Monday, December 05, 2016

From Ian:

I’m a South African Activist Who Used to Fight Against Israel—Until I Went There
Tshediso Mangope grew up under apartheid and believed that Israel had the same policies. But seeing the country for himself changed his perspective.
As a black South African and member of the African National Congress (ANC), I have often heard the accusation that Israel is an apartheid state—and therefore a just solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has to be based on a single state of Palestine between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River. I recently made a trip to Israel and the West Bank in order to understand the issues and the prospects for resolving the conflict.
Traveling through the country encouraged me to reflect upon the suggestions by some sections of the Palestine solidarity movement—particularly those advocating for boycotts, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) against Israel—that it is possible to establish one country between Israel and Palestine based on a “one-state” solution, like the one we established here in South Africa. Though supporters of this solution claim it is democratic, the rejection of a Jewish state is in fact a modern way of institutionalizing anti-Semitic posturing.
First and foremost, my visit to the region confirmed for me that there is no meaningful comparison between the State of Israel and the former apartheid regime in South Africa.
I grew up under apartheid. I saw my parents being humiliated under apartheid. The scars of apartheid still live with us to this day and are strongly embedded in the psychology of my people. Therefore, in considering what a just solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict involves, I reject both the analysis that Israel practices apartheid and the demand that Israel should be dismantled and replaced with a single state of Palestine.
It appears that those who compare the State of Israel to apartheid South Africa do not understand the fundamentals of apartheid, nor have they experienced it. Let me explain.
The Holocaust as a Weapon Against Jews
What remains of Holocaust memory is now poisoned with even greater ill will and bad faith. Hijacked once again, in the same lifetime, by a sinister movement that trivializes and falsifies the Holocaust even further. On campuses, for example, Students for Justice in Palestine has disrupted Yom HaShoah commemorations, hosted events and rallies that equate Zionism with Nazism, charged Israelis with committing genocide against the Palestinian people, and proclaimed that Israel has turned Gaza into Auschwitz. On both sides of the Atlantic, such twisted, abhorrent thinking is fashionable on university campuses, despite the fact that many of SJP’s intersectional partners would be stoned, beheaded, or burned alive if they lived in Gaza. Israel, meanwhile, remains the only nation in the region that functions as a liberal democracy where an open, pluralistic society enjoys rights nowhere else seen in the Middle East.
In so many pernicious ways, this latest misappropriation, this vulgar corruption, is worse than conventional Holocaust denial. The existence of the Holocaust—the reality of its moral indictment of humanity—is not a difficult argument to win. Such claims were mercifully confined to crackpot conventions. They were in the same category as having to prove that there was once an African slave trade, or that the world is round. In such low-budget intellectual battles, the deniers revealed themselves to be nothing but barbarians and baboons.
When it comes to anti-Semitism cloaked in the smug smock of human rights, however, the toxic atmosphere against Zionism makes even the exploitation of the Holocaust fair game so long as it is being directed at delegitimizing the State of Israel—an especially favorite pastime of university and Leftist communities in the West. In such dizzying games of three-card monte, the Holocaust is not a myth, but an operating manual that Israelis are following, with great precision, in their “ethnic cleansing” of Palestinians. The fact that the Palestinian population has more than doubled since the Six-Day War becomes only an inconvenient and easily ignorable truth. After all, genocide requires subtraction in the census, not multiplication.
Ben-Dror Yemini: Fighting anti-Semitism while demonizing Israel?
Op-ed: The Rockefeller Brothers Fund, which backs organizations supporting the BDS campaign, is paying the New Israel Fund to research the growth of anti-Semitism on US campuses. This absurdity needs no explanation.
The Rockefeller Brothers Fund (RBF) has allotted a special grant to the New Israel Fund (NIF) for “research and report on anti-Semitism on US campuses.” I read it and couldn’t believe my eyes.
Let’s put the NIF aside for a moment. The RBF funds bodies that support the BDS campaign, which is at the spearhead of the demonization propaganda against the State of Israel. The style, the lies, the preaching and the brainwashing are similar to the patterns of action of the anti-Jewish campaigns in the 1930s.
There is no need for any research on anyone’s behalf, including the NIF, to know that whoever is exposed to these bodies’ propaganda quickly reaches the conclusion that Israel is a monster which has no right to exist. The heads of the BDS campaign are not trying to be self-righteous. They are saying these things out loud. They are against a two-state solution and in favor of Israel’s destruction. These are the bodies funded by the RBF.
Are these bodies’ activities anti-Semitic? Let’s put the Israeli definitions aside and refer to the US State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism. Well, BDS activists seem to fit almost every segment in that document. It includes, by the way, not just demonization but also double standards, comparing Israel to the Nazis and denying Israel’s right to exist or the Jews’ right for self-determination.

