The facts of life in the MIddle East

By Avi Bell

If Israel refuses to negotiate, that proves Israel is not interested in
peace, because it refuses to negotiate.

If the Palestinians refuse to negotiate, that proves Israel is not
interested in peace, because the Palestinians can see negotiations with
Israel are pointless.

If Israel makes preconditions to negotiations, that proves Israel is not
interested in peace, because it is trying to avoid negotiations.

If the Palestinians make preconditions to negotiations, that proves Israel
is not interested in peace, because the Palestinians have to force Israel to
be serious in the negotiations.

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July 31, 2013 | 15 Comments » | 199 views

Very Good News Israel

Yet Another Opportunity

Abba Eban famously stated that the Palestinian Arab leadership never misses an opportunity to miss an opportunity.  This week Israel made another huge traumatic concession just to initiate another opportunity to conduct peace talks.  In parallel news, Israelis continued to make the most of numerous opportunities to benefit humanity.

Israelis have made several opportunist discoveries recently.  Scientists at Tel Aviv University struck gold when they found that heart cells integrated with nano-fibers of the precious metal improve electrical signaling between cells to strengthen the contraction of cardiac muscle. The TAU scientists are using this to create cardiac patches for replacing damaged heart tissues.  At Ben-Gurion University researchers discovered that methylphenidate – used to treat ADHD sufferers – is also successful in reducing the risk of falling by the elderly.  And TAU Professor Illana Gozes has created a new peptide (short protein) called NAP which she has found has benefits for Alzheimer’s, ALS and Parkinson’s sufferers.

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July 31, 2013 | 4 Comments » | 140 views

PM appeases right with territories construction

“Ma’ariv”: The prime minister let Housing Minister Uri Ariel build in Judea and Samaria in exchange for the release of Palestinian prisoners.

31 July 13 09:43, Globes’ correspondent

Although the government’s decision to release 104 security prisoners ahead of the resumption of peace talks with the Palestinians was resentfully accepted by Habayit Hayehudi, behind the party’s decision to stay in the coalition, despite bitter objections by its members, is an agreement between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Minister of Housing and Construction Uri Ariel. Hebrew daily “Ma’ariv” reports that, under the agreement, Israel will unfreeze building plans for thousands of housing units in Judea and Samaria in exchange for keeping Habayit Hayehudi in the coalition.

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July 31, 2013 | 172 Comments » | 325 views

Bolton: Netanyahu Releasing Prisoners to Get US Help on Iran

By: Greg Richter, NEWSMAX

Former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton says it is a “mistake” for Israel to release 104 Arab prisoners, but that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is likely making a political calculation to get U.S. help later.

The move makes sense to Netanyahu, Bolton told Fox Business Network, because he is focused on the most important issue in the region: Iran’s nuclear weapons program.

Netanyahu is facing a hard decision on whether to strike, and if he does he wants to be in a place to tell Obama, “I have done everything you asked me on the Israel-Palestinian question, despite the political cost, now I want you to stand with me against Iran,” Bolton said on “Lou Dobbs Tonight.”

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July 31, 2013 | 5 Comments » | 112 views

Israel faces legal hurdles to free 104 convicted killers

By David Bedein, Israel Resource Review

This week, if you followed newscasts on the Israel Broadcasting Authority and the Israel Defense Forces Radio and nearly all of the Israeli media, you would have been convinced that Israel has already freed 104 convicted murderers in accordance with the Israel Cabinet decision of July 28, and nothing can to be done to stop that process.

That is not the case.

Over the past few days, I wore my MSW hat and interfaced with social work professionals from Israel Prison Service system, who confirmed that, according to Israel penal law, there is no such thing as “automatic” clemency, pardon or commutation for someone who has been convicted of murder or attempted murder.

There is a “security risk” form that the Israel Prison Service must submit concerning each convict, known as “HaArachat Misukanut” which is binding upon the decision as to whether or not a convict can be released.

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July 31, 2013 | 3 Comments » | 108 views

Obama drops the other shoe (on Israel)

By Fresno Zionism

Obama mentor Edward Said symbolically throws a stone at Israel across Lebanese border, July 2000

Obama mentor Edward Said symbolically throws a stone at Israel across Lebanese border, July 2000

With the start of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations in Washington, there is one overriding question:

What does the Obama administration think it will get out of this?

