The Mismatch Between Europe’s Israel Labeling Demands And Palestinian Legal Arguments

2015-08-05T134230Z_1_LYNXNPEB740NZ_RTROPTP_4_IRAN-NUCLEAR-e1455134070658Daily Caller, by Alex VanNess, Feb. 11, 2016:

International bodies such as the European Union (EU), in their infinite wisdom, have decided to call on Israel to “end all settlement activity,” as well as target Israel, economically, through special labeling of Israeli products originating in Judea and Samaria, the “West Bank.” Moreover, U.S. State Department spokesperson, John Kirby has defended Europe’s actions, which is a departure from the Administration’s position from November that said the EU’s labeling guidelines “could be perceived as a step on the way to a boycott.”

The EU claims that goods produced in settlement areas are not “Made in Israel” and that the new labeling guidelines are to ensure accuracy. This decision ignores Israel’s legal right to this land under International Law and reiterated a faulty position that the lands Israel has controlled since the 1967 Middle East war are not part of the internationally recognized borders of Israel.

Palestinians have spent decades pushing the narrative that Israel’s activities in this region; in particular, settlements are “illegal” theft of Palestinian lands. For decades, a public relations campaign has been waged to ensure that any mentioning of Jewish neighborhoods in the West Bank is proceeded by the phrase “illegal settlements” at every possible opportunity.

Are the Israeli settlements as illegal as the international community says they are? The answer to that is no. With regards to their legal argument, Palestinians and their supporters have been pounding a square peg into the round hole for decades. In doing so, they have bastardized long-understood concepts of international law, to the point of being unrecognizable. However, several key aspects of this issue need to be understood.

First, while over a million Arabs live and own land in Israel, the laws on land ownership under the Palestinian Authority (PA) prohibit Arabs from selling land to Jews. Unless I missed something, there are no international laws on the books saying, “No Jews allowed in the West Bank.” In fact, Jews have lived in that area for thousands of years. The only time Jews haven’t lived there was for the few years, prior to Israel’s acquisition of the territory, when the Arab governments in control of the area forcefully removed these Jews from their homes.

Instead of fighting against these gross injustices, the international community has instead been fed a narrative, which is now widely believed, that Israel’s settlements are a violation of international law. Specifically, Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which states a power “shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.”

However, the Geneva Convention does not apply to this situation. Even if the Convention did apply, Israel’s settler population was neither deported nor transferred to the region; rather, they choose to live in the land because of their deep-rooted connection to it.

Moreover, the Convention specifies that it apply to “all cases of partial or total occupation of the territory of a High Contracting Party.” The treaties specificity regarding “High Contracting Party’s” is an important one. A High Contracting Party under international law is the representative of a group with a de facto capacity to bind the society that they represent to a signed or ratified a treaty. Within the current international system, this refers to a nation state. Unless I’ve missed something, Palestine has never been a state in accordance with the standards set forth under International law.

Prior to Israel’s acquisition of the territory in 1967 the Egyptian and Trans-Jordanian governments, illegally occupied the territory (to the international community’s indifference). The last High Contracting legal sovereign with legal stewardship over the territories was that of the League of Nations Palestine Mandate, which mandated the land for the Jewish people, in recognition of their historic connection to the land.

For decades, Palestinians and their supporters have pushed countless resolutions through the UN, including the Security Council, stating that the Convention applies to the territories; describe settlements as “illegal” and unilaterally defining the territories ownership outside of framework of negotiations.

Additionally, through these resolutions and the UN’s continued obsession with the Palestinians, the UN has been committing a fraud and attempting to position the Palestinians as a High Contracting power and sole legitimate claimant to the land, when they aren’t. Essentially, they are trying to creating ade facto Palestinian State.

However, the UN does not have the authority to create a country for the Arab-Palestinians, or anyone else. In 1947, when the UN General Assembly passed Resolution 181 to partition the territory into two states, they did not create Israel. The Jewish people created Israel, and established its government, language, culture, and military. The UN’s resolution was merely a recommendation.

Palestinians are consistently looking for shortcuts to statehood by pushing international pressure on Israel. However, no matter how many UN resolutions are passed, they do not supersede the 1993 Israeli-PLO Declaration of principles, known as the Oslo Accords and all ensuing agreements. The Oslo Accords are a series of agreements between the Palestinian leadership and Israel — ratified under U.S. and European auspices — and it stipulates that the issue of settlements is one to be determined by the parties through permanent status negotiations.

The agreements, which cover all aspects of their relationship, produced a special independent regime — known as a lex specialis — and despite the current challenges in negotiations, these agreements are legally binding between the two parties and takes precedence over any third party resolutions on the issue.

In fact, the constant attempts by Palestinians to bypass the negotiating process and go to the international community to foment opinion as to the illegality of Israel’s settlements can be seen as a material breach, on the part of the Palestinians, to live up to their end of the peace process.

Products produced in the region, by Israel, don’t require special labels because Israeli activities in the West Bank, such as building, production, or simply existing are activities both sanctioned by the Israel’s government and agreed upon by the Palestinian’s.

The EU’s new labeling guidelines disregard mutually agreed upon arrangements and only serve to further proves their inability to serve as impartial arbiters to peace. We cannot continue to ignore the implications anti-occupation rhetoric has on both bastardizing international law and diminishing any possible future peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

Alex VanNess is the Manager of Public Information for The Center for Security Policy

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Plenty of Palestinian Passes – Plus Alan Dershowitz destroys in 4 minutes the global lie of “human rights”

1354by Noah Beck
Special to IPT News
February 9, 2016

Activists who genuinely want to see peace between Israelis and Palestinians need to internalize a memorably alliterative warning: plenty of Palestinian passes perpetuate the impasse. The more global opinion ignores or rewards irresponsible behavior by Palestinians, the more likely renewed violence (rather than peace) becomes.

There are enough instances of unfair and counterproductive “Palestinian passes” to fill a tome, but here are some recent examples.

PASSING ON HAMAS BELLICOSITY

Probably the most important pass currently given to the Palestinians is the global silence over news that Hamas is preparing to launch another war against Israel while distressing ordinary Israelis with their ominous tunneling sounds. Such silence by the world’s most important media, international bodies, political leaders, NGOs and academics helps keep Hamas in power, and when Hamas eventually launches new hostilities against Israel, many of the same voices that are now silent will blame Israel for the resulting suffering.

Hamas bellicosity is constant, and constantly ignored. Rather than prepare Palestinians for peace, Hamas glorifies death and promotes viciously hateful ideologies. A Hamas TV broadcast announces, “We have no problem with death. We are not like the children of Israel…we yearn for death and Martyrdom…Every mother…must nurse her children on hatred of the sons of Zion.”

Last April, Iran reportedly sent Hamas tens of millions of dollars to rebuild tunnels and restock missile arsenals destroyed in 2014 by Israel during Operation Protective Edge. Instead of global sanctions or censure over its support for terrorism, Iran was rewarded with a nuclear deal that just unlocked $100 billion in frozen assets, some of which are expected to support more terrorism.

Hamas regularly starts pointless wars with Israel that doom Gaza to inevitable devastation. Then, when international sympathy and donations pour in, Hamas diverts the resources to rebuilding its offensive capabilities/tunnels (rather than destroyed homes in Gaza).

Hamas recently accelerated its tunnel-digging program. Indeed, three collapsing tunnels killed eight Hamas diggers in late January and another two last week.

Such reports establish that Hamas is diverting resources from rehabilitating Gaza to attacking Israel, and yet the world still blames Israel for Gazan misery.

PASSING ON HAMAS ABUSE OF GAZANS

Ironically, those who claim to excoriate Israel out of their concern for the welfare of Gaza don’t seem to care when Hamas causes Gazan suffering.  At least 160 Gazan children died digging Hamas’ tunnels intended to kill Israeli children. Hamas tortures political prisoners next to a girl’s school and kills its critics (it executed 25 in 2014). Hamas executed 120 Gazans for breaching a curfew. Hamas kills fellow Palestinians when its rockets fall short. Unsurprisingly, in a poll last September, Gazans actually preferred Israeli rule to Hamas.

PASSING ON PALESTINIAN INCITEMENT

Facebook tolerates Palestinian incitement but quickly responds to complaints about Jewish racism. The company is clearly able to control the threats circulating on its site, as shown by Facebook’s recent decision to stop gun sale promotions, making thecontinued incitement against Jews and Israelis on Facebook all the more outrageous. Facebook has much to learn from its tech rival, Google, which is reportedly directing jihadi search queries to sites that deradicalize.

Global opinion seems indifferent to how incitement (including in Palestinian pop culture) contributes to Palestinian violence. Instead, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon blames Palestinian terrorist attacks on Israeli policy (settlements), which is like blaming the November Paris attacks on France’s policy against Islamic veils in schools (ironically, Israel actually allows such veils in its schools).

When Israelis kill knife-wielding Palestinians in self-defense, Sweden’s foreign minister calls for a probe into Israeli “extra-judicial killing,” but she was conspicuously silent after French police preemptively killed a machete-wielding Islamist trying to hack them in a Paris police station.

Except for attacks on Israelis, world leaders and commentators never try to blame the victims of Islamist terror. This hateful, blame-the-victim exception for Jews is not limited to the Jewish state. According to recent polls, many of the French believe that Jews in France are responsible for a rise in anti-Semitism.

DIPLOMATIC PASSES

Those who claim to want Israeli-Palestinian reconciliation should recognize that pressuring only Israel actually reduces the prospects for peace (as an architect of the Oslo Peace Accords observed about the Obama administration’s fruitless efforts). Unfortunately, France is repeating Obama’s mistakes with its latest threat to recognize Palestine if Israelis doesn’t make enough concessions to those trying to stab them.