  • Monday, December 05, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon
In his statement on the death of Fidel Castro, Mahmoud Abbas sent a telegram of condolence to Cuba.

In the telegram, Abbas wrote, "Cuba was the only Latin American nation that voted against the decision for the partition of Palestine in 1947, and since that time and it was as a champion for each national liberation movement in the world, especially the Palestinian revolution that it stood with in all international forums, did a lot to support the Palestinian people and the revolution, including Fidel Castro's statement dated 09/09/1973 during the fourth Summit of the non-aligned Movement meeting in Algeria [where he] cut diplomatic relations with Israel, and recognized the PLO."

Of course, the annual UN Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People is specifically done on the anniversary of the partition resolution that the Arabs (and Cuba) were against. Yet even today, Mahmoud Abbas considers the resolution that would have given the Palestinians an independent state to be illegitimate, while at the same time claiming that it gives Palestinians the legal right to a state.

And the reason is because the resolution also included the creation of a Jewish state.

That is what makes it unacceptable to Mahmoud Abbas, then - and now.

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If you are lucky enough to never have heard of Martin Lejeune, you can read a sympathetic article about this German “journalist” at Ali Abunimah’s Electronic Intifada (EI). It was exactly a year ago that the EI denounced Lejeune’s deportation from Israel, concluding that “he was denied entry because he has reported things that the powerful in Israel do not want us to know.”

Of course…

Well, one of the “things” Lejeune “reported” long before the EI spoke up for him was that the public executions of accused “collaborators” by Hamas in August 2014 were completely “legal” and that Hamas really truly treated the families of the executed with a praiseworthy sense of “social” responsibility. For the EI, this was no doubt an entirely acceptable point of view – after all, Abunimah as well as several EI contributors also justified the executions. But while Abunimah pontificated that “[in] every society wartime collaboration is seen as the most heinous crime and mortal threat to resistance,” Amnesty International eventually condemned the executions, concluding that Hamas had been eager to “‘settle scores’ against opponents under the pretext they were ‘collaborators with Israel’.”

For Lejeune, his defense of Hamas doomed his pretensions of being a “journalist” just when his “career” started to take off: claiming (falsely) to be the only German “journalist” in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014, Lejeune’s “reporting” was eagerly picked up and published by German language mainstream media (and even the BBC) until his defense of the executions set off some rather belated alarm bells. 

As a critical Facebook post on Lejeune and his credulous promoters pointed out in late August 2014, it shouldn’t have been hard to find out that Lejeune’s social media activities included being “friends” with people endorsing far-right views, conspiracy theories and Holocaust denial, as well as participation in groups cheering Syrian dictator Bashar Assad and advocating BDS against Israel. On the site of Mena Watch, Lejeune was identified as a Hamas apologist already in early August 2014.
A recent Mena Watch post on Lejeune highlights the vicious remarks he made during the fires in Israel at the end of November. In this context, one needs to know that in July, Lejeune converted to Islam – an event that was reportedly celebrated by Islamists and Salafists in Germany, and according to Lejeune, his embrace of Islam was not unconnected to his knowledge about the evils of Zionism. If Lejeune craved attention, his conversion certainly got him some: an article on the website About Islam under the title “German Journalist Reverts to Islam on `Eid” described him as a “famous German journalist,” duly noting that he “is known for his criticism of Israel;” the article garnered an astonishing 32.7K Facebook shares. [The embedded video doesn’t work, but the clip of the ceremony can be viewed here.]

With the recent fires raging in Israel, Lejeune happily joined those of his fellow-believers who took to social media to cheer the fires: like so many others, Lejeune opined that the fires were God’s punishment for Israel’s prohibition of the Muslim call to prayer (which wasn’t prohibited). It is noteworthy that an Israeli Muslim responded to him in no uncertain terms, rejecting what he called “the disgusting hatred” expressed by his “putative brethren in faith” and wondering when Lejeune would finally join the terror group ISIS.

But as documented by a German blog, Lejeune then went further and made a video where he professed doubts about the Holocaust, asserting that if it really happened as claimed, Jews would have learned a lesson and would surely not be so “inhumane” to Palestinians. Lejeune then emphasized that he was really hoping the fires would spare “Palestinians”, i.e. “Christians and Muslims,” but regretted being unable to wish the same for the Jews “because they treat the Palestinians so inhumanely.” To sum up Lejeune’s “philosophy”: since the Jews don’t behave as they should if the Holocaust really happened, let’s hope a lot of them will burn to death now.

