Saturday, September 01, 2012

Iran doubles underground nuclear capacity: U.N. agency

(Reuters) - Iran has doubled the number of uranium enrichment centrifuges it has in an underground bunker, a U.N. report said on Thursday, showing Tehran has continued to expand its nuclear program despite Western pressure and the threat of an Israeli attack.
As Israeli politicians increased their talk of air strikes on Iran's nuclear sites in recent months, the Islamic Republic was rapidly increasing the enrichment capacity of its Fordow site, buried deep underground to withstand any such hit.

The U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency also said in its quarterly report on Iran that buildings had been demolished and earth removed at a military site the IAEA wants to inspect, in what Western diplomats see as a determined effort by Tehran to clean up any evidence of illicit nuclear-linked tests.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Another Response to Peter Beinart on Israel-Agnosticism


Peter Beinart recently asked what makes Jewish Voices for Peace (JVP) “so treif.”  Beinart is bewildered why JVP is excluded from the “organized American Jewish community” because, in his estimation, the group is not anti-Israel but “Israel-agnostic:” it does not oppose or support a one or two-state solution.  Well, here are some questions that may help answer why JVP is “so treif.”

1) On the JVP page stating its so-called agnosticism linked to by Beinart, the organization explicitly endorses the Palestinian right of return, which is a straightforward call for the end of the Jewish state.  Is the Palestinian right of return something the “organized American Jewish community” should accept?

Obama's Appalling Mistreatment of Israel

Obama's Appalling Mistreatment of Israel
As Israeli and Palestinian peace talks are scheduled to resume in Washington in a few days, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reiterated that Palestinian recognition of Israel as the Jewish homeland is an essential condition for peace. Completely reasonable, yet don't keep your fingers crossed, especially with the Obama administration's attitude toward Israel.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Who killed Rachel Corrie?

Lenny Ben-David
August 30, 2012, 12:06 pm 0
The parents of Rachel Corrie deserve Israel’s condolences and sympathy for the loss of their daughter on March 16, 2003. But, like their daughter, they misdirected their anger and crusade for justice against Israel.
Their anger is now focused on Israel’s judicial system. But Israel’s courts are known as independent and liberal (to a fault, in my opinion), and the Israeli court found the Israeli army and government blameless for Corrie’s death.
So who is to blame? Rachel Corrie herself, for her presence and carelessness on a volatile battlefield? Maybe, and maybe not. There may be other culprits lurking.

Judith Butler and the Theodor Adorno Prize

Judith Butler, who last week received Frankfurt’s coveted Theodor Adorno Prize, came to prominence as an anti- Israel agitator almost a decade ago. In September 2002, Harvard president Lawrence Summers charged that “at Harvard and... universities across the country,” faculty-initiated petitions were calling “for the University to single out Israel among all nations as the lone country where it is inappropriate for any part of the university’s endowment to be invested.”

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Jewish Broken Jaw or Burnt Muslim Koran?

Daniel Greenfield In The Point

What’s more of a hate crime, a Jewish student whose jaw was broken… or a burnt Koran left outside a mosque?

Answering questions like these are about what we value as a civilization. Human beings or Muslim scriptures?
Zachary Tennen said two college-aged males asked if he was Jewish and when he answered yes, the two men assaulted him. Zachary told police the two men then “stapled me in the back side of my bottom teeth, starting in my gums and going upwards.”
Tennen, a journalism sophomore who loves basketball, is recovering from his injuries, but he had this to say.

Corrie Verdict Won't End Delegitimization by the ISM
Now that the Judge Oded Gershon has ruled that the death of Rachel Corrie her own fault and an accident on the part of the IDF, if anyone thinks this affects the de-legitimization efforts of the IDF to protect the people of Israel or for the nation to protect itself from terrorists, they had better think again.

Judge Gershon, by allowing this publicity farce to be held at all, has unwittingly put Israel in a no-win situation by falling into the ISM’s publicity trap.

