WEDNESDAY’S “NEWS IN REVIEW” ROUND-UP

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

 

Contents: | Weekly QuotesShort Takes   |  On Topic Links

 

On Topic Links

 

Islamist Turkey is Imploding: Alex Alexiev, American Thinker, Feb. 24, 2016

Canadian FM Outdoes Himself: Ruthie Blum, Algemeiner, Feb. 23, 2016

What Is Canada Doing Celebrating Hijab Day?: Shabnam Assadollahi, Gatestone Institute, Feb. 21, 2016

Congratulations North Korea! (Video): Jimmy Kimmel Live, Jan. 7, 2016

 

WEEKLY QUOTES

 

“That, given Canada and Israel share a long history of friendship as well as economic and diplomatic relations, the House reject the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which promotes the demonization and delegitimization of the State of Israel, and call upon the government to condemn any and all attempts by Canadian organizations, groups or individuals to promote the BDS movement, both here at home and abroad.” — Text of a motion by Conservative foreign affairs critic Tony Clement and Michelle Rempel. By a vote of 229 for and 51 against, the Canadian Parliament passed a motion which formally condemned the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) anti-Israel movement. The Conservatives (including former Prime Minister Stephen Harper who attended the session to cast his vote against BDS), as well as the Liberals voted for the motion. Tom Muclair, leader of the NDP, opposed it as well as Bloc Québécois and three MPs of the Liberal Party (René Arseneault, Larry Bagnell and Nick Whalen). (National Post, Feb. 17, 2016 & CIJ, Feb. 22, 2016)  

 

“The BDS movement … is wrong because the thrust of what it is asking for is the disappearance of the State of Israel. BDS is saying that all Palestinian refugees must have the right of return to what is today Israel, which would automatically create a situation where we would not have a two-state solution. We would have a one-state solution where Israel was not a majority Jewish state…BDS, which again singles out Israel, is not looking at all those other countries in the world that engage in egregious human rights violations…Only Israel is condemned, as BDS holds it to a complete double standard. Indeed, I have been to many meeting where there is talk of BDS. I have heard that Israel should be held to a higher standard, that people do not think it is like other Arab countries. That is the new form of anti-Semitism. The whole idea of holding Israel to a higher moral standard than anyone else is clearly anti-Semitic.” — Anthony Housefather, Liberal MP for Mount Royal, Quebec, during a House of Commons debate over the anti-BDS motion brought by Tony Clement and Michelle Rempel. WATCH HOUSEFATHER’S HOUSE OF COMMONS SPEECH HERE. (CIJ, Feb. 22, 2016) 

 

“The problem comes when a small group of closed-minded students attempts to impose one view of a complex regional conflict on the entire student body…There are so many opportunities for dialogue, so many opportunities for cooperation on the McGill campus. And yet it doesn’t happen. What we get is maybe eight months of silence from pro-Palestinian groups, and then a [resolution] is thrown at us on a moment’s notice. That’s not productive. That’s not cooperative. That isn’t the proper way to address the situation.” — Simon, a law student at McGill University. McGill’s student government on Monday passed a resolution endorsing the anti-Israel BDS movement, by a large margin. The final tally in the secret ballot was 512 for, 357 opposed and 14 abstentions. The group behind the resolution, the McGill BDS Action Network, worked during the week before the vote to rally support for it, sponsoring a series of events on campus, including lectures, panel discussions, and films. Similar BDS resolutions at McGill failed in 2009, 2014 and as recently as 2015. (Algemeiner, Feb. 23, 2016)

 

“The BDS movement is wholly anti-semitic, seeks to destroy Israel, and promotes alliances with people whose values are absolutely counter to Western values of law and civil rights. Palestinian society has no freedom of religion, no rights for gays, no freedom of speech, no rule of law, no equal rights for women, no concept of civil rights, and proposes a state in which no Jews would be allowed to live. The claim that BDS opposes only “Israeli occupation” is belied by the wholesale belief across the Palestinian spectrum that “occupation” refers to all of the land of Israel. If the Palestinians really wanted a state and could accept living in peace next to Israel (rather than seeking to destroy it), they could have had one long ago.” — David M. Sherman. The executive of the York University Faculty Association (YUFA) voted Feb. 12 to endorse the YUDivest Coalition, made up of groups including Amnesty International at York and Students Against Israeli Apartheid (SAIA), to urge York to divest from arms manufacturers, such as Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems, Northrop Grumman, FLIR Systems, and Textron. Jewish groups and some York faculty believe that although this campaign doesn’t openly single out Israel, it is part of a “backdoor” BDS campaign against Israel. (CJN, Feb. 18, 2016)

 

“This is going to be difficult to implement…We know there are a lot of obstacles, and there are sure to be some setbacks.” — White House spokesman Josh Earnest. The U.S. and Russia have agreed on a new cease-fire for Syria that will take effect Saturday, even as major questions over enforcing and responding to violations of the truce were left unresolved. Syria’s warring government and rebels still need to accept the deal. The timeline for a hoped-for breakthrough comes after the former Cold War foes, backing opposing sides in the conflict, said they finalized the details of a “cessation of hostilities” between President Bashar Assad’s government and armed opposition groups after five years of violence that has killed more than 250,000 people. The truce will not cover Islamic State (I.S.), the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front and any other militias designated as terrorist organizations. (Global, Feb. 22, 2016)

 

