Saturday, February 06, 2010

Palestine is to Israel as Oz is to Kansas

Test Your Palestine IQ

Daniel Pinner (

Answer the questions but don't check them until you are finished.
Check your score at the end.

1. As is well known, Palestine is the Holy Land for Judaism,
Christianity, and Islam. Palestine's sanctity in Islam is expressed
in the fact that the Koran mentions Palestine:

a) 1,034 times;

b) 837 times;

c) 408 times;

d) 1 time;

e) never. 2. Jerusalem is the third holiest city for Islam (after Mecca and
Medina). In honour of this status, the Koran refers to Jerusalem as:

a) Al-Kuds ("The Holy");

b) Al-Medina al-Kuds ("The Holy City");

c) Urusalim ("Jerusalem");

d) Al-Kibla al-Awalani ("The First Direction ");

e) By no name, because Jerusalem is never mentioned in the Koran.

3. The Dome of the Rock, on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, is one of
Islam's holiest shrines. In accordance with this sanctity, Moslems
pray on the Temple Mount:

a) facing the Dome of the Rock;

b) in the north-west section, to face the Dome and Mecca

c) standing facing the Dome of the Rock, kneeling facing Mecca;

d) facing the Dome of the Rock for certain prayers, Mecca for others;

e) kneeling facing Mecca, their backsides towards the Dome of the

4. The Jewish claim to the Holy Land is that God promised it to them.
Moses - the Jewish national leader - is quoted as saying: "O my
people! Remember the bounty of God upon you.and gave you that which
had not been given to anyone before you amongst the nations. O my
people! Enter the Holy Land which God has decreed for you". This
speech of Moses is recorded in:

a) the Book of Exodus;

b) the Book of Isaiah;

c) the Talmud;

d) the Midrash;

e) the Koran (Sura 5:20-21).

5. In popular literature, historical discussions, political debates,
and other forums, the Palestinians' standard claim is that they are:

a) the descendants of the Biblical Philistines (a European tribe
originating in Crete, who invaded the Holy Land in the early Biblical

b) the continuation of the Biblical Canaanites (a Hamatic tribe, in
perpetual warfare against the Philistines);

c) the descendents of the earliest Christians (i.e. Jews);

d) an integral part of the Arab nation (a Semitic nation originating
in Arabia, and entirely unconnected to the Philistines, the
Canaanites, and the Jews);

e) all of the above.

6. In the period of history that Palestine was an independent
country, its capital city was:

a) Jerusalem;

b) Jaffa;

c) Haifa;

d) Ramallah;

e) meaningless, because there was never in history an independent
country called Palestine, so it never had a capital city.

7. The earliest mention of a place called Palestine in history is:

a) in the Hebrew Bible, in the Book of Genesis, when God commanded
Abraham to go to Palestine;

b) in the Hebrew Bible, in the Book of Joshua, when the Israelites
conquered Palestine;

c) in a stone plaque dating from about 600 BCE, commemorating the
Babylonian conquest of Palestine;

d) in the New Testament;

e) in the year 135 CE, after the European Roman invaders defeated the
Jewish revolt in Judea, and re-named the province Palestine.

8. "There is no such country ! 'Palestine' is a
term the Zionists invented! There is no Palestine in the Bible.
'Palestine' is alien to us."

Who said these words?

a) Golda Meir, Prime Minister of Israel, in a speech to the American
Zionist Organisation, 1972;

b) Moshe Dayan, Minister of Defence of Israel and former Chief of
Staff of the Israel Defence Forces, addressing the General Staff,

c) Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of Israel, in his election
victory speech, 1996;

d) Abba Eban, Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations, in a speech
in 1981;

e) Auni Bey Abdul-Hadi, a local Arab leader, addressing the British
Peel Commission, 1937.

9. "The 'Palestinian People' does not exist. The creation of a
Palestinian state is only a means for continuing our struggle against
the State of Israel."

Who said this?

a) Egyptian dictator, President Gamal Abdul Nasser, addressing the
Egyptian parliament, a month after the Six Day War, July 1967;

b) Jordanian King Hussein, a week before the Six Day War, May 1967;

c) Syrian dictator, President Hafez al-Assad, addressing the Arab
League, 1994;

d) Iraqi dictator President Saddam Hussein, addressing the Iraqi
nation in a televised speech, 2002;

e) Zahir Muhsein, executive member of the PLO, in an interview with
the Dutch newspaper Trouw, March 1977.

10. On the eve of Israel's independence in May 1948, approximately
600,000 Arabs lived in the areas that would soon become the State of
Israel. When the War of Independence was over (March 1949), 150,000
Arabs were still there. This is why the UNRWA (United Nations Relief
Works Agency) officially recognized that the number of Arab refugees

a) 450,000;

b) 600,000;

c) 850,000;

d) 1,000,000;

e) 1,300,000.

11. In June 1982, the Israel Defence Forces entered south Lebanon to
fight against the PLO, which had invaded Lebanon in 1975. The total
population in southern Lebanon was about 400,000, of whom vast numbers
- perhaps as many as 10% - fled northwards to escape the fighting.
UNIFIL (United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon) officially estimated
the number of refugees as:

a) 40,000;

b) 80,000;

c) 120,000;

d) 250,000;

e) 600,000.

12. The Palestine National Covenant (the constitution of the PLO)
states that "Palestine, with the boundaries it had during the
British Mandate, is an indivisible territorial unit" (Article 2).
77% of this "indivisible territorial unit" is today:

a) the State of Israel, and the remaining 23% is Judea and Samaria
(the "West Bank") and Gaza;

b) Israel (including Judea, Samaria, and Gaza, i.e. the "occupied
territories"), and the remaining 23% are the border areas of various
neighbouring Arab states;

c) Judea, Samaria, and Gaza (the "occupied territories"), and the
remaining 23% is divided between Israel and Jordan;

d) Judea, Samaria, and Gaza, and the remaining 23% has been annexed
to the State of Israel;

e) The Kingdom of Jordan, and the remaining 23% is Israel (including
Judea, Samaria, and Gaza).

13. As its name suggests, the raison d'etre of the PLO (Palestine
Liberation Organisation) is to liberate Palestine. Accordingly, the
PLO has fought to establish its independent state in:

a) the whole of Israel, starting with Judea, Samaria, and Gaza (the
"occupied territories");

b) sovereign Israel alone, rejecting any claim to Judea, Samaria, and
Gaza (prior to the Six Day War);

c) Jordan (in the late 1960s and early 1970s)

d) Lebanon (from the mid-1970s until 1982);

e) All of the above.

14. The PLO's purpose, as they and their supporters make clear, is
to liberate the "occupied territories" which Israel captured in
the Six Day War (5th-10th June 1967). This claim is proven by the
historical fact that the PLO was founded:

a) in Ramallah, the biggest city in the West Bank, a month after the
Six Day War;

b) in Gaza City, which has traditionally been a centre of Palestinian
nationalism, on the first anniversary of the Six Day War;

c) as a response to the establishment of the first Israeli settlement
in Hebron in 1969;

d) on the 10th anniversary of the Six Day War, in June 1977, in

e) 3½ years before the Six Day War, on 1st January 1964, in Cairo
(the capital of Egypt).

15. In the 25-year period 1950-1974, the Arab countries (including
Iran) donated a total of $26,476,750 in aid to Palestinian refugees,
representing 0.04% (i.e. $1 out of every $2,500) of their combined oil
revenue for 1974 alone. The only country in the entire Middle East
which gave no aid at all to Palestinian refugees was:

a) Israel;

b) Iran;

c) Libya;

d) Jordan;

e) Algeria.

16. Israel has often been accused of "ethnic cleansing" of the
Arabs in the "occupied territories". The demography bears this
out, because the Arab population of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza has:

a) plummeted from 6,500,000 in 1967 to 3,000,000 in 2009;

b) plummeted from an estimated 5,000,000 in 1967 to less than
2,000,000 in 2009;

c) remained steady at 3,000,000, despite huge natural growth in the
rest of the world;

d) increased at one tenth of the pace of natural population growth;

e) increased from about 750,000 in 1967 to an estimated 3,700,000 in
2009, a population growth of nearly 500% in barely more than a
generation, which is one of the highest rates of increase anywhere in
the world.

