Monday, December 31, 2012

Rabbit, Not Rabbi, Rosen

Did you know that the term
Cybergeddon (from tech. cyber-, lit. "computer"; Hebrew: Megiddo, extracted from Har Megiddo ("mountain of final battle") refers to cataclysm resulting from a large-scale sabotage of all computerized networks, systems and activities.

There is a bit of Hebrew there but no Rabbi.

Rabbi?  No, Rabbit.
Cybergeddon follows the story of agent Chloe Jocelyn as she investigates a slew of seemingly unrelated cyberattacks with fellow agent Frank Parker and incarcerated master hacker Chase ‘Rabbit’ Rosen. Chloe and her team must crack the worldwide cybercrime ring led by Gustov Dobreff before it is too late. In a world where everyone is connected, everyone is at risk.


It's a nine-part movie, more properly, a web-series.  Content is digitally distributed.


Israel's Youth Train for Warfare


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, this evening (Monday, 31 December 2012), at Ashkelon Academic College, attended the opening ceremony for a national program to train young people for cyberwarfare.

Prime Minister Netanyahu said: "The threat of cyberattacks against Israel comes from Iran and other elements. Our vital systems are targets for attack and this will only increase as we enter the digital age. We are bolstering our ability to deal with these threats via the Israel National Cyber Bureau (INCB) that we established, and we are building a digital Iron Dome for Israel. To the outstanding pupils that are studying in the special program, I say: 'You are the future interceptors for the State of Israel.' We are one of the world's leaders in the field of cybernetics and we must maintain this position; therefore, we will continue to cultivate the generation of the future."

INCB head Dr. Eviatar Matania said: "We realize that many elements in the world are interested in Israeli minds in the field of cybernetics, as well as in how they are developed. We must improve methods of operation and it is our intention to do so. This program is an example of the actions that we are advancing in the field of cybernetics in order to develop the high-quality human capital in the State of Israel."

From PMO.


The Mechitza Hat

A wonder.

Serves two purposes at once:

a) it fully covers the hair


b) acts as a portable mechitza:-

 Er, I am not responsible for the dress choice.


Bennett Humor

The Hebrew reads:

He'll give us an order you won't be able to refuse.


This Isn't an Islamic Weather Report

It isn't despite the use of the word "storm":-

Jewish settlers storm Aqsa mosque

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)– Jewish settlers stormed the holy Aqsa mosque in occupied Jerusalem on Monday morning in an attempt to offer Talmudic rituals.

Local sources said that Israeli policemen arrested one of the guards inside the mosque for trying to stop the settlers from performing those rituals inside the Islamic holy shrine.

And from the original Arabic story:

A number of settlers and Israeli election candidates, accompanied by groups of Israeli intelligence, stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Dnsuh several times since the early morning hours, where he witnessed the Al-Aqsa Mosque frequent incursions of the Mughrabi Gate guarded by the Israeli occupation forces.

the man in the light brown coat on the right front is Arieh King

The  "Aqsa Foundation" in its statement called for the need to alert the Muslim and Arab world to the seriousness what is going on from the continuous attacks by the Israeli occupation on the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which calls for putting the issue of Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa a top priority and work to save the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the city of Jerusalem from the clutches of the Israeli occupation.

The "Aqsa Foundation" said that a group of settlers numbering 27 settlers, including "Arieh King" candidate for the Party "Otzma to Yisrael" raided in an organized tour of the various parts of it, and then followed incursions individual by the number of settlers.
At the same time stormed groups of intelligence occupation Al-Aqsa Mosque in two installments, with a of 41 element, raided the old Marwani mosque and Dome of the Rock, as the two elements of the intelligence stormed Chapel Islamic Museum in the western corner south of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which is which is rare.

And by the way, while shoes must be removed when stepping on to mosque prayer rugs, I guess chairs are not problem.

At the wedding of the children of the Abu Sneineh and Abdeen families' wedding in Al-Aqsa:-


Madonna and the Book of Job


These verses from Chapter 6:

15 My brethren have dealt deceitfully as a brook, as the channel of brooks that overflow,
16 Which are black by reason of the ice, and wherein the snow hideth itself;
17 What time they wax warm, they vanish, when it is hot, they are consumed out of their place. 


These pictures:-

Can't identify her yet?

Try now:


Making Noise

An Otzma L'Yisrael campaign ad complaining about the noise from the nearby mosque, neighborhood party, the motorcycle of the neighbor or the next-door infant crying.


