Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Walking the Land

In a review of David Grossman's book, To the End of the Land, now published in English (a new one in Hebrew has by now appeared), you can find this:

The reader might not guess that the hiking holiday Ora takes represents a national pastime. Yael Zerubavel’s book Recovered Roots describes how Zionist settlers of the pre-state period were given special classes in local nature and geography, part of a practice called

Yediat ha-aretz (knowing the Land) [that] did not simply mean the recital of facts in the classroom, but rather an intimate knowledge of the land that can only be achieved through a direct contact…trekking on foot throughout the land was particularly considered as a major educational experience, essential for the development of the New Hebrews. For the non-Israeli reader, the association of hiking with laying claim to the land may be lost.

That element of hiking, of attempting to know not only the physical lay of the land, what happens every season, how to take advantage of what is there in the land amnd on it, what happened at that spot over the past three thousand years and how to quote a reference from the Bible or the Talmud or modern Hebrew literature is what contributes to our character as Zionists.

It is not an educational tool but an essence.


Happy New Year - שנה טובה

The new year of 5772 is coming in.

I'll be off the keyboard for three full days, until Saturday night.

Have a sweet year:


Hosting Maurice Ostroff on Gilo

Here's Maurice:

With great respect to the European and American leaders who rushed to condemn Israel's intention to build houses in Gilo (which they believe is in East Jerusalem) I suggest that the reaction is based on misinformation,

Firstly Gilo is not in East Jerusalem. It is a residential neighborhood in South Western Jerusalem (*) not far from the Knesset building. Objecting to Israel building houses in Gilo is akin to objecting to Palestinians building in Raamallah. Gilo does not resemble outposts in the West Bank.. It is an integral part of the Jerusalem municipality as recognized even by the late Yitzhak Rabin.

Secondly, Gilo is not an impediment to peace negotiations since everyone acknowledges that the negotiations will involve new borders. In his video message to the November 2000, Rabin Rally in Tel Aviv, President Obama urged Israel to pursue Rabin's legacy. It is therefore relevant to recall that in his last speech to the Knesset on October 5, 1995, Rabin said "The borders of the State of Israel, during the permanent solution, will be beyond the lines which existed before the Six Day War. We will not return to the 4 June 1967 lines.


Lenny Ben-David points out the construction area is near the synagogue marked off here.

The Negativism of Prof. Cargill

I left the following comments at this blog post

The ‘negative space’ argument: another reason why the U.S. should back Palestinian statehood (and why Hamas opposes it)

by one Dr. Robert Raymond Cargill who is Assistant Professor of Classics and Religious Studies at The University of Iowa. He is a biblical studies scholar, classicist, archaeologist, author, and digital humanist [?]. His research includes study in the Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls, literary criticism of the Bible and the Pseudepigrapha, and the Ancient Near East. He has appeared as an expert on numerous television documentaries and specials and is an advocate for social justice and public higher education. He previously worked and taught at UCLA.

Here is my comment:

Permit a bit of a telegraphed response to a few points:

a) you wrote - "Hamas would rather not have a Palestinian state than acknowledge an Israeli one". I put it to you that that approach has characterized all Mandate Arab political thinking since early 1920s when they rejected an "Arab agency", "parity", partition proposals in 1937, 1938, 1939 & 1947 and yielded on TransJordan being handed over to a Saudi Arabia refugee.

b) with a principled Hamas opposition registered, there can be no two-state solution. Right now, there are developing two Arab states west of the Jordan River: Fatahland and Hamastan so at the minimum, there has to be a three-state solution according to those who presume Palestinianism is legitimate and genuine, which is in dispute (yes, not only territories are disputed here).

c) as for defining territory, let's add VAT = Value-Added Territory. Jordan was part of the Mandate. Even the State Dept. claimed in early 1946 that Jordan's territory cannot become independent until the entire Mandate issue is settled. Review this: The area west of the river is too small geographically and topographically to solve the dispute and so, Jordan must become part of the new "whole" that perhaps will be divided, again.

d) Hamas will never be attacked in the way you suggest. Right now, it is, oddly, being propped up by Iran, via Hezbollah. For years, Egypt permitted the tunnels to flow with arms to be fired at Israeli citizens. Now Egypt is becoming Muslim Brotherhood and for the 6th time the gas line, under treaty, that supplies Israel has been sabotaged.

e) and ehtically, how can an academic define the area where almost 7 million Jews live as "negative"? that area, historically, reflects less than 25% of the original Jewish national home territory granted the Jewish people by an act of international law.

