Wednesday, April 29, 2015


By Mehdi Majid Abdallah April 23, 2015
For the full article go to:                                                              
In his column on the liberal website, Kurdish-Iraqi writer Mehdi Majid 'Abdallah called on the Palestinians and the Arabs in general to renounce the terrorism of Hamas and to extend a friendly hand to Israel. He wrote that, since its founding, Israel has been facing terrorism labeled as "resistance," and that today it is defending itself against Hamas, which is firing rockets on its civilian population. He added that Hamas, rather than Israel, was responsible for the death of innocent Palestinians, whereas Israel extended medical treatment to hundreds of thousands of Palestinians.

"Ever since its founding in the late 1940s, the young state of Israel has been facing constant terror labeled as 'resistance.' I do not mean to say that all Palestinians are terrorists, for some of them love life and prefer the culture of peace and to live in peace and security alongside Israel. I do not know if Hamas, when it fires its rockets randomly into Israeli cities, thinks of the fact that they will hit women and children who have done nothing wrong other than choose to live in the land that was stolen from them thousands of years ago and has now been restored to them. [Today] they wish to build this land, but Palestinian terrorism constantly sabotages their livelihood, their development [efforts] and their prosperity. Whether we like it or not, the land on which the Palestinians live belongs to the Jews, and there is historic and religious evidence of this, both Islamic and non-Islamic. I shall not present it here, but the reader is welcome to search the Internet and find plenty of proof for what I say.

"Today the Palestinians have begun to understand that Hamas is a serious liability and a terrorist movement. That is why we saw no significant Palestinian opposition to the international and Arab decisions to designate Hamas a terror organization. The glamour of so-called 'resistance' faded after the deeds of its leaders and perpetrators were exposed, and [now] they no longer convince any intelligent person.

"Hamas leader Isma'il Haniya is always calling to boycott Israel, eliminate it and destroy it, and is always urging the Palestinians not to maintain any ties with it, in any domain. He has even sent thousands of young Palestinians to die [for this cause]. But when his sister, his daughter and some other members of his family fell ill, one after the other, we immediately saw him send them to the best hospitals in Tel Aviv, where they received treatment before being sent back to Gaza unharmed. Why [were they sent back unharmed]? If Israel was [really] a murderer of Palestinian women and children, as the Arab media falsely maintains, it would have regarded Haniya's relatives as choice prey. If Israel [really] wanted to exterminate the Palestinians, as the Arabs and Muslims falsely maintain, why didn't it have Haniya's sister and daughter killed or raped?

"Instead of [taking] the funds that are given to the Palestinian people and investing them in the poor and the needy, Hamas and other Gazan movements rush [to invest them in] the building of secret tunnels and passages for purposes of terror...

"According to a UN report, in 2008 Israel, which the Palestinians claim murders innocent children, took in 144,838 Palestinians for purposes of medical treatment. In 2009 this figure grew by 20%, reaching 172, 863, in 2010 it reached 175,151, in 2011 it grew by 13%, reaching 197,713, and in 2012 it reached 210,469. I wonder if any Arab country would do the same for Israelis?

"The Palestinian women and children who are killed in the Israeli army's defensive war against Hamas are not killed deliberately. They are collateral damage, for any war has innocent victims. Israel knows this well, as evidenced by the fact that, after every defensive military operation, it apologizes for the [death of] innocent victims and compensates their families morally and financially. Were it not for the reckless actions of Hamas, which constantly fires rockets into extensive parts of Israel [where] peaceful [people live], there would have been no innocent victims, because Israel's actions are directed against the terrorists.

"It is time that the Arabs, Muslims and Palestinians, who are deceived and drugged by false and baseless slogans, wake up and extend a friendly hand to Israel, so that peace and security can prevail and everyone can live in peace. Every decent Palestine should oppose Hamas and its terrorism against Israel. If the Palestinians want to avoid being harmed by Israeli fire, they should prevent Hamas from using their homes, mosques and schools [as bases from which] to launch its terrorist rockets at Israel."  
 Don't forget to view our Video of the week, “Arab & Israeli Teens cooperate”

Tuesday, April 21, 2015


Bret Stephens in this WSJ article, April 20, 2015,  is suggesting that Israel be more independent! 

