Friday, October 14, 2011

A Pact Signed in Jewish Blood


by Caroline Glick

No one denies the long suffering of the Schalit family. Noam and Aviva Schalit and their relatives have endured five years and four months of uninterrupted anguish since their son St.-Sgt. Gilad Schalit was abducted from his army post by Palestinian terrorists and spirited to Gaza in June 2006. Since then, aside from one letter and one videotaped message, they have received no signs of life from their soldier son.

There is not a Jewish household in Israel that doesn't empathize with their suffering. It isn't simply that most Israelis serve in the IDF and expect their children to serve in the IDF.

It isn't just that it could happen to any of our families.

As Jews, the concept of mutual responsibility, that we are all a big family and share a common fate, is ingrained in our collective consciousness. And so, at a deep level, the Schalit family's suffering is our collective suffering.

And yet, and yet, freedom exacts its price. The cause of freedom for the Jewish people as a whole exacts a greater sacrifice from some families than from others.

Sometimes, that sacrifice is made willingly, as in the case of the Netanyahu family.

Prof. Benzion and Tzilla Netanyahu raised their three sons to be warriors in the fight for Jewish liberty. And all three of their sons served in an elite commando unit. Their eldest son Yonatan had the privilege of commanding the unit and of leading Israeli commandos in the heroic raid to free Jewish hostages held by the PLO in Entebbe.

There, on July 4, 1976, Yonatan and his family made the ultimate sacrifice for the freedom of the Jewish people. Yonatan was killed in action. His parents and brothers were left to mourn and miss him for the rest of their lives. And yet, the Netanyahu family's sacrifice was a product of a previous decision to fight on the front lines of the war to preserve Jewish freedom.

Sometimes, the sacrifice is made less willingly.

Since Israel allowed the PLO and its terror armies to move their bases from Tunis to Judea, Samaria and Gaza in 1994, nearly 2,000 Israeli families have involuntarily paid the ultimate price for the freedom of the Jewish people. Our freedom angers our Palestinian neighbors so much that they have decided that all Israelis should die.

For instance Ruth Peled, 56, and her 14- month-old granddaughter Sinai Keinan did not volunteer to make the ultimate sacrifice for the freedom of the Jewish people when they were murdered by a Palestinian suicide bomber as they sat in an ice cream parlor in Petah Tikva in May 2002.

And five-year-old Gal Eisenman and her grandmother Noa Alon, 60, weren't planning on giving their lives for the greater good when they, together with five others, were blown to smithereens by Palestinian terrorists in June 2002 while they were waiting for a bus in Jerusalem.

Their mothers and daughters, Chen Keinan and Pnina Eisenman, had not signed up for the prospect of watching their mothers and daughters incinerated before their eyes. They did not volunteer to become bereaved mothers and orphaned daughters simultaneously.

The lives of the victims of Arab terror were stolen from their families simply because they lived and were Jews in Israel. And in the cases of the Keinan, Peled, Alon and Eisenman families, as in thousands of others, the murderers were the direct and indirect beneficiaries of terrorists-for-hostages swaps like the deal that Yonatan Netanyahu's brother, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, made this week with Hamas to secure the release of Gilad Schalit.

The deal that Netanyahu has agreed to is signed with the blood of the past victims and future victims of the terrorists he is letting go. No amount of rationalization by Netanyahu, his cheerleaders in the demented mass media, and by the defeatist, apparently incompetent heads of the Shin Bet, Mossad and IDF can dent the facts.

IT IS a statistical certainty that the release of 1,027 terrorists for Schalit will lead to the murder of untold numbers of Israelis. It has happened every single time that these blood ransoms have been paid. It will happen now.

Untold numbers of Israelis who are now sitting in their succas and celebrating Jewish freedom, who are driving in their cars, who are standing on line at the bank, who are sitting in their nursery school classrooms painting pictures of Torah scrolls for Simhat Torah will be killed for being Jewish while in Israel because Netanyahu has made this deal. The unrelenting pain of their families, left to cope with their absence, will be unimaginable.

This is a simple fact and it is beyond dispute.

It is also beyond dispute that untold numbers of IDF soldiers and officers will be abducted and held hostage. Soldiers now training for war or scrubbing the floors of their barracks, or sitting at a pub with their friends on holiday leave will one day find themselves in a dungeon in Gaza or Sinai or Lebanon undergoing unspeakable mental and physical torture for years. Their families will suffer inhuman agony.

The only thing we don't know about these future victims is their names. But we know what will become of them as surely as we know that night follows day.

Netanyahu has proven once again that taking IDF soldiers hostage is a sure bet for our Palestinian neighbors. They can murder the next batch of Sinais and Gals, Noas and Ruths. They can kill thousands of them. And they can do so knowing all along that all they need to do to win immunity for their killers is kidnap a single IDF soldier.

There is no downside to this situation for those who believe all Jews should die.

In his public statement on the Schalit deal Tuesday night, Netanyahu, like his newfound groupies in the media, invoked the Jewish tradition of pidyon shevuim, or the redemption of captives. But the Talmudic writ is not unconditional. The rabbinic sages were very clear. The ransom to be paid cannot involve the murder of other Jews.

This deal - like its predecessors - is not in line with Jewish tradition. It stands in opposition to Jewish tradition. Even in our darkest hours of powerlessness in the ghettos and the pales of exile, our leaders did not agree to pay for a life with other life. Judaism has always rejected human sacrifice.

The real question here is after five years and four months in which Schalit has been held hostage and two-and-a-half years into Netanyahu's current tenure as prime minister, why has the deal been concluded now? What has changed? The answer is that very little has changed on Netanyahu's part. After assuming office, Netanyahu essentially accepted the contours of the abysmal agreement he has now signed in Jewish blood.

Initially, there was a political rationale for his morally and strategically perverse position.

He had Defense Minister Ehud Barak and the Labor Party to consider.

Supporting this deal was one of the many abject prices that Netanyahu was expected to pay to keep Labor and Barak in his coalition.

But this rationale ended with Barak's resignation from the Labor Party in January.

Since then, Barak and his colleagues who joined him in leaving Labor have had no political leverage over Netanyahu.

They have nowhere to go. Their political life is wholly dependent on their membership in Netanyahu's government. He doesn't need to pay any price for their loyalty.

So Netanyahu's decision to sign the deal with Hamas lacks any political rationale.

WHAT HAS really changed since the deal was first put on the table two years ago is Hamas's position. Since the Syrian people began to rise up against the regime of Hamas's patron and protector President Bashar Assad, Hamas's leaders, who have been headquartered in Syria since 1998, have been looking for a way to leave. Their Muslim Brotherhood brethren are leading forces in the Western-backed Syrian opposition.

Hamas's leaders do not want to be identified with the Brotherhood's oppressor.

With the Egyptian military junta now openly massacring Christians, and with the Muslim Brotherhood rapidly becoming the dominant political force in the country, Egypt has become a far more suitable home for Hamas.

But for the past several months, Hamas leaders in Damascus have faced a dilemma. If they stay in Syria, they lose credibility. If they leave, they expose themselves to Israel.

According to Channel 2, in exchange for Schalit, beyond releasing a thousand murderers, Netanyahu agreed to give safe passage to Hamas's leaders decamping to Egypt.

What this means is that this deal is even worse for Israel than it looks on the surface.

Not only is Israel guaranteeing a reinvigoration of the Palestinian terror war against its civilians by freeing the most experienced terrorists in Palestinian society, and doing so at a time when the terror war itself is gradually escalating. Israel is squandering the opportunity to either decapitate Hamas by killing its leaders in transit, or to weaken the group by forcing its leaders to go down with Assad in Syria.

At best, Netanyahu comes out of this deal looking like a weak leader who is manipulated by and beholden to Israel's radical, surrender-crazed media. To their eternal shame, the media have been waging a five-year campaign to force Israel's leaders to capitulate to Hamas.

At worst, this deal exposes Netanyahu as a morally challenged, strategically irresponsible and foolish, opportunistic politician.

What Israel needs is a leader with the courage of one writer's convictions. Back in 1995, that writer wrote: "The release of convicted terrorists before they have served their full sentences seems like an easy and tempting way of defusing blackmail situations in which innocent people may lose their lives, but its utility is momentary at best.

"Prisoner releases only embolden terrorists by giving them the feeling that even if they are caught, their punishment will be brief. Worse, by leading terrorists to think such demands are likely to be met, they encourage precisely the terrorist blackmail they are supposed to defuse."

The writer of those lines was then-opposition leader Binyamin Netanyahu. Netanyahu wrote those lines in his book, Fighting Terrorism: How Democracies Can Defeat Domestic and International Terrorists.

Israel needs that Netanyahu to lead it. But in the face of the current Netanyahu's abject surrender to terrorism, apparently he is gone.

Originally published in The Jerusalem Post.

Caroline Glick

Source: http://www.carolineglick.com/e/2011/10/a-pact-signed-in-jewish-blood.php

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

Radical Islam: A Problem World Leaders Must Confront


by Neil Snyder

Radical Islam is a growing problem throughout the world. In Europe, it's a burgeoning issue that politicians have been unwilling to address properly because of the influence of Muslims there, but it's a critical problem in the United States, too -- especially in our nation's prisons.

The mood in the U.S. is so anti-anti-Islam that politicians run for cover whenever Islam is raised as an issue. Not so with Representative Peter King (R-New York). He endured death threats and ridicule from liberals because he held hearings in the House of Representatives to investigate the Islamist threat we face as a nation. The people who castigated King because he took his job in the House seriously will be the first in line to raise a ruckus if/when a homegrown terrorist, maybe an ex-convict who is out on parole, attacks innocent men, women, and children in this country.

I'm reminded of a scene in the movie Ghost Writer. Pierce Brosnan plays a former British prime minister being charged with crimes against humanity in the International Criminal Court (ICC) in Geneva, Switzerland for trying to prevent terrorist attacks in Great Britain. Toward the end of the movie, Brosnan tells his ghostwriter (Ewan McGregor) that if he had it to do all over again, he would have two lines for people boarding planes out of England. The first line would lead to planes carrying passengers whose terrorist affiliations and connections were not investigated. The second line would lead to planes carrying passengers who had been cleared. He says, in effect, "You know which planes the chronic complainers would board. Every one of them would choose a plane that we cleared."

The movie is fiction, but the problem is real. World leaders who attempt to deal with the growing Islamist militancy problem that's spreading across the globe like a putrid infection are at risk of being charged with crimes against humanity or worse in the ICC. For example, President George W. Bush was forced to cancel a trip to Geneva in February 2011 to avoid being charged with crimes against humanity for the role he played as president of the United States in creating the federal prison in Guantánamo Bay, where the U.S. holds captured terrorists.

Radical Islam Is a Global Threat

An article in a June 2011 issue of The Weekly Standard titled "From Somalia to Nigeria: Jihad" stops far short of revealing the extent to which radical Islamists have infiltrated countries around the world. "From Somalia to Nigeria" is across the heart of Africa, from the Arabian Sea to the South Atlantic, but jihadists have a major presence in every North African country, too, from Morocco to Egypt. Their presence in the Middle East is obvious as well, from Saudi Arabia to Lebanon and Syria, but it doesn't stop there. They have created strongholds in Iran, Afghanistan, and the Indian subcontinent. Their reach extends from India to the Philippines and Indonesia and into the heart of Asia from China to Russia.

Jihadists are active in Europe, too, but their presence doesn't stop there, either. They have footholds in most South American countries, including Venezuela, Bolivia, and Brazil. Like a thriving cancer, jihadists have extended their reach to North America from Mexico to the United States to Canada.

Radical Islam is a problem that the entire world must confront. It's not about politics. It's about eradicating a festering sore before it turns into gangrene and threatens our very existence.

The YouTube videos below showing recent violent outbursts in Cairo aimed at Coptic Christians who dared to stand up for their rights demonstrate what the Arab Spring has become. Discrimination against Christians and Jews in the Muslim world isn't limited to Egypt. It exists in Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Iraq, and most other predominantly Muslim countries.

The U.S. doesn't need a president who bows and scrapes before Islamic despots in hopes of currying favor -- something that President Obama is prone to do. We need a president who is willing to lead the leaders of the world in a global mission before it's too late. We didn't declare war on jihadists. They declared war on us, and they are deadly serious. We should be, too.

We Don't Need Dilettantes in Leadership Positions

In a recent article, Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz pointed out that after a terrorist attack on Norway, Norway's ambassador to Israel said that Hamas' terrorist activity against Israel is more justified than terrorist attacks against Norway. The ambassador's logic was simple, naïve, and asinine. "We Norwegians," he said, "consider the occupation to be the cause of the terror against Israel."

First things first: the land in question in Israel isn't "occupied." It's "disputed land." There's a huge difference. People in Norway need to get it straight, and so do people in other nations around the world.

Second, Islamofascists have made it clear that they have set their sights on the entire world. They say that they want a one-world caliphate under sharia law. They don't really mean that, though -- they don't want the rule of any law. They are subversive butchers, murderers, and thieves -- Islamist anarchists, as it were. They are a threat to everyone, Muslims included. They don't like even each other.

Third, the terrorist attack on Norway wasn't carried out by a radical Islamist. It was perpetrated by Anders Breivik, a man who was reported by the Western media to be a Christian. His manifesto proves that that's not so, but the anti-Christian point of view sells in a world where it's okay to attack Jews and Christians, but not Muslims.

We may be witnessing the beginning of a global backlash against radical Islamists in the wake of government unwillingness to address the problem. In a nutshell, I'm saying that I don't think Breivik was a lone wolf. Neither do I believe that the anti-Islamists of the world are connected in a formal sense -- not yet, anyway, but that day may come.

When governments fail to do their jobs, people take matters into their own hands. I'm not excusing Breivik's brutal, unprovoked attack on innocent victims, many of whom were children. I'm simply stating a fact, and I'll repeat it to make sure that my message is crystal-clear. If people who are charged with the responsibility to secure our nations won't do their jobs, vigilantism will result. It's a dangerous consequence of government failure.

Neil Snyder is a chaired professor emeritus at the University of Virginia. His blog, SnyderTalk.com, is posted daily. His latest book is titled If You Voted for Obama in 2008 to Prove You're Not a Racist, You Need to Vote for Someone Else in 2012 to Prove You're Not an Idiot.

Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/10/radical_islam_a_problem_world_leaders_must_confront.html

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

Get Off Your Knees, Iran Warns Palestinian Leader


by Reza Kahlili

Iran is stepping up its condemnation of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas after his recent speech to the United Nations General Assembly seeking statehood for the Palestinian people.

Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, last week denounced a two-state solution for Israel and the Palestinians, saying Abbas's appeal for statehood is doomed.

The Palestinians should not limit themselves to seeking a country based on the pre-1967 borders because "all land belongs to the Palestinians," Khamenei said in an address to the 5th International Conference in Support of the Palestinian Intifada, being held in Tehran.

"We neither propose dumping the migrant Jews in the sea nor the U.N. arbitration. Rather, our proposal includes a referendum to be participated in by all Palestinians," Iran's semi-official FARS news agency reported Khamenei as saying.

"Today the West is standing on a crossroads, and it should either leave its age-old bullying and recognize the rights of the Palestinians or wait for harder blows in the near future," Khamenei warned.

Iranian leaders have always seen Abbas as an appeaser of the West and a barrier to the Iranian regime's influence in the Palestinian territories. In order to challenge his authority, the Iranian leaders have continuously provided funding and arms to its terrorist proxies in the region such as the Islamic Jihad, the al-Aqsa Brigades, and Hamas.

The Mahramaneh Online Website, which is close to Khamenei, in a recent analysis wrote that "[u]nfortunately what we witnessed in the ... speech ... by Abbas, the so-called representative of the Palestinians, at the United Nations was nothing more than a feeble and dispassionate speech that felt more like begging for affection; one can say that Abbas begged away a part of the Palestinian people's rights, and giving that main part away for acceptance, he pleaded and supplicated at the United Nations."

Mahramaneh Online implied that Abbas is a "stupid, inexperienced politician" because he should know that "begging, pleading and supplicating do not help one obtain one's rights. No politician ever gives up something that he has arrived at through force and invasion," referring to Israel's conquest of Palestinian lands.

Mahramaneh Online concluded that no nation will be able to achieve its rights without war.

The Iranian Revolutionary Guards' website, Javan Online, added in a recent commentary that it is only through war and destruction of Israel that a free Palestine could be achieved.

"The biggest goal of supporting the Palestinian Intifada is the fall of Israel, and that with the current events in the region (the Arab Spring), Israel is next in the line," Javan Online warned.

Negotiations are not the way forward, Javan Online said.

"History attests to the fact that any discussion between the Palestinians and Israel will either end in indignity or will be diverted onto the path of corruption," Javan Online said. "The downfall of Yasser Arafat, the living director of the Palestinian Liberation Organization, was his acceptance in 1988 of Article 242 of the U.N. Security Council."

Article 242, passed unanimously after 1967's Six-Day War, refers in its preamble to the "inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war and the need to work for a just and lasting peace in the Middle East in which every State in the area can live in security." That article has been the basis for all Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations.

"The only way to liberate Jerusalem," Javan Online said, "is for the resistance of the nation of Palestine and their firm stance, as well as an international united and defiant front which will send shivers through the weak Israeli posture, but given the new regional shifts and the awakening of the Islamic masses, it will quicken the liberation of Palestine and the downfall of Israel."

It is time to realize that in the view of the Islamists ruling Iran, there is no room for Israel in the future of the region and that they are committed to the elimination of Israel even if that means a destructive war, which would destabilize not only the region, but also the world.

"The murderous Zionist regime of Israel ultimately is reaching the final fall and destruction of its own non-existence," Khamenei has warned.

Reza Kahliliis a pseudonym for an ex-CIA spy who requires anonymity for safety reasons. He is a senior fellow with EMPact America and the author of A Time to Betray, a book about his double-life as a CIA agent in Iran's Revolutionary Guards, published by Threshold Editions, Simon & Schuster, April 2010. A Time to Betray was the winner of the 2010 National Best Book Award and the 2011 International Best Book Award.

Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/10/get_off_your_knees_iran_warns_palestinian_leader.html

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

Palestinian Claims and the "Arab Spring"


by Fabio Rafael Fiallo

It has become fashionable to assert that the so-called Arab Spring will give a boost to the Palestinian claims against the State of Israel, based on the view, presumably, that the Arab-Muslim dictatorships being contested today had forsaken the Palestinian movement to reach an accommodation with Israel (as Egypt and Jordan did); whereas the Arab Spring, the argument runs, is giving birth to a political environment more responsive to the expectations of the Palestinian movement.[1]

This assertion is not supported by the facts: it is not true that the dictatorships of the Middle East and North Africa have been congenial to Israel; nor is it true that the Arab Spring is showing a clear empathy, at least yet, with the Palestinian people..

With a few exceptions, the region's dictatorships have served as megaphones for the Palestinian narrative. For these dictatorships, to inveigh against Israel on behalf of the "Palestinian cause" has always been a handy means of both playing a geopolitical role diplomatically, and of diverting public attention away from their own failures and crimes.

It was a dictatorship, that of Iran, that called for wiping Israel off the map; two other dictators, Libya's Muammar Qaddafi and Syria's Bashar al-Assad, never missed an opportunity to anathematize the Jewish State. Still another dictator, the President of Yemen, in power for 33 years, disingenuously qualified the Arab Spring as "a storm orchestrated from Tel-Aviv."

The dictatorships of North Africa and the Middle East have, in fact, been at the origin of all the resolutions condemning Israel at the UN Council on Human Rights and other UN and international forums.

It was autocrats and dictators who declared war on the incipient State of Israel in 1948; who were ready to try to destroy it again in 1967, and who launched a surprise attack on Israel in 1973. It was one of the secular tyrants of the region, Iraq's Saddam Hussein, who, after sending 39 scud missiles into Israeli territory during the first Iraq War, offered rewards amounting to thousands of dollars for any suicide attack on Israeli soil.

The Palestinian movement has thus been backed -- politically, militarily and financially - by most of the autocratic regimes that have today fallen - better late than never -- into disrepute.

This effective connivance between the region's dictatorships and the Palestinian movement might help to explain why the Arab Spring's protesters have kept their distance from the Palestinian question. With the exception of the assault on the Israeli embassy at Cairo, and the attack on the television journalist Lara Logan ,during which her rapists kept repeating "Jew! Jew! Jew!" (even though she is not one), anti-Israel slogans and the burning of Israeli flags have been absent since the beginning of the Arab Spring.

Although the recent application for Palestinian Statehood, addressed by Mahmoud Abbas to the UN General Assembly, was, as expected, greeted cheerfully in the streets of the West Bank, primarily for his having rebuffed the request of the United States and the West in general not to proceed with the proposal, it aroused no manifestation of support among the population of neighbouring countries -- an indifference all the more remarkable as, at nearly the same time, slogans of solidarity were being chanted in the streets of Yemen's capital, Sana'a, in favour of the Syrian people[2].

This does not mean that there are no risks ahead. The protest movement may be hijacked by Islamist organizations, not least the Muslim Brotherhood, whose entire reason for being is the destruction of the State of Israel. Moreover, the region's governments may continue to resort to their customary reflex of railing against Israel as a means of diverting attention away from their lack of interest in meeting their people's wishes to have a better life.

At the same time, however, the Arab Spring may have an impact of a radically different nature on the Palestinian question and induce Palestinians to settle scores with their own leadership -- a leadership that has proven to have, as its main priority, staying in command no matter what.

Conditions for such score-settling certainly exist. Elections in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip should have taken place a long time ago, but they are systematically put off. Palestinians are thereby prevented from choosing how they want to be ruled, and by whom. The mandate of Mahmoud Abbas, as president of the Palestinian Authority, expired two years ago. He therefore continues to exercise his functions without the legitimacy that only the popular vote may confer -- or take away.

Not surprisingly, no one talks any longer about the elections that both Fatah and Hamas - in a short-lived show of unity mounted last April - promised to hold at the beginning of next year. Moreover, because of the internecine war between Fatah and Hamas, the Palestinian Parliament (Legislative Council), based in Ramallah, has been unable to vote one single law through during the past three years[3].

As for the Palestinians of the Diaspora, in particular the hundreds of thousands who live in Lebanon, they are deprived of the right to acquire the nationality of the host country because the Palestinian leadership is keen on keeping them in the disgraceful condition of refugees so they can continue to request a "right of return," designed to making Jews a minority in their own country and thereby converting Israel into yet another Arab state.[4]

For all these reasons, Palestinians might soon be tempted to reproduce the Arab Spring by massively contesting those who pretend to represent their interests and speak on their behalf.

Mahmoud Abbas's petition for Palestinian Statehood was clearly an attempt to foreclose that possibility. But for how long?

________________________________

[1] See, for instance, "Israel's new problem with the Arab street", by David Ignatius, The Washington Post, 09/14/ 2011.
[2] Le Figaro (Paris), 10/1/2011.
[3] BBC News, "Will Arab revolt spread to Palestinian territories?", 02/23/2011.
[4]See "Abbas rules out naturalization of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon", The Daily Star, 02/28/2008.

Fabio Rafael Fiallo is an economist, writer and retired UN official. He writes on issues related to international relations and the world economy. His latest publication, "Ternes Eclats", or "Dimmed Lights" (Paris, L'Harmattan), presents a critique of international organizations, including of the anti-Israel bias that prevails in a number of international forums.

Source: http://www.hudson-ny.org/2501/palestinian-claims-and-the-arab-spring

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

Muslim Hijab Sparks New Islam-Related Controversy in Spain


by Soeren Kern

Soeren Kern is Senior Fellow for Transatlantic Relations at the Madrid-based Grupo de Estudios Estratégicos / Strategic Studies Group.

Source: http://www.hudson-ny.org/2502/muslim-hijab-sparks-new-islam-related-controversy

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

The United Nations and Human Rights Abuse


by Wafa Sultan

When I emigrated to the United States of America from Syria, another Arab country that today is undergoing a turbulent political earthquake, never did I imagine that one day I would stand outside the United Nations to oppose its perverted conference, to defend against its malicious attempt to single out Israel -- a country that I was taught to hate.

But here I am today, proud to stand for light in the midst of darkness. This darkness brought about by the multiple Muslim countries and their international enablers, who have dishonored the initial objective of the United Nations, only to vilify, and eventually to destroy Israel - the one and the only free democratic country in the entire Middle East.

For the last 1,400 years, since its inception, Islamic ideology has attempted to deprive the Jews of their three most cherished possessions -- their Bible, their Lives, and their Land of Israel.

During my school years, I heard my teachers, family members, neighbors, and the media all bombarding us daily, throughout the Arab world. We, as small kids and young adults, were indoctrinated to share the anti-Semitic vitriol -- to despise and denigrate Jews.

  • God condemned the Jews because they falsified the Torah. How did I know it? That is what I was taught.
  • Since Jews forged the Bible, they were despised and depicted as pigs and apes. How did I know it? That is what I was taught.
  • Jews killed our prophets and were the enemies of Allah. How did I know it? That is what I was taught.
  • Therefore, the Jews represent an existential danger to all humanity, so their annihilation, as individuals and as a people, was and would be a legitimate service to God and mankind. How did I know it? That is what I was taught.

Yes, killing Jews was always presented to me and my classmates as a religious obligation. We absorbed this evil propaganda with our food and water, and with our school books, each and every day.

As a trained psychiatrist, I assert that seeds of hatred planted in the mind of a child, lead to immense hatred as the child grows into adulthood. Tragically, this hatred generates dangerous actions and even death.

And so, Durban III is the end-product of exactly this lasting hatred. Let's be honest; Durban III harbors deep anti-Semitic sentiments -- the same sentiments with which my mind was poisoned; sentiments that are still taught to hundreds of millions of Arab kids throughout the Middle East.

I believe that any nation that grants equal opportunity to every citizen, regardless of race, religion, political affiliation, or gender, thereby, establishes its moral legitimacy.

According to this principle, Israel stands alone in the Middle East region, as a nation with moral legitimacy: it grants all citizens equal rights for men and women alike, freedom of religion, and freedom of speech and of the press. Not a single Arab or Muslim country in the surrounding region does the same. Nor do any of those Arab and Muslim nations allow their citizens personal freedom, or the right to maintain and express opposing points of view.

These essential qualities of life provide oxygen for the human soul; they are the kind of basic nourishment that is desperately missing in all of Israel's Muslim neighbors.

Yet, the so-called humanitarian aid organizations at the United Nations direct all their energy to act against anything and everything Israel does.

Let me ask: as every human being deserves to live in dignity, why has an enormous unbalanced portion of global aid gone mostly to Palestinians, while millions of underprivileged people all over the world suffer genuine, life-threatening deprivation?

Here is why: The United Nations time and again focuses its power on the perpetual manufacturing of false anti-Israel accusations. Painting Palestinians as perennial underdogs provides the perfect cover for their subversive effort.

Without doubt, this trend encourages hatred and violence against the Jewish people in Israel and everywhere else. And that is exactly its point.

Hence, as a woman of an Arab and Islamic background, with that perspective, I join you all today to highlight the hypocrisy of the UN. I challenge the U.N. for neglecting its fundamental mission. They do it under pressure from totalitarian Muslim regimes who put their full faith and credit of their oil wealth behind this anti-Israel campaign.

I am here to demand that the United Nations return to its objectives, to apply international law, justice and fairness equally, to all nations regardless of their size, economic conditions, or global influence.

While the United Nations obsessively attacks Israel, it merely reveals its own abysmal human rights record -- neglecting Muslim women's rights; ignoring freedoms of faith and conscience; turning a blind eye to the fate of Muslim apostates sentenced to death; failing to address the brutal treatment of Christians and other citizens of Islamic nations, and for ignoring the rights of non-Muslim foreigners living or working in Muslim countries.

A Palestinian women's organization reported that Muslim men perpetrate some 40 honor killings annually in the West Bank alone, not including the vast majority of honor killing and abuse of women that go unreported -- as Islamic society maintains secrecy in upholding the popular belief that those "cursed with a sin, [should] hide it."

Where is the UN Human Rights Commission's outcry over the Muslim world's honor killing epidemic? Has the UN adopted the same Islamic philosophy, hiding a societal sin to protect Muslim honor?

Where is the UN condemnation of Sharia law that forgives abusive and murderous men whose wives are assumed sinful? What has the UN done to stop and forbid this appalling trend?

Mr. Ban Ki-moon, please note that we, enlightened and liberated Muslims take notice. And we are enraged. Just as with Israel, the UN marginalizes enlightened and liberated Muslims, and treats them as pariahs. Elite government leaders, willfully blind Western media, arrogant Middle East studies academics and foolish UN representatives follow suit. All these presumably progressive, freethinking leaders have given their full support to Islamic totalitarian countries and rally behind their dehumanizing objectives at the UN.

I receive countless letters from Arab readers throughout the Middle East, expressing their desperate desire to live as free people with the same human rights we enjoy in the West -- and especially, freedom from Sharia!

One young Arab woman, a student, wrote to me only last month:

"They deprive us of any right to think, and ... remind us each time, how we will burn in hell. They terrorize us, and they do the same with the children. I would like that to stop. I try very hard to change things. I created a little group against sexism. And I hope to be able to defend Arab women one day."

Tell me Mr. Ban Ki-moon, who will defend this young student and her small group fighting Arab sexism and the atrocities committed against Arab women?

Concerning Islamic and Arab violence, the UN remains tragically blind and silent. The UN repeats its denunciation of Israel, the only Middle East nation that grants all citizens the basic human rights this young Arab woman wishes to have for her people.

Here is important information to expose the charade of Durban III conference: According to recent face-to-face surveys by prominent international pollsters, more Palestinians in East Jerusalem would prefer to be citizens of Israel than citizens of a new Palestinian state -- and 40% would probably or definitely move to avoid Palestinian rule. This alone demonstrates the hypocrisy of the UN and its Durban III forum.

To add salt to wound, the UN has degenerated into the puppet of Arab and Islamic forces operating freely in its own hallways and offices. It has evolved into a tool of the Organization of Islamic conference – the 56 Islamic nations seeking through the UN to impose international blasphemy laws supposedly labeled "defamation of religion."

We understand this would criminalize anyone criticizing Islam. To be specific, the UN aims to suppress free speech globally -- and especially the freedom to oppose many harsh tenets of Islam's Sharia law. Without a doubt, this plan to criminalize a genuine and necessary discourse on Islam is seditious and most dangerous.

But in spite of its attempt to silence voices of dissent, let us be frank: From Islamic point of view, the so called Arab-Palestinian-Israeli conflict is merely an Islamic Jihad, specifically targeting Jewish infidels, cultivated by sacred texts, which date to the time of Mohammed.

Even if the alleged Arab-Palestinian crisis were "solved," jihadists would continue to fulfill their Islamic duty to subdue the entire world under Islam and Sharia.

So now, I am here to stand with all of those who are in the fight to preserve our freedom. I call on all nations and people to boycott the United Nation's Durban III conference against racial discrimination.

Those who love liberty and life will strengthen their ties and warm relations with Israel, and stand with her. Israel will continue to shine its light among all nations.

Originally presented in slightly different as an address to the conference entitled, The Perils of Global Intolerance, in New York City, September 22, 2011.

Wafa Sultan

Source: http://www.hudson-ny.org/2485/united-nations-human-rights-abuse

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

Freeing Gilad Shalit


by P. David Hornik

On the eve of the joyous Sukkot holiday, Israel learned that Gilad Shalit—the soldier kidnapped and held incommunicado by Hamas in Gaza since June 2006—was soon to be freed in exchange for a thousand security prisoners. That number was already set by the previous government of Ehud Olmert when it started negotiating with Hamas on Shalit. It is, though, the highest price Israel, with its history of lopsided prisoner deals, has ever paid for a single soldier.

Predictably, celebrations broke out in the West Bank and Gaza. But Israelis, except for a small group Tuesday night at the Shalit family’s protest tent in Jerusalem, and despite the confluence of the news and the holiday and the fact that polls have found a large majority supporting such a deal, may feel profoundly relieved but are not celebrating.

The deal lays down that about 450 of the Palestinian prisoners will be released in a first stage, 550 in a later one. Of the 450, 110 will be released to their homes in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, 163 (who are West Bank residents) will be deported to Gaza, 40 (also West Bank residents) will be deported out of the country, and the rest include Gazans who will return to Gaza as well as six Israeli Arabs who will likewise go home.

In the years of tortuous, on-and-off negotiations leading up to this deal, Israel insisted that a larger number of these prisoners, many of them serving life terms for murderous attacks, be deported to Gaza or abroad; Hamas insisted that they include a set of major terrorist masterminds. Israel yielded somewhat on the number to be allowed into the West Bank; Hamas yielded on the masterminds.

That means Marwan Barghouti, a Fatah ringleader of the savage Second Intifada, Abbas Sayyad, organizer of the 2002 Passover attack on the Park Hotel in Netanya, and others of that ilk will stay behind bars hopefully for good.

As for the second round of 550 prisoners, Israel gets to choose who they are, though they have to include all prisoners who are women or minors. In other words, mostly (but not exclusively) a less bloody and dangerous lot than the first 450.

Israel’s bloated cabinet voted 26-3 in favor of this most disproportionate of Israel’s prisoner deals—notable especially for a right-leaning government. The votes of the 26 stemmed both from conviction and from the public’s strong backing for such a deal. On Tuesday night Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told the nation:

I believe that we have reached the best deal we could have at this time, when storms are sweeping the Middle East. I do not know if in the near future we would have been able to reach a better deal or any deal at all. It is very possible that this window of opportunity that opened because of the circumstances would close indefinitely and we would never have been able to bring Gilad home at all.

In other words: Egypt’s military government played a major role in mediating the deal, something that could soon have become impossible as the Muslim Brotherhood and other radical forces gain strength in that country. As for Hamas, the weakening of its Syrian base and its resultant need to appease Egypt, its Fatah rival Mahmoud Abbas’s recent gain in popularity thanks to his UN statehood bid, and its fear of an “Arab spring”-type revolt in Gaza are conditions that made it want to quickly close a deal. Despite Hamas’s major concession on the ringleaders, many Gazans, West Bankers, and other Arabs will regard it as a triumph.

The Israeli security chiefs—Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, Mossad head Tamir Pardo, and Shin Bet (internal security) head Yoram Cohen—all affirmed that there was no military option to free Shalit and came out in favor of the deal. Pardo’s and Cohen’s predecessors both opposed such a swap, though that was when Hamas was insisting that the masterminds be included.

Cohen, explaining his position, called it “the best deal possible” while allowing that “it is not simple to release 280 murderers” and “noting that [the deal] would likely increase Hamas’s motivation to attack Israel and try to abduct more soldiers.” He said further:

I think that we will be able to deal with the threat and potential dangers.… We cannot promise that they will not produce terror. Statistics show that 60 percent of those released in prisoner swaps return to activity in their terrorist organizations and that 15 to 20 percent return to Israeli prisons.

He also noted that the 110 to be released to the West Bank will be under strict surveillance. Optimists point to Israel’s currently strong security capabilities there, which have kept lethal terrorism to a minimum for years.

On one side, then, a further encouragement of kidnapping; a possible spike in terror; the pain of relatives of the victims of the released prisoners; a boost to Hamas; and a dire subversion of justice as murderers go free.

Understanding, then, why Israel’s top security officials as well as a large majority of its government and public nevertheless support the deal requires understanding certain underlying intangibles of Israeli society. Simple sympathy for Shalit and his family is, of course, one of them, but not the whole story. As Netanyahu put it in his speech Tuesday night:

I am happy that I succeeded in fulfilling the Jewish decree of redeeming captives…. The nation of Israel is a unique people. We are all mutually responsible for each other, as our sages said: “He who saves one soul, it is as though he saved an entire world.”

To which it can be objected—validly—that in this case, the statistical record suggests that saving one soul means condemning other souls. To which, in turn, it can be replied that danger is inherent in being a Jewish, non-Muslim state in the Middle East, and fundamental to coping with it is a solidarity that goes to the deepest level of Israel’s ethos of survival in a hostile environment.

For most of us, abandoning Gilad to his fate was simply not an option.

P. David Hornik

Source: http://frontpagemag.com/2011/10/13/freeing-gilad-shalit/

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

US Aid to Israel’s Enemies


by David Meir-Levi

In a previous article, this writer initiated an inquiry into the topic of US aid to Israel. As adumbrated there, it is clear that the USA and Israel enjoy a special relationship, a tight alliance based on more than mere political expediency. The USA gives Israel political support and c. $3 billion per year, and Israel gives the USA political support, financial reciprocity and very significant benefits in the areas of military intelligence, ordnance and operations. Many of our most outstanding political leaders agree. Yet critics of Israel, most prominent among them being the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs (WRMEA) and Professors John Mearscheimer and Stephen Walt, complain that the USA gives too much money to Israel and that the special relationship is in reality a liability for the USA.

But these critics fail to take into consideration the proverbial other side of the coin. On one hand, the USA reaps the enormous benefits of financial reciprocity as Israel spends most of its US aid money in the USA, Israeli military intelligence worth more than “five CIAs,” and operational support which has been likened to a US aircraft carrier which cannot sink and which requires no American military personnel. And this was no exaggeration. See here, here, here and here for a detailed assessment of Israel’s military support for the USA in the Eastern Mediterranean; and for the history of Israel’s intelligence support see Wolf

Blitzer’s Between Washington and Jerusalem (New York, Oxford University Press, 1986). A few examples, among many, are the Soviet MiG 21 that the Mossad smuggled out of the former USSR, and a variety of Soviet weapons systems (including the 122-mm. and 130-mm. artillery and T-72 tanks), all offered free of charge to US military intelligence.

Maj. Gen. George J. Keegan, former head of U.S. Air Force intelligence, stated that America’s military defense capability “owes more to the Israeli intelligence input than it does to any single source of intelligence.” While a dollar figure on such benefits is hard to pin down, Keegan put the number at somewhere between $50 billion and $80 billion: a balance of trade very much in America’s favor. A. F. K. Organsi, professor of political science at the University of Michigan, offers a bit more conservative estimate in his The $36 Billion Bargain: Strategy and Politics in the U.S. Assistance to Israel (New York, Columbia University Press, 1990).

On the other hand, what benefits does the USA reap from its financial and political support of Muslim countries, especially those which are the avowed enemies of Israel? It is important to recall that the goals of billions of US dollars to foreign countries is to advance pro-US policies, to constrain anti-US elements, to promote regional stability, to prevent terrorist armies from establishing operational bases, and to prevent WMD proliferation. A brief review of the past decade’s US aid to Muslim countries will demonstrate the frightening degree to which those goals have not been achieved.

The most extreme case is Pakistan. Zalmay Khalilzad, former US Ambassador to Pakistan, recently reported that Pakistan helps the Taliban! In fact, Pakistani support is a major reason why the Taliban have been successful in outmaneuvering our troops and carrying out a series of high-profile assassinations of senior Afghan officials. Pakistani military and intelligence services (ISI) assist the Taliban, while the Pakistani government offers “implausible denials” of its complicity in Taliban military operations against the USA. Pakistani support for the Taliban could well deal America a “major strategic blow” in its war in Afghanistan. Pakistan’s support for American enemies in Afghanistan could be “the difference between victory and defeat” according to Mr. Khalilzad.

Admiral Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, went even further. On September 21 he told the Senate Armed Services Committee (and on September 28 he told the world, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal) that the Taliban’s supreme military and political command, and other terrorist organizations, not only operate with impunity against US troops from within Pakistan, but they are in reality Pakistan’s proxies, carrying out Pakistani orders when they attack Afghan and American troops and civilians. Both Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta have recently made similar accusations. And this is not a new issue. Although unnoted in western mainstream media, the Pakistani army itself has carried out a number of attacks against Afghan troops and police in Afghanistan since February of this year. John Brennan, counterterrorism advisor to the White House, defined Pakistan as an enemy of the U.S.A. back in 2001, during a live interview on CBS.

Pakistan receives almost $2 billion in US aid annually and uses some if that money to kill our troops and support our enemies. What kind of trade balance is that?

Egypt is another example of a negative imbalance of trade. Over the past 30 years, America has given Egypt almost $40 billion, $10 billion of that in the last 5 years as the annual sums rose to about $2 billion a year. Yet, former President Hosni Mubarak supported Sadam Hussein in the first Gulf war, undermined US war efforts by uniting Arab opposition and supporting French and German anti-US initiatives, and by violating post-war sanctions on Iraq. During the last decade of his rule, Mubarak worked with Russia to expand Egypt’s nuclear technologies, undermined US peace-making strategies in Sudan, exacerbated the Eritrea-Ethiopia conflict, and opposed US sanctions on Iraq prior to the 2nd Gulf war. Despite Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel, Mubarak has led anti-Israel initiatives at the UN and has provided safe passage for terrorists and weapons smuggled into the Gaza Strip.

Professor Fuad Ajami summarized the mood in Egypt after 9.11.01:

“On September 11, 2001, there was an unmistakable sense of glee and little sorrow among upper-class Egyptians for (the USA) — only satisfaction that America had gotten its comeuppance….The United States could grant generous aid to the Egyptian state, but there would be no dampening of the anti-American fury of the Egyptian political class….There would be no open embrace of America, and no public defense of it….”

And this is a country that we long considered our chief ally in the Muslim world.

Things don’t look much better now that Egypt has enjoyed its “Arab Spring.” If the Muslim Brotherhood comes out on top in the promised elections, it is likely that the USA, despite its tens of billions of dollars of aid, will see Egypt become its chief enemy in the Muslim world. None the less, President Obama recently unveiled a plan to forgive over $1 billion in Egyptian debt, on top of an additional $2 billion in direct aid. It is important to recall that the Muslim Brotherhood has direct ties to numerous Arab terror groups and its Egyptian branch founded Hamas in 1988. This is another obvious case of good billions after bad.

The situation is similar in other Muslim countries.

In 2009 the USA distributed about $45 billion to more than 180 countries, 41 of which are Muslim countries. Seven of the top eleven recipients were Arab or Muslim countries: Afghanistan was #1 with $8.8 billion, then Iraq with $2.3 billion, and Egypt tied with Pakistan for $1.8 billion each. Sudan received $1.2 billion, the Palestinian Authority received $1billion, and Jordan received $816 million. The total to the top eleven was of $17.7 billion.

Over the past ten years, the seven Muslim countries listed above received more than $136 billion. Almost two-thirds of American aid money for 2012 is earmarked for Muslim countries, and about one-half of that goes to Arab countries.

America has been amazingly generous to many Arab and Muslim countries over the past few decades. Yet America is still viewed quite unfavorably in almost all of the Arab world, and in much (but not all) of the Muslim world; and Arab governments routinely vote against the USA in the UN. On average, Muslim countries vote against the USA c.75% of the time. The worst offenders are Syria (87%), Lebanon (80%), Egypt (79%), Libya (76%), Pakistan (75%), and Saudi Arabia (73%). Even Jordan, perhaps the most westernized of all Muslim countries, voted against the USA 60% of the time; yet it will be the happy recipient of $4.5 billion in US aid in 2012.

And speaking of Libya, Admiral James Stavridis, NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander, Europe, and the commander of the U.S. European Command told the U.S. Senate that el-Qaeda and Hezbollah fighters are among the Libyan rebels currently receiving support from the US and its NATO allies. This was confirmed by one of the Libyan rebel officers, Abdel-Hakim al-Hasidi, who leads one of the el-Qaeda units.

And then we have the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas. Since the 1993 Oslo Accords, the PA has received over $4 billion in direct US aid. American taxpayers’ money, thoroughly documented by the Congressional Research Service and others, along with funds from the UK, EU, Japan, India, and the World Bank, flow directly into the PA’s general fund. Once there, its uses cannot be traced. Cash is fungible, corruption is rife, and Arafat kept the records in a little black book (literally) in his shirt pocket! Under Abbas things have improved; but even if American dollars are not being used directly to support terrorist activities or enrich the personal bank accounts of terrorists or government officials, they are most assuredly freeing up other money elsewhere in the PA and Hamas budgets to go directly to the costs of fielding various terrorist armies.

One example of the very troublesome possibility that American aid is funding Palestinian terrorism is the case of American support for Palestinian universities.

Millions of dollars in U.S. foreign aid have been given in the past several years to two Palestinian universities, one of them controlled by Hamas, which have participated in the advocacy, support or glorification of terrorism. The funding, principally in scholarships to individual students, is being eyed by several members of Congress and their aides, including Rep. Gary Ackerman (Dem. NY), chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Middle East, who says that this aid may violate U.S. law.

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has provided more than $140,000 in assistance to the Hamas-controlled Islamic University in Gaza, including scholarships to 49 of its students, since Congress changed the law in 2004 to restrict aid to entities or individuals “involved in or advocating terrorist activity.”

USAID also gave $2.3 million last year to the Al-Quds University, in Gaza City, which is controlled by Hamas and has student groups affiliated with Hamas and other designated terrorist organizations on campus. This university was founded by Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, former leader of Hamas, who used it as a base of operations; and it is now serving in that same capacity for Ismail Haniyeh, Prime Minister of the Hamas government in the Gaza Strip. For details on USAID’s indirect support for terrorism see here, here, here, and here.

But perhaps most outrageous of all, almost half of the aid received by the PA this year will go to pay the salaries of almost 5, 500 terrorists held in Israeli prisons.

Over the past decade, billions of American tax-payer dollars flowed into the coffers of Hamas and the Palestinian Authority to indirectly support Palestinian terrorists, and to directly fund universities where Hamas operatives recruit and have bases of operations. This year the lion’s share of American largesse will enrich the bank accounts of incarcerated terrorists and mass murderers. Yet, the Obama administration is lobbying Congress to unblock the $ 200 million in aid for the PA that was frozen when President Abbas asked for UN recognition.

American aid to Israel saves American lives, enhances our ability to confront our enemies, improves our military intelligence, and supports our only stable and reliable ally in the Middle East; even as the majority of that aid flows back into the American economy.

American aid to Muslim countries supports our enemies, assists them to kill our own soldiers, funds the countries that seek our destruction, and pays the salaries of terrorists and mass murderers. There is no evidence that a penny of that aid is ever spent for American goods or services. As Cal Thomas put it: “U.S. aid to Muslim nations is not paying us any dividends.”

Notes:

[1] The most infamous of late being Walt and Mearsheimer, http://www.lrb.co.uk/v28/n06/john-mearsheimer/the-israel-lobby (and see http://www.jcpa.org/JCPA/Templates/ShowPage.asp?DBID=1&LNGID=1&TMID=111&FID=376&PID=0&IID=1795 for a very thorough rebuttal); and Thomas Stauffer in The Christian Science Monitor, Dec. 9, 2002,

http://www.csmonitor.com/2002/1209/p16s01-wmgn.html (and see http://honestreporting.com/u-s-aid-to-israel/?mobile=1 for a very thorough rebuttal); Stephen Zunes in The Jerusalem Fund, Feb., 2001, http://www.thejerusalemfund.org/www.thejerusalemfund.org/carryover/pubs/20010201ftr.html; Scott McConnel, “The Special Relationship with Israel: Is it worth the Cost?,” Middle East Policy Council Archive, http://www.mepc.org/journal/middle-east-policy-archives/special-relationship-israel; and a variety of articles over the last few years condemning Israel and urging the USA to end its support, financial and political, for Israel in The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs (WRMEA), and especially the August, 2008 edition, http://www.highbeam.com/publications/the-washington-report-on-middle-east-affairs-p61470/august-2008.

David Meir-Levi

Source: http://frontpagemag.com/2011/10/13/us-aid-to-israel%e2%80%99s-enemies/

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

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