Perhaps fearing that this wasn’t the best PR for his supposed status as a new “ambassador” for Islam and his “work” for Islamist groups, Lejeune soon decided to delete the clip and issue an apology of sorts. No prize for guessing who’s to blame for Lejeune’s supposedly temporary doubts about the Holocaust: naturally, the “Zionists” made him do it… But now, Martin Lejeune realizes that not all Jews are evil Zionists torturing and massacring Palestinians: there are also good anti-Zionist Jews – and Herr Lejeune stands ready to work with all good Jews “against Jew-hatred, against antisemitism, and against Zionism.”

Unsurprisingly, Lejeune’s “pledge” echoes Ali Abunimah’s Orwellian definition of antisemitism, which is based on his obscene claim that Zionism is “one of the worst forms of anti-Semitism in existence today.” Equally unsurprisingly, Lejeune’s “career” as an ardent Hamas apologist and Israel-hater also included collaborations with Max Blumenthal and David Sheen. Alongside Blumenthal and Sheen, Lejeune appeared in September 2014 at the “Russell Tribunal on Palestine,” i.e. an outfit whose members like to imagine themselves holding a kangaroo court to pronounce the world’s only Jewish state too evil to exist. Not long afterwards, in November 2014, Lejeune joined Blumenthal and Sheen for their infamous “Toiletgate” performance in Berlin, which both Lejeune and Blumenthal later defended passionately on the German channel of Russia’s propaganda outlet RT.
Lejeune’s website is appropriately named FlyingStone and it prominently displays a Palestinian flag, which links to his relevant posts. Though the site is updated only occasionally, the material that is posted is largely identical to the kind of content available on countless other sites run by anti-Israel activists and BDS campaigners. Lejeune’s eagerness to help promote the agenda that is so tirelessly touted by anti-Israel activists like Abunimah and Blumenthal is also evident from a speech he gave at the annual “Al Quds Day” rally last year in London, where he talked about “the catastrophe [i.e. Israel’s establishment] that started in 1948 and is still taking place right now.”

In short, one can be quite confident that Lejeune’s recent pledge to fight “against Jew-hatred, against antisemitism, and against Zionism” is sincere only regarding the dreadful evil he mentions last.

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From Ian:

Israel/Spain WC qualifier to be played in city boycotting Israel
The decision to hold a World Cup qualifying game between Spain and Israel in the city of Gijon has raised ire among officials in Israel due to the city passing a boycott resolution last January; 'It is unclear to us why out of all places, Spain chose the hold the game in this city.'
The Israel national team's World Cup qualifying game against Spain in Gijon has angered state officials because the city hosting the game has declared a boycott against Israel. Officials are also concerned that protests will accompany the game, which will be held on the 24th of March.
The Spanish national team holds games in many cities, so residents across the country have the opportunity to see the games.
In January 2016, the city council approved a boycott on Israel, which was initiated by extreme left-wing and socialist parties. Gijon Mayor Carmen Moriyón was opposed to the boycott, but her party and other centrist parties abstained and failed to overturn the decision.
Pro-Israel activists appealed the decision to the Administrative Court, but the judge rejected the appeal on the grounds that the action had no real practical significance, but was only a political statement.
The Real Illegal Settlements
While construction in Jewish settlements of the West Bank and neighborhoods of Jerusalem has long been carried out within the frame of the law and in accordance with proper licenses issued by the relevant authorities, the Palestinian construction is illegal in every respect.
The Palestinian goal is to create irreversible facts on the ground. The sheer enormity of the project raises the question: Who has been funding these massive cities-within-cities? And why? There is good reason to believe that the PLO and some Arabs and Muslims, and especially the European Union, are behind the Palestinian initiative.
The Jewish outpost of Amona, home to 42 families, is currently the subject of fiery controversy both in Israel and in the international arena. Apparently, settlements are only a "major obstacle to peace" when they are constructed by Jews.
The EU and some Islamic governments and organizations are paying for the construction of illegal Palestinian settlements, while demanding that Israel halt building new homes for Jewish families in Jerusalem neighborhoods or existing settlements in the West Bank.
The hypocrisy and raw malice of the EU and the rest of the international community toward the issue of Israeli settlements is blindingly transparent. Yet we are also witnessing the hypocrisy of many in the Western mainstream media, who see with their own eyes the Palestinian settlements rising on every side of Jerusalem, but choose to report only about Jewish building.
Who Keeps Shuafat Orphaned?
Israel may be accused of lacking sympathy for the refugees, but it lacks the power to improve conditions in Shuafat or other camps in the West Bank, let alone Hamas-run Gaza. The responsibility belongs solely to UNRWA and the Palestinian leadership, both of which remain content to continue the same cynical policies.
It also bears noting that Kushner’s article was published only a few days after Israel’s annual commemoration of the more than 850,000 Jews who fled or were forced to flee their homes in the Arab and Muslim world during the same time that the Palestinian refugee problem was born. Of course, none of those refugees or their descendants are still living in camps. They found new homes and lives in Israel or the West and did so without the assistance of the United Nations, instead relying on Jewish philanthropy.
The people of Shuafat may indeed be orphans. But if they remain in squalor and hopelessness, the fault lies with an Arab world that refused to do as the Jews did because they hoped to destroy Israel and with Palestinian leaders that feed the refugees hate instead of hope. The only real solution to this toxic mix is a peace that will end the century-old war against Zionism. But, like a rational resettlement plan, that is one solution the refugees and those who continue to exploit them seem unable to embrace. When a biased media ignores this fact, the biggest losers are the refugees.

