[I have nothing against this policy except that it should apply equally to illegal Arab construction. T. Belman]
Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon orders military, police and Civil Administration to prioritize razing illegally built structures in Judea and Samaria outposts and settlements where residents are prone to violently clashing with security forces.
Israel Hayom Staff
Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon
Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon has instructed Israel Defense Forces commanders across Judea and Samaria to accelerate the razing of illegally built structures in settlements and outposts where security forces meet violence from extremists, Army Radio reported Wednesday.
According to the report, the order, which was given in a closed forum, extends to police and Civil Administration forces in the area as well. (Read more…)
Palestinian factions reach deal after late-night reconciliation talks in Gaza;
Netanyahu: Instead of making peace with Israel, Abbas is making peace with Hamas.
Fatah and Hamas have reached an agreement in principle to form a unity government within the “next five weeks,” officials said early Wednesday.
A Palestinian official who attended Tuesday’s late-night meeting said there had been an “agreement in principle” on forming a “government of experts,” a term for a cabinet staffed by technocrats rather than politicians.
The agreement, between members of the PLO and Hamas, was reached following talks in Gaza City which began on Tuesday evening, a member of the PLO who wished to remain anonymous told AFP.
By Ted Belman
Jonthan Tobin wrote recently an article that mentioned Sarah Palin in which he accused her of quitting. This illicited a strong rebuff from James V. DeLong entitled Commentary and Sarah Palin
Feel free to read it but be sure to read the 760 comments and counting made since the article was published on the 21st.
The comments are overwhelmingly in her favour.
Sarah Palin has stood her ground for the last 5 years against all the hate the media could throw at her or her family to fight for this country. She worked tirelessly to forward the commonsense conservative agenda she had always articulated and she continues her work to help put government back on the side of the people.
Israel’s oligarchy has no time or interest to spare for the tragic murder of Baruch Mizrahi.
By Giulio Meotti, INN
There is an expression in the Mishna: “In a place where there is no one else [doing what needs to be done], try to be a man”.
Baruch Mizrahi was that man.
A strange atmosphere of heavy acquiescence, guilty silence and moral equivalence followed his assassination on the road to Hevron. Then, when I saw the photos from his funeral, the face of his wife and the pain of his children and friends, I understood something even more intollerable, even though it needs to be said.
Israel today is dominated by a cold and cynical oligarchy, a self proclaimed élite which made possible the last unpunished assassination near Hevron.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 22, 2014,
Syrian rebels have been sighted wielding anti-aircraft weapons in various combat sectors including the Damascus region in the last few days. Just as on April 6, DEBKAfile was the first publication to disclose the arming of Syrian opposition forces with their first US weapons, BGM-71 TOW anti-tank missiles, our military sources now reveal that they have also acquired – and are using – Russian-made 9K310 Igla-1 aka SA-16 anti-tank rockets, which have an operational range of 5.2 km.
The SA-16 is not new, but it is effective and has been widely used for the past 30 years by various armies in several world conflicts.
According to our sources, the very US-Saudi suppliers, who brought the TOW missiles to certain Syrian rebel units through Jordan and Turkey, are now consigning the anti-tank weapons through the same route.
But although the rebels are now armed for the first time in the more than three-year conflict with a weapon for combating Bashar Assad’s air force, it has come too late to reverse the tide of war. As the Syrian air force drops barrel bombs and chlorine gas canisters on indiscriminate targets, the rebel side continues to be in retreat against the Syrian army’s pumped-up momentum.
The newly-armed rebels have gained not much more than the capacity to hold on to their present lines for a while longer. But ultimately, they cannot prevent the combined weight of the Syria army, Hizballah and Iraqi Shiite Iraqis, who continue to stream into Syria, breaking through those lines.
Had the Obama administration seriously meant the rebel side to win the war – even at this late date – it would have laid on a commensurate supply of 10,000 BGM-71 TOW and 5,000 SA-16 missiles. This hardware is available on international black markets. Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies would have been ready to foot the bill and get the weapons smuggled through to their destination.
But Washington shows no inclination to give the Syrian opposition the upper hand against Assad’s radical military coalition. At best, only a few hundred missiles are being made available, enough to send the war into standoff with neither side able to finally rout the other.
Since the removal of Prince Bandar Bin Sultan, the Saudi Intelligence Director who opposed this half-and-half US policy, Riyadh is going along with the Washington line on Syria.
This plays straight into Bashar Assad’s hands. After completing their takeover of the strategic Qalamoun mountain range on the Lebanese border, the Syrian army and Hizballah have finally achieved control of the Old City of Homs at the end of two years of vicious fighting.
Saturday, April 19, they launched themselves on rebel positions in eastern Damascus, starting with Jobar and Douma so as to push the rebels out of the center of the Syrian capital and loosen their grip on the main roads to Damascus International Airport.
To support this effort, Assad’s emissaries have entered into secret negotiation with three rebel militias holding the southern outskirts of Damascus in a bid to persuade them to pull back.
