Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Palestinian Authority has never acted seriously against the terrorists, and never will - by Stephen Flatow

...Let's be grateful Israel's security forces have once again pre-empted the terrorists. But at the same time, let's learn an important lesson from this latest episode: the Palestinian Authority has never acted seriously against the terrorists, and never will. The PA regards the terrorists as "martyrs" and "heroes," and it says so every day in its newspapers, radio shows, and television programs. It allows them to operate freely, and sometimes even directly assists them. This week's photograph proves it yet again.

Stephen M. Flatow..
JNS.org..
24 August '16..

It's one of the most disturbing photos from Israel that I've seen in years.

I'm referring to this week's image of the hundreds of Palestinian terrorist weapons captured in Israeli raids. It was enough to send shivers down one's spine. And it revealed more about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict than all the panel discussions, research papers, and expert analyses with which we are always being bombarded.

Friends of Israel often complain about what they say is the Israeli Foreign Ministry's inadequate effort to make Israel's case to the international community. And those complaints are not entirely without merit. But somebody in the foreign ministry's "hasbara" division deserves credit for coming up with a simple, yet incredibly effective way of demonstrating what Israel is up against: show their weapons.

Telling the world that hundreds of terrorists have been arrested, or thousands of weapons captured is mind-numbing. They're just numbers. The public yawns and turns the page. But recall what the Israelis did after capturing in Jan. 2002 the Karine A, the Palestinian ship seized by Israeli commandos. They didn't just issue a press release about the 50 tons of arms, or the 700,000 rounds of ammunition on board. They actually spread the weapons out, on the ground, for the photographers and television cameras. And they reached as far as the eye--and the lens--could see.

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Reframing and politicising an animal welfare story at BBC News - by Hadar Sela

...Clearly telling BBC audiences the story of the relocation of abused animals from the Khan Younis zoo was of much less interest to Yolande Knell than the opportunistic promotion of her long apparent political agenda.

Hadar Sela..
BBC Watch..
25 August '16..

A filmed report which appeared on the BBC News website’s homepage as well as on its ‘World’ and ‘Middle East’ pages on August 24th revisited the location of a previous BBC report from April 2012.

Back then, the report titled “Gaza zoo resorts to displaying stuffed animals” told audiences that:

“A zoo owner in Gaza has had to resort to displaying stuffed animals, because of a shortage of live ones.

Mohamed Owaida from the Khan Younis Zoo says it is proving too costly to feed his living animals, and he can not always get live specimens through the Israeli blockade of the Gaza strip.”

Around the same time, the Times of Israel also produced a report about that zoo.

“Flies swarm around some of the 10 animals that have been embalmed so far. The makeshift cages housing the exhibits — fashioned from fencing salvaged from Jewish settlements that Israel dismantled in 2005 — are littered with empty soda cans and other trash.

An emaciated-looking stuffed lion, its coat patchy and mangy, lies on an exhibit cobbled together from crates and shipping pallets. A monkey had missing limbs. A porcupine had a hole in its head.

The zoo’s 65 live animals, which include ostriches, monkeys, turtles, deer, a llama, a lion and a tiger, don’t fare much better. During a recent visit, children poked chocolate, potato chips and bread through the wire. There’s no zookeeper on the premises. Gaza has no government body that oversees zoos, and medical treatment is done by consulting over the phone with zoo veterinarians in Egypt.[…]

Owner Mohammed Awaida said he opened the “South Forest Park” in 2007, only to lose a number of animals during Israel’s military offensive against Hamas that began in December 2008. During the three-week offensive, launched in response to rocket attacks on Israel, Awaida said he could not reach the zoo, and many animals died of neglect and starvation.”

Earlier this year the international animal charity ‘Four Paws’ began trying to save the remaining animals in Khan Younis.

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Surprise? Reuters Headline Describes Palestinian Attacker As "Driver"

...The disappearance of the post might seem strange. But then again, it sure would look bad if Baker's own bureau repeatedly publishes headlines of the type that he himself said were "horrible." And it does look bad. But might look equally bad for a journalist to surreptitiously delete his own tweets.