“Russia must understand that its unconditional support to Bashar al-Assad is a dead end and a dead end that could be extremely dangerous.” — François Delattre, French Ambassador to the UN.  Delattre put the blame for the latest military escalation on the new push by the government of Syria’s President Assad, and his backers in Moscow, and he warned that it could further inflame the region. (New York Times, Feb. 19, 2016)

 

“There is a risk of war between Turkey and Russia…There must be pressure on Moscow so that we have negotiations…You are not striking the right spots and you are striking civilian populations, which is unacceptable.” — President François Hollande of France. (New York Times, Feb. 19, 2016)

 

“If Russia continues behaving like a terrorist organization and forcing civilians to flee, we will deliver an extremely decisive response…Unfortunately, barbaric attacks on civilians are continuing in Syria, and these attacks are being waged by both Russia and terrorist groups.” — Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. Turkish President Erdogan is angry with Russia (and the U.S.) for helping Syria’s Kurds. Under Russian air support, the Kurds are expanding their territory into areas near the Turkish border, where the Turkish air force has been active. The problem intensified when at least 27 people were killed in a suicide bombing in Ankara last week. Turkish officials quickly blamed a Syrian Kurdish group, the YPG — which the U.S. supports and trains, and which Russia helps from the air. (YPG denies involvement in the Ankara bombing.) Turkey says the Kurds are allied with Bashar al-Assad — the man whose power Russia fights to preserve. (New York Post, Feb. 18, 2016)

 

“The “dimensions of shame” awaiting the perpetrators of and the bystanders to the crimes of the Syrian war are as yet unknown, but they will be ample. German has a better word than bystander for those — always the majority — who make their accommodations with evil. That word is “mitläufer,” roughly “fellow traveler.” There has been a lot of discussion of the origins of ISIS, of the complexity of defeating it, of its digital slickness, but little of its pure evil — its desecration of human life and its exaltation of death (even delivered by children). To dwell on the group’s iniquity — its contempt for humanity — would be to suggest the necessity of its immediate extirpation; and no Western government wants to deploy soldiers to do that. That is a moral capitulation, whatever else it may be.” — Roger Cohen (New York Times, Feb. 18, 2016)

 

“Libya has become a magnet for individuals not only inside of Libya, but from the African continent as well as from outside.” — John O. Brennan, the director of the C.I.A. I.S.’s branch in Libya is deepening its reach across a wide area of Africa, attracting new recruits from countries like Senegal that had been largely immune to the jihadist propaganda — and forcing the African authorities and their Western allies to increase efforts to combat the fast-moving threat. Even as American intelligence agencies say the number of I.S. fighters in Iraq and Syria has dropped to about 25,000 from a high of about 31,500, partly because of the United States-led air campaign there, the group’s ranks in Libya have roughly doubled in the same period, to about 6,500 fighters. (New York Times, Feb. 21, 2016)

 

“America will stand unapologetically with the nation of Israel – if I am president – because I am not neutral between terrorists who are blowing up and murdering women and children, and the people of Israel who are trying to defend their nation.” — Texas senator and Republican Presidential hopeful Ted Cruz. Cruz derided Donald Trump for claiming “neutrality” on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Last week, Cruz’s rival Trump said that he would like to remain “neutral” in order to maintain credibility with both sides as a potential peace negotiator, though he hinted Israel is justified in its actions against Palestinian terror and incitement. (Breaking Israel News, Feb. 22, 2016)

 

“I will defend and do everything I can to support Israel, particularly as the neighborhood around it seems to become more dangerous and difficult…I also believe the Palestinians deserve to have a state of their own. That’s why I support a two-state solution. That’s what I have worked on. That’s what I tried to move forward when I was secretary, and holding three very intense conversations between the prime minister of Israel and the president of the Palestinian Authority.” — Democratic hopeful Hillary Clinton. Despite her warm words in public, however, emails released as part of the ongoing investigation of her use of a private email address during her tenure as Secretary of State suggest a less-than-positive attitude towards Israel. In one she calls Israelis “always cocky”, while in another, dated 2011, she considers a suggestion from a senior aide to stir up Palestinian unrest as a means to bring Israel back to the negotiating table. (Breaking Israel News, Feb. 22, 2016)

 

Contents

 

SHORT TAKES

 

THREE PALESTINIANS KILLED IN ATTACKS ON ISRAELI FORCES (Jerusalem) — Three Palestinian attackers were killed in separate assaults on Israeli forces on Friday, including a stabbing attack in Jerusalem that left two Israeli officers wounded before one of them overpowered and killed the attacker. The assaults were the latest in a five month-long wave of Palestinian violence that shows no sign of abating. Palestinian attackers have carried out numerous assaults at the Damascus Gate over the past five months, prompting Israel to significantly beef up security there in response. Since mid-September, 28 Israelis have been killed. During that time, 165 Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire, the majority said by Israel to be attackers. The rest died in clashes with security forces. (Washington Post, Feb. 19, 2016)

 

IRAN OFFERS REWARD FOR FAMILIES OF PALESTINIAN 'INTIFADA MARTYRS' (Tehran) — Iran announced its support for the "Jerusalem intifada" that Israel has been witnessing for months, declaring that it would give financial rewards to families of Palestinian terrorists. Speaking at a press conference in Beirut, with the participation of several Palestinian leaders, Iranian ambassador to Lebanon, Mohammad Fathali, said: "Continuing Iran's support for the oppressed Palestinian people, Iran announces the provision of financial aid to families of Palestinian martyrs who were killed in the "Jerusalem intifada." According to the ambassador, every family of a martyr will receive $7,000, while a family whose home was demolished by the IDF will receive $30,000. (Jerusalem Post, Feb. 24, 2016)

