Istanbul terror attack had nothing to do with reconciliation with Israel
Just a brief comment on Tuesday night's triple suicide bombing at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport in which at least 36 people were killed and 147 injured (I saw a number that had over 200 injured a short while ago).
Although Israel and Turkey supposedly 'reconciled' earlier this week, I can guarantee you that last night's terror attack had NOTHING to do with that. Although there were Israeli diplomats present in the airport at the time (they escaped injury), the planning for this type of attack takes weeks and months. The fact that it took place a day after the announcement of an Israeli-Turkish rapprochement is nothing but coincidence.
French immigrant to Israel explains why he returned to France
In a Facebook post in French, Alexandre Kassel, a young French Jew who immigrated to Israel from Paris' swanky 19th arrandissemente explains why he returned to France.
I'll be honest, the first few weeks [in Israel] and even the
first few months were a dream. Discovering a new country, especially a
special country like Israel and its new culture is a real opportunity.
But soon I realized that I didn’t come just to sightsee and had to start
building my life [in Israel] as well. That's when the wine turned sour,
the apple revealed its worm, the carriage became a Cinderella pumpkin,
and Israel, as Melissandre (a character in “Game of Thrones”), withdrew
her magic necklace and revealed herself in her ugliest nakedness.
begin with the weather…10 months out of 12, you can beg it to give us a
bit of the good old Parisian gloom, so we can feel a little of the
melancholy of the poets from our rich French literature, a little gray
depression that blends perfectly with our Ashkenazi genes. Oh no! Day
after day, week after week, the sun insisted to bring our morale up…It's
like living in the world of the Teletubbies and Care Bears. Every
morning when leaving, the black coat purchased from a Paris boutique
gave me an unbearably taunting look.
Outside, as in
Paris, I proudly wore the skullcap on my head. It took me a moment to
realize that something was wrong. I realized that…Oh misery...no one was
giving me acidic looks. I walked in the street, anonymous, as a member
of the whole population, [and] the yarmulke was no longer an object of
attention but naturally blended into the landscape. Do you have an idea
how hard it is to become a Mr-all-the-world once you’ve been used to
being the target of all the bitterness within one kilometer?
the Israelis do not stop at that! Not only did they not hate me, but
they all told me that I was their friend, or worse—their brother. You
know that in Israel, no one uses the family name or "Sir." Either they
call you by your first name, or you are jovially called "brother" as if
you did not even have a first name.
Under the blazing
daily sun, how do you not pine for the refreshing coolness of French
politeness? How do you not pine for the natural distance that all
citizens put between them, giving everyone the privilege, perhaps
illusory, of being a stranger in their own country? (I understood that
it's worthwhile to be a stranger in France.)
the first difficulties, but I did not give up and went forward by
beginning my studies in a secondary school deemed the toughest in
Israel: The Technion in Haifa. Having had a relatively easy schooling, I
needed tougher challenges.
To my amazement, when I saw
how my friends stayed in France to face the walls of intolerance, with
crucial exams falling on a Saturday (Shabbat) or a [Jewish] holiday
without alternatives, the Technion proposed a program that made it
ridiculously easy to avoid taking examinations on those days. The only
difficulty allowed to be imposed on us is the high level of education.
besides, it's crazy there at the Technion and in industry. Instead of
respecting the principle of inertia by resting on their laurels and
wallowing in existential immobility, as France knows to do so well, they
(Israelis) have only one word in their mouths:
Innovate….[and] "innovate more" and then continue…
in Israel, we don’t know the beautiful and pleasant feeling of going for
a coffee or to the theater while the country crumbles around us. They
(Israelis) understand nothing of life.
And worse, you
know, when we talk about Israel on television, it’s like living in an
open, actual-size Call of Duty. The truth is that walking down the
street in Israel is rather like child’s play. Certainly there are
attacks, but otherwise it feels even too safe. No one has to spy out of
the corner of one’s eye to find bands of scum and figure out how to pass
by with the least damage. No, we just walk straight like idiots
directly towards our goal.
Heck! There was a school just
next to my home, where the kids are Jews and there's not a single damn
soldier. What kind of life is it where Jewish kids do not need an army
to be left to live?? You tell me.
But you know what? When
a bloody attack does happen, there are headlines in the local
newspapers the next day such as “A TERRORIST committed an attack and
killed lots of Israelis." Yes do not worry, there are also some
journalists justifying the act, but this does not prevent them from
daring to call these poor people terrorists. I felt myself compelled to
take out my wallet and buy the French press, which arrived two days late
but at least stated the facts correctly by writing "a Palestinian
killed in an attack in Jerusalem."
In short, as you have understood, with all this it seemed natural that I needed to return to France.
And yes, it's a satire - satiring French discomfort with the number of French Jews making aliya.
In May, the French newspaper Le Mondedecided
to invert the discussion on French Jews making aliyah by asking
French-Jewish readers who had made aliyah, but later decided to return
to their native country, about their reasons for deciding to move back
Seeing a kind of “malice” in the request by Le Monde, a writer for the French-Jewish news website rootsisrael.com
asked readers to instead inundate the newspaper with responses by
people who have made aliyah and stayed in Israel. The news website later
published one such letter by Alexandre Kassel, which he originally
posted on Facebook. The letter then went viral and was shared more than
2,000 times. The Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth has also featured the letter, which it translated into Hebrew.
'Palestinian' reporter forced into exile by the 'Palestinian Authority'
A young 'Palestinian' reporter says he's staying in Europe (he won't say where) out of fear that the 'Palestinian Authority' will arrest him and send him to jail on trumped up charges of 'spying for Israel' in a best case scenario.
Qaisi said that he has been targeted because of a video he published
with MEE last September which showed PA security forces beating
Palestinians in Bethlehem during a protest against Israeli settler
attacks on the Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem.
The video showed at least 10 security forces surrounding two teenage protesters who lay on the ground as officers kicked and beat them with batons.
The MEE footage was viewed over
60,000 times and it caused outrage as it spread across Arabic and
English media outlets in the region.
“It was the first time Palestinians could see on camera the PA beating their own people,” Qaisi said.
