Wednesday, January 18, 2017
As we’re relocating next week, I’m enforced to take a short break until we’ll be connected again.
By Sander Gerber, Jerusalem Center For Public Affairs. Jan. 18th 2017
For the full article go to: http://tinyurl.com/hszcy65
When Israel revealed in 2016 that it had arrested the Palestinian director of the “World Vision” aid organization in Gaza and later a prominent official of the UN Development Program (UNDP) in Gaza for diverting international assistance for humanitarian and civilian purposes to support Hamas terror activities, much of the world was upset. Yet at the same time, the Palestinian Authority (PA) officially, publicly, and proudly supports terror using international funding.
The PA pays directly and, as of 2014, partly through the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), about 1.1 billion shekels (around $300 million) every year as salaries to Palestinian terrorists in Israeli jails, continuing after they are released, and to the families of dead terrorists and other Palestinians who died fighting against Zionism.
These “incentives to terror” salaries appear clearly in the PA budget. They amount to seven percent of the Palestinian budget and more than 20 percent of the annual foreign aid to the PA. (See appendices for PA legislation and budget, and prisoner and martyrs payment schedules.)
It may seem strange, but the international and Israeli reactions to these payments have been minimal until recently, and the aid and the payments keep flowing without significant interruption.
The purpose of this study is to examine the ideological and political background for the payment of these salaries that constitutes blatant support for terrorism in contradiction to the Palestinian commitments in the Oslo agreements. It discusses the attitude of Israel and the international donor community towards the payments and the legal aspects of this phenomenon. Finally, the study presents recommended actions for dealing with it.
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Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Video of the week - The video that Obama and the U.N. want removed from YouTube - http://tinyurl.com/zq6leb7
Tom Gross and Sacha Dratwa contributed to this article.
Moshe Aharon, the driver of the bus, told Army Radio that “a group of soldiers was standing with their bags near the bus. I had just let them off. The truck drove into the group of soldiers, ran over them and kept going. The soldiers shot at the driver. He reversed and ran over them again.”
Leah Schreiber, one of the guides for the group of soldiers, told reporters that the driver had reversed and run over the bodies again.
“I was explaining about the view of Jerusalem. I saw soldiers shouting and screaming. Some of the soldiers started shooting. It took some time to kill [the driver] so he was able to reverse. The whole thing took maybe a minute and a half,” Schreiber said.
At first, it was not clear if this was an accident or a deliberate attack, but Schreiber said she “understood it was a terror attack when they started shooting at him.”
A number of victims were trapped under the truck after the incident, according to a Magen David Adom paramedic on the scene.
According to the Ben Zvi Institute, which led the trip for the army, the soldiers were cadets from the IDF’s officer’s training course, but from non-combat units.
The driver of the truck was identified as Fadi al-Qanbar, a resident of the capital’s Jabel Mukaber neighborhood, according to Arab media. The truck, with Israeli license plates, came from the direction of that neighborhood, which is adjacent to the promenade.
He was in his late 20s, married with four children, and had served time in Israeli jail, Channel 2 said. He bought the truck last year.
One seriously injured soldier was sent to Shaare Zedek hospital. She was unconscious and doctors were attempting to stabilize her condition, a spokesperson for the hospital said.
The scene of a truck ramming attack in Jerusalem in January 8, 2017
There was no immediate claim of responsibility but the Hamas terror group praised the attack as “heroic.”
Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem lauded the attack on his Facebook page, saying, “These operations demonstrate that all attempts to bypass the resistance or to thwart it will fail every time.”
Palestinian assailants have used vehicle rammings as a method for terror attacks for years, and the method seemed to have been adopted by European jihadists in recent months, including in an attack in Berlin last month that left 12 dead, including an Israeli woman.
Hamas, a group previously praised by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, British Labour Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn, British peer Baroness Jenny Tonge and others, hands out sweets to motorists in Gaza after the attack yesterday in celebration of the murder of Israelis.
