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Sunday, September 30, 2012

Succoth music video

This evening is the Jewish holiday of Sukkoth, and to prepare you for the rest of the week, here are some highlights of the Simchath Beith HaShoeva at the Karliner Hassidim last year.

Let's go to the videotape. More after the video

Chag Sameyach - A happy holiday to everyone.

Because I am considered an Israeli in Israel under Jewish law, my holiday is only one day rather than the two days in the rest of the world. So I will be back, God willing, on Monday night after the holiday ends.

Chag Sameyach!

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Charles Small's Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy (ISGAP) is resuming activities this fall. As you might recall, Small's Yale Institute for the Interdisciplinary Study of Anti-Semitism was shut down due to what was apparently pressure on the university by Muslim donors. The new institute will be spread across several campuses, including Harvard, Fordham and McGill. You can learn more about it and about its fall programs here.

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We may be tired of the war on terror, but the terrorists and their supporters aren't

Walter Russell Meade tries to connect the dots between several events that the Obama administration would like us to believe are not connected. Here's his conclusion.
But sometimes truth needs to be told. We are killing people in acts of war across Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa and expect to kill quite a few more. We are fighting a battle first to contain and then to defeat a vicious ideology of murder and hate that masks itself as religious zeal. We are fighting this war both at home and abroad, and there is not an inhabited continent anywhere on Planet Earth where this threat is not a serious concern.   All Muslims are not our enemies — far from it, and many of our most important allies and associates are decent, pious, enlightened Muslims who loathe the hate-spewing murderers as much as anybody else — but all of our enemies claim to be fighting in the name of Islam.
Basing war policy on the denial of facts is never smart, and the blow back can be severe. It’s quite possible that President Obama will be more frank about this conflict in his second term; whatever happens in November the threat will be too real and our efforts to deal with it will be too far-reaching for the United States government to pretend that we don’t face a global security challenge as serious as a war.
Read it all

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Are Jewish towns in Judea and Samaria built on Arab land?

One of the many claims in the mainstream media that is taken for granted is that Jewish towns in Judea and Samaria are built on Arab land. That claim, write Rachel Neuwirth and John Landau, is patently false (Hat Tip: Sunlight).
Not even the so-called “unauthorized” or “illegal” Jewish settlements, those that the Israeli government has not fully and expressly authorized, are built on Arab-owned land. Both the authorized and unauthorized Jewish communities were all built on what had been completely unoccupied, uncultivated and uninhabited “waste land.” No Arab homes were destroyed, no Arab residents were expelled, and no Arab farmland was seized in creating any of these Jewish communities—whether their construction was fully authorized by the Israeli government or not. And under the land ownership laws of Judea and Samaria — which date to when these territories were under Turkish rule, and which have been respected by all subsequent governments, including the Israeli administration — nearly all uninhabited and completely undeveloped “waste land” belongs to the state, not to any private owner. While such land could legally be purchased from the state, there were almost no instances in which Arabs actually did purchase such “waste land,” because they would have had to pay taxes on it while deriving no benefit for the foreseeable future. Whatever few purchases of such land were made, were made by Jewish philanthropists hoping to provide land for future Jewish refugees or immigrants.
Why, then, have the notions that all of the Jewish “settlements” are “illegal” and, what is more, built on Arab-owned land taken such a firm hold on the belief-systems of the world’s governments and news media? One major reason has been the activities of Israel-based “Human rights” NGOs (“non-governmental organizations”) such as Peace Now, B’tselem, Yesh Din, Yesh Gvul and many others. These soi-disant human rights organizations, which are committed to ending the Israeli “occupation” of all land outside the country’s June 3, 1967 cease-fire lines, and to forcing the expulsion of the 600,000 Israelis who live outside those cease-fire lines (which were never legal borders), have published a series “reports” claiming that up to 30 percent of the land on which Israeli-Jewish “settlements” on the “West Bank” are built exist on what these groups describe as “privately owned Arab land” (or is it 38%? Or 32%? or 24% ? or 16%? Each “report” gives a different percentage figure, and sometimes there are even two contradictory figures within one “report”). These figures, as well as many other claims by the soi-disant human rights groups, are then immediately published as facts—first by the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, which despite being published in Israel is actually a mouthpiece for the Palestinian Authority and its network of affiliated organizations—and then by The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, the The Washington TimesNPR, the BBC and a thousand other newspapers and electronic media services throughout the Western world.
However, when one actually reads in detail the lengthy reports on the web sites of these “human rights” groups that purport to document the supposed settler “land grabs,” one finds no credible evidence for these percentage claims, despite many footnotes and long statistical tables, charts, etc. Either these “reports” a) fail to give any original source at all for the statistics, or b) they claim that they are supported by thousands of Israeli government documents that these groups have received under Israel’s Freedom of Information law—but without quoting from a single specific document that supports their claims about Jewish settlements on “privately owned Arab land.”
Sunlight asked me - and I'm sure others are wondering - whether there is written documentation of this land belonging to Jews. I'm not sure that there is any written documentation, or that if there is such documentation that the Israeli government can get its hands on it except maybe, possibly, through the auspices of the Jewish Agency (which is not a government agency). I also suspect that there are a lot of forces among Israel's elites who do not want such documentation to be available.

On the other hand,  although it's been a lot of years since my first-year law school property course, my recollection is that possession is 90% of the law, and that the burden of proving otherwise is on the side that would seek to expel someone in possession of land. Clearly, that burden has not been met.

Read the whole thing.


The future belongs to gay feminist ecumenical Muslims?

This Mark Steyn piece is too funny not to pass on. 
And so it was with President Obama’s usual visionary, inspiring, historic, etc., address to the U.N. General Assembly the other day: “The future must not belong to those who bully women,” he told the world, in a reference either to Egyptian clitoridectomists or the Republican party, according to taste. “The future must not belong to those who target Coptic Christians,” he added. You mean those Muslim guys? Whoa, don’t jump to conclusions. “The future must not belong to those who slander the Prophet of Islam,” he declared, introducing to U.S. jurisprudence the novel concept of being able to slander a bloke who’s been dead for getting on a millennium and a half now. If I understand correctly the cumulative vision of the speech, the future will belong to gay feminist ecumenical Muslims. You can take that to the bank. But make no mistake, as he would say, and in fact did: “We face a choice between the promise of the future or the prisons of the past, and we cannot afford to get it wrong.” Because if we do, we could spend our future living in the prisons of the past, which we forgot to demolish in the present for breach of wheelchair-accessibility codes.

