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Monday, March 31, 2014

US to release Pollard as inducement for fourth tranche of terrorists? Don't bet on it

The rumors are starting again: The United States is going to release Jonathan Pollard in exchange for the release by Israel of the fourth tranche of 'Palestinian' terrorists.
The sources, who spoke as U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry prepared to meet Israeli and Palestinian leaders, said under the proposed arrangement that Jonathan Pollard, a former U.S. Navy analyst caught spying for Israel in the 1980s, could be released by mid-April.
In addition, Israel would go ahead with a promised release of a fourth group of Palestinians, among the 104 it pledged to free in a deal that led to the renewal of peace talks last July. Another group of jailed Palestinians would also go free - and the peace talks would be extended beyond an April 29 deadline, the sources said.
As you read what I'm about to say, please keep in mind that I think Jonathan Pollard should have been released a long time ago.

First, there is NO WAY I would agree to a deal where Obama says 'release the terrorists now and I'll release Pollard in two weeks.' Why would Netanyahu agree to such a deal? He was already screwed by Clinton 15 years ago when Clinton promised him that Pollard would be released if Netanyahu signed the Why Why Wye deal. After Netanyahu signed, Clinton reneged. Many American Jews considered Clinton a great friend of Israel. Does anyone consider Obama a great friend of Israel?

Second. what is the 'another group of 'Palestinians''? Whom does that include? How many? Will Netanyahu's cabinet (which would have to approve any release of more than the 104 terrorists to which Netanyahu agreed in July and which would have to approve any release of 'Israeli Arabs') approve that 'other group'? Will it approve the release of 'Israeli Arabs'?

Third, will Pollard himself agree to such a deal? Pollard has said time and time again that he will not agree to be released in exchange for terrorists. Has anyone asked him whether he changed his mind?

Finally, as much as this deal smells rotten, it's very typical Obama. Every President since Bill Clinton has held onto Jonathan Pollard as a bargaining chip to make Israel give up something big (like land) in exchange for Pollard. Leave it to Obama (and I say this as someone who would love to see Pollard released) to release Pollard in exchange for six more months of meaningless negotiations.

Bottom line: No, I don't believe this is going to happen.

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Mike Huckabee interviews Caroline Glick on Iran and her new book

Here's Mike Huckabee interviewing Caroline Glick about Iran's nuclear program and about her new book, The Israeli Solution.

Let's go to the videotape.

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Shenkar College forces students to think 'out of the box' for 'Palestine'

The status above was posted to the Facebook page of former Knesset Member Michael Ben Ari by a student at Shenkar College of Engineering and Design. I am posting an English translation of its appalling contents below:
In the middle of a class day, Shenkar College requires all of its students to join lectures on "thinking out of the box." Instead of student creations that are displayed in the various corners of the campus, they hung pictures of wounded Arabs and soldiers beating. The pictures are decorated with slogans of "Free Palestine."

Any student that tried to tear down the signs was stopped and taken to a disciplinary committee!!! Shocked female students stood and cried - it could be that their families were terror victims. In a place of art, of creativity and doing in which politics should stay out of the limelight, it is instead brought out with all its ugliness, by force, and it drags the students into a civil war. A disgraceful day for the Shenkar system, for those who head it, for the faculty and for our entire state!

Today, I am ashamed to be a student at Shenkar!
It perhaps bears noting that the President of Shenkar is Comrade Yuli Tamir. Tamir was one of the founders of 'Peace Now.'

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Europe's spiritual Holocaust

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg isn't European but he is intermarried.

So are a stunning 85% of newly married European Jews according to the Rabbinical Center of Europe.
According to RCE's research, over 85% of European Jews assimilate and intermarry with non-Jews; 80% do not attend synagogues, even on the central holiday of Yom Kippur; over 75% of Jewish children in Europe do not receive a Jewish education, and over 90% of European Jewish students have no connections with the Jewish community.
The sobering figures led Rabbi Shimon Elitov, a member of the Israeli Chief Rabbinate Council, to say "assimilation in the shocking numbers that we see is worse that the physical Holocaust that we saw."
In order to provide European rabbis with tools to respond to the threat, Rabbis Moshe Braverman and Doron Kornbluth ran a workshop at the conference to give pointers on how to deal with the phenomenon.
It sounds like the situation is well-past workshops. Massive action is needed - and even that may not help.
Deputy Religious Services Minister Eli Ben-Dahan presented a different counter-measure to the difficulties of Jewish life in Europe, calling on European Jews to leave and immigrate to Israel or face disappearing. In contrast to the 85% assimilation rate, Ben-Dahan argued that in Israel the rate is a mere thousandth.
Perhaps it's a Heavenly decree that so many French Jews are fleeing to Israel.  And given that the cause of that flight is Muslim anti-Semitism -a phenomenon that is rising in many other European countries, perhaps ultimately European Jewry will either flee to Israel or be lost.

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Kerry rushes to Israel to 'save' the 'peace process'

US Secretary of State John FN Kerry rushed to Israel on Monday in a bid to 'save' the 'peace process.'
US Secretary of State John Kerry broke from his travel schedule for the second time in a week to rush back to Israel on Monday to try to salvage Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.
The US-brokered negotiations faced a crisis over the weekend when Israel, saying it was seeking a Palestinian commitment to continue negotiations beyond an end-of-April deadline, delayed the fourth prisoner release to which it had committed to in previous negotiations.
"After consulting with his team, Secretary Kerry decided it would be productive to return to the region," State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said.
Kerry had interrupted a visit to Rome last week to go to Amman for talks with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to try to convince him to prolong the talks beyond an April 29 deadline for a deal and to press Israel to release the prisoners.
Since when is 'productive' a criterion for this administration? These 'talks' have been anything but productive - if anything their impending failure is likely to be downright destructive (God forbid) - and that was predictable from the outset. You can't force two parties to come to the table when neither of them wants to, and then expect them to reach an agreement.

Arutz Sheva adds:
Psaki reported that Kerry will be in Israel on Monday and Tuesday, and aside from meeting Netanyahu in Jerusalem will likely meet PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah. Kerry interrupted a trip to Rome to meet with Abbas just last Wednesday, amid the failing talks.
Oh well. There goes the first day of the NATO foreign ministers' meeting. Well, there's a fierce moral urgency to create a 'Palestinian' reichlet. There's no fierce moral urgency to save the Ukraine. 
"Over the course of the last eight months, the Israelis and Palestinians have both made tough choices, and as we work with them to determine the next steps, it is important they remember that only peace will bring the Israeli and Palestinian people both the security and economic prosperity they all deserve," Psaki added.
I think that if you asked most Israelis, they would tell you that we have relative security and economic prosperity right now (our streets are a lot safer than Kiev's), and that what Obama-Kerry are asking us to do is to endanger that relative security and economic prosperity for a pipe dream. If you go here, you will see that Israel is ranked as the 11th happiest country in the world, despite all of our issues with the 'Palestinians' and our other neighbors. The first Arab country to make the list is the oil-rich United Arab Emirates at number 14. The United States(!) is number 17. (Okay, Venezuela is number 20, which has to make you wonder how the survey was done, but still...). If most Israelis are happy, why would we want to change our status quo in a risky manner?

