Month: November 2014

Dr. David A. Yeagley: There is no Palestine, There are no Palestinians

 

From Israzine Nov., 2014: "Zionism, An Indigenous Struggle: Aboriginal Americans and the Jewish State"

 

 

In 1974, Dennis Banks, a leader of the new American Indian Movement (AIM) travelled to Vienna to meet with the World Council of Churches.  While there, he also met with the Palestinian Liberation Organization, identified as a terrorist group, but having nothing to do with American Indians.   Why would there be any meeting between AIM and the PLO?

 

The American Indian Movement, with a violent and anti-American image, had already established ties and associations with Angela Davis and the Communist Party, the Socialist Workers Party (Minneapolis), the American Labor Party, Cesar Chavez, the Puerto Rican Solidarity Committee, Fidel Castro, Hollywood entertainers, and a host of other new Communist organizations popping up all over the United States.  The PLO was considered another anti-American Communist effort, and AIM was trying to identify with the general Communist racial agitation movement that was sweeping the “oppressed” peoples of the Third World.   Most of these groups welcomed AIM, for no people like the American Indians could shout its protest as loud against America.  AIM quickly became a favorite of the anti-American movements.  (See: Alan Stang, “Red Indians,” in American Opinion, September, 1975.)

 

When I entered the field of American Indian politics in 2001, and learned the history of AIM, I was appalled.  That the American Indian should be used as the mascot of the political low-life of the world was to me intolerable.  I had nothing but positive intuitions about the Indian role in American society. Indians are an integral part of the land, like the rivers and mountains – more than the Europeans will ever be.  The American national image can never be complete or sound without the American Indian being a fundamental part of it.  This idea must be put forth positively and not in a confrontational way.  Some Americans have a profound respect for Indians.  The “Communist” (Socialist, Leftist, Liberal, and Progressive) use of aboriginals, though, seems to have obscured these natural psychological affinities.  In demonstrating the Indian’s natural affection for the land, the Indian can be seen as the bedrock of patriotism to the land.

 

I denounced the protracted and paid belly-aching on the part of AIM, and condemned its influence as detrimental to Indian youth.  Such a negative outlook as was being professionally pushed by Communist-funded (– now we call “liberal” or “Democrat”) anti-American, anti-constitutionalists was impossible and dangerous.  To my mind, nothing poisoned youth more that this nasty disposition of “I’ve been wronged,” and “You owe me.”  It crushed every natural aspiration of youth.  It stifled the intuitive ambitions of young people, particularly young men.

 

Then, as early as 2002, I began hearing of attempts to actually equate the “plight” of the so-called “Palestinians” with that of the American Indian.  I found this bizarre.  I could not perceive the association.  Implied by this, of course, was that Israel was somehow the equivalent of the European invaders of the American continent.  So it seemed the Indians were cast against the Jews.  This was preposterous, in my opinion.

 

However, what really struck me was the absolute ignorance of who the so-called “Palestinians” really were, which allowed for the berserk claims that there was a natural connection between American Indians and “Palestinians.”  By this time, of course, most people knew nothing of the origins of the American Indian Movement, and its anti-American roots, nor of the earliest attempts of associating it with “Palestinians.”  My work was cut out for me.  I had to expose, at least to my audience that consists of conservatives and patriots of all ethnicities and nationalities, the world over who the “Palestinians” were, and why they should not be associated with American Indians.   

 

The people who are today referred to as “Palestinians” are Jordanian, Syrian, and more recently, a mix of other Arab nationals, and some military mercenaries from various Middle Eastern countries like Iran and groups like Al-Qaeda. “Palestinian” does not refer to a race, language, a culture, a land, or a nation.  It is a political fantasy.  There is no Palestine, and there are no Palestinians.

 

The word “Palestine” comes from an ancient Hebrew word, פלשת (pelesheth), which has a root meaning “rolling,” and means migratory.  In Biblical literature, it is first used in Exodus 15:14, identifying the land and inhabitants who would greatly fear the approach of the children of Israel as Israel came up from Egypt.  It was a general term for a general area and people.  However, in other ancient, non-Hebrew records, the land (or people) is not referred to as such, but separate tribal inhabitants are named, or the names of their ‘kings,’ such as Kummuhu, Urik, Sibitti-be’l, Enil, Panammu, etc.  Tiglath-Pileser III (744-727) left such an inscription.  (See, The Ancient Near East, ed. James B. Pritchard, 1973, p.193.)  Apparently, the eastern coast of the Mediterranean was an evolving identity, being highly coveted real estate, yet, until inhabited by Israel, never saw an established nation over any significant period of time.

 

In the Torah, the same land is also called Cana’an.  Cana’an was, however, just another tribe inhabiting the area.  There were Hittites, Girgashites, Amorites, Cana’anites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites (Deuteronomy 7:1).  The list varies slightly elsewhere in the Torah (e.g., Exodus 33:2), but Cana’an is a consistent reference.  The land of Cana’an was the land of promise.  It was promised to Abraham (Genesis 17:8). 

 

“Palestine” has also been occasionally associated with the word Pi-liš-te, or Philistine.  The ancient Hebrew word is פלשתי  (pelishtee), which is very similar to pelesheth (Palestine).  This people, believed to be Egyptian in origin, did inhabit and dominate the coasts, certainly around the eleventh and tenth centuries BCE.  Obviously, they were not part of the original migrants at the time of the Exodus.

 

None of these ancient peoples who inhabited Palestine prior to the Jews, were Arab, nor were they part of any other nation.  They were very loosely confederate “fertility cults” with no political focus.  When the children of Israel came upon the land, these tribes for the first time experienced a circumstantial unity, which comprised fear of a common enemy.

 

At the time of the destruction of the 2nd Temple (70 CE), there was, contrary to popular Christian belief, no major or significant dispersion of Jewish people.  A small number of Christian Jews left the country for Peraea (a Transjordan province).  The Jews in general did not leave the country.  A new Jewish educational system was immediately established by the famous Rabbi Johannan ben Zakkai.  As a people, Israel retained its identity.  The Roman armies of Titus destroyed only Jerusalem and the national government.  The people and the culture remained.  (See, Michael Grant, The Jews in the Roman World (1973), p. 206, f.)

 

Without a national government, without a Temple, the coming centuries saw a certain lack of national Jewish focus in the land of Cana’an (Palestine).  By the time of WWII (1945), the migration of European and Russian Jews to Palestine struck the uninformed world as a radical move.  Arab peoples had inhabited Palestine for some time, people from Jordan, southern Syria, and even some Egyptians.  It was all a leftover Muslim effect from the medieval era (7th century AD).  The Arab Muslims made a profound claim not only on Palestine, but on the very site of the 2nd Temple.  This, of course, is the historically established Muslim procedure—to take over, to claim someone else’s land, to coerce the inhabitants, and to deny other national identities.   There is no intent to respect, not to honor, but only to destroy that which is not Islamic.   

 

The modern history of Palestine, as a British land management project (which included the etching out artificial borders of Arab countries all over the Middle East) is found in a fabulous volume by Joan Peters, called From Time Immemorial (1984).  As in no other work, Peters documents all.  The Arab Muslim “refugees” in Palestine, “victims” of the Jewish invasion, were mostly Jordanian and Syrian, and were not allowed back into their own countries, but rather were used as tools, as pricks, in the side of the new Israel.  Indeed, some of these “immemorial” refugees were declared refugees (by the United Nations Relief and Work Agency) if they had lived in Palestine a minimum of two years before the 1948 conflict.

 

Rosemary Syigh wrote in 1977 that “a strongly defined Palestinian identity did not emerge until 1968, two decades after expulsion.”  Peters comments, “It had taken twenty years to establish the “myth” prescribed by Musa Alami”  See, Rosemary Syigh, “Sources of Palestinian Nationalism: A Study of a Palestinain Camp in Lebanon,” Journal of Palestinian Studies, vol. 6, no.3, 1977.  Musa Alami (1897-1984) was an Arab leader born in Jerusalem.  Peters quotes him as saying in 1948, “The people are in great need of a “myth” to fill their consciousness and imagination” (Peters, p.11).  Alami wrote in 1949, “How can people struggle for their nation, when most of them do not know the meaning of the word? … The people are in great need of a ‘myth’ to fill their consciousness and imagination…”  Musa Alami, “The Lesson of Palestine,” The Middle East Journal, October, 1949.

 

Palestine is not a country.  “Palestinian” does not denote a language, a religion, a culture, or an ethnicity.  It is a myth, indeed.  It is a political vision and the most ill-founded, perverted money laundry in modern times.  That even someone as noble and broad-minded as Benjamin Netanyahu must speak of “Palestinians” as if they are a legitimate people demonstrates how effective anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism still is in the world.

 

As an American Indian, a Comanche from Oklahoma, it may strike some as wholly inappropriate that I should venture to comment on affairs so apparently remote from my own.  There is a reason for my indulgence:  In 2002, there were journalistic political attempts to associate Palestinians with American Indians, such as “Swallowing all before them,” in The Economist (October 31, 2002), and “Palestinians and Native Americans” in Counterpunch (January 14, 2003), and even crazy home-made web pages like “Colonization and Resistance in North America and Palestine” (2002).   These efforts to cast Israel in the mold of a colonial force against the “Palestinians” were loud, and I was piquantly offended.  I wrote articles of response, as I mentioned earlier, beginning with a FrontPageMagazine piece on April 9, 2002, called “American Indians Aren’t Like Palestinians.”  I’ve written numerous articles since, and published them on BadEaglel.com, my own web site.

 

I was particularly offended in January, 2007, when a group of so-called “Palestinians” actually dressed in pathetic, dime-store American Indian costumes to express their protest to the aggressions of the great Israel.  (They were protesting road blocks!)  The analogy is amiss.  American Indians are not of some foreign race moved into a foreign country not theirs.  We invaded no country.  We later did fight a mighty invader, indeed.  But we were never asked to go back to our native countries and leave America in peace.  Moreover, we did not have billions of other American Indians in surrounding countries ready to come to our aid (or even to use us) and to ‘wipe America off the map.’  The analogy of “Palestinians” and American Indians is therefore preposterous, stupid, and reflects the superficial emotionalism of liberals.  Liberals profess great sympathy for the poor Indians, and decry the horrible abuse of white America wreaked upon the Indians.  Liberals use Indians as a symbol, a token of anti-Americanism, anti-patriotism, and anti-white racism, really.   That Indians should be also used to support other political groups in the world who claim abuse, as if Indians are the universal mascot of the oppressed, is something I simply cannot tolerate.  This places American Indians in the most pathetic, weak, and abject position possible, precluding us from any positive self-image, any development, and any real dignity in the world. 

 

I don’t appreciate abuse of American Indians—especially when Indian images are being used to support specific political positions which I reject or despise.  My whole purpose in public speaking and writing on political issues in America and in the world is to proffer American Indian history as an example of racial and national honor, not chauvinism, and least of all as a tool to support the antithesis of such.  I believe in the preservation of race, nationhood, and honor.  In the so-called “Palestinians,” I see no race, no nationhood, and no honor.

 

                                                                  ***

Dr. David Yeagley (1951-2014) was a twenty first century renaissance man.  Armed with a doctorate in Music and a Master’s degree in Divinity, he attacked issues head on, paying little heed to those offended by his onslaughts.  An author, political commentator, classical composer and biblical scholar, he was the conservative voice among American Indian intellectuals.  An enrolled Comanche Indian and an avowed patriot, he railed against those he felt to be a threat to American liberty.

 

He had a special interest in Persian culture: He published articles on this subject and toured Iran.  He was a Judeophile, often expressing his admiration for the Jewish people, the modern state of Israel, and the ancient land of the Bible.

 

He was a Bible scholar, posting on YouTube a series of five minute “Torah Shiurim,” (commentaries).  When I mentioned to him a concern about a series of verses in the book of Samuel, he quickly brought together other verses which resolved the question.

He was intolerant of people who claimed special privilege based on past or contemporary raccial oppression.  This earned him the enmity of liberal Indians and their supporters, who denied Yeagley’s authenticity as well as his facts.  His harsh criticism of many black leaders and especially of their enmity towards American values brought charges of racism.  Perhaps there was some truth to this.  However, Yeagley also expressed profound admiration for black people who upheld American values, such as Allan West, Herman Cain, and Condoleeza Rice.  He said of the latter “Sheer elegance is her draw, and class, to say nothing of intelligence, character, and consistency.”

 

He was also intolerant of people who tried to exploit Native American identity and culture.  He ridiculed those who claimed the words “Redskin” or “Indian” to be demeaning, and carried both labels proudly.  He denounced other ethnic groups who tried to latch on to past exploitation of Indians in order to advance the cause of their own victimization.

Dr. Yeagley had cancer in his youth.  The radiation treatments resulted in Mesothelioma when he got older.  I called him several times to inquire about his well-being, and he could barely catch his breath to say a few words.  He was grateful when I told him my synagogue was including him in its prayers for the ill.

 

Alas, those prayers were insufficient, and he passed away on March 11, 2014.  His essay on Palestinian attempts to exploit Indian identity reflects the depths of his scholarity, and the intensity of his passion.  While he said much to offend, he said more to inform.

We don’t endorse everything that Dr. Yeagley has said during his life.  Then again we don’t endorse everything the other contributors to this publication have said, either.  We choose to let their essays included herein, including Dr. Yeagley’s, speak for themselves.

RELIGIOUSLY MOTIVATED TERRORISM—INSPIRED BY PALESTINIAN LEADERS—WILL NOT DESTROY JEWISH RESILIENCE

We welcome your comments to this and any other CIJR publication. Please address your response to:  Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish Research, PO Box 175, Station  H, Montreal QC H3G 2K7 

 

Contents:

 

[NB: Our Latest Israzine is Now Online! "Zionism, An Indigenous Struggle:

Aboriginal Americans and the Jewish State." Click the Following Link to View]

 

Coping With Barbaric, Religiously Inspired Terrorism.: Isi Leibler, Candidly Speaking, Nov. 26, 2014— The horror that engulfed the entire nation in the wake of the barbaric murder of Jews engaged in prayer in a Jerusalem synagogue remains palpable.

Sunni Political Islam: Engine of Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: Jonathan Spyer, PJ Media, Nov. 22, 2014— An oft-repeated sentiment currently doing the rounds in discussions of the Israeli-Palestinian issue is that it is imperative that the conflict not become a “religious” one.

We Are Home. We are Staying. We're Not Going Away.: Gil Troy, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 27, 2014 — The Palestinian movement’s self-destructive streak continues.

When Words Have No Meaning: Michal Cotler-Wunsh, Times of Israel, Nov. 19, 2014— When words have no meaning, it does not matter what values parents inculcate into their children from the day that they are born…

 

On Topic Links

 

The Bloody Effects of Antisemitism: Rafael Barak, National Post, Nov. 24, 2014

Abbas and Fatah Show Their True Colors… in Arabic: Rachel Bresinger, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 17, 2014

The “Status Quo” on the Temple Mount: Nadav Shragai, JCPA, Nov. 13, 2014

Outremont Sukkah Battle is the Latest Case of Harassment of Hasidim: Leila Marshy, Montreal Gazette, Nov. 19, 2014

                                      

           

         

COPING WITH BARBARIC, RELIGIOUSLY INSPIRED TERRORISM             

Isi Leibler                                                                                                             

Candidly Speaking, Nov. 26, 2014

 

The horror that engulfed the entire nation in the wake of the barbaric murder of Jews engaged in prayer in a Jerusalem synagogue remains palpable. Although there have been other devastating acts of terror against innocent civilians, this time it was clearly religiously motivated. It was undoubtedly inspired by the incitement and despicable lies repeatedly broadcast by our purported peace partner, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who created frenzy among Muslims by alleging that Israelis would “contaminate” the Temple Mount by praying there and then invade and destroy Al Aqsa mosque. Such outbursts are reminiscent of the Arab riots in the 1930s. Abbas also sent his condolences to the family of a terrorist slain while attempting to murder a Jew the previous week, hailing him as a “martyr” who “rose to heaven while defending our people’s rights and holy places.” This was followed by false allegations that Israelis had murdered a Jerusalem Arab bus driver, even though a Palestinian coroner confirmed that it was a suicide. To top it off, the day following King Abdullah’s meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu in Jordan in order to ease tensions, Abbas called on his people to launch “a day of rage” against Israelis.

 

This latest escalation of incitement is yet another extension of the traditional hatred against Jews inculcated among the Arabs but which accelerated after the Oslo accords. Yasser Arafat and then Abbas have effectively brainwashed generations of Arabs — from kindergarten age — into fanatically hating Jews and sanctifying as “martyrs” those willing to sacrifice their lives and gain paradise by killing them. The Palestinians have, in fact, been molded into a criminal society adopting a culture of death comparable only to the Nazis who, once in power, also brainwashed Germans into committing barbaric crimes. And those, including Jews, who morally equate this monstrous society with Israel because the Jewish state like any country also includes deviants and degenerates, are making obscene analogies.

 

Every level of Israeli society, from the leadership to the media and down to the man in the street, reacts with shock, horror, disgust and condemnation against our deviants. Contrast this to the public display, not merely in Gaza but also in Ramallah, Bethlehem and Nablus, as Palestinians celebrated the most recent horror their “martyrs” had inflicted on Jews praying in a synagogue. It is noteworthy that our “peace partner” Abbas had to be cajoled twice by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (who subsequently thanked him profusely) for condemning this latest act of terror. Yet even when he did, he had the chutzpah to blame Israel for inciting Muslims by repeating his lies that Israel is attacking Al Aqsa mosque. His Fatah spokesmen immediately stressed that he was forced to make the statement for “diplomatic” reasons. Furthermore, Sultan Abu Al-Einein, his senior adviser and member of the Fatah Central Committee, praised those who carried out the synagogue massacre, stating, “Blessed be your quality weapons, the wheels of your cars, your axes and kitchen knives because [they are being used] according to Allah’s will. We are the soldiers of Allah.”

 

These murders, some of which were committed by Arab Israelis who worked and interfaced with Israelis, have had a devastating impact on good relationships between Israeli Jews and Arabs. Understandably many Jews now feel uncomfortable and suspicious of their Arab neighbors. The majority of Israeli Arabs are law-abiding and wish to live in peace with us but major efforts are required to convince Jews to regain their trust in those Arabs living and working among them. This will require more than government and media appeals calling for tolerance. Much will depend on whether there are moderate responsible Arabs willing to speak out, condemn the terrorists and take active steps to effectively excommunicate the minority of fanatics in their midst — including their Knesset representatives who currently openly identify with the terrorists and praise their vile acts. The outrageous public celebrations by the Arab residents of the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Jabel Mukaber are an example of what must no longer be tolerated. This village was an incubator of dozens of terrorist attacks, including the recent synagogue massacre, the murder of the eight Merkaz Harav students in 2008 and many others. The family of the murderers publicly proclaimed: “We are proud of what they did. … They are heroic martyrs.” Paradoxically, the village pleaded with the High Court to remain on the Israeli side of the separation barrier.

 

We must adopt tough measures if we are to avoid a breakdown between Israeli Jews and the Arab minority. The first step must be for the government to reinforce security, including in Arab areas that had until now been unsupervised. This is an awesome challenge and requires punitive measures for those engaged in anti-state or antisocial activities such as stone throwing, destruction of private property and incitement against the state. The homes of the terrorists’ families should be destroyed and the residence status of convicted terrorists and their families revoked, as this will serve as a major deterrent even to those willing to die in order to kill Jews. Should the international community condemn this as an infraction of human rights or the U.S. again complain that such steps “harm the interests of peace,” we should remind them that it is our lives that are at stake and that they should not interfere. Beyond that, we should now repudiate the misplaced displays of goodwill we have made over the years in order to placate the international community. These have been counterproductive and only served to camouflage the Palestinians’ criminal society and culture of death….

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

                                                                       

Contents            

                                                                                                                                          

SUNNI POLITICAL ISLAM:

ENGINE OF ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN CONFLICT                                           

Jonathan Spyer                                          

PJ Media, Nov. 22, 2014

 

An oft-repeated sentiment currently doing the rounds in discussions of the Israeli-Palestinian issue is that it is imperative that the conflict not become a “religious” one. This sentiment, guaranteed to set heads nodding in polite, liberal company, stands out even within the very crowded and competitive field of ridiculous expressions of historical ignorance found in discussion of the Israeli-Palestinian issue. This sentiment is connected to the recent wave of terror attacks in Jerusalem, which are the result of Palestinian claims that Israel is seeking to alter the “status quo” at the Temple Mount. As this theory goes, up until now this conflict had mainly been about competing claims of land ownership and sovereignty, but it is now in danger of becoming about “religion,” and hence turning even more intractable. So this must be prevented.

 

In objective reality, the conflict between Jews and Arab Muslims over the land area between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea has been, from its very outset, inseparable from “religion.” On the Arab/Palestinian/Muslim side, recent events in the Levant (specifically in Syria and Iraq) ought to have taught us just how very flimsy and contingent the supposed “secular, national” identities of the local populations are. Both these identities have now largely been eclipsed, replaced by sectarian, ethnic, and religious markers of loyalty. As Professor Mordechai Kedar pointed out in a recent article, there is no reason to think that a “Palestinian” national identity is any stronger or more durable than either of these neighboring constructs. This does not mean, of course, that the Arabic-speaking population of the area is not mobilized for struggle. The events of recent days suggest a murderous commitment to the fight. The engine for this commitment, however, is a religious one. The engine is the determination to prevent the Jews from in any way, be it ever so minor, infringing on the situation of de facto Arab Muslim domination of the Temple Mount/ Haram al-Sharif area. This commitment is not a new development; it has in fact been the driving force of the conflict throughout.

 

The very first major instances of Arab Muslim violence against Jews in the 20th century were related to this self-same area. In 1929, it was precisely an attempt by Jews to assert Jewish prayer rights at the Western Wall that led to a furious Arab and Muslim counter-reaction. This reaction led to the slaughter of over one hundred Jews and the destruction of an ancient Jewish community (in Hebron). The supposed threat to the mosques at the Haram al-Sharif and the alleged desire of the Jews to build the Third Temple continued to form a staple in Arab propaganda against the Zionists in the 1930s and 1940s. This was a time when the nascent Palestinian “national” movement was led by a man holding a position of religious authority: Jerusalem Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini.

