Friday, July 21, 2017

From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: Europe remains blind because it doesn’t want to see
The Islamists’ key insight is that progressive views have hollowed out Western societies, particularly in Europe, so that they no longer know what values they need to defend against the Islamic jihad.
What secularists fail to grasp is that the values they most prize, such as the power of reason or belief in human rights, were created by Judaism and expressed in the West through Christianity.
Human rights rest on the belief that all are created equal in the image of God. The power of reason rests on the revolutionary concept in the book of Genesis that there is an intelligible universe.
Secular ideologies, however, are positively anti-Judaism.
Moral relativism denies the moral codes of Mosaic law. Deep green environmentalism repudiates the belief embodied in the creation that mankind is superior to the natural world. Scientific materialism dethrones God and puts man in his place.
Judaism is an obstacle both to the unconstrained individualism of Western libertines and also to the Islamist attack on reason, equality and freedom. Small wonder Western progressives make common cause with Islamists against the Jewish people.
Macron is a universalist who doesn’t believe in defending Western national identity. Nor does he believe in France. He said last February: “French culture does not exist; there is a culture in France and it is diverse...
French art? I never met it!” Anyone who believes Macron will defend the Jewish people, the free world or France itself is in for a rude awakening. As are the rest of Europe and the West, while they continue to misjudge the central importance of Israel and the Jewish people to their battle to survive. (h/t Elder of Lobby)
Macron’s Terrorism Idiocy
According to Macron, climate change causes droughts and migration, which exacerbates crises as populations fight over shrinking resources. If Macron really believes that, France and Europe are in for some tough times.
First, droughts are a frequent, cyclical occurrence in the Middle East, the Sahel, and the Horn of Africa. The difference between drought and famine is the former is a natural occurrence and the latter is man-made, usually caused by poor governance. Nowhere is this seen more clearly than in the Horn of Africa, where the same drought might kill a few dozens of Ethiopians but wipe out tens of thousands of Somalis.
Second, the common factor in the wars raging in the Middle East today is neither climate change nor extreme weather, but brutal dictatorship, radical ideologies, and the militias supported by the Islamic Republic of Iran. Yemen could be a breadbasket. Its terraced fields rising up thousands of feet in the mountains grow almost every fruit imaginable. Yemen also catches the tail end of the monsoon. If Yemenis planted exportable crops like coffee rather than the mild drug qat, which does not bring in hard currency, they might be fairly prosperous.
It is not climate change that denied the Syrian public basic freedoms and liberty for decades, nor was it climate change that dropped barrel bombs on civilian neighborhoods, tortured and killed 13-year-old Hamza Ali al-Khateeb, or used chemical weapons. For that matter, when it comes to radicalization, the problem is Syria was less climate and more decades of Saudi-and Qatari-funded indoctrination and Turkish assistance to foreign fighters.
Regardless of all this, another obvious factor nullifies Macron’s thesis: When drought occurs in regions outside the Middle East, the result is seldom suicide bombing.
A Non-Hyperbolic, Non-Apologetic Analysis of the Proposed Israel Boycott Law
Some of you may have read a recent Intercept post claiming that Congress is considering banning support for the boycott of Israel (by "some of you", I mean half my twitter feed). Unsurprisingly, this piqued my interest. On the one hand, the Intercept is not exactly an outfit known for letting accuracy get in the way of hyperbole. On the other hand, plenty of bad/regressive/poorly drafted laws are introduced in Congress, and the Israeli/Palestinian conflict in particular tends not to bring out people's sense of care and proportion.
So in my ongoing effort to help reintroduce the endangered species of calm, non-hyperbolic discussion of Israel on the internet, here's my best attempt at a calm, non-hyperbolic analysis of what this bill actually would do. But first, a bit of background.
American law already prohibits the boycotting of a country friendly to the United States where it is done at the behest of a boycott call by a foreign country. This law came about for a very particular reason: the threat of secondary boycotts by Arab countries. Companies which might have no interest in boycotting Israel might do so if, say, Qatar (whose business they value much more) said "you can't do business with us if you do business with Israel." The U.S. law counters by saying "you can't follow the Qatar boycott if you want to stay within American law". Even for companies where Qatar > Israel, the U.S. is > > > Qatar, so the law effectively neutralizes foreign calls for a secondary boycott.
The most anodyne way of describing this new law is to say that it merely extends the preexisting ban on boycotting an ally of the United States at the behest of a foreign country (e.g., Qatar) to include doing so at the behest of an International Governmental Organization (e.g., the EU and UN). If the current law isn't unconstitutional (and it's been upheld against challenge, see Briggs & Stratton Corp. v. Baldrige, 728 F.2d 915 (7th Cir. 1984)), why would this one be problematic?