Public anger at the beatings led
to the PA forcing four senior officers into early retirement, including
Deputy Commander of the Bethlehem Area Issam Nabhan and Deputy Director
of Operations Shaher al-Qaisi.
Six lower ranking officers were sentenced to three months in prison and barred from promotion for one year.
Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said at the time that the security
forces’ misconduct did “not reflect the policy of the Palestinian
government or the Palestinian security forces”.
However, soon after, Qaisi said, the security forces approached him about the abuse he had captured on camera. Initially, they wanted him to work for the Palestinian intelligence agency, but Qaisi refused.
10 days they started interrogating me,” he said. “They told me I had
three options: be killed in a car accident, be found with guns in my
home, or be accused of being an Israeli spy.”
They'll stop behaving like this if only they get a 'Palestinian state'.... Right....
As part of the agreement, Israel has agreed to pay $20 million in
compensation to the bereaved and injured, and in return Turkey will pass
legislation banning legal proceedings against the Israeli soldiers in
its courts. Turkey also dropped a demand for Israel to lift the blockade
on Gaza, and will only be permitted to send aid to the territory after
it passes security checks at Israel’s Ashdod port. Ankara will also be
allowed to build a hospital as well as a power and desalinization plant
In addressing these terms, Netanyahu stressed that the deal will
secure the “continuation of the maritime security blockade off the Gaza
“This is a supreme security interest for us. I was not prepared to compromise on it,” Netanyahu continued.
Turkey in return has committed to thwart the plotting and financing
of Hamas terrorist acts against Israel from its soil. It will also not
stand in the way of Israeli involvement in international forums to which
it belongs, mostly notably NATO.
Jerusalem and Ankara will also restore full diplomatic relations,
appointing ambassadors and lifting restrictions on military and
intelligence cooperation. Netanyahu added that the deal will open
Turkey to Israeli natural gas exports, and that the country could
possibly serve as a gateway to European markets. “[The deal has] immense
implications for the Israeli economy, and I use that word advisedly,”
the prime minister told reporters.
While not a formal part of the deal, Turkish President Recep Tayyip
Erdogan also personally pledged in a letter to help return the bodies of
two Israeli soldiers killed during the 2014 Gaza war, which are thought
to be held by Hamas, and free two Israelis reportedly being held by the
terrorist group. One of the captives is an Ethiopian Jew — described as
mentally-ill by his family — who wandered into Gaza accidentally in
2014; the second man, a resident of a Bedouin town in Israel’s Negev
desert, also apparently crossed into Gaza of his own volition. He has
been described as mentally disabled.
The agreement is expected to be approved by Israel’s security cabinet on Wednesday.
Secretary of State John Kerry congratulated Netanyahu on the
agreement when the two met in Rome on Monday, calling it a “positive
Who wins from this deal?
“Israel comes out on top here,” Louis Fishman, an assistant professor
at Brooklyn College who focuses on Turkish and Israeli affairs, told
Reuters. “From the start it believed that a deal could be worked out
where Turkish aid was able to enter the Gaza Strip under Israeli
supervision. It seems this is what was struck.”
“Restoring relations with Ankara is a linchpin in Israel’s strategy
to unlock its natural gas wealth,” Reuters added, noting that Israeli
energy stocks and shares in Turkey’s Zorlu Energy rose in reaction
to the agreement.
A senior Turkish official has also called the deal a “diplomatic victory.”
Israel apparently has agreed to the presence of Hamas in Turkey as
long as it does not involve itself directly in terrorist attacks against
Israel, but limits itself to political and other supposedly nonviolent
However, the sanction of the presence and “political”
activity of Hamas in a country with diplomatic ties with Israel
undermines years of Israeli public relations against the terrorist
group, which sought to identify Hamas with other Sunni groups such as
al-Qaida and Islamic State.
Would Israel or any other Western country allow the leader of a
friendly state with which it has diplomatic relations meet with Islamic
State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and allow the organization to operate
within its territory? Jonathan Schanzer, vice president for research
at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, told The Jerusalem Post the upcoming deal is “a win for the status quo as nothing really changes.”
Hamas not being able to carry out military activity from Turkish soil,
everything else stays the same: Hamas maintains its Turkish
headquarters; Turkey continues assisting Hamas-ruled Gaza; and Israel
Schanzer pointed out that from Israel’s perspective, the government
would like to have normalized ties with Muslim countries in general.
there is no way to have true normalized relations with Erdogan’s
government. It is virtually impossible to imagine, given that Turkey
remains an Islamist-ruled state with close ties to Hamas and other
Perhaps the deal can be best
described as an agreement “to stop publicly fighting, while quietly
continuing to disagree on virtually everything.”
All in all, it's not a great deal for Israel, principally because it leaves Hamas in place in Turkey. It remains to be seen how Israel will react if Hamas continues to use its Turkish headquarters to orchestrate terror attacks in Judea and Samaria.
“Wait, so he made a really awful choice with far-reaching negative
consequences and now he’s just stepping down to let someone else take
over? What?” said Colorado Springs, CO resident Evan Austin, echoing the
sentiments of citizens across the United States who were left
struggling to understand why a democratically elected head of government
would relinquish control simply because they had been shown to have
made a spectacularly bad judgment call. “So he jeopardized the future of
his country, and instead of spending the next several years remaining
in power while trying to paper over his mistakes, he’s just gone?
Where’s the part where he denies any wrongdoing or tries to blame
somebody else? This is absolutely crazy.”
Yes, of course that was The Onion, and you can read the whole thing here.
'Moderate' 'Palestinian' President Mahmoud AbbasAbu Mazen has in essence now admitted that lied when he told the European Parliament on Thursday that a 'rabbi' ordered Jews to poison 'Palestinian' water. The 'rabbi' doesn't exist, the organization he 'represented' doesn't exist, but none of that stopped Abu Bluff from telling the lie, nor did it stop the European anti-Semites who make up the European Parliament (including a grinning ear-to-ear foreign policy chief Federika Mog - a pity you can't watch the video anymore).