 

This centrality of religion continued to fire the various movements fighting Israel. The very name “Fatah,” for example, which is often – absurdly — described as a “secular” movement, is a religious term. “Fatah” is in Arabic a term literally meaning to “open,” but is used in context to mean “to conquer a land for Islam.”

The central role of religion in this conflict has served to prevent the eventual resignation to and compromise with Israel’s presence, which many early Zionist leaders predicted.  This prediction was based on similar national conflicts elsewhere, where after a period of struggle the two sides grow tired and settled their difference, cutting a deal. But religious sentiments have a way of not growing tired.                                                                                                                       

                                                                        Contents                                                                                                

 

             

         

WE ARE HOME. WE ARE STAYING. WE'RE NOT GOING AWAY.                      

Gil Troy                                                                                                               

Jerusalem Post, Nov. 27, 2014

                            

The Palestinian movement’s self-destructive streak continues. A week after the barbaric butchering of Jews praying in Har Nof, we can already declare: their terrorism failed. These nihilists mistake our tears as signs of weakness. But these tears energize us. The Palestinians and their collaborators worldwide should have learned by now: We are home. We are staying. We are not going away. Note, during the massacre, many people, including the 30-year-old Druze policeman, Zidan Saif, ran toward danger to save others, not away from it to save themselves. Such selflessness reflects a vibrant community terrorists cannot terrorize.

 

The ugly slaughter united Israel in love. One of the 25 orphaned by the attack, Michal Levine, the daughter of Rabbi Kalman Levine, told Arutz Sheva that while flying home from Miami, strangers comforted her: “a Chabad rabbi and a leftist couple from Israel. They cried together with me.” Palestinian terrorists foster this sweet, primal communal unity, even if Israelis sometimes forget it amid passionate political debates. Zionist resilience repudiating anti-Zionist evil is an old story. When terrorists killed his teenage cousin in 2001, Rabbi Yehoshua Fass moved to Israel – establishing Nefesh b’Nefesh which has helped over 40,000 people move since. That’s Zionist math – we overcompensate for each tragedy exponentially. Every act of terror unifies Israelis and reinforces Zionism’s mission. Each death, each injury, makes a Palestinian state less likely and the Jewish state stronger.

 

We are home. Israel is the Jewish people’s homeland. The link is deep and enduring, meaningful and nourishing, multi-dimensional and mutually reinforcing. The Jews are a people, not just a religion, with a homeland and collective rights to it, like other nations.  From the beginning – Bereisheit, Genesis – the Jewish people bonded with Eretz Yisrael, the Land of Israel. In the Bible, the Jewish people’s founding moment is a land-based moment. Abram becomes Abraham when, leaving his birthplace, he goes home to his new homeland, Israel. God promises: I will make of you a great people. The Jewish people were reborn when we regained our freedom by leaving Egypt and wandering home to Israel – despite a 40-year desert detour. The Torah offers a blueprint for life everywhere. It also functions as a constitution for life in Israel with 26 specific, land-based commandments.

 

The land of Israel then becomes the stage where the Jewish people play out our early narratives and values, rituals and ideas. Archaeological evidence confirms the rich Jewish civilization established: ruins of a once-splendid Jerusalem; villages which did not leave pig bones in their food piles, unlike neighboring settlements; and coins, vessels, scrolls, gems, even an amulet with the priestly prayer traditional Jews use to bless their children every Friday night. Israel is the land of Abraham the believer and Sarah the nurturer, of King David the charmer and King Solomon the thinker, of Deborah the inspirational and Isaiah the ethical.

 

Israel is the living repository of our first great strides on the world stage. Here, our ancestors developed the subversive idea of one unseen deity, not multiple action figures. Here, they invented the healing notion of a weekly day of rest. Here, they pioneered the religious-ethical ideal of linking serving the Lord with being good to one another. Here, Samuel the prophet taught the powerful King David that no person is above the law, as the countercultural notion of every individual being equal in rights emerged. In short, here the seeds of democracy were first planted, cultivated, and harvested – mocking those who see only contradictions between “Jewish” and “democratic,” overlooking their overlaps.

 

So we are home. We are staying. True, we were exiled. And many of us spent millennia as wandering Jews, away from our home. But ideas like “exile,”  “wandering,” the tradition of turning toward Jerusalem to pray, the anomaly of celebrating agriculture-based holidays in foreign cities, when we prayed for rain in Israel while being drenched or frozen in Russia, all proved our living connection to the land. Jews also always remained in the four Holy Cities of Jerusalem, Hebron, Safed, and Tiberias. We are home. We are staying. We are not going away. The Jewish people were reborn when we reestablished our nation-state, just as so many other countries have in the last 200 years. Israelis are among earth’s happiest, most family-oriented, most community-minded people. Israeli men have the West’s lowest mortality rates, another repudiation of the Palestinian death cult. Even if we didn’t like it here, where we would go? Some Jews have individual ties to other countries, personal escape routes. But collectively? Europe rejected us with genocide. America is not seeking 8 million immigrants. When Amos Oz’s father lived in Vilna, “every wall in Europe said, ‘Jews go home to Palestine.’” Today we’re told “Jews get out of Palestine.” Oz concludes: “A Jewish refuge is just and necessary.”

 

Israel is not just a “Jewish refuge,” that’s too defensive. Israel is a Jewish opportunity, a Zionist laboratory, a great human adventure. We are writing a glorious new chapter in Jewish history here, in today’s greatest collective Jewish people project. That project’s appeal trumps my disappointment that so many Europeans and academics blindly dismiss any questions about Palestinian nationalism as bigotry, while repudiating Jews’ older ties to Israel and longer national consciousness. The inspiration of the Israel experiment pre-empts any sourness I might develop, if all I did was contemplate the many lives Palestinian terrorists have destroyed.  And the nobility of the Zionist vision pushes me to perfect this old-new state on our ancient homeland, to make sure it fulfills the highest Jewish and democratic ideals – in life not with laws — acknowledging the creative tension between those ideas, like many appealing ideas. We respond to Palestinian nihilism with Zionist idealism. We answer Palestinian-imposed death with Jewish –and Israeli — life.

                                                                       

Contents                                                                                               

 

                                          

WHEN WORDS HAVE NO MEANING                                                                      

Michal Cotler-Wunsh

Times of Israel, Nov. 19, 2014

 

When words have no meaning, it does not matter what values parents inculcate into their children from the day that they are born; When words have no meaning, it does not matter what school books teach; When words have no meaning, it does not matter what religious leaders preach; When words have no meaning, it does not matter that a soccer stadium in a sovereign, democratic State is named for a capitol city of a terror sponsoring, enemy State; When words have no meaning, it does not matter that elected political leaders condemn terror attacks by day, and send condolence letters and rewards to the families of the perpetrators by night;

 

When words have no meaning, an internationally acclaimed news agency reports the brutal murder and injuring of innocent civilians in the ‘safety’ of a house of worship, as an event where ‘4 Israelis and 2 Palestinians died’; When words have no meaning, heinous acts of terror find justification in false allegations that a bus driver found dead was killed, when in fact, when words have no meaning, it does not matter that a Palestinian coroner concluded in his report that the cause of death was suicide; When words have no meaning, nobody can be held accountable for what they said, or for what they did not say.

 

Growing up, I was taught that ‘the Holocaust did not begin in the gas chambers, it began with words’. That powerful message resonates poignantly at a time of ‘moral ambiguity’ in which words seem to have no meaning. At a time that the very institutions founded to protect the world from what began with words, utilize the terms developed to safeguard us all irresponsibly – systematically ignoring human rights violations of terror sponsoring member states, thereby exposing the vulnerability of these institutions and allowing them to be manipulated by the very forces that they were established to protect from.

 

Growing up, I was also armed with the understanding that ‘bad things happen when too many good people do nothing’.

 

As time passes, understanding the profound significance of words, coupled with the tremendous responsibility of not standing idly by when words are unaccountably expressed, it seems that knowledge is a necessary tool and very possibly the only way to address these challenges. It is unquestionable that knowledge is power to the individual possessing it. This view places the onus on the individual to seek knowledge and empower themselves, that is certain. But beyond that power, there is another layer of responsibility. In order to fulfill the obligation of acting and not standing idly by, we must influence our surroundings – whatever they might be – in order to further the impact, by disseminating the knowledge that we have acquired.

 

It is thus the role of each of us to gather the facts, process them and draw our own independent conclusions. At a time that words have no meaning, the burden becomes even greater and the responsibility even more substantial. It is up to each and every one of US, in our personal, professional and extended circles, to ensure that the knowledge we gather is disseminated in accurate and transparent ways. From time immemorial we have witnessed and endured the horrific results of attributing no meaning to words and no responsibility to those that utter them. The overwhelming power of words and the reverberating influence that they have must be acknowledged. This supposition implicates each and every one of us.

 

A final, personal thought. My teacher, the individual responsible for shaping my understanding that if we are to heal a broken world, words MUST have meaning and that those who utter them MUST be held to account, is Prof. Irwin Cotler, my father. Having dedicated his entire life to that notion, committed to the awesome responsibility of upholding the values of justice and the law, he has been heralded time and again for his many achievements. Most recently, he was awarded the honor of Maclean’s 2014 Canadian Parliamentarian of the Year on the very day of the heinous act of terror in Jerusalem. In a valiant attempt to protect all that he believes in and has been recognized for, my role model filled me with optimism and hope on a dark and sad day.

 

Seizing the opportunity and exercising the responsibility to speak in Canadian Parliament, he challenged us all to re-attribute meaning to words – ALL words – including those of incitement to hatred and violence. He challenged us all to hold individuals – ALL individuals – accountable for uttering words of incitement, glorification of terror, justification of killing and celebration of murder. The abysmal prospect that words have no meaning and that there is no accountability of those who utter them, has had horrific results, world-over. From an unthinkable attack on the very same Canadian Parliament just weeks ago, to a brutal terror attack on the very same day in which a 3 month old baby was murdered in Jerusalem, to filmed beheadings of innocents by terrorists committed to destroying all that represents freedom and democracy.

 

The Canadian parliament rose to a unanimous standing ovation in response to the call to action, demanding we ensure that words have meaning and that those that utter them be held accountable. It is time that we all rise to the challenge. It is time that we attribute meaning back to words. It is time that we hold those that utter words of incitement to hate and glorification of terror, day or night, to account. It is time that we each empower ourselves with the necessary facts, circulate them and speak up clearly. It is time that we affirm that there is NO excuse for terror and there is NO way to avert responsibility by those that incite, promote and encourage it, whether by speaking for it or by not speaking up against it, in a loud and clear voice that leaves NO room for moral ambiguity. It is time to assert that words DO in fact have meaning and that those that utter them ARE accountable.

 

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends and Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

 

Contents           

On Topic

 

The Bloody Effects of Antisemitism: Rafael Barak, National Post, Nov. 24, 2014—Last Tuesday’s terror attack at a Jerusalem synagogue, which killed four innocent men and one police officer, was a serious blow to all Israelis.

Abbas and Fatah Show Their True Colors… in Arabic: Rachel Bresinger, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 17, 2014—For years it has been known by many within Israeli society that there is a great disparity between what the Palestinian leadership headed by Mahmoud Abbas says in English to the Western World and what they say to the Palestinian people and Muslim world in Arabic.

The “Status Quo” on the Temple Mount: Nadav Shragai, JCPA, Nov. 13, 2014—The status of the Temple Mount and the “status quo” practiced there has in recent months figured prominently in the religious-political discourse in the region.

Outremont Sukkah Battle is the Latest Case of Harassment of Hasidim: Leila Marshy, Montreal Gazette, Nov. 19, 2014—In 2011, Outremont councillor Céline Forget lobbied to block the renovation of a Mile End synagogue.

 

               

 

 

 

                      

                

                            

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Contents:         

Visit CIJR’s Bi-Weekly Webzine: Israzine.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing is available by e-mail.
Please urge colleagues, friends, and family to visit our website for more information on our ISRANET series.
To join our distribution list, or to unsubscribe, visit us at http://www.isranet.org/.

The ISRANET Daily Briefing is a service of CIJR. We hope that you find it useful and that you will support it and our pro-Israel educational work by forwarding a minimum $90.00 tax-deductible contribution [please send a cheque or VISA/MasterCard information to CIJR (see cover page for address)]. All donations include a membership-subscription to our respected quarterly ISRAFAX print magazine, which will be mailed to your home.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing attempts to convey a wide variety of opinions on Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world for its readers’ educational and research purposes. Reprinted articles and documents express the opinions of their authors, and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research.

 

 

Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish ResearchL'institut Canadien de recherches sur le Judaïsme, www.isranet.org

Tel: (514) 486-5544 – Fax:(514) 486-8284 ; ber@isranet.org

OBAMA’S INEFFECTIVE IRAQ & SYRIA STRATEGY DESPERATELY DEMANDS A MAKEOVER

We welcome your comments to this and any other CIJR publication. Please address your response to:  Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish Research, PO Box 175, Station  H, Montreal QC H3G 2K7 

 

Contents:

 

The U.S. Strategy Against the Islamic State Must be Retooled. Here’s How.: Max Boot, Washington Post, Nov. 14, 2014— President Obama’s strategy in Syria and Iraq is not working.

In Iraq and Syria, It's Too Little, Too Late: Terry Glavin, Ottawa Citizen, Nov. 14, 2014— “It was seven o’clock in the morning when they came to Tel Azir, my village. They killed seven men and captured 24 women, so we ran to the mountains. We escaped to the mountains.”

The Beltway’s Syria Fairy Tales: Andrew C. McCarthy, National Review, Nov. 11, 2014 — The November 18th murder of five people at Kehilat Yaakov Synagogue in Jerusalem has shocked the world.

With Incentives and Brute Force, IS Subdues Tribes: Washington Post, Nov. 27, 2014— The Obama administration will never abandon its courtship of Iran.

 

On Topic Links

 

ISIS Says its Flag Will Wave Over Jerusalem, Even if the Jews Don't Like it: Yasser Okbi & Maariv Hashavua, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 26, 2014

Obama May See Assad's Removal as Necessary to Defeat ISIS: Jerusalem Post, Nov. 26, 2014

More Than 100 Canadians Have Offered to Join Kurds in Fight Against ISIS: Stewart Bell, National Post, Nov. 25, 2014

U.S. Adds Planes to Bolster Drive to Wipe Out ISIS: Eric Schmitt, New York Times, Nov. 26, 2014

                                      

                    

THE U.S. STRATEGY AGAINST THE ISLAMIC STATE                          

MUST BE RETOOLED. HERE’S HOW.                                               

Max Boot                                                                                                              

Washington Post, Nov. 14, 2014

 

President Obama’s strategy in Syria and Iraq is not working. The president is hoping that limited airstrikes, combined with U.S. support for local proxies, will “degrade and ultimately destroy” the Islamic State. But while U.S. actions may have blunted the Islamic State’s expansion, they have not shaken the terrorist group’s control of an area the size of Britain. If the president is serious about dealing with the Islamic State, he will need to increase America’s commitment well beyond his recent decision to deploy 1,500 more advisers. What will it take to achieve the president’s objective?

 

Intensify airstrikes. When the Taliban lost control of Afghanistan between Oct. 7, 2001, and Dec. 23, 2001 — a period of 75 days — U.S. aircraft flew 6,500 strike sorties and dropped 17,500 munitions. By contrast, between Aug. 8, 2014, and Oct. 23, 2014 — 76 days — the United States conducted only 632 airstrikes and dropped only 1,700 munitions in Iraq and Syria. Such desultory bombing will not stop such a determined force as the Islamic State.

 

Lift the prohibition on U.S. “boots on the ground.” Obama has not allowed U.S. Special Forces and forward air controllers to embed themselves at the company level and go into combat as they did with the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan in 2001. This lack of eyes on the ground makes it harder to call in airstrikes and to improve the combat capacity of U.S. allies. Advisers fighting alongside indigenous troops are far more effective than trainers confined to big bases.

 

Increase the size of the U.S. force. The current force, even with the recent authorization to expand to 3,000 personnel, is still inadequate to counter the 20,000-plus fighters of the Islamic State. Credible estimates of the necessary troop strength range from 10,000 personnel (retired Marine Gen. Anthony Zinni) to 25,000 (analysts Kim and Fred Kagan).

 

Send in the Joint Special Operations Command. Between 2003 and 2010, JSOC — composed of units such as SEAL Team Six and Delta Force — became skilled at targeting the networks of al-Qaeda in Iraq. Its success was due to its ability to gather intelligence by interrogating prisoners and scooping up computers and documents — something that bombing alone cannot accomplish. JSOC squadrons should once again be moved to the region (they could be stationed in Iraq proper, the Kurdish region or Jordan) to target Islamic State organizers.

 

Do more to mobilize Sunni tribes. Given Shiite militia infiltration, working exclusively through the Iraqi Security Forces would risk empowering the Shiite sectarians whose attacks on Sunnis are the Islamic State’s best recruiter. The United States should directly assist Sunni tribes by expanding the newly established U.S. outpost at al-Asad Air Base in Anbar province, and also increase support for and coordination with the Free Syrian Army and Sunni tribes in Syria. Current plans to train only 5,000 Syrian fighters next year need to be beefed up.

 

Impose a no-fly zone over part or all of Syria. Even though U.S. aircraft are overflying Syria, they are not stopping dictator Bashar al-Assad’s forces from bombing rebel-held areas. This has led to a widespread suspicion among Sunnis that the United States is willing to keep Assad in power — a suspicion fueled by news that Obama sent a letter to Assad’s backers in Tehran proposing cooperation. Sunnis are not going to fight the Islamic State if the alternative is Iranian domination. A no-fly zone over part or all of Syria would save lives while rallying Sunnis to the anti-Islamic State cause, allowing the Free Syrian Army to expand, and possibly paving the way for greater Turkish involvement.

 

Prepare now for nation-building. The United States should lay the groundwork for a post-conflict settlement in both Iraq and Syria that does not necessarily require keeping both political entities intact. In the Iraqi context, this means offering greater autonomy to the Sunnis (they should be promised Kurd-like autonomy) and guaranteeing the Kurds that their hard-won gains will not be jeopardized. The United States should offer to station troops for the long term in the Kurdish area and possibly Anbar, too. Social fragmentation in Syria will make reconstruction there harder. The U.S. goal should simply be to ensure that Syrian territory is not controlled by Shiite or Sunni extremists. The postwar settlement in the former Yugoslavia, which involved the dispatch of international peacekeepers and administrators under United Nations, European Union and NATO mandates, could be a model. This is admittedly an ambitious, long-term goal, but if no such plans are in place, as in Libya in 2011 or Iraq in 2003, failure is guaranteed.

 

Critics will call this strategy too costly, alleging that it will push the United States down a “slippery slope” into another ground war. But while this approach will undoubtedly incur greater financial cost and higher risk of casualties, the present minimalist strategy has scant chance of success and risks backfiring — the Islamic State’s prestige will be enhanced if it withstands half-hearted U.S. airstrikes. Left unchecked, the Islamic State could expand into Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey or Saudi Arabia, making a major ground war involving U.S. troops more likely. By contrast, this strategy would enhance the odds that the group could be defeated before Obama leaves office.

                                                                       

Contents                                                    

                                                          

IN IRAQ AND SYRIA, IT'S TOO LITTLE, TOO LATE                                         

Terry Glavin                                              

Ottawa Citizen, Nov. 14, 2014

 

“It was seven o’clock in the morning when they came to Tel Azir, my village. They killed seven men and captured 24 women, so we ran to the mountains. We escaped to the mountains.” This is how 24-year-old Amira Jamil begins her story about the Yazidi pogrom – the singular event in a three-year chain reaction of atrocities that led to the American-brokered coalition campaign of airstrikes on jihadist targets now underway across Iraq and Syria. It was Aug. 3. Heavily-armed marauders from the al-Qaida offshoot known as the Islamic State (also called ISIL, ISIS, and in the Arabic pejorative, Da’ash) swept in from the south and surrounded Jamil’s village, in the Shingal Mountains of northern Iraq. They’d come to commit a genocide explicitly ordered by their caliph, the fanatical Sunni cleric Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, in a fatwa. The Yazidis are “mushrikin,” devil-worshippers. Plunder their homelands. Slaughter the men who refuse to submit to Islam. Capture the Yazidi women and the girls. Everything is permitted. Rape, mass murder, slavery, extortion, pillage.

 

Al-Baghdadi had announced the establishment of his caliphate in June, declaring himself the leader of all the world’s Muslims. All summer his shock troops had been pouring into Iraq from the smoking ruins of Syria. Iraqi troops abandoned their posts, one after the other. At Tikrit, at least 700 Iraqi soldiers who’d surrendered were slaughtered en masse. Al-Baghdadi’s fighters easily overran Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city. By July they were in control of a swathe of territory the size of Great Britain, from Raqqa in Syria to Fallujah on the outskirts of Baghdad. Christians were crucified, Muslim apostates were lined up in front of firing squads. Captured women were traded around like livestock. Captured soldiers were forced to dig their own mass graves. When al-Baghdadi’s forces came roaring towards the Shingal Mountains they were loaded down with weapons they’d looted from Camp Speicher, the former American military base at Tikrit. They moved in convoys of tanks and hundreds of armoured Humvees.

 

The Yazidis’ arsenals consisted mainly of bird guns, rusty AK-47s and antique Lee Enfield rifles. A minority within a minority, the Yazidis follow a pre-Abrahamic faith with a peacock-angel for a deity, and they are found only among the Kurds – a stateless people whose homelands straddle the mountainous frontiers of Turkey, Syria, Iraq and Iran. By Aug. 3, the Yazidis had no one to defend them but the ragged guerrillas from Turkey’s outlawed PKK (the Kurdish Workers’ Party) and the Kurdish YPG (Local Defence Forces) from the rebel zones of northern Syria. Under a guerrilla escort, the Yazidi exodus began. “We were in the mountains for seven days, and then we started walking,” Jamil told me. “We couldn’t even get water for our babies. If our children die, we must save ourselves. Just throw them away, leave them by the side of the road.” I met Jamil at a makeshift refugee camp that had sprung up at a football field and picnic ground near the town of Sukurlu, about eight hours’ drive from the Iraqi border and a half-hour’s drive from Diyarbakir, the largest city in southeastern Turkey. Nearly 5,000 Yazidis were living there in shelters built from tarpaulins, plastic equipment sheds, bedsheets and carpets. As I travelled south from Diyarbakir into Iraq, and then across the Tigris River into Syria, the scale of the Yazidi pogrom became clearer in accounts I heard at the half-dozen makeshift camps I visited. Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other agencies are just beginning to tabulate the enormity of the catastrophe. It was only when thousands of Yazidis found themselves encircled and trapped on the barren massif of Mount Sinjar, dying by the dozen from exposure and thirst, that the outside world took notice. It was at Mount Sinjar that the curtain was raised on the United States’ disastrous foreign-policy incoherence in the Middle East, and on the NATO capitals’ indifference.