Aren't You Too Fed Up To Wake Up In Arabic?


Low-Intensity Conflict Report #63, December 31, 2012

Low-Intensity Conflict Report #63, December 31, 2012

These reports are translated and publicized by Yehudit Tayar for Hatzalah Yehudah and Shomron with the clearance and confirmation of the IDF.  Hatzalah Yehudah and Shomron is a voluntary emergency medical organization with over 500 volunteer doctors, paramedics, medics who are on call 24/7 and work along with the IDF, 669 IAF Airborn Rescue, the security officers and personal throughout Yesha and the Jordan Valley, and with MDA.

We, the volunteers of Hatzalah Yehudah and Shomron go out to rescue anyone who needs our emergency medical assistance; including civilians, military and Arabs also those within the PA territories. (with IDF presence) To us a life is precious and we go out at risk leaving home and family or stopping on the road to rescue anyone in need.

December 31, 2012

Shomron: Again Arabs attack the Givat HaShkaidia ( Almond Hill) near  Yitzhar, threw rocks and again attempted to ignite the field and attack the residents.  IDF responded.

Jerusalem Region: Near Har Adar Arabs attacked Border Police patrol with Molotov cocktail .

Benjamin Region: Haramia Valley; Arabs attack Israeli vehicles with rocks.

December 30, 2012

Israeli bus attacked by Arabs with rocks causing damage to the front windshield that was bullet proof near Ben Inun Junction.

Southern Hevron Hills near Al Fawwar Israeli bus attacked by Arabs with rocks causing damage to window and body of the bus.

Hevron:  IDF soldiers guarding at post at Jewish cemetery reported seeing explosion on the fence most likely a Molotov cocktail.

December 29, 2012

IDF female soldier injured by Arabs when attacked with rocks near Neve Zuf in the Benjamin Region at Nabi Salah.

Highway 443 Israeli injured from rocks thrown by Arabs between Modi'in and Bet Horon.

Abu Dis- Molotov cocktail thrown on IDf post north-east of Bethlehem.

Hawara –Betot Junction IDF position attacked by Arabs with Molotov cocktail: IDF spokesman releases:IDF force captured 2 terrorists possessing gun, 2 knives and a Molotov cocktail that was ready to throw.

IDF spokesman releases  that on Gush Etzion-Hevron Highway near El Arub  Arabs attacked IDF post with Molotov cocktail.

December 28, 2012

Highway 443 near Hurbat AL Matzvat between Modi'in and Bet Horon Arabs attacked Israeli vehicles with rocks injuring one of the travelers.

Near Chavat Gilad in the Shomron Arabs attack Israeli vehicles with rocks.

Near Utzrin Israeli vehicles attacked by Arabs with rocks.

December 27, 2012

Rock Attacks:

South-west of Hevron near El Hawar Arabs attacked Israeli vehicles with rocks causing damage to the vehicles.

Arab vehicle attacked by Arabs with rocks near El Arub on Gush Etzion-Hevron Highway damaging window.(mistaken for Israeli car)

Alon Road near El-Mughaiyir and 2 Molotov attacks against Israeli vehicles.

Kever Rachel (Tomb of Rachel Bet Lechem) Arabs attacked the site with rocks and pipe bomb.  The bomb exploded inside of PA controlled area.

Again Arabs attack Kever Rachel with pipe bomb which exploded in the air and particles hit the site of the Tomb. No injuries.

Benajmin Region:

South of Ofra near Ain Yabrud damage caused to Israeli car.

Near Aish Kodesh

Near Shiloh at Turmous Aya

North of Eli

Near Neve Zuf

Near the vineyards of Harasha Arabs placed a barricade of rocks and started a fire.  The security coordinator of the community was attacked by the Arabs with rocks causing damage to his vehicle.

Gush Etzion-Hevron Highway near El Arub.

Gush Etzion: near the security fence of Karmei Zur a number of Arabs attacked with rocks and lit and fire bomb.  IDF responded.

December 26, 2012

Southern Hevron Hills: Arabs threw rocks on Israeli bus between Bet Chagai and the Yehudah Brigade Headquarters.

Benjamin Region:  Near Shiloh at Turmos Aya Israeli vehicles attacked by Arabs with rocks damaging 3 cars.

