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Saturday, October 04, 2003

O Lord our G-d hear our cry

Suicide Bomber Strikes Beachside Restaurant in Haifa on Shabbos

19 Dead including one entire family, three children, a baby, four Arabs -- Over 60 Wounded

At least 19 people were killed and 60 wounded when a Palestinian Arab (Islamic Jihad) terrorist blew herself up in Maxim's Restaurant around 2:15 Saturday afternoon. The restaurant was packed. Early reports were that the bomber first shot the security guard, before proceeding into the crowded restaurant; the Northern Region Police Commander said it remained unclear.

Maxim's was frequented by the Maccabi Haifa soccer team. Itamar Chizik, technical manager, Arieh Burstein and team coach Ronni Levi were there at the time of the blast and all three were lightly wounded. "We were sitting with our sides toward the door, we didn't see who came in,"said Chizik. "We felt an explosion and then everyone around us was either wounded or dead."

A motorist, identified only as Navon, said he was at a nearby junction when he heard the blast. "When I got to the area of the restaurant, we saw smoke and all the glass had been blown out. I parked my car. We went in,about five or six of us and started to take the wounded out. In truth, there was not much to take out. There were not a lot of wounded, just a lot of people strewn on the ground. There was nothing to do, no way to help them.

One entire family - from Kibbutz Yagur - was killed. Those victims were Bruria Zer-Aviv, 54, her son Bezalel, 30, his wife Keren, 29 and their two children, Liran, 4, and one-year-old Noya.

Another family lunching in the restaurant included a couple, their grown son and daughter and four grandchildren -- the son's three children aged 4, 9 and 11, and the daughter's 11-year old son. The story of relatives trying to locate them all is wrenching: The grandparents' daughter was injured and taken into surgery; two of her brother's three children were located - both had been seriously injured and were also in surgery. However, the grandparents, their son, one of his children and the son of his sister could not be found in any hospital.

"It was rare for them to go out for lunch," a relative who came to the hospital said.

The daughter's husband landed in Israel after a long flight from South America. He heard the bad news on landing and drove directly to the Forensic Medicine Institute at Abu Kabir. There, he waited all night to identify his wife's parents, his son, his brother-in-law and his nephew.

* * * * *

The restaurant was apparently owned for the last 40 years by Jewish and Arab partners.

Nir Muli, the grandson of the restaurant's Jewish owner, was quoted in Haaretz as saying, "This restaurant was a symbol of coexistence. We never thought that this would happen to us." "Most of the people who work here are Arabs. I don't understand why they would do this," he said.

* * * * *

The suicide bomber was an apprentice lawyer, according to Associated Press headlines "scarred by her brother's killing."

Her family was "shocked" to hear she was responsible, "but we are receiving congratulations from people," her brother said. "Why should we cry? It is like her wedding today, the happiest day for her," said the 15-year-old.

Friday, October 03, 2003

This from India

"The Long Shadow of Israel" by Lt. Gen. Vinay Shankar (Ret.)
I can't seem to link to this, so am stuck with posting just the excerpt from Asian Age in India, provided by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs' Daily Alert:
India's emerging dependence on Israel for armaments is, unlike the past, a dependence of choice, for almost all our requirements could have been met from alternative sources. However, the Israelis brought more to the table than just commerce; they perhaps also brought a commitment to our security concerns.

Israel has the highest ratio of engineers to population in the world. Similarly, its investment in R&D as a percentage of its GDP is not matched by any other country. Each year its people-to-patents ratio is well above the others.

Through cooperation and strategic linkages with Israel, the benefits that India can derive are considerable. Israel is a small country but it has the potential to prop us so that the hardly visible shadow of India becomes clearly discernible in the Asian region.
It's good, huh? I'll keep trying to provide a working link, so that we can all read the rest.

No time for more blogging now, too much happening on the home front. I'll let you know about the "Panel" when I get to blog on Sunday.

Please participate in the utmost repentance, prayer and charity as Yom Kippur approaches, so that the Jewish people might remove the evil of any decree against us.

Shabbat Shalom.

Debka is on vacation til Oct. 14

How can they do this? I am completely addicted to Debka, and don't think I'll be able to function without it. It's my homepage and checking their headlines is like breathing; I depend on it.

No warning, nothing. Cold turkey.

I'm not providing a link. There's no point.

Thursday, October 02, 2003

Palestinian press marks the beginning of the fourth year of Intifadah

The anniversary of three years of war against Israel was marked by the official PA daily, Al Hayat Al Jadida, with this cartoon

While Israelis are reeling at the anniversary of three years of the Intifadah, this Palestinian cartoon has text that reads: "The Palestinian Intifadah enters its fourth year." Note the subtle, quirky little difference in cultural perspective.

According to Itamar Marcus at Palestinian Media Watch, the cartoon celebrates Israeli losses and suffering by depicting an Israeli squirming in pain, trapped in the fist of the Palestinian arm. The arm has three full-sized muscles, representing the three years, and a fourth small one just beginning to grow.

The PA message to the outer world is that it seeks an end to the violence, but its message to its own people celebrates the war and anticipates its continuation. for another year.

G-d forbid.

Media plagued by Mideast Relativism: Objective reality distorted in favor of the Palestinian regime

Dear HonestReporting Subscriber,

Media coverage of the Mideast conflict is plagued not only by specific episodes of bias, but also by a dangerous set of more subtle, underlying assumptions. To the typical Westerner, the media has generated the following desert mirage:

In this small stretch of arid land dwell two stubborn peoples, led by two even more stubborn elected leaders, and locked in a seemingly endless cycle of tit-for-tat violence. If only the two inflexible sides could be convinced to lay down arms and settle border differences, they could co-exist and the world could put this matter behind us.

The problem is that this depiction ignores what Western observers now recognize, after years of Palestinian violence, to lie at the heart of the conflict - a deep political and cultural clash between a free, Western democracy on the one hand, and a dictatorial thugocracy, fueled by radical Islam, on the other. As Jerusalem Post editor-in-chief Bret Stephens recently stated: "The principal problem in the Middle East is not the unsettled status of our borders. It is the unsettling nature of Arab regimes - and of the bellicosity, fanaticism, and resentments to which they give rise."

In their overarching effort to "remain neutral," the media have settled into a pattern of distorting this objective reality - simultaneously beating Israel over the head with Israel's own organs of democracy, while granting "democratic" legitimacy to a corrupt and dictatorial Palestinian regime. For example, Associated Press recently quoted Yassir Arafat defending his ongoing rule:
"(Bush) has to remember that he had been elected by the Americans and he is representing the Americans, and I have been elected by the Palestinians and I am representing the Palestinians."
The democratic equivalency claimed by Arafat is absurd, yet AP supplies no qualifying statement such as "Arafat was elected with no legitimate opposition, and his term of office expired years ago."

By allowing such a statement to pass without comment, AP flattens key political-cultural differences, and distorts objective reality in favor of the Palestinian regime.

* * *

The Israeli Supreme Court

On September 30, an Israeli court sentenced three Israeli men to extended prison terms for plotting to bomb a Palestinian school. Newspaper editors and ombudsmen have written scores of articles to justify their refusal to call Palestinian suicide bombers "terrorists" ¯ yet news outlets such as AFP and BBC were quick to label the convicted Israelis a "terrorist network."

Striking in its absence was any contrast between Israel's system of justice for controlling extremists, and the utter lack of internal prosecution on the Palestinian side.

By skewing coverage of matters central to democratic process, the media give the impression of a level playing field. Far from achieving "media objectivity," this instead projects a distorted image of the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict - a conflict of political cultures to which Western media consumers are increasingly left in the dark.