  • Friday, July 21, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Katherine Franke, a law professor at Columbia who previously falsely retweeted the claim that the US recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital would be illegal under international law, wrote an op-ed in the Boston Globe invoking Rosa Parks to justify anti-Israel bigotry:

I recently traveled to Tuskegee, Ala., to meet with civil rights icon Rosa Parks’s lawyer, Fred Gray, and we talked about the role of the Montgomery bus boycott in breaking up racial segregation. “The boycott was the spark that ignited the end of Jim Crow segregation in this country,” he told me. Gray noted that when Rosa Parks refused to surrender her seat to a white man, political boycotts were illegal in Alabama. (Some years after the Montgomery bus boycott, the Supreme Court found bans on political boycotts unconstitutional.)

Given the important role that boycotts have played in virtually every social movement in this country, it is particularly troubling that a committee of the Massachusetts legislature will hold a hearing this week on a bill that aims to punish supporters of political boycotts. The bill would require that anyone who applies for a state contract over $10,000 must sign a pledge that they will not engage in a boycott that targets a person or entity because of their “race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, gender identity, or sexual orientation.”

What’s really behind this measure is a desire to punish people or groups that have endorsed a boycott of Israel or of companies that profit from Israel’s denial of Palestinians’ human rights. Israel’s most ardent defenders argue that any criticism of Israel — and particularly the use of a political boycott — is motivated by hatred toward Jews and/or Israelis. Yet this is a gross mischaracterization of the role of boycotts in social movements generally, and in human rights activism in the Middle East specifically. In 2005, Palestinians called for boycotts, sanctions, and divestment as a peaceful measure to pressure the state of Israel to abide by international law and grant Palestinians their fundamental rights. 
...Passage of antiboycott legislation here in Massachusetts would betray the legacy of Rosa Parks and the sacrifices made by the supporters of the Montgomery bus boycott who played such a crucial role in ending race-based apartheid in this country.
Besides the false assertion that boycotts of Israel are not motivated by antisemitism (since the Arab boycott before 1948 was explicitly against Jews), Franke is claiming that being against boycotting Israel is a betrayal of Rosa Park's legacy.

Rosa Parks would disagree.

In 1975, Parks - along with other prominent African-Americans - signed a full page ad in the New York Times that was explicitly against the Arab economic boycott of Israel.

The ad says, among other things:

1.We condemn the anti-Jewish “blacklist.”
We have fought too long and too hard to root out
discrimination from our land to sit idly while foreign interests
import bigotry into America. Having suffered so greatly from
such prejudice, we consider most repugnant efforts by Arab
states to use the economic power of their newly acquired oil
wealth to boycott business firms that deal with Israel or that
have Jewish owners, directors or executives and to impose
anti-Jewish preconditions for investments in this country. 

Franke is pretending that a civil rights icon would support discrimination against Israeli Jews today.

No, Professor Franke. It is you who Rosa Parks would condemn. The BDS movement is a direct continuation of the Arab League boycotts of Israel before there was an Israel and the Arab boycotts of the 1970s that prominent American blacks so eloquently exposed as pure bigotry.. 

(h/t CAMERA)

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  • Friday, July 21, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Ahmed Shihab-Eldin calls himself "palestinian by blood. american by birth. kuwaiti by nationality. egyptian by upbringing. austrian by adolescence. curious by nature. employed by @AJplus."