We know what the Palestinians want: They hope to see Israel forced to stop construction outside of the Green Line, while they push forward with EU-funded projects to create facts on the ground in Israeli-administered Area C. They hope to make it impossible for Israel to back away from the idea that the 1949 armistice lines are in fact the boundaries of ‘Palestinian land’, and not mere accidents of history. They want to further cement their narrative about history and international law, including fantastic conceptions like ‘right of return’ in the world’s — and America’s — consciousness. They have already gained agreement to the release of many convicted murderers, a humiliating loss of face for Israel and a huge propaganda victory for them.

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July 31, 2013 | 3 Comments » | 161 views

This is not Peace It is Pure Nazi Ideology

Abbas tell the truth, but those listening pretend not to hear.

Giulio Meotti, INN

Imagine if any political leader would say: “No ‘nigger’ will be allowed to live in my state”. He would be denounced correctly, as a racist, a bigot.

That does not seem to include Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian Arab leader of Ramallah, who on the verge of the new “peace talks” in Washington just declared: “In a final resolution, we would not see the presence of a single Israeli – civilian or soldier – on our lands”.

This is not “peace”, but pure Nazism, it is ethnic cleansing. And instead of the expression “final resolution”, Abbas should have said what he really means, “final solution”.

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July 31, 2013 | 3 Comments » | 126 views

United States Presses Israel to Release Murderers but won’t release Pollard

By Alan M. Dershowitz – The Jerusalem Post – July 30, 2013

The Israeli cabinet took a courageous and politically unpopular step by
approving the release of 104 Palestinian prisoners, including many
terrorists who had murdered Israeli babies, women, the elderly and other
civilians. According to Israeli intelligence some of these released
murderers are likely to rejoin terrorist organizations and may kill again.
Relatives and friends of the victims have protested the decision to release
these killers. Yet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his
cabinet withstood these pressures and ordered their release.

The United States government had pressured the Israeli government to release
these prisoners because the Palestinian Authority had made their release a
condition to resuming peace talks. The Israeli government, which had agreed
to peace talks with no preconditions, submitted to the Palestinian
precondition, and talks are now likely to go forward.

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July 31, 2013 | 7 Comments » | 107 views


Francisco Gil-White tells me that the inspiration for this article came from a comment Canadian Otter made on Israpundit.

Historical and Investigative Research

by Francisco Gil-White

Hajj Amin al Husseini is the father of the Palestinian Movement. He created PLO/Fatah (now better known as the ‘Palestinian Authority’), the organization that will govern any future Palestinian state. And he was mentor to Yasser Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas, the leaders of that organization. Husseini was also, during World War II, a top Nazi leader who co-directed with Adolf Eichmann the death camp system that murdered between 5 and 6 million European Jews, also known as the Final Solution. These facts are not widely known or understood. Neither has their implication for our understanding of Israeli ruling elite behavior been properly appreciated. We present a short documentary and a discussion.

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July 30, 2013 | 29 Comments » | 144 views

Now We Know The Truth: What’s Behind U.S. “Peace Process” Policy

By Barry Rubin, PJ MEDIA

At last we have an explanation for what has been going on with Israel-Palestinian talks. It is credible yet ridiculous. And it is very important.

Here is today’s New York Times.

“In recent weeks, Mr. Kerry and his aides have outlined several basic arguments for why his efforts might bear fruit. Perhaps the most important one, which Mr. Kerry advanced almost the moment he was picked for the State Department post, is that the United States does not have the luxury of staying on the sidelines.

“With the Palestinians poised to take their claim for statehood to the International Criminal Court and United Nations bodies, American officials say the two sides were facing a downward spiral in which the Israelis would respond by cutting off financing to the Palestinian territories and European nations might curtail their investment in Israel, further isolating the Israelis.”

Now, what is this saying?

