But in this version–Hamas and Fatah are competing against each other.
Two weeks after Hamas seized control of Gaza in a four-day putsch, the Islamists are desperate to deliver on their pledge of good governance. Palestinians are watching, comparing the Hamas-run strip with the Fatah-run West Bank, waiting to see which people prosper economically and which are plagued by criminals and gun-toting militants.
[..] However, the “Palestinian-Taliban,” now in charge of the zone can only go forward. With all ties to Mahmoud Abbas broken, the Ismael Hanieh (Gaza) â€“ Khaled Mishaal (Damascus) junta has to rapidly consolidate its grip over Gaza and even begin a campaign to destabilize the West Bank. A Hamas-only “regime” in Gaza, free from the PA international commitments would most likely resort to transform the enclave into a super-bastion for Jihad. This would include:
- 1. A mass mobilization, in an attempt to levy an Army of more than 60,000 fighters. Hamas’ expectation is to see Iran and eventually Syria and Hezbollah heavily involved in providing weapons and training. But such a projection could be mitigated by international opposition.
2. The creation of dozens of “Fallujahs” in the strip in anticipation of an “outside” offensive at some point. A series of no-surrender fortresses to deter any would-be attacking force.
By Ted Belman
I just spent a couple of days with the diminutive, courageous, historian, Bat Ye’or, author of Eurabia and Islam and Dhimmitude among others. She was in Toronto as the featured speaker at a conference hosted by The Fraser Institute titled Immigration Policy, Border Controls, and the Terrorist Threat in Canada and the U.S. More about that later.
While in town she found time to be interviewed on the Michael Coren Show. Michael Coren wrote about her in his National Post article Eurabia’s author comes to Canada which I urge you to read.
The conference was a very big success due to the top notch speakers the Fraser Institute attracted. As good as they were, Bat Ye’or stole the show. The audience was well aware of her pioneering work though they may have been short on details. They were in attendance in recognition of the importance of the subject matter but mainly to hear her address.
by Jerry Gordon
This was the week not to be believed in our Nationâ€™s Capitol: a President buttering up Islamists in full view of a feckless press six years after 9/11 and hundreds of billions spent on a war without a name.
Eli Lake in his New York Sun article of June 20th pointed out the current Bush push to make nice with the Islamists began last fall, when newly elected Democratic House Majority Leader, Steny Hoyer of Maryland made an inspection trip to Egypt and found himself in the garden of the U.S. Embassy chatting it up with leaders of the Moslim Brotherhood.
Witness the tableau of President Bush going once more to the Islamic Center of Washington to preside over a new initiative: becoming a Dhimmi. Yes, thatâ€™s what I said, a Dhimmi. Someone who obsequiously abides by the rules of subjugation under Muslim Sharia law. How did he do it? For starters he went to the Islamic Center of Washington – a Saudi financed and built Dawa institution – on the occasion of its 50th anniversary to make several important announcements.
“There Imam Bush goes again.” I am astonished by President Bush when he claims there is nothing in the Qu’ran that justifies jihad violence in the name of Islam,” jailed jihadi cleric Abu Qatada said under similar circumstances almost six years ago. “Is he some kind of Islamic scholar? Has he ever actually read the Qu’ran?”
No. He’s just leader of the Free World â€” a Free World that has become less free and more dhimmified on his severely myopic watch”.
by Diana West, Washington Times, June 29, 2007
If anyone wants to know why Muslims the world over tell pollsters the United States is at war with Islam, just read President Bush’s speech at the Islamic Center of Washington, especially the part about American-style religious freedom â€” in the president’s words, “what we wish for the world.”
by Jerry Gordon
Let’s hear it from Congressmen Rob Andrews (D-NJ) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) for introducing legislation – The Iran Sanctions Enhancement Act HR 2880 -aimed at depriving Iran of gasoline and diesel fuel imports facilitated by U.S. companies.
We at Israpundit have been promoting this alternative in articles last year ” “Pull the Plug on Iran’s Gas , Now!!” and just this past week on ” Iran’s Domestic Gasoline Crisis Looms”. Perhaps coupled with this boycott of U.S. owned refinery suppliers of refined petroluem products, we might, as suggested by my Canadian ‘cousin’, Al Gordon of the Canadian Coalition for Democracies in comments to my piece this week, see some ‘possible industrial accidents’ in those Iranian domestic refineries.
They’re pretty easy to spot from satellite imagery.
So, perhaps more than gasoline stations will be torched by outraged Iranian tax cab drivers, motorists and truckers by the sudden introduction of gas rationing this week.
The Mullahs will have a hard time quelling this ‘domestic unrest’. They won’t have the spare gas to get the revolutionary Guards to those ‘hot spots’.
Although I did not get a chance to post most of this on my blog IsraGood, I did get a chance to read up on some very interesting developments in Israel, ranging from everything in health, technology, not to mention a Israel’s “innovative” competitor to the iPhone.