Wednesday, January 4, 2017
Video of the week - Obama's Alleged "Collusion" at UN: http://tinyurl.com/zs3es2a
By Melany Phillips 28th Dec. 2016
Dear Prime Minister,
It was sickening to see that your government last week voted for the declaration of diplomatic war against Israel embodied in resolution 2334 passed by the UN Security Council.
Bad enough that Britain didn’t use its position as a permanent SC member to vote against this vicious resolution and thereby stop it in its tracks. Worse, far worse was that your government voted for it. In doing so, Britain signed up to propositions that repudiate law, justice and truth.
Now reports have surfaced that, yet more appallingly, Britain was actually instrumental in getting 2334 passed by helping draft the resolution and then stiffening New Zealand’s resolve in proposing it.
I don’t know whether that is correct. I suspect it may well be. I think, nevertheless, that you spoke from the heart the other week when you told the Conservative Friends of Israel of your admiration for Israel as a “remarkable country” and a “beacon of tolerance” and your warm feelings towards the Jewish people.
I also think, however, that you know little about the history of the Jews in the Middle East, the part played in that history by previous British governments or the infernal strategic aims of the people known as the “Palestinians”. I believe, therefore, you might not fully grasp the implications of supporting UNSC resolution 2334.
So let me spell out exactly what your government has done by voting in this way.
It has put itself firmly behind the attempt to exterminate the State of Israel under the cowardly cover of vacuous pieties about supporting two democratic states and opposing terrorism and incitement. It has done this by endorsing the inflammatory falsehoods and legal and historic fictions deployed by those whose purpose is to destroy the State of Israel.
It has shredded the concept of diplomatic integrity by delegitimising Israel’s legal actions in defence of its survival while legitimising the manifestly false claim to the land by those who want Israel gone.
It has put rocket fuel behind the discriminatory and bigoted BDS movement whose aim is to delegitimise Israel and bring about its destruction.
By declaring that Israel’s borders should be established on terms demanded by its mortal enemies, the British government has backed coerced surrender to aggressors bent on Israel’s extermination.
Through this vote, your government has shown its contempt for international law. It has helped tear up the treaty obligation under the Oslo Accords to decide through negotiation the borders of Israel and the status of Jerusalem.
Prime Minister, your officials will not be informing you of crucial facts about the legal validity of Israel’s actions. So I will.
Despite the wilful misreading by the Foreign Office of the Geneva Conventions through flagrantly twisting and distorting the meaning of the word “transfer” in that context, Israel’s settlements are legal several times over.
Under the 1922 Mandate for Palestine, the British administration was instructed to “facilitate… close settlement by Jews on the land, including state lands and waste lands not required for public purposes”.
The land on which the international community thus gave the Jews the right to settle included what is now Israel, the disputed territories of Judea and Samaria, and Gaza. That legal right has never been abrogated.
Israel has no borders, only ceasefire lines which marked the cessation of hostilities in 1949 after it defeated the Arab attempt to destroy it at its rebirth. It continues to have no borders because the war of extermination mounted against it by the Arabs has never ended.
A country is entitled under international law to occupy land it seizes from a belligerent enemy and retain it as long as the belligerency continues. That was why Israel was entitled to retain land beyond the ceasefire lines seized in the 1967 Six-Day War.
UN resolution 242 called for Israel’s withdrawal merely from “territories” seized at that time. It deliberately eschewed the definite article, which would have required withdrawal from all “the” territories, on the understanding that they would only be yielded up if the Arabs ended their aggression. That has never happened. To this day, these territories are used as a launching pad for the mass murder of Israelis.
Worse even than ignoring these legal realities, your government has now struck at the very heart of Jewish identity.
The essence of the strategy to delegitimise and destroy Israel is the attempt to airbrush the Jewish people out of their own history in the land – a history which gives them and them alone the right to live there. In voting for this resolution, your government has now endorsed that pernicious endeavour.