 

US 'TARGETS TUNISIA MASSACRE ORGANISER' IN LIBYA STRIKES (Tripoli) — One of the masterminds behind last summer's massacre of British tourists in Tunisia is believed to have been killed in a US bombing raid on an I.S. camp in Libya. American warplanes targeted Noureddine Chouchane, a Tunisian terrorist who helped organize the attack that killed 30 Britons at a beach hotel in June. US intelligence is still trying to confirm whether Chouchane was killed but more than 30 other I.S. fighters died in the bombing. The raid is symbol of growing Western alarm at how I.S. has expanded its control over swathes of Libya even as it faces setbacks in Iraq and Syria. (Telegraph, Feb. 19, 2016)

 

I.S. RELEASES 43 ASSYRIAN HOSTAGES AFTER RANSOM PAYMENTS (Raqqa) — I.S. released 43 Assyrian hostages from its capital of Raqqa after receiving ransom payments. Those released are the final group of captives that I.S. kidnapped one year ago from villages in northern Syria, including many children. In 2015, I.S. forced more than 200 Assyrians to live under its strict version of Islam after making them pay jizya (tax) and sign a dhimma (social contract). As of July, a third of Syria’s 600,000 Christians had fled; Lebanon’s Christian population has shrunk from 78 percent to 34 percent; and only a third of the 1.5 million Christians who lived in Iraq in 2003 remain today. (Newsweek, Feb. 22, 2016)

 

SAUDI ARABIA SCRAPS $3 BILLION FUNDING TO LEBANON FOR ARMS (Riyadh) — Saudi Arabia scrapped $3 billion in pledged military aid to Lebanon, blaming the prominent role in national affairs of the Hezbollah group backed by Iran. The decision was taken to protest Lebanon’s failure to condemn an attack on the Saudi embassy in Iran “as the so-called Hezbollah confiscates the will of the state,” the Saudi Press Agency reported. The Saudi assistance was destined to buy French weapons for the Lebanese army as part of the government’s plan to modernize its forces. Saudi Arabia is unable to ensure the French weapons won’t fall into the hands of Hezbollah, whose fighters are supporting President Bashar al-Assad’s government in Syria’s war. (Bloomberg, Feb. 19, 2016)

 

OTTAWA EYES FRESH FUNDING FOR UN GROUP WITH ALLEGED TIES TO HAMAS (Ottawa) — The Liberal government is now reviewing whether to extend funding for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), which was established in 1950 to deal with Palestinian refugees. The Liberals are eyeing a plan to provide $15-million to the agency. UNRWA has been criticized by pro-Israel lobbyists in Canada and the U.S. for working closely with Hamas supporters in Gaza by providing schools and employment and humanitarian assistance for Palestinians who are still considered refugees by the UN. The former Harper government eliminated its funding for UNRWA in 2010, amid mounting criticism that its schools were hotbeds of anti-Israeli extremism. (Globe & Mail, Feb. 14, 2016)

 

PA OFFICIAL: JEWS SHOULD RETURN TO THEIR COUNTRIES OF ORIGIN (Ramallah) — Ibrahim Khreisheh, the Palestinian Authority’s envoy to the UN Human Rights Council, recently said that it may "be useful" to ask Arab and European countries "to allow the Jews to return to their former lands and homes…We never had people from Poland, the Ukraine, France, or England," he added. Khreisheh is the same PA official who admitted in the past that the PA has no hope of pressing charges against Israel in international courts because Palestinian terrorist groups are far worse violators of international law themselves. (Arutz Sheva, Feb. 17, 2016)

 

ANTI-ISRAEL ADS COVER LONDON UNDERGROUND TRAINS (London) — Millions of Monday morning passengers on the London Underground were greeted with a number of ads taken out by the BDS Movement accusing Israel of torturing and massacring Palestinians and slamming UK companies with links to the Jewish state. According to a report, the campaign includes four ads purportedly put up in 500 trains. The posters were made for what anti-Israel activists dub “Israel Apartheid Week”. Transport for London, the body that oversees the London Underground, said in a statement that it had not approved the ads. "These are not authorized adverts," read the statement. "It is fly posting and therefore an act of vandalism which we take extremely seriously.” (Ynet, Feb. 22, 2016)

 

AFTER PALESTINE TALK, HARVARD DONOR STOPS SPONSORING EVENTS (Boston) — A major backer of Harvard Law School has stopped sponsoring student events after its donation helped pay for a discussion on Palestine. In 2012, law firm Milbank promised Harvard $1 million over five years to pay for scholarly conferences organized by law students. But after the money was used to support an event hosted by the student group Justice for Palestine, the law firm asked Harvard Law School to use the money for other purposes. In October, students in Justice for Palestine hosted a talk examining what they say is a movement to suppress advocates of Palestine. (Washington Post, Feb. 19, 2016)

 

STUDENTS IN BROOKLYN COLLEGE DEMAND ‘ZIONISTS OFF CAMPUS’ (New York) — A group of Brooklyn College students interrupted a faculty council meeting last week and allegedly demanded that “Zionists” leave campus. Brooklyn state Assemblyman Dov Hikind said he received complaints after the meeting from “dozens” of faculty members. The Anti-Defamation League denounced the incident and commended the Brooklyn College president and senior vice president for their strong condemnation.  Back in November, ADL had commended CUNY (City University of New York) for standing up against bigotry, prejudice and antisemitism after the student group “Students for Justice in Palestine” invoked antisemitic stereotypes when referring to CUNY leadership as a “Zionist administration” at Hunter College. (Jerusalem Post, Feb. 18, 2016)