No, I don't expect Kerry to succeed. But then, I never expected him to succeed.

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A Muslim doctor talks about the Technion and BDS

Dr. Qanta Ahmed is a subspecialist board certified sleep disorders specialist and faculty attending physician in the Department of Medicine as part of the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care Medicine at Winthrop University Hospital in Mineola, New York. Dr. Ahmed is appointed Associate Professor of Medicine at the State University of New York (Stony Brook). She practices sleep disorders medicine in Garden City at the Winthrop University Sleep Disorders Center where she treats adolescents and adults of all ages.

Dr. Ahmed is also a non-fiction author. Her first book, In the Land of Invisible Women (Sourcebooks 2008) details her experience of living and working in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and has been published internationally in 13 countries including in translation and is now in its 12th edition. A graduate of the University of Nottingham, England, she has been a physician for 20 years.

Please listen to what Dr. Ahmed has to say about the Technion (which made this video) and about BDS in general.

Let's go to the videotape.

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Ehud Korruption Olmert is supposed to speak at the JPost conference next week in New York....

I guess now they'll have to find a replacement. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

(Actually you have to wonder why they were dumb enough to invite him, but then they invited him last year too, didn't they).

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Leader of Iranian green movement won't even shake hands with a Jew

Some of you might recall that in 2009, I kept asking all the Iranian greens I was following where they stood on Israel. If they weren't open to having diplomatic relations with us, I would ignore them. A curse on both their houses. I couldn't get a straight answer. I kept getting told it's not relevant now.

Now, I know for sure why I got that answer. Here's an English translation of the caption of the picture above.
“This is Iran’s deceased Ayatollah Montazeri (d. December, 2009) in the photograph where he rejected ‎shaking the hand of a fellow Jewish Iranian. He declined the handshake because he did not want to become dirty (najis) and his cleanliness despoiled for his “Salaat” preparation (for prayer, as a Muslim), by contacting the (najis, infidel) Jew.” (thanks to S for the translation) 
So yes, Ahmadinejad kissed the Neturei Karta nutjobs who showed up for his Holocaust denial conference. But they're a different kind of Jew.

More here (Hat Tip: Jack W).

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Great smackdown of BDS by University of Michigan student

This was from last week's debate over a resolution calling on the University of Michigan to divest from Israel, and it's a great speech. The divestment resolution lost because a secret ballot was called.

Let's go to the videotape.

She did great. I hope she  moves back here eventually.

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Finally: Ehud Korruption Olmert convicted on bribery charges

It's been a long time coming, but it's finally happened. Former Prime Minister Ehud K. Olmert has been convicted of bribery in what's known as the Holyland case. The Holyland is the eyesore that overlooks the Malcha mall on the right side of the Begin expressway in southern Jerusalem. Eyesore because what was supposed to be a 25,000 square foot project became a colossal 311,000 square foot project due to bribes paid to Olmert and others.

But first, let's go to the videotape.

Completing nearly two years of what may be looked back on as the trial of the century, the Tel Aviv District Court on Monday convicted former prime minister Ehud Olmert on charges of bribery.
With a thundering ruling that will shake the country, Judge David Rozen also convicted former Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski, former Bank Hapoalim Chairman Dan Dankner, Olmert's former chief-of-staff Shula Zaken and, in total, 10 out of 13 individual defendants (3 defendants are corporations.)
Judge David Rozen said that Olmert lied in court. The court cited Zaken's total devotion to Olmert as proof that he had to know about all of the bribes she was receiving from main state witness Shmuel Duchner.
Rozen said that Zaken even got convicted in the prior Jerusalem corruption trial rather than testify against Olmert.
On the NIS 500,000 in bribes given to Yossi Olmert, Ehud's brother, the court completely rejected Ehud's story that he did not know that Duchner gave the money to Yossi. The court added that there was no reason for Duchner to give Yossi money except at Ehud's request since they did not know each other.
Rozen said that Duchner was always careful to make sure sponsors like Olmert knew he had given bribes to secure their help with the Holyland project.
Olmert was convicted of some of the most serious bribery charges including large sums. Absent Rozen being very sympathetic since Olmert is a former prime minister (and Olmert did get this sympathy at his Jerusalem trial) he could be looking at serious jail time. Sentencing arguments in the case were scheduled to begin on April 28.
The judge completely rejected Zaken's story that money she got from Duchner was not bribes, but part of a romance between them.
Rozen called Zaken a "central mover" in the bribery scheme,  telling the state that he is not convinced he wants to accept an easy sentence for plea bargain. He added that in light of his conviction of Olmert already, it is unclear that her evidence is a "revolution."
Though the state originally rejected Zaken's new evidence as insufficient, at the start of last week, Zaken produced to the state a series of cassette tapes which the state said provide a "serious suspicion" of obstruction of justice and witness tampering against Olmert.
By moving forward with the verdict, the plea bargain reportedly could require Zaken to cooperate with the state in filing a new indictment against Olmert for the obstruction of justice charges – though the state may call it a day having gotten a conviction.
In the Holyland trial,  Olmert was accused of accepting over NIS 1.5 million in bribes (out of around NIS 9 million given to public officials in total), either directly or through Zaken or his brother Yossi to smooth over various legal and zoning obstacles. The allegations relate to the 1993-mid 2000s period while Olmert was mayor of Jerusalem and Minister of Infrastructure, Trade and Industry.
The prosecution's closing arguments already significantly backed off of the NIS 1.5 million number to around NIS 800,000.
With a conviction, Olmert's career could be over and he could even face jail time.
Arutz Sheva adds:
Judge Rosen announced the acquittal of real estate men Shimon Galon and Amnon Safran, as well as former Israel Lands Authority head Yaakov Efrati. According to law, acquittals need to be announced at the start of the decision.
Other defendants include former Jerusalem mayor Uri Lupoliansky, former city engineer Uri Sheetrit, and businessman Hillel Cherney. All in all, there were 13 people and three companies on the defendants' bench in this case. 
The judge noted that the testimony of state witness Dachner was detailed but also contradictory. He preferred Dachner's testimony to Olmert's, however, and it was the key to the conviction. Olmert "tried to besmirch the witness, even at the price of lying to the court," the judge added.
"Hundreds of thousands of shekels were transferred to public leaders,” wrote Rosen. “The dirty money was given in order to advance the business of the people who gave the money. Every defendant has his own corruption case. Dachner came up with the idea and carried out the bribery deals. In the court, he answered the lawyers' questions as best he could.”
Dachner gave hundreds of thousands of shekels in bribes to Zaken, the judge determined. He also "bought Olmert's services," Judge Rosen wrote. Dachner gave Olmert's brother, Yossi, 500,000 shekels, as a favor to Ehud Olmert, the judge found. Yossi Olmert had been a successful and famous academician before he was plunged into debt and left Israel for the United States.
Rosen also had some devastating comments on Israel's political system.
"We're talking about corrupt and filthy practices," Judge David Rosen said while reading out the verdict, his remarks playing out across all Israeli media.    
He also spoke of a "corrupt political system which has decayed over the years... and in which hundreds of thousands of shekels were transferred to elected officials".    
Rosen also said the former premier had lied to the court in a bid to "blacken the name" of the state's witness.  
Olmert reportedly sat expressionless throughout the verdict.
The reading of the verdict is ongoing and has been followed live by Israeli media since it began, with reporters flitting in and out of the courtroom to report on the developments.
The sides are expected to file appeals to the Supreme Court.
If Olmert's career is over, the system will by definition be cleaner. 