The resolution refers to “occupied Palestinian territory including East Jerusalem.” There is no such thing as “Palestinian territory” and never was.
First of all, the term “Palestinian” is itself bogus. Palestinian identity was an artificial creation invented solely to destroy the Jewish entitlement to their own homeland.
“Palestine” was invented by the Romans to rename Judea, in order to eradicate Jewish entitlement to land the Romans had conquered and to expunge all trace of its Jewish identity.
Arabs who lived in pre-Israel Palestine were either nomadic or considered themselves Syria or pan-Arab. As many Arabs have acknowledged over the years, there is no such thing as a “Palestinian”.
Second, the land in dispute never belonged to the “Palestinians” nor indeed to any Arab state. Jordan illegally occupied Judea and Samaria, which it renamed the West Bank, between 1949 and 1967. That territory is in effect no-man’s land. And given the terms of the British mandate which have never been overturned, it is only Israel which has any legal, moral or historical right to settle its people there.
Prime Minister, the picture accompanying this letter is of a young girl who was one of the victims of the 1929 Hebron massacre. Hebron, one of the holiest places in Judaism, had a substantial Jewish community until in 1929 the Arabs carried out a three-day pogrom, slaughtering 67 Jews. The rest of the Jewish community was driven out, rendering Hebron empty of Jews for the first time in hundreds of years.
During the war to destroy Israel in 1948, the Jewish residents of Gush Etzion were expelled and murdered. The Arabs similarly depopulated the Jewish villages of Kalya and Atarot, drove out the Jews living in the Jewish Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem and blew up all of their synagogues.
Obscenely, resolution 2334 deems all these places and more that were ethnically cleansed of their ancient Jewish populations to be “Palestinian territory” and that it is against international law for any Israeli to live there. Prime Minister, in supporting this resolution the British government has made itself party to the proposed racist ethnic cleansing once again of the Jews from their own ancient land.
Worse yet, it has also struck at the very heart of Jewish religious identity.
By stating that everything beyond the 1949 ceasefire lines is “occupied Palestinian territory” the resolution denies the Jewish claim to the Old City of Jerusalem and thus to Temple Mount, the holiest place in Judaism.
Nor is this the only way the British government has now struck not just at Israel but at the Jewish people. Recently, and with great fanfare, it officially adopted the definition of antisemitism by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance. Providing examples of where this definition might apply, the IHRA states that it may do so in respect of the State of Israel by “Applying double standards by requiring of it a behaviour not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation.”
That double standard is precisely what the British government has applied in voting for resolution 2334. For other countries have disputed borders and displaced populations: Cyprus, for example, or western Sahara. Yet it is only Israel that is singled out for condemnation in this way. By the standard the British government has itself adopted, it therefore now stands condemned for an antisemitic act in voting for resolution 2334.
Prime Minister, the Israeli settlements are not the impediment to a solution of the Arab-Israel impasse. The war against the Jewish homeland started decades before Israel took over these disputed territories. A state of Palestine cannot possibly be the solution because the “Palestinians” have been repeatedly offered it; their only answer has always been to launch yet more wars or terrorist campaigns against Israel.
As the Arabs have repeatedly made clear, the sole purpose of a state of Palestine is to bring about the extermination of the Jewish homeland. The Arab-Israel impasse continues principally because Britain, Europe and America have consistently sanitised, rewarded and incentivised Arab aggression against Israel while punishing it for trying to defend its right to the land.
Britain bears primary responsibility for this. In the thirties, it betrayed its Mandate obligations by reneging on its treaty obligation to settle the Jews in the land and instead rewarded genocidal Arab aggression by offering the Arabs part of the Jews’ own entitlement to the land. Voting for UNSC resolution 2334 merely continues that history of British infamy.
There are now well-sourced reports that President Obama intends to take even more malicious action against Israel at the UN before he leaves office. Prime Minister, is your government intending to support those moves too? If so, it will be a dreadful irony that someone who is so obviously well-disposed towards the Jewish people should go down in history as one of its most bitter enemies.
