Canadian Institute for Jewish Research
L'institut Canadien de Recherches sur le Judaisme
Strength of Israel will not lie

Month: October 2016

U.S. ELECTION 2016: WILL LASTEST EMAIL SCANDAL, & CLINTON FOUNDATION CORRUPTION, LEAD TO TRUMP VICTORY?

 

TONIGHT: CIJR & Congregation Tifereth Beth David Jerusalem Present: the U.S. Elections, 2016: Panel Discussion. Featuring: Machla Abramovitz (CIJR Academic Fellow), Prof. Frederick Krantz (Director, CIJR), Prof. Ira Robinson (Concordia U.), Prof. Harold Waller (McGill U.), Moderator: Jack Kincler (National Chairman, CIJR). Topics of discussion include U.S elections and American Jewry, the Middle East and the world, U.S. elections and Israel, U.S. elections and women: une question mal posée?

 

Admission is free. 7:30pm, Oct. 31, 2016.

 

Location: Congregation Tifereth Beth David Jerusalem, 6519 Baily Road, Montreal

 

Hillary Has Only Herself to Blame for the Mess She’s in: Michael Goodwin, New York Post, Oct. 29, 2016 — We must forgive Mark Twain for his error when he declared that “history never repeats itself but it often rhymes.” After all, he’d never met the Clintons.

Clinton’s State Department: A RICO Enterprise: Andrew C. McCarthy, National Review, Oct. 29, 2016 — Felony mishandling of classified information, including our nation’s most closely guarded intelligence secrets; the misappropriation and destruction of tens of thousands of government records — these are serious criminal offenses.

How Donald Trump is Still a Thing: Rex Murphy, National Post, Oct. 21, 2016 — Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump may have finally received the campaign miracle he needs

Donald Trump Garners Unlikely Muslim Cheerleaders: Yaroslav Trofimov, Wall Street Journal, Oct. 20, 2016 — With his statements targeting Muslims, it might seem that  Donald Trump would have few cheerleaders in the Middle East.

 

On Topic Links

 

Can Hillary Clinton Survive the Return of Carlos Danger?: Amy Chozick and Mark Landler, New York Times, Oct. 31, 2016

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in Dead Heat as Email Scandal Returns Near End of Presidential Campaign: Nick Allen and David Lawler, Telegraph, Oct. 30, 2016

What's a Conservative to Do? Vote for Pence: Daniel Pipes, Philadelphia Inquirer, Oct. 18, 2016

If You Love America and Israel, Vote Against the System: Naomi Ragen, Arutz Sheva, Oct. 31, 2016

 

 

HILLARY HAS ONLY HERSELF TO BLAME FOR THE MESS SHE’S IN

Michael Goodwin                                                                    

New York Post, Oct. 29, 2016

 

We must forgive Mark Twain for his error when he declared that “history never repeats itself but it often rhymes.” After all, he’d never met the Clintons. If Twain were alive now, he would be astonished at how the headlines over the email scandal roiling the presidential race are virtual repeats of the family’s 1990s saga in power. The headlines are also an omen. A restoration of the Clinton presidency would be a restoration of the national and moral chaos they invariably create. They can’t help themselves. They are corrupt and corrupters, the ­Typhoid Mary of politics.

 

Whether by nature or nurture, they are programmed to ruin. Friends, allies, institutions — all are stained by their touch. And always, the Clintons blame somebody else. Now it’s FBI Director James Comey’s turn to embody their all-purpose bogeyman, the vast right-wing conspiracy. Somebody, sometimes everybody, is out to get them, unfairly of course.

 

The victim card is a Clinton family heirloom, but there are major problems playing it over Comey’s sudden reopening of the email probe. Clinton created the mess with her incredibly stupid decision to use a private server as secretary of state. Virtually every major issue dogging her, including her reputation for chronic dishonesty, was started or exacerbated by that decision, including the current one.  Even as her top aides remain mystified about why she did it, the result fits the family pattern now that Huma Abedin, her most loyal “body” person, is on the hook. It was, by all accounts, the FBI’s criminal investigation into Abedin’s pervy husband, Anthony Weiner, that led to the new cache of suspect emails found on a computer the couple shared.

 

Still, Clinton is understandably panicked because the timing of Comey’s announcement could cost her the election. Her demand that he release everything immediately is also understandable, even as she knows it is impossible for him to release potential evidence before it is examined. Her attacks on him play well to her base, and her media handmaidens are amplifying the complaint that he has gone rogue. But, as usual, there is less than meets the eye here, for Clinton could solve the problem herself without Comey doing anything to help.

 

She could simply order Abedin to hold a press conference and answer any and every question about the newest batch of emails. Let reporters ask Abedin directly: What’s in those emails? Did any contain classified material? Why didn’t you turn that computer over to the FBI during its initial investigation? Did you lie to the FBI about having work-related emails on it? Also, did Weiner have access to classified material? Was the computer ever hacked? the potential upside is huge. If Abedin can answer “no” to all the key questions about classified material and her own conduct, Clinton could credibly declare Comey’s announcement much ado about nothing. She could even hold her own press conference to answer questions and conclude by saying: We have been as transparent as we can be, and we are not afraid of a new investigation because we have nothing to hide.

 

Now, back to reality. Clinton reality. Hillary won’t do any of that because the potential downside is also huge. My guess is she fears the worst, and may secretly subscribe to the idea that Comey wouldn’t have acted in such a bold and controversial way without some conviction that he had stumbled on a potential bombshell. And Clinton, a former litigator used to playing defense, probably already knows what’s in the emails. Or perhaps she has concluded that, if indeed there are thousands of them, as is being reported, at least some are bound to refuel suspicions that she and her team are guilty of mishandling national secrets.

 

Then, instead of putting the issue to bed, any substantive discussion, including an Abedin press conference, would actually fan the fire just as voters are going to the polls. Moreover, even if Abedin’s answers would help Clinton, taking her public would be effectively betting the presidency on her performance. Abedin’s always worked behind the scenes, and has little experience in front of a camera, not to mention a forest of them that would assemble for such an extraordinary event.

 

To top it off, this professional crisis is coming as Abedin’s personal world is in turmoil. Weiner is a certified creep, but he is still the father of their young child, and now faces the possibility of federal prison. Against that backdrop, what if Abedin were to stumble or crack in public? What if she has a lawyer who advises her to say nothing because she might also be a federal target and risks incriminating herself by speaking publicly?…                                                                                               

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

 

Contents                                                                                                        

                                     

CLINTON’S STATE DEPARTMENT: A RICO ENTERPRISE                                                                     

Andrew C. McCarthy                                                                                            

National Review, Oct. 29, 2016

 

Felony mishandling of classified information, including our nation’s most closely guarded intelligence secrets; the misappropriation and destruction of tens of thousands of government records — these are serious criminal offenses. To this point, the Justice Department and FBI have found creative ways not to charge Hillary Clinton for them. Whether this will remain the case has yet to be seen. As we go to press, the stunning news has broken that the FBI’s investigation is being reopened. It appears, based on early reports, that in the course of examining communications devices in a separate “sexting” investigation of disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner, the bureau stumbled on relevant e-mails — no doubt connected to Huma Abedin, Mr. Weiner’s wife and, more significantly, Mrs. Clinton’s closest confidant. According to the New York Times, the FBI has seized at least one electronic device belonging to Ms. Abedin as well. New e-mails, never before reviewed by the FBI, have been recovered…

 

One thing, however, is already clear. Whatever the relevance of the new e-mails to the probe of Clinton’s classified-information transgressions and attempt to destroy thousands of emails, these offenses may pale in comparison with Hillary Clinton’s most audacious violations of law: Crimes that should still be under investigation; crimes that will, in fitting Watergate parlance, be a cancer on the presidency if she manages to win on November 8.  Mrs. Clinton appears to have converted the office of secretary of state into a racketeering enterprise. This would be a violation of the RICO law — the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act of 1971 (codified in the U.S. penal code at sections 1961 et seq.).

 

Hillary and her husband, former president Bill Clinton, operated the Clinton Foundation. Ostensibly a charity, the foundation was a de facto fraud scheme to monetize Hillary’s power as secretary of state (among other aspects of the Clintons’ political influence). The scheme involved (a) the exchange of political favors, access, and influence for millions of dollars in donations; (b) the circumvention of campaign-finance laws that prohibit political donations by foreign sources; (c) a vehicle for Mrs. Clinton to shield her State Department e-mail communications from public and congressional scrutiny while she and her husband exploited the fundraising potential of her position; and (d) a means for Clinton insiders to receive private-sector compensation and explore lucrative employment opportunities while drawing taxpayer-funded government salaries.

 

While the foundation did perform some charitable work, this camouflaged the fact that contributions were substantially diverted to pay lavish salaries and underwrite luxury travel for Clinton insiders. Contributions skyrocketed to $126 million in 2009, the year Mrs. Clinton arrived at Foggy Bottom. Breathtaking sums were “donated” by high-rollers and foreign governments that had crucial business before the State Department. Along with those staggering donations came a spike in speaking opportunities and fees for Bill Clinton. Of course, disproportionate payments and gifts to a spouse are common ways of bribing public officials — which is why, for example, high-ranking government officeholders must reveal their spouses’ income and other asset information on their financial-disclosure forms.

 

While there are other egregious transactions, the most notorious corruption episode of Secretary Clinton’s tenure involves the State Department’s approval of a deal that surrendered fully one-fifth of the United States’ uranium-mining capacity to Vladimir Putin’s anti-American thugocracy in Russia.

 

The story, significant background of which predates Mrs. Clinton’s tenure at the State Department, has been recounted in ground-breaking reporting by the Hoover Institution’s Peter Schweizer (in his remarkable book Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich) and the New York Times. In a nutshell, in 2005, under the guise of addressing the incidence of HIV/AIDS in Kazakhstan (where the disease is nearly nonexistent), Bill Clinton helped his Canadian billionaire pal Frank Giustra to convince the ruling despot, Nursultan Nazarbayev (an infamous torturer and human-rights violator), to grant coveted uranium-mining rights to Giustra’s company, Ur-Asia Energy (notwithstanding that it had no background in the highly competitive uranium business). Uranium is a key component of nuclear power, from which the United States derives 20 percent of its total electrical power.

 

In the months that followed, Giustra gave an astonishing $31.3 million to the Clinton Foundation and pledged $100 million more. With the Kazakh rights secured, Ur-Asia was able to expand its holdings and attract new investors, like Ian Telfer, who also donated $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation. Ur-Asia merged with Uranium One, a South African company, in a $3.5 billion deal — with Telfer becoming Uranium One’s chairman. The new company proceeded to buy up major uranium assets in the United States. Meanwhile, as tends to happen in dictatorships, Nazarbayev (the Kazakh dictator) turned on the head of his state-controlled uranium agency (Kazatomprom), who was arrested for selling valuable mining rights to foreign entities like Ur-Asia/Uranium One. This was likely done at the urging of Putin, the neighborhood bully whose state-controlled atomic-energy company (Rosatom) was hoping to grab the Kazakh mines — whether by taking them outright or by taking over Uranium One.

 

The arrest, which happened a few months after Obama took office, sent Uranium One stock into free fall, as investors fretted that the Kazakh mining rights would be lost. Uranium One turned to Secretary Clinton’s State Department for help. As State Department cables disclosed by WikiLeaks show, Uranium One officials wanted more than a U.S. statement to the media; they pressed for written confirmation that their mining licenses were valid. Secretary Clinton’s State Department leapt into action: An energy officer from the U.S. embassy immediately held meetings with the Kazakh regime. A few days later, it was announced that Russia’s Rosatom had purchased 17 percent of Uranium One. Problem solved.