And the crowd went wild! Well, okay, they didn’t. They’re transnational bureaucrats on expense accounts, so they clapped politely, and then nipped out for a bathroom break before the president of Serbia. But, if I’d been one of the globetrotting bigwigs fortunate enough to get an invite — the prime minister of Azerbaijan, say, or the deputy tourism minister of Equatorial Guinea — I would have responded: Well, maybe the future will belong to those who empower women and don’t diss Mohammed. But maybe it’ll belong to albino midgets who wear pink thongs. Who knows? Que sera sera, whatever will be will be, the future’s not ours to see. But one thing we can say for certain is that the future will not belong to broke losers. You’re the brokest guy in the room, you’re the president of Brokistan. You’ve got to pay back $16 trillion just to get back to having nothing, nada, zip. Who the hell are you to tell us who the future’s going to belong to?

The excitable lads around the globe torching American embassies with impunity seem to have figured this out, even if the striped-pants crowd at Turtle Bay are too polite to mention it.  Obama is not the president of the Future. He is president right now, and one occasionally wishes the great visionary would take his eye off the far-distant horizon where educated women and fire-breathing imams frolic and gambol side by side around their Chevy Volts, to focus on the humdrum present where the rest of us have the misfortune to live.

In the America over which Barack Obama has the tedious chore of actually presiding, second-quarter GDP growth was revised down from 1.7 percent to 1.3 percent — or, in layman’s terms, from “barely detectable” to “comatose.” Orders of durable goods fell by 13.2 percent — or, as Obama would say, the future must not belong to people who own household appliances. Growth of capital stock (which basically measures investment in new equipment and software — or, as Obama would put it, investment in “the future”) is at its lowest since records began. There are 261,000 fewer payroll jobs than when Obama took office — in a nation where (officially) 100,000 immigrants arrive every month. A few weeks ago, an analysis of government employment data by the nation’s oldest outplacement firm, Challenger, Gray & Christmas, discovered that, of the 4,319,000 new American jobs created since January 2010, 2,998,000 — or about 70 percent — went to people aged 55 or older. This is a remarkable statistic, even in a land of 31-year-old schoolgirls like Sandra Fluke. You’d almost begin to get the vague, unsettling feeling that the future does not belong to Americans aged 54 and younger.
 Read it all

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A real plan for peace between Israel and the 'Palestinians'

Here's an interview with Mudar Zahran, a lecturer, publicist and 'Palestinian' blogger, who has a more realistic approach to peace between Israel and the 'Palestinians' (Hat Tip: David H).

“Actually, most of the Palestinians are angry with and hate their Arab 'brothers' more than they are angry with or hate the Jews. I have never heard about a Palestinian woman dying of cancer and one of the neighboring Arab countries, Lebanon for example, helping her. But I’ve heard of plenty of cases where hospitals in Israel have offered help,” said Mudar Zahran, 39, a lecturer and publicist — and a Palestinian blogger — in an interview with Israel Hayom. Zahran participated in an international seminar on new media and public diplomacy given by the Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Ministry this week.
One might have expected such statements to come from a Jewish Israeli right-winger, not necessarily an extremist. But anyone who knows Zahran and attended the seminar, which was held in cooperation with the Ariel University Center of Samaria (which offers advanced studies in new media toward a bachelor's degree) was not at all surprised. This is not the first time Zahran has judged Israel favorably while speaking against the Arab states when it comes to the Palestinian question (just ask Jordan, which he accuses of practicing apartheid in one of his essays).


Q. In other words, many Palestinians will never dare to express similar opinions in public?
“True. Among other reasons, I came to Ariel to state clearly that the settlements are legitimate. The more Israelis delegitimize the settlements, the more they’ll complicate the situation and harm more Palestinians. You, the Israelis, need to wake up and realize that most of the Palestinians in east Jerusalem, for example, want you to stay. I know polls that show that 70 percent of the residents want that. I felt it was my duty as a Palestinian to speak the truth, to present the Palestinians and to represent them. I hope I’ll succeed in changing the situation.”
During the seminar in Ariel, Zahran listened with an open mind to both sides of the Jewish-Palestinian conflict. He spoke about difficult moments at the checkpoints and the procedure that Palestinians must undergo to enter Israel. On the other hand, he says, “Every country on earth would do the same to protect its citizens if it were living under the threat of terrorism. The extremists within the Palestinian people are the ones who caused it.”
Zahran describes himself as a religious Muslim. Although his parents wanted to give him a different kind of education, he grew up in a community with an atmosphere of hatred toward Israelis and, of course, toward Jews. “My parents had different opinions,” says Zahran, setting them apart from other Palestinians and continuing in that direction.
“Usually, in reality, most of the Palestinians feel hatred toward Arabs more than they do toward Jews. We suffer because of our Arab brothers, but we are also dependent on them. It’s a bizarre situation because the Arab countries don’t really care what happens to the Palestinian people.”
He adds, “The only assistance that we have ever received from any country was from the ‘Zionist enemy.’ We really have no other options. It’s not that I’m a Zionist. I care about Israel for selfish reasons, but how long are we going to fight against the only nation that helps us?” Of course, he does not understand the Israelis who oppose the settlements, because in his words, “They’re just encouraging the terrorist groups indirectly. They’re giving legitimacy to Hamas.” Zahran, who deplores the lack of good education and good leadership among the Palestinians, is certain that only cooperation with Israel can help. “Nothing can be done without Israel’s assistance,” he says again.

Read the whole thing. I can only wonder how many 'Palestinians' think like  he does and would be willing to say so in public.

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Barack Hussein Obama buying the election one phone at a time

The Obama campaign has given out more than a million free cell phones in Ohio (at government expense, of course) in a bid to woo voters in this critical state (Hat Tip: Ellen S).
A program that provides subsidized phone service to low-income individuals has nearly doubled in size in Ohio in the past year — now covering more than a million people. At the same time, federal officials say they’re reining in waste, fraud and abuse in the program.
The Federal Communications Commission announced recently that reforms have saved $43 million since January and are expected to save $200 million by year’s end. In Ohio, savings are expected to be $2.9 million a year.
The savings were realized in part because the government gave out fewer cellphones to ineligible people and took steps to avoid issuing duplicate phones.
But the size of the program in the state — and profits to the increasing number of cellphone companies involved — has exploded in recent months, according to a Dayton Daily News analysis of program data.
The program in Ohio cost $26.9 million in the first quarter of 2012, the most recent data available, versus $15.6 million in the same timeframe in 2011. Compared to the first quarter of 2011, the number of people in the program nearly doubled to more than a million.
Growth could cost everyone who owns a phone. The program is funded through the “Universal Service Fund” charge on phone bills — usually a dollar or two per bill — and the amount of the fee is determined by the cost of this and other programs.
A growth of $100 million in this program could result in an increased fee of a few cents on the average bill, according to officials from the agency that administers the program. The total cost of the program nationwide was $1.5 billion in 2011, up from $1.1 billion in 2010.
A billion here, a billion there. Eventually it adds up to real money.

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Aren't they the perfect couple?

What? You think I'm kidding? Joe loves Debbie. More here.