  • Monday, December 05, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon

I was curious why there was no news about a new, updated Fatah platform as a result of the Seventh Fatah Conference, and the first one since 2009.

It turns out that Fatah is still using the 2009 platform.

So we still have a Fatah that explicitly supports keeping its own people in "refugee camps" for political purposes:

Fatah Movement is committed to ..working hard to achieve the right of refugees for return, compensation and restitution of properties while maintaining the unity of the refugees’ cause regardless of their locations, including the refugees inside the green line..Fatah supports the need to preserve the refugee camps as a political witness to the  plight of the refugees who have been deprived of returning to their homes  pending the resolution of their cause.

Fatah will strive to preserve UNRWA as an international address for the rights of the refugees until their return to their homes and country.

Fatah even refers to Israeli Arabs as "refugees", let alone "refugees" living in camps in land under PLO control - it is a fundamental part of Fatah's platform to perpetuate the "refugee" issue forever, in concert with UNRWA. (The platform is also explicitly against Palestinians becoming citizens in Lebanon and remaining citizens in Jordan indefinitely.)

We still have a Fatah that refuses to sign a peace treaty unless every terrorist is released:

We commit ourselves to strive to liberate all Palestinian prisoners and never to sign any final peace agreement without the freedom of every one of them

Finally, we still have a Fatah that reserves the "right" to use terrorism:

Fatah adheres to the right of the Palestinian people to resist the occupation by all legitimate means, including the right to use armed struggle. Such a right is guaranteed by international law as long as the occupation, settlement, and the denial of our inalienable rights continue

The Fatah platform is out there, in English. I am convinced that not one member of the Obama administration ever read it, nor has any New York Times columnist that pretends to be an expert on the Middle East.

Hopefully, with the new administration, the truth about how Fatah's ideals are nearly interchangeable with those of Hamas will be noticed by more people.

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  • Monday, December 05, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon

+972 magazine says:
The number of Americans who support imposing sanctions on Israel over its defiant settlement policies has shot up to 46 percent, the same percentage of Americans who voted for Donald Trump in the presidential election.

That number has shot up nearly 10 percentage points over the past year, according to a national poll published by the Brookings Institute on Friday, on the sidelines of this week’s Saban Forum, “an annual dialogue between American and Israeli leaders.”

Among Democrats, a 60-percent majority “supported imposing some economic sanctions or taking more serious action” in response to Israeli settlements, the poll found. A much smaller number of Republican respondents (31 percent) support sanctions.

Now, look at how the question was worded:

One of the issues of tension between the United States and Israel has been its construction of Israeli settlements in the territories occupied by Israel in the 1967 war. These settlements are considered illegal by most of the international community and have been opposed by every U.S. administration, both Republican and Democratic. The Israeli government has continued to build settlements arguing that they have the right to do so, or that these are not obstacles to peace.
How do you believe the U.S. should react to new settlements? 

The question starts off by priming the target with "Settlements are a source of tension between the US and the Israelis," "Settlements are illegal," and " The US has consistently opposed them." The Israeli viewpoint is presented as "Israelis have no good or valid arguments to support settlements but they build them anyway."

It is no surprise that the poll was created by Shibley Telhami, the  Anwar Sadat Professor for Peace and Development at the University of Maryland, and author of "The World Through Arab Eyes."

Pollsters should always check their questions for unintentional bias. It is hard to believe that the bias in this question was not intentional.

What if the question was worded:
The Jewish people have lived in Judea and Samaria for thousands of years, and it is the central part of their history. The international community supports a Palestinian state in those areas where the Jews who live in their ancestral homeland would not be allowed to stay in their homes. Should the US support the right of Jews to continue to live  in the land of their ancestors, or not?
How would people answer that question?

Or perhaps:
The vast majority of Israeli settlers live on land that would become part of Israel in any conceivable peace plan. How should the US react when Israel allows new houses on land that does not impact any Palestinians whatsoever and will become part of Israel anyway?

The poll had other leading questions. For example:
As you may know, there have been suggestions that the UN Security Council should endorse the establishment of a Palestinian state. This idea has received some support in Europe, but opposition in Israel. If the UN Security Council considers such a plan, what do you think the U.S. should do as a member of the UN Security Council? 
How about adding "Israel and the US have supported a Palestinian state but have insisted that it only come about from negotiations, not from  unilateral action by the UN, which has been consistently historically biased against Israel"?