Recent conversations with senior Israeli officials are shot through with a sense of incredulity. They can’t understand what’s become of U.S. foreign policy.
They don’t know how to square Barack Obama’s promises with his policies. They fail to grasp how a president who pledged to work toward the abolition of nuclear weapons is pushing an accord with Tehran that guarantees their proliferation. They are astonished by the nonchalance with which the administration acquiesces in Iran’s regional power plays, or in al Qaeda’s gains in Yemen, or in the Assad regime’s continued use of chemical weapons, or in the battlefield successes of ISIS, or in Russia’s decision to sell advanced missiles to Tehran. They wonder why the president has so much solicitude for Ali Khamenei’s political needs, and so little for Benjamin Netanyahu’s.
In a word, the Israelis haven’t yet figured out that what America is isn’t what America was. They need to start thinking about what comes next.
The most tempting approach is to wait Mr. Obama out and hope for better days with his successor. Israel and the U.S. have gone through bad patches before—under Ford in the 1970s, Reagan in the early ’80s, Bush in the early ’90s, Clinton in the late ’90s. The partnership always survived the officeholders.
So why should it be different this time? Seventy percent of Americans see Israel in a favorable light, according to a February Gallup poll. The presidential candidates from both parties all profess unswerving friendship with the Jewish state, and the Republican candidates actually believe it. Mr. Obama’s foreign policy is broadly unpopular and likely to become more so as the fiascoes continue to roll in.
Yet it’s different this time. For two reasons, mainly.
First, the administration’s Mideast abdications are creating a set of irreversible realities for which there are no ready U.S. answers. Maybe there were things an American president could have done to help rescue Libya in 2011, Syria in 2013, and Yemen last year. That was before it was too late. But what exactly can any president do about the chaos unfolding now?
Shakespeare wrote that there was a tide in the affairs of men “which taken at the flood, leads men on to fortune.” Barack Obama always missed the flood.
Now the president is marching us past the point of no return on a nuclear Iran and thence a nuclear Middle East. When that happens, how many Americans will be eager to have their president intervene in somebody else’s nuclear duel? Americans may love Israel, but partly that’s because not a single U.S. soldier has ever died fighting on its behalf.
In other words, Mr. Obama is bequeathing not just a more dangerous Middle East but also one the next president will want to touch only with a barge pole. That leaves Israel alone to deal as best as it can with a broadening array of threats: thousands more missiles for Hezbollah, paid for by sanctions relief for Tehran; ISIS on the Golan Heights; an Iran safe, thanks to Russian missiles, from any conceivable Israeli strike.
The second reason follows from the first. Previous quarrels between Washington and Jerusalem were mainly about differing Mideast perceptions. Now the main issue is how the U.S. perceives itself.
Beginning with Franklin Roosevelt, every U.S. president took the view that strength abroad and strength at home were mutually reinforcing; that global security made us more prosperous, and that prosperity made us more secure.
Then along came Mr. Obama with his mantra of “nation building at home” and his notion that an activist foreign policy is a threat to the social democracy he seeks to build. Under his administration, domestic and foreign policy have been treated as a zero-sum game: If you want more of the former, do less of the latter. The result is a world of disorder, and an Israel that, for the first time in its history, must seek its security with an America that, say what it will, has nobody’s back but its own.
How does it do this? By recalling what it was able to do for the first 19 years of its existence, another period when the U.S. was an ambivalent and often suspicious friend and Israel was more upstart state than start-up nation.
That was an Israel that was prepared to take strategic gambles because it knew it couldn’t afford to wait on events. It did not consider “international legitimacy” to be a prerequisite for action because it also knew how little such legitimacy was worth. It understood the value of territory and terrain, not least because it had so little of it. It built its deterrent power by constantly taking the military initiative, not constructing defensive wonder-weapons such as Iron Dome. It didn’t mind acting as a foreign policy freelancer, and sometimes even a rogue, as circumstances demanded. “Plucky little Israel” earned the world’s respect and didn’t care, much less beg, for its moral approval.

Perhaps the next American president will rescue Israel from having to learn again what it once knew. Israelis would be wise not to count on it.

Thursday, April 16, 2015


By Robert Fisk 5.4.2015
For the full article go to:

A hundred years on from the Armenian genocide, and a Christian minority is again suffering

One summer's day in 1990, I walked into a beautiful Crusader chapel in Keserwan, a gentle mountainside north of Beirut, where an old Catholic Maronite priest pointed to a Byzantine mosaic of – I think – Saint John. What he wanted to show me was the holy man's eyes. They had been stabbed out of the mosaic by a sword or lance at some point in antiquity. 'The Muslims did this,' the priest said.