Gush Etzion-Hevron Highway:  Near Bet Umar following a funeral of a Arab resident of the village tens of Arabs who attended the funeral attacked IDF force with rocks.  The IDF force made the attackers retreat into the village.

Gush Etzion:  Near Tekoa Arabs attack Israeli vehicles with rocks causing damage.

East of Shechem at Bekaot checkpost Arab caught with explosive device and 10 ct. knife on his possession.  Bomb squad detonated the explosive device.

Arabs attack Israeli vehicles near Migdalim Junction.

Shomron:  Near Yitzhar 15 Arab agitators climbed the Shkaidia Hill and attacked with rocks with the intent to perpetrate violence.

Hawara: ambulance and private Israeli vehicle attacked by Arabs with rocks.

December 25, 2012

IDF Post at Shoafat Arabs attacked the post with rocks and Molotov cocktail.  Border Police carried out investigation.

Arabs attacked IDF patrol near Tekoa.  In addition the patrol reported an object thrown on them after which they heard an explosion. Incident under investigation by IDF.

Burning object hurled from Arab taxi toward Israeli vehicles near the residence of Moshe Zar near Karnei Shomron.

Molotov cocktails thown towards truck by  Rama Base near A-Ram.

Arabs threw rocks on Border Police patrol at Issawiya.

Benjamin Region:

Between Ofra and Givat Asaf rocks were thrown by Arabs on Israeli vehicles causing damage.

Arabs placed a barricade of rocks between Rimonim and Michmas causing an Arab driver who did not see the blockade to crash into it and damage his car.


The Irony Jerry Auerbach Caught

Irony: the Women of the Wall web page features a brief video of several women entering the nearby police station after their recent refusal to comply with the rules for prayer. They ignored the mezuzah on the door frame. The only woman who touched it reverently was the policewoman [at 1:23].



Fathoming Fathom

I just received the hard copy of Fathom, which is the new organ of BICOM (the Britain Israel Communications and Research Centre, an independent British organisation founded in 2001 to foster a more complete understanding of Israel).

Why Fathom?  Why a new quarterly journal of "expert analysis, informed opinion and genuine debate about Israel and the region".

They presume that

Today’s discussion about Israel is too often supercharged with emotion and underpowered in expertise and nuance. It is time to confront this challenge. We stand at a crossroad and in need of tough-minded and expert intellectual analysis.

First, there is a desperate need for a deeper understanding of Israeli society itself – complex and fast-changing, commanding global attention, yet often reduced to a mere caricature by parts of the mass media, civil society and intellectual culture. Fathom will present Israel in HD.

However, the editorial board is playing from a stacked deck:

Two states for two peoples remains the only way to balance Jewish and Palestinian demands for sovereign independence and national self-determination, but there has been a waning of support for this project,  among intellectuals especially. Fathom will be a partisan and artisan of the two-state solution, helping to put some intellectual substance back into the project of mutual recognition and peaceful coexistence between Israelis and Palestinians.

There is no "only one way".  There can be a kaleidoscope merger of methods and approaches, or a diluted ideological position or some form of compromise on the mechanics of administration.  But there can be no yielding on the requirement for the retention of Judea and Samaria.

Two states already exist, indeed two Arabs states of Palestine: Jordan and Gaza.  The Palestinian Authority, if you wish is the third statelet in the area.  That's 3:1 against Israel.

The Pals. refuse to recognize two states where one is the nation-state of the Jewish people, since Jews are not a nation.  And they have not yielded on the right of return.  And Mashal declares all of "Palestine", i.e., no Israel, as the future Arab state.

This "Palestine" is not democratic, is not transparent.  It oppresses.  It tortures.  Its own.

It incites.  It misleads.  It misrepresents history and archaeology and promotes discord and terror.

It does not adhere to commitments, obligations and responsibilities.  It is an anti-Jewish regime, one that practices apartheid.

It is one thing to promote intellectual discussion and exchange of views.

It is another to argue from an indefensible framing of the conflict's solution.


Are You Poll Fooled?

Fooled by this poll*?

Poll: Most right-wing Israelis would support Palestinian state, division of Jerusalem

The principles of the agreement as presented to respondents were for two states - Israel for the Jewish people and Palestine for the Palestinians, with Palestinian refugees having the right to return only to their new country.

BTW, Molad, the group behind this latest left-wing progressive poll, is a regurgitation other Israel-bashing bullies such as Breaking the Silence, Sheikh Jarah Solidarity, et al. with Avrum Burg which 'merits' the worship of Haaretz providing their headline status.