17. Israel has also been accused of "ethnic cleansing" of Arabs
who are citizens of the state, and deliberately enforcing policies
designed to keep the Arab population small. This, too, is shown by the
demography, in that the Israeli Arab population has:

a) dropped from slightly over 1,000,000 (40% of the overall
population) in 1948 to 750,000 (20% of the population) in 2009;

b) remained at a steady 1,000,000 from 1948 to 2009, while the
overall population has increased seven-fold;

c) increased from 500,000 in 1948 to 1,000,000 in 2009, representing
a drop from 35% of the overall population to just 12% in 58 years;

d) decreased steadily by 2% per year from 1948 onwards;

e) increased from 150,000 (15% of the overall population) in 1948 to
about 1,420,000 (22% of the overall population) in 2009.

18. As of 2009, there are five universities (the Islamic University
of Hebron; Bir Zeit University; Bethlehem University; Al-Najah
University in Shechem ; and Al-Ahzar in Gaza), and five
religious higher education academies, throughout the "occupied
territories". These institutes are:

a) all that remain of 25 institutes of higher education, the others
having been destroyed by the Israeli occupation forces;

b) some of the oldest in the Arab world, with the Islamic University
of Hebron having been founded under the original Caliphate in the 8th

c) forced to operate secretly, because the Israeli authorities have
banned them;

d) barely tolerated by the Israeli authorities;

e) all founded since the Israeli "occupation" of 1967, under
Israeli auspices, the oldest one being the Islamic University of
Hebron, founded in 1971.

19. Since the Israeli "occupation" of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza in
1967, nine Palestinians have been sentenced to death by the courts and
judicially executed, and scores - probably hundreds - more have
been executed in extra-judicial killings. All of them, without
exception, were executed:

a) by the Israeli military occupation authorities;

b) by the Israeli Army after military courts-martial;

c) by the Israeli civil administration, following criminal trials in
civilian courts;

d) by Israeli civilian courts, acting under special emergency

e) since September 1993 by the Palestinian Authority in the
autonomous zones, because Israel, alone in the Middle East, does not
use the death penalty.

20. In early October 2005, an estimated 650 people charged the
security fence/separation barrier, and an estimated 350 succeeded in
crossing it. Security forces responded with bayonets, shotguns, and
rubber bullets, killing between ten and fifteen people and injuring
dozens more. This incident was given minimal media attention, and has
been entirely forgotten, because:

a) the world media is biased in Israel's favour;

b) a dozen Palestinians killed is so commonplace, it is not even

c) the Israeli authorities imposed a media blackout;

d) Jewish settlers intimidated the journalists and photographers into

e) the incident occurred along the security fence in Morocco,
separating sovereign Morocco from the Spanish Sahara, and the security
forces in question were Spanish.


Every a) is worth 1 point; every b) is worth 2 points; every c) is
worth 3 points; every d) is worth 4 points; every e) is worth 5

Now add up your score. If your score is 20, then you answered a) to
every question. This means that you got every single answer wrong, and
that you are politically correct and base your ideas of the Middle
East on standard anti-Israel and pro-Arab propaganda lies rather than
on the truth. Since you are more concerned with Israel-bashing than
truth, and since you parrot every canard peddled by pro-Arab
propagandists, you are ideally suited to become a European career
diplomat accredited to the Middle East, or a BBC or CNN reporter, or a
journalist for Haaretz.

If your score is between 21 and 99, then you might have a more open
mind than others, and you might know slightly more than the average
media report contains. You might be interested in studying more on the

If your score is 100, then you answered e) to every question. This
means that you got every answer right. This suggests that you have a
good, solid knowledge of the issues involved and are uninfluenced by
propaganda. Be careful: people infected by independent and honest
thought tend to become targets of Islamic terrorists and their
left-wing cohorts. At the very least, they get demonized as
"right-wing fanatics".

If your score is below 20 or above 100, this means that you cannot
count properly. Why not consider a career as the Secretary General of
the United Nations?

Children of Jewish Holocaust Survivors (CJHS)

A Freeze of Jewish Construction in Judea and Samaria

Leslie Sacks

Obama and the Europeans demand a freeze on Jewish construction in the West Bank, in Judea and Samaria. Mahmoud Abbas (aka Abu Mazen) and the Arab League require such a freeze to even consider further negotiations with Israel.
By all means, let’s support a freeze - a comprehensive, simultaneous freeze on all sides. Let us freeze the settlements but also freeze the Arab world’s (including the Palestinian Authority’s) continued rejection of Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state within - at a minimum - the 1967 borders.

Freeze the settlements (located on less than 5% of the West Bank) – Yes! But let's also freeze:
- The hate education in the schools, universities and mosques of Palestine;
- The anti-Semitic propaganda so rife amongst the Muslim world’s media;
- The suicide bombings, and the sanctification of (and even pensions for!) the bombers;
- The continuing rocketry from Gaza into Israel's southern civilian areas;
- The gun smuggling in Gaza, Hamas’ attempts to kidnap more Israelis, and its murder of suspected Palestinian collaborators;
- The expulsions and discrimination against Christians and other minorities in the West Bank and Gaza;
- The continuing disenfranchisement of and economic discrimination against Palestinian refugees by their Arab “brothers” in the countries surrounding Israel;
- The buildup of more than 40,000 rockets in Hezbollah-controlled Southern Lebanon;
- The charters of the PLO, Hamas and Hezbollah, all of which advocate the destruction of Israel and the decimation of its Jewish population.

We could keep freezing many injustices, many absurdities that contribute to the current state of war, to the oppression of much of the populations on all sides. A great idea: let's support a partnership of moderates rather than obstructionists, appeasers and unilateralists. But let's put all in the same pot - let's freeze settlement construction for as long as all parties to peace negotiations do the same and freeze their multitudinous intransigencies.

The day they stop, the day their freeze fails the acid test, the quid-pro-quo - that is the day Israel starts building again.

What could be more balanced and fair? What could be more logical and pragmatic? Realism at its purest. No preconditions - just total transparency. Let all parties put their money where their mouths are.

Let's see who signs on. Let's see who in fact wants real progress, which sides have any sincere interest in peace.

Published on Family Security Matters

Friday, February 05, 2010

Reserve Generals Sign Petition Supporting Struggle Against NIF

Gil Ronen Generals Against New Israel Fund

Senior reserve officers signed a petition Wednesday supporting Im Tirtzu's struggle against the organizations supported by the New Israel Fund that besmirched the IDF

"We deplore the false claim by 16 Israeli NGOs that the IDF carried out war crimes during operation Cast Lead,” the petition's text said. In fact, it said the IDF “was making superhuman efforts to avoid hurting innocent civilians. We therefore call upon the entire public to support us and strengthen the IDF and its commanders. The signatories include the former Head of the National Security Council, Maj. Gen. (res.) Giora Eiland; former Head of Southern Command, Maj. Gen. (res.) Doron Almog; former Head of Ground Forces Command, Maj. Gen. (res.) Yiftach Ron-Tal; former Head of the National Security Council and Deputy Chief of Staff, Maj. Gen. (res.) Uzi Dayan; former Head of Personnel Branch Maj. Gen. (res.) Elazar Stern; former Military Secretary to the Minister of Defense, Maj. Gen. (res.) Yakov Amidror, former Navy Commander, Maj. Gen. (res.) Micha Ram, former Head Artillery Officer and President of Industrialists' Federation Brig.-Gen. (res.) Oded Tira.

They added their signatures to that of Im Tirtzu's chairman and founder, Ronen Shoval, as did former UN Ambassador Dr. Dore Gold; former diplomat Yoram Etinger; former Chief of Police, Lt. Gen. (res.) Assaf Chefetz and others.

Meanwhile, artists and writers signed a petition in which they expressed their “disgust with the campaign of incitement” against the New Israel Fund.

