Saturday, June 15, 2013

Understanding politics in Israel: The limousine theory


 Into the Fray: How is it that, time after time, the electorate ends up with a gov't adopting precisely the policy it urged voters to reject?
Yuval Steinitz
Yuval Steinitz Photo: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post
On the one hand, the state invests billions of dollars in building a modern army; purchasing state-of-the-art warplanes and constructing modern airfields; equipping and training reserve battalions; and deploying Arrow missiles. All this is right and proper and necessary. But on the other hand, it has permitted a situation to develop in which these selfsame modern, expensive systems are liable to be rendered irrelevant. On the basis of such wishful thinking, battles, and wars, are lost
     – Yuval Steinitz, “When the Palestinian Army Invades the Heart of Israel,” Commentary, December 1, 1999.

To a dispassionate observer, unfamiliar with the mechanisms – and machinations – of Israeli politics, the events of the past two-and-a-half decades must seem to defy explanation, flying in the face of both logic and common sense, and a gross violation of the rationale of democratic principles.

To the vanquished the spoils?

Political realities in Israel since the early 1990s have shown that electoral victory has little bearing on the policies the resultant governments will pursue. Quite the reverse.

No matter how often the doctrine of political appeasement and territorial concession failed to win approval at the ballot box, it nevertheless continued to dominate the policy-making decisions of governments – even of those elected in express opposition to it.

Astonishingly, time and time again, the prescriptions of the vanquished became the policy of the victors.

Thus, Yitzhak Rabin, elected in 1992 on the basis of a series of hawkish “nays,” including rejection of negotiations with the PLO terrorist organization, radically switched his positions, transforming them all to dovish “yeas.”

The policy he adopted was indistinguishable from that promoted by the radical Left of the time – which failed to win voter support.

Friday, June 14, 2013

The Other Battlefront: The Propaganda War

Samuel Westrop

The Fatah thugs are regularly sent by the Palestinian Authority, which is funded by the West, to threaten and batter journalists, writers, university students and political opponents -- driving them into the open arms of Hamas and other extremist groups.
Until recently, the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank used to arrest Palestinians who criticized its leaders, especially Mahmoud Abbas.
But now the Palestinian Authority has resumed using thugs to break the bones of its critics.

It is an easy and quick way to deal with the critics and deter others from speaking out against Palestinian Authority leaders.

The thugs are often members of Abbas's ruling Fatah faction. However, they do not hold any official position in the Palestinian Authority; they do not belong to Palestinian Authority security forces or any government-related agency in the West Bank.

This allows the Palestinian Authority to distance itself from the thugs each time they perpetrate a crime.

The Islamic future of Britain

Britain is in denial. If population trends continue, by the year 2050, Britain will be a majority Muslim nation

Vincent Cooper
Yassir Arafat understood the political power of high birth rates. The Palestinian population increased sevenfold in one generation from 450,000 in 1967 to 3.3 million in 2002. The wombs of Palestinian women, Arafat said, were the “secret weapon” in his cause. The Israeli government is very much aware of Palestinian demographics.
Population projections over the long term can be wrong. But for Britain, over the short term, whatever way you do the numbers, they all point in one direction: Britain will be a majority Muslim state by the year 2050.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Israel/Poland joint communique is a disaster.

By Ted Belman
Netanyahu and entourage are headed to Poland for a high level meeting. In advance his office put out a joint communique which said, inter alia, “Unilateral steps by either party are counterproductive to achieving a sustainable lasting peace,”
Netanyahu took issue with this statement because, according to JPOST:

Op-Ed: We Were Fooled Once; Is That Not Enough?