Partial (and dated) list of Saudi investments in Islamic centers, mosques and institutes worldwide

This from The Saudi Arabian Information Resource (Riyadh February 2002) via LittleGreenFootballs.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has paid great attention to establishing mosques and Islamic centers, institutes and universities in a number of non-Islamic countries all over the world. Sure that this is the most effective way to spread Islamic culture and Arabic language, the Kingdom, under the leadership of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd bin Abdul Aziz, has established 210 Islamic centers in non-Islamic countries in Europe, North and South America, Australia and Asia. Among the biggest is King Fahd Islamic Center in Malaga, Spain, on an area of 3,848 sq. m., whose foundation stone was laid in 1998. The university-like Center embraces academic, educational, cultural, and propagatory activities.

King Fahd has donated five million US dollars for the cost of the Islamic Center in Toronto, Canada, in addition to 1.5 million US dollars annually to run the facility.

The Islamic Center in Brasilia;
King Fahd Cultural Islamic Center in Buenos Aires;
King Fahd Cultural Islamic Center in Gibraltar;
King Fahd Cultural Islamic Center in Mont La Jolly, France;
King Fahd Islamic Center in Edinburgh, Scotland
were built at the personal expense of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd bin Abdul Aziz.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has also contributed to the establishment of a number of Islamic centers e.g.
The Islamic Center in Geneva;
Islamic Cultural Center in Brussels;
Islamic Center in Madrid;
Islamic Center in New York;
Islamic Center in Australia;
Islamic Center in Zagreb, Croatia;
Cultural Center in London;
Islamic Center in Lisbon, Portugal;
and Islamic Center in Vienna, Austria.

In Africa, the Kingdom fully financed King Faisal Center in N’djamena, Chad, and contributed to the establishment of the Islamic Center in Abuja, Nigeria, and Islamic African Center in Khartoum, the Sudan.

In Asia, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has fully financed King Fahd Islamic Center in the Maldives, Islamic Center in Tokyo and contributed to the establishment of the Saudi Indonesian Center for Islamic Studies in Indonesia.

The Kingdom has established more than 1,359 mosques abroad at a cost of SR 820 million, notably
King Fahd Mosque in Gibraltar;
Mont La Jolly Mosque in France;
King Fahd Mosque in Los Angeles;
King Fahd Mosque in Edinburgh, Scotland;
Islamic Center Mosque in Geneva, Switzerland at a cost of SR 16 million;
the 4000-worshippers-capacity Brussels Mosque at a cost of SR 20 million;
and Madrid Mosque, the biggest in the West.

Other mosques partially financed by the Kingdom included mosques in Zagreb, Lisbon, Vienna, New York, Washington, Chicago, Maryland, Ohio, Virginia and 12 mosques in a number of countries in south America.

In Africa, the Islamic Solidarity Mosque was established in Mogadishu, Somalia,
four mosques in main cities in Gabon,
two mosques in Burkina Faso,
Zanzibar Mosque in Tanzania and
Grand Mosque in Senegal.

Among mosques which received the Kingdom's or King Fahd's personal financial support are Leon Mosque in France (SR 11 million);
King Faisal Mosque in Chad (SR 60m);
King Faisal Mosque in Ghenia (SR 58m);
Grand Mosque in Senegal (SR 12m);
Farooee Mosque in Cameroon (SR 15.6m);
Zanzibar Mosque in Tanzania (SR 10m);
Bamako Mosque in Mali (SR 23m);
Yaoundi Mosque in Cameroon (SR 5m);
Al Azhar Mosque in Egypt (SR 14m for rehabilitation);
Bilal Mosque in Los Angeles;
repairs of the Rock Tomb and Omer bin Al Khattab Mosque in Al Quds;
and Central Brent Mosque in Britain.

King Fahd also established a number of scholarships and academic chairs in foreign prominent universities and colleges.

We can cite King Abdul Aziz Chair for Islamic Studies at the University of California, King Fahd Chair for Islamic Sharia Studies at the College of Law at Harvard University, King Fahd Chair for Studies at the Oriental and African Studies Institute at the University of London, and Prince Naif Department for Islamic Studies at the University of Moscow.

The Kingdom also established a number of Islamic academies abroad. Among them, are the Islamic Academy in Washington at a cost of 100 million US dollars, where multinational students are taking lessons. Now it accommodates 1,200 students, of which 549 are Saudis. The rest represent 29 nationalities;

King Fahd Academy in London whose students belong to 40 nationalities;
King Fahd Academy in Moscow;
King Fahd Academy in Bonn, which cost 30 million German Marks.

A number of institutes, designed to spread Islamic culture and the Arabic language were also opened in foreign countries to serve Islamic communities in non-Muslim countries. They include the Arab Islamic Institute in Tokyo, an affiliate of the Riyadh-based Imam Mohammed bin Saud Islamic University.

Moreover, there are several Islamic schools e.g. in South Korea where 20,000 Muslims have formed the Korea Islamic Federation. King Fahd has appropriated an annual donation worth 25,000 US dollars to the federation. There are also many Islamic institutes all over the world, most notably the Arab and Islamic Institutes in Washington, Indonesia, Ras Al Khaimah Emirate (UAE), Nouakchott (Mauritania), and Djibouti. The Institute of the History of Arab and Islamic Sciences in Frankfurt, Germany, receives an annual financial support from the Kingdom worth 15 million German Marks while the Arab World Institute in Paris receives considerable Saudi contribution to its annual budget.


If one is concerned with Jewish settlements in Judea, Samaria and Gaza -out of either love or hostility- I highly recommend and refer you to the website of The YESHA Council. Anyone with an opinion about a "necessary fate" of these communities, owes it to themselves and to the people who live there, to see what they have to say.

The following is an excerpt from "Diplomatic and Legal Aspects of the Settlement Issue" by Jeffrey Helmreich.
. . . Since their establishment nearly three decades ago, settlements have been the cause celebre of critics seeking to attribute the persistence of the conflict to Israeli policy. The criticism falls into two categories: moral/political arguments that settlements are "obstacles to peace," and legal claims that settlements are illegitimate or a violation of international norms. The pervasiveness of these claims masks the fact that, upon closer scrutiny, they are false, and they hide the true source of grievances and ideological fervor that fuel this conflict.

An Obstacle to Peace?

Settlements make up less than 2 percent of the West Bank. According to Peace Now, which opposes Israeli settlement in the territories, the built-up areas of the settlements take up only 1.36 percent of the West Bank (Foreign Affairs, March/April 2000). B'Tselem, an Israeli human rights watchdog group, places the figure slightly higher, at 1.7 percent. The much larger numbers often used to describe the land comprising Israeli settlements are reached only by including roads and adjacent areas, as well as land between settlements or between settlements and roads, nearly all of which is unpopulated. In truth, settlements simply do not comprise enough land to be serious obstacles to any political or geographic eventuality in the area, be it a Palestinian state or a continuation of the Oslo process.

Some critics charge that settlements prevent peace by blocking the potential for a contiguous Palestinian state in the West Bank, which is proposed in most peace plans. This claim ignores certain basic realities.

The settlers would not block a peace agreement. Most Jews living in the West Bank express a deep love of the land and an attachment borne over two millennia when Jews yearned, prayed, and at times sought to return to their ancestral homeland. This natural bond has led to the view, popular in some Western circles, that these Jews prefer land to life, and would sacrifice the blood of Palestinians and fellow Jews on the alter of their biblical vision. This image -- while dramatic and a neat counterpart to the image of Islamic fundamentalism -- is simply untrue of the settlers today.

A majority of the settlers have already indicated a willingness to relocate if a final agreement should require it, according to a poll taken by Peace Now (Agence France Presse, July 31, 2002). Even if such polls are disputed by opponents of Peace Now, such data indicates a far more pragmatic approach on the part of large numbers of settlers than has been allowed them by their critics.