The signatories include author A. B. Yehoshua, playwrights Yehoshua Sobol and Edna Mazia, sculptor Danny Caravan, as well as actors, journalists and academics.

Transformation of Ruins- A Gush Katif Wedding

The pinnacle of the wedding celebration comes not at the end of the party, rather at the beginning
Those of you who’ve been reading my postings over the years might remember my strong bonds to Gush Katif, and particularly to Kfar Darom. Every once in a while, for one reason or another, I find myself flipping through photos of that I took, prior to its destruction. It is very difficult to view the pictures; my guts begin churning and sometimes it’s even worse. The displacement of so many people, the abandonment of our land, and the catastrophic consequences, culminating in 8,000 rockets fired into Israel, the Gaza War, and of course, the present challenges of Goldstone were so totally unnecessary. All of these results were predicted, time and time again, before the expulsion, but were totally ignored by Sharon and Co. It is still beyond comprehension. Our best friends at that time at Kfar Darom, then like family (and today with an actual family connection), was the Sudri family. We met Noam and Tali Sudri about 12 years ago, when our oldest daughter Bat-Tzion fulfilled her year of Sherut Leumi, National Service, at Kfar Darom, as a volunteer, working at the Agricultural Institute and also with the children in the community. The Sudris became Bat-Tzion’s adopted family, and they became very close. We too met them and their children, and began spending summer vacations in that “Garden of Eden,” and also Shabbat weekends with the Sudris.

A few years later they introduced another one of our daughters, also doing her volunteer service at Kfar Darom, to Tali’s younger cousin. Not too long after meeting they became engaged and married, making us ‘one of the family.’

Amost five years ago I spent Kfar Darom’s last Shabbat with Noam and Tali, their family, and everyone else who showed up. It was a Shabbat, just like any other Shabbat, but really it wasn’t. We all dined together, sang Shabbat songs, spoke Torah; but during Shabbat morning worship, prayers not normally recited on Shabbat were said; no they weren’t said, they were heart-wrenching pleas to G-d to somehow prevent the annihilation. On Shabbat a person is not permitted to mourn, yet I don’t believe there was a dry eye in the packed synagogue. Kfar Darom’s Rabbi, Avraham Schrieber, (now dean of the Yeshiva High School where my son studies, in Ashdod) spoke, saying ‘none of us know where we’ll be next Shabbat…’. Yet his voice did not quiver, rather it was filled with conviction and faith.

The next Shabbat Kfar Darom’s refugees filled a hotel in Beer Sheva.

Of course we’ve remained in contact with Noam and Tali and their family over the years. Since the expulsion they’ve lived in a temporary Kfar Darom, in a large apartment building in Ashkelon. Not quite the house they lived in, but at least it’s a roof over their heads. They’ve only been waiting almost five years for commencement of construction of their new ‘permanent homes’ in Nir Akiva, in southern Israel. Despite a multitude of promises, the deal still hasn’t been finalized. So they are forced to spend the ‘reparations’ received following the expulsion on rent in Ashkelon.

Their oldest daughter Tamar was the subject of at least one article I wrote following the expulsion. I also have an interesting photo of her, dressed all in orange. Last year, Tamar was a tour guide for Midreshet Hevron in Kiryat Arba, carrying out her year of national service.

And now I have another photo of Tamar, dressed all in white. Last night she married a wonderful man named Oneg, who studies Torah in Kiryat Gat.

The wedding was a particularly emotional event. Of course all weddings are. But this one even more so. Firstly due to the bond we have with the family of the Kalah, the bride. But on another level, also. Much of Kfar Darom’s residents were present, many of whom I hadn’t seen in quite some time. Knowing that they are still suffering because of the inconceivable stupidity of the Israeli government and the continuing turtle-speed saga of resettlement is extremely distressing.

The pinnacle of the wedding celebration comes not at the end of the party, rather at the beginning. Under the chupa, the wedding canopy, the chatan, the groom, places the ring on his new wife’s finger and then the Sheva Brachot, the seven blessings traditionally recited, accompanied by joyous singing by those present, almost completes the ceremony. But Jewish smachot, festivities, do no not end there. At each and every wedding the chatan repeats the age-old verse: If I forget thee O Jerusalem, let my right hand wither, let my tongue cleave to my palate, If I do not remember you, If I do not place Jerusalem above my highest joy. (Psalms 137:5-7) The chatan, in symbolic remembrance of the destruction of the Temple, then breaks a glass, stomping his leg down on it.

It is also customary to place ashes removed from Temple Mount, remnants from the ruins of the Beit HaMikdash, on the Chatan’s forehead. Last night the officiating Rabbi put ashes on Oneg’s forehead from the ruins of Jerusalem, and also remains from the ruins of Kfar Darom in Gush Katif.

Despite the elation of the wedding ceremony, the poignancy of the moment was heartbreaking. At most chupas the only emotion expressed is bliss. Last night, as those vestiges from Kfar Darom were placed under Oneg’s kippah, and the audience recited, together with the Chatan – ‘Im Eshkachech Yerushalayim’ – ‘If I forget thee O Jerusalem,’ I believe that even the Kallah was silently weeping. It was hard not to.

But then, with the breaking of the glass, and the resounding Mazal Tov echoing through the hall, happiness prevailed. The singing and dancing erased those few melancholy moments.

Tamar and Oneg will undoubtedly continue the tradition of building a “new house in Israel.” It is said that he who brings joy to a Chatan and Kallah is as if he were adding one stone to the rebuilding of Jerusalem. Last night, all those present, and most especially, the Chatan and Kallah, did not only begin the renewal of Jerusalem; they also commenced on a journey which will, with G-d’s help, lead them back to Gush Katif, to Kfar Darom and to the transformation of the ruins left in the sand to a beautiful, thriving, community, atoning for the horrid transgression committed by Israel almost five years ago.

Mazal Tov!

With blessings from Hebron,
David Wilder

Visit Hebron (English) (Hebrew)

Tel:Israel # 972-52-429-5554
US # - 1-347-725-0325

Your Federation Dollars Hard at Work: American Jews fund anti-Israel organizations

Samuel Sokol and David Bedein

A U.S. organization has been receiving money from perhaps unsuspecting Jewish donors to support blatantly anti-Israel groups.

American Jews wishing to donate money to Israeli causes routinely utilize local city Jewish federations as a middleman. Hundreds of millions of dollars per year are sent to Jewish federations across the country with the expectation contributions will be used to aid worthy causes in Israel. Many U.S. Jewish federations as well as individual Jewish donors give to the New Israel Fund, or NIF, a Washington, D.C.-based foundation dedicated to fostering social change and progressive causes in Israel.

The NIF budget comes from a combination of donors. These include the Ford Foundation, grant organizations such as the Jacob and Hilda Blaustein Foundation and the Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies, as well as various Jewish communal federations such as the Jewish Federation in New York, the Durham-Chapel Hill Federation and the Jewish Federation of Grand Rapids.

However, while many of the programs run by the NIF are considered laudable in the pro-Israel community, such as work the group does with economically disadvantaged Ethiopian immigrants, the flagship grantees of the NIF are Israeli-Arab nongovernmental organizations that openly and unabashedly dedicate themselves to removing the Jewish character of the state of Israel.

The NIF disperses hundreds of thousands of dollars for the core budgets of such groups as Adalah: The Legal Center for Minority Arab Rights in Israel, Mossawa: The advocacy center for Arab citizens in Israel and I'lam media center for Arab "Palestinians" in Israel.

Supporting Iran's nukes

I'lam was founded in the wake of the Palestinian intifada, or terrorist war, initiated in September 2000 after then-PLO Leader Yasser Arafat turned down an Israeli offer of a state in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and eastern Jerusalem.

The first director of I'lam was Hanin Zoabi, recently elected as a member of the Israeli Arab Balad Party in the Knesset. Zoabi's party spawned Azmi Bishara, the Israeli Arab Knesset member who fled Israel after he was threatened with prosecution for allegedly aiding the Hezbollah terrorist organization. Balad officials routinely condemn Israel and at times openly present themselves as representing the state of "Palestine."

