Wednesday, April 30, 2014

A Case of Selective Holocaust History by Dr. Mordechai Kedar

...According to Israel’s presumptive peace partner, Israel is doing unto the Palestinians what the Nazis inflicted upon the Jews. Is that so? Is Israel herding Palestinians onto trains like animals? Is Israel shoving the Palestinian people into gas chambers? Is Israel burning Palestinian bodies in crematoria? Is Israel capturing Palestinians and confining them in forced labor camps?

Dr. Mordechai Kedar..
Middle East Insights..
30 April '14..

To mark the 70th anniversary of the mass deportation and murder of over 585,000 Hungarian Jews, the Israeli government decided to observe this dark chapter in Holocaust history by making it the focus of the official Holocaust Memorial Day 2014 commemoration.

Beginning in May 1944, Hungary’s Jews were deported by train to Auschwitz-Birkenau, where they were killed upon arrival. Israeli President Shimon Peres described the destruction of Hungarian Jewry in bone-chilling detail in his speech at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem Sunday night.

The American Rabbi, the Palestinian President and Holocaust History

A few days before Israelis honored the six million Jews killed by the Nazis and their willing collaborators, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas met with American Rabbi Marc Schneier, a well-known proponent of interfaith dialogue. It was during this get-together that Abbas declared, “The Shoah was the worst crime in human history.” The “Holocaust was a reflection of a racist ideology as expressed in ethnic cleansing, which the Palestinian people reject,” the PA president added. “Indeed, the Palestinian people, afflicted and oppressed, are the first to demand the end of racism against other nations.”

Abbas subtly draws a parallel between the Nazi ‘Final Solution’ and today’s Israel. According to Israel’s presumptive peace partner, Israel is doing unto the Palestinians what the Nazis inflicted upon the Jews.

Is that so? Is Israel herding Palestinians onto trains like animals? Is Israel shoving the Palestinian people into gas chambers? Is Israel burning Palestinian bodies in crematoria? Is Israel capturing Palestinians and confining them in forced labor camps?

Yet, despite the fact there is zero similarity between what is happening now west of the Jordan River and the horrors experienced 70 years ago in Europe, Abu Mazen (Abbas) does not hesitate to implicitly equate Israel to Nazi Germany.

Grand Mufti: Founder of Palestinian Liberation, Nazi Collaborator

As disturbing as Abbas’s statements are, it’s what he does not say that is morally repugnant. Let’s not forget that the annihilation of Hungary’s Jews was aided by the founder of the Palestinian national liberation movement, the Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini.

Abbas, the PA and preparations to inter another of their inspirational heroes

...Stand by for more of the same as the Palestinian Authority, probably with its new business partner Hamas (who long ago claimed al-Masri as one of its heroes), prepares to celebrate the life and death of the human bomb who murdered 15 innocents. In fact, it's begun...

As the remains are received from
the celebrations begin.
That's al-Masri
in the poster [Image Source]
Frimet/Arnold Roth..
This Ongoing War..
30 April '14..

From Israel National News this morning

Israel Returns Body of Sbarro Terrorist to PA | Dalit Halevi | First Published: 4/30/2014, 1:13 AM | Israel has returned to the Palestinian Authority (PA) the bodies of four terrorists who carried out deadly terrorist attacks against Israelis, including the body of the terrorist who blew himself up in the Sbarro restaurant in Jerusalem in 2001. The PA-based Safa news agency reported on Tuesday that the terrorists... In addition to Izz al-Din al-Masri, the Sbarro suicide bomber, Israel also reportedly handed the body of suicide bomber... The attack at the Sbarro restaurant in Jerusalem in August of 2001 was one of the deadliest terror attacks in Israel’s history, and it took place during the Second Intifada, also known as the Oslo War. 16 people were killed in the Sbarro attack [our comment: actually fifteen but a victim remains unconscious today as she has for the past twelve and a half years] including five members of the Schijveschuurder family from the community of Neria in Binyamin. Ahlam Tamimi, the female terrorist who drove [our comment: not true; she accompanied him by by bus and taxi cab; her major contribution to this crime was not the accompanying but the planning of the massacre before it was executed] the suicide bomber to the attack, was released in 2011 in the Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange.

For the record, the Israeli decision to hand over the body of Al-Masri, the human bomb whose explosion caused so much devastation, grief and ongoing pain to so many Israelis, was made on the basis of zero consultation with the families of his victims. There was also no pre-hand-over official notification to the news media or to the judicial system as far as we know. The Arab media are the sole source of the news.

What next? Will the human bomb be quietly buried in an unmarked grave, with a nondescript marker identifying the place of his remains? Will this happen in the dead of night so that civilized people will not be offended, and so that their civilized lives can go on undisturbed?

Perhaps in some parallel universe.


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In Any Case, Hamas Decision Overshadows Kerry’s Slur

...If the administration should choose to walk down this road toward recognition of Hamas, it will do so to the cheers of the foreign-policy establishment and liberal mainstream media that have always chafed against the idea that Hamas was beyond the pale. But if it does, it should also expect that Congress as well as a united pro-Israel community would make them pay a high political price for this betrayal. This is not a battle Obama wants to be fighting in an already difficult midterm elections year. If Abbas is counting on the president to risk some of his scarce political capital on such a cause, then both he and Kerry may have badly miscalculated. But should the Palestinian alliance last into 2015 with a lame duck president already feeling he has little left to lose, then it is entirely possible that Obama could make Kerry’s apartheid flap look like a picnic compared to a decision to recognize Hamas.

Jonathan S. Tobin..
Commentary Magazine..
29 April '14..

Secretary of State John Kerry’s apology for his use of the word apartheid to describe Israel’s future in the absence of peace has done nothing to lessen the impact of this slur. The secretary’s attempt to walk back his remarks was long on umbrage about anyone questioning his dubious pro-Israel bona fides and short on actual contrition. The aftermath of a taped speech in which he uses a misleading attempt to cast blame for the failure of his peace initiative equally between Israel and the Palestinian Authority is not the most appropriate moment to boast of his commitment to the Jewish state, especially when he has damned it as heading inevitably to racist tyranny if it doesn’t do as he says.

But though the Daily Beast’s scoop about Kerry’s speech to the Trilateral Commission has put the administration on the defensive for the moment, the statement has served the purpose of Israel’s critics since it has given them the opportunity to defend his assertion even as the secretary distanced himself from it. The notion that what he said is an unpalatable truth has become a piece of liberal conventional wisdom even though its premise is demographically dubious and rendered nonsensical when one considers that unless one includes the population of Gaza—which is already an independent Palestinian state in all but name—the day will probably never dawn when Arabs outnumber Jews in the territory between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. Israel not only, as Kerry conceded in his apology, is not now and has no intention of ever becoming an apartheid state. The entire discussion is specious and tells us more about the effort to delegitimize the Jewish state than it does about Israel’s character. The real damage here is that Kerry has breathed new life into an old canard that neither facts nor logic seems to have the power to extinguish.

But for all the effort expended on this controversy, an even more important one is looming over Obama administration’s Middle East policy in the wake of the collapse of the peace talks. By entering into a unity coalition with the Hamas terrorist movement, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas put President Obama on the spot. The president has repeatedly pledged that the U.S., like Israel, will not deal with Hamas, at least until it repudiates its genocidal charter, recognizes Israel, and commits itself to peace. That ought to mean the end of all U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority (something mandated by law) as well as putting an end to negotiations that are aimed at empowering the PA. But no one in Israel should be taking the fulfillment of that pledge for granted.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

(Video) The actual demographic balance between Israelis and Palestinians.

