Latest Entries »
|Shira’s note: I am going to try something different here. With the profundity of this essay and the means to understand and grasp the implications of the messages, I will give you my impression and/or perspectives to the most valuable message being said by Ms. Glick, and that will be through definitions with extrapolation throughout the article. The italics in parenthesis are definitions to keep on track as her essays are regularly lengthy. The bold in parenthesis and italics will be my perspectives. As always, please comment on how you feel or what you think…S.Posted: 04 Oct 2012 07:27 PM PDT
Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s legal term in office expired nearly four years ago. But his supporters don’t care. In Israel, Washington and throughout the world, Abbas’s supporters extol (to praise highly: glorify) the authoritarian leader as a great moderate. In 2002, desperately searching for a face for the Palestinians that wasn’t Yasser Arafat’s face, the Left pushed Abbas out from behind Arafat’s shadow. Abbas, who served as Arafat’s deputy for 39 years (in point, remember the policies of Arafat’s crazy thinking to always destroy Israel), was upheld as a great moderate and placed in the invented position of Palestinian prime minister. The fact that Abbas was an inveterate Jew-hater who spent four decades in the senior leadership of a terrorist organization and whose doctoral dissertation was a long denial of the Holocaust, was brushed aside. His leftist supporters don’t care that he says Israel has no right to exist. They are untroubled by his 2008 rejection of then-prime minister Ehud Olmert’s unprecedentedly generous offer of peace and Palestinian statehood (“they” not recognizing through ignorance or just not keeping up to date with the latest). They don’t mind that Abbas has refused to negotiate peace with Israel for the past four years (ibid). They don’t care that he has signed two unity government deals with Hamas or that he seeks to gain sovereignty for a Palestinian state through the UN and so establish a Palestinian state in a formal state of war with Israel.
They don’t care. But most Israelis do. Due to their recognition of his hatred for Israel and due to the terrorism Abbas has condoned and financed for decades, the vast majority of Israelis do not consider him a potential partner for peace. They do not believe that either Abbas or the Palestinians as a whole are remotely interested in being appeased by Israel. As a consequence, most Israelis greeted Abbas’s speech at the UN General Assembly last week with indifference. In that speech, Abbas made clear – yet again – that he remains Arafat’s loyal deputy. The majority of Abbas’s speech involved a litany of libels against Israel, which he accused of everything from terrorism to apartheid, colonialism, racism, murder, theft, etc., etc., etc. (which to me is yelling out projection). Then he moved on to his demands. In addition to reinstating his demand that Israel agree to every Palestinian demand as a precondition for negotiations, Abbas demanded that Israel release all Palestinian terrorists from its prisons. No, none of Abbas’s attacks had an iota of truth to them.
But who cares? Abbas certainly doesn’t. And neither do his supporters. Their support for Abbas has nothing to do with what he says or does. It has to do with who they are and what they want. Abbas is their prop, not their partner. Abbas’s Israeli supporters are the core of far-leftists who brought us the phony peace process with the PLO. Two thousand dead Israelis later (that’s two thousand lives!), and with no peace in sight, their camp is much smaller today than it was in 1993. But it is still dedicated. And it is overpopulated by members of the media. TIPPING HIS hat to this group, this week Defense Minister Ehud Barak announced in a media interview that he thinks that Israel should unilaterally withdraw from much of Judea and Samaria. For most Israelis, Barak’s plan is self-evidently insane. We left Gaza and see the consequences of that unilateral withdrawal every day as southern Israel is bombarded with missiles and rockets (not to mention, the destruction of precious, fertile land which produced food that would’ve given them the means for food). We left and Gaza was transformed into a hub for global jihad, increasingly indistinguishable from Sinai. The very notion that our defense chief could suggest adopting an identical strategy for Judea and Samaria is both obscene and frightening. What can he be thinking? Barak is thinking about elections, which are apparently about to be called (which is sick…how can anyone think this way? His decisions will kill people). Barak thinks his best bet politically is to try to win the support of Abbas’s ever shrinking support base.
Barak lost his political base when he left the Labor Party and formed his own Independence faction with other breakaway Labor politicians at the beginning of 2011. He needs Abbas’s Israeli supporters to vote for him if he is to get elected to the next Knesset. Even more crucially, Barak needs Abbas’s supporters in the Israeli media. So to win their support, he opted to run on a platform of expelling Jews from their homes. Barak’s move doesn’t tell us anything we don’t already know about him. He remains the political opportunist he has always been. His move is interesting because of what it reveals about the nature of Israel’s Left.
There is no rational way to argue that Israel can gain any advantage by surrendering Judea and Samaria to the Palestinians. If Israel departs, either Abbas will gobble up the territory and demand more, or he will swallow the concession and get swallowed by Hamas, which will demand more – as happened in Gaza. Either way, Israel loses. But that doesn’t matter for the Left. The Left continues to support Israeli withdrawals because its members know that the biggest loser of such an action won’t be Israel as a whole. It will be the Israeli Right. And that is all the Left cares about. The only enemy they are interested in fighting, the only adversary they wish to defeat, is their fellow Israelis. And in a bid to win their support at the ballot box – and on the evening news – Barak has decided to embrace their cause. He will fight their fight against their Israeli enemies for them (I’m appalled by the notion that politics are more important than even one life lost through decisions like these. It does not make sense and how can one man’s ego trump one, just one Israeli?).