In April, in Zoabi's maiden interview to the Jerusalem Post as a Knesset member, she declared her open support for Iranian nuclear weapons as a counterbalance to Israel.

Zoabi, in her capacity as the director of I'lam, helped draft and sign the Haifa Declaration, which called for the negation of Israel's Jewish identity and for a "comprehensive change in Israeli policy, whereby Israel abandons its destructive role towards the peoples of the region. …"

In March, I'lam's so-called empowerment coordinator, Zaher Boulos, issued a "cry of solidarity with the Palestinian people who hold strong to the establishment of a Palestinian state that is independent with Jerusalem as its capital and the return of the refugees to their homes" at the annual conference of the Forum of Journalists, an I'lam affiliate of which he is also coordinator.

The conference expressed "support for the Palestinian people in their struggle for the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital and the return of refugees."

Also in March, I'lam issued a press release stating Israel cannot "liquidate the fact that Jerusalem is the capital of Arab culture and will be the future capital of a Palestinian state, and tomorrow will be the focal point of the Arab and Islamic world and the progressive forces in the world."

The terminology in I'lam's media publications resounds with terms such as "massacre" and "ethnic cleansing," as well as accusations of war crimes and the targeted murder of journalists.

Last year, the NIF-funded organization held a conference in Ramallah with journalists from the Palestinian Authority which "aimed to develop and facilitate working relationships between Palestinians journalists in Israel and in the West Bank, and to discuss the role of the Palestinian media on both sides of the Green Line" as well as "exploring strategies for Palestinian media practitioners in addressing Israeli, European and U.S.-American media."

I'lam's official statements are representative of the rhetoric employed by some of the NIF's grantees.

I'lam posted on its website a statement declaring, "The (Israeli) soldiers are the grandchildren of the Nazis' victims, the Nazis' survivors. They have come here to consume food quickly and consume life quickly. This is the true image of Israel."

The statement was made in the context of accusing Israeli soldiers of a "massacre" against Palestinian civilians.

The connection of I'lam to the PA is reflected by its current staff.

Sanaa Hammoud, the current director of I'lam, was a senior official of the PA's Negotiations Support Unit in Ramallah and served in Jerusalem as a senior communications adviser for the Palestinian leadership.

Wadea Awawdy, who served on the founding board of directors of I'lam, worked as a correspondent for the official PA publication Al-Ayyam, which routinely prints anti-Israel propaganda.

I'lam's international relations coordinator, Nasser Victor Rego, has issued numerous statements of support for Hamas, terming the Islamist group "The Palestinian resistance," while providing a link on his blog to the website of Hamas' armed wing, the Essedeen Al-Qassam Brigades.

Nasser also has called on the international community to boycott Israel.

Rego would not return calls to comment on the issue.

In addition to receiving funds from the NIF, I'lam is also a grantee of Al-Quds: Capital of Arab Culture, which works under the auspices of both the PA and the Arab League.

Among other charges laid against Israel in materials distributed by I'lam are allegations that the Hebrew media contains, "Encouragement for killing and destruction."

Other anti-Israel groups

Also supported by the NIF is Adalah, which defines itself as a non-partisan human rights organization. However, its agenda differs significantly from its self-definition.

Jerusalem-based researcher Arlene Kushner, in her study of Adalah published by the Center for Near East Policy Research entitled "Inside Adalah," finds that "in various venues – including the Durban U.N. conference on racism – Adalah has charged or participating in charging Israel with grave breeches of international humanitarian law, war crimes, willful killing, racism, apartheid [and] ethnic cleansing."

Adalah takes the position that the Israeli government is a "junta which proves each day that it is the most fascist and racist in history."

In 2007, Adalah proposed a constitution for Israel in which immigration of Jews would be banned except for "humanitarian reasons." With its demand for the right of return for so-called Palestinian refugees, Adalah sees Israel's future as one with an Arab majority, which would create another predominantly Arab-Muslim state.

Another group funded by the NIF is Mossawa. Last month, Mossawa and fellow NIF grantee Coalition of Women for Peace wrote to the Norwegian government and asked "the Norwegian people to join us in our efforts and to stop investing in the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory."

Naomi Paiss, director of communications for the NIF, declined to comment for this report.


Thursday, February 04, 2010

Prof. Aumann: Freeze is Immoral and Stupid

Malkah Fleisher, Yoni Kempinski
A7 News

( Professor Robert J. "Yisrael" Aumann, the Israeli who won the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2005 for his work on conflict and cooperation through game-theory analysis, thinks Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is not working game-theory to Israel's advantage. Professor Aumann is an Orthodox Jew who immigrated to Israel from the United States in 1956.Speaking to INN TV's Yoni Kempinski about Prime Minister Netanyahu's 10-month building freeze in Judea and Samaria, Professor Aumann said "I think it's a very, very bad idea."

Professor Aumann went on to say he does not believe anyone – Jew or Arab – should be expelled from his home. He also said he is not opposed to making certain concessions to the Arabs if concessions are also given by them to Israel.

However, he felt strongly that the building freeze is not an instance of appropriate diplomacy. "It's not only immoral, it's stupid!" Aumann said. "It's stupid… because it says to the Arabs, 'you can continue to be intransigent and we will make one gesture, one capitulation after another.' We're giving the wrong signal."

"Just as Chamberlain gave the wrong signal to Hitler in Munich and Chamberlain brought about the Second World War – not Hitler, but Chamberlain brought about the Second World War, made it possible by his capitulation to Hitler in Munich – by sending a signal of weakness, we are encouraging intransigence and in fact, war, on the part of the Arabs. It's simply stupid," Aumann said.

He strongly chastised Israel for making unilateral moves in 2005 which were harmful to Jews and were not met with simultaneous moves towards peace from the Arabs. He called the Disengagement from the Jewish cities of Gush Katif in Gaza "immoral" and "criminal", and accused the Supreme Court of hypocrisy in allowing the program to take place, when it would "never have allowed, and rightly so, to expel even a few Arab famlies from their homes."

Let's play 'what if'

Karni Eldad

Assume for a moment that you are a Palestinian parent. Assume (really, let your imagination run free) that you are a Palestinian parent who wants peace. You would presumably want to educate your children in the same spirit. So how difficult is it, if it is even possible, for parents who live in the Palestinian Authority today to educate toward nonviolence, tolerance, recognition of the State of Israel and peace? Sports are generally considered a good thing - a challenging, healthy activity. And that is certainly true of sports tournaments for children. A PA soccer tournament could be both fun and educational - if it were not named for the terrorist Dalal Mughrabi. She is the one who perpetrated the bloody attack on Israel's coastal highway in 1978, which killed 37 Jews.

According to Palestinian Media Watch, a celebration was held on Palestinian television to mark this terrorist's 50th birthday, sponsored by PA President Mahmoud Abbas himself. The event included a party at which a youth orchestra played in Mughrabi's honor. For the last two years, the PA has also run a summer camp named after this "martyr" (no, not Hamas, the PA - the good guys). Abbas funded a computer center named after her, and recently, a square in Ramallah was named for her as well, with Abbas' full backing. How heartwarming.
The PA and its leader, Abbas, are for some reason considered partners in the dream of peace between us and them. But peace, if it is to be true and lasting, must be based on the desire and trust of both sides.

For some time now, the PA, and even this newspaper, have been claiming that the Palestinian Authority does not incite against Israel. That is partly true. What you find on television, in textbooks, on posters and in public statements is not incitement; incitement is something superficial, something easily pushed aside by the next bit of incitement to come along. What is happening in the PA is systematic education, brainwashing that poisons the minds of its children - or rather "your children," as the U.S. secretary of state once said in commenting on the issue.

If two PA schools are named after the arch-murderer Mughrabi, what will be implanted down the road in the subconscious of the children who attend them? That murdering Jews is a good thing, which brings you honor. If Palestinian television describes Palestine as extending "from Gaza and Ashkelon in the south to Haifa and, further north, Acre," if children are told that Tiberias is an important Palestinian city and Lake Kinneret a Palestinian water source, if Jaffa is called "Palestine's gateway to the world," what will your children understand from this? That there is no Israel. It doesn't exist.

