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Saturday, December 13, 2003

Hitler wine sales soaring

Ananova: Christmas sales of Adolf Hitler wine have reached a record high thanks to publicity generated by attempts to ban it in both Brussels and Berlin.

Wine-grower Alessandro Lunardelli started selling the bottles of Hitler wine in 1995 after the success of his Mussolini label back home in Italy.

He has already made a fortune but says this Christmas sales have "gone through the roof" thanks to the interest generated by publicity over attempts to ban his wine.

"Getting sued was the best thing that could have happened," Lunardelli said in a telephone interview from his company's headquarters near Udine on Italy's border with Austria.

Lunardelli was also sued in Italy over his Mussolini wine but escaped fines and jail because authorities said it could not be proven he was promoting fascism.

His Hitler wine has caused a similar row, with Germany asking Italy to act to stop Lunardelli. He said the publicity helped him reach thousands of new customers across Europe.

The Hitler wine is on the market with the slogan "One People, One Empire, One Leader" and has variations with pictures of Rommel and Goering.

Lunardelli rejects any allegations that he is promoting fascism and Nazism and points out he also offers bottles with pictures of Marx, Stalin, Lenin and Che Guevara.

"It's strange that Stalin murdered 15 million people, but there is no fuss about the bottle. And for the labels with Hitler and Mussolini I ended up in court," said 41-year-old Lunardelli.

The Words of Mohamed ElBaradei, director of the International Atomic Energy Agency:

via LGF

About Israel:
"We work on the assumption that Israel has nuclear capability."
About Iran:
"You are saying it is 'assumed,' but we do not work on the basis of assumptions. We work on the basis of facts, witnesses, and records. We do not take a leap of faith and jump to conclusions. Their activities could have been used for nuclear weapons, but could easily have been used for civilian purposes, as well. Unless we see direct evidence that there is work and activities on nuclear weapons - and we haven't seen any of that - we do not jump to conclusions."

Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades:
"a largely autonomous militant group"

Release the prisoners: A masked member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a largely autonomous militant group linked to Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat 's mainstream Fatah movement, marches during a rally to demand the release of Palestinian prisoners from Israeli jails in Gaza City. (AFP/Mahmud Hams)

What the hell is "largely autonomous" supposed to mean? That Arafat only controls them somewhat? I know there's a message there somewhere . . .

Friday, December 12, 2003

ISRAEL: 7 Breslov Hassidim shot by Arab Terrorist

Near Kever Yosef, in Schechem
7 Breslov hassidim were shot by an Arab terrorist near Kever Yosef, in Shechem. Two of the injured are listed in serious condition.

Police arrested 9 other Jews for the crime of praying at the holy site, and upsetting the local Arabs. According to Israeli law Jews are forbidden to enter into territories which have been surrendered to the Arabs.

It may come as a surprise to the Israeli government, but many people do not acknowledge every moronic agreement it signs, particularly those that are violated by the Arabs immediately after. Why should they change their religious traditions because some naïve patsy who was elected largely because of the Arab vote was suckered into giving away Jewish land? Arafat is indeed, as the Israeli government has stated, irrelevant, but so are the mindless treaties and agreements signed with him, including the surrender of Kever Yosef in Shechem.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

EXCELLENT sample letter from VIPAC:

"I don't want you using MY money to fund Arafat's terrorism"
Use a subject line (the most important thing, as they don't always read the letters, but tally them by subject) such as:
Stop Funding Terror
Not with my money!
PLO still funds terror
You are aiding terrorists
Stop sending $ to PLO terrorists
Sample Letter:
President George W. Bush
The White House
Washington, DC
via E-mail

Dear Mr. President:

I think you are making a terrible mistake by supplying U.S. tax dollars
to Arafat's PLO at an ever accelerating rate, currently exceeding 200 million
dollars a year.

The PLO uses this money to pay for suicide bombers. Your supply of
hundreds of millions of dollars to the PLO makes it easier for them to continue
their campaign of Islamic terror. Just last week, on December 3, two Islamic
Jihad terrorists were arrested on their way to carry out a suicide bombing in an
Israeli school at the Yokneam commercial center. The suicide bomber - Manir
Shade Mohammed Rabia, 23, is a member of the Palestinian National Security
Service and the dispatcher of the suicide bomber - Morad Hassan Diab Abu-Zeyton,
20, is a member of the Palestinian National Security Service from the village of
Zbuba near Jenin.

