Saturday, April 30, 2011

A Declaration of War

Ari Bussel

“To Israel’s enemies I have only one thing to say—HISS OFF!” Norma Zager

When a country’s enemies actively attempt to destroy it by any means possible, would one not expect the country to fight back?

Israel’s track record in that respect is dismal at best. Excuses aside, for eight long years, Israel’s “neighbor” Gaza (today’s Hamastan) was constantly bombarding her towns, cities and agricultural communities with rockets. Israel allowed the barrages to go on and on until finally fed up, at the end of 2008 and beginning of 2009 she embarked on Operation Cast Lead.As a result, she was accused of war crimes by a United Nations body that officiated an inquiry into Israel’s alleged wrongdoings under the leadership of Judge Richard Goldstone.

Still today rockets and missiles are continually launched and Israel is not taking these attacks seriously enough. She is unwilling or unable to face the root of the problem and the road she must travel to treat it.

Israel’s situation to the North is bleak. While Israel may claim that the situation is “calm” or even “under control” and that a “deterrent has been achieved,” that assessment is far removed from reality. Hezbollah is more armed than ever before and is able, if desired, to bring life in Israel to a standstill.

The Second War in Lebanon in 2006 highlighted the precarious condition of Israeli military. Many improvements have been initiated since under the leadership of the capable former Chief of Staff Ashkenazi. Yet, the enemy has not wasted time either, and if its threat was real in 2006, it is considerably greater in 2011.

Her enemies to the North and South, both cronies of Iran, who have coordinated and been able to learn and implement new terrorist methods from one another’s mistakes and successes, await a green light to attack. Additionally, Israel now faces a more stealth enemy in the guise of the Palestinian Authority.

Known as the “PA” it is a front for Hamas, posing and speaking to the outside world in a way much more palatable than “we are committed to destroy you.” Much leeway is therefore accorded the “PA,” turning one’s head when it burns Israeli products, when it actively engages in official sponsored incitement against Israel and even when its own bylaws call for the extinction of the Jewish State.

Article 12 of the Fatah Constitution sets the following goal: “Complete liberation of Palestine and eradication of Zionist economic, political, military and cultural existence.” To achieve this goal, Article 17 provides the following method: “Armed public revolution is the inevitable method to liberating Palestine.” And article 19 explains: “Armed struggle is a strategy and not a tactic, and the Palestinian Arab People’s armed revolution is a decisive factor in the liberation fight and in uprooting the Zionist existence.”

They furthermore promise (ibid) “and this struggle will not cease unless the Zionist state is demolished and Palestine is completely liberated.” So much for peace promises and a frightening look at the true intentions of Israel’s closest neighbors.

The “PA” is the West’s favorite, most commiserated child. People the world over cry over the plight of the “Palestinians,” when the latter enjoy the fastest growth anywhere in the world (higher even than China’s). It is a world gone crazy with make belief, where stories are embellished, facts never quite meet reality and their intention is one, and nothing but one: the Destruction of the Jewish State.

The PA latest maneuver is one of the smartest in history, taken directly out of Israel’s textbooks. Modern Israel was born out of a UN vote in November 1947. The Palestinians are now going to duplicate that very same action.

The goal, objectives, strategy and tactics are clearly spelled out. In fact, the “PA” is focused around the clock on the upcoming September meeting of the General Assembly of the United Nations. There, the Palestinians will disclose that their leadership has been deciduously working on the establishment of a nation from the bottom up, its institutions and all manners of existence. The member nations will then be told that now it is time to recognize Palestine with Jerusalem as its capital. Like a chorus they are then expected to repeat: “Amen!”

Preparatory work is in full swing, with members of the “PA” traveling the world over to ensure their request is accepted without a glitch. All indications, according to the accord with which their emissaries are received, are that the mission will be successful. They are already treated like royalty and accepted de facto as an independent country.

The world seems to ignore one simple fact: Palestine can only rise on the ruins of the only Jewish state. Possibly, this is exactly what everyone wishes.

What is Israel to do? There are conflicting opinions. Some call for the annexation of part of Judea and Samaria, while others urge the Prime Minister to work for the establishment of a Palestinian state. These are nothing but what in engineering may be called NOISE. September will arrive, Palestine will be a fait accompli and Israel will face new, insurmountable challenges.

The Palestinians are engaged in an extremely stealth war. The world continues to participate in their game, while Israel ignores its existence and thus does not fight back.

Unlike the Second War in Lebanon, the Goldstone Report or the Turkish Terrorist Flotilla, this time around national commissions of inquiry or regret-in-retrospect will not work. The process is irreversible.