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The Torah includes all the goodness in the world

Here are Rabbi Hillel Paley and Sruly Werdyger with HaTorah kolleleth kol haTovoth baOlam (The Torah includes all the good in the world).

Let's go to the videotape.

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Wow! 312% rise in aliya from France in first part of 2014

French Jewry has finally decided enough is enough. They are looking to leave France as soon as possible. The first three months of 2014 show a 312% rise in aliya (immigration) from France over 2013. And those levels were already higher than was the case just a few years ago.
Since January, the Jewish Agency said, 854 immigrants from France arrived in Israel, compared with just 274 in the same period in 2013. The Jewish Agency attributed the dramatic 312% rise in immigrants to the work it has been doing in the country, educating French Jews on the options available. Officials said that their efforts were aided by a deterioration of the French economy, and especially by a dramatic increase in anti-Semitism in the country, in which many Jews have been harassed and attacked by local thugs and gangs in recent months.
In addition to families and individuals coming to live in Israel, there has also been a large increase in the number of students coming to attend educational programs in Israel. Some 1,000 Jewish high school students recently participated in The Jewish Agency's Bac Bleu Blanc ("High School Seniors in Blue and White") program, which enables students at Jewish schools to explore opportunities for life in Israel following their graduation from high school.
Additionally, 1,000 French Jewish young people are currently participating in Masa Israel Journey, a partnership between the Government of Israel and The Jewish Agency that enables young Jews to experience life in Israel, compared to 500 just two years ago. Some 70% of French Masa participants make Aliyah upon completing the program.
I don't remember a lot of French from my high school years 40 years ago, but it sounds like I should be brushing up on it. 

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Sunday, March 30, 2014

Peter Beinart and MJ Rosenberg have an epiphany

The BDS movement's goals have become so blatantly obvious that even such uber-Leftists as Peter Beinart and MJ Rosenberg have been forced to admit that BDS's goal is not a 'two-state solution.'
Peter Beinart, the de facto spokesman for Liberal Zionism, famously called for a boycott of the West Bank in 2012. In the same article, however, he also called for the increasing investment inside the Green Line, in order to distinguish “Zionist BDS” from the predominant BDS movement.
“Boycotting anything inside the green line invites ambiguity about the boycott’s ultimate goal — whether it seeks to end Israel’s occupation or Israel’s existence.”
MJ Rosenberg, a longtime critic of Israel’s West Bank policy, who was spurred by last week’s debate at the University of Michigan, to write a detailed piece about the duplicity of the BDS used the same argument:
The reason why BDS keeps failing despite the almost universal recognition that the occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and the blockade of Gaza, are illegal and immoral is that the BDS movement is not targeting the occupation per se. Its goal is the end of the State of Israel itself.

In its view, all of historic Palestine is occupied territory; that means Tel Aviv and Haifa as much as Hebron and Nablus. Obviously, a movement dedicated to eradication of Israel as a country is never going to achieve support other than from a radical fringe.
Rosenberg and other supporters of the two-state solution – including those who support a “limited boycott” of the West Bank for that purpose – are best positioned to see that the BDS movement is not a “peace” movement and does not aim for a Palestinians state alongside a Jewish state.
BDS is an all-or-nothing proposition. You can't support BDS and support a 'two-state solution.' Beinart and Rosenberg apparently see that. Does J Street? Do other 'liberal Zionists'? Hmmm. 

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Jodi loves terrorists

Jodi Rudoren writes an incredible puff piece humanizing a 'Palestinian' murderer who was released as part of the 'peace talks.' The terrorist murdered a 72-year old Holocaust survivor in cold blood in 1993. A few highlights and comments.
Demonized as terrorists by Israelis and lionized as freedom fighters by Palestinians, prisoners like Mr. Salah have become a flash point in the troubled peace talks, whose continuation hinges on whether a promised fourth group is let go in the coming days. Amid the charged debate, these middle-aged men — 69 of them convicted of murder, 54 escaping life sentences — have begun to rebuild disrupted lives. They are earning their first driver’s licenses, leveraging $50,000 grants from the Palestinian Authority to build apartments or start businesses, searching for wives and struggling to start families.
Mr. Salah was flush with more than $100,000 saved from the Palestinian Authority’s monthly payments to prisoners’ families. He remodeled and refurnished his mother’s home. He bulldozed the rocky slope out back and built a 2,400-square-foot pen for livestock. He invested in a Nablus money-changing storefront in December, and, last month, bought his first car, a silver 2007 Kia Pride.
But he still wakes at 5 a.m., as he had to for the prison count. He makes coffee in an electric kettle like the one he had in his cell. The day before his wedding, Mr. Salah and one of his brothers got threatening phone calls from a man who gave his name as Moshe and spoke in Hebrew.
“He told me, ‘I will kill him, kill his wife, and shoot you and all his family,’ ” said the brother, Muhammad. “He told me, ‘I know where you live, in Burqa, and Burqa is next to Sebastia.’ ”
If Charles Manson is ever released from prison, will the Times do a story about his difficulties in adjusting to life outside prison?  With the Times, one can never be 100% sure, but somehow I doubt it.
Hearing about Mr. Salah’s new life was unsettling for Ms. Harris [the daughter of Salah's victim, 72-year old Israel Tenenbaum HY"D - May God Avenge his blood. CiJ], who is 56 and works as a special-education teacher. “If he was an anonymous character, it would be easier,” she said.
But while most Israelis — and certainly most victims’ relatives — oppose the prisoner releases, Ms. Harris said of her family, “If it advances the peace process, we all support even the release of this murderer.”
And it's this kind of insanity that drives just enough of a wedge in Israeli society to allow terrorists to be released. You're willing to let your father's murderer be released if it 'advances the peace process' - whatever that means.  I haven't seen anything that advanced the 'peace process' - certainly not in the last 20 years. Why do we continue to fool ourselves?

