India to that list, too, says Dr. Arvind Gupta, the head of technology affairs in India’s BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party), the largest opposition party in the country. Although Israeli tech and business deals with other Asian countries — especially China — seem to grab most of the headlines, there is considerable trade between Israel and India. India is the largest purchaser of Israeli military equipment, and Israel is the second-largest military partner of India after Russia. In 2009, that business was was worth about $9 billion. Israeli ‘bubble tech’ to help keep UK’s water clean
Mapal systems have been installed in Israel, as well as in Brazil, South Africa and India for a total of 30 locations worldwide. Now, the company has its first European contract, closing a deal with the UK’s Anglian Water to deploy its solution for a water company serving 4 million customers. Mapal’s bubble-spreaders will be installed in as many as 400 of Anglian’s 1,100 wastewater treatment facilities, the company said, adding that it is in “advanced talks” with other UK water treatment companies. Israel Daily Picture: In Memory of Robert F. Kennedy on the 45th Anniversary of his Assassination
We leave our regular historical features to pay tribute to Robert Kennedy who was murdered on this day in 1968.
Several special features about Kennedy make this posting very appropriate for this site today:
Today one more poll joins the two that Pete wrote about yesterday in offering us the IRS scandal from the American voters’ point of view. And it only confirms the perception problem the Obama White House now has. “For roughly half the public to believe Mr. Obama is lying at this relatively early stage in the congressional investigation is quite high,” Pete wrote, “especially since at this point there’s no direct evidence showing the president knew about these scandals prior to May of this year.”
The latest poll, conducted by the New York Times and CBS, shows not only that a majority thinks the IRS was wrong to target conservatives but that nearly seven in 10 believe it was driven by political motivations. Additionally, 44 percent think the Obama administration was involved. Only a quarter of respondents think the IRS acted appropriately, which is still too high for comfort but not nearly high enough to make the story go away. And key to keeping interest in the story going–aside from the chilling testimony of the IRS’s victims–is the fact that Americans don’t believe they are being told the whole truth about the scandal. And there’s a good reason for that: they aren’t. As the Wall Street Journal reports:
Two Internal Revenue Service employees in the agency’s Cincinnati office told congressional investigators that IRS officials in Washington helped direct the probe of tea-party groups that began in 2010.
Transcripts of the interviews, viewed Wednesday by The Wall Street Journal, appear to contradict earlier statements by top IRS officials, who have blamed lower-level workers in Cincinnati.
Elizabeth Hofacre said her office in Cincinnati sought help from IRS officials in the Washington unit that oversees tax-exempt organizations after she started getting the tea-party cases in April 2010. Ms. Hofacre said Carter Hull, an IRS lawyer in Washington, closely oversaw her work and suggested some of the questions asked applicants.
“I was essentially a front person, because I had no autonomy or no authority to act on [applications] without Carter Hull’s influence or input,” she said, according to the transcripts.
The IRS higher-ups and the administration have tripped themselves up by reacting to each revelation as if no other information about the scandal would ever be revealed. A couple of weeks ago–which is a long time in the life of this scandal, considering the pace of revelations–Politico filed an amusing story at what at that time was “the fifth iteration of the Obama administration’s account of events,” paying special attention to the evolving list of people in the administration who knew about the IRS targeting before it was revealed by Lois Lerner.
The more significant mistake was not being forthcoming in which figures in the White House–which turned out to include the president’s chief of staff–knew of the IRS targeting before it was made public. That gives the public the impression that the administration is hiding something–and if the administration is hiding something, and the president’s chief of staff knew about the targeting, it’s getting difficult for the public not to wonder whether the president is being truthful about what he knew, and when.
That explains the poll numbers showing that although the president has not been tied directly to the scandal, he’s struggling to convince the public that he’s not somehow involved. Additionally, we now know that of course it wasn’t a couple of rogue agents who were overwhelmed by a flood of conservative applications and tried to simplify the process; the targeting was overseen by Washington and when they initiated it there was no flood of applicants. The IRS hasn’t been honest, and neither has the administration.