But didn't we just read that 67% of Israelis won't divide Jerusalem?  
And didn't we read this:

The May (five months ago!) data is from Tel Aviv University's Walter Lebach Institute for Jewish-Arab Coexistence... Some findings:
- 80 percent of Israelis don't believe it's possible to make peace with the Palestinians. Half of them don't believe it's ever possible to make peace, while half don't believe it's possible in the foreseeable future. About two-thirds support a diplomatic solution, but many more still eagerly buy the convenient argument that there's no partner.

- only about 20 percent of secular Jews see the demographic threat as an existential problem and only one-third believe the occupation and the settlements are creating a security threat to Israel.
- nearly half the respondents consider Palestinian terror a major security problem;
- Within the Green Line, the number who consider themselves rightists or right-leaning has increased from 41 percent to 48 percent...

Previously in 2008, there was this:

Two-thirds of Israelis support a total or partial resumption of building communities in Judea and Samaria, according to a poll broadcast on Wednesday, as peace talks are due to restart in Washington.

Israpundit reminds us of this one this past June:

A new poll shows a solid majority of Israelis – 64% – supports the continuation of the settlement enterprise in Judea and Samaria. The remaining 36% support a temporary freeze on Jewish construction there or a complete freeze of construction. While these numbers are unchanged from last year, this year’s poll shows a small increase compared to last year in the percentages of Israelis who think Jewish settlement in Judea and Samaria is a “truly Zionist deed” (64%) and that Judea and Samaria are the country’s security belt (57%)
You should be interested in this late 2010 survey in which respondents were asked (among many others) the following two questions:

“If during peace talks, Israel succeeds in reaching a permanent peace with the Palestinians that is backed by the United States and includes the evacuation of all of the settlements in the West Bank/Judea and Samaria, in your opinion, should Israel sign or not sign such an agreement?”

And “if it includes only the evacuation of the settlements and territories […] that are outside the large settlement blocs, since the large blocs would remain in Israeli hands, in your opinion should Israel sign or not sign the agreement?”

The answers:

A large majority (72%) favors such negotiations, but only 33% think they are likely to bear fruit.   Is there a price for extending the construction freeze? A clear majority (74%) supports Netanyahu’s demand that the Palestinian leadership recognize Israel as the state of the Jewish people as a condition for extending the building freeze in the settlements...

Is there a price for peace? In return for a permanent peace with the Palestinians backed by the United States, half of the Jewish public are willing to evacuate settlements that lie beyond the large settlement blocs (a minority of 43% oppose this). However, only a minority (28%) thinks Israel should sign such an agreement and pay for it by evacuating all of the settlements in the territories (a majority of 65% oppose such an evacuation).

This past Aprilin response to a question about the urgency of achieving Israeli-Palestinian peace,

58% of the Jewish respondents and 51% of the Arab respondents defined the issue as urgent or very urgent. At the same time, 58% of the Jewish interviewees and 61% of the Arab ones saw no chance of ending the conflict in accordance with the "two states for two peoples" formula at the present time.

And earlier in January, it was found that

a large majority (76%) preferring that Israel remain a country with a Jewish majority, with one-quarter preferring that Israel continue to rule all of the Land of Israel west of the Jordan. Asked how they would respond if they knew that "continued Israeli rule over the West Bank would lead to one state for Jews and Arabs in the entire Land of Israel that would not have a Jewish majority,” the majority (63%) answered that in this case they would oppose continued rule in the territories. However, the majority (54%) did not agree with the claim that continued rule in the territories will result in a country without a Jewish majority. Some 54% believe that continued rule in the territories will not prevent Israel from remaining a Jewish and democratic state. In other words, the public indeed prefers that Israel be a Jewish state over continued rule over the whole Land of Israel, but most of it does not believe there is a contradiction between the two objectives.

And I've collected comments:
So according to the poll, Israel is ready to make peace if the Arabs will implement their agreements...When can we expect the obvious follow-up polls measuring how willing the Arabs are to implement what is necessary to make all this happen?
-   -   -
What the poll shows is that Israelis from left to right all want peace..Perhaps the reason that more Israelis have turned to the right is because of what the poll doesn't show...What the poll does not show is how the same number of Arabs feel; no recognition of Israel as a Jewish state.  No agreement without the right of return.  Nothing doing without Jerusalem as their capital. No respect for other religions or their holy places.  And the list goes on. The last two decades of concessions, autonomy, expulsion of Jews from their homes, arming the Palestinian police, just to name a few of the major 'efforts' Israel has made, have resulted in a real peace being further than ever and an Israel on probation in the eyes of the world.   That giving up land makes our enemies more intransigent, not less.  And coexistence?  Nary a peep about that anymore.