The only good news here is that Salah - who is still only 47 - says he won't participate in the next intifada.
“I’m away from the conflict now,” he said. “I’ve paid the tax in full. If tomorrow there is a third intifada, I’ll sit on this couch, and watch it on TV.”
Let's see if he sticks to that one.

Releasing terrorists from prison is insane. Even if they don't go back to their former lives, the message being sent to future generations of terrorists is not one that Israel can abide.

And as to the Times, it's long past time for them to stop lionizing murderers.

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Surreal: Abu Bluff offers to extend talks to end of 2014 in exchange for 1,000 terrorists of his choosing

The Times of Israel reports that 'moderate' 'Palestinian' President Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen has offered to extend the 'talks' with Israel through the end of 2014 in exchange for the release of 1,000 'Palestinian' terrorists of his choosing.
On Saturday, The Times of Israel learned from a Palestinian source that Jerusalem, backed by Washington, offered to release 400 more prisoners of Israel’s choosing, in addition to a fourth and final group of longtime terrorism convicts who were set to go free this weekend – on the condition that the Palestinian Authority agrees to prolong the ongoing negotiations beyond the April 29 deadline.
However, on Sunday, the Palestinian leadership rejected the offer and presented a counteroffer of its own to American mediators – that Israel release 1,000 more prisoners, of the Palestinian Authority’s choosing. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas also demanded that Israel freeze settlement construction and transfer some Area C regions to the Palestinian Authority’s control.
In exchange, peace talks would be extended until the end of 2014.
Although the Palestinian leadership rejected Israel’s offer, which was an attempt to at least partially fill Abbas’s prerequisites for the extension of talks, the Palestinian Authority was holding intensive talks Sunday to discuss the matter further.
Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat, who has resigned several times since peace talks started up again in July under US mediation, said Sunday that he was still holding secret talks with Jerusalem and Washington, far from the public eye.
Saturday’s offer had stipulated that Israel would determine which additional 400 security prisoners would go free, Palestinian sources said. The demand was rejected by the Palestinian leadership, which insisted on determining which prisoners would be freed.
Israel is said to be holding close to 5,000 Palestinian security prisoners.
Netanyahu has all the backbone of a pretzel soaked in warm water overnight, but I do not see his own party - let alone Jewish Home - going along with this. 

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'Moderate' Rohani appoints hostage taker as UN ambassador

'Moderate' Iranian leader Hassan Rohani has appointed Hamid Aboutalebi, a 1979 hostage taker at the United States embassy in Tehran, as Iran's ambassador to the United Nations.
The Iranian government has applied for a U.S. visa for Hamid Aboutalebi, Iran’s former ambassador to Belgium and Italy, who was a member of the Muslim Students Following the Imam’s Line, a group of radical students that seized the U.S. embassy on Nov. 4, 1979. Imam was an honorific used for Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the leader of the Islamic Revolution.
Relations between the Islamic Republic and the U.S. and its allies are beginning to emerge from the deep freeze that began when the self-proclaimed Iranian students overrun the embassy and took the hostages. The State Department hasn’t responded to the visa application, according to an Iranian diplomat.
A controversy over Aboutalebi’s appointment could spark demands on Capitol Hill and beyond during this congressional election year for the Obama administration to take the unusual step of denying a visa to an official posted to the UN. It also could hamper progress toward a comprehensive agreement to curb Iran’s nuclear program, which the U.S. and five other world powers are seeking to negotiate with Iran by July 20.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani chose Aboutalebi to serve at the UN, which is headquartered in New York City on international, soil after the interim nuclear deal was forged last Nov. 24. 
Aboutalebi has said he didn’t take part in the initial occupation of the embassy, and acted as translator and negotiator, according to an interview he gave to the Khabaronline news website in Iran.
“On a few other occasions, when they needed to translate something in relation with their contacts with other countries, I translated their material into English or French,” Aboutalebi said, according to Khabaronline. “I did the translation during a press conference when the female and black staffers of the embassy were released, and it was purely based on humanitarian motivations.”
He referred to the release of some embassy staff members during the first few weeks of the crisis in November 1979. 
Although Aboutalebi downplays his involvement, his photograph is displayed on Taskhir, the website of the Muslim Students Following the Imam’s Line. Taskhir can mean both capture and occupation in Persian.
According to Mohammad Hashemi, one of the students who led the occupation of the embassy, Iran’s revolutionary government sent Aboutalebi and Abbas Abdi, another architect of the occupation, as emissaries to Algiers. The Algerian capital at that time was a mecca of third-world liberation movements, including the Palestine Liberation Organization.
Hamid Babaei, a spokesman for the Iran’s UN Mission in New York, declined to comment.
I wish it were otherwise, but I can't see Hussein Obama denying a visa to an Iranian diplomat. Anyone disagree?

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'Palestinians': Israel to release 4th trache of terrorists within 48 hours, no additional concessions

'Palestinian' news site al-Quds is reporting that Israel will release the 4th tranche of 26 'Palestinian' terrorists by Tuesday evening without the 'Palestinians' making additional concessions to Israel. If that is true, the names of the terrorists to be released would have to be posted on the Prisons' Authority website on Sunday evening.
"It seems that the efforts paid off and there will be a release of the prisoners," the unnamed source said to be familiar with the negotiating process told the Palestinian news site.
Earlier Sunday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said that haggling on the issue could go on for "a number of days."
Speaking at a meeting of Likud ministers, Netanyahu said that Israel would not make a deal to free the prisoners "without a clear benefit for Israel in return." He acknowledged that negotiations to come to an agreement could potentially "blow up." 
Saeb Erekat, the PLO’s chief negotiator, said that both sides are still negotiating the scale and composition of the prisoner release, though he added that the Palestinians did not see any linkage between the release and the continuation of the negotiations.
Nonetheless, Palestinian sources in Ramallah told Israel Radio that there would be no discussion of future negotiations without the fourth installment of the prisoner release, which should include Israeli Arabs. The Israeli government has so far refused to consider freeing Israeli citizens convicted of terrorist acts.
On Saturday, the United States charged Israel with violating the terms of the original agreement reached between Israel and the Palestinians at the start of talks nine months ago regarding terrorist releases.