 

ISRAEL INTERCEPTS GAZA-BOUND DRONE SHIPMENT DISGUISED AS TOYS (Gaza) — A shipment of drones disguised as toys that was bound for the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip was recently intercepted by Israeli security personnel at the Kerem Shalom border crossing, the Israeli Defense Ministry announced Sunday. The drones were discovered during a search of a truck carrying toys. Security personnel found drones of different sizes and types. All were equipped with quality cameras. It is believed the drones were meant to be used to gather intelligence on Israel Defense Forces activities. According to the Defense Ministry, a number of other drone-smuggling attempts have been foiled by Israel’s Shin Bet security agency in recent weeks. (Algemeiner, Feb. 22, 2016)

 

FROM CHINA TO ISRAEL: FIVE WOMEN FROM JEWISH COMMUNITY TO MAKE ALIYA (Bejing) — Five women in their twenties from the ancient Chinese Jewish community of Kaifeng are due to make aliya in late February in what will mark the first aliya of its kind in nearly seven years. The women plan to pursue Jewish studies in Jerusalem upon arrival. The last time a group of Kaifeng Jews made aliya was in 2009, when Shavei Israel assisted seven young men in their journey from China to Israel. According to a press release issued by Shavei Israel, the Kaifeng Jews were found by Iraqi or Persian Jewish merchants around the 8th century. The community peaked during the Ming Dynasty with 5,000 members. Yet widespread intermarriage and assimilation brought about their demise by the early 19th century. Today only 500-1000 are believed to be remaining. (Jerusalem Post, Feb. 24, 2016)

 

GERMANY: MIGRANT CRIME SKYROCKETS (Berlin) — Migrants committed 208,344 crimes in 2015, according to a confidential police report that was leaked to the German newspaper, Bild. This figure represents an 80% increase over 2014. The actual number of migrant crimes is far higher, however, because the report, produced by the Federal Criminal Police Office, includes only crimes that have been solved. Moreover, the report does not include crime data from North Rhine-Westphalia, the most populous state in Germany and also the state with the largest number of migrants. North Rhine-Westphalia's biggest city is Cologne, where, on New Year's Eve, hundreds of German women were sexually assaulted by migrants. Further, many crimes are simply not reported or are deliberately overlooked: political leaders across Germany have ordered police to turn a blind eye to crimes perpetrated by migrants, apparently to avoid fueling anti-immigration sentiments. (Gatestone Institute, Feb. 21, 2016)

 

NAZI HUNTER BEATE KLARSFELD GETS ISRAELI CITIZENSHIP (Berlin) — German Nazi hunter Beate Klarsfeld, 77, has been granted Israeli citizenship. Interior Minister Aryeh Deri presented Klarsfeld, who is not Jewish, with the citizenship in a ceremony in Jerusalem. A German journalist, Klarsfeld is the daughter of a Wehrmacht soldier, while her husband Serge, 79, is the son of French Jews deported from France during the Holocaust. The Klarsfelds played a vital role in bringing Klaus Barbie, the former Gestapo chief in Lyon during World War II, to justice, as well as French officials who collaborated with the Nazi occupiers. (Times of Israel, Feb. 19, 2016)

 

LAST SURVIVOR OF TREBLINKA REVOLT IS LAID TO REST (Jerusalem) — Israeli President Rivlin was among those attending the funeral of Samuel Willenberg, the last remaining survivor of the revolt at the Treblinka death camp in Poland, who died on Saturday at the age of 93. Willenberg was born in 1923 in Częstochowa, Poland. At the age of 19, he was rounded up with the Jews during the liquidation of the ghetto in Opatow, and sent to Treblinka. Acting on the advice of another Jewish prisoner, he posed as a bricklayer upon his arrival at the extermination camp. He was the only person from his transport not to perish in the gas chambers. Willenberg took part in the 1943 revolt at Treblinka, becoming one of the few hundred who managed to escape the camp. Willenberg moved to Israel in 1950 with his wife and his mother. After retirement, he found success as a sculptor and held several international exhibits of his work, which focused on the Holocaust and his own experiences in Treblinka. (Times of Israel, Feb. 22, 2016)

 

Contents

On Topic Links

 

 

Islamist Turkey is Imploding: Alex Alexiev, American Thinker, Feb. 24, 2016 —In the past two weeks a number of events have taken place in Turkey that, taken together, indicate that this erstwhile U.S. ally is spinning dangerously out of control with neither Ankara nor Washington and its European allies having the slightest clue of what to do.

Canadian FM Outdoes Himself: Ruthie Blum, Algemeiner, Feb. 23, 2016 —Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion exhibited a real knack for the twofer on Friday, by going after both his political opposition and the Israeli government in one disingenuous swoop.

What Is Canada Doing Celebrating Hijab Day?: Shabnam Assadollahi, Gatestone Institute, Feb. 21, 2016 —This Thursday, February 25, 2016, the city of Ottawa will be holding a public event celebrating the hijab, Islam's physical repression of women. The City for All Women Initiative (CAWI) organization, backed by the City Council of Ottawa, is hosting the Ottawa Hijab Solidarity Day celebration, also called "Walking with Our Muslims Sisters," at City Hall. According to CAWI, the main purpose of this event is to encourage non-Muslim women to wear a hijab to understand life as a Muslim woman.