The following TV interview, by Dr. Guy Bechor from the Herzliya Interdisciplinarian Center (IDC), one of Israel's leading Middle East scientists, sets the record straight on the Jewish-Arab demographic balance west of the Jordan Rive. Those who claim that Jews are doomed to become a minority west of the Jordan River - or that an Israeli control of the mountain ridges of Judea & Samaria would transform Israel into an Apartheid state - are either dramatically mistaken, or outrageously misleading. Yoram Ettinger

Caroline Glick..
18 April '14..
H/T Yoram Ettinger..

Dr. Guy Bechor discusses the actual demographic balance between Israel and the Palestinians on Israel TV Channel 2's morning show. His data are aligned with those set out in Caroline Glick's book: The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in The Middle East and point to the same policy conclusions


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Farewell Mahmoud, Mon Amour by Rick Richman

...Somewhere along the line, the means and the end got confused. Perhaps it was after the Gaza disengagement produced not peace but new rocket wars. Perhaps it was after the Palestinian failure to complete even Phase I of the three-phase Roadmap, when Condoleezza Rice responded by deciding to “accelerate” it and skip the first two phases. Perhaps it was after President Obama ignored the written and oral promises to Israel from prior peace processes and made new demands on Israel, but none on the Palestinians. Perhaps it was when Kerry decided that, notwithstanding the refusal of Mahmoud Abbas even to endorse a Jewish state as one of the two states in the “solution,” the U.S. should proceed with the process anyway.

Rick Richman..
Commentary Magazine..
29 April '14..

Today marks the official end of the Kerry Process–initiated July 30, 2013 with a White House meeting and State Department press conference proclaiming an effort to achieve a “final status agreement” in nine months; then simply a non-binding “framework”; then just an agreement to talk beyond nine months. The end result: no agreement, no framework, no talks.

The concept of a peace agreement with Mahmoud Abbas was always a romantic idea, featuring the triumph of hope over experience, the repeated pursuit of a “peace partner” who kept saying “no,” and the failure of peace processors to understand every part of that answer. If there has been any benefit from the Kerry Process, it’s that it has made it clear that the Palestinians do not want a state–not if it requires recognizing a Jewish one, or releasing the specious “right” of “return” to the state they repeatedly tried to destroy, or an end-of-claims agreement that would actually resolve the conflict. You can’t have a “two state solution” when one of the parties refuses to acknowledge “two states for two peoples” as the goal.

The romance has been a bad romance not just for nine months but ten years. In 2003, Abbas accepted the Roadmap and then later that year bragged to the Palestinian Legislative Council about refusing to dismantle terrorist groups, as the Roadmap required. In 2005, he was given Gaza without a single settler or soldier remaining, announced “from this day forward, there will be no more security turmoil and weapons chaos and abductions, which are not characteristic of our culture”–and then did nothing as Gaza turned into Hamastan in one week.

In 2006, after his corrupt party lost the election, he cancelled all future ones, including his own. In 2007, after Hamas took over half of the putative state, he was reduced to being the mayor of Ramallah. In 2008, he was offered a state on land equivalent to all of the West Bank and Gaza, with a capital in Jerusalem, and he walked away. In 2010, after Netanyahu became the fourth Israeli prime minister to endorse a Palestinian state and implemented an unprecedented ten-month construction freeze, Abbas did nothing for nine months, had to be dragged to the negotiating table in the tenth, and then simply demanded the freeze be continued.

In 2013, he demanded pre-negotiation concessions to return to the table to discuss the Palestinian state that is purportedly his goal, got a promise of prisoner releases as long as he stayed at the table, and made it clear he would leave the table as soon as he finished collecting them. Now he has come full circle, agreeing again to form a government with the terrorist group he promised to dismantle in 2003.

You don’t have to have been a Jewish mother to know this guy was not going to be the guy.

Rejoicing and Ingathering in the Promised Land

...And yet, after almost 30 years, nothing—essentially—has changed the feeling I had when I came to live here on September 6, 1984. That this is the true home, that no other place where Jews live can come close to it.

P. David Hornik..
PJ Lifetyle..
27 April '14..

The first three months of 2014 saw a rise in aliyah—Jewish immigration to Israel. A 312% increase from France, 70% increase from Ukraine, 100% increase from Brazil. The absolute numbers are not huge; if the current rate continues, the total for this year will be about 20,000—compared to, for instance, much higher numbers of former-Soviet Union Jews who came to Israel in the 1990s.

The present uptick, though, appears likely to continue and could accelerate. Amid rising antisemitism, about two-thirds of French Jews are considering emigrating, and half of those are considering Israel. Similar, if somewhat less dramatic, numbers are reported among Jewish communities elsewhere in Europe.

I read such reports with elation, as if reading that I personally had won some prize or had some other good fortune coming my way. This is rather interesting in light of the fact that I’ll soon have been living in Israel for 30 years. More than enough time, of course, to get over romantic visions, to be inducted into the many dimensions of ordinary, flawed human reality that constitute Israel as they do other societies.

And yet, after almost 30 years, nothing—essentially—has changed the feeling I had when I came to live here on September 6, 1984. That this is the true home, that no other place where Jews live can come close to it.

About a year ago the Grand Canyon Mall opened in Beersheva about a 15-minute walk from where I live (the name is a play on kanion, the Hebrew word for mall). The publicity proudly trumpeted that it had taken its place as the largest mall in Israel. Its three floors have it all—boutiques, shoe stores, bookstores, toy stores, electronics stores, candy stores, cafes, fast-food joints, a drugstore, a supermarket, you name it.

Thirty years ago there were few, relatively small malls in Israel, and I would have found the Grand Canyon depressing. What, the same chase after material goods? Now, walking to the Canyon almost every day for a reading break in a café, I find the place exhilarating. Yes, the same chase after material goods—so what?

Looking at it more analytically, I would say that the Grand Canyon phenomenon represents some positive changes in Israel over these thirty years. Dramatic economic growth, of course. Ongoing liberation from the socialist shackles of the country’s early decades. And of course, dramatic population growth; you can see it most vividly before a Sabbath or holiday, when the Canyon is packed and very noisy.

But it’s not only the numbers. Although I now spend almost all my time in Israel and don’t have much to compare with, I think it’s unmistakable that the masses in the Grand Canyon have a strong nuclear-family flavor to them. Loads of kids; strollers and baby carriages, too.

'Never Again' cannot be allowed to become an empty catchphrase

...We have said Never Again so many times that we have forgotten what the words mean. They have lost their edge. Worse, they have lost their purpose. It's time to stop just saying , "Never Again". It's time to mean it.

Daniel Greenfield..
Sultan Knish..
28 April '14..

Never again. To Jews it means a refusal to give genocidal bigots another go at them. To Obama, it means refusing to ever again have to listen to an Israeli leader explain why his country cannot commit territorial suicide in order to appease a gang of genocidal bigots.

When the Jews who fought among the crumbling walls of the Warsaw Ghetto finally made it to Israel, they came just in time to load up their guns and fight once again for their people's survival. The survivors of one genocidal ideology bent on making someone pay for its sense of humiliation came just in time to fight off another version of the same thing.