In quiz shows on PA television and crossword puzzles in PA newspapers, children know the right answers to questions such as "Which is Palestine's most important port - Acre, Jaffa or Haifa?" Other questions include: "Name three states that border Palestine" (the correct answer is Egypt, Lebanon and Jordan) and "What is the area of the state of Palestine?" The correct answer to that one is 27,000 square kilometers - a territory that encompasses the entire area between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River, including the entire State of Israel. It is clear from the questions, of course, that the state of Palestine already exists. And so on and so forth.

Your efforts to educate your children toward tolerance and acceptance of the neighboring Jewish entity are doomed to failure from the start.

It is your word against the brainwashing inculcated by the schools, the television programs, the crosswords, the teachers, the textbooks, the songs. So what can you do? And how?

PM: Peace talks could resume in weeks

04/02/2010 01:59

Seven years after then-prime minister Ariel Sharon unveiled his Gaza disengagement plan at the Herzliya Conference, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu took the same podium Wednesday evening and delivered what he said was a call for the engagement of the country with Jewish heritage, Zionism and history. “Here in the land of our fathers, which is also the land of our children and grandchildren, in order to determine our fate we need to strengthen our collective efforts in three primary spheres: security, economy and education,” Netanyahu said.

But before turning to those matters, especially education and linking the youth to Israel’s history, he addressed diplomatic matters, perhaps feeling an obligation to do so because that is generally the subject discussed by prime ministers at the final session of the Herzliya Conference.

“I have reason to hope, realistically, that in the next few weeks we will renew the peace process with the Palestinians, without preconditions,” Netanyahu said. “I have been saying now for a long time that among the international community there is recognition that Israel wants and is prepared to renew the diplomatic process. And once this recognition emerged among the central players in the international community, the practical preparations for this step are also ripening.”

In an apparent reference to “proximity talks,” the idea broached recently by US Middle East envoy George Mitchell whereby talks would begin with him shuttling between the two sides, Netanyahu said that while the customary phrase is “it takes two to tango,” in the Middle East, “sometimes it takes three to tango, or at least to begin to dance. Afterward we will be able to engage in a couple’s dance.”

Netanyahu said that if the Palestinians demonstrated the will not only to build up the Palestinian economy and institutions, but also “peace itself, then we will see the beginning of the process in the coming weeks.”

One senior diplomatic source, however, said it was unlikely that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas would renew negotiations until after the next Arab League summit, scheduled for the end of March in Libya. The hope is that this summit would give him the green light to return to talks.

Netanyahu, speaking at the concluding session of the four-day conference, said that Israel would need to continue strengthening the IDF.

“The weak do not survive in the difficult geographic region in which we find ourselves,” he said. “And peace is not made with the weak. I want to make clear that our security needs will increase over the next decade, and in my mind over the next two decades.”

Netanyahu said that Israel’s defense needs required it to have a strong, growing economy. But, he said as a segue to the main part of his address, a strong army and economy were not enough to ensure the country’s existence; it also needed a commitment from the people to be here, and an understanding of why they are here.

And this, he said, depended on education.

The educational basis so important for the country’s strength and existence, he said, was not only math, English and reading comprehension, but also the strengthening and deepening of “all of our connection to each other and this place.”

“I think that this type of education begins with the Book of Books, it begins with the Bible,” he said, adding that “this is a subject close to my heart these days.”

On Tuesday his youngest son, Avner, won the Jerusalem Regional Bible Quiz for state schools, and will now go on to participate in the National Bible Quiz at the end of the month.

Netanyahu said that the education so critical for the existence of the state starts with the Bible and runs through all of Jewish history up to the Zionist present.

“A nation must know its past to ensure its future,” he said, then adding a quotation from Yigal Alon that a nation that does not know its past will find that neither its present nor future are secure.

“The guarantee for our existence is dependent first and foremost on the knowledge and national consciousness that parents and the educational system impart to our children,” he said.

During an address which prime ministers have used in the past to discuss high policy, Netanyahu quite simply called on the youth, and the nation, to go out, walk the land and discover the country.

He said that in less than a month his government would launch an initiative to restore and preserve historic landmarks, as well as develop two new trails alongside the popular Israel National Hiking Trail (Shvil Yisrael).

One of these new trails will concentrate on historic archeological landmarks, and another will focus on places of historic interest to the “Israeli experience,” – a trail he called a “living Eretz Yisrael museum.”

Preempting questions about why he chose to talk about these matters at the Herzliya Conference, Netanyahu said – to applause – that “sometimes small steps lead to big things.”

"We worked until we collapsed"

Daniel Ben-Tal

A doctor with the Israeli delegation tells ISRAEL21c what it was like to try to save as many lives as possible in Haiti, after the devastating earthquake. An unexpected call up: Dr. Ian Miskin, an infectious disease specialist, joined the Israeli delegation to Haiti in the wake of the earthquake.

Dr. Ian Miskin, one of Israel's foremost infectious disease specialists, admits it will take time for him to fully internalize his experiences in post-earthquake Haiti. For two weeks he was totally immersed in aiding rescue missions and treating survivors rescued from the rubble.There were some uplifting experiences, he says, such as when he helped to treat a child who had been rescued after being trapped under debris for a full week, but he also witnessed many deaths. It was like nothing he had seen before.

"It was an unexpected call-up," the 53-year-old British-born doctor, who has lived in Israel since age 14, tells ISRAEL21c "A colleague in infectious diseases asked if I wanted to go. I called my wife [who is a pediatrician] and she said yes, so I went. Within two hours I was on the list. We met at five o'clock that evening at Tel Hashomer Hospital for a briefing, then I went home to prepare and early the following morning turned up with two weeks' worth of clothes. We all had [immunization] shots, heard a lecture about the situation and were briefed about the operation."

Miskin, who spends about a month each year in uniform as an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) doctor in the reserves, knew only two members of the delegation beforehand. "We were introduced to each other then got to work. Eighty percent were soldiers serving in the standing army. I was one of about a dozen reservists. Somehow, within 24 hours all the equipment was loaded on a jumbo for the long flight. By the time we arrived at the airport, we were really tired."

The 200-strong team used the 16-hour flight on an El Al plane to recharge its batteries. "The first-class section was set aside for sleeping. We originally planned to fly to Santa Domingo - only two hours out we learned that we could land in Port-au-Prince."

Working till they dropped

On arrival, they rapidly set up camp in a soccer field not far from the airport. "We had no food, and made a kabalat Shabbat [Jewish ritual for welcoming the Sabbath with bread and wine] with two pitas and a glass of grape juice. We went to sleep at seven then were woken at midnight to unload the jumbo, which had just arrived. By 10:30 the following morning the first patient arrived - there was no time for an opening ceremony. From that point on, we worked non-stop, at full capacity."

According to Miskin, on a professional level, the team learned much from the experience. "We made plans in advance - some worked out, some didn't. To set up a field hospital was the correct decision. It was the only one in Haiti for five days. We also had a pretty sophisticated patient identification system - each patient was photographed on arrival and had an electronic record of his treatment that went with him."

Miskin has nothing but praise for his colleagues. "They wouldn't set a time when they would finish their shifts - they just worked until they collapsed. We had 40 doctors, 20 nurses and 20 medics and paramedics with us. People were doing things that weren't their job - when the eye doctor finished treating his patients he manned the gate. Everyone helped each other. People were looking out for each other all the time, seeing who needs help."

There is still much work for international aid missions to do in Haiti, Miskin says, adding that there is a growing problem of infections among survivors, which often lead to endemics and widespread diarrhea.

"There are still a huge number of maimed people out there - everything was infected. People who were severely crushed often died because their kidneys packed in - there was nothing we could do. Those who had wounds on their torsos died."

Who decides who lives or dies

"On the last day we were working, the Monday, we saw 150 patients. We closed at 4pm, but then, after the last patient had already been admitted, a little girl came up. She was given a local anesthetic and we operated on her."