Congratulations North Korea! (Video): Jimmy Kimmel Live, Jan. 7, 2016 —North Korea is claiming that they successfully detonated their first hydrogen bomb. You’d think that the idea that they might have an H bomb would be somewhat alarming to those of us who are here on the West coast, but we went out on the street and it seems like if you ask people a question in a cheerful enough way, we will offer congratulations for just about anything.

 

Wednesday’s “News in Review” Round-Up

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

 

 

 Download a pdf version of today's Daily Briefing

 

Contents:  Weekly Quotes |  Short Takes On Topic Links

 

Terra Incognita: The Racist Romance of the Arab Village: Seth J. Frantzman, Jerusalem Post, July 9, 2013

Families of Israeli Terror Victims Express Outrage at Proposed Release of Palestinian Terrorists for Peace Talks: Zach Pontz, Algemeiner, July 23, 2013

Bionic Contact Lenses Turn Touch Into Vision: Karin Kloosterman, Israel 21c, July 23, 2013

 

"We are now making an effort to resume the diplomatic process. I see this as a vital strategic interest of the State of Israel….If it [an agreement] will be [reached], it will be put to a referendum….It must be put to the people for a decision….The goal is to prevent "the creation of a bi-national state between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea, alongside preventing the establishment of another Iranian-sponsored terrorist state….Our negotiating partners will also need to make concessions that will allow us to maintain our security and uphold our vital national interests….These will not be easy negotiations, but we will enter into them with integrity, sincerity and the hope that this process will be conducted responsibly, seriously and substantively, and …discreetly….Throughout this process, I will strongly uphold…the security needs of the State of Israel and other vital interests." — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, to the Israeli Government Cabinet on Sunday [July 21] following the announcement by U.S. Secretary of State that negotiations were set to resume between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. (Prime Minister's Office, July 21, 2013)

“The Palestinian leadership's sense of responsibility towards its nation made it take political steps about 20 years ago (i.e., signing the Oslo Accords). Despite the controversy, despite much criticism and much opposition by some, it brought us to where we are today: We have a [Palestinian] Authority and the world recognizes the [Palestinian] state. All this happened through the wisdom of the leadership, conscious action, consideration, and walking the right path, which leads to achievement, exactly like the Prophet [Muhammad] did in the Treaty of Hudaybiyyah, even though some opposed it….In less than two years, the Prophet returned and based on this treaty, he conquered Mecca. This is the example, this is the model." — Mahmoud Al-Habbash, PA Minister of Religious Affairs, in a sermon in front of Mahmoud Abbas, PA President as broadcast on official Palestinian Authority TV, July 19, 2013, just prior to the announcement of the resumption of peace negotiations. [The Hudaybiyyah peace treaty was a 10-year truce that Muhammad, Islam's Prophet, made with the Quraish Tribe of Mecca. However, two years into the truce, Muhammad betrayed the truce, attacked and conquered Mecca. – Ed.] (PalWatch, July 20, 2013)

 

"I do not adopt the theory of 'now or never,' we shall have to negotiate again, and I don't see any tragedy in it." Menahem Begin z”l, former Prime Minister of Israel, in an interview during the difficult negotiations with Egypt in 1979, prior to the final signing of an agreement. (Elder of Ziyon, July 23, 2013)

 

The campaign of delegitimizing the Jewish state – a campaign financed primarily by Arab oil – has gained momentum in recent years. The only thing that can stop it is the resumption of peace negotiations. In one fell swoop, the misguided folks [European Commission] in Brussels have emboldened the extremists, allowing them to triumphantly claim to Abbas: "You see, we were right all along. You must not negotiate. We don't have to do anything. The international community will do our job for us." The world shouldn't make things easier for extremists. It's challenging enough to pursue peace in this problematic neighborhood of ours. We do not need our friends overseas to make it even more difficult. The EU would do well to revoke its decision.” — Yair Lapid, Israel Minister of Finance, commenting on the decision of the European Union to prohibit grants and awards going to any organization operating in any of the territories captured by Israel in its defensive war in 1967. (New York Times, July 24, 2013)

 

"Anyone who thinks that in the center of the diplomatic, political and social tsunami that is shaking the Arab world it is possible to get a magical solution of comprehensive peace with the Palestinians does not understand…I am saying clearly that it is impossible to reach a comprehensive agreement with the Palestinians. It is impossible to solve the conflict, it needs to be managed.” — Avigdor Liberman, Israel’s former Foreign Minister, reacting to the possible resumption of peace negotiations. (Jerusalem Post,July 23, 2013)

 

"It looks as if the [EU] decision [to blacklist Hizbullah] was written by American hands with Israeli ink. The EU only had to add its signature in approval" — Hizbullah, in a statement following the EU’s announcement that it would put the Hizbullah’s “military wing” on it’s list of terrorist organizations.(UPI. July 23, 2013)

 

"Hizbullah is a single large organization, we have no wings that are separate from one another. What's being said in Brussels doesn't exist for us." — Ibrahim Mussawi,  a spokesman for Hizbullah, to Spiegel Online. (Der Spiegel-Germany, July 22, 2013)

 

"Syria is drawing thousands of global jihad activists and radical Muslims from the region and the world who are basing themselves in the country, not only to overthrow Assad, but also to promote the vision of an Islamic state. Right before our eyes a center of global jihad is developing on a scale that may affect not only Syria and the borders of the State of Israel, but also Jordan and Sinai." — Maj.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi,  chief of IDF Military Intelligenc, at an intelligence officers' graduation ceremony on Tuesday [July 23].  (Ynet News, July 23, 2013)