After 2000 years of running, an indigenous minority that had been kicked around by emperors and caliphs finally made its stand around a handful of farming towns and in alleyways lined by the golden stone of Jerusalem. Men and women who only a few years earlier hid in their homes from Muslim pogroms, covering their children's ears at the cries of "Ibtach Al Yahood", "Kill the Jews", took up arms. They stood alongside the settlers who had drained the swamps, the refugees fleeing Muslim terror in Egypt and Syria and the remains of the original indigenous Jewish population which had survived the conquests of seven empires. They stood and fought for their lives against an ideology that said they had no right to be free because of their religion and the blood in their veins.

Like their Nazi allies, Muslim violence was driven by a need to reverse the humiliations of World War I which dismantled the Ottoman Empire and gave regional minorities like the Jews a chance at rebuilding their own independent countries. But going back to 1914 was only the beginning. Some wanted to go back to 1492 and the fall of Granada. Others in the Saudi desert were dreaming of a return to the 6th century. But what they all had in common was a refusal to tolerate an independent non-Muslim state in their midst.

And even though Allied troops were still within sight of the rubble, ruined tanks and barbed wire camps remaining behind from the last time that their countries had chosen to appease this sort of thing with a slice of Czechoslovakia, they still chose appeasement. Again.

President Wilson had idealistically envisioned turning over portions of the territories of the Ottoman Empire to peoples like the Jews and Armenians who had struggled for so long under Muslim dominion. But the European willingness to tolerate and appease Muslim violence nearly put an end to both dreams. Turkish armies swarmed over Armenia at the first opportunity and Arab armies did the same in Israel. The lesson was the same. If you wanted to be free to practice your religion, to live under your own laws, not those of the Koran which dictate the inferiority of minorities, you had to stand up and fight for it without counting on the support of the West.

Wilsonian idealism was no match for British empire building, and that was no match for Postmodern globalism. Both British and Globalist empire building desired stability at all costs.

President Wilson had wanted to give the peoples oppressed by Islam a chance to breathe the fresh air of freedom. But the British Empire turned over the largest part of Israel to a Saudi monarchy to rule over as the newly created nation of Jordan. Then the UN partitioned the remainder into a stump with indefensible borders in an attempt to appease the gathering Muslim armies. But the armies of Islam rejected even that partition and chose war instead. Now Barack Hussein Obama and a coterie of European leaders would like Israel to go back to those indefensible borders. Not because it will bring peace, but for the same reason that he retasked NASA from studying stars, to pander to the genocidal fragility of Muslim self-esteem.

The West has sold out Israel, the way that it once sold out Czechoslovakia, and with the same results. Muslims are no more satiated with the prospect of an ethnically cleansed Palestine, than Nazi Germany was with a Volksdeutsche Sudetenland. Their vision of a "Pure Arab-Muslim Palestine" inevitably swallows Israel, as it already does on their maps, and then aspires to join with a Pan-Islamic state stretching from Cairo to Damascus and beyond.

Just as the Sudetenland was only the first bite out of Czechoslovakia, then Eastern Europe and then Europe... and then the world. So too Palestine is the first bite, followed by the overthrow of secular regimes in Egypt, Algeria and Turkey, the conquest of multi-religious African states, like Nigeria and Cote d'Ivoire, and then Drang Nach Osten, into Europe, and finally civil war in Thailand, India and China. This is what World War III looks like. And it is happening before our very eyes.

Never Again has become an empty phrase. Something that angry world leaders shout when the victims aren't eager enough to appease the Third Reich or the Seventh Caliphate. Leaders who are committed to the false narrative that the violence in the Middle-East is caused by insufficient territorial concessions by the region's only Non-Muslim minority to its Sunni Muslim majority, rather than the unwillingness of the Sunni Muslim majority to practice tolerance in their own countries, throughout the region or the world.

Jews cannot allow Never Again to become an empty catchphrase or a universalized call for tolerance that fails to hold Islam accountable for its promotion of bigotry, violence and genocide. While Jewish leaders occupy themselves with empty calls for interfaith brotherhood, Jewish farms and villages once again fall under siege. Farmers sleep with guns by their beds, children are taught to race to bomb shelters and Jewish store windows are smashed in the cities of Europe. Armies of soldiers, terrorists and diplomats gather once again to carve up Jerusalem. To ethnically cleanse half the city of Jews and turn it into a platform for terror.

This is what going back to 1948 means. It means going back to a religious civil war and a stump state with indefensible borders. This is the vision of international diplomats who hope that feeding a big enough piece of Israel to the crocodile will put it to sleep. It is also the vision of a leftist elite in Israel which wants to turn the Gush Dan region into a cramped tech-happy Singapore, and let Jerusalem and the farmlands fall into enemy hands, in the hope that they will be left alone to sip coffee in their cafes and launch their IPO's in peace. But it is nothing more than the Warsaw Ghetto with an internet cafe. And even they are only a few years away from discovering that.

Shimon Peres' vision of Tel Aviv as the Warsaw Ghetto with an internet cafe and a nanotech research lab, is colliding with the Muslim vision of the fall of Israel as the first of many victories over the Kufar, and the vision of world leaders of Israel dissolving away to make room for a Muslim Middle-East. Only one of those visions can survive or none of them. Either Israel falls to the first wave of a Jihad that will engulf the world, or it once again makes a stand.

The Europeans and Obama competing to offer Israel the best 'alternative' before the UN recognizes Palestine is nothing but empty theater. There is no compromise that will settle the issue. Nor can Israel ever convince the world compromisers of that. So long as the world community accepts the inevitability of Islamic dominance, then Israel will always be the goat. The sacrifice to appease the beast.

If Never Again means anything at all, it is a refusal to be the sacrifice, to be placed on the altar of appeasement for a Holocaust, a burnt offering, to the Muslim Moloch of insatiable rage and genocidal fanaticism.

Jews say, "Never Again" for the same reason that rape victims say, "No, Means No." We have been there. We are not going to allow it to happen again. No matter what words are used to justify it. No matter how the perpetrators turn the world around so that they are right and we are wrong, so that their violence is just and our self-defense isn't. No matter how many ways they find to blame us for their actions. World leaders may try to carve us up, but we will never consent to it. Not orally and not silently. We will resist.

We have said Never Again so many times that we have forgotten what the words mean. They have lost their edge. Worse, they have lost their purpose. It's time to stop just saying , "Never Again". It's time to mean it.


Spanish Language Translation at Reflexiones Medio Sobre Y Oriente

See more at:
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How to inject Palestinian propaganda in 'news' dispatches

...Thus, the unqualified headline, “Palestinians willing to continue peace talks,” is totally misleading. Given his marriage with Hamas, Abbas has just killed the peace process, not offered to revive it – as is made clear by the Israeli side – IF readers can get as far as paragraphs nine and ten. First you dangle a wonderful offer by the Palestinians, only to discover later that it’s just a mirage.

Leo Rennert..
American Thinker..
28 April '14..

Readers of the Washington Post and New York Times beware when reading “news” dispatches from Jerusalem and Ramallah. Headlines and lead paragraphs reflect a decided Palestinian bent. Only if you dig deeper into such articles does it become apparent that messages conveyed at the top just ain’t so. All too often, subsequent qualifiers and outright corrections come too late, if at all.