Tuesday, December 27, 2016
Video Of The Week - Danny Dannon condemns the Anti-Israel UN Resolution-http://tinyurl.com/gvzn7rd
24-12-2016 Melanie Philips
For the full article go to: http://tinyurl.com/jffamf7
President Obama’s refusal to veto the sickening UN Security Council resolution against Israel yesterday was an act of pure malice.
The resolution, demanding an immediate halt to all Israeli “settlement” construction, was proposed by New Zealand, Malaysia, Venezuela and Senegal after its original sponsor, Egypt, had withdrawn. No-one can be in any doubt, though, that the resolution’s real sponsor was Obama, acting behind the backs of the US Congress and the American people.
Clearly it makes a negotiated settlement between Israel and the Palestinians very much harder, since the Palestinians will now have no incentive to negotiate the boundaries of a future Palestine state.
Worse than that, it seeks to draw the border of Israel along the ceasefire lines established in 1949, when Israel fought off the Arab attempt to exterminate it at its rebirth. These ceasefire lines have been called the “Auschwitz borders” because they leave Israel militarily indefensible against its enemies. These include the Palestinians who remain committed to destroy Israel – and whose infernal cause the UN, manipulated by Obama, has now backed.
Worse even than that, the resolution is legally illiterate and perpetrates the Big Lie about Israel: that the “settlements” violate international law and that they are the major obstacle to peace.
They do not violate international law and no UN resolution can make them unlawful. Israel is legally entitled to build on this territory. This is principally because 1) it was never sovereign land belonging to any other state and 2) because it was land where the UN’s precursor body pledged that the Jews should be settled on account of their unique right to do so.
The idea that the settlements are the greatest obstacle to peace is ludicrous. There were no settlements before 1967, yet the Arab war of extermination against Israel had already gone on for decades.
There are two actual reasons for the Middle East impasse: first, that the Palestinians continuously incite their people to hatred of the Jews and mass murder of Israelis on the back of a narrative of lies which writes the Jews out of their own history in the land; and second, that America, Britain and Europe fund, sanitise and incentivise that genocidal Palestinian agenda.
What this vote so clearly demonstrates is what has been clear for years: that the UN is no longer fit for purpose. Dominated by states implacably hostile to Israel and the Jewish people, the UN has long demonstrated through its egregious application of double standards against Israel alone that it has become nothing less than an instrument of extermination against a member state. Only the US restrained it; now Obama has allied America to this agenda of infamy.
The US Congress and new American president must now finally hold the UN to account. It is insupportable that the American people should be financing this rogue body which is not just motivated by ideological and religious malevolence against the Jewish people but actively damages world peace.
There is another country, however, whose behaviour over this resolution must be noted with grim dismay (we can forget New Zealand, a stupid country of no other significance). As one of the five permanent Security Council members, Britain could have vetoed the resolution. Instead it actually supported it.
Since she came to power last July the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, has gone out off her way to express her warm affection for the Jewish people and her strong support for the State of Israel.
Her words now stick in the throat. If Obama has committed a foul and final act of malice towards Israel, Mrs May has done something just as bad, if not worse: presented herself as the friend upon whom the Jewish people can rely while her government stuck the knife not into Israel’s back, as did Obama, but its front.
Two weeks ago, Mrs May told the Conservative Friends of Israel that the 1917 Balfour Declaration, in which the British government committed itself to the re-establishment of the Jewish homeland in Palestine, was “one of the most important letters in history” and that next year’s anniversary of the Declaration was one that Britain would be “marking with pride”.
There is no reason to doubt that she is personally warmly disposed towards the Jews and Israel. But her understanding seems terribly limited. The reality, of which she seems to be genuinely unaware, is that for three decades after the Balfour Declaration the British did everything they could to undo it.