The question also doesn't describe the differences if the US votes no or abstains, which most respondents wouldn't necessarily know.

The rest of the poll has similar issues.

A hilarious but very accurate description of how pollsters can lead a respondent to the answers they want comes from the British comedy Yes Prime Minister:

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  • Monday, December 05, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon

On multiple occasions, Mahmoud Abbas has warned the world that Israel is turning the conflict into a religious conflict.

He said it to the UN Human Rights Council in October 2015.   He said it in a statement in November 2015. He said it in November 2014 and in October 2014, when he said, "The world know the dangers of using religion in political conflicts; we must all see what goes around us and Israel must pay attention and understand that such steps are dangerous to both Israel and others."

This is what Abbas said at the end of the Fatah conference Sunday:
When you return to your cities and villages and camps and fields tomorrow or the day after tomorrow remember every moment that what you have accomplished during this conference is the smaller Jihad; and the task before us now is to go onto greater jihad.
It is Abbas who chooses to frame the conflict in religious terms, not Israel.

And while he didn't call explicitly for a violent jihad, his closing remarks made it clear that violence will be condoned, as he praised the terrorists of the past and the present:

Congratulations to all of us have gathered here from all generations and all actors in the march of the Palestinian national struggle: pioneer guerrilla heroes from the beginning, and the brave revolution fighters in defense of Palestine...and the brave resistance fighters against the occupation in the occupied territory, and the courageous fighters for the intifada in Jerusalem and the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and the epic steadfastness  of our hero prisoners in Israeli jails.
Abbas praises violence and calls for jihad. This is not the Mahmoud Abbas that the Western media will ever mention.

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Sunday, December 04, 2016

  • Sunday, December 04, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon
Palestinian site Safa has an article that describes the Temple Mount Sifting Project, where tons of debris that was excavated from the Temple Mount by the Waqf in the late 1990s is being searched to find archaeological artifacts.

Findings so far have included coins, jewelry and tiles from the Second Temple period - and from the Second Temple itself.

But Muslim "experts" are now saying - without actually inspecting the artifacts - that every single thing that was found was from the Umayyad or Ottoman periods.

Because, of course, Jewish history is a myth. And the entire purpose of the Temple Mount Sifting Project is, according to this "expert," to falsify a fake history of a Jewish Temple and Jewish presence in the area.

The psychological projection is classic. Not only is it the Arabs who are trying to erase Jewish history, but the Temple Mount Sifting Project also has experts to identify Islamic artifacts!

Gilded glass mosaic tesserae from the
Early Islamic Period removed from the
Dome of the Rock exterior walls
 during later renovations.
Originally from Haifa, Peretz Reuven is our expert in the Islamic period pottery and artifacts. He originally got interested in the Islamic period while at Hebrew University. He began with Arabic and Islamic history, added in a bit of archaeology, and the rest is history. He has studied under some of the most widely published scholars, including Myriam Rosen-Ayalon, Rachel Milstein, and Hava Lazarus-Yafe. Now he works on many excavations and research projects across Jerusalem and Israel.

Peretz was working on a project with Dr. Eilat Mazar documenting all the walls of the Temple Mount, and researching and publishing the large ophel medallion when he met our director, Zachi Dvira. Zachi invited him to join our project, and now Peretz is researching all of the Early Islamic period pottery found by the Sifting Project. He is also planning to use his experience in researching architectural elements from the Roman, Byzantine, and Islamic periods to research the architectural elements found in our sifting.

The Early Islamic period assemblage from the Sifting Project is very rich in materials. We have a lot of ceramic vessels, many of which are glazed and elaborated. Though most of them are locally made, some were imported from Persia, Egypt, or parts of Europe.
The Jews are careful, as always, to preserve Muslim artifacts they find. Muslims are careful, as always, to destroy any vestiges of Jewish history that they find.

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  • Sunday, December 04, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon
4 bodies were recovered in a Gaza tunnel this weekend. They were missing for 9 days after Egypt flooded the tunnels.

No one is calling for revenge against Egypt for killing 4 Gazans.

Apparently, Gazans are still interested in trying to smuggle goods from Egypt.

Meanwhile, a Hamas member was electrocuted in a tunnel this past weekend as well. Here he is:

And Allah knows best.