That means that both of these Islamic terrorists are on Arafat's
official Palestinian Authority payroll, and therefore both have salaries that
are subsidized by your administration.

I remember when you were campaigning for the presidency, you pointed out
that since American citizens pay the taxes that fund the U.S. budget that "It's
not the government's money. It's your money." And you were absolutely right.

You are taking our money, my money, and giving it to Arafat who uses it
to pay the salaries of suicide bombers like those captured this Dec 3. I object
to this horrible misuse of our country's precious tax dollars. And I am ashamed
that my government continues to use my money to subsidize Arafat's Islamic


The President's email: president@whitehouse.gov
The Vice President's email: vice.president@whitehouse.gov
White House phone: 202-456-1111 Fax: 202-456-2461
Senate and House switchboard: 202-224-3121
Click on "Govt. Email Addresses" at www.vipac.org for other officials.

The mother of my husband, and grandmother to my children

Boulder Daily Camera
She was a remarkable woman. May her memory be for a blessing.


Shalom from Israel,

In the past, we have had the privilege of sending Pizza, Hot Soup, Burgers, Chanuka Donuts and other special food from you to our soldiers serving out in the field. Once again thank you on their behalf.

We look forward to the day we can write to tell you that Israel's brave soldiers are sitting in their barracks with nothing to do -- but unfortunately today the opposite is true. For them, the last six months have been far more difficult than the preceding months. Additionally, the economic situation in Israel has now also hit the defense budget, even affecting the army mess halls. As a result, the food we bring the soldiers from you has become even more valued and more appreciated.

Now, in addition to the Burgers, Pizza and Ice Cream that you have been sending all year, you can treat our soldiers with traditional Donuts (sufganiot) for Chanuka.

You can send your donuts from www.PizzaIDF.org. On the site read the wonderful messages people send with their gifts, letters from the soldiers themselves, and also see photos of soldiers "in action" with their pizza and donuts!

Please also tell your friends about this way to help bring cheer to our soldiers.

If you wish, we can send your relatives and friends a certificate indicating that, in lieu of a Chanuka present this year, you have sent a gift in their name to our soldiers.

We wish you and your families a Happy Chanuka -- and once again thank you for all your support.

Shimon Aharon

PS Contributions of over $250 are U.S. tax deductible.

In terms of Jewish pride, Israeli government outdone by cartoon character

A recent episode of the popular "Simpsons" cartoon show featured the Bar Mitzvah of the middle aged 'Krusty the Clown.' Krusty, a regular character on the show, was known in previous editions for his personal problems, including his dependency on alcohol and his poor relationship with his family.

It's really sad to see Israel's leaders (Ehud Olmert, Sharon, etc) outdone by a cartoon character in terms of Jewish pride. An alcoholic, often depressed cartoon clown with pointy green hair is now a greater symbol of Jewish pride and tradition than the leaders of the supposedly Jewish state. After that episode I can't tell if I should laugh or cry.

Pope calls for "concrete acts" from Israel, Palestinians

Palestinian woman rides her donkey next to part of the
controversial "security" wall. French and Israeli Foreign
Ministers Dominique de Villepin and Silvan Shalom have
expressed diametrically opposed views over the
"security" wall (AFP/Saif Dahlah)

We recognize the political opinion of "AFP" expressed by putting the word, security, in quote marks when it is not a quotation. Point taken, that the evil Joooos are not really trying to save lives by preventing suicide attacks, but rather seek only to humiliate, inconvenience and otherwise oppress their Arab neighbors, who mean them no harm, except for maybe a few marginal extremists.

See AFP story on the pope's comments, and their coverage of disagreement between French foreign minister de Villepin, who condemns the Israeli security fence, and his Israeli counterpart, Silvan Shalom, who defends the fence:
Addressing some 400 guests, Shalom replied that the barrier was "necessary and legitimate" and that there was no other way to protect the Israeli people against terrorist attacks. A barrier was "always reversible, human lives are irreversible," he said to applause.
De Villepin, on the other hand, said that the fence risked "fuelling the hatred" between Palestinians and Israelis.

Car explodes outside Italian synagogue, killing Arab driver

JPost: A car exploding outside a synagogue in the north Italian city of Modena at 4 AM local time Thursday, killing the driver.