Israel must face reality and fight for her life. She must find the will and the determination to prevail. But the battle must begin without any further delay, lest we find a new Middle Eastern reality in which Israel is a bygone notion.

The series “Postcards from America—Postcards from Israel” by Ari Bussel and Norma Zager is a compilation of articles capturing the essence of life in America and Israel during the first two decades of the 21st Century.

The writers invite readers to view and experience an Israel and her politics through their eyes, Israel visitors rarely discover.

This point—and often—counter-point presentation is sprinkled with humor and sadness and attempts to tackle serious and relevant issues of the day. The series began in 2008, appears both in print in the USA and on numerous websites and is followed regularly by readership from around the world.

© “Postcards from America — Postcards from Israel,” April, 2011


First Published April 23, 2011

Friday, April 29, 2011

The West should not be fooled by Syria

Fiamma Nirenstein
published in Il Giornale, April 28, 2011

Today, as the Syrian unrest continues, we are forced to acknowledge our weakness and to measure the lies of Realpolitik. Indeed it's worth quoting President George Bush: “... the horrors of dictatorships remind us that at the end of the day, no dialogue is possible with bullies.” After Rafiq Hariri's assassination in 2005, the Bush administration broke up all ties with Syria; following that decision, the State Department launched a wide finance campaign aimed at helping secular Syrian dissidents and their projects, including an anti-Assad satellite TV. But later on Bashar Assad started his big game, playing simultaneously ‘at once the arsonist and the fireman’, just as Fouad Ajami writes.

But it's time to be honest and to admit that we - the West, the US who sent back its ambassador to Syria, the EU that called Assad to start peaceful talks with Israel, the UN that might let him have a seat in the Human Rights Council – it's time to tell ourselves honestly that we wanted to see only 'Assad the fireman'. After so many killings, America now starts talking of personal sanctions on the Assad family (not a big deal). Meantime the US ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, told publicly something really worth mentioning: the United States can prove that among Syrian security forces, the same that are perpetrating a mass killing of civilians, there are many Iranian emissaries. The governments of Italy, France, United Kingdom, Germany and Spain have summoned the Syrian ambassadors and the EU is expected to gather an high ranking meeting in the following days to discuss potential sanctions against Assad's regime. Meanwhile, another of the very few initiatives of the EU nations, i.e. a resolution in the Security Council, has been defeated by Russian, Chinese and Lebanese opposition.

But one the most interesting of all the useless reactions to the Syria slaughter is the call by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon to the Human Rights Council to take a position. Yet Syria is still a candidate for the vacant Libyan seat in the HRC. Ban Ki Moon, requested to express his opinion on this contradiction, answered that this is not his business. Since Syria is one the four Asian countries entitled to one seat in this UN body, without a veto on the nomination, Syria could get its aim, while Syrians are slaughtered in the streets.

The UN should do whatever is necessary to save Syrians, reaffirming 'the responsibility to protect', the same principle that has led the UN Security Council to approve the 1973 resolution, and allowed Nato to wage war against Muammar Gheddafi. But Robert Gates, while still US Secretary of Defense, in a joint statement with his British counterpart, Liam Fox, has stated that the situation in Syria is far different from that of Libya. And even though the international community has responded to Gheddafi's brutality with military means, it certainly won't do the same in confronting Assad.

This is the kind of weakness revealed by this UN indifference for democracy and human rights; the same unfortunate deviation we witnessed on massacres like Darfur and Tibet. And this tells the truth about the real reasons inspiring most of the approved Security Council resolutions: political interests. Gheddafi is a bizarre dictator, his ferocity is unquestionable but his strategic value is poor, it is not critical for our and Middle East future. And after all, when he started to shoot his own people, we certainly had to stop him.

Syria is a completely different story. This country is the core of Iranian power in the Middle East, a hub for deadly terrorist groups. Syria is the mother of Hezbollah, the father of Hamas. It borders with Israel and dreams to destroy it. It borders with Iraq and has sent there its anti-American terrorists. As a matter of fact, Syria still occupies Lebanon even though Assad withdrew his troops few years ago, and it shares a very long border and a complicated relations with Turkey, that refuses to condemn the Syrian regime.