His words had added clarity because at that time the Lebanese Christian army General Michel Aoun – who thought he was the president and still, today, dreams of this unlikely investiture – was fighting a hopeless war against Hafez Assad's Syrian army. Daily, I was visiting the homes of dead Christians, killed by Syrian shellfire. The Syrians, in the priest's narrative, were the same ‘Muslims’ who had stabbed out the eyes in the ancient picture.
I remember at the time – and often since – I would say to myself that this was nonsense, that you cannot graft ancient history onto the present. (The Maronites, by the way, had supported the earlier Crusaders. The Orthodox of the time stood with the Muslims.) Christian-Muslim enmity on this scale was a tale to frighten schoolchildren.

And yet only last year, as shells burst above the Syrian town of Yabroud, I walked into the country’s oldest church and found paintings of the saints. All had had their eyes gouged out and been torn into strips. I took one of those strips home to Beirut, the painted eyes of the saints staring at me even as I write this article. This was not the sacrilege of antiquity. It was done by ghoulish men, probably from Iraq, only months ago.
Like 9/11 – long after Hollywood had regularly demonised Muslims as barbarian killers who wish to destroy America – it seems that our worst fears turn into reality. The priest in 1990 cannot have lived long enough to know how the new barbarians would strike at the saints in Yabroud.

Note how I have not mentioned the enslavement of Christian women in Iraq, the Islamic State’s massacre of Christians and Yazidis, the burning of Mosul's ancient churches or the destruction of the great Armenian church of Deir el-Zour that commemorated the genocide of its people in 1915. Nor the kidnapping of Nigerian schoolgirls. Not even the very latest massacre in Kenya where the numbers of Christian dead and the cruelty of their sectarian killers is, indeed, of epic, Hollywood proportions. Nor have I mentioned the ferocious Sunni-Shia wars that now dwarf the tragedy of the Christians.
But the Christian tragedy in the Middle East today needs to be re-thought – as it will be, of course, when Armenians around the world commemorate the 100th anniversary of the genocide of their people by Ottoman Turkey. Perhaps it is time that we acknowledge not only this act of genocide but come to regard it not as just the murder of a minority within the Ottoman Empire, but specifically a Christian minority, killed because they were Armenian but also because they were Christian (many of whom, unfortunately, rather liked the Orthodox, anti-Ottoman Tsar).
And their fate bears some uncommon parallels with the Islamic State murderers of today. The Armenian men were massacred.  The women were gang-raped or forced to convert or left to die of hunger. Babies were burned alive – after being stacked in piles. Islamic State cruelty is not new, even if the cult’s technology defeats anything its opponents can achieve.  In Kuwait last week, a good and thoughtful Muslim, an American university graduate – within the al-Sabah family and prominent in the government – shook his head with disbelief when he spoke of Islamic State.  ‘I watched the video of them burning the Jordanian pilot alive,’ he told me. ‘I watched it several times. I had to, because I had to understand their technology. Do you know they used seven camera angles to film this atrocity?  We could not compete with this media technology. We have to learn.’

And this is true. The West – that amorphous, dangerous expression – has still not understood the use of this technology – especially the use which the cult makes of the internet – nor have the Muslim Arab imams who should be speaking about the fearful acts of Islamic State.
But most are not, any more than they denounced the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war, when around a million Muslims killed each other. Because they were on Saddam’s side in that war. And because the Islamic State’s ideology is too obviously of Wahabi inspiration, and thus too close to some of the Gulf Arab states. 
The crimes of Islamic State are as brutal as any committed by the German army in the Second World War, but Jews who converted were not spared Hitler’s plan for their extermination. What the Islamic State and the 1915 Ottoman Turks have in common is a cruelty based on ideology – even theology – rather than race hatred, although that is not far away. After the burning of churches and of synagogues, the rubble looks much the same.
The tragedy of the Arab world is now on such a literally Biblical scale that we are all demeaned by it. Yet I also think of Lebanon where the old priest showed me his mosaic with the missing eyes and where the Lebanese Christians and Muslims fought each other – with the help of many foreign nations, including Israel, Syria and America – and killed 150,000 of their own people. 
Yet today, Lebanese Muslims and Christians, though still politically deeply divided, are protecting each other amid the gale-force winds around them. Why? Because they are today a much more educated population. It’s because they value education, reading and books and knowledge. And from education comes justice. Which is why, when compared to Lebanon, the Islamic State is a nation of lost souls

Sunday, April 12, 2015


 Marc Goldberg 8-4-2015

"It’s better they die in Syria than give up their right of return”
Mahmoud Abbas

While the Israeli Defense Force were storming into Gaza in 2014, the streets of Europe were overrun with demonstrators. There were virtual riots outside of the Israeli embassy in London, tens of thousands of people marched there in support of Palestinians as they did in Paris, Madrid and elsewhere. With every march came cries that the IDF were perpetrating a massacre in Gaza. The pictures of dead Palestinian children filled Facebook feeds.

