Thursday, July 20, 2017

  • Thursday, July 20, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Mic? What mic?

 Unaware that his remarks were also being transmitted to reporters outside, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu criticized the European Union in unusually harsh terms on Wednesday for its treatment of Israel, urging the leaders of four Central European countries to use their influence in the organization to ease its conditions for advancing bilateral ties.
“I think Europe has to decide if it wants to live and thrive or if it wants to shrivel and disappear,” he said in a closed-door meeting whose content was accidentally broadcast to journalists outside the room. “I am not very politically correct. I know that’s a shock to some of you. It’s a joke. But the truth is the truth — both about Europe’s security and Europe’s economic future. Both of these concerns mandate a different policy towards Israel.”
During the meeting, Netanyahu also urged the leaders of Hungary, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Poland to close their borders to refugees from Africa and the Arab world, and praised the administration of US President Donald Trump for its “stronger” position on Iran and Syria.
The funny part is, there was no fallout. There was no difference between what Bibi said behind closed doors and what he says in public, if he was a little less diplomatic.

Some interesting analysis from Tal Shalev and Lahav Harkov:
[D]espite the obvious embarrassment, the incident is not necessarily bad for Bibi, as it proves he actually delivers the same messages both inside closed doors and outside as well.  His staunch defense of Israel will definitely earn him some points with his base, and prompted some speculation and theories that perhaps the hot mic wasn't unintended. 
I was wondering the same thing. His comments made him look good. Barely past what Israel has admitted in the past (like how many Hezbollah targets have been bombed in Syria) but altogether nothing embarrassing and in many ways it enhances his reputation.

I'm sure the EU has heard the exact same complaints by him in the past as well, and as of this writing there has been no reaction.

Interestingly, Arab media have emphasized one very small part of what he said about how Israel has good relations with Arab countries and that they speak to Israel about technology and other common interests. There are no protests at this information.

The dreaded "normalization" is practically here and no one really cares.

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The recent terror attack at the Lions’ Gate in Jerusalem reminded me, as if I needed reminding, of the complexity of the Jewish-Arab conflict in the land of Israel.

There are actually three separate conflicts raging in the same place, involving more or less the same people. They have distinct objectives, but they are intertwined in a complex way, which is detrimental to ending any of them.

The first is the political conflict between the State of Israel and the PLO in its embodiment as the Palestinian Authority (PA). This is a disagreement over borders, settlements, security, and other geopolitical issues.

The second is the national conflict between the Jewish people and those Arabs whose self-defining national narrative is that of “Palestinians.” This is a disagreement that can be characterized as an argument over the historical title to the land between the river and the sea.

The third is the religious conflict between Jews and Muslims. This stems from the Islamic ideas that Muslims are superior to non-Muslims (especially Jews), that they should live under shari’a (which implies Muslim sovereignty), and that land that has once been Muslim must not be allowed to remain in the hands of infidels.

The various attempts to end the conflict have mostly focused on the political conflict, and to a great extent ignored the national and religious ones. This confuses people who don’t understand or aren’t aware of the latter two, which in my opinion are far more important than the political one.

So, for example, when Yasser Arafat walked away from a political compromise at Camp David/Taba that was unprecedented in its generosity, US President Clinton was shocked. But the compromise did not include recognition of a right of return for Arab refugees, and thus represented an defeat in the national conflict that could not possibly be accepted by Arafat.

The Arab position in the national conflict is based on the Palestinian narrative, in which the “Palestinian people” are a distinct people who have been living for many generations, even from biblical times, in the land. They had a flourishing civilization which was usurped by Zionist colonizers, who invaded Palestine and dispossessed the indigenous Palestinian inhabitants in 1948. The continued occupation – which includes the territory on both sides of the Green Line – is a continued besmirching of Palestinian honor.

This story is entirely false, but that doesn’t matter, because the Arabs firmly believe it, and – of great importance in an honor-shame culture – much of the rest of the world believes it too. The implication of the story is that the “Palestinian people” had their most important possession, their land, taken from them by force – and they were unable to prevent it. Not only that but (and here we see the interplay between the national and religious conflicts) it was done by the despicable Jews. Only a complete reversal of the act of dispossession, in which Palestinians violently dispossess the Jews, can begin to restore Palestinian honor.

The religious and national conflicts are intertwined. The original Hamas charter refers to the land between the river and the sea as an “Islamic waqf,” that is, as inalienably Islamic property, once governed by Muslims and now in the hands of infidels. The imperative to regain this land for religious reasons is thus added to the need to do so in order to restore national honor.

The conflict that is going on right now at the Temple Mount is over both religion and national honor. Of course there is no Islamic issue with metal detectors, which are in use in Mecca during the Haj, along with even more invasive security measures. However, the idea that Jews (or non-Muslim Israelis like Druze police officers) can decide who is allowed to enter the site damages the honor of the Arabs, both as Muslims and as Palestinians. The fact that these metal detectors were introduced in response to a brutal murder is not relevant for Palestinians who believe that violent ‘resistance to occupation’ is fully justified, and for Muslims who believe that jihad for the sake of recovering land that was once dar al-islam is praiseworthy.

In other words, the murder of the two policemen is not seen as immoral, but Jewish control of Muslim Palestinians is.