Bashar Assad knows that the Sunni majority of his country - where the Alawites are a tiny Shiite minority - keeps a vivid memory of 1982 Hama massacre, where 20,000 Muslim Brothers were wiped out by Bashar's father, Hafez. The Syrian president knows that unless he would succeed in chocking the protests at the very beginning, only tanks could crush a large opposition waiting for revenge. Now we can expect from Assad an awful enormous carnage that we have the duty to stop. But the world concern about a possible collapse of Syria, the best friend of Iran, is much greater than the worry about the future of Libya. For that reason we wait and see, while Syrians keep being killed.

Because of our fear of Iran, looking at Bashar Assad in recent years, we have rather chosen to see a beanpole guy wearing well-tailored British suits, a middle class faced boy with a charming wife, instead of the professional butcher who has already decreed the killings of more of 500 among his citizens, awfully using for this aim his bother Maher who commands the Presidential Guard.

Many self made videos show us ferocious aggressions even against women and children. Assad has employed tanks and warplanes against his own towns. This is what we witness, but we don’t want to face it. In the meanwhile the death toll rises.

It's time to define with moral clarity how worth is the Western religion of human rights. But we must do it now, before the next dictator shoots his people. We gave credit to a dictator, Assad, who didn't deserve such a chance as no dictator have ever deserved. Instead he used the chance we gave him to arm terrorist groups, to build up chemical weapons and a powerful army. And today, to crash his own people.

Hon. Fiamma Nirenstein
Vice-president of the Committee on Foreign Affairs
Chair of the Committee for the Inquiry into Antisemitism
Italian Chamber of Deputies

Abbas’ Holocaust-Denial Dissertation Widely-Taught in PA

Hillel Fendel
Research by the Center for Near East Policy Research Center has found that the doctoral dissertation of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas “stars” throughout the Palestinian Authority educational curriculum, and “is the basis for Holocaust studies in the PA.”
The Center’s Director, David Bedein, has asked Education Minister Gideon Saar and the government of Israel to demand that the PA remove the work from its schools and from its curricula.

Bedein wrote that the Center is engaged in preparing a movie on the PA educational system, in the course of which it tracks that which is taught in PA classrooms. “Throughout the educational system of the PA,” he wrote to Saar, “we have found that the doctorate of Mahmoud Abbas stars, and forms the basis of PA Holocaust studies.” Downgrades Number of Victims, Accuses Zionists of Collaboration
The doctorate was published as a book in 1984, entitled,"The Other Side: the Secret Relationship Between Nazism and Zionism.” It was completed in 1982 at a university in Communist Russia, and was defended at the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

It downgrades the number of Holocaust victims to “[possibly] below one million,” and accuses Zionist leaders of encouraging the persecution of Jews.

It also denies that the gas chambers were used to murder Jews, quoting a "scientific study" to that effect by French Holocaust-denier Robert Faurisson.


* “…it is possible that the number of Jewish victims reached six million, but at the same time it is possible that the figure is much smaller--below one million.”
* "The historian and author, Raoul Hilberg, thinks that the figure does not exceed 890,000." [Holocaust authority Dr. Rafael Medoff says, “This is, of course, utterly false. Professor Hilberg, a distinguished historian and author of the classic study 'The Destruction of the European Jews', has never said or written any such thing.”]]
* "It seems that the interest of the Zionist movement, however, is to inflate this figure so that their gains will be greater… This led them to emphasize this figure [six million] in order to gain the solidarity of international public opinion with Zionism.”
* "A partnership was established between Hitler's Nazis and the leadership of the Zionist movement ... [the Zionists gave] permission to every racist in the world, led by Hitler and the Nazis, to treat Jews as they wish, so long as it guarantees immigration to Palestine."

# Medoff writes that Abbas writes in his dissertation that the Zionist leaders actually wanted Jews to be murdered, because "having more victims meant greater rights and stronger privilege to join the negotiation table for dividing the spoils of war once it was over. However, since Zionism was not a fighting partner --suffering victims in a battle --it had no escape but to offer up human beings, under any name, to raise the number of victims, which they could then boast of at the moment of accounting."


Thursday, April 28, 2011

"Back on Track"

Arlene Kushner

Me, that is. Certainly not this part of the world. I'm post-Pesach, post a major writing assignment, and ready to look at this part of the world (oi!) via my postings...


The big news now is the purported unity agreement between Fatah (the PA) and Hamas that has been secretly brokered by Egypt.

As I share information please keep in mind that it's all a bit nebulous and "iffy," with conflicting reports coming from different sources. It is apparent why this is coming about now:

The PA wants to go to the UN in order to be recognized as a state in September. Its leaders believe their chances of pulling this off are better if they can say they are seeking a state that encompasses all Palestinians, not just half of their people.