According to Italian news services, the driver, a Jordanian citizen, set fire to the car. Two policemen guarding the synagogue spotted the car in flames and attempted to put out the blaze, but moved away just before it blew up. The car was reportedly a liquid propane propelled Peugeot.

No other casualties were reported. Buildings in the immediate area were moderately damaged. Investigators were inclined to believe it was a suicide and not an attack on the synagogue.

Police are not treating the matter as a terror attack, since the odd time of the explosion indicates the driver had no intention of causing fatalities. Cinzia Ricciardi, a police official in Modena, said it appeared the man took his own life but that the investigation was still under way.

There have been several recent anti-Semitic incidents in Italy, which has a Jewish community of some 30,000 people.

"The more Israel offers, the more Palestinians demand"

JPost: There are seemingly endless meetings, speeches, and ceremonies aimed at solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But underneath it all, nothing changes. Why this is so can be understood in terms of two disproved propositions:

Israel must keep offering the Palestinians more until they accept a deal. This is the only way to achieve peace.

If Israel keeps offering more concessions it will win international support and sympathy.

Both these ideas seem logical. This is how international relations often works and conflicts are resolved. And this set of ideas was the basis for the Oslo peace process. Moreover, this approach has basically governed Israeli policy during the last decade.

The problem is: In this specific case the formula does not work. On the contrary, it is road map for disaster. Several thousand people have died partly because of a well-intended but misconceived acceptance of the concessions strategy.

This is not a matter of ideology or Left and Right. Comprehending the situation is a matter of analysis, experience, and observation. We must put aside our preferences and wishful thinking in order to see the reality that is all too apparent.

The propositions of concessions and international sympathy might hold true if the sole Palestinian grievance were Israeli rule over the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem since 1967, and their sole goal were to gain an independent state in which Palestinians can prosper and live in peace.

Unfortunately, this is not the case.

Things would probably be different if there were a Palestinian leadership which educated its people toward more moderate goals and was ready to fight extremists. The current leadership, however, presses a hard line; schools, media, mosques, and the overwhelming majority of political organizations all push against moderation.

I HAVE joked that if Israel were to offer Yasser Arafat all the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and east Jerusalem (plus billions of dollars in compensation money), his response would be, "OK, now let's talk about the return of all refugees."

The affair of the so-called Geneva Accord has proven this jest to be an accurate assessment of the situation.

A central problem is that Arafat is not a nationalist whose appetite would be assuaged by the creation of a state. He cares nothing for the kind of social, educational, economic, and other systems he could put in place as leader of a country. Palestinian living standards and welfare are a matter of indifference for him.

Arafat is basically a combination of old-fashioned Islamist, who believes that God is on his side and that compromise is sinful, and romantic revolutionary, who does not want the battle to end and would view its termination as a betrayal of everything he stands for.

While there are many moderate Palestinian elements they do not affect policy.

What has instead happened is that the Palestinian appetite grows with the feeding. The more Israel offers, the more Palestinians demand.

Experience has taught the Palestinian leadership that as it refuses compromise, Israelis who claim to speak for Israel offer more concessions.

There is also a psychological and ideological gap regarding the implications of continued concessions. In the West, moderation and generosity are taken as proofs that one truly wants to settle a dispute; in the Middle East they are taken as signs of weakness and of knowing that one's cause is unjust.

Yet even in the West, the strategy of giving more and more concessions has been taken as proof that Israel is at fault and the occupation (along with settlements, the fence, and so on) is the central problem in the conflict.

INSTEAD, OF course, the central problem is a Palestinian refusal to settle for anything but everything, either immediately or in stages. The use of terrorism as the main strategy of the Palestinian movement (and of the sponsoring Arab states) both reflects and deepens the problem.

I do not write these words lightly. This is the result not of a predetermined ideology but rather of experience, along with a careful reading of what is actually said and done by the Palestinian leadership and opinion-makers.

These are not people whom Israel will persuade by concessions.

Ironic and controversial as it may be, it is nonetheless true that Israelis are more eager to withdraw from the territories and to see an independent Palestinian state established - as long as it has the prospects of being stable and peaceful - than is the Palestinian leadership.

This is neither a colonial problem nor the mere result of an oppressive occupation. It is an ideological issue on the Arab side, one of how the conflict is defined and the methods deemed worthy of pursuing it.

By continuing to insist that the problem is that Israel has not offered enough, Israelis do not prove their goodwill but rather seem to suggest that they are the guilty party. This is also part of the reason for the world's hostility.