Check out, for example, an April 27 report in the Post from Jerusalem by correspondent Ruth Eglash that carries the following headline: “Palestinians willing to continue peace talks.” What a wonderful stance by the Palestinian side at a moment when negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian are sinking fast.

The lead paragraph similarly throws a bouquet to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who is depicted as ready to continue talks with Israel, “speaking two days after Israel broke off the latest round of peace talks.”

Well you get the message: The Palestinians are the good guys, ready to give peace another try, while Israel is turning its back on further peace negotiations. Or so one would deduce in reading both the headline and the first paragraph.

But is that the real, full picture? Well, not quite. Turn down to the eighth paragraph, which conveys a quite different impression and casts serious doubt on the headline and the lead paragraph. Now, finally, we are told that Abbas isn’t all that ready to resume talks. Au contraire. Eglash finally admits that Abbas’s grand peace gesture comes with a batch of poison pills -“Abbas said he is willing to continue ways to achieve peace under a nine-month-old U.S.-led initiative IF Israel agrees to release a group of veteran Palestinian prisoners, freeze settlement-building and present him with a map showing the borders of a future Palestinian state.”

Of course, Abbas, who has just thrown his lot in with the Hamas terrorist group’s lethal agenda to destroy the Jewish state, is making dead-on-arrival demands that he well knows Israel will not accept. Why would any sane government release more terrorist killers (euphemistically termed “veteran Palestinian prisoners” by Eglash), when the same Abbas embraces Hamas? And why would Israel freeze settlement-building before Abbas has made a single concession? Nor is Israel apt to resume negotiations only on borders of a Palestinian state – without any provisions for Israel’s security?

Thus, the unqualified headline, “Palestinians willing to continue peace talks,” is totally misleading. Given his marriage with Hamas, Abbas has just killed the peace process, not offered to revive it – as is made clear by the Israeli side – IF readers can get as far as paragraphs nine and ten.

First you dangle a wonderful offer by the Palestinians, only to discover later that it’s just a mirage.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Oh My, Running Away from Statehood Again

...But why should the Palestinians engage in the daunting tasks of nation-building and state creation if they can have their hapless constituents run around in circles for nearly a century while they bask in international sympathy and enrich themselves from the proceeds of their self-inflicted plight?

Prof. Efraim Karsh..
BESA Center..
Perspectives Paper No. 246..
28 April '14..

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The Palestinian Authorities’ decision to strike an agreement with Hamas instead of with Israel is of little surprise. Since before 1948, the Palestinian leadership has continually rejected any possibility of attaining statehood, in favor of a commitment to violence and promoting their self-inflicted plight for their own financial benefits. With the possibility of another failed round of peace talks, one wonders whether the Palestinian leadership is even interested in independent statehood of any kind.

The “historic” agreement of last week between The Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) and Hamas, to form a united government casts a serious doubt not only on the Palestinian leadership’s commitment to a two-state solution, but also on its interest in the attaining of statehood at all.

Not that this should have come as a surprise to anyone. For nearly a century, Palestinian leaders never have missed an opportunity to impede the development of Palestinian civil society and the attainment of Palestinian statehood.

Had the Jerusalem mufti Hajj Amin Husseini, who led the Palestinian Arabs from the early 1920s to the late 1940s, chosen to lead his constituents to peace and reconciliation with their Jewish neighbors, the Palestinians would have had their independent state over a substantial part of mandate Palestine by 1948, and would have been spared the traumatic experience of dispersal and exile.

Had Yasser Arafat, who dominated Palestinian politics from the mid-1960s to his death in November 2004, set the PLO from the start on the path to peace and reconciliation instead of turning it into one of the most murderous and kleptocratic terrorist organizations in modern times, a Palestinian state could have been established on numerous occasions: In the late 1960s or the early 1970s; in 1979, as a corollary to the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty; in May 1999, as part of the Oslo process; or more recently at the Camp David summit of July 2000.

Had Mahmoud Abbas, who succeeded Arafat as PLO chairman and PA president, abandoned his predecessors’ rejectionist path, a Palestinian state could have been established after the Annapolis summit of November 2007, or in June 2009, during President Obama’s first term when Benjamin Netanyahu broke with the longstanding Likud precept by publicly accepting the two-state solution and agreeing to the establishment of a Palestinian state.

But why should the Palestinians engage in the daunting tasks of nation-building and state creation if they can have their hapless constituents run around in circles for nearly a century while they bask in international sympathy and enrich themselves from the proceeds of their self-inflicted plight?

But is it good for the Jews? Maybe a little.

What might happen, though, is a short pause in the international pressure, along with a further disillusionment with the ‘process’ in Israel (even Tzipi Livni said that there could not be “business as usual” with a Hamas-ified PA). This could be an opportunity for Israel to act decisively to end the charade started at Oslo and the pretense that the PLO is anything other than the genocidal terrorist gang that it has always been.
24 April '14..

Nu, my grandmother would have asked, is it good for the Jews?

I am talking about the latest episode in the Fatah-Hamas ‘reconciliation’ soap opera. Let’s look at some of the arguments pro and con.

First, on the left, we have this: “it is good for the Jews because a unified Palestinian entity can sign a peace agreement that binds all their factions.” This is probably the weakest argument. As I wrote yesterday, the idea that the PLO, even without Hamas, would in good faith make and keep an agreement to end the conflict is at best wishful thinking. This has been proven on multiple occasions since the days of Arafat. Add the rejectionist Hamas, and the tiny probability becomes even tinier.

Turning right, we hear that it is bad for the Jews because it will strengthen Hamas. There is some truth to this. Hamas has been suffering economically since its patron, the Muslim Brotherhood, lost power in Egypt. General Sisi’s forces are continuing to destroy the tunnels that provide a path for weapons and terrorists to pass into and out of the strip, and whose operation is heavily taxed by Hamas. If Hamas gets access to the European and American funds sloshing around in the Palestinian Authority (PA), that will offset the loss.

Some object that Europe and the US will not continue to fund a PA that includes the terrorist Hamas. But practically speaking, the powers are not prepared to give up the control that they buy with their aid. US State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki reiterated yesterday that Hamas would be an acceptable partner in a unity-governed PA only if it met the three “quartet conditions” of renouncing violence, recognizing Israel and accepting prior agreements (the Oslo Accords, in particular). While this appears to be a rejection of Hamas, which has often insisted that it would never agree to these conditions, it is also a door that Hamas can pass through. If it really wants to join the PA, I suspect a formula could be found that both Hamas and State would accept. Of course, in practice nothing about Hamas would change.

All this is true and on the ‘bad’ side of the ledger. But others suggest that there may be an unexpected benefit as well, which is that union with Hamas would expose the PLO for what it is — an organization with genocidal aims no less sinister than Hamas. After all, what distinguishes the PLO from Hamas? Three things:

How Many Arrested? A Week Has Passed

Yisrael Medad..
My Right Word..
25 April '14..

A week has passed since the attack on the young children visiting the Temple Mount last week.

How many Muslims were arrested?

Let's assist the police. Here are some of them:

and some more:

Nu? How many?