The medical staff found itself confronted with issues of medical ethics. "Obviously, we had a problem that we couldn't treat everyone, and someone had to make life-and-death decisions. Because we thought it was important, we set up ad-hoc, three-doctor ethics committees. Nobody else foresaw the problem - it was something we found we had to do. It's something that only Israelis would think of - doing it together."

The mission worked in less-than-ideal conditions. "The scary part was the first days - we had almost nothing to eat, no shower, no way to sleep properly. We slept in pup tents, but it was so hot and humid, so damp. Everything you left outside was soaked... our electricians set up satellite telephone lines to Israel so that we could call home, but because of the work load, we often didn't have five free minutes to call home."

He notes the importance that was attached to maintaining the team's health - both physical and psychological, so that its members would have the strength to give their all. "We had a psychiatrist and psychologist with us - we all needed that help. There was a huge amount of stress - and remember, many of the group were 20-year-olds. We just worked until we dropped. I've never seen anything like it. There was a huge amount of pressure on every member of staff."

The team's commanders insisted that their charges take time off. "Three hours in the shade on the beach - everyone went there once. There was even a list to make sure that everyone went. Rest is important. Also, everyone went out into the city at least once to see what was going on.

Israelis first on the scene

"It was very hard work. In time, we were joined by a Colombian surgery theater, working side-by-side. They also worked their asses off. The Colombians were terrific. They brought us drugs and equipment we'd run short of, such as a blood analyzer. A group of Canadian nurses also helped, and there were some Haitians who spoke Creole. I used my basic French to communicate with patients. The American civilian hospital also took a little of the load off us," says Miskin.

The Israeli response to the crisis received a tremendous amount of praise, which some commentators described as "disproportionate." Miskin responds drily: "The advantage of the Israeli delegation was that we got there first. Haiti is the poorest country in the western world. All the buildings collapsed, and there was rubble everywhere. That's what you're starting from.

"The operation was so well organized because it's the army, which can muster people within hours. Every morning at seven we held a morning parade. There were 30 majors, 10 lieutenant colonels and three full colonels in the team - but that didn't matter."

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

"Gang of 54" Congressmen Slammed for Censuring Israel

Hana Levi Julian
A7 News

An American-Israeli action group has strongly criticized a group of 54 U.S. Congress members for accusing Israel of inflicting “collective punishment” on the residents of Gaza.

Harvey Schwartz, chairman of the nonprofit American Israeli Action Coalition (AIAC), called the Congress members' charge “preposterous,” and said it “amounts to nothing more than outright, outrageous Israel-bashing." The AIAC is a nonprofit organization based in Jerusalem that represents the more than 250,000 U.S. citizens living in Israel.

The 54 lawmakers, all Democrats, called on President Barack Obama in a recent letter to pressure Israel into lifting its blockade on Gaza. The letter charged that “the blockade imposed by Israel... following Hamas' coup and particularly following Operation Cast Lead [imposed de facto collective punishment... of the residents of the Gaza Strip.”

“Nowhere do the 'Gang of 54' point out that there has not been an Israeli in Gaza ever since the Israeli disengagement from there 5 years ago,” Schwartz added. He said that the major exception was the defensive counter-terrorist Operation Cast Lead carried out by the IDF against Hamas terrorists in January 2009.

“Nor did they mention that the well-being of Gaza's population is solely the responsibility of Hamas – which they elected in 2007 – [a not Israel. The financial assistance given to Gaza by numerous European countries, as well as hundreds of millions of dollars in aid pledged by the United States, has been used by Hamas either to further its terrorist activities or to line the pockets of its leaders, rather than to provide for the needs of Gazans,” Schwartz said.

Schwartz was joined in the statement by AIAC director Aaron Tischwell, who called on American-Israelis in Israel and the U.S. to contact the White House “and the Gang of 54” to make their voices heard on the issue.

One Signatory Steps Away, More or Less

At least one of the signatories to the letter, U.S. Representative Yvette Clarke (D-NY), has apparently withdrawn her signature, change her political attitude when the issue hit a little closer to home. A long-standing representative of the Brooklyn community of Crown Heights, Clarke recently joined a photo-op snapped with Brooklyn Jewish community leaders who had gathered donations for the earthquake-stricken people of Haiti.

“We all see the swift and expert work of Israeli doctors and rescue teams on the ground almost immediately following the 7.0 earthquake,” she told reporters covering the event at the time. “The Jewish response to the pain of others is legendary -- and today's gathering is a continuation of the special heart the Jewish community always shows in times of crisis.”

The dissonance was striking, noted Jewish leaders, between Clarke's warm praise for Israel's aid in Haiti – an island which represents the origin of a huge segment of her voter constituency – and her signature on the letter censuring Israel's blockade of the terrorist-controlled region of Gaza.

In a followup, a group of Jewish community activists and top local and national Jewish community leaders met earlier this week with the Congresswoman to question her about the matter, according to Yeshiva World News.

The result was an “open letter” issued by Clarke's office disavowing her signature on the letter accusing Israel of collective punishment in Gaza. The open letter also disavowed her participation in another letter she had co-signed in support of the Goldstone report. The second letter came out against last November's Congressional resolution calling on U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to unequivocally oppose the United Nations' Goldstone Report accusing Israel of guilt in committing war crimes in Gaza.

“These letters are uneven in their application of pressure and do not sufficiently present a balanced approach/path to peace,” Clarke wrote in her new letter. The Congresswoman claimed that the two earlier letters did not “reflect [he record with regards to Israel” and “have a provocative and reactionary impact, as they do not provide a complete, and therefore accurate, picture of the situation.”

'Goldstone tried to incriminate Israel'

03/02/2010 13:08

Berlusconi tells Knesset members world "cannot accept" a nuclear-armed Iran. Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi lashed out at the Goldstone report on Wednesday during a special session at the Knesset, saying that the report tried to "incriminate Israel for its legitimate response" to Palestinian terrorists' rocket attacks.

The Italian leader also had strong words to say against Iran, arguing that the world "cannot accept" a nuclear-armed Iran and defended the Jewish state's much-criticized war against Hamas in Gaza last year.

Berlusconi expressed hope that Israel and the Palestinians would soon resume peace talks.

From the podium of the Knesset, Berlusconi called on the international community to pursue stronger sanctions against Teheran, which Italy, like Israel and the West, suspects is developing nuclear weapons.

"We cannot accept the nuclearization of a country whose leaders have explicitly expressed their desire to destroy Israel, have denied the Holocaust and delegitimized the Jewish state," Berlusconi said, in remarks translated into Hebrew simultaneously.

"We cannot make compromises," he said. "The path that must be taken is multilateral oversight, negotiations and sanctions" against Iran.

Berlusconi has repeatedly criticized the Islamic Republic during his three-day visit to Israel. On Tuesday, he announced that Italy had cut business ties with Iran by a third since 2007, noting that Italian energy giant ENI has decided not to extend an existing contract to develop an important oil field in Iran.

Berlusconi's speech before lawmakers, an honor bestowed on few world leaders, was a sign of the friendship between the two nations that has grown much closer under his stewardship.

The Italian leader drew a warm round of applause when he declared: "We, the free and liberal people across the world, thank you (Israel) for your very existence."

Before Berlusconi spoke, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hailed him "as a courageous leader who always stands by Israel's side."

He concluded a speech filled with praise for Berlusconi with a story of a heavily pregnant Italian woman who confronted a German officer during World War II and, at great peril to her own life, persuaded him to let an arrested Jewish woman go.

This woman's actions "saved the life of the Jewish woman and cast, if only for a brief moment, a scintilla of humanity and courage upon the great darkness that enveloped the whole of Europe at that time," Netanyahu said.

"That courageous woman's name was Rosa. And one of her children is called Silvio Berlusconi, today the prime minister of Italy," the prime minister said.

Netanyahu concluded his remarks by telling Berlusconi that, "We appreciate you. We embrace you. We love you.”

The two men embraced, and the Italian leader took out a white handkerchief to wipe tears from his eyes.