What could go wrong?

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UN 'human rights council': 'Fair and reasonable' as usual

As usual, yes. Fair and reasonable, no.


Dry Bones hits it on the head again


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Picture from the first meeting of the 'Palestinian' National Council


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Judea and Samaria: Our eternal bond

This did not get enough exposure last year....

Judea and Samaria: Our Eternal Bond is the latest short film produced by One Israel Fund. It debuted at our recent 19th Anniversary Gala Event on Monday Night, April 22, 2013 in NYC. It focuses on two specific stories - The Har Sinai Farm in Sussia and The Pina Chama (Warm Corner) in Gush Etzion - and the amazingly crucial work One Israel Fund is involved with in improving the preparedness of the communities throughout Judea and Samaria in regards to preventive security and emergency medical equipment and training. Over the past year, our projects have been cited for their roles in saving Jewish lives.

Let's go to the videotape.

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Iranian legislator slams UN monitor as Mossad agent

An Iranian legislator has slammed Ahmed Shaheed, the Moldavian diplomat who was designated by the United Nations 'human rights council' as special rapporteur on the state of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, calling Shaheed a Mossad agent.
"All fair and independent human rights bodies are well aware that Shaheed works as an agent for the Zionist regime and also the CIA," Rapporteur of the parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Commission Seyed Hossein Naqavi Hosseini told reporters on Saturday.
He stressed that Iran is quite familiar with Shaheedˈs character.
"The extension of Shaheedˈs mission by the UN Human Rights Council serves to gain time to level yet more accusations again Iran," he added.
Naqavi Hosseini said that Shaheed compiles his false reports upon orders he receives from the Mossad and CIA.
"Shaheed is the only one among these rapporteurs who repeatedly gets reinstated every time his time of service ends," he said.
In relevant remarks on Saturday, Iranian Envoy to the UN offices in Geneva Mohsen Naziri Asl blasted Ahmed Shaheed for his baseless allegations against Tehran.
"Those behind the draft resolution against Iran's human rights record were to deepen a rift among countries and consequently, impose their norms upon others," Naziri Asl said, addressing the 25th meeting of the UN Human Rights Council in the Swiss city of Geneva.
Naziri-Asl pointed to the drafting of the anti-Iran resolution as a dangerous and concerning act, and said, "The resolution would encourage competition instead of cooperation and weaken the basic principles of the international body."
He added that Iran's positive achievements in the field of human rights resulted from the country's constructive interaction with the international community were ignored in the draft resolution.
“In reality the claim by the main sponsors of this resolution regarding human rights advocacy has proved to be a myth, as they have, in numerous occasions, put on display their fully politicized approach to human rights issues,” Naziri Asl said.
 Pass the popcorn....

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What a surprise: There's employment discrimination against Haredim (and Arabs)

I'm sure that you Israelis will all be shocked - just shocked - to hear that a sizable number of Israelis (and an even more sizable number of Israeli employers) is willing to admit an unwillingness to work with Haredim.
A survey of employers and employees, commissioned by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), reveals disturbing data about the willingness employees and employers in Israel employ various workers to work alongside them.
The survey was conducted among 500 respondents, a representative sample of the adult Jewish population and Hebrew speakers. The results, which were revealed Sunday, note that politics have a considerable impact on the type of person employers are willing to hire.
Half of respondents (46%), both employers and employees, expressed reluctance to work with Arab men. 30% of respondents expressed reluctance to work with a hareidi man, and 28% are reluctant to work with educated Arab women. 
Employers show particular prejudice, according to the survey. 42% of employers showed reluctance to employ Arab men; over a third of employers (37%) expressed a reluctance to employ hareidi men; and 13% of employers were unwilling to employ married women with small children from any sector.
Read the whole thing.  If you can't get a job because of prejudice and there are no government handouts, on what are you supposed to live?

You all might recall that Naftali Bennett admitted that discrimination against Haredim was an issue when I heard him speak in January.

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Chris Christie calls Jewish towns in Judea and Samaria 'occupied territories'

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who sees himself as a possible Republican Presidential candidate in 2016, used the term 'occupied territories' to describe Judea and Samaria in a speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition on Saturday.
Invoking a 2012 trip he and his family took to Israel, Christie recalled “I took a helicopter ride from the occupied territories across and just felt personally how extraordinary that was to understand, the military risk that Israel faces every day.”
While the story was intended to forge common cause with Adelson and the several hundred donors to the Republican Jewish Coalition to which Christie was speaking, his use of the term “occupied territories” set off murmurs in the crowd.

Let's go to the videotape.

Christie apologized for the gaffe.
Not long after his speech, Christie met with Adelson privately in the casino mogul’s office in the Venetian hotel and casino, which hosted the RJC meeting.
The source told POLITICO that Christie “clarified in the strongest terms possible that his remarks today were not meant to be a statement of policy.”
Instead, the source said, Christie made clear “that he misspoke when he referred to the ‘occupied territories.’ And he conveyed that he is an unwavering friend and committed supporter of Israel, and was sorry for any confusion that came across as a result of the misstatement.”
Adelson accepted Christie’s explanation, the source said.
Before the meeting, Adelson ally Morton Klein, president of the hawkish Zionist Organization of America, had confronted Christie about his use of the term, telling POLITICO he explained to the New Jersey governor that “at minimum you should call it disputed territories.”
Christie was non-committal, said Klein, who concluded afterwards that the governor “either doesn’t understand the issue at all, or he’s hostile to Israel.”