Hamas, for its part, is concerned with increased international credibility. Without a doubt, Hamas is also watching the instability in other nations -- Egypt, Syria -- with which it has links and seeking to maximize its own stability.


An aside here: Even though the PA is much more like Hamas than most people perceive -- both want Israel destroyed, etc. etc. -- there is one significant difference. Fatah is still a nationalist movement, while Hamas, as a jihadist movement, is interested in an international caliphate.


The impetus for striking the deal was apparently Moussa Abu Marzouk, deputy head of the Hamas's politburo, and Fatah Central Committee member Azzam al-Ahmad. Announcement was first made by Egyptian intelligence via the Egyptian state news agency, MENA.

What is known about the deal at this point is that both sides have initialed an agreement, with signing to take place soon in Cairo. A caretaker government of neutral professionals -- persons who would satisfy both parties -- is slated to take over shortly, with this government then making preparations for presidential and legislative elections in a year. The election committee will be decided upon by both factions. Political prisoners will be released.


According to Reuters, Taher Al-Nono, the Hamas spokesman in Gaza, has declared that "All points of differences have been overcome."

And I will declare that I do not believe it for an instant. The "unity" that is being forged is superficial, with Hamas still in charge in Gaza and the PA in Judea and Samaria. The big unknown remains who will control what security forces: there is to be the formation of a "joint security higher committee."

How many times have the parties attempted "reconciliation," only to find it didn't work? What they have done now is determine that the semblance of unity would suit all concerned. How long this will last is anyone's guess.


One thing that is clear is that whenever Fatah and Hamas strike an agreement, it is Fatah that makes concessions, and Hamas that comes out ahead. In this instance, at the moment, I am seeing two things. One, that there will be re-structuring of the PLO so as to include Hamas participation; this is something Hamas has sought for a long time.

And then, it has apparently been agreed, at Hamas's insistence, that Salam Fayyad, who is currently PA prime minister, will not be part of the professional interim government that is to be set up. What is significant here is that Fayyad is the darling of the West, the one who presents the most moderate image. It is largely because of him that Western nations have been forthcoming with the support for the PA that they have. This decision, then, in essence, is Fatah thumbing its nose at the West.

Should this "unity" Palestinian entity achieve statehood (I do not think it will), the dominance of Hamas suggests that it would ultimately be in charge.


Prime Minister Netanyahu's response to this turn of events was quite clear:

"Palestinian Authority needs to choose between peace with the people of Israel and peace with Hamas. You cannot have peace with both, because Hamas aspires to destroy the State of Israel, and I'll say it openly.

"Hamas fires rockets at our cities and anti-tank missiles at our children. I think the mere idea of reconciliation demonstrates the Palestinian Authority's weakness, and brings up the question of whether Hamas will take over Judea and Samaria as it did Gaza.

""I hope the PA makes the right choice, to choose peace with Israel. The choice is hers."


Mahmoud al-Zahar of Hamas then responded that, "Our plan does not involve negotiations with Israel or recognizing it. It will be impossible for an interim government to take part in the peace process with Israel."

Following this, however, Abbas suggested that negotiations would still be possible following the establishment of the interim government because the PLO, which he heads, is responsible for negotiations.

What we see here, of course, is evidence that all disagreements have not been resolved.

My first, question, among many, is what about the agreement that Hamas would now be a constituent element of the PLO?

What sort of game is Abbas playing -- pretending that he is prepared to negotiate, when a faction within the state we would be negotiating about is dedicated overtly to our destruction?

It becomes enormously convoluted -- this game playing.


Abbas then responded to what Netanyahu had said, commenting that, "Netanyahu and Lieberman said yesterday that I had to choose between Israel and Hamas, but Hamas is part of the Palestinian people, and whether or not you like or agree with them, they are part of our nation and they cannot be extracted from us."


I am pleased to say that Obama has seemed disgruntled with the "unity" announcement. This throws a monkey wrench into his plans for negotiations.
White House spokesman Tommy Vietor issued a statement saying that: "To play a constructive role in achieving peace, any Palestinian government must accept the Quartet principles and renounce violence, abide by past agreements, and recognize Israel's right to exist."


Significantly, there are key Congresspeople who are suggesting that the Fatah-Hamas merger might spell the end of US support.

Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), the chair of the U.S. House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, declared, "The reported agreement between Fatah and Hamas means that a Foreign Terrorist Organization which has called for the destruction of Israel will be part of the Palestinian Authority government. U.S. taxpayer funds should not and must not be used to support those who threaten U.S. security, our interests, and our vital ally, Israel."