 

Except it became a bigger problem when the Russian company sought to acquire a controlling interest in Uranium One. That would mean a takeover not only of the Kazakh mines but of the U.S. uranium assets as well. Such a foreign grab requires approval by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, a powerful government tribunal that the secretary of state sits on and heavily influences. Though she had historically postured as a hawk against foreign acquisitions of American assets with critical national-security implications, Secretary Clinton approved the Russian takeover of Uranium One. During and right after the big-bucks Russian acquisition, Telfer contributed $1.35 million to the Clinton Foundation. Other people with ties to Uranium One appear to have ponied up as much as $5.6 million in donations.

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

                                               

 

Contents                                                                                                                                              

                                                    

HOW DONALD TRUMP IS STILL A THING                                                                   

Rex Murphy                                                                                                                   

National Post, Oct. 21, 2016

 

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump may have finally received the campaign miracle he needs: Madonna recently promised that, “If you vote for Hillary Clinton, I will give you a b—j–.” If a spur were needed to drive the millions still in the “undecided” camp to flee in dread to Trump, this is it. Should it come down to a forced choice between voting for a rude scatterbrain, or being targeted for a home service visit from the world’s only Kabbalist sex toy, what’s to choose?

 

I’d prefer to use a less graphic example, but it does show that Trump, despite his own best efforts, is still in the running. After all, the washed-up pop star wouldn’t be offering her services if Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was a shoo-in. This prompts the question: how does the most disorganized, febrile, roller-coaster campaign in modern history still have wheels? If Trump is really a foolish, misogynistic, egotistic groper, why is the election still a contest? Well, loathe him as you may, he still strikes a chord with a great swath of the American electorate.

 

If Trump had a brain and could properly organize his thoughts, he would have already left Clinton in the dust. But even with the disorganized substitute for a brain that he does have, he is exploding so many of the fixed patterns of modern American politics, that — in spite of all his outrageous performances — people are still with him. His campaign may be a battered and beat-up embarrassment, but, for many people, at least it’s heading in a different direction from the weary, cynical road the political class has always travelled upon. Trump has wrecked the neat and subtle pact between the Republican and Democratic establishments. He broke the entire Republican field on the troublelous matter of immigration. He has blistered the mummified consensus on so many issues, and opened the windows on many others deemed too “uncomfortable” for public discussion, that, despite his recklessness, he finds support from multitudes of people who are fed up with the political class.

 

He’s broken free from the self-imposed shackles of political correctness, which has smothered so many conversations on important issues. And he has violated with almost gleeful savagery the previously sacred zone of not asking questions about the Clintons — from Bill’s transgressions, to Hillary’s ruthless attacks on her husband’s mistresses, to her “extremely careless” handling of national security matters, from sending confidential emails using a private server to the many still-unanswered questions about Benghazi. Then there’s the immense accumulation of wealth — more than $2 billion — by the Clinton Foundation, which was acquired from some of the most questionable regimes in the world, by the most questionable of methods.

 

Meanwhile, the left-wing media has tried its darnedest to ignore Clinton’s many sins, to the point of nullifying its real responsibilities. As Glen Reynolds of Instapundit has said, many of the high priests of the American media are “Democratic operatives with bylines.” Most damningly, Trump thrust into public view the tawdry tale of how the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. State Department and perhaps even the White House gave immunity to all Clinton’s aides, and made every effort to obstruct Congressional inquiries into the email scandal. In other words, he has been exposing how the power of the Clinton machine has infected the heart of the American system of government and how justice bends before power.

 

So how is it is the Trump campaign still has wheels? How can such a fractured personality, a blundering reality-show celebrity, wander about the American political landscape with even a slight chance of winning? It isn’t because of the candidate. It is despite the candidate. Trump, as such, inspires no one. But by instinct or just random chance, he highlights much of what is wrong with American politics. He says what has long been waiting to be spoken, calling out the political process itself, the players and the media.

 

Trump is rough, rude and unready to be president, by any normal or even strained standard. That he is still in contention is a barometer of how greatly American politics needs to be taken out of the hands of the people who have owned it for a generation. That’s the only reason his campaign matters. With savage irony, it’s likely even he doesn’t know that his own campaign is the strongest proof of how broken that system is.

 

Contents           

                      

DONALD TRUMP GARNERS UNLIKELY MUSLIM CHEERLEADERS                                                                   

Yaroslav Trofimov                                                                                                          

Wall Street Journal, Oct. 20, 2016

 

With his statements targeting Muslims, it might seem that Donald Trump would have few cheerleaders in the Middle East. And yet, as the U.S. presidential election approaches, an unusual collection of America’s Muslim friends and foes is rooting for the Republican candidate. Broadly, they can be grouped in two camps. The first are those long opposed to American presence in the region and encouraged by Mr. Trump’s isolationist thinking. They figure discrimination against Muslims in America is an acceptable price for ending America’s decadeslong involvement in the Middle East. A Trump victory, they hope, would greatly diminish America’s global standing.

 

Then there are some traditional U.S. allies in the region who have grown alienated under President Barack Obama and who fear Hillary Clinton would renew U.S. efforts to promote democracy in the region. In particular, these politicians in countries such as Egypt and Turkey find solace in Mr. Trump’s reluctance to criticize human-rights violations abroad. “Those regimes have a lot of concerns about a relaunch of the democratic project. For them, supporting Trump is a pragmatic choice,” said Jordanian commentator Amer al-Sabaileh, head of the independent MEMPSI think tank in Amman. “Their major priority is not to lose power, and they don’t care about how he views Muslims.”

 

Iran’s stance in the U.S. presidential race is particularly interesting. On the surface, Mr. Trump appears a hawk on Iran. He has criticized the nuclear deal struck by Mr. Obama, a plank of the Trump campaign. Yet, unlike Mrs. Clinton, he also appeared to embrace the core Iranian narrative of the current turmoil in the Middle East. He portrayed Tehran, the Syrian regime of President  Bashar al-Assad and Russia as forces combating terrorism. “Assad is killing ISIS, Russia is killing ISIS and Iran is killing ISIS,” Mr. Trump said at the second presidential debate. While the Obama administration points out that Iran, Russia and the Syrian regime focus their firepower on moderate rebels who oppose Islamic State, Mr. Trump, at the third debate on Wednesday, asserted that these rebels may be worse than Mr. Assad.

 

He also questioned American defense commitments to Iran’s main regional rival, Saudi Arabia, and alleged that Saudi authorities, like Islamic State, “push gays off buildings.” While gay sex is illegal in Saudi Arabia and many other Muslim nations, no one in the kingdom has been executed for it in recent times. “There are noises of joy in Iran when Trump turns around and says that Iran is on the right side in Syria,” said Alex Vatanka, Iran expert at the Middle East Institute in Washington. Yet, he added, the real reason Iranian leaders are rooting for him goes deeper: They believe they could get away with a lot more under a President Trump. “The hard-liners in Tehran view the Trump presidency as one where any kind of coalition against Iran in the way Iranians experienced it in the past 10 years would be so much harder for Washington to achieve,” Mr. Vatanka said. “The world is not going to listen to him and that becomes, in itself, an opportunity for Iran on the international stage.”

 

Even Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Lebanon’s Iran-backed Shiite Hezbollah militia, approvingly quoted Mr. Trump in a recent speech, citing the Republican candidate to support his longtime allegation that the Obama administration and Mrs. Clinton had created the Sunni extremist Islamic State. In Turkey, President  Recep Tayyip Erdogan initially reacted with anger when Mr. Trump proposed to bar Muslims from entering the U.S.—a policy stance since modified as “extreme vetting.” In June, the Turkish leader even called for renaming the Trump Towers in Istanbul. Mr. Erdogan’s tone, however, changed dramatically after the failed July coup against him. Unlike other Western leaders and the Obama administration, Mr. Trump refused to criticize the wave of detentions and dismissals in Turkey that followed the failed coup and expressed his admiration for the Turkish leader…                                                                                                               

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

 

Contents                       

           

On Topic Links

 

Can Hillary Clinton Survive the Return of Carlos Danger?: Amy Chozick and Mark Landler, New York Times, Oct. 31, 2016—In the summer of 2013, Hillary Clinton had just left the State Department and returned to New York. She planned a quiet year, basking in sky-high approval ratings and enjoying a respite from the media spotlight as she laid the groundwork for a second presidential run. Then Carlos Danger happened.

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in Dead Heat as Email Scandal Returns Near End of Presidential Campaign: Nick Allen and David Lawler, Telegraph, Oct. 30, 2016 —The U.S. presidential race has narrowed to a statistical dead heat in the wake of Hillary Clinton’s latest email scandal, a new poll showed Sunday. Donald Trump surged to within one percentage point of Clinton in the ABC News/Washington Post survey, having been 12 points behind in the same poll a week ago.

What's a Conservative to Do? Vote for Pence: Daniel Pipes, Philadelphia Inquirer, Oct. 18, 2016 —The disgraceful presidential candidates coughed up by America's two great political parties, each one repulsive in his or her distinctive way, leaves many conservatives in a dilemma. We cannot vote for either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. Nor, try as we might, do we warm to Gary Johnson's Libertarian Party.

If You Love America and Israel, Vote Against the System: Naomi Ragen, Arutz Sheva, Oct. 31, 2016—I can certainly see why women, including Jewish women, would prefer a seemingly well-spoken, mature senior stateswoman, to a brash, loud-mouthed political neophyte who has made so many off-handed offensive locker-room comments about women. This would be your instinct. How lovely, how easy, it would be then, to vote in a woman running against a man like that. And how disastrously wrong.

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHRISTIAN GENOCIDE IN THE MIDDLE EAST: WHY IS THE WORLD SILENT?

 

CANADIAN INSTITUTE

FOR JEWISH RESEARCH

 

AND

 

BETH RADOM CONGREGATION

 

PRESENT IN TORONTO

 

ACADEMIC CONFERENCE

MODERATED BY PROF. FREDERICK KRANTZ

 

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2016

1:00 PM TO 4:00 PM

 

FREE ADMISSION

LIGHT REFRESHMENTS

 

Address: Beth Radom,18 Reiner Road, North York, ON, M3H 2K9

 

With the support of:

 

Featuring:

 

Prof. Paul Merkley

Professor of History, Emeritus, Carleton University

Born 1934 in Toronto and educated in Toronto schools, concluding with Ph. D. in History from University of Toronto, 1965. 

Retired, as of July, 1999, from the full-time teaching faculty of Carleton University, with the rank of Professor of History. 

Author of six published books on aspects of Christian theology, politics and history. 

Most recent publication has been on the theme of Christian attitudes towards Jews, towards Israel and towards Zionism. 

Much of Paul’s recent publication has been of a more polemical or controversial character than his published books and has appeared in Christian denominational periodicals and journals, in journals of opinion, an on various websites and weblogs. 

In church circles, he is recognized as an advocate of support for Israel and as a critic of the anti-Israel bias which has become increasingly prominent in institutional Christianity.

 

Donna Holbrook

National Executive Director, ICEJ Canada

A former teacher, entrepreneur, and stay at home Mom, Donna discovered Israel for her first of now 37 tours to Israel in 1996 with ICEJ. Donna brought new life into the Canadian branch when it was closed of its own accord in spring 2001. As a full time and overtime volunteer in her Executive role, Donna has a heart to build bridges of friendship between the Jewish & Christian community, to help fight the evils of Antisemitism, to educate on God’s eternal promises to Israel for the redemption of all people & to get as many people to Israel as possible, especially young adults where she has seen lives transformed.

Awarded the Meir Medical Center Woman of Valour award in 2006, and the State of Israel Bonds Kesher Award in 20012, she has served on many boards including CIC (now CIJA), Canadian Society of Yad Vashem, Israel & Our Jewish World, currently an advisor on StandWithUs Canada, and board member of HonestReporting Canada. Profiled in Lifestyles New Years 2011, she is quoted in Jewish and Christian press, and currently seen on Vision and Daystar Canada in Inside Israel with ICEJ Canada TV weekly program.