Wednesday marked the second anniversary of Rosa Bossi Berlusconi's death.

Opposition leader Tzipi Livni (Kadima) also spoke at the Knesset,, welcoming Italy's continued support of Israel. "When Israel is facing difficult times, it sees those who remain silent, ignore, or criticize - as well as those who are doing the right thing without hesitation or vacillation, and you are one of the few who has expressed, in a clear and strong voice, the deep cooperation between Italy and Israel."

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Silvan Shalom: Fayyad Obstacle to Peace, Wants to Replace Abbas

Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
A7 News

Deputy Prime Minister Silvan Shalom told the Herzliya Conference on Monday that Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Fayyad’s about-face is "an obstacle to peace," and occured because he is currying favor with Fatah with the goal of replacing Mahmoud Abbas.
“Fayyad would like to replace Abbas and wants the support of activists in Fatah," Shalom said, "and that is why he is not willing to engage with Israel even though he knows this would help the PA economy."

Fayyad began his term as Prime Minister eager to cooperate with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s plan for “economic peace” that would provide the PA with stability to support an independent state in the future. But, Shalom said, Fayyad’s attitude has recently changed for the worse. “I have met with him many times, and he was willing to make moves for peace," Shalom told the annual conference on national affairs. "He has changed his attitude because he is under pressure for not being part of Fatah and for being suspected of being an American agent.”

The Vice Prime Minister pointed out that Fayyad (at left in ) recently appeared at a bonfire where he helped burn tens of thousands of dollars ophotof Jewish goods from Judea and Samaria, stating that the PA is boycotting them. “He knows that 25,000 Arabs work in Judea and Samaria, so something else is behind this move,” Shalom explained.

He also revealed that he recently met with a PA trade minister, who was immediately forced to quit, indicating a general refusal by Fayyad as well as Abbas to resume talks with Israel.

Shalom charged that the PA is “putting on a front of making concessions without making any real ones. What needs to be done is for the Americans to say to them, ‘Do you want peace or just the process?’

“I think it is too late. The PA does not want anything positive.”

Inappropriate Use of the Fourth Geneva Convention

February 2, 2010 | Eli E. Hertz

In advising that Jewish settlements are illegal, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) went beyond its own mandate from the General Assembly without being asked to do so.

In paragraph 120 of the Court's opinion [Advisory Opinion July 9 2004), the ICJ declares:

"The Court concludes that the Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (including East Jerusalem) have been established in breach of international law."

The ICJ based its conclusion on the inappropriate use of an article of the Fourth Geneva Convention which stipulates:

"The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies." Once the ICJ has 'established evidence' that the West Bank and Gaza are unlawfully occupied territories, it then applies this status to the Fourth Geneva Conference de jure, stating in paragraph 120 of the opinion that:

"As regards these settlements, the Court notes that Article 49, paragraph 6, of the Fourth Geneva Convention provides: 'The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.' [italic by author]

"In this respect, the information provided to the Court shows that, since 1977, Israel has conducted a policy and developed practices involving the establishment of settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, contrary to the terms of Article 49, paragraph 6, just cited." [italics by author]

One can hardly believe this baseless ICJ assertion that Israel used "deportation" and "forced transfer" of its own population into "occupied territories."

The Court unlawful attempts to broaden the definition of Article 49 to possibly 'fit' some wrong doing on the part of the State of Israel, all with no authority or reference to law, adding:

"That provision prohibits not only deportations or forced transfers of population such as those carried out during the Second World War, but also any measures taken by an occupying Power in order to organize or encourage transfers of parts of its own population into the occupied territory." [italics by author]

In the above conclusion, the ICJ fails to disclose the content of the "information provided" (information the Court based its decision on), and the anonymous 'authorities' that provided such. Anyone interested in the subject at hand is aware of the difficulties the Israeli Government faces in its decision to relocate some Israeli settlements out of the "Territories," a fact that seems to be contrary to the "information provided" to the ICJ.

Professor Stone touches on the applicability of Article 49 of the Geneva Convention. Writing on the subject in 1980:

"That because of the ex iniuria principle, Jordan never had nor now has any legal title in the West Bank, nor does any other state even claim such title. Article 49 seems thus simply not applicable. (Even if it were, it may be added that the facts of recent voluntary settlements seem not to be caught by the intent of Article 49 which is rather directed at the forced transfer of the belligerent's inhabitants to the occupied territory, or the displacement of the local inhabitants, for other than security reasons.) The Fourth Geneva Convention applies only, according to Article 2, to occupation of territory belonging to 'another High Contracting Party'; and Jordan cannot show any such title to the West Bank, nor Egypt to Gaza.".

Support to Stone's assertion can be found in Lauterpacht's writing in 1968:

"Thus Jordan's occupation of the Old City-and indeed of the whole of the area west of the Jordan river-entirely lacked legal justification; and being defective in this way could not form any basis for Jordan validly to fill the sovereignty vacuum in the Old City [and whole of the area west of the Jordan River]."

Professor Rostow concludes that the Convention is not applicable to Israel's legal position and notes:

"The opposition to Jewish settlements in the West Bank also relied on a legal argument - that such settlements violated the Fourth Geneva Convention forbidding the occupying power from transferring its own citizens into the occupied territories. How that Convention could apply to Jews who already had a legal right, protected by Article 80 of the United Nations Charter, to live in the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, was never explained."

It seems that the International Court of Justice "never explained" it either.

For more on the subject see:

Monday, February 01, 2010

"Jews are the enemies of Allah and humanity" "The Prophet says: 'Kill the Jews'"

"Even if donkeys would cease to bray, dogs cease to bark,
wolves cease to howl and snakes to bite,
the Jews would not cease to harbor hatred towards Muslims."

By Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik

A sermon calling for the genocide of Jews was broadcast Friday by PA TV, which is under the control of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas. The speech called the Jews the enemies of God and humanity, and compared Jews to Nazis.

In a recent interview with the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Abbas proudly declared that there is no more incitement in the mosques:
"They [Israel] said there is a problem with incitement in speeches in mosques
during Friday prayers. Today there is no more incitement at any mosque," he
[Abbas] said." [Haaretz, Dec. 16, 2009] The following is the transcript of excerpts of the hate speech in a mosque broadcast on PA TV:

"The loathsome occupation in Palestine - its land and its holy places - by these new Mongols and what they are perpetrating upon this holy, blessed and pure land - killing, assassination, destruction, confiscation, Judaization, harassment and splitting the homeland - are clear proof of [unintelligible word - Ed.] hostility, of incomparable racism, and of Nazism of the 20th century. The Jews, the enemies of Allah and of His Messenger, the enemies of Allah and of His Messenger! Enemies of humanity in general, and of Palestinians in particular - they wage war against us using all kinds of crimes, and as you see - even the mosques are not spared their racism...

"Oh Muslims! The Jews are the Jews. The Jews are the Jews. Even if donkeys would cease to bray, dogs cease to bark, wolves cease to howl and snakes to bite, the Jews would not cease to harbor hatred towards Muslims. The Prophet said that if two Jews would be alone with a Muslim, they would think only of killing him. Oh Muslims! This land will be liberated, these holy places and these mosques will be liberated, only by means of a return to the Quran and when all Muslims will be willing to be Jihad Fighters for the sake of Allah and for the sake of supporting Palestine, the Palestinian people, the Palestinian land, and the holy places in Palestine. The Prophet says: 'You shall fight the Jews and kill them, until the tree and the stone will speak and say: 'Oh Muslim, Oh servant of Allah' - the tree and the stone will not say, 'Oh Arab,' they will say, 'Oh Muslim'. And they will not say, 'Where are the millions?' and will not say, 'Where is the Arab nation?' Rather, they will say, 'Oh Muslim, Oh servant of Allah - there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.' Except for the Gharqad tree [tree mentioned in the Quran - Ed.], which is the tree of the Jews. Thus, this land will be liberated only by means of Jihad..."
[PA TV (Fatah), Jan. 29, 2010]

Comment: No political correctness here and then of course they know this resonates in their culture and society. Only in the West does PC exist to the detritment of its own civilization.