The overwhelming majority of settlers, close to 80 percent, live in communities such as Elkana, Maale Adumim, Betar, and Gush Etzion, located close to, if not contiguous with, pre-1967 Israel, and which can be connected geographically to the "Green Line" without involving Palestinian population centers. For separate reasons, the settlements in the strategic Jordan Valley do not impede the contiguity of the main Palestinian population centers, or prevent their expansion -- the Jordan Valley is, after all, sparsely populated by Palestinians, with the exception of Jericho, which is today under full Palestinian control.

Most settlements are concentrated in a few areas that, for security reasons, Israel cannot afford to cede. For example, the settlement of Ofra is located next to Baal Hatzor, the highest point in the West Bank and the location of the main early warning station for the Israeli air force. It was from high points along the West Bank hill ridge that neighboring Arab armies twice invaded Israel's low-lying heartland, in 1948 and in 1967, which was then nine miles wide and completely exposed.

The late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, architect of the Oslo Peace agreements, coined the term "security settlements" to describe those communities, in order to emphasize those settlements located on strategic terrain essential to Israel's security interests. And yet, as noted above, these areas make up barely two percent of West Bank territory and nearly all of them do not encroach upon Palestinian population centers or block their contiguity. Moreover, Israel cannot, in any event, afford to withdraw from these small but strategic points even if they were entirely unpopulated. Thus, the presence of settlements in such locations is not the reason Israel remains in these areas.

Settlements are Not Illegal

The settlements are not located in "occupied territory." The last binding international legal instrument which divided the territory in the region of Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza was the League of Nations Mandate, which explicitly recognized the right of Jewish settlement in all territory allocated to the Jewish national home in the context of the British Mandate. These rights under the British Mandate were preserved by the successor organization to the League of Nations, the United Nations, under Article 49 of the UN Charter.

The West Bank and Gaza are disputed, not occupied, with both Israel and the Palestinians exercising legitimate historical claims. There was no Palestinian sovereignty in the West Bank and Gaza Strip prior to 1967. Jews have a deep historic and emotional attachment to the land and, as their legal claims are at least equal to those of Palestinians, it is natural for Jews to build homes in communities in these areas, just as Palestinians build in theirs.

The territory of the West Bank and Gaza Strip was captured by Israel in a defensive war, which is a legal means to acquire territory under international law. In fact, Israel's seizing the land in 1967 was the only legal acquisition of the territory this century: the Jordanian occupation of the West Bank from 1947 to 1967, by contrast, had been the result of an offensive war in 1948 and was never recognized by the international community, including the Arab states, with the exception of Great Britain and Pakistan.

The Settlements are Consistent with Resolution 242

Many observers incorrectly assume that UN Security Council Resolution 242 requires a full Israeli withdrawal from the land Israel captured in the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. Some may have a hidden agenda aimed at depriving Israel of any legal rights whatsoever in the disputed areas. In either case, they use this misinterpretation to conclude that settlement activity is unlawful because it perpetuates an "illegal" Israeli occupation.

The assumption and the conclusion are deeply flawed. Resolution 242 calls for only an undefined withdrawal from a portion of the land -- and only to the extent required by "secure and recognized boundaries." Israel has already withdrawn from the majority of the land it had captured, and nearly all of the areas in which it retains communities are essential to "secure and recognized boundaries." The specific location of Israeli settlements was determined by Israel's Ministry of Defense over the last 30 years, not by the settlers themselves, and they were set up in order to strengthen Israel's presence in those few areas from which it cannot, militarily, afford to withdraw.

Settlements are Consistent with the Geneva Conventions

In three recent emergency special sessions of the UN General Assembly, Israeli settlement was cited as a violation of the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention. These international humanitarian instruments, forged in the ashes of the Holocaust to prevent future genocidal brutality and oppression, were never invoked in 50 years until the case of condominium construction in Jerusalem during 1998. Was such construction -- any settlement construction -- a violation of the Geneva Convention?

No. The relevant clause, Article 49, prohibits the "occupying power" from transferring population into the "occupied territory." Aside from the fact that the territory is not occupied, but disputed, Morris Abrams, the U.S. Ambassador to the UN in Geneva, had pointed out that the clause refers to the forcible transfer of large populations. By contrast, the settlements involve the voluntary movement of civilians.

The U.S. Department of State, accordingly, does not view Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention as applicable to settlement activity in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. For that reason, the official U.S. position has been over the years that settlements are legal, even though successive administrations have criticized them on political grounds. (Only the Carter administration for a short time held that settlements were illegal; this position was overturned by the Reagan administration.)

Settlement Growth Never Violated Oslo

Although certain Palestinian negotiators demanded a settlement freeze, the peace agreement ultimately reached by Israel and the Palestinians at Oslo, along with the Interim Agreement of 1995, allow settlement growth as well as the growth -- and creation -- of Palestinian communities in the disputed territories. The Palestinians acquired planning and zoning rights in Area A, while Israel retained the same rights in Area C where the settlements were located. Indeed, their legal status was to be addressed and decided only in the final status negotiations which, unfortunately, never took place. Until this point is reached, settlement growth remains within the legal scope of the Oslo Agreements.

At the October 5, 1995, session of the Knesset at which the Interim Agreement was ratified, the late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin proclaimed that we "committed ourselves before the Knesset, not to uproot a single settlement in the framework of the interim agreement, and not to hinder building for natural growth" (Israel Foreign Ministry, http://www.israel-mfa.gov.il/mfa/go.asp?MFAH00te0). On the basis of this understanding of Oslo II, the Knesset voted to approve the Agreement.
Helmreich concludes: "One may legitimately support or challenge Israeli settlements in the disputed territories, but they are not illegal, and they have neither the size, the population, nor the placement to seriously impact upon the future status of the disputed territories and their Palestinian population centers."

Israeli Students Boycott Professors who support the Rebel-Pilots

According to Israel National News, the University Students' Union has publicized a call for all students to boycott the 200 professors who signed a petition in support of the "rebel pilots," and not to sign up for their courses.

Igniting the controversy was a letter sent last week to Israel Air Force Chief Gen. Dan Halutz by 27 pilots, including 18 on non-active duty, saying they would refuse to carry out the "unethical" orders to bomb murderous terrorists hiding out amidst Arab civilians. Their many critics state that they are more concerned with the risk to Arab civilians than that to Israelis who are targeted by the terrorists.

The students' call, signed by 22 student union heads from around the country and addressed to the professors, stated,
We call on the student public to give up on the privilege of hearing your learned doctrine and to boycott your lectures.

You, with your confused ideas, are not worthy of imparting knowledge to anyone, and we are ashamed of you. Refusal to carry out orders is against the country's laws and it eats away at the foundations of democracy. It is incumbent on a well-founded state to condemn and uproot phenomena of this nature. . .

The wayward pilots should be made to stand public trial and be stripped of their ranks. By saying that 'the real terrorist infrastructure is the continued occupation of Palestinian lands,' you have 'let the blood' of tens of thousands of students who serve in the reserves for the Israel Defense Forces and who are on the watch night and day to guard the nation and the land."
Three pilots have so far withdrawn their signatures from their original letter, and two more have joined.

Fatah in the News

Armed men from the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the military arm of Fatah, shot to death Nasser Kalawla, 25, in a Ramallah hospital Wednesday night after accusing him of cooperating with Israel. Kalawla, a resident of the Jenin area, had been shot in the leg the previous week by Al Aqsa men and was transferred from Jenin to a hospital in Ramallah due to fears for his safety. (Yediot Ahronot-Hebrew only)

From JPost: IDF forces in Nablus thwarted a terror attack by uncovering a vehicle containing explosives in the city's southern entrance Wednesday night.

Troops fired a mortar at a suspicious car parked at the roadside near the entrance to Nablus. The car exploded and, in a subsequent inspection, was found packed with a large quantity of explosives. The army believes the car was intended to for use as a bomb in a terror attack. This is the third car bomb attack thwarted in the past month, an army spokesman said.