 

By those early days of August, the contradictory and waffling half-measures that U.S. President Barack Obama had pursued in Syria and Iraq had cost him the confidence of almost all his senior advisers, along with a majority of American opinion-poll respondents. With the American public riveted to the horror unfolding on Mount Sinjar, he finally decided it was time to act. On Aug. 7, Obama announced that American fighter jets would bomb Islamic State convoys advancing across the Nineveh Plain towards Irbil, the capital city of Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdish Regional Government. “American personnel” were at risk there. In tandem, the U.S. air force was to begin humanitarian airdrops to the Yazidis trapped on Mount Sinjar. “When we face a situation like we do on that mountain … then I believe the United States of America cannot turn a blind eye,” Obama declared. “We can act, carefully and responsibly, to prevent a potential act of genocide. That’s what we’re doing on that mountain.”…

 

Within days, Canada, France and Germany were airlifting arms to the faltering peshmerga (“those who face death”) of the Kurdish Regional Government, and ramping up humanitarian aid. When his Arab League allies would only strike Islamic State targets in Syria, Obama enlisted a coalition of mostly NATO countries, including Canada, to target al-Baghdadi’s forces in Iraq. The U.S.-led intervention came about only after the deaths of 26,000 people in Iraq and 200,000 in Syria, and after more than 13 million people had been rendered either refugees or “internally displaced persons” in both countries. The carnage had been unfolding since 2011, and even now it shows no sign of abating. Syrian President Bashar Assad has ramped up his own air war threefold, most notoriously in the crude barrel bombs that he has used to kill thousands of Syrian civilians and to destroy so many Syrian cities and towns over the past three years…

 [To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]                                                                                                                                                  

                                                                       

Contents                              

                                                                                

 

THE BELTWAY’S SYRIA FAIRY TALES                                   

Andrew C. McCarthy                                                                                          

National Review, Nov. 11, 2014

                            

Since the outbreak of the latest Middle East war a few years back, we have been chronicling the Washington political class’s Syria Fairy Tales. In particular, there is the story line that Syria is really teeming with secular democrats and authentic moderate Muslims who would have combined forces to both overthrow Assad and fight off the jihadists if only President Obama had helped them. But his failure to act created a “vacuum” that was tragically filled by Islamist militants and gave rise to ISIS. At this point in the story, you are supposed to stay politely mum and not ask whether it makes any sense that real democrats and actual moderates would agree to be led by head-chopping, mass-murdering, freedom-stifling sharia terrorists.

 

In point of fact, there simply have never been enough pro-Western elements in Syria to win, no matter how much help came their way. There was never going to be a moderate, democratic Syrian state without a U.S. invasion and occupation for a decade or more, an enterprise that would be politically untenable — and, as the Iraq enterprise shows, unlikely to succeed. The “moderate rebels” had no chance against Assad unless they colluded with the Islamist militants, who are vastly superior and more numerous fighters. And they would have even less chance of both knocking off Assad and staving off the jihadists.

 

The Obama administration and the Beltway commentariat have done their best to obscure these brute facts. Their main tactic is to exploit the American public’s unfamiliarity with the makeup of Syria. Obama Democrats and much of the Beltway GOP continue to invoke the “moderate Syrian rebels” while steadfastly refusing to identify just who those purported “moderates” are. They hope you won’t realize that, because of the dearth of actual moderate Muslims and freedom fighters, they must count among their “moderate rebels” both the Muslim Brotherhood (which should be designated as a terrorist organization) and various other Islamist factions, including . . .  wait for it . . . parts of al-Nusra — i.e., al-Qaeda’s Syrian franchise.

 

We’ve also noted that a new wrinkle has recently been added to the Beltway’s Syria Fairy Tales: Obama’s Khorasan Fraud. In a desperate attempt to conceal the falsity of Obama’s boasts about destroying what is actually a resurgent al-Qaeda, the administration claimed that the threat to America that impelled Obama to start bombing Syria was not ISIS (supposedly just a “regional” threat), not al-Qaeda (already defeated, right?), but a hitherto unknown terrorist organization called the “Khorasan group.” To the contrary, the Khorasan group, to the extent it exists at all, has never been a stand-alone terrorist organization. It is an internal component of al-Qaeda — specifically, an advisory board (or, in Islamic terms, a shura council) of al-Qaeda veterans who advise and carry out directives from Ayman al-Zawahiri, al-Qaeda’s emir. During the fighting in Syria, some of these operatives were sent there by Zawahiri to conduct operations under the auspices of al-Nusra. These operations have included jihadist activity against both the United States and Assad allies, plus negotiations for a rapprochement with the Islamic State (or ISIS). The limited success of those negotiations has led to fighting among the jihadists themselves.

 

The ball to keep your eye on here is al-Qaeda. The al-Nusra terrorist group is just al-Qaeda in Syria. Even ISIS is just a breakaway faction of al-Qaeda. And the Khorasan group is just a top-tier group of al-Qaeda veterans doing al-Qaeda’s work in conjunction with al Nusra — i.e., al-Qaeda. The Obama administration disingenuously emphasizes these various foreign names to confuse Americans into thinking that there are various factions with diverse agendas in Syria — that al-Qaeda is no longer a problem because Obama has already dealt with it, and what remains are sundry groups of “moderate rebels” that the administration can work with in the effort to vanquish ISIS. Meanwhile, you are supposed to refrain from noticing that Obama’s original Syrian project — remember, he wanted Assad toppled — has given way to fighting ISIS . . . the very Sunni jihadists who were empowered by Obama’s lunatic policies of (a) switching sides in Libya in order to support the jihadists against Qaddafi and (b) abetting and encouraging Sunni Muslim governments in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Turkey to arm Sunni militias in the fight against Assad — those militias having all along included al-Qaeda elements, some of which split off to become ISIS and now threaten to bite off the very hands that once fed them.

 

If you thought the Khorasan fraud was just a passing fad to get Obama through the initial stages of trying to rationalize his incoherent Syria air campaign, think again. You see, Obama continues to have a problem. Everyone knows that ISIS, the main target of U.S. bombings in Syria and Iraq, cannot be defeated — or even stalled much — by a mere air campaign, which has been half-hearted at best anyway. Ground forces will be needed. So the administration and Washington’s foreign-policy clerisy keep telling Americans: Never fear, there is no need for U.S. ground troops, because we can rely on “moderate rebels” to fight ISIS. But the so-called “moderates” Obama backs have been colluding with al-Qaeda (i.e., al-Nusra) for years — at least when not being routed by al-Qaeda/al-Nusra. Now, the sensible thing at this point would be to concede that there are no viable moderate forces in Syria, and that it would be folly for us to continue pretending those forces either exist or will materialize anytime soon. But no, that would be honest . . . which is not the Obama way — nor, frankly, is it the Washington way — to end our willful blindness to the lack of moderation among Middle Eastern Muslims…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]   

 

                                                                       

Contents     

                                                                                                    

              

WITH INCENTIVES AND BRUTE FORCE, IS SUBDUES TRIBES             

Washington Post, Nov. 27, 2014

 

The Islamic State group is employing multiple tactics to subdue the Sunni Muslim tribes in Syria and Iraq under its rule, wooing some with gifts — everything from cars to feed for their animals — while brutally suppressing those that resist with mass killings. The result is that the extremists face little immediate threat of an uprising by the tribes, which are traditionally the most powerful social institution in the large areas of eastern Syria and northern and western Iraq controlled by the group. Any U.S. drive to try to turn tribesmen against the militants, as the Americans did with Sunnis during the Iraq war, faces an uphill battle. Some tribes in Syria and Iraq already oppose the Islamic State group. For example, the Shammar tribe, which spans the countries’ border, has fought alongside Kurdish forces against the extremists in Iraq. The U.S. and Iraqi governments have proposed creating a national guard program that would arm and pay tribesmen to fight, though the effort has yet to get off the ground.

 

But in Syria in particular, tribes have no outside patron to bankroll or arm them to take on IS, leaving them with few options other than to bend to Islamic State domination or flee. “There are people who want to go back and fight them,” said Hassan Hassan, an analyst with the Delma Institute in Abu Dhabi. “But the circumstances now mean that you can’t provoke ISIS because the strategy they’ve followed and tactics are to prevent any revolt from inside.” The rulers of the self-styled caliphate have mastered techniques of divide and rule. Tribes are powerful institutions that command the loyalty of their members across the largely desert regions of Syria and Iraq. But they are also far from cohesive. Large tribes are divided up into smaller sub-tribes and clans that can be pitted against each other. Such divisions also emerge on their own, often in connection to control over local resources like oil wells or land.

 

Also, the Islamic State group itself has roots in the tribes. Though hundreds of foreign fighters have flocked to join the group, most of its leaders and foot soldiers are Iraqis and Syrians — and often belong to tribes. In eastern Syria’s Deir el-Zour province, for example, the Ogeidat is one of the largest tribes. One of its major clans, the Bu Jamel, has been a staunch opponent of the extremists. Another, the Bakir, long ago allied itself to the group. IS operatives use threats or offers of money or fuel to win public pledges of loyalty from senior tribal sheikhs. The group has also wooed younger tribesmen with economic enticements and promises of positions within IS, undermining the traditional power structure of the tribe. “They offer many sweeteners,” said Abu Ali al-Badie, a tribal leader from the central city of Palmyra in Syria’s Homs province. “They go to the tribes and say, ‘Why are you fighting against Muslims? We’ll give you weapons and cars and guns, and we’ll fight together.’” “They offer diesel and fuel. They bring barley and animal feed from Iraq,” he said. “They build wells at their own expense for the tribes and they say, ‘Others have neglected your needs.’”

 

In Syria, IS has won the acceptance of many tribesmen in Raqqa and Deir el-Zour provinces by ending chaos that reigned when the areas were controlled by a patchwork of rebel warlords. IS provides services including electricity, fuel, water and telephone lines, as well as flour for bakeries, said Haian Dukhan, a researcher at the University of St. Andrews Center for Syrian Studies. “Things have started to become stable to a degree, and this is something that people were really desperate about,” said Dukhan. The group has “tribal affairs” officials to handle relations with the tribes, calibrating its style to local dynamics. Often they will allow loyal tribesmen to run their communities’ services, said Hassan. The group also has removed its own commanders who caused tension with tribes in their areas. The idea, Hassan said, is “to remove some of the toxins.”

 

At the same time, the group sends a clear message to those who resist. In August, IS militants shot and beheaded hundreds of members of the Shueitat tribe in eastern Syria. Activists reported death tolls ranging from 200 to 700. Photographs in the Islamic State’s English-language “Dabiq” magazine showed black-clad fighters shooting prisoners said to be Shueitat, lined up on the sandy ground. In Iraq, IS killed more than 200 men, women and children from the Al Bu Nimr tribe in Anbar province, apparently in revenge for the tribe’s siding with security forces and, in the past, with American troops. It has also shot dead several men from the Al Bu Fahd tribe. “Everyone is hiding or fled. They will chop us in pieces if they see us,” said Sheikh Naim al-Gaoud, a leader in the Al Bu Nimr. “They want us to support them and to join their fight. In return, they say they will let us live in peace.” As a result, Dukhan says there’s little chance for a revolt unless tribes are confident the extremists are losing. “I think that for the time being, seeing a large-scale uprising against IS is just a fantasy.”

 

Contents           

 

On Topic

 

ISIS Says its Flag Will Wave Over Jerusalem, Even if the Jews Don't Like it: Yasser Okbi & Maariv Hashavua, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 26, 2014—The Islamic State has threatened to make it all the way to Jerusalem "even if the Jews and Crusaders despise it."

Obama May See Assad's Removal as Necessary to Defeat ISIS: Jerusalem Post, Nov. 13, 2014—President Barack Obama wants his advisers to review the administration's Syria policy after determining it may not be possible to defeat Islamic State militants without removing Syrian President Bashar Assad, CNN reported on Wednesday.

More Than 100 Canadians Have Offered to Join Kurds in Fight Against ISIS: Stewart Bell, National Post, Nov. 25, 2014 —Dozens of Canadians have volunteered to fight ISIS in recent days, the founder of a support group said Monday amid reports that military veterans from several Western countries had travelled to Syria and Iraq to take up arms against the extremists.

U.S. Adds Planes to Bolster Drive to Wipe Out ISIS: Eric Schmitt, New York Times, Nov. 26, 2014 —The United States is shifting more attack and surveillance aircraft from Afghanistan to the air war against the Islamic State, deepening American involvement in the conflict and presenting new challenges for the military planners who work here in central South Carolina, far from the targets they will pick for those aircraft.

 

               

 

 

 

                      

                

                            

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Contents:         

Visit CIJR’s Bi-Weekly Webzine: Israzine.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing is available by e-mail.
Please urge colleagues, friends, and family to visit our website for more information on our ISRANET series.
To join our distribution list, or to unsubscribe, visit us at http://www.isranet.org/.

The ISRANET Daily Briefing is a service of CIJR. We hope that you find it useful and that you will support it and our pro-Israel educational work by forwarding a minimum $90.00 tax-deductible contribution [please send a cheque or VISA/MasterCard information to CIJR (see cover page for address)]. All donations include a membership-subscription to our respected quarterly ISRAFAX print magazine, which will be mailed to your home.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing attempts to convey a wide variety of opinions on Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world for its readers’ educational and research purposes. Reprinted articles and documents express the opinions of their authors, and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research.

 

 

Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish ResearchL'institut Canadien de recherches sur le Judaïsme, www.isranet.org

Tel: (514) 486-5544 – Fax:(514) 486-8284 ; ber@isranet.org

IL N’Y A RIEN DE NOUVEAU SOUS LE SOLEIL

 

POINT DE VUE : LE PÈRE DE NETANYAHU AVAIT DIT « L'HOLOCAUSTE NE S'ARRÊTERA PAS »

Ronn Torossian

http://www.europe-israel.org, 26 novembre 2014

           

A la fin d’une semaine brutale où des Israéliens ont été tués pendant la prière, les leçons du héros sioniste Zeev Jabotinsky sont pertinentes, comme ce qu’il a écrit avant qu’il n’y ait un Etat juif : « Il est très, très triste que les juifs soient contraints d’apprendre à tirer. Mais nous y sommes contraints et il est inutile de s’opposer à la contrainte de la réalité historique. Que la contrainte dise que vous pouvez être bien formés, vous pouvez apprendre à labourer la terre et à construire des maisons, vous pouvez parler l’hébreu … mais si en même temps vous ne savez pas comment tirer, il n’y aura aucun espoir. C’est la leçon de la réalité de notre temps et c’est la perspective de la durée de vie de nos enfants. »

 

Ce que Jabotinsky avait déclaré dans les années 1930 en Europe reste vrai aujourd’hui.

 

Ainsi, le sont aussi les paroles de son ancien secrétaire, Ben-Zion Netanyahu, le père du Premier ministre d’Israël qui disait en 2009 : « L’Holocauste ne se arrêtera pas. Il continuera tout le temps. » Les images brutales de Juifs tués en prière pendant cette semaine à Jérusalem auraient pu venir de toute autre tragédie de l’histoire juive.

 

Ze’ev Jabotinsky avait noté :

 

« Où il est question de guerre vous ne vous levez pas et vous ne vous posez pas de questions quant à ce qui est ‘’mieux’’, s’il faut tirer ou ne pas tirer. La seule question admissible dans de telles circonstances est au contraire ‘’ce qu’il y a de pire’’, c’est de se laisser tuer ou réduire à l’esclavage sans aucune résistance ou d’entreprendre la résistance avec toutes ses questions horribles. Car il n’y a pas de ‘’meilleur’’ du tout. Tout ce qui concerne la guerre est mauvais, et ne peut être ‘’bon’’. Lorsque vous tirez sur les soldats ennemis, il ne faut pas se mentir à soi-même ou de se persuader soi-même que vous tirez sur des ‘’coupables’’. Si vous commencez à calculer ce qui est ‘’préférable’’, le calcul est très simple ; si vous voulez être ‘’bon’’, alors laissez-vous tuer et renoncez à tout ce que vous souhaitez  défendre : La maison, le pays, la liberté, l’espoir. La plus noire de toutes les options, c’est la tradition du sang juif bon marché. »

 

Dans l’essai légendaire « L’éthique du Mur de Fer », Jabotinsky, le père du Likoud avait écrit :

 

« La société humaine est fondée sur la réciprocité. Si vous supprimez la réciprocité, la justice devient un mensonge. Une personne marchant quelque part dans une rue a le droit de vivre que parce que, et uniquement dans la mesure où elle reconnaît mon droit de vivre. Mais, si elle veut me tuer, à mon avis, elle perd son droit d’exister – et cela vaut aussi pour les nations. Sinon, le monde deviendrait une zone de course pour les prédateurs vicieux, où non seulement les plus faibles seraient dévorés, mais les meilleurs.

 

Danny Danon, un membre du Likoud, de la Knesset a récemment déclaré qu’« Israël doit montrer sa force et écraser les terroristes », puis le propriétaire de cette Agence de Relations Publiques a rejoint tous les honnêtes gens en deuil de la mort d’innocents à Jérusalem, en Israël.

 

Le terrorisme doit être combattu et défié.

 

ABBAS SOUTENU PAR LES OCCIDENTAUX HIER A APPELÉ AU MEURTRE D'ISRAËLIENS

Danilette

http://www.israel-flash.com, 25 novembre 2014

           

Le Conseil consultatif du Fatah (olp) présidé par le Président Mahmoud Abbas s’est réuni à Ramallah pour une session spéciale consacrée aux Martyrs de la patrie, de Jérusalem et de la mosquée Al Aqsa.

 

Dans son discours, Abbas a déclaré que chaque Palestinien était prêt à sacrifier sa vie pour la mosquée Al Aqsa, il a ajouté que défendre la mosquée Al Aqsa est un droit moral, national et religieux. Il a accusé Israël de soutenir tous ceux qui agressent la mosquée Al Aqsa et a félicité les Palestiniens pour leur défense de Jérusalem.

 

Les dirigeants du Fatah participants à la conférence ont appelé à intensifier la résistance populaire (intifada) et ont félicité le public palestinien pour son combat courageux contre ceux qui cherchent à assaillir Jérusalem et la mosquée Al Aqsa.

 

Dans une communication faite à la clôture de la conférence, le Conseil consultatif a salué l’éveil héroïque des résidents palestiniens de Jérusalem, a mis en garde contre les tentatives de souillure de la mosquée Al Aqsa (les Juifs souilleraient la mosquée…sauf qu’aucun Juif n’entre dans la mosquée Al Aqsa ni dans le Dôme du Rocher !!!) et a recommandé d’allouer des fonds spéciaux aux familles des martyrs (comme les familles des 2 terroristes qui ont tué à la machette et à la hache les 4 rabbins en train de prier et le policier druze venu les défendre) enfin il a exprimé sa détermination à poursuivre la lutte.

 

Voici des extraits d’un discours prononcé à cette conférence comme ils sont reportés dans le quotidien de l’Autorité palestinienne Al Hayat Al Jadida et sur le site palestinien Amad.ps

 

Voir d’autres extraits dans l’article de Memri, en anglais : ICI

 

Je n’ai pas eu le temps de tout vous traduire, voici un passage révélateur de leur aspiration à la paix :

 

La déclaration souligne que « les actions menées à l’approche de la présentation au Conseil de sécurité du projet de résolution nationale afin de mettre fin à l’occupation, d’établir un Etat indépendant palestinien et de reconnaître le droit au retour des réfugiés sera un événement historique pour notre peuple, compte tenu de l’isolement d’Israël dans l’arène internationale. Cette résolution du Conseil de sécurité est accompagné par des actions internationales en Europe cherchant à promouvoir la reconnaissance de l’Etat palestinien indépendant … »

 

***

 

Notes ajoutées par l’équipe du blog :

 

Les Arabes palestiniens puisqu’ils n’ont pas réussi à vaincre Israël par les multiples guerres déclenchées, les vagues incessantes de terrorisme, cherchent à parvenir à leurs fins, non pas par la négociation, tel que cela était bien stipulé dans les accords d’Oslo (qui stipulait également le renoncement au terrorisme pour les Arabes) mais en contournant les négociations.

 

Mais ils ne veulent rien négocier : ils veulent qu’Israël retournent à la ligne d’armistice de 1949 (antérieure à la guerre des six jours), lignes indéfendables qui ne sont pas des frontières, comme s’ils n’avaient pas déclenché toutes les guerres cherchant à anéantir Israël et comme si on pouvait revenir au status quo ante, où a-t-on vu des agresseurs vaincus dans une guerre exiger de revenir à la situation antérieure ?

 

Lire la suite.   

 

ISRAËL ET LES USA TENTENT D'EMPÊCHER LA TENUE DE LA 4È CONVENTION DE GENÈVE
Réd.

i24news, 27 novembre 2014

           

Israël et les Etats-Unis organisent actuellement leurs efforts pour tenter de dissuader près de 200 Etats qui sont membres de la 4è Convention de Genève de convenir d'une session spéciale dans le courant du mois de décembre traitant de la Cisjordanie, de la bande de Gaza et de Jérusalem-Est, ont indiqué mercredi des diplomates israéliens occidentaux au journal Haaretz.

 

La Suisse, qui parraine la Convention, fait l'objet de pressions intenses de la part des pays arabes et devrait lancer incessamment des invitations. La Confédération helvétique a néanmoins fait savoir que cette Convention, qui devrait durer 3 heures avec quelques discours et sans couverture médiatique, excepté une déclaration à la presse, devrait se focaliser uniquement sur le droit international humanitaire.

 

"Nous avons clairement indiqué que nous ne voulons pas que cela devienne un événement politique ou un débat ou une conférence qui blâmerait une des parties concernées", a confié un diplomate suisse au Haaretz.

 

Israël s'oppose avec force à cette initiative en dépit de la version modérée proposée par les Suisses. Des diplomates israéliens se sont rendus à plusieurs reprises à Berne et à Genève pour tenter de dissuader le ministère helvétique des Affaires étrangères de tenir cette conférence, indiquant que Jérusalem la boycottera.