Abbas’s retraction was sent to reporters early Saturday morning, issued
by the P.L.O., of which Mr. Abbas is the chairman. It said that Mr.
Abbas “rejected all claims that accuse him and the Palestinian people of
offending the Jewish religion.” It added that he “also condemned all
accusations of anti-Semitism.”
it has become evident that the alleged statements by a rabbi on
poisoning Palestinian wells, which were reported by various media
outlets, are baseless, President Mahmoud Abbas has affirmed that he
didn’t intend to do harm to Judaism or to offend Jewish people around
the world,” the statement continued.
was not immediately clear why Mr. Abbas repeated the allegation on
Thursday, days after it was widely debunked. Neither the rabbi who
supposedly made the claim, nor the organization quoted in the original
P.L.O. article, appear to exist.
And of course, this is not the first time that 'Mr. Abbas' has invented a lie. In fact, the entire existence of a 'Palestinian people' is one great big lie.
In October, Mr. Abbas erroneously accused Israeli forces of killing a 13-year-old Palestinian boy who had taken part in the stabbing of two Israelis. The boy had actually been wounded and later recovered.
So what's the genesis of this particular lie (aside from the Bubonic plague in 14th century Europe)? Here's where it came from.
The story was discovered to be false by Palestinian Media Watch (PMW),
an Israeli NGO that monitors Palestinian incitement. PMW claims that
Abbas’ accusation is based on an article published last week in Anadolu,
a Turkish news service, which claimed , “Rabbi Shlomo Mlma (sic),
chairman of the Council of Rabbis in the West Bank settlements(sic), has
issued an advisory opinion in which he allowed Jewish settlers to
poison water in Palestinian villages and cities in the West Bank.”
PMW reported that the story in Anadolu was based on a claim by Yehuda Shaul, a leader of the extreme left-wing Israeli NGO Breaking the Silence. Shaul was quoted in the Hebrew news service, NRG, as saying that “settlers poisoned” the water of a Palestinian town a number of years ago causing the Palestinians to leave”.
The story was confirmed as incorrect by several news services including Reuters and Haaretz. No such rabbi or council was found to exist.
Shocked. Just totally shocked... to see the Turks and the self-hating Jews at 'Breaking the Silence' involved in this....
I can't help but wonder what would happen if membership in the United Nations were brought to a democratic vote in its member countries. Here's some (prescient?) thoughts on that question by Judi McLeod in the Canadian Free Press (well, at least for now it's free, but the Trudeau government might have something to say about that).
the sun has risen on an independent Britain, and look at it, even the
weather has improved,” announced Nigel Farage from the steps of
Westminster after the result was confirmed.
And the sun, which replaces the artificial
one on Obama’s logo, is rising in America too. Obama, who likely has
the leadership of the UN in his sights with the end of his term in
January 2017, was all but totally ignored by pro-Brexit voters.
Obama and his teleprompter can’t possibly walk back the unasked for
advice he pushed on British voters to “stay” warning them they would be
at the “back of the queue” in trade with the U.S.
The toffs at the
EU, mostly unknown by the people they profess to serve, but who are
lavishly paid, may rule the roost in other European countries, but after
today’s vote of the people—no more in England.
The UN, which has the same unearned status from its ever sprawling headquarters in Manhattan, should be feeling the chill.
Shout it from the rooftops: The status quo was historically toppled for independence in Britain.
If it can happen there, it can happen in America.
In Israel, where we have systematically ignored the UN for as long as anyone can remember, voters may be too afraid to withdraw from it. After all, we are the lone sheep among all the lions, and we are still a small country, who can be hurt by the nations of the world in other ways, even if the UN's obsession with the 'Palestinians' also hurts us.
But the United States? That might be a different story.
I'm in Boston for those who have forgotten, and that's why I'm posting after Shabbat started in Israel. In case I don't get to post again, Shabbat Shalom to all of you.
Celebrating #Brexit: Why the EU doesn't deserve to exist
It's the morning after the #Brexit vote, and President Obama is giving (worthless) assurances that the US will maintain its 'special relationship' with Britain, even if Britain just slapped him and his internationalism in the face. If nothing else, #Brexit is proof positive that nationalism is alive and well in the 21st century. Two of the three guys in this picture are happy this morning. The other is President of the United States.
Like many Americans who have had it with Obama's immigration policies (and celebrated Thursday's Supreme Court decision upholding the State of Texas' defiance of Obama's open borders edict), many Brits have had it with Angela Merkel's allowing unfettered access to Europe for Muslim terrorists by way of Germany and the Schengen visa.
But if you want a reason for the wrath of God to be brought down on Europe, watch the European Parliament's reaction to 'moderate' 'Palestinian' President Mahmoud AbbasAbu Mazen claiming that unnamed 'rabbis' had called for poisoning 'Palestinian' water. Yes, that's a blood libel worthy of the Middle Ages, but it brought the anti-Semitic Euroweenies lots of cheer on the day of the #Brexit vote.
Let's go to the videotape.
Here's the 30-second standing ovation the EU parliament gave to Palestinian President Abbas's anti-Semitic speech: pic.twitter.com/rYMHRG5Tld
Greetings from an airline lounge in Paris, where the caterer is Jewish but the food isn't Kosher :-(
Yes, it's a travel day again.
Tomorrow Britain may vote to secede from the European Union in a process known as Brexit. If you're an Israeli, you should be rooting for that to happen. Here's why.
Should supporters of the ‘Leave’ campaign win the day this Thursday there’ll be aftershocks aplenty — and Israel too will feel the pain. Yet paying a short-term price will be worth the long-term gain: a victory for Britain’s exit from the EU is a preferable outcome both for Israel and Europe.
Diplomatically, Israel is better off negotiating separately with 28 foreign offices than with the European foreign service — the EEAS. As Michel Gurfienkel, the founder and president of the Jean Jacques Rousseau Institute, perceptively wrote: "the EU’s decision-making process, at French insistence but with British acquiescence, is based on the principle of unanimity or near-unanimity rather than on majority opinion."