He tweeted:

I keep watching this video, but I cannot find any frisking or pushing. The soldiers are relaxed. At the very end one directs him to leave by lightly touching his elbow.


I think the UN should convene a special session.

The funny part is that he has scores of people tweeting feeling sorry for him because this was as traumatic an experience as one can imagine.

Even funnier is that there were about 10 photographers looking so hard to find a story there. But apparently, when there is no story, certain people will just make one up, knowing full well that even when they have video that contradicts their own story, people will believe them as long as the story is anti-Israel.

And this reporter's buddy who took this video is wildly moving his camera around as if he is being pushed, to create the impression of chaos and wild aggression. But the police aren't near him, nothing it happening.

It is really bad Pallywood.

(h/t geo)

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From Ian:

Dr. Martin Sherman: Temple Mount attack-the demise of the “1-state” theory
Last Friday, three non-Jewish terrorists gunned down two-non-Jewish policemen to express their hatred of the Jewish state.
And yet while many condemned the heinous deed, expressing shock, dismay, and opprobrium at the brutal desecration of the Temple Mount, no one really found it bewilderingly inexplicable or staggeringly aberrant. After all, Judeocidal Arab hatred has always defied rational explanation.
Extinguishing hopes for one-state formula
No less perverse was the fact that the alleged cause of the killers’ homicidal urge was purported to be the “Occupation”, despite the fact that none of the perpetrators were subject to any form of “Occupation”—as they were all Israeli citizens, with full civil rights.
But beyond the human tragedy, the hail of bullets that cut short the lives of the two Druze police officers from the Galilee, Hayil Satawi and Kamil Shanaan, inflicted an additional casualty.
For they conclusively cut down any residual credibility that the proposal for a one-state formula—especially as touted by “right wing” pundits—might still have had. Indeed, it totally extinguished any lingering hopes that some kind of coherent, cohesive society could be forged if Israel were to annex Judea-Samaria—and incorporate its Palestinian Arabs into Israel’s permanent population.
Arsen Ostrovsky: Temple Mount Crisis: It’s Not About the Metal Detectors
For its part, the international community has turned a blind eye to the pervasive anti-Israel incitement and the growing payments to terrorists. According to Palestinian Media Watch, the Palestinian Authority has increased spending to terrorist prisoners by thirteen percent and to families of terrorist “martyrs” by four percent in 2017.
The UN agencies and nongovernmental organizations that proclaim to champion human rights are silent as Palestinian children are exploited. European governments that are quick to decry the building of Jewish homes in Jerusalem, are silent as Jewish lives are threatened in Jerusalem. Not a single voice has emerged from the Arab world calling for a restoration of calm and an end to the violence.
Jerusalem is a tinderbox. The city’s Muslim leadership has called for the closure of all mosques on Friday and urged all Muslims to converge on the Temple Mount. Tens of thousands of worshipers are expected to visit the site, creating an extraordinarily volatile situation.
As Arab leaders fan the flames of discontent for selfish political gains, the international community, beginning with every Western head of state, must urge Palestinian and Arab leaders to act responsibly and call for calm. Anything less is to be complicit in the violence that is sure to follow.

Three Palestinians reported killed in protests in Jerusalem, West Bank
Three Palestinians were reported killed in clashes that erupted between protesters and Israeli police on Friday in East Jerusalem and the West Bank as thousands demonstrated against the installation of metal detectors at the entrances to Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. The upgraded Israeli security measures at the Temple Mount were introduced after three Arab Israelis shot dead two Israeli police officers on duty there last Friday, using guns they had smuggled into the Al-Aqsa mosque.
Palestinian medical officials said all three of gunshot wounds.
The Palestinian Authority’s official Wafa news agency said a 17-year-old was killed in Ras al-Amud outside the Old City after being shot by a “settler,” though no shooter was identified; the term is often used by Palestinians to refer to any Israeli out of uniform. The Palestinian Health Ministry identified the teen as Muhammad Mahmoud Sharaf from the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan.
A second person was reportedly shot in the A-Tur area of east Jerusalem and died of his wounds at Makassed Hospital in East Jerusalem. He was identified by Palestinian media as Muhammad Hassan Abu Ghanem. The Wafa agency did not give his age or his place of residence.
The third death reportedly occurred in Abu Dis in the West Bank, near Jerusalem, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry. The fatality was identified as Muhammad Lafi, 18, from Abu Dis, by Palestinian media.