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Overnight music video

Here's Avishai Eshel with Hashem Echad (God is one).

Let's go to the videotape.

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Obama again refuses to set red lines on Iran

In a phone call with Prime Minister Netanyahu on Friday, President Obama refused once again to set red lines on Iran.
President Obama called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and reiterated his opposition to Iran possessing a nuclear weapon, but he did not accede to Netanyahu’s request for a red line statement.
“The two leaders discussed a range of security issues, and the President reaffirmed his and our country’s unshakeable commitment to Israel’s security,” the White House Press Office stated in a readout of Obama’s call. “The two leaders underscored that they are in full agreement on the shared goal of preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.”
In short, Obama’s position did not change despite Netanyahu’s high-profile appeal at the United Nations yesterday. 
Later on Friday, Netanyahu spoke with Republican candidate Mitt Romney
Romney, who has repeatedly criticized Obama for not meeting with Netanyahu while the prime minister is in the U.S., told reporters after speaking with the Israeli leader that while he believed diplomacy can resolve the standoff with Iran, military action must not be ruled out.
“We spoke about his assessment of where the red line ought to be drawn, and my own views with regards to Iran,” Romney said of the conversation.
Netanyahu must feel like Chicken Little running around telling everyone the sky is falling while no one will listen.

What could go wrong?

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Explosion targets Malmo Jewish community center

An explosion targeted a Jewish community center in Malmo, Sweden on Friday morning. No one was hurt.
“There has been an explosion. Something has detonated – we are certain of that,” police officer Erik Liljenström said to local paper Sydsvenskan.
While damage had been done to the front door, the building itself was not damaged.
Local police brought two men in for questioning after their car was seen by witnesses leaving the area at a high speed following the explosion.
The Jewish community in Malmö was previously the target of anti-Semitic attacks. Earlier this year, a rabbi was physically assaulted and in 2010, a group of Jews were attacked by Swedish Muslims during a peaceful protest in support of Israel.
In August, several hundred Kippah-wearing Jews and non-Jews marched in Stockholm in solidarity with Malmö's persecuted Jewish community.
Folks, it's time to leave.... 

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Panetta: You've lost what?

US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said on Friday that the United States has lost track of 'some' Syrian chemical weapons. How many? They're not saying. And no one knows whether the weapons are in the control of Syrian rebels, Iranians in the country helping the pro-Assad forces or someone else (Hat Tip: Sunlight).
“There has been intelligence that there have been some moves that have taken place. Where exactly that’s taken place, we don’t know.” Panetta said, in a Pentagon press briefing.

Panetta said that the “main sites” in Syria storing chemical weapons with which the Pentagon is most concerned remain secured by the Syrian military. But there is “some intelligence” that “limited” movements of weapons from other sites have occurred, he said, “for the Syrians to better secure what they – the chemicals.”

Panetta's statement follows reporting that Syrian rebels claim to have taken control of a military base that contains chemical weapons.

“But with regards to the movement of some of this and whether or not they’ve been able to locate some of it,” he said of U.S. intelligence, “we just don’t know.”

Following the briefing, Pentagon officials sought to clarify the extent of their grasp on the status of Syria's stockpiles. "We've never had perfect visibility into the Syrian chemical weapons stockpile, but we have excellent information that accounts for most of it," said a senior defense offiical, speaking on background. "We've seen it move, and we've been able to make an assessment as to why it's been moved.  This is a highly distributed network of chemical weapons sites, and we have a good grasp of what's going on inside that network."
What could go wrong? Well, that's not the end of it. It seems there's a lot about Mr. Panetta that we didn't know. Until now.

Here's Trevor Loudon addressing an enthusiastic crowd at the 2012 Gathering of the Eagles crowd event in Turner, OR. Trevor is a libertarian activist and political researcher from Christchurch, New Zealand and is founder and editor of KeyWiki.org, a rapidly growing website with the goal of unlocking the covert side of U.S. and Global politics. He is the author of "Barack Obama and the Enemies Within". "Trevor Loudon does the job that few in the media ever even attempt. This eye-opening book is proof that one person really can make a difference, especially when they have no agenda other than finding the truth." ~ Glenn Beck, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author and Founder of GBTV.

Trevor Loudon has an awful lot to tell us about Leon Panetta, Barack Obama and the Communist party. 

Let's go to the videotape (Hat Tip: Maggie's Notebook).

Details on the Shanghai Cooperation Organization are here.

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Saturday, September 29, 2012

MTA changes their advertising rules, the Dersh calls new rules unconstitutional

Just one day after Mona Eltahaway was arrested in New York for vandalizing Pamela Geller's subway advertisements (see above), New York City's Metropolitan Transportation Authority changed its rules regarding ads like the ones in question.
The New York Times reports the MTA will prohibit any advertisements that it “reasonably foresees would imminently incite or provoke violence or other immediate breach of the peace.” Those “viewpoint” ads that do not meet this criteria will be allowed, so long as a disclaimer is included saying the MTA does not endorse them. The MTA met on Thursday to discuss the rules, which were approved unanimously 8-0. 

Self-proclaimed “proud-liberal Muslim” activist Mona Eltahawy served as the impetus of the ruling after she spray painted a pro-Israel advertisement placed in the New York City subway.
Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz says that the new rules are plain dumb and unconstitutional.
“A. it’s clearly unconstitutional” he said, and “b. it incentivizes people to engage in violence. What it says to people, is that if they don’t like ads, just engage in violence and then we’ll take the ads down.”
“It’s very bad policy,” he continued, “and it’s just plain dumb, because it is going to encourage violence.”
Responding to the charge in an interview with The Algemeiner, M.T.A. spokesperson Aaron Donovan declined to comment.


The Law Professor also made clear that he is certain the decision will face legal challenges. “It will be challenged, there is no question about that,” he confirmed, “if the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) doesn’t get into this case immediately, they are going to have to write to me several times for my contribution this year. This is a perfect case for the ACLU, the ACLU should be in there, opposed to the MTA.”
“I would hope the ACLU would get behind the organization that put up the ads even though I’m sure they disagree with the content of the ads, as do I,” he concluded.
When asked by The Algemeiner if they had considered the constitutionality of their decision, M.T.A. spokesperson Aaron Donovan said that he wasn’t concerned. “All of the changes that were made to the guidelines, were made within the framework of our understanding of First Amendment law, we feel the guidelines as they have been amended are firmly planted in the bedrock of the constitution, specifically the First Amendment,” he said.
I wonder whether the ACLU will get behind Pam and her group. Hmmm.

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Video: Kiss the good life goodbye?