PASSING ON ISRAELI VICTIMS

Phyllis Chesler shows how the New York Times employs a double standard in reporting on victims of violence. Palestinians are personalized with names, ages, and sympathetic eyewitnesses. That rarely happens with Israeli victims.

More recently, CAMERA highlights how leading U.S. papers downplay or ignore the recent Palestinian stabbing murders of Israeli women.

1353A CBS News headline last week provided a classic example after gunmen attempted a terrorist attack outside Jerusalem’s old city. Three terrorists died after killing a 19-year-old policewoman. The headline? “3 Palestinians killed as daily violence grinds on.” Thankfully, the network apologized and changed the headline. But the original version would have been akin to a 9/11 headline saying, “19 Muslims Die in Plane Crashes.”

PASSING ON ISRAEL’S POSITIVE STORIES

A corollary of the pro-Palestinian pass on negative coverage is passing on positive coverage of Israel. There has been virtually no mention of Israel’s disproportionately generous humanitarian aid efforts, or its exceptional contributions to solving global problems relating to health, energy, agriculture, security, (as Israel has done in Africa).

If the world knew just how important Israel is to solving some of the planet’s toughest problems, and how Israelis can also be victims of war and terror, global opinion might be less judgmental and more protective of the only democracy in the Middle East, as the tiny Jewish state does its best to survive in the world’s toughest neighborhood.

All of these types of passes grow exponentially worse whenever war breaks out, usually after Hamas launches one too many missiles at Israeli civilians. When Israel can no longer accept about 40 percent of its population living in range of deadly rocket attacks and finally does what any normal country would do – take military action against those attacking it – the global media bias moves into overdrive, enabled by “Pallywood,” journalistic malpractice, and fear of Hamas retribution. Casualties inevitably mount, especially thanks to Hamas’s unethical use of human shields, emotions run high, and media outlets compete to get “breaking news” out first, resulting in less time to check facts and more groupthink pressure to favor the perceived underdog. The media slant then exacerbates the bias from world leaders, international bodies, NGOs, academics, and anti-Israel boycott movements.

Thus, with each war, Israel gets more demonized while Palestinians are increasingly presented as blameless victims. Tragically, these biases actually perpetuate the conflict. Those who genuinely want peace should focus global media attention, lobbying, and resources on Palestinian intransigence and Hamas’ obsessive focus on attacking and trying to “destroy Israel.”

Noah Beck is the author of The Last Israelis, an apocalyptic novel about Iranian nukes and other geopolitical issues in the Middle East.

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Alan Dershowitz destroys in 4 minutes the global lie of “human rights”

In Sinai, ISIS Grows with Iran’s Help

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The Tower, by Arik Agassi, January 2016:

Most people assume that the Sunni terrorist group ISIS is the natural and mortal enemy of Shia Iran, but this is not always the case. In fact, in at least one part of the Middle East, Iran has become a crucial, if indirect, sponsor of its supposed enemy.

As the world’s eyes are focused on ISIS terrorism in Europe, the Middle East, and even the U.S., the group’s branch in the Sinai has become one of the most powerful, dangerous, and effective in the region. Recent reports indicate that Iran, through the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, is primarily responsible for this.

The Iran-Hamas-ISIS axis is part of Iran’s strategy of using proxy forces against U.S. allies like Egypt and Israel as part of a larger strategy to achieve hegemony over the Middle East. This has resulted in one of the region’s best kept secrets: An intensive cooperation mechanism between Iran, Hamas, and ISIS, based on money, weapons, military equipment, and training.

Iran’s foreign policy goal of hegemony over the Middle East is based on its primary ideological pillar – exporting the Islamic Revolution to other countries using terrorism and political subversion. In pursuing its ambitions, Iran has often put aside its religious differences with radical Sunni groups like ISIS and Hamas. The Islamic Republic is more than willing to cooperate with these groups as long as doing so helps promote its larger interests.

“By directly supporting Hamas in Gaza and indirectly supporting ISIS in the Sinai, Iran is able to gain foothold against Israel and Egypt to destabilize them, undermine America’s regional influence, create another Iranian power base in a Sunni-dominated region, and project its power and influence in its pursuit of regional hegemony,” Major (res.) Dan Feferman, a former senior IDF intelligence officer and Iran specialist, told the Tower. When asked why Iran would indirectly fund a serious rival such as ISIS, Feferman said that Lebanon, Iraq, and especially Syria are more important to Iran than the Sinai, as Iran wants to preserve its influence in states affected by the Syrian civil war – so Iran fights ISIS in those counties. In places where Iran does not have a strong influence, such as Egypt, it feels comfortable supporting ISIS, albeit indirectly.

“Just like Iran needs ISIS in Syria and Iraq to maintain its relevance among world powers such as Russia and the United States, it has no problem with ISIS gaining strength in Sinai for the time being,” added Brigadier General (res.) Yossi Kuperwasser, former Director General of the Israeli Ministry of Strategic Affairs and former head of Israeli intelligence’s Research and Assessment Division added. “If ISIS gains more power in the Sinai and Iran is able to help demean that power in the future, it will once again position itself as an address to world powers and thus demand something in return. Moreover, as long as Iran is able to weaken the moderate Sunni Arab state alliance of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan by indirectly supporting ISIS Sinai through Hamas, it won’t stop doing so.”

But Iran’s support of ISIS via Hamas goes deeper than mere strategic considerations. Despite the deep ideological rifts between Iran, Hamas, and ISIS in Sinai, as well as the traditional animosity between Shias, Sunnis, and Salafists, all three groups see each other as temporary partners in

1. The destruction of the state of Israel.
2. Undermining the peace process between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, as well as Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ authority.
3. Opposing and destabilizing Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s Western-oriented regime, especially in regard to its peace treaty with Israel.
4. Harming U.S. interests in the region and undermining its presence in the Middle East as a whole.
5. Bridging the Sunni-Shia divide and reconstituting a Muslim caliphate.

For Iran, Hamas and ISIS serve different aspects of these ambitions. Iran uses Hamas to deepen the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians by supporting Palestinian terror and a rejectionist approach to the peace process. It uses ISIS in the Sinai against al-Sisi and to further its vision of a caliphate dominated by Iran.

Iran could not support ISIS in Sinai or pursue its ambitions against Israel and Egypt without Hamas. The relationship between the terrorist organization and Iran is deep and of long standing. Indeed, Iran has provided funding, weapons, training, technology, and political support to Hamas for decades.

This relationship began almost simultaneously with the founding of Hamas, and has intensified every time the peace process appeared to be gaining momentum. In October 1991, Iran convened a conference in Tehran whose purpose was to unite various radical organizations led by Hamas who were hostile to the PLO’s negotiations with Israel at the Madrid peace summit. The groups gathered in Tehran called for the destruction of Israel and pledged to make every possible effort to sabotage the newborn peace process, which was seen as a direct threat to their strategic goals.

Iran-Hamas relations were officially formalized in October 1992, when a Hamas delegation led by then-Secretary General Mousa Abu-Marzuq visited Tehran for talks. Iran permitted Hamas to open an office in Tehran, provided it with millions of dollars in cash, and agreed to have the elite Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps train thousands of Hamas members in Hezbollah camps in Lebanon.

This initially lukewarm relationship became a full-blown alliance when the second intifada began in 2000. Iran began funding, recruiting, directing, training, and supporting Palestinian terrorists and building the infrastructure to support them. This included carrying out suicide bombings, paying the families of terrorists, and providing monthly salaries to terrorists in Israeli jails.

Hamas soldiers take part in a military parade marking the first anniversary of the killing of Hamas’s military commanders Mohammed Abu Shammala and Raed al-Attar, in Rafah, Gaza Strip, August 21, 2015. Abu Shammala and al-Attar were killed by an Israeli air strike during a 50-day war between the terror group and Israel the previous summer. Photo: Abed Rahim Khatib / Flash90

Hamas soldiers take part in a military parade marking the first anniversary of the killing of Hamas’s military commanders Mohammed Abu Shammala and Raed al-Attar, in Rafah, Gaza Strip, August 21, 2015. Abu Shammala and al-Attar were killed by an Israeli air strike during a 50-day war between the terror group and Israel the previous summer. Photo: Abed Rahim Khatib / Flash90

The Israeli disengagement from the Gaza Strip in August 2005 created a new reality. Hamas won the Palestinian Legislative Council elections in January 2006, which resulted in a significant increase in Iranian funding. Immediately following the elections, Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal visited Iran and secured an estimated $20 million per month from the Islamic Republic – enough to cover Hamas’ entire budget. This was followed by a visit from Hamas’ former Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, in which Iran pledged $250 million in aid. The funds were earmarked to pay the wages of civil servants, bankroll Hamas security forces, and compensate Palestinian families that lost their homes during Israeli military operations.

In June 2007, Hamas carried out a putsch in the Gaza Strip, neutralized Fatah and the Palestinian Authority’s military and political power, and set up a radical Islamic government. Following the takeover, Iran became a patron of the new Gaza regime, providing Hamas with military, financial, political, and media support. Iran saw the establishment of Hamas rule in the Gaza Strip as a way to wage an armed campaign against Israel and advance its influence in the Palestinian arena. The exposure of the Israeli home front to rocket fire during three rounds of armed confrontation between Israel and Hamas showed the Iranians the great benefits they could reap by constructing a military infrastructure for Hamas.

As a result, Iranian money, equipment, and military expertise keep flowing to Hamas and then to ISIS.