PA Sheikh: Jail for Arabs Who Work with Jews

Hillel Fendel PA Sheikh Issues Severe Ruling

The supreme spiritual authority of the Palestinian Authority, Sheikh Taisar Tamimi, rules that Arabs who work in Jewish construction are traitors and must be imprisoned. The ruling also includes Arabs who take part in archaeological digs by the Israel Antiquities Authority in eastern Jerusalem, or who work with other Jewish organizations in the old city of Jerusalem. It goes even further by forbidding Arabs to do business or work with “settlers” - Jewish residents of Judea, Samaria or eastern Jerusalem.

Sheikh Tamimi is the President of the PA’s Sharia Moslem religious courts. His fatwa, or religious edict, gives special emphasis to the archaeological digs on the Temple Mount, and accuses Israel, once again, of seeking to uncover traces of the First and/or Second Holy Temples under the Temple Mount.

Tamimi said that the above “traitors to Islam and to their homeland” must be punished with “severe and difficult prison sentences,” as these construction and archaeological works are designed only to “Judaize Jerusalem.”

It is not clear how the ruling will be enforced, as Jewish construction and business provides sustenance to many Arabs in the area.

Last August, Tamimi condemned Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, as well as "all Jewish rabbis and extremist organizations,” for lying and asserting that Jerusalem was a Jewish city. This, despite the fact that a Waqf pamphlet from 1925 boasts proudly that the Temple Mount once housed Solomon's Temple.

Al-Tamimi nearly caused an international incident last May when he disrupted Pope Benedict XVI's interfaith meeting in Jerusalem with a vicious verbal attack on Israel. .

'PA funds, endorses anti-fence protests'

31/01/2010 04:02

Concern growing of new wave of popular resistance.
Talkbacks (9)

The Palestinian Authority is funding and even participating in violent demonstrations against the construction of the West Bank security barrier, defense officials said on Thursday, warning that if not controlled the protests could escalate into a new wave of a Palestinian resistance.

The IDF has noted a growing presence of PA government officials at the weekly demonstrations north of Modi’in Illit, in Bil’in, Na’alin and near the settlement of Neveh Tzuf (Halamish), where a top PA official was spotted two weeks ago. According to information obtained by Israel, the escalation and funding has been endorsed by the PA’s President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Salam Fayyad.

“We have reason to believe that the PA is supporting and funding these demonstrations,” one official said. “We are afraid that this will spin out of control.”

IDF sources described the Friday demonstrations as violent, noting that more than 100 Israeli security personnel have been injured in the past two years.

“They throw rocks and sharp objects,” one source said. “Once the demonstrators see that they have the PA’s support, they are encouraged to act violently.”

While the IDF is not concerned that a third intifada will begin – due to the tight grip it has on Palestinian territory and the effective crackdown by PA security forces on Hamas infrastructure – there is concern that the new wave of violence could develop into a new conflict and undermine efforts to restart negotiations. Abbas has in the past publicly endorsed the idea of a popular protest.

“There are about 2,000 people who participate weekly in these demonstrations,” the military source said. “While this is a minute percentage of the Palestinian population in the West Bank, it could grow and undermine all of our efforts to ease restrictions in recent years.”

The IDF is cracking down on the organizers behind the protests and on Thursday morning arrested Muhammad Khatib, a member of the Popular Committee against the Wall from Bil’in and the coordinator of the Popular Struggle Coordination Committee.

IDF sources said that Khatib was arrested because he had failed to sign in every Friday at a nearby police station, as ordered by an Israeli court following an earlier arrest.

Khatib’s arrest, his Web site said, was the most “severe escalation in a recent wave of repression again the Palestinian popular struggle and its leadership.”

Khatib, the site claimed, was the 35th resident of Bil’in to be arrested on suspicions related to the Friday protests.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Dershowitz Slams Goldstone: "He's An Evil Man"

Hillel Fendel Dershowitz
A7 News

Following his scathing critique of the Goldstone Report, for which Israel is preparing a response, Harvard Law School’s Professor Alan Dershowitz calls Goldstone an “evil man.”

Speaking with Army Radio on Sunday morning, Dershowitz said that Goldstone – whose report to the United Nations on Israel’s anti-terrorism Operation Cast Lead accused Israel of war crimes – “is a traitor using his Jewishness to malign Israel… He is an evil man, one who allowed himself to be used against the Jewish people, an absolute traitor.” In his internet-publicized analysis of the Goldstone report, Dershowitz wrote that it is “much worse than most of its detractors (and supporters) believe. It is far more accusatory of Israel, far less balanced in its criticism of Hamas, far less honest in its evaluation of the evidence, far less responsible in drawing its conclusion, far more biased against Israeli than Palestinian witnesses, and far more willing to draw adverse inferences of intentionality from Israeli conduct and statements than from comparable Palestinian conduct and statements.”

Goldstone’s report, Dershowitz wrote, “is worse than any report previously prepared by any other United Nations agency or human rights group. As Maj.-Gen. Avichai Mandelblit, the advocate general of the Israeli Defense Forces, aptly put it: ‘I have read every report, from Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the Arab League. We ourselves set up investigations into 140 complaints. It is when you read these other reports and complaints that you realize how truly vicious the Goldstone report is. He made it look like we set out to go after the economic infrastructure and civilians, that it was intentional: It’s a vicious lie.’”

Methodology Worse than Conclusions

Dershowitz said that though the conclusions are harmful and unfavorable to Israel, it is Goldstone’s “methodology, analysis and substantive findings” that should be criticized. Dershowitz wrote that he has offered to debate Goldstone about his findings, but that Goldstone “has refused, as he has generally refused to respond substantively to credible critics of the report.”

Different Standards for Israel, Hamas

Prof. Dershowitz chiefly targets two aspects of the report. One is the fact that it uses different criteria for judging Hamas actions and Israeli actions: “Its writers applied totally different standards, rules and criteria in evaluating the intent of the parties to the conflict.” For instance, when faced with doubts about various incidents, in Israel’s case they were resolved against Israel, “concluding that its leaders intended to kill civilians,” while doubts regarding Hamas activities were resolved in favor of Hamas, “concluding that it did not intend to use Palestinian civilians as human shields.”

“Moreover, when it had precisely the same sort of evidence in relation to both sides - for example, statements by leaders prior to the commencement of the operation - it attributed significant weight to the Israeli statements, while entirely discounting comparable Hamas statements. This sort of evidentiary bias, though subtle, and perhaps not readily apparent to the non-legal reader, permeates the entire report.”

The Goldstone report also “takes a completely different view regarding the inferring of intent from actions. When it comes to Israel, the report repeatedly looks to results and infers from the results that they must have been intended. But when it comes to Hamas, it refuses to draw inferences regarding intent from results. For example, it acknowledges that some [Hama combatants wore civilian clothes, and it offers no reasonable explanation for why this would be so other than to mingle indistinguishably from civilians. Yet it refuses to infer intent from these actions.”

Conclusions are Wrong

Secondly, Dershowitz writes that the two central conclusions reached in the report are “demonstrably wrong.” The report’s two conclusions are that 1) Israel used the 8,000 Hamas rocket attacks on its citizens as an [excu for the real purpose of the operation, which was to target innocent Palestinian civilians for death, and 2) Hamas was not guilty of deliberately and willfully using the civilian population as human shields. It found “no evidence” that Hamas fighters “engaged in combat in civilian dress,” “no evidence” that “Palestinian combatants mingled with the civilian population with the intention of shielding themselves from attack,” and no support for the claim that mosques were used to store weapons… As we will see, the report is demonstrably wrong about both of these critical conclusions.”

Dershowitz told Army Radio that he feels Israel should respond to the report by conducting its own inquiry, by a committee headed by a former Supreme Court judge.

He said that he and Goldstone were friends and colleagues for a long time, “but now I see him as a traitor… It’s as if they would have taken a Jew to edit the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. He uses his Jewish last name to kosher his slander of the Jewish People.”