In yet the latest example of an attempted coverup by the Obama administration of the President's outrageous personal spending at the taxpayers' expense, Judicial Watch has filed a lawsuit to force the Secret Service to disclose how much it spent to take Malia Obama, 12 of her friends and 25 secret service agents on a Mexican vacation in March (March? Elementary school kids now have spring break when the colleges do?).
The Obama administration is unlawfully withholding public records about the spring break trip to Mexico funded by taxpayers last March for Malia Obama, according to a new lawsuit filed by Judicial Watch, the government watchdog organization based in Washington.
It’s not the first blackout the government has imposed on the trip, Judicial Watch noted.
Press reports of the trip for the then-13-year-old, a dozen friends and an estimated 25 Secret Service agents were erased from the Web on orders from the White House.
The new lawsuit claims not only are the records for the expenses of the trip required to be public, it is illegal for the administration to withhold them.
“Contrary to federal law, the Obama administration has simply ignored this basic [Freedom of Information Act] request. I have little doubt that this stonewall is because of the embarrassment of the security costs for the spring break trip of the Obamas’ daughter,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.
The organization previously has ferreted out details, including estimated expenses, for other Obama vacations at taxpayer expense.
Reports of the trip were removed from numerous websites (the article includes a list) at the request of the Obama administration on the pretense that they were 'not newsworthy.'

God willing the Obama administration's time in the White House will soon be over.

Let's go to the videotape to look at some of the consequences (Hat Tip: Jack W).

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Shuffling through the IDF

Here's an IDF soldier shuffling through IDF basic training, from the day of his enlistment to the day of his  swearing in.

Let's go to the videotape.


US Ambassador to the UN missed Bibi's General Assembly speech

The 'most pro-Israel administration ever's Ambassador to the United Nations missed Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech at the United Nations on Thursday, choosing instead to go play golf to lunch with Hillary Clinton or something like that. Who knows? Lazy Susan Rice spends so little time in New York, maybe she had to go pick up her cleaning.

Let's go to the videotape (Hat Tip: BeShepp via Gateway Pundit).

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Surprise! Hussein Obama lied when he said he wasn't available to meet Netanyahu

Shauva tov, a good week to everyone.

Prime Minister Netanyahu spoke at the United Nations on Thursday. Two weeks ago, he offered to travel to Washington on Friday to meet with the self-proclaimed 'most pro-Israel President ever,' Barack HUSSEIN Obama. Hussein Obama claimed he didn't have time to meet with Prime Minister Netanyahu because he was too busy campaigning too busy appearing on David Letterman too busy consorting with the women of The View a scheduling conflict.

I'm sure you'll all be shocked - just shocked - to hear that when President Obama's schedule for Friday was released, it had a huge hole from 10:15 am to 4:20 pm.  I'm sure the White House press corps will be all over this (/sarc).
Netanyahu spoke at the U.N. on Thursday. Today is the day he would have traveled to Washington—and Obama’s schedule shows that his entire afternoon is free.
9:45 am || Receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
10:15 am || Meets with senior advisers
4:20 pm || Delivers remarks at a fundraiser; Capital Hilton, Washington
6:05 pm || Delivers remarks at a fundraiser; private residence, Washington
8:25 pm || Delivers remarks at a fundraiser; Capital Hilton, Washington
I wonder what 'as the first Jewish woman ever to represent Florida in Congress, I wear my love for Israel on my sleeve when I go to work every day' will have to say about this. Probably not a whole lot.

Those who want to keep fooling themselves that this President is pro-Israel may continue to do so, but please don't expect the rest of us to believe you. And please don't tell us that you care about Israel either. You don't. You're liars just as much as Barack Hussein Obama is.

So what did he do on Friday? Play golf again?

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Friday, September 28, 2012

Sabbath music video

Here's Ohad Moskowitz with Echad Yachid u'Meyuchad (One, only and exclusive).

Let's go to the videotape.

Shabbat Shalom everyone.

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The Bibi Netanyahu highlight reel

Here's a highlight reel of Prime Minister Netanyahu's Thursday speech to the United Nations.

Let's go to the videotape.



Video: Absolutely uncertain

A new, 18-minute mini-documentary follows the journey of Irina, a 23-year-old liberal, Jewish New Yorker who voted for Obama in 2008. Yet as her connection to Israel has grown, and she has learned more about the President's policies across the Middle East and towards Israel in particular, Irina has come to realize that "when the chips are down," the President may not "have Israel's back" as he says.

The short film features:

Exclusive interviews with leading journalists and politicians in Israel
(Bloomberg, London Times, Jerusalem Post, etc.)

Mainstream news reports (CNN, MSNBC, ABC, BBC, etc.),

Clips from longtime Democratic supporters including: Harvard Professor Alan Dershowitz Former NYC Mayor Ed Koch Senator Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY)

Let's go to the videotape (Hat Tip: Sunlight). 

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Why does Hillary Clinton need Huma to meet with Bibi?

Haaretz's Barak Ravid tweeted this photo of Hillary Clinton arriving at the Regency Hotel in New York for her Thursday meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu.

In a tweeted response, Laura Rozen identified the other people in the picture. That's Hillary in the front. The lady to her left (our right) in the blue pantsuit and pink wrap is Wendy Sherman, the United States' Iranian negotiator. The tall, thin guy behind her is policy planning chief Jake Sullivan. And the woman to Sullivan's right (our left) with the brown shirt, white necklace and off white pants is Hillary's administrative aide Muslim Brotherhood representative Huma Abedin.

What the heck is Huma doing there? Taking notes? For whom?

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Obama's red line on the Iranian nuclear threat

Do you think that Barack Hussein Obama doesn't have a red line on the Iranian nuclear threat? Well, you're wrong. Here it is (Hat Tip: Jack W):

Sad but probably true.

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LATMA's tribal update studies the media's math and Egypt's honor

The Tribal Update with Flock Builder's explanation of how demonstrators are counted. Egyptian Minister of Conspiracy Theories and fiasco expert Yevava Ben-Whine defend Egypt's honor and about Israel's defeat in the Yom Kippur War.

Let's go to the videotape.