Gilead Ini..
CAMERA Snaphots..
24 August '16..

The Israeli army today reported that a Palestinian attacker was killed after he stabbed a soldier.

But a Reuters headline about the attack suggests the man was killed while doing no more than driving his car: "Israeli soldier shoots dead Palestinian driver in West Bank: army."


By contrast, here's how Reuters described an incident in Belgium earlier this month in which an attacker was killed after slashing police officers:

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The Poll that Headlines Got Wrong. Two State Solution is Most Sincerely Dead

...The "two state solution" isn't a final solution. It’s clearly a step towards something else. Hint: They oppose a demilitarized state 81.6%:16.0% !!


Dr. Aaron Lerner..
IMRA Weekly Commentary..
24 August '16..
Link: http://www.imra.org.il/story.php3?id=71312

The headlines covering a poll of Palestinians and Israelis this week claimed that there is still slightly more support for the "two-state solution" than opposition.

But if you spend 60 seconds actually reading the poll results you will understand that the Palestinian street is dead set against the two-state solution.

Let's walk through some key results of the Joint Poll conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute (IDI) in Jerusalem and the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR) in Ramallah, in partnership with and support from the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) and with funding from the European Union (EU).

Let's focus on the results for Palestinians from the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem interviewed between June 2 and 4, 2016.

When questioned regarding support for a two state solution, there was indeed a 50.9%:47.6% majority for a two state solution.

But most - 58.3% - oppose dropping further claims against Israel or considering the conflict over if a two-state solution is implemented.

The "two state solution" isn't a final solution. It’s clearly a step towards something else.

Hint: They oppose a demilitarized state 81.6%:16.0% !!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

When Israel is not involved, assaults on freedom of the media and expression do not interest them

One might wonder if the human rights groups neglect these abuses because of their continued obsession with destroying Israel.

Ahmed Said (left) and Mahmoud Abu Awwad (right)
are two journalists living in the Gaza Strip who
were recently arrested by Hamas security forces.
Khaled Abu Toameh..
Gatestone Institute..
23 August '16..

Palestinian journalists are at the top of the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas hit-list in the crackdown occurring alongside preparations for the Palestinian local and municipal elections, scheduled for October 8.

The crackdown is part of an ongoing campaign by the two rival parties to silence critics in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Neither Hamas nor the PA tolerates a free and independent media -- especially on the eve of a crucial election that could have far-reaching political implications in the Palestinian arena.

A Hamas victory in the upcoming elections would be catastrophic for President Mahmoud Abbas and his Palestinian Authority. Such an electoral outcome would be tantamount to a vote of no-confidence in their policies and performance.

Hamas, for its part, is investing a huge amount of resources in the election campaign, in hopes that the results would further boost its standing among Palestinians. Hamas fears that a defeat would undermine its power in the Gaza Strip and pave the way for its collapse.

As the election campaign heats up, it is clear that Hamas and the PA agree on one thing: intensifying their repressive measures against Palestinian journalists.

This media crackdown is essentially ignored by international human rights organizations. Why? One reason is that when Israel is not involved, assaults on freedom of the media and expression do not interest them.

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When UNRWA was against moving Palestinians into normal homes - by Elder of Ziyon

...There was, of course, a postscript. The UN condemned Israel for improving the lives of hundreds of Palestinians and for trying to get them out of these crime-ridden, crowded camps. Many times.

Elder of Ziyon..
23 August '16..








We've spoken about this before, but here is a 1977 LA Times article that shows how much UNRWA (and the PLO) were against Israel moving Arabs into decent housing.

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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

With Friends Like These, Who Needs Enemies? - by David Collier

...Simply writing a piece slamming Haaretz for picking on Israeli policy isn’t really a worthwhile exercise today. We have long since passed the point of Haaretz being recognised as anything but a bitter media outlet drowning in its own extreme agenda. It no longer has a relevant readership inside Israel at all, and if it were not for the global fanbase of Israel’s rabid haters, Haaretz would long ago have either sunk completely or began to swim in another direction. Yet the question remains, how far gone are they?