There is no way to separate these conflicts. Not only that, but the tools that would be employed for solving the political one – negotiations, compromise, concessions on both sides – are precisely the wrong ones to use for conflicts based on honor and religion. In the latter cases, concessions are seen as admissions of weakness, a reason to push harder. So it isn’t puzzling that Arafat responded to the failed Camp David negotiations by launching the Second Intifada; he saw the Clinton and Barak offers as signaling their desperation, and expected that more violence would bring about the collapse of the tottering colonialist empire (despite all his years of trying to kill them, he never understood Israelis).

In pre-modern days, national and religious conflicts were easy to solve. The side with military superiority would drive out, kill or enslave the enemy population. In the today’s enlightened world, it’s not so easy (although third-world actors still do it under the Western radar whenever possible). This is surely the option the Arabs would take if Israel were weaker, but Israel is too Western and too modern to behave like that.

Sometimes what appears to be human progress is actually the opposite. Contemporary diplomacy can only solve political conflicts, not ones about national honor or religion. So they go on forever.

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From Ian:

State Dept blames Israel for causing Palestinian violence
Rex Tillerson’s State Department added blistering anti-Israel language to this year’s “Country Reports on Terrorism,” adopting a tone not seen even during the hostile Obama era.
On Wednesday, Tillerson submitted the annual report to Congress. This year’s report may come as a shock to the overwhelmingly pro-Israel majority that elected Donald Trump president.
The report appears to blame Israel for the lack of peace between the two sides, pointing to a “lack of hope” as a “driver” for Palestinian violence.
Tillerson’s State Department concluded that Palestinian terrorism is motivated by “Israeli settlement construction in the West Bank, settler violence against Palestinians in the West Bank, the perception that the Israeli government was changing the status quo on the Haram Al Sharif/Temple Mount, and IDF tactics that the Palestinians considered overly aggressive.”
Continuing its pro-Palestinian posture, the next paragraph of the State Department memo commends the Palestinian Authority chairman for condemning acts of violence.
Tillerson continues to shock supporters of Israel with his pro-Palestinian policy promotion.
In May, the embattled secretary of state blackmailed Israel, using the debate over its embassy move as a bargaining chip for Palestinian statehood. That same month, he described Tel Aviv, not Jerusalem, as the “home of Judaism.”
Unlike U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, Tillerson refuses to recognize that the Western Wall is in Israel. Moreover, his State Department continues to reject Israeli claims over the city of Jerusalem.
Israel UNESCO is a full partner in Palestinian incitement
Israel has charged that UNESCO’s actions have helped Palestinians use the Temple Mount to incite violence against Israel.
“UNESCO is a full partner to the false incitement by Palestinians and radical Islam who claim that Al-Aksa [Temple Mount mosque] is in danger,” Israel’s ambassador to UNESCO in Paris Carmel Shama HaCohen said on Thursday.
HaCohen said that Israel hopes to see an end to the incitement that comes from sensational and false stories put out by Arab and Palestinian media about the Temple Mount.
This year, both UNESCO’s Executive Board and its World Heritage Committee passed a resolution that disavowed Israeli sovereignty on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem’s Old City, known to Muslims as Al-Haram/Al-Sharif. This followed two years of resolutions that also ignored Jewish ties to the Temple Mount - as well as the city of Jerusalem as a whole - by referring to Judaism's holiest site solely by its Muslim name.

Will UNESCO ever condemn Temple Mount terror attack?
Will the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) stand up and condemn a murderous terror attack which took place on a UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site, and the use the Heritage Site to store weapons for the attack?
That is the question Israeli envoy to UNESCO Carmel Shama Hacohen posed to the international body on Thursday in a letter to its director-general, Irina Georgieva Bokova.
While UNESCO has designated the Old City of Jerusalem, the Temple Mount included, as a UN-protected World Heritage Site, since last week’s murder of two Israeli Border Police officers by a gang of Arab terrorists, the UN organization has yet to issue any form of condemnation against the terror attack.
In his letter, Shama Hacohen urged UNESCO to stand by its pledge to protect World Heritage Sites and condemn the use of one in facilitating Friday’s attack. Authorities believe that the three terrorists responsible for the attack stored their firearms in one of the mosques on the Temple Mount with the help of officials from the Waqf, the Islamic trust charged with managing the holy site.

I have seen young people and older people too, who are good democratic liberals, lovers of peace and gentleness, struck dumb with admiration for individuals threatening or using the most terrible violence for the slightest and tawdriest reasons. They have a sneaking suspicion that they are face to face with men of real commitment, which they themselves lack. And commitment, not truth, is believed to be what counts.
Allan Bloom, The Closing of the American Mind, p. 221

Bloom was writing in the 1980's, basing himself on his experiences on college campuses in the 1960's.

Today, we witness a more nuanced approach, where "activists" under the banner of "human rights" use their halo -- some times as a shield, other times as a hammer -- preaching about commitment to high ideals and human values, while appealing to people's baser instincts.

Linda Sarsour is one such "activist." The deserving cause of the Muslim rights in America apparently cannot be achieved unless Islamophobic and alt-right villians can be revealed and attacked in order to increase her audience and galvanize it into action.