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The great divider

Jeff Jacoby writes that after promising to unite the world, Barack Hussein Obama has turned himself into the great divider.
As the 2012 campaign heads into the home stretch, a story in Politico notes that “Obama and his top campaign aides have engaged far more frequently in character attacks and personal insults than the Romney campaign.” The man who won the presidency by decrying “partisanship and pettiness and immaturity” now seeks reelection by deploying slurs and aspersions with abandon: A key aide suggests that Mitt Romney’s financial filings may amount to a felony. The vice president claims that Republicans want to put voters “ back in chains.” An Obama campaign video likens Romney to “ a vampire.”
“The Obama-led attacks on Romney’s character,” Politico concludes, “have been both relentless and remorseless.”
There is nothing new about ruthlessness in politics. For all of Obama’s talk about not wanting “ to pit red America against blue America,” it was always foreseeable that his reelection campaign would eventually become a merciless march to the sea.
Yet Obama’s brutal negativity can’t simply be brushed aside as the inevitable surrender of idealism to realism. It’s true that presidents have often lamented the shrillness of American politics. Abraham Lincoln sought to “bind up the nation’s wounds.” George W. Bush originally ran for office as “ a uniter, not a divider.” Even Richard Nixon said his “great objective” would be “ to bring the American people together.” But only Obama made national unity and bipartisan harmony the justification for his candidacy.
It never happened. The 44th president has been nothing like the healer-in-chief he promised to be. Early on he took the low road, inflaming resentments, demonizing his critics, and, yes, pitting red Americans against blue Americans. His defenders argue that he had no choice — that in the face of unremitting Republican opposition, going negative was his only option.
But all presidents face partisan opposition. Democrats vehemently fought Bush; Republicans fiercely battled Bill Clinton. Obama never conditioned “hope and change” on GOP support for his agenda. His condition was that he be elected.
“2008’s candidate of hope stands poised to become 2012’s candidate of fear,” New York Magazine’s John Heilemann wrote last spring. “For anyone still starry-eyed about Obama, the months ahead will provide a bracing revelation about what he truly is: not a savior, not a saint, not a man above the fray, but a brass-knuckled, pipe-hitting, red-in-tooth-and-claw brawler determined to do what is necessary to stay in power.”
 Indeed. Read it all.


'Poor Palestinians' have more money invested abroad than foreign money invested in 'Palestine'

The 'poor Palestinians' have more money invested abroad than there is foreign money invested in 'Palestine' (Hat Tip: IMRA).
Stocks of Palestinian assets invested abroad in 2011 were about $5,233 million, while stocks of foreign liabilities on the Palestinian economy were about $4,512 million, a Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) report said on Wednesday.
PCBS and the Palestine Monetary Authority (PMA) said in a joint press release on International Investment Position (IIP) and External Debt statistics that primary results of IIP for the Palestinian Territory by the end of 2011 revealed that the net IIP had amounted to about $721.0 million, which means that the Palestinian economy of its various sectors had invested outside Palestinian Territory by more than the investment amount in the Palestinian Territory from abroad.
The cash deposits of local banks in foreign banks and foreign exchange in the Palestinian economy had contributed majorly in the external assets, representing 63.6% of their total value, said the release.
The total stocks of external assets for the Palestinian Territory (stocks of residents in the Palestinian Territory invested abroad) had amounted to $5,233 million; foreign direct investment abroad contributed to 3.7%, portfolio investments abroad reached 21.9%, while other foreign investments abroad reached 64.9%, and reserve assets amounted to 9.5%.
And that doesn't even count Abu Mazen's Swiss bank accounts, let alone the accouatnts left over from Arafat....

But send them more money 'international community.' They're 'impoverished.'


Soros' and Silverman's contempt for Jewish education

Joel Pollak writes than an Obama election ad made by Samuel L. Jackson (pictured) and financed by the Soros family shows contempt for Jewish education.

Jewish education is all about profanity, bestiality, and dishonesty--if George Soros, Samuel L. Jackson, and Sarah Silverman are to be believed.

The so-called "Jewish Council for Education and Research," in reality a super PAC backed by Soros's son Alexander, has produced a new anti-Romney ad in which Jackson exhorts a family to "Wake the F--- Up!" and work for President Barack Obama's re-election. Earlier this year, the Jewish Council released an ad in which Silverman simulates sex with a dog to mock Jewish GOP donor Sheldon Adelson.

There is nothing "Jewish" at all about these ads--far from it. Yet Alexander Soros--with money, no doubt, from Soros père--uses the "Jewish" label to give the imprimatur of respectability to these profane and profoundly unfunny ads. 
Not even the smug liberalism which emanates from some corners of the Jewish institutional world would stoop as low as Soros. He has defamed the enterprise of Jewish education and the Jewish community. In any other context--i.e. if a Jew were not involved--the abuse of the "Jewish" label would be considered antisemitic.

In addition to profound bigotry, what the "Jewish Council" ads suggest is the desperation of Obama supporters in Washington and Hollywood. The Jackson ad suggests that Democrats fear and know that their supporters are less motivated to vote today than in 2008. It repeats several outright lies about Romney--i.e. that he does not believe in any kind of safety net--and in the end resorts to profanity, not only from Jackson but from a child.

The irony of a self-described "Jewish" organization releasing such an ad during the Jewish high holidays and at a time of profound threats to Israel and to Jews in Europe suggests an insensitivity bordering on malice.
 Read the whole thing.  I won't post the disgusting ad, but you can find a link to it at the link in this post.

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Dr. Miriam Adelson: We did build that

Dr. Miriam Adelson, the very accomplished wife of Republican donor Sheldon Adelson, is furious that the Obama administration is attacking her and her husband.
My husband, Sheldon Adelson, a son of a poor Boston taxi driver, started his business life at the age of 12, and has achieved everything with his own hands. His companies have directly created more than 50,000 jobs and indirectly provided employment for hundreds of thousands of Americans and people around the world. These jobs have in turn supported an even greater number of families.
For my part, I have worked as a medical doctor for almost 40 years in the areas of internal, emergency and addiction medicine. In those years I have saved human life and helped countless individuals regain meaningful lives.
Our belief is that it is one’s right and obligation to rely on oneself, on one’s efforts, on one’s talent. This is the American way. This is the dignified way — to be an entrepreneur, not a follower; to rely on yourself, not to expect the government to take care of you; to strive to do your work by yourself, not to demand others do it for you.
And if you succeed, then your success is exactly what America is about — proof of the American dream!
But the American dream is possible because of certain fundamental rights that are conferred and protected by our Constitution.
One of those rights is the freedom to support and donate to the candidate you want, as long as you abide by the laws that protect us all.
Those who currently chase after my family, who demonize us for our political positions, are acting on motives contrary to American values. And those in the media who are collaborating with these people are also acting from the same wrong political motives. Indeed, they are feeding it with a media double standard — allowing for Democrats what is forbidden to Republicans.
The reason is simple: to help the Democrats keep control of the executive branch of the government.
Indeed. Read the whole thing.

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Overnight music video

As we prepare for the Sukkoth holiday this coming week, here's the Miami Boys Choir with Yaaleh v'Yavo (He will go up and arrive), which is part of the prayers on every Jewish holiday.

Let's go to the videotape.

Ya'aleh V'Yavo - miami boys choir by corinettte

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'Bibi can you spare a dime'?

If Prime Minister Netanyahu can come up with a dime to call him, His Lord Master President Hussein Obama has agreed to talk to him by phone on Friday... after he's been dressed down by Hillary Clinton (Hat Tip: Memeorandum).
President Barack Obama is due to speak to Benjamin Netanyahu by telephone on Friday - a day after deputing Hillary Clinton to stand in for him by meeting the Israeli premier in New York.
Jay Carney, Obama's press secretary, confirmed that the two leaders would speak as Netanyahu prepared to address the United Nations in New York. Obama left the U.N. before he arrived and is spending most of Thursday campaigning in Virginia.
The White House rejected an Israeli request for Netanyahu to meet Obama, either at the U.N. or in Washington - a sign of the icy relationship between the two men.
And American Jews are still going to vote to reelect this moron? Fools.