They turned a blind eye to Arab pogroms against the Jews of Palestine. They tore up Britain’s internationally binding obligation to settle the Jews throughout that land, making Britain an accessory to the Holocaust by refusing Jewish refugees entry to Palestine during the Nazi period. And they offered the Arabs, as a response to their murderous violence against both the Jews and the British, part of the Jews’ own entitlement to the land.
Britain’s wholesale disregard of international law, its craven appeasement of the Arabs’ violence and its further punishment of their Jewish victims cemented permanent Arab aggression and rejectionism towards Israel. Yesterday at the UN, making common cause with ideologues, appeasers and tyrants, perfidious Albion continued its betrayal of the Jewish people.
The scene is now set for the US to tackle the reservoir of evil that the UN has become. Not before time. This is one swamp that most urgently needs to be drained.
Wednesday, December 21, 2016
Video of the week:Arson terrorists destroy vineyard in Dolev, Israel- http://tinyurl.com/z3kp9tv
MICHAEL GOVE The Times 16-12- 2016
· For the full article go to: https://cfoi.co.uk/michael-gove-lefts-hatred-of-israel-is-racism-in-disguise/
How do you know if someone’s an antisemite? They don’t all perform stiff-arm salutes for the camera and offer interesting 140-character thoughts about race theory on Twitter. Although those are helpful clues, as the American alt-right, Hezbollah and Iran’s leadership prove.
But antisemitism isn’t a prejudice restricted to the likes of Richard Spencer, Hassan Nasrallah and Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. As befits the world’s oldest and most durable hatred, it has many more adherents and has taken many different forms.
In medieval times, when individuals made sense of their world through the prism of faith, antisemitism was a religious prejudice. In the 19th and early 20th centuries — the age of Darwinism — antisemitism clothed itself in the white coat of the scientist. Biological metaphors were deployed to modernise hate. The Jews were carriers of “racial contamination” who had to be eliminated as a pathological threat to humanity’s future.
That belief led to history’s greatest crime. The extermination of six million powered by hatred of one thing — Jewish identity. It should have been the case that antisemitism died in the furnaces of the Holocaust. But the hatred survived. And, like a virus, mutated.
Antisemitism has moved from hatred of Jews on religious or racial grounds to hostility towards the proudest expression of Jewish identity we now have — the Jewish state.
No other democracy is on the receiving end of a campaign calling for its people to be shunned and their labour to be blacklisted. The Boycott, Disinvestment and Sanctions movement is a growing force on our streets and campuses. Its campaigners argue that we should ignore ideas from Jewish thinkers if those thinkers come from Israel and treat Jewish commerce as a criminal enterprise if that business is carried on in Israel.
This is antisemitism, impure and simple. It is the latest recrudescence of the age-old demand that the Jew can only live on terms set by others. Once Jews had to live in the ghetto, now they cannot live in their historic home.
It is to Britain’s eternal credit that we rejected centuries of prejudice one hundred years ago and pledged to extend to the Jewish people the rights enjoyed by Germans and Italians, Japanese and Mexicans — the right to a land they could call their own. The Balfour Declaration in 1917 was followed in 1948 with the creation of the state of Israel. Since then, that state’s success has been near-miraculous.
Surrounded by enemies who sought to strangle it at birth, continually threatened by war and constantly under terrorist attack, a nation scarcely the size of Wales with no natural resources, half of whose territory is desert, has become a flourishing democracy, a centre of scientific innovation, one of the world’s major providers of international humanitarian relief and the only state from Casablanca to Kabul with a free press, free judiciary, a flourishing free enterprise economy and freedom for people of every sexual orientation to live and love as they wish.
And that is the reason it attracts such hostility. Not because of what Israel does. But because of what it is.
For those on the left addicted to guilt-tripping and grievance-mongering, who believe that poverty is a consequence of western exploitation and that bourgeois ethics lead to oppression, the existence of a political entity that is a runaway success precisely because it is a bourgeois-minded, capitalist-fuelled, western-oriented nation state is just too much to bear. Their ideological prejudices have collided with a stubborn, undeniable, fact.