The Israeli Left is not alone in its belief that its number one priority is to destroy its domestic political opposition (Not working in unity will topple Israel. I don’t understand why this party wants to ‘destroy’ their own people, or for that matter, any party, being left or right). Throughout the Western world, the political Left is increasingly rallying around positions that are in fundamental conflict with their nation’s interests as well as with the specific ideological commitments of the Left, for the sole purpose of gaining and maintaining power (Again, power will destroy us as a people). In recent weeks, the Left in the US has exposed its motivations and purpose in profoundly troubling ways. If Jewish settlement of the Land of Israel is the core of the Zionist revolution, freedom of speech is the foundation of America. Without Jewish settlement, there is no Israel. Without freedom of speech, there is no America. IN RECENT weeks, US President Barack Obama and all of his senior aides and supporters have launched an assault on freedom of speech. They have attacked previously unknown figures because they dared to exercise their freedom of speech to produce an anti-Islamic film and broadcast it on YouTube. The White House pressured Google (which owns YouTube) to take the movie down. Obama’s media supporters have gone along with this shocking assault on bedrock American principles. The Left’s support for Obama’s bid to repress freedom of speech in relation to the movie was not an isolated incident. Today the enlightened leftists of New York and Washington are apoplectic (meaning, enraged, furious, irate, etc.) because a federal judge required New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority to post paid advertisements by the Stop the Islamization of America human rights group calling for Americans to support Israel against jihad. The content of the ads is self-evidently reasonable. They read, ”In any war between the savage and the civilized man, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat Jihad.” SIOA’s founder Pamela Geller submitted the ads to the MTA last year in response to a rash of anti-Israel ads calling for the US to end its support for the Jewish state. Those ads were published on New York buses and subways and on public transportation around the US. The MTA rejected SIOA’s ad but the group sued. Citing the US Constitution, the court required the MTA to post them. When after a year’s delay the ads were finally posted last week, the US Left in the media and beyond had a collective fit. From The New York Times to radical rabbis to pro-Islamic Christian pastors to The Washington Post, everyone is wringing their hands. In a televised debate with Geller, the anti-Israel evangelical pastor Rev. Jim Wallis condemned the ads, told Geller she was going to get Christians killed, (by what or whom, he never said), and demanded that Geller silence herself. As he put it, “Stop talking.”It is important to be clear. The American Left doesn’t have a problem with free speech, per se. And they aren’t concerned – as Wallis would have you believe – that calling jihad savagery is going to get people killed, (by not-at-all savage jihadists). The problem with messages like Geller’s is that talk about jihad distracts people from what the Left wants them to be thinking about (this is where we need to inform ourselves and use the resources available to stem our ignorance. If not, we become part of some principles that we don’t want to be a part of. These people cannot think for us. They actually would prefer our ignorance, as most media outlets would have it. It is their strength and our demise). Like the Israeli Left, the American Left doesn’t want Americans to think about the actual threats to the US emanating from the Islamic world. They want the public to think about what for them is the only real threat to their values and their ability to win and wield power. That threat doesn’t emanate from the Islamic world where women are treated worse than farm animals, homosexuals are hanged in public squares, Christians are forcibly converted and assaulted, churches are burned to the ground, the annihilation of the Jewish people throughout the world is an ardent desire, and “Death to America” is a political program. For the American Left, the primary threat to their way of life comes from people who oppose abortions and gay marriage and gun control. It comes from people who oppose unionization of government workers and nationalization of healthcare. And it comes from people like Geller who state the obvious about jihad.
The reason that Islam is supposed to be immune from criticism is that for American leftists as for Israeli leftists, the only important battle is the one against domestic foes (seriously, it’s about power and ego’s and where are our voices to make a difference. Complacency is evil working its way into good). And just as the abysmal results of leftist policies have left the Israeli Left with no choice but to shoot the messengers, so too the American Left must deal with policy failure by silencing the opposition. In Israel, leftist appeasement of Palestinian terrorists has led to a horrific death toll and the obvious absence of peace. So the Left must silence those who have the temerity (boldness: reckless confidence that might be offensive) to oppose that failed policy. The Right’s most visible members are the religious Zionists, who are disproportionately situated beyond the 1949 armistice lines, and so the Left must destroy them through expulsions, no matter what the cost to Israel.
In America, the Left’s most conspicuous failure is its claim to promote women’s rights, equality and civil liberties in the culture war, even as it defends the Islamic world’s addiction to female genital mutilation, forced marriages, honor killings and executions of homosexuals for the ”crime” of being gay. So the Left must silence critics of jihad and Islamism, and hope no one will notice its hypocrisy (To me, a very sad state of affairs. How long will this go on?). The upshot of all of this is that the Left must be denied its ability to dominate national discourses. Because Abbas and the pathologically Jew-hating society he leads is a threat to the Jewish state, while religious Zionists are not. And the assaults on American embassies throughout the Islamic world are not due to Internet movies, but to the savagery inherent in jihadist Islam. In these perilous times we cannot permit ourselves to be led astray by those who insist we are our worst enemies (and with that means being educated in government policies and educating our children, older of course, to recognize that education will defeat ignorance whatever its form it takes and uphold our truths and liberties).
Originally published in the Jerusalem Post.
Shira’s note: This is a must see video. It is approximately 20 minutes. Please share it as much as you can so as to underscore the importance of Israel’s existantialism in the Middle East. It’s scary but we must be strong for Israel and the Western world.
Shira’s note: As much as I respect and regard Ms. Glick’s perspective on everything she expounds upon, it is always a lengthy read. With that, it’s worth it. Unfortunately, with us, our time is so limited with everything else, we don’t give ourselves enough time to practice polemics in educating ourselves and others; whereas, personalities such as Ms. Glick makes this, their perspectives finely tuned and wise with as much truth that can be warranted to be read on a daily basis. It’s my wish that we can take the time to discuss the global issues prevalent today to make a difference micro-globally, to somehow damage ignorance-based hatred and find justice where it is usually hidden and takes too much to find. This is a wish. Let me know if you relate to what I’m saying, and if so, share this blog so others can relate. Thanks…S.