 

“The notion that Palestinians, whenthere are only a few dozen of them, always require an army of NGOs and Israeli activists with jeeps and hospitals and schools in order to survive plays on two stereotypes: First, an Orientalist view of Arabs as incapable objects in the landscape of the Bible, and second that only outsiders can save them and speak for them.” — Seth J. Frantzman, in an op-ed column: Terra Incognita: The Racist Romance of the Arab Village, in the Jerusalem Post.(Jerusalem Post, July 9, 2013

 

“Dozens of top American officials have called for [Jonathan] Pollard’s immediate release due to the values of justice and mercy. Jonathan did not murder anyone. His 28 years of service, including seven in solitary confinement, is an unprecedented sentence for the crime, so he should be released immediately without conditioning it on anything else [such as the release of Palestinian terrorists].” —  the Committee for Pollard’s Freedom, in a statement issued in response to reports that Israel had asked the U.S to release Pollard in exchange for releasing Palestinian terrorists. (Jerusalem Post, July 23, 2013)

 

 “We’re closer [to Iran] than the United States. We’re more vulnerable. And therefore, we’ll have to address this question of how to stop Iran, perhaps before the United States does. But as the prime minister of Israel, I’m determined to do whatever is necessary to defend my country, the one and only Jewish state, from a regime that threatens us with renewed annihilation.” — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu,  on CBS News’s Face the Nation. (Jerusalem Post, July 24, 2013)

 

When we finally caught them [Iran] in the act of trying to kill Adel [al-Jubeir, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the US], we had a beleaguered attorney general, a fine man but beleaguered politically, stand up and give a legal argument that frankly I couldn’t understand . . . And we had what I would call a Zimmerman telegram moment . . . We caught them in the act, and yet we let them walk free….They’re like children balancing light bulbs full of nitroglycerin. You get the picture? One of these days they’re going to drop one, and it’s going to knock out the London stock exchange or Wall Street because we never drew a line and said, ‘You won’t do it.’ ” — Gen. James Mattis, former head of US Central Command which has responsibility for the Middle East, addressing the Obama administration policies toward Iran at the annual Aspen Security Forum in Aspen, Colorado. [The Zimmerman telegram was a secret message, intercepted by Britain, sent by Germany  to Mexico before the outbreak of World War I  inciting it to retake areas of the U.S. south with an eye to preventing the U.S. from entering the war in Europe on the side of Great Britain against Germany . Ed ] (New York Post,  July 23, 2013)

 

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KERRY ANNOUNCES DEAL TO REVIVE MIDEAST TALKS(Amman, Jordan) Israeli and Palestinian leaders have "established a basis" to resume direct peace negotiations for the first time in three years, Secretary of State John Kerry announced Friday. He said that if "everything goes as expected," Saeb Erekat, the chief Palestinian negotiator; Tzipi Livni, the Israeli minister in charge of the peace process; and Isaac Molho, Prime Minister Netanyahu's special envoy, would join him for talks in Washington "within the next week or so." On Saturday, Israel's Minister of Strategic Affairs Yuval Steinitz told Israel Radio, "There will be some release of [Palestinian] prisoners," carried out in phases. According to Israeli news reports, both sides have agreed to negotiate for at least six months. (New York Times, July 20, 2013)

 

TOP AIDE TO PALESTINIAN PRESIDENT SAYS PATH TO A RESUMPTION OF MIDEAST TALKS STILL BLOCKED(Ramallah) Nabil Abu Rudeneh, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, said in a statement Sunday that for actual peace talks to resume, Israel must first accept its pre-1967 war frontier as a baseline and halt settlement building. He said that Abbas agreed to send a delegate to Washington to continue lower-level preliminary talks with an Israeli counterpart about the terms for negotiations. The Washington talks are meant to "overcome the obstacles that still stand in the way of launching negotiations," he said. Palestinians say three issues need to be settled before talks can begin – the baseline for border talks, the extent of a possible Israeli settlement slowdown, and a timetable for releasing long-detained Palestinian prisoners. Israel has been insisting that peace talks resume without preconditions and that all issues should be resolved through dialogue. (AP-Washington Post, July 22, 2013)

 

ISRAEL TO RELEASE 85 PALESTINIAN PRISONERS(Jerusalem) Israel has agreed to gradually release 85 Palestinian terrorists who were imprisoned prior to the 1993 Oslo Accords. The first phase of the release will take place in four to six weeks. The terrorists in question were convicted of multiple counts of murder and sentenced to more than one life sentence. All of them have so far served between 20 and 28 years of their sentences. (Israel Hayom, July 21, 2013)

 

FAMILIES OF ISRAELI TERROR VICTIMS EXPRESS OUTRAGE AT PROPOSED RELEASE OF PALESTINIAN TERRORISTS FOR PEACE TALKS (Jerusalem)

Expected concessions on the part of Israel aimed at inducing the Palestinian Authority to enter into peace talks are rankling many in the Jewish State. Israel has reportedly agreed to release at least 82 Palestinian convicts held since before the Oslo Peace Accords in 1993. Many of the prisoners were jailed for violent crimes, and the families of their victims, as well as the family’s of others murdered in the interim, are voicing their displeasure at the prospect of the prisoners going free. (The Algemeiner, July 23, 2013)

 