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Netanyahu: No terrorist release without 'clear benefit' to Israel

Prime Minister Netanyahu told a meeting of Likud ministers on Sunday that Israel will not release any more terrorists without a 'clear benefit.'
Speaking at a meeting of Likud ministers, Netanyahu said that Israel would not make a deal to free the prisoners "without a clear benefit for Israel in return." He acknowledged that negotiations to come to an agreement could potentially "blow up." 
Israel said it  is willing to release a fourth batch of convicted Palestinian terrorists, but not if the Palestinians say that they will end the negotiations directly after the release, a highly-placed Israeli official said Saturday night.
The official, familiar with the negotiations, said “Israel wants to see the continuation of the peace talks with the Palestinians, and is willing to implement the fourth release of convicted terrorists. But the Palestinians are making that very difficult when they say that immediately following the release, they will end the talks.”
An Israeli official said that the Palestinians also did not live up to their commitments under the framework, including to engage in serious and good faith negotiations.  
Meanwhile, 'moderate' 'Palestinian' President Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen is trying to get Fatah Tanzim leader Marwan Barghouti onto the list of terrorists to be released. Barghouti is serving five life sentences for murder.
The wife of Marwan Barghouti, a senior member of Abbas’s Fatah party who is serving five life sentences for planning numerous terror attacks against Israelis, stated Sunday that Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas is campaigning for the terrorist's release. 
Barghouti has been named as a possible successor for Abbas, who is under increasing pressure in the political sphere to both sign an agreement with Israel and ascertain Palestinian nationalist rights.
Barghouti is one of the PA's most dangerous terrorists, according to experts, and he has threatened Israel with a third intifada, albeit an unarmed one from his jail cell. He declared that “would not give up and I claim that the right of return is a sacred right of the Palestinians.”
Someone please find Netanyahu's backbone quickly so that there will actually be a chance that he sticks to that demand.

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Haredi national service enlistment hits lowest point since December 2008

Only 29 Haredim enlisted in national service during the month of March according to this report on YNet (which has been printed out and hung up as a giant poster in some Haredi neighborhoods). That's the lowest monthly enlistment number since December 2008 (link in Hebrew).

According to the article, 108 Haredim enlisted for national service in February (which was already a decline), which means that the month-to-month decline from February to March was 73%.

The article goes on to report on the trend of Haredi leaders subscribing to 'extremism' in which all Haredi boys will be told not to report at all to IDF recruitment centers. If that were to happen and the boys were to listen (which they likely would), the IDF and the police would be faced with a Hobson's choice of arresting thousands of AWOL draft-age boys, or admitting that they cannot enforce the law.

According to the article, the 'extremists' are seeking another joint meeting of the three branches of the Haredi leadership (Lithuanian, Sephardi and Hassidic), with a view toward calling for all Haredi boys not to appear at the recruitment centers, while the 'moderate' camp (or so YNet claims) is trying to defer such a meeting.

Last week, a Haredi boy who had been arrested for not appearing at a recruitment center was released, causing a mass nighttime celebration in the center of the city.

There are wall posters in all of the Haredi neighborhoods in Jerusalem, which call on the boys to go to jail rather than the army. At the demonstration, there were signs that said "come and get me at 3:00 am also" - a reference to the military police method of operation of searching 'missing' boys' family homes at 3:00 am in order to harass the family. To date, the police have yet to appear at any yeshiva, and since the Tal law was canceled, the boys are no longer obligated to notify the IDF once every six months where they are studying.

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Bennett: No way we'll release another 400 'Palestinian' terrorists

On Saturday, a 'Palestinian official' claimed that Israel had offered to release an additional 400 terrorists, beyond the 26 who were to be released in the fourth tranche on Saturday night, in return for the 'Palestinians' continuing the 'talks' for an additional six months. Economics Minister and Jewish Home party leader Naftalin Bennett has said that such a release will never take place.
"As soon as Shabbat ended I started receiving hundreds of calls about the reported deal of releasing 400 prisoners in exchange for continued negotiations. Let me be clear: That will not happen," he wrote on his Facebook page.
Housing Minister Uri Ariel, also of the Jewish Home party, reacted to the report as well and said, “If this is true, I will recommend that we leave the coalition.”
The 'Palestinian official' apparently spoke with Israel Radio on Saturday. JPost adds:
US sources tell The Jerusalem Post they fear the consequences of Israel's failure to release the final group of prisoners, expressly calling the decision a violation of the original deal.
US special envoy to the Middle East peace process Martin Indyk is on the ground working to secure the release, Jen Psaki said in a statement on Saturday.
"On an agreement on the release of prisoners," Psaki said, "no deal has been arrived at and we continue to work intensively with both sides. Any claims to the contrary are inaccurate."
She said that, after meeting with Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov in Paris over the Crimean crisis, US Secretary of State John Kerry may travel to the region to join Indyk in his efforts. 
Meanwhile, Israel said it  is willing to release a fourth batch of convicted Palestinian terrorists, but not if the Palestinians say that they will end the negotiations directly after the release, a highly-placed Israeli official said Saturday night.
The official, familiar with the negotiations, said “Israel wants to see the continuation of the peace talks with the Palestinians, and is willing to implement the fourth release of convicted terrorists. But the Palestinians are making that very difficult when they say that immediately following the release, they will end the talks.”
The fourth batch of terrorists is to include 'Israeli Arabs,' but such a release would require a new cabinet vote and it is not clear whether the release would pass. 

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I made you take a vow

Here's the L'Chaim Choir with Hishbati (I made you take a vow). The words are a verse from the Song of Songs.

Let's go to the videotape.

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Netanyahu to Kerry: Terrorist release would topple government

Prime Minister Netanyahu allegedly told US Secretary of State John FN Kerry that releasing another 26 terrorists would topple his government.
The pan-Arab London-based newspaper Al-Hayat has reported that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told US Secretary of State John Kerry that his governing coalition may fall apart if Israel goes ahead with the fourth planned tranche in the terrorist release that it agreed to as a “goodwill gesture” toward the Palestinian Authority.
Al-Hayat said that Kerry has asked PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas to extend negotiations even if Israel fails to release additional terrorists. Abbas, for his part, told Kerry he would not discuss continuing negotiations until the terrorists are freed, including 14 Israeli Arabs.
According to another report, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu refuses to release any more terrorists until the PA recognizes Israel as a Jewish state.
The leadership of Hamas said that Israel's refusal to carry out the fourth tranche is “a ringing slap in the cheek” to the PA. Hamas said that the way to free terrorist prisoners is by abducting Israeli soldiers – and not in a deal that involves a PA commitment not to take action against Israel in the UN.
If it was a ringing slap in the cheek (I hope it was), it was long overdue. 

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Saturday, March 29, 2014

Not as popular as he used to be

The 'President of the World' was in the Netherlands this week. Here's what happened when  he spoke.

Let's go to the videotape.

You think he was expecting a little more applause than that? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

More here.

Maybe he should have taken Mooch along?