Here is an excerpt from an interview with Muslim Brotherhood supporter and member of the Jordanian parliament, Dima Tahboub.

At the very same time that she claims to be against violence, she justifies and cheers the murder of 7 Israeli schoolgirls in 1997 in the Island of Peace massacre.

Dima Tahboub is not the reason peace is impossible in the Middle East. She's a hater, a bigot, an antisemite, a Muslim supremacist and an inciter, but there are lots of those around.

The reason that peace is impossible is because it is impossible to find any Arabs, anywhere in region, who are aghast at these comments and willing to publicly stand up and condemn them.

If one cannot find a a single Arab government, a single Arab "human rights' organization, a single Arab lawmaker or a single Arab pundit or columnist willing to condemn Tahboub for cheering the murder of innocent girls because they are Jewish, then that silence tells us far more about how the Arab world thinks than a thousand statements that they are against violence and don't hate Jews.

I have no doubt that many Arabs do not support the wanton murder of innocent girls, even Jewish ones. But even those Arabs live in a society where they both do not feel strongly enough about it to speak up, and where if they did there would be very unpleasant consequences for them and their families. Such a society is not capable of making real peace, ever.

The full disgusting interview is here.

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  • Friday, July 21, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Israel has done absolutely nothing wrong in regards to Israeli or Palestinian Muslims in this past week.

Muslims attacked Israeli police from their supposedly holy site using weapons that were hidden in the mosque itself. Muslims decided to riot instead of worshipping at that same site.

All of the moves Israel made (temporary closing of Temple Mount, setting up metal detectors, barring young Muslim men from Jerusalem) were defensive and in reaction to offensive actions or threats from Palestinians.

So J-Street decided to write a backgrounder for its fans so they can know how to spin the story as much as possible against Israel and for Muslims. To be "even-handed." Because Allah-forbid "pro-Israel" J-Street ever finds anything nice to say about Israel or anything bad to say about her enemies.

Over the course of the last week, a new crisis has broken out over questions of control, access and security at the Holy Esplanade of Jerusalem’s Old City, known to Jews as the Temple Mount (formerly the site of the ancient Jewish Temple) and to Muslims as the Haram-al Sharif (site of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock). For years, controversies involving the holy site, which is jointly controlled by Israel and Jordan and administered by the Islamic Religious Trust known as the Waqf, have generated major tension between Israeli and Palestinian leadership and between devout Muslims and Jews. Now, in the wake up of a shooting attack last week that killed two Israeli policemen at the site, those tensions are dangerously close to boiling over.
Look at this "even-handed" garbage. The Muslims are rioting and Israel is trying to save human lives, but to J-Street "tensions are dangerously close to boiling over."

On Friday, July 14, two Israeli Border Policemen were shot and killed (and another wounded) inside the Holy Esplanade complex by three Palestinian citizens of Israel, who were then themselves shot and killed by police. 
To J-Street, there are no such things as Israeli Arabs. They are "Palestinian citizens of Israel." If they are Palestinian, of course, it begs the question of why they don't move to the territories. The implication is that all of Israel is still Palestine.
The most significant measure taken so far seems to be the decision to install metal detectors at the entrances to the site. While Israeli officials apparently viewed the move simply as a prudent security measure, many Palestinian leaders and clerics have denounced it as an attempt to transform the “status quo” at the site and as a continuation of what they see as a pattern of Israel tightening its control over the site and increasing restrictions on Muslim access.
J-Street's "objectivity" is again shown to be a sham. Israel only "apparently" thinks metal detectors to stop Arabs from bringing more weapons to the Temple Mount is "prudent," but Palestinians are quite justified in denouncing the move.