David Collier..
Beyond the Great Divide..
23 August '16..

Truth is I had placed myself on a month long self-imposed exile from all my research into the anti-Zionist camp. I reasoned I needed a holiday, a break from the venom, the hatred and the antisemitism.

The theory had been that if I replace Electronic Intifada with the Israel press and Counterpunch with Jewish media in the US or UK, I would be able to switch off and relax. In hindsight it was a mistake to think it would be a detoxifying experience. After just two weeks I basically end up asking the question. With friends like these – who actually needs enemies?

Let me begin with a point of clarification. I do not as a rule, attack the politics of the Israeli left. It isn’t that I agree with them – I don’t. In part I understand their anxiety, their moral conflict, but my response to all those who simply wish to ‘end the occupation’, is always to ask a simple question – “how?”

Opposition politics is always easy, it’s just naysaying and grandstanding. It is difficult to think of a better example of this than the position of the far left in Israel. The na├»ve belief that all that is wrong is embedded in the ‘occupation’, the flimflam argument put forward by those who think that somehow, the conflict would end (or be less harmful) if Israel would just ‘play nice’. So if you ever want to see true confusion, take a supporter of Meretz (Israel), Yachad (UK), J-Street (US) and ask them how exactly they intend to ‘end the occupation’. What does it all look like a day after?

For the most part these movements are astroturf organisations, the expensive playthings of fools with too much money. However, my research focuses on anti-Zionists, not Zionists with whom I have disagreements. So I leave them alone when they leave me alone. However, at times like this our paths do cross, and over the last few weeks I experienced two incidents of what I can only refer to as ‘press rage’ (I would define ‘press rage’ as the point where I begin to throw random heavy items having read an article I took extreme exception to).

The first article was in Haaretz. I made the mistake of reading an online Haaretz piece penned by Gideon Levy. The second was a hatchet job in Jewish News that directly affects me and attacks my own political position. The article in the Jewish News also has far reaching implications and creates an impossible environment for Zionists in the UK. This piece is a response to those attacks on Zionism. Let me deal first with Haaretz.

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The first BBC English language report on missile fire since the beginning of 2016 - by Hadar Sela

...The corporation’s public purposes remit commits it to “giving insight into the way people live in other countries” and building “understanding of international issues”. The BBC apparently believes that on this particular issue it can meet those obligations by producing one belated report in eight months which includes a generalised portrayal of ‘periodic’ missile fire rather than providing audiences with the readily available concrete statistical information.

Hadar Sela..
BBC Watch..
23 August '16..

Well over 24 hours after the incident took place, a day after colleagues at BBC Arabic published two articles on the story and following the appearance of this post, the BBC News website finally informed its English-speaking audiences that a missile had been fired by “Palestinian militants” in the Gaza Strip at an Israeli town.

Titled “Israel launches Gaza strikes after rocket attack on Sderot“, in its fourth paragraph the report from August 22nd tells readers that:Sderot attack art

“Earlier, a rocket launched in Gaza landed near a house in the Israeli town of Sderot without causing any injuries.”

It continues:

“Israel and militants in Gaza led by Hamas, which dominates the coastal territory, fought a 50-day war in the summer of 2014.

Since then, a ceasefire has largely held, but some small jihadist groups have defied the agreement and periodically fired rockets at Israel.”

Does that portrayal provide BBC audiences with an understanding of the rate of missile fire from the Gaza Strip since the end of the 2014 conflict? The facts behind the BBC’s claim that the ceasefire which came into force in August 2014 “has largely held” are as follows (an attack represents one incident rather than the number of missiles fired. Short falling missiles which were fired towards Israel but landed inside the Gaza Strip are not included):

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Perhaps the Palestinians will yet thank Israel for their skirting the Arab catastrophe - by Moshe Arens

...The rhetoric of Palestinian leaders like Abbas in Ramallah and Ismail Haniyeh in Gaza might lead you to believe that nothing can be worse than Israeli “occupation,” but it’s not likely that all Palestinians believe that. Maybe some even consider the establishment of the State of Israel a blessing in disguise.