There was no massacre of Palestinians at the hands of the IDF last Summer. But in Syria there is - right now as you read this. But you would be forgiven for being unaware of it. For this time there aren’t tens of thousands demonstrating on the streets. There are no demonstrations at all. There are no rallies. There are no screams of massacre. There are no demands on governments to take action.
There is simply a sad, deafening silence.
It’s not as if people don’t know what’s happening in the largest Palestinian refugee camp in Syria, Yarmouk. The story took pride of place on Sky News, it has been published by every major newspaper around the world. Yet there is no action. The heat, the friction, the activism of the Summer is nowhere to be found.
In the United Kingdom there is no shortage of organizations dedicated to the Palestinian cause. The Palestine Solidarity Campaign, was the main organizer of the demonstrations and of a boycott campaign against Israel and yet the cause of Palestinian suffering in Syria is noticeable only for its absence from their website. There are no events planned, there are no calls for aid, there are no plans to lobby Members of Parliament to take action.
There is silence.
And I want to know how this is possible. How can it happen that when Israel defends herself, thousands take to the streets, the activists with their megaphones go marching, the whole machinery of campaigning and letter writing and the demands for action from politicians swing into action but when a real massacre of Palestinians happening there is silence from the very organization which exists to campaign on behalf of Palestinians.
This is a bizarre state of affairs indeed. But then perhaps they are only following the example set by Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestine Authority President. His words concerning Palestinians in Syria from 2013 are proving to be truly prophetic today;
"It’s better they die in Syria than give up their right of return”
Perhaps the silence regarding Palestinians in Syria and elsewhere in the Middle East comes from a belief that it is only worth demonstrating when a Palestinian is killed by an Israeli. Even if that means throwing around words like massacre, when there isn’t one, and ignoring a real one while it happens.
We’re constantly told that the Israel Palestine conflict is what radicalises young Muslims in the West. So what happens when those radicalised Muslims from the West start beheading Palestinians while wearing the uniform of the Islamic State?
Apparently nothing at all.

Monday, April 6, 2015


by Lawrence A. Franklin, April 3, 2015,
In failing to adhere to international law, the United Nations has, as its principle violator, primarily itself.

The real dispute is not about a "Palestinian State." It is about who has the right to the entire area. This is also the reason the Palestinians will never sign an "end of conflict" agreement.

The Palestinian Authority (PA) continues to depict a world without Israel. This is to be done in stages, a "salami" tactic, by which any land acquired is to be used as a forward base from which to take the rest. The Phased Plan was never rescinded.

Hamas, with whom the PA is now aligned in a "Unity Government," takes the Phased Plan a bit farther. Hamas, in its Charter, advocates not only displacing Israel, but killing all the Jews worldwide as well, or genocide. This too has never been rescinded.

And now the PA and Hamas are to be rewarded for aggression? Such a move flies in the face of the UN's own international agreements -- signed by all parties under international law. 

They state that the Israel-Palestine dispute is to be resolved only by face-to-face negotiations.

There is an unspoken racist assumption that underlies the drive for a separate Palestinian Arab state: that no Jews should be allowed to live there. Presumably, this is why any land now resided on by Jews in the West Bank is called a "settlement." The assumption is apparently that the entire area is an illegal colony.

What is less well known is that even though Jews have continuously lived in this region -- it is called Judea -- for nearly 4,000 years, to many Muslims, the entire State of Israel, not just the West Bank, is considered an "illegal settlement." Please look at any map of "Palestine." It is exactly this view that is the real source of the dispute. 

The real dispute is not about a "Palestinian State." It is about who has the right to the entire area. This is also the reason the Palestinian negotiators will never sign an "end of conflict" agreement. As we have seen with Syria and Iraq, "official borders," even and including the "pre-1967 line," do not matter any more.

Further, the Palestinian Authority (PA) -- Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah as well as Hamas -- continues to educate the next generation of Arab Palestinians that Israel is destined to disappear. The PA continues to depict a world without Israel and a future without Israel -- a vision first embodied in the Palestinian Liberation Organization's (PLO) 1974 Ten Point Program, known as the "Phased Plan." 

Its stated goal -- never rescinded -- is the "liberation of all of Palestine." This is to be done in stages, a "salami" tactic, by which any land acquired is to be used as a forward base from which to take the rest.[1]

Hamas, with whom the PA is now aligned in a "Unity Government," takes the Phased Plan a bit farther. Hamas, in its Charter, advocates not only displacing Israel, but killing all the Jews worldwide as well, or genocide. This too has never been rescinded.