Holocaust Remembrance Day as a reminder of how much is not being remembered

Our daughter Malki Z"L with her Australian
grandmother (may she be well), Genia Roth. 
Malki's paternal grandparents survived 
the Holocaust, losing almost everything.
Malki herself was murdered in Jerusalem 
by Hamas terrorists, among this generation's
heirs to the Nazi heritage, when she was 15.
Frimet/Arnold Roth..
This Ongoing War..
25 April '5774..

Whatever small hesitations we may have had about a new initiative taken by the IDF's Social Media Unit, in the end we are deeply disturbed by the many ways in which the experience of the Jewish people just a handful of decades ago - within the lifetimes of the parents of us bloggers here at ThisOngoingWar - is increasingly diminished, degraded and denied.

Measures that restore dignity and respect to the victims of the Holocaust perpetrated by the Nazi Germans and their many willing helpers are in our view measures worth taking.

This coming Sunday is marked here in Israel as Holocaust Remembrance Day. In its honour, the IDF has undertaken a campaign:

In a few days(today), we will commemorate the memory of the six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust and the bravery of all those who stood up against Nazi barbarism. This year, the IDF is putting together a special social media project. With your help, we will pay tribute to Holocaust survivors across various social networks.

With three simple steps, you will be able to contribute to Holocaust remembrance. Post a photo of yourself together with a Holocaust survivor on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram with the hashtag #WeAreHere. Also be sure to include his or her name, age, and place of residence.

We will then create an index of all of the photos you tagged, and build an interactive map according to location. This will contribute to commemorating those who were lost, and produce a dynamic memorial to those who remain across the globe.

Start publishing your images now and on April 27 the IDF will publish the interactive map to show the world that #WeAreHere.

We're fully supportive. We posted this Tweet yesterday - and we're grateful to the many who have retweeted it:

Malki Roth, murdered by Hamas 2001, with beloved grandmother Genia Roth, Auschwitz survivor #WeAreHere and remember

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Abbas, Holocaust Commemoration and the embrace of those who shed Jewish blood in our own time

...But courtesies about the events of the 1940s do not outweigh efforts to deny legitimacy to Jewish rights let alone justify the embrace of those who shed Jewish blood in our own time. If Holocaust commemoration has evolved to a point where these factors are unimportant, then perhaps it is time for those of us who have worked so hard to make it part of the fabric of Western culture to rethink the impact of what we have accomplished.

Jonathan S. Tobin..
Commentary Magazine..
27 April '14..

Today Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas did as many peace process proponents, both Jewish and non-Jewish, have been imploring him to do. He condemned the Holocaust in terms that are entirely appropriate, saying the Shoah was “the most heinous crime to have occurred against humanity in the modern era” and expressing sympathy for the victims. If, as we are informed by the New York Times, this statement is published in the Palestinian media in Arabic in the same phrasing as in the English version for Israelis and the international media, that is progress of a sort, especially coming as it does from the lips of a man who wrote a doctoral thesis centered on the theme that the Holocaust was a “Zionist fantasy, the fantastic lie that six million Jews were killed.”

The timing of the statement was meant to coincide with the beginning tonight of Yom HaShoah—the day set by the State of Israel and the international Jewish community for Holocaust remembrance. Yet coming as it did only days after Abbas signed a unity agreement with the Hamas terrorist movement that is committed in its charter to not only the destruction of Israel but to the slaughter of its Jewish population, it is hard to view this statement as purely an expression of the evolution of Abbas’s views about the Holocaust. The man who only one day earlier restated his pledge to “never” recognize Israel as a Jewish state—a pledge that would signal that the Palestinians were truly prepared to end their century long war on Zionism—it is easy to understand the less than enthusiastic reaction to Abbas’s words from Israel’s government. But far from being greeted with the cynicism that Abbas might have expected, it was instead Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu who appears to have come out the loser in the exchange with pundits. Abbas’s apologists are lauding the Palestinian for his “outreach” campaign—the Holocaust statement was procured by celebrity interfaith proponent Rabbi Marc Schneir—and blasting Netanyahu for a petty rejection of the Palestinian gesture. Abbas’s words, welcome as they might be, were a clever tactical move and in the viewpoint of much of the international press seemed to outweigh any negative feedback about the Hamas deal.

But this contretemps illustrates something more significant than the success of the Palestinians in distracting the world from what was, in effect, their fourth rejection of an Israeli peace offer, including independence and statehood, in the last 15 years. If the world thinks Abbas’s nice words about the Holocaust are more important than his pact with Hamas or even his personal embrace of the terrorist murderers who shed Jewish blood, then perhaps it is time to start worrying about a trend that appears to elevate Holocaust commemoration over and above any concern for Jews currently alive.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Anyone Surprised? Shouldn't Be. Hamas is the same Hamas

...In the meantime, at the end of the nine-month negotiating window, there is an agreement, just like U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry wanted. But rather than it being an Israeli-Palestinian deal, it is a Hamas-Fatah one. This is not the child we prayed for. Obama knows that Palestinian reconciliation will not get him a Nobel Peace Prize.

Boaz Bismuth..
Israel Hayom..
27 April '14..

Iran on Saturday congratulated the Palestinian people on the "anti-Zionist" reconciliation agreement that was reached between Hamas and Fatah. Does Iran see things that our politicians and commentators are missing?

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas destroyed the negotiations with Israel, even though he promised his people a state, which, he should be reminded, can only be received from Jerusalem, not Gaza. Abbas should have done everything possible to extend the talks with Israel. This was a joint interest he shared with Israel and the Americans. But Abbas chose Hamas.

As always, at the moment of truth Abbas knew to make the "right" decision -- proving again that he is not interested in or capable of reaching a peace agreement with Israel. There will always be those who choose (due to Pavlovian conditioning) to blame the Israeli government and claim that it has no policy on the peace process. But particularly on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day, we should remember that the Israeli government's demand for secure borders is not just a policy, but also an obligation to its citizens.

But, as usual, it is natural to cast blame on Israel, as numerous media outlets around the world are doing. They point to the Diplomatic-Security Cabinet's decision to suspend negotiations with the Palestinian Authority, without mentioning the refusal of Hamas (a group that also the U.S. boycotts) to recognize Israel, which is just a small detail. It is not easy to negotiate with just half of the Palestinian populace, and Israel would have preferred that Palestinian "democracy" would have chosen a different government in 2007, rather than a terror government. Despite this impossible situation, Israel agreed last summer to conduct talks with the Palestinians and even release murderous terrorists from prison.

Reality. First victory, then peace will follow

...But it’s essential to understand that the Jewish nation is at war with the Palestinian Arabs, and has been for almost 100 years. If the survival of the state and consequently the Jewish people is important, then our primary objective has to be victory. Peace will follow.
25 April '14..

Emily Amrousi’s piece about rape as an act of terror should be required reading for everyone who thinks that the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is about borders and Palestinian statehood.

There is one passage that stood out, about the 2006 rape and murder of 9-year old Lipaz Himi:

Anwar Ahdush, a resident of the village of Tzurif and a member of Fatah’s Tanzim who had entered Israel illegally, confessed to the crime. Two days before raping and murdering Himi, Ahdush killed another Jew, David Ben-Hamo, with an axe. When police questioned him for the first time, he said he had committed both acts as “revenge for the suffering of Palestinian mothers,” and added that he had also planned to murder a female soldier and kidnap a bus carrying schoolchildren and steer it down a ravine.

When Judge Dalia Ganot of the Tel Aviv District Court asked Ahdush why he had committed the act, he answered: “Because tomorrow this girl will grow up, be in the army and murder our children.”