One side's actions make perfect sense to save lives. The other side's actions are literally a call to violence, using normal security measures as a pretext. "Pro-Peace" J-Street doesn't take sides (in this case.)
Dating back to Ottoman rule in the 19th century, visitors of all religions were permitted to visit the site, while the Muslim holy places were administered by Muslim authorities, an arrangement that has broadly informed the status quo since then. 
This is knowingly deceptive. Jews were known to have prayed on the Temple Mount up until the Ottoman period, when they were banned altogether and were limited to worshiping at the Western wall. After the Crimean War, Great Britain insisted on non-Muslim access to the Mount, but Jews had to get specific permission from the governor and apparently had to pay high fees for the right to ascend. So in theory they were "permitted" but in fact they were effectively barred.

J-Street doesn't say a word about how Jews were banned from the Old City altogether and synagogues razed under Jordanian rule.

J-Street is deliberately whitewashing the history of Muslim bigotry.

Since Israel captured the Old City, East Jerusalem and the West Bank from Jordan during 1967’s Six-Day War, it has maintained de facto overall control over the site, but allows the Jordanian Waqf to administer it for Muslim worshippers, a role that was formally recognized in Israel’s 1995 peace treaty with Jordan.
False. The peace treaty says "Israel respects the present special role of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in Muslim Holy shrines in Jerusalem. When negotiations on the permanent status will take place, Israel will give high priority to the Jordanian historic role in these shrines." That is not at all saying that the Waqf has the legal right to administer the site; it is Israel's decision to allow it and Israel's right to take it away.

A key pillar of the generally accepted “status quo” was that the site would be fully open to both Muslims and non-Muslims for visits, but that only Muslims would be allowed to worship there. In recent years, however, Israeli Temple Mount activists who wish to secure greater Jewish access and rights to worship at the site have increasingly agitated for changes -- greatly angering and unsettling the Waqf and other Palestinian and Muslim leaders. Israel has allowed increasingly large groups of these Jewish activists to visit the site -- and to protect them, they have at times imposed major restrictions on which Muslims are allowed at the site. That includes sometimes barring all Muslims from the site, or barring all Muslim men under the age of 30 or even under the age of 50.
This  "status quo" is only since 2000. Jewish prayer on our holiest site is a human right that is protected by international law.  J-Street, instead of pushing for these basic human rights, is blaming Jews for wanting to exercise them - the exact opposite of its position towards Muslim worship. Muslim anger towards Jews is, to J-Street, a more important factor in determining what is right than the Jewish rights to worship.

And never has Israel barred "all Muslims from the site" except for the two cases where it banned all people from the site. J-Street is accusing Israel of anti-Muslim bigotry.

J-Street here is also implicitly blaming Israel for allowing Jews to visit the site - even though it (falsely)  claims that the Ottomans did exactly that. But when Muslims purportedly allow Jews to visit, it is tolerance; when Israel allows it, it is incitement.

J-Street tried to write this in a way that it would appear to be fair and balanced. But applying "balance" to a situation that is so one-sided as to who is right and wrong is not balance, it is bias. And when you look a little closer at their words, the anti-Israel bias and whitewashing of Muslim antisemitism is even clearer.

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  • Friday, July 21, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon

Here is the full statement from White House Press Secretary about the events in Jerusalem, released on Wednesday:
Statement from the Press Secretary on Temple Mount/Haram Al-Sharif

The United States is very concerned about tensions surrounding the Temple Mount/Haram Al-Sharif, a site holy to Jews, Muslims, and Christians, and calls upon the State of Israel and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to make a good faith effort to reduce tensions and to find a solution that assures public safety and the security of the site and maintains the status quo.  The United States will continue to closely monitor the developments.
This is a vague statement that can be interpreted in a number of ways.  It seems calibrated to not offend anyone by not going into any details and highlighting the Muslim as well as Jewish names for the Temple Mount. Asking to maintain the "status quo" could be interpreted as being against the metal detectors but highlighting the importance of public safety and security implies the opposite. The "status quo" section can also be interpreted as being against Jewish prayer on the Mount, although the White House seems unlikely to say anything more pro-Jewish than the Netanyahu government which already promised to maintain the status quo.