Having done his intelligence homework, the Syrian ruler sent agents to approach the leaders of the Syrian Liberation Army or Brigade, the Brigade of Beloved Mustafa and the Imprisoned Sheikh Omar Abdul-Rahman Brigades for a deal.
They were offered immunity from attack if they turned coat and agreed to withdraw their fighting men as far south as Daraa and regroup in the area between that town and Quneitra on the Golan, i.e. along the Syrian-Israeli border.
By this gambit, Assad plans to keep his own army at a safe distance from the anti-tank and anti-aircraft rockets newly supplied by US and Saudi Arabia to the rebels in the south. At the same time, he intends to insert the three militias into the security pockets US- Jordanian- and Israel-backed rebels are carving out in southern Syria.
Two of those militias are made up of radical Islamist fighters who maintain ties with al Qaeda.
The Syrian ruler’s plan is to transplant the jihadist threat they pose to his forces in the Damascus area over to his southern borders where they will be ranged face to face with Israel and Jordan.
A SONG IS BORN
(Sorry. I don’t know who wrote this introduction)
What a beautiful story and presentation. The vocalist was excellent as you will see and hear.
The first time Andrée Geulen, a 20-year-old teacher in a Brussels, Belgium school, was confronted with the persecution of the Jews was when one day some of her students arrived at school with the compulsory yellow star on their clothes. Like many other Belgians, until that time Geulen hadn’t paid attention to the anti-Jewish measures and the persecution of the Jews. But once she was faced with the discrimination of her students, she decided to act. She ordered all her students to wear aprons to school, thus covering the humiliating marking imposed on the Jews.
By Daniel Greenfield, FPM
Few divides are as impossible to bridge as those of religion. You either believe or you don’t.
When it comes to Islam, non-Muslims are expected to take its goodwill on faith. If you believe your eyes and ears, Islam and violence go together like peanut butter and jelly. But if you believe Muslims and their spin doctors with academic degrees, Muslims are the victims of other religions.
If Muslims fighting Christians, Jews, Hindus and Buddhists are the victims of non-Muslims, what are we to make of Muslims fighting other Muslims in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq? Religious civil wars make it hard to believe that Muslims are the victims of other religions instead of the authors of their own violence.
By Joseph Puder, FPM
In his ploy to avoid negotiations with Israel that might actually force him to make such minimal concessions as “ending the conflict” with Israel, and recognizing Israel as the “state of the Jewish people,” Mahmoud Abbas, Chairman of the Palestinian Authority (PA) can count on the European Union (EU) to support him.
That support has been both financial and political. Financially, the EU has written a virtual “blank check” for the Palestinians to use with no accountability.
Politically, the EU has deemed the Palestinians as “underdogs,” deserving uncritical support. In both cases, EU support for the PA has done little to advance a lasting peace between Israel and the Palestinians.
Op-ed: If both Jews and Palestinian Arabs start their historical narrative with beginning of Zionism, Jews have deeper moral claim to Land of Israel.
Lawrence J. Epstein, YNET NEWS
Beginning the story of Jewish nationalism with the forerunners of the Zionist movement or the First Aliyah or the arrival of Herzl already grants Palestinian Arabs their greatest moral argument.
This is so because if the Jewish nationalist starting point is, say, 1890, then there were already large numbers of Arabs living in the Land of Israel. The exact numbers aren’t known, but the standard demographic estimate is that there were probably close to 500,000 Muslims and Christians who were living in the land by 1890, with ten times more Muslims than the 43,000 Jews. It is those numbers that seem to present Zionism’s founding with a moral problem.
Sharia in America
FREEDOM OF SPEECH IN THE AGE OF JIHAD
There is very dangerous legislation making its way through both the House of Representatives and Senate that will finish the United States. The sharia bill calls for Islamic blasphemy laws — the criminalization of speech that offends or insults — who, exactly? Well, that is up to the enforcer, is it not?
On Wednesday, Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) introduced “The Hate Crime Reporting Act of 2014? (S.2219), which seeks “to examine the prevalence of hate crime and hate speech on the Internet, television, and radio to better address such crimes.” Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) introduced a companion bill in the House – H.R. 3878.
By Christine Williams, GATESTONE INSTITUTE
Hamas — the terrorist group and offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood — has fueled and directed the BDS and Israel Apartheid Week campaigns on campuses across North America.
“Islam is my life… Jihad is my spirit… I will die to establish Islam.” — from the Muslim Student Association pledge of allegiance.
Under the guise of promoting peace and human rights, resolutions to join Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions [BDS] drives are being foisted on Canadian university campuses to push the agenda of the Muslim terrorist group, Hamas, to destroy Israel.
It is Hamas—an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood—that has fueled and directed the BDS and Israel Apartheid Week campaigns on university campuses across North America through chapters of the Muslim Student Association and the Palestine Solidarity Network.