On Tuesday, Egypt’s chief prosecutor issued arrest warrants against eight US citizens. Their purported crimes relate either to their reported involvement in the production of the Internet movie critical of Islam that has received so much attention over the past 10 days, or to other alleged anti-Islamic activities. One of the US citizens indicted is a woman who converted from Islam to Christianity. According to the Associated Press, Egypt’s general prosecution issued a statement announcing that the eight US citizens have been indicted on charges of insulting and publicly attacking Islam, spreading false information, and harming Egyptian national unity. The statement stipulated that they could face the death penalty if convicted. The AP write-up of the story quoted Mamdouh Ismail, a Salafi attorney who praised the prosecution’s move. He claimed it would deter others from exercising their right to free expression in regards to Islam. As he put it, the prosecutions will “set a deterrent for them and anyone else who may fall into this.” That is, they will deter others from saying anything critical about Islam. This desire to intimidate free people into silence on Islam is clearly the goal the heads of the Muslim Brotherhood seek to achieve through their protests of the anti-Islamic movie. This was the message of Muslim Brotherhood chief Yussuf Qaradawi. Three days after the anti-American assaults began on the anniversary of the September 11 jihadist attacks on America, Qaradawi gave a sermon on Qatar television, translated by MEMRI.
Qaradawi struck a moderate tone. He called on his followers to stop rioting against the US. Rather than attack the US, Qaradawi urged his Muslim audience to insist that the US place prohibitions on the free speech rights of American citizens by outlawing criticism of Islam – just as the Europeans have done in recent years in the face of Islamic terror and intimidation.
In his words, “We say to the US: You must take a strong stance and try to confront this extremism like the Europeans do. This [anti-Islamic film] is not art. It has nothing to do with freedom of speech. This is nothing but curses and insults. Does the freedom to curse and insult constitute freedom of speech?”
Both the actions of the Egyptian prosecution and Qaradawi’s sermon prove incontrovertibly that the two policies the US has adopted since September 11, 2001, to contend with Muslim hatred for the US have failed. The neoconservative policy of supporting the democratization of Muslim societies adopted by President Barack Obama’s predecessor George W. Bush has failed. And the appeasement policy adopted by Obama has also failed. Bush’s democratization policy claimed that the reason the Muslim world had become a hotbed for anti-Americanism and terror was that the Muslim world was not governed by democratic regimes. Once the peoples of the Muslim world were allowed to be free, and to freely elect their governments, the neoconservatives proclaimed, they would abandon their hatred of America. As a consequence of this belief, when the anti-regime protests against the authoritarian Mubarak regime began in January 2011, the neoconservatives were outspoken supporters of the overthrow of then-president Hosni Mubarak, despite the fact that he had been the US’s key ally in the Arab world for three decades. They supported the political process that brought the Muslim Brotherhood to power. They supported the process despite the fact that Qaradawi is the most influential cleric in Egypt. They supported it despite the fact that just days after Mubarak was ousted from power, Qaradawi arrived at Cairo’s Tahrir Square and before an audience of two million followers, he called for the invasion of Israel and the conquest of Jerusalem. In the event, the Egyptian people voted for Qaradawi’s Muslim Brotherhood and for the Salafi party. The distinction between the two parties is that Qaradawi and the Muslim Brotherhood are willing to resort to both violent and nonviolent ways to dominate the world in the name of Islam. The Salafis abjure nonviolence. So while Qaradawi called for the riots to end in order to convince the Americans to criminalize criticism of Islam, his Salafi counterparts called for the murder of everyone involved in producing the anti-Islamic film. For instance, Salafi cleric Ahmad Fouad Ashoush issued a fatwa on Islamic websites last weekend calling for American and European Muslims to murder those involved with the movie. His religious ruling was translated by the SITE Intelligence Group on Monday. Ashoush wrote, “Those bastards who did this film are belligerent disbelievers. I issue a fatwa and call on the Muslim youth in America and Europe to do this duty, which is to kill the director, the producer and the actors and everyone who helped and promoted the film. ”So, hurry, hurry, O Muslim youth in America and Europe, and teach those filthy lowly ones a lesson that all the monkeys and pigs in America and Europe will understand. May Allah guide you and grant you success.”
These are the voices of democratic Egypt. The government, which has indicted American citizens on capital charges for exercising their most fundamental right as Americans, is a loyal representative of the sentiments of the Egyptian people who freely elected it. The Salafi preacher is a loyal representative of the segment of the Egyptian people that made the Salafi party the second largest in the Egyptian parliament. Qaradawi’s call for the abolition of freedom of speech in America – as has happened in Europe – and to ban all criticism of Islam is subscribed to by millions and millions of Muslims worldwide who consider him one of the leading Sunni clerics in the world. Free elections in Egypt have empowered the Egyptian people to use the organs of governance to advance their hatred of America. Their hatred has been empowered, and legitimized, not diminished as the neoconservatives had hoped. The behavior of the Egyptian government, Qaradawi and the Salafis also makes clear that Obama’s policy of appeasing the Muslim world has failed completely. Whereas Bush believed the source of Muslim hatred was their political oppression at the hands of their regimes, Obama has blamed their rage and hatred on America’s supposed misdeeds. By changing the way America treats the Muslim world, Obama believes he can end their hatred of America. To this end, he has reached out to the most anti-American forces and regimes in the region and spurned pro-American regimes and political forces.