Lahav Harkov and Petra Marquardt-Bigman, among others have examined Sarsours hateful statements and tweets and have written about what they reveal about her. Yet despite what Sarsour says, not matter how nasty she may get, her self-proclaimed dedication to human rights suffices for the media to raise her on a pedestal -- and protect her from criticism.

Not that this is surprising.
We have seen this before.

In April, The New York Times came out with an Op-Ed entitled,Why We Are on Hunger Strike in Israel’s Prisons, by Marwan Barghouti, described as "a Palestinian leader and parliamentarian." It was only later, in reaction to criticism, that the paper decided to describe Barghouti more fully in a correction:
This article explained the writer’s prison sentence but neglected to provide sufficient context by stating the offenses of which he was convicted. They were five counts of murder and membership in a terrorist organization. Mr. Barghouti declined to offer a defense at his trial and refused to recognize the Israeli court’s jurisdiction and legitimacy. [emphasis added]
Marwan Barghouti. Credit: BDalim, Wikipedia

Not content, The New York Times came out with an article about Marwan Barghouti's wife: Fadwa Barghouti is the unflappable voice of a jailed Palestinian freedom fighter -- this despite the admission in the piece that
Reflecting on that time, Fadwa repeats over and over that Marwan never killed with his own hands. He led, she says, but he never killed. [emphasis added]
The New York Times is similarly glowing about Sarsour, proclaiming: Linda Sarsour Is a Brooklyn Homegirl in a Hijab:
She has emerged in the last few years not only as one of the city’s, and the country’s, most vocal young Muslim-American advocates, but also as a potential — and rare Arab-American — candidate for office.
Linda Sarsour. Credit: Wikipedia

Again, The New York Times is more interested in her commitment as a "vocal young Muslim-American advocate" than it is interested in what she actually says and how she says it. The most controversial thing it quotes her saying is a gratuitous swipe at Israel:
Then, last summer, Mr. Brown was killed in Ferguson. “I was sitting here in Brooklyn,” Ms. Sarsour said, “and heard he’d gotten shot and was lying in the street for four and a half hours. I was like, ‘Wait a minute. This happened in the United States of America? You hear about that happening in Palestine.’
The New York Times does not mention her attacks on critics, such as Sarsour's tasteless tweet threating to take away the vagina of female genital mutilation survivor Hirsi Ali.

Meanwhile, The Washington Post ran an article in February, March catapults Muslim American into national spotlight and social-media crosshairs describing her as "one of the highest-profile Muslim American activists in the country" who "despite a barrage of hateful messages and violent threats targeting her on social media" has "continued a punishing schedule of activism as she has sought to bring her heightened profile, and a new sense of what is possible, to a range of resistance movements that are developing in the first weeks of President Trump’s administration."

As Petra Marquardt-Bigman writes, the Washington Post article:
allows Sarsour to airily dismiss a vile tweet she posted in 2011 fantasizing about Brigitte Gabriel and Ayaan Hirsi Ali “asking 4 an a$$ whippin’” and expressing the “wish” to “take their vaginas away” because “they don’t deserve to be women.” All Sarsour has to do now is to shrug off her vicious outburst as “stupid” and to dismiss it as simply a reflection of her being “a brash New Yorker.” An open threat against Brigitte Gabriel also posted by Sarsour remained unmentioned
The Washington Post is nothing if not consistent.

Just as The Washington Post frames Sarsour's critics as reacting to her rise in the public eye, when Sarsour spoke about jihad against the White House, the headline did not address the provocative term but rather the reaction to it: Muslim activist Linda Sarsour’s reference to ‘jihad’ draws conservative wrath.

Lee Smith noted that Sansour did something sensationalist, and then played the victim -- aided by The Washington Post.

More importantly, Smith notes Sarsour's message to the American Muslim community which the media ignored:
“You can count on me,” she told an audience of American Muslims, “to use my voice to stand up, not only to people outside our community who are repressing our communities, but those inside our communities who aid and abet the oppressors outside our community.”
Right, it’s a threat. If you don’t see things like she does, even if you’re Muslim, then you’re in for it— Linda Sarsour is watching. Linda Sarsour has your name.
James Kirchick writes that the whitewashing of Sarsour in the media is common. She uses the term "Islamophobia" as a catchall phrase to tar her critics, and the media plays along:
The point of the term “Islamophobia” as used by Sarsour and her sympathizers is very often a self-interested and dishonest one—namely, to delegitimize critics by lumping them in with fringe racists and bigots. “Feminist activist Linda Sarsour has become one of the far right’s favorite targets,” declares Newsweek. The Times, meanwhile, characterizes her “critics” as “a strange mix, including right-leaning Jews and Zionists, commentators like Pamela Geller, and some members of the alt-right.” All this is being done in an effort to excuse Sarsour’s own extremism.
But even when the media plays along, there appear to be limits.

This week, the Women’s March came out with a tweet celebrating the birthday of Assata Shakur, the black militant who killed a New Jersey state trooper in a 1973 shootout. She later broke out of prison and escaped to Cuba in 1984, where she remains on the FBI's “most wanted terrorists” list. Not content with the one tweet, the group then came out with a series of tweets defending what they had done.

Jake Tapper criticized them.