Despite some rifts between Iran and Hamas’ political wing since 2012 (stemming from Hamas moving its headquarters from Syria and refusing to follow the Iranian line by supporting President Bashar al-Assad), the Times of Israel reported in September that, boosted by the nuclear deal, Iran has increased its funding to Hamas’ military wing with literally “suitcases of cash” sent directly to leaders in the Gaza Strip. Moreover, The Wall Street Journal and The Daily Telegraph quoted top senior Western intelligence officials in April saying that Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have transferred tens of millions of dollars to Hamas.

Read more

Listen to Kyle Shideler, Director of the Center for Security Policy’s Threat Information Office, discuss the relationship between ISIS and Hamas in this Secure Freedom Podcast:

Podcast (podcast2): Play in new window | Download

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Stop the Jihad on Campus Campaign Combats Pro-Terror Groups

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Exposing the true motivations of terrorist proxies and challenging their genocidal propaganda.

Frontpage, by Mark Tapson, Nov. 27, 2015:

Two weeks ago, a series of posters was placed anonymously on the campuses of George Washington University and American University in Washington, D.C. and those of UCLA, UC-Irvine and UC-San Diego in Southern California. The images were hashtagged #StopTheJihadOnCampus and pulled no punches in denouncing a pair of campus organizations for what they are: supporters of violent, Jew-hating jihad.

One poster depicted a bloody knife and photos of children being trained to become terrorists. Referring to a group known as the Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), the caption read, “Students for ‘Justice’ in Palestine: Supporting a Culture that Teaches Children to Slaughter Jews.” A second poster linked the late terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki to the Muslim Students Association (MSA), a national campus organization. A third targeted the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement and the current “stabbing intifada” in Israel with the image of a bloody knife stabbing a Star of David. Its caption read, “The Real BDS: Boycott, Divest, Stab.”

Naturally, the posters sparked instant controversy and angry condemnations, because the campus supporters of jihad weren’t accustomed to having their agenda challenged or being caught in the harsh spotlight of truth. In response to the discovery of the posters, the Hillel organization at American University predictably issued a statement decrying them as threatening, “Islamophobic” hate speech and condemning “any efforts to demonize any racial or religious group.” Likewise, the statement from the Students for Justice in Palestine at American University labeled the posters as “the intimidation tactics of bigoted ideologues,” as “falsehoods” propagated about BDS (which the statement described as “the epitome of effective non-violent resistance”), and as “vitriolic, hateful rhetoric deliberately targeting Muslims, Arabs, those who may appear Muslim, and supporters of Palestinian rights.”

The following week, the David Horowitz Freedom Center took credit for distributing the posters as part of a major campus initiative called Stop the Jihad on Campus. The poster campaign targeted SJP and MSA, both of which were spawned by the Muslim Brotherhood, the same terrorist organization that launched al-Qaeda and Hamas. As a Freedom Center statement put it, both groups “are the chief campus sponsors” of the BDS movement “designed to destroy the Jewish state.”

UCLA’s Daily Bruin posted an article labeling the “offensive posters” as Islamophobic, to which David Horowitz himself responded with a letter in the Bruin correcting that and other “misleading impressions” in the initial article. “Shame on the students who spread the genocidal lies of Hamas on the UCLA campus,” he wrote. “Shame on them for supporting the 70-plus-year Arab aggression against the Jewish state and the 70-plus-year oppression of Palestinian Arabs by Fatah and Hamas.”

It is typical of these campus supporters of terrorism to attempt to suppress their critics by falsely accusing them of racism and Islamophobia, even though no racial or religious group was specified in the poster campaign. The posters were aimed at the two campus groups not because their membership is entirely Muslim (it’s not), but because they hold “Israeli Apartheid Weeks,” spread Jew-hating propaganda, support intifadas like the current one in Jerusalem and the West Bank, and support terrorist parties in Gaza and the West Bank that call for the destruction of the Jewish state and the extermination of the Jews of the Middle East.

The Stop the Jihad on Campus campaign seeks to raise awareness of how such anti-Israel terrorists have infiltrated American universities, spreading terrorist propaganda and messages, with university funding and support. Along those lines, it offers teach-ins to raise student awareness and combat pro-terrorist propaganda on American campuses. It has since gone on to post a list of the “Top 10 American universities most friendly to terrorists.”

The campaign’s demands are simple: no campus support for jihad terrorists, no campus privileges for anti-Israel hate groups, and no student funding for apartheid hate weeks. “Our goal in placing these posters on prominent campuses across America,” explains David Horowitz, “is to expose the true motivations of these terrorist proxy-groups and challenge their genocidal propaganda.” He continues:

These terrorist support groups are afforded campus privileges, including university offices and the right to hold events on campus grounds that would be denied to any other group that preached hatred of ethnic groups or supported barbaric terrorists who slaughter men, women and children as part of a demented mission to cleanse the earth of infidels.

Below are photos from the “Palestinian Wall of Lies” display recently set up at the University of South Dakota in conjunction with the Stop the Jihad on Campus campaign, as part of the Freedom Center’s efforts to counteract campus propaganda. The Wall lists and then debunks the major Palestinian lies about Israel and the Jews, which are often propagated unquestioned by the mainstream media and swallowed whole by impressionable college students. Needless to say, the Wall has proven to be quite a conversation piece whenever it has appeared on American campuses awash in leftist indoctrinationabout the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

To donate to Stop the Jihad on Campus, click here.

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Blade of jihad: Extremists embrace the knife as tool of terror

Wielding a knife from his pulpit in a sermon streamed on the Iternet last month, Palestinian Sheikh Muhammad Salakh called for followers to take up butcher knives and attack Israelis.

Wielding a knife from his pulpit in a sermon streamed on the Iternet last month, Palestinian Sheikh Muhammad Salakh called for followers to take up butcher knives and attack Israelis.

Fox News, by Paul Alster, Nov. 6, 2015:

The knife has replaced suicide bombings, car attacks and random shootings as the new tool of choice for waging jihad on Israel, with leaders blatantly calling for Palestinians young and old to take up the kitchen implement and kill.

While cars careening into crowds was the trend in terror last year– with hit songs in Gaza and the West Bank praising “martyrs” behind the wheel– this year Hamas and Palestinian Authority leaders, clerics and newspaper editors are openly encouraging stabbings that have so far killed a dozen and wounded 167 since Oct. 1. Through sermons, social media, online blogs, editorial cartoons and TV and radio reports, the message seems to be that anyone can pick up a knife and advance the cause.

“Restrain the victim while others attack him with axes and butcher knives,” influential Sheikh Muhammad Salakh recently preached as he brandished a knife in a sermon that was widely viewed within the territories. “Do not fear what will be said about you. Oh men of the West Bank, next time, attack in a group of three, four, or five. Attack them in groups. Cut them into body parts.”

“Oh men of the West Bank, next time, attack in a group of three, four, or five. Attack them in groups. Cut them into body parts.”

– Sheikh Muhammad Salakh, Palestinian cleric

The attackers are hailed as brave heroes, with a youth soccer tournament named for Muhannad Halabi, who murdered two Israelis, wounding the wife and two-year-old son of one in a stabbing in Jerusalem in early October. Some terrorists, killed by Israeli security forces and police either during or in the immediate aftermath of their attacks, are revered as shahids (martyrs) and have had streets and squares named in their honor.

The bloody toll to date includes a dozen dead and at least 19 seriously wounded in 59 separate stabbing attacks, mainly in Jerusalem. Some 72 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli security forces, including 45 who Israel said were involved in attacks and another 27 Palestinians killed in clashes between stone-throwers and security forces.

The latest attack came on Friday afternoon, when a Palestinian stabbed an Israeli outside a supermarket in Sha’ar Binyamin “injuring him severely,” according to local authorities.

Particularly chilling is the fact that the call to regular citizens to use readily available weapons appears to be creating a new wave of terrorists.

“Generally speaking, the terrorists have not been operatives of any established terrorist organization,” the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs noted in a statement Thursday. “The current wave of terrorism has not been directed by any organization, but rather is directly inspired by the intensive incitement accompanying it.”

Suspected weapons are removed from Arabs entering Jerusalem’s Old City, but once inside the ancient walls, anyone can walk into a hardware store and by a hammer, or a kitchenware shop and purchase butcher knives. They could even visit a private house and take a carving knife from a kitchen drawer. Israeli security forces have found it almost impossible to restrict the proliferating use of knives, but recent increases in security patrols in Jerusalem have seen a decrease in attacks in the capital, only for more attacks to be perpetrated in other Israeli towns and cities, including in the disputed West Bank, especially Hebron.

The troubling trend was underscored last week, when a baby born in Gaza wasgiven the name “Knife of Jerusalem” by his proud parents in honor of the wave of fatal stabbings carried out by Palestinians on Israeli Jews.

“Allah has given me a new baby and I’ve named him ‘Knife of Jerusalem,’ after the Intifada of the Knives,” the baby’s father proudly declared in a television interview translated by Middle East Media Research Institute. “We gave him the name… in solidarity with our people in the West Bank,” the baby’s mother added. A friend explained that he was watching a video called “Lovers of Stabbing” with the expectant father, and suggested the macabre name, an idea the father was delighted to adopt.

The recent wave of terror was sparked when violence broke out at the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem, site of the Golden Dome and the Al Aqsa mosque, the third holiest place on earth for Muslims. It overlooks the Western Wall, the holiest place on earth for Jews. Arab media insisted that Israel was planning to take over the Al Aqsa compound and that all means should be employed to defend the site – and Islam itself.