So what do they do? Keep the prejudices, of course, and try to get rid of the fact. Try to undermine, delegitimise and reduce support for Israel. Make it the only country in the world whose right to exist is called continually into question. Make the belief in that state’s survival, Zionism, a dirty word. Denounce, as the NUS president has, a British university for being a “Zionist outpost”. And instead call organisations pledged to eliminate Israel such as Hezbollah and Hamas “friends”, as Jeremy Corbyn has.
Antizionism is not a brave anti-colonial and anti-racist stance, it is simply antisemitism minding its manners so it can sit in a seminar room. And as such it deserves to be called out, confronted and opposed.
Because the fate of the Jewish people, and the survival of the Jewish state, are critical tests for all of us. The darkest forces of our time — Islamic State, the Iranian leaders masterminding mass murder in Aleppo — are united by one thing above all: their hatred of the Jewish people and their home. Faced with such implacable hatred, and knowing where it has always led, we should not allow antisemitism any space to advance, or incubate.Instead we should show we’re not going to be intimidated by those who want to treat Israel as a second-class state, we’re not going to indulge the antisemitic impulse to apply the double standard. Israel is the only state where we don’t locate our embassy in the nation’s capital and the only ally the Foreign Office has refused to let the Queen visit. So let’s celebrate the centenary of the Balfour Declaration by moving our embassy to Jerusalem next year and inviting Her Majesty to open it. What are we afraid of? Earning the enmity of those who hate Israel? To my mind, there could be no greater compliment.
Wednesday, December 14, 2016
Video of the week - Wounded Syrians treated in an Israeli hospital - http://tinyurl.com/jqtf6hn
Ynetnews by Yaniv Halily: 13.12.16
For the full article go to: http://tinyurl.com/jd8b7hs
LONDON - British Prime Minister Theresa May delivered a staunchly pro-Israel speech Monday during which she declared her government’s unwavering support for Israel, proclaimed her unequivocal opposition to boycotts and reiterated her commitment to expunging anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial from British society.
Speaking at the annual Conservative Friends of Israel lunch, May announced her intention to make her country one of the first in the world to adopt an international definition of anti-Semitism and to clamp down on hate crime after an increase in the number of reported incidents targeting Jews.
Speaking to more than 800 guests, May described the 1917 Balfour Declaration—Britain’s pledge to create a Jewish state in Palestine—as “one of the most important letters in history" before stating her believe that the two-state solution, for two peoples brought about by direct negotiations, “without preconditions” offered the only plausible blueprint for a peaceful resolution to the ongoing conflict with the Palestinians.
May lauded Israel as “a thriving democracy, a beacon of tolerance, an engine of enterprise and an example to the rest of the world for overcoming adversity and defying disadvantages.”
Recalling her experiences during a 2014 visit to Israel, the prime minister added that “it is only when you walk through Jerusalem or Tel Aviv that you see a country where people of all religions and sexualities are free and equal in the eyes of the law.”
May also acknowledged Israel’s disproportionate impact on the world: “It is only when you travel across the country that you realise it is only the size of Wales—and appreciate even more the impact it has on the world.”
Citing the kidnapping and murder of Naftali Frenkel, Gilad Shaer and Eyal Yifrah in 2014, she said “it is only when you witness Israel’s vulnerability that you see the constant danger Israelis face, as I did during my visit.”
After heaping praise on Israel’s life-saving work around the world, from Nepal to Haiti, and paying homage to Israel’s late former President Shimon Peres, May assured her listeners that “no British taxpayers’ money will be used to make payments to terrorists or their families.”
May then addressed anti-Semitism in British society and announced her much anticipated promise to adopt an international definition.
“That means there will be one definition of anti-Semitism – in essence, language or behaviour that displays hatred towards Jews because they are Jews – and anyone guilty of that will be called out on it.”
In a similar vein, she also pledged to continue her predecessor’s (David Cameron) vision to build a National Memorial to the Holocaust next to Parliament.