When Obama’s policies are recognized as driven by appeasement, the seeming inconsistency of his war against Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi on the one hand, and his passivity in the face of the anti-regime uprising in Iran in 2009 and the Syrian uprising against the Assad regime today makes sense. Gaddafi was not a threat to the US, so he was unworthy of protection. The mullahs in Iran and Assad are foes of the US. So they deserve protection. Obama has assiduously courted the Muslim Brotherhood from the outset of his presidency. The official and unofficial Egyptian exploitation of the Internet film as a means to intimidate and attack the US into disavowing its core principles is proof that Obama’s theory of the source of Muslim rage is wrong. They do not hate America because of what the US government does. They hate America because of what America is. And it is because of this that since September 11, the rationale for Obama’s foreign policy has disintegrated. Rather than accept this basic truth and defend the American way of life, Obama has doubled down in the only way now available to him. He, his administration, his campaign and his supporters in the media have responded to the collapse of the foundations of his foreign policy by resorting to the sort of actions they accused George W. Bush, his administration and supporters of taking. They have responded with a campaign of political oppression and nativist bigotry directed against their political opponents.
Late last Friday night, law enforcement officers descended on the California home of Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the man who made the film that the Muslims of the newly free Arab lands find so offensive. Nakoula was questioned by federal authorities and later released. His arrest was photographed. The image of a dozen officers arresting an unarmed man for making a movie was broadcast worldwide within moments. Beyond persecuting an independent filmmaker, the White House requested that YouTube block access to it. YouTube – owned by Google – has so far rejected the White House’s request. The Obama administration’s abetment of bigoted nativism to silence criticism of its substantively indefensible foreign policy was on prominent display last Sunday. Obama’s campaign endorsed an anti-Semitic screed published by New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd.
In her column, titled, “Neocons slither back,” Dowd wrote that Republican Presidential and Vice Presidential nominees Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are mere puppets controlled by “neocon puppet master, Dan Senor.” Neocon is a popular code for Jewish. It was so identified by Dowd’s Times’ colleague David Brooks several years ago. Dowd said that “the neocons captured” Bush after the September 11 attacks and “Now, amid contagious Arab rage sparked on the 11th anniversary of 9/11, they have captured another would-be Republican president and vice president, both jejeune about the world.” One telling aspect of Dowd’s assault on Senor as a neoconservative is that he and his boss in the Bush administration, Paul Bremer, were the nemeses of the neoconservatives at the Pentagon. The only thing Senor has in common with the likes of Paul Wolfowitz and Douglas Feith is that all three men are Jews. Moreover, Dowd drew a distinction between supposed “neocons” like Senor, and non-Jewish US leaders Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney who merely “abetted” the neocons. So Senor doesn’t share the same ideological worldview as Feith and Wolfowitz but he’s a neocon. And Cheney and Rumseld do share the same worldview as Feith and Wolfowitz. And they are not neocons.
The Times’ public editor Andrew Rosenthal dismissed claims that Dowd’s column was anti- Semitic, arguing it couldn’t be since she never said a word about Jews. The Obama campaign linked to Dowd’s column on its Twitter account with the message, “Why Romney and Ryan’s foreign policy sounds ‘ominously familiar.’” Obama’s campaign’s willingness to direct the public to anti-Semitic screeds against his political opponents is consistent with the administration’s general strategy for defending policies. That strategy involves responding to criticism not with substantive defense of his policies, but with ad hominem attacks against his critics. His failed economic policies’ critics are attacked as “Wall Street fat cats.” His failed foreign policies’ critics are demonized as ominous neocon puppet masters. There is a difference between appeasing parties that have been harmed by your actions and appeasing parties that wish your destruction. In the 1970s the US appeased the Philippines by transferring sovereignty over the Clark Air Force Base to the Philippine government. America was still America and the US and the Philippines became friends.
|The 9/11 attacks on the US embassies were not about a movie
Here are a couple of facts: On June 4 the White House confirmed that the US had killed Abu Yahya Al-Libi – OBL’s Libyan lietenant who had moved into Al Qaeda‘s #2 spot after Ayman Zahawiri after the Navy SEALs whacked OBL. On Tuesday 9/11, a tape was released of Zawahiri announcing that Libi had been killed earlier this year by a US drone attack. The Zawahiri tape was made during Ramadan which ended in the middle of last month. Zawahiri called for his terrorist underlings to avenge Libi’s death and especially exhorted Libyans to take revenge.
The attack in Libya was well planned and executed. It wasn’t about a spontaneous protest against some ridiculous Internet movie of Muhammad. The assailants came armed to the teeth, with among other things, RPG 7s. They knew that the US Ambassador was in Benghazi rather than Tripoli. They knew how to track his movements, and were able to strike against him after he and his colleagues left the consulate building and tried to flee in a car. As Israel Channel 2‘s Arab Affairs Correspondent Ehud Yaari noted this evening, you don’t often see well trained terrorists participating in protests of movies. Then there is the attack in Cairo. They were led by Mohammad Zawahiri – Ayman Zawahiri’s brother. According the Thomas Josclyn in the Weekly Standard, the US media has been idiotically presenting him as some sort of moderate despite the fact that in an interview with Al Jazeerah he said said, “We in al Qaeda…”
Egypt’s US supported Muslim Brotherhood President Mohamed Morsi recently released Zawahiri from Egyptian prison. The same Barack Obama who has no time in his schedule to meet with Prime Minister Netanyahu next week in New York, is scheduled to meet Morsi. The Egyptian government has not condemned the attack on the US Embassy in Cairo. But Morsi is demanding that the US government prosecute the film’s creator.
You may be wondering how some movie no one’s heard of has caused such a hullabaloo. Well, as it turns out, the film was screened on an Egyptian Salafist television channel. Obviously the Salafists — many of whom, like Zawahiri, were released from prison by Morsi, wanted to stir up anti-US violence on the eve of 9/11. So if the film is responsible for the violence, a finger needs to be pointed to its chief distributor — Al Qaida’s Egyptian friends and members.