Once France adopted a pro-Arab policy, for reasons of grandeur and later due to the increasing weight of its Muslim minority, it could use its position as part of the bloc's traditional motor to accentuate the EU's anti-Israel diplomatic tilt. The current French-inspired international conference to which the EU foreign ministers have subscribed is a case in point. After an anti-Israel vote, some of Israel's friends within the EU rush to explain that they disagreed but had to go along with the resolution to be good Europeans. For Israel it would be beneficial to rob them of this excuse.
The EU foreign service with pretensions to represent a great power status unflaggingly pummels Israel to compensate for Europe's prostrate behavior towards the likes of Turkey and Iran. The EU intervenes in our politics by engaging and empowering NGOs from one side of the political spectrum and thumbs its nose at our sovereignty by illegally building houses and roads in disputed areas whose ultimate disposition can only be decided by direct negotiations.
It is hard to feel benevolence towards a body whose representatives at UNESCO voted for a resolution that denied a Jewish connection to Jerusalem. It is difficult to take their condemnations of anti-Semitism at face value when Jews in Europe are compelled to take off their kippot and pull out their mezuzahs to disguise their identity and protect their safety.
The music that emanates from the corridors of Berlaymont is that the nation state is an anachronism. Israel, by providing a counter-example, angers the mandarins of Brussels.
Stone Throwing = Attempted Murder: If you try to kill us, we will kill you first
Four 'Palestinian' 'youths' poured oil onto Route 443 on a steep downhill stretch early this morning, and then threw stones and firebombs at passing cars. The cars, although damaged (see above), managed to make it to the Maccabim checkpoint near Modiin and tip off the IDF. The IDF confronted the stone throwers, killing one, critically wounding another, and arresting the other two.
Two tourists and one Israeli were lightly wounded Tuesday morning after a group of Palestinians threw stones at their vehicle on Route 443, near the West Bank village of Beit Sira and the Israeli city of Modi'in.
Israeli forces at the scene shot dead one of the alleged Palestinian stone-throwers and critically wounded another. The wounded assailant has been taken to Hadassah University Hospital, Ein Karem. Two additional Palestinians suspected of involvement in the incident were arrested.
It goes without saying that the 'Palestinian Authority' is telling a different story. A bunch of lies.
The Palestinian Authority identified the slain Palestinian as Mahmoud Rafat Mahmoud, a 15-year-old from the village of Beir Ur al-Tahta, west of Ramallah. Abdul Karim Kassem, head of the village's local council of the Palestinian village of Beit Ore-Tahta, told Reuters that the wounded Palestinians were in a car "returning from a pool in a village near us when they came under fire."
According to the Palestinian Health Ministry, four Palestinians were wounded by Israeli fire, three of them seriously. Three of the wounded Palestinians were taken to a medical center in Ramallah, while the other remains hospitalized at Ein Karem. Two of the wounded are brothers, according to sources in the village.
The car with the windows blown out kind of puts the lie to the 'Palestinians' story.
Route 443, which I have discussed many times on this blog, is a back road that runs between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. The main road, Route 1, is currently under construction (widening) and the result is that a lot more people are using Route 443 at night. The tourists may have been on their way to the airport - many people use the road during the night to get to the airport, where one of the busiest times of day is between 5:00 and 6:00 am.
I generally use that road myself to get to and from the airport. I also use it to get to the Modiin region. I was last on it around Midnight on Sunday night.
Beir Ur al-Tahta is toward the bottom of a very steep downhill, a kilometer or two away from the Maccabim checkpoint. It sounds like the stones were thrown on the side heading toward the airport and Tel Aviv. Here's another picture that makes that clearer.
Glad no one hesitated to open fire on these terrorists.
I'm sure you'll all be shocked to hear that Seddique Mateen, the father of the terrorist who murdered 49 people in a gay nightclub in Orlando last week, has connections to several radical Islamic groups, including some who set attacking Israel as their primary goal.
The father of Orlando mass shooter Omar Mateen has longstanding connections to prominent Islamist groups in the U.S., a document discovered by the Investigative Project on Terrorism shows. Seddique Matin is listed as president of a then-new American Muslim Alliance (AMA) chapter in Fort Pierce in a July 1997 announcement archived by the IPT.
The Fort Pierce chapter is among 10 new AMA chapters opened, the announcement in an AMA bulletin says.
AMA no longer exists as a registered nonprofit and it last filed tax
returns in 2010. But the organization continues to maintain an active Facebook account. In its posts, the AMA refuses to consider any Islamist motivation for the attack and lays the blame for Omar Mateen's massacre which killed 49 people at the Pulse nightclub solely on the country's lax gun laws. [Sounds like the Obama administration. CiJ].
The organization has a history of working with radical Islamist
groups and has issued statements in support of several terrorists later
convicted in the U.S. The FBI cut off outreach communication
with CAIR, for example, after uncovering evidence placing the
organization and its leaders in a U.S.-based Hamas-support network.
In 2003, Saeed testified on Al-Arian's behalf, describing the man who ran "the active arm"
of Palestinian Islamic Jihad as "my friend and during the last ten
years we have worked together to mainstream American politics. We have
worked together to replace the culture of despair with culture of hope
and the culture of bullet with the culture of ballot." AMA's website
also featured a section entitled "Valiant Civil Rights Struggle of Dr. Sami Al Arian."
The title of this post is a new hashtag I've introduced to Twitter. I also tried to get my photoshopper to put niqabs and Abayas on the roller coaster riders, but alas, she no longer has Photoshop on her computer. So just imagine all that black hanging down, because yes Virginia, Six Flags Over Riyadh is opening soon.
The world's largest amusement park corporation Six Flags is set to
open up investments in Saudi Arabia following a meeting between its CEO
and Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
a statement to Al Arabiya News Channel, Chief Executive Officer and
President at Six Flags Entertainment Corporation John M. Duffey said the
company was proud to enter this agreement to provide entertainment
facilities” for the kingdom.
statement, Duffey also emphasized the importance of bringing
entertainment facilities to citizens as part of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030.
share Saudi Arabia’s vision to bringing entertainment to the country.