 

"Ils (les diplomates israéliens) nous ont dit que la tenue de cette conférence ne ferait que faciliter une initiative palestinienne unilatérale pour dégrader l'image d'Israël et l'attaquer dans un forum international", a précisé le diplomate suisse.

 

Après l'échec des pourparlers israélo-palestiniens en avril dernier, le président de l'Autorité palestinienne Mahmoud Abbas avait indiqué qu'il ferait appel à une quinzaine d'agences dépendant de l'ONU. L'une d'entre elles est la 4è Convention de Genève qui traite de la "protection des populations civiles dans des zones de combats ou dans des territoires occupés".

 

La Convention n'a pas le pouvoir de prendre des décisions coercitives, mais elle pourrait accroître la critique internationale à l'encontre de la politique israélienne concernant les constructions dans les implantations.

 

Les Etats-Unis, le Canada et l'Australie soutiennent Israël et font pression sur la Suisse et d'autres pays pour tenter de contrecarrer la conférence. Des responsables américains ont fait savoir à la diplomatie helvétique que Washington boycottera la conférence au cas où elle se tiendrait. Les Canadiens ont envoyé des messages similaires à Berne.

 

Parallèlement, les Palestiniens, soutenus par un groupe de pays arabes, poursuivent leurs efforts et font pression sur les Suisses pour la tenue de la Convention.

 

Selon des diplomates occidentaux, la Confédération helvétique est déterminée, en dépit des pressions américaines, à lancer les invitations.

 

La 4è Convention est un des 4 traités de la Convention de Genève adoptée en 1949 qui traite de la protection des civils dans les conflits armés.

 

Israël est membre de la Convention, mais la Knesset (Parlement) n'a jamais légiféré en incluant ce traité dans la Loi fondamentale de l'Etat.

 

Israël affirme que ce traité n'est pas applicable à la Cisjordanie ou à Jérusalem-Est considérant que ces zones sont "disputées et non pas occupées". Israël estime que les implantations ne constituent pas une violation du traité.

 

Lire la suite.

 

UNE PATROUILLE DE TSAHAL ATTAQUÉE À LA FRONTIÈRE ENTRE ISRAËL ET GAZA

Réd.

i24news, 27 novembre 2014

 

Une patrouille de l'armée israélienne a été la cible de coups de feu alors qu'elle opérant le long de la frontière entre Israël et la bande de Gaza en début d'après-midi, a confirmé l'unité du porte-parole de Tsahal jeudi.

 

"Aucun soldat n'a été blessé dans l'attaque, mais un véhicule a été endommagé dans l'attaque (…) en réponse, l'armée a procédé à un tir d'obus de mortier en direction des coups de feu", a encore précisé un porte-parole.

 

Si de tels échanges de tirs sont rares depuis le cessez-le-feu qui a mis fin le 26 août à cinquante jours de guerre entre Israël et le Hamas à Gaza, certains incidents surviennent encore trois mois après l'arrêt des hostilités.

 

Selon Ziyad Nahala, vice-chef du Djihad islamique, une nouvelle confrontation est à attendre de l'échec des avancées diplomatiques avec Israël au lendemain du cessez-le-feu à Gaza et des réunions successives au Caire entre les parties – Israël, l'Autorité palestinienne, l'Egypte, le Hamas et le Djihad islamique.

 

Si les points majeurs exigés par les membres des organisations islamistes dans l'enclave n'ont pas été acceptés par Israël pour des raisons sécuritaires, Nahala affirme que le refus par l'Etat hébreu "de respecter les obligations du Caire mèneront à une nouvelle confrontation", assurant que l'organisation était désormais plus "expérimentée".

 

La seule option, pour le dirigeant du Djihad islamique est de s'unir avec les Palestiniens de Cisjordanie pour combattre l'"agression sioniste et recruter dans le monde arabe pour cette prochaine guerre".

Nahala a également fustigé le plan de reconstruction de Gaza par l'ONU, affirmant qu'il avait été décidé en collaboration avec lsraël.

 

Par ailleurs, un membre du Hamas a appelé Ismaïl Haniyeh à jouer son rôle de Premier ministre dans la reconstruction, afin de prendre le contrôle en cas de chute du gouvernement d'union palestinien.

 

Le chef d'état major israélien Benny Gantz a de son côté averti le gouvernement jeudi, affirmant que la frontière entre Israël et Gaza devait de nouveau être sécurisée, les communautés limitrophes se trouvant dans une position toujours fragile. Gantz appelle à fortifier et à soutenir les résidents du sud, à l'aune de la menace d'une attaque hivernale.

 

"Il faut renforcer ces communautés pour les crises qui sont, selon moi, encore à venir. "Nous avons vu l'été dernier le grand effort mobilisé dans une attaque générale contre l'Etat d'Israël, mais spécifiquement contre les communautés frontalières de Gaza et Sderot", a-t-il ajouté.

 

Puis Gantz a rappelé la menace posée à la frontière nord d'Israël par l'Etat islamique. "Les frontières entre les Etats sont brouillées par une violence intense, créant de facto des entités ethno-sectaires dirigées par des règles où l'épée fait loi", a-t-il conclu.

 

VIDÉO: 69 ANS APRÈS LA SHOAH, ELLES SE RETROUVENT !

Jack Philip

JSS News, 27 novembre 2014

           

Une survivante de l’Holocauste et son amie d’enfance ont été réunis pour la première fois en 69 ans aujourd’hui.

 

Mira Wexler a accueilli Helena Weglowski à l’aéroport John F. Kennedy de New York, avant de l’étreindre et de l’embrasser lors d’une émouvante cérémonie.

 

Les deux femmes ont grandi ensemble à Stara Huta en Pologne (aujourd’hui en Ukraine) où le père de Wexler possédait un moulin dans la ferme appartenant aux de Weglowski.

 

Lorsque les nazis ont pris le dessus de la ville, Wexler et sa mère se sont cachées dans les bois près de la ferme de Weglowski. Helena Weglowski et son frère se sont relayés pour leur apporter à manger et à boire tous les jours.

 

«Je suis extrêmement heureuse de voir Mira de nouveau. Je me souviens du temps avant la guerre, nous jouions ensemble. La guerre a tout détruit, mais maintenant nous pouvons être ensemble à nouveau » a dit Weglowski, aujourd’hui âgée de 85 ans.

 

«Ce est très émouvant pour moi d’être ici et de voir Helena. C’est quelque chose que je ne pouvais pas imaginer jusqu’à présent. C’est un cadeau, Helena était un cadeau pour moi, » a ajouté Wexler, 78 ans.

Après la guerre Wexler et sa mère sont parties vivre au Brésil (elle y habite toujours). Weglowski réside toujours en Pologne.

 

Lien (avec vidéo).

 

Articles recommandés :

 

Jérusalem: des documents du procès Eichmann aux enchères: i24news, 25 novembre 2014.

L’islamisme est le stade suprême de la folie musulmane: www.israel-flash.com, 24 novembre 2014.

 

 

Shabbat Shalom  à tous nos lecteurs!

 

Jay Corwin: The Convergence of the Native American and Jewish Narratives in our Times

 

From Israzine Nov., 2014: "Zionism, An Indigenous Struggle: Aboriginal Americans and the Jewish State"

 

 

In considering the convergence of Jewish and Native American experiences, I may be uniquely suited to this task because my mother was Tlingit of the eagle moiety and the kaayaash keiditaan clan, and my father was Jewish.  His father was from Brzesko and his mother from Sniatyn in Galitzia.  I am acquainted with both cultures but was born and brought up in Lingít áani, Tlingit territory in Alaska, with my maternal family, and that is my home.  I have deep feelings for Jews and for Israel, as relatives and as part of my ancestry.  I am also an academic, specialized in Spanish and Latin American literature, and it is from a literary sense that I view these convergences of culture and experience.

 

The first commonalities that come to mind naturally are mass deportations, genocide, harassment and victimization of all types.  Native Americans have for some time been projected as exotic philosophical victims of their own timeless reality.  According to a student of mine at University of Cape Town, Native Americans perceive time differently from Europeans.  His professor of Anthropology had stated as much, quoting from some particular expert on the subject.  I mentioned that the Mayan calendar is more accurate than any other, which contradicted his professor’s idiotic visions of a people living in a time zone that doesn’t exist.  I mentioned that my mother and my grandmother didn’t have that peculiar perception of time, to which he answered that that they must have been westernised.   It took me a few minutes to understand how he could have been so lacking in scepticism and reason that he could look at someone with obvious Native American features but deny him his personal experience.  It was because he was misled by the romantic fantasies of a third-rate thinker with the title “professor.”  It is on this point that contemporary Jewish and Native American experiences converge wherein professors, journalists and politicians present a condescending pseudo-anthropological vision of both groups without questioning their presumed unspoken right to pontificate about every aspect of both peoples’ existence, including where they should and should not live.  I believe the real nature of this pathological desire to issue decrees stems from a simple religious narrative, the Christian depiction of Jesus, and the subsequent roles assigned by Europeans to themselves and others in our contemporary political reality.

 

Native Americans are seen by liberals as the perpetual victim, the sob story of the Americas, the gentle red-skinned people who met Columbus and the Mayflower Pilgrims, whose hospitality was recompensed with treachery and violence, the long dead heroes of Thanksgiving.  And then there is the grand Hollywood narrative of the Great Plains, replete with Italians in cheap wigs and bad makeup that evolved into the equally dreadful “Dances with Wolves,” that self-serving fantasy of “the Good White Man” who has come to save the people.  Transfer the characters to another place and time, and we have “Lawrence of Arabia,” the British equivalent.   Both are recycled Lord Jim fantasies wherein a god-like European finds himself revered by little brown people.  And both are reinventions of the Jesus story, European style, in which the blonde haired, blue eyed Jesus is killed by the people he has tried to save.

 

Martyrdom is evident in the story of Jesus, and it has crept into fiction, where it is a sin that condemns a novel or short story to second rate status.   It also constitutes a kind of generic formula in the media.  There are probably many reasons for that. I suspect that the main one is that media moguls and journalists understand that to make money their task is to manipulate the naïve, not to record history as it occurs. It is an infantile polarization of Good and Evil, a reductionist, condescending narrative technique that serves as a basis for mass media reports.   One may only be a hero, a victim or a villain in the comic book realm.  In popular media, victims and perpetrators are presented, and the journalist and activists assume the role of Superman.  And the media is well aware of it.  It feeds on the public’s longing for a dark, simplistic narrative strategy, inducing in the audience the cheap middle class thrill of righteous indignation.

 

In today’s narrative, Native Americans are placed on the margins, perhaps beyond victimhood.  Native Americans are not allowed an equal voice, and never equal footing.  I recall a conference in Spain on the indigenous mythology in Latin American fiction, my precise field of expertise.  A professor and keynote speaker, a European, had in the course of his presentation presented an analysis of an aboriginal work of literature, most of which hinged on the meaning of a Quechua word.  After he finished speaking, a Peruvian professor challenged his interpretation, explaining that the Quechua word, upon which it was based, had more than one meaning.  Another Peruvian concurred and the two began discussing the point in Quechua, their native language.  The keynote lecturer turned red and in an angry hostile tone rejected their correction, stating that he had worked with “those people” for over ten years, of course taking ownership of the word and the people.  He had probably not counted on the presence of native Quechua speakers in the audience, for how could such humble people be educated, let alone equal to other literary scholars such as himself?  I was disappointed to find at such a conference that not one of the keynote speakers was indigenous.  What I witnessed was likely a direct result of the European narrative, possibly because that speaker had been induced into this version of literary reality as a child through Karl May’s eponymous fantasy novels of a romanticized Navaho named Winnetou.

 

I am certain that the man who offered the correction was aware of my unique background.  Just after this exchange and without his having asked, I brought him a bottle of water from a vending machine.  That isn’t something a European would very likely do.  (For aboriginals, doing so is a sign of respect for someone who is older as well as an acknowledgement of his linguistic expertise and his rank as a distinguished professor and authority on his language (Quechua).  Simply nodding is not enough whereas bringing someone a drink in this context is a sign of servitude.)  This was also a subtle nod to him that I also acknowledged his victory over an under-prepared opponent.

 

That anecdote is also illustrative of the victim/perpetrator narrative.   Because, while the victim is pitied, he may never be equal, and for him to ask for or demand equality means the end of victimhood.  The speaker’s refusal to acknowledge the correction was not just an indication of his arrogance (after all, how could he be wrong, as he had studied and therefore owned those people) but a reminder to us aboriginals that we are only to be pitied.  In a sense, this is a repetition of the story of the crucifixion, the religious subtext to all contemporary European political thought.  In other words it is simply not possible for ethnic Europeans to remove themselves from their depiction of Jesus.  Victims are not allowed to play any other role, because then it spoils the entire fantasy, and moreover, he is not entitled to be Jewish: to skirt that minor problem he is relegated like Native Americans to the mythological realm of a non-existent time zone, ascending to Heaven and returning, and presented as one who is closer to God than others and therefore no longer human.   The image of the crucified Christ, a misunderstood philosophical being who lived in his own timelessness, is identical to the insulting mythologized cliché of Chief Joseph, who said “I will fight no more forever.”  The false ascription of a lyrical philosopher comes through people too thick to understand that the man was only saying “I will not fight any longer” in a language he hadn’t mastered.

 

Of course in this narrative and in European passion plays evil is incarnate in the Jews.  It is the basis of much small-minded European racism.   Europe could not have Jews in it, and now, since the establishment of the State of Israel, it cannot allow Jews the sense of equality that all people who live independently in their own land must have.  It sometimes seems as if the entire planet has been given carte blanche by Europeans to express its opinions about Israel. The subtext to those who live in the Diaspora is, “We will only like you and let you into our social circles, you bad Jews, if you condemn Israel.”  This, though, is reminiscent of the hollow promises of the Spanish Inquisition: you will only be equal if you accept our religion and condemn your people.  It is an empty promise, of course, but foolish people still fall for that promise, which is very close the Euro-American history of broken treaties with Native Americans.  After the Spanish Inquisition and over three hundred broken treaties one would expect us all to wake up and reject the tainted promises of European racists.

 

The condescending treatment of Jews, forged in Europe, was passed from European Socialists and the All-Embracing emancipated promises of Soviet Socialism to academics and journalists all over the world.  In place of Christianity there is a false, comic-book version of humanism that is broadcast via the mass media that seeks to convert its readers and viewers into the Cult of Righteous Indignation.

 

A good academic might rather question why others are trying to press a particular agenda and then consult histories.   My impression is that today’s journalists have no concept of world history, nor do left-leaning University professors.  Instead of reading canonical works they, like Soviet socialists, have created new versions of history, and cite from the babbling brook of postmodern-speak in, like the works of professors who oddly have no formal training in history.  Citing them, the academic left adorn themselves with the socialist Rosary in the face of the vampire Zionist: “How can you say we are anti-Semitic when the people we are quoting are Jews?”  Similarly, the Crow were used by Europeans who knew they would gladly help defeat their enemy, the Sioux.  These tacticians understand that Jews also have their philosophical divisions and employ the likes of Noam Chomsky and Judith Butler to cite as righteous Jews.   And their new faith of Righteous Indignation allows them a platform to unleash ethnic hatred, as long as it masquerades as criticism of Israel.  I have noticed that the word “Zionist” is used by cult members as a curse and an insult.

 

In North America, anti-Israel demonstrations are all the more absurd.  To hear people scream things such as, “Get off their land!” makes me wonder how these people could not be aware of whose land “they” are on.  Has post-modern education erased pre-contact American history? A prime example of this sort of blind hypocrisy can be found in the drama of Rachel Corrie, the American anti-Israel activist who fell under an IDF bulldozer on March 16, 2003. Rachel Corrie lived in Olympia, Washington and attended Evergreen College.  Her professors had obviously encouraged her misconceptions and half-cooked visions of Righteous Indignation and social justice, revolving around a notion of occupation and stolen land.  Some of them have publicly claimed she was murdered by Israel.   In other words the Jesus narrative is their way of understanding the zoned-out girl whose friends had time to snap photographs of her falling under a heap of earth as a bulldozer ploughed over her, but didn’t have time to pull her to safety.  Without the crucifixion there is no passion play, no climax to the narrative, and no means of blaming Jews for the murder of a Holy Martyr.    The best analogy I have read compares Corrie with Mary McGregor, the dim-witted school girl in Muriel Sparks’ novel The Prime of Miss Jean Brody, who is brainwashed by her teacher and dies volunteering in the Spanish Civil War, for the wrong side. 

 

I see Rachel Corrie, her professors and allies as hypocrites of the greatest magnitude, as Olympia, Washington was ceded by treaties backed by false promises and lies.  In short, the Coastal Salish were defrauded of their land in the 1850s.  On that land sits the Corrie family and Evergreen State College where Rachel Corrie was a student.    As far as I am aware, no one has yet made this point.  While screaming about how Israel mistreats Gazans, Corrie’s mere presence on requisitioned (stolen) Coastal Salish land invalidates any claims to martyrdom that her family, political cohort or Arab Nationalists may proclaim.

 

I often suspect that such people understand fully that they are guilty of land theft, or at the very least know they are benefiting from bartering in stolen property.  To attenuate their guilt they divert their attention and the attention of others to a mythological version of Gaza. It is much easier to live in a comic book fantasy than to reconcile oneself to the most difficult questions of justice in the present. For me, the Rachel Corrie story represents the convergence of the Native American and Jewish narratives in our times.  It is the point at which European myth-making has reached its climax and implodes under the weight of its own stupidity.  It is a story of media generated heroes, villains, and victims, which to any thinking person should recognize as hollow and transparently stale as a Hallmark card.

 

Much of academia is perverted by left-leaning social activism whose proponents have been busy rewriting history or reinterpreting it according to a Soviet-style party line.  It calls to mind the anger I felt when reading Tzvetan Todorov’s Conquest of America, which alludes to European cultural superiority during the fall of Tenochtitlán by conveniently ignoring the fact that Tenochtitlán (now Mexico City) was not conquered, as is claimed, but was abandoned by its population who fled a horrific plague, probably smallpox, that ran rampant and killed people in droves.  It was likely carried by one of Cortes’ co-conspirators.  It was an accident of nature and not a victory of superior technology or martial tactics that allowed history to unfold as it has, and to claim otherwise is simply a lie.

 

The Leftist Academic narrative which serves as the intellectual force behind BDS is trapped in an infantile phase of development.  Leftist academics pretend to reject Christianity while stuck in its mythological mind set, and its need for Jewish villains only reassures us that they are Christians without God, who maintain their form while rejecting the spiritual content and replacing it with a false humanism (though maintaining an overtly Calvinist brand of sanctimonious grandstanding).  Replace “Jesus” with “Palestine” and voila, the new religion! I would suggest that the real centre of academic leftism is its propensity for dispensing pity to the victims it creates, for without those victims there can be no object for their pity and no feeling of superiority issues as a by-product of acts of Righteous Indignation, like the bad aftertaste of an artificial sweetener.

 

I would contend that Native Americans and Jews have been victimized in the same terms by Europeans who are unable to extract themselves from the perversion of their desire to be good human beings.  This desire has been manipulated by the media, by the socialist inheritors of Soviet anti-Israel propaganda and by Arab nationalists, who along with the Soviets invented a false analogy to Native Americans, based on a desire to dominate Jews rather than coexist.   In these terms our peoples are inextricably bound until we are able to abate the mythologies that fuel the false Righteous Indignation that impedes us all from progress in the modern world.

 

Born in Wrangell, Alaska, Jay Corwin has a doctorate in Spanish and Latin American literature from the Florida State University and is author of many pieces of criticism of Latin-American fiction. He is currently head of the Spanish programme at the University of Cape Town.