On Oct. 19, ISIS began releasing a series of online video messages, the first of which was titled, “Project Behead the Jews.” The videos praised Palestinians for the wave of terror and reportedly feature footage of the Temple Mount, punctuated by calls for Muslims to “liberate Al Aqsa” and “wage jihad against the Jews.”

From the start, Israel stressed it has no designs on Al Aqsa – a compound overseen by the Islamic “waqf” trust as part of a long-standing status quo agreement – insisting that the violence followed attacks on Jewish worshippers at the Western Wall, stoned by Muslims using the compound as safe haven. Israeli security forces reportedly discovered pipe bombs inside the mosque when they intervened to stop the violence.

“This incitement comes from the Muslim Brotherhood, the Islamic Movement in Israel, Hamas, and – to our chagrin – also with the active participation of the Palestinian Authority,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said last month. [emphasis added]

Now five weeks into the violence sparked by the Temple Mount crisis, Hamas continues to call for blood. While knifings constitute the lion’s share of attacks, the other techniques for spreading terror are not forgotten. On Wednesday, a terrorist identified as Ibrahim al-Acri, 38, was killed by Israeli security forces in Jerusalem after slamming his car into 15 pedestrians, killing one and injuring 14 more. An official Hamas statement praised al-Acri as a “heroic martyr”.

Some regional observers suggest the wave of attacks is a spontaneous reaction from Palestinians frustrated by lack of jobs, difficult housing conditions, travel restrictions, and the controlling hand of Israel, but also highlight disillusionment with the corruption of the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority controlled by Mahmoud Abbas. But experts who spoke to FoxNews.com said it would be naive to believe the wave of stabbings is organic.

“It’s too simplistic to say it just rose from the people,” a senior Israel Defense Forces officer told FoxNews.com. “Hamas is inciting what they now call the ‘Al Aqsa Intifada’ encouraging Palestinians in the territories to carry out terror acts… but the Palestinian Authority is not stopping it.”

Yesterday, U.S. Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Rep. Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., the committee’s ranking member, along with 367 other House members sent a bipartisan letter to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, urging him to quell the incitement against Israelis.

“Now is the time for the Palestinian Authority to take concrete steps to avoid further violence,” read the letter. “This starts with a sustained effort to publicly and officially repudiate these attacks, ending the unacceptable incitement to violence emanating from Palestinian Authority officials and institutions, continuing important security cooperation with Israel and agreeing to unconditionally renew direct talks with the Israelis.”

“Mahmoud Abbas is trying to delegitimize Israel, but he does not want an intifada to happen. He thinks he can control the flames [of the uprising]. He’s playing a dangerous game,” the senior IDF officer warned. “An intifada is a bigger risk to his regime than it is to Israel.”

Paul Alster is an Israel-based journalist. Follow him on Twitter @paul_alster and visit his website: www.paulalster.com.

Reframing the Arab-Israeli Conflict

“The art of reframing is to maintain the conflict in all its richness but to help people look at it in a more open-minded and hopeful way.”  – From Bernard Mayer’s “The Dynamics of Conflict Resolution”

Can we look at what is going on in Israel today – and the Arab-Israeli conflict as a whole – “in a more open-minded and hopeful way”?

After all, the current trouble is nothing new. Arabs have been stabbing and murdering Jews for 100 years, long before the modern State of Israel came into being. The Hebron Massacre in 1929 is just one incident that springs to mind.

And with no substantial political or military solution on the horizon, how can we possibly reframe things?

Well, the popular way of looking at the conflict is to see it simply as a dispute over land. This narrative accuses Israel of occupying the West Bank and Gaza in 1967. And if Israel will just give these areas back to the Palestinians, they will instantly lay down their stones and knives and Jews and Arabs will live together happily ever after.

Of course though, every time Israel has “given back” land, the Arabs use it to launch further attacks on Israel, with Hamas tunnels and rockets from Gaza being the most obvious and recent example.

Yet, strangely enough, most of the world’s leaders and media still buy into this theory.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said at Harvard University said last week, “a massive increase in settlements” has led to the current “frustration and violence.”

But that concept is as flawed as the failed peace process itself.

The Arab-Jewish conflict was ablaze long before Israel came along. For example, Arab rioters with knives, pistols and rifles ran rampant through Jaffa on May 1, 1921, beating and murdering Jews and looting Jewish homes and stores. They killed 27 Jews and wounded another 150.

And because similar conflicts rage in more than 25 other countries today – Afghanistan, Angola, Nigeria, Syria, to name but a few – the symptoms indicate a more serious problem.

This is not a common cold to be cured by a Jewish country evacuating this piece of land or agreeing to that concession.

It’s a cancer of the most virulent strain…spreading rapidly throughout the entire free world.

Let’s face facts.

This conflict is not primarily about land at all.

Those malignant cells terrorizing Israel today are infected with the same disease as the forces destroying 2,000-year-old archaeological treasures in Syria, beheading, raping and massacring Muslims and non-Muslims across the Middle East and detonating suicide bombs in Turkey, Bali, Indonesia. And the list goes on.

The bad guys – whom the world refuses to acknowledge as such – are out to impose radical Islam on the world. They want to obliterate Israel, America, Christianity and even other anti-Islamist Muslims – “infidels” in their eyes. And that includes innocent Palestinians suffering at the hands of Hamas & Company.

In short, the entire civilized world is at risk.

I’m talking about ISIS, al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, the PKK, Hezbollah and dozens of similar organizations.

An entire society – connected to a daily drip of vitriol and hate from birth, brainwashed by a well-oiled system of education, media and religious rhetoric – ready and willing to kill and die in the name of the anti-Semitic Jihad of Intolerance.

And that’s why the current situation in Israel is not a localized “few days of rage,” “a wave of terror” or even “a Third Intifada.”

What’s happening is yet another symptom of a global Third Jihad.

The first jihad lasted from 622 – 750 AD, after Mohammad’s armies conquered all of Arabia and most of the Middle East, North Africa and Spain.

The second jihad started in 1071, when Islamic armies conquered Constantinople and spread into Europe, India and further into Africa. It eventually began to peter out when the Muslim Ottoman army was vanquished at the Battle of Vienna in September 1683.

And radical Islam’s pursuit of world domination has never stopped.

Countries and cultures ignored the threat or reacted too slowly and were swallowed up by the relentless radical Islamic monster. So much so that there are now 57 countries in the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, or OIC.

The Third Jihad is upon us.

This is the deeper, more sinister nature of the Arab-Israeli conflict. It is not simply a war over settlements, land or the Temple Mount.

It’s a religious battle. A clash of two diametrically opposed world views.

Between the sanctity of life and the culture of death.

And that definitely removes the conflict from the Middle East, away from the Israeli government, rolling responsibility to the feet of anyone who believes in a just and righteous world.

Is that “more open-minded and hopeful”?

Well, it could be. Continuing the cancer analogy, things will get worse until someone – preferably sane world leaders and a responsible media – makes the correct diagnosis.

Also see:

The Watchman Show: Terror Wave Against Israel

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CBN News, by Erick Stakelbeck, Oct. 27, 2015:

On this week’s edition of The Watchman, we examine the latest Palestinian terror wave against Israel and how ISIS and its supporters could use similar tactics here in the West.

We also break down why Russia is getting involved militarily in Syria and what it means for America and Israel.

Don’t Make the Muslims Angry

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Frontpage, by Daniel Greenfield, Oct. 27, 2015:

The Secretary of State of the United States traveled to the Muslim country of Jordan to assure its Foreign Minister that Jews would not be praying any more at the holiest site in Judaism.

As Kerry put it, “It is Muslims who pray on the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif and non-Muslims who visit.”

Israel is often accused of apartheid and segregation, but here was the Secretary of State championing both, as long as it was Muslim segregation aimed at Jews. The Temple Mount “Status Quo” worriedly talked about by Kerry and the media as the answer to the recent Muslim stabbing spree is no different than the Muslim ban on Jews entering the Cave of the Patriarchs, where Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are buried, past the seventh step. It rewards Muslim violence by upholding Muslim segregationist racism.

There’s no word on whether segregated drinking fountains will be put in for Muslims and non-Muslims. Jews visiting the former site of their Temple have been attacked for drinking from an “Islamic” water fountain.

Perhaps the status quo will also say that, “It is Muslims who drink from water fountains on the Temple Mount and non-Muslims who go thirsty.”

And don’t even ask about the bathrooms. PLO leader Abbas, whom Kerry also met with, shrieked that Jews “have no right to defile it with their filthy feet”.

The status quo on the Temple Mount and in the Middle East is the supremacism of Muslim bigotry. The Jews violated this status quo in a very big way by seeking independence. The indigenous Jewish people were no longer willing to be a conquered nation under the boot of Muslim invaders, forced to live in ghettos, wear yellow badges, walk barefoot or wait on the seventh step outside their holy places.

Every act of Muslim terrorism is blamed on this primal Jewish violation of the “Status Quo”. Israel violated the status quo by becoming the first non-Muslim country in the Middle East. If that wasn’t bad enough, Jews violated the status quo even further by becoming the first indigenous people to reclaim land lost in a war from its Muslim conquerors. Then the members of a religion that had been defeated by Islam, its holy places turned into mosques, had the temerity to go and pray at their own holy places.

What could Muslims do in the face of so many violations of the status quo by an inferior conquered race except resort to maddened orgies of violence, setting off bombs and chopping up Rabbis with cleavers?

It’s not only the Jews who get in trouble for violating the Muslim status quo. When Coptic Christians turned out to protest the Muslim Brotherhood regime in Egypt, the supporters of the “moderate” terror group, which Kerry backs, responded by shouting “Death to the Christians” and burning churches.