Others who are on board with this approach include Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-NY), the senior Democrat on the foreign operations subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee; Congressman Gary Ackerman (D-NY), the senior Democrat on the House Middle East subcommittee and Senator Mark Kirk (R-Ill), who is on the Senate Appropriations Committee.


In closing let me carry the idea of discontinuing aid to the Palestinians one step further: If there is a joint Hamas-Fatah government, the US is forbidden by its own laws from providing it with assistance. US funds cannot go to a terrorist entity. We will need members of Congress to be fully cognizant of these laws (some, I know, are not). I'll have more on this is due course.


© Arlene Kushner. This material is produced by Arlene Kushner, functioning as an independent journalist. Permission is granted for it to be reproduced only with proper attribution.
see my website

Hamas, Fatah initial a fake agreement

Elder of Ziyon

From JPost:

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah movement hammered out an agreement with rival group Hamas on Wednesday, setting the stage for forming an interim government as well as fixing a date for a general election.

"The consultations resulted in full understandings over all points of discussions, including setting up an interim agreement with specific tasks and to set a date for election," Egyptian intelligence said in a statement. Spokespeople for both Hamas and Fatah confirmed that "all differences" have been worked out between the long-feuding Palestinians political movements.

A spokesperson for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said that Hamas has agreed to hold elections within a year, a part of the reconciliation deal it signed in Cairo.

A Hamas spokesperson said that "all points of differences" between the rival groups have been overcome. He added that officials in Cairo will soon invite top Hamas and Fatah officials for a signing ceremony in the Egyptian capital.

Here is where it is useful to know a little history.

Palestinian Arabs have long been able to put together temporary, paper agreements and truces to achieve larger political goals. Inevitably, Westerners are consistently fooled by these, stupidly believing that short-term absence of violence indicates a long-term shift in attitudes.

In 1947, in the months before the UN Partition vote, virtually all Arab terror against Jews stopped. Amazing! The Arabs were proving to th world that they could act responsibly and run an Arab-led Palestine where they would protect the Jews as Islam requires them to, and they were puching this as an alternate plan to partitioning Palestine.

But within hours of the UN vote to partition Palestine, the Arabs gave up their pretense of peacefulness and started attacking Jews (in those days, they didn't bother with calling them "Zionists.")

In the months before Israel's unilateral withdrawal from Gaza, Hamas managed miraculously to reduce rocket fire from Gaza, and the rocket count dropped dramatically from 1157 in 2004 to 417 in 2005 as Israel implemented the plan. The next year, the number of rocket attacks increased back up to nearly the pre-disengagement levels.

Now the Palestinian Arabs are faced with another deadline.

The PA is putting all of their eggs in the unilateral recognition basket, that they are hoping the world provides to them in September. The biggest obstacle to that recognition was the simple fact that the PA and Hamas are hopelessly split - ideologically, physically and politically. There is no way that sympathetic Europeans can overlook that problem and support the establishment of a state where there are two competing rulers.

Hamas also recognizes the immense political value that recognition would bring them - something that, like the disengagement, would happen once and would likely never be reversed.

So even though Fatah and Hamas have been negotiating for years over the exact same issues without being able to come to an agreement, they now are agreeing to paper over their differences with vague wording that is just enough to convince the credulous, wishful-thinking West that they major obstacle to Palestinian Arab independence has been removed.

Note the little we do know: "Hamas has agreed to hold elections within a year." You can bet that the elections will be scheduled after September, because the result of elections beforehand - either way - would torpedo any chance for a unity government.

Vagueness will be the hallmark of the agreement - just enough to fool the world into thinking that these two groups can work together. Hamas can play the unity game until September, and, if the world is sufficiently fooled, for a few months afterwards. Then the elections, or absence of elections, will start to rock this false alliance.

By then, they hope, Palestine will already be de facto recognized as a state, and Israel will be on the ropes politically anyway. The world will be cheerleading the PalArab insistence on ethically cleansing the heart of the Land of Israel of Jews, and Hamas-Fatahstan will blame all of their new problems on Israel. They will say things like they cannot accept Palestinian Arab "refugees" in their new state as long as Israel holds any of "their" land. The ever present threat of them exploding in a new terror war will cause the West to pressure Israel, as always, as they insist on Israeli concessions to solve their problems.

The outline of what is coming is clear. Because we've seen this game before. Unfortunately, Western amnesia will help ensure that it plays out the way the PalArabs are planning it.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Netanyahu on Front Lines in Europe to Fight PA State

Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
A7 News

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will dig into the diplomatic front lines next week and fly to London and Paris as Europe tightens support for ‘Auschwitz Borders,” the phrase the late United Nations Ambassador Abba Eban used to describe the “Green Line” that existed until 1967.