This perception problem isn’t helped, moreover, by the reaction of some Democrats in Congress. Jim McDermott, a Democratic congressman from Washington, went on Fox News to defend himself yesterday after seeming to blame the victims of the targeting, but he only ended up reinforcing the notion that he views the victims here with suspicion. And Americans are listening, as CBS explains: “As hearings on Capitol Hill rage on to explore the origins of the targeting scheme, most Americans said they are following the story, with 21 percent who said they are following it very closely.”
They are tuning in because they are rewarded for doing so. Thanks to the IRS and the administration’s behavior, Americans keep learning more and more about the scandal while being given less reason to believe official explanations.
Yes, it is time for the (haredi) Jews to take over the Arab world again!
Zionism is the problem of this era, a cancer of the Islamic nation, ...(whose policy is) mostly based on the demolition and weakening the Arab and Islamic worlds. Allah Almighty says of them "Every time they [the Jews] kindled the fire of war [against you], Allah extinguished it. And they strive throughout the land [causing] corruption, and Allah does not like corrupters."(Table 64) A Koranic quote about how evil Jews are is always a nice touch.
The Zionist enemy seeks to create economic and political crises to many countries with different interests, specifically Egypt. We will find there are serious problems that threaten the security and stability and growth of Egypt, and these problems of the dam which is located in Ethiopia located on the Blue Nile, which is still under construction and upon completion of its establishment will become the largest hydroelectric dam in the African continent, and the world's tenth largest dams for electricity production.
The question that arises here, this poor country which does not have the financial capabilities available for the establishment of such a large project, which is considered one of the world's poorest countries, where does it get such financial support? What is the purpose of supporting a country as Ethiopia?
...The Zionist enemy follows the policy of successful economic warfare I've previously discussed, and showed them that the Islamic world in general and Palestinians in particular follow the same economic policy if they want progress and growth. There are large-scale projects in most countries of the world from the cultivation of cotton in Uzbekistan to water in Ethiopia, and here the Zionist enemy is trying to use economic strength to wear down economic powers of neighboring countries.
[next few paragraphs on how Israel is using Ethiopia to divert the waters of the Nile away from Egypt to help destroy that country.] Finally, after trying mightily to avoid saying the J-word, the writer can't stop himself any more:
We ask God Almighty to foil their evil schemes against the Islamic nation, (as there is no God but Allah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah,) and [we ask Allah to] cleanse the land of Palestine from defiled Jews and their supporters, and to support the mujahideen everywhere in Burma, Syria, Palestine, ...and may this century herald the era of the beginning of Islamic Renaissance, God willing. I want to once again stress that the existence of Jew-hatred in the mainstream Palestinian Arab media every once in a while is not necessarily such a problem - if other Arabs would be upset. The problem is the complete absence of a counter-narrative in the Arab world - virtually never does one see any comments or talkbacks that say, "hey, you do know you are advocating genocide against Jews, which is just a slight violation of human rights, don't you?"
While the entire Arab world might not be as explicit in their goals as this writer, they are simply not exposed to anything positive about Jews, except in the nostalgic sense of remembering how nice the Jews who were ethnically cleansed from their countries 60 years ago were.
As I have been emphasizing recently, Arab antisemitism is a human rights issue, yet it has been completely ignored by the major human rights organizations. If you haven't done it yet, please sign the petition I set up to pressure Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International to fulfill their own mandates and condemn an upcoming blockbuster antisemitic TV series that will potentially reach hundreds of millions of Arabs.
UN Watch: “We do not take this lightly; the UN has a record of suspending or removing NGOs that criticize the worst regimes”
GENEVA, June 6, 2013 – In a scathing and unprecedented attack on a UN-accredited NGO, top UN Human Rights Council official Richard Falk is publicly calling on the 47-nation body to investigate and potentially expel a watchdog organization after it mobilized world leaders—including his own boss, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon—to condemn his comments blaming the Boston Marathon bombings on “the American global domination project” and “Tel Aviv.”