With these facts in hand, it is clear that the attempts to present these acts of war against the US as the consequence of some stupid, nothing movie are obscene attempts to deflect the blame for these unwarranted attacks onto their victims and away from their perpetrators.
Shira’s note: Okay, since this all began, it’s been confusing. We need to get the facts straight before anything, because without the truths involved here, nobody can place judgment or render an absolute opinion on these matters. For me, the only politically correct, or is it incorrect, is to say that the main issue is freedom of speech. Obviously, the perpetrators and governments of Libya and Egypt abhor the idea and want to suppress what we hold sacred to our freedoms. They hate enough to kill. I do not want the victims to have died in vain. These wonderful people died doing what they felt was right. We want that righteousness to have been planted to see it grow with the same care these wonderful people gave to it. We need to unite. Whether in prayer or deed do not succumb to stupidities the media would have given to us through their apathy and greed as in their mediums and by all means research the facts out and then render an opinion. It takes time, but if you believe in your principles, then do what you must. It’s about not being ignorant and adding to the pool of ignorance which births hate and intolerance. Shira
Today, I feel the pain, grief, sadness, and suffering of what happened to us those many years ago. I remember where I was, what I was doing, but this is not about that. It’s about what we feel together, then and now, and even in the future. The September 11 attacks gave us the monuments and memory of what we were, what we have become and what will be. It’s about strength, about not hating more than those that did this to us, to the families and the survivors, of which we are survivors also. We have learned that hate was stronger on that day, but that hate will not prevail now or in the future. We are together as one, with as much love and tolerance as we can have, knowing our mistakes and knowing how to overcome. Life is brilliant, beautiful, full of love and laughter, and with it, we bring the memories of those that left us that day to a place of peace in our hearts and in our spirits where the light of good and love will never die. As the victims are now in peace, may we be in peace with them, today and always. S.
God, Jerusalem and American foreign policy. Here’s a must read from Ms. Glick. I am trying to be neutral in this, the Obama administration’s policy towards Israel. Everywhere I read though, it’s just not looking good.
Shira’s note: This post, thankfully, is a reminder of the plight Israel is chronically dealing with. There is so much info to be gained about this. Once again, the truth is something most people refuse to confront, and why I ask? Is it so much easier to be blind to other parts of the world that need our help and compassion. With truth, one can move forward and say their specific peace. Ignorance is what we are fighting. Hate is another and we are up against a wall. But who we are as humans, those of us who seek justice, mercy, truth and love will not forsake Israel. To me, to be a part of speaking up for justice in this instance and any other instance you feel strongly about, will bring a change to our world. We might not see it now, but it does make a difference. Believe and it will be….S. (please pass this along!)
By GIULIO MEOTTI – The Jerusalem Post – August 19, 2012
America’s interest in Israel’s strategic value has always been the primary motivation for US support… Can we forget the US treatment of Jonathan Pollard, the only American to receive a life sentence for spying for an ally? The Israel-Iran countdown has begun, and with regard to Teheran’s nuclear race we are witnessing a great crisis in US-Israel relations. Will America help the tiny Jewish state? Can Israel trust the word of a US administration which treated Jerusalem like a banana republic? A few days ago, Israeli officials told Yediot Aharonot newspaper that “the US’ stance is pushing the Iranians to become a country at the brink of nuclear capability.” Very few people in Israel believe that the US will ever launch another preemptive war against the ayatollahs. The US, especially if Barack Obama is re-elected, will be tempted to reach a compromise with the Iranians.
Israel is dependent on the US for economic, military and diplomatic support. American taxpayers fund 20%-25% of Israel’s defense budget, with the Jewish state being the largest recipient by far of American aid since World War II. Israel is required to use a portion of US aid to buy from the US defense establishment, but no other country – certainly not any European one – provides the weapons needed to protect Israeli lives. Moreover, the United States has cast 40 vetoes to protect Israel in the UN Security Council. There is a quid pro quo for such support, but also a limit to what even that degree of dependence can buy. The current Iranian nuclear race made this very clear, just as it made clear that the US has, again, forsaken the Israelis. Washington doesn’t support Israel because of the Jewish state’s democracy, because of the Holocaust or out of respect for human rights. America’s interest in Israel’s strategic value has always been the primary motivation for US support. But that could change tomorrow, especially if Israel’s survival becomes a burden for Washington (France was Israel’s most important ally after the war, but Paris suddenly abandoned the Jews for the Arab world). Israel must remember that she is America’s ally and client, not its “friend.”