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AP and Reuters try to make Netanyahu look like a Nazi

You would think that the picture above would have been the lead picture in every story about Prime Minister Netanyahu's UN speech on Thursday.

But you'd be wrong.

Look at the 'shock photos' al-AP and al-Reuters chose to publish instead (Hat Tip: Memeorandum).

Coincidence? I doubt it.

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Debbie Wassserman Schultz's birthday present

So I missed by three minutes Israel time, but Thursday is Debbie Wasserman Schultz's 46th birthday and her opponent, Republican Karen Harrington, made this a birthday Congresscritter Wasserman Schultz will never forget.

Read all about it here.

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Thursday, September 27, 2012

Jews for Mitt

Can anyone get me one (or more) of these?

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In case you missed them, here are Abu Mazen and Netanyahu's speeches

In case you missed them, here are Abu Mazen's and Prime Minister Netanyahu's speeches to the United Nations General Assembly.

Abu Mazen accused Israel of 'ethnic cleansing' and promoting another 'naqba.' 
"Israel is promising the Palestinian people a new catastrophe, a new Nakba," the PA president declared.
Abbas began his speech by referring to the "catastrophic danger of the racist Israeli settlement of our country, Palestine."
He claimed that during the past months, "attacks by terrorist militias of Israeli settlers have become a daily reality."
The Palestinians, he said, "are facing relentless waves of attacks against our people, our mosques, churches and monasteries, and our homes and schools; they are unleashing their venom against our trees, fields, crops and properties, and our people have become fixed targets for acts of killing and abuse with the complete collusion of the occupying forces and the Israeli government."
Abbas accused Israel of carrying out a policy of "ethnic cleansing" against Arab residents of Jerusalem by demolishing their homes and denying them basic services. He also accused Israel of preventing "millions of Palestinians from freely accessing Jerusalem mosques, churches, schools, hospitals and markets.
Abbas called on the international community to investigate the conditions of some 5,000 Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails. "They are soldiers in their people's struggle for freedom, independence and peace," he said of the prisoners.
A bunch of lies.

Let's go to the videotape.

Prime Minister Netanyahu spent most of his time discussing Iran. And he was the consummate orator as usual.
"At this late hour, there is only one way to peacefully prevent Iran from getting atomic bombs and that's by placing a clear red line on Iran's nuclear weapons program," Netanyahu said in an address to the United Nations General Assembly. "Red lines don't lead to war; red lines prevent war."
"Iran uses diplomatic negotiations to buy time to advance its program," he said. "The international community has tried sanctions, has passed some of strongest sanctions. Oil exports have been curbed, and the Iranian economy has been hit hard. But we must fact the truth that sanctions have not stopped Iran's nuclear drive."
Citing data from the IAEA, Netanyahu said that Iran "doubled its centrifuges last year."
Physically drawing a red line across a diagram of the Iranian bomb, that he held up before the assembly, Netanyahu said that a red line must be placed on Iran's uranium enrichment program: "Then Iran will back down," he asserted.
 Let's go to the videotape.

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Awesome: The biggest anti-Obama, pro-Romney ad on Israel you've ever seen

The Republican Jewish Coalition presents "Perilous Times," a mini-documentary in which Israeli experts and everyday citizens candidly discuss their concerns about the U.S.-Israel relationship under Pres. Obama.

Among the notable experts consulted for this film are :
• Zalman Shoval, former Israeli ambassador to the U.S. and a highly-respected diplomat;
• Oren Kessler, foreign affairs correspondent at the Jerusalem Post;
• Barry Rubin, an expert on terrorism and Middle East affairs;
• Jacob Levy, Israel's leading pollster and founder of Gallup Israel;
• Itamar Marcus, founder and director of Palestinian Media Watch; and
• Yair Shamir, leading Israeli businessman; former chair of El Al and Israel Aerospace; son of former PM Yitzhak Shamir.

For more information about the RJC, visit www.RJCHQ.org.

Let's go to the videotape (Hat Tip: Gary P).

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If Israel strikes Iran, it won't be the end of the world

Peter Glover and Michael Economides make a strong case that an Israeli strike on Iran won't necessarily lead to a wider conflagration, and that Israel has the right and duty to do the job that no one else will do.
The fact is that Shia Iran is an isolated and ailing economy with no friends other than Syria in the predominantly Sunni Middle East region. We need to bear in mind that, historically, there is no love lost between Shia and Sunni Islam. We need only look at the murderous conflict between the two in Iraq.
In response to an attack against Iran’s enrichment facilities, young hotheads would certainly take to the streets to burn Israeli and US flags and effigies to call for jihad. Their leaders, from Riyadh to Cairo to Amman would, however, quietly be breathing a sigh of relief that someone had finally ended Iranian nuclear regional ambitions that could well see a nuclear-armed Iran targeting them, not just Israel.
As the Pentagon’s Wiki-leaks emails revealed only too clearly, Iran’s neighbours, deeply suspicious of Tehran’s ideological regional ambitions (and not just as regards Israel), have privately been urging a U.S. military resolution of the Iranian nuclear program for years.
Moreover, Russia may have helped build Iran’s nuclear facility at Bushehr but, as we reported in Has Russia Sold Out Iran for a Stake in Israeli Gas?, for all its public bluster, Moscow appears already to have sold its partners down the Moskva. In short, in the event of a strike on its nuclear facilities, Iran would stand alone.
Equally, as we have shown elsewhere, fears of an attack creating an oil scarcity, should Iran’s global contribution be interrupted, are entirely groundless.
While any interruption in Iran’s energy exports and the effect of a regional conflict would temporarily spike world oil prices, sanctions have already effected a significant reduction in Iranian energy exports.
Also, any attempt by Iran to close the Straits of Hormuz, through which 40 percent of the world’s oil passes, would quickly be prevented – as it was during the Iran-Iraq War in the 80s – by the arrival of U.S. warships. No doubt the Pentagon has plans in place for such an eventuality.


The IAEA’s evidence is clear enough: Iran is approaching its weapons-grade uranium enrichment goal. Israel clearly has the right to self-defence. In the case of a potential nuclear attack that clears the way for pre-emptive action. As Israel’s PM Netanyahu asked rhetorically on the historic remembrance of September 11th, “The World asks us to wait. Wait for what? Wait till when?” 
Anyone who still believes that a country sitting on top of the world’s second largest reserves of oil and gas is fast-tracking nuclear capacity for domestic power purposes is clearly living in cloud cuckoo land.
The Israelis share no such fantasy. And for them, unlike for armchair Western commentators, sitting back and waiting for Iran to achieve the nuclear means to carry out its stated goal is not an option.
 Indeed. Read it all.