What cannot be ignored from this statement, however, is the complete absence of the word "Palestinian."

The Palestinian Authority is not asked to work to reduce tensions. 

This is a stinging omission from two angles.

It implies that the Palestinian Authority, which is calling for protests today against the very solution that "assures public safety and the security of the site," is not expected to act like a responsible party by the White House. Mahmoud Abbas is not considered to be a responsible leader to tamp down tensions - he is regarded not as part of the solution, but as part of the problem.

From the Palestinian perspective, this statement is even worse. They claim to be the legal sovereign over the Old City of Jerusalem and they claim it as their future capital. The White House, in this statement, recognizes none of that. Jordan - whose only relevance is that they are the employers of the Waqf and who formerly had illegally annexed the West Bank but renounced that claim in 1988 - is considered more relevant to the Old City of Jerusalem than the purported "State of Palestine."

Any way you read this, the White House has downgraded its opinion of Palestinian leadership to essentially being irrelevant as a partner to find a solution to what their own people are doing. Which means that this statement implicitly blames Mahmoud Abbas for his actions and inactions since the murders of two Israeli police from the "third holiest site in Islam" last Friday.

(h/t Irene)

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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Our weekly column from the humor site PreOccupied Territory

Check out their Facebook page.

GPO (Israel)
GPO (Israel)
Gaza City, July 19 - Sources within the intelligence community have uncovered evidence that prolonged Arab opposition to the Israel under the misapprehension that it remains possible to defeat and destroy the Jewish State actually results from a decades-long disinformation operation to distract Arabs from the work of building prosperous, peaceful societies.
Analysts and former intelligence officials in multiple Arab capitals told PreOccupied Territory this week they had made the potentially explosive discovery after examining the long-term results of the seemingly disparate anti-Israel stances of the dozens of Arab and Muslim states in the region and beyond.
"It occurred to me that we could have advanced our societies beyond imagination if we hadn't been focused on denying the Jews sovereignty," observed one, a Jordanian. "Clearly, forces conspired to deprive us of a sober perspective on these developments, and we all know which forces those are."
"It just makes so much sense, and fits all the evidence - it's shocking we hadn't considered this before," admitted an Algerian analyst. "It dovetails with everything we know about the way the Zionists operate, and the only way to explain how it took us this long to realize it is to attribute it to a Zionist scheme."
If true, the plot represents yet another in a long line of sweeping Zionist initiatives to compromise the Arab-Muslim societies of the Levant and broader Near East, including the introduction of Islam in the seventh century as a means to make Muslims look bad, a nefarious initiative still yielding dividends many centuries later.
According to experts, such a plot virtually guarantees a victory to the Zionists, as it plays on the Arabs' worst vulnerabilities. "The last thing anyone, at least any leader, in this region wants to do is betray any sign of serving the Jews' interests," explained Morton Sfork. "That rules out advocating an abandonment of the Palestinian issue. But focusing on the Palestinian issue means allocating resources to it instead of to the industrial, educational, or economic development of the country, a decision that in turn condemns the country to economic, cultural, and developmental stagnation, resulting in defeat. Clever chaps."
"It turns on the axiom that Muslims and Arabs can't be blamed for their misfortune," he concluded. "As always, the fault must lie with outside forces, and the Jews were kind enough to bring their outside forces to the Islamic world, for convenience's sake, which was nice of them."

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From Ian:

With longest concert in 11 years, Radiohead shows it does belong here
Forty-seven thousand creeps and weirdos flocked to Tel Aviv’s Yarkon Park to hear Radiohead play in the Jewish state for the first time in 17 years on Wednesday night, despite the hot, muggy weather and in appreciation of the band’s robust defiance of calls by boycott-Israel activists that it cancel the show.
Those tens of thousands of fans, plus the hordes who saved the ticket price and listened to the concert on the grass beyond the gates, were treated to the longest Radiohead concert in 11 years, according to a Reddit tally.
Toward what seemed like the end of the show, lead singer Thom Yorke, who’d been relatively quiet all night, told the fans: “We ain’t done yet. We came all the way here. We’re gonna play our fingers off.”
Other than perfunctory “Thank yous” and a bit of Israeli slang, “yalla” (come on), which drew whoops of approval from the crowd, Yorke’s only other brief on-stage comments during the show had to do with some of the controversy surrounding the Tel Aviv performance.
In the months leading up to the show, a group of activists who support cultural boycotts of Israel called for Radiohead to cancel the concert, as they routinely urge all visiting artists, over Israel’s policies regarding the Palestinians. Unlike many artists — a minority of whom cancel, and most of whom go ahead with their shows and ignore the critics — Radiohead responded fiercely to the pro-BDS pressure campaign, calling it patronizing and saying that their playing in Israel does not signify approval of the government’s policies.
Yorke didn’t go into the details of the argument, but merely told the crowd quietly, “A lot of stuff was said about this. But in the end, we played some music,” before launching into the final song of the night, “Karma Police” from its hit album “OK Computer.”

New ADL Guide Blasts Right-Wing Anti-Semites, Gives Left-Leaning Bigots a Pass
Yesterday, the ADL issued a guide to help us errant Jews understand who are our true haters. It is titled “From Alt Right to Alt Lite: Naming the Hate,” and it profiles 36 (double chai!) prominent individuals who are either known for their anti-Semitism or known for cozying up to people known for their anti-Semitism. As long, of course, as they’re on the right.
Looking for social justice warriors who kick Jews out of their marches? Prominent progressive activists who think you can’t be both a Zionist and a feminist? Professors who believe Jews were behind the 9/11 attacks? Don’t bother the ADL by arguing that Jew hatred is as rampant on the left as it is on the right, if not more.
Why the double standard? Why focus on one end of the political spectrum and ignore the other? Todd Gutnick, the ADL’s Senior Director of Communications, said his organization “will continue to put out reports on the wide range of extremist threats, as well as those involved in anti-Israel activity.” He also added that the organization’s CEO, Jonathan Greenblatt, a former assistant to Barack Obama, has spoken out before about the left’s growing anti-Semitism problem. But reporting on the right, Gutnick said, “felt timely and necessary. These groups have been holding a number of public rallies recently and our Center on Extremism has been tracking their activities. As more of the individuals in these movements attempt to move into the mainstream, we felt it was crucial to understand their ideas and to share their statements.”
It’s a strange argument. Is Andrew Anglin, who runs the neo-Nazi site The Daily Stormer, more mainstream than Linda Sarsour? Are KKK rallies in Virginia better attended or more prominent than leftist anti-Jewish marches in Chicago? Of course they’re not. Why, then, the systemic focus on the alt-right? I pressed Gutnick for an answer; I never heard back.
It’s a shame. As Jews face real hate from left and right alike, we need and deserve an organization that places principles over politics.
ADL accuses Jewish Voice for Peace of ‘anti-Israel radicalism’
The Anti Defamation League on Wednesday accused Jewish Voice for Peace of seeking to undermine support for Israel among US Jews, saying the pro-BDS group has adopted “increasingly radical positions” and uses “questionable tactics” to promote its agenda.
In a statement, the ADL said JVP is engaged in “harassing LGBT groups,” citing the organization’s infiltration of the pro-Israel Jewish Queer Youth during June’s Celebrate Israel parade in New York and its support for the Chicago Dyke March’s removal of three Jewish women from its parade for carrying Jewish Pride flags.
The ADL also slammed JVP for “shutting down dialogue,” saying that members of the group shout down speakers whom they deem to be too pro-Israel rather than engaging them in debate.
JVP also came under fire from the ADL for its continued praise of convicted Palestinian terrorists, including its decision to host Rasmea Odeh — who was was convicted by Israel of involvement in a 1969 bombing in Jerusalem that killed two and injured nine — at an event in April and an advertisement it published in The Forward newspaper hailing jailed Palestinian terror mastermind and political leader Marwan Barghouti that made no mention of his involvement in the murder of Israelis.

  • 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.

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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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