May then turned her focus to British Labour Party, expressing her disgust with anti-Semitic elements within it and what she described as its hard-left allies. Furthermore, she ridiculed the UK Labour Party's deputy leader, Tom Watson who broke out singing Am Yisrael Chai ("The people of Israel live") at a recent annual Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) lunch.
“No amount of karaoke can make up for turning a blind eye to anti-Semitism, May insisted. “No matter what Labour say—or sing—they cannot ignore what has been happening in their party.”
May’s government already began backing up her stated commitment to countering anti-Semitism with the announcement on the same day that a British neo-Nazi group would become the first of its kind to be banned under the country's new anti-terror laws, with Interior Minister Amber Rudd branding it Monday as "racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic."
Tuesday, December 6, 2016
Gatestone Institute - by Bassam Tawil, December 5, 2016
For the full article go to - http://tinyurl.com/zctqunt
While construction in Jewish settlements of the West Bank and neighborhoods of Jerusalem has long been carried out within the frame of the law and in accordance with proper licenses issued by the relevant authorities, the Palestinian construction is illegal in every respect.
The Palestinian goal is to create irreversible facts on the ground. The sheer enormity of the project raises the question: Who has been funding these massive cities-within-cities? And why? There is good reason to believe that the PLO and some Arabs and Muslims, and especially the European Union, are behind the Palestinian initiative.
The Jewish outpost of Amona, home to 42 families, is currently the subject of fiery controversy both in Israel and in the international arena. Apparently, settlements are only a "major obstacle to peace" when they are constructed by Jews.
The EU and some Islamic governments and organizations are paying for the construction of illegal Palestinian settlements, while demanding that Israel halt building new homes for Jewish families in Jerusalem neighborhoods or existing settlements in the West Bank.
The hypocrisy and raw malice of the EU and the rest of the international community toward the issue of Israeli settlements is blindingly transparent. Yet we are also witnessing the hypocrisy of many in the Western mainstream media, who see with their own eyes the Palestinian settlements rising on every side of Jerusalem, but choose to report only about Jewish building.
As the international community continues to slam Israel for construction in Jewish settlement communities, Palestinians are quietly engaging in massive construction of entire neighborhoods in many parts of the West Bank and Jerusalem. In addition to overlooking the Palestinian building project, the West has clearly been neglecting a crucial difference between the two efforts: while the construction in the Jewish settlements of the West Bank and neighborhoods of Jerusalem has long been carried out within the frame of the law and in accordance with proper licenses issued by the relevant authorities, the Palestinian construction is illegal in every respect.
In this behind-the-scenes endeavor, which does not meet even the most minimum standards required by engineers, architects and housing planners, the Palestinian goal is to create irreversible facts on the ground.
A quick tour of the areas surrounding Jerusalem from the north, east and south easily exposes the colossal construction that is taking place there. In most cases, these high-rise buildings are slapped together without licenses or any adequate planning or safety concerns.
An example of massive illegal Palestinian construction near Shufat and Anata,
on the northeastern outskirts of Jerusalem.
An example of massive illegal Palestinian construction near Shufat and Anata, on the northeastern outskirts of Jerusalem.
The Jewish outpost of Amona in the central West Bank, home to 42 families, is currently the subject of fiery controversy both in Israel and in the international arena. In 2006, the High Court of Israel ruled that the outpost is illegal under Israeli law because it lies on private Palestinian land. In 2014, the High Court ordered the government to evacuate and demolish the entire outpost within two years.
In Israel, as Amona demonstrates, no one is above the law. Israel boasts an independent judiciary system that is second to none.
Yet as the debate in Israel intensifies over the fate of Amona, the Palestinians are making a mockery of laws and building regulations by embarking on massive construction of illegal neighborhoods and buildings. Apparently, settlements are only a "major obstacle to peace" when they are constructed by Jews.
Video of the week: Israeli women in the IDF - http://tinyurl.com/hnh4h4l