Aleppo May 2016
Moshe Arens..
moshearens.com..
15 August '16..
Link: http://moshearens.com/2016/08/15/the-palestinians-can-thank-israel-for-their-skirting-the-arab-catastrophe/

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas wants to sue Britain over the 1917 Balfour Declaration, which pledged His Majesty’s Government’s support for the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people in Palestine. Arthur James Balfour has a well-deserved place in history, not only because he signed the famous letter addressed to Lionel Walter Rothschild, but also because he served as Britain’s prime minister between 1902 and 1905, and as Britain’s foreign secretary between 1916 and 1919.

As for Abbas, he might have remained completely unknown had it not been for the Balfour Declaration. The Palestinians as a national entity, recognized internationally and as such by themselves, would probably not have existed had it not been for the Balfour Declaration. They were not recognized as such at the time, either by the Turks or the British.

The Balfour Declaration refers to “existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine.” Thirty years later, in November 1947, the UN partition declaration called for the establishment of a Jewish and an Arab state in a divided Palestine. The non-Jewish population in Palestine was considered by the international community, and by themselves as well, not a distinct nationality but part of the Arab nation.

It was the establishment of Israel, and the following Arab wars waged against Israel, that gave rise to a separate Palestinian national consciousness and in time international recognition of a Palestinian nation. Abbas has no reason to sue Britain, which by its declaration and the subsequent establishment of Israel also gave birth to the Palestinian nation that he purports to lead. If anything, he should recognize Britain’s contribution to Palestinian nationhood.

What would have been the fate of the Arab population living in Palestine at the time of the Balfour Declaration had Britain not pledged its support to the Zionist enterprise and if Israel had not been established 31 years later? We can only speculate, though one would expect that their fate would have been intertwined with the fate of the Arab populations in the Middle East in the years after World War I until the present time, and no doubt would have been affected by it.

Actually, Palestinians want to keep the conflict going until their ultimate victory - by Elder of Ziyon

...This is the fundamental fact missing from most analysis of the Israeli-Arab conflict. Palestinians do not want a real, permanent peace, only to grab what they can to stage the next phase of their goal to destroy Israel. Most polls are written by people who do not even want to accept that as a possibility, so the question is not asked and the headlines can be written based on the very specific, yet ultimately inadequate, questions that were asked.

Elder of Ziyon..
22 August '16..








The news media spins it this way: (from AP)

Slim majority of Israelis, Palestinians still favor peace deal
A new poll of Israelis and Palestinians released on Monday found that a slim majority on both sides still favor a peace settlement establishing a Palestinian state alongside Israel, despite years of conflict and deadlock in negotiations.

The results of the joint poll may provide some small signs of encouragement when peace prospects appear bleak. The last round of negotiations broke down two years ago, and a resumption of talks, much less progress between the sides, at this point seems unlikely.

The poll found that 51 percent of Palestinians and 59 percent of Israelis still support a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
But the reality is shown to be different once you look at the actual questions.

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Truly Eyeless in Gaza - by Michael Danby

Isn’t it ironic that aid from a Christian charity, or at least their reckless support for Palestinians in Gaza, is used for attack tunnels against Israel, the only place Christians feel safe from persecution in the entire Middle East.

Michael Danby..
Times of Israel..
22 August '16..
Link: http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/world-vision-eyeless-in-gaza/

The Reverend Tim Costello is the very image of the muscular, “socially concerned” Church Man. For all his righteous self-confidence he and World Vision have long suffered from a lack of imagination as to good and evil in the Middle East. It should surprise no one that World Vision’s director in Gaza, Mohamed Halabi has been accused of being a double agent for Hamas and indicted in an Israeli court for diverting the bulk of World Vision aid for the Palestinians to that notorious terrorist group. The internal Israeli security service, Shin Bet has a very detailed list of charges against Halabi. Isn’t it ironic that aid from a Christian charity, or at least their reckless support for Palestinians in Gaza, is used for attack tunnels against Israel, the only place Christians feel safe from persecution in the entire Middle East. Only in Israel, in all of the Middle East is the number of Christians increasing as the fighting Jihadist program has chased most of the ancient Christian communities out of the Arab World.