In response, Sarsour lashed out:

Alexander Nazaryan of Newsweek reported
But the criticism leveled on Tuesday against Tapper by liberal activist and Women’s March co-founder Linda Sarsour has struck many as malicious, misguided and unjustified, though others defended her ferocity...Sarsour chose to respond by branding Tapper a member of the alt-right, a loosely defined movement that includes nativists, nationalists, anti-Semites, Islamophobes and anti-establishment meme warriors. Under no definition of the term, however, would Tapper, who is Jewish and a long-standing member of the Beltway media-political nexus, belong in that category.
In the long term this is not going to have an effect on Sarsour's tactics, nor on the attitude of the liberal media.

But it was refreshing to see the media's blinders momentarily removed.

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Saeb Erekat, among others, claim that Israel's placing metal detectors at all the entrances to the Temple Mount (it already had them at the single entrance for non-Muslims) is a violation of international law.

For example:
Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah on Tuesday called on the international community to make Israel remove metal detectors from the entrances to the Temple Mount.
“We call on the international community and the Arab and Islamic states to take responsibility for... stopping the occupation’s measures that are in contravention with all laws, agreements and international charters,” he said.

Even if one regards parts of Jerusalem as occupied, the Fourth Geneva Convention very clearly allows the occupying power wide latitude in what it deems necessary for security measures. In fact, security measures override many other rights mentioned in Geneva.

The most relevant section is Article 27, which reads in full:
Art. 27. Protected persons are entitled, in all circumstances, to respect for their persons, their honour, their family rights, their religious convictions and practices, and their manners and customs. They shall at all times be humanely treated, and shall be protected especially against all acts of violence or threats thereof and against insults and public curiosity.
Women shall be especially protected against any attack on their honour, in particular against rape, enforced prostitution, or any form of indecent assault.
Without prejudice to the provisions relating to their state of health, age and sex, all protected persons shall be treated with the same consideration by the Party to the conflict in whose power they are, without any adverse distinction based, in particular, on race, religion or political opinion.
However, the Parties to the conflict may take such measures of control and security in regard to protected persons as may be necessary as a result of the war.
 The ICRC's 1958 commentary on the last paragraph says:

The various security measures which States might take are not specified; the Article merely lays down a general provision. There are a great many measures, ranging from comparatively mild restrictions such as the duty of registering with and reporting periodically to the police authorities, the carrying of identity cards or special papers, or a ban on the carrying of arms, to harsher provisions such as a prohibition on any change in place of residence without permission, prohibition of access to certain areas, restrictions of movement, or even assigned residence and internment. 
A great deal is thus left to the discretion of the Parties to the conflict as regards the choice of means. What is essential is that the measures of constraint they adopt should not affect the fundamental rights of the persons concerned. As has been seen, those rights must be respected even when measures of constraint are justified.
Note that the mild restrictions enumerated by the Convention are far more severe than requiring people to walk through a metal gate.

There are absolutely no restrictions of any fundamental rights of any persons - except for Jews who are now banned from visiting the Temple Mount because some uttered prayers out of earshot of any Muslims.

As always, the Palestinians and their allies are perverting international law.

And as always, the media's vaunted "fact checkers" don't even bother doing their jobs when the lies don't offend them.

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  • Thursday, July 20, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

  • Wednesday, July 19, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon

No, this is not a spoof.

From Toronto Metro:
As Queer Arabs of Halifax continue to boycott Pride for a second year, a number of groups have decided to join them in solidarity until issues of pinkwashing are resolved.
Pinkwashing is when groups or individuals use LGBTQ issues and spaces for their own marketing and political agendas.
“Halifax Pride is still not acknowledging pinkwashing… and the way they acted in the AGM, [annual general meeting] “ said a member of Queer Arabs Halifax, who asked to remain anonymous, on why they’re continuing the boycott.
“It’s going to take time for wounds to heal and until Pride apologizes publicly, it’s not going to solve anything.”
Speaking with Metro earlier this month, Halifax Pride did apologize for the events that occurred at the 2016 annual general meeting, although they did not mention Queer Arabs directly or acknowledge pinkwashing in their events.
At the AGM, Queer Arabs Halifax had put forth an amendment to remove pro-Israel campaign from Pride events, as well as other pinkwashing concerns.
Instead of hearing those concerns and addressing them in a way to mitigate harm, Halifax Pride chose to go through with a public meeting wherein the opposed amendment was voted publicly. It was a really traumatic experience for the people who were in attendance,”said Carmella Farahbakhsh, volunteer and administration coordinator at South House, one of the groups also boycotting Pride.
Farahbakhsh said that Halifax Pride had not apologized publicly to the Queer Arabs group or acknowledged their lack of support and communication since the AGM.
What happened at the AGM?
At the Pride annual general meeting last October, a resolution to remove a pro-Israel campaign hosted by the Atlantic Jewish Council from the Pride festival was defeated by majority vote, leaving societies such as the Queer Arabs of Halifax feeling marginalized and ignored.
The "Queer Arabs" were upset that their resolution wasn't accepted without a vote, and when the majority of members voted against it!

Because it is self-evident that any gays who support a state that support gays are the bigots, while the gays who support states that would put them in jail (or worse) are the liberals.