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From Ian:

As Syria burns, the United Nations again bashes … Israel
French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault this week called the bloodshed in Syria, where Bashar al-Assad is butchering civilians, “a descent into Hell” and demanded an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council.
British Prime Minister Theresa May called the situation “horrific.”
The Security Council didn’t act — but the UN General Assembly managed to pass six resolutions targeting Israel.
One of them even calls for putting more people under Assad’s thumb, demanding that Israel cede the Golan Heights to Syria.
Another echoes the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s attempt in October to deny any Jewish (or Christian) ties to Jerusalem’s Temple Mount — a holy site in Judaism for 2,000 years — by using only its Islamic name.
It was all part of the General Assembly’s “Palestine Day,” a yearly festival of Israel-bashing that only serves to highlight the United Nations’ ludicrous bias and mock its stated goal of promoting peace.
Jimmy Carter’s biggest lie yet
Mark Twain once reiterated that “there are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics.” And former president Jimmy Carter has made a post-presidential career out of lying about Israel. The latest is this doozy, which appeared in his November 29 op-ed in the New York Times: “Over 4.5 million Palestinians live in these occupied territories…Most live largely under Israeli military rule…”
Not only is that a lie, but Carter knows it’s a lie. The former president has visited Ramallah , the Palestinian Authority’s capital city with a population of more than 57,000 residents, on numerous occasions — most recently in May 2015, when he placed a wreath at the tomb of arch-terrorist Yasser Arafat there. He has seen with his own eyes that there are no Israeli troops occupying that city, or any of the other cities where 98% of the Palestinian Arabs reside.
Carter knows that the PA, not Israel, rules those areas. He knows that the PA, not Israel, runs the schools, the courts, the police department, and all other aspects of daily life.
Since Carter used the figure 4.5-million in his op-ed, he must have been including Gaza in his accusation. Yet he knows there are no Israelis occupying Gaza. He knows that Hamas rules that area.
So how can the ex-president knowingly tell such blatant lies? The same question might be asked about many of his past statements about Israel:
IsraellyCool: WATCH: My First Look Inside An UNRWA Refugee Camp
A couple of weeks ago I toured Israel with Tommy Robinson. I’ve written about him before, for some he’s controversial, for me he’s a good friend I’d vouch for anytime. The best introduction to Tommy is the review of his book I posted here a year ago. All I will say from having spent a week with him is that none of the mainstream media lies about him hold up to any kind of scrutiny.
One of the highlights of the trip was a visit to one of the three UNRWA Refugee camps in Bethlehem. After our visit Tommy recorded this interview with our local guide.
He says what most of us already know, Western governments are prolonging the suffering of these people who are used as tools to keep the crony government workers and political leaders flush with cash.
Tommy Robinson interviews a Palestinian from Bethlehem UNRWA Camp
After visiting one of the UNRWA Refugee camps in Bethlehem, Tommy Robinson interviews the guide who showed us round

Tommy Robinson visited Israel: A response to the Jewish Chronicle’s attack
I invited Tommy Robinson to Israel for two reasons. I wanted to show him the real boundaries of Zionism today and give him a glimpse of the almost unfathomably deep connection between Jews and Israel.
I achieved both on our first day, starting from the beach in Tel Aviv, swinging through Arad and driving all the way north across Judea and Samaria along the west bank of the Jordan river, passing Massada and the Qumran caves as we headed to our destination on the shores of the Kinneret.
Tommy certainly has a colourful past and it’s all explained in his book, Enemy of the State. I’ve known him years but hadn’t met him till I arrived to pick him up from the beach in Tel Aviv where I told him and his friends to wait for me on the first morning of our trip.
Tommy learned of the amazing links between Jews and our land over the next few days. He saw Jewish and Christian history and our obvious, deep love for our land. He saw the stunning country we built out of the diseased ruin it had become under a succession of emperors, sultans, caliphs and Imperial British troops.
Since his earliest days opposing supremacist Islam on the streets of Luton, Tommy knew most of what he heard about Israel in the mainstream press was distorted. He knew how badly his own story had been twisted and could see the same being done to Israel.

The Ohio State University Jihad attack a few days ago did not really happen.

Or, to be more precise, for many Americans it did not really happen because they simply don't care about Islamic theological violence against their fellow Americans. The reason that many Americans, particularly of the progressive variety, tend not to care about this kind of violence is because to do so is considered "racist" by president Obama, the leadership of the Democratic Party, and the elite media.

Koranically-based attacks on innocent Americans are, therefore, perceived like the weather. A typhoon or a flood or an earthquake may happen now and again, but what can you do? You cannot dwell on such things. They are simply "acts of God" and there is very little to be done or said, for most of us, beyond, "Gee, how unlucky."

The truth is that the Ohio State attack will, with the obvious exception of 9/11, slide down the memory hole along with all the others. Abdul Razak Ali Artan, apparently inspired by the Palestinian-Arab "car ramming intifada" put eleven people in the hospital for reasons of Muslim religious intolerance while Democrats cannot even bring themselves to utter the words "radical Islamic terrorism."