-   -   -

I bet if there was a poll that asked Israelis whether they would support 3 states, so long as it brought peace, they would get the same percentage supporting, so too with 4 states. etc.  Offer peace, Israelis support it - in theory, because that's as far as they will get to real peace.  

-   -   -

The only point in publishing polls that aren't grounded in reality is to create a false narrative. I think that's why so many object to the Haaretz - Abraham poll. It's propaganda. 

-    -   -

As for the Arabs:

·         the results of the present poll show that respondents are divided on the issue of a two-state solution, with 47 percent supporting and 50 percent opposing. Support for a two-state solution is higher in Gaza (51 percent) than in the West Bank (44 percent).

(k/t=Yishai K)

                Thanks to Dr. Aaron Lerner - IMRA we have an analysis based on the poll's data.

Well, take a look at what the pollsters are asking. There's a trick to it. Notice the loophole:  "implementation would take place only after the Palestinians would fulfill all their commitments with an emphasis on fighting terror"

If you haven't figured it out yet, here is the obvious question that the pollsters didn't ask:  "Do you think, if Israel accepted this deal, that the Palestinians would fulfill all their commitments?"

...So who is right about the real thinking of the Israeli street?  The folks commissioning a poll that declines to actually figure out what the public is really thinking or yours truly?  Well consider this result from a poll of Israelis interviewed by phone between December 9 and 13, 2012 in a poll planned and supervised by Prof.
Yaacov Shamir, the Harry S. Truman Research Institute for the Advancement of Peace and the Department of Communication and Journalism at the Hebrew University 60% of Israelis think the Palestinians want to conquer Israel (42% also kill most of the Jews & 18% not necessary kill the Jews)

And this Dahaf poll of Jews the end of November 2012 commissioned by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs: Would a withdrawal to the 1967 borders and the division of Jerusalem bring about an end of the conflict? Yes 15% No 83%

No. The Israeli street doesn't think that pigs can fly.

New Polls on Israeli Public Opinion
December 2012
Positions  of the Israeli Public Regarding a Possible Peace Agreement
The S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace


See this.


Channel 2 Poll: 70%:25% Not possible to reach solution to the dispute with the Palestinians in the near future
Dr. Aaron Lerner - IMRA   31 December 2012

Poll of Israeli adults (including Arabs) carried out the week of 31 December for Israel Television Channel 2 and broadcast on 31 December.

How do you classify yourself politically? [the figures do not add to 100%! apparently the folks at Channel 2 don't bother to proofread]

Right 48% Center 28% Left 26% Don't know 5%

What party loyally represents the Right in Israel? [Asked before report that PM Netanyahu to stand by Bar Ilan Address on Palestinian state]
Bayit Yehudi 33% Likud-Beiteinu 32% Otzma Leyisrael 16% Shas 2%

Is it possible to reach a solution to the dispute with the Palestinians in the near future?
Yes 25% No 70% Don't know 5%


Suggested Reading

By Michael Zimmerman who notes

We see in the “Arab Spring” (or “Winter”) that elections have not been accompanied by minorities’ rights being protected, a central feature of real democracies.

And Jews, are a minority in the Middle East.


Have You Read Aristeas' Letter?

As explained, the Letter of Aristeas (and see this book)

was a letter addressed from Aristeas to his brother Philocrates...Over twenty manuscripts of this letter are preserved...the letter's author alleges to be a be a courtier of Ptolemy II Philadelphus (reigned 281-246 BCE).

Most scholars hold that the letter was a

pseudepigraphal work of pseudo-history produced in Alexandria, probably in the mid-2nd century BC, to promote the cause of Judaism...The author’s purpose was to present Judaism in a favourable light to pagans and make strict observance of religious laws attractive to Hellenistic Jews...The writer used current Hellenistic literary conventions and the technical language of the Alexandrian court, but his Greek style and several historical inaccuracies indicate that he was a deliberate archaist. His concern for the welfare of Jewish slaves, his romantic picture of Palestinian Jewry, and his efforts to explain the theory behind Jewish dietary laws mark him as a Jew rather than a pagan.