And it is equally self-evident that when people vote for something you are against, the vote is invalid.

Not only that, but other queer groups are joining the Queer Arabs in boycotting a Pride Parade that allows people who support Israel.

You simply cannot make this stuff up.

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From Ian:

UN Watch: Report on U.N. Social Media Posts Accusing Israel of ‘Apartheid’
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres just swore in a new head of ESCWA, the UN regional agency for the Middle East that is composed of 18 Arab states, and based in Beirut. Israel has been excluded from the time the agency was founded four decades ago.
In March, Mr. Guterres rightly took action to remove ESCWA’s unauthorized publication of a politicized report—co-authored by Richard Falk, a discredited former UN official who was condemned by Ban Ki-moon for promoting 9/11 conspiracy theories—that demonized Israel as an “Apartheid” state.
As stated by Mr. Guterres, the Executive Secretary of ESCWA is “a representative of the Secretary-General.” As such, Mr. Guterres is obliged to uphold UN discipline regarding posts that single out a member states in contravention of the UN Charter.
ESCWA Speeches and Posts Demonizing Israel
Despite Mr. Guterres’ clear and unequivocal stand in March, numerous ESCWA webpages, Facebook posts, and tweets continue to display this same “Israel Apartheid” slur.
For example, on 6 March, Mr. Guterres’ then-representative Rima Khalaf abused the occasion of International Women’s Day at UN House in Beirut—with Mr. Guterres’ photo on display, and right after his message was read—to attack “the Israeli apartheid regime.” A room full of UN officials heard it, yet failed to object. Ms. Khalaf is gone, yet her obscene remarks are still online on the UN site.
UNESCO is an Immoral, Anti-Semitic Organization
Although Europe claims to respect human rights and the rights of peoples, it has been a party to violating the most essential right of the Jewish people: the recognition of its existence for more than 3,000 years, and the anchoring of this existence to its sacred monuments. Worse, Europe does so in the name of a people fictitiously invented less than 50 years ago. No serious scholar can find any trace of a "Palestinian people" before the 1960s. Europe has apparently been all too happy to accept lies.
While claiming to fight terrorism, Europe complies with the demands of a terrorist movement that does not even bother to hide its terrorist nature. When Mahmoud Abbas speaks Arabic, he continually incites the murder of Jews. He recently repeated that he would not stop paying tried, convicted and imprisoned murderers of Jews, and still calls these murderers heroic "martyrs". On all maps used by the Palestinian Authority and in Palestinian textbooks, Israel does not exist; it is called Palestine.
Europeans, imbued with a generic sense of guilt, began attributing all that is wrong in the world to Western civilization. Because they had colonized parts of the Muslim world, they failed to note that Muslim culture had, in fact, colonized Persia, the Byzantine Empire, the Middle East, Greece, Cyprus, the Balkans, North Africa, Southern Spain, and, more recently, northern Cyprus.

Operation Good Neighbor: Israel’s massive humanitarian aid to Syria revealed
The Israeli military on Wednesday unveiled the scope of its humanitarian assistance in Syria that has dramatically mushroomed over the last year to include treating chronically ill children who have no access to hospitals, building clinics in Syria and supplying hundreds of tons of food, medicines and clothes to war-ravaged villages across the border.
Since Syria disintegrated in to a brutal civil war that has left hundreds of thousands dead and millions displaced, Israel has struggled with how to deal with the humanitarian disaster taking place just across the border, a dilemma made even more complicated by the fact that Israel and Syria remain officially at war.
Israel initially responded by providing medical treatment to Syrians wounded in the war, treating more than 3,000 people in field hospitals on the border and in public hospitals, mostly in northern Israel since 2013.
But on Wednesday the army revealed that since June 2016 it has quietly been working on Operation Good Neighbor, a massive multi-faceted humanitarian relief operation to keep starvation away from the thousands of Syrians who live along the border and provide basic medical treatment to those who cannot access it in Syria because of the war.
In the year since the operation was launched, over 600 Syrian children, accompanied by their mothers, have come to Israel for treatment. Hundreds of tons of food, medical equipment and clothing have also been sent across the border to Syria, clearly bearing Hebrew labels from Israeli companies.
Operation Good Neighbor
Operation Good Neighbor is a mission of compassion for those in need and of hope for a better, more secure border between Israel and Syria. Over the past six years, we’ve seen war destroy the lives of Syrian civilians. We couldn’t stand by and watch. While carrying out Operation Good Neighbor, we’ve had the honor of meeting our neighbors and hearing their stories.

My friends Jerry and Leora Hyman take advantage of the Waqf-free environment to visit the Temple Mount

The word Islam has been referred to, most famously by Barack Obama, as the religion of peace. That's because the word "Islam" is derived from the same three-letter root as the word "salaam," which is similar to the Hebrew "shalom." "Salaam" means "peace."

But "Islam" does not mean "peace." It means "submission."

What is peace to a Muslim? It is submission. To Allah, to jizya, to the sword, to other Muslims. When others submit, whether voluntarily or involuntarily, there is peace and quiet. After all, if you slaughter people, they no longer make noise or fight back. They're DEAD.

And that is why jihadists go around killing people. In this way, they're fulfilling their religion the easy way, spreading the religion of peace through submission to the sword.