The fraudulent diplomatic charade now underway in the U.S. and Europe, treating Palestinian Arabs as the only victims, ignores the historical reality that a Jewish claim to these territories is at least as valid, if not more.

It is not the Jews or the Israelis who have rejected peace; they signed agreements, still in effect, with both Jordan and Egypt, and have offered the Palestinians opportunity after opportunity to do the same.
It was the Arabs and Muslims that rejected the Partition Plan internationally offered them in 1947.[2] 

It was the Arabs and Muslims that attacked Israel on the day of its founding -- as they did every war after that -- but were defeated.[3] 

The 1949 armistice line -- where the fighting stopped -- is now pointed to as the new border to which Israel must supposedly retreat.
And now they are about to be rewarded for aggression?

There are nearly two million Arabs with full and equal rights living in Israel to this day. Ironically, they enjoy greater rights than they would have in any other regional state, including seats in Israel's Parliament, the Knesset, from which many of them freely and loudly criticize Israel non-stop. 

Non-Muslims in many Islamic states do not enjoy full citizenship. Minorities in many Muslim states are treated as dhimmis, at best: "tolerated" second-class residents, who have to pay protection money (jizya) to live at the whim of their Muslim rulers.[4]

There has for years been a silent movement afoot -- a diplomatic sleight-of-hand -- which implies that "Israel," the name, may exist, but as a Muslim State, where Jews may live, as dhimmis. The same plan probably exists among many Muslims to rule over Catholics in parts of Spain. The notion of being treated as dhimmis in their own Biblically historic land has been met by Jews with less than enthusiasm.

To protect Israel from such a maneuver, some Israelis have suggested that its parliament pass a law that Israel be declared officially a Jewish state -- just as Iran, Pakistan, and Afghanistan are officially Islamic states, and as England is officially an Anglican Christian state. Unlike the leaders of Iran or England, however, those who have suggested that Israel be officially a Jewish state have been denounced as racists.

The question that refuses to go away is: Why the double standard?
As mountainous evidence accumulates that any territory presently ceded by Israel at this time would be vulnerable to seizure by extremist Islamic terrorists, there seems to be another diplomatic movement afoot, among some Europeans, unilaterally to grant the Palestinians their own state. 

Presumably, it is all right with these Europeans if that state is ruled by Islamist terrorists, such as Hamas, or if it is taken over by terrorists worse than Hamas, such as ISIS. Presumably it is all right with these Europeans if the leadership remains repressive, lawless and despotic -- indifferent to human rights, the rule of law, and still promoting genocide. And these Europeans actually think they are being so good and moral?

So far, all diplomatic progress toward the emergence of a separate Palestinian state has happened only with the hypocritical non-binding endorsements of several EU member-state parliaments, namely Sweden, Ireland and France.

Such a move flies in the face of the UN's own international agreements -- signed by all parties under international law. They state that the Israel-Palestinian dispute is to be resolved only by face-to-face negotiations.

The decades-old failure of the UN to abide by its own diplomatic agreements has created an opportunity for Palestinians to manufacture a false narrative. Furthermore, the UN has arrogated to itself the entirely false air of legitimacy for establishing yet another Arab state.

In failing to adhere to international law, the United Nations has, as its principal violator, primarily itself.

Internationally binding post-World War I conferences and treaties, as well as the Mandate system of the League of Nations (LN), make no mention that any portion of the land of Palestine would be ceded to Arabs.

 On the contrary, all of these international documents delineate that the new state that would emerge from the LN's assignment of the Palestine Mandate to the United Kingdom would be a "Jewish National Home." 

Moreover, this Jewish National Home was also recognized as consisting of the historically recognized land of Biblical Israel, including Judea and Samaria, which are today often referred to as the "West Bank" of the Jordan River.

These documents contain no ambiguity, and no counter-narratives suggesting otherwise. In fact, U.S. President Calvin Coolidge enthusiastically affirmed in 1922 that it was official U.S. policy to recognize a planned future state for the Jewish people by his support for a Joint Congressional Resolution endorsing the Balfour Declaration.[5] 

There was also never any challenge to the historical reality that Jerusalem has always been the capital of Israel, and exclusively and entirely within the land of Israel.

This juxtaposition of internationally-certified, legally-documented, historical commitments, contrasted to the current Palestinian narrative as "victims of occupation," is simply another extreme example of "historical revisionism," a specialty of the Kremlin.

Unless this false narrative is exposed for the fabrication it is, the future viability of international law -- and the continued U.S. funding of the United Nations -- should be in serious question.