The first US presidents after Israel was established – Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy and Johnson – gave nothing to the Jewish state. And we were in a time when the ashes of Auschwitz were still warm, while today the memory of the Holocaust is fading. Truman maintained a US embargo against arms sales to the Israeli and Arabs, which was effective only against Israel. In 1948, it was US pressure which forced Israel to withdraw from Sinai where Israeli forces were pursuing the defeated Egyptians. In 1960 the Nazi officer Adolf Eichmann was apprehended by Israeli agents in Argentina and flown to Jerusalem for trial. Argentina turned to the UN Security Council, asking it to condemn Israel and order Eichmann’s return. Washington intended to support the Argentinean complaint and only the furious reaction of Israel’s foreign minister Golda Meir dissuaded Washington. Prior to the Six Day War, Abba Eban approached Lyndon Johnson and all he got was an arms embargo on the Middle East. In 1970, at the height of the War of Attrition, the US turned down an urgent Israeli request for security assistance. In 1992 the Bush-Baker administration humiliated the Israelis with an ultimatum: “Settlements or loan guarantees.” (The later Israeli general and minister Rehavam Ze’evi dismissed Bush senior as “anti-Semitic”). The US post-Gulf War settlement included American efforts to dislodge Israel from the territories by endangering Israel’s security. The former editor of The New York Times, A.M. Rosenthal, wrote that “the Bush administration has a spiritual affinity for Arab rulers and oilmen, but bares its teeth when Jerusalem shows independence.” Bill Clinton’s appeasement has been a tragedy for the Jewish people, since he pushed the Oslo process along and encouraged its implementation, bearing a historic responsibility for the intifada’s bloodshed, in which 2,000 Israelis paid with their lives. In 1981 the Jewish state bombed the Iraqi Osirak reactor. Recent files released by the UK National Archives show that Britain’s ambassador to Washington, Sir Nicholas Henderson, was with US defense secretary Caspar Weinberger as the news came in. “Weinberger says that he thinks Begin must have taken leave of his senses. He is much disturbed by the Israeli reaction and possible consequences,” Nicholas cabled London. Alexander Haig was secretary of state then. “I argued,” he recalled, “that while some action must be taken to show American disapproval, our strategic interests would not be served by policies that humiliated and weakened Israel.” Those who remember Ronald Reagan as friendly to Israel may be startled to recall the vehemence of his reaction against Israel. His administration’s immediate response was to impose sanctions on the Jewish state, and he suspended the delivery of F-16 fighter jets, doing something even Jimmy Carter refused to do: use arms supplies as leverage against Israel. Washington has also armed Israel’s western neighbor to the teeth. The Egyptian army today is infinitely more modern and lethal then when the Egyptians carried out their successful attack against Israel in the Yom Kippur War.
And can we forget the US treatment of Jonathan Pollard, the only American to receive a life sentence for spying for an ally? Despite the fact that nobody has given a single specific example of how Pollard’s actions harmed the US, Pollard is still being held in solitary confinement in an underground cell. Pollard has been in prison longer than anyone ever sentenced in the US for passing classified materials to a friendly foreign power (the median sentence for someone spying for a non-Soviet power has been less than three years). For his contribution to Israel’s security and for his long suffering in prison, Pollard is an Israeli hero. He is the source of the Israeli preparedness for the Iraqi missile attacks during the Gulf War, when Saddam’s rockets began to rain down on Tel Aviv, and Israelis wore gas masks. Pollard warned Israel of Iraq’s bellicose intentions, and that Syria’s Assad was amassing quantities of chemical weapons. By its own agreement with Israel, the US should have given this information to Jerusalem. But it was deliberately blocked by Weinberger.
Today Israel can stand tall in the face of its important ally because it never asked American soldiers to spill their blood in its defense. It’s Washington that must beg for Israel’s alliance and protect the Jews, as it cannot afford disengagement from the only democracy in a region dominated by Islam. But will the US eventually be compelled to sacrifice Israel on the altar of “realism” and oil price, at which time Iran’s knife will descend on the Jews? And will the Jewish state’s leadership dutifully bind Israel on the altar? As Charles Krauthammer put it: “for Israel the stakes are somewhat higher: the very existence of a vibrant nation and its 6 million Jews.” If Israel is unable to change the US’ red line on Iran and Jerusalem capitulates to Washington’s appeasement, Iran will be soon armed with atomic bombs. And the Jews? They will be psychologically weaker and totally dependent on others’ help. Like it was during the Holocaust. Does someone need to be reminded how Washington refused to help the Jews while they were entering into the gas chambers?
The writer is an Italian author.
Shira’s Note: Here’s Caroline Glick’s new article which I had to post. Nobody wants to hear about what the ugly truth is, but we can’t stand aside and ignore what’s plain to see. If anyone has a better solution to the current crisis going on in the middle east, somebody please, elaborate! 23 Jul 2012 10:13 PM PDT
I am travelling now and so have been very much out of the loop for the past several days. But I have noticed a couple of things that I think need to be pointed out. First, there is Syria. Today it was reported that the Syrian regime is threatening Israel with chemical weapons. According to Reuters’ report:
Foreign Ministry spokesman Jihad Makdissi said the army would not use chemical weapons to crush rebels but could use them against forces from outside the country.
“Any chemical or bacterial weapons will never be used … during the crisis in Syria regardless of the developments,” Makdissi said. “These weapons are stored and secured by Syrian military forces and under its direct supervision and will never be used unless Syria faces external aggression.”
Israel of course has not threatened to attack Syria. Rather Israel has made clear that it reserves the right to use force to prevent the embattled terror sponsor Bashar Assad from transferring his chemical and biological weapons to Hezbollah in Iran. And now Syria is responding by threatening to attack Israel with chemical weapons. I don’t want to trivialize this threat by bringing it down to the level of politics. And so at the outset, it is crucial that we recognize just how serious things have become. First, there is Iran. Iran through Hezbollah just massacred Israeli tourists in Bulgaria. Iran is probably past the point of no return with its nuclear weapons program. And so today, when we speak of a military option for preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, the only viable option is to kill the vast majority of Iran’s nuclear scientists. One or two top guys will not be enough. Today anyone and everyone in possession of nuclear know how in Iran should have a target mark on his head and should be killed. Nothing short of this will do if we are determined to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power.
I don’t know if it is possible to carry this out. And I don’t know if it is possible to find and destroy Syria’s chemical and biological weapons. But just as Iran has done with its nuclear weapons program, Syria has pointed its gun at Israel’s head. We know where they want to take this. And if Israel is to survive this Islamist tsunami, things are likely to get very ugly, and very violent very quickly. To confront these massive threats, Israel could really use American support, even if it is only rhetorical.