No one to give them back to
By Aluf Benn Haaretz 28 June 2007
The demonstrators and writers of articles commemorating 40 years of Israeli occupation of the territories this month can save their placards and high-brow expressions for repeated use – they will need them in the coming years.
There is a growing consensus in Israel that a withdrawal from the West Bank is no longer possible. It may be possible to hide the Palestinians behind a separation fence, but it is impossible to relinquish control over them.
If the government considers control over the Palestinians as inevitable and not as a temporary situation, it must prepare accordingly: through the correct public relations abroad, through building task-specific security forces, and through fair treatment of the residents of the West Bank.
Read this extensive interview with Dr. Anat Berko, author of the new book, “The Path to Paradise: the Inner World of Suicide Bombers and Their Dispatchers” on what makes suicide bombers and their handlers tick. Dr.Berko is a trained expert with a PhD in Criminology. Hence the background and biases she comes with to this daunting investigation. Her observations are based on her professional military interviews as a former Lt. Col, in the IDF with thwarted suicide killers and their handlers. Her views mirrors those of the observations of French documentarian Pierre Rehov in his documentary film “Suicide Killers.” The handlers are sociopaths who manipulate the would be suicide bombers using Koranic canards and the barbaric underpinnings of the Arab ‘honor shame’ society. While she states early on that “not all Muslims are suicide bombers”, it is safe to say that most suicide bombers are Muslim.
Ruthie Blum, The Jerusalem Post, June 28, 2007
Descending from the podium in a conference room at Mishkenot Sha’ananim where she has just finished a briefing to the foreign press, Anat Berko exits to the terrace. The occasion is the release of the English version of her book, The Path to Paradise: The Inner World of Suicide Bombers and Their Dispatchers [Greenwood Publishing].
by Omri Ceren
The inability for critical self-reflection – bolstered by near-automatic anti-Israel scapegoating – is deeply ingrained in Palestinian culture. Even the people relying on the US for their very survival end up lashing out in blind irrationality. It’s like the child who screams “I hate you I hate you” at weak-willed parents, knowing that the hysterical tantrum will cause them to give in:
The Gaza events were not a war between Fatah and Hamas; but between Hamas and Fatah collaborators who served the Americans and the Israelis, said a senior Fatah advisor on Wednesday. Hani al-Hassan, the Palestinian president’s senior political advisor and member of Fatah’s central committee said in a TV interview that what was happening in the Gaza Strip was the defeat of to plans of American Major General Keith Dayton and his Fatah followers. Al-Hassan’s words severely discredit Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and other Arab leaders’ claims that the Gaza takeover was a coup against Palestinian democracy. By making such statements the presidential advisor supports Hamas’ claims that the war was between a small group of Fatah men who served Israel and the United States.
Naturally, Abbas fired him and will replace him with someone smart enough not to say those things within earshot of journalists.
[Cross-posted to Mere Rhetoric]
by Omri Ceren
Starting about fifteen seconds after Lebanon II ended, Syria has been smuggling weapons into Lebanon to give to Hezbollah. Of course, they were doing it though civilian aid convoys during the war, but they dropped even some of those less than subtle pretenses when fighting stopped. But suddenly the Lebanese government is deeply concerned about that, because the weapons are going to the AQ forces that they’re fighting:
Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Saniora said Wednesday that Syria was sending weapons to Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon and vowed to bring up the issue before the Arab League. “In recent weeks, ammunition, weapons and fighters have been brought to the camps,” Saniora told reporters on a visit to France. Saniora added that he had asked the United Nations to renew the mandate of international peacekeepers in his country, despite an attack last weekend that killed six members of the force. “I am in no position to tell now” who was behind the Sunday car bombing in southern Lebanon that killed three Spaniards and three Colombians, Saniora told a news conference, adding that the investigation was continuing.
This has all the feel of how weapons smuggling in Gaza suddenly became a problem when Hamas turned the weapons away from Israelis and toward Palestinians.
[Cross-posted to Mere Rhetoric]
Condoleezza Rice’s ignorance of the Middle East is persistent. Back in November 2005, James Taranto at OpinionJournal.com pointed out that in a Joint Press Conference, Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice blindly repeated the pro-Palestinian line–and got the history wrong.
Rescue operations conducted by the government of Israel to bring more than 16,000 Ethiopian Jews to Israel represented one of the few times in history that a Black African community willingly and enthusiastically moved to a majority-White Western country. From the point of view of Ethiopian Jewry, they had come home to Zion. Having visited Ethiopian Jews during their trek from Ethiopia during Operation Moses in 1984, this reporter heard numerous stories from Ethiopian Jews about their own prophetic lore. Passed down from one generation to the next was a tradition that Ethiopian Jews would be repatriated to Zion when the last emperor of the Solomonic dynasty would fall. And when Haile Selassie, the last emperor of Ethiopia, was overthrown in 1974, that was one of the signs that Ethiopian Jews would indeed come home.