 

Christine Williams

Award-winning Journalist, author and Public Affairs & Media Consultant, ICEJ Canada

Christine Williams is a journalist, author and Public Affairs and Media Consultant for the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem-Canada. She directs and co-produces Inside Israel with ICEJ Canada on Vision TV & Daystar Media weekly. She is a nine-time Int’l Award-winning Journalist and Television Producer. Christine was also a segment host and producer for Canada’s premier Christian Broadcast 100 Huntley Street, in a joint venture between Christian Post in Washington and New York, The World Evangelical Alliance and Crossroads Christian Communications; aired on the former CTS TV and Global TV Network.

 

Christine holds two federal government appointments, and has served on the anti-semitism task force for Simon Wiesenthal in Toronto and is on the Board of Advisors for Muslims Facing Tomorrow. Christine is also a political columnist and has served on the Board of Governors for The Gatestone Institute; and as a Senior Advisor to The Hudson Institute in New York. Her writings have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage Magazine, Jihad Watch, USA Today, Metro News, Breaking Israel News and the Middle East Quarterly. Christine has also authored the forthcoming book: The Challenge of Islamic Reform, to be released in Spring by Encounter Books in New York City. It was commissioned by Dr. Daniel Pipes and the Middle East Forum Education Fund.

 

Lieutenant Colonel Sargis Sangari

Chief Executive Officer, Near East Center for Strategic Engagement LLC

LTC Sangari served twenty years and six months in the United Sates Army Infantry and Special Operations Forces.  In the course of six years of continuous combat deployment he conducted 144 combat patrols, 22 Special Forces missions, and two key direct action operations while surviving seven improvised explosive attacks and one enemy checkpoint engagement with no loss of life. He was awarded the Combat Action Badge for his service. He conducted 670 key leader and tribal leader engagements in support of multiple counter-insurgency operations to counter and enemy influence and terrorist activities in the region while writing three major policy papers for the Special Operations Forces and the U.S. Marine Corps on federalism, governance, and civil military operations that were used as guides for conducting civil engagements in Iraq. These policies helped to legitimize three newly elected city councils and the election of two mayors in Al-Anbar province, developments that played an important role in countering enemy influence in the province and which indirectly allowed for a new approach in supporting the Sons of Iraq efforts in Iraq.  He also served in a diplomatic post as the Director of Host Nation Affairs in Kuwait.

 

Upon his retirement from the United States Army, LTC Sangari established the Near East Center for Strategic Engagement on 11 SEP 2014.   As of today, NEC-SE articles and related materials have been read and referenced in over 133 countries and in over 2,550,000 news media outlets, academic journals, and by multiple strategic think tanks. Since 2014 NEC-SE has been the military advisory group for the Assyrian Army and its operations in Iraq and Syria and advises the Public Security Intelligence Agency (PSIA) of Japan on the issues and topics related to the Middle East political policies affecting Japanese security requirements concerning terrorist operations and networks.  In March of 2015 LTC Sangari also founded the United Assyrian Appeal.org 501.c3 which honors, empowers, and supports Assyrian military families with family members who are fighting against the forces of terror in the Middle East.

 

LTC Sangari's most recent trip to Iraq and Jordan on 7 October saw him working to promote unity of effort and commonality of purpose between the churches, political parties, and Christian military forces in Iraq. Pursuant to his activities in this regard, he assisted in the steps required which lead to the drafting of a historical, first-of-its kind document, signed by representatives of these groups and blessed by church leaders, that affirmed the binding commitment of the signatories to work as partners to seize and secure their historical homeland of Assyria Nineveh Plain.

 

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Posted in Uncategorised

ALL THE NEWS?: NYT & OTHER MEDIA ABANDON INTEGRITY WITH BIASED “JOURNALISM” & ISRAEL OBSESSION

The Press Buries Hillary Clinton’s Sins: Kimberley A. Strassel, Wall Street Journal, Oct. 16, 2016 — If average voters turned on the TV for five minutes this week, chances are they know that Donald Trump made lewd remarks a decade ago and now stands accused of groping women.

The New York Times Abandoned its Integrity Just to Bash Donald Trump: Michael Goodwin, New York Post, Oct. 11, 2016 — There is apparently nothing wrong with America that can’t be blamed on Donald Trump.

The New York Times’ Obsession With Settlements Means It Misses Other News: Ira Stoll, Algemeiner, Oct. 6, 2016  — One of the ways the New York Times shows its bias against Israel is with decisions on the placement of stories.

Is Obama Preparing a Parting Shot at Israel?: Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post, Oct. 27, 2016— Last week, the U.N.’s premier cultural agency, UNESCO, approved a resolution viciously condemning Israel (referred to as “the Occupying Power”) for various alleged trespasses and violations of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

 

On Topic Links

 

Why Readers See The Times as Liberal: Liz Spayd, New York Times, July 23, 2016

The Ongoing NYT Propaganda Campaign: Prof. Phyllis Chesler, Arutz Sheva, Sept. 22, 2016

The Real Reason Reporters Don’t Give to Pols: It Would Give Away Their Agenda: Jonah Goldberg, New York Post, October 21, 2016

Checkmating Obama: Caroline Glick, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 27, 2016

 

 

 

THE PRESS BURIES HILLARY CLINTON’S SINS

Kimberley A. Strassel                                 

Wall Street Journal, Oct. 16, 2016   

 

If average voters turned on the TV for five minutes this week, chances are they know that Donald Trump made lewd remarks a decade ago and now stands accused of groping women. But even if average voters had the TV on 24/7, they still probably haven’t heard the news about Hillary Clinton: That the nation now has proof of pretty much everything she has been accused of.

 

It comes from hacked emails dumped by WikiLeaks, documents released under the Freedom of Information Act, and accounts from FBI insiders. The media has almost uniformly ignored the flurry of bombshells, preferring to devote its front pages to the Trump story. So let’s review what amounts to a devastating case against a Clinton presidency.

 

Start with a June 2015 email to Clinton staffers from Erika Rottenberg, the former general counsel of LinkedIn. Ms. Rottenberg wrote that none of the attorneys in her circle of friends “can understand how it was viewed as ok/secure/appropriate to use a private server for secure documents AND why further Hillary took it upon herself to review them and delete documents.” She added: “It smacks of acting above the law and it smacks of the type of thing I’ve either gotten discovery sanctions for, fired people for, etc.”…

 

A few months later, in a September 2015 email, a Clinton confidante fretted that Mrs. Clinton was too bullheaded to acknowledge she’d done wrong. “Everyone wants her to apologize,” wrote Neera Tanden, president of the liberal Center for American Progress. “And she should. Apologies are like her Achilles’ heel.” Clinton staffers debated how to evade a congressional subpoena of Mrs. Clinton’s emails—three weeks before a technician deleted them. The campaign later employed a focus group to see if it could fool Americans into thinking the email scandal was part of the Benghazi investigation (they are separate) and lay it all off as a Republican plot. A senior FBI official involved with the Clinton investigation told Fox News this week that the “vast majority” of career agents and prosecutors working the case “felt she should be prosecuted” and that giving her a pass was “a top-down decision.”

 

The Obama administration—the federal government, supported by tax dollars—was working as an extension of the Clinton campaign. The State Department coordinated with her staff in responding to the email scandal, and the Justice Department kept her team informed about developments in the court case. Worse, Mrs. Clinton’s State Department, as documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act show, took special care of donors to the Clinton Foundation. In a series of 2010 emails, a senior aide to Mrs. Clinton asked a foundation official to let her know which groups offering assistance with the Haitian earthquake relief were “FOB” (Friends of Bill) or “WJC VIPs” (William Jefferson Clinton VIPs). Those who made the cut appear to have been teed up for contracts. Those who weren’t? Routed to a standard government website.

 

The leaks show that the foundation was indeed the nexus of influence and money. The head of the Clinton Health Access Initiative, Ira Magaziner, suggested in a 2011 email that Bill Clinton call Sheikh Mohammed of Saudi Arabia to thank him for offering the use of a plane. In response, a top Clinton Foundation official wrote: “Unless Sheikh Mo has sent us a $6 million check, this sounds crazy to do.”

 

The entire progressive apparatus—the Clinton campaign and boosters at the Center for American Progress—appears to view voters as stupid and tiresome, segregated into groups that must either be cajoled into support or demeaned into silence. We read that Republicans are attracted to Catholicism’s “severely backwards gender relations” and only join the faith to “sound sophisticated”; that Democratic leaders such as Bill Richardson are “needy Latinos”; that Bernie Sanders supporters are “self-righteous”; that the only people who watch Miss America “are from the confederacy”; and that New York Mayor Bill de Blasio is “a terrorist.”

 

The leaks also show that the press is in Mrs. Clinton’s pocket. Donna Brazile, a former Clinton staffer and a TV pundit, sent the exact wording of a coming CNN town hall question to the campaign in advance of the event. Other media allowed the Clinton camp to veto which quotes they used from interviews, worked to maximize her press events and offered campaign advice.

Mrs. Clinton has been exposed to have no core, to be someone who constantly changes her position to maximize political gain. Leaked speeches prove that she has two positions (public and private) on banks; two positions on the wealthy; two positions on borders; two positions on energy. Her team had endless discussions about what positions she should adopt to appease “the Red Army”—i.e. “the base of the Democratic Party.” Voters might not know any of this, because while both presidential candidates have plenty to answer for, the press has focused solely on taking out Mr. Trump. And the press is doing a diligent job of it.        

 

 

Contents                                                                                                           

                                                                         

THE NEW YORK TIMES ABANDONED ITS                                                            

INTEGRITY JUST TO BASH DONALD TRUMP                                                                        

Michael Goodwin                                                                                                  

New York Post, Oct. 11, 2016

 

There is apparently nothing wrong with America that can’t be blamed on Donald Trump. He is single-handedly destroying the Republican Party, trashing presidential debates and spoiling the reputation of locker-room talk. And — breaking news alert! — Trump is even changing journalism. His habit of saying things that nobody ever said before is forcing reporters to unleash their partisan views instead of just giving the facts.

 

Some of these charges may be true, but the one about Trump changing journalism is demonstrably false. All the more so because it comes from the editor of the New York Times, who happens to be the actual guilty party. Dean Baquet, the Gray Lady’s boss for two years, recently claimed that Trump’s campaign had forced the paper into a new way of covering politics. “I think that he’s challenged our language,” Baquet told an interviewer. “He will have changed journalism, he really will have.”

 

The claim is presented as one of those chin-stroking insights about a new paradigm that liberals spot around every corner. In fact, it is just another example of the Times getting it all wrong. Trump didn’t change the Times — Baquet did. He’s the one who authorized reporters to abandon the paper’s standards when covering Trump and express their personal political opinions. Or, as Baquet said in the interview with Nieman Lab’s Ken Doctor, the struggle for fairness is over. “I think that Trump has ended that struggle,” Baquet boasted. “I think we now say stuff. We fact-check him. We write it more powerfully that it’s false.”

 

Fact-checking, of course, is often in the eye of the beholder, and quickly morphs into opinion when there is no restraint or neutral standard. The result is the paper’s relentless, daily assault on Trump, to the advantage of Hillary Clinton. Opinions, all uniformly anti-Trump, now ooze from the paper’s every pore, with headlines on front-page “news” articles indistinguishable from daily denunciations on the editorial and op-ed pages. This is not a mere continuation of the old liberal bias that infected the Times, the Washington Post and the broadcast networks for years. This is a malignant strain of conformity that strips away any pretense of fairness in favor of strident partisanship.