Jordan’s Foreign Minister warned Kerry, “When you infuriate the emotions of one of our billion Muslims around the world, things become rather thorny and rather difficult to manage.”

The world’s one billion Muslims, whose delicate emotions are always infuriated by something, enforce an Islamic status quo in which no non-Muslim dares to violate the Muslim superiority complex.

A Danish newspaper can’t print cartoons that a few Imams don’t like or the billion Muslims will get angry. Burger King can’t have ice cream that Muslims think resembles the name of their god or a billion Muslims will get angry. America can’t defend itself against Islamic terrorism or a billion Muslims will get angry. Jews in Israel and Christians in Egypt can’t have their civil rights or a billion Muslims will get angry.

Some might say that the billion Muslims are just looking for things to get angry at… but that would just make a billion Muslims angry.

When buildings fall or buses blow up, when people are stabbed, shot or exploded by the unofficial representatives of the bilious billion, we go right past the crime to the anger that motivated it. “Why do they hate us?” becomes the question and Muslim anger becomes the pivot of national security policy.

Since Muslim anger causes violence, we stop terrorism by tiptoeing around anything that might make them angry. Minor things mostly like freedom of speech or freedom of religion. If you’re a Coptic Christian who makes a YouTube video about Mohammed, you can be sent to prison when some of the moderate Muslim Brotherhood/Al Qaeda locals murder four Americans while shouting, “Allahu Akbar.”

After weeks of brutal Muslim murders, Kerry has gotten Israel to reinforce a ban on Jews praying at the holiest site in Judaism because it offends Muslims. Next up, maybe Jews will be restricted to the seventh step of the Cave of the Patriarchs again. Because that was the “Status Quo” under the Muslim conquest.

But the status quo won’t be restored by merely banning Jews from praying at the Temple Mount. It won’t even be restored by giving in to demands from Obama, Kerry and the outraged stabber lobby to keep Jews out of those parts of Jerusalem that Muslims had ethnically cleansed them from in 1948.

A Jewish Israel is a violation of the Islamic status quo. But so are a Christian Spain and an independent Greece. The Ottoman Empire at its peak nearly reached Vienna and extended into the Ukraine. Muslims once held Sicily. The monstrous Mughals ruled over much of India. Creative Muslim geography and revisionist history now claim that Australia’s aborigines were originally Muslim and Turkey’s Islamist ruler, who hopes to revive the Ottoman Empire, insists that Muslims originally discovered America.

These violations of the status quo must all be eliminated or a billion Muslims will be very, very angry.

Pandering to Muslim bigotry only earns more of the same. The Muslims butchering Jews in Jerusalem are not going to be satisfied with any status quo short of the total Sharia subjugation of the Jews with all the attendant ritual humiliations of ghettos, bare feet and legal immunity for Muslim murderers of Jews.

Allowing Muslims to set the tone for every negotiation by invoking one billion fuming faithful who will go on a killing spree if a cartoon is published, a book is printed or a prayer is prayed is a submission to a racist theocracy. Worse still, it treats the anger of the bigoted murderers as if it had moral weight.

Our diplomatic Stockholm syndrome traces back the root cause of Muslim violence not to the Muslim killers, but to anyone who might be guilty of provoking them.

Obama’s people responded to the murder of Americans in Benghazi with a Pakistani video apology and by treating a YouTube video critical of Mohammed as the real crime. Hillary Clinton told the father of a murdered SEAL, “We’re going to have that person arrested and prosecuted that did the video.”

When Muslims butcher Jews in Jerusalem, the blame settles not on the killers, but on their victims.

Some Jews had to be stabbed because other Jews (and their filthy feet) had prayed at the holiest site in Judaism that the Muslim conquerors claimed for their own because Mohammed once flew there on a magic horse with a woman’s head. Or at least that was this week’s Muslim excuse for killing Jews.

Muslims had been killing Jews for over a thousand years. But there’s always some momentary excuse for how the Jewish victims provoked their Muslim killers this time that utterly fails to explain why this same cycle of Muslim anti-Semitic violence has been going on since the beginning of Islam.

We are often lectured on how oppressed Muslims are. One of the more popular Muslim victimization memes claims that Muslims are “the new Jews”. So far the only thing they have done to prove this claim is trying to kill all the Jews on the theory that when all the Jews are dead, they can be the new Jews.

By accepting Muslim anger as moral we have turned murderers into victims and victims into murderers. The extremes of Muslim outrage are not proof of their suffering, their frustration and desperation, as the media claims, but of their racism, their supremacism and their dehumanization of non-Muslims.

Muslim terrorism is not a cry for help. It’s a cry of hate.

Muslims are not entitled to a supremacist status quo that enshrines their conquests as sacred and forever represses the rights and identities of the peoples under their rule. It is this supremacist sense of entitlement that fuels Muslim terror from ISIS to Hamas.

Upholding such a status quo only breeds further conflicts as Islam seeks to restore its status quo conquests around the world. It’s their belief that they can restore a supremacist status quo that is the cause of Muslim terrorism. Take away this expectation of a status quo and Muslim terror goes away.

Obama has decided to uphold the Muslim status quo. Muslim terrorism is met with backdoor support for a Caliphate through political Islam. Muslim stabbings in Israel are met with calls for upholding a Muslim supremacist status quo that bans Jews from praying at the holiest site in their religion.

Our national security strategy, our diplomacy and the premise of societies that are being transformed by Muslim migration is don’t make the Muslims angry. This vision for the West is an abusive relationship in which the free world plays the beaten wife whose dreams and hopes have narrowed down to not “provoking” another violent tantrum from the psychotic monster who has taken over her life.

“Don’t Make the Muslims Angry” has become our highest law. The free world needs an intervention before we give up our rights, our identities and our future to live in this abusive relationship with Islam.

Obama Tells Falsehoods About Israel, Retracts, Then Repeats Falsehoods

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Frontpage, by Morton A. Klein, Oct. 26, 2015:

After weeks of murderous Palestinian stabbing attacks upon innocent Israelis, how has the Obama Administration responded?

Although Israel has been killing or apprehending knife-wielding terrorists, while Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority (PA) has been inciting and glorifying their acts of murder, the Administration presents both sides as morally equivalent, while insinuating or even asserting Israeli responsibility.

Obama officials have been doing this in five ways:

1. Condemning violence and incitement on both sides: Specifically condemning attacks on innocent Israelis, Secretary of State John Kerry nonetheless also called upon “all sides to take affirmative steps to restore calm” and called for “leadership that condemns the tit-for-tat.” And State Department spokesman John Kirby explicitly stated, “we recognize that incitement can go both ways here.”

2. Refusing to identify or condemn PA incitement to violence: Despite disseminating falsehoods  about Palestinian terrorists being innocents murdered in cold blood by Israel and Muslim supremacist calls by Abbas for Muslims to block imaginary Israeli take-over and “desecration” of Muslim shrines with “their filthy feet,” Administration officials don’t allude to this, much less condemn it. Quite the contrary: State Department spokesman Mark Toner implied Israel isn’t upholding the status quo on Temple Mount, while Mr. Kirby explicitly endorsed this false Palestinian claim, saying, “certainly, the status quo has not been observed, which has led to a lot of the violence.”

3. Refusing to identify which side is using terrorism: Secretary Kerry has spoken of “a revolving cycle,” while Mr. Toner has referred to the “recent wave of violence,” not Palestinian terrorism, and refused to “assign blame” for the attacks. So did Mr. Kirby (“this isn’t about affixing … blame on either side”).

4. Accusing Israel of using excessive force in dealing with the knife-wielding terrorists: Mr. Kirby baldy stated that “we’ve certainly seen some reports of what many would consider excessive use of force.”

5. Rationalizing the Arab violence as partly the product of Jews moving into or living in the West Bank: Secretary Kerry spoke of  a “massive increase in [Jewish] settlements over the course of the last years,” which is neither a warrant for murder nor even true: construction within Jewish communities in the West Bank has dropped during Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s six-year tenure to its lowest point since the Rabin government.

When the Obama Administration nullifies and voids the meaning and worth of its original condemnation of attacks on Israelis with defamatory charges and moral equivalence, it exposes its hostility and bias against Israel.

It is also inflammatory –– if Kerry can assign blame for Arab terrorism on Jews building houses in the West Bank, why can’t Arabs?

It is also untenable: one cannot credibly condemn terrorist acts and then include under the rubric of restoring calm forbearing from lawful actions of self-defense taken in response to them.

Under consequent pressure to to clarify the U.S. position, White House spokesman Josh Earnest denied that Secretary Kerry assigned any specific blame for the recent tensions –– which, of course, he had. Mr. Kirby avowed that “we have never accused Israeli security forces with excessive force with respect to these terrorist attacks” –– which, of course, he had –– and recanted his false statement, saying, “I did not intend to suggest that status quo at Temple Mount/Haram Al-Sharif has been broken” –– which, of course, he did.

These disavowals and retractions are correct and necessary –– but do not dispose of the root problem of hostility and bias.

Recall, for example, Secretary Kerry last year publicly bolstered the Palestinian delegitimization campaign by suggesting that Israel could become an apartheid state and would be understandably the target of boycotts if negotiations then on foot failed. Kerry later retracted his words –– but the damage was done.

The Administration seems to be seeking the damaging effects of these subsequently triangulated statements. The clarifications are just sufficiently retractive to mollify critics, while nonetheless preserving the original, damaging impact.

In this instance, President Obama seems to think they retracted too much.

Accordingly, on October 16, he himself doubled down on the original misrepresentations uttered by his officials on October 13 and 14, but retracted on October 14 and 15,  saying, “We must try to get all people in Israel, and the West Bank” to oppose “random violence.” President Obama also urged both Messrs. Netanyahu and Abbas to tamp down rhetoric, and again called into question Israel’s maintenance of Jerusalem’s status quo.