The Israeli government has acknowledged that Prime Minister Netanyahu will travel to the European capitals next week to discuss “political matters” with French President Nicolas Sarkozy and British Prime Minister David Cameron. Prime Minister Netanyahu is to address the U.S. Congress shortly afterwards, while U.S. President Barack Obama prepares his ideas for establishing the Palestinian Authority as a new Arab country within Israel’s current borders. The president reportedly will reject the Arab world’s demand for the immigration of thousands of foreign Arabs to Israel. Abbas has said he will not surrender on the issue.

Palestinian Authority PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has almost won public support from leading European countries, particularly France and Britain, for leaning on Israel to sacrifice to the Palestinian Authority the homes of more than half a million Jews in United Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria.

Abbas, since taking over from Yasser Arafat six years ago, has successfully globetrotted to build international support for his one-sided demands while going through the motions of accepting American-sponsored ideas to negotiate the terms of creating the PA state.

The United States last month thwarted plans by the Quartet – the United Nations, Russia, the United States and the European Union – to officially propose a PA state based on the old Armistice lines of 1949, often incorrectly termed "1967 borders", after the Arabs lost the war they launched as a rejection of the re-establishment of Israel as a country.

European leaders, acting independently of the United States, have announced their increasing support for Abbas’s demands, without any negotiations with Israel, where nearly 10 percent of the Jewish population lives in areas demanded by the PA.

"The recognition of a Palestinian state is an option that we are currently thinking about, with our European partners,” Gérard Araud, France’s ambassador to the United Nations said last week, one day after Abbas met with French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Abbas told France24 in an interview last week that “We can’t say that certain organizations or countries promised to recognize a Palestinian state. But all the signs they are sending show that they are awaiting the right moment to do so. You notice that a certain number of European countries have recently sent additional delegations and official representatives to the Palestinian territories. From our side, we are already treating them like ambassadors.”

Joyce Kaufman. The 7 Reasons to Support Israel

Watch the video:

We do not apologize for the United State or for Israel!

Does the world care if Jewish kids run into bomb shelters every twenty minutes because Hamas shoots rockets at their home town daily? NO! Because the world never cared what happened to the we MUST not care what they think about us Jews and Israel as long as we talk the truth!

Israel is the place where every great thing that happened in terms of civilization was birthed there

Reason 1: Israel has the right to the land because of all the archeological evidence. You do not have to go into a long philosophical argument because the archeological evidence proves that Jews have been in Israel since the beginning of its civilization. Reason 2: Historic; history supports it totally and completely; the land belonged to Israel way before the Roman Empire conquered it and exiled many Jews, though some remained to live there and never left! 700 years ago the Turks conquered the land and controlled it until WWI when the land was conquered by the USA Founding Fathers, the British! The British Government was very greatful to a Jewish Chemist named Weisman who discovered a way to manufacture Nitro Glycerin from materials that existed in England and to the Jewish people who bank rolled all Weisman's research and so the British promised to give the Jews their Homeland back! That is exactly how it went down all is supported by historical evidence.

Reason 3: the practical value of the Israelis being there; Israel today is a modern marvel of agriculture. There is no place on earth where a desert has become an orchard.

Reason 4: Humanitarian Concerns ground; there were six millions Jews slaughtered in the last century because the Jews had no where to go or a home to call their own! Make sure that Israel stays in tact so no one pogrom or Holocaust takes place again!

Reason 5: Strategic ally to the United States; Israel is a deterrent, a detriment and impediment to certain groups that want to destroy democracies all over the world. More often than not, it is Israel that keeps these groups from coming to the USA doors. It is good to know that we in the USA have a genuine--the only--ally, strategic and otherwise—in the Middle East on whom the USA can depend.

Reason 6: Israel is a road block to terrorism; Israel has cutting edge technology to fight terrorism; The problem we have is that we have an administration that refuses to use it; an administration that thinks that if they take a stand against US foes they will lose favor in the courts of the world's opinion. Guess what...they hate us no matter what!

Reason 7: and the most important...because God said so! And if God said it, that settles it all! Amen!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Revisiting the Jordan option

Asaf Romirowsky

Amid the unrest now sweeping the Middle East, Israeli government and security officials are quietly discussing an unusual strategy that would pass the Palestinians’ political future off to Jordan. With the odds of a negotiated two-state solution at an all-time low, former Defense Minister Moshe Arens, Knesset Member Arieh Eldad, and Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin resurrected the “Jordan is Palestine” model for regional peace.

