Tag Archive: Israel


Decades ago, the sociographer Milton Himmelfarb coined the aphorism that “American Jews earn like Episcopalians and vote like Puerto Ricans.” And his words ring as true today as ever. Surveys show that roughly 70 percent of American Jews intend to cast their ballots for President Barack Obama’s reelection next month.  Himmelfarb’s quip indicated that American Jews abjure their economic interests in favor of their liberal values. Certainly it is true that for American Jews to vote for Obama next month they must act against their economic interests. Obama’s economic policies have taken a huge toll on the economic fortunes of American Jews who invest disproportionately in the stock market. His nationalization of the college loan business has given universities impetus to raise tuition rates still further, thus dooming more young American Jews to start their adult lives under a mountain of debt. And it isn’t at all clear how they will be able to pay off this debt since under Obama half of recent college graduates cannot find jobs. Obama’s gutting of Medicare to pay for Obamacare has harmed the medical choices for older Jewish Americans. His war on tax deductions for charitable contributions has placed synagogues, Jewish schools and nursing homes in financial jeopardy. So with economics ruled out as a reason to support Obama we are left with American-Jewish values.
But is Obama really advancing those values? What are those values anyway? Well, there’s civil liberties. American Jews like those. But Obama doesn’t. Take freedom of speech. Obama is the most hostile president to freedom of speech in recent memory. He has advocated implementing the so-called “fairness doctrine” for radio to stifle the free speech of his political opponents on talk radio. He has sought to undermine the freedom of the Internet through federal regulations and intimidation of Internet companies such as Google. He has made repeated and outspoken attempts to intimidate individuals, groups and businesses including Google to bar freedom of speech as relates to criticism of Islam. He has purged the lexicon of the federal government of all terms necessary to describe jihad, Islamic radicalism and terrorism, and so made it impossible for federal employees to examine, investigate, discuss or understand the nature of the greatest national security threat facing the US.  Then there are women’s rights. American Jews like those. True, Obama has distinguished himself as the greatest ally of abortion-on-demand ever. He even supported infanticide of babies who survived abortions when he served in the Illinois legislature. But, we women are a bit more than reproductive machines. We also work and raise families. And Obama’s economic programs hurt women as much if not more than they hurt men. Aside from that, there are females who live outside of the US. American Jews have long been outspoken champions of women’s rights around the world. But here Obama’s record is arguably worse than any president in US history.  Obama has abandoned the women most at risk of gender-based discrimination, rape and murder – the women and girls of the Muslim world. Whereas the Bush administration liberated the women and girls of Afghanistan from the maniacally misogynist Taliban regime, the Obama administration is negotiating with the Taliban and setting the conditions for its return to power. If the signature image of the Bush administration’s war in Afghanistan was that of women voting, the signature image of Obama’s war in Afghanistan is the photo of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai. This week Yousafzai was shot in the head by the Taliban in Pakistan for her defense of the right of girls to go to school.
Then there is the cause of good governance. American Jews like that. But here, too, Obama fails to live up to liberal values of clean politics. Every day seems to bring with it another scandal related to the Obama administration. This week we learned that the Obama campaign is illegally soliciting funds from foreigners. According to a report published by the Government Accountability Institute, some 20% of visitors to the Obama campaign’s fund-raising site “my.barackobama.com” are foreigners, barred by US law from contributing to political campaigns. So, too, the Obama.com website was registered by Robert Roche, a US businessman living in Shanghai with ties to Chinese state-owned companies. Roche is an Obama campaign bundler. Sixty-eight percent of the traffic on the site comes from foreign users. Obama.com is currently managed by a Palestinian rights activist in Maine.
Finally, there is the cause of Israel and US-Israel relations that American Jews are assumed to care about. After the fiasco at the Democratic National Convention when the widespread antipathy for Israel raging in the Democratic Party was broadcast on primetime television, the Obama administration has stopped even trying to hide its contempt for the Jewish state and its American Jewish supporters. Whereas the US refused to walk out of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s obscene address to the UN General Assembly last month, US Ambassador Susan Rice chose to absent herself entirely from Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s address before the body.
Adding insult to injury, last week Obama appointed Salam al-Marayati to represent the US at the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe‘s annual 10-day human rights conference. Marayati is the founder and executive director of the Muslim Public Affairs Committee. As Robert Spencer recalled this week, on September 11, 2001, Marayati gave an interview to a Los Angeles radio station accusing Israel of being responsible for the jihadist attacks on the US. He is an outspoken supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah. And Obama appointed him to represent America at a major human rights conference.
So what is it that drives over two-thirds of American Jews to support Obama? The only issues that come easily to mind are social issues – particularly the two flagship causes of American Jews these days – abortion and homosexual marriage. While it is true that Obama shares their positions on these issues, it is hard to believe that these two issues have become the cri du coeur of more than two-thirds of American Jews. It isn’t that it is wrong for people to support abortions on demand and homosexual marriage. And it isn’t wrong for people to oppose them. There are reasonable, Jewish arguments to be made for a woman’s right to abort her unborn children. But there are also reasonable Jewish arguments for constraining that right. There are Jewish arguments in favor of permitting homosexuals to wed. And there are Jewish arguments opposing such unions.
Then there is the relative urgency of the issues. With the US economy in a rut and American national security increasingly imperiled, are abortion rights and gay marriage really the American Jewish community’s top priorities? True, there are some American Jewish fanatics who are propelled to near violence when faced with opponents of their beliefs. And they are capable of intimidating a large proportion of their fellow Jews into toeing their extremist lines. Their intolerance has been on display in all of its ugliness at synagogues around the US since the start of the election campaign. In one recent, outrageous incident, one gay marriage partisan managed to intimidate his congregation on Erev Yom Kippur.
On the most sacred evening on the Jewish calendar, at Anshe Emet synagogue in Chicago, congregant Gary Sircus led other congregants in walking out of services when, in keeping with synagogue protocol (and common courtesy), Rabbi Michael Siegel acknowledged the presence of US Rep. Michele Bachmann in the audience. After staging the walkout, Sircus went home and began an online assault on Bachmann and on his synagogue for extending the outspoken and stalwart supporter of Israel the courtesy of acknowledging her presence at services. Sircus wrote a letter of support to Jim Graves, Bachmann’s deep-pocketed Democratic opponent in her reelection campaign. In it, he referred to Bachmann as “this evil woman.” Rabbi Siegel did not decry Sircus for his shocking behavior. Speaking to the Chicago Tribune Siegel said, “I am aware of the fact that our congregation’s policy in regards to [welcoming public officials to the community and honoring their presence] clearly caused pain to some members of our community on the most precious day of reconciliation on the Jewish calendar. That we regret deeply.” In a letter of explanation to synagogue board members, Siegel spoke of the need to welcome visitors even if they don’t share the community’s “values.”  But when did the members of Anshe Emet take a vote to determine that support for gay marriage is their shared value? Undoubtedly, Sircus’s success in embarrassing his entire community owed in part to his willingness to intimidate his fellow congregants with his moralistic sanctimony on Erev Yom Kippur. But it isn’t only gay marriage champions who use intimidation tactics to silence their communities into conforming with their views. American Jewish Democratic partisans have taken a leading role in blocking dissenting voices from their midst. For instance, this past May B’nai Emet Congregation in Boca Raton, Florida, invited Amb. Susan Rice to address the congregation. Synagogue officials not only rejected offers to have Rice debate opponents of Obama’s treatment of Israel. They barred community members known for their opposition to Obama from attending the speech. For these synagogue officials, the idea that their partisan prejudice might be challenged was simply unacceptable.
To be fair, there are some American Jews who have been willing to approach politics with an open mind. For instance, Susan Crown, of the Chicago-based Henry Crown business empire, has transferred her support from Obama to Mitt Romney. In an interview with Chicago Magazine Crown explained that she switched candidates last May when Obama gave his speech calling on Israel to withdraw from Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and contract to within the indefensible 1949 armistice lines. Crown said that her switch was due as well to economic and foreign policy considerations. Crown’s arguments for transferring her support from Obama to Romney are all rational. On the other hand, the positions taken by the likes of Sircus and the management of B’nai Emet are emotional and unthinking. Unfortunately, the polls indicate that more than two-thirds of American Jews are with the synagogue bullies at B’nai Emet and with Sircus, not with Crown.
For 70% of American Jews, party loyalty trumps all of their conceivable rational interests. For them, partisan loyalty is more important than facts. They do not want to use independent judgment. They just want to be Democrats. The most disturbing aspect of the surveys of American Jewish voters is not that they are willing to vote for the most hostile US president Israel has ever experienced in order to remain true to their party. The most disturbing aspect of the American Jewish community’s devotion to Obama and the Democrats is that it indicates that the vast majority of American Jews have abandoned their faculties for independent thought and judgment in favor of conformism and slavish partisanship. They have rendered themselves unreachable.
Originally published in The Jerusalem Post.

 

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.

Obama has Israel”s back….right in front of his dagger. On the other hand, Israel does have America”s back.

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

http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Op-EdContributors/Article.aspx?id=281832

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 livesBut 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.

  
 

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Shira’s note:  This is a lesson in making sure you do your news homework in that always get as much info as you can so as to make yourself aware of all of the facts before you make an opinion or judgment.  This is a prime example of how news can be twisted to the bias.  Please share…

 

Today’s speech by Iran’s Supreme Leader, the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, about the sanctions on his country and its determination to persist in its quest for nuclear capability was a significant news event. Khamenei served notice on the United States that he would not be bluffed into giving up his nuclear plans. Though he conceded the economic […]/p

via Iran Threatens Israel With Destruction, But the Times Doesn’t Hear It.

Dealing with the reality of the Shalit deal and Hannibal Protocol:

Dr. Aaron Lerner Date: 19 October 2011

I received a lot of angry mail when I wrote earlier in the week that thanks to the very lopsided prisoner swaps, the IDF policy today is to do everything possible to kill IDF soldiers who appear to be in the process of being captured by terrorists.  Many couldn’t believe that this was indeed the policy of the IDF.  So I put up a video on YouTube of a Battalion 51 commander briefing his Golani troops on the eve of their entry into Gaza during Operation Cast Lead.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BvlP6yM15ws

“The strategic weapon, the ‘Judgment Day Weapon’ that Hamas wants to acquire, is to capture a soldier. But no soldier in Battalion 51 will be kidnapped at any price. At any price. Under any condition. Even if it means that he blows himself with his own grenade together with those trying to capture him. Also even if it means that now his unit has to fire a barrage at the car that they are trying to take him away in. There is no situation. No situation that they will have this weapon.”

This was not some faked video. I copied from a video report broadcast on Israel Television Channel 2 News 16 October 2011

You can see the full report for yourself:

http://www.mako.co.il/news-military/security/Article-778ae8d014e0331017.htm

Now what does this all mean?  Am I saying that the Hannibal Protocol is wrong?  No. Not under the circumstances.  All I am saying is that we have to address the decisions we make with mature honesty.  The reason that we trade a thousand terrorists for a single soldier is not because of our commitment to do everything in our power to get our soldiers back home alive.  We do it because, as indicated by the polls, we don’t have the stomach to see soldiers as POWs once we know who they are. And since a key element of the equation is that this feeling only goes into play when we see their name, faces, etc., we as a society have a very different attitude about soldiers being killed before we see their name, faces, etc. And that is why we would rather kill a soldier being taken captive then have him sit somewhere being held by terrorists.

That is where we are.

And we have to deal with it.

Dr. Aaron Lerner, Director IMRA (Independent Media Review & Analysis) (Mail POB 982 Kfar Sava) Tel 972-9-7604719/Fax 972-3-7255730 INTERNET ADDRESS: imra@netvision.net.il

Website: http://www.imra.org.il

Shira’s note: Does this mean I’m indifferent, apathetic? It’s very conflicting for me. No, I am not that in my soul. If we understand acts of war and the knowledge that any goodness we have to fight evil is futile in a war of existentialism, then the above applies to us all whether we acknowledge it or not. We as a people have to sacrifice for the good in humanity. As such, if I’m to put myself in that position, as a soldier in the IDF, and if Gd willed, yes, I would be sacrificed for the people, namely, the children of Israel. So it is, if that is what is willed from on High. Reality is what it is…there are no words, actions, or opinions that would deter us from the truth, of which many try to oppress or try to prevaricate, in which the entire of humanity, governments, groups, or religions do to hide from their hypocrisies.

An American soldier stands near a wagon loaded...
Image via Wikipedia

From the New York Times featured headliner in yesterday’s paper: NYT states that it (the latest deaths) started when Israel fired back.  NYT claims Israel “ignited” the violence by responding to Palestinians’ terror attacks.  Also, the NY Times purposely chose an emotive image of a Palestinian child’s funeral, particularly as Israel was also burying its dead as a result of a terror attack.

This morning, I felt challenged.  It’s hard to be complacent when there is a war against the good in this world.  The way we see it, here, on this corporeal existence, can be seen through the kaleidoscope of the NYT or other news media as good versus evil, almost like a movie, but it’s real.  Here, the truths and consequences are distorted in some brainwashed conspiracy to accept the violation of basic human rights to live and breathe in the form of apathy.  We as mere puppets in this game of weaving truths against untruths play the biggest part of all.  We have become that of which he hate.  We have become intolerant, ignorant, inpatient, and willing to let the media’s bias take a stranglehold of our consciousness and let them play it all out with words and pictures.  This society has become stupid.  We are letting others teach us about intolerance, bigotry, anti-Semitism, and hate to form our subconsciousness, and our conscience decisions without even thinking we are doing so.  Judgment in the confluence (a flowing together) that it is, is left to a priori (involving deductive reasoning from the general principle to a necessary fact, not supported by fact) that manifests itself as profound sublimation (divert expression to a more social or culturally accepted form) than it is to make our own judgments based on our own knowledge of facts and truth instead of the above mentioned prevarication (to shift or turn direct speech or behavior; to evade the truth; to be intentionally ambiguous).  Which means, friends, that we need to educate ourselves and not be the media wherewithal they so desperately want us to be.

August 21, 2011

To the NYT:

I’m remembering a time, this decade, when there was a terrorist attack on a bus in Israel were there were multiple deaths and injuries.  As I was watching in horror, a cameraman from a major US network panned over to the attempts of paramedics trying to revive a Jewish infant in the ambulance via CPR, to no avail.  As soon as the scope of the horror of such atrocity was evident , the cameraman panned away immediately. The image was never seen again.

As you show the dead infant in the man’s arms, as horrible as it is, no matter who they are, why are we not also reminded of the death of other human beings on Israel’s side? Has the NYT actually become the apathetic machine who scores indifference to the general media when it comes to Israeli deaths, infants or adults?  Is there no questioning as to why such bias and condemning behavior in the name of human lives of the existential threat of reality that Israel must live in day-to-day terror no NYT employee would dare live through, in as much as they and their children (and I say children because they are the product of this hypocrisy through which their parents are teaching) sit pretty and comfortable in their cushy chairs of hypocrisy on the other side of the world?  Indeed, there is something really wrong here.

Gloss over as much as you like NYT, the truth will not be suppressed by your conscience indignation of willingness to be a form of anti-Semitic propaganda to the world.  Take a history lesson and see that it is the evil of Islāmic  doctrine that will never cease to try to destroy the Jews, whether or not Israel gives up what it is that you want them to give up. Peace will not or
does not occur within evil.   You will see that history and facts are on the side of Israel, whether through the UN or others, that you negate to mention in your articles.

A challenge, if you dare, live among the Palestinians, be their proctor from within the Gaza strip or Ramallah and see if you will survive without the help of Israel.  I dare the NYT to live there and report from there and see how well your untruths will reveal themselves.  Or maybe too afraid to live among them, why I wonder?

Shira’s note:  I’m always relieved when the politicians of Israel offer some sparks of hope in this chaotic place.  I become stronger, I pray harder, I feel a veil has been lifted so we can see clearer through the screen.  I know wherever one stands in their views of the Arab/Israeli conflict, nobody wants death or another, G-d forbid, holocaust.   If we stay silent, there will be many lives lost.  It’s time to get the facts straight, time for reading, researching, time to shed the mask of ignorance and change the way things are, not only for  this area, but within ourselves. Speak up, challenge, let our voices prevail.  May Israel live forever.. May we find peace on both sides…

Independence Day address by FM Liberman to the diplomatic corps Liberman: Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, now it becomes clear that we are also an island of stability in a chaotic region.

10 May 2011  MFA Website

His Excellency the President of the State of Israel Mr. Shimon Peres, Heads of Missions and International Organizations, Members of the Diplomatic Corps, Ladies and gentlemen: Excellencies, welcome and thank you for being here on this, Israel’s 63rd Independence Day.