As for Abbas’ incitement –– still not a word from him, nor from UN Ambassador Samantha Power, who has also doubled down on some of the earlier false charges in the UN Security Council.

The Obama Administration is telling falsehoods about Israel, retracting them and then restating them. When someone persists with falsehoods, even after admitting them to be untrue, he intends them to stick.

Morton A. Klein is National President of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA). Dr. Daniel Mandel is Director of the ZOA’ s Center for Middle East Policy and author of H.V. Evatt & the Creation of Israel (Routledge, London, 2004).

***

Also see:

The Palestinian Authority’s Sinister Sleight of Hand

palestinian protestNational Review, by Alex VanNess, Oct. 26, 2015:

A good magician hones his craft by spending countless hours mastering sleight-of-hand techniques. The audience is distracted by one hand while the other hand is executing the illusion.

The Palestinian Authority (PA) pulled off an amazing sleight-of-hand trick this month by erasing Jewish ties to the Land of Israel.

Last week, the PA, with the backing of six Arab countries, successfully shepherded a resolution through the U.N. Education, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) listing the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron and Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem as Muslim sites, and condemning Israel for archeological excavations near the Temple Mount.

The resolution followed weeks of violent encounters, which started as a series of riots at the al-Aqsa mosque on the Temple Mount, where Palestinians had stockpiled rocks, firebombs, and other weaponry. After the riots, Palestinians alleged that the status quo over the Temple Mount, where Jews are allowed to visit but not pray, was being threatened by Israel. These allegations were repeated, and exacerbated, by PA President Mahmoud Abbas, who accused Jews of contaminating Muslim and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem with their “filthy feet.”

By stoking riotous violence on the Temple Mount, the PA gave itself a pretext for demanding concessions from UNESCO, and it pounced, overreaching at first to establish a bargaining position. Its original proposal asked that the Western Wall, officially known by its Hebrew name, “Kotel,” be rechristened as the Arabic “Buraq,” and recognized as belonging to the al-Aqsa Mosque compound. Even UNESCO’s director-general Irina Bokova condemned this power grab, stating that it would “further incite tensions” and was inconsistent with the organization’s “mandate and efforts.”

Though Israel maintains control over Jerusalem, administration of the city’s holy sites is entrusted to their respective religious authorities. The PA failed to win the Kotel as part of al-Aqsa, but its leaders will no doubt try again, and use the concessions they did win to agitate for Islamic stewardship of any number of other contested sites. When they do not get what they want, a slew of U.N. Resolutions will rain down condemning Israel’s refusal to hand over control of “Muslim” property. The PA will then proceed to incite its people to violently demand what they couldn’t take through diplomacy, and the process will repeat itself, the Palestinians winning incremental concessions each time.

The PA has continuously denied Judaism’s historical and religious ties to the region. During the 2000 negotiations at Camp David, then PA President Yasser Arafat refused to acknowledge Jewish ties to the Temple Mount and claimed that a Jewish Temple never existed there.

Before Israel took control of the region, Jewish holy sites were vandalized and desecrated, and Jews were denied access to many of them, including the Kotel. Muslims have built mosques directly on top of some Jewish shrines in order to lay claim to them.

Even now, Jewish sites in PA-controlled areas are subject to violent assaults. Last week, a Palestinian mob set fire to Joseph’s Tomb, a Jewish holy site located in the West Bank. While the Muslim administrators of the Temple Mount have official visiting hours for non-Muslim visitors, such visitors are forbidden from praying there. Just visiting the Temple Mount is difficult for non-Muslims, who are subject to harassment as soon as they set foot on the site: Muslim youths are paid salaries to harass Jewish and Christian visitors. These professional bullies even accosted a U.S. Congressional delegation visiting the mosque.

With one hand, the Palestinians are claiming that Israel is performing a power grab in an attempt to change the status quo of the Temple Mount. With the other hand, the Palestinians are co-opting religious sites, changing the status quo of the Temple Mount in their favor, and attempting to erase Jewish connections to contested Holy lands. All of this is being done in plain sight, with the tacit acceptance of the international community. It’s some magic trick.

— Alex VanNess is the manager of public information at the Center for Security Policy.

Netanyahu Answers the Big Lies Against Israel

PM Netanyahu at the UN Photo Credit: vi Ohayon/GPO

PM Netanyahu at the UN
Photo Credit: vi Ohayon/GPO

Jewish Press, by Lori Lowenthal Marcus, October 21st, 2015:

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu took the opportunity during his speech to the 37th World Zionist Congress, to speak from his Zionist heart to the hearts of Zionists everywhere.

Netanyahu used the occasion to rally supporters of Israel and to call upon them to spread the truth about Zionism and Israel. He spoke during the midst of a wave of terror in Israel unlike any in recent time. The stabbing, shooting, car-ramming attacks on Israeli citizens just during the month of October alone has unnerved many. Once again the media and the outside world uses moral equivalency or worse to condemn Israel for the terror unleashed against its citizens.

Netanyahu’s rock steady speech enlisted all supporters of Israel in the battalion of truth tellers about Israel. The physical attacks are being endured solely by Israelis, but the fight against the vilification of the Jewish State is something in which everyone can and must participate.

The ammunition Netanyahu provided the troops he enlisted consists solely of truth. The truths that can and will deflate the myths perpetuated by so many against the Jewish State.

In all, Netanyahu summarized into Ten Big Lies being told about Israel, and he provided answers to all of them. The entire speech can be found here.

The First Big Lie: Israel is trying to change the Status Quo on Har Habayit (Temple Mount). No, Israel is not. But here are additional facts you need to back up this categorical statement. First, King Solomon built the Temple Mount 3,000 years ago. That’s 1,500 years before the birth of Islam. The current arrangement, despite Israel’s victory in a defensive war against Jordan in 1967 which previously controlled the site, is that Muslims may visit the Temple Mount and pray there, while non-Muslims are permitted to visit only between Sunday and Thursday and Jews are not permitted ever to pray there. Over the past year, three and a half million Muslims visited the Temple Mount, 80,000 Christians and a mere 12,000 Jews.

The Second Big Lie: Israel is trying to destroy Al-Aksa Mosque. Netanyahu told an anecdote about how, just after his grandfather arrived in Israel, there was a terrorist attack because Arabs claimed Jews were trying to destroy the Al-Aksa Mosque. That was in 1920. Jews were attacked based on this false claim again in 1921, and in 1929. And it’s still happening today. So, Netanyahu explained, “this lie is about a hundred years old. It fomented many, many attacks. The Temple Mount stands. The al-Aqsa Mosque stands. But the lie stands too, it persists.”

The Third Big Lie is that there has been a surge in settlement construction, Netanyahu explained. The truth, however, is that the number of units built in the “settlements” has gone down from 5,000 annually under Ehud Barak, to 1,900 under Sharon, down to 1,700 under Olmert. Under Netanyahu’s reign, the number is down to 1500. As Netanyahu said, “some surge.”

The Fourth Big Lie is that Israelis are executing Palestinians. Netanyahu used Abbas’s public charge that Israel executed a young teenager, Ahmen Mansara, to show the absurdity of this charge. In fact, Mansara had just viciously stabbed a 13 year old Israeli boy riding on his bicycle. Israelis stopped Mansara, but they certainly didn’t kill him. In fact, Mansara was treated in Hadassah Hospital and released. The Israeli victim, however, is still in that hospital, desperately trying to live.

The Fifth Big Lie is that Israel uses excessive force. To this claim, Netanyahu asks people to consider what the police forces in New York or Paris or Moscow would do if people ran through the streets of their cities trying to stab their citizens with knives or screwdrivers. Israel’s instructions are clear: if there’s a threat to life, take action to neutralize it. Period.

The Sixth Big Lie is that the increase in terrorism is due to the stagnation in the peace process. Netanyahu explained that terrorism in Israel rises and falls completely independently of the peace process or of the status of Israel. There was terrorism against the Jews before Israel was established, before the acquisition of the territories, while the peace process was ongoing and even when the peace process was at its peak. The peace process has no bearing on the increase in terrorism. What gives rise to the terrorism is the fact that the State of Israel exists.

The Seventh Big Lie is that Mahmoud Abbas is a moderate. Abbas just said “I welcome every drop of blood spilled in Jerusalem.” He glorifies the killers. He hasn’t condemned a single one of the 30 plus terrorist attacks on Israelis over the last month. Abbas is no moderate.

The Eighth Big Lie is that international observers will restore calm on the Temple Mount. Netanyahu categorically rejects that notion. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry did earlier this week, also.

The Ninth Big Lie is that the violence is erupting because there isno Palestinian State. The reality is, Netanyahu explained, the Palestinian Arabs have repeatedly rejected every single offer of a nation-state for their people. The only nation-state the Palestinian Arabs will accept is one with no Jewish State next to it.

The Tenth Big Lie supporters of Israel must denounce is the claim that “the core of the Middle East conflict is the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. For the past four years, Netanyahu reminded everyone, ever since the “Arab Spring,” Syria is disintegrating, Iraq is disintegrating, Libya is disintegrating, Yemen is unraveling, there is chaos in the Sinai and terror across North Africa. Millions are displaced, hundreds of thousands are being butchered. None of that has anything to do with the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Nothing.

The core of the conflict in the Middle East, the Israeli Prime Minister said, is “the battle between early medievalism, very primitive, very violent, forms of militant Islam, and modernity. The core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is the continued absolute refusal by the Palestinians to recognize a Jewish state within any boundaries”.