Here, in a nutshell, are Arafat's lies, lies and more lies.
William K. Langfan
The writer is a pro Israel activist and lawyer living in Florida.
“Arafat is a man who never comes to a bridge which he can’t double cross” was a favorite late King Hussein’s expression.
Israel and the US were beguiled by Arafat into Israel signing the Oslo agreement with his September 1993 letter to PM Rabin and the Wye River Agreement with his Jan. 1998 letter to President Clinton.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Demand the PLO Ratify the Oslo Accords

David Bedein On June 12, 2013

Recently, US Secretary of State Kerry passionately called for the renewal of talks with the PLO. Former President Bill Clinton, who hosted the PLO-Israel ceremonies on the White House lawn twenty years ago, is en route to Jerusalem for high profile lectures where he will call also call for for renewal of negotiations. And Shimon Peres, Israel’s president, who served as Israel’s foreign minister at the outset of negotiations with the PLO two decades ago, is about to convene thousands of dignitaries at a conference at the President’s mansion that will call for jump starting negotiations with the PLO.
Veteran observers of Middle East politics may ask: what is there to negotiate about?
Indeed, there is an item on the table that is hardly a minor detail: The Palestinian Liberation Organization did not ratify the Oslo Accords after Arafat and Abbas signed the agreement on the White House lawn.

Why Does the New York Times So Hate Missile Defense?

Peter Huessy

Recent news is that both North Korea and Pakistan have sought help in developing EMP weapons; Iran has launched its missile tests in an EMP mode. The U.S. could, for a small additional expense, protect the country from EMP and nuclear threats through the production of short and medium defense radars and interceptors, now available and in the U.S. inventory.
In nearly two thousand stories and editorials since President Reagan identified missile defense as a critical new capability needed for America's security, the New York Times has rarely found anything positive to say about America's first line of defense against enemy missiles.

Rare Discovery of Mikveh in New England Rewrites US Jewish History

The mikveh barely existed in 19th century American, where Jewish immigrants turned against religion. But one has been found in Connecticut, and it is more similar those in Israel than in the US.
Nicholas Bellantoni, state archeologist, left, Stuart Miller, professor of Hebrew, history and Judaic studies look down into the site of a old US mikveh
Nicholas Bellantoni, state archeologist, left, Stuart Miller, professor of Hebrew, history and Judaic studies look down into the site of a old US mikveh
Photo Credit: Peter Morenus/UConn Photo

Researchers in  Connecticut have unearthed in a old farming community a 19th century mikveh that has totally changed view of Jewish history in the United States.
In addition to the rarity of finding a mikveh in the United States dating back approximately 120  years, the University of Connecticut researchers were astonished to see that the mikveh was more similar those in ancient Israel rather than in America.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Arab Spring and anti-Semitism

Steven Shamrak
Some people are trying to explain the failure of so-called "Arab Spring" by blaming it on the anti-Semitic attitude of Arab 'revolutionaries'.
What a BULL!
It is like saying that Nazis failed to take over the world because anti-Semitism. In the past there were people who tried to justify the failure of Nazi Germany by blaming it on anti-Semitic policy. Quite an opposite, solidarity with the Nazi anti-Semitic policy partially could be blamed for the delay of the opening of the Western front - Churchill wanted to open it in Greece .

"Slogging Along"

Not sure where we're going, but...
Signs in Syria right now suggest either an ultimate Assad victory -- which is what Minister of Strategic Affairs Yuval Steinitz is suggesting: -- or a dividing of the country with Assad's Alawites in control of a portion of the country (and Sunnis and Kurds likely dividing up the rest).
I wrote last about Syrian encroachment towards Quneitra and Israel's border.  Two things have evolved in this context.

Op-Ed: Eric Yoffie is Clueless About Israel's Security

Good advice for those armchair security "experts" who would have Israel pressured to make concessions.

Eric Yoffie is an American Reform Rabbi who is mistakenly herding the 6,000,000 Jews of Israel into yet another Holocaust.  He just wrote a delusional article entitled “Why U.S. Jews must embrace Kerry’s appeal to put pressure on Netanyahu.”  
I, in contrast, urge US Jews and Israel to pressure Obama to support Israel’s full retention of Judea and Samaria, Israel’s last defense against mass-murder by the Arabs and Muslims.