Wednesday’s “News in Review” Round-Up

We welcome your comments to this and any other CIJR publication. Please address your response to:  Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish Research, PO Box 175, Station  H, Montreal QC H3G 2K7 – Tel: (514) 486-5544 – Fax:(514) 486-8284; E-mail: rob@isranet.org

 

 

Contents:  Weekly Quotes |  Short Takes On Topic Links

 

 

 

On Topic Links

 

Iran Cheats, Obama Whitewashes: Bret Stephens, Wall Street Journal, Nov. 24, 2014

Vladimir Putin’s Mindless Cynicism: Conrad Black, National Post, Nov. 22, 2014

The Making of an Imperial President: Ross Douthat, New York Times, Nov. 22, 2014

Sweden’s ‘State of Palestine’ Offense: Barry A. Fisher & Peter Sichrovsky, Wall Street Journal, Nov. 16, 2014

 

WEEKLY QUOTES

 

"To the nations that continue to allow prejudice to prevail over truth, I say 'J’accuse,'"— Israeli ambassador to the UN Ron Prosor, during the United Nation's annual commemoration of the vote on the partition of the British Mandate. Addressing diplomats and dignitaries, Prosor took a page from Emile Zola's "J'accuse"—a famous 19th century pamphlet on antisemitism— to respond to the anti-Israel declarations at a special session of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People. Prosor told the attendees, "I accuse you of hypocrisy. I accuse you of demanding concessions from Israel, but asking nothing of the Palestinians. I accuse you of speaking about Israel’s right of self-defense in theory, but denying it in practice. I accuse you of lending legitimacy to those who seek to destroy our state," said Prosor, adding, "Our conflict has never been about the establishment of a Palestinian state. It has always been about the existence of the Jewish state." Prosor attacked European governments, in general, and Sweden, in particular, saying they are "failing us again" and their recognition of a Palestinian state was an "historic mistake." The Israeli ambassador said such votes and declarations are "giving the Palestinians exactly what they want – statehood without peace. By handing them a state on a silver platter, you are rewarding unilateral actions and taking away any incentive for the Palestinians to negotiate or compromise or renounce violence." (Ynet, Nov. 25, 2014)

 

“The fact that there is no deal now means there is an opportunity to continue the economic pressure that has proven the only thing that has brought Iran to the table,” — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Netanyahu's comments came during a BBC interview in which he said the current stalemate in the Iran nuclear talks is a “lot better” than the deal that he said Iran was pushing for. That deal, which he described not as a “bad deal,” but rather a “horrible deal,” would have “left Iran with the ability to enrich uranium to an atom bomb while removing sanctions." The deal that the world should be pushing for, he added, was to “dismantle Iran's capacity to make atomic bombs, and then only to dismantle the sanctions.” Netanyahu said Iran's development of intercontinental ballistic missiles is a clear sign that it is seeking nuclear weapons. “The only reason you build ICBMs is to launch a nuclear warhead. So Iran, I think everyone understands, is unabashedly seeking to develop atomic bombs. And I think they shouldn't have the capacity either to enrich uranium or to deliver nuclear warheads. And I think that is the position the P5+1 should take.” Netanyahu said one of the justifications for not taking that position was that to do so would “offend Iranian pride.” “So what,” he said. “If this position was taken in the 1930s against Germany, it would have offended German pride, but saved millions and millions of lives.” (Jerusalem Post, Nov. 24, 2014)

 

“In the nuclear issue, America and colonial European countries got together and did their best to bring the Islamic Republic to its knees, but they could not do so — and they will not be able to do so,” —Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Khamenei issued his remarks on his personal website the day after a deadline for concluding a nuclear agreement was extended for seven months. Khamenei has the final say on all important policy matters in Iran, including the country’s nuclear program. In the Iranian Parliament, lawmakers erupted in their usual chants of “Death to America” after a lawmaker commenting on the deadline extension spoke of “the U.S.’s sabotaging efforts and its unreliability.” (New York Times, Nov. 25, 2014)  

 

“I think it is the last chance for Iraq, and this is the moment to back it,” —British Defence Secretary Michael Fallon.  Fallon urged Canada to expand its commitment to Iraq during what he says is a “critical stage” in the battle against Islamic State. During an international security forum in Halifax, Fallon said that he planned to encourage Canada’s defence minister to firm up plans to contribute to training for Iraqi security forces. During the past three weeks, Canadian fighter jets have struck a warehouse used to manufacture improvised explosive devices, a piece of artillery, some construction equipment and a bunker. “But if there’s more [Canada] can do on training, if there’s more they can offer in terms of stocks of arms and ammunition they don’t need, now is the time to throw it into the fight,” Fallon added. (Globe & Mail, Nov. 21, 2014)

 

“Ultimately what we need to do is wage a jihad against jihadism,” —Kamran Bokhari, a Middle East analyst and author. Bokhari said it was up to police and intelligence agencies to deal with those who break the law, “but they can’t police ideology, that’s the job of the Canadian Muslim community.” He said a Muslim mainstream would have to emerge to moderate the extremists defining the problem as “it’s our way or the highway” thinking. “How do we reach out to them? That is our challenge.” (National Post, Nov. 23, 2014)

 

“Within the limits of our capacity, we are leading the world in many ways in responding in a balanced way,” —Canadian Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney. The minister said the bombing campaign by Canadian and allied warplanes had made it much harder for the Islamic State to use its heavy weapons such as tanks and artillery. “They can no longer move out in the open like that,” he said. Kenney defended the Canadian approach to the crisis, which he said involved a range of policies, from resettling refugees to “discreet” military operations. (National Post, Nov. 23, 2014)

 

“The significance of these attacks and others is enormous and cannot be underestimated,” —latest edition of the Islamic State propaganda magazine Dabiq, released Friday. The magazine claims that last month’s attacks that killed two Canadian Forces members in Quebec and Ontario were “the direct result” of its call for violence in countries that had joined the international military campaign against the terrorist group. “By calling on Muslims around the world to rise up in arms, the sheikh launched attacks in Canada, America and Australian … without nothing more than words and a shared belief in the act of worship that is jihad,” it claimed. While individual jihadists had previously referred to the attacks, the magazine marked the first time Islamic State had mentioned them in its official propaganda. The violence “demonstrates the immense power that jihad wields over those who chose to embark upon its path,” it said. (National Post, Nov. 21, 2014)  

 

“Canada is strongly opposed to the glorification of Nazism and all forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and intolerance. We are deeply concerned by the rise of neo-Nazism in many parts of the world, and are committed to eliminating racism and discrimination, in all their forms,” —François Lasalle, a spokesman for the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade. At the United Nations on Friday, however, Canada voted against a resolution, brought by Russia, “combating glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.” Canada was joined in its opposition by just two other countries, U.S. and Ukraine. The motivation for the Russian resolution is thought to be related to Russia’s claims that far-right extremist groups are aligned with Ukrainian nationalists and even the Kyiv government in escalating clashes with pro-Russian separatists. Canada objected because the resolution has a “narrow focus” and it draws on the controversial declarations of the 2009 World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa, which Canada regards as antisemitic. “…The resolution put forward at the United Nations General Assembly Third Committee on November 21 on the glorification of Nazism regrettably includes references which are counterproductive to this goal, including by seeking to limit freedom of expression, assembly and opinion…Given its narrow focus and these concerns, Canada did not vote in favour of the resolution,” Lasalle said. (National Post, Nov. 23, 2014)

 

"You cannot put women and men on an equal footing…it is against nature," —Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, at a women's conference in Istanbul. Women cannot do all the work done by men, he added, because it was against their "delicate nature…Our religion regards motherhood very highly," he said, adding "feminists don't understand that, they reject motherhood." Earlier this month, Erdogan claimed that Muslims had discovered the Americas more than 300 years before Christopher Columbus. (BBC, Nov. 24, 2014)

 

“Every day, we get more and more calls from more terror victims who want to fight back who are seeking justice, who more than anything else in the world don’t want to be victims anymore,” —Shurat HaDin (Israel Law Centre) director Nitsana Darshan-Leitner. Darshan-Leitner and her colleagues have been hard at work since 2003 choking off terrorist funding through legal cases against terrorist-sponsoring countries, banks and other entities terrorists use to fund and carry out their murderous activities. Darshan-Leitner, who spoke at a CIJR event in Montreal earlier this month, said her organization has won more than $1 billion in judgments, with $120 million in actual payments to victims of terror, and has frozen more than $600 million in terror assets. “Every day, we find cases we must get involved with on behalf of the Jewish community and the State of Israel. We fight terrorism in court because we are doing what governments are not able to do. Governments cannot sue other governments, banks or terror organizations. They have political considerations, foreign relations and treaties they sign — they have to be politically correct. We don’t. We are private lawyers who represent private people that have one goal — to bankrupt terrorism one lawsuit at a time. We will keep fighting terrorism in court because we don’t have any other choice. We live in Israel and we want to send our kids to school and make sure they come back safe. We want to shop in our malls, ride our buses, sit in our cafés and walk on our streets. We don’t want to send our kids to fight in Gaza. We don’t want to run to shelters three, six or nine times a day. We want to live normally in our country,” she said. (Suburban, Nov. 19, 2014)

 

Contents

 

SHORT TAKES

 

U.S. DEFENCE SECRETARY HAGEL RESIGNS (Washington)— U.S. Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel announced Monday he is stepping down, leaving under pressure following a rocky tenure in which he has struggled to break through the White House’s insular team of national security advisers. Hagel is the first senior Obama adviser to leave the administration following the sweeping losses for the president’s party in the Nov. 4 elections. It also comes as the President’s national security team has been battered by crises including the rise of Islamic State and Russia’s provocations in Ukraine. In recent weeks, Hagel sent a letter to national security adviser Susan Rice in which he said Obama needed to articulate a clearer view of the administration’s approach to dealing with Syrian President Assad. The letter is said to have angered White House officials. (Globe & Mail, Nov. 24, 2014)

 

CABINET APPROVES 'JEWISH STATE BILL' (Jerusalem)— Israel’s Cabinet approved a contentious bill to officially define it as the nation-state of the Jewish people. The bill, which still needs to be passed in parliament to become a law, ostensibly looks to define Israel’s existing Jewish nature into law. But its various versions have drawn accusations that it will undermine the country’s democratic character. The vote comes at a time of soaring tensions between Arabs and Jews and a wave of violent attacks, including last week’s deadly assault on a Jerusalem synagogue in which two Palestinians killed five people. The Israeli government vowed to respond to the wave of violence with harsh new measures, including a proposal to strip Palestinian attackers of their residency rights. In its current form, the bill calls for recognizing Israel’s Jewish character, institutionalizing Jewish law as an inspiration for legislation and delisting Arabic as an official language. (Wall Street Journal, Nov. 23, 2014)

 

HAMAS PLANNED TO ASSASSINATE LIEBERMAN (Jerusalem)— A Hamas terrorist cell planned to assassinate Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, the IDF, Shin Bet and police said in a statement. According to the statement, the group, comprised of members of Hamas military wing from the Bethlehem area, planned to target top Israeli officials, including Lieberman. They sought to purchase an RPG rocket launcher with the intent of shooting Lieberman's car.  Ibrahim Salim Mahmoud al-Zir, 37, from the village of Harmela near Bethlehem, led the terror cell behind the mission. Al-Zir is known to Israeli security forces and has in the past served time for security offenses he conducted with Hamas. Al-Zir planned the attack in August, during Operation Protective Edge, in order to send a message to Israel to stop its war in Gaza. (Ynet, Nov. 20, 2014)

 

OLMERT TO BE QUESTIONED ON ALLEGATIONS THAT BARAK TOOK BRIBES (Jerusalem)— Israeli police announced on Sunday that former prime minister Ehud Olmert will be called as a witness in its investigation of allegations that former prime minister Ehud Barak took bribes. Two weeks ago, Attorney-General Weinstein ordered police to investigate bribery allegations Olmert made against Barak in a taped conversation. The decision came a day after an NGO asked Weinstein to investigate taped allegations Olmert made sometime in 2007-2009 that his then defense minister Barak had taken millions of dollars in bribes as part of arms and weapons transactions. The NGO’s letter to Weinstein followed an airing of taped conversations between Olmert and his then top aide, Shula Zaken, in which he tells her of the allegations. Barak has denied the allegations. In the tapes, Olmert tells Zaken that Barak “has millions, tens of millions, stashed away in secret bank accounts in Switzerland or somewhere,” which he allegedly illegally skimmed off weapons deals. (Jerusalem Post, Nov. 23, 2014)

 

AFGHANISTAN SUICIDE BOMBING KILLS 50 PEOPLE AT VOLLEYBALL TOURNAMENT (Kabul)— A suicide bomber blew himself up at a volleyball tournament in Afghanistan on Sunday, killing at least 50 people and wounding about 60 more in the country's deadliest terrorist attack this year. The bloodshed came just hours after Parliament approved agreements allowing U.S. and NATO troops to remain in the country past the end of the year. Volleyball is a popular sport in Afghanistan, played across the country, and the attacker is likely to have targeted the event to ensure maximum casualties. No one claimed responsibility. Paktika, bordering Pakistan, is one of Afghanistan's most volatile regions, a place where Taliban and groups like the Haqqani network are waging an intensifying war against the government. Earlier this year, a suicide bomber blew up a car packed with explosives near a busy market and a mosque in Paktika's Urgun district. (CBC, Nov. 23, 2014)

 

KENYAN STRIKE ON MILITANT CAMPS KILLS 100 AFTER BUS SHOOTING (Mombasa)— Kenya’s army said it killed more than 100 fighters of the Islamist group al-Shabaab in assaults on its camps in neighboring Somalia after the terrorists claimed responsibility for a bus attack in northeastern Kenya that left 28 people dead. Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility for the Nov. 22 attack on a bus while it was traveling northeast of the Kenyan capital, Nairobi. Non-Muslims were separated from other passengers before being killed by gunmen. Kenya has faced increasing attacks by Islamists since sending its troops into neighboring Somalia in 2011 to fight al-Shabaab, which has waged an insurgency against that country’s government since 2006. (Bloomberg, Nov. 24, 2014)

 

RUNOFF WILL DECIDE PRESIDENT OF TUNISIA (Tunis)— Tunisia’s first democratic presidential election will be decided in a runoff next month between the two leading candidates, President Moncef Marzouki and Beji Caid Essebsi, a former prime minister, the election board announced on Tuesday. Preliminary results of the first round, held on Sunday, showed Essebsi in first place with 39.46 percent of the vote, and Marzouki second with 33.43 percent. The two will face each other in a runoff because no candidate secured a majority in the race. Given that only six percentage points separated them in the first round, the runoff may well be a closer contest than expected. It has already reopened the deep divisions in Tunisian society between secularists and Islamists and could frustrate hopes of a national unity government between the two main blocs in Parliament: Essebsi’s party, Nidaa Tounes, and the main Islamist party, Ennahda. (New York Times, Nov. 25, 2014)

 

GERMANY OPPOSES UNILATERAL RECOGNITION OF PALESTINIAN STATE (Berlin)—German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Friday that Germany was opposed to the unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state, urging for the renewal of peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians. Merkel said Friday that Berlin supports a two-state solution and “we see how difficult that is, so we also believe that unilateral recognition of the Palestinian state won’t move us forward” toward that goal. Last week, Spain’s Parliament approved a non-binding resolution recognizing a Palestinian state, following similar motions in Britain and Ireland. Sweden’s new government officially recognized a Palestinian state on Oct. 30,  making it the first major European Union member state to back Ramallah’s statehood bid in this way. (Times of Israel, Nov. 21, 2014)

 

SWISS MUSEUM ACCEPTS ART TROVE AMASSED UNDER NAZIS (Bern)— Kunstmuseum Bern will accept the bequest of an immense trove of art amassed by a Nazi-era art dealer, but will ensure that any looted art in the trove is returned to its rightful owner. The bequest was made by the dealer’s reclusive son, Cornelius Gurlitt, just before he died in May. A cousin of Gurlitt made a last-minute attempt to block the bequest, but the president of the museum’s board of trustees, said he did not expect that action to prevent the museum from accepting it. German authorities seized the trove after Gurlitt died at his Munich home. An agreement reached among the museum, the German federal government and the state of Bavaria calls for the collection to be dealt with as openly as possible. Looted art remains a thorny issue nearly seven decades after World War II ended. Art experts and historians are hoping that the museum’s pledge of openness in handling the Gurlitt bequest will set a new tone for dealing with future discoveries of looted artworks. (New York Times, Nov. 24, 2014)

 

ISRAEL TO EASE ABSORPTION, EMPLOYMENT FOR IMMIGRANTS FROM FRANCE (Jerusalem)— Israel’s government cabinet decided to clear obstacles to the absorption of new immigrants in the labor market, in particular, those from France. “We want to see masses of Jews coming here,” Prime Minister Netanyahu said. “I appeal especially to the Jews of France; this is a community that I know, love and appreciate. We see you today not only as brothers and sisters but as our very flesh.” Antisemitism is a key factor in rising migration of wealthy Jewish families. At present there are between 3.5 to five million Muslims in France, representing between five to ten percent of the population. Islam is currently the second most widely-practiced religion in France, after Roman Catholicism. Intelligence and law enforcement personnel in France are becoming increasingly concerned about Islamic radicalization and antisemitism. (Jewish Press, Nov. 23, 2014)

 

UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT TO MARK AUSCHWITZ LIBERATION IN PRAGUE (Kiev)— Ukrainian President Poroshenko is set to travel to Prague in January to attend an event marking the 70th anniversary of the Soviet liberation of Auschwitz. Poroshenko was reportedly invited along with the leaders of other countries that fought against Germany during the Second World War and is the first to confirm his attendance. The Holocaust has become politicized in the conflict between Russia and its former Soviet subject, with Russian Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar holding a Holocaust memorial in Crimea shortly after its annexation by Moscow. Members of antisemitic groups have been seen fighting on both sides in the civil war in Ukraine’s eastern regions bordering Russia, a war that Western nations have accused Russia of fomenting. Some Ukrainian Jews have denounced Russia for allegedly stirring up provocations, and the World Jewish Congress has downplayed the severity of anti-Semitism there, even as Russian outlets report nonexistent pogroms in Odessa. (Jerusalem Post, Nov. 23, 2014)

 

14 HONORED FOR SAVING JEWS IN THE NETHERLANDS (Amsterdam)— Israeli diplomats serving in the Netherlands honored 14 non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust. The title of Righteous Among the Nations was given posthumously to Frederika Maria Segboer and Christina Segboer — sisters who hid Jews in southern Netherlands and helped them reach safety in Spain. Frederika’s daughter accepted the honor at a ceremony in Gorinchem for her mother and aunt, who directed Jews they hid to the Westerweel group — a ring of resistance fighters who helped smuggle at least 210 Jews out of the Netherlands, as well as hundreds of non-Jews who were wanted by the Nazi occupation forces. Many of the Jews that the group smuggled to Spain left from there to pre-state Israel. The Netherlands, which used to be home to 140,000 Jews before the Holocaust, has over 5,350 Righteous Among the Nations. (Jerusalem Post, Nov. 23, 2014)

 

 

On Topic Links 

 

Iran Cheats, Obama Whitewashes: Bret Stephens, Wall Street Journal, Nov. 24, 2014—Does it matter what sort of deal—or further extension, or non-deal—ultimately emerges from the endless parleys over Iran’s nuclear program? Probably not.

Vladimir Putin’s Mindless Cynicism: Conrad Black, National Post, Nov. 22, 2014—Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s robust words to Russian leader Vladimir Putin in Australia were welcome, appropriate and should be supported by all Canadians.

The Making of an Imperial President: Ross Douthat, New York Times, Nov. 22, 2014 —Let me be clear, as he likes to say: I believe that President Obama was entirely sincere when he ran for president as a fierce critic of the imperial executive.

Sweden’s ‘State of Palestine’ Offense: Barry A. Fisher & Peter Sichrovsky, Wall Street Journal, Nov. 16, 2014—Sweden’s new Social Democratic-Green Party coalition government on Oct. 30 officially recognized “the State of Palestine,” over the opposition of Israel, the U.S. and other nations.

 

Rob Coles, Publications Editor, Canadian Institute for Jewish Research/L'institut Canadien de recherches sur le Judaïsme,   www.isranet.org Tel: (514) 486-5544 – Fax:(514) 486-8284. mailto:ber@isranet.org

 

 

 

 

 

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing is available by fax and e-mail.
Please urge colleagues, friends and family to visit our website for more information on our Briefing series.
To join our distribution list, or to unsubscribe, contact us at http://www.isranet.org/.

 

The ISRANET Daily Briefing is a service of CIJR. We hope that you find it useful and that you will support it and our pro-Israel educational work by forwarding a minimum $90.00 tax-deductible membership contribution [please send a cheque or VISA/MasterCard information to CIJR (see cover page for address or “Donate” button on Website)]. All donations include a membership-subscription to our respected quarterly ISRAFAX print magazine, which will be mailed to your home.

CIJR’s Briefing series attempts to convey a wide variety of opinions on Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world for its readers’ educational and research purposes. Reprinted articles and documents express the opinion of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Institute.

 

 

 

NUCLEAR IRAN & PALESTINIAN TERROR: CHALLENGES ISRAEL WILL OVERCOME

We welcome your comments to this and any other CIJR publication. Please address your response to:  Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish Research, PO Box 175, Station  H, Montreal QC H3G 2K7 

 

Contents:

 

The Vitality of Anger: David M. Weinberg, Israel Hayom, Nov. 21, 2014— A grotesque kind of quiet has taken root among Israelis in the Promised Land; a morose passivity that expresses depression and suggests acquiescence.

In This Struggle, Israel Can Prevail: Dr. Mordechai Kedar, Arutz Sheva, Nov. 20, 2014— During these difficult days of increasing terror, the most urgent question is: What can we do in order to cope optimally with the growing terrorist violence in Israel, knowing that behind the scenes there are several players who are expending intense efforts to bring about an explosion.

The Silence of the Dhimmis: Camera, Nov. 20, 2014 — The November 18th murder of five people at Kehilat Yaakov Synagogue in Jerusalem has shocked the world.

Iran's no China: Caroline Glick, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 24, 2014— The Obama administration will never abandon its courtship of Iran.

 

On Topic Links

 

Sunni Political Islam: Engine of ‘Israeli-Palestinian’ Conflict: Jonathan Spyer, PJ Media, Nov. 22, 2014

Battle of Jerusalem: What Congress Should Do Now: Seth Lipsky, New York Post, Nov. 19, 2014

What To Do About Car Terrorism: Stephen M. Flatow, Jewish Press, Nov. 13, 2014

The Accomplishment of Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, A Soldier of Allah: Paul Merkley, Bayview Review, Nov. 18, 2014

The Temple Mount and Global Jihad: Ruthie Blum, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 9, 2014

                                      

                                          

THE VITALITY OF ANGER                                                                                       

David M. Weinberg                                                                                             

Israel Hayom, Nov. 21, 2014

 

A grotesque kind of quiet has taken root among Israelis in the Promised Land; a morose passivity that expresses depression and suggests acquiescence. It stems from the feeling that little can be done about "the situation." It comes from the paralyzing conclusion that there are no easy solutions in our war with the Palestinians. And you have to wonder: When will we learn, finally, to harness the vitality of anger — anger that has built-up inside of us all — instead of wallowing in woe?

 

It is almost as if Israelis have been lulled into a stupor by the intractable nature of the conflict. No matter how hard the gangs incited by Mahmoud Abbas hit us, we fail to rise up in appropriate rage and demand that our government take even harsher action to shut up Abbas and shut down the terrorist cells in eastern Jerusalem. No matter how many times Palestinians violate their treaty obligations, Israelis, it seems, just settle back into the living room armchair to sigh and cluck in sadness. No matter how horrific the latest terrorist outrage, we are wont to sorrowfully cry with the widows and orphans on TV, or mournfully mutter "how terrible it is" around the coffee-maker at work. To release some bottled-up bitterness, someone will make a sarcastic remark about feeble Israeli leadership or crack some black humor about the situation. How weak and how sad.

 

Immediately upon discovering the next Palestinian transgression, Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch will comically convene "urgent consultations," from which he will emerge hours later to inform us that "the police are beefing up their presence in Jerusalem"; or that "we will respond at the time and place of our choosing"; or perhaps that he has ordered concrete blocks be placed at strategic train stops in Jerusalem to defend pedestrians. Benjamin Netanyahu will emerge from the Prime Minister's Office with a grim face to tell us for the umpteenth-thousandth time that he views "this dangerous escalation with the utmost gravity" and to rhetorically slam Abbas. Justice Minister Tzipi Livni will pontificate something about the need for "calm" and suggest that we need to give the Palestinians a "horizon." Undoubtedly, these pronouncements have Islamic Movement leader Raed Salah, Abbas and the gangs of Jabel Mukaber shaking in their boots.