Netanyahu closed his speech with the following exhortation: “The biggest battle we have to fight is the battle for the facts. The facts win over the fiction if they’re repeated clearly, responsibly, firmly. This is what I ask all of you to do for the sake of the Jewish state and for the sake of the Jewish people.”

Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the U.S. correspondent for The Jewish Press. A graduate of Harvard Law School, she previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools. You can reach her by email: Lori@JewishPressOnline.com

Also see:

Moral Equivalence in the Middle East

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The West has developed a dangerous concern for ‘proportionality.’

National Review, by Victor Davis Hanson — October 20, 2015:

In the current epidemic of Palestinian violence, scores of Arab youths are attacking, supposedly spontaneously, Israeli citizens with knives. Apparently, edged weapons have more Koranic authority, and, in the sense of media spectacle, they provide greater splashes of blood. Thus the attacker is regularly described as “unarmed” and a victim when he is “disproportionately” stopped by bullets.

The Obama State Department has condemned the use of “excessive” Israeli force in response to Palestinian terrorism. John Kirby, the hapless State Department spokesman, blamed “both” sides for terrorism, and the president himself called on attackers and their victims to “tamp down the violence.”

In short, the present U.S. government — which is subsidizing the Palestinians to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars a year — is incapable of distinguishing those who employ terrorist violence from the victims against whom the terrorism is directed. But why is the Obama administration — which can apparently distinguish those who send out drones from those who are blown up by them on the suspicion of employing terrorist violence — morally incapable of calling out Palestinian violence? After all, in the American case, we blow away suspects whom we think are likely terrorists; in the Israeli instance, they shoot or arrest those who have clearly just committed a terrorist act.

RELATED: The One-State Solution, Ctd.

Two reasons stand out.

One, Obama’s Middle East policies are in shambles. Phony red lines, faux deadlines, reset with Putin, surrendering all the original bargaining chips in the Iranian deal, snubbing Israel, cozying up to the Muslim Brotherhood, dismissing the threat of ISIS, allowing Iraq to collapse by abruptly pulling out all American troops, giving way to serial indecision in Afghanistan, ostracizing the moderate Sunni regimes, wrecking Libya, and setting the stage for Benghazi — all of these were the result of administration choices, not fated events. One of the results of this collapse of American power and presence in the Middle East is an emboldened Palestinian movement that has recently renounced the Oslo Accords and encouraged the offensive of edged weapons.

RELATED: The Obama Intifada

Mahmoud Abbas, the subsidized president of the self-proclaimed Palestinian State, and his subordinates have sanctioned the violence. Any time Palestinians sense distance between the U.S. and Israel, they seek to widen the breach. When the Obama team deliberately and often gratuitously signals its displeasure with Israel, then the Palestinians seek to harden that abstract pique into concrete estrangement.

Amid such a collapse of American power, Abbas has scanned the Middle East, surveyed the Obama pronouncements — from his initial Al Arabiya interview and Cairo speech to his current contextualizations and not-so private slapdowns of Netanyahu — and has wagered that Obama likes Israel even less than his public statements might suggest. Accordingly, Abbas assumes that there might be few consequences from America if he incites another “cycle of violence.”

RELATED: Palestinian Reasoning: Yield to Our Crazy Religious Intolerance or We’ll Kill You

The more chaos there is, the more CNN videos of Palestinian terrorists being killed by Israeli civilians or security forces, the more NBC clips of knife-wielding terrorists who are described as unarmed, and the more MSNBC faux maps of Israeli absorption of Palestine, so all the more the Abbas regime and Hamas expect the “international community” to force further Israeli concessions. The Palestinians hope that they are entering yet another stage in their endless war against Israel. But this time, given the American recessional, they have new hopes that the emerging Iran–Russia–Syria–Iraq–Hezbollah axis could offer ample power in support of the violence and could help to turn the current asymmetrical war more advantageously conventional. The Palestinians believe, whether accurately or not, that their renewed violence might be a more brutal method of aiding the administration’s own efforts to pressure the Israelis to become more socially just, without which there supposedly cannot be peace in the Middle East.

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But there is a second, more general explanation for the moral equivalence and anemic response from the White House. The Obama “we are the ones we’ve been waiting for” administration is the first postmodern government in American history, and it has adopted almost all the general culture’s flawed relativist assumptions about human nature.

Affluent and leisured Western culture in the 21st century assumes that it has reached a stage of psychological nirvana, in which the Westernized world is no longer threatened in any existential fashion as it often was in the past. That allows Westerners to believe that they no longer have limbic brains, and so are no longer bound by Neanderthal ideas like deterrence, balance of power, military alliances, and the use of force to settle disagreements. Their wealth and technology assure them that they are free, then, to enter a brave new world of zero culpability, zero competition, and zero hostility that will ensure perpetual tranquility and thus perpetual enjoyment of our present material bounty.

RELATED: There Is No God But Hephaestus — And Fire Is His Messenger

Our children today play tee-ball, where there are no winners and losers — and thus they are schooled that competition is not just detrimental but also can, by such training, be eliminated entirely. Our adolescents are treated according to the philosophy of “zero tolerance,” in which the hero who stops the punk from bullying a weaker victim is likewise suspended from school. Under the pretense of such smug moral superiority, our schools have abdicated the hard and ancient task of distinguishing bad behavior from good and then proceeding with the necessary rewards and punishments. Our universities have junked military history, which schooled generations on how wars start, proceed, and end. Instead, “conflict resolution and peace studies” programs proliferate, in which empathy and dialogue are supposed to contextualize the aggressor and thus persuade him to desist and seek help — as if aggression, greed, and the desire for intimidation were treatable syndromes rather than ancient evils that have remained dangerous throughout history.

Human nature is not so easily transcended, just because a new therapeutic generation has confused its iPhone apps and Priuses with commensurate moral and ethical advancement. Under the canons of the last 2,500 years of Western warfare, disproportionality was the method by which aggressors were either deterred or stopped. Deterrence — which alone prevented wars — was predicated on the shared assumption that starting a conflict would bring more violence down upon the aggressor than he could ever inflict on his victim. Once lost, deterrence was restored usually by disproportionate responses that led to victory over and humiliation of the aggressive party.

The wreckage of Berlin trumped anything inflicted by the Luftwaffe on London. The Japanese killed fewer than 3,000 Americans at Pearl Harbor; the Americans killed 30 times that number of Japanese in a single March 10, 1945, incendiary raid on Tokyo. “They have sown the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind” was the standard philosophy by which aggressive powers were taught never again to start hostilities. Defeat and humiliation led to peace and reconciliation.

The tragic but necessary resort to disproportionate force by the attacked not only taught an aggressor that he could not win the fight he had started, but also reminded him that his targeted enemy might not be completely sane, and thus could be capable of any and all retaliation.

Unpredictability and the fear sown by the unknown also help to restore deterrence, and with it calm and peace. In contrast, predictable, proportionate responses can reassure the aggressor that he is in control of the tempo of the war that he in fact started. And worse still, the doctrine of proportionality suggests that the victim does not seek victory and resolution, but will do almost anything to return to the status quo antebellum — which, of course, was disadvantageous and shaped by the constant threat of unexpected attack by its enemies.

Applying this to the Middle East, the Palestinians believe that the new American indifference to the region and Washington’s slapdowns of Netanyahu have reshuffled relative power. They now hope that there is no deterrent to violence and that, if it should break out, there will be only a proportionate and modest response from predictable Westerners.

Under the related doctrine of moral equivalence, Westerners are either unwilling or unable to distinguish the more culpable from the more innocent. Instead, because the world more often divides by 55 to 45 percent rather than 99 to 1 percent certainty, Westerners lack the confidence to make moral judgments — afraid that too many critics might question their liberal sensitivities, a charge that in the absence of dearth, hunger, and disease is considered the worst catastrophe facing an affluent Western elite.

The question is not only whether the Obama administration, in private, favors the cause of the radical Palestinians over a Western ally like Israel, but also whether it is even intellectually and morally capable of distinguishing a democratic state that protects human rights from a non-democratic, authoritarian, and terrorist regime that historically has hated the West, and the United States in particular — and is currently engaged in clear-cut aggression.

NRO contributor Victor Davis Hanson is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the author, most recently, of The Savior Generals.

Palestinian Muslims Eagerly Kneel to Smell Dead Terrorist’s Blood

lecter_palestine2b

Not only do you get 72 virgins, but great-smelling blood.

Frontpage, by Daniel Greenfield, Oct. 20, 2015:

3937304979The “Palestinian” experiment answers the question; what if you tried to turn an entire society into Hannibal Lecter. I defy any criminologist to tell the difference between a psychotic serial killer and a society where…

1. Postcards featuring the dead body parts of terror victims were sold

2. Exhibits recreate scenes of terrorist mass murders complete with blood and body parts

3. Crowds swarm to grab pieces of body parts of their victims and then show them off. (GRAPHIC)

4. Islamic clerics give very specific instructions on mutilating their Jewish victims

“Oh men of the West Bank, next time, attack in a group of three, four, or five. Attack them in groups. Cut them into body parts,” the preacher said.

During parts of the sermon, the religious leader wildly flailed his knife, screaming angrily at the top of his lungs.

“Form stabbing squads. We don’t want just a single stabber. Oh young men of the West Bank: Attack in threes and fours. Some should restrain the victim, while others attack him with axes and butcher knives,” the preacher instructed.

Nothing serial killer about that…

…. and now

5. Blood sniffing. Yes, blood sniffing. Because prior to this you could still somehow tell the difference between Hannibal Lecter and “Palestine.