A senior member of Fatah's al-Aksa Martyrs Brigades informed ynet that the car was prepared by Fatah, PA Chairman Yasser Arafat's faction, to be used in a major car bomb attack in one of the Jewish settlements. . . "There are more [explosive] cars on the way, and I have no doubt they will reach their destination," he said.

U.S. to Reduce Involvement in Israeli-Palestinian Dispute

This story, from the Israeli Ma'ariv, is available only in Hebrew. The following capsulation is from the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
Jerusalem believes the U.S. is planning to reduce its involvement in the Middle East and the Israeli-Palestinian dispute. According to a recent estimate in diplomatic circles, "it is possible that the current situation, with its heavy external and internal pressures, will require the [U.S.] government to focus on Iraq and free the president, to a certain extent, from intensive involvement with other issues, including Israeli-Palestinian ones." In Jerusalem it is believed that the problems in Iraq and the decline in Bush's popularity have affected American self-confidence in its ability to broker a deal between Israel and the Palestinians.

Lebanon gives Palestinians gift on third anniversary of intifadah

Draft law would allow Palestinians to own property in Lebanon
The 10 deputies presented a draft "meant to give the right to own a housing apartment for those who do not carry a citizenship issued by a recognized state," the state news agency INA said. . . .

According to the United Nations, two thirds of 390,498 Palestinian refugees in Lebanon currently live in 12 squalid camps across the country.

Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled to Lebanon as part of their nation's mass exodus at the 1948 establishment of the state of Israel, but some have since acquired Lebanese nationality while others emigrated during the 1975-1990 civil war.

Even now, Palestinians find themselves eyed with suspicion by the country's Christians, who fear the mainly Muslim community wishes to settle permanently in Lebanon and render them obsolete as a political force. The fears are reflected in the constitution which, apart from stopping Palestinians from settling here, also bans them from a list of 70 professions as well as purchasing property.
Full story at Yahoo News.

Spreading Saudi Fundamentalism in the US

Network of Wahhabi Mosques, Schools, Web Sites Probed by FBI
Enlightening read, especially with controversy raging over the Patriot Act.
An excerpt:
Backed by money from Saudi Arabia, Wahhabis have built or taken over hundreds of mosques in North America and opened branches of Saudi universities here for the training of imams as part of the effort to spread their beliefs, which are intolerant of Christianity, Judaism and even other strains of Islam.

"A growing body of accepted evidence and expert research demonstrates that the Wahhabi ideology that dominates, finances and animates many groups here in the United States, indeed is antithetical to the values of tolerance, individualism and freedom as we conceive these things," said Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), who has been holding hearings on Wahhabism.

What began as discrete investigations in Idaho, Michigan, New York and Northern Virginia has coalesced in recent months into a cluster of interrelated probes. Prosecutors and FBI agents are trying to determine whether links among the groups suggest a network whose purpose is to incite violent jihad, or holy war, and recruit people to fight it, according to sources familiar with aspects of the investigation.

To date, a variety of charges have been brought against 19 people associated with the groups, and seven have pleaded guilty.

Authorities also are investigating the use of Internet sites, mosques, charities and Islamic conferences as possible venues for recruitment, the sources said. U.S. prisons, where several of the groups have mounted efforts to spread their brand of Islam with outreach programs that include distribution of Korans and other literature, have also come under scrutiny.

The FBI opened a major case file on the suspected network last year, law enforcement sources said, though progress investigating it was initially slow. "The feeling was, 'we see the network, we know it's there, but it's out of our reach. It's so monumental nobody knew how to take it on," one law enforcement official said.
Read it all at the Washington Post.

For more, see "Pentagon Jihadis" by Daniel Pipes, in the New York Post.

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

Update on Boulder Panel

"Multiple Truths Revealed" 7-9 pm tomorrow night at Unity Church - Folsom and Valmont
Several people have written to me that they won't be able to attend this event because observant Jews don't go into sanctuaries of churches. Apparently this was brought to the attention of the organizers early on, but rather than change the venue to be more inclusive, they chose to maintain the location.

Observant Jews are frequently among the strongest supporters of Israel.

NACHAS from Rutgers

"Israel Inspires" responds to three days of hate and extremism with a year of celebration, education, and inspiration.
Come participate in the Israel Inspires Rally on October 9th. Join thousands of people from all over the world as they rally in celebration of Israeli democracy and in support of Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state.
What is the relationship between this program and the National Student Conference of the Palestine Solidarity Movement?

Answer: Organizers of the National Student Conference of the Palestine Solidarity Movement support university divestment from companies doing business with the State of Israel. They have promoted the destruction of the State of Israel and have refused to oppose terrorist attacks against Israelis.

Students United for Israel believes that a secure, economically healthy Israel is in the best position to make peace with its neighbors. Students United for Israel has sponsored a wide array of pro-Israel programs on campus in the last two years that appeal to students' interest in arts, culture, politics and social activities. Israel Inspires will concentrate these programs in a three-day celebration of Israel. Israel Inspires activities will contrast with the negative message of the Palestine conference.

The Palestinian conference at Rutgers presents enormous challenges to our community, but also a unique opportunity to focus increased resources and attention on of the most important issues facing both college students and the entire Jewish community.
Find out what you can do to support these students, and/or send them words of encouragement and gratitude ~ info@israelinspires.org

Kol Hakavod!

I don't know if this is for real or not
"Here's one I hope you like. Feel free to forward. This was sent by a friend who noted that a group of Syrians decided to hold an anti-American rally. Since they couldn't read and write English for their protest signs, they found an English-speaker to "translate" their anti-American slogans for them. They apparently made the mistake of asking the wrong guy to help them and he took matters into his own hands."

Found here via Naomi Ragen.

A top Islamic Jihad leader in Jenin, Bassam Saadi, was caught this morning hiding under a car.

Saadi, arrested by a force of the Golani infantry brigade's elite Egoz unit, is suspected of having dispatched the suicide terrorist who killed Mazal Afari in Moshav Kfar Yabetz in July.

Saadi led opposition within the Jihad to the temporary truce called by militant organizations on June 29 and which later collapsed, Israel Radio said.

In the Jenin raid, soldiers backed by helicopters and tanks raided a section of the refugee camp before dawn and told residents to evacuate the area as they carried out
house-to-house searches for suspected militants, the witnesses said.

They said Saadi was found by tracker dogs beneath a car parked outside a mosque.

The Golani arrest campaign in the camp, which began more than two weeks ago, has netted more than 20 wanted fugitives and headed off a car bombing planned for the northern Israeli town of Bet Shean, security sources say.

Nearly 3/4 of Palestinians Support Arafat

55% support continued suicide attacks
In a new poll published Wednesday, 73.7% of Palestinians said they support Arafat.
He enjoys 41.6% firm support and 32.1% moderate support.
21% said they do not support him, and more than 5% were undecided.
55% said they support the continuation of suicide attacks against Israel
27% oppose the attacks
18% are undecided.

56% are in favor of continuing the Intifada, and 47% believe the Intifada has served Palestinian interests.
(Does this mean that 9% want to continue the Intifada even though they don't believe it has served their interests??)

45% support the peace process. 38% do not.
Read the rest.

Israel approves security barrier route, sort of

The story from Reuters:
JERUSALEM - Israel's government approved the next stage of its vast security barrier in the West Bank on Wednesday, despite international criticism that it cuts deep into Palestinian territory and undermines peace moves.

Political sources said the cabinet had decided to press on with construction of what it calls a security fence to keep out suicide bombers, but that it had opted for now to leave a gap at one point under U.S. pressure.

Leaving the gap patrolled by troops delays a decision on whether the barrier will loop around the sprawling Jewish settlement of Ariel, 12 miles inside the West Bank.

Instead, the government approved the construction of a separate fence near Ariel which could later be joined up with the main barrier, the sources said.

"It kicks the problem down the road a little bit. Eventually they're going to have to decide whether they'll build the rest of the fence or not to fill the gap, and that will bring the problem back to the forefront," a Western diplomat said.