As to its dating,

the general consensus [is] that it was likely written in the last third of the 2nd century B.C.E. (i.e. ca. 130-100 B.C.E.) - although some scholars (e.g. Jelicoe and Orlinsky) date it as early as 170...Under the cloak of a Gentile praising Judaism, it defended Judaism to Jews by letting Jewish readers look at their tradition through the eyes of an outsider, who found not only something commendable, but traditions corresponding to high values in Hellenistic society. As an apology for the prestige of Judaism, this document is one of the most striking and vigorous attempts to bridge the gap between Judaism and Hellenism for which we have evidence. 


This article proposes that the Letter of Aristeas was written in the late third century bce, either towards the end of the reign of Ptolemy IV (222–205 bce) or the beginning of the reign of Ptolemy V (204–180 bce). This dating is supported, inter alia, by the list of harbors in the Letter (115) and by the Sitz im Leben of Jewish life in Egypt that the Letter reflects.

In the end, the letter attests to a physical reality even if it is polemical or theological propaganda.

As another scholar writes:

major parts of the book relate the expedition members’ impressions of the Land of Israel, Jerusalem, the Temple and the High Priest and describe in detail the philosophical banquet in which the king and his friends participated together with the seventy-two sages that came from Jerusalem. Clearly then, since it exhibits characteristics of other genres such as utopian geography and philosophy, Aristeas should not be regarded as historiography alone...
 ...the core of the ideology [of the letter] is easily discernible: a combination of total loyalty to Judaism and deep and active involvement with the Hellenistic world and culture. This combination is revealed in the writer’s affection for and identification with the Hellenistic world on the one hand, and in the logic and justice attributed to the laws of the Torah, the central place of God and the importance of the Land of Israel, Jerusalem and the Temple on the other

As to that physical, geographical reality, what does it contain that, for example, could deny the Islamic Temple Denial campaign?

Well, this:
Description of Jerusalem.
(a) The temple (and the water-works system).
(b) The ceremony.
(c) The citadel.
(d) The city.
(e) The countryside.

Excerpts from Chapter Four:

...but I will first of all give you a description of the whole country. When we arrived in the land of the Jews we saw the city situated 84 in the middle of the whole of Judea on the top of a mountain of considerable altitude. On the summit the temple had been built in all its splendour. It was surrounded by three walls more than seventy cubits high and in length and breadth corresponding to the structure of the edifice. All the buildings 85 were characterized by a magnificence and costliness quite unprecedented. It was obvious that no expense had been spared on the door and the fastenings, which connected it with the door-posts, and 86 the stability of the lintel. The style of the curtain too was thoroughly in proportion to that of the entrance. Its fabric owing to the draught of wind was in perpetual motion, and as this motion was communicated from the bottom and the curtain bulged out to its highest extent, it afforded a pleasant 87 spectacle from which a man could scarcely tear himself away. The construction of the altar was in keeping with the place itself and with the burnt offerings which were consumed by fire upon it, and the approach to it was on a similar scale. There was a gradual slope up to it, conveniently arranged for the purpose of decency, and the ministering priests were robed in linen garments, down to their 88 ankles. The Temple faces the east and its back is toward the west. The whole of the floor is paved with stones and slopes down to the appointed places, that water may be conveyed to wash away the 89 blood from the sacrifices, for many thousand beasts are sacrificed there on the feast days. And there is an inexhaustible supply of water, because an abundant natural spring gushes up from within the temple area. There are moreover wonderful and indescribable cisterns underground, as they pointed out to me, at a distance of five furlongs all round the site of the temple, and each of them has countless pipes 90 so that the different streams converge together...

92 The ministration of the priests is in every way unsurpassed both for its physical endurance and for its orderly and silent service. For they all work spontaneously, though it entails much painful exertion, and each one has a special task allotted to him. The service is carried on without interruption - some provide the wood, others the oil, others the fine wheat flour, others the spices; others 93 again bring the pieces of flesh for the burnt offering, exhibiting a wonderful degree of strength. For they take up with both hands the limbs of a calf, each of them weighing more than two talents, and throw them with each hand in a wonderful way on to the high place of the altar and never miss placing them on the proper spot. In the same way the pieces of the sheep and also of the goats are wonderful both for their weight and their fatness. For those, whose business it is, always select the beasts which are without blemish and specially fat, and thus the sacrifice which I have described, 94 is carried out. There is a special place set apart for them to rest in, where those who are relieved from duty sit...Everything is carried out with 96 reverence and in a way worthy of the great God.