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July 30, 2013 | 10 Comments » | 110 views

Sisi’s Islamist Agenda for Egypt

[See also: Experts Say Muslim Brotherhood Will Strengthen in Egypt Despite Military Control]

The General’s Radical Political Vision

Robert Springborg, FOREIGN AFFAIRS

Addressing graduates of military academies is a standard responsibility for high-ranking military officers all over the world. But last week, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the commander of Egypt’s armed forces, which recently deposed the country’s first freely elected president, went far beyond the conventions of the genre in a speech to graduates of Egypt’s Navy and Air Defense academies. Sisi’s true audience was the wider Egyptian public, and he presented himself less as a general in the armed forces than as a populist strongman. He urged Egyptians to take to the streets to show their support for the provisional government that he had installed after launching a coup to remove from power President Mohamed Morsi, a longtime leader of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood. “I’ve never asked you for anything,” Sisi declared, before requesting a “mandate” to confront the Muslim Brotherhood, whose supporters have launched protests and sit-ins to denounce the new military-backed regime.Al-Sisi at a press conference in Cairo. (Courtesy Reuters)

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July 30, 2013 | 2 Comments » | 164 views

Asia laps up lax Israeli weapons rules

By Alvite Singh Ningthoujam, ASIA TIMES

Israel’s rising arms trade is once again making headlines. Israeli and international media are reporting that sales soared to US$7.5 billion last year, a significant jump on the $5.8 billion raised in 2011. SIBAT, the defense export and defense cooperation agency of the Ministry of Defense, has predicted a similar figure for the current year.

The figures have drawn mixed reactions due to their size, but one of the most noteworthy aspects of this activity is the period in which Israel managed to clinch major arms deals.

During 2011-2012, major European nations and the US had to cut down on their defense budgets due to the economic crisis. Further, the US has also withdrawn its troops from Iraq (and is in the process of doing the same in Afghanistan). Despite these events, the diminutive Jewish state maintained its age-old trade elsewhere, and profitably.

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July 30, 2013 | 4 Comments » | 139 views

Islamism’s Likely Doom

by Daniel Pipes The Washington TimesJuly 22, 2013

As recently as 2012, it appeared that Islamists could overcome their many internal dissimilarities – sectarian (Sunni, Shi’ite), political (monarchical, republican), tactical (political, violent), or attitudes toward modernity (Salafi, Muslim Brotherhood) – and cooperate. In Tunisia, for example, Salafis and the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) types found common ground. Differences between all these groups were real but secondary, as I put it then, because “all Islamists pull in the same direction, toward the full and severe application of Islamic law (the Shari’a).”

Ali Khamene’i and Mahmoud Ahmedinejad in better times.

This sort of cooperation still persists in small ways, as shown by a recent meeting between a member of Turkey’s ruling party and the head of a Salafi organization in Germany. But Islamists have in recent months abruptly and overwhelmingly thrown themselves at each others’ throats. Islamists still constitute a single movement who share similar supremacist and utopian goals, but they also have different personnel, ethnic affiliations, methods, and philosophies.

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July 30, 2013 | 1 Comments » | 151 views

Paying in Advance

Israel could have refused the prisoner release. The result would have been endless discussions in which Kerry tries to get them to reverse. Who knows what assurances or “gestures” it might have been able to get. But it choose to say yes. Now it has one more chance to avoid the concessions and demands and that is to hold firmly to its own demands and to demand all of Area C. Time to be more assertive and play offense. Israel must set the agenda. Ted Belman


Like the dog that finally caught the bus he chased, Secretary of State John Kerry now has to figure out what to do with what he’s got. He induced, bribed, cajoled, and threatened Israelis and Palestinians to return to the “negotiating table.” The Palestinians were promised up to $4 billion in “investment” and aid, and up to 104 Palestinian prisoners held by Israel from the pre-Oslo era; terrorists with blood on their hands and previously thought to be unreleasable.

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July 30, 2013 | 9 Comments » | 151 views

Syrian army and Hizballah capture Homs – opening way to Aleppo and decisive Assad victory

DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 29, 2013,

Three months after winning the strategic town of Al Qusayr, the combined Syrian and Hizballah armies have captured the historic Muslim Brotherhood city of Homs, 162 kilometers northeast of the capital Damascus. DEBKAfile’s military and intelligence sources report that Sunday, July 28, jeeps with recoilless guns, pick-up trucks with anti air guns – all loaded with defeated rebel Farouq Brigades fighters were to be seen fleeing the city. As they fled, Syrian and Hizballah army tanks facing no resistance rolled into the center of Homs, the old city and the Khladiyeh district and hoisted images of President Bashar Assad.

The fall of Homs, which the rebels designated from the start of the uprising “capital of the revolution,” opens the way for Syrian-Hizballah forces to move north on Aleppo, Syria’s largest city.