World Vision, a Christian charity “doing good” amongst the heathen Palestinian Muslims, is in fact not an aid organisation, it is constituted as a church. Irony of irony that a church would unwittingly support a Jihadist organisation like Hamas. Hamas’s military organisation has long been designated by the Australian Parliament as a terrorist organisation, as it is in most Western Countries.

Rev Costello is not a neophyte when it comes to the Israeli and Palestinian conflict and has a long record of getting things wrong on this volatile area. Some years ago he wrote a commentary for Melbourne’s Age which ignored suicide bombings and condemned Israel for building a security fence.

As my friend Professor Gerald Steinberg argued in the Wall Street Journal “For years, World Vision promoted the Palestinian cause, developed alliances and provided funds to some of the nongovernmental organizations active in demonizing Israel and promoting boycotts. In publications designed to bring in donations, the brutality of Palestinian terrorism is erased while images of victimization are highlighted. Children are depicted as harassed by “soldiers and settlers,” and “suffer from lack of adequate education facilities” due to “demolitions,” as World Vision’s website puts it. Palestinian corruption is whitewashed, as is the fact that Israel has been out of Gaza for more than a decade.”

Germany too has decided to bar financing World Vision. Volker Beck the German Green Party MP and head of the German- Israel Parliamentary Group said: “World Vision massively damages the trust necessary for aid work for the people in Gaza,” adding that “Hamas is a terrorist organization, which should not be financed with tax-payer funds.”

Now World Vision have as the result of this scandal suspended its operations in Gaza. Wise thing to do.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Turning Rocket-Fire into Fibs, Fabrication and Fraud at Reuters

...Reuters creates the false impression that the Israeli victims of this terror are somehow partly to blame, that the terrorism isn’t really terrorism, and that Israel’s highly restrained response was somehow heavy-handed or provocative. This kind of irresponsible journalism emboldens terrorists, giving them an impression that the world will not notice, or care, about their aggression. The end result of this irresponsible journalism is a greater risk of even more human tragedy: for Israelis and Palestinians alike.

Daniel Pomerantz..
Honest Reporting..
22 August '16..

Yesterday, terrorists in Gaza fired rockets at the Israeli town of Sderot. By a tremendous stroke of luck there were no injuries, but at least one rocket landed in a residential area, exploding next to a house. The terror organization Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) took responsibility, as did a Salafist group with ties to Islamic State (ISIS).

Reuters then wrote an absurd story: misstating facts, covering up context, and even changing attributed statements from the Israeli military.

Reuters fabricated statements by the Israeli military to make it look like the IDF had shelled a town.

The Reuters story begins,

Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip launched a rocket that landed in the Israeli border town of Sderot on Sunday and Israeli aircraft and tanks responded by shelling the Gaza town of Beit Hanoun, the army and police said.(emphasis added)

The IDF said nothing of the kind.

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Updates throughout the day at http://calevbenyefuneh.blogspot.com. If you enjoy "Love of the Land", please be a subscriber. Just put your email address in the "Subscribe" box on the upper right-hand corner of the page.Twitter updates at LoveoftheLand as well as our Love of the Land page at Facebook which has additional pieces of interest besides that which is posted on the blog. Also check-out This Ongoing War by Frimet and Arnold Roth. An excellent blog, very important work. 
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Original sin and a J-Street U officer's support for Black Lives Matter platform on Israel

...The important takeaway is what George Orwell taught decades ago, "He who controls the past controls the future." If we ignore insinuations that Israel was created through the dispossession of the Palestinians, then we are ceding control of the past to the post-Zionists and the Palestinianists, and therefore we cede to them the future, that is the litany of "Occupation" perpetuating the dispossession from a century ago.