...100 But in order that we might gain complete information, we ascended to the summit of the neighbouring citadel and looked around us. It is situated in a very lofty spot, and is fortified with many towers, which have been built up to the very top of immense stones, with the object, as we were informed, of 101 guarding the temple precincts, so that if there were an attack, or an insurrection or an onslaught of the enemy, no one would be able to force an entrance within the walls that surround the temple. On the towers of the citadel engines of war were placed and different kinds of machines, and the position was 102 much higher than the circle of walls which I have mentioned. The towers were guarded too by most trusty men who had given the utmost proof of their loyalty to their country...The citadel was the special protection of the temple and its founder had fortified it so strongly that it might efficiently protect it.

105 The size of the city is of moderate dimensions. It is about forty furlongs in circumference, as far as one could conjecture. It has its towers arranged in the shape of a theatre, with thoroughfares leading between them. Now the cross roads of the lower towers are visible but those of the upper 106 towers are more frequented. For the ground ascends, since the city is built upon a mountain. There are steps too which lead up to the cross roads, and some people are always going up, and others down and they keep as far apart from each other as possible on the road because of those who 107 are bound by the rules of purity, lest they should touch anything which is unlawful... 

A great quantity of spices and precious stones and gold is brought into the country by the Arabs. For the country is well adapted not only for agriculture but also for commerce, and the 115 city is rich in the arts and lacks none of the merchandise which is brought across the sea. It possesses too suitable and commodious harbours at Askalon, Joppa, and Gaza, as well as at Ptolemais which was founded by the King and holds a central position compared with the other places named, being not far distant from any of them. The country produces everything in abundance, 116 since it is well watered in all directions and well protected from storms. The river Jordan, as it is called, which never runs dry, flows through the land. Originally (the country) contained not less than 60 million acres-though afterwards the neighbouring peoples made incursions against it...

Other mountain torrents, as they are called, flow down into the plain and encompass the parts about Gaza and the district of 118 Ashdod. The country is encircled by a natural fence and is very difficult to attack and cannot be assailed by large forces, owing to the narrow passes, with their overhanging precipices and deep ravines, and the rugged character of the mountainous regions which surround all the land. 119 We were told that from the neighbouring mountains of Arabia copper and iron were formerly obtained...


The Temple.


Arab merchants.

So, is denial an historical option?


Yikes! Another 'Settlement' Expected?

Well, it reads that way in the NYTimes:-

but it's a story on

Banking regulators [who] are said to be close to a $10 billion settlement with 14 banks that would end the government’s efforts to hold lenders responsible for foreclosure abuses.

Okay, everyone relax.

No abuse of "Palestinianism".  No in-your-face-Obama.  No who-the-heck-are-you-EU.

Just another American economic matter.


Sunday, December 30, 2012

Inside Al-Aqsa


More clips here.


Temple Mount Textual Analysis

How Ir Amim (Terrestrial Jerusalem)'s Daniel Seidemann and Americans for Peace Now's Lara Friedman twist things around in their Status quo on the Temple Mount? from last October 17th.

Recent developments in Jerusalem pose a threat to the stability of the city and to the region...[Jewish] activists challenged the Israeli-imposed ban on Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount...
No, not the Women of the Wall.  But really, really dangerous Jews:-
...the growing power of an emboldened group of Israeli activists focused on the Temple Mount are today coalescing into concrete initiatives that aspire to alter the status quo at the site for the first time since 1967. 
Actually, it has been the Arabs who having been consistentally altering the status quo with building mosques and prayer platofrms and detsroying and obliterating Jewish historical artifacts.

A bit of history:
Israel captured the Temple Mount/al-Haram al-Sharif on June 7, 1967, at the height of the 1967 War. Arriving on the scene, legendary Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Dayan spotted Israeli flags flying over the Mount and swiftly ordered them removed, reportedly stating: We don't need a holy war.
He didn't convince the Arab Muslims and co-religionists of that.  They drummed up a religious war at every opportunity.