When he was asked why he trained at shooting, he answered, “Because we are in a state of war.”

“A war against a 9-year-old girl?” the judge pressed.

“For us, there is no 9 years old or 10 years old,” he answered. The fact that since Ahdush’s arrest his family has been receiving a stipend of NIS 4,000 ($1,100) per month from Fatah is further evidence that the crime was nationalistically motivated.

Some random thoughts that came to mind:

Israel has no death penalty, and lately a history of releasing murderers either to ransom kidnapped Israelis (even dead ones) or to “strengthen Palestinian moderates.” Fatah, the organization headed by Mahmoud Abbas to which Anwar Ahdush belonged, is counted as ‘moderate’. When prisoners are released, especially those that have murdered Jewish civilians, they are welcomed as heroes.

When Yasser Arafat returned from exile after the Oslo Accord created the Palestinian Authority (PA), he instituted a wide-ranging campaign to deepen the hatred of Jews and Israel in the Palestinian Arabs. The Palestinian educational and religious systems and all Palestinian media were focused on this objective. The Palestinian Media Watch organization provides hundreds of examples, which include crude Jew-hatred, denial of Jewish history, distortions of recent events, sheer invention of ‘war crimes’, blood libels, religious conspiracy theories, adulation of terrorists and exhortation to martyrdom.

The Palestinian Cause, as it is taught, takes various forms, but what is common to all of them is the end of the Jewish state. The campaign has been continued, even strengthened, under ‘moderate’ Mahmoud Abbas.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

New York Times Semantically Purifies Palestinian Terrorism

...How many more suicide bombings and rocket barrages must Israel absorb for Hamas to qualify as a terrorist organization in the New York Times? To be sure, the Rudoren-Gordon article does contain here and there the “T” word – but only when it’s attributed to someone else – not to the New York Times.

Leo Rennert..
American Thinker..
25 April '14..

The announcement by Fatah and Hamas of a unity deal has prompted mainstream media to engage in a predictable semantic game – using all kinds of verbal distortions to keep from calling Hamas what it really is – a certified terrorist organization.

Witness, for example, the New York Times version in its April 24 edition, which runs an extensive article that carries the following headline: “Palestinian Rivals Announce Unity Pact, Drawing U.S. and Israeli Rebuke.”(Page A14).

This puts the identity of Fatah and Hamas on a fairly equal scale, scrubbing in the process any hint of terrorism in defining Hamas.

Ditto the lead paragraph of the dispatch by Times’ correspondents Jodi Rudoren and Michael Gordon, which tells readers about a “new deal announced by feuding Palestinian factions, including the militant group Hamas.”

“Militant,” of course, is the media’s favorite semantic disguise of terrorism. Except it doesn’t come close to conveying the accurate identity of a terrorist group like Hamas.

Friday, April 25, 2014

The Time Has Arrived for Consequences by Caroline Glick

...Abbas was only able to sign the Geneva Conventions on the one hand, and the unity deal with terrorist war criminals on the other, because he is utterly convinced that neither the US nor the European Union will hold him accountable for his actions. He is completely certain that neither the Americans nor the Europeans are serious about their professed commitments to upholding international law.

Caroline Glick..
25 April '14..

It’s hard not to admire Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s brazenness.

Two weeks ago, Abbas signed on to 15 international agreements that among other things require the PA to respect human rights and punish war criminals.

And this week, he signed a unity deal with two genocidal terror groups all of whose leaders are war criminals. Every leader of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, the two parties that signed the deal with the PLO, are war criminals. Under the Geneva Conventions, which Abbas signed onto just a couple of weeks ago, he is required to put them on trial, for their war crimes.

Here it is worth noting that under the Geneva Conventions, every single rocket launch from Gaza into Israeli territory is a separate war crime.

Abbas was only able to sign the Geneva Conventions on the one hand, and the unity deal with terrorist war criminals on the other, because he is utterly convinced that neither the US nor the European Union will hold him accountable for his actions. He is completely certain that neither the Americans nor the Europeans are serious about their professed commitments to upholding international law.

Abbas is sure that for both the Obama administration and the EU, maintaining support for the PLO far outweighs any concern they have for abiding by the law of nations. He believes this because he has watched them make excuses for the PLO and its leaders for the past two decades.

When it comes to the Palestinians, the Western powers are always perfectly willing to throw out their allegiance to law – international law and their domestic statutes – to continue supporting the PLO in the name of a peace process, which by now, everyone understands is entirely fictional.

Why do they do this?

They do it because the peace process gives them a way to ignore and wish away the pathologies of the Islamic and Arab world.

The peace process is predicated on the notion that all those pathologies are Israel’s fault. If Israel would just surrender Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria to the Palestinians, then the Arabs writ large, and the Muslim world as a whole will cast aside their support for jihad and terrorism and everything will be fine.

At least that is how Abbas analyzes the situation.

And so far, the US has not disappointed him.

The Obama administration’s immediate response to Abbas’s unity with terrorist war criminals deal involved pretending it didn’t understand what had just happened.

In a press briefing on Wednesday, shortly after Hamas war criminal Ismail Haniyeh signed the deal with Fatah and Islamic Jihad, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki acknowledged that the deal is bad for the peace process. But she wasn’t willing to reach the inevitable conclusion.

Rather, she averred, idiotically, “I think the ball, at this point, is in the Palestinians’ court to answer questions to whether this reconciliation meets the US’s long-standing principles.”

Two days before the unity deal, a reporter from Al-Monitor asked Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar if Hamas has given up terrorism.

Zahar responded, “Anyone who claims so must be drunk. How has Hamas abandoned the resistance [that is, terrorist] effort? What are the manifestations of it doing so? Where have we prevented the launching of rockets?” No ambiguity whatsoever there.

And Abbas just signed a deal Hamas, and with Islamic Jihad, the official representative of the Iranian mullahs in the Palestinian war criminal lineup.

No ambiguity there, either.

The Compelling Need to Restore Security in Jerusalem

...If Aharonovich and the Israel Police Commissioner can’t muster the determination to tackle the string of security incidents, they should be replaced. Safety and security on all roads and at all sites in the city is a basic right of Israeli citizens of all religions and ethnicities, and the state has an elementary duty to provide this – even in Jerusalem; especially in Jerusalem.

David M. Weinberg..
A Citadel Defending Zion..
25 April '14..

I salute Ari and Naomi Zivotofsky for tenaciously pursuing the American government in order to have their son registered as having been born in Jerusalem, Israel – a case which they are now taking for a second time to the US Supreme Court.

But the real struggle over Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is underway every day in Jerusalem itself. At present, Israel is evincing a weak hand and losing the battle.

Last Friday, Tova Richler of New York arrived in Israel to attend her father’s funeral in the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives in eastern Jerusalem. En route to the burial site, near the Gethsemane Church junction, her car was pelted with rocks and bricks by ten Arab youth, smashing the windows. She escaped alive but missed the internment.

In recent years, such attacks have become commonplace in and around the hallowed cemetery, and many people are afraid to travel to funerals and memorial ceremonies there.

The French Hill neighborhood which borders on Hadassah Mount Scopus Hospital also has become unsafe. Residents are harassed by Arab youth from nearby Arab neighborhoods, and there have been many robberies, repeated arson attacks and car stonings, a firebombing, and a stabbing.