So it's an interesting thing that now the shoe is on the other foot.

Since the terror attack on the Temple Mount on Friday, Israel has forced the Muslim Waqf into submission. First, the police kicked all Muslims out of the Temple Mount so they could run their investigation into the attack. Then, Israel decided to put metal detectors on the Temple Mount.

The Waqf protested and said they would not submit to metal detectors, and so, as a protest, they've mostly stopped going to the Temple Mount. They have voluntarily given up their control over the Temple Mount. They've submitted to the Jews.

They've as much as admitted it. Israel National News reported that the Islamic Waqf Authority made an announcement to that effect. The headline of this story is "Waqf: We have lost control over the Temple Mount."

They've even told Muslim worshippers to stay home—that their prayers are invalid if they've gone through the metal detectors.

What does this mean? It means that the Jews have won peace through Arab submission. The Arabs have been forced to either comply with Israeli security measures or stay off the Mount, so they're staying off. This means that not only can Jews go up to the Mount without being harassed, spat upon, and treated like criminals, they can actually PRAY.

And it's not just Jews celebrating, but at least one God-fearing Christian woman, "Jerusalem Jane" Jane Kiel, as well.

As hopeful as this all seems, it will not last. It's inevitable: Israel gains the upper hand, then allows the Arabs to play the victor. Why this should be, I have no idea. It's sickening and sad.

How do I know this will happen? Prime Minister Netanyahu held a question and answer session at the Knesset on Monday. MK Shuli Moalem Rafaeli asked a three-part question about Temple Mount rights and Bibi expressed his commitment to the status quo.

Thanks to Einat Hashman's translation of this transaction between the prime minister and MK Moalem, my readers can all be privy to Bibi's in depth expressed opinion on the Temple Mount and Jewish rights:

Shuli Mualem: Yesterday I had the privilege of seeing my daughter Nitzan Moalem marry, and I accompanied her to the entrance gate to the Temple Mount. I would like to ask you a three part question about the Temple Mount.
The first part is why the Waqf personnel are allowed to accompany and disturb most of the time, Jews visiting the Mount? From where does the Waqf derive the authority to do this? It is illegal. It creates a lot of friction. I should think an [Israeli] police escort would suffice.
The second part [of my question], if I may, why has it been decided that only one group of Jews will be allowed in at the time, even in contrast with allowances granted to tourists? There is the impression that we [Jews] do not even have the rights of every average traveler or tourist from Honolulu.

Bibi: Excuse me, what was the second question? I did not understand.
Moalem: At any given time on the Temple Mount, there is only one Jewish group of eight to ten Jewish visitors.
The third part relates to the opening hours of the Temple Mount to Jewish visitors. These hours are very, very limited and do not allow Jews to visit, not on Saturdays or in the afternoons when people finish their day's work and seek to ascend to the holiest place. 
Bibi: MK Moalem, I will start with the third part of your question. Opening hours have not changed. They have been fixed for many years and I do not intend to change them; because there is a principle that I am trying to uphold, and that is the "status quo" principle.

I do not want to change it, not regarding visiting hours for Jews, [and] not regarding prayer times and prayer arrangements for Arabs. [The status quo] was decided after the Six-Day War. It has undergone a few changes, but it has been with us for many years.

Now since then, I know that you have certainly noticed we are witnessing religious wars on a global scale, with attempts to incite hundreds of millions of Muslims in general, and against Israel in particular, and the focus of incitement, we see clearly, has been and remains the Temple Mount. There are stories going around that we are going to break the status quo, that we are going to destroy the Al-Aqsa Mosque, that we will change the order of prayer, the order of visits, and so forth. That's why I set a policy. I stick to it. I think it's correct, to prevent any changes in the existing arrangements. This is regarding the hours.
We do not prevent... I did request to prevent Jewish and Arab Knesset members alike, Jews and Muslims alike, from visiting the Mount, because of my assessment—based on experience as well as on information and intelligence warnings—or intelligence assessments. I wanted to disallow entry to the Temple Mount [for members of Knesset], at least at this stage, in order to prevent that incitement. I see no reason to think otherwise at this point. This does not mean that the restriction will not change in the future, but at the moment, despite our best intentions, we do not believe that the time has come.
Regarding the escorting of groups, the role of the Waqf, as has been agreed upon with the State of Israel, is to protect the arrangements that the Waqf is obligated to, including supervising the various parties operating there—not necessarily us—and we asked that the Waqf be fortified.

In the context of our contacts with the Jordanian government, we asked that the Waqf will act responsibly, that there will be support forces backing the Waqf regarding things on which we see eye-to-eye with the Jordanian government, and I hope things will happen accordingly. I do not know of any harassment [of Jews by the Waqf], and if there is such harassment, we will make sure that it will not happen. (emphasis added)

Well, Bibi, the status quo seriously SUCKS, as you'd know if you knew anything about the goings on at the Temple Mount. It's unsustainable. What we need is peace. Real peace.

The kind of peace that can only be had through Arab submission to Israel.