 

And the people of Israel? We cluck and groan and murmur our discontent, and then get on with our daily business as best we can. Because we have no choice, right? I ask: What has happened to our determination and sense of national responsibility? Where are all the activists, the taxi drivers, the pioneers, the suffering victims, and all those who sympathize with them? Even after the Begin Center, Shuafat, Sheikh Jarrah and Wadi Joz assaults, the slaughter of Jews in the synagogue in Har Nof, and recent Tel Aviv terrorist attacks too — are we too afraid or tired or too downcast to take to the streets and demand real action from our government? It is almost as if we are embarrassed to demonstrate; ashamed to let the blood get to our heads and make us truly angry. Anger, writes Maimonides, is a treacherous emotion to be avoided in most situations, as is hate (Mishneh Torah, The Book of Knowledge 2:3). Except when faced with evil. Then, anger is the appropriate, necessary, energizing, response. It is a mitzvah to hate those who seek to undermine the morality of society or to destroy the nation.

 

Does anyone have any doubt that the Palestinian regime established alongside us over the past 20 years is malignant? That the PA-controlled Wakf on the Temple Mount is fomenting violence? And if so, are we forever going to sit back and sigh? I truly believe that the vast majority of eastern Jerusalem Arabs abhor the violence. They value their Israeli-provided freedom of expression and mobility, their Israeli jobs, medical care and social welfare benefits; and they would welcome an Israeli military reconquest of their streets. They really would. Thus the neutralization of Abbas' influence in Jerusalem and the crushing of radical elements in eastern Jerusalem are not impossible. I'm certain the Shin Bet, Israel Police and IDF can do the job if given the order and the resources to do so. But this requires national will; it requires a government with that is not wrought by rivalries and frozen in place; a government that is not paralyzed by over-attentiveness to foreign criticism. Hundreds of thousands of Israelis marching in the streets to say "enough!" might supply our government with the necessary spine. Otherwise, our inaction and apparent indifference could yet be mistaken by enemies without and within as resignation and acceptance of the situation. They will continue running to huddle and hug Abbas, to lobby against our national interests abroad, and to broadcast their corrosive messages on national radio and TV.

 

Two thousand years after the destruction of the Second Jewish Commonwealth and only one generation after the Holocaust, the Jewish people have returned to Zion to reclaim their homeland, through much sweat and sacrifice. Despite a few post-Zionist intellectuals and a defeatist press, Zionist grit and patriotic determination to overcome all challenges is alive and well among large majorities of Israel's varied sub-societies. Doing what is needed to improve our personal and national security does not require any apologies. We ought not weakly whimper away. It is essential that we take to the streets. It is time to angrily shake the trees and rustle up the troops. The Netanyahu government should feel much more manifestly that it has the overwhelming backing of Israelis for decisive, seismological action against radical actors in Palestinian society and the Israeli Arab community.         

 

                                                                       

Contents    

                                                                                                                                       

IN THIS STRUGGLE, ISRAEL CAN PREVAIL

Dr. Mordechai Kedar                                           

Arutz Sheva, Nov. 20, 2014

 

During these difficult days of increasing terror, the most urgent question is: What can we do in order to cope optimally with the growing terrorist violence in Israel, knowing that behind the scenes there are several players who are expending intense efforts to bring about an explosion. Leading the pack is Hamas, whose goal is to become the undisputed leader of the Palestinian Arabs at the expense of the Palestinian Authority – and, for good measure, giving Sisi something to remember. Supporting Hamas is a coalition composed of Qatar and Turkey, with unlimited sources of funds.

 

The PLO, at the same time, is trying to hold on to first place and cannot allow itself to appear less extreme than Hamas, for fear it will be accused of cooperating with Israel. This is the origin of the two-faced behavior of the PA: on the one hand, it presents a cooperative face to Israel and on the other hand, it stabs Israel in the back, through incitement and education, on the street and in international forums. Qatar bases its standing in the Arab world and the West by pouring oil on the fire, exactly as it does with Islamic State. Hypocritically, in the usual Qatari fashion, it funds Islamic state while, as part of the Western coalition, it expresses support for those who fight it. Behind the scenes of the growing terror Israel faces stands Islamic State, the model for successful battles against the enemies of Islam: massacre the enemy, act with extreme violence and use fast vehicles that give the impression of Jihad's sweeping, advancing victory. The murderers who entered the Jerusalem Synagogue did not bring long butcher's cleavers for nothing.

 

The answer: The time for politically correct euphemisms is over and the unpleasant truth must be told as it is. First of all, Israel must say emphatically: the Palestinian Authority established on the basis of the Oslo Accords is an enemy entity, an enemy whose goal is establishing an Arab state  in place of Israel, not alongside Israel, but on its ruins. That is the reason the Oslo Accords were violated so blatantly and thoroughly by the other side, resulting in them being declared null and void.. In addition, Israel must cease funding the PA on the basis of economic agreements derived from the Oslo Accords. There is no other country that funds an enemy entity, and there is no reason for Israel to be the only country that acts in such a delusional manner. The government of Israel must condemn those among us who were instrumental in giving us the "New Middle East", even those who once held posts of high honor.

 

2. Israel must announce as clearly as possible that Jerusalem is not a subject in any negotiations with anyone. It was never the capital of any entity connected to the Arab or Islamic world and was never ruled by a king, sultan, emir or caliph, so that there is no historical or legal basis for demanding that it be the capital of any state other than Israel. 3. Israel has to remind the entire world that Judea, Samaria and Eastern Jerusalem were areas occupied by Jordan for 19 years, from May 1948 until June 1967. Had the Arab world felt it was just and necessary, it could have established a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital then, without anyone in the world disputing it.  The Arabs  refrained from doing that for the 7000 days in which Jordan had control of the area and therefore have no right to demand from Israel what they did not demand from themselves. 5. Israel must immediately shut down all the PA institutions in Jerusalem and any governmental entity that is not that of the state of Israel. Sovereignty cannot be shared or compromised on, because he who compromises with regard to his sovereignty loses it. 6.The police must issue a restraining order against all Islamic Movement activists, first and foremost to Sheikh Raad Salah and his deputy Sheikh Kamal el Khatib.  After that, the possibility of issuing an order forbidding them to leave Um El Fahem and Kafr Kana should be considered. 7. Israel must immediately shut down all the Hamas TV stations broadcasting in Judea and Samaria. 8. Israel must keep the bodies of all dead terrorists who committed terror attacks. To all events, Israel must forbid their burial in Jerusalem, especially not in the vicinity of the Temple Mount, because burial in that spot is an expression of pride in the shahid and  encourages more terror…[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

                                                                       

Contents            

                                                                                                  

                                     

THE SILENCE OF THE DHIMMIS                                                       

Camera, Nov. 20, 2014

                                               

The November 18th murder of five people at Kehilat Yaakov Synagogue in Jerusalem has shocked the world. Two Palestinian men turned a house of prayer into a killing zone. One group that has remained remarkably silent about the massacre is Christian leaders in Bethlehem, where the Christ at the Checkpoint Conference takes place every even-numbered year under the auspices of Bethlehem Bible College (BethBC). Christian leaders associated with CATC and BethBC have offered nary a word of criticism of the attack, nor have they condemned Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas for the inflammatory remarks he has made prior to the attack. He has referred to Jews who want to visit the Temple Mount as "a herd of cattle," accused them as "contaminating" the Al Aksa Mosque and declared they must be prevented from entering the site "by any means."

 

Palestinian Christians who routinely (and falsely) condemn Israel for denying Christians access to holy sites in Jerusalem have remained virtually silent about these remarks. And they have not offered a word of condemnation for incitement against "'the rabbis' of the secret societies," that was published in an official PA newspaper a week before the attack. With their silence, these Christians have demonstrated once again that they are not really the “peacemakers” they claim to be, but are merely propagandists who use the language of peace to condemn Israel and encourage their allies in the West to gloss over the sins of the Palestinians.

 

They are part of the machinery of cognitive warfare that has been built piece-by-piece, year-by-year – over the past several decades – to destroy the reputation of the Jewish state and undermine its ability to defend itself both physically and ideologically. When Westerners speak of Palestinian "civil society," what they are referring to — without meaning to — is this apparatus of cognitive warfare. Palestinian intellectuals, politicians, journalists and religious leaders (including Christians), have helped keep Palestinians on a war-footing with the Jewish state for the past several decades. All too often, they speak in terms that justify Palestinian violence against Israelis. For example, at the 2012 Christ at the Checkpoint Conference, one of the speakers was Bethlehem Mayor Victor Batarseh, a former member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – the organization which, according to The New York Times, took “credit” for the November 18 attack. It was also responsible for the murder of Leon Klinghoffer. During his talk, Batarseh said Israel was “crucifying” the Palestinians, spoke of Bethlehem being a giant prison and said that Jesus Christ was, in the form of the Palestinian people, imprisoned by the security barrier.

 

Statements like these are clearly intended to incite Christian animosity toward the Jewish state. (Apparently, you can take the mayor out of the PFLP, but you can't take the PFLP out of the mayor.) The PFLP, which was founded by a Palestinian Christian (and terrorist) by the name of George Habash, enjoys a vaunted place in the imagination of Christians in Bethlehem. In September 2007, the Holy Land Trust, founded and led by Sami Awad, held a protest in honor of Abu Ali Mustafa, who served as secretary General of the PFLP prior to his death in 2006. Judging from this 2000 interview, Mustafa was clearly a supporter of violence against Israel, even as other Palestinian organizations were negotiating with Israel. Why did Sami Awad, a so-called peacemaker who is heavily involved with the Christ at the Checkpoint Conference, allow his organization, Holy Land Trust, to commemorate the death of an avowed terrorist who in 2000 was calling for violence against Israel when other Palestinian factions were negotiating with Israel? Is this an appropriate action for a so-called peacemaking organization to be doing? This question takes on increased urgency when we learn that Awad has called Khader Ahdnan, a member of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, a “national hero.”

 

Unfortunately, the people who help broadcast the Palestinian Christian narrative in the United States and Europe are reluctant to raise these issues. In his 2012 movie, With God on Our Side, filmmaker Porter Speakman presented Palestinian Christians as unalloyed forces for peace in the Holy Land. For example, he portrayed Saleem Munayeer, who at one time bragged of his connections to PFLP founder George Habash, as someone who can point a way to peace between Jew and Arab. This might alarm people who are knowledgeable about Habash's life story.

 

The sad reality is this: Christians in Palestinian society are not the unalloyed force for good they are portrayed as by their allies in the West. Some Christians, like George Habash, engage in acts of violence against Israel. Others, like Victor Batarseh, justify it with falsehoods. And others, like Sami Awad and those associated with the Bethlehem Bible College's Christ at the Checkpoint movement, condemn Israel every chance they get, but keep their mouths shut when their countrymen do unspeakable things. If Palestinian Christians cannot speak the truth about their own society at a time such as this, there is every reason to question their testimony about the Jewish state.

                                   

                                                                       

Contents                   

                                                                                                                                          

IRAN'S NO CHINA                                                                                                    

Caroline Glick                                                                                                                  

Jerusalem Post, Nov. 24, 2014

 

The Obama administration will never abandon its courtship of Iran. On the eve of the extended deadline in the US-led six-party talks with Iran regarding Teheran’s illicit nuclear weapons program, the one thing that is absolutely clear is that courting Iran is the centerpiece of US President Barack Obama’s Middle East policy. Come what may in Geneva, this will not change. To be clear, Obama does not seek to check Iran’s rise to regional hegemony by appeasing it. None of the actions he has taken to date with regard to Iran can be construed as efforts to check or contain Iran.

Their goal is to cultivate a US alliance with Iran. As Obama sees things, Iran for him is what China was for then US president Richard Nixon. Nixon didn’t normalize US relations with the People’s Republic of China in order to harm the Chinese Communists. And Obama isn’t wooing Iran’s Islamic revolutionaries in order to harm them. Unfortunately for the world, China is not a relevant analogy for Iran. Nixon sought to develop ties with Beijing because he wanted to pry the Chinese out of the Soviet orbit. Courting China meant harming Moscow, and Moscow as the US’s greatest foe. There is no Moscow that will be weakened by the US’s empowerment of Tehran. The only parties directly and immediately harmed by Obama’s policy of courting Iran are America’s allies in the Middle East. The Allies’ appeasement deal with the Nazis in 1938 had three victims: Czechoslovakia, the rest of Europe, and the rest of the world.

 

Obama’s policy of courting Iran also has three victims: Israel, the Sunni Arab states, and the rest of the world. Obama’s initiation of the six-power nuclear talks with Iran harms Israel because the talks facilitate Iran’s nuclear program. That is, Obama is enabling Iran to develop the means to attack Israel with nuclear weapons. According to press reports of the content of the negotiations, the US has already abandoned its major red lines. It has abandoned its demand that Iran dismantle its centrifuges. Late last week the US was reportedly about to abandon its demand for Iranian transparency to the International Atomic Energy Agency regarding its past work on atomic bomb development.  In other words, the deal the US was hoping to conclude this week with Iran, and will now continue negotiating next month, involves taking no serious action to curtail Iran’s progress in developing nuclear weapons. And in exchange for taking no action to curtail its nuclear progress, Iran demands and will likely receive a complete abrogation of binding UN Security Council economic sanctions against it. Those sanctions were passed in response to Iran’s illicit nuclear progress. The deal the US is now willing to sign renders Iran’s nuclear program legitimate.

 

Then there are the rest of the states in the region. The Saudis and their Sunni brethren are not the Czechs. They are Poland, Belgium France and Holland. Like the Nazis and the European states in late 1938, Iran threatens all Sunni states in the region. As the Americans have engaged in obsessive-compulsive nuclear negotiations with Iran, the Iranians have divided their attention between nuclear development and regional expansion. In September they took over Yemen. Houthi militia from northern Yemen took over Yemen’s capital city Sana’a that month. The Houthi are Shi’ite, and are to Yemen what Iran’s Lebanese Shi’ite proxy Hezbollah is to Lebanon. The Houthis, who are already a major force in the US-trained Yemeni armed forces, are demanding control over them.

 

In addition to its proxy’s takeover of Yemen, as Middle East analyst Tony Badran reported earlier this month, the Iranian leadership is orchestrating a major information campaign to present itself as the regional hegemon to regional actors. Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps Commander Qassem Soleimani has had his picture taken with Kurdish peshmerga in Iraq as well as with Iraqi regular military forces. Iranian security chief Ali Shamkhani went to Lebanon in late September and offered to arm the Lebanese Armed Forces. Iran, these photo-ops and visits signal – is the new boss of the region. Yemen shares a 1,700 km border with Saudi Arabia. The Houthis already fought a border war with Saudi Arabia in 2009. The Iranian proxy’s control over much of the border today is a clear threat to Saudi sovereignty. In light of the close ties the Houthis have spent the past decade cultivating with Saudi Arabia’s Shi’ite minority, it is also a threat to the internal political stability of the kingdom.

 

As the Obama administration has erased red line after red line in the nuclear talks, and sided with Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood and other Iranian Sunni allies against US allies, Iran’s leaders have gloated that their hegemony over Yemen raises to four the number of Arab states under their dominion, that list including Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. Iran’s control over Yemen is a direct threat to the world economy. Before the Houthis marched on Sana’a, Iran was able to threaten global oil markets with its sovereignty over the Straits of Hormuz that controls naval traffic between the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean. With the Port of Aden, Iran will also control maritime traffic between the Persian Gulf and the Indian Ocean. It is true that massive increases in US oil sales due to its shale oil development will reduce some of the Middle East’s power to dictate oil prices. But Middle Eastern oil sales still constitute 40 percent of the world market and will continue to be a massive force in the global economy in the coming years. As the force controlling the flow of that oil, Iran will exert massive influence over the global economy.

 

Add to that the fact that Iran’s Hezbollah has sleeper cells in every major city in Europe and in several hubs in North America, and that Iran has strategic alliances with Venezuela and Nicaragua, a nuclear- armed Iran exerting hegemonic control over the Middle East and its oil exports will become a strategic danger to the global economy and global security. One of the many eyebrow raising aspects of Obama’s courtship of Iran is that it isn’t tied to a US retreat from the region. The US isn’t retreating. Obama has ordered hundreds of air strikes on Islamic State targets to date, and more will undoubtedly follow. The US participated in the NATO overthrow of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. US power remains a major factor in regional affairs, and Obama has not shied away from using it during his tenure in office. The problem is that in all cases, his use of US power has helped Iran more than it has helped US allies. And in the case of Libya, US power has directly threatened US allies and empowered al-Qaida and it associates.

 

With the rise of China today, some US analysts question the wisdom of Nixon’s opening to Beijing. But there is little argument that his China gambit caused strategic damage to the Soviet Union and contributed to the US victory in the Cold War. Not only will Obama’s Iran opening not redound to the US’s benefit in the short term. Its inevitable result will be a decade or more of major and minor regional wars and chronic instability, with the nuclear-armed Iran threatening the survival of all of America’s regional allies. It will also lead to shocks in the global economy and massively expand Iran’s direct coercive power over the word as a whole. Not only is Obama no Nixon, compared to him, Neville Chamberlain looks like a minor, almost insignificant failure.

 

Contents           

 

On Topic

 

Sunni Political Islam: Engine of ‘Israeli-Palestinian’ Conflict: Jonathan Spyer, PJ Media, Nov. 22, 2014—An oft-repeated sentiment currently doing the rounds in discussions of the Israeli-Palestinian issue is that it is imperative that the conflict not become a “religious” one.

Battle of Jerusalem: What Congress Should Do Now: Seth Lipsky, New York Post, Nov. 19, 2014 —Let the massacre of the rabbis in Israel serve as a wake-up call to the new Congress that will be seated in Washington come January.

What To Do About Car Terrorism: Stephen M. Flatow, Jewish Press, Nov. 13, 2014 —As I prepare for an upcoming visit to Israel, I can’t help but feel a twinge of apprehension. How could it be otherwise?

The Accomplishment of Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, A Soldier of Allah: Paul Merkley, Bayview Review, Nov. 18, 2014 —Islam is becoming more dangerous for everybody every day.

The Temple Mount and Global Jihad: Ruthie Blum, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 9, 2014 —On Thursday, thousands of mourners attended the funeral of Border Police Superintendent Jadan Assad, from the Druse village of Beit Jann.

               

 

 

 

                      

                

                            

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Contents:         

Visit CIJR’s Bi-Weekly Webzine: Israzine.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing is available by e-mail.
Please urge colleagues, friends, and family to visit our website for more information on our ISRANET series.
To join our distribution list, or to unsubscribe, visit us at http://www.isranet.org/.

The ISRANET Daily Briefing is a service of CIJR. We hope that you find it useful and that you will support it and our pro-Israel educational work by forwarding a minimum $90.00 tax-deductible contribution [please send a cheque or VISA/MasterCard information to CIJR (see cover page for address)]. All donations include a membership-subscription to our respected quarterly ISRAFAX print magazine, which will be mailed to your home.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing attempts to convey a wide variety of opinions on Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world for its readers’ educational and research purposes. Reprinted articles and documents express the opinions of their authors, and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research.

 

 

Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish ResearchL'institut Canadien de recherches sur le Judaïsme, www.isranet.org

Tel: (514) 486-5544 – Fax:(514) 486-8284 ; ber@isranet.org

AS ISRAEL WATCHES O. EXTENDS NUCLEAR DEADLINE (AGAIN)–CLEARLY, U.S.-IRAN DETENTE PREFERABLE TO A NUCLEAR IRAN

We welcome your comments to this and any other CIJR publication. Please address your response to:  Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish Research, PO Box 175, Station  H, Montreal QC H3G 2K7 

 

Contents:

 

As We Go To Press: IRAN, WORLD POWERS EXTEND TALKS TO JULY AFTER FAILING TO SEAL DEAL (Vienna) —The US and Iran will extend nuclear talks into 2015, Western diplomats said, as the sides agreed to continue negotiations after failing to reach a deal by a November 24 deadline. A well-placed Western diplomat said that elements are falling into place for an agreement to allow talks on Iran’s nuclear program to continue for more than seven months. The diplomat told The Associated Press Monday that a broad agreement should be completed by March 1, with the final details worked out by July 1. The talks would be extended until July 1, 2015…As part of the agreement to extend talks, which was still being worked out by officials as of Monday afternoon, Iran would see no additional easing of sanctions, the source said. US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif agreed Sunday to start discussion on continuing the talks past the target date.  (Times of Israel, Nov. 24, 2014)

 

How the Obama Administration Has Already Caved to Iran: Lee Smith, Weekly Standard, Nov. 24, 2014— The deadline for the Joint Plan of Action ended it seems without a final agreement between the P5+1 and Iran over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program. It’s not yet clear what happens next.

Concerning Iran: Jerusalem Post, Nov. 24, 2014— Will Israel be pushed into a corner from which military action against Iran may be the only recourse?

Congress Must Rescue Administration Held Hostage by Iran: Jonathan S. Tobin, Commentary, Nov. 24, 2014 — This morning’s announcement that the West has formally agreed to extend its nuclear talks with Iran for another seven months confirms something that we already knew about Obama administration attitudes on the issue…

Obama: Helping Terror Go Nuclear: Noah Beck, Algemeiner, Nov. 21, 2014 — Last Tuesday’s terror attack on a Jerusalem synagogue killed five people: four rabbis (including three born in the USA) and a Druze police officer.

 

On Topic Links

 

After the U.S. Mid-Term Elections: The Congressional Role in U.S.-Iran Policy: Lenny Ben-David, JCPA, Nov. 17, 2014

Iran’s Supreme Leader Calls for Annihilation of Israel on Eve of Nuclear Talks: Lt. Col. (ret.) Michael Segall, JCPA, Nov. 9, 2014

Iran Nuclear Talks: The Narcissism of Minor Differences Between the EU and US: Benjamin Weinthal, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 23, 2014

Iran Blames Israel and Jews for Negotiations Breakdown: Rachel Avraham, Jerusalem Online, Nov. 20, 2014

                                      

  

HOW THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION HAS ALREADY CAVED TO IRAN           

Lee Smith                                                                                                            

Weekly Standard, Nov. 24, 2014

 

The deadline for the Joint Plan of Action ended it seems without a final agreement between the P5+1 and Iran over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program. It’s not yet clear what happens next. “There will be some kind of extension,” says Mark Dubowitz, executive director at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, says Dubowitz, with parties reconvening in December to continue to negotiate. "Iran has 'hooked the fish' with Western negotiators so committed to negotiations that they will do whatever it takes to keep everyone at the table." It’s useful then to see exactly what, for better or worse, has been resolved so far, either during the course of these talks or previously. According to Omri Ceren at the Israel Project, a pro-Israel public affairs organization that focuses on the Middle East, there are several issues on the table, many of which the Obama administration has already caved on.