We share the same vision with Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin
Salman and are prepared to providing multiple options in a bid to
translate that vision into reality,” he added.
Providing a space for entertainment and promoting culture is featured prominently in Saudi Arabia’s vision for the future that was announced in April.
the vision, Saudi Arabia has said it is planning to provide “land
suitable for cultural and entertainment projects. Talented writers,
authors and directors will be supported.”
What could ever go wrong?
Here are some of my proposals for Saudi-themed entertainment for Six Flags.
What's worse: if a certain type of terror attack hasn't happened outside
of Israel, for the most part, no one is prepared for it. So yes, my Red
Sox tickets for next week say "No bags or items larger than 16 x 16 x
8, coolers, cans, bottles, flagpoles, firearms or fireworks will be
permitted into the ballpark." (So much for the days of the picnic lunch
in the bleachers). And the ticket says that you are subject to search:
but they'll search my father and me, and they won't search a 21-year old
Muslim because that would be 'profiling'. And I will still walk into
shopping malls or large stores tomorrow, and no one will search my bags -
or anyone else's - because no American shopping mall has ever been
attacked by a suicide bomber. No one will search me on my way into a
movie theater until the first time someone with a political agenda
shoots up a movie theater. And no one will search me going into Sbarros
(which I cannot do here because they are not Kosher) or any other
restaurant until a suicide bomber blows up a restaurant. In Israel, you
cannot walk into an enclosed public space without being searched.
Titled "You Are Not Held Responsible Except for Yourself," the
Al-Furat Media Foundation release was distributed online with a
promotional banner featuring President Obama, Omar Mateen and scenes
from the previous weekend's carnage.
Al-Furat specializes in
Russian-language messages to Muslims in the Caucasus and beyond. Earlier
this year, for example, the media wing released the Philippine
terrorist group Abu Sayyaf's video pledging allegiance to ISIS leader
Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
The video opens with the tag "USA" in the
upper corner and shots of an unseen person assembling a bomb to put in a
suicide vest. The person buttons up a blue shirt, straps on the bomb
belt, and zips up a dark brown leather jacket to conceal it. He's
wearing a stainless steel wristwatch that reads 9:25.
followed by scenes of Times Square and the torso of the leather-jacketed
man walking along the street. A TGI Friday's sign is shown.
In a close-up of the man with no location shown, he's pulling the ring on his detonator.
It appears to be mock-up footage from an Al-Jazeera segment, with the network's logo fuzzed out but still discernible.
News footage is then shown of the ABC News building banner in New York scrolling a headline about the November Paris attacks.
pictures of Mateen along with closeups of the weapons he used in the
June 12 attack on the Pulse nightclub: a Sig Sauer MCX .223 caliber
rifle and Glock 17 9 mm.
Footage of the attack from American and Arabic TV is shown.
black jihadist in fatigues with an outdoor backdrop that looks like IS
territory in the Middle East is identified as Abu Isamil al-Amriki; he
speaks perfect English and is referred to as an American, yet he speaks
with a slight accent.
you think you are at war with a small group of mujahideen in Iraq,
Syria, Libya and other places? You are sadly mistaken. And do you think
you will defeat us by bombing our homes with your drones and F-16s?" Abu
"O America, indeed you are at war with ... sincere
Muslims around the world who yearn and desire to see the honor of Islam
returned," he adds. "And O America, indeed you are at war with the
people who wish to be killed and slain for the sake of Allah... you are
at war with the holy Quran."
Let's go to the videotape.
Will this warning be heeded? Given that the FBI has released partial transcripts of phone calls from terrorist Omar Mateen, who murdered 50 people in a gay nightclub ten days ago and has deleted all references to ISIS, things don't look very promising.
To maintain liberty, sometimes you have to compromise a little bit of liberty. Unfortunately, some people can only learn that lesson the hard way.
Must see: The leader of the free world reacts to the Orlando attack
Prime Minister Netanyahu puts Obama, Clinton and Trump to shame with his reaction to the Orlando massacre.
Let's go to the videotape. A transcript follows.
"In Orlando, a terrorist walks into a nightclub and murders nearly 50
human beings. Sons and daughters, brothers and sisters cut down in cold
They did nothing wrong. They were dancing with friends, they were enjoying music with loved ones.
Why did the terrorist murder them?
Because he was driven by a fanatical hatred.
He targeted the LGBT community because he believed they were evil.
Now, the murderer wasn't alone.
Regimes and terrorist organizations around the world ruthlessly persecute the LGBT community.
In Syria, ISIS throws gays off rooftops.
In Iran, the regime hangs gays from cranes.
Too many people have remained silent in the face of this awful persecution.
week's shooting wasn't merely an attack on the LGBT community. It was
an attack on all of us, on our common values of freedom and diversity
Radical Islamist terror makes no distinction between shades of infidel.
week it was gays in Orlando. A few days before that it was Jews in Tel
Aviv. Before that it was music fans in Paris; Travelers in Brussels;
Yazidis in Iraq; Community workers in San Bernardino; Christians and
journalists in Syria.
All of us are targets.
We believe that all people are created in the image of God.
ISIS, by contrast, believes that all people who aren't just like them deserve to die.
We will not be terrified into submission.
We will fight back. And we will triumph.
Today I ask you to reach out to friends in the LGBT community. Comfort them.
Tell them you stand together, we stand together as one. And that you will always remember the victims.
Tell them they will never be alone, that we are all one family deserving of dignity, deserving of life.
I have no doubt that those who seek to spread hate and fear will be defeated.
Working together we will defeat them even faster.
need to stand united, resolute in the belief that all people regardless
of their sexual orientation, regardless of their race, regardless of
their ethnicity, all people deserve respect, deserve dignity."
So it's come to this. The leader of the free world is not Barack Obama (it never was) and it's not likely to be either of the candidates for President of the United States. It's the Prime Minister of little Israel, Binyamin Netanyahu.
Notice that Netanyahu doesn't shy away from calling the attack what it was: Islamic terrorism.
Will it say 'Allahuakhbar' and if it does will we be told?