And Prof Cargill has responded there and I'll copy here:

thanx for your comments. allow me a few comments in response.

a) agreed, but now i believe fatah (not hamas, but fatah) is willing to settle on a defined state with israel. of course, this would leave hamsa/gaza out of the loop, but i have argued a so called ’3-state solution’ before. as soon as hamas sees that fatah is going forward with west bank peace with israel, they’ll either get on board (less likely) or attack fatah (more likely, as they have already done this). however, israel and fatah/west bank should not wait on hamas to stall the process. we all know where the resistance is centered. fatah can use hamas as political cover to forge peace with israeli moderated.

b) see above.

c) prior to the arab uprisings, i would have said nothing is going to change in jordan. however, now that there is unrest there, unless king abdullah abdicates political power and creates a system akin to the u.k., he’s going to have unrest, which would leave the door open to border changes in jordan. it’s less likely, but if the gov’t falls, anything is possible.

d) hamas HAS been attacked in the way i suggest. during operation cast lead, fatah was showing israel where to bomb in gaza. you are correct that egypt will not be as accommodating now that the m.b. has more power, but do not confuse egypt with palestine: egypt doesn’t want gaza’s problems any more than israel (or fatah/west bank) does. they might offer public lip service support and open a tunnel, but they won’t stand in the way if gaza comes under attack.

e) with regard to comment e, i do believe you are stretching a bit. ‘negative space‘ is a technical artistic term referring to the space around a subject, but not the subject itself. to imply that the word ‘negative’ in this technical phrase in any way passes a qualitative judgment on any people or group risks appearing as a desperate attempt to intentionally misrepresent a phrase for the purpose of introducing ethnic (or ethical – i couldn’t tell from your misspelling) tension.

i also find irony in the fact that you refer positively to the ‘act of international law’ (i.e., the u.n.) that established the early borders of the state of israel, while when this very international body is asked to consider the same for palestinians, it is opposed and derided by the very organization that earlier benefited from the u.n. (israel) as a political body with no jurisdiction in the matter. go figure.

as i said earlier, people will find a way to discuss this matter into chaos. israel would force the arab league into recognizing it as a state by simply accepting the peace deal they are going to one day accept anyway.

also, don’t forget the possibility of an ‘israeli spring’ – israel moderates and liberals are growing tired of the bad economy and the use of palestinian tensions by conservatives/hawks to distract from their fiscal woes. it would not surprise me if israelis began rallying against their government and demanded a peace settlement or risk the collapse (or maybe the no confidence) of an israeli government led by a prime minister that after all didn’t get the most vote.
And I replied:

It’s just before a three-day New Year/Shabbat holiday here so I’ll just make one factual correction:

you write: “also find irony in the fact that you refer positively to the ‘act of international law’ (i.e., the u.n.) that established the early borders of the state of israel, while when this very international body is asked to consider the same for palestinians, it is opposed and derided by the very organization that earlier benefited from the u.n. (israel) as a political body with no jurisdiction in the matter. go figure”

sorry i was too concise but I was referring to a series of decisions of the Great Powers and then 54 nations of the civilized world, between 1915 and 1922 (Sikes-Picot; Balfour; Versailles Peace Conference; San Remo; and the League of Nations) which established several fundamentals in international law: the Jews have the right to reconstitute their national home; that their right to ‘close settlement on the land’ is guaranteed; and that only the Jews possessed in Palestine what we would term national-political rights where as all others, literally, “non-Jews” is the language, are guaranteed personal and religious rights only. Arab nationalism was to find its expression, at that time, in Lebanon/Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, etc. Today, there are some two dozen Arab countries. I’d like to think that we Jews deserve at least one and that it be in our patrimony.

But since you mention the UN, in my opinion, since the Arabs and Jews were offered a partition, territorial compromise or land-for-peace in today’s diplomatic parlance, and whereas the Jews accepted and the Arabs didn’t, that framework simply doesn’t exist anymore. It’s what as we say, “off the table”. So, any attempt to recreate that or have its paradign apply is a non-starter.

I will return after the holidays.


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Great Demographic News

The news source, but with my rewrite redaction:

Settlements Jewish communities in the occupied West Bank areas of Judea and Samaria, portions of the historic Jewish national homeland, gained 3,500 residents last year and settlers the Jewish revenants popualtion had the largest families of any Israeli community, with an average of 4.6 persons, a government survey said.

It said about four percent of all Israelis, equivalent to about 312,000 people, live in Jewish settlements cities, towns and villages in the West Bank area of Judea and Samaria.