Middle East Non-Solutions

Steven Plaut
The mantra crops up almost everywhere . "You Israelis have two simple choices ," it goes. "You can either annex all of the 'occupied territories' and grant equal Israeli citizenship to all of the Palestinians there, in which case Israel will no longer be a Jewish state. Or you can agree to a two-state solution, in which Israel continues to exist alongside a Palestinian Arab state. Simple. Make your choice !" The posing of these two "choices" for Israel is part of the campaign to convince Israelis that there is no alternative to the "Two-State Solution."

The first "alternative" is often dubbed these days the "One-State Solution" by its anti-Israel advocates. Israel and its Jewish population would be enfolded within a larger Arab-dominated Islamic state. A better term for this is the "Rwanda Solution." It is little more than a recipe for a second Holocaust of Jews, a Nazi-style final solution, in which the Middle East conflict would end because the Jewish population of the Middle East would be exterminated.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Corries lose lawsuit; Israel-haters pretend verdict was fixed

Elder of Ziyon

From JPost:

The Haifa District Court on Tuesday ruled against the family of Rachel Corrie, the American pro-Palestinian activist struck and killed by a bulldozer in Gaza.

In the verdict, Judge Oded Gershon invoked the principle of the combatant activities exception, noting that IDF forces had been attacked in the same area Corrie was killed just hours earlier.

Reading a summary of his 62-page decision, the judge described Israel's investigation into the incident as appropriate and said it had no mistakes.
YNet adds:
Corrie in front of a different bulldozer
In a ruling read out to the court, Judge Oded Gershon called Corrie's death a "regrettable accident", but said the state was not responsible because the incident had occurred during what he termed a war-time situation.

At the time of her death, during a Palestinian uprising, Corrie was protesting against Israel's demolition of Palestinian homes in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip.

"I reject the suit," the judge said. "There is no justification to demand the state pay any damages."

The secular beatification of Rachel Corrie sums up everything that is wrong with modern solidarity with Palestine

Last updated: August 28th, 2012

A court in Israel has ruled that the death of Rachel Corrie, a Palestinian solidarity activist who was crushed by an Israeli bulldozer in Rafah in 2003, was accidental rather than being caused by the negligence of the Israeli army. The ruling will not please Corrie’s supporters. Over the past decade they have elevated her to saintly status, turning her into a paragon of virtue who wanted merely to “protect Palestinians” from Israel’s raging war machine. They have long depicted her death as a simple case of “murder” by the marauding forces of the Israeli state, which apparently is not only happy to kill uppity Palestinians but also virtuous white Americans who want only to “help Palestinians”. This secular beatification of Corrie, who has effectively been turned into St Rachel of the Put-Upon Palestinians, captures everything that is wrong with modern-day solidarity with Palestine.

Israel's Clock Is Running Out on Iran


Get ready for war in the Middle East -- after the election.

Last February Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei said "Israel is a true cancer tumor on this region that should be cut off." Khamenei promised to support any groups fighting Israel anywhere in the world. On about August 17, Iranian President Ahmadinejad said Israel's existence is an insult to humanity. There has been an almost steady stream of Iranian provocations like these. Meanwhile, Iran's nuclear weapons program proceeds unabated.
This week, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will attend a summit of the 120 UN "non-aligned" nations in Tehran giving the Iranian kakistocracy the legitimacy it craves, further isolating Israel and diminishing America's position in the Middle East.

What comes next will be a war between Israel and Iran. Unfortunately, there's a lot of fuzzy thinking going around about how that war could be prevented. In short, it cannot.

Unknown assailants open fire on Arish checkpoint

Al-Masry Al-Youm Mon, 27/08/2012 - 22:36
Unknown assailants opened fire on an army and policy checkpoint in Arish,
North Sinai, today for five minutes before driving off in a four-wheel drive
vehicle. No injuries were reported.
The past few days have seen several similar attacks on security checkpoints
in Sinai. None have resulted in casualties.
On Friday the armed forces resumed its Operation Eagle maneuvers amid
preparations for an expensive campaign to storm Mount Halal and its
surrounding areas that will include the air force.
IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis

Monday, August 27, 2012

Extreme Makeover: From Teenage Criminal to Top Commander


Upon completion of the IDF commanders’ course, Corporal A had only one thing to say: “I did it!”
“I stood at the graduation ceremony wanting to cry like a baby — I was overcome by the feeling of success.”
But it wasn’t an easy makeover for Corporal A. In his teenage years, before drafting into the army, he seemed destined for a life of crime. At the age of 14, he was already a well-known juvenile delinquent with an extensive criminal record.
Cpl A Following IDF Basic Training
“I have to tell my story so that other people in a similar situation will understand that despite the difficulty, anything is possible.” (Photo: Shay Levy)

Like many teens, he was drawn to crime because of the highly glamorized and romanticized lifestyle shown on many popular television shows, from Boardwalk Empire to The Sopranos. He began stealing motorcycle for joyrides. From there, he started stealing cars and soon gained the interest of some of the biggest crime lords in Israel. “I was like a king among my friends,” he recalled.

A Letter to Aly Raisman From an IDF Soldier

IDF soldiers of the 162nd Division's Medical Department took the day off to volunteer at 'Reuth' Medical Center for Rehabilitation in celebration of Purim. Photo: wiki commons.
Below is a letter to olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman, the American and Jewish gymnast who performed to the tune of Hava Nagila in London, from an officer in the Israel Defense Forces. The letter was posted by the author on Aly’s Facebook page.
Dear Aly,

I want to tell you about how you became the hero of a gym full of Israeli soldiers.
The same Israeli soldiers who have to deal with Iran’s nuclear threat to the Jewish state. The same ones who serve two-to-three years of their lives, because we have to; because there’s no one else that would do it besides us, because our neighborhood sucks, and when the leadership next door in Syria massacres their own people, there’s no way we would let them lay hands on our kids, as foreign dictators have done for thousands of years.
You picked a song for your floor routine in the Olympics that every Jewish kid knows, whether their families came from the shtetls of Eastern Europe, the Asian steppes of Azerbaijan, the mountains of Morocco or the Kibbutzim of northern Israel. It’s that song that drew almost everyone at the Israeli army base gym to the TV as soon as the report about you came on the news this morning. After showing your floor exercise to Hava Nagila, the announcer told about your gold medal with unmasked pride, and of your decision to dedicate it to the Israeli athletes who were killed in the Munich Olympics in 1972.

A New Slur

Calling people "Holocaust-obsessed" is the new holocaust denial.

    Adolf Hitler and his staff salute the teams during the opening ceremonies of the XI Olympic Games on August 1, 936 in Berlin

Is there an algorithm for suffering? One that calibrates how much empathy we should feel for the victims of genocide? What degree of concern is “rational”? What degree is excessive, “obsessed”? Should the degree to which we grieve about, analyze—and react to the threat of—mass murders be calculable objectively?

It would make things easier if we could just take number of actual dead, say, (or the number the killers wanted dead), times the percentage of victim-group killed, maybe multiplied by the logarithm of cruelty of the methodology of mass killing, divided by the number of decades in the past the crime occurred. (Time is a factor: Hitler was famously quoted as saying, in 1939, “Who, after all, speaks today of the extermination of the Armenians?” After all, the Holocaust took place seven decades ago, the Armenian horror a little more than two decades before Hitler’s remark. Lucky for him there were few “obsessed” with this mass murder at the time.)

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Video: Hamas MP: ‘Annihilate Jews and Americans’

Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu Video: Hamas MP:   Annihilate Jews and Americans

A senior Hamas legislator has widened the usual call to kill Jews and includes all Americans on his hit list for jihadists.

A video of his speech was translated and uploaded by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

Israeli 'occupation' a relic of the past

Op-ed: Resilience of Jewish-Israeli survival overshadowed by false Arab-Palestinian notion of being 'occupied'
Published: 08.26.12, 20:00 / Israel Opinion
As the dog days of summer are coming to an end, pro-Palestinian activist groups are gearing up for the fall semester to rally campuses in support of their cause. One upcoming event is the 'US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation' national conference, set to take place at St. Louis University between September 21-23.

It will feature speakers such Hatem Bazian, an Arabic lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley who following the war in Iraq stated that "it's about time that we have an intifada in this country that changes fundamentally the political dynamics in here." Also appearing will be Dalit Baum, who runs the anti-Israel site Who Profits from the Occupation, dedicated to the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement – which claims that BDS has already cost the Israeli economy in excess of 1.5 billion dollars.