 

The signal that the Times abandoned its traditional church-state separation of news and opinion came in an article by the paper’s media reporter two months ago. In his August piece, Jim Rutenberg declared that most reporters saw Trump “as an abnormal and potentially dangerous candidate,” and concluded they had a duty to be “true to the facts, in a way that will stand up to history’s judgment.” Baquet, in the interview, cited the Rutenberg piece, saying it “nailed” his thinking. He also said he started “down this track” years ago, during the dispute over weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, and made it clear he believed then-President George W. Bush and then-Secretary of State Colin Powell lied to take America to war. The Trump treatment, he said, was a logical extension: “I think he gave us courage, if you will. I think he made us — forced us, because he does it so often, to get comfortable with saying something is false.” Baquet offered another example that got him to this point. He accused Republicans of lying in their “swift-boat” charges against Democratic nominee John Kerry in the 2004 campaign.

 

It is not incidental that his examples all involve allegedly dishonest Republicans, and none involves dishonest Democrats. Nothing better explains why the Times fails to give Clinton the same scrutiny it gives Trump. More than 60 percent of voters regard her as fundamentally dishonest, but Baquet sees only Republicans as liars. Simply put, his political bias precludes fair journalism. And once standards are gone, they are gone forever, meaning anyone wanting to work at the Times will face a political litmus test. Baquet’s defense of slanted coverage is reflected in the trove of ­emails WikiLeaks released from Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta.

 

Times reporters and columnists repeatedly show up in partisan ways. Washington correspondent John Harwood sends Podesta his private approval of Hillary Clinton appearances, as if he’s on the team. Columnist Nicholas Kristof, in advance of an interview with Bill Clinton, ­emails his questions, which Podesta’s team passes around to staffers to shape Clinton’s answers.

 

A Washington reporter gives Hillary Clinton veto power over quotations he can use from an interview. Another reporter is praised as someone who has “never disappointed” in delivering stories the campaign wants “teed up” for public consumption. As the editor, Baquet should be outraged that his staff secretly compromised the paper’s integrity. But as the editor who eliminated the Times’ standards, he’s getting the biased paper he wanted.                                                        

 

Contents                                                                                                                                              

                                                    

THE NEW YORK TIMES’ OBSESSION WITH                                                                   

SETTLEMENTS MEANS IT MISSES OTHER NEWS                                                                       

Ira Stoll                                                                                                                  

Algemeiner, Oct. 6, 2016

 

One of the ways the New York Times shows its bias against Israel is with decisions on the placement of stories. The latest example comes with the newspaper’s decision to print a news article, above the fold on page one, about a flap between the Obama administration and the Israeli government over a West Bank settlement.

 

I’d argue that this doesn’t really amount to “news” much at all. American governments have been critical of West Bank settlements for decades. Israeli governments, meanwhile, have for decades supported allowing Israeli Jews to live in the West Bank. Jews have a long historical and religious connection there. Jewish settlements provide a security buffer in the Jordan valley. They provide affordable housing and a security buffer around the Israeli capital at Jerusalem. And the existing Jewish population in the settlements needs room to grow.

 

Yet the Times editors place the “United States Criticizes Israel Over West Bank Settlement Plan” headline at the top of page one, judging it to be bigger news than a bunch of other stories in the day’s paper that did not make it onto the front page at all — including the approach of Hurricane Matthew, the end of cash tolls at New York City bridges and tunnels, the selection of a new secretary-general of the United Nations and the announcement of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

 

The Times is so obsessed with the settlement issue that it follows up the front-page story with another long one online — it will probably make the print newspaper sometime in the next few days — headlined, “West Bank Settlers Prepare for Clash, With Israeli Government.” That article is about the prospect that the Israeli government will force the evacuation of 40 families from Amona. Unfortunately for Times readers who are counting on the newspaper to deliver an accurate portrayal of the world, the newspaper’s focus on the settlement issue comes at the expense of excellence when it comes to other issues that are probably more significant.

 

For example, the White House made a stunning insult to Israel and to world Jewry by issuing a “corrected” press release deleting the word “Israel” from its description of the location of the Mount Herzl cemetery in Jerusalem, the site of President Obama’s remarks at the funeral of Shimon Peres. The Times handled this not with a full-length news article, much less a front-page, above-the-fold one, but instead with a single paragraph all the way at the end of an article about the funeral. The fact that the Obama White House can’t even acknowledge that Shimon Peres was buried in Israel says so much. As Elliott Abrams wrote on his blog at the Council on Foreign Relations web site, the site “lies in Western Jerusalem, near Yad Vashem and Jerusalem Forest…only those who seek to destroy Israel think this place will ever be anything but a part of the Jewish State.”

 

As for the Washington Free Beacon’s scoop that there are three written agreements between the US and Iran’s intelligence ministry that are being kept secret from the public in a secure reading room on Capitol Hill — well, nothing about that in the Times, either. But in terms of the prospects for peace in the Middle East and for the security of Israel and America, that’s a much bigger and more important deal than any nonsense the Times is peddling about West Bank settlements.

 

Contents           

                                                   

IS OBAMA PREPARING A PARTING SHOT AT ISRAEL?                                                                        

Charles Krauthammer                                                                               

Washington Post, Oct. 27, 2016

 

Last week, the U.N.’s premier cultural agency, UNESCO, approved a resolution viciously condemning Israel (referred to as “the Occupying Power”) for various alleged trespasses and violations of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Except that the resolution never uses that term for Judaism’s holiest shrine. It refers to and treats it as an exclusively Muslim site, a deliberate attempt to eradicate its connection — let alone its centrality — to the Jewish people and Jewish history.

 

This Orwellian absurdity, part of a larger effort to deny the Jewish connection to their ancestral homeland, is an insult not just to Judaism but to Christianity. It makes a mockery of the Gospels, which chronicle the story of a Galilean Jew whose life and ministry unfolded throughout the Holy Land, most especially in Jerusalem and the Temple. If this is nothing but a Muslim site, what happens to the very foundation of Christianity, which occurred 600 years before Islam even came into being?

 

This UNESCO resolution is merely the surreal extreme of the worldwide campaign to delegitimize Israel. It features the BDS movement (Boycott, Divest and Sanction), now growing on Western university campuses and in some mainline Protestant churches. And it extends even into some precincts of the Democratic Party.

 

Bernie Sanders tried to introduce into the Democratic Party platform a plank more unfavorable to Israel. He failed, but when a couple of Hillary Clinton campaign consultants questioned (in emails revealed by WikiLeaks) why she should be mentioning Israel in her speeches, campaign manager Robby Mook concurred, “We shouldn’t have Israel at public events. Especially dem activists.” For whom the very mention of Israel is toxic.

 

And what to make of the White House’s correction to a news release about last month’s funeral of Shimon Peres? The original release identified the location as “Mount Herzl, Jerusalem, Israel.” The correction crossed out the country identifier — “Israel.” Well, where else is Jerusalem? Sri Lanka? Moreover, Mount Herzl isn’t even in disputed East Jerusalem. It’s in West Jerusalem, within the boundaries of pre-1967 Israel. If that’s not Israel, what is?

 

But such cowardly gestures are mere pinpricks compared to the damage Israel faces in the final days of the Obama presidency. As John Hannah of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies recently wrote (in Foreign Policy), there have been indications for months that President Obama might go to the U.N. and unveil his own final status parameters of a two-state solution. These would then be enshrined in a new Security Council resolution that could officially recognize a Palestinian state on the territory Israel came into possession of during the 1967 Six-Day War. There is a reason such a move has been resisted by eight previous U.S. administrations: It overthrows the central premise of Middle East peacemaking — land for peace. Under which the Palestinians get their state after negotiations in which the parties agree on recognized boundaries, exchange mutual recognition and declare a permanent end to the conflict.

 

Land for peace would be replaced by land for nothing. Endorsing in advance a Palestinian state and what would essentially be a full Israeli withdrawal removes the Palestinian incentive to negotiate and strips Israel of territorial bargaining chips of the kind it used, for example, to achieve peace with Egypt. The result would be not just perpetual war but incalculable damage to Israel. And irreversible, too, because the resolution would be protected from alteration by the Russian and/or Chinese veto.

 

As for the damage, consider but one example: the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem, destroyed and ethnically cleansed of Jews by its Arab conquerors in the war of 1948-1949. It was rebuilt by Israel after 1967. It would now be open to the absurd judicial charge that the Jewish state’s possession of the Jewish Quarter constitutes a criminal occupation of another country. Israel would be hauled endlessly into courts (both national and international) to face sanctions, boycotts (now under color of law) and arrest of its leaders. All this for violating a U.N. mandate to which no Israeli government, left or right, could possibly accede.

 

Before the election, Obama dare not attempt this final legacy item, to go along with the Iran deal and the Castro conciliation, for fear of damaging Clinton. His last opportunity comes after Election Day. The one person who might deter him, points out Hannah, is Clinton herself, by committing Obama to do nothing before he leaves office that would tie her hands should she become president.

 

Clinton’s supporters who care about Israel and about peace need to urge her to do that now. It will soon be too late. Soon Obama will be free to deliver a devastating parting shot to Israel and to the prime minister he detests.

 

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

Contents                       

           

On Topic Links

 

Why Readers See The Times as Liberal: Liz Spayd, New York Times, July 23, 2016—I HAVE been here less than a month, but already I’ve discovered something that surely must be bad for business if your business is running The New York Times.

The Ongoing NYT Propaganda Campaign: Prof. Phyllis Chesler, Arutz Sheva, Sept. 22, 2016—I’m sure that reading the New York Times is shortening my life—and yet I continue to do so. I no longer monitor it as I once did.

The Real Reason Reporters Don’t Give to Pols: It Would Give Away Their Agenda: Jonah Goldberg, New York Post, October 21, 2016 —‘Let me say for the billionth time: Reporters don’t root for a side. Period.” This declarative tweet came from The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza on Oct. 16. The next day, Cillizza posted on Twitter, “Well, this is super depressing. NO idea why any journalist would donate $ to politicians.

Checkmating Obama: Caroline Glick, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 27, 2016—In one of the immortal lines of Godfather 2, mafia boss Michael Corleone discusses the fate of his brother, who betrayed him, with his enforcer. “I don’t want anything to happen to him while my mother is alive,” Corleone said.

 

 

 

 

 

LES ONG ET ISRAËL

  

    

 

 

13 ONG ANTI-ISRAEL SONT FINANCÉES DIRECTEMENT

PAR L’EUROPE ET PAR L’AUTORITÉ PALESTINIENNE

Shraga Blum                                   

israenews, 3 jan., 2016

 

 

Un rapport choquant compilé par le groupe sioniste Im Tirtzu examine 20 ONG israéliennes qui reçoivent des fonds étrangers et sont activement impliquées dans des activités anti-Israéliennes. Le rapport donne une idée sur la somme d’argent reçue par chacune des organisations d’extrême gauche, qui participent ou créent activement des programmes médiatiques qui nuisent à Israël. Cette activité comprend la diffusion de la propagande anti-Israëlienne à travers le monde, travaille en vue de prévenir la punition des terroristes, et de défendre les terroristes des meurtres de citoyens israéliens.

 

Le financement étranger vient du New Israel Fund (NIF), des gouvernements étrangers, de l’UE – et plus de 13 millions de shekels d’une fondation palestinienne basée à Ramallah. Matan Peleg, le PDG de Im Tirzu, a parlé à Arutz Sheva sur le pourquoi d’accepter de l’argent provenant de gouvernements étrangers et de la promotion de ces organisations qui se disent «pro-israéliennes» aux donateurs est un tel problème.

 

Peleg a dit:  » Les dégâts que le New Israel Fund, en particulier, fait au pays, c’est qu’il donne une légitimité à revendiquer aux mouvements d’extrême gauche ainsi qu’aux organisations qui nuisent effectivement au pays, et qu’ils se revendiquent comme sionistes. Les bailleurs de fonds en Amérique ne connaissent peut-être pas tous les détails de ce que chaque organisation fait, lorsque le NIF se présente comme un fonds sioniste qui donne de l’argent pour aider Israël, mais la réalité est différente cet argent  donné est redistribuer à des organisations qui nuisent à Israël, c’est là le problème « .