By Nadav Shragai, ISRAEL HAYOM
It happened in 1988 on the Temple Mount. It started when a gang of Muslims captured an Israeli policeman — an officer in the “Yamam” counterterrorism unit. By the time he was rescued by his comrades, he had been beaten and bloodied. His weapon, however, remained with his captors. With the firearm in hand, thousands of Muslims barricaded themselves in Al-Aqsa mosque. Police began closing in on the mosque, but resisted breaching its walls, as was common in those days. Eventually, a compromise was reached and a team of officers approached the mosque gates. The besieged group inside cracked open the doors and the gun, according to an agreement reached earlier, was “concealed” beside it. Police “discovered” it. Israeli “honor,” as well as the gun, were restored to their rightful places. The masses made their egress from the mosque.
By YOSEF BEGUN, JPOST
A Passover story on the eternal theme of being a Jew.
Torah lesson in a Moscow prison cell Photo: HANALISA OMER
After the cold, dark winter comes Passover, a holiday of spring that warms the heart. And no holiday was closer to the hearts of Jewish activists in the Soviet Union than this one, which marks the Exodus from Egypt, from slavery to freedom. But in the spring of 1977, I was not to share in the joys of the celebration.
Incarcerated in a Moscow prison for my “anti-Soviet” activities, I shared a cell with criminals who were imprisoned for such crimes as robbery, violence and rape. They were simple, ignorant men.
By JPOST.COM STAFF
Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz said on Tuesday that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas doesn’t really want peace with Israel and instead has gone to make peace with Hamas.
“Now it appears that Abbas is bluffing. He is not willing to make concessions, he turned to the UN and he ran to hug Hamas instead,” Katz said on his Facebook page.
Ted Belman. I am surprised that the US took this threat seriously. The US over the decades have expended much effort and aid to protect the PLO and the PA, no matter what the provocations. That means they have a lot to lose should he make good on the threat. That doesn’t make it all the more realistic.
Netanyahu had a different response;
“Yesterday the Palestinian Authority discussed dismantling, today it is mulling uniting with Hamas. Let them decide whether to dismantle or unit.”
The US probably doesn’t want them to unify also because that would put the “peace process” in further jeopardy. For that matter, Hamas doesn’t want them to unify because that would in jeopardy all the money that the US and the EU give the PA and thus the share of it that the PA gives to their people who live in Gaza.
US to Revoke Aid to PA Over Threats to Dismantle?
State Department official hints that financial aid, political support for the Palestinian Arabs to be ‘seriously harmed’ if PA disbanded. Chairman Mahmoud Abbas threatened to dismantle the PA on Sunday, in a move which would dissolve the Oslo Accords and allegedly make Israel “vulnerable” to international legislation, according to some analysts.
The Economy Ministry predicts a 4.7% rise in Israeli exports to Asia this year, the largest increase for any of the world’s regions.
By Ora Coren, HAARETZ, Apr. 22, 2014
Israel’s exports to the Far East this year are projected to exceed those to the United States for the first time, the Economy Ministry said on Sunday.
Such a development would make the Asian market Israel’s second largest export market after Europe. The Central Bureau of Statistics has already reported that last year, for the first time, Israeli exports to Asia equaled those to the United States.
But two companies, Intel and Israel Chemicals, account for much of Israel’s Asian exports, as other Israel firms are having a hard time diversifying from an approach focused on Europe and the United States.
DEBKAfile Special Report April 21, 2014,
The household cleaning agent chlorine, in heavy concentration is purchased by Iran and and fitted with detonators, to provide President Bashar Assad with a vehicle for cheating on his undertaking to surrender Syria’s chemical arsenal under the year-old US-Russian chemical disarmament accord. And Assad is indeed getting away with using chlorine bombs, with crippling effect, especially on children, every few days.
Nonetheless, Sigrid Kaag of the UN Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons said Saturday, April 19, that Syria had destroyed approximately 80 percent of its arsenal as agreed under the Kerry-Lavrov accord. At this rate, she said, Syria will have got rid of 100 percent of its chemical arsenal by the April 27 deadline.
As a result of significant demographic changes in recent years, World Jewry is in the process of a changing of the guards. It is Israel who will decide whom she defines as a friend and whom she defines as an enemy.
By Ron Jager, INN
The “Celebrate Israel Parade” known in the past as the “Israel Day Parade” will be marching June 1st for its 50th consecutive year, but it is now under the shadow of its allowing the participation of Jewish groups and Jewish organizations that assist and support the economic and political boycott of Israel.
Under the leadership of UJA Federation of NY, this event, which has always been solidly pro-Israel, has evolved into the latest ideological battleground between the classic Jewish liberal circles which have dominated American Jewry since the Holocaust and the growing coalition of secular and religious leaders, organizations and synagogues who refuse to support an unspoken and immoral policy of “selection” – a kind of “gentleman’s agreement” that has legitimized the division of the Jews of Israel and of Israel itself into two distinct groups, good Jews and bad Jews.