Israeli officials fear that a Palestinian Intifada could break out on both sides of the Jordan River, and they seek to make it as much a Jordanian problem as an Israeli one. In February, Human Rights Watch, the world’s self-proclaimed defender of minority rights, produced a 60-page report entitled, “Stateless Again: Palestinian-Origin Jordanians Deprived of their Nationality.” The paper details how Jordan deprives its Palestinian citizens of West Bank origins their basic rights, such education and healthcare. The report received scant attention back then. But the problem of Jordanian Palestinians, amidst growing unrest in the Hashemite Kingdom, has put the issue back on the front burner.

Israeli analysts worry that if the Jordanian government is to become more representative, it is possible that the country’s 72% Palestinian population could effectively take control. Jordan, in effect, could become “Palestine.”

The notion of a Palestinian controlled polity in Jordan is not new. From the war of Israeli independence in 1948 through the Six-Day War in 1967, Israeli politicians on the Left and Right advanced a policy of “Jordan is Palestine.” While defending Israel from Arab aggression, they proposed that Jordan become the Palestinian homeland. Israeli officials proposed various scenarios for a Jordanian-Palestinian confederation that fused the East Bank and West Bank of the Jordan River under one administration.

However, it is not as simple as that. Dan Schueftan, author of A Jordanian Option, correctly noted in 1986 that such an arrangement would be dependent on Israeli-Jordanian relations and how the two parties view potential threats from the Palestinian populations in their midst.
Inseparable security needs

To be sure, in the years after the Six-Day War, the Jordanian monarchy was wary of the Palestinians. Palestine Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat challenged the sovereignty of the country in 1970. After that, the kingdom had blocked the flow of Palestinians from the West Bank into the East Bank in order to preserve the kingdom’s Hashemite political structure. To a certain extent, the Jordanians renounced all claims to the West Bank in 1988, backed the creation of the Palestinian Authority in the early 1990s, and then made peace with Israel in 1994 in an attempt to prevent further flooding of Palestinians into their country.

To a certain extent Jerusalem h as long looked to the Hashemite monarchy to maintain stability and security on both sides of the river. Both Amman and Jerusalem, in fact, recognize that their security needs are inseparable. Jordan has benefited from the periods of relative quiet and prosperity in Israel. Accordingly, Jordanian security forces have been increasingly involved in the West Bank, where they conduct joint training sessions with Palestinian forces. It has been a win-win-win situation for Jordan, Israel and the Palestinians.

The problem now is that Jordan’s traditional power centers are unhappy with the rise of Palestinian influence in the country. Tribal leaders resent Jordan’s Queen Rania, born in Kuwait to a family with roots in the West Bank, for her vocal advocacy of the Palestinian cause. In fact, 36 tribal leaders recently published their objections to Rania’s position, fearing that it will accelerate a slow Palestinian takeover of the kingdom.

With hopes fading for a two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, this seemingly far-flung notion may become the last, best option. The problem is that it could embolden Palestinian radical groups, as well as the Muslim Brotherhood, which derive much of their power from disillusioned Palestinians in the West and East Banks. With the rise of such groups in Jordan, the peace agreement between Amman and Jerusalem would be in peril.

Nevertheless, as uncomfortable as it might be for Palestinians, Israelis and Jordanians to admit, the Jordanian option might be the best one they have.

Asaf Romirowsky is an adjunct scholar at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a former liaison officer from the Israeli Defense Forces to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Who Makes U.S. Policy? UN, Arab League, international community or U.S. Government?

Barry Rubin

This interview with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton deserves close analysis for a reason that neither I nor anyone else noticed before.

"QUESTION: But, I mean, how can [Libya] be worse than what has happened in Syria over the years, where Bashar Asad’s father killed 25,000 people at a lick? I mean, they open fire with live ammunition on these civilians. Why is that different from Libya?


"QUESTION: This [Syria] is a friend of Iran, an enemy of Israel. “SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, if there were a coalition of the international community, if there were the passage of Security Council resolution, if there were a call by the Arab League, if there was a condemnation that was universal – but that is not going to happen, because I don’t think that it’s yet clear what will occur, what will unfold.”

On one hand, what Clinton says is quite logical. It doesn’t make sense for Western countries to send forces to Syria and start bombing. But that’s not the issue. The issue is supporting the Syrian opposition and really comprehending that Syria is an enemy of the West whose regime deserves no quarter.