This year I stand before you with mixed emotions. There are those who have always felt that Israel was the ‘black sheep’ of the Middle East and international politics. They suggested that Israel was the source for all the wars and challenges in the Middle East. Recent events have certainly ended this fantasy once and for all. We were always proud to state that Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, now it becomes clear that we are also an island of stability in a chaotic region. In fact, Israel’s stable democracy can serve as a model for the region. Some suggest that democracy can not flourish in the Middle East, Israel has proven that as a fallacy. Our country and its institutions, 63 years young, created by people from over 130 different countries, few with any experience of democracy and freedom, created one of the most successful and free democracies anywhere. Our institutions have stood the test of time, especially in this dangerous neighborhood. The bloody reaction to those who seek change in our region has not surprised us. The repression that has met the demonstrations in Syria, Yemen, Libya and elsewhere in the region can not possibly be justified. However, it remains confusing why the international community intervenes in Libya, but not in Syria or Iran. What conclusions are we to draw from this seeming inconsistency? These inconsistencies send a damaging message to the people of the Middle East and further erode the path to peace, security and democracy for our region. The recent reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas brings up many questions.

First of all, it is clear who are the leaders of Hamas and what are their goals. Also, we heard in the last few days that they are not willing to change the Hamas Charter and to accept the conditions of the Quartet. That an organization with a charter that calls for the destruction of the State of Israel through violent Jihad and aspires to a world without Jews, not just Zionists and Israelis, but Jews, should be thought of as partners to Fatah tells us more about Fatah than it does about Hamas. The fact that Hamas mourned Bin Laden’s death, as much as they celebrated 9/11, condemned America and called him “a Muslim and Arabic warrior” and prays that bin Laden’s “soul rests in peace” further demonstrates the kind of people Fatah is now calling its partners and equals in government. In addition, in recent years over 12,000 rockets were fired at Sderot and southern Israel. Ask yourselves how would your countries have reacted to such attacks? Fatah itself continues to glorify terrorists, including the naming of the Palestinian presidential offices in Ramallah after arch-terrorist Yahya Ayyash, a square in the government compound after Dalal Mughrabi, who participated in the Coastal Road massacre and rewarded the family of the mastermind of the terrorist attack which resulted in the death of dozens of Israelis enjoying a Passover Seder in Netanya.

The day before yesterday we heard Mahmoud Abbas say during a meeting that if Israel will freeze construction in the settlements for two or three months then the Palestinians will be ready to resume talks. This is very interesting and very strange. When the Israeli government decided on a moratorium as a unilateral gesture a year ago Abbas and the Palestinians rejected it completely. However, now they are exerting pressure for a moratorium that they previously rejected. The Palestinians wasted nine months and only during the final month entered into negotiations, not with a genuine intention to reach an agreement but rather because the U.S. imposed the process on them. At least for me, it is clear that they are only looking for excuses to avoid meaningful talks that will lead to a comprehensive solution. The Palestinians are overly confident and are assuming that they have the complete support of the international community. This allows them to think that they will gain more directly from the international community than through negotiations with Israel. As a result, we have the right to wonder about the real intentions of Fatah. We are ready for immediate talks without preconditions. However, there will be no new moratorium in Jerusalem or Judea and Samaria. Not for three months, not for three days and not even for three hours. The international community needs to understand that there is only one country in our region that respects international norms while standing against waves of unceasing daily terror attacks and incitement.

The recent killing of Osama Bin Laden should send a message to our enemies, that regardless of time, there is no statute of limitations to bringing justice for those massacred by terror. Our enemies on our northern and southern border who have shed innocent blood should pay attention to this message very clearly. The State of Israel has always said and I repeat, we are willing to come to the negotiating table immediately to start direct talks with all of our neighbors. We are willing to make a great effort to achieve peace but we will not compromise our vital security interests. I call on all of our neighbors to look at Israel’s achievements in finance, hi-tech, science and industry. We are willing to share this knowledge with you. You have more to gain from cooperating with us than engaging in conflicts. The ball is in your hands.

Jonathan Pollard #09185-016

FCI Butner

Butner, NC 27509

The Honorable Barack Obama

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20500

Via Hand-delivery

April 1, 2011

Dear President Obama:  I am writing to you with faint hope in my heart as Jewish people the world over are preparing for Passover, the Jewish national holiday of freedom.  With the help of President Shimon Peres, G-d willing, this letter will reach you personally.

I write to implore you, Mr. President, in the wake of numerous calls by senior American officials urging you to commute my sentence to time served, and in light of the official request by Prime Minister Netanyahu, to please send me home to Israel now, in time to celebrate my first Passover in freedom in 26 years.

After serving more than a quarter of a century in some of the harshest prisons in the American penal system, I have had a great deal of time to think and to regret. As you are likely aware, I have expressed remorse publicly and privately on numerous occasions and in various documents. Let me take this opportunity to do so once again and to state unequivocally that I am genuinely and sincerely sorry for the offense that I committed in passing classified information to Israel. My actions were wrong and I deeply regret that I did not find a legal way to act upon my concerns for Israel.  As part of an official appeal to you for my release made earlier this year, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu also apologized for the operation and expressed remorse on behalf of the State of Israel. I am grateful that the State of Israel has taken this step to assure the United States that such actions will never again be repeated.

As you are also aware, former CIA Director James Woolsey, former White House Counsel Bernard Nussbaum, and former Senator and Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee Dennis DeConcini, in recent letters to you, have indicated that my continued incarceration is unjust.  I defer to their professional  gratefully.  Similarly, I deeply appreciate the principled statement of former Secretary of State George Shultz, who wrote to you that the people who are best informed about the classified material that was passed to Israel favor my release.  He referenced, Messers Woolsey, Deconcini and Michael Mukasey amongst them.

The prominent American leaders who have recently appealed to you  to commute my sentence to time served (to whom I am also deeply indebted) include: US Former Vice President Dan Quayle, Former CIA Director R. James Woolsey; Former White House Legal Counsel Bernard Nussbaum; Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee; Head of International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein; Former Secretary of State George Shultz; Former Head of Senate Intelligence Committee Dennis Deconcini; Former Assistant Secretary of Defense Lawrence Korb; Former Attorney General Michael Mukasey; Former Deputy Attorney General Phillip Heymann; Republican Leader Gary Bauer; more than 500 American Religious and Communal  Leaders of all denominations; Harvard Law Professor Charles Ogletree; Rabbi Capers C. Funnye Jr; Congressman Barney Frank along with 39 congressional colleagues; Homeland Security and International Security Adviser, former Congressman Lee Hamilton;  Dr. Henry A. Kissinger; Senator John McCain; Congressman Michael Grimm; 100 New York State legislators; and the Reverend Pat Robertson. (A summary of “Notable Quotes” is attached for your convenience.)

A common theme expressed in these appeals concerns the disproportionate nature of my sentence. Again, I deeply appreciate the expert opinions which state that while I deserved to be convicted, my sentence is grossly disproportionate to the offense committed and that I have served far more time than others convicted of similar offenses. I defer to those officials named above who are far better qualified than I am to make the case on these issues.  For my part, I hope that my own personal appeal may touch your heart and elicit a compassionate, humanitarian response to my heartfelt request to be sent home to Israel for Passover, the holiday of freedom.

My devoted wife, Esther, whom I met and befriended as a teenager, has been faithfully doing everything she can to help me and to bring about my freedom. She has led the struggle for my release for 2 decades, sacrificing her life and her health in the process. She has also had to wage a relentless battle with cancer concurrent with her efforts on my behalf, without the help and support of a loving husband by her side. When she married me in prison years ago, she never imagined that after more than two decades the honeymoon she dreamed of would still be delayed. Mr. President, as much for her sake as for my own, I beseech you to please send me home now, to the first happy holiday that the two of us will ever have.  In a similar vein, after more than a quarter of a century in prison, 7 years in solitary, and much of the time in harsh conditions, my health has dangerously deteriorated. I am in dire need of medical attention and care.  In light of the above compelling health and family reasons, and with the principled support of so many senior American officials, I implore you to act expeditiously to commute the more than 25 years that I have already served in prison to time served.

My release in time to celebrate Passover at home in Israel with my beloved wife would be a welcome gesture of friendship to the Israeli people, an act of solidarity with a staunch and long-time ally of the United States, and a deeply compassionate and humane gift of life to my wife and me.

Sincerely,

Jonathan Pollard