EUROPEAN UNION ADDS HIZBULLAH TO TERROR LIST(Brussels) EU foreign ministers Monday [July 22] added the “military” wing of the Lebanese Shiite militant group Hizbullah to a list of terrorist organizations. Sanctions are expected to include travel bans and asset freezes. The policy shift reflected their concern about Hezbollah’s suspected involvement in Europe-based bombings and its growing role in the Syria war. The immediate practical effects of the new designation were not clear, but symbolically at least they were an embarrassment to Hezbollah, the most important political organization in Lebanon. Many Lebanese expressed concern the designation would damage Lebanon’s international relations and worsen internal tensions, and Lebanon’s president, Michel Suleiman, asked the European Union to “re-examine its decision,” Lebanese media reported. (New York Times, July 23, 2013)

 

EGYPT'S OLD GUARD IS BACK (Cairo) Egypt's new power dynamic, following the July 3 coup that ousted Morsi, is eerily familiar. Gone are the Islamist rulers from the once-banned Muslim Brotherhood. Back are the faces of the old guard, many closely linked to Mubarak's reign or to the all-powerful generals. And for a seemingly broad array of Egyptians, that's exactly the way they want it. In Egypt's new cabinet, Mubarak-era figures abound and Islamists are absent.  Egyptians who once demanded punishment for the remnants of Mubarak's regime say that a year of disastrous Brotherhood rule has put everything in perspective. (Washington Post, July 19, 2013)

 

TWELVE DIE IN CLASHES IN EGYPT (Cairo)A long night of political bloodshed in Egypt left at least 12 people dead on Tuesday and 86 wounded. In the latest fighting between supporters and opponents of ousted President Mohamed Morsi which began on Monday in several Cairo neighborhoods and north of the city, civilians were seen firing weapons during running battles near Cairo landmarks. Morsi's supporters have intensified their protests with daily marches in cities around Egypt, to publicize what they call a "putsch" by the army. (New York Times, July 23, 2013)

 

PALESTINIAN FAMILIES TO SUFFER FROM EU LABELING OF GOODS FROM JUDEA & SAMARIA(Jerusalem) Deputy Foreign Minister Zeev Elkin on Tuesday told Elmar Brok, the chairman of the European Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee, that 20,000 Palestinian families stood to lose their livelihood if products from the settlements were labeled as such in Europe. He said Palestinian workers in agriculture or manufacturing could find themselves out of work if these businesses shut down due to a drop in exports to the EU. "You are trying to hurt Israeli enterprises that already exist and provide a respectable livelihood for tens of thousands of Palestinian families," Elkin told Brok. "This is simply bizarre."  (Ha'aretz, July 23, 2013)

 

ISRAELI HOSPITAL TREATS WOUNDED SYRIANS — (Golan Heights) Four Syrians including an eight-year-old girl were brought to a hospital in Israel after they were wounded by fighting in the war-torn country, a medical source said on Tuesday. "Yesterday night an injured eight-year-old girl and her 48-year-old mother were treated for fractures to their arms and legs from shrapnel," said a spokesman for Ziv hospital, which is located north of the Sea of Galilee. "Another Syrian adult in his 20s arrived an hour ago… with a severe head injury and was treated in the trauma unit," he told AFP. A 15-year-old girl also arrived at the facility Tuesday morning with an amputated leg and wounds to her stomach, the spokesman said. The wounded were brought to the hospital by the Israeli army after being allowed across the ceasefire line with Syria, he said. A total of 45 Syrians have received treatment at Ziv since Syria's civil war broke out, and nine of those are currently in the hospital, including the eight-year-old girl admitted late Monday, he said. (Yahoo! News, July 22, 2013)

 

FORMER PA NEGOTIATOR SUING ABBAS IN THE HAGUE(The Hague) Former senior PLO official Mohammed Dahlan is suing Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas for malicious persecution. Dahlan, a personal nemesis of the chairman, was removed from all his positions in the organization two years ago. Now he claims that Abbas is after him for publicly exposing the corruption of the chairman and of his offspring. Dahlan is pushing an assortment of lawsuits in various European courts, according to Kol Israel, revolving around his charge that some $700 million are missing from the PA treasury. Dahlan, who used to be head of the PLO Gaza Preventive Security Force, and participated in earlier rounds of the “peace process” resides in Dubai, where, back in May, he met with Mossad head Tamir Pardo. On Sunday, Dahlan accused the PA Chairman of forcing “political suicide” on his nation by agreeing to renewing the talks with Israel. (Jewish Press, July 24th, 2013)

 

NEW SHOAH BOOK IS HIT AMONG NON-JEWISH IRANIANS (Irvine, Calif.) Dr. Ari Babaknia, an Iranian Jewish doctor based in Southern California, spent 15 years working on what some viewed as a quixotic project: the first-ever history book about the Holocaust in Farsi. But now the four-volume work—which details the facts of the Holocaust from the rise of Nazism in Germany to the final days of World War II and eventually chronicles the other genocides of the 20th century that occurred in Armenia, Bosnia, Cambodia, Rwanda, and Sudan—is becoming a hit among the very audience Babaknia intended to reach: Iranian Muslims. “There are about 120 million-plus people in the world who speak Farsi, but there has never been a book written in their mother language about the Holocaust,” said Babaknia, an obstetrician-gynecologist by profession who said he wrote the first draft of the work by hand. (Tablet Magazine, July 23, 2013)

 