Anybody who has traversed the new road from Benzion Netanyahu junction through Beit Hanina also knows the dangers. Stoning is not uncommon, and red traffic lights are apparently mere decorations to the neighborhood’s Arab residents.

The greatest affront of all has been playing itself out almost every day this month on the Temple Mount in the Old City, where Arab youth regularly accost Jewish visitors to the site, and have taken to almost-daily stoning of Israeli police. The Arabs have even been caught stocking stones and other riot gear inside the mosques.

Outrageously, the police response to these attacks has been to close the Mount to Israeli-Jewish visitors and tourists – instead of closing it to Arab visitors.

Dear Ms. Saskia Ramming - About those rockets, a couple of questions?

...Robert Serry, the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process has issued a statement that during his meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, Mr. Serry was assured that the Fatah-Hamas reconciliation deal "will be implemented under the leadership of the President and on the basis of the PLO commitments....President Abbas emphasized that these commitments include recognition of Israel, non-violence, and adherence to previous agreements."

Dr. Aaron Lerner..
24 April '14..

Question to spokesperson relating to statement by Robert Serry regarding assurances he received from President Abbas

Dear Ms. Saskia Ramming, Spokesperson, Office of the United Nations Special
Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process,

According to the UN News Centre report of 24 April 2014

Robert Serry, the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process has issued a statement that during his meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, Mr. Serry was assured that the Fatah-Hamas reconciliation deal "will be implemented under the leadership of the President and on the basis of the PLO commitments....President Abbas emphasized that these commitments include recognition of Israel, non-violence, and adherence to previous agreements."

Question: Given that Hamas boasts that it has deployed large numbers of missiles in the Gaza Strip and keeping in mind that this is most certainly in clear violation of "PLO commitments" and "previous agreements":

(a) Does Mr. Serry expect that implementation of the Fatah-Hamas reconciliation deal will include the removal and/or destruction of these missiles from the Gaza Strip?

Shocked! Saeb Erekat Exonerates Hamas

...By now, indicted by his own statements, Erekat would seem to deserve little credibility with members of the news media. That he continues to be treated as a viable source appears to speak volumes about the shortage of self-professed moderates, fluent in English, on the Palestinian side.

Eric Rozenman..
CAMERA Snapshots..
24 April '14..

Saeb Erekat is the gift that keeps on giving—for those tracking the Swiss cheese-like consistency of “the Palestinian narrative.” Erekat, the Palestinian Authority’s chief negotiator in PA-Israeli talks, has a habit of making Pinocchio-like assertions. For example:

* In 2002, he insisted to Cable News Network (CNN) that Israeli troops had destroyed the refugee district in the West Bank city of Jenin. In truth, they killed 55 Palestinian Arabs, almost all combatants, losing 23 of their own in house-to-house fighting.

* Earlier this year he declaimed on his people’s descent from ancient Canaanites who allegedly preceded the Israelites in the Promised Land by thousands of years. Never mind the much later arrival of Arabs or that the Palestinian Arab national movement essentially began in 1920.

Now Erekat has done it again. According to Middle East Monitor, the PA representative declared, “Hamas is a Palestinian movement, is not and will never be a terrorist organization .” Apparently the United States,

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Actually, In Spite of Israel Doomsayers the Conflict Can Be Managed

...By feeding the Palestinian fantasy about Israel running out of time to make peace, President Obama, Secretary Kerry, and their cheerleaders on the Jewish left are actually undermining the chances for peace. The notion that Israel is living on borrowed time has been a staple of Middle East commentary since its victory in 1967 and it is just as much of a fallacy today as it was then. Indeed, despite numerous problems, both domestic and foreign, Israel has become an economic and military powerhouse that cannot be wished away.

Jonathan S. Tobin..
Commentary Magazine..
24 April '14..

The last place one expects to find common sense about the Middle East conflict is Roger Cohen’s column in the New York Times. A reflexive critic of the Jewish state, Cohen has been rightly criticized for sloppy writing and threadbare clichés, and he earned lasting infamy in 2009 for a series of columns he wrote seeking to whitewash the Iranian regime of the charge of anti-Semitism. That was an endeavor so transparently false and despicable that it was rightly compared to the Times’s Walter Duranty who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1932 for seeking to depict Josef Stalin as innocent of the crime of genocide in Ukraine. But Cohen has his occasional moments of clarity and today’s piece is one of them. In it, he rightly takes on the oft-repeated charge that the current standoff between Israel and the Palestinians is “unsustainable.”

The notion that Israel must seize any opportunity to make peace on any terms is rooted in a belief that the economic and military strength of the Jewish state is a house of cards that will, sooner or later, come tumbling down as the Palestinians and their supporters undermine both its prosperity and its political legitimacy. But as Cohen writes today, this piece of conventional wisdom that has been embraced by the president of the United States as well as the Jewish left is utter rubbish. As Cohen notes:

Behind its barriers and wall, backed by military might, certain of more or less unswerving American support, technologically innovative and democratically stable, Israel has the power to prolong indefinitely its occupation of the West Bank and its dominion over several million Palestinians. The Jewish state has grown steadily stronger in relation to the Palestinians since 1948. There is no reason to believe this trend will ever be reversed. Holding onto all the land between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River, while continuing to prosper, is feasible. This, after all, is what Israel has already done for almost a half-century. …

Throughout this year the Obama administration has pushed the unsustainability argument to make its case for peace. “Today’s status quo, absolutely to a certainty, I promise you 100 percent, cannot be maintained,” Secretary of State John Kerry said in February. “It is not sustainable. It is illusionary. There’s a momentary prosperity, there’s a momentary peace.”…

But that “point” of unmanageability is a vanishing one. Permanent occupation is what several ministers in Netanyahu’s coalition government advocate. Backed by the evidence, they are certain it can be managed. They are right.

Cohen believes this “permanent occupation” is not desirable and the majority of Israelis probably agree with him about that. But the problem is that in the absence of a credible Palestinian peace partner, the idea of retreating from the West Bank as Israel did with Gaza in 2005 is rightly seen as an act of utter folly.

Cohen and others believe Israel’s presence in the West Bank and the corrosive nature of its anomalous relationship with the Palestinians undermines its democratic ethos. But as problematic as that situation may be, as Cohen acknowledges, the vast majority of Israelis prefer to go on living with that conundrum rather than endanger their future by repeating the mistakes of Oslo and Ariel Sharon’s Gaza retreat.

Wants to ‘test’ Jewish state out of existence. Any guesses?

...Of course you make peace with enemies, but only enemies with whom you have common interests, interests that are more compelling to them than their desire to kill you. Absent that, the conflict continues until one or the other side wins. Such common interests do not exist between Israel and Hamas, so the only way for us to survive is to win. Anything that strengthens Hamas physically or psychologically moves peace farther away, not closer.
23 April 14..

I have rarely read anything quite as incoherent as the latest from J Street. In response to the news that the Fatah and Hamas organizations are yet again proposing a unity government for the Palestinians, they write,

J Street regards today’s news of a preliminary agreement on political reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas with caution and urges the United States to press forward with an even more assertive effort to forge a two-state solution. Today’s developments only highlight how important it is for the United States – backed by the international community – to define the contours of a two–state solution.

A non-sequitur. But for J Street, nothing is more important, ever, than Israel being forced to withdraw from the territories. Anything that happens will “highlight” this, in their world.