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What if Iran launches an EMP attack against the US?

America is a relatively safe place. However, a regime halfway around the world could destroy our way of life.

From the beginning, the current Iranian regime made it clear that America is public enemy #1. One way to seriously damage America would be a nuke, and one terrifying scenario is a nuclear bomb detonated at high altitude. This is an issue that Congressional commissions and others have investigated, and concluded that it is a credible threat. This would cause severe damage or catastrophic destruction to the electric grid across America.

In this day and age, everything ultimately depends on electric power: communications, transportation, banking, finance, food and water. The result of such an attach would mean that within a short amount of time, it will be nearly impossible to get food and water, pump gas, provide medical care, withdraw money or use cellular phones. Moreover, without electricity, nuclear power plants melt down. If their containment buildings are breeched, the areas around them could become uninhabitable for centuries. Anarchy. Starvation. Disease.

As long as the current Iranian regime is in power, we are NOT SAFE..

Take Action! Contact your representative:

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With apologies if I've run this before... let's go to the videotape.

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Livestream of Netanyahu and Abu Mazen speaking to UN General Assembly

The screen below is supposed to become a live stream feed of Prime Minister Netanyahu's United Nations General Assembly speech sometime between 6:45 and 7:00 pm Israel time on Thursday. I apologize in advance if the livestream of Prime Minister Netanyahu does not work out.

Abu Mazen ('Mahmoud Abbas') is supposed to immediately proceed Netanyahu so I'm putting this up early.

Let's go to the videotape.

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Soccer Dad's Middle East Media Sampler

Here's Soccer Dad's Middle East Media Sampler for Thursday, September 27.
The urgency gap

Jeffrey Goldberg responds to a charge that he's a "court Jew:" ( h/t Lenny Boy USA )

I also received some thoughtful responses, and read some in the media, including one, in Haaretz, from Chemi Shalev who wrote the following: "In the discussion that followed Netanyahu's appearance on Meet the Press, it was instructive to hear Atlantic magazine and Bloomberg blogger Jeffery (sic) Goldberg - whom right wingers consider to be a leftie, left-wingers view as a rightie and most Jews embrace as a voice in the middle - say that 'I have never seen a prime minister who has mismanaged Israeli-US relations like Netanyahu.' And while Goldberg's stature may be light years away from that of the legendary Walter Cronkite, my immediate association was to the oft-told but never-proven account of Lyndon Johnson's reaction to Cronkite's assertion in early 1968 that the Vietnam War was unwinnable: "If I've lost Cronkite, I've lost middle America."
Light years away is right, but it is true, and worth underscoring, that Netanyahu is making a hash of most everything right now. He's done a fine job of concentrating the world's attention on the Iranian nuclear program, but he's overreached with the American president, and he's allowed the settlement movement, the vanguard of binationalism and Israel's eventual dissolution, to steer state policy. And one more thing. This is only anecdotal, but he seems to be alienating American Jews at a rapid clip. One such Jew, a friend of mine in the media (we're everywhere in the media, you know), told me that he was becoming embarrassed by Netanyahu. This is not some sort of deracinated Jewish media person I'm talking about, either. This is the real deal. And yet he can't fathom Netanyahu's behavior, and Israel is not the source of pride for him it once was. Now Israelis will say: Who cares if we're a source of pride for someone in the Diaspora? Well, they will care when their support in America dissipates, as it could do.
(For the record, Goldberg is not a centrist; he's a leftist. The only reason that leftists consider him a "rightie" is because he isn't reflexively anti-Israel, defends Israel's right to exist and often defends Israel's right to self-defense.)

In a similar vein, Thomas Friedman in his recent Hard Lines, Red Lines and Green Lines wrote:
Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu of Israel has been loudly demanding that America publicly draw a “red line” in respect to Iran’s nuclear program that would delineate exactly when the U.S. would launch a strike against Tehran. Bibi is Winston Churchill when it comes to demanding that the U.S. draw red lines, but he is a local party boss when America asks him to draw a “green line” delineating where Jewish settlements in the West Bank will stop and a Palestinian state might start. Oh, no! Can’t do that, Bibi tells American officials. “I would lose my coalition.” So America is supposed to risk a war with Iran, but Bibi won’t risk anything to advance a deal with the Palestinians that might create a little more global legitimacy and sympathy for Israel, and America, in the event of a war with Iran. Thanks a lot.
In different ways both Goldberg and Friedman take the approach that Netanyahu is playing politics - and losing.

I disagree with the premise. To be sure Netanyahu taking a big risk by going public with his fears. But consider that Netanyahu has learned something since his first term as Prime Minister.  He did what he could to play along with Obama at least until May, 2011. It didn't win him any warmth or sympathy from the President. But as Netanyahu's position in Israel strengthened there wasn't much Obama could do about him either.

Also consider that Netanyahu returned to power after ten years in the political wilderness. It isn't impossible to do that, but it requires great political skills. According to Goldberg and Friedman, Netanyahu simply threw away hard earned political capital to strike a blow at the Obama administration. It doesn't make sense.

Walter Russell Mead makes a lot more sense:
Prime Minister Netanyahu is running huge risks. If President Obama is re-elected (and, although there are more than six weeks until the election, most observers now think he will be), he can expect icy relations with Washington for some time to come. His recent activities will be read in the White House as a deliberate attempt to intervene in American politics—not simply to lobby for more aid for Israel, but to block the re-election of an incumbent. It is something that many Democrats will never forgive and, certainly, something that President Obama will not forget. If the President is re-elected, the power of future Israeli prime ministers in the U.S., based in large part on their perceived ability to shift U.S. domestic opinion, will have permanently and significantly declined.
Nothing less than a truly serious threat to Israel’s existence could justify such a high risk move; we must assume that this underlines the sincerity of Netanyahu’s belief that the Iranian nuclear program is about to reach a point of no return.
Keep in mind that Netanyahu's request for American red lines came shortly after Secretary Clinton's declaration that "The US is 'not setting deadlines' for Iran and still considers negotiations as 'by far the best approach' to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons ..." His point that sanctions can hurt Iran, but absent a "red line" nothing will stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons. If anything, Netanyahu's request seemed to be a response to a rejection of understandings that he had with the administration; not an opportunity to score political points. It was coming more from frustration than calculation.

