Wednesday, January 20, 2010

"Up and Down"

Arlene Kushner

I wrote yesterday about Peace Now as one of several organizations that take money from international sources -- with the Knesset considering a bill that would require such organizations to register as foreign agents.

I apologize that I did not adequately specify what I was referring to: It's not money from international sources that is the problem, but, rather, from foreign governments. Peace Now and others receive funding from European governments that have an agenda not compatible with Israel's. Organizations, for example, such as Magen David Adam, which takes money from American Friends of MDA, are not foreign agents. (Thanks to Nan for asking the right question.) had also written yesterday that I had it from a reliable source, but could not absolutely confirm, that Israel was the only nation that had a field hospital in Haiti. Almost correct, but not quite. There apparently are some other hospitals set up, but they are meager facilities. (Improvement is expected, but up to this point, the US showing is pathetic; it's appropriate to ask why.)

Israel's hospital was the first, and is the largest; most significantly, it is the only one equipped with proper surgical facilities and life-saving equipment. It's a serious place. Dying patients from other places are being transferred to the Israeli hospital. Additional medical staff and supplies are on their way to Haiti from Israel today.

See the video clip below from CNN. Can you believe? CNN praising Israel! We have to be damn good to receive such accolades. I would recommend simply sharing this clip with others. It says it all. (Thanks to Wallace and Cheryl for sending it to me.)

In a similar video from CBS News, the Israeli hospital is called the "Rolls Royce of emergency medical care."


I would like to recommend a piece by Barry Rubin: "New Failure on Iran Sanctions: Will the Farce Never End?"

"It is literally incredible how ineptly the Obama Administration is handling the sanctions on Iran...

"This situation provides a vivid case study on the Obama Administration's view of the world, diplomatic skills, and unwillingness to take even a moderately tough stance on handling critical issues."

Rubin makes clear that in spite of Obama's declared intention to start sanctions by this date, or that, nothing is actually happening.

It's time for everyone to be very worried.


I had a similar response when I read a news report today about what German Chancellor Angela Merkel said, in a press conference with Prime Minister Netanyahu, after an historic joint Israeli-German cabinet session. Said she:

"If Iran's reactions don't change, we will help work on comprehensive sanctions."

If Iran's reactions don't change? What utter nonsense this is. How long is the world supposed to wait?

Netanyahu's response:

"If we don't apply sanctions, crippling sanctions, against this Iranian tyranny, when shall we apply them? If not now, when?"

The world is highly uneasy about the prospect of an Israeli military attack on Iran, but this same world, which shies away from sanctions, as well, is increasing the likelihood that Israel will attack.


I like it that it has been announced that the theme for this year's independence day (Yom Ha'Atzmaut) celebrations will be: "If you will it, it is no dream – Achievements of the State of Israel on the 150th anniversary of the birth of Herzl."

Of course, this can be turned around to focus on achievements such as stunning hi-tech. But there is a very definite political message here, and we need to emphasize it: We cannot be intimidated by the world. We must hold on to our vision, in order to make it happen. Judea and Samaria are ours. We must will it, to make it so.


After weeks of unseasonably warm weather, winter has finally arrived, with chill and wind and heavy rain and sleet. We need much more -- we're in trouble because of water shortages, but this is most welcome. A blessing.

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