 

Peleg a admis que  le FNI ne donne pas tout l’argent à des organisations qui nuisent à Israël, il donne aussi de l’argent à des causes nobles, une méthode pour avancer masqué et en profondeur.

 

En ce qui concerne la question d’un gouvernement étranger, Peleg dit cela est un problème encore plus grand. Les gouvernements étrangers prennent un rôle actif dans la politique israélienne par l’intermédiaire de ces organisations  causant des dommages internes à Israël. « C’est tout simplement abjecte », a déclaré Peleg, « et cela doit cesser. »

 

« Nous savions que ces organisations sont parrainées par des gouvernements étrangers, mais nous avons été très surpris de l’énorme quantité d’argent étrangère qui va à ces organisations. Les mots me manquent pour décrire à quel point la situation est grave », a dit Peleg.

 

Les organismes énumérées dans le rapport incluent:

Breaking the Silence, B’Tselem, Adalah, l’Association pour les droits civils en Israël, Yesh Din,

Médecins pour les droits de l’homme, Rabbis for Human Rights, Stoptorture, Gisha, Bimkom,

Machsom Watch, Hamoked , Zochrot, Coalition des Femmes pour la Paix, Who Profits, Ir Amim,

Amnesty International, et Worker’s Hotline.

 

 

 

C’EST LA MEILLEURE :

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL A UN PROBLÈME JUIF

Jean-Patrick Grumberg

Dreuze, 22 avril 2015

 

 

Amnesty International vient de faire la preuve que son action est plus dominée par son idéologie gramsciste anti-blancs qu’humanitaire, s’écartant de son glorieux et noble passé. Lors de sa conférence internationale annuelle, les adhérents devaient voter une résolution qui proposait de s’attaquer à l’antisémitisme en Grande Bretagne. Ils ont refusé.

 

Amnesty International, mais c’est une tare commune aux ONG de gauche, a régulièrement été soupçonné de défendre les Droits de l’homme de façon sélective. Les Français connaissent bien cela avec par exemple, SOS Racisme, qui se concentre sur le racisme, pourtant en baisse, et ignore la lutte contre la christianophobie, en forte hausse. La proposition de lutte contre l’antisémitisme a été rejetée par 468 voix. 461 personnes ont voté pour.

 

La résolution était soutenue par Andrew Thorpe-Apps, qui a déclaré au Jewish Chronicle britannique qu’il n’est pas juif, mais qu’il a mis sur pied la proposition parce qu’il est consterné par l’envolée des discriminations et des attaques contre les Juifs britanniques.

 

La semaine dernière, un rapport confirmait la recrudescence de l’antisémitisme européen, la France et la Grande Bretagne en tête, recrudescence en réalité tout à fait naturelle, puisqu’elle existe depuis plus de 2 000 ans sans discontinuité, a connu son paroxysme avec l’extermination de 6 millions de juifs avec la complicité des Etats européens, et est largement maintenue vivace par le biais anti-israélien des médias.

 

Thorpe-Apps a précisé à notre confrère que de toute la conférence, c’est la seule proposition qui a été rejetée. Cela montre combien l’antisémitisme, qui a été chuchoté dans les conversations pendant cinquante ans, a maintenant repris sa place au grand jour, mal grimmé en antisionisme radical.

 

“Je savais que l’organisation a été ouvertement « pro-Palestine » dans le passé, et qu’elle ne s’est pas manifestée en défense du peuple juif, et je pensais que c’était une bonne idée qu’elle le fasse,” a ajouté Thorpe-Apps qui a récemment adhéré au mouvement, notant « la tendance à condamner plus particulièrement Israël [que les pays qui violent grossièrement les Droits de l’homme] dans ses rapports ».

 

“Non je ne suis pas juif moi-même, mais je suis consterné de ce que je lis dans la presse et une organisation comme Amnesty devrait vraiment ajouter sa voix comme elle le fait pour les autres violations des Droits de l’homme.”

 

Cet article vous a intéressé ? Inscrivez-vous à notre newsletter pour recevoir les nouveaux articles de Dreuz, une fois par jour en fin d’après-midi. La réponse de Neil Durkin, d’Amnesty International GB, est un modèle d’hypocrisie : “Nos membres ont décidé de rejeter cette résolution qui proposait de faire campagne sur un sujet unique… Amnesty International combat les discriminations sous toutes ses formes, et il va continuer à le faire.”

 

Perversion mentale qui explique mon dégoût pour la gauche. Neil Durkin explique que le groupe a ainsi voté du fait qu’il ne veut pas se concentrer sur une discrimination, pourtant, Amnesty a publié, entre autres nombreux dossiers spéficiques, un rapport de 123 pages contre la discrimination des Musulmans en Europe. Un bon gauchiste tentera de vous expliquer que l’un n’a rien à voir avec l’autre, puis devant votre résistance, il vous insultera, dira que vous êtes xénophobe et fasciste, et mettra fin à la conversation.

 

Le double standard est, avec le mensonge, une des tares dégoutantes de la nature humaine. Etrangement, ces tares dégoutantes sont monnaie courante à gauche. Cela ne veut pas dire qu’on doit l’accepter sans le dénoncer. Les responsables d’organisation humanitaires en vue devraient s’imposer un niveau de morale irréprochable, et être particulièrement attentifs à ne pas tomber dans le « un poids deux mesures ».

 

C’est tout le contraire. Ces ONG « humanitaires » se servent de leur prestige et de leur supposée neutralité pour tricher, mentir, accuser les uns et oublier les autres, et faire de la propagande. C’est à nous, journalistes internet, pour pallier les renoncements des médias, de le dénoncer. L’an dernier, Amnesty GB a comparé Israël à l’Etat islamique.

 

 

 

LE HAMAS EXPLOITE WORLD VISION À GAZA

Ambassade d'Israël en France, 5 aout, 2016

 

 

   

World Vision est une ONG américaine, une des plus grandes organisations charitables et humanitaires au monde, qui opère dans plus de 100 pays. Elle reçoit le soutien principalement de la part des Nations Unies et des gouvernements occidentaux.

 

Israël a découvert que Mohamed El-Halabi, l'actuel directeur de la branche de World Vision à Gaza, est en réalité une figure majeure dans l'arme terroriste et militaire du Hamas. El-Halabi a profité de cette position pour détourner les fonds et ressources de l'organisation humanitaire au bénéfice des terroristes du Hamas et de leurs activités militaires.

 

Plus de la moitié des ressources de World Vision dans la bande de Gaza – provenant de l'aide financière de pays occidentaux tels que les Etats-Unis, l'Angleterre et l'Australie – ont été transférées au Hamas pour renforcer leur bras militaire.

Les détails

Mohamed El-Halabi (du village de Jabalya), directeur de la branche de l'organisation d'aide humanitaire internationale World Vision à Gaza, a été arrêté au poste-frontière d'Erez entre Israël et la Bande de Gaza le 15 juin 2016. Il est suspecté d'une grande atteinte à la sécurité pour son lien avec la branche terroriste du Hamas et l'exploitation de ses visites en Israël dans cet objectif. Pendant son instruction, El-Halabi a révélé avoir été un membre du Hamas depuis sa jeunesse et avoir suivi un entraînement organisationnel et militaire dans les années 2000.

 

En 2005, le Hamas a exigé d'El-Halabi qu'il infiltre l'organisation World Vision. El-Halabi a rapporté que le Hamas pensait qu'il avait de grandes chances d'infiltrer l'organisation d'aide humanitaire étant donné que son père travaillait pour les Nations Unies, et lui-même avait travaillé pour le Programme des Nations Unies pour le Développement. En cette qualité, il a employé des "paysans" dans certaines zones aux alentours de la frontière de Gaza avec Israël, qui agissaient en réalité comme des guetteurs pour le Hamas.

 

Il a ajouté que son père, Halil El-Halabi, qui avait été dirigeant des institutions éducatives de l'UNWRA dans la Bande de Gaza pendant des années, est un membre du Hamas et profitait de son poste au sein des Nations Unies pour fournir une aide à l'organisation terroriste. Peu de temps après avoir été employé par World Vision, El-Halabi a commencé à utiliser sa fonction au bénéfice de l'organisation terroriste islamiste, premièrement en détournant des fonds pour renforcer la branche terroriste du Hamas.

 

Au cours des années, El-Halabi a avancé dans la hiérarchie de World Vision jusqu'à ce qu'il soit nommé à la tête de la branche de Gaza. En cette qualité, il a contrôlé le budget, l'équipement et l'enveloppe financière d'un montant de dix millions de dollars.

 

El-Halabi a employé un dispositif particulièrement sophistiqué pour transférer les fonds de World Vision au Hamas, à hauteur de 60% du budget annuel de la branche de Gaza, selon El-Halabi. Il a mis en place des projets humanitaires et des associations agricoles fictives qui agissaient comme couverture pour le transfert de fonds au Hamas. Parmi ces projets et associations se trouvent la construction d'une serre, la restauration de terres agricoles, la santé mentale et des projets de santé publique pour les résidents gazaouis, de l'aide aux pêcheurs, un centre de traitement pour handicapés, et des associations de paysans. Tous ces projets et associations ont été utilisés afin de transférer des fonds au Hamas.

 

La somme allouée par World Vision pour ses projets et associations de paysans parviennent au Hamas par divers moyens, tels que le faux enregistrement des terroristes du Hamas comme des employés dans les projets de charité.

 

L'enquête a révélé que la principale méthode employée pour détourner des fonds au Hamas était de mettre en place des offres fictives pour les projets supervisés par World Vision dans la Bande de Gaza. L'entreprise "gagnante" était alors informée que 60% de ces sommes étaient destinées au Hamas. De cette manière, El-Halabi assurait un flux continu de liquide dans les caisses du Hamas.

 

Selon El-Halabi, les fonds qu'il a détournés au Hamas étaient prévus principalement pour renforcer le bras terroriste de l'organisation. A cet égard, ils étaient utilisés pour financer la construction de tunnels destinés à l'attaque de civils dans le Sud d'Israël ou des forces de sécurité israéliennes, ou la construction de bases militaires comme celle appelée sous son nom de code "Palestine", ainsi qu'à la vente d'armes. Une partie des sommes servaient à financer les salaires des terroristes du Hamas, et dans certains cas, les personnalités à la tête du Hamas encaissaient des sommes pour leur propre usage.

 

El-Halabi a aussi utilisé les ressources de World Vision pour fournir de l'aide logistique à la branche terroriste du Hamas. Ceci est également le résultat d'un dispositif très sophistiqué qui a permis de transférer 60% des ressource de l'organisation à Gaza au Hamas. El-Halabi transférait régulièrement au Hamas des équipements qu'il avait commandés pour le compte de World Vision, et qui étaient supposés être prévus pour de l'aide agricole. Il transférait en réalité entre autres des barres de fer, des instruments pour creuser la terre, des tuyaux et des matériaux de construction. Ils étaient par la suite utilisés pour construire les avant-postes militaires du Hamas et creuser des tunnels.

 

Tout comme El-Halabi exploitait les projets humanitaires qu'il entreprenait afin de détourner des fonds pour le Hamas, il organisait aussi la provision d'un soutien logistique au Hamas. A titre d'exemple, son projet de construction d'une serre était utilisé pour dissimuler des sites où des tunnels terroristes étaient en train d'être creusés. De plus, le projet de réinsertion de soi-disant pêcheurs était en réalité utilisé pour fournir des bateaux à moteur et des combinaisons de plongée à l'unité navale du Hamas.

 

Une autre méthode régulière d’acquisition d'équipements pour le Hamas consistait à faire passer les entrepôts de l’organisation terroriste pour ceux de Vision Mondiale. Les camions apportant des fournitures à la Kerem Shalom, entre Israël et Gaza, déchargeaient leurs marchandises dans les entrepôts du Hamas au lieu des entrepôts légitimes de Vision Mondiale. Les agents du Hamas venaient alors récupérer les fournitures dans le milieu de la nuit.