Israeli Justice Minister Yosef Lapid said in a radio interview before the vote that the building work would be coordinated with the United States and that its sole intention was to protect Israelis from Palestinian suicide bombers.

This is the Jewish settlement of Ariel.
Officially designated a city in 1998, with a population of 18,000 Israelis, and home to the College of Judea and Samaria, Ariel is called a settlement.

These are five of the 18,000 Jewish settlers who obstruct peace by living in Ariel.

Ariel is 25 miles from Tel Aviv and 12 or 13 miles inside the "West Bank." (Do the math.)

The "Ariel bloc" includes Ariel, Karnei Shomron, Kedumim, Emanual and a number of smaller communities.
Almost 50,000 Jews and 7,000 Arabs live in the Ariel bloc.

Update on Boulder Panel: "Multiple Truths Revealed"

Tomorrow night, Thursday, 7-9 pm at the Unity Church, Folsom and Valmont
Say What? Anti-Semites? Who, us anti-Zionists? US? We have nothing against Jews as such. We just hate Zionism and Zionists. We think Israel does not have a right to exist. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such. Heavens to Mergatroyd. Marx Forbid. We are humanists. Progressives. Peace lovers.

Anti-Semitism is the hatred of Jews. Anti-Zionism is opposition to Zionism and Israeli policies. The two have nothing to do with one another. Venus and Mars. Night and Day. Trust us.

Sure, we think the only country on the earth that must be annihilated is Israel. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

Sure, we think that the only children on earth whose being blown up is ok if it serves a good cause are Jewish children. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

Sure we think that if Palestinians have legitimate grievances this entitles them to mass murder Jews. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

Naturally, we think that the only people on earth who should never be allowed to exercise the right of self-defense are the Jews. Jews should only resolve the aggression against them through capitulation, never through self-defense. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We only denounce racist apartheid in the one country in the Middle East that is NOT a racist apartheid country. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We refuse to acknowledge the Jews as a people, and think they are only a religion. We do not have an answer to how people who do NOT practice the Jewish religion can still be regarded as Jews. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We think that all peoples have the right to self-determination, except Jews, and including even the make-pretend Palestinian "people". But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We hate it when people blame the victims, except of course when people blame the Jews for the jihads and terrorist campaigns against them. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We think the only country in the Middle East that is a fascist anti-democratic one is the one that has free elections. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We demand that the only country in the Middle East with free speech, free press, or free courts be destroyed. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We oppose military aggression, except when it is directed at Israel. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We really understand suicide bombers who murder bus loads of Jewish children and we insist that their demands be met in full. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We think the only conflict on earth that must be solved through dismembering one of the parties to that conflict is the one involving Israel. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We do not think that Jews have any human rights that need to be respected and especially not the right to ride a bus without being murdered. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

There are Jewish leftist anti-Zionists and we consider this proof that anti-Zionists could not possibly be anti-Semitic. Not even the ones who cheer when Jews are mass murdered. These are the only Jews we think need be acknowledged or respected. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We do not think murder proves how righteous and just the cause of the murderer is, except when it comes to murderers of Jews. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We do not think the Jews are entitled to their own state and must submit to being a minority in a Rwanda-style "bi-national state", although no other state on earth, including the 22 Arab countries, should be similarly expected to be deprived of its sovereignty. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We think that Israel's having a Jewish majority and a star on its flag makes it a racist apartheid state. We do not think any other country having an ethnic-religious majority or having crosses or crescents or "Allah Akbar" on its flag is racist or needs dismemberment. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We condemn the "mistreatment" of women in the only country of the Middle East in which they are not mistreated. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We condemn the "mistreatment" of minorities in the only country in the Middle East in which minorities are NOT brutally suppressed and mass murdered. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We demand equal citizen rights, which is why the only country in the Middle East in need of extermination is the only one in which they exist. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

We have no trouble with the fact that there is no freedom of religion in any Arab countries. But we are mad at hell at Israel for violating religious freedom, and never mind that we are never quite sure where or when it does so. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.

So how can you possibly say we are anti-Semites? We are simply anti-Zionists. We seek peace and justice, that's all. And surely that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
by Stephen Plaut.

Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Terrorists Captured

The Jerusalem Post reports that Shin Bet agents, aided by IDF troops, have captured three members of the Islamic Jihad cell which carried out an attack on the Trans-israel Highway this summer (June) that killed a seven-year-old-girl, Noam Leibovitch.

Three other members, including the leader, have not been caught. According to the report, the terrorists used a cafe and a mosque in Kalkilya to plan the attack and distribute weapons and money funneled from "abroad."

It breaks my heart, but I couldn't remember this shooting, this child. There have been so many. I had to look it up. Here is Noam's story.

Days of Awe

via master blogger, Charles Johnson, at LittleGreenFootballs
At Power Line, the Big Trunk has a fascinating account of a meeting between President Bush and a group of rabbis right after Rosh Hashanah: Days of awe: Meeting with President Bush. (Hat tip: rizzo.)
"[President Bush] talked about his concern of increasing anti-Semitism in Europe, and how he's trying to work with them to eradicate it. He said that we have to fight hard all the isms. Then the Hillel rabbi there talked about the swatiska that Rutgers had recently and the shouting down of pro-Israel speakers on various campuses. He said that he knows about some of that, and that he is keeping abreast of it, that it's a concern. He spoke often about peace and freedom, the importance of optimism and the love of America. He mentioned several times the speech he gave June 24, 2002, where he laid out his principles of fighting terrorism and said the key is to continue to stick to our values and not deviate from them.

"A rabbi mentioned a book he was reading about how the Saudis have continued to profess to be our friends, but support radical Islam all over the world. He asked the President what he thought about it. The President said, 'You basically stated the question. It's not just the Saudis. We're dealing with every country in the Middle East that way except the one democracy, Israel. We have to try to reform them and help them be true democracies.'
Read it all. It's a MUST.

It's "fall fundraising" time at NPR

It's always good to be reminded that there really are many good people out there, paying attention and responding with appropriate outrage to NPR's entrenched bias against Israel. Check this out, and remember, not a Jewish plug nickel to the coffers of NPR - and for good reason:

To: Morning@NPR.org

Thanks for reinforcing my commitment to not pledge any monies to you anymore, after years (decades) of doing so through my local station.

Your coverage today about the fence building in Israel presented the one side you wanted to present: the "con". Even the Israelis that you interviewed were ones who had nothing, or something negative, to say. Do you really think there are not large numbers Israelis who DO support this?

Building a fence is not what Israel wanted to do. You can make it out to be a land-grab all you want. But as you also aptly reported, this is the now the 3-year marking of an uprising that has unleashed unimaginable terror attacks upon civilian Israelis, well within the borders of Israel!

Israelis want peace - not a fence. Israel has offered land for peace since 1948 - "no deal" from the Arabs; "no deal" from the Palestinians. What Israel HAS gotten is attacks and wars that no legitimate country should ever have had to endure for these past 50 years.

The Israelis can remove a fence once they have a partner in peace. Oh, pity the woman and her family that will be separated from her extended family by the fence!?!? What about the families forever shattered by a suicide bombing on a Jerusalem bus that was filled with women and children? This woman still has her family; these Israeli families DO NOT.

If a fence can avert even one successful suicide bombing, wouldn't that be worth it - if it is your family? your friends?

So thank you again - at this time of "fall fundraising" - to remove any pangs of guilt from my commitment to no longer provide any money for your brand of "fair and balanced" reporting.

Boulder, Colorado

Kol hakavod to the writer. Let us all go "from strength to strength" and send our monies to Israel instead of "National Palestinian Radio."

Daniel Pipes on O'Reilly TONIGHT

In Colorado, at 6 pm and again at 9 pm

Colin Powell interview with Detroit Free Press

Excerpts pertaining to Israel:
Q: Can we accomplish any meaningful growth in trade and economic exchange with the Middle East without settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and how far away are we there?
A: I think it will all be so greatly facilitated with the solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict but that's really not holding people back. Right next door in Jordan we've concluded a free trade agreement... and their trade has soared in recent years and is really, really growing as a result of that free trade agreement.