Now that we have this cleared up, we need to recognize how it is that we have reached this incredibly dangerous time. Let us start with Syria. Over the weekend, the main headline about the US response to the war in Syria was that the US is concerned about Israel acting unilaterally. The Syrian government is daily engaging in massacre. Its opponents, for their part are increasingly open about their jihadist ideology, spurring the Christians of Syria to flee from their homes, and the Alawite minority to fear for their lives. But what makes the Americans most fearful is that these competing groups of terror sponsors and mass murderers will find their arsenals of genocide destroyed by Israel, acting in self-defense. If this sounds familiar, it is. This is, after all, Obama’s primary concern about Iran and its nuclear weapons program.
Speaking to reporters in a conference call on Monday Obama’s foreign policy surrogates claimed there is still “time and space” (whatever that means), to reach some sort of a deal with Iran. It bears noting that in the best of cases, that deal would not end Iran’s nuclear weapons program. It could temporarily slow down some of Iran’s uranium enrichment but probably wouldn’t even do that. At this point, the most probable deal would have no impact whatsoever on Iran’s progress towards a nuclear arsenal but would serve to slow down the imposition of sanctions on Iranian oil exports. That is, at this point, if a deal is reached with all the “time and space” available to Obama, such a deal will only redound to Iran’s benefit, including to the benefit of Iran’s nuclear weapons program, which, I repeat, will not be cancelled, stopped or diminished.
Many have criticized Obama by arguing that he has no policy on Syria. But actually, he does. He sees Syria in the same light that he sees Iran. In both cases, his main concern is to prevent Israel from defending itself.
- Hezbollah may get chemical weapons if Syria collapses-Netanyahu (theuglytruth.wordpress.com)
- Israeli Defense Minister Barak: Israel may Invade Syria, Seize Advanced Weapons (theuglytruth.wordpress.com)
Obama’s spectacular failure: Posted: 12 Jul 2012 08:39 PM PDT
Shira’s Note: This one is a hard one to swallow from the office of the president. As much as I would like to disagree and have more faith in Mr. Obama, I cannot. Here, Ms. Glick lays out facts as only she can, well researched and truthful. There is no ignoring these facts. My only hope is that somehow the Obama’s administration’s foreign policy will work out, that maybe we might be missing something, but then I think a terrorist is a terrorist and the extremely virulent nature of them will prove otherwise. The truth is they will not stop until we are dead, that’s the truth, unfortunately for us, but especially the president and his thinking. Read on and find out what I’m talking about…
Two weeks ago, in an unofficial inauguration ceremony at Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt’s new Muslim Brotherhood President Mohamed Mursi took off his mask of moderation. Before a crowd of scores of thousands, Mursi pledged to work for the release from US federal prison of Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman. According to The New York Times’ account of his speech, Mursi said, “I see signs [being held by members of the crowd] for Omar Abdel-Rahman and detainees’ pictures. It is my duty and I will make all efforts to have them free, including Omar Abdel-Rahman.” Otherwise known as the blind sheikh, Abdel Rahman was the mastermind of the jihadist cell in New Jersey that perpetrated the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. His cell also murdered Rabbi Meir Kahane in New York in 1990. They plotted the assassination of then-president Hosni Mubarak. They intended to bomb New York landmarks including the Lincoln and Holland tunnels and the UN headquarters. Rahman was the leader of Gama’a al-Islamia – the Islamic Group, responsible, among other things for the assassination of Anwar Sadat in 1981. A renowned Sunni religious authority, Rahman wrote the fatwa, or Islamic ruling, permitting Sadat’s murder in retribution for his signing the peace treaty with Israel. The Islamic group is listed by the State Department as a specially designated terrorist organization. After his conviction in connection with the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, Abdel-Rahman issued another fatwa calling for jihad against the US. After the September 11, 2001, attacks, Osama bin Laden cited Abdel-Rahman’s fatwa as the religious justification for them. By calling for Abdel-Rahman’s release, Mursi has aligned himself and his government with the US’s worst enemies. By calling for Abdel-Rahman’s release during his unofficial inauguration ceremony, Mursi signaled that he cares more about winning the acclaim of the most violent, America-hating jihadists in the world than with cultivating good relations with America. And in response to Mursi’s supreme act of unfriendliness, US President Barack Obama invited Mursi to visit him at the White House. Mursi is not the only Abdel Rahman supporter to enjoy the warm hospitality of the White House. His personal terror organization has also been the recipient of administration largesse.
Despite the fact that federal law makes it a felony to assist members of specially designated terrorist organizations, last month the State Department invited group member Hani Nour Eldin, a newly elected member of the Islamist-dominated Egyptian parliament, to visit the US and meet with senior US officials at the White House and the State Department, as part of a delegation of Egyptian parliamentarians. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland refused to provide any explanation for the administration’s decision to break federal law in order to host Eldin in Washington. Nuland simply claimed, “We have an interest in engaging a broad cross-section of Egyptians who are seeking to peacefully shape Egypt’s future. The goal of this delegation… was to have consultations both with think tanks but also with government folks, with a broad spectrum representing all the colors of Egyptian politics.” MURSI IS not the only Arab leader who embraces terrorists only to be embraced by the US government.