 

Selon El-Halabi, l'aide humanitaire attribuée aux habitants de la Bande de Gaza était en réalité presque exclusivement allouée aux terroristes du Hamas et leurs familles. Les individus qui n’étaient pas membres du Hamas n’ont quasiment jamais pu bénéficier d’une quelconque aide, en dépit de leur relative situation de nécessité. Inutile de préciser que cela est en contradiction avec la pratique acceptée des organisations d'aide humanitaire. Chaque mois, El-Halabi distribuait des milliers de paquets de nourriture, des produits de base et des fournitures médicales aux terroristes du Hamas et leurs familles, les produits que Vision Mondiale avait l'intention de faire acheminer aux nécessiteux.

 

Cette aide humanitaire a également été détournée par El-Halabi aux terroristes du Hamas pendant le conflit de l'été 2014 [Opération Bordure protectrice]. Pendant les combats, ces derniers ont reçu des colis alimentaires pour les soutenir au-dessus et en dessous du sol, y compris dans les tunnels terroristes.

 

En plus d’avoir fourni une aide financière et logistique au Hamas, El-Halabi a également exploité ses visites en Israël – autorisées au vu de son travail légitime pour Vision Mondiale – afin de se livrer à une activité terroriste grave : la localisation et le marquage [via GPS] de sites près du passage d'Erez qui pourraient potentiellement être utilisés comme points de sortie pour les tunnels d'attaque du Hamas.

 

L'enquête a révélé beaucoup d'informations concernant d’autres personnalités de la bande de Gaza ayant exploité leur travail dans les organisations, y compris les organisations d'aide humanitaire et les institutions des Nations Unies, au nom du Hamas. Les déclarations de El-Halabi dépeignent une image troublante dans laquelle les institutions des Nations Unies à Gaza sont en réalité contrôlées par le Hamas, organisation terroriste islamiste.

 

En résumé, les faits découverts au cours de cette importante enquête illustrent, avant tout, l'exploitation cynique du Hamas de l'aide et des ressources offertes par les pays occidentaux qui sont destinés à aider les résidents nécessiteux de la bande de Gaza, mais qui, en fait, sont détournées et profitent au renforcement des capacités terroristes et militaires de l’organisation palestinienne. Par ses propres actions, le Hamas porte atteinte à la population civile dans la bande de Gaza en affichant ses priorités destructrices, y compris concernant Gaza.

 

 

COMMENT L’EUROPE COMBAT LE TERRORISME TOUT

EN FINANÇANT CEUX QUI L’EXCUSENT

Gerald M. Steinberg

Times of Israel, 8 mai, 2016

 

 

« Nous sommes en guerre, nous subissons depuis plusieurs mois en Europe des actes de guerre, » a déclaré le Premier ministre Manuel Valls lorsque des terroristes ont tué des dizaines de personnes innocentes suite aux explosions meurtrières à Bruxelles. Des dirigeants du monde entier ont présenté leurs condoléances et ont affirmé leur détermination à vaincre le terrorisme.

 

Mais les mots sont une chose et les actions en sont une autre. A titre d’exemple, l’Union européenne et ses Etats membres continuent de financer des organisations non-gouvernementales (ONG) qui justifient, glorifient et encouragent le terrorisme palestinien. Un rapport du 27 mars dernier a mis en évidence le fait que « des milliers de terroristes palestiniens, y compris les hommes qui ont orchestré des attentats-suicides et qui ont assassiné des enfants, reçoivent des fonds provenant de financements publics [étrangers] » du gouvernement britannique. Dans de nombreux cas, ces fonds sont transférés aux ONG problématiques liées à des groupes terroristes.

 

En 2013, par exemple, le Royaume-Uni a transféré 1,25 million de livres à l’Islamic Relief Worldwide (IRW); peu après, en Juin 2014, le ministre de la Défense d’Israël déclarait l’IRW illégale, à cause de son rôle présumé dans le transfert de fonds vers le Hamas et lui a interdit d’opérer en Israël et en Cisjordanie (le Hamas est une organisation classée comme terroriste par Israël, les États-Unis, l’Union européenne et le Canada).

 

Ce dangereux phénomène ne concerne pas uniquement le Royaume-Uni, d’autres Etats membres de l’Union européenne font un usage irresponsable de l’argent du contribuable européen. Depuis plusieurs années, l’UE et les gouvernements des pays européens financent des campagnes d’ONG qui suppriment volontairement le contexte du terrorisme à l’encontre de civils, tout en favorisant un artificiel et dangereux « droit de résistance ». Certains, comme Saif Abu Keshek (anciennement de l’International Solidarity Movement), qui a déclaré que les Palestiniens ont le droit de « choisir la lutte armée » dans le cadre de leur résistance, utilisent ainsi ce droit inventé pour justifier les attentats dirigés contre des Israéliens innocents.

 

En octobre 2015, par exemple, alors que les attentats au couteau, les fusillades et d’autres attaques contre des Israéliens s’intensifiaient, la plupart des ONG financées par l’Union européenne prétendant défendre les droits de l’Homme se sont abstenues de condamner immédiatement ces actions. Au lieu de cela, elles ont publié des communiqués quelques jours après, condamnant principalement la réponse des forces de sécurité israéliennes aux attaques. Certaines ONG ont également noté que les droits israéliens avaient été violés. Cependant, cela était presque exclusivement dans un contexte de création d’équivalence immorale entre les attentats terroristes et les réponses défensives, et en plaçant le blâme sur Israël pour la violence palestinienne.

 

Par exemple, les Pays-Bas, le Danemark, la Suède et la Suisse ont versé des dizaines de millions d’euros au  Secrétariat des droits de l’homme et du droit international de l’Université de Bir Zeit à Ramallah. La mission du Secrétariat est ouvertement biaisée et sa mise en œuvre consiste essentiellement à diaboliser Israël et à effacer les crimes commis contre des civils israéliens. Plusieurs représentants d’ONG financées par le Secrétariat ont des liens présumés vers des groupes terroristes mais les bailleurs de fonds européens sont manifestement désemparés.

 

L’ONG Al Haq, bénéficiaire d’une subvention de 710 000 dollars du Secrétariat, maintient sur son site internet une liste appelant les attaques terroristes des crimes « présumés » et met en avant la fiction selon laquelle les Palestiniens ont été tués arbitrairement au lieu de préciser qu’ils l’ont été alors qu’ils assassinaient des Israéliens. Al Haq ne qualifie pas les attaques terroristes palestiniennes de criminelles ou illégales, ni ne tente de connaitre les identités et l’état des victimes israéliennes.

 

Dans un autre exemple flagrant, le Centre palestinien pour les droits de l’homme (Palestinian Center for Human Rights ou PCHR), qui a reçu plus de 700 000 dollars du Secrétariat, a nié l’existence des attentats au couteau à Jérusalem, les qualifiant de « présumés » et a déshumanisé les victimes civiles qualifiées de « colons », comme si ce statut était pertinent ou justifiait leur assassinat.

 

Un troisième exemple est celui d’Addameer, qui a reçu  325 000 dollars du Secrétariat (2014-2016), qui s’ajoutent aux 75 000 euros versés par l’Irlande en 2013. En octobre 2015, cette ONG a refusé de se prononcer contre le terrorisme palestinien, qualifiant chaque attaque contre les citoyens israéliens de « prétendue » attaque. En outre, dans une lettre qu’elle a co-signé avec une douzaine d’ONG après que des dizaines d’attaques terroristes aient eu lieu, cette ONG a supprimé toute mention de la violence palestinienne contre les Israéliens, en déclarant « les deux dernières semaines ont été le témoin d’une alarmante escalade de la violence contre les Palestiniens, à la fois dans la fréquence et dans la gravité. » Non seulement les attentats ont été ignorés, mais les auteurs sont allés jusqu’à déclarer qu’« Israël utilise la sécurité comme prétexte » pour cibler les Palestiniens.

 

Ce faux récit, construit par des ONG grâce à des années de travail financées par l’Europe, repris par des articles de journaux, par la radio et par la télévision en Europe, a finalement pénétré l’ONU et les parlements en Europe. En novembre 2015, par exemple, la ministre suédoise des Affaires étrangères, Margot Wallström, a déclaré que l’alternative qui se présente aux Palestiniens est qu’ils « doivent accepter une situation désespérée ou recourir à la violence », tandis que le secrétaire de l’ONU Ban Ki Moon a déclaré que le terrorisme palestinien était compréhensible, car c’est « la nature humaine de réagir à l’occupation ». En d’autres termes, les attentats terroristes visant des civils dans les cafés, les bus ou les supermarchés sont compréhensibles.

 

Face au terrorisme, l’Europe doit comprendre qu’il n’y a pas de différence entre un attentat dans un bus à Tel Aviv et celui dans une station de métro à Bruxelles, entre une attaque dans un café à Jérusalem ou à Paris : le mode opérationnel est le même, et les mesures prises pour lutter contre le terrorisme sont similaires. Dans les deux cas, les groupes qui soutiennent ces attentats odieux doivent cesser d’être financés.

 

La lutte contre l’apologie du terrorisme exige un changement de mentalité chez les dirigeants et les hauts fonctionnaires. Ils ne peuvent tout simplement pas lutter contre le terrorisme en Europe avec une main et l’excuser en Israël avec l’autre. De même que l’UE ne pourrait à la fois dénoncer le racisme et financer des groupes qui prônent la suprématie blanche, elle doit cesser de financer les ONG palestiniennes encourageant le terrorisme.

 

 

ACTUALITE

 

JERUSALEM: COMMENT L’UNESCO EFFACE LES JUIFS

Oudy Ch. Bloch

Causeur, 25 oct., 2016

 

 

 

On aura beau jeu de dire que les Juifs sont paranoïaques, qu’ils voient des antisémites partout et que le dernier vote à l’Unesco n’intéresse finalement pas grand-monde. On aura tort. La résolution votée le 13 octobre 2016 à l’Unesco, comme celle votée le 16 avril dernier, ne vise qu’un seul objectif: réécrire l’histoire. Pas pour un effet immédiat mais pour plus tard, parfaite illustration de l’aphorisme touareg « vous avez la montre, nous avons le temps ». Car une fois que les quelques vagues de colère et d’indignation seront retombées, il ne restera que ces résolutions scélérates offrant des mensonges qui s’inscriront dans l’esprit des gens comme autant de vérités.

 

Ces résolutions votées par l’Unesco avec le soutien indigne de la France sont un acte de propagande, ni plus ni moins. Le titre seul de la résolution devrait suffire à voter contre. « Palestine Occupée », voilà une belle façon pour l’Unesco de “construire la paix dans l’esprit des hommes et des femmes”. Mais plus encore que ce titre infâmant, c’est la réalité historique qui devrait couper court à tout débat. L’Islam est apparu au VIIème siècle de l’ère commune, soit plus de 2.000 ans après le Judaïsme et 700 ans après les premiers chrétiens. En ne faisant référence qu’aux noms musulmans des lieux saints de Jérusalem alors que les Hébreux et les chrétiens y ont vécu pendant des siècles, que l’on y trouve le Kotel (le Mur occidental du Temple) et le Saint Sépulcre, qu’un papyrus datant de 2700 ans écrit en hébreu et mentionnant Jérusalem vient d’y être découvert, les promoteurs de ces résolutions cherchent à effacer consciencieusement toute attache qui ne serait pas exclusivement musulmane. Qu’importe que Jérusalem ne soit pas citée une seule fois dans le Coran alors qu’elle l’est à 669 reprises dans la Bible. L’approche n’est pas tant religieuse. Elle est politique.