J Street activists wear pro-terror t-shirts

These are the kind of people who are attracted to J Street.
The allegations broke this morning when photos were discovered of the two students wearing the shirts at an event sponsored by J Street U last April. In coverage of the event, AbuNe’meh is quoted as a representative of the group. In AbuNe’meh’s Facebook postings, shown below, when asked where they acquired the shirts, he pointed to a vicious anti-Israel website called existenceisresitance.org. That website also offers shirts with a map of the entirety of Israel drawn in with a keffiyeh pattern and the caption “Un-Occupy,” calling for the elimination of Israel as a whole. The site describes the shirts explicitly as showing a picture of Leila Khaled....
It is worth noting that another student, Elisabeth Housman, who is listed here as “liking” the pro-terror photo, is also listed on the local campus Hillel website as the official contact person for J Street U on campus.
The second student in the photo, Yamaguchi, was described as the moderator of the event. He has gone on record advocating for the ”full right of return” of Palestinians to pre-1967 Israel. “In some ways,” he has written, “the essence of being Palestinian today is the right of return itself: what we lost, and what we fight to regain.” 
Neither student was apparently available to respond to the accusations, as both seem to be off campus this year. As of this writing, both list “Ramallah,” in the Palestinian Authority, as their current city of residence on what appear to be their Facebook pages.
Washington University’s J Street U branch came under fire recently this week for sponsoring an event for the discredited anti-IDF group “Breaking the Silence.”
 'Pro-Israel, pro-peace'?

Read the whole thing. There are lots of Leila Khaled t-shirts for sale....

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Good grief: Apple introduces Sharia-compliant emoticons

And someone actually think this is a great idea.
The website DoSomething.org first let the battle cry sound, asking Apple to take a closer look at its 800 emojis.
“The only two resembling people of colour are a guy who looks vaguely Asian and another in a turban. There’s a white boy, girl, man, woman, elderly man, elderly woman, blonde boy, blonde girl and, we’re pretty sure, Princess Peach,” the petitioners wrote. “But when it comes to faces outside of yellow smileys, there’s a staggering lack of minority representation.
Apple’s head of communications, Katie Cotton, responded to the criticism by stating that the software company was working to “update the standard”. She did not say when such emojis would be introduced. The last time the offering was updated was in 2012, when same-sex couples were included.
“Digitalization means that we communicate ever more with pictures,” said Rubin Dranger. “They have never been so important and so dominant as today and therefore we also need to be conscious about what the pictures represents.”
She told TT it was “obvious” that the emojis should represent everyone.
 Political correctness run rampant....

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US citizens warned to stay away from Land Day demonstrations

Shavua tov, a good week to everyone.

I received an email this morning from the US consulate in Jerusalem advising me, a US citizen, to stay away from Land Day demonstrations on Sunday.
The U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem advises U.S. citizens that "Land Day" will be commemorated on Sunday, March 29, in Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Israel. Demonstrations and heightened tensions may continue on Monday, March 30, and through the next week. U.S. citizens are advised to exercise an extra measure of caution.

The U.S. Consulate General takes this opportunity to remind U.S. citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence. U.S. citizens should avoid areas of demonstrations and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

Review your personal security plans; remain aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitor local news stations for updates. Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security and follow instructions of local authorities.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza enroll in the Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency. If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.
Seemingly, it never occurred to them that the violence might be planned.

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Friday, March 28, 2014

Let it go up!

Here's Shalsheles with Yaaleh (Let it go up!).

Let's go to the videotape.

Shabbat Shalom everyone!

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Goldstone Commission member appointed special rapporteur on “Israel’s violations of the bases and principles of international law.”

Deciding that the vetting committee's choice for the UN’s next special rapporteur on “Israel’s violations of the bases and principles of international law,” the United Nations 'human rights council' has decided to appoint Goldstone Report co-author Christine Chenkin to the position, replacing Richard Falk. The Arab group at the 'human rights commission' decided that the vetting committee's choice was not anti-Israel enough.
The only power that can yet stop these outrageously partisan and problematic appointments before tomorrow’s plenary decision is the Obama Administration.

When council president Baudelaire Ndong Ella tomorrow moves the nominations, the U.S. — if it is to live up to its pledge to use its UNHRC membership to fight bias, politicization and double standards — must take the floor, call a vote, and vote No.

Because the UN desperately seeks to make such appointments by consensus, the president may change his mind if he knows in advance and for certain that the U.S would challenge these two objectionable nominations.

If the U.S. fails to call a vote and stand up for what is right, it will have forfeited its moral justification for serving on a council that just elected Putin, the Castro regime, the Chinese Communist Party, and the House of Saud.
More on Chenkin's anti-Semitic background here.

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Anti-J Street documentary screened in Philadelphia

I want to show you the trailer for a documentary (which I still have not seen) about the 'Jewish' J Street group, which calls itself 'pro-Israel, pro-peace.' J Street is currently seeking admission to the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, and the fact that this documentary was shown in Philadelphia last night will not help J Street's cause.

The J Street Challenge is an important and timely documentary about a significant issue facing the American Jewish community.

Since it was founded in 2008, J Street's idealistic message has attracted many Jews, young and old, who are frustrated by the Middle East conflict and sincerely want peace between Arabs and Jews. J Street has been a subject of controversy. Critics claim that J Street has divided the Jewish community and weakened American Jewish support for Israel. "The J Street Challenge" lets viewers hear both sides of this important debate over the elusive solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict. The film explores the reasons for J Street's appeal, as well as the diverse and at times contradictory motivations of its leaders and followers. The film is being released at a critical time for the American Jewish community given the intense efforts by the United States to resolve the conflict and influence the community's leadership to support these efforts. The Kerry peace initiative has further divided the Jewish community, with J Street working to weaken the influence of AIPAC while strongly backing the administration.

The film includes distinguished scholars and writers from a wide political spectrum, including Harvard professors Alan Dershowitz and Ruth Wisse, Rabbi Daniel Gordis of the Shalem College in Jerusalem, Caroline Glick, Managing Editor of the Jerusalem Post, Professor Richard Landes of Boston University, Lenny Ben David -- former Israeli diplomat and author, and Bret Stephens, Pulitzer prize winning columnist for The Wall Street Journal.