Yet what does Clinton begin with as the reasons for treating the two differently? Let’s list them:

1. “a coalition of the international community”

2. “passage of Security Council resolution”

3. “call by the Arab League”

4. “a condemnation that was universal”

But, she correctly concludes, “that is not going to happen.”

Now, this is no way for a U.S. secretary of state to speak. What about U.S. interests? What about an independent American decisionmaking process?

Again, these steps might be appropriate for military action–which, again, is not the issue here–but let’s recall, for example, how President George Bush set U.S. policy on Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait in 1990 and then put together an international coalition on the basis of decisions made on the basis of U.S. national interests. That’s the way it’s supposed to work. Not the other way around.

Since Syria is an American enemy killing Americans in Iraq and backing terrorist groups to a degree exceeded only by Iran–which is its ally and also an enemy of the United States–why does the U.S. government need an international coalition, UN resolution, Arab League call, and universal condemnation to act?

At any rate, this kind of things certainly does not apply for taking a strong U.S. stance of diplomatic opposition, freezing all the concessions this administration has given to Syria, recalling the U.S. ambassador in protest, building an anti-Syria alliance, blocking Syria’s takeover of Lebanon, working actively to eliminate Syria’s Gaza client, supporting the Syrian opposition and trying to bring down the regime, punishing Syria for its surrogate warfare against the United States in Iraq, and so on.

But instead the kind of thinking this administration all too often represents turns over U.S. power and sovereignty to others.

Every American secretary of state from 1789 onward would be shaken and shocked by such thinking. They would say: No, the United States determines its interests, sets its policy, and implements that policy. Getting international support is an element in that process but it is a byproduct of U.S. interests and decisionmaking; not the other way around.

It is preferable that the United States act multilaterally if possible, but it is not the precondition for action either. Nor should trying to maximize foreign support require too much watering down of the measures taken or–in the case of the Iran sanctions–smoothing passage by giving exemptions to Russia, China, and other countries thus gutting the sanctions.

Similarly, the U.S. government should not become so obsessed with international popularity and multilateralism as to ignore it when countries stab it in the back, as Turkey’s government did on the UN sanctions issue. Nor should it bring situations, as is happening with the unilateral Palestinian independence issue at the UN, in which the United States opposes something as dangerous but doesn’t lobby energetically with other countries on it.

During the Cold War, the United States usually acted with coalitions under president after president. Even the supposedly obsessive unilateralist President George W. Bush put together an international coalition to invade Iraq.

Yet now broad international support has in many cases become the precondition for U.S. action or indeed formulating a U.S. policy at all. In other cases, the U.S. government refuses to take leadership as if such behavior was a demonstration of high virtue. This kind of thing has become so common as to be accepted without anyone even noticing.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

PA daily: "Jews, Jews! Your holiday [Passover] is the Holiday of Apes"

Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook

An article in the official PA daily newspaper claims that Palestinian Christian youth perform a spring march in the streets that includes the chant: "Jews, Jews! Your holiday [Passover] is the Holiday of Apes." (See PMW web site for examples of the Palestinian Authority referring to Jews as "apes and pigs.") He writes that these "meaningful messages" are in response to Israel's security measures in Jerusalem during the holiday of Passover:

"For many years the holy city [Jerusalem] has been deliberately closed to Palestinians, under security-related pretexts and for the Jewish festival of Passover."

The writer says that the Easter services in Jerusalem have lost their Palestinian flavor because of western Christian pilgrims:

"The festivities at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre have begun to assume a western character, because of the massive presence of foreign Christian pilgrims and the limited presence of Palestinians."

But the writer insists that in Palestinian Authority cities, the festivities have retained their Palestinian flavor. He describes youth chanting that the Jewish holiday of Passover is the "Holiday of the Apes":

"The spring carnival has retained its [Palestinian] flavor in towns such as Bethlehem, Beit Sahour and Ramallah... with the demonstrations of the Scouts, songs, dances, and popular Palestinian hymns about Christian-Islamic unity and internal Christian unity. These hymns carry meaningful messages, in response to the Israeli prohibition [to enter Jerusalem], as seen in the calls of the youth who lead the procession of light, waving swords and not caring if anyone accuses them of anti-Semitism: ... 'Our master, Jesus, the Messiah, the Messiah redeemed us, with his blood he bought us, and today we are joyous while the Jews are sad,' and, 'Jews, Jews! Your holiday is the Holiday of the Apes, while our holiday is the Holiday of the Messiah.'"

[PA TV (Fatah), April 11, 2011]