Sorry for the striking out there but I think the media doesn't have to take semantic sides.

But it's good news nevertheless.


Daniel Pipes On Turkey As A Rogue State

Here's one of several of his points.  Turkey is:

Looking for a fight with Israel: In the tradition of Gamal Abdel Nasser and Saddam Hussein, the Turkish prime minister deploys anti-Zionist rhetoric to make himself an Arab political star. One shudders to think where, thrilled by this adulation, he may end up. After Ankara backed a protest ship to Gaza in May 2010, the Mavi Marmara, whose aggression led Israeli forces to kill eight Turkish citizens plus an ethnic Turk, it has relentlessly exploited this incident to stoke domestic fury against the Jewish state. Erdoğan has called the deaths a casus belli, speaks of a war with Israel "if necessary," and plans to send another ship to Gaza, this time with a Turkish military escort.


The Guilt of Samer Allawi - For readers of Arabic

سامر فريق محمد علاوي ، ولد في عام 1966 ، في الأصل من سبسطية ، يعيش في باكستان ، ويشغل منصب مدير مكتب قناة "الجزيرة" في أفغانستان ، اعتقل في 9 أغسطس-ايلول 2011 ، بمعبر جسر النبي ، على اثر اشتباهه نشيطا وشريكا في حركة حماس.

خلال التحقيق معه في مكاتب جهاز الأمن العام "الشاباك" ، اعترف علاوي انه كان قد جند في عام (1993) في باكستان لصالح حركة حماس. خدم هناك حتى عام (2004), "كعضو في لجنة فلسطين المشرفة"، والتي تشرف على مؤسسات حماس وأنشطتها ، اضافة الى جمع الأموال لصالح حماس.

من بين المؤسسات : "رابطة الاقصى" والمركز الفلسطيني للمعلومات والاتصالات".

هذا وخلال عمله في هذه اللجنة ، وصل علاوي الى سورية في عامي 2001 و 2003 ، من اجل تقديم تقرير عن أنشطتها لموسى أبو مرزوق ، نائب خالد مشعل رئيس المكتب السياسي في حماس ، في عام 2004 ، خلال مقابلة اجراها علاوي مع مرزوق في سوريا ، عرض عليه مرزوق العمل معه. كما وخلال لقائاته بسوريا عرضت على علاوي خدمة ممثل حماس في ايران ، لكنه رفض.

كما اتضح في التحقيق معه ، أنه في عام 2000 ، وخلال لقائه مع ناشط من حماس في دبي ، وافق علاوي على القيام بكل نشاط عسكري أو تنظيمي ، تطلبه حماس من جانبها. اضافة الى ذلك قدم استعداده ان يعمل من اجل احراز اهداف حماس عبر استخدامه قناة "الجزيرة" ومؤسساتها", وهذا من خلال الاستفادة من موقعه ودوره كصحفي واستغلاله.

في عام 2006 ، اجتمع علاوي مع عدد من النشطاء في حركة حماس في قطر، الذين عملوا كصحفيي شبكة "الجزيرة" ، و اختتم اللقاء بمحاولة استغلال عملهم في الشبكة لتعزيز موقف حماس. وذلك ، من خلال انتقاد العمليات الأميركية في أفغانستان ، وايضا على يد الإعراب عن دعم "المقاومة" الفلسطينية

في عام 2010 ، خلال اجتماع آخر مع نشطاء حماس ، سئل علاوي ، اللذي شارك في مؤتمر صحفي ، للعمل على تعزيز الدعم الشعبي لحماس والجهاد الفلسطينيي ، وذلك من خلال انتقاد سياسة الولايات المتحدة.

وفي موضوع آخر ،تبين خلال التحقيق، هو مشاركته في العمل العسكري في أفغانستان ، بين عامي 1988 و 1992. من خلال العمل مع وحدات "المجاهدين" في أفغانستان. وايضا اشترك علاوي (عام 1988) في مداهمة لقوات المتمردين على معسكرات الامن التابعة لقوات النظام الأفغاني ، وايضا اشترك في أنشطة ضد القوات السوفيتية.

علاوي ، الذي كان ينقل حمولة شاحنة من الاسلحة من باكستان إلى أفغانستان ، شارك ايضا في عمليات اطلاق نار استهدفت القافلة.

في سياق نشاطه مع "المجاهدين" عام 1992, تدرب علاوي ليصبح مدرب عسكري في باكستان بهدف العودة للمنطقة والعمل كمدرب عسكري.

Who Is Providing The Honey?

See the apples