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

At issue is a March 27 event sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia and by the local Hillel, titled “What It Means To Be Pro-Israel.” The answer to the question, at least in the eyes of the organizers, is revealed in the event’s content: It will feature a screening of a full-length anti-J-Street documentary and a panel made up mainly of critics of the organization.
The upcoming event has sparked an angry debate within the Philadelphia community, the nation’s fourth largest, and has brought to the surface accusations against the Jewish federation’s leadership and its decision-making process. “Political views on the right are listened to more, because the few people donating large amounts of dollars are on that political side,” said Jill Zipin, a community activist who has protested the decision to sponsor the event. “The Jewish federation shouldn’t be a tent of one Jewish donor.”
Panelists at the event, which will take place on the University of Pennsylvania campus, include Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, a staunch defender of Israel and just as staunch a critic of J Street; Charles Jacobs, who heads the group that produced the anti-J-Street film, and Sara Greenberg, a Harvard University graduate student who has been active in fighting attempts to boycott Israel.
Supporters of J Street have taken issue with the makeup of the panel and, more importantly, with the movie that will be the evening’s centerpiece. The J Street Challenge, released earlier this year, is a documentary aimed, according to the film’s official synopsis, at “examining and debating J Street’s message and its leaders.” It does so through clips from speeches of the lobby’s leaders and a series of interviews with experts, almost all of them known as leading critics of the group. Speakers in the movie accuse J Street of “dividing the Jewish community,” of being “imperialistic” and of manifesting “arrogance” in their views on Middle East peace. The J Street Challenge was produced by Americans for Peace and Tolerance, a not-for-profit organization devoted to fighting Islamic extremism.
More here.

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Report: Israel refusing to release last tranche of terrorists

The 'Palestinians' are reporting that Israel has refused to release the fourth and final tranche of terrorists on Saturday night as scheduled.
"The Israeli government has informed us through the American mediator that it will not abide with its commitment to release the fourth batch of Palestinian prisoners scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday 29," PA official Jibril Rajoub told AFP.
"Israel has refused to commit to the names that were agreed upon of prisoners held by Israel since before the 1993 Oslo agreements," added Rajoub, calling the move a "slap in the face of the US administration and its efforts."
Rajoub reiterated PA threats to take unilateral moves for recognition at the UN next week, in breach of conditions of the peace talks, due to the release not occurring. "Not releasing the prisoners will mark the beginning of the efforts in the international community to challenge the legality of the occupation," threatened the PA official.
Israel has already released 78 of the 104 terrorists it committed to release. The talks have gone nowhere, and the 'Palestinians' are continuing them only to gain the release of additional terrorists.

Israel Radio reported early this morning that the release would be delayed because under the procedure fixed by the Supreme Court, the names have to be released 48 hours in advance - not including the Sabbath - in order to allow the families of the terrorists' victims to appeal the release. The appeal is pro forma anyway - none have ever been granted - but the government must still comply with the procedure. As of this morning, no names had been released by the Prisons Service.

Anyone could have foreseen this result. But of course Obama and Kerry didn't.

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Sing for the King

Here's Yeedle Werdyger's classic Shiru LaMelech (Sing for the King) in a new video.

Let's go to the videotape.

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Difficult to watch video of Paris anti-Semitic attack victim

Here's an interview with the victim of last Thursday night's anti-Semitic attack on a French school teacher.

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

Here's part of a summary of the interview.
Speaking on camera a day after his assault, the victim  a 59-year-old Jewish teacher only identified as David said he was attacked by three North African “Maghreb men” at 10 p.m. on March 20 after leaving a kosher restaurant in Rue Manin, Paris, and making his way to a subway station.
“They started to curse me out: ‘dirty Jew,’ ‘death to the Jews,’ ‘son of a b***,’ etc. Then they started to beat me up,” David says in the clip before breaking down in tears. “I was hit on my face, I got my nose fractured… And then one of them took something out of his pocket, I thought it was a knife… It was a marker… And this is what they did to me (showing his chest), a swastika as they were screaming ‘dirty Jew.’ ”
David then shows the Nazi symbol drawn on his bare chest by the attackers. When members of the public started coming close to the scene of the attack, the assailants ran away and yelled “we are not finished, we’ll get back to you!!” he said.
The assault happened in the 19th district in Paris, which I believe has a large Jewish population and is one of the newer areas in which Jews live (the oldest Jewish community in Paris is in the 4th district; the last two times I have been to Paris I stayed in the relatively old Jewish community in the 9th district). Here's an interview with Rabbi Levy Djian, a Parisian living in New York who finds himself asked often to help French Jews emigrate to the United States and Canada.
“It happened right near the main Jewish neighborhood of the 19th district of Paris where I grew up. Often my family and friends who are still in France tend to ignore the rise of anti-Semitism and its danger, but this recent video shows that it’s real,” he added. “It’s the first time that we get to actually see and hear the victim of such a brutal and obvious anti-Semitic attack perpetrated by young uneducated Muslims and it makes us realize what it really feels like.”
Jews - it's time to leave France. Please come home!

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Rolling Stones to do Shavuoth

When I first reported the Rolling Stones concert in Tel Aviv, someone pointed it that it's on Shavuoth. I thought it would start after the holiday, and it is. But barely. If you're keeping the holiday, you probably cannot go to the concert unless you live within walking distance. Here's why.
Gates open at Tel Aviv's Hayarkon Park for the concert at 5:30 p.m., three hours before the holiday ends. The iconic band is expected to take the stage right at the end of the holiday, at 8:30 p.m., reports Yedioth Ahronoth. As a result, religious fans will have to arrive late, or miss the show altogether.
MK Nissan Slomiansky (Jewish Home) is among the Rolling Stones fans who are sorely disappointed by the timing of the concert. He contacted promoter Shuki Weiss who arranged the concert on Wednesday, and asked him to postpone the show a day or move it forward two days.
"On Israeli Memorial Day they wouldn't have let something like this happen. Something is messed up here. Only money is important? What about our values?" lambasted Slomiansky.
"It cannot be that they'll hold a concert that will cause a desecration of the holiday by hundreds of thousands of Jews," noted Slomiansky. "It's not logical to force the Israel police to work from two in the afternoon...and harm the honor of the holiday of the giving of the Torah."
Remarking on the widespread observance of the holiday, Slomiansky added "precisely on a holiday that the non-religious public joins in Torah study, such a massive event comes along, which one can't really attend without desecrating the holiday.
But promoter Shuki Weiss has a history of this sort of thing.
Weiss reportedly pledged the band $6.7 million for the one-night show. Slomiansky noted this isn't the first controversial move by Weiss, saying "last time he tried to bring the band Depeche Mode on (the fast day of) Tisha B'av, and in the end they didn't come."
Slomiansky took a picture of himself wearing a Rolling Stones shirt, to express that "I don't have anything against the band, the opposite. It's an excellent and important band, and I value that they're coming to Israel at a timing like this, when many are boycotting. But why can't religious Jews like us go enjoy the performance?"
Oh well. My kids were sort of daring me to go. Now for sure it won't happen. Not that I was likely to spend that much money on a ticket in the first place.... 

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