 

Portées par des pays musulmans, ces résolutions sont commanditées par l’Autorité Palestinienne. La stratégie est cousue de fil fluorescent mais ne semble choquer personne à part les Juifs : laisser infuser des mensonges, des contre-vérités, des approximations jusqu’à ce que ceux qui ne s’intéressent peu au sujet, c’est-à-dire les plus nombreux, finissent par le croire. Et dans quelques générations, qui se souviendra – si ce n’est les Juifs – que sur le Mont du Temple s’étaient élevés les deux Temples de Jérusalem dont le Kotel (le Mur occidental) reste la trace la plus visible ? Personne. On n’y verra plus que l’esplanade des mosquées Al-Aqsa/Al-Haram Al-Sharif et la place Al-Buraq.

 

Qui se souviendra que le « site palestinien Al Khalil » (ainsi que le précise la dernière résolution) se nommait autrefois Hébron et, au même titre que le Mont du Temple et le Kotel, est un lieu saint du judaïsme où se trouve le Tombeau des Patriarches ? Personne. Le temps aura fait son œuvre, attaquant les souvenirs comme il attaque les pierres, faisant d’une imposture la vérité à force de trop l’entendre. Qui remet en cause aujourd’hui la version « officielle » du massacre de Sabra et Chatila selon laquelle le responsable serait l’armée israélienne ? Personne. Ou si peu. C’est pourtant Elie Hobeika et ses Phalanges libanaises qui ont commis ces massacres alors que selon l’ancien garde du corps d’Hobeika, Robert Hatem, Sharon avait expressément demandé à Hobeika « aucun débordement, aucune action excessive » (« D’Israel à Damas », 1999, Vanderblumen Publications).

 

Effacer les racines, c’est effacer la mémoire, les spécificités qui font l’unicité d’un individu ou d’un peuple. Anéantir symboliquement Israël. Pendant la seconde guerre mondiale, les nazis profanaient les cimetières juifs en prenant soin de casser les plaques sur lesquelles les noms étaient inscrits afin d’effacer – jusque dans la mort – la présence juive sur les terres conquises. Parce qu’ils ont pris conscience de leur incapacité – pour l’heure – à faire disparaître Israël physiquement, les antisémites tentent de le faire symboliquement, mensonge après mensonge, calomnie après calomnie, laissant le temps passer et la pression démographique faire le reste. En attendant, la prochaine fois que l’Unesco parlera de culture, un des signataires sortira peut-être son révolver.

 

Shabbat shalom
 

 

 

 

 

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AS ISRAEL BECOMES MAJOR GAS EXPORTER, SECURITY ISSUES IMPOSE BURDENS ON IDF

Israel Faces Gas Export Challenge: Yakir Gillis, Forbes, Sept. 28, 2016— Israel has been looking to develop its huge offshore gas resources after a period of regulatory uncertainty, but the challenges surrounding the construction and security of export pipelines may put off all but the most forward-looking investors.

Israel Inks Historic Gas Deal with Jordan at Perilous Time: Ari Lieberman, Frontpage, Sept. 28, 2016 — Israel this week signed a historic agreement with Jordan to supply the energy-starved kingdom with natural gas from its Leviathan gas field.

IDF Battles to Keep its Finest From Defecting to Private Sector: Shoshanna Solomon, Times of Israel, Oct. 27, 2016 — The Israeli army is fighting a battle it knows it can only partially win: to preserve the best of its talent within its ranks, even as the likes of Google, Apple and Facebook entice them with salaries as much as five times what the army can offer.

Spies in Space: The Story of Israel's Ofek Satellite Program: Barbara Opall-Rome, Jerusalem Post, Sept. 25, 2016— If you’re looking for a story that captures Israeli innovation, cunning and can-do chutzpa, think spy satellites. Look to Ofek, the Hebrew word for horizon.

 

On Topic Links

 

World’s Largest Desalination Plant Turns Mediterranean into Drinking Water (Video): Breaking Israel News, Oct. 26, 2016

Israel Should Avoid Turkey, Include Cyprus in Gas Export Projects: Ariel Ben Solomon, BESA, Oct. 7, 2016

Israel's Plan to Supply the Arab World With Energy Is Under Threat in Jordan: Natanel Abramov, Newsweek, Oct. 11, 2016

Israel-China Ties Bloom with Free Trade Talks Imminent: Iacopo Luzi, Times of Israel, Sept. 29, 2016

 

 

 

ISRAEL FACES GAS EXPORT CHALLENGE

Yakir Gillis                                                          

Forbes, Sept. 28, 2016        

 

Israel has been looking to develop its huge offshore gas resources after a period of regulatory uncertainty, but the challenges surrounding the construction and security of export pipelines may put off all but the most forward-looking investors. Israel has one of the biggest gas reserves in the eastern Mediterranean basin, the Leviathan field, which could in time turn it into a major regional energy player. However, getting the gas out of the ground has been dogged with problems. Chief among them was an antitrust ruling stemming from concerns that the two main exploration companies, Texas-based Noble Energy and Israel’s Delek, stood to monopolise the country’s natural resource sector.

 

The subject was addressed in protracted production agreement negotiations between the government and the investors. The process was held up by persistent claims that the latter were being offered too generous a deal. Eventually approved by the Supreme Court in May, the so-called “Gas Framework” offers exploration companies a friendly regulatory and tax environment, exempting them from royalties until they achieve a 150% return on their investment.

 

Early this month, the Israeli Ministry of National Infrastructure, Energy and Water Resources held an event in London aimed at encouraging international oil and gas companies to submit bids for several new exploration blocks off Israel’s coast. The Minister, Yuval Steinitz, alongside the ministry’s Director General and its Chief Scientist, gave a presentation underlining both the high likelihood of a major natural gas discovery and the attractive production terms offered by the government. It was the second leg of a roadshow that has also taken in Houston and Singapore. But while there is no doubting the commercial potential of the 24 blocks up for auction, Israeli officials may find them a tough sell.

 

One of the main reasons is the slump in the price of natural gas, which many believe will be long term because of excess supply. There is intense competition between exporters over a limited number of major consumer markets. Since sale to Israeli consumers alone would not be sufficient to offset the costs of production, the commercial success of companies exploring Israel’s offshore reserves will rely on their ability to export to other countries in the Middle East and beyond.

 

This would require close cooperation between four major actors— Israel, Turkey, Egypt and Cyprus— to create a regional export network. The centrepiece of a plan being discussed in diplomatic and business circles throughout the region is an underwater pipeline running from Israel through Cyprus to Turkey. Turkey is one of the fastest growing energy markets in the world and, more importantly, a gateway to Europe, which has been heavily reliant on gas from Russia. An existing pipeline would connect Israeli offshore sites to Egypt, which is developing substantial LNG infrastructure, and could offer a shipping gateway for LNG exports. This pipeline runs through the volatile Sinai Peninsula and previously transported gas from Egypt to Israel. At that time, its reliability was questioned because of repeated sabotage by terrorists.

 

The diplomatic challenges involved in getting these countries to cooperate on a gas export project of this scale are formidable. Turkey has only just restored diplomatic relations with Israel after years of heightened tension, and still does not officially recognise the Cypriot government. Relations between Turkey and Egypt have also been strained ever since the July 2013 coup, which ousted former Muslim Brotherhood President Mohammed Morsi, who was supported by Ankara. While Egypt and Israel have been on relatively good terms under President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s administration, open cooperation with Israel would leave him facing accusations of ‘selling out’ the Palestinians. All of which undermines the business rationale for launching a major exploration operation in the eastern Mediterranean basin.

 

But while geopolitical conditions might be difficult, they have never been more favourable than now. The Israeli government is keen to promote regional stability, particularly to make the point that it can be achieved without major concessions to the Palestinians. Turkey’s adoption of a more pragmatic foreign policy and a desire to diversify its energy resources could see it building bridges with regional foes, which was certainly a factor in its rapprochement with Israel. As part of the reconciliation agreement between the two countries in June, Turkey committed to entering negotiations with Israel over the purchase of Israeli gas. The US, meanwhile, would be keen on cooperation between its Middle East allies on pipeline projects, and to see Turkey and Europe shift away from buying Russian gas. Indeed, many observers regard gas exploitation in the eastern Mediterranean as a possible driver of stability and cooperation in the region.

 

It is hard to predict whether many potential investors will look beyond the present geopolitical obstacles to the proposed pipeline projects, which is why the Israeli government is offering such a favourable regulatory and taxation framework. That should prove to be attractive, but only to those with a significant risk appetite. For exploration companies who believe that countries in the region could in time pull together to export gas to the Middle East and beyond, it might be a gamble worth taking.          

 

Contents                                                                                                           

                                           

ISRAEL INKS HISTORIC GAS DEAL WITH JORDAN AT PERILOUS TIME                                                        

Ari Lieberman                                                                                                      

Frontpage, Sept. 28, 2016

 

Israel this week signed a historic agreement with Jordan to supply the energy-starved kingdom with natural gas from its Leviathan gas field. The deal is worth a reported $10 billion and has instantly transformed the Jewish state into an energy exporter. In addition to the obvious pecuniary benefits to the Israeli economy, the agreement promotes regional stability by creating an energy and economic interdependence.

 

Israel is now looking to sign energy deals with two other regional players of import, Greece and Cyprus. Israel’s energy minister plans on traveling to Athens on Wednesday to cement agreements. The Israeli plan centers on laying a network of pipes so that natural gas can be shipped to these nations as well as other European countries. Currently, much of Europe relies on Russian gas and an alternative source would be welcome. Even Turkey, which recently exchanged ambassadors with Israel after a long hiatus, has expressed interest in cooperating with Israel in the energy sector.

 

Israel currently operates and lays claim to four gas fields off its coast. Two small ones are located off the shores of Ashkelon while the two larger ones – called Tamar and Leviathan – are located in the north, approximately 90 miles west of Haifa. Leviathan should be fully operational within a few years while the other fields are already supplying Israel with natural gas. Israel derives approximately 60 percent of its electricity needs through natural gas. Energy officials estimate that since the gas began flowing just over a decade ago, Israel has saved approximately 35.5 billion shekels which translates to $9.6 billion.

 

The welcome news however, comes with cost. Lebanon, which is controlled by Hezbollah, which in turn receives its marching orders from Iran, has laid claim to Israel’s energy finds. Lebanon’s maritime and territorial claims are wholly without merit and it is a virtual certainty that they were made at the behest of either Hezbollah or Iran or both. While Lebanon’s navy is negligible and poses no threat to Israel and its off-shore gas platforms, Hezbollah does pose a more significant threat. Hezbollah possesses a number of Chinese C-802 radar guided anti-ship missiles. A missile of this type damaged an Israeli corvette, the INS Hanit, during the 2006 Lebanon War (the ship was repaired and returned to service 3 weeks later) and sunk a civilian Egyptian ship cruising some 37 miles from shore.

 

The C-802 can be defeated through electronic counter measures (ECM) and point defense systems like the Barak-8 anti-missile, anti-aircraft system and the Phalanx. In the case of the Hanit, its captain had turned off the ship’s ECM systems because he did not believe that Hezbollah had such missiles. Of greater concern is the Russian Yakhont missile which is considered more accurate and less susceptible to ECM than the C-802. Israel considers these missiles game-changers because they significantly enhance Hezbollah’s anti-ship capabilities. They also quite naturally pose a threat to Israel’s offshore gas platforms and related infrastructure. In the past few years, Israel has launched several successful attacks on Syria aimed at interdicting the flow of sophisticated weapons to Hezbollah but it is believed that notwithstanding these efforts, Hezbollah has taken possession of a limited number of Yakhont missiles.

 

In addition to the missile threat, Israel must also prepare for other contingencies such as suicide speed boats and remotely piloted drones packed with explosives. Israel can also not discount the possibility that Hezbollah may attempt to seize an offshore platform with shock troops. While Hezbollah is fully engaged in Syria and the threat level remains relatively low for the moment, Israel is not resting on its laurels. It is significantly enhancing the Navy’s tactical and strategic capabilities.