The flight data recorders from EgyptAir Flight 804, which crashed into the Mediterranean on a flight from Paris to Cairo on May 19, were recovered today, damaged but intact.
Will they show that the plane went down due to terrorism? And if they do, will we be told the truth?
In a statement, investigators said: "The vessel's equipment was able
to salvage the part [of the recorder] that contains the memory unit,
which is considered the most important part of the recording device."
The recorder will now be taken to the Egyptian city of Alexandria to be studied.
The plane's manufacturer, Airbus, previously said that finding the
black boxes was crucial to understanding what happened when radar lost
track of MS804.
Electronic messages sent by the plane revealed
that smoke detectors went off in the toilet and the aircraft's
electrics, minutes before the radar signal was lost.
Greek investigators, the plane turned 90 degrees left and then 360
degrees to the right, dropping from 11,300m (37,000ft) to 4,600m
(15,000ft) and then 3,000m (10,000ft) before it was lost from radar.
A terror attack has not been ruled out but no extremist group has claimed to have downed the plane.
Analysts say human or technical error is also a possibility.
The crew on board do not appear to have sent a distress call.
The cockpit voice recorder should allow investigators to hear what
the pilot and co-pilot were saying to each other, plus any alarms in the
If the flight data recorder is recovered, it should show what the plane's computers were recording at the time.
Experts have warned that signals emitted by the data recorder are expected to expire by 24 June.
That's next Friday. Meanwhile, there are very few clues.
The little evidence so far suggests a fire broke out in the front of the
aircraft, so they will be keen to film and photograph that area. One
experienced investigator who worked on the Lockerbie bombing told me
bomb damage looks very different to fire damage.
I'm sure it does. But everything I've seen about this one seems to point to terrorism.
'Palestinians' whine to pollsters over Sunni Arabs preferring their own interests
There's a very detailed poll of 'Palestinian' public opinion out ('Palestinian' public opinion tends to be more measurable than in other places in the Arab Islamic world - they learned from Israel). While I may come back to this poll eventually, I'd like to focus on this part for a minute. Keep in mind that this is 'Palestinian' public opinion and not Sunni Arab or other Arabs or Muslims.
(7) The Arab World, war in Syria, ISIS, and US elections:
78% say the Arab World is too preoccupied with its own concerns, internal
conflicts, and the conflict with Iran and that Palestine is no longer the
Arab’s principal or primary issue or cause. Only 20% think Palestine remains
the Arab’s principle cause.
They finally are starting to understand that the Arab world is tired of them. It's the anti-Semitic Europeans who have been carrying the ball for the 'Palestinians' for many years now. While the Arab world has not made peace with us, there is a de facto detente, and this a result of shared interests and not love. But the bottom line is that the Arab world has abandoned the 'Palestinians' even more so than it did previously.
59% believe that there is an Arab Sunni alliance with Israel against Iran
despite the continued Israeli occupation of Arab land while 30% believe that
the Arabs would not ally themselves with Israel until it ends its occupation
and allows the creation of a Palestinian state.
I'm with the majority. Just from what we know, there is an alliance, and I'd estimate that it's even stronger behind the scenes. The 30% who think that the Arabs wouldn't ally themselves with Israel to save their own necks is simply unrealistic.
In light of the escalating conflict in Syria and the emergence of three main
parties to the conflict, we asked the public for its view on the party it
views as the more preferable or the one it views as the least harmful. The
largest percentage (40%) chose the Free Syrian army, 18% chose Bashar Asad
and his army, and 5% chose the extreme religious opposition, such as ISIS.
23% said they do not like any of the three parties.
The Syrian Free Army will go down in history as one of the biggest (of many) foreign policy mistakes by the Obama administration. The FSA could have become a 'moderate' (in relative terms) group had Obama and Clinton chosen to aid it in 2011-12. They did not. Now, it's nearly as Islamist as ISIS. Why Trump isn't pounding Clinton on this....
An overwhelming majority of 88% believes that ISIS is a radical group that
does not represent true Islam and 8% believe it does represent true Islam.
4% are not sure or do not know. In the Gaza Strip, 16% (compared to 3% in
the West Bank) say ISIS represents true Islam.
79% support and 18% oppose the war waged by Arab and Western countries
This is actually a pleasant surprise.
We asked the public about the US elections and which presidential candidate,
Hilary Clinton or Donald Trump, it viewed best for the Palestinians. A large
majority (70%) said there is no difference between the two candidates, while
12% said Clinton is better and 7% said Trump is better.
I'd love to see a survey of what US citizens in Israel think of the US elections.... I don't like either of them, and am tempted to 'stay home.'
Thirty-five years after the fact, Iraq plans to sue Israel for destroying its Osirak nuclear reactor.
Iraq plans to sue Israel over the 1981 bombing of the Iraqi nuclear site Osirak, the deputy speaker of parliament, Humam Hamoudi, said in a statement.
The announcement, which was reported on Wednesday, comes just days after the 35th anniversary of the attack. Iraq's parliament has been working on initial steps for demanding compensation from Israel for several years.
The 1981 attack was condemned unanimously by the UN Security Council in resolution 487, which noted that the site was approved by the International Atomic Energy Agency. The resolution said Iraq was entitled to "appropriate redress."
I wonder how they think they're going to get jurisdiction over a sovereign state that's not willing to appear in court. Hmmm.
Hezbollah currently has a stockpile of over 130,000 rockets, more
than the combined arsenal of all NATO countries, with the exception of
the United States. This number includes long-range rockets and M-600
ballistic missiles, which carry a high payload and would be able to
“wipe out a good chunk of Times Square and maim and kill people four
football fields away from the point of impact,” Stern noted. Hezbollah
also has approximately 100,000 short-range rockets trained on schools,
homes, and hospitals in northern Israel, which could potentially kill
hundreds of civilians.