 

Sanctions. The White House is offering upfront sanctions relief that the administration says it can "snapback" if the Iranians fail to comply with their end of the bargain. However, as Dubowitz explained in congressional testimony last week, the idea that it will possible to re-impose sanctions once Iran is opened for business, is politically and economically unrealistic.

 

Sunset clause. The Jerusalem Post reported that the administration has offered Iran a 10-year sunset clause, meaning that after ten years, whatever so-called permanent deal is reached comes to an end, constraints go away, and Iran is a normalized nuclear power despite the fact that, for instance, the Islamic Republic is a state sponsor of terror. “If this is true it’s shocking,” says Dubowitz. “Congress has been talking about many decades, and the administration said 20 years. Iran asked for 3 to 7, 10 would be a significant climb down. And it means that within a decade most of the constraints would disappear and Iran will be well-positioned to develop a massive industrial-size program, which will be much more difficult to monitor, and an easier clandestine breakout route to a bomb."

 

Enrichment. The administration gave up on its demands that Iran enrich no uranium at all. The Joint Plan of Action acknowledged Iran’s “right” to enrich which will allow them to close their breakout time by increasing materials to enrich. “Under several presidential administrations,” says Dubowitz, “the United States denied Iran any enrichment and now we’re haggling with them over how much uranium they get to enrich.”

 

Centrifuges. The White House abandoned its demands Iran must dismantle its centrifuges. Now they must only disconnect, or unplug, them, which which will allow them to close their breakout time by making sure there is equipment on hand to do the enriching. The Obama administration also gave up on its demand that there be no research and development of advanced centrifuges, which will allow Iran to close its breakout time by speeding up enrichment with next generation centrifuges. Plutonium. The administration gave up on the demand that Iran has to convert the heavy-water reactor at Arak into a light-water reactor, but Iran now refuses to budge, and the administration will instead allow an easily reversible cosmetic quick fix.

 

Ballistic missiles. Several U.N Security Council resolutions (most recently UNSCR 1929) require Iran to cease all activity on its ballistic missile technology. However, it is now inconceivable that the administration will include ballistic missiles as part of the deal. Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif literally laughed at White House negotiators when they suggested Iran should meet long-standing UNSC resolutions demanding a halt to proliferation-sensitive ballistic technology. As Reuters reported, “the U.S. delegation made clear that it wanted to discuss both Iran's ballistic missile program and possible military dimensions of its past nuclear research… Zarif merely laughed and ignored the remarks." Possible military dimensions of Iranian nuclear program, and the verification regime. Reports over the weekend suggested that the White House may have given up on demanding that Iran fully disclose its past activities, including possible military dimensions of the nuclear program. Without knowing exactly what Iran has done in the past, any post-agreement verification regime would be incapable of discerning whether or not Iran was keeping its word. The administration denied these reports.

                                                                       

Contents                      

                                                                                                                                         

CONCERNING IRAN

Jerusalem Post, Nov. 24, 2014

 

Will Israel be pushed into a corner from which military action against Iran may be the only recourse? It is Iran that should have been pushed into a corner by the international community over its nuclear program, but the direction talks have taken so far between world powers and the Islamic Republic leaves little room for optimism. At press time, the deadline set by the sides for talks – midnight of November 25 – was expected to come and go without a deal, due to Iranian opposition. The feeling in Israel was that if the mullahs ruling Tehran had agreed to the accord presented to it by the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Russia, China, and Germany – also known as the P5+1 – Iran would have remained a threshold nuclear state. And Israel might have been forced to act.

 

That was the clear message given to The Jerusalem Post’s Michael Wilner by a high-ranking Israeli official. It is still not clear what precisely were the details of the accord rejected by Iran. The understanding in Jerusalem is that certain restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program would have been imposed for roughly 10 years. During that time, an inspection regime would have been put in place by the world powers. Current uranium stockpiles would have been removed or converted.  Iran’s ability to produce fissile material for a bomb would have been capped at nine months, compared to the current three months. But all this is in theory. In practice, Iran would have been allowed to keep thousands of centrifuges that would have enabled it to enrich uranium for a bomb within a short time. As Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu put it in an interview with the BBC on Monday, “There’s no right to enrich. What do you need to enrich uranium for if you’re not developing an atomic bomb?” Inspections cannot be relied on to stop enrichment without Iranian goodwill, of which there is a dearth. Iranian officials will inevitably attempt to use subterfuge and lies to cover up its nuclear weapons program, as it has in the past. And the experience with North Korea tells us that inspection regimes are unreliable. Even intelligence agencies are far from perfect. It took years to discover the nuclear facilities located in Natanz and Qom.

 

Thanks to Iranian intransigence, the signing of a bad deal has so far been averted. And clearly no deal is better than a bad one. But where do we go from here? The Iranians are apparently stalling for time in an attempt to come closer to nuclear weapons capability. In the meantime, they are also involved in perpetuating a number of conflicts throughout the Middle East. The Assad regime in Syria, Hezbollah in Lebanon, and a number of terrorist organizations operating in Gaza all receive support from the Iranians. Eventually, however, the P5+1 will have to make a decision. In the best-case scenario, they will soon reach the conclusion that Iran has no intention of willingly giving up its nuclear weapons program and will reinstate a strict sanctions regime. Combined with a credible military threat, stiff penalties might yet coerce the Iranians into giving up on their aspirations to become a nuclear power. A military attack on Iran, and the unknown negative consequences resulting from such an attack, would be avoided.

 

However, if the P5+1 permit Iran’s leaders to continue to stall for time as they develop their nuclear program or if they end up signing a bad deal that allows Iran to remain a nuclear threshold power, a peaceful resolution to the conflict will be impossible. Countries such as Egypt, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia would not stand by silently while Iran attains nuclear weapons, or the ability to deploy them within a short period of time. The ensuing nuclear arms race would risk destabilizing the Middle East. Because Iran is also developing intercontinental ballistic missiles – missiles which are used only to carry nuclear payloads, as Netanyahu pointed out Monday – it would also have the ability to strike targets thousands of kilometers away, endangering large parts of the world. Of course, Israel would be forced to act as well. Just a few weeks ago, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called for “the elimination” of Israel. He urged Israel’s enemies to commit to “armed resistance” until the Zionist entity is destroyed. The best way to prevent Iran from dragging the region into a war is by using non-military means, combined with a credible military threat, to pressure it to give up its aspirations for nuclear weapons. Signing a bad deal or dragging out talks for too long will only lead to conflict, a nuclear arms race, and perhaps even war.      

                                                                       

Contents                  

                                                                                            

    

CONGRESS MUST RESCUE ADMINISTRATION HELD HOSTAGE BY IRAN    

Jonathan S. Tobin

Commentary, Nov. 24, 2014

 

This morning’s announcement that the West has formally agreed to extend its nuclear talks with Iran for another seven months confirms something that we already knew about Obama administration attitudes on the issue: it is far more afraid of disrupting any chance for détente with the Islamist regime than in sticking to its principles or its promises about halting the threat posed by Tehran’s program. But while sending the talks into a second overtime period allows Iran to keep moving ahead with its nuclear program and lets Secretary of State John Kerry and his negotiators to relax a bit, this decision should wake up Congress. The failure of the administration to escape the trap that it has set for itself by letting the next stage of the talks drag on endlessly should re-energize the existing bipartisan coalition in favor of toughening sanctions on Iran to get back to work and pass a new bill.

 

It should be remembered that a year ago in the aftermath of the signing of a weak interim deal with Iran, the administration successfully fended off efforts to increase sanctions on the Islamist regime by claiming that doing so would disrupt the negotiations. President Obama and Kerry both promised that the next round of talks would have a limited time frame that would prevent Iran from continuing the same game that it has played with the West for the last decade. Tehran has been trying to run out the clock on the nuclear issue since George W. Bush’s first term in the White House. It has easily exploited two administrations’ efforts at engagement and diplomacy during this time frame and has gotten far closer to its goal of a bomb as a result. Even more importantly, with each round of negotiations it has forced Obama and America’s allies to retreat on its demands. Last year its tough stance forced Kerry to give up and ultimately agree to tacit Western acceptance of Iran’s “right” to enrich uranium. In the last year, it has also successfully gotten the U.S. to retreat on issues such as the number of centrifuges it is allowed to operate and the future of its stockpile of nuclear fuel, and kept other issues such as the need to divulge the extent of its nuclear military research, the future of its plutonium plant at Arak, its ballistic missile program, and support for international terrorism off the agenda. Proposed Western concessions have grown to the point of the absurd, such as the suggestion about disconnecting the pipes between the centrifuges. At the same time Iran has also stonewalled the International Atomic Energy Agency on demands for more inspections and transparency.

 

After last year’s interim deal was signed, the administration easily fended off congressional efforts to toughen sanctions by saying they weren’t needed to strengthen the hands of Western negotiators and openly talked of the danger of demonstrating ill will toward Tehran that would scuttle the talks. The president and his foreign-policy team also labeled skeptics about this deal and advocates of more sanctions as warmongers. But a year later it’s clear that the skeptics were right and everything the administration promised about the next round of talks was either mistaken or an outright lie. Though Kerry claimed that the interim deal had achieved its goal of halting Iran’s progress, the truth is that nothing it accomplished can be easily reversed. In exchange for dubious progress, the U.S. sacrificed its considerable economic leverage in the form of loosening sanctions. Iran now believes with good reason that it can end the sanctions without giving up its nuclear ambition. By turning the promised six months of talks to pressure Iran into a year plus seven months, the president and Kerry have broken their word to Congress and played right into the hands of the ayatollahs. It’s possible that seven more months of ineffectual pressure on Iran will yield another weak deal that will ensure it will soon become a threshold nuclear power while at the same time allowing Obama to announce a much-needed foreign-policy success and the fulfillment of his campaign pledges on the issue. But given the promises that were made about the previous two deadlines, what confidence can anyone have in America’s willingness to draw conclusions about the talks if Iran doesn’t yield?

 

Even if we are operating under the dubious assumption that any deal reached under these circumstances could be enforced or achieve its goal, the failure of the president to enforce the current deadline telegraphs to Iran that it needn’t worry about any other threats from the West. If the U.S. wouldn’t feel empowered to push Iran hard now with oil prices in decline and the current sanctions (which Obama opposed in the first place) having some impact on the regime’s economy, why would anyone in Tehran take seriously the idea that there will be consequences if they don’t make concessions or sign even another weak deal? Though Kerry talked about building trust with Iran, the only thing that can be trusted about this process is that the Islamists have played him and his boss for fools.

 

That is why Congress must step in now and immediately revive the bipartisan bill proposed by Democratic Senator Robert Menendez and Republican Senator Mark Kirk that would tighten the noose around Iran’s still-lucrative oil trade. Just as the current sanctions that Obama and Kerry brag about were forced upon them, the only way this administration will negotiate a viable deal with Iran is to tie its hands by passing a new sanctions bill. It should also be pointed out that the alternative to Kerry’s appeasement of Iran is not the use of force. Tougher sanctions that will return the situation to the point where it was last year before Kerry caved on the interim deal provide the only chance to stop Iran by means short of war. It may be that outgoing Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will block a sanctions bill in the lame duck session just as he did last year despite the support of an overwhelming majority of members from both parties. But if he does thwart action, the new Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and the Republican majorities in both houses should act quickly to pass a bill that will impose real penalties on Iran. The commitment of Obama and Kerry to détente with Iran has made them, in effect, hostages of the Islamist regime in these talks. The only way they can be rescued from their own folly is action by Congress.

                                   

                                                                       

Contents                                      

                                                                                                     

OBAMA: HELPING TERROR GO NUCLEAR                                                        

Noah Beck                                                                                                                          

Algemeiner, Nov. 21, 2014

 

Last Tuesday’s terror attack on a Jerusalem synagogue killed five people: four rabbis (including three born in the USA) and a Druze police officer. Two Palestinians entered during morning prayers and attacked worshipers with knives, meat cleavers, and a handgun. Congress showed moral clarity when blaming the horrors on Hamas and Palestinian Authority incitement, but Obama’s statements were perfunctorily “balanced.” Obama warned of a “spiral” of violence – an obtuse refrain of those suggesting moral equivalency between terrorism and the fight against it. Obama also misleadingly claimed that “President Abbas…strongly condemned the attacks” omitting that Abbas did so only after pressure from the administration and with equivocation (Abbas suggested a link between recent terrorism and visits by Jews to the Temple Mount, as if to justify the attacks). It’s also worth noting that Palestinians celebrated the massacre (as they did after the 2013 Boston bombing and the 9/11 attacks).

 

Obama’s weak reaction is consistent with his mostly impotent response to ISIS terrorists who behead Americans and Mideast Christians, and grow their Islamist empire by the day. Frighteningly, his approach to Iranian nukes follows the same meek pattern, but the stakes are exponentially higher, because when Iran goes nuclear, so does terrorism. Iran is already the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, without nuclear weapons. Iran-supported Hamas has already tried to commit nuclear terror: last summer, Hamas launched rockets at Israel’s Dimona nuclear reactor. How much more dangerous will Iran become when it has nukes? Even if Iran doesn’t directly commit nuclear terrorism, an Iranian nuclear umbrella will embolden the regime and the terrorist organizations it sponsors.

 

Obama has a long record of weakness towards Iran. In 2009, when Iran’s Basij paramilitary force brutalized demonstrators protesting Iran’s fraudulent presidential election, Obama kept his response irrelevantly mild for the sake of “engaging” Iran. That surely helped Iranian voters understand the risks of protesting the “free” election of 2012 (involving eight regime-picked candidates). It was indeed a very orderly rubberstamp. In 2011, when a U.S. drone went down on Iranian soil, Obama cordially requested it back. The regime recently scoffed at such impotence by showcasing its knock-off based on that drone and some U.S.-made helicopters that it purchased,  highlighting just how useless sanctions have become. President Hassan Rouhani’s election vastly improved the public face of Iran’s nuclear program, and Obama was charmed too. Obama has been unilaterally weakening the sanctions against Iran by not enforcing them. He has threatened to thwart any Congressional attempt to limit his nuclear generosity by simply lifting sanctions without Congressional approval. Yet despite these concessions and Rouhani’s smiles, human rights abuses in Iran have actually worsened.

 

Obama declared in 2012 (while running for reelection) that he doesn’t bluff when it comes to stopping Iranian nukes, and that containment was not an option, unlike military force. But the credibility of that statement collapsed after Obama shrunk away from his “red line” against Syrian chemical weapons use. In 2013, Basher Assad gassed his own people and Obama took no military action. So if Obama cowers against a disintegrating state, what are the chances that he’ll militarily prevent Iranian nukes? And Obama has dangerously undermined the only military threat to Iranian nukes that anyone still takes seriously: Israel. On the Iranian nuclear issue, Obama has isolated Israel on how close Iran is to a nuclear capability with estimates that are far laxer. And as long as Obama continues negotiating (even if Iran is clearly playing for time as the U.S. offers ever more desperate proposals) or reaches a deal allowing Iran to become a threshold nuclear weapons state, an Israeli military option to defang Iranian nukes appears less legitimate.

 

The media’s anti-Israel bias is well known (they can’t even get a simple story about vehicular terrorism against Israelis correct (compare how The Guardian writes accurate headlines when Canada suffers an Islamist car attack but not when Israel does). So if Obama accepts Iran’s nuclear program and Israel then attacks it, the media will be even harsher on Israel (even though the world will be silently relieved, if Israeli courage succeeds at neutralizing what scared everyone else). Downgrading U.S.-Israel relations seems to be part of Obama’s détente with Iran. Iran’s Supreme Leader Khamenei recently tweeted his plan for destroying Israel, but Obama grows even more determined to reach an accord that legitimizes Iran’s nuclear program. And the Obama administration’s diplomatic abuse of America’s closest Mideast ally is unprecedented – from his humiliation of Prime Minister Netanyahu in 2010, to Secretary of State John Kerry’s betrayal of Israel during Operation Protective Edge, to calling Netanyahu a “chickenshit” a few weeks ago, without even apologizing later (note the irony of calling Netanyahu a coward anonymously). Obama seems far more concerned by Israeli construction of apartments in Jerusalem than a nuclear Iran. And he has been pressuring Israel to retreat from more disputed territory, effectively rewarding Palestinians for launching the third missile war against Israel from Gaza in five years last summer and now the third Intifidah inside Israel in 17 years. That puts Obama just behind the European appeasers who think Palestinian bellicosity merits statehood. They all naively think — at Israel’s peril — that peace is possible with raw hatred.

 

Obama indeed appears desperate to get a nuclear accord with Iran at any price. He has written letters asking for Iran’s help against ISIS after they hinted at an ISIS-for-nukes exchange, and has pursued an agreement at all costs. Obama’s top aide, Ben Rhodes, was caught saying how a nuclear accord is as important to Obama as “healthcare”; at least there’s a fitting slogan to sell the deal to Americans: “If you like your nukes, you can keep them.” Russia, the serial spoiler, suggested extending nuclear talks past the November 24th deadline. Iran will undoubtedly agree to more enrichment time (while it keeps stonewalling the IAEA’s investigations into it nukes), as it did last July. For Obama, a bad agreement or an extension looks far better than concluding that talks have failed and issuing more empty threats to stop Iran militarily. And so U.S. foreign policy will continue its freefall, as the world’s bad actors will want to see what they can extort from a leader even weaker than President Carter. While Carter permitted Iran to hold 52 American diplomats and citizens hostage for 444 days, Obama may allow Iran to hold the world hostage with nuclear terrorism. It’s now dreadfully obvious: without massive public pressure, Obama will help Iran get nukes…

[To Sign A Petition to Tell Washington: NO PATH TO A BOMB OR NO DEAL, Click the Following Link—Ed.]

 

 

Contents           

 

On Topic

 

After the U.S. Mid-Term Elections: The Congressional Role in U.S.-Iran Policy: Lenny Ben-David, JCPA, Nov. 17, 2014 —November 24 is seen as a critical date in the negotiations between Iran and UN Security Council’s permanent members (the “P5+1” the United States, France, Britain, Russia, China plus Germany) on the fates of Iran’s nuclear enterprise and the economic sanctions imposed on the recalcitrant and bellicose

Iran’s Supreme Leader Calls for Annihilation of Israel on Eve of Nuclear Talks: Lt. Col. (ret.) Michael Segall, JCPA, Nov. 9, 2014 —On the eve of the opening of the nuclear talks in Oman on November 9, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei repeated his call to annihilate Israel and suggested a nine  – point plan on how to confront Israel and urged Muslims to arm the Palestinians in the West Bank. Khamenei also re-twitted Iran’s 11 red lines in the nuclear talks.

Iran Nuclear Talks: The Narcissism of Minor Differences Between the EU and US: Benjamin Weinthal, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 23, 2014 —With the negotiation process to end Iran’s illicit nuclear weapons program about to enter the final stretch, nuanced differences still exist among the Western powers toward Tehran.

Iran Blames Israel and Jews for Negotiations Breakdown: Rachel Avraham, Jerusalem Online, Nov. 20, 2014 —The deadline is approaching, but an agreement is still far away.

 

               

 

 

 

                      

                

                            

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Contents:         

Visit CIJR’s Bi-Weekly Webzine: Israzine.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing is available by e-mail.
Please urge colleagues, friends, and family to visit our website for more information on our ISRANET series.
To join our distribution list, or to unsubscribe, visit us at http://www.isranet.org/.

The ISRANET Daily Briefing is a service of CIJR. We hope that you find it useful and that you will support it and our pro-Israel educational work by forwarding a minimum $90.00 tax-deductible contribution [please send a cheque or VISA/MasterCard information to CIJR (see cover page for address)]. All donations include a membership-subscription to our respected quarterly ISRAFAX print magazine, which will be mailed to your home.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing attempts to convey a wide variety of opinions on Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world for its readers’ educational and research purposes. Reprinted articles and documents express the opinions of their authors, and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research.

 

 

Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish ResearchL'institut Canadien de recherches sur le Judaïsme, www.isranet.org

Tel: (514) 486-5544 – Fax:(514) 486-8284 ; ber@isranet.org

Charles Bybelezer: The ‘Peace Process’ That Kills

The region was already burning when…John Kerry rolled into town in July 2013, on his fifteenth-odd visit to Jerusalem… Syria was well into its third year of carnage, with sectarian strife beginning to spill over into Lebanon…Libya was in shambles, with Islamist militias carving out spheres of influence following the American-led operation to remove Muammar Gaddafi…Yemen, once a major US ally in the fight against terrorism, was without a stable government after the overthrow of long-time ruler Ali Abdullah Saleh…In the wake of the total US military withdrawal from Iraq, that country was coming apart at the seams under Nuri al-Maliki…Egypt, the pillar of regional stability for decades, was in turmoil…

Yet in his blinding arrogance, Kerry was certain what was needed most: The renewal of a 20-year-long “peace process” that neither Israeli nor Palestinian officialdom had asked for nor wanted. Kerry would, with unsinkable hubris, secure his place in history by succeeding where everyone before him had failed. In any event, the move would deflect attention away from other US foreign policy blunders that had contributed to plunging the Middle East and North Africa into chaos…

The only thing negotiations were ever bound to deliver were more corpses to the morgue. Engagement with the Palestinians has never produced anything other than the weakening of Israel’s bargaining positions and the erosion of its legitimate rights…

Just weeks after the breakdown of talks…Hamas dutifully reminded Palestinians of their nationalistic responsibilities. The incorporation of Gaza’s rulers into a unity government with…Abbas was near-unanimously hailed as a positive step by the international community, effectively justifying terror against Israelis. The kidnapping and murder of three Jewish teens this past June, accompanied by a surge of rocket fire on civilian population centers, was the outcome…

And while the world was perversely condemning Israel’s “disproportionate” response to the terror it helped to unleash, unrest was brewing in the West Bank and especially Jerusalem. Violent demonstrations in Arab-Israeli cities likewise foreshadowed the campaign of murder currently being waged against Jews within the so-called “1967 borders.”…

The question of whether or not another Palestinian “uprising” has started is irrelevant – because it is unavoidable. It is the natural consequence of the venomous indoctrination with hate of an entire population based on the total rejection of the Jewish people’s right to live within any borders in its one and only state, the recurring result of a phony peace process which holds only one side accountable and deems the construction of schools in disputed territories as a greater sin than the taking of life. In the result, Israel finds itself in a great conundrum, from which it cannot escape without altering dramatically the prevailing, warped paradigm. One needs to look no farther than the media coverage of Tuesday’s attack to understand the depths to which the country has fallen. Canada’s public news station, the CBC, conjured up this headline: “Police fatally shoot two after apparent synagogue attack.”… But nobody should be surprised; the US Embassy in Tel Aviv, after all, described the first terror attack in the recent series – which saw a Palestinian mow down as many bystanders as possible on the streets of Jerusalem – as a “vehicular accident.”…

 

(Jerusalem Post, Nov. 24, 2014)
Charles Bybelezer is a correspondent for i24News

and a former CIJR Publications Chairman

THE WEEK THAT WAS: JEWS SHOCKED BY MORE BARBARIC ISLAMIC VIOLENCE, POLLARD’S PAROLE DENIED (AGAIN), & RETRACING LVIV’S JEWISH HERITAGE

We welcome your comments to this and any other CIJR publication. Please address your response to:  Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish Research, PO Box 175, Station  H, Montreal QC H3G 2K7 

 

Contents:

 

Statement by Irwin Cotler on the Jerusalem Synagogue Attack: Nov. 18, 2014— Mr. Speaker, early this morning in Jerusalem, two Palestinian men wielding knives, axes and guns stormed a synagogue, killing four people and injuring eight, including one Canadian.