 

The Israeli Navy had once been considered the orphan child of the armed forces. Priority went to the ground and air forces with the Navy getting the leftover hand-me-downs. That perception changed during the Yom Kippur War of 1973 when the Navy was the only branch of the armed forces not taken by surprise during the initial Arab onslaught. Its fleet of Israeli and French designed missile boats decimated the entire Syrian navy and severely mauled the Egyptian navy while keeping the shipping lanes free for maritime traffic. The Navy’s role in securing Israel’s defense has come to prominence ever since.

 

In the next war with Hezbollah, the Navy will be tasked with neutralizing the Hezbollah menace and securing the eastern Mediterranean. Israel’s naval capabilities are indeed formidable. Its large fleet of Sa’ar 4.5 missile boats and Sa’ar 5 corvettes pack powerful punches and are equipped with Harpoon and Gabriel anti-ship missiles, torpedoes, an array of cannon, point defense missile systems and state-of-the-art ECM. The Sa’ar 5 is also equipped with a helipad and hangar to accommodate the Atalef helicopter. Complementing the corvettes and missile boats are some 45 patrol and fast attack craft, some of which are equipped with missiles and the highly regarded Typhoon stabilized cannon system. Rounding out the surface fleet will be a pair of F124 Sachsen-class frigates from Germany and the Sa’ar 72, an 800 ton vessel currently under construction by Israel Shipyards.

 

The Navy has also taken possession of its fifth submarine, the INS Rahav. The craft can deliver Israeli designed nuclear tipped missiles called the Popeye Turbo and can remain submerged for significantly longer periods than conventional submarines. It will be tasked with carrying out covert operations and remains a powerful deterrent against those who seek to harm Israel.  Israel’s naval commandos are continuously training for scenarios in which they’re called upon to retake gas rigs seized by terrorists. The complex operation would be made more difficult by the fact that the terrorists could conceivably seize hostages and a firefight on the rig could set off an explosion or fire due to the presence of highly flammable materials.

 

The challenges involved in protecting Israel’s gas rigs and related infrastructure are daunting but it appears that Israel is more than ready for the task and the Navy will serve as the nation’s tip of the spear.                                                            

 

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IDF BATTLES TO KEEP ITS FINEST FROM

DEFECTING TO PRIVATE SECTOR                                                  

Shoshanna Solomon                                                                         

Times of Israel, Oct. 27, 2016

 

The Israeli army is fighting a battle it knows it can only partially win: to preserve the best of its talent within its ranks, even as the likes of Google, Apple and Facebook entice them with salaries as much as five times what the army can offer. With Israel’s startup scene flourishing and multinationals setting up research and development centers, a shortage of engineers is heating up the competition for skilled personnel, with companies offering fatter and fatter salaries to recruit talent.

 

A reliable pool of skills — and one that has been fueling the so called “startup nation,” has traditionally come from the army. The IDF recruits 18-year-old women and men for a compulsory two-to-three-year service imposed on most citizens and allocates them to combat or other units, including intelligence and tech units. After intensive training, these soldiers are put in highly sensitive, secret and responsible jobs, developing and using cutting edge technologies. After their service, many stay on to become career soldiers while others venture out into civilian life and are either snapped up by high-tech corporations or set up their own start-up.

 

“The army has a very real problem” because the salaries it offers cannot compete with those offered by the private sector, said Giora Eiland, a retired major general of the IDF and a former head of the Israeli National Security Council. A son of a friend, he related, who recently graduated from the elite 8200 technology intelligence unit received a number of offers to work for private companies for around NIS 30,000 a month (around $7,800), which was four times the salary the army was offering him to stay on. “If you love your job, salary won’t make much of a difference,” Eiland said. “But if the salary they offer is 100 percent higher or, as in this case, 300 percent higher, then for sure you will leave. There is no dilemma whatsoever.”

 

Demand for army graduates has been fueled by the surge in startups operating in Israel and multinationals that have set up R&D centers in the country — all of which are scouting for talent. The intensity of their need has been compounded by the shortage of skilled engineers the nation is facing. The number of active high tech companies operating in Israel has jumped from 3,781 in 2006 to 7,400 in mid-2016, according to figures compiled by Tel Aviv-based IVC Research Center, which tracks the industry. In addition, companies from Google to Apple, Deutsche Telecom to Bosch have all set up research and development centers in Israel, with 278 multinational companies operating a total of 327 R&D centers around the country today, compared with about 250 such centers three years ago, IVC data shows.

 

Meanwhile, Israel’s high-tech industry will suffer a shortfall of more than 10,000 engineers and programmers in the coming decade if the government doesn’t take immediate action to prepare students to enter these fields, the Ministry of Economy and Industry’s chief scientist Avi Hasson warned in a report in June. So there is more demand for these skilled workers than supply, leading to a salary rise of around 10 percent in the past five years with workers changing jobs on average every 20 months, according to data compiled by Workey, which has developed a job search engine for Israeli startups. Starting monthly salaries in high-tech for soldiers who have completed their army service are around NIS 20,000, Workey data shows.

 

Data released by the IDF shows that a career officer with the rank of lieutenant in a technological position can earn roughly NIS 5,800-9,100 per month, pre-tax, while a captain could earn roughly NIS 8,600-11,200 per month. Salaries are determined by several factors including training, educational background, location and risk level. IDF data also shows that in the years 2011-2015, the number of outstanding officers leaving the army rose from under 17 percent in 2011 to a peak of almost 27% in 2014 before dipping to just over 25% in 2015 . The army defines outstanding officers as those who served as officers for at least two years and rank in the top third of officers in their unit, following a peer evaluation over a period of two years or who have shown outstanding abilities.

 

So the army decided to fight back. Not with salaries, an area it knows it cannot compete in, but by emphasizing the contribution these soldiers make to the country, by giving them more interesting jobs and greater responsibility at a younger age, and by putting in place a set of perks, scholarships and bonuses that will make them feel more valued. “We saw a trend in which it was very difficult to maintain our soldiers in service and we checked the reasons why,” said Maj. Meirav Stoler, a spokesperson of the Human Resources Branch in the IDF. Those who stay in the army, she said, based on a survey the army conducted among 21- to 29-year-olds, stay not for the salary, but for the challenge their role offered and because the soldiers found it important to contribute to the state.

 

“We know that the army cannot compete on matching terms with the civilian world,” said Stoler. “But we do not work based on material considerations only. The army needs to provide its soldiers with much more than material things and salaries.” The army’s new plan — which it has been implementing in the past few months — is to make sure that the soldiers who choose to remain “feel they can do more, get more and be more influential,” Stoler said. “Our push to keep the best in the service allows us to give each of them more important and senior jobs, and we see that this is indeed helping people to stay.”…                                   

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

 

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SPIES IN SPACE: THE STORY OF ISRAEL'S                                                                            

OFEK SATELLITE PROGRAM                                                                               

Barbara Opall-Rome                                                                                            

Jerusalem Post, Sept. 25, 2016

 

If you’re looking for a story that captures Israeli innovation, cunning and can-do chutzpa, think spy satellites. Look to Ofek, the Hebrew word for horizon. It’s all there in Israel’s military satellite program, the newest of which – Ofek 11 – is struggling to stabilize itself in space after its launch earlier last week.

 

Inserted successfully into orbit by the country’s homemade Shavit launcher, the newest and most advanced satellite is likely to soldier on in space, but with limited lifespan and ability to perform its high-resolution spy duties. White-knuckled technicians and program managers toiling around the clock at Israel Aerospace Industries’ (IAI) ground control station near Ben-Gurion Airport are still hoping for a favorable ending to the latest chapter still unfolding. But like the chapters that have gone before, Ofek 11 represents the highs and lows of a story driven by strategic need and enhanced by its share of diplomatic intrigue. Conceived in secret, it’s a story of battling the laws of physics; and struggling on a shoestring budget to build rockets strong enough to loft satellites small enough into retrograde orbit against Earth’s eastward spin.

 

It’s also a story of fortitude. How the euphoria of reaching space in 1988 was followed by bitter back-to-back failures that saw two satellites swallowed by the sea. And how the heroes of our story finagled their way back from the brink with the 1995 launch of Ofek-3, Israel’s first operational imaging satellite whose progeny continue to fuel the regional power status of the Jewish state. “Small countries can be great only if they dream big,” said former president Shimon Peres. “With Ofek, we penetrated space and skepticism.”

 

Interviewed before the stroke that befell the pioneer of Israel’s aerospace and defense industry, Peres said Israel’s small size makes it uniquely positioned as a “center of excellence” for advanced research and development. “Our advantage is creative, out-of-the-box thinkers who push the boundaries of what was deemed impossible.” But with all due respect to Israel’s senior statesman, this is where our tale takes a cautionary turn. Because the flip side of this story is one of untapped potential and failure to leverage billions of dollars invested in military space to assure commercial competitiveness on the global market.

 

The US Futron Corp. consistently ranks Israel eighth in an annual competitiveness survey based on myriad criteria, including government investment, national space policy, the ability to attract financing and annual sales. In its latest Space Competitive Index (SCI), we have dropped to number nine. “Israel continues to be a leader in space technology, but has limited commercial sales,” Futron reported in its first SCI survey from 2008. The same holds true today. “Although Israeli technology is high quality and generally cost-competitive, Israeli manufacturers have less global scale than their counterparts,” Futron senior analyst Jonathan Beland told the Jerusalem Post Magazine.

 

But let’s go back. Our story begins in the late 1970s. US President Jimmy Carter was proving relentless in prodding Israel and Egypt toward peace. In the run-up to Camp David, the era of Israeli Air Force reconnaissance flights over Sinai was about to end. Plan Treasure was a top-secret forum where US and Israeli officials hashed out compensation to come from the 1978 accord. Among Israel’s requests: access to imagery from US spy satellites. “The Americans didn’t even answer us; they ignored the request,” recalls David Ivry, a retired major general who commanded the Israel Air Force at the time. That’s when the indigenous Israeli satellite program started to gain traction. Ivry said. “We knew after the treaty was signed, we would be obliged not to violate Egyptian sovereignty by overflying their airspace as we used to do,” he added…

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

 

 

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On Topic Links

 

 

Israel Should Avoid Turkey, Include Cyprus in Gas Export Projects: Ariel Ben Solomon, BESA, Oct. 7, 2016 —As Israel begins closing deals for its natural gas, it should avoid linking itself to any expensive long-term pipeline deal with Turkey at the expense of allies Cyprus, Greece, or even Egypt. Notwithstanding the recent easing of tensions between the two countries, Israel cannot trust Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s Islamist regime as a linchpin in its natural gas export strategy.

Israel's Plan to Supply the Arab World With Energy Is Under Threat in Jordan: Natanel Abramov, Newsweek, Oct. 11, 2016—Public protests and civil society campaigns have been gathering pace in Jordan in opposition to the $10 billion deal recently signed by the state-owned National Electric Power Company (NEPCO) and suppliers of Israeli gas, serving as a timely reminder of the limits of overt cooperation, economic or otherwise, between Israel and neighboring Arab states.

Israel-China Ties Bloom with Free Trade Talks Imminent: Iacopo Luzi, Times of Israel, Sept. 29, 2016—Israel and China relations are reaching new heights as investors and entrepreneurs throng conferences in China and Tel Aviv and the two countries gear up for talks on establishing a free trade zone.

India, the UN vote, the Temple Mount and Ayodhya: Souptik Mukherjee, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 25, 2016— Hindu-Jewish ties date back over 2,500 years. It is believed that Jews arrived in India after the destruction of the First Temple by the Babylonians in 587 BCE. Jewish waves of migration to India took place after the destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans in 70 CE.