“You don’t collect 130,000 missiles if you don’t intend to use them,”
said Matthew Levitt, an expert on counter-terrorism and intelligence at
the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
Hezbollah’s positioning of this weaponry in civilian areas poses a
challenge to Israeli officers, added Geoff Corn, an international
military law expert at the South Texas College of Law in Houston. “After
exhausting all feasible efforts to reduce civilian risk, IDF commanders
must resolve the decisive question: Is the potential for civilian harm
excessive in comparison to the advantages the attack would provide? When
you talk of an M-600 in the hands of an enemy that targets vital
military assets or the civilian population—even if that apartment
building is full—launching the attack will be necessary to mitigate the
threat,” he explained.
That seems like a no-brainer. When it's our civilians or their civilians, it's pretty clear to this Israeli that the IDF must act to defend Israel's civilians, and damn the rest of the world for facilitating their doing this.
Israeli military officials in May 2015 told the New York Times
how Hezbollah has “moved most of its military infrastructure” in and
around Shiite villages, which “amounts to using the civilians as a human
shield.” A senior military official stated that Lebanese civilians are
“living in a military compound.” He told the Times: “We will
hit Hezbollah hard, while making every effort to limit civilian
casualties as much as we can…We do not intend to stand by helplessly in
the face of rocket attacks.” Stern, who was shown maps of the locations
of Hezbollah weapons, said that they are not only being stored in these
southern villages, but in Beirut itself.
Yaakov Amidror, Israel’s former national security advisor, met
with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in the summer of 2013 and showed
him “detailed evidence of Hezbollah’s deadly arsenal and the fact that
it was strategically placed within densely populated civilian centers.”
When Amidror asked Ban what the Israelis should do, he “offered no
response and no suggestions.” Stern concluded his piece, “Nobody, it
seems, in times of peace is willing to offer Israel a constructive
suggestion on how to deal with an Iranian-backed terrorist organization
in possession of a massive arsenal on its northern border. But these
same organizations stand front and center to criticize Israel for acting
legally and proportionately for protecting its own citizens in
Article 28 of the 4th Geneva Convention of 1949 is simple and clear. It
says: " The presence of a protected person may not be used to render
certain points or areas immune from military operations." Hezbullah
violates this provision daily. It is due to Hezbullah's violations of
this provision that Lebanese civilians are being killed.
article published on the Wall Street Journal's OpinionJournal.com web
page over the weekend, Orde F. Kittrie, a professor of international law
at Arizona State University and who served in the Office of the Legal
Adviser at the U.S. State Department from 1993 to 2003, summarized the three-part test in determining whether Israeli actions violate the Geneva Convention:
law has three major prohibitions .... One forbids deliberate attacks on
civilians. Another prohibits hiding forces in civilian areas, thereby
turning civilians into "human shields." A third prohibition, the
proportionality restriction that Israel is accused of violating,
involves a complicated and controversial balancing test.
the fact that Israel has warned Lebanese citizens to flee the combat
zones dozens of times, given the manner in which Hezbullah has hidden
both itself and its weapons among civilians, it is impossible to assert,
let alone prove, that Israel is deliberately attacking civilians. But
it is clear that Hezbullah has turned what remains of Lebanon's civilian
population into human shields.
I have already noted that Orde Kittrie wrote that the proportionality
test "involves a complicated and controversial balancing test." Kittrie
goes on to explain:
Geneva Convention Protocol I contains
one version of the proportionality test, the International Criminal
Court Statute another; neither is universally accepted. As a result, the
proportionality test is governed by "customary international law," an
amalgam of non-universal treaty law, court decisions, and how
influential nations actually behave. It does not hinge on the relative
number of casualties, or the force used, however, but on the intent of
the combatant. Under customary international law, proportionality
prohibits attacks expected to cause incidental death or injury to
civilians if this harm would, on balance, be excessive in relation to
the overall legitimate military accomplishment anticipated.
If Israel was mistaken and Hezbollah was not firing from or hiding amongst these civilians, the legality of its action is assessed by the proportionality test. [But we know from countless testimonies that Israel is not mistaken and that Hezbullah is firing from among civilians.
CiJ] Because the test is vague, there have been few, if any, cases
since World War II in which a soldier, commander or country has been
convicted of violating it. In the absence of guidance from the courts,
determining whether Israel's military has failed the proportionality
test depends on an assessment of what civilian casualties it expected,
what its overall military goals are, the context in which the country is
operating, and how the international community has in practice balanced
civilian risk against military goals. [There
is no way to attack a munitions depot hidden beneath a house and a
school without blowing up the house and the school. That would make any
attack in which the civilians have been warned to leave the house and
the school proportional per se. CiJ]
Israel did not expect civilian casualties; it warned civilians to leave Qana [and all areas south of the Litani at this point. CiJ]... The
law of war recognizes that mistakes are inevitable, and does not
criminalize soldiers who seek in good faith seek to avoid them.
Read the whole thing (it describes similar tactics adopted by Hezbullah on a lesser scale during the Second Lebanon War ten years ago).
We all know that the word 'impoverished' always precedes 'Gaza Strip.' But apparently, Hamas' rulers have decided that poverty isn't good for investment, so they've come up with an innovative way to eradicate it: They're arresting beggars.
On May 24, the director of Legal and Regulatory Affairs of the General
Investigation Department of the Palestinian police in the Gaza Strip,
Imad Harb, announced in a press statement to Safa Press Agency the arrest of 72 beggars, including 42 children in the streets of Gaza. The arrests were part of the campaign launched
May 8 by the Ministry of Social Affairs in Gaza in cooperation with the
Palestinian police and the Ministry of Culture to fight begging and
arrest beggars in Gaza’s streets.
Harb said in his statement that the problem of beggars is being
addressed by making them sign pledges not to return to the streets after
their arrest. In case the beggar returns to panhandling, the necessary
legal measures will be taken for violation of Article 193
of the 1936 Palestinian Penal Code. According to this article, begging
is an illegitimate source of income, and beggars are punished with a
one-month prison sentence the first time they are caught and a one-year
sentence the second time.