The Accomplishment of Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, A Soldier of Allah: Paul Merkley, Bayview Review, Nov. 18, 2014— Islam is becoming more dangerous for everybody every day.

Pollard’s Parole Plastering: Gil Hoffman, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 19, 2014 — Today, Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard enters the 30th year of his life sentence for the crime of passing classified information to an ally.

Picking up the Pieces of a Lost Culture: Eitan Arom, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 19, 2014 — I’m traveling across the bleak Ukrainian countryside with half a dozen Israeli journalists, two history professors in animated discussion, an employee of Wikipedia and two native speakers of Ukrainian.

 

On Topic Links

 

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks: "To be free, you have to let go of hate." (Video): Stand With Us, Nov. 13, 2014

Domestic Radicalization and the Arab-Israeli Conflict: Max Boot, Commentary, Nov. 18, 2014 

The Essentiality of Anger: David M. Weinberg, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 20, 2014

In This Struggle, Israel Can Prevail: Dr. Mordechai Kedar, Arutz Sheva, Nov. 20, 2014

                                      

                                      

STATEMENT BY HON. IRWIN COTLER

ON THE JERUSALEM SYNAGOGUE ATTACK                                                    

Nov. 18, 2014

 

Mr. Speaker, early this morning in Jerusalem, two Palestinian men wielding knives, axes and guns stormed a synagogue, killing four people and injuring eight, including one Canadian. This brutal attack is part of a recent escalation in terrorist violence. Indeed, on the day of the terrorist attack in this House, a terrorist attack killed a three-month-old baby in Jerusalem, and others since. Moreover, this escalation cannot be divorced from the incitement to hate and violence and the glorification of terror propagated by much of the Palestinian media and leadership, where Palestinian authority officials have praised terrorists as “heroic martyrs”, declared that Jerusalem needs blood to purify itself of Jews, while Hamas celebrated the attack and President Abbas' party's Facebook page today announced that candy was being distributed in celebration of it. I join with all hon. members in offering our heartfelt condolences to the victims of today's attack, while we call for an end to incitement, an end to the glorification of terror, an end to the terror itself, and a commitment to peace and non-violence.

 

 

CIJR Congratulates Irwin Cotler, MP for Mount Royal, and former Justice Minister, for being honoured with Maclean’s Magazine “Parliamentarian of the Year.” [to Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

                                                                       

Contents            

                                                                                                                      

THE ACCOMPLISHMENT OF MICHAEL ZEHAF-BIBEAU,

A SOLDIER OF ALLAH                                                                                   

Paul Merkley                                                                                                                  

Bayview Review, Nov. 18, 2014

 

Islam is becoming more dangerous for everybody every day. In a typical evening broadcast on any of the major global news-networks at least one in three leading items brings to our ears and eyes the horrific effects of the command of Muhammad to “slay the unbeliever.” Typically, there will be stories about this day’s work by suicide-bombers: scores of people who had been going about their daily lives, removed from the earth in the blink of an eye because of the need of dedicated individuals and groups to make theological statements. As I was writing these words the emergency services were cleaning up the human muck left by such incidents in several Arab countries from Mali to Pakistan, in Indonesia and in Muslim parts of Africa as well as in parts of Africa being newly-won for Allah from nominally Christian regimes, such as that in Nigeria. Not always at the top of the news but always going on somewhere are similar events in the Muslim parts of China, Central Asia and the South Pacific – everywhere, in short.

 

The usual intent of these mass-murderers is to display to the world how utterly right he or they are about a point of theological difference between real Muslims and false Muslims. The Holy Qur’an teaches that such differences cannot be set right by argument, because entering into argument with falsifiers of the truth would have to begin with recognizing the right of falsehood to exist at all. Being the inheritors of a spiritual tradition that has at its heart the conviction that God, the Creator of All, has made us in his image (Genesis 1:26), equipped with free will and intelligence, fully responsible for our choices and thus always liable to error — we cannot grasp this zero-sum thinking, and we inevitably go wrong when we imagine that we can – that is, when we rush into the debate seeking to help things out by separating the “moderates” from the “radicals.”

 

Within the world of Islam, there have always been elements so fanatical – nowadays, our journalists call them “Islamists” — that the political leaders of the time have had to rally the community against them, using the full force of loyal and equally bloody-minded armies to crush and pulverize them – for the sake of the continuity of life. In the absence of such loyal and bloody-minded armies, the leaders of the regime have no alternative but to flee the land. In this connection, the story of the “Assassins” of the Eleventh to Thirteenth Centuries is instructive.

 

A few weeks ago there went out from the website of Islamic State to all the faithful everywhere in the world this ukase from Abu Muhammad al Adnan: “If you are not able to find an IED, a bullet, then single out the disbelieving American, Frenchman or any of their allies. Smash his head with a rock, or slaughter him with a knife, or run him over with your car.” Here we find up-to-date and practical advice for carrying out the mandate that Muhammad left to all the faithful: “Fight and slay the Pagans wherever you find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (Sura 9:5.) ISIS’s hot-off-the-press instructions lack nothing to make them immediately applicable to daily life. Paradoxically, as the Islamist organizations have mutated to meet the challenge of commanding millions of souls in the age of the internet and cell-phone, unlimited possibilities for solitary response have also ramified – making use of objects lying as close to hand today as the knife was in the days of the Prophet, items for which the world owes everything to European invention and nothing to Islam.

 

Now cottage-industry jihad has come to Canada. In recent weeks, Canadian citizens have been murdered by solitary Muslim zealots in broad light of day because their uniforms identified them as Canadian military. Progressive politicians and commentators are exhausting their deposit of credibility as they argue whether such creatures as Michael Zehaf-Bibeau and Martin Rouleau were “solitary agents” or foot-soldiers in the ranks of some Islamist organization, known or yet to be uncovered. The first murdered Nathan Cirillo, a reservist-soldier standing guard at the National Cenotaph and then ran up Parliament Hill and into the Centre Block intent on murdering parliamentarians; the second used his car to murder soldier Patrice Vincent on a street-curb in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. Each left unambiguous testimony to his conviction that he was a soldier for Allah.) Neither of these individuals needed to have been a card-carrying member of anything in order to win the prize of eternal martyrdom held out by these internet scholars of Islam. Here is the paradox: by acting utterly alone, seeking the purpose of his life in annihilation of himself and others, each of these men was accomplishing, all by himself, everything for which all the Islamist organizations exist. This is not the sort of individualism that Western political philosophers like to celebrate.

 

Many commentators (including the Leader of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition in Canada’s Parliament) persist in ringing the changes on the theme that Zehaf-Bibeau’s motives are a mystery. (“Mulcair deems Ottawa shooter Michael Zehaf Bibeau a criminal, but not a terrorist,” National Post, October 29, 2014.) It is politically urgent to such people to keep maximum distance between this mad man’s deed and the Muslim community. But most people acknowledge that Zehaf-Bibeau knew exactly what he was doing, and that we do not need specialized sociological or therapeutic vocabulary to comprehend it. He simply wanted everything that we belong to die. The marvelous fact is that Zehaf-Bibeau accomplished just the opposite of what he intended. He assaulted the Center Bloc and briefly made most of the Members of Parliament his prisoners, cowering in realistic fear for their lives. But when they were let out, they were changed for ever. Only a few hours later, we saw the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Official Opposition and the Leader of the Liberal step out of their places in the House and embrace without embarrassment – something none of us ever expected to live to see!

 

An even more profound and widespread effect could be seen when Remembrance Day came around a few days later. For several decades now, the Remembrance Day ceremonies at the National Memorial in Ottawa and those held at the thousands of municipal monuments throughout the land have stood alone as occasions in our public life when Christian hymns are sung aloud by children’s choirs and by unembarrassed crowds of civilians and when prayers are addressed out loud to God — and it is all televised without interruption! This years’ Remembrance Day (as noted by the Hamilton Spectator) was marked by “record commemorative crowds, soaring poppy sales, a revived drive for a statutory holiday and media coverage stretching over several days…. Far from fading in significance as once feared, Remembrance Day is resonating with Canadians more now than it has in decades.” (Hamilton Spectator, November 7; “Remembrance Day 2014; Record-Breaking Sales Lead to Poppy shortage,” Huffingtonpost.ca, November 7, 2014.) And this year, as a bonus, there has been a stream of statements from all the Muslim organizations and from the Mosques affirming loyalty to Canada and repudiation of violence. None of this bears any resemblance to what this soldier of Allah intended.

 

Paul Merkley is a CIJR Academic Fellow

         

                                                                       

Contents           

                                                                                         

                             

POLLARD’S PAROLE PLASTERING                                                                      

Gil Hoffman

Jerusalem Post, Nov. 19, 2014

 

Today, Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard enters the 30th year of his life sentence for the crime of passing classified information to an ally. As he does so, he is aware that yet another possible door to his long-awaited freedom has just slammed shut. The first time such a door closed was November 21, 1985, when he was prevented from entering the Israeli Embassy in Washington and arrested outside. Today also marks another significant anniversary: 19 years since the day he became eligible for parole after 10 years in prison. Since then, he has decided repeatedly not even to try and seek parole, because his release would be conditional, and his lawyers had told him that he had no chance in a parole hearing where the legal deck would be overwhelmingly stacked against him.

 

Many have questioned why Pollard never even tried the parole path and focused instead on seeking clemency – asking presidents of the United States to commute his life sentence to the time he had already served. But after so many years of failure, that strategy was secretly reconsidered and replaced last year, according to documents and information revealed exclusively to The Jerusalem Post. Pollard finally applied for parole in December 2013. The person who persuaded him to take that step was the man in whose hands his fate lies: US President Barack Obama. Obama’s statements when he came to Israel in March 2013 left no doubt about what approach Pollard should take. The president ended hopes that he would announce clemency for Pollard during the visit as part of a so-called charm offensive. But he hinted that if Pollard were to apply for parole, he would be treated like any other prisoner. “I have no plans for releasing Jonathan Pollard immediately, but what I am going to be doing is make sure that he – like every other American who has been sentenced – is accorded the same kinds of review and same examination of the equities that any other individual would be provided,” Obama told Channel 2 anchorwoman Yonit Levi in an interview. Obama said his obligation as president was to uphold his country’s laws and make sure they were applied consistently, “to make sure that every individual is treated fairly and equally.”

 

Here was the opportunity that Pollard had been waiting for. He felt he had been treated unfairly and unequally for so many years, and now the president was hinting – in his view, even promising the Israeli people on record on the highly rated nightly news – that he would fix that. Pollard’s parole hearing was scheduled for April 1. But then a different opportunity came, the sort Pollard had always made a point of rejecting. Obama was ready to commute Pollard’s sentence as a gesture to Israel for releasing Israeli Arab prisoners as part of an American-brokered diplomatic process with the Palestinians. That process nearly brought Pollard home in time for the Passover Seder, but it ultimately failed. Pollard withdrew his parole application so it would not be connected to a trade for terrorists. Only when the trade talk died down did he reapply for a parole hearing, which was scheduled for July 1. He and the team working for his release then had a limited time to make efforts to ensure the parole hearing would go well. To that end, they enlisted the man who is arguably the most respected Israeli in America – possibly the only Israeli who enjoys a close relationship with Obama: then-president Shimon Peres.

 

Peres’s role in bringing about Pollard’s release was more than symbolic. He was the prime minister at the time of Pollard’s arrest. At the time, he did not alert the embassy staff about Pollard to ensure he would be let in, and he gave the US documents with Pollard’s fingerprints that incriminated him. Many Israelis saw Pollard’s continued incarceration as a lingering stain on Peres’s decades of public service that neither of the medals he recently received in Washington could remove. The two presidents were due to meet in the US capital during Peres’s final tour in office on June 25, six days before the parole hearing. Peres vowed to the people of Israel to take action for Pollard, and the Israeli agent’s pro-bono lawyers prepared him meticulously. Respected New York attorneys Eliot Lauer and Jacques Semmelman, who have represented Pollard for free for 15 years, met with Peres’s aides extensively to explain how the US parole process worked. Lauer reviewed the information with Peres himself at Washington’s Willard Hotel immediately before he met with Obama.

 

Peres’s message to Obama was to be the following: You don’t have to grant clemency. In fact, you can distance yourself from the matter completely. Just privately let the US Justice Department know that you don’t oppose paroling Pollard and letting him leave for Israel. Obama would not need to get his hands dirty, just keep the commitment he had made to Israelis 15 months earlier to treat Pollard fairly, like any other prisoner, and let his parole be assessed naturally on the merits of his case. Following the meeting, Peres’s diplomatic adviser Nadav Tamir reported back to the lawyers with good news: The message had indeed been delivered. Peres’s office leaked to the press that Obama had personally referred the matter to his attorney-general and close confidant Eric Holder – the head of the American Justice Department and the chief law-enforcement officer of the US government. “The entire nation is interested in releasing Pollard, and I am the emissary of the nation,” Peres told reporters after the meeting. “I don’t think of myself as Shimon. I am the representative of the State of Israel, and I speak in the name of its people.”…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

                                   

                                                                       

Contents        

                                                                                                                                  

PICKING UP THE PIECES OF A LOST CULTURE                                               

Eitan Arom                                                                                                                        

Jerusalem Post, Nov. 19, 2014

 

I’m traveling across the bleak Ukrainian countryside with half a dozen Israeli journalists, two history professors in animated discussion, an employee of Wikipedia and two native speakers of Ukrainian. Together, we form the press attaché for Limmud FSU, an organization that travels the former Soviet Union to stoke the heritage and Jewish life of the Jews still there. We pull off the highway into a town called Brody in Western Ukraine and stop at the main square. In the middle of the overgrown grassy plaza, facing two Soviet-looking apartment blocs and a convenience store, is a synagogue. Or more precisely, what used to be a synagogue – its roof has fallen in and the interior is choked with undergrowth.

 

We all troop out of the bus. I turn up my collar against the damp and chill. The Great Synagogue of Brody is a metaphor for Eastern European Jewry, written in stone. Cut down at the apex of its greatness, once the site of rich culture, legend and scholarship, it is now derelict. It is a faint shadow of what it was, much like the community to which it once played home. And yet, Europe is full of these ruins. Walking around the perimeter of the eerie monument, I ask myself: what am I supposed to feel – other than the cold? Thousands of Jewish cemeteries, schools, mikvaot (ritual baths) and places of worship face a similar fate across Ukraine and the rest of Eastern Europe. Languishing for many long years under the cruel and intentional neglect of the Soviet regime, they now overstretch the resources of the region’s much-diminished Jewish population to protect.

 

It’s hard to know why these derelict or otherwise reconstituted buildings are so important to the Jewish people. Certainly, history has practical value – there’s that oft-repeated idiom about knowing your past to avoid repeating it – but it doesn’t explain why Jewish historiography can put such a heavy focus on individual people, places, stories. Surely the broader picture of a people destroyed by industrialized, political hatred does the trick, right? Yet the ghost of a culture that lives in Eastern Europe holds an attraction for today’s Jews that I don’t pretend to fully understand. Among those traveling with the Limmud FSU press corps is Fania Oz-Salzberger, a professor of history at Haifa University and the daughter of Israeli novel-ist Amos Oz. Rovne is the childhood home of her grandmother, Oz’s mother, and is memorialized in Oz’s novel A Tale of Love and Darkness, soon to be a motion picture starring Natalie Portman. But the Rovne of Oz’s book – a community with more than 20,000 Jews – is gone. The house where Oz-Salzberger’s mother grew up stands (we attended the installment of a plaque at the site) but the inhabitants share no relation with her other than their goodwill. Even in the absence of the Jewish population they once housed – the same population that in-vented the Hassidic movement – the abandoned or re-purposed structures that mark our Eastern European heritage command our inexplicable attention and respect.

 

About three hours by car to the southeast of Rovne is Lviv, where Limmud FSU’s annual festival of culture and learning in Ukraine took place this month. The city of pristine Polish architecture is a draw for history-seekers both Jewish and otherwise. Krysztof Willmann is an amateur historian of Lviv, a Warsaw resident who dedicated himself to researching the place his parents fled after his father ran afoul of the Gestapo. After retiring from his career as a PhD economist, Willmann spent two years in Lviv documenting the rich history of the town. He researches people and places, participating, for example, in the annual International Bruno Schulz Festival celebrating the Jewish artist and critic slaughtered in the Holocaust. It’s a vocation that costs rather than earns him money. He describes finding and purchasing with his own funds a letter written by a famous prewar actress from Lviv.

 

What’s the point of this whole business? Why does Willmann care about an actress from a city he didn’t grow up in? Why do we Jews care about old hulks of buildings that haven’t seen Jewish worship since before the war? Something of an answer to those questions can be found in the achingly tragic and hysterically funny story told in Liev Schreiber’s Everything is Illuminated, based on Jonathan Safran Foer’s novel of the same name. The main character, named Jonathan Safran Foer after the author, is a magpie-like collector of family heirlooms, seeking items for his collection from grandfather’s shtetl in Western Ukraine. When he reaches the site of the shtetl, only one woman remains, a recluse whose sister was his grandfather’s sweetheart. She reveals to Foer that before being killed by the Nazis, her sister left her wedding ring buried under the ground, “in case someone should come searching one day.” “So they would have something to find?” asks Foer’s translator. “No, it does not exist for you,” she answers “You exist for it. You have come because it exists.

 

Stories don’t exist for us. They exist whether we see them there or not, and they exist for their own sake. Given that they are there, collecting them seems the only human thing to do. Foer, Oz-Salzberger, Willmann – these people are collectors. They collect stories, mo-ments, and objects from the past. The exercise is important for its own sake. As a journalist, this is a fact I should probably have grasped by now. After all, my world is made up of stories. I scurry around looking for plotlines, characters, settings, anecdotes, and disseminate them to as many people as possible. I do it for it’s own sake. I do it because these stories exist. Because, unequivocally and above all else, they are human.


 

 

 

Friends, On the Sabbath, tomorrow, congregations across Canada, will show their solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Israel – see the link below. On Tuesday, the terrorists struck at the core of our identity as Jews – of who we are – they deliberately committed a grotesque and monstrous attack against innocent worshippers, rabbis, praying to God in the sanctity of a synagogue, a house of worship in Har Noff Israel.

 

The terrorists want us to be afraid – their goal is to promote fear – now is the time to show strong support for Israel and go to Israel and be there just to make the statement “We will not be intimidated”. People living in Western society who value life and believe in the sanctity of life are shocked at the outrageous attacks committed by these sociopaths with no moral conscience – they are murderers.  How can someone be capable of committing such evil? 

 

In Israel, most restaurants, shops and malls have security at their entrances – in Toronto, many synagogues, schools and community centres have security at their entrances – synagogues in Israel will have to follow suit – pogroms against Jews must stop… Plan on attending a synagogue on Shabbat where we will stand together in solidarity…

[For More Information Click the Following Link—Ed.]

 

Shirley Anne Haber, The Media Action Group

 

 

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

 

 

 

 

Contents           

 

On Topic

 

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks: "To be free, you have to let go of hate." (Video): Stand With Us, Nov. 13, 2014

Domestic Radicalization and the Arab-Israeli Conflict: Max Boot, Commentary, Nov. 18, 2014  —Israel appears to be facing a do-it-yourself terrorist offensive.

The Essentiality of Anger: David M. Weinberg, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 20, 2014 —A grotesque kind of quiet has taken root among Israelis in the Promised Land; a morose passivity that expresses depression and suggests acquiescence.

In This Struggle, Israel Can Prevail: Dr. Mordechai Kedar, Arutz Sheva, Nov. 20, 2014 —During these difficult days of increasing terror, the most urgent question is: What can we do in order to cope optimally with the growing terrorist violence in Israel, knowing that behind the scenes there are several players who are expending intense efforts to bring about an explosion.

 

               

 

 

 

                      

                

                            

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Contents:         

Visit CIJR’s Bi-Weekly Webzine: Israzine.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing is available by e-mail.
Please urge colleagues, friends, and family to visit our website for more information on our ISRANET series.
To join our distribution list, or to unsubscribe, visit us at http://www.isranet.org/.

The ISRANET Daily Briefing is a service of CIJR. We hope that you find it useful and that you will support it and our pro-Israel educational work by forwarding a minimum $90.00 tax-deductible contribution [please send a cheque or VISA/MasterCard information to CIJR (see cover page for address)]. All donations include a membership-subscription to our respected quarterly ISRAFAX print magazine, which will be mailed to your home.

CIJR’s ISRANET Daily Briefing attempts to convey a wide variety of opinions on Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world for its readers’ educational and research purposes. Reprinted articles and documents express the opinions of their authors, and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research.

 

 

Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish ResearchL'institut Canadien de recherches sur le Judaïsme, www.isranet.org

Tel: (514) 486-5544 – Fax:(514) 486-8284 ; ber@isranet.org