In a seemingly unrelated matter, this week it was reported that in an attempt to satisfy the Obama administration’s urgent desire to renew negotiations between the Palestinians and Israel, and to satisfy the Palestinians’ insatiable desire to celebrate terrorists, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu offered to release 124 Palestinian terrorist murderers from Israeli prisons in exchange for a meeting with Palestinian Authority Chairman and Fatah chief Mahmoud Abbas. Alas, Abbas refused. He didn’t think Netanyahu’s offer was generous enough. And how did the Obama administration respond to Abbas’s demand for the mass release of terrorists and his continued refusal to resume negotiations with Israel? By attacking Israel. The proximate cause of the Obama administration’s most recent assault on Israel is the publication of the legal opinion of a panel of expert Israeli jurists regarding the legality of Israeli communities beyond the 1949 armistice lines. Netanyahu commissioned the panel, led by retired Supreme Court justice Edmond Levy, to investigate the international legal status of these towns and villages and to provide the government with guidance relating to future construction of Israeli communities beyond the armistice lines. The committee’s findings, published this week, concluded that under international law, these communities are completely legal. There is nothing remotely revolutionary about this finding. This has been Israel’s position since 1967, and arguably since 1922. The international legal basis for the establishment of the Jewish state in 1948 was the 1922 League of Nations Mandate for Palestine. That document gave the Jewish people the legal right to sovereignty over Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem, as well as all the land Israel took control over during the 1948- 49 War of Independence. Not only did the Mandate give the Jewish people the legal right to the areas, it enjoined the British Mandatory authorities to “facilitate… close settlement by Jews on the land, including state lands and waste lands not required for public purposes.” So not only was Jewish settlement not prohibited. It was required. Although this has been Israel’s position all along, Netanyahu apparently felt the need to have its legitimacy renewed in light of the all-out assault against Israel’s legal rights led by the Palestinians, and joined enthusiastically by the Obama administration. In a previous attempt to appease Obama’s rapacious appetite for Israeli concessions, Netanyahu temporarily abrogated Israel’s legal rights by banning Jews from exercising their property rights in Judea and Samaria for 10 months in 2010. All the legal opinion published this week does is restate what Israel’s position has always been. Whereas the Obama administration opted to embrace Mursi even as he embraces Abdel-Rahman, the Obama administration vociferously condemned Israel for having the nerve to ask a panel of senior jurists to opine about its rights. In a press briefing, State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell banged the rhetorical hammer. As he put it, “The US position on settlements is clear. Obviously, we’ve seen the reports that an Israeli government-appointed panel has recommended legalizing dozens of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, but we do not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlement activity, and we oppose any effort to legalize settlement outposts.” In short then, for the Obama administration, it is all well and fine for the newly elected president of what was until two years ago the US’s most important Arab ally to embrace a terror mastermind indirectly responsible for the murder of nearly 3,000 Americans. It is okay to invite members of jihadist terror groups to come to Washington and meet with senior US officials in a US taxpayer- funded trip. It is even okay for the head of a would-be-state that the US is trying to create to embrace every single Palestinian terrorist, including those who have murdered Americans. But for Israel’s elected government to ask an expert panel to determine whether Israel is acting in accordance with international law in permitting Jews to live on land the Palestinians insist must be Jew-free is an affront. THE DISPARITY between the administration’s treatment of the Mursi government on the one hand and the Netanyahu government on the other places the nature of its Middle East policy in stark relief. Obama came into office with a theory on which he based his Middle East policy. His theory was that jihadists hate America because the US supports Israel. By placing what Obama referred to as “daylight” between the US and Israel, he believed he would convince the jihadists to put aside their hatred of America. Obama has implemented this policy for three and a half years. And its record of spectacular failure is unbroken.
Obama’s failure is exposed in all its dangerous consequence by a simple fact. Since he entered office, the Americans have dispensed with far fewer jihadists than they have empowered. Since January 2009, the Muslim world has become vastly more radicalized. No Islamist government in power in 2009 has been overthrown. But several key states – first and foremost Egypt – that were led by pro-Western, US-allied governments when Obama entered office are now ruled by Islamists. It is true that the election results in Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco and elsewhere are not Obama’s fault. But they still expose the wrongness of his policy. Obama’s policy of putting daylight between the US and Israel, and supporting the Muslim Brotherhood against US allies like Mubarak, involves being bad to America’s friends and good to America’s enemies. This policy cannot help but strengthen your enemies against yourself and your friends. Rather than contend with the bitter consequences of his policy, Obama and his surrogates have opted to simply deny the dangerous reality he has engendered through his actions. Even worse they have come up with explanations for maintaining this policy despite its flagrant failure. Nowhere was this effort more obvious than in a made-to-order New York Times analysis this week titled, “As Islamists gain influence, Washington reassesses who its friends are.” The analysis embraces the notion that it is possible and reasonable to appease the likes of Mursi and his America-hating jihadist supporters and coalition partners. It quotes Michele Dunne from the Atlantic Council who claimed that on the one hand, if the Muslim Brotherhood and its radical comrades are allowed to take over Egypt, their entry into mainstream politics should reduce the terrorism threat. On the other hand, she warned, “If Islamist groups like the Brotherhood lose faith in democracy, that’s when there could be dire consequences.” In other words, the analysis argues that the US should respond to the ascent of its enemies by pretending its enemies are its friends. Aside from its jaw-dropping irresponsibility, this bit of intellectual sophistry requires a complete denial of reality. The Taliban were in power in Afghanistan in 2001. Their political power didn’t stop them from cooperating with al-Qaida. Hamas has been in charge of Gaza since 2007. That hasn’t stopped it from carrying out terrorism against Israel. The mullahs have been in charge of Iran from 33 years. That hasn’t stopped them from serving as the largest terrorism sponsors in the world. Hezbollah has been involved in mainstream politics in Lebanon since 2000 and it has remained one of the most active terrorist organizations in the world. And so on and so forth. Back in the 1980s, the Reagan administration happily cooperated with the precursors of al-Qaida in America’s covert war against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. It never occurred to the Americans then that the same people working with them to overthrow the Soviets would one day follow the lead of the blind sheikh and attack America. Unlike the mujahadin in Afghanistan, the Muslim Brotherhood has never fought a common foe with the Americans. The US is supporting it for nothing – while seeking to win its support by turning on America’s most stable allies. Can there be any doubt that this policy will end badly?
Originally published in The Jerusalem Post.