These unfamiliar concepts for the West should be becoming more familiar from having to deal with such Middle Eastern phenomena as the Iranian revolution, Saddam Hussein, Osama bin Laden, and radical Islamism.

Previous generations supposedly learned such lessons in dealing with fascism and communism: Not everyone is a pragmatist eager for conciliation with those who prove their good intentions, willingness to make concessions, and kind natures.

These are hard words to say, but they are needed to explain why this conflict has gone on for endless decades, bred so much hate, and cost so many lives.
The writer is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center of the Interdisciplinary Center, and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal.

"Without resistance, we have nothing to do"

JPost: At Beir Zeit University's student election, which focused on which party had killed the most Israelis, Hamas swept to victory Wednesday, defeating Yasser Arafat's Fatah. . .

In voting Wednesday, Hamas won 25 seats of the 51 on the council, Fatah took 20, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - a radical PLO faction - won five and the lesser-known People's Party got the remaining seat.

During a two-day campaign, the parties debated, marched through campus with war drums reminiscent of the Prophet Muhammad's instrument and waved party flags.

At a debate, the Hamas candidate asked the Fatah candidate: "Hamas activists in this university killed 135 Zionists. How many did Fatah activists from Bir Zeit kill?"

The Fatah candidate refused to answer, suggesting his rival "look at the paper, go to the archives and see for yourself. Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades have not stopped fighting the occupation."

Fatah set up models of Jewish settlements and then blew them up with fireworks. The display was meant to emphasize the group's focus on attacking settlers and their communities - considered by Palestinians to be one of the most provocative elements of Israel's occupation of territory they claim for a state.

Hamas countered by blowing up models of Israeli buses, a tribute to the dozens of suicide bombings its members have carried out in the past three years, killing hundreds of Israelis.

Activists straddled on their shoulders samples of the group's homemade Qassam rockets - often fired at Gaza Strip settlements and Israeli towns that border the coastal area.

Student issues were barely touched on because the Palestinian's main problem is the Israeli occupation, candidates said.

"We have been living under hard conditions. Our students are going through checkpoints, many of them have been scared and arrested, so this is our life now. Our life is resistance," Samara said.

Hamas said fighting Israel is the only issue. "We are a resistance movement and without resistance we have nothing to do," said Moussa Kiswani, a prominent university Hamas activist.

The campaign was so focused on violent activities that officials at the university - considered the most liberal of the Palestinian higher education institutions - were nervous.

"We were worried ... the atmosphere seems very dangerous," said Ludna Abdel Hadi, a university spokeswoman.

She said the student elections have wider significance. "The Bir Zeit elections are like a barometer to measure the political mood on the Palestinian street."

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

HAMAS issues instructions: Fully reactivate all terror units for fresh offensive

DEBKAfile Special Report
The next Hamas suicide bomber can kill without strapping a bomb belt to his body. DEBKAfile’s counter-terror sources reveal the new type of explosive going into use after the collapse of the Cairo ceasefire talks as being much smaller and lighter while packing a much larger bang. It is compressed enough to be carried in a small bag or hidden in the killer’s clothes. A vest can be soaked in its liquefied form. Improved detonators and timers enable the bomber to start the countdown before he reaches target. By the time he is searched at the entrance to a mall or bus station, the bomb is on timer.

This week, after the breakdown of the Egyptian attempt to broker a Palestinian ceasefire, Hamas leaders issued instructions to the operational commands in Damascus and the Gaza strip to fully reactivate all terror units for a fresh offensive against Israel. They agreed to cooperate.

A senior Hamas operations commander in the Gaza Strip Abu Muhaheed forewarned Palestinian officials of this decision and told them of the extra-powerful, miniaturized explosive substance for use by Hamas suicide bombers.

Israeli security experts confirm the improved incendiary is far more powerful than the types used hitherto by Palestinian terrorists. It appears to be a new cocktail not previously encountered in the Palestinian terrorist offensive in Israel.

DEBKAfile’s Counter-terror sources add that the Hamas appears to have obtained the new explosive from the Hizballah together with the improved timers and detonators which enable the terrorist to activate the charge between ten and twenty minutes before he reaches the scene of attack. Even if he is caught on the way to target, there is no way the bomb can be disarmed. It will go off exactly at the preset time.