By Alan W. Dowd, FrontPageMagazine.com
[..] But going nuclear isnâ€™t the only answer for America. There are multiple paths to energy independence, and as the chaos and wars of the oil-rich Middle East continually remind us it is in the national interest to pursue all of them. That includes nuclear energy, bio-fuels like ethanol, hybrid technologies, conservation strategies like those in the Senate billâ€”and fossil fuels from right here in America.
If you think the United States has exhausted its own reserves of fossil fuels, think again. The Energy Information Administration, a sub-agency of the Department of Energy, reports that, at this moment, the US has 29.9 billion barrels of oil. In other words, the US actually possesses more oil than oil-exporting countries such as Mexico, Norway and the UK.
After the Six-Day War, Moshe Dayan coined the phrase,
“better Sharm el-Sheikh without peace than peace without Sharm el-Sheikh.”
In keeping with this sentiment, I proclaim,
“Better Judea and Samaria without peace than peace without Judea and Samaria.”
Amir Teheri, an Iranian and respected journalist, lays it out.
[..] Tehran, meanwhile, was concerned that a Hamas-Fatah deal would strengthen those in the Syrian leadership who dislike what they see as their country’s increasing vassalization to Tehran. The same Syrian leadership elements recently opened an indirect dialogue with Israel and received some encouraging hints from Israeli Premier Ehud Olmert.
Syrian critics of the alliance with Tehran pointed to the Mecca deals as a model that might help repair ties with moderate Arab states, placate the United States and, eventually, even persuade Israel to give up the Golan Heights, which it won in the 1967 war. A Hamas defection followed by a Syrian change of policy would have left the Islamic Republic isolated and exposed.[..]
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has structured his foreign policy on the assumption that a military showdown with America and Israel is inevitable. He also thinks that, when and if it comes, the radical forces led by Tehran would be able to resist long enough and to raise the cost of the conflict in human terms to break the adversaries’ will to fight.
Today’s New York Times reports that Exxon Mobil and Conoco have refused to meet Venezuela’s deadline for an agreement to cede their operations in Venezuela to government control. Exxon Mobil may stand to lose a billion dollars in assets, Conoco about 3.5 Billion and other companies as much as 1.5 billion. The Times says that expropriation by Venezuela would likely result in a lack of oil field expertise, which they suggest may be met by bringing in engineers/oil field workers from China or Iran.
Venezuela produces about 2 million barrels per day of conventional crude and 400,000 b/d of heavy crude. There are vast quantities of heavy and ultra-heavy crude in Venezuela, sufficient to supply most of the needs of the hemisphere is properly exploited. While financially all oil is fungible and the world price is set by overall supply and demand for that oil, the oil is distributed by minimizing transportation cost, so most of the Venezuelan oil comes to the US.
So, the question is will the US continue to accept closing of oil resources to US companies and perhaps to US markets? The Cubans have invited the Chinese to exploit possible oil reserves in the Gulf of Mexico, less than 100 miles from Florida. The US has historically developed oil reserves in the South China Sea, the Persian Gulf and other regions of South East Asia. Will the Chinese and Iranians continue to accept a US presence with controlling interests in oil fields near them? I think the day is coming when powerful governments like the US and China will begin to say these are critical supplies, vital to national security and we won’t permit foreign producers to operate in these fields. Then what? The US cannot continue to operate on a free market model, not withstanding soaring oil prices, when other governments are expropriating oil field investments and securing the oil for their own national use.
If this sounds ominous, the NY Times goes on to say that beyond oil there is the telecommunication industry and other critical infrastructure industries which are ripe for expropriation. Which US president is likely to say no, we won’t permit this, or we will retaliate in kind?
“Blowing smoke about the ‘atmospherics’ at Sharm El Shaik is not being candid with the Israeli public nor the world”.
“Propping up the â€˜corpseâ€™ of a dead Palestine state is what occurred on Monday in Sharm El Shaik, â€˜unique atmosphericsâ€™.”
by Jerry Gordon
Thereâ€™s a scene in the Spielberg film, â€˜Schindlerâ€™s Listâ€™ when actor Liam Neesom who portrays â€˜righteous gentileâ€™ Oscar Schindler turns to Stein the Jewish accountant portrayed by actor Ben Kingsley in the Krakow business office holds his hands apart and says: â€˜itâ€™s all about the presentationâ€™.
Well, that line from â€˜Schindlerâ€™s Listâ€ popped into my head as I listened to the â€˜spinâ€™ orchestrated by English speaking, American born PMO spokesperson Miri Eisin yesterday morning on a conference call arranged by the Israel project. The conference call took place before an estimated 100 journalists at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem with a number of us listening in from North America.
Twenty children from the Russian speaking community in Sderot will be arriving in the USA to tell their story- â€˜Living under Fireâ€™.
The project, organized by the Russian- Jewish Community Federation (RJCF) of Boston , will bring the story of these embattled Jewish children and how they cope with the constant rocket attacks that plague their Negev city of Sderot . The children ages, 9 to 13 will perform in a community â€“theatre type production in the Boston , New York and New Jersey area. The performances will be in Russian with English translation.