J Street has consistently condemned Hamas for calling for Israel’s destruction, using terror and violence against Israeli civilians and denying the Holocaust. Bringing Hamas into a unity government poses real challenges to those of us who are deeply concerned about Israel’s security.

Hamas proudly proclaims that the highest calling of a Muslim is to kill Jews, and does its best to do so day in and out. So, yes, there are “real challenges” for those of us who want to stay alive. Does this mean that J Street reasonably opposes negotiations with a government that includes Hamas? Sounds like it…

However, we also recognize several important realities: first, that one makes peace with one’s enemies not one’s friends; second, that Hamas – although weaker today – still has a significant base of political support within Palestinian society; and, third, that overcoming the split between Fatah and Hamas (and between the West Bank and Gaza) has always been a condition for effective resolution of the conflict.

…but apparently not.

Of course you make peace with enemies, but only enemies with whom you have common interests, interests that are more compelling to them than their desire to kill you. Absent that, the conflict continues until one or the other side wins. Such common interests do not exist between Israel and Hamas, so the only way for us to survive is to win. Anything that strengthens Hamas physically or psychologically moves peace farther away, not closer. This is precisely why we should not negotiate with terrorists.

A Long Overdue Obligation to Remove Incentives for Murdering Jews

...He sees that upon his release, instead of being obliged to express remorse for his crimes, Palestinian television audiences will approvingly entreat him to describe to them in detail the ghoulish murders he committed. Ahmed will hear how correspondents from Western newspapers, like Jodi Rudoren of the NY Times, wrote a lengthy article humanizing a released terrorist, the brutal murderer of an elderly Holocaust survivor. Rudoren noted that the murderer had been “demonized as a terrorist by the Israelis”, relating sympathetically to his complaint that as a national hero (he was elevated to the honorary rank of a PA brigadier general), the “$100,000 grants and monthly payments” received from the PA were insufficient to buy him an apartment.

Isi Leibler..
Candidly Speaking from Jerusalem..
23 April '14..

It is a damning reflection on the civilized world that one rarely hears a word of condemnation of the criminal Palestinian society in which the murder of Jews is not only considered laudable, but has today effectively become a vehicle towards achieving upward social mobility, both socially and financially.

Let us relate hypothetically to Ahmed, a typical youngster in a large and impoverished Palestinian family.

Like his peers, Ahmed has been brainwashed – since kindergarten and throughout his schooling, by the mullahs at his mosque and in the daily media – into believing that the highest level of piety is attained by killing the Israeli enemy.

He knows that if he were killed in attacking a Jew, he too would become a Shaheed – a martyr – and be compensated for his sacrifice by the rewards and pleasures bestowed on him in Paradise. Moreover, his family will be honored and receive a lifelong state pension from our “peace partner”, Mahmoud Abbas and the PA.

Ahmed will recollect the interviews he watched on the PA state television of mothers displaying pride in their offspring’s sacrifice on behalf of Islam and their frequently expressed hope that some of their remaining children will follow the example of the blessed martyr.

Furthermore, PA officials will ensure that even if he had brutally murdered innocent Israeli civilians, he would be portrayed as a saintly hero of the Islamic nation and Palestinian people. Ahmed’s family name would become memorialized as city squares, roads, schools, cultural centers and even football teams will be named in his honor.

Of course, death is the worst outcome. If Ahmed is fortunate enough to be captured rather than killed, he gets to have the best of all worlds.

His family will continue to visit him in prison where he is likely to receive better food than he had at home. He will even be provided with amenities such as television. Moreover, he will be able to educate himself and enroll in University courses and obtain a degree – which would have been inconceivable in his former habitat

And for all this “suffering” the PA will pay him a handsome salary (using funds received from the US, EU and other donors) for every day that he remains in jail. In fact, the longer his sentence, the higher his monthly salary.

A Groundhog Day That Never Ends. Why Hamas and Fatah Carry on the Charade

...Abbas knows he does not have nearly enough control over the Palestinian polity to claim to be a legitimate head of state even if he were to sign a deal with Israel. Hamas’s inclusion can potentially make him president of a failed state instead of failed president of a non-state. The benefits to Hamas are obvious...

Seth Mandel..
Commentary Magazine..
23 April '14..

Progress in Hamas-Fatah unity talks may appear to be fertile ground for jokes at Secretary of State John Kerry’s expense, since it seems the one divide he hasn’t been feverishly trying to bridge is the one place where prospects for reconciliation have improved. But Kerry can rest easy on this score: whatever Kerry’s diplomatic faults (and they are many), he is not going to be outdone on the peace score by the terrorists of Hamas.

In fact, the Hamas-Fatah unity talks–a staple of those truly dedicated to wasting everyone’s time–are worth watching, but not for the reason the region’s idealists think. Instead, the Palestinian civil war and attempts to end it demonstrate, for those paying attention, why Israeli-Palestinian negotiations have so often been a fool’s errand. Even the Western media’s most excitable Palestinian boosters–Israel’s leftist daily Haaretz–can’t quite conceal the contradiction at the heart of the internecine compromise we are told is within reach. The paper reports:

The headlines were all referring to a meeting expected to take place Tuesday between the Fatah delegation to the reconciliation talks and the Hamas leadership, with the participation of Moussa Abu Marzouk, deputy to Hamas political chief Khaled Meshal. Will reconciliation come about this time between the factions, which have been at loggerheads since 2007? Will the reconciliation agreement they signed in 2011 be implemented?

That last sentence is quite the red flag. The two sides have signed agreements in the past: not only does signing a new one concede the fact that the last agreement hasn’t been honored, but the new agreement might not even require the last agreement’s implementation. The concern by Israelis has always been that even if Mahmoud Abbas signs a peace deal with them, his successor might not honor it. But the history of Hamas-Fatah reconciliation suggests it won’t get that far: the Palestinian signatories themselves are unlikely to honor it.

Haaretz continues:

If the parties reach agreement, Israel might view this as intentional Palestinian abandonment of the negotiations with Israel, and use reconciliation as a pretext to halt the peace process. This, despite the fact that Hamas had agreed at the time to allow PA President Mahmoud Abbas to continue negotiations without Hamas committing to accept their outcome, and the fact that in 2010, Hamas made clear that it does not oppose the establishment of a Palestinian state within in the 1967 boundaries.

At the same time, Abbas can present himself as the legitimate representative of all parts of the Palestinian state and thus bolster his demand for international recognition for the state.

It is unclear from the agreements attained so far what the status will be of the accords signed between the PLO and Israel, whether the PA will be able to continue implementing them and what will happen to security cooperation with Hamas still supporting armed struggle. For Hamas, which is in deep economic trouble and in a hostile relationship with Egypt, reconciliation could be an indispensable way out. The funding sources that reach the PA could then be used to cover civil activities of government ministries that would be under Hamas control. Abbas could then ask Egypt to change its position toward Hamas and also open lines of communication for Hamas with other Arab countries.

The tone of that section is typical of the Israeli left: the Israeli government would use the talks as “pretext” to skip out on their own negotiations with a government quite different from the one they were negotiating with. How unreasonable. Additionally, even Haaretz notes that this is “despite the fact” that Hamas is allowing Abbas to continue talks with Israel “without Hamas committing to accept their outcome.” So they are meaningless.