An article in the official PA daily described a dead terrorist’s blood in romantic and poetic terms, presenting it as something Palestinians cherish. According to the PA daily:

“[Palestinians] insisted on inhaling the scent of the Martyr’s blood… The residents of Jerusalem, who waited to inhale the scent of the blood which was still on the ground and in the water which turned slightly red from it.”

This blood sniffing ritual has been brought to you by the American taxpayer, subsidizing the psychotic ravings of a mass murdering cult for decades. But Kerry would like both Israel and the PLO to “tamp down the rhetoric.”

The PA has reiterated the idea of the Martyr’s blood being pure and fragrant. During the PA terror campaign from 2000-2005 (the second Intifada), official PA TV broadcast a video hundreds of times aimed at children, presenting Martyrdom-death as an ideal. It repeated the verse: “How sweet is the fragrance of the Martyrs”:

But great smelling blood is another of the freebies Allah gives you when you kill non-Muslims. Not only do you get 72 virgins, but great-smelling blood.

The full Hadith mentioning the blood of the Martyr:

“The Messenger of Allah said: If anyone fights in Allah’s path as long as the time between two milkings of a she-camel, Paradise will be assured for him. If anyone sincerely asks Allah to be killed and then dies or is killed, there will be a reward of a martyr for him. Ibn al-Musaffa added from here: If anyone is wounded in Allah’s path, or suffers a misfortune, it will come on the Day of resurrection as copious as possible, its colour saffron, and its odour musk; and if anyone suffers from ulcers while in Allah’s path, he will have on him the stamp of the martyrs.” [Sunan Abi Dawud 2541, Book 15, Hadith 65]

If you kill people for Allah and get wounded, he will make your blood yellowish and make it smell really nice. Also there will be copious blood and Allah’s stamp on your ulcers. Or maybe Allah just gave you Hepatitis C.

These are the sort of crazy ravings that you expect to find in a notebook under a pile of corpses in a serial killer’s attic. But unfortunately it’s just Islam.

But wait, according to Hamas, there’s an even better type of blood than Muslim terrorist blood. Jewish blood.

So the Muslim terrorists need to get some of that Jewish blood in them… and then Allah will upgrade their blood to smell like musk. Nothing serial killer about this at all.

Let’s give these people a state. I can’t think of a single horrifying terrible thing that could happen as a result of that. Not one thing.

muslimvalues3

Also see:

U.S. Pays $400M for U.N. Agency Calling for Attacks on Israeli Jews

one-state-solution-palestinian-violenceNational Review, by Andrew C. McCarthy, October 17, 2015

The Obama Intifada

Palestinians improvise a barricade during clashes with Israeli troops near Ramallah, West Bank, Saturday, Oct. 10 / AP

Palestinians improvise a barricade during clashes with Israeli troops near Ramallah, West Bank, Saturday, Oct. 10 / AP

Washington Free Beacon, by Matthew Continetti, Oct. 16, 2015:

More than 30 dead in Israel as Palestinians armed with knives attack innocents. What’s responsible? A campaign of incitement, which slanderously accuses Jews of intruding on the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem and murdering Arab children in cold blood.

And who is legitimizing this campaign? None other than Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, whom President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have long held up as a peacemaker. “I think nobody would dispute that whatever disagreements you may have with him, he has proven himself to be somebody who has committed to nonviolence and diplomatic efforts to resolve this issue,” Obama told writer Jeffrey Goldberg in 2014.

That’s a strange view of commitment. This is the same Abbas, remember, who rejected then-Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s absurdly generous 2008 peace offer. The same Abbas who resisted negotiations with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during the 10-month settlement freeze in 2010, which Obama demanded explicitly on the grounds that it would give Abbas the cover he needed to begin talks. Abbas finally relented to Saudi pressure, and attended a few meetings with Netanyahu that September. But under no definition of what the word “negotiation” actually means were these meetings for real: The freeze was about to expire, the get togethers were perfunctory, and nothing of significance was discussed. The farce ended soon after.

It is a lie to say that Mahmoud Abbas is committed to a diplomatic resolution. Just as it was a lie when, the other day at Harvard, Secretary Kerry attributed the bloodshed to “a frustration that is growing” because of the “massive increase in settlements over the course of the last years.” As Elliott Abrams points out, there has been an increase in the population of the settlements, but not in their size. As if the settlements have any connection to what’s happening in the first place: The terror gripping Israel is the result of a Palestinian leadership so adrift and corrupt, so aggrieved and conspiratorial, that it encourages the radicalization of its youth and promotes an atmosphere of hatred and murder.

David Horovitz of the Times of Israel recounts the history. Not only did Abbas reject Olmert and Obama. He insisted in 2013 that the Palestinian “right of return,” which would irrevocably transform Israel into a bi-national state, be part of any deal. Declared in 2014 that Israel was committing “genocide” in Gaza. Announced in 2015 that the Palestinian Authority would no longer uphold previous agreements. Charged Israel, falsely, with infiltrating and violating Muslim sites. Encouraged Palestinians to lionize the knife-wielding assailants as martyrs, victims of Israeli “execution.” Spread the myth that 13-year-old Ahmad Mansara, recovering in an Israeli hospital from wounds he incurred in a botched terrorist attack—in which he critically wounded a Jewish teen—had been killed by an Israeli vigilante.

Concludes Horovitz: “The fact is that Abbas has quite deliberately fueled the flames of this latest Al-Aqsa-centered terror wave.”

And what has the United States done to stop him? Nothing. Not during this presidency. Obama’s focus has been laser-like when it comes to Israel’s missteps, Israel’s weaknesses, Israel’s moral code, and what he sees as Israel’s true interests. Abbas, on the other hand, is someone Obama has been content to puff up, placate, excuse, humor, ignore.

“I have to commend President Abbas,” Obama said during a bilateral meeting at the White House last year. “He has been somebody who has consistently renounced violence, has consistently sought a diplomatic and peaceful solution that allows for two states, side by side, in peace and security.”

In his interview with Goldberg, conducted around the same time, Obama added, “I believe that President Abbas is sincere about his willingness to recognize Israel and its right to exist, to recognize Israel’s legitimate security needs, to shun violence, to resolve these issues in a diplomatic fashion that meets the concerns of the people of Israel.”

But at that White House meeting, according to reports, Abbas explicitly rejected three key elements of any agreement: recognition of Israel as a Jewish State; renunciation of the right of return; and commitment to “end of conflict” language that would foreclose future Palestinian demands. As he has done with so many dictators, theocrats, and goons, the president offered an open hand—and was rebuked with a closed fist.

This rebuke was not met with forceful rhetoric, countermeasures, or a shift in policy to strengthen Palestinian institutions, develop Palestinian civil society, broaden and liberalize the Palestinian leadership. It was met with silence. The White House just looked the other way.

“My concern about Obama is that he never asks anything about the Palestinians. He gives them a complete pass,” says Ambassador Dennis Ross, a former Obama official whose new book Doomed to Succeed tells the story of the beleaguered U.S.-Israel alliance. “It makes it worse for the Palestinians. For the Palestinians, you have a political culture that is driven so much by this profound sense of victimhood and grievance—the idea that they should do anything towards the Israelis, they should make any accommodation towards the Israelis, is completely illegitimate.”

Why the pass? Jeffrey Goldberg says it’s because the Palestinians “have less power.” That’s no excuse. Another possibility: The president is occupied with Cuba, ISIS, Syria, Ukraine, and Iran. He doesn’t have the bandwidth to hold Mahmoud Abbas to the same standard as Benjamin Netanyahu.

But we know that’s not the case, either. The president has been more than happy to castigate Netanyahu all along. Can’t he say a few tough things about Abbas?

Obama won’t hold the Palestinians accountable because that might jeopardize his policy of daylight between America and Israel. A policy that was intended to improve U.S. credibility in the Muslim world and thereby denuclearize Iran, disarm and remove Bashar al-Assad, and establish a peaceful Palestinian state. A policy that has instead destabilized the region, formalized the Russian-Iranian-Syrian axis, enriched and empowered the Shiite theocracy, rattled our allies, and done nothing to curtail Palestinian intransigence.

Even the carrot Obama offered Israel as part of the Iran deal—interdiction of Iranian weapons to Hezbollah—has been exposed as an illusion. Russia has a no-fly zone in Syria and is arming Syrian regulars and presumably Hezbollah, too. How else to explain Netanyahu’s sudden visit to Moscow last month? Hezbollah with a nuclear umbrella was something the Iran deal was supposed to prevent. Now Hassan Nasrallah benefits from the Russian nuclear umbrella, in addition to the Iranian one that will be unfurled a decade hence. Great job Obama.

So here we are: Palestinians no closer to statehood, Israel terrorized, Jewish and Arab lives being lost, and an atmosphere so rife with revisionism and paranoia that the New York Times is questioning the history of Jews on the Temple Mount. All because President Obama forgot that daylight ends in darkness.

***

Published on Oct 15, 2015 by Pierre Rehov

By Pierre Rehov. http://www.middleeaststudio.com
According to most Palestinians, “Israeli Occupation” means Tel Aviv, Ber Sheva and Haifa, and for their leaders, Palestine should be built “From the River to the Sea”. Meaning, should replace Israel, from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.

In this disturbing film, “From the River to the Sea”, a revised version of “Hostages of Hatred” acclaimed director Pierre Rehov sets out to tell us the real story of those men, women and children, who have been shamefully used as mere pawns for over 50 years, by Arab leaders at first, by Palestinian leaders later on and until this very day but also by the United Nations’ body that was specially created to supposedly take care of them: the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, UNWRA.

Also see: