.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Hasbara needed now more than ever (Zvi Mazel)

Israel has historically done a awful job of explaining its position to the world. It is way past time to start rectifying this.

If only someone would listen....
The old diplomacy is dead
By ZVI MAZEL

You may remember me. I was the Israeli ambassador to Sweden who was confronted with a so-called art installation in Stockholm in January 2004 that glorified suicide bombing. It was a representation of the suicide bomber who murdered 22 innocent people and maimed dozens more gliding serenely on a pool of blood on a little craft labeled "Snow White."

The "art" showed me there are no limits to the lies told against Israel or the hatred of the Jewish people. I also felt we had given up trying to reverse the terrible decline of our image, especially among European public opinion.

And so I decided to damage the display, and shut down the lights illuminating it. Not a very diplomatic step, perhaps, but one that brought the issue into the open and led to a healthy discussion in Sweden and elsewhere. Israel needs a hasbara offensive. While I was an ambassador, I was stunned to discover that many people in Europe - journalists included - are convinced that in 1948 Israel occupied a sovereign Palestinian state in a classic case of colonialism. The generation that witnessed the rebirth of Israel is gradually disappearing and younger people don't know the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. So when Arab propaganda speaks about "occupation," it sounds easy to understand why Israel is being asked to terminate this anachronistic situation.

It was not always like that. Until the 1993 Oslo Accords, Israel had an information policy that, while not optimal, didn't abandon the field completely to the other side.

But immediately after Oslo, the information department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was shut down; since Israel was presumably on the road to peace, it was not necessary to continue to explain our policies. Unfortunately, the other side had a different idea, and redoubled its propaganda.

It was during the implementation of Oslo that the Arab narrative of the conflict succeeded in flooding campuses, rallying the extreme Left and even capturing the more moderate Left, while Israel was conspicuously absent from the arena. The results were played out in the 2001 Durban conference, when the world ignored Israel's plight and condemned it without considering the facts.

Traditional diplomacy doesn't work anymore. Secret conversations between heads of states and foreign ministers, and the demarches carried out daily by ambassadors and other diplomats are no match for the media's ceaseless torrent of images and information.

One cannot win a war in the media alone, but one can weaken an opponent's messages; one can help change perspectives.

On a governmental level, such efforts are called public diplomacy; the academic world thinks of it as a form of "soft power."

ISRAEL MUST launch a large-scale, proactive campaign of public diplomacy to turn back the tide of anti-Semitic ignorance that is closing in on us. We have to move from our current policy - if you can even call it a policy - of delayed reactions, excuses and apologies to a potent strategy that will challenge the Arabs - taking the battle into their own media and propaganda castles and putting them on the defensive.

We have to face a cluster of factors - from blatant Muslim anti-Semitism, lies and distortion to the new anti-Semitism of European acquiescence, and the negative attitude of the Left with its calls for boycotts and divestment.

We need to tell the truth, publicly and repeatedly: the Arabs themselves are to blame for their underdevelopment, and as long as they ignore basic civil rights their peoples will remain poor and illiterate, a prey to unemployment and illness.

This situation, it needs to be emphasized over and over, has nothing to do with Israel or the conflict in the Middle East.

At the same time, we should ask them to condemn terror and stop calling it resistance. We should demand their apology for calling us pigs and monkeys, for stepping on our flag, for all the lies they write about Israel and the Jews. We should analyze their declarations and writings and lay bare their false contentions. We should remind them of their part in promoting slavery in East Africa.


We should urge governments, clerics and intellectuals in Arab countries to search their souls, and not hide behind lip-service condemnations, as some of them did after the bombing in London.

In Europe and America we should ask the media to forgo the tendency to close their eyes to terror - for instance, not one Western paper condemned the abduction and murder of the Egyptian ambassador in Iraq - and to condemn terrorism unequivocally. The time has come to understand that appeasement will not work, and that membership in the Third World doesn't confer a free pass to murder.

Europe should be reminded of its long history of persecution and suffering inflicted on the Jews - well before the Holocaust. Europeans too have some soul searching to do.

The time has come to switch to a proactive campaign. Israel finds itself dangerously isolated, and that isolation could get worse, since I don't believe many of us think the conflict is going to be resolved any time soon.

Moreover, European silence in the face of Arab pretensions only gives the Arabs more courage and fewer incentives to compromise. Arab hatred for Israel is on the rise in spite of the disengagement and the so-called improvement of relations with Egypt.

Two things need to be done. First, Israeli politicians must realize that there is no time to lose; the government must tackle this issue as part of its strategy to end the cruel terrorist war being waged against us.

Second, we need to set up an Arab television station broadcasting news, commentaries and programs that will deliver our case to Arab homes throughout the region.

The writer was a career diplomat for 38 years, and ambassador to Romania, Egypt and Sweden. He retired last year.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Lawyers are good for something!

Notice how hard the Boston Globe tries to spin this as being a bad thing.
WASHINGTON -- A Rhode Island lawyer trying to collect a $116 million terrorism judgment against the Palestinian Authority has obtained a court-ordered freeze on all its US-based assets, severely limiting most Palestinian economic and diplomatic activities in the United States at a critical moment for the fledgling government.

The frozen assets include US holdings in a $1.3 billion Palestinian investment fund meant to finance economic development as well as bank accounts used to pay Palestinian representatives in Washington, according to lawyers and court documents filed in Rhode Island, Washington, D.C., and New York. Also frozen are about $30 million in assets from the Palestinian Monetary Authority, the Palestinian equivalent of the US Federal Reserve.

Providence attorney David Strachman, who is representing the orphaned children of a couple killed in Israel by Palestinian militants, has also initiated a court action to seize and sell the Palestinian-owned building in New York that serves as the Palestine Liberation Organization observer mission to the United Nations.

The aggressive collection effort comes as the Palestinian Authority is struggling to create economic opportunity and set up a viable government. Now, Palestinian officials say, the unpaid claim in the Rhode Island court, resulting from a 2004 ruling, threatens to complicate their efforts to become a credible emerging state.


The second half of the first paragraph could have said "giving hope to dozens of American victims of Palestinian terror."

And perhaps the continued Palestinian support for terror "complicates their efforts to become a credible emerging state" more than the lack of money?

Nah, we cannot expect a reporter to understand such nuance.

UPDATE: SoccerDad tackled this last December, and includes many links to other attempts to get damages for Islamic terrorism in US courtrooms. He also points out the original list of criminals who are the defendants:
THE PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY (A.K.A. “THE PALESTINIAN INTERIM SELF-GOVERNMENT AUTHORITY”); THE PALESTINE LIBERATION ORGANIZATION; YASSER ARAFAT; JIBRIL RAJOUB; MUHAMMED DAHLAN; AMIN AL-HINDI; TAWFIK TIRAWI; RAZI JABALI; HAMAS – ISLAMIC
RESISTANCE MOVEMENT (A.K.A. “HARAKAT AL-MUQAWAMA AL-ISLAMIYYA”) ABDEL RAHMAN ISMAIL ABDEL RAHMAN GHANIMAT; JAMAL ABDEL FATAH TZABICH AL HOR; RAED FAKHRI ABU HAMDIYA; IBRAHIM GHANIMAT; AND IMAN MAHMUD HASSAN FUAD KAFISHE, Defendants.

A veritable who's who!

Rewarding the terrorists ... from 1929

Mofaz orders Hebron outpost evacuation

Although the legality of the Rinat Shalhevet neighborhood may be questionable under Israeli law, there are bigger issues here. This war is not only about facts but, especially on the Arab side, it is about symbolism. And the symbolism of Jews being forced out from what had been a Jewish neighborhood for hundreds of years a second time under an Israeli government is extraordinarily dangerous. (Hebron's Jews were massacred and forced out in the 1929 Arab riots.)

Hebron is the second-holiest city in Judaism. Morally, Jews should have the right to move there if they wish with no limitations. The ones that moved back to Hebron after 1967 were nothing short of heroic. There certainly has been friction between the Jews and Arabs of Hebron. Nevertheless, there is a huge symbolic importance to maintaining - and increasing - the Jewish areas of Hebron.

Even more symbolic is the fact that the neighborhood was named after Shalhevet Pas, the 10-month old girl murdered by a sniper in her baby carriage in Hebron. The single most effective response to Palestinian terror is to take back Jewish land, irrevocably, after every terror attack.

The Arabs understand the symbolism of Israel giving up on historically Jewish land. That is why they fight, beyond all logic, for the tiniest slivers of land, far beyond its useful value. That is why they never compromise on land. If there were no Jews there, they wouldn't care in the least - they do not fight because it is Arab land but because it is Jewish land.

When Israel gives away the indisputably Jewish parts of Israel, then it loses part of its character. Israel's claim to the land is not based only on logic, it is not based only on the law - it is based on emotions. When the Jewish state suppresses its emotions and its historic ties to the land in the name of an illusory "peace process" it loses far more than land. Emotions and symbols are important, and Israel is at a disadvantage because the world expects the Jews to be logical and Arabs emotional. Logical people can compromise, emotional people cannot. Hebron is not a logical issue.

Some things are worth fighting for, and Hebron is one of them.

Monday, August 29, 2005

IDF catches 14-year old with 3 bombs.

First, the Haaretz story:

A 14-year-old Palestinian boy carrying three pipe bombs was arrested by Israel Defense Forces paratroopers Monday at a checkpoint near the West Bank city of Nablus.

Sappers were summoned to the the Hawara roadblock and safely neutralized the bombs.

The boy, Hussain Abu Kalifeh, was placed under arrest.

Now, the version that will appear in Palestinian "news" sources:

The Zionist IOF cruelly arrested a Palestinian child today near his home. Witnesses said he was beaten with flashlights before his property was taken from him and destroyed. By the time he was forcibly taken away, he was barely moving, according to the witnesses.

The child, Hussain Abu Kalifeh, is now in jail, facing daily torture.

A Hamas official stated that in the light of increased Israeli provocations, Hamas will have no choice but to respond "with the crushing fury of a thousand wild camels" against the Zionists.

PA Prime Minister Qurei denounced the jailing, saying that the Zionists continue to practice "methodical and ritual child abuse" against thousands of Palestinian children and babies. "This is not acceptable. I call on the UN and human rights organizations to denounce this continuing aggression and attempts at genocide towards the peaceful Palestinian people," he continued.


Recap of weekend Palestinian peace initiatives


It is so nice to see that the Palestinians are wasting no time in quid pro quo peace moves. Just imagine how appreciative they would be if Israel gives them more stuff for free!

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Abbas calls Beersheva attack "terrorist"

In what may be a first, Abbas actually used the "T" word to describe a terror attack by Palestinians. Of course, he has used the same word for Israeli self-defense operations in the past, he continues to condemn any Israeli moves to live in peace, and he continues to pay terrorist salaries, so the word has little meaning to him, but it shows that in one narrow sense he is now more dovish than Reuters!
RAMALLAH, August 28, 2005, (WAFA)- President Mahmoud Abbas denounced Sunday the 'anti civilians terrorist operation' took place in the city of Beir Sheva' this morning.

"Don't trust any kaffirs" - A divestment supporter unmasked

I was surfing tonight and saw a rabidly anti-Israel article concerning another thinly-disguised anti-Jewish campaign for the town of Somerville, MA to divest from Israel. Among the hysterical, bigoted and demostrably false comments in this article were:

* Zionism is a "violent genocidal racist ideology";
* " Israel’s crimes are ongoing, and have included bombing the Church of the Nativity."
* "Are we safe with them living among us? What if they want to murder our family and steal our house? What if they get a Caterpillar bulldozer to root out non-Jews from Somerville? These are the kind of racists we are dealing with here."

The author of the article was "Karin Friedemann", a prolific author of anti-Israel diatribes who is also editor of the "World View News Service", and who is evidently also known as "Umm Yakoub" and "Maria Hussain."

As she lobbies Somerville about human rights and liberal ideals, perhaps someone should point out exactly how liberal she really is:

For example, she is quoted as having said
"Muslims ... are not seeking peace. We get peace from Allah. In Palestine, we will stop only at victory, which will be, inshaAllah, in the end, a just implementation of Islamic religion. We have to guard against the Palestine movement being represented primarily by homosexuals and feminists."


A little further research finds that she wrote this lovely liberal statement about Jews in the anti-semitic Jewish Tribal Review:
"Clearly, there are no moral guidelines in Jewish Law, other than genocide and enslavement, for the treatment of conquered peoples, as one would find in Islamic Law. While Islam views humans as stewards of the earth, and Muslims consider themselves God’s appointed defenders of religious freedom for people of all religions, Judaism neither proclaims respect for other people’s prophets nor guarantees any respect of other people, nor even of the environment, except in so far as they are useful to the Jewish community. "
Not surprisingly, she supports US Muslims murdering their fellow soldiers:
This is written in response to Stan Goff’s article "The Case of Hasan Akbar" in which he repeatedly asserted that he did not condone Hasan Akbar’s killing of two US soldiers. I was put off by his obscene moralizing and wrote to him that were I in Akbar’s shoes I would have done the same thing, and when I am president I will put Hasan Akbar on a postage stamp.

And lest the Massachusetts liberals still feel that Karin/Maria/Umm is still a kindred spirit, perhaps these words that she wrote in 2002 to fellow Muslims in a posting called "How Quickly Liberals Become Fascists" will make them think twice about what she thinks about them:

Salam alaikum

I am forwarding this to you all just so you can see how even liberals who seem to be on our side will quickly turn on you and attack you. [following is a story about a liberal who she feels attacked her in a letter....]

Live and learn. Don't trust any kaffirs, because if they knew what you really think they will turn on you at the drop of a hat. They only feel sorry for Muslims as long as we are being victimized. But if we ever were to gain domination they would cringe in horror.


Ms. Hussain's own rants, as disgusting and bigoted as they are, do not even hold a candle to the absurd filth she happily reprints in her "newsletter" from other anti-semites. Check out, for example, "Do Sinister Jews Rule the World?" (Guess what the answer is!) and "Nuclear Attack in United States `Imminent' As Jews Continuing Fleeing From North America" - just in recent weeks.

It is bitterly ironic that someone who is so strongly a Muslim supremacist, who openly despises "kaffirs", who viciously attacks the most liberal writers when they give even a mild rebuke to any Muslims worldwide, who clearly hates all Jews with a passion - that such a person can represent herself as someone who seeks "justice" and "equal rights."

UPDATE: Ms. Friedemann/Yakoub/Hussain married Joachim Martillo in 2004. Martillo is one of the most bizarre people in cyberspace history. Back in the early days of Usenet, around 1985, he represented himself as a Sephardic Jew who was rabidly anti-Arab and anti-Ashkenazic Jew. For example:

> In article <5...@jjmhome.UUCP> marti...@jjmhome.UUCP (Joachim Martillo) writes:
> >In practically every way, Palestinians are a thoroughly dispicable
> >community whose bigotry and fanaticism prevents them from joining
> >the modern world and who deserve much worse punishment than they
> >are receiving (apparently mostly at their own hands -- poetic
> >justice or the cunning of history, if I have ever seen it).

He changed in the mid-90s, claimed he was never Jewish, and now he is one of the most pro-Arab and anti-Jewish voices on the Web. As I recall, he was always beyond weird and in some ways quite intellectual, in other ways just off the wall.

A match made in heaven for the strange, psychopathic Ms. Yakoub.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Islamic scholars end up agreeing that suicide bombing Israeli Jews is obligatory

Another indispensable translation from MEMRI. One must marvel at the ability of these would-be mass murderers to call this a "counter-terrorism" conference.

The following are excerpts from a panel discussion at the counter-terrorism conference of religious scholars at Sharm Al-Sheikh, Egypt. The discussion aired on Iqra TV on August 22, 2005. (To view this clip, visit: http://memritv.org/search.asp?ACT=S9&P1=822.)

Dr. Muhammad Rafat 'Othman, Egyptian professor of Islamic law: "According to another opinion, a person who blows himself up is committing suicide. This opinion is based on sources that categorically forbid self-killing. The Koran says: 'Do not kill yourself, surely Allah is ever merciful to you.' There are also such sources in the Sunna and in the general consensus of scholars. No text in Islamic religious law permits a person to kill himself. Even in the case of Jihad, which is the pinnacle of religious duties, Islam does not permit a person to kill himself.

"What Islamic religious law does permit is for a person to wage Jihad, facing one of two options – victory or martyrdom. He may risk being killed by someone else, but may not kill himself."

[...]

Sheikh Yousuf Al-Qaradhawi: "Dr. Said Ramadhan [Al-Bouti] stressed the legitimacy of defense, saying it is a legitimate right in Palestine and Iraq. I think that saying it is a legitimate right is not enough, because a right is something that can be relinquished. It is a duty. All scholars say that defending an occupied homeland is an individual duty applying to every Muslim. Reducing this duty to a 'right,' which can be relinquished, is a kind of depreciation.

"We must stress this point, and emphasize that it is the rights of those defending their homeland. It is not only a right, but also their duty. I am amazed by what Dr. Muhammad Rafat 'Othman said.

"This has nothing to do with suicide. This man does not want to commit suicide, but rather to cause great damage to the enemy, and this is the only method he can use to cause such damage. Since this method did not exist in the past, we cannot find rulings about it in the ancient jurisprudence. We may find rulings about plunging into the [ranks of the] enemy and risking one's life, even in cases of certain death – so be it. The truth is that we should refrain from raising this issue, because doubting it is like joining the Zionists and Americans in condemning our brothers in Hamas, the Jihad, the Islamic factions, and the resistance factions in Iraq. It is as if we are joining them.

"We all condemn violence or terrorism, although, to tell the truth, I personally don't like the word 'terrorism.' I always say 'violence.' I have written a book called Islam and Violence. But since this word is so widespread, I use it. We all condemn the [terrorist] operations. We condemned them before we came to this conference. We condemned the bombings in London, Madrid, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, and Egypt. We condemned them as individuals and as institutions. This is something everyone agrees on. We cannot say we pat these misguided boys on the back, but we do want to listen to them. They have gone astray, so we want to treat them in a way that will set them straight, and bring them closer to us. We don't want to be like prosecutors, demanding their execution. We want to treat them the way clerics treat their students, the way fathers treat their sons."

[...]

Professor 'Abla Kahlawi, Al-Azhar University, Egypt: "We must be united in condemning this behavior, this terrorism or violence – call it what you will. We must declare loud and clear that resisting the aggression, and resisting the enemy is a legitimate right, and that a fighter who risks his life has that right. When he perishes along with his enemy, this is a resounding cry of truth, through which the martyr declares: 'This was mine and it has been plundered – let the whole world see.' This is how a Muslim should act when he defends what is his, and I don't accept anything else."

[...]

Iraqi Cleric Ahmad Al-Qubeisi:
"Does any Islamic government have the right to prevent individuals from resisting the occupiers? This is what happens. There are young people who thought it was bad that the Americans were occupying the Arabian Peninsula, Iraq, Afghanistan, and so on. So they started the resistance, which might have been exaggerated, but this was an operational error. In principle, these are people who are trying to drive out the occupier, which is deemed legitimate by all earthly and divine laws. People are in dispute over the methods. Listen to what happens worldwide – things you may have forgotten: The officer who killed 400 children in the Bahr Al-Baqr elementary school in Egypt many years ago – they said he was depressed, and pardoned him.

[...]

"The arch-killer who murdered, at the Al-Aqsa Mosque many years ago in the days of [Israeli prime minister] Yitzhak Rabin, 38 people in the middle of prayer – they said he was depressed, and was pardoned.

[...]

"The pilot who dropped the bombs on Hiroshima and killed 700,000 got a medal. Rustum and the Americans killed 700 prisoners in an Afghan prison – no one demanded they be held accountable. My question is: Why can't you show some mercy and say that these mujahideen are depressed, and pardon them? Thank you."

Sudanese Minister of Religious Endowments 'Issam Ahmad Al-Bashir: "The mujahideen are not depressed. Their faces shine."

Al-Qubeisi:
" But you are accusing them of heresy, here. If you had to choose between depression and heresy, which would you choose?"

[...]

Saudi scholar Abd Al-Muhsen Al-'Abikan: "The suicide operations that are called 'martyrdom operations' are forbidden by Islamic law. Those who carry them out, committing suicide, cannot be called martyrs, and their actions cannot be called martyrdom. It was forbidden even in cases of Jihad by a number of prominent Muslim scholars."

[...]

Al-Bashir: "We have agreed that resisting the occupier is a sacred right and an obligatory duty, approved by Islamic religious law and by [international] conventions. It has nothing to do with forbidden terrorism. Moreover, it is legitimate. As proposed by Sheikh Al-Bouti, we emphasize this point in this concluding statement."

Participant: "And one cannot call their deaths suicide."

Al-Bashir:
"Yes."

Participant
: "It is an obligatory duty."

Al-Bashir: "Yes. I've already said that. It is an obligatory duty and a legitimate right. Someone who carries out this duty cannot be said to have committed suicide."

Israel leads again in microprocessor design

It looks like Israeli research, not Silicon Valley, pretty much owns the advanced microprocessor development space. Here's just the latest example:Jerusalem Post | Breaking News from Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World: "Intel Corporation unveiled its next generation micro-architecture, a multi-core processor, which was completely developed at its facilities in Israel, and which will be used in all Intel-based computers from next year, the company said Wednesday.

Speaking at the Intel Development Forum (IDF) in California, Intel President and CEO Paul Otellini introduced the new 65 nano-meter (nm) microprocessor, saying that it was designed to bring increased power per watt and that it was expected to deliver an improvement of three to five times the strength of previous products.

'We will deliver 'factor of 10' breakthroughs to a variety of platforms that can reduce energy consumption tenfold or bring 10 times the performance of today's products,' Otellini said.

The new technology will go into production towards the end of this year, the first products of which will enter the market in the second half 2006.
Many earlier Intel chips were designed in Israel as well, such as the Centrino and many (most?) of the Pentiums. And the much-hyped Cell microprocessor, which will be used in the Sony Playstation 3, was developed at IBM Israel.

It is interesting that IBM, Motorola and Intel rarely mention this when introducing their new microprocessor products.

Here's a list of Israeli semiconductor companies.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Today's Zionist plot - and a recap of some old ones

We now can add Joo-toxins to the list of hilariously stupid Palestinian accusations of Israel.
Representatives of various Palestinian groups in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday accused Israel of burying 'toxic materials' under the rubble of dismantled settlements to prevent Palestinians from exploiting the land.

The allegations were made during a press conference in Khan Yunis that was organized by the Popular Committee for Defending Palestinian Lands.

Committee coordinator Abdel Aziz Qadih claimed that the IDF and the settlers had buried the toxic materials six meters under the rubble of the settlements that were evacuated last week. He did not specify the type of toxins, but claimed that they were placed in large barrels underground.

'They want to destroy the land to prevent the Palestinians from using it after it's handed over to the Palestinian Authority,' he said. 'We call on all those who support our people to expose this matter and to help us deal with it.'"
This joins a long line of notable Palestinian flights of fancy:

A complaint to the UN in Geneva that Israel injected “300 Palestinian children with HIV”;

The claim that Israel was selling chewing gum in the PA-controlled areas containing “a sexually-stimulating adrenaline substance”;

Accusations by the PA’s Deputy Minister of Supplies in 1997 that Israel was giving the Arabs “food containing material that causes cancer and hormones that harm male virility and other spoiled food products in order to poison and harm the Palestinian population.”

In September 1998 the head of the Palestinian Consumer Protection Association accused Israel of “flood[ing] our markets with hundreds of thousands of tons of food products which are unfit for human consumption…the common goal [of which] is the proliferation of disease, weakness and slow death in the Palestinian body through indirect means.”

Israel also sold milk “designated for fattening calves” as baby food and “intentionally” filled meat with “carcinogenic hormones” before distributing it to the Arabs.

But wait - there's more!

"ISRAELI BULLETS CAUSE CANCER": Speaking to reporters on July 20, 2004, Arafat falsely alleged that Israel uses depleted- uranium bullets, as part of its plot to "cause cancer that is like Hiroshima and Nagasaki." (Washington Times, July 21, 2004)

"ZIONISTS CARRYING OUT ANTI-SEMITIC ATTACKS IN FRANCE": Hafez Barghouti, editor of the official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, said on PA Television in January 2004, that "secret Zionist gangs" in France have been "blowing up Jewish synagogues in order to force them to immigrate [to Israel]." (PMW, Jan.11, 2004)

"ISRAEL RESPONSIBLE FOR MOSQUITOES IN GAZA": Basem Abu Dalal, the mayor of the town of Al-Nuseirat in PA-controlled Gaza, said that central Gaza is "suffering a rampage by mosquitoes," and said "the occupation" was one of the factors responsible. (Even though Israel’s administration of the area ended in 1994.) (Jerusalem Times, Aug. 7, 2003)

"ISRAEL MURDERS ARAB CHILDREN TO GET THEIR ORGANS": The official PA newspaper Al-Hayat Al-Jadida reported on Dec. 24, 2001, that "When the occupying authority holds the bodies of martyrs ... they steal body parts of the martyrs." Similarly, Arafat said on Al Jazeera Television on January 13, 2002, that the Israelis "murder our kids and use their organs as spare parts."

"ISRAEL CAUSES MAD COW DISEASE": Maher Al-Dasouqi, director of the PA’s Committee for Consumer Protection, said: "Citizens must be vigilant regarding chocolate from England, especially Cadbury’s, which is very popular in Palestinian markets, since the milk used in the production of all types of Cadbury’s chocolate was infected with mad cow disease. The sale of this chocolate is forbidden in England, but it was smuggled into the Palestinian regions by Israeli merchants..." (Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec.8, 1997)

"ISRAEL INFECTS ARAB CHILDREN WITH AIDS": Nabil Ramlawi, the PLO representative to the United Nations in Geneva, said: "The Israeli authorities infected by injection 300 Palestinian children with the HIV virus during the years of the intifada." (Jerusalem Post, March 17, 1997)

"ISRAEL ASSASSINATED ITS OWN TOURISM MINISTER": In a three-part interview with Israel TV on Dec.7-9, 2001, Arafat said "the Israeli Mossad was behind the assassination in Jerusalem of Israeli cabinet minister Rehavam Ze’evi."

"ISRAEL CARRIED OUT THE 9/11 ATTACKS": On Oct. 7, 2001, PA Radio reported that "U.S. law enforcement officials have nabbed three cadres of Mossad operatives in New York in connection with the September 11 attacks." Mossad chief Ephraim Halevy said in Nov. 2001: "Arafat tells everyone who will listen that the Mossad crashed into the Twin Towers in New York. Arafat lives in a world of lies and perpetual fantasy." (Israel Radio, Nov.26, 2001)

"ISRAEL USES NAKED WOMEN TO CAPTURE INTIFADA YOUTH": A front-page declaration in the official PA newspaper Al-Hayat Al-Jadida on Aug. 14, 2001, claimed that "the occupation is using naked women to hunt down intifada youth." (Jerusalem Post, Aug.15, 2001)

Not to mention the famous Joo-Rays that kill elderly Palestinian women and Arafat himself.

Hat tip to Bacon Eating Atheist Jew.

Jihad in South Florida (Robert Spencer)

Robert Spencer (of Jihad Watch) gets us up-to-date on the Al-Arian trial.
In a trial with more important national security implications than any since the Rosenbergs’, Sami Al-Arian now begins his third month in the dock. The defense claims that Al-Arian is a peaceful Muslim with unpopular political views. But according to prosecutors, while Al-Arian was a professor at the University of South Florida, and Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times was affectionately characterizing him as a “rumpled academic with a salt-and-pepper beard,” he was actually the head of the American wing of the terrorist group Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), held a key position in the group’s worldwide leadership, and even established a cell of the terrorist group at his university.

A great deal of information about Al-Arian’s activities on behalf of Palestinian Islamic Jihad has come to light at the trial – much of which was hitherto unknown or only sketchily reconstructed by intelligence officials. The trial has become the occasion for the professor, whose case has for years been a minor cause celebre among Leftists, to be confronted with the fruit of his labors for the first time. Israeli policeman Yuval Avargil was on the scene at Beit Lid in Israel on January 22, 1995, when a PIJ suicide bomber exploded a bomb that killed twenty-two people. “I opened my eyes,” Avergil recounted at the trial, “I heard something rolling near me, I saw a head of a soldier with his eyes open on the side.”

What did the Rumpled Academic think of this attack? He wrote about the bombing enthusiastically almost three weeks later in a letter to Kuwaiti politician Ismail al- Shatti: “The latest operation, carried out by the two mujahideen who were martyred for the sake of God, is the best guide and witness to what the believing few can do in the face of Arab and Islamic collapse at the heels of the Zionist enemy and in keeping the flame of faith, steadfastness and defiance glowing.” He also asked for donations so that “operations such as these can continue.” Key to the defense’s case at this point is Al-Shatti’s contention that he never received this letter; prosecutors are hoping that Abdurraham Alamoudi, once the leading “moderate Muslim” and now serving a 23-year prison sentence on other charges, will corroborate their claim that the letter was hand-delivered to Al-Shatti.

Al-Arian, meanwhile, has consistently denied any involvement with the leadership of PIJ or any other “political organization.” In fact, when in early 1995 Tampa Tribune reporter Michael Fechter probed his ties to the jihad group, Al-Arian attributed it all to the sinister hand that jihadists so often see behind their misfortunes, no matter how farfetched the connection: “This,” he intoned to another PIJ member, “is an Israeli job, my brother.”

Is Sami Al-Arian actually caught in the middle of terrorist activities by others who are linked to him, but with which he has had nothing to do? A clue may come from a 1989 conference of the Islamic Committee for Palestine. Held in Chicago, the conference featured a panel discussion moderated by Al-Arian. As the Rumpled Academic looked on, one panelist addressed a question about how to solve the Israel/Palestinian conflict by inviting him to talk with him later about weapons smuggling techniques. Another, Imam Fawaz Damra of Cleveland, a former high-profile “moderate” who has recently been deported for failing to disclose his ties to terrorist groups on his visa application, declared: “The first principle is that terrorism, and terrorism alone, is the path to liberation.”

Damra, incidentally, was one of the signers of the recent fatwa condemning terrorism issued by the Fiqh Council of North America under the auspices of the Council on American Islamic Relations and the Muslim Public Affairs Council. Damra’s name among the signatories lends credence to the view that this fatwa, despite the enthusiastic praise it has received from the mainstream media, is in fact another exercise in the deception that Damra and others so skillfully practiced in America for so long, while continuing behind closed doors to support terror. Just how well Sami Al-Arian played this game is now coming to light.

So this is why the neo-cons wanted to invade Iraq

It was so Israel could make some money selling bullets! :)
Israel Military Industries won a tender Tuesday for around $300 million to supply the U.S. army with ammunition. IMI said this is their biggest ammunition deal with the U.S. army to date.

IMI will supply light ammunition for rifles and machine guns, which will be produced in its 'Yitzhak' factory in Upper Nazareth. The deal will double the factory's scope of activity. It currently employs 350 workers, and has a revenue today of over $60 million a year.

The Yitzhak factory produces light ammunition principally for American forces operating in Iraq, the Israel Defense Forces, the police and the Israeli defense establishment, as well as various western European clients.

IMI Chairman Ovadia Eli said the success is a significant achievement for the company and represents an important stage in its growth, and that is likely enable it to win additional international tenders. According to Eli, the deal establishes the standing of IMI as an essential supplier for the U.S. army.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Israel’s exports to Arab countries up 21%

Some cheerful news to further freak out the Saudis:

Israel’s industrial exports to Arab countries, excluding diamonds, grew 21% to $106 million in January-June 2005, compared with the corresponding period last year, Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute director Yechiel Assia said.

Assia noted that these figures did not include $6 million in indirect exports to Arab countries by way of third countries in the first half of this year. These exports resulted from partnerships between Israel and Arab companies.

That's a lot of paper cups!

Abbas to media: Print what I say, not what I do

Once again, the new incarnation of Arafat says meaningless words to the news media, and they lap it up:
RAMALLAH, West Bank (Reuters) - President Mahmoud Abbas said on Monday he hoped to persuade Palestinians peaceful dialogue was the way to statehood after an Israeli pullout from Gaza that militants claimed as a victory for armed struggle.

Declaring the 'jihad' or 'holy struggle' of confrontation with Israel over, Abbas told Reuters it was time for what he called the 'greater jihad' of economic revival, rule of law and talks with the Jewish state to achieve a lasting peace.

Abbas said he has been promoting that message at recent public rallies celebrating the first evacuation of Jewish settlements from Israeli-occupied land Palestinians want for a state.

'The people are responding in a remarkable way. The people's beliefs are changing,' he said."
On the very same day, the PA's Ministry of Culture was busy as well:
The PA's Ministry of Culture released its "Book of the Month" today, a poetry collection honoring suicide terrorist Hanadi Jaradat, who murdered 29 Israelis. It was distributed as a special supplement in the daily Al-Ayyam.

Entitled "What Did Hanadi Say?" the collection includes a poem glorifying Jaradat's act of suicide terror, calling it "the highest goal":

"O Hanadi! Shake the earth under the feet of the enemies! Blow it up! Hanadi said: "It is the wedding of Hanadi the day when death as a Martyr for Allah, becomes the highest goal."

Now, we wait for a single mainstream media outlet to point out the jarring contradiction between Abbas' words and his actions.

And wait. And wait.

I just wrote to Reuters about this; we'll see what kind of form letter I get in return:
To the Editors:

On the very same day that Mahmoud Abbas claims in your interview to now be promoting a culture of peace among Palestinians, his own Ministry of Culture published a book praising a female suicide bomber who killed 29 Israelis.

Would it be too much to ask you, as a supposed "news" organization, to go a tiny bit beyond parroting the words of a proven liar and actually exposing the clear fraud he is trying to use you for? I seem to remember learning that news organizations should be a little skeptical of what leaders say; yet I have yet to see you expose a single incongruity within your beloved Palestinian Authority.

Would it be physically harmful to you to mention that the terrorist Al Aqsa Martyr's Brigades gets money from Abbas' PA, which in turns gets its money from US and European taxpayers?

Is it too taxing for your Arabic-speaking reporters to mention the incitement that is printed and broadcast daily in the Palestinian media, directly breaking a signed agreement with Israel?

Or does your own political agenda trump actually reporting the news?

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Saudis freak out over Hebrew paper cups

You can't make this stuff up! (Hat tip to OpinionJournal Best of the Web)

Made-in-Israel Paper Cups Used in Local Hospital
Samir Al-Saadi, Arab News

JEDDAH, 22 August 2005 — Paper cups with Hebrew writing disturbed both employees and medical staff at King Khaled National Guard Hospital on Saturday. The catering subcontractor for the hospital coffee shops began using them on Saturday after their usual supply ran out.

We were shocked and angry,” said an employee. “How can Israeli products be allowed and how did they enter this hospital?” he asked.

The Filipino employee who works in the Al-Musbah coffee shop asked: “Why is everybody mad about the cups?” He was told: “Because they are made in Israel!

According to hospital officials, the matter is being investigated and action will be taken.

Saleh Al-Mazroi, executive director for operations at KKNGH, said the matter had been referred to authorities in Riyadh and was being dealt with.

On the bottom of the paper cup was a website address and a telephone number. When Arab News looked at the website — www.orion-rancal.co.il. — it was found to be in Hebrew though there were a few words of English: “Israeli disposable paper, plastic and foam dinnerware supplier for restaurants.”

Arab News contacted Ibrahim Al-Musbah, manager and owner, who said, “I thank you for informing me. I will look into it personally and the offending articles will be disposed of.” He added that the company has a supplier in the Kingdom from whom they buy restaurant supplies. According to Al-Musbah, the supplier might be unaware of the problem.

Al-Musbah later contacted Arab News and said that the paper cups had come to his company by mistake. The cups were in a cardboard box that looked exactly like the ones his company normally receives and so the employees did not notice any difference. Al-Musbah added that the supplier was named “Jeelani” and that he would supply Arab News with his contact numbers today.

The paper cups were quickly withdrawn from use but might there not be other, less obvious, Israeli products in our shops and marketplaces?
Horrors! The $15 that they accidentally paid to an Israeli company could have gone for bomb belts!

Australian mainstream Muslim group promotes Protocols of the Elders of Zion

In a transcript of a radio interview in Australia about the Prime Minister meeting with "moderate" Muslim leaders, a moderate Muslim critic mentions a casual fact in passing:
MICHAEL VINCENT: What do you think of the result of today's meeting? Do you think it does progress the dialogue between the Muslim community and the Government?

IRFAN YUSUF: Well, it'll progress the dialogue between the Government and these particular organisations, but then I don't know really how committed these organisations are to, you know, to curbing extremism.

I mean, the last camp I went to, which was organised by the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils, I was handed a copy of The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion, as an educational text. It's extremely anti-Semitic, anti-Jewish text.

It's (inaudible) anti-Semitic forgery which was written, I believe, during the Zionist time as a way of encouraging pogroms against Jewish people.

And, I mean, I don't regard that as being, you know, reflective of mainstream Muslim opinion, but unfortunately that's the sort of opinion and attitudes and books and what have you that are being distributed by some of these peak bodies.

Today's future Pal Police funnies

Another in the continuing saga of "Today's criminals, tomorrow's policemen."
In another incident in the West Bank, arsonists set fire to the offices of the Palestinian Legislative Council in Hebron on Sunday night. No group claimed responsibility for the attack, which is yet another sign of increased lawlessness in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Hebron residents said the arson was apparently the work of a local Fatah gang whose members were angry because they were not given jobs and money.

Your tax dollars going to terrorists

An interesting part about funding for Fatah terror groups buried in another Gaza-in-chaos article:

In a military training camp run by the ruling Fatah movement, hundreds of young Palestinians marched in formation Monday and sprinted across a sandy lot.
[...]
Competition among armed Palestinian groups over control of Gaza's lawless towns intensified Monday as Israeli settlers cleared out the last of 21 Jewish settlements.

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas wants to see carefully orchestrated victory marches under the Palestinian national flag. However, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and a few tiny Palestinian Liberation Organization factions have ignored his appeals, already parading their gunmen in a show of force and planning parades once the last Israeli soldiers leave in the coming weeks.

[...]

In southern Gaza, near what was once the Gush Katif bloc of Israeli settlements, members of Fatah's military wing, the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, have organized three military training camps for more than 3,000 activists. (Tiny indeed! - EoZ)

[...]
The Palestinian Authority distanced itself from the training camps.

"There is no Fatah army, no popular army," said Tawfik Abu Khoussa, a Palestinian Interior Ministry spokesman. "We want to get rid of the military images. After the withdrawal, there is one authority and that's it."

However, the Al Aqsa men said they were getting Fatah funding for the camps, and Palestinian security officials sat in on one of Monday's interviews with camp organizers.

In organizing a small private army, Fatah gunmen in southern Gaza also appeared to be sending a warning to the Palestinian Authority that they could make trouble if jobs are not found for them in the security forces. Many gunmen believe they are entitled to government posts, saying they made personal sacrifices in fighting Israel.


We have mentioned many times before the absurdity of believing that Abbas is a "moderate" when he directly funds the Al Aqsa Martyr's Brigades terror group. The connection is well known and for some reason the world community doesn't seem to have a problem continuing to give huge amounts of money to the PA knowing that some of it goes directly to a terror organization.

The AP decided that this information didn't have to appear until paragraph 24.

Two good reference articles

CAMERA published a good backgrounder, "Why Palestinians Still Live in Refugee Camps", that explode many of the myths that the media take for granted about Palestinian "refugees." (interestingly, they published the same table I did in an earlier article, but I had not seen theirs before I published mine from Wikipedia.)

And, via Israpundit, here is "Confessions of a Once-Hopeful Leftist," by Jared Israel, that does a nice job laying out the basic truths of the conflict and the true goals of the Palestinian Arab leaders.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Palestinian "Police" punchlines continue

More insanity from the Palestinians that the world thinks sounds normal in the bizarro Palestinian world. In today's double feature, we have the interesting idea of paying former terrorists more so they abandon their lives of crime.

It brings a whole new meaning to the expression "pay for their crimes."
Palestinian Authority Interior Minister Nasser Youssef has decided to double the salaries paid to the PA's security forces.

The increase in salaries is an attempt to attract more recruits to the PA security forces and to prevent them from opting to join terrorist organizations.

Meanwhile, back in Gaza:
Palestinians from the ruling Fatah party armed with assault rifles converged on the Gaza parliament building on Sunday to demand jobs in a protest that underlined challenges ahead for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

At least 200 al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades gunmen, most dressed in black, demanded jobs while accusing officials of corruption. Some fired into the air. The protesters came close to scuffles with police before commanders on both sides ordered calm.

They then dispersed.

"We are here only to send a message that Fatah fighters should be treated fairly. Jobs should be secured for those who made dear sacrifices," said Abu Jihad, a spokesman.


I can just see the want-ad now:

WANTED: New Palestinian policemen. Must have fired at Jews. Will consider rock throwers. A previous stint in jail a plus. We will do a background check to ensure previous membership in terror organizations. Send resume, along with references, blackmail and threats to shoot us, to: Abu Abbas, on top of Arafat's grave, Ramallah

Statue of Liberty, 8:30 AM

I am very lucky in that I can see the Statue of Liberty looking south from my cubicle window. I am about a mile away from it so I can't take any really good pictures without a much better zoom, but the lighting was pretty interesting at 8:30 even though there was a lot of smog today.

Enjoy!

Haveil Havalim #33 is up

Another excellent issue of Haveil Havalim, a round-up of the week's best postings in the Jewish blogosphere, is now at SoccerDad. One of my articles made it there.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

The birth of modern Islamic terror

An amazing article by John Roy Carlson from October 19, 1948 in the Palestine Post about the growing threat of Islamic fundamentalism. Essentially every point the author makes applies today; eerily so. The graphic format is a little hard to read but it is worth it, especially the parts about the Muslim Brotherhood and Al Azhar University, about liberalism in interpreting the Koran, the various competing Muslim fundamentalist groups, and the affinity they had with Nazism.

Before this point, Arab terror was not primarily religious-oriented; it was more nationalist, anti-Western and anti-semitic. The rise of Muslim fundamentalism changed the game and it is more important to understand the origins today of a movement that is responsible for 9/11.



Arabs accelerate media attacks on Israel

One of the biggest hopes of the wishful thinking accompanying the Gaza withdrawal is that it will lead to "peace." In the West, a peacemaking move is regarded as something that is naturally reciprocated with good-will gestures. But in the Arab and Muslim worlds, it appears to be a chance to increase the hateful rhetoric and absurd conclusions.

Here's a selection from Arab and Muslim writers over the past couple of days.

The Providence Journal published an op-ed by Mazin Qumsiyeh comparing post-withdrawal Gaza to apartheid South Africa, justifying terror, and referring to Zionist "ethnic cleansing."

Aljazeerah.info (from Georgia) blames Israel for Darfur and seems to be claiming that Israel wants to expand to Africa through the Sudan.

A New York writer names Preston Taran calls for the destruction of Israel, saying that a two-state solution is impossible. He openly calls for war in the name of Arab pride:

Therefore, “we have nothing to lose but our chains.” We cannot continue under these circumstances forever. Do we want our children to continue witnessing our humiliation? Do we want them to look us in the eyes and see our powerlessness? Do we want to keep on losing our children to Israeli murder? I do not think so. It is time to break the chains and end the “pleasant talk.”


Hamas has said, to no disapproval from the Arab world, that they will now move the terror attacks to the West Bank and Jerusalem.

The PA-controlled Palestine Media Center published an Al Ahram editorial slamming the Gaza withdrawal as a facade. It also mentions "territorial contiguity" as a requirement for a Palestinian state, meaning that Israel would have no territorial contiguity itself.

The next stages, from the Arab perspective, are clear, and all are consistent with Israel's destruction and inconsistent with any real desire to live in peace with Israel:
  • Do not create an independent state in Gaza because that would lessen pressure on Israel.
  • Move Kassam rockets to the West Bank because (they think) that is what caused the withdrawal.
  • No Palestinian state without all of Jerusalem.
  • No Palestinian state without cutting Israel in two.
  • No real Arab aid to Palestinians; their suffering is what keeps them useful.
  • Keep taking land, even tiny bits; never compromise. (Shebaa Farms is a good example.)
  • Use Hamas and Islamic Jihad and Hezbollah to create the illusion of moderation by the PA.
  • Always blame Israel for every worldwide terror attack so Europeans will do the same.
  • Use Western standards of morality to castigate Israel; use Arab standards of morality to justify terror.
  • Lie continuously and often, because the West will report it as fact.
  • Keep pressuring about "right of return" to destroy Israel demographically.
  • Keep referring to Palestinians as "refugees" although in no other case are the descendants of refugees ever referred to as such. This way there are always more Palestinian "refugees," never fewer.
  • After the 1967 borders come the 1947 partition borders, then no borders at all.
There will be no softening of rhetoric as a result of Gaza - on the contrary, it will only increase. Because, ultimately, today's Israel is sensitive to world pressure and those who want to destroy Israel have an inexhaustible supply of means to apply it.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Liberals blaming US for Muslim terror. Again.

As predictable as ever, we have a new article from The Nation going through a history of the Muslim Brotherhood and blaming 1940's era American bigotry (and perceived Western bigotry today) for today's Muslim terrorism. This was written by a Naomi Klein.

Hussain Osman, one of the men alleged to have participated in London's failed bombings on July 21, recently told Italian investigators that they prepared for the attacks by watching "films on the war in Iraq," La Repubblica reported. "Especially those where women and children were being killed and exterminated by British and American soldiers...of widows, mothers and daughters that cry."

It has become an article of faith that Britain was vulnerable to terror because of its politically correct antiracism. Yet Osman's comments suggest that what propelled at least some of the bombers was rage at what they saw as extreme racism. And what else can we call the belief -- so prevalent we barely notice it -- that American and European lives are worth more than the lives of Arabs and Muslims, so much more that their deaths in Iraq are not even counted?

It's not the first time that this kind of raw inequality has bred extremism. Sayyid Qutb, the Egyptian writer generally viewed as the intellectual architect of radical political Islam, had his ideological epiphany while studying in the United States. The puritanical scholar was shocked by Colorado's licentious women, it's true, but more significant was Qutb's encounter with what he later described as America's "evil and fanatic racial discrimination." By coincidence, Qutb arrived in the United States in 1948, the year of the creation of the State of Israel. He witnessed an America blind to the thousands of Palestinians being made permanent refugees by the Zionist project. For Qutb, it wasn't politics, it was an assault on his identity: Clearly Americans believed that Arab lives were worth far less than those of European Jews. According to Yvonne Haddad, a professor of history at Georgetown University, this experience "left Qutb with a bitterness he was never able to shake."

When Qutb returned to Egypt he joined the Muslim Brotherhood, leading to his next life-changing event: He was arrested, severely tortured and convicted of antigovernment conspiracy in an absurd show trial. Qutb's political theory was profoundly shaped by torture. Not only did he regard his torturers as sub-human, he stretched that categorization to include the entire state that ordered this brutality, including the practicing Muslims who passively lent their support to Nasser's regime.

Qutb's vast category of subhumans allowed his disciples to justify the killing of "infidels" -- now practically everyone -- in the name of Islam. A movement for an Islamic state was transformed into a violent ideology that would lay the intellectual groundwork for al Qaeda. In other words, so-called Islamist terrorism was "home grown" in the West long before the July 7 attacks -- from its inception it was the quintessentially modern progeny of Colorado's casual racism and Cairo's concentration camps.

Why is it worth digging up this history now? Because the twin sparks that ignited Qutb's world-changing rage are currently being doused with gasoline: Arabs and Muslims are being debased in torture chambers around the world and their deaths are being discounted in simultaneous colonial wars, at the same time that graphic digital evidence of these losses and humiliations is available to anyone with a computer. And once again, this lethal cocktail of racism and torture is burning through the veins of angry young men. As Qutb's past and Osman's present reveal, it's not our tolerance for multiculturalism that fuels terrorism; it's our tolerance for the barbarism committed in our name.
[...]
The real problem is not too much multiculturalism but too little. If the diversity now ghettoized on the margins of Western societies -- geographically and psychologically -- were truly allowed to migrate to the centers, it might infuse public life in the West with a powerful new humanism. If we had deeply multi-ethnic societies, rather than shallow multicultural ones, it would be much more difficult for politicians to sign deportation orders sending Algerian asylum-seekers to torture, or to wage wars in which only the invaders' dead are counted. A society that truly lived its values of equality and human rights, at home and abroad, would have another benefit too. It would rob terrorists of what has always been their greatest recruitment tool: our racism.


The ability to write an article like this without giving the slightest amount of blame to the people who actually plan terror attacks is nothing short of amazing. I suppose that Naomi Klein has just given carte blanche to black people or native Americans to start blowing up other Americans at shopping malls because of historic racism - and she would be the first to defend them.

She likes the theme that the West perceives that "American and European lives are worth more than the lives of Arabs and Muslims." What she glaringly fails to address is that American and European lives are worth more to the terrorists than the lives of Arabs and Muslims. How else to explain the entire idea of suicide bombing? (I know, she must consider it noble.) How else to explain the huge number of Muslims killed by other Muslims? How else to explain the concept of Jihad as it is normally used - as a holy war against the infidels? (And is she writing as many words about deaths in Africa and Indonesia as she is on Arabs and the West? Perhaps there is a little racism there, too, according to her "logic"?)

Her other points supposedly supporting her thesis are nothing short of absurd. Qutb was tortured by Nasser's thugs and she somehow uses his Colorado experiences to blame the West.

And not a word that Muslim extremism may be, just maybe, fueled partially by an interpretation or misinterpretation of the Koran? Nope...they might as well be secularists; religion cannot enter the worldview of this uber-liberal because religion is only a corrupting evil when practiced by Westerners; in the Third World it is some sort of civilizing factor that couldn't possibly be included in the calculus of terror. Nope...that's all our fault. (I wonder if Klein's vision of "deeply multi-ethnic societies" have as much room for Christian fundamentalists or West Bank settlers as they do for extremist mosques.)

So the words of a Muslim terrorist said to a Western reporter about a propaganda film launches this poor excuse for an opinion piece in The Nation. The only thing noteworthy about this is that anyone can write any claptrap that fits the editorial line of the magazine and get published.

(Of course, this also applies to some conservative publications as well. Over the years I have found way too many things written that said nothing but just filled space in partisan publications; they could have been written by a 'bot. Critical analysis by partisan editors is way too rare.)

Friday, August 19, 2005

Kfar Darom, 1946-1949

Kfar Darom was refounded in 1946 as part of "Operation Negev", an ambitious one-day program to build five settlements on JNF-owned land in October, 1946.

Even though the political implications were clear, the local Arabs welcomed the new Jewish villages, as this Palestine Post article shows:


The village was integral in the 1948 war, repulsing Egyptian attacks even before Israel declared its independence:



And the attacks continued, as Kfar Darom was the first line of defense against the Egyptian army. And the members were nothing short of heroic against a much larger and better-equipped enemy.


Unfortunately, Kfar Darom's isolation made it impossible to hold on to it, and the village was abandoned later in 1948.

But Jews are compared to the moon, where every month it appears to disappear only to come back again. And the members of the 1946 incarnation of Kfar Darom founded a new village a year later in the Negev:

Thursday, August 18, 2005

New US Ambassador to UN does his job

A good article showing the cluelessness of the Jew-hatred of the UN and the direct criticism from Ambassador Bolton.

This is an auspicious start for the new UN ambassador. Let's hope that he continues to do his job in the spirit of Moynihan and Kirkpatrick.
The United Nations’ funding of a Palestinian Arab propaganda campaign timed to coincide with Israel’s pullout from the Gaza Strip has increased tensions between the U.N. and American officials.

America’s newly installed ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, labeled “inappropriate and unacceptable” the United Nations Development Program financing of materials bearing the slogan “Today Gaza, Tomorrow the West Bank and Jerusalem.”

Mr. Bolton said yesterday that the UNDP had failed to explain why it funneled money to the Palestinian Authority to back the production of banners, bumper stickers, mugs, and T-shirts bearing the provocative slogan as well as UNDP logos.

Responding to angry reactions from Jewish and Israeli leaders, UNDP officials yesterday said financial support from the agency was intended to help the Palestinian Authority communicate with Palestinian Arabs during Israel’s evacuation of Jewish settlers from Gaza. (Communicating how to build rockets? - EoZ)

In a letter to the American Jewish Congress, which had decried the funding of the propaganda materials, a UNDP administrator, Kemal Dervis, said it was “not at all acceptable” that the agency’s logo was placed on the propaganda.

“We cannot be involved in political messaging,” Mr. Dervis wrote. The UNDP manages nearly $4 billion in donor resources annually, operating in 166 countries.

The response from the UNDP was not sufficient, Mr. Bolton said yesterday. “Funding this kind of activity is inappropriate and unacceptable. We plan to raise the issue with UNDP and with others,” he said in a statement to The New York Sun. In effect, Mr. Bolton expressed to the UNDP that the most serious problem for his office was not the logo, but the fact that the agency supported that message with its checkbook.

William Orme, a spokesman for the UNDP, told the Sun by telephone yesterday evening, “We’ve seen Ambassador Bolton’s comments, and we are taking this matter seriously.”

This is the fourth explusion of Jews from Gaza

A fascinating timeline I found on this site shows the history of Gaza. During the first millenium, after the destruction of the Second Temple, Jews slowly moved back into Gaza. (The remains of one 1500 year old synagogue are still there today.) The number of Jews moving there accelerated during the Middle Ages and throughout the tumultuous history of the region.

During WWI, the Ottoman Empire ordered the eviction of Jews from Gaza City.

Jews returned in small numbers during the 20's, but were forced out by the Arabs during the riots in 1929, leaving all their possessions behind.

In 1946, the kibbutz Kfar Darom was founded the east-central part of Gaza on the same area as the Kfar Darom mentioned in the Talmud in around the year 500. It was abandoned under Egyptian fire in the 1948 war.

Of course, under Egyptian rule, no Jews were allowed to live in Gaza. They started returning after the Six Day War, with Kfar Darom being built for the third time in 1970.

So while history may be repeating itself in that Jews are being forced to leave Gaza, who knows - history may also repeat itself where Jews may end up going back there yet again.

Exclusive offer for Elder of Ziyon readers!

Yesterday I was playing with a new, awesome digital camera and decided to take some pictures of Manhattan from the place I work. I took ten shots and stitched them together to make what is effectively a 33 megapixel panoramic view of lower Manhattan.

Here is a much-reduced version:



To give you an idea of how large the full picture is; here is a small slice:

If you want to download the full gigantic picture, it is here (sorry, filehost.to is no longer working - EoZ) It is over 3 MB.

Enjoy!

Kassam rockets kill more Arabs than Jews

Ha'aretz reports:
Ever since the Palestinians began to manufacture and launch locally produced missiles, about four years ago, most of the casualties they have inflicted - dead and wounded - have been Palestinian, and not Israeli.

The legendary Palestinian regard for human life remains legendary.

Hamas: Gaza withdrawal will help Islamists in Afghanistan and Iraq

Sometimes, Hamas tells the truth.

Gaza is being perceived in the Arab world not only as a victory over Israel but as a victory of militant Islam over the West.
At the height of Israel's disengagement, Mahmoud Zahar, the leader of Hamas in Gaza, said that from the Palestinian perspective the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza signifies the collapse of the Zionist outlook and is "a sign of the final battle that will decide the conflict."
"It is a defeat for Israel, which did not find an answer to the Kassam rockets or the war of the tunnels or to suicide attacks."
Zahar expressed confidence that the disengagement will lift the morale of the Arab and Islamic world and will affect the battle for Afghanistan and Iraq.
"We are part of the great world plan whose name is the world Islamic movement.
"We do not recognize the State of Israel nor its right to control any of the land of Palestine.
"Palestine is holy Islamic land that belongs to Muslims the world over," he emphasized.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Here come the Macau terrorists!

Often you will see the media hammer home how densely populated the Gaza Strip is, as if that excuses terrorist behavior and the fact that the Palestinians have failed to build a decent infrastructure there over the decades. Well, unfortunately, there seem to be many far-more crowded (and yet productive) areas of the world.

It's a wonder that we don't see any suicide bombers from Hong Kong or Gilbraltar.

Country/region

Population

Area (km2)

Density

Macau, SAR, PRC

449,198

25.4

17,685

Monaco

32,409

1.95

16,620

Singapore

4,425,720

692.7

6,389

Hong Kong

6,898,686

1,092

6,317

Gibraltar

27,884

6.5

4,290

Gaza Strip

1,376,289

360

3,823


Gaza has less than one quarter of the population density of Macau and Monaco, those hotbeds of terror.

How do you say "hypocrisy" in French?

It always amazes me how countries that have no problem pressuring Israel to give more and more and more to Palestinian thugs, despite decades of terror attacks and murders of Jews, become so hawkish so quickly when a single one of their citizens becomes a victim of a much smaller attack - one that would barely make Page 17 of Le Monde if it was against an Israeli Jew.

Where are the French newspaper articles pointing out that Hamas might have kidnapped the journalist, and that the PA is short of ammunition so cannot be held responsible to police their own people? Where are the supporters of the "moderate" government of the PA defending their efforts to find the kidnappers? Where are the politicians pointing out that Hamas has a humanitarian as well as a militant wing and that they shouldn't be punished for the crimes of the "activists"?

And the bigger question is: how quickly after the journalist is released will the French revert to pressuring Israel to give more to the terrorists?

France has threatened to halt financial and humanitarian aid to the Palestinian Authority unless a French journalist who was kidnapped in Gaza City earlier this week is freed unharmed.

PA officials said the threat was delivered to the PA on behalf of French President Jacques Chirac, who is 'extremely disturbed' by the abduction.

The journalist was identified as Muhammad Ouathi, an Algerian Muslim with French citizenship who was working as a soundman for French Television Channel III.

More than 80 non-governmental organizations on Tuesday called for the immediate release of Ouathi. They also urged the PA to arrest the kidnappers and bring them to trial.
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Tuesday, August 16, 2005

San Jose Mercury News equates settler supporters with terrorists

The magical words that have been used for years to downplay terrorists murdering people are now being used to describe Jews with no intent to hurt other Jews:
Police, militants clash in Gaza

By MICHAEL MATZA, DION NISSENBAUM AND MARTIN MERZER

Knight Ridder Newspapers

NEVE DEKALIM, Gaza Strip -- Clashes erupted Tuesday between Israeli authorities who stepped up the use of force and militant supporters of the Israeli settlers who faced a midnight to leave their homes in Gaza.

Hundreds of protesters were arrested or detained and several injuries were reported during a sporadic series of shoving matches. Extremists also torched several vehicles, tossed rocks at authorities and threw acid and other caustic agents at them.


So the same words that are used to describe Al Qaeda, Hamas and the British bombers now apply to Jewish demonstrators.

By the way, the "acid" incident seems to be close to fictional. In Israel they are reporting that the police claim that demostrators threw acid or ammonia on one policeman.

I wrote a letter to the Mercury News complaining about this:

I am outraged at the words you have chosen to describe the protests against disengagement in Gaza.

It is well known that many newspapers dislike the word "terrorist", with the specious claim that it is a loaded term. So for years we have seen terrorists described as "militants", or, in some cases, "extremists." So when we see a headline that says "Police, militants clash in Gaza" we have a good idea that it is referring to either Israeli or Palestinian policemen and members of Hamas or Islamic Jihad.

However, today I see not only a headline but the contents of an article referring to Jewish settler sympathizer-protesters as both "militants" and "extremists." The only violent act that is referred to is an alleged splash of acid on a policeman, which I have not been able to verify in any Israeli online news source outside of a single mention that "police claimed" that one policeman was splashed with either acid or ammonia.

So we possibly have a case where your report lacks veracity, as it didn't have any qualifiers on the "fact" that acid was thrown on multiple policemen.

But more troubling is the implicit moral equivalence of protesters who have stated numerous times that they have no intention of physically hurting anyone, and members of Al Qaeda and Hamas who explicitly state and act to kill hundreds of people.

This is a perversion of the English language, and it succeeds in doing exactly what you claim to want to avoid by not using the word "terrorist" - you are making an obscene moral judgment by using the exact same words to describe diametrically different sets of people.

There is a good definition of terror - it is the purposeful targeting of innocent civilians. It is not hard to call members of Hamas or Al Qaeda "terrorists." But to call them "militants" and "extremists" when you also give the same name to overwhelmingly peaceful protesters betrays a bias that is way beyond what a newspaper should exhibit. It is insulting, sickening and unacceptable.

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Update: The newspaper replied to me with a form letter saying they will not publish my letter without more personal information. Of course, I was not interested in being published: I wanted a reply.

Israeli armor saving American lives in Iraq

Yet another story that the mainstream media wouldn't touch because it doesn't fit with their agenda.
The speed and effectiveness with which American military trucks were equipped with armor in Iraq had a lot to do with ’s war with Palestinian and Lebanese terrorists. For over a decade, Israeli troops have had to drive trucks through areas containing Islamic terrorists. The ambush methods of these terrorists were similar to those encountered in Iraq, and it was from this experience that Israeli firms developed kits for armoring trucks. These kits included 10mm steel plates, cut and shaped to fit a particular type of truck, plus bulletproof glass for the windshield and windows, and brackets and other hardware needed to attach the armor. Thus when thousands of American military trucks had to get armored in 2003, the Israeli firms had kits already designed. Thus many, if not most, of the American armored trucks in Iraq got that way because of Israeli designed, and often Israeli manufactured, armor kits.

Reuters: Kidnapping is just a form of protest

Reuters' "even-handedness" continues on in bizarre ways as it justifies Palestinian kidnapping of journalists:
GAZA, Aug 15 (Reuters) - Palestinian gunmen abducted an Algerian Muslim journalist working for a French television station on Monday, his TV crew said, the latest in a string of kidnappings of foreigners in the Gaza Strip.

Mohamed Ouathi, a soundman for France 3 Television, was walking back to his hotel in Gaza City with his television crew when three unmasked men armed with rifles threatened him, pulled him into their vehicle and drove away.
[...]
Palestinian militants have kidnapped several foreigners in the past in a sign of growing chaos in Gaza, caused mainly by those opposed to reforms President Mahmoud Abbas has carried out in his Fatah group and those protesting against alleged corruption in his government.

Ya gotta love a "news" agency that bends over backwards so much to justify terrorist crimes, reducing them to a mere "protest", no different from a letter to the editor.
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UN pays for terrorist banners

On Sunday in Gaza City, Hamas strung blazing green banners: 'Resistance wins,' read one, 'so let's go on.' Around the corner was a banner from the Palestinian Authority, which is dominated by a more secular faction, Fatah. 'Gaza today,' it read, 'the West Bank and Jerusalem Tomorrow.' A tag line said the banner was paid for by the United Nations Development Program.
Nice to know that the UN is spending its money so wisely. I guess there are no longer any Palestinians who need food or jobs.
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Monday, August 15, 2005

One year of blogging

Boring nerd stats:

TruthLaidBear ranks me as blog #9973, which is frankly pretty bad. ("Slithering Reptile" in the Ecosystem.) I used to be ranked higher but then the blog URL had to change and evidently some people never found me again.

Technorati shows 10 blogs that link back to this blog.

I am still short of 10,000 page-hits. This blog still barely registers on the JBlogosphere, except that SoccerDad seems to like me and I get lots of links from his blog.

By far my most popular post was this one, which ended up spinning off its own blog that has far less traffic than this one. Fame is fleeting.

I recently got a very nice compliment from Linda of Something and Half of Something, saying:
"I read your blog several times each week, in my humble opinion, it is one of the best out there."

People find me mostly through jrants.com and jewishblogging.com, with a sizable percentage from Google searches. I am also proud to be the only hit when Googling for "Joo Rays."

For those interested in the name of the blog: I used to spend massive amounts of time on Yahoo News Message Boards, arguing about Israel with idiots, and spending way too much time coming up with thoughtful responses that end up scrolling off the page in a few minutes. One of the handles I used was "Elder of Ziyon" because someone had already taken the name Elder of Zion. So I migrated out of MB hell and into the blogosphere, hoping that my articles might be accessible longer to a larger audience, as well as hoping to be able to keep my own repository of interesting articles (this blog originally was only quoting others' articles with very little comment from me.)

I know I can increase my audience by doing things like posting links to my site on LGF (or even Havel Havalim), and also by posting more personal blog entries, but so far I have been happy with people just finding me. It is more meant to be a reference blog than a conversational blog and while I enjoy and appreciate people commenting, I'm more interested in making sure that news articles and opinions are published that might have otherwise gone unnoticed.

But I am sure that this blog will continue to evolve over the coming months anyway. Hope you like it!