In his just-released annual report, Falk—the controversial human rights monitor tasked by the Council with investigating “Israel’s violations of the principles and bases of international law” in the Palestinian territories—accuses UN Watch, a Geneva-based human rights group that fight antisemitism and anti-Israel bias, with “demeaning” and “defaming” his character, damaging the “credibility,” “effectiveness,” and “substantive intention” of his mandate, all of which “diverts attention from the message” and “shifts public interest away.”
UN Watch, whose draft resolution to remove Falk has been circulated by the United Nations as an official document and will be before the Council when he addresses it on Monday, “categorically rejected Falk’s baseless and pathetic attempt to cast aspersions on our independence.”
“Sunlight is the best disinfectant, wrote Justice Brandeis, and that’s why Falk wants to shut us down—so his despicable abuses can proliferate in the dark,” said UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer.
In Falk’s report, as well as in intense lobbying efforts that he conducted this week as reported by UN insiders, the Council official demands that UN Watch “be investigated” to determine whether it qualifies as a genuine NGO.
“We call on UN Secretary Ban Ki-moon to denounce Richard Falk’s McCarthy-style attempt to have rogue regimes conduct a retaliatory ‘investigation’ of UN Watch, as a punishment for successfully exposing his gross misconduct,” said Neuer.
“Falk is dangerously trying to intimidate and silence the UN’s only watchdog group, to grant himself impunity while he continues to exculpate terrorist groups and make other inflammatory remarks that contradict the UN’s founding principles,” said Neuer.
“We are in good company, however, given that Falk’s report also accuses Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon of being ‘complicit’ with UN Watch for having condemned his ‘preposterous’ comments, in 2011 and again last month.”
Falk wrote that “it seems important to encourage a greater willingness on the part of senior United Nations officials to defend special rapporteurs subject to such diversionary attacks.”
Falk’s report claims that UN Watch’s “smear campaign” is carried out in “numerous settings, including at the Human Rights Council, as well as university venues where the Special Rapporteur gives lectures.”
The “smears” have been “sent to diplomats and United Nations officials, including the Secretary-General, who has apparently accepted the allegations at face value, issuing public criticism of the Special Rapporteur… with no effort to seek the views of the Special Rapporteur.”
In his report, Falk’s ninth and final recommendation is for the Human Rights Council to “establish a mechanism to support Special Rapporteurs who are subject to defamatory attacks, especially those that divert attention from the substantive human rights concerns relevant to their respective mandates.”
“This administration also puts forward a false choice between the liberties we cherish and the security we provide. I will provide our intelligence and law enforcement agencies with the tools they need to track and take out the terrorists without undermining the Constitution and our freedom. That means no more illegal wiretapping of American citizens. No more national security letters to spy on citizens who are not suspected of a crime. No more tracking citizens who do nothing but protest a misguided war. No more ignoring the law when it is inconvenient. It is not who we are. It is not what is necessary to defeat the terrorists. The FISA Court works. The separation of powers works. Our Constitution works. We will again set an example for the world that the law is not subject to the whims of stubborn rulers and that justice is not arbitrary. This administration acts like violating civil liberties is the way to enhance our security. It is not. There are no short cuts to protecting America.”
Tough words these are. They were uttered by President Obama while he was still Senator Obama, outraged at similar but less widespread monitoring than his administration was just exposed conducting. What prompted this change of heart on the necessity and constitutionality of the procedures found within the Patriot Act? After coming into office, did President Obama learn more about the full extent of the threat against America’s security or was he just bluffing on the campaign trail in order to secure the most powerful job in the world? It seems the White House isn’t willing to explain, instead deciding to issue a blanket defense of the collection of Verizon users’ metadata as a “critical tool in protecting the nation from terrorist threats to the United States.”