We know, however, that the attack was done for religious reasons - and was thereby a Jihadi attack - because Abdul told us so on a recent Facebook posting where he wrote, "By Allah, I am willing to kill a billion infidels." It should also be noted, shamefully enough, that ONLY conservative outlets are covering this angle of the story.

The problem is that after eight years of Obama administration, and Democratic Party, obfuscation concerning the rise of political Islam people are terrified to so much as discuss the matter lest they get smeared as racist... which is part of the reason that we just saw the election of Donald Trump to the presidency. Progressive-left Democrats are not afraid that if they speak out against the most fascistic and widespread political movement in the world today that some crazed Shaheed will leap from the bushes with a scimitar, but something far worse. They are afraid that their own friends will look down upon them as Neanderthal racist pig farmers.

So, people won't discuss the Jihad because there is too much at stake. Friendships and reputations and, even, employment can be at risk. In Europe one can literally go on trial for questioning immigration policy in manners too blunt. Alternatively, in the United States we tend to apply social and economic pressure, rather than the direct threat of imprisonment, for crimes of political incorrectness.

Furthermore, in the US we all understand that the good people favor open immigration, because the US is a country of immigrants. It's only the bad people - the rat-bastard racist Trumpeteers - who want to significantly screen Arab-Muslim immigrants for ties to political Islam. Those who prefer open borders, however, insist that just as our ancestors came to this country with no intention other than to build better lives for themselves and their families, so people throughout the Middle East and North Africa are likewise seeking better lives. 

And, needless to say, no one should be more cognizant of this than American Jews, such as myself.

{My parents had me rather late in life, but my father came through Ellis Island as a baby in the arms of my grandmother early in the twentieth-century from the Ukraine via Argentina. They fled the Ukraine and the town of Medzhybizh which, as it happens, was the birthplace of the Chasidic movement. The Nazis also paid a visit to my paternal ancestral hometown in Operation Barbarossa during World War II. Were it not for my family's earlier departure, not a one of them would have survived, chances are.}

But, the point is that there is intense social pressure within the United States to avoid discussing either the Jihad or the potential problems with large-scale Arab-Muslim immigration. Consequently, we rarely even think about these questions, because as human beings we tend not to fret about things which have no real place within out cultural-political frameworks. So, because we don't discuss it, we don't think about it, and because we don't think about it we don't pursue vital questions around such issues.

It is for this reason that the great majority of Americans have not the slightest clue what is happening in Europe, particularly in Germany and Sweden, under the burden of mass Arab-Muslim immigration. They don't know about the Rape Game called "taharrush" or rising rates of immigrant crime or the never-ending violent conflicts with the cops and the indigenous population. To the extent that Americans have even heard of such figures as Geert Wilders or Robbie Thompson, they are vaguely dismissed as the irrational and hate-filled vestiges of hard-right White Supremacy in Europe.

Thus most Americans, like most Europeans before them, are simply tuning out the Jihad when it arrives in their own neighborhoods.

The Obama administration refuses to acknowledge it, the major media barely discusses it, and virtually no one in the Democratic Party does so beyond smearing the reputations of those of us who would like to open a national discussion on the question.

The truth, of course, is that there is nothing the least little bit "racist" about opposing Koranically-based violence in the United States, or anywhere else, for that matter. Opposing Islamic terrorism is no more racist than opposing German National Socialism or Soviet Communism. It has nothing to do with skin color or ethnicity and everything to do with a political-theocratic ideology that demands the submission or death of the infidel, the violent elimination of Gay people, the conquest of Jerusalem, and the complete domination of women.

And this is part of the reason why Trump took the White House.

Perhaps things will change when liberals rediscover their liberalism.

Michael Lumish is a blogger at the Israel Thrives blog as well as a regular contributor/blogger at Times of Israel and Jews Down Under.

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
  • Sunday, December 04, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon

The nomination of Keith Ellison to be the head of the Democratic National Committee has resulted in two remarkable stories over the past couple of weeks.

The first one was the Anti Defamation League's initial statement of support for him, discounting Ellison's history of anti-Israel and antisemitic statements, especially when he was involved in the Nation of Islam group.