Here are the facts, you decide:

Mark Langfan, 12 November 1993 Full-Page New York Times Ad (8 years before the first rockets flew from Gaza, I solely wrote the ad, and paid for the graphics and Dr. Joe Frager raised the $40,000 to place the ad):
“1. 70% of Israel’s Jewish population and 80% of her industry will be within direct range of easily concealed and transportable Katyusha rockets. (See map.)
An autonomous ‘demilitarized’ Palestinian state, off-limits to Israeli internal security personnel, will be unable (and, in all likelihood, unwilling) to prevent the infiltration and use of these lethal weapons capable of carrying both conventional and low-tech chemical warheads.
The only recourse available to Israel -- and this only after many Israeli civilians have been killed --will be an invasion of the ‘Palestinian State’. This would result inevitably in a war involving combined Arab forces, and a firestorm of sophisticated missiles which would decimate a strategically weakened Jewish State.”

Arab countries not EU recognize: Hezbollah is a terrorist organization

On June 4, the European Union once again decided that it would decline to designate Hezbollah as a terrorist organization, and would refrain from adding it to the EU’s list of proscribed terrorist groups. The decision came in the wake of a determination by the Bulgarian authorities that Hezbollah was behind last year’s deadly terrorist attack on Israeli citizens in the Black Sea resort town of Burgas.  
European citizens now have decided to take action and have organized an online petition  calling on EU institutions to designate Hezbollah as a terror group.
One wonders why an effort by European citizens is needed before their political leaders become convinced that Hezbollah belongs to the class of terrorist organizations.

Hindu American Foundation Calls Attention to Muslim Hinduphobia

Muslim religious tolerance is rather notorious. But while Muslims have the ability to drive stories about their grievances in any part of the world from America to Burma to Israel, Muslim persecution of non-Muslims tends to stay buried.

But the Hindu American Foundation is attempting to bring attention to the serious problem of Muslim Hinduphobia.
With the release of their ninth annual report, members of the Hindu American Foundation are pushing policymakers to take action against international human rights violations directed at Hindus.
The four countries the report categorized as egregious violators — Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Malaysia and Pakistan — are all Muslim-majority countries.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Understanding the Turkish Demonstrations

Harold Rhode

In the culture of the Middle East, there is no such thing as a win-win compromise. Turks, like their neighbors, consider backing down or apologizing dishonorable.
Turkey, although nominally part of the West, is in most ways culturally closer to the Middle East. Turks live with pent-up grievances -- as do we all -- but with virtually no way to resolve them. People in a supposedly democratic Turkey are reluctant to air their grievances even in public surveys out of fear their government might take revenge on them. During the past few years, people in Turkey have been saying that they are petrified to speak to others, write things, or talk freely on the telephone for fear they will be arrested. At present, Turkey has more journalists in jail than any other country.

Obama's true nature exposed

Last week, the fog lifted. The appointments of Susan Rice as national security adviser and Samantha Power as the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. made it clear in which direction U.S. President Barack Obama's administration is heading in the international arena. A portrait of America's new defense and diplomatic leaders shows a monolithic group that observes the world through a purely liberal lens. 

The White House's decision to surround itself with an ideologically uniform team, with the exception of some slight nuances in Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel's outlook, represents a break with the traditional pattern in American politics. Immediately after entering the Oval Office, presidents generally try to promote a vision with a clear ideological stamp. However, after four years of ideals clashing with reality, second-term presidents tend to give up ideological purism and instead adopt realistic policy goals that recognize the limits along the path to fulfilling their original vision. In Obama's case, however, the opposite is taking place.

In Benji’s Memory: A Place for Lone Soldiers to Call Home

HaBayit Shel Benji is named for Benji Hillman, a British-born IDF soldier who fell in the 2006 Second Lebanon War. It now hosts 50 lone soldiers.
Benji Hillman
Benji Hillman
Benji Hillman and the rest of his family immigrated to Israel from London in 1983. He joined the Israel Defense Forces in 1998, going on to serve as an officer. Benji was sent to the front lines during the Second Lebanon War.  Three weeks after his wedding, he fell in combat.
Years later, his parents decided to commemorate his life by founding HaBayit Shel Benji – Hebrew for “Benji’s house” – a home for IDF combat lone soldiers. This brand-new housing complex, located in Ra’anana, provides lone soldiers with food, housing, friends and support. In other words, a home away from home.