... The king spends a great deal of time in the United States, and I spend a great deal of time in Jordan; I'm very close to him, and I know what his goal is and that is to make his country more democratic, more representative of the interests of the people and not just the monarchy, and to educate his young people for a different kind of future.

He needs to not only trade the usual indigenous goods, he needs to get into the service sector, he needs to get into the IT sector, he needs to upgrade the quality of education in Jordan and that's what every Arab nation has to focus on. That's why, in addition to working on the Middle East peace process between the Palestinians and the Israelis, you'll hear me talk tonight about the Middle East Partnership Initiative, the Millennium Challenge Account, all the other things we have been doing to get ready for the day when there is peace.

Now to your question, we are greatly disappointed in the fact that (Palestinian) Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas resigned from office, and we are now waiting to see whether Ahmed Qureia can put together a cabinet. There's been some discussion over the past 24 hours that a cabinet has been put together.

More important, however, is will the new prime minister have political authority -- real political authority -- that is separate and distinct from that wielded by Chairman (Yasser) Arafat? And will he have full control of the security forces? And if he does have full control over the security forces, will he use those security forces to go after terrorists?

The fact of the matter is that as long as Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad can just sit back and make their own judgment as to whether they think things are going well or not and decide whenever they wish to that they're going to blow up another bus full of children and bring the whole thing to a halt again -- until the Palestinians take on that challenge and say to them "No, enough of that. This is no longer an acceptable way to achieve our political objectives. We will never get a Palestinian state as long as we try to do it by blowing up innocent people. We're blowing up the dreams of our own people."

And until the Palestinian leadership takes on that challenge, we can have conferences, we can have plans, we can have proposals, we can have timelines, but it will be very difficult to go forward.

Israel knows it has to meet its obligations under the road map, has to end settlement activity, unauthorized outposts have to go. I have a serious problem with this fence that's being built. We have to open up access between Palestinian cities, towns and villages. We've got to get Israeli troops out of there and turn responsibility back over to the Palestinians. We had started down that road right after Aqaba, when we got everybody on the road map. It was slow, it was halting, it couldn't go fast enough because we couldn't guarantee that Hamas wouldn't start it all up again -- and they did.
Q: How do you find someone to make this work that is acceptable to the United States and Israel and also has credibility with the Palestinian people? And as settlements expand and the fence is built, it's carving up the West Bank and doesn't it almost preclude the possibility of a Palestinian state?
A: We painfully came to the conclusion that Chairman Arafat was not a partner for peace. The Israelis had come to that conclusion some time ago. President Clinton came to that conclusion at the very end of his administration. The last day of his administration he called me as I was getting ready to become Secretary of State the next day and all of his efforts had just come to naught. And he let me have it for about 20 minutes on the phone about Yasser Arafat and how a great deal had been put before him and he didn't take it.

I tried for 14 months to try to get Mr. Arafat to move. I got him out of his confinement in the Muqata'a (Arafat's compound) twice. I went into the Muqata'a through Israeli lines, then the Palestinian lines, with one set of bodyguards passing me off to another set of bodyguards and I sat there across from him when he had a machine gun on his desk and told him that you've got to change. You simply have to become a partner for peace and start taking action against terrorists or we're not going to get anywhere and I'm not going to be able to deal with you.

We got him out of that situation and he didn't change. And so last year, the 24th of June, the president gave a speech, a vision for the Palestinian state that would need new leadership. And guess what, we found new leadership in Prime Minister Abbas, so the Palestinians, with Arafat, created a prime minister position, and we wanted to work with him. And that's why the president went to Aqaba and before that Sharm al-Sheik.

But Abbas was not able to get full control of all the security forces, couldn't wrest them away from Arafat, Arafat constantly undercut him. And finally Abbas said "I've got to have it or I'm going to quit." Arafat didn't give it and he quit.

Arafat is still seen by the Palestinian people as their leader. You can't take away from people what they think about leadership and who their leader should be. But the Palestinian people have to start looking at what that leadership has gotten them. It's not gotten them one day closer to the Palestinian state.

And they're cheering him on now because the Israelis, I think, made a mistake in threatening to exile him and kill him and other things. They just put him back on Page One and every television station. It was a mistake.

With respect to the second part of your question, actions such as continuing settlement activity and a fence that is on your property is fine, but as it transgresses and goes into Palestinian territory, you're creating a de facto situation which makes it harder to define the contiguous line needed for a Palestinian state. We've made it clear to the Israelis that we wouldn't be interested in any final solution that looks like Bantustan or a bunch of little fiefdoms all over the West Bank. It has to be a contiguous, sensible state. So if we can get to the point where we're having those discussions it will be very tough. President Clinton had some very tough discussions with the Israelis and got them to acknowledge how much would have to be given up in order to bring peace between the two parties.

I think if you can get to that point where serious negotiations on what the state looks like take place, you can make progress. Because the reality is that Israel needs peace just as badly as the Palestinians do. Demographically Israelis need peace. Arabs and Palestinians will outnumber them and it will, de facto, by demography, become a Palestinian area pressing in on Israel. Isreali leaders know this and the Israeli people know it. And they know they will have to make the kinds of sacrifices suggested by your question.

Beverly Hills homes and stores defaced in graffiti attack coinciding with Rosh haShanah

Associated Press
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. - About 15 homes and stores were vandalized over the weekend with graffiti attacking various religious, political and minority groups, police said Monday.

The graffiti was found early Sunday on upscale homes, two clothing retailers and a Pottery Barn store, which included statements hostile to President Bush and Jews, police Lt. Mitch McCann said.

No synagogues, mosques or other religious institutions were damaged and the vandalism lacked any specific patterns, McCann said. Police were investigating the incidents and no arrests had been made, he said.

The attacks, which targeted sites between Sunset and Santa Monica boulevards, coincided with the Jewish new year, Rosh Hashanah.

BOULDER: Lop-sided Panel on "Israel and Palestine"

Thursday night, 7-9 at the Unity Church at Valmont and Folsom
Please don't miss this. FOME [Focus on the Middle East], a self-described subgroup of the Jewish Renewal Community of Boulder, is presenting a panel called "Multiple Truths Revealed" wherein pre-selected panelists will present their "individual truths" about the decades-long conflict between Israel and the Arabs.

This is how the panelists are described:

"The Moderator" - Daniel Ziskin, one of the event's coordinators and founder of JOTE [Jews of the Earth]

"A Zionist" - Raz Telchai, ::enthusiastic applause:: Director of the Boulder Jewish Identity Center

"A Jewish Moderate" - Rabbi Victor Gross of the Jewish Renewal Congregation Pardes Levavot

"A Jewish Progressive" - Irving Greenbaum of CJJP [Colorado Jews for a Just Peace]

"A Non-Violence Advocate" - someone ? from RMPJC [Rocky Mtn Peace and Justice Center]

"A Palestinian" - Aref Malawi

Panelists will each speak uninterrupted for 10 minutes, then there will be a Q&A session.

I don't know Rabbi Gross's position, but I bet it doesn't include Israel's rights to the disputed territories in Judea and Samaria. I imagine that he believes that if you give the Palestinians the West Bank and Gaza, they will stop killing Jews --Camp David notwithstanding-- and everyone will live happily ever after.

As for representatives of these other groups, don't let the organizations' names fool you; they are not concerned with peace or justice. They are simply pro-Palestinian groups, and in my experience, it is a short and slippery slope from there to terror advocacy. Note that the "Colorado-Palestine Solidarity Campaign" links to both CJJP and RMPJC at their website - http://palestineday.eccmei.net - the homepage of which equates Israelis with Nazis.