A few days after a firestorm of criticism, the ADL released a more nuanced statement about Ellison (and pretended that they issued that statement simultaneously with the initial praise of him:)

While he has stated his support for Israel and a two-state solution, Rep. Ellison has taken the other side at critical moments. He voted against the US providing supplemental funding for Israel’s anti-missile Iron Dome program at the very time that Hamas missiles were raining down on Israeli civilians. He has criticized Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza, ignoring Israel’s legitimate security concerns. He supported the JCPOA despite strong Israeli resistance to the deal. And it is unclear that he would oppose efforts by the Palestinian Authority to undertake unilateral measures to achieve statehood in the short-term, a surefire recipe for disaster in the long-term.
These positions alone raise questions about where Rep. Ellison would take the party. As chairman, would he ensure that the Democratic party prioritize its historic support for the Jewish state? In the event of a future conflict, would he ignore Israel’s legitimate security considerations? We do not know the answers to these questions, but their intersection with other trending issues raise even more concerns.
Then, the Investigative Project unearthed a much more recent speech that Ellison made, after he was already a member of Congress, which was unabashedly antisemitic as he claimed that US policy was entirely driven by Israeli Jews:

The United States foreign policy in the Middle East is governed by what is good or bad through a country of seven million people. A region of 350 million all turns on a country of seven million. Does that make sense? [A male says "no"]. Is that logic? Right? When the people who, when the Americans who trace their roots back to those 350 million get involved, everything changes. 
And that wasn't all that he said as a member of Congress:
A year earlier, as conflict raged between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, Ellison told Al Jazeera that "the people who have a strong sympathy for the Israeli position dominate the conversation. It is really not politically safe to say there have been two sides to this."
A month later, Ellison told the BBC that outreach to Hamas was not feasible for a member of Congress – not because it is a terrorist organization with an anti-Semitic charter demanding Israel's destruction – but because it is too politically risky.
"What I can tell you now is that the constellation of political forces in the United States at this moment would make a member of Congress who has reached out directly to Hamas spend all their time defending that decision and would not be able to deal with other critical issues that need to be focused on. So for example if I were to make a move like that I wouldn't be able to focus my attention on the humanitarian issue. I'd have to defend myself to my colleagues why I reached out to a terrorist organization. It would absorb all of my time. I would spend a lot of time fighting off personal attack and would not be able to achieve goals that I have."
Just after the 2009 Gaza war, Ellison was among 22 House members to vote "present" rather than take a stand on a nonbinding House resolution "recognizing Israel's right to defend itself against attacks from Gaza, reaffirming the United States' strong support for Israel, and supporting the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Ellison claimed he was "torn" on the issue because it "barely mentions the human suffering of the Palestinians in Gaza."
And, of course, Ellison was one of a handful of members of Congress to vote against funding for Israel's Iron Dome, a purely defensive weapon against Hamas rockets.

After these latest revelations came out, the ADL finally woke up, however reluctantly:
Rep. Ellison’s remarks are both deeply disturbing and disqualifying.  His words imply that U.S. foreign policy is based on religiously or national origin-based special interests rather than simply on America’s best interests. Additionally, whether intentional or not, his words raise the specter of age-old stereotypes about Jewish control of our government, a poisonous myth that may persist in parts of the world where intolerance thrives, but that has no place in open societies like the U.S. 
That was December 1.

On December 2, J-Street released a statement that not only supports Ellison, but it accuses his critics - including the ADL - of being anti-Muslim!

Rep. Ellison is and has long been a friend of Israel, a champion of pro-Israel, pro-peace policies and an admirable elected official whose thoughtful and considered leadership has shown deep respect for Jewish values and the Jewish people.

Attempts to paint Rep. Ellison as anti-Israel or anti-Semitic aid a concerted and transparent smear campaign driven by those whose true objections may be to the Congressman’s religion, strong support for the two-state solution and/or concern for Palestinian rights. These opponents seek to unearth the slightest inartful statements from decades in public life, take them out of context and use them as a weapon to silence responsible and important voices like Rep. Ellison’s.
J-Street refers to Ellison's antisemitism as "the slightest inartful statements." His unwavering criticism of Israel is simply "concern for Palestinian rights."

J-Street claims to be pro-Israel, yet it cannot find a single example in Keith Ellison's long history of supporting antisemites and terrorists that gives the group the slightest pause. Not one.

J-Street's hypocrisy doesn't end there. In their statement they claim that pro-Israel groups are trying to "silence" critics of Israel. So J-Street calls for them to be silenced!

The recent spate of attacks on Rep. Keith Ellison’s record of support for Israel and the Jewish community need to come to an end. It is time to retire the playbook that aims to silence any American official seeking high office who has dared to criticize certain Israeli government policies.

J Street believes that this recurrent process undermines our ability to have open, honest and productive conversations about Israel and the Middle East in our national politics, and that it does deep and lasting damage to the American Jewish community.
In other words, J-Street - knowing it has no possibility of winning the debate on Ellison based on his actual statements - calls for his critics to stop criticizing him. Because they are the ones who should be silenced, not anti-Israel and antisemitic rhetoric.

This episode crystallizes J-Street perfectly: it isn't interested in open debate, but in silencing anyone who supports Israel.

One thing is clear: J-Street is exactly as pro-Israel as Ellison is.

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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 12 years and over 25,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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