Meretz's 'Peace Partner' Rajoub: All of Israel is 'Occupied

PA official Jibril Rajoub, touted last week as a “man of peace” by Meretz, told an Arab station that all of Israel is "occupied Palestine."

By Arutz Sheva Staff 

Palestinian Authority official Jibril Rajoub, who was touted last week as a “man of peace” by the leftist Meretz party, is continuing his incitement against Israel.
The Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) research organization exposed on Sunday yet another controversial statement by Rajoub, who this time said during an interview, which aired last week on an Arab sports television channel, that all of Israel is “occupied Palestine”.

The Resurgence of National Pride and the Future of Europe

Speech by Geert Wilders
Los Angeles, June 9, 2013

Dear friends, thank you for inviting me to Los Angeles. I always like coming to the United States. There are many things that I admire Americans for. One of them is that they are unashamedly patriotic.

The American Freedom Association has asked me to speak to you about the future of Europe.

Europe is in a terrible state. Bit by bit, European countries are losing their national sovereignty. The economy is in shambles. Islamic immigrants riot and terrorize the many locals. And when people’s throats are slit in the streets, while the murderers shout “Allahu Akbar,” the authorities appease the killers and declare that Islam has nothing to do with it.

Europeans feel that the gap between them en those who rule them is growing. Many no longer feel represented by their politicians.

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Jibril Rajoub, senior PA official, prevented entry into Israel because of his hate speech exposed by PMW

by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik
The Israeli government prevented senior Palestinian Authority leader Jibril Rajoub from entering Israel, citing examples of his incitement against Israel that were exposed by Palestinian Media Watch. Israeli TV Channel 2 News cited Rajoub's statement last month:

PMW bulletin, May 8, 2013:
 "We as yet don't have a nuke, but I swear that if we had a nuke,
we'd have used it this very morning."
[PA TV (Fatah), April 30, 3013]
Reporting the refusal to allow Rajoub to enter, the Israeli daily Ha'aretz website posted links to two PMW videos as examples of Rajoub's incitement:

Hezbollah named “enemy of Arabs and Muslims”, poll


Over two-thirds of participants in a four-day online survey that ended Tuesday believe that the Iranian backed Hezbollah militant group is the new enemy of Arabs and Muslims.
The one-question survey by asked: “Do you think Hezbollah has turned out to be an enemy of Arabs and Muslims?”
A total of 453,943 respondents (or 72.8%) said yes, compared to 169,605 (or 27.2%) who said no.
Almost half of the respondents (49.18%) were from Saudi Arabia. The others were from Lebanon, Kuwait, Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Qatar, Oman, Yemen, Turkey, Jordan, the UAE, Palestine, Morocco, the UK, Germany, France, the U.S., Canada and Australia.
The survey that closed Tuesday got underway last Saturday, when Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah, whose militiamen are openly fighting alongside Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s army, told supporters Assad’s war “is ours, and I promise you victory.”

Jewish Voice for Peace goes full blown anti-Semitic

Israel Matzav
From Wrath of God:

Ok, we all knew that, despite their claims of working for a "just peace, blah blah blah" JVP was Anti-Israel, but it seems that that just wasn't self-hating enough for them. Now they have gone full throttle into classic Antisemitic themes.

"...limits to Jewish media..."

Today, they posted the following on their Facebook account and to what seems to be their own website "Muzzlewatch" (because we all know nobody is discussing the Arab-Israeli conflict. Must be those ever powerful Jewish media and bankers keeping everyone down. Wait I mean Zionist, well Jewish...ah who cares anymore. But I digress).

Europe under attack, Israel beware

Dror Eydar
1. Europe is on fire. It has been for some time. Roughly half a century after World War II, it is being conquered, by degrees, with no battle. That last terrible war destroyed the national idea and made Western-style democracy vulnerable to the dangers that threaten its existence with no real ability to cope with them.
The intellectual elite that once held those soci