Israeli counter-terror chiefs have suspected that a new kind of composite bomb substance was about to go into use after two British Muslim suicide bombers attacked a Tel Aviv seafront bar at the end of last April. One fled, the other’s body was found with an unknown type of explosive.

On May 20, the presumption was confirmed when the Israeli navy succeeded in capturing an Egyptian fishing boat, “Abu Hasan,” en route from Beirut to Gaza. On board was one of Hizballah’s expert bomb-makers, Hamad Amra. Found in his possession were 36 instructional video tapes demonstrating how to assemble explosive material and the different ways of incorporating them undetectably in fine undergarments or even outer wear to defeat the searches of bags.

Security experts assume that the Lebanese Shiite terrorist group transferred the experts and the know-how to the Hamas in the Gaza Strip, with the help of Syrian military intelligence.

A Palestinian boy cries as he is arrested by an Israeli
border police officer, after the boy threw a kitchen knife
at the officer near the barrier that seperates East Jerusalem
from the West Bank town of Abu Dis, Monday, Dec. 8, 2003.
(AP Photo/Kevin Frayer)

Comments from a thread at LGF

"there are those of us out here that . . . can be counted upon to do the right thing"
I don’t know if this is the correct thread to post these comments on, but I’ll risk it on this thread and do it anyhow. I grew up in Elizabeth, NJ. During the late ‘40’s and through the 50’s I lived in the Elmora neighborhood. By the name you’d think it was a Latino area. But no, the locals called Elmora Ave. “New Jerusalem Ave.” because of the great influence of Jewish people. And this post is dedicated to those Jewish people that made up my neighborhood and my childhood.

This is for you, Abigail and Naomi. Thank you and your grandfather, who frightened me with his great white beard, yarmulke and huge girth for letting me sit in your parlor to watch the 12” black and white TV cartoons every afternoon for 15 minutes. We didn’t have a TV until 1956, but you included me in, and I loved it.

Thanks to you, Norm Gerson, who owned the butcher shop/grocery store. You clued my parents in to the rooms above your store that were for rent, and we moved in. You carried my mother on the grocery bill, and even treated me to slices of corned-beef and cheese when I went to pick up her order.

This is also for Gertrude Young, a German ex-pat lady who ran the bakery next to the movie theatre. I worked there for two years and still have a taste for her Hammentashen, Rugullah and Challah (spelling ???). She knew her customers, and treated them well. I have yet to taste a bagel like those she imported from Brooklyn!

I remember Goodman’s deli. I have never eaten a better sandwich; you could hardly get your mouth around it. And Stu Goodman would always let you pull a kosher pickle out of the barrel, if you insisted. He complained, but always got over it and forgot to charge.

And my friend Susan, who at 13 years old invited me to the YMHA for a “social” and a sleepover later at her house. I got my first kiss from David, a gorgeous Jewish boy, that night, and I’ll never forget it. The next morning her mother soaked Matzos and mixed them with eggs to make a great breakfast for us. She hung a name on that dish, but I just don’t remember. Anyone know?

And then my mother. As a small child, I was not allowed to touch some of my parents’ things. Off-limits were some books that today would be called “coffee-table” books. They were “Best Photographs of 194…whatever”. I recall being disobedient and looking through those books. They were filled with black-and-white photos of the horrors of the Holocaust and W.W.II. The pictures of the Jewish people in the European ghettos and the concentration camps really disturbed me. My mother realized that something was troubling me, and it didn’t take much on her part to get my confession. She understood that I was worried about my Jewish friends, and concerned that maybe the “bad people” would come and take my friends away. She never reprimanded me for my offense, but instead just reassured me that the war was over and that those things weren’t ever going to happen again. My mother passed away this past year. We never spoke about that time again. I wish that she was still here to reassure me, however, today I have no illusions. That which I thought could not happen again seems to be possible today. And like then, I don’t understand it. But I do know, that over my dead body, will I allow anyone to harm anyone just because of a group they belong to.

Sorry to use up so much of your bandwidth, Charles. But I thought I’d confirm my support for you and so many of your posters, who may not know that there are those of us out here that might seem silent, but can be counted upon to do the right thing, when and if necessary, for the Jewish people who we learned to love so many years ago.

Monday, December 08, 2003

My husband's mother, Batya bat Sarah v'Nachum, passed away peacefully during the night.
May her memory be for a blessing. Our family is deeply grateful for your prayers.