I was present at a CJJP demonstration where the group was mourning the death of Rachel Corrie, a misguided young American terror advocate. They read a list of the dead, including suicide bombers and bomb-makers who accidentally blew themselves up. CJJP big-wig Leslie Lomas said that all the deaths were equal in G-d's eyes. A suicide bomber, a peaceful Jewish infant, theoretically it's all the same to her. Inconsistent with this view, however, Lomas focuses only on the suffering of Palestinians caused, in her opinion, only by Israelis.

The representative of CJJP will be Irving Greenbaum. Irving has signed on to A Call to Bring the Settlers Home to Israel from the Jewish Alliance for Justice & Peace (there they go again, hogging all the good words) which proposes to BRIBE the so-called settlers with so-called "suitable compensation" to move out of the terror-tories.

Irving also penned a Guest Opinion in the Boulder Daily Camera June 23, 2002, attempting to explain how Jewish values demand that we appease terrorists. I don't buy it, and neither should you; but read it anyway.

I'll never forget witnessing someone ask Irving, quite tongue-in-cheek, why he hated Jews so. His response was vociferous: "Why do you THINK I hate Jews?!" . . . 'nuff said.

RMPJC, the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center, "created in the spirit of unconditional nonviolence," is forever claiming it is not anti-Israel, but nevertheless is associated with organizations such as CCMEP [Colorado Campaign for Middle East Peace] that train and fund pro-terror activists. These activists have been shown on international television kissing and hugging Arafat, as well as aiding and abetting the terrorists who took hostages in, and trashed, the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.

A friend of mine witnessed a RMPJC-sponsored presentation by the head of the Holy Land Trust. According to her, this U.S.-educated Arab spouted the blood libels of Jewish "genocide," "massacres," and "mass deportations" of Palestinians, along with such nonsense as "the Palestinians have no history of being militant." The RMPJC audience received these lies enthusiastically, with one voicing that "if you eradicate Zionism, you end the whole problem" and others muttering "dirty Jews." The RMPJC is fanatically far-Left, obsessed with Bush hatred and opposition, and infatuated with the Palestinian cult of victimhood and violence.

CCMEP is vile. On their website, under the headine, "Millions Rally Against War" they show "Pictures of Anti-War Protests from around the World," including this:

Banners read in Turkish: "Long Live Global Intifada."

The photo is captioned, "Turkish protestors shout slogans against U.S. and Israel as they march through central Ankara September 27, 2003. Nearly five thousand protestors, including Islamists and leftists, gathered to rally . . . ."

Which are the leftists? Which the Islamists? I'm telling you, it's a slippery slope. And at the bottom of that slope you fall into a sewer where Anti-War protestors call for GLOBAL INTIFADAH.

PLEASE ATTEND this panel presentation. Raz Telchai is a passionate supporter of Israel, but will be hugely outnumbered on this skewed panel.

Bring your facts, your reason, your clarity and your love for Israel -- and prepare to have them challenged during the revelation of these "multiple truths."

Not to worry, it's all in the name of "peace."

Monday, September 29, 2003

The media is (literally) careless in coverage of Rosh haShanah murders

Honest Reporting continues to reveal bias against Israel in the media. Their latest communique focuses on the Rosh haShanah murders (if you don't understand the reference, read David Wilder, below).

The BBC's headline was "Three Dead in West Bank Attack" -- presenting a "gross moral equivalence between the terrorist and victims - all of whom are grouped together, without specifying that one of the 'three dead' murdered the other two in cold blood." The headline fails to identify anyone (Arab attacker, Jewish victims) and ignores that fact that one of the victims was a baby.

Comments to: newsonline.complaints@bbc.co.uk

Reuters cannot bear to let their report go without adding this rationalization: "Palestinians regard Jewish settlements in the West Bank and Gaza Strip as major obstacles to peace and have regularly attacked them."

Thus Reuters seems to portray that Palestinian terrorists purposefully killing baby Jews is really just their way of removing obstacles to peace. Does anybody buy this? Murdering babies at the dinner table in a quest for peace?

Comments to: editor@reuters.com

Three days later, a Yahoo News search for "Shaked Abraham" yields no news stories; a Google News search yields two hits. There is not a single American news reference to "Eyal Yeberbaum" that I could find.

Arab jihadists don't want Jews around them; they don't want Jews to live in the disputed territories in the state of Israel, and it may eventually be that they don't want Jews in other places, either. And if they don't want Jews in a place, they will come into Jewish homes at any time they want - including our Days of Awe - and murder anyone they can find - including our infants and our children. It will not merit much of the world's attention, and it will be accepted. Unless we do something.

You can start by letting Shaked Abraham and Eyal Yeberbaum, their lives and their deaths, mean something to you.

Negahot, a Jewish community of about thirty families, in the southern Hebron hills.

Person of the Year by David Wilder

in full at Arutz Sheva
. . . I participated in early morning prayers at Ma’arat HaMachpela, the Tomb of the Patriarchs and Matriarchs. It is difficult to characterize one’s own prayer, but I found my worship to be troubled. Reflecting on the past year was very painful. For many years, while living in Kiryat Arba before moving to Hebron, I prayed at the same synagogue with my friend Rabbi Eli Horowitz, sitting one row behind him. Year after year I would not only see his prayer, but in many cases actually sense it, especially during the High Holy Days of Rosh HaShana and Yom Kippur.

It was only a few months ago that Rabbi Eli Horowitz and his dear wife Dina were cut down in their apartment, murdered while eating their Sabbath meal on a Friday night. This Rosh HaShana, his image seemed to be constantly before my eyes.

On Saturday morning, during prayers, a friend of mine said something to me about the year starting off with a ‘bang.’

When I asked him what he was talking about, he looked at me with surprise and asked, “What, you don’t know?” When I shrugged, he added, “Negahot – a terrorist infiltrated last night, started shooting, and killed two people.”

Just as we were sitting down to eat on Friday night, so, too, Eyal and Sarah Yeberbaum, together with friends Shai and Shira Abraham and some other guests, were dipping an apple in honey. Negahot, their home, is about ten miles south-west of Hebron. . .

Eyal Yeberbaum, 27 years old, had served in Negahot while still in the army and, after marrying a year ago, brought his bride to live in this beautifully scenic community. The Yeberbaums, together with their neighbors the Abrahams and some other guests, welcomed the New Year with hope and expectation for a happy, sweet and good year.

It was just after nine o’clock when their dinner was interrupted by sharp knocking at the door. Eyal asked twice, “who’s there”, but received only a garbled, unclear answer. When he slowly opened the door, weapon in hand, a twenty-one year old terrorist from a nearby Arab village opened fire with an automatic rifle, killing Yeberbaum.

A guest in the house quickly shot at the terrorist, preventing him from entering the home. The terrorist, standing outside, started blasting his rifle at the ‘caravan’ home, whose walls are constructed of plasterboard. As a result of this shooting, seven month old Shaked Abraham, infant daughter of Shai and Shira, was hit in the chest. Her father, an ambulance driver, together with his wife, attempted to resuscitate their daughter; to no avail. She died in their arms. Two other guests were slightly wounded.

Soldiers serving in Negahot quickly arrived at the site and within two minutes killed the Arab attacker. It was later learned that the murderer, Mahmoud Hamdan, was recently released from an Israeli prison after serving thirteen months because he planned to blow himself up in a suicide attack against Israelis. An Arab gets a year in jail for attempted murder, is released, and then fulfills his wish by killing a baby and a 27-year-old man on the eve of the New Year.

At the end of every year, it is customary in certain circles to crown a ‘person of the year.’ I spent some time thinking about who is my ‘person of the year.’ In the end, I decided that my choice is not one particular person, rather, it is a collective – Am Yisrael, living in Eretz Yisrael – the people of Israel, living in the Land of Israel, they are my ‘person of the year.’