UPDATE: Since I wrote this piece the "status quo" has once again been imposed at the expense of Jewish freedom of religion in the Holy Land. Jewish visitors have been barred from the Temple Mount because the police kept catching them in prayer, which the police are calling a "violation of visitation rules." 
From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: The day of deranged inversion
The Israelis’ real crime, in the Arabs’ eyes, is to assert control of any kind on Temple Mount. The Arabs have threatened to unleash world war if Jews were ever to have free access to it or in any way alter the status quo. That status quo means Jews have their access to Temple Mount heavily restricted and are not even allowed to pray on it.
This despite the fact that, as the site of the original Jewish Temple, it is the holiest place of all for religious Jews. The Arab and Muslim belligerency over Temple Mount is not just an attack on Israel but on Judaism itself.
The most frightening thing of all about this, the one thing that the secular west just cannot begin to grasp, is that the murderously-incited Arabs really do believe the lie that Temple Mount (and all of Jerusalem, and all of Israel) belong only to them rather than to the Jews – the only people for whom this land was ever their national kingdom.
Back in 2014, the distinguished medievalist (and originator of the term “Pallywood”) Professor Richard Landes wrote a fine piece explaining the cultural dynamic behind this otherwise baffling inversion of reality by the Arab and Muslim world. This is the key passage:
So, alongside the nakba (catastrophe) that struck hundreds of thousands of the Arab inhabitants of the former British Mandate Palestine, we find yet another, much greater psychological catastrophe that struck the entire Arab world and especially its leaders: a humiliation so immense that Arab political culture and discourse could not absorb it. Initially, the refugees used the term nakba to reproach the Arab leaders who started and lost the war that so hurt them. In a culture less obsessed by honor and more open to self-criticism, this might have led to the replacement of political elites with leaders more inclined to move ahead with positive-sum games of the global politics of the United Nations and the Marshall Plan. But when appearances matter above all, any public criticism shames the nation, the people, and the leaders.
Instead, in a state of intense humiliation and impotence on the world stage, the Arab leadership chose denial—the Jews did not, could not, have not won. The war was not—could never—be over until victory. If the refugees from this Zionist aggression disappeared, absorbed by their brethren in the lands to which they fled, this would acknowledge the intolerable: that Israel had won. And so, driven by rage and denial, the Arab honor group redoubled the catastrophe of its own refugees: They made them suffer in camps, frozen in time at the moment of the humiliation, waiting and fighting to reverse that Zionist victory that could not be acknowledged. The continued suffering of these sacrificial victims on the altar of Arab pride called out to the Arab world for vengeance against the Jews. In the meantime, wherever Muslims held power, they drove their Jews out as a preliminary act of revenge.
The Arab leadership’s interpretation of honor had them responding to the loss of their own hard zero-sum game—we’re going to massacre them—by adopting a negative-sum strategy. Damaging the Israeli “other” became paramount, no matter how much that effort might hurt Arabs, especially Palestinians. “No recognition, no negotiations, no peace.” No Israel. Sooner leave millions of Muslims under Jewish rule than negotiate a solution. Sooner die than live humiliated. Sooner commit suicide to kill Jews than make peace with them.

Please think about this when you read about the violence taking place against Israelis – then, now and in the future.
David Horovitz: On Temple Mount, Israel long since made its fundamental compromise
No concession, agreed by Israel in negotiations to resolve the current standoff, could come close to matching that most dramatic of compromises half a century ago, in which the revived Jewish nation, having defeated its enemies in a war foisted upon it and liberated the most sacred place in its religious heritage, promptly relinquished its religious rights there to the representatives of its vanquished enemies.
And no compromise agreed to by Israel today could compare in its repercussions to the impact of that agreement 50 years ago, which has empowered a Palestinian and wider Muslim false narrative that asserts the Jews actually have no connection to the Mount, no history there, no legitimacy there — and by extension no sovereign legitimacy in Israel either. Why did defense minister Moshe Dayan’s concession on June 10, 1967, fuel that false narrative? Because, the way it was perceived in much of the Muslim world, the Jews could not and would not have relinquished their authority over the site if it truly constituted the most sacred physical focal point of their faith. Israel’s restraint, its religious realpolitik, in other words, has come to be regarded as proof of our illegitimacy. And of our duplicity. We were not the returning liberators; we were interlopers, who could and would be resisted until we returned to whence we ostensibly came.
Why get into all that decades-old history again now? Why focus on Israeli forbearance half a century ago, and decades of Muslim delegitimization, when we’re grappling with immediate dangers swirling around the Temple Mount? Because that’s what all of this is really about. Israel made its big-picture choice 50 years ago. It opted not to insist on religious freedom for Jews at the Temple Mount. Indeed, it opted not to insist on religious freedom at the Temple Mount, period. Israel deferred to Muslim sensitivities because of its perceived wider interests in working to normalize its very sovereign presence in the hostile Middle East.
Was that a historic mistake? Well, maybe it was, or maybe it was a vital, nation-saving imperative. It’s emphatically a question worth exploring. But the fact is that, today, right now, despite endless false assertions in the Muslim world to the contrary, there is no indication that the Netanyahu government intends to revisit that fundamental decision, no sign that it intends to reassert Israel’s fleeting full sovereignty at the Temple Mount.
In which case, it has less than three days, at most, to find an arrangement both sides can live with — to add one more tweak to that most dramatic of concessions from 50 years ago.