MCGILL UNIVERSITY RECEIVES $500,000 FROM ALLEGED IRANIAN FRONT (Montreal) Two weeks after bestowing an honorary doctorate on a noted anti-Israel activist, controversy is once again brewing at McGill University, as the school has come under fire for continuing to receive funds from an alleged front for the Iranian government. McGill University has received about $500,000 since 1986 from the Alavi Foundation, a New York City-based non-profit organization. According to a civil complaint filed by United States federal prosecutors in 2009, the foundation’s income derives from a Manhattan property that was built in 1978 to handle Iran’s charitable activities in the United States. The Fifth Avenue property and foundation subsequently came under control by the new Iranian government following the Islamic Revolution. (Jewish Tribune, July 2, 2013)

 

ISRAEL'S FAST EVOLVING DEMOGRAPHY (Jerusalem) In the first 12 years of the current century the number of Arab births in Israel has almost completely flat lined at around 40,000 per annum. This despite the growing size of the Arab population, which means that the Arab birth rate – births relative to population size – has fallen. Over the same period, Jewish births have risen from 95,000 to 130,000. In the first four months of 2013, the most recent period for which data is available, Jewish births were up 38 percent during the same period for 2001, and Arab births down 6%. This means that the Arab share of Israeli births, at a little over 22% of the total, is now not much higher than the overall Arab share of the population, at a little under 21% of the total, and well down from its peak of around 30%. The birth rates of Arabs and Jews in Israel are close to converging. (Jerusalem Post, July 21, 2013)

 

ISRAELI DEFENSE EXPORTS HIT RECORD HIGH (Tel Aviv) Israel sold some $7.5 billion in defense products in 2012 – a record high – the Defense Ministry revealed on Tuesday, but officials voiced concerns that the coming year could see a slump in sales. Speaking to reporters at the Defense Ministry in Tel Aviv, Brig.-Gen. (res.) Shmaya Avieli, director of Defense Export and Defense Cooperation (known by its Hebrew acronym, “Sibat”), pointed to an ongoing economic downturn as one factor for decreased projected sales. He added that with the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq coming to a close, decreased demand for military products by coalition members will have a significant impact on the global defense industry. Additionally, Europe has a stated policy of preferring its own defense suppliers. “Israel is in the top 10 defense exporters in the world, if not the top five,” Avieli said. According to figures he unveiled, 25 percent of Israeli defense exports involve air defense systems, while sales of satellite platforms and radars collectively made up 24% of the revenue. (Jerusalem Post, July 24, 2013)

 

UN SAYS EGYPT CRACKDOWN CLOSES 80 PERCENT OF GAZA SMUGGLING TUNNELS (United Nations) About 80 percent of tunnels used to smuggle goods and arms into the Gaza Strip from Egypt are "no longer functioning" due to a crackdown by the Egyptian military after it ousted President Mohamed Morsi this month, a UN official said on Tuesday. UN Middle East peace envoy Robert Serry told the UN Security Council that the Gaza Strip was experiencing "some serious shortages of fuel and basic building materials for which the tunnels had become the primary entry point due to severe restrictions on imports via the official crossings and the higher cost of fuel available from the West Bank and Israel." The tunnel crackdown has gathered pace since the Egyptian military removed Morsi from power earlier this month. "As a result of these actions against illegal activity, according to some estimates, 80 percent of the tunnels are no longer functioning," Serry said. (Jerusalem Post, July 24, 2013)

 

BIONIC CONTACT LENSES TURN TOUCH INTO VISION(Tel Aviv) A new Israeli approach to providing sight to people with vision impairment uses a technique known as sensory substitution. Much in the way Braille allows people who are blind to “see” the written word, a bionic contact lens invented by Israeli researcher Prof. Zeev Zalevsky “presses” images onto the surface of the eye to help the brain decipher through touch what the wearer is looking at. The lens, still in a prototype stage, uses electrical signals sent to it from a small transponder, clipped to a pair of glasses or downloaded to a smart phone. A regular off-the-shelf camera, like the one inside a phone, “looks” at a crosswalk, items for sale in the grocery store, or at a loved one’s face, and transmits the encoded image via the lens to the wearer’s cornea. The image gets translated into a tactile sensation that can be interpreted visually. “The cornea has the highest density of tactile sensors in the human body,” the Bar-Ilan University professor tells ISRAEL21c. (Israel 21c, July 23, 2013)

 

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On Topic

Terra Incognita: The Racist Romance of the Arab Village: Seth J. Frantzman, Jerusalem Post, July 9, 2013—This romance of the “primeval” landscape, juxtaposed with Israeli activists and European NGOs who tell their story and save the villagers, is a classic motif.

 

Families of Israeli Terror Victims Express Outrage at Proposed Release of Palestinian Terrorists for Peace Talks: Zach Pontz, Algemeiner, July 23, 2013—Expected concessions on the part of Israel aimed at inducing the Palestinian Authority to enter into peace talks are rankling many in the Jewish State. Israel has reportedly agreed to release at least 82 Palestinian convicts held since before the Oslo Peace Accords in 1993.

 

Bionic Contact Lenses Turn Touch Into Vision: Karin Kloosterman, Israel 21c, July 23, 2013—A new Israeli approach to providing sight to people with vision impairment uses a technique known as sensory substitution. Much in the way Braille allows people who are blind to “see” the written word, a bionic contact lens invented by Israeli researcher Prof. Zeev Zalevsky “presses” images onto the surface of the eye to help the brain decipher through touch what the wearer is looking at.

 

 

Ber Lazarus
, Publications Editor
 Canadian Institute for Jewish Research
/L'institut Canadien de recherches sur le Judaïsme   www.isranet.org  Tel: (514) 486-5544 Fax: (514) 486-82843

 

 

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