Shortly after Netanyahu's request for "red lines," President Obama told "60 Minutes" that Israeli concerns about Iran's nuclear program were "noise." Does Goldberg think that his dismissal of Netanyahu's urgency didn't, in some way, influence the President's response. (Yes, the President tried to justify his "noise" comment, after the fact. But that's because he realized that standing by it was not good for him politically. His original response, reflected his true feelings.)
There clearly is an urgency gap between Obama and Netanyahu regarding Iran's nuclear capacity. If there weren't, Obama's supporters wouldn't be criticizing Netanyahu, Obama wouldn't have dismissed Israeli concerns as "noise," and Obama would have made meeting Netanyahu a bigger priority than meeting David Letterman. This is a point made in a recent Wall Street Journal editorial, Israel must be 'eliminated':
The world's civilized nations typically denounce such statements, as the U.S. State Department denounced Mr. Ahamadinejad's on Monday. But denouncing them is not the same as taking them seriously. Sometimes the greatest challenge for a civilized society is comprehending that not everyone behaves in civilized or rational fashion, that barbarians can still appear at the gate.
The tragic lesson of history is that sometimes barbarians mean what they say. Sometimes regimes do want to eliminate entire nations or races, and they will do so if they have the means and opportunity and face a timorous or disbelieving world.
No one knows that more acutely than Israeli leaders, whose state was founded in the wake of such a genocide. The question faced by Benjamin Netanyahu, Ehud Barak and other Israelis is whether they can afford to allow another regime pledged to Jewish "annihilation" to acquire the means to accomplish it. The answer, in our view, is as obvious as Mr. Ahmadinejad's stated intentions.

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Videos: Romney and Obama both go 'direct-to-camera'

On Tuesday, Mitt Romney released a 'direct-to-camera' 60-second spot, and on Wednesday, President Obama released a similar two-minute spot. Both ads are reproduced below.

Let's go to the videotapes.

Here's Obama:

Nothing about Israel in either of them. I hope there will be more of these and that at least some of them will deal with US foreign policy.

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Prime Minister Netanayhu on President Obama

No further comment needed.

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The end of 'Fayyadism'?

Jonathan Schanzer reports that westernized 'Palestinian Prime Minister' Salam Fayyad may be on his way out. And if he goes, one has to wonder how the West will continue to justify pouring money into the bottomless pit known as the 'Palestinian Authority.'
Fayyad's crusade against corruption, coupled with his sustained effort to construct real administrative institutions, is part of the reason for his isolation. Over the years, the P.A. has earned a reputation—first under the late Yasser Arafat and then under current president Mahmoud Abbas—for nepotism and corruption. Arafat's former advisor Mohammed Rachid (recently sentenced in absentia for corruption) recently leveled a series of damning accusations against Abbas and his inner circle. And while Fayyad is certainly not in cahoots with Rachid, for the powerful Palestinian insiders who have established lucrative monopolies under the Abbas regime, Fayyad's "Mr. Transparency" shtick has become consistently irksome.
That's why some Palestinians speculate that regime loyalists organized anti-Fayyad rallies. While they were not exactly "rent-a-rallies," pro-Fatah chants were prevalent. And as Hugh Naylor of The National notes, the anti-Fayyad protests seemed to last a lot longer than other demonstrations decrying the PA and its policies.
Senior Palestinian officials have stood by Fayyad in public, including longtime senior PLO figure Nabil Shaath and even Abbas, But Abbas and Fayyad are both public faces of a failed government, which Palestinians rightfully view has having fallen short of its sole mandate -- to negotiate a final status agreement with Israel and create a Palestinian state.
Abbas recently threatened to quit, but quickly stepped back from the brink. Fayyad may be another story. Some insiders believe that he is trying to buy time before he quits on his own terms. With few leaders prepared to continue his important institution-building program, Fayyad's departure would be a harsh setback for the Palestinian cause.
 Read the whole thing. I, for one, won't cry if he goes. 

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Video: Ahmadinejad spokesman gets manhandled on the streets of Manhattan

It's tough being in New York City. The New York Police Department isn't willing to beat and shoot demonstrators like the basij and the Revolutionary Guards.

On Wednesday, Ahmadinejad spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast found out just how tough it can be, when he was confronted by an angry mob of Iranian expats near the UN in midtown Manhattan.

Let's go to the videotape.

I would love to see this one subtitled. According to PJ Tatler,

He’s being called a murderer…then chants of “terrorist”…they’re calling him a “bastard.” “Get lost and go back into your hotel…What are you doing in New York you sick criminal?”
“Yeah, you scared sh*t run away and go stand next to the police.”
There's another version of the video, where you see from a distance (you see more but it's further away - it's shot from above the street) but hear less here

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Sex scandal, 'Palestinian' style

'Moderate' 'Palestinian' President Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen has put the kaboshes on an investigation into a sex scandal involving one of his ministers until he returns from the United Nations General Assembly in New York (where he is due to speak on Thursday). The 'Palestinians' are already accusing 'people opposed to our statehood bid' of being behind the scandal, even though Abu Mazen has supposedly promised President Obama that he would not bring up the statehood bid until after the US elections on November 6.
Mahmoud al-Aloul, a member of the Fatah Central Committee, said the scandal was part of a scheme designed to foil Abbas’s renewed statehood bid.
Ghazali quoted Abbas as telling two senior PA officials who presented him with details of the sex scandal as saying: “Close the case until I return from the US because this is a sensitive time and we are facing elections. If the public learns about it, we will lose the presidential and municipal election. We already have enough scandals and don’t need more.”
The scandal erupted after a Palestinian woman complained that Hussein Sheikh, a top Fatah official who serves as PA Civilian Affairs Minister, harassed her sexually and tried to bribe her and her husband.
The woman, who works in Sheikh’s ministry, said the minister summoned her to his office on the pretext that he wanted her to help fix a computer.
Ghazali said that the woman, who is married and has two children, spat in the minister’s face after he tried to force himself on her while the two were alone in his office.
According to Ghazali, the minister later sent her a number of SMS messages to her mobile phone in which he continued to harass her sexually.
The woman’s husband, Ahmed Abu Alam, 30, also works in the ministry and is a former commander of Fatah’s armed wing, the Aksa Martyrs Brigades.
Upon hearing from his wife about Sheikh’s behavior, the furious husband stormed the minister’s office carrying a pistol, but did not find him, Ghazali said.
According to the investigative journalist, Sheikh later offered the husband $10,000 and a promise of promotion for him and his wife in return for their silence.
Abu Alam said he and his wife filed a complaint against Sheikh with various PA security forces in Ramallah and members of the Fatah Central Committee, but to no avail.
He added that he also provided the security forces and Fatah leaders with evidence implicating the minister, including the text messages and the cash.
The husband said that he and his wife have since been facing a campaign of threats and intimidation to force them to withdraw their complaint.
Last week, Abu Alam and his two brothers, Nasser and Muhammad, were detained for four hours by the PA’s Military Intelligence Force in Ramallah.
Upon his release, Abu Alam went to Abbas’s office and demanded to talk to the PA president. “I was told that he had traveled to the US,” the husband said.
 The Abu Alam's have fled to Jordan. A curse on their house and Sheikh's. Heh.

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