Sar Shalom..
Israel Thrives..
21 August '16..
Link: http://israel-thrives.blogspot.co.il/2016/08/surprise-surprise-jstreet-u-officer.html

Tablet Magazine ran a few great takedowns of Black Lives Matter's platform as it concerns Israel. Unfortunately, they were followed by an article by Daniel May, a past Director of JStreet U, essentially saying that Israel's occupation policy is responsible for BLM's platform. While nearly every paragraph of May's deserves criticism, in particular his parroting of Haaretz's lies, I'd like to focus on his original sin. In the final paragraph, May writes:

Palestine will never advance so long as Jews deny the cost of Zionism. The Jewish nation’s independence was won only through the dispossession of another nation.

Everything in the case against "the Occupation" stems from the accusation the Jewish sovereignty was won by dispossessing another nation. From the dispossession narrative comes the "right to resist" which justifies Palestinian terror and, with such actions being justified, delegitimizes Israel's countermeasures. Hence we see the one-sided description from JStreet and their ilk.

To understand dispossession as it pertains to the "Palestinians," consider a counterfactual from American history. Suppose that when the Pilgrims came to Massachusetts (for simplicity, I will be using present-day names for places), the population of Indian tribes native to Massachusetts was small. However, just before then, a handful of tribes from Quebec had started migrating to Massachusetts and accelerated during the Pilgrims' lifetimes. Subsequently, the Pilgrims' descendants stopped the inflow from Quebec and imposed population controls on the Indian population in Massachusetts, affecting the Quebec tribes because they were the larger presence. Would such an action constitute dispossession for the Quebec tribes? Such is the case with the Palestinians.

While it is true that Arabs were the majority of the population of the southwest Levant before the advent of Zionism, it does not follow that all non-Jewish population change was the result of natural growth. In the decades before the first Aliya, the Ottomans started moving population from other parts of its empire to the southwest Levant. A larger impetus for immigration was the economic development created by the Zionists. The result is that as the Jewish population rose due to Zionist immigration, so did the Arab population due to Arab immigration. Neither the Ottomans nor the British attempted to document how many Arabs thus entered Palestine. Thus, we have no reliable numbers for how many entered or what percentage of those claiming to be Palestinian have actual ties to the southwest Levant from before the first Aliya. Thus, the dispossession narrative claims that denying sovereignty to immigrants from Arabia and Egypt is dispossessing those immigrants.

Once again ignored by BBC News: Hizballah terror activity against Israelis - by Hadar Sela

...This is of course not the first time that Hizballah’s attempts to set up terror cells in Israel via social media have been thwarted by the Israeli security services. A similar story came to light in February of this year and – like this latest one – it too was ignored by the BBC’s numerous correspondents in Jerusalem, Ramallah and Gaza.

Hadar Sela..
BBC Watch..
21 August '16..







On August 16th the Israeli security services announced the earlier arrests of nine suspects recruited by Hizballah and the prevention of a number of terror attacks.

“Hezbollah operatives from the group’s Unit 133 — its foreign operations unit — working out of Lebanon and the Gaza Strip recruited members in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and within Israel through social media sites, notably Facebook, the Shin Bet security service said.

The terror cells had planned to carry out suicide bombings and ambush IDF patrols in the West Bank. They received funding from Hezbollah, and some members had begun preparing explosive devices for use in attacks, the Shin Bet says.”

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Updates throughout the day at http://calevbenyefuneh.blogspot.com. If you enjoy "Love of the Land", please be a subscriber. Just put your email address in the "Subscribe" box on the upper right-hand corner of the page.Twitter updates at LoveoftheLand as well as our Love of the Land page at Facebook which has additional pieces of interest besides that which is posted on the blog. Also check-out This Ongoing War by Frimet and Arnold Roth. An excellent blog, very important work. 
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