Sure, people like Rabbi Eli and Dina Horowitz, Shaked Abraham and Eyal Yeberbaum. Not only them though – also Eli and Dina’s children, Shaked’s parents, and so many others who have been afflicted by Arab terror, which has left hundreds and thousands of dead and wounded. These are the people who are continuing to live – who are not giving up, are not leaving their homes, and have not despaired of their dream. These are the people of the year – and they are not just in Yesha - Judea, Samaria and Gaza. They are from Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, and Hadera and Haifa, Eilat and Shlomi – continuing to live – to dip an apple in honey, wishing each other a happy, sweet and good New Year, despite the difficulties, despite the pain. This is the real Am Yisrael, which has returned home – to our eternal home, our only home, Eretz Yisrael.

With blessings from Hebron, with blessings for a happy and better New Year, from all of Hebron’s men, women and children.

This is what Rabbi Levi-Yitzchok of Berdichev (1740-1810) once said

before the sounding of the shofar
"Lord of the Universe, you said let it be a day of shofar-blowing and in honor of that one commandment we blow the shofar 100 times.

Multitudes of Jews have been blowing the shofar for thousands of years, and we multitudes of Jews have been shouting and praying and begging you for centuries:

Sound just one great blast of the shofar and set us free

- and still you have not done so!"

May the merit of this tzaddik protect us.

Inevitable Disobedience by Moshe Feiglin

Another seam in the Israeli social fabric came apart this week.

The boastful slogan coined by former Air Force Commander Ezer Weizmann: "The best men become pilots – and receive the best girls", reflected the elite of Israeli society – the IAF pilots. And now they have given a slap in the face to this society by declaring: "You are not moral".

What do people want from the pilots?

If the State of Israel has abandoned the elimination of the leadership of the Hamas terrorist organization in order not to harm "innocent people", why shouldn't the pilots do the same?

Morality isn't confined to a specific position. Why is Defense Minister Mofaz's morality better that that of the pilots?

The State of Israel arose on the basis of a set of values that inevitably led a thinking person to reach the views expressed in the pilots' letter. The guilt does not lie with them but with that set of values. In fact, those who signed the letter did us a favor, by forcing us to examine for ourselves our basic moral assumptions.

What gives a soldier in a checkpoint in Kalandia the right to check the bags of a local Arab? Not to shoot him, just check his bags?

The amazingly simple answer is: the ownership of the country. If this is our country, then we have the full right to be there and check anyone suspected of threatening our sovereignty. I have the right to ask a person wishing to stay in my home to identify himself, and I have the right to employ force against him if he refuses to leave. But if this is not our country, we have no right to invade the lives of the residents.

The State of Israel has declared that the heart of the country, the land of the Bible, the cradle of the Hebrew nation, is not ours, but that we have conquered it. In this we have destroyed the fundamental moral argument.

If so, how can the state justify its violent activities in the "territories" (even before mentioning the colonialism of the neighborhoods of Gilo and Ramot in Jerusalem).

Israel says that these are acts of self-defense. We have to check the trunk of the Peugeot or make targeted attacks on terrorist leaders because they are killing us. The moment they stop, we will also do so. In other words, our moral right is derived from the right of self-defense.

But this is a very weak argument. First of all, they claim that they are killing us because we are occupying their country. Until we leave, taking the last of our dead with us (as Mahmud Darwish said) we cannot make the claim of self-defense, because we are the attackers.

Secondly, the Israeli principle of self defense is based on the Western/ Christian principles of morality, in which self defense is permissible only for the weak against the strong. You cannot eliminate those who do not directly present a threat to you. You cannot defend yourself while at the same time killing women and children weaker than you.

These two principles, on the one hand the (lack of) sovereignty, and on the other hand, the Christian war morality, form the current basis for the moral ethic code of the IDF.

The State of Israel has itself adopted the principles that leave no alternative to thinking, principled people, who wish to be honest with themselves, other than to disobey orders. Until a revolution takes place in the ideological basis for the existence of the state, until we return to our basic Jewish principles, we cannot say that this is our country, and we cannot free ourselves from the bonds of Christian morality when trying to defend ourselves.

The result will be that Jewish children will die instead of Arab children, Israeli society will continue to disintegrate, and the IDF will rely on "robot" soldiers after it has lost the best of its combatants.
Moshe Feiglin is the head of the Jewish Leadership faction, Manhigut Yehudit, of the Likud.

Winston Churchill:

"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last."

Monday Morning in The Terror-tories

Palestinian Men, Women and Children Rally Against Israel

Monday morning, what shall we do? How about parading down the street with RPGs, shouting anti-Israel slogans?

Palestinian ladies "vow to continue the fight against Israel."

Appealing or Appalling? Which side are you on?

Palestinian schoolchildren holding Islamic Jihad flags run through Gaza City trying to catch up with a Unified Palestinian rally joined by all factions, PFLP, DFLP, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Fatah, in Gaza City Monday Sept. 29 2003. Hundreds marched shouting anti-Israeli and pro-Arafat slogans. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

"Schoolchildren"?? My kids are "schoolchildren." These are terrorists in the making.

Can you imagine a child wanting to be a bomb when s/he grows up?
Venahafoch hu! - Everything is turned upside down.

Sunday, September 28, 2003

While Jews were praying for peace in the New Year, the world was on the march Saturday . . . against Israel

In Sofia, Bulgaria

In Barcelona, Spain

Banner reads, "No Occupation in Iraq and Palestine"

In Athens

In Istanbul

Turkish protestors hold banners that read: "Long Live Global Intifada!"

In Lahore, Pakistan

Pakistani women carrry signs saying, "Sharon - Butcher" and "Stop Killing Children in Palestine."

In Paris

Parisian protestors hold parts of fake wall, symbolizing separation barrier being built by Israel.

And last, but not least, in Berlin

Protestor holds up red-painted hands in imitation (and glorification) of lynching of Israelis in Ramallah:

Meanwhile, Palestinians on Sunday celebrated three years since the beginning of their present war of terror against Israel. I just can't bear to post any more tonight. If you're anxious to see photos of more Jew-haters, you'll have to wait til morning.

Rosh HaShanah Joy Shattered

Terrorist Kills Baby and Man Friday Night - Two Others Seriously Wounded

Shaked Abraham was 7 months old. This was her first Rosh HaShanah, her first celebration of a New Year. She was murdered in the sanctity of her own home, at her family's holiday table, for being a Jew. She wasn't even old enough to speak the word.

The terrorist also killed 27-year-old Eyal Yeberbaum. He was buried at midnight tonight.

Jerusalem Post reports: A Palestinian gunman broke into the settlement [of Negohot] and made his way to one of the caravans there. The attacker knocked on the door of the home inside which a Jewish family and guests were sitting down to Rosh Hashana dinner. Yeberbaum, armed with a handgun, opened the door and was shot and critically wounded. He died a short time later.

The owner of the house and a visiting soldier picked up their weapons and fired at the gunman, who peppered the caravan with bullets while trying to escape. One of the bullets sailed through the caravan and hit a seven-month-old baby girl who was sitting in her pram. The baby was critically wounded and died a short while later.

. . . An Israeli volunteer from the Orthodox Jewish emergency organization ZAKA cleans blood from the entranceway to the settlement home which was the site of the killing of an infant and a man during a family holiday dinner, in Negahot, a small settlement near the West Bank town of Hebron, Sunday, Sept. 28, 2003

An army reserve unit protecting the settlement was also sitting down to dinner at the time the first shots rang out. The soldiers left the dining hall and rushed to the caravans, where they spotted the terrorist. At first, the reservists thought the man was a settler, as he was wearing civilian clothing and was carrying an M-16 with telescopic sight. The soldiers called on the man to take cover inside one of the caravans, but he turned to them, yelled Allah HuAkbar (God is great) and opened fire on them. The soldiers returned fire and killed the terrorist.

Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility.
The murderer was 22 years old, released from an Israeli prison two months ago.