The arrangement was
...control of all but one of the gates to the Mount -- [is] in the hands of Islamic authorities, known as the Waqf. This same understanding led Israeli courts from the outset to interpret Israel's first post-1967 war piece of legislation, the Law for the Protection of Holy Sites, as making the exercise of religious freedoms subordinate to considerations like public safety and security. All Israeli governments, backed by the court, have subsequently prohibited Jewish prayer on the Mount...

Any other field of social activity so treated would be well supported by the two but not the Temple Mount. Too Jewish, I guess.

And then they mention, obliquely, me and friends who founded El Har Hashem in 1971, after the short-lived Ariel, to be followed by The Temple Mount Faithful:-

A few Jewish activists challenged the Temple Mount/al-Haram al-Sharif status quo from the start. They aspired to turn the esplanade into a site of Jewish worship, often belittling or denying the Muslim attachments to the site, and with some among them speaking openly of their desire to erase the mosques at the site and replace them with the third Jewish temple. They launched perennially unsuccessful appeals to the court demanding the right to pray on the Mount. Over time, they made inroads into mainstream Israeli society...

They do note a Islamic negative:

Their cause was aided by the phenomenon in the Arab and Muslims worlds of "Temple Mount denial." Former Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat denied any Jewish connection to the Mount. Others portray Jews as usurpers on the Mount, with no genuine attachments. Muslim extremists regularly claim that Israel is seeking to destroy al-Haram al-Sharif. The result is a vicious cycle, with the discourse ceded to extremes on both sides.

And who else is "extreme"?

the Israeli government has contributed to the movement's efforts -- evidenced by the ministry of education's August 2012 announcement that 30,000 Israeli pupils had recently visited the Mount as part of its controversial "National Heritage Project," something that would have been unthinkable a few years ago.

They claim to perceive an

...emboldened activism [that] comes in tandem with the emergence, for the first time, of a clear and serious political agenda: to force a change in the status quo on the Temple Mount/al-Haram al-Sharif. The agenda has two prongs: legislation that would compel the government to permit Jewish prayer at the site, security concerns notwithstanding, and the promotion of a joint (or split) Jewish-Muslim control of the site, modeled on the Tomb of the Patriarchs, known to Palestinians as the Ibrahimi Mosque, in Hebron.

And, further, they know

There is ample historical evidence to show that the eruption of violence in Jerusalem is sparked by threats, real or imagined, to sacred space.

But, even democratic legislation is wrong for

Tinkering with the status quo on the Temple Mount/al-Haram al-Sharif -- a site that is the focus of Muslim fears and longing around the world -- would clearly fall into this category. 

And we have a new political category:

...a neo-Biblical zone of exclusionary Jewish hegemony in and around the Old City. Together, these trends threaten to transform a complicated but solvable national-political conflict into an intractable religious war.

And we are responsible for something we are not responsible for

In post-Mubarak Egypt, thousands of demonstrators gathered in Cairo under the banner: "The liberation of Cairo requires the liberation of Jerusalem."...A debate is raging within the Arab world over whether Muslims should visit al-Haram al-Sharif while it is under occupation. Jordanian officials, including King Abdullah, have suggested, offering compelling reasons, that Israeli actions related to the site are sowing regional instability.

And they nail it with Jewish religious literature (the devil quoting?)

Accordingly, it is wise to recall the Talmudic aphorism: "Jerusalem was destroyed because it was ruled by [an overly rigorous application of] the rule of Torah."

And today, Druze MK Ayoub Kara said
"The natural right of the Jewish people in its land as mentioned in the Declaration of Independence, was granted to the Jews only on the basis of historical connection. By allowing Arabs to throw Jewish heritage on to the garbage heap and to disperse it as ash in all directions, will eventually be thrown itself into the dustbin of history and will be cast about in all directions."

And it is Jews like Friedman and Seidmann who assist in that crime.

Hagel Is Good for...Goldberg

Wrote J. Goldberg in The Atlantic as part of his justification for supporting Hagel for Defense:

...I can't let anti-Semites dictate the terms of this debate. I think Israel is heading down a dangerous path, toward its own, eventual dissolution, because it refuses to contemplate even unilateral half-measures that could lay the groundwork for a Palestinian state. I've been arguing for years that the settlers are the vanguard of binationalism, and now they're closer to the center of power than ever not a hater of Israel. On the other hand, he, like Bob Gates, the former secretary of defense, might be able to look Netanyahu in the eye and demand an explanation for the Israeli government's actions on the West Bank.

Goldberg excuses Hagel's lure for anti-Semites, I presume.