PMW: PMW exclusive: Huge increase in PA terror funding in 2017
PA increases spending by 13% for salaries to terrorist prisoners and by 4% for payments to families of terrorist "Martyrs"
Direct terror funding expenditures by the PA now reach 1.237 billion shekels or $355 million in 2017
Below, for your convenience, are two PMW charts depicting PA terror funding in 2017
The PA has publicized its budget for 2017, which includes how much it will be spending on salaries to terrorist prisoners and to families of terrorist "Martyrs." Ignoring demands to stop rewarding terror by the United States, EU countries, Israel and many others, the PA in 2017 is actually increasing significantly these outlays. The PA expenditure for salaries to terrorist prisoners has risen by a huge 13%, from 488 million shekels ($135 million) in 2016 to 550 million shekels ($158 million), and the expenditure for payments to families of "Martyrs" has gone up by 4% from 660 million shekels ($183 million) to 687 million shekels ($197 million). In 2017, the PA's total expenditure for directly funding terror is 1.237 billion shekels or $355 million.

  • Wednesday, July 19, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Mustafa Barghouti, the lying Palestinian official we mentioned yesterday, was the star of this video taken in 2015 that is a must-see.

He says, “They started shooting at us, also with tear gas, but they will never succeed to scare us. We are staying here, steadfast, fighting. Tear gas is coming here… I salute all the young men and women… This will not scare us. We will stay steadfast..”

Then see how steadfast he and his rioting friends are.

(h/t Ibn Boutros)

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  • Wednesday, July 19, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Fatah declared today, Wednesday to be a "Day of Rage."

This is supposed to instill fear in the hearts of the dhimmis, who presumably forgot that the last "Days of Rage" were only a couple of months ago. Almost every Friday in May was a "day of rage"  in support of the prisoner hunger strike, an issue that faded so quickly it seems hard to remember how important Palestinians pretended it was.

Just like metal detectors on the Temple Mount.

It is important to realize that "Days of Rage" are not responses to events. To the contrary.

Palestinians are completely defined by honor and shame. They cannot communicate except in those terms. Arabic media is filled with words like "humiliation." They are walking bundles of shame waiting for events to attach these "Days of Rage" to - because they want excuses to turn their shame into honor.

Their sense of self-worth is so pathetically poor that they look for excuses to start riots and to display rage to the world. They believe that by starting riots and causing Israeli security forces to deploy, they have achieved a tiny degree of honor. They are not as irrelevant as they fear  - they have caused mighty Israel to notice them. They matter.

Rage is the only reliable product Palestinians have.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad can hold a rally with tens of thousands of people for any reason. Fatah's followers are not quite as fanatic, but give them an excuse to fight their shame, to show their rage, and they will come.

This is why this was never about metal detectors. Palestinians look at any Israeli display of control as evidence of their irrelevance, and there is nothing more shameful than being unimportant and impotent.

The reaction to such an affront is violence. Violent people are not impotent, they are doing something that makes it into newspapers and gets noticed by the world media.

The Fatah Facebook page has these posters:

# The Rage of Jerusalem
The world must know that we here are the owners of this land, and that we won't prostrate, and that we are returning

Indeed it is a revolution until victory... until victory
The Rage of Jerusalem

The rage of Jerusalem
The intifada is continuing... the revolution is continuing until (it reaches) Jerusalem

 They are using  these hashtags to push this "Day of Rage."

#إغضب - Get angry!
أبواب_ الأقصى _مغلقة - Aqsa doors closed
#الأقصى _بلا _مصلين - Aqsa no worshipers
#إغلاق _الاقصى - Closing of Al aqsa

Of course, Al Aqsa is open to Muslims. If anyone is closing it, it is the Waqf.

So why aren't any Muslims walking through the metal detectors to pray?

Because these daily, violent protests are really picket lines, and any Arab who dares to cross the picket line would be in danger!

Anyone defying the desire of the PA and the Waqf shows how irrelevant those groups are. Pretending to be important is a more important value to Palestinians than prayer at their supposedly holiest site in the region.

Palestinians are actively blocking Muslims from praying at their own holy site - and blaming Israel.

While on Sunday there were some Muslims who went through the metal detectors, since then I have not heard of any. Is it because, of the thousands that visit the site every day, not one thinks it is important enough to go to now?

Yet I cannot find any criticism of the Waqf and PA policy to intimidate every Muslim from going to the site.

This is not because 100% of all Israeli and Palestinian Muslims have decided to follow the Waqf instructions. It is because they are afraid of what could happen to them and their families if they even say they don't agree.

Solidarity is a very important part of the shame culture, and if anyone breaks ranks that is a source of shame. People must self-censor out of fear.

Westerners don't get how much that fear colors the interviews and even polls of Palestinians. They repeat what they think they are supposed to say; independent thinking is kept within.

When it is convenient to say that the Al Aqsa Mosque is a hugely important place for prayer, that is what is said. When it is convenient to say that it is not nearly as important as not allowing Jews to put up meta detectors, which means that it was never that important to begin with, then that becomes the story they say.

Can you imagine for a moment that religious Jews in the 1930s would boycott the Kotel because the British didn't allow them to blow the shofar there?

(h/t Ibn Boutros)

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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 12 years and over 25,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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