As Max discussed earlier, whether we like it or not, the data mining that the NSA took part in was both legal and necessary in a world where terrorism is still very much a threat, as we saw most recently in Boston and London. Many, including Politico and National Journal‘s Ron Fournier are calling the leak, first reported by Glenn Greenwald, further proof that Obama’s second term could really be considered George W. Bush’s fourth in terms of national security measures. Former senior Bush administration officials are playing the unlikely role of Obama’s defenders today, including Ari Fleischer, President Bush’s former press secretary. According to the AP, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee has stated that the phone records collection prevented a domestic terror attack. In other words, the data mining did exactly what it was meant to do, which is why it was written into the 2001 legislation commonly known as the Patriot Act, and why it has remained in subsequent reauthorizations of the law.
Where I diverge from Max’s defense of the practice, however, is the assumption that the data mined would only be used as part of an effort to detect patterns that would indicate a terrorist threat. What may have seemed like paranoid delusions just a month ago now are a reality. Could the call data taken from Verizon customers (do we really believe that this collection is limited to Verizon customers?) be used by other governmental agencies to track the calls of conservative activists or journalists reporting on stories that aren’t in the interest of the Obama administration? These scenarios, after the IRS scandal and controversy surrounding wiretapping of AP and Fox News journalists, are unfortunately very real possibilities. How much confidence should Americans have that their call data is being handled only by super computers at the NSA, searching for patterns as part of a larger national security operation? What assurances can the White House and the executive branch give the American people who are already increasingly wary of the politicization, size and scope of the government’s power in the wake of the IRS scandal, that the data was and will continue to be solely used in the interest of national security?
While many liberals vociferously expressed their mistrust of the Bush administration’s commitment to civil liberties, Americans never saw under Bush the kind of abuses of personal information in a politicized campaign against real or imagined foes of the administration that have emerged in the last month about the Obama White House. The Bush White House was closely watched by an American media that was, at its core, incredibly hostile to the president and his party and eager to report on any misstep, even if these missteps later proved to be outright fabrications. In contrast, it is only with the leaks about surveillance on AP reporters that the American media has even stirred in response to the Obama White House’s missteps. Today’s story on the NSA data collection was broken first by a foreign newspaper, the U.K.’s Guardian, not an American publication. While the data collection itself is a defensible and necessary step to protect Americans’ safety, the Obama administration needs to prove to the American people that it can be trusted with the information it has gathered and continues to gather for the sake of national security.
Not satisfied with bikini ban, Islamic supremacists in modern, moderate Indonesia vow to stop Miss World
Israeli police on Wednesday identified a 19-year-old Palestinian as the main suspect in the murder of a woman from Jerusalem.
Police spokeswoman Luba al-Samari said 19-year-old Mohammad Shweiki was suspected of choking Minas Qasim to death because her family rejected his marriage proposal.
The body of Qasim, 21, was found near a dump in East Jerusalem's al-Eizariya area on May 6, three days after she disappeared on her way home from work. An autopsy revealed the cause of death as strangling.
Police found Qasim's belongings at the suspect's home, including a necklace and her mobile phone, al-Samari said in a statement. Is there any difference between "family honor" and the "honor" of a spurned beau?
Not really. In both cases, men decide that when they are embarrassed by a woman for whatever reason, she must be killed. Saying it is to defend "honor" is a deflection, but one that gullible observers swallow.
After all, one major reason there is no Palestinian Arab state now is, indeed, "honor."
Compromise, to an extent, involves swallowing one's pride for the greater good. Since "everyone knows" that Arabs value their honor more than Israeli Jews, it seems logical to push the Israelis to make concessions while justifying Arab intransigence. It is a cultural thing, and to decry Arab culture seems vaguely colonialist.
The same logic that allows Arab nations to minimize punishments for "honor crimes" allows Western nations to give them a free pass for prioritizing "honor" over peace.