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July 30, 2013 | 2 Comments » | 114 views

Peace talks: It’s time for an Israeli initiative

There is little difference in this idea and what I have been arguing for, namely that we annex Area C and then begin offering to make A and B more contiguous and offering part of area C to round things out. While the author wants to negotiate a small Palestinian state to begin with, I prefer to annex C then negotiate. Ted Belman


We have to be flexible where possible, and we have to realize that if we genuinely want to put an end to the conflict it will take time.

The issue of a referendum won’t be relevant if the peace talks are aimed at reaching a final-status agreement with the Palestinians. There won’t be anything for the electorate to approve, because there won’t be an agreement.

Abbas won’t agree to any less than what was offered by Barak and Olmert, and Netanyahu won’t be able to make the same offer, and rightly so. Before long, the talking will stop and the free-for-all will begin: international pressure, demonstrations, acrimonious and divisive infighting.

We need to take a different tack: to emphasize to the Palestinians and the world at large what we are willing to do.

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July 30, 2013 | 1 Comments » | 108 views

Ya’alon alludes to hidden considerations in prisoner release

By Yaacov Lappin, JPOST

Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon referred on Monday to unseen considerations that are far from the public eye as the main catalyst for Israel’s decision to release imprisoned Palestinian terrorists.

Speaking at the IDF’s absorption base for new draftees at Tel Hashomer, Ya’alon said, “Releasing prisoners came as a result of choosing a bad option over a worse option… We reached the decision to avoid the worse [option]. Many strategic considerations, which may be revealed in the future, stood behind this, and hence we must go forward with a release of pre-Oslo prisoners.”

Some analysts have suggested that Israel agreed to the release as part of its efforts to secure American support in a potential military confrontation with Iran over Tehran’s expanding nuclear program.

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July 30, 2013 | 1 Comments » | 111 views

Abbas: “In a final resolution, we would not see the presence of a single Israeli – civilian or soldier – on our lands,”

We are not in a good position when the agenda is set by Abbas. His demands become the focus of talks. Better to reiterate our own demands and I am talking territorial demands. We should demand the retention of most of Area C. We must not remain silent on our territorial demands. Ted Belman

Reuters, Jpost

CAIRO – Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas laid out his vision on Monday for the final status of Israeli-Palestinian relations ahead of peace talks due to resume in Washington for the first time in nearly three years.

Abbas said that no Israeli settlers or border forces could remain in a future Palestinian state and that Palestinians deem illegal all Jewish settlement building within the land occupied in the 1967 Six Days War.

The forceful statements appeared to challenge mediator US Secretary of State John Kerry’s hopes that the terms of the talks, scheduled to begin Monday night over dinner, be kept secret.

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July 30, 2013 | 1 Comments » | 123 views

Investigation into police intimidation in Canada

By Pamela Geller. WND

Remember the sharia cop in Canada who strong-armed a rabbi into cancelling my talk at his shul? You didn’t think I was going to just let it go, did you? Inspector Ricky Veerappan of the York Regional Police force’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Bureau, is currently under investigation for threatening Chabad Rabbi Mendel Kaplan into canceling my speech. I will be giving testimony the second week of August.

DEFENDING THE WEST Screen Shot 2013-07-29<br /><br />
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Fighting back! Police intimidation in Canada
Exclusive: Pamela Geller declares, ‘This outrageous double standard has to end’

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July 30, 2013 | 3 Comments » | 131 views

A New Declaration of Principles

By Salomon Benzimra

Twenty years ago, a Declaration of Principles (DoP) initiated the Oslo peace process. We have witnessed an unmitigated disaster ever since: terrorism; two “wars” in Gaza; incitement against Jews; indoctrination of Palestinian children; recrudescence of anti-Semitism under the guise of anti-Zionism in academia, the media and among NGOs, delegitimation of the State of Israel, etc.

One may wonder about the lofty Principles which triggered this mayhem. Sadly, nobody wonders. Whereas all respected professionals – engineers, architects, physicians, etc. – are accountable for their malpractice, the architects of the DoP and its ensuing Oslo Accords seem to be perpetually immune from scrutiny. The lawyers, politicians, diplomats, journalists and academics who promoted these insane policies – and continue to do so to this day – never had their day of reckoning.

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July 29, 2013 | 18 Comments » | 180 views