During live MSNBC coverage of a terrorist attack in Tel Aviv in the 3
p.m. ET hour on Wednesday, NBC correspondents Ayman Mohyeldin and Martin
Fletcher took turns blaming Israel’s “right-wing” government for
Palestinian “frustration.” Mohyeldin ranted: “...in terms of the context
of what has been happening in the occupied Palestinian territories, the
occupation, the shift of Israeli politics, including now the current
government, more to the right, to what has been described by Israelis as
even more of an extreme right-wing government, some of the measures
that have taken place in the West Bank, the siege that continues in
Gaza, all of those continue to fester.”
Is this what the US State Department told Belgium and France after their terror attacks?
Posting this in the hope that @apdiplowriter will ask the State Department about it this afternoon.
In the aftermath of the terror attack at the Max Brenner restaurant at Tel Aviv's Sarona Market on Wednesday, the US State Department is warning Israel not to 'escalate tensions.'
"We understand the Israeli government's desire to protect its
citizens after this kind of terrorist attack," said Mark Toner, a
spokesman for the State Department. "We would just hope that any
measures that Israel takes would be designed to not escalate tensions
any further, but we certainly respect their desire to express outrage
and to protect the safety of their people."
Nine Israelis were
shot on Wednesday night by at least three Palestinian men, in what has
been characterized by the United Nations, the US and Israel as an act of
terror. Four of the victims have died.
The decision by Israel not to return the bodies of dead
Palestinian perpetrators to their families– a policy Israel considers a
deterrent against future attacks– is "obviously an internal matter for
Israel to debate," Toner remarked. But he made note of Israel's decision
to constrict ease of travel for thousands of Palestinians in and out of
I doubt the State Department bothered to look, but Saturday night and Sunday are the Jewish holiday of Shavuoth, and on Jewish holidays travel from Judea, Samaria and Gaza (isn't there a 'blockade' in Gaza anyway?) is always restricted to humanitarian cases to enable the army to give more leaves.
The Washington Institute's Rob Satloff asks the right question:
Well, of course they didn't. But a different standard always applies to Israel.... I can't wait to hear the reaction when they find out that the cabinet is meeting today to expedite the demolition of the terrorists' homes.
And by the way, the terrorists came from Yata, which is south of Hebron, and not from Gaza.
Mrs. Carl and I went out to dinner here in Jerusalem shortly before the attack happened. The place where we ate had actually had a suicide bombing very close by during the intifada in the early 2000's, and I was surprised to see that there was no security guard outside. My guess is that you go back tonight, there will be one there.
The 'Palestinians' continue to look for opportunities to murder us. Occasionally, they succeed. Fortunately, it's far less often than it was 15 years ago.
By the way, the United States and Hillary Clinton have condemned last night's terror attack. I have not yet seen any condemnation issued by President Obama or Donald Trump. If you see one, please give me a holler. I've been too busy working to post much recently....
June 5 was the anniversary of the outbreak of the Six Day War. This year, it coincided with the 28th day of the Jewish month of Iyyar, which is the date on the Jewish calendar on which the Old City of Jerusalem was liberated.
At the time, the Arabs were lying, telling their people that they were winning the war.
But here's a cable from the British Ambassador to Jordan to Britain's Foreign Office that tells a very different story. It was sent 49 years ago today, June 6, 1967.
How to hold a 'peace conference' without either of the sides making 'peace'
With 500,000 Syrians dead and millions more homeless, the Obama administration and Europe turned to the real priority today: The 'Palestinians.' At a 'peace conference' whose outcome is predetermined (host France has already announced that if Israel does not agree to a 'Palestinian state,' France will), John Kerry, Federica Mog and friends urged Israel to 'accept' the division of the remaining 22% of the British Mandate that is currently called Israel. There are only two problems: Israel didn't show up and neither did the 'Palestinians.'
Among the participants will be US Secretary of State John Kerry, UN
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and EU Foreign policy chief Federica
Mogherini, and representatives from the Arab League. Although Russia,
Germany, Britain and Japan will be among the 26 representations at the
conference, they will not be represented by their foreign ministers.
Following an opening statement by Hollande, each representative
is expected to make a statement on the primacy of Middle East peace
and the importance of retaining the possibility of the two state
The conference is expected to conclude with a press
conference where conclusions – worked upon by the delegations on
Thursday night – will be presented. The summit will be the first
international gathering on the Middle East peace process since then US
President George Bush convened the Annapolis conference in 2007. Both
Israel and the Palestinians were invited to that parley.
meeting’s initial focus is to reaffirm existing international texts and
resolutions that are based on achieving a Palestinian State in the
West Bank and Gaza Strip co-existing with Israel, an outcome the French
said in a pre-summit document is increasingly coming under threat.
document blamed the threat to the two-state solution primarily on
settlement activity, without mentioning Palestinian violence, the
Hamas-Fatah split, or the consistent Palestinian refusal to recognize
Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people.
Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said in a Le Monde interview that
in order for there to be an agreement, the Palestinians needed
reconciliation between Hamas in Gaza and Fatah in the West Bank, and
that Hamas needed to take the first step by recognizing Israel,
accepting previous Israeli-Palestinian agreements, and forswearing
The Paris meeting will try to establish working groups
comprising various countries that would meet in the coming months and
tackle all aspects of the peace process.
Some groups would strive to creating economic incentives and security
guarantees to convince both sides to return to talks. Others would
focus on trying to find ways to break deadlocks that scuttled previous
negotiations or look at whether other peace efforts such as a 2002 Arab
initiative remain viable.
"France isn't trying to reinvent
things that already are out there. The idea is to rebuild confidence and
convince everybody to work together to find a way to get to the next
conference," a senior french diplomat said. He said the objective was to
get Israelis and Palestinians back together after the U.S. elections.
I am an Orthodox Jew - some would even call me 'ultra-Orthodox.' Born in Boston, I was a corporate and securities attorney in New York City for seven years before making aliya to Israel in 1991 (I don't look it but I really am that old :-). I have been happily married to the same woman for thirty-five years, and we have eight children (bli ayin hara) ranging in age from 12 to 33 years and eight grandchildren. Three of our children are married and a fourth is engaged! Before I started blogging I was a heavy contributor on a number of email lists and ran an email list called the Matzav from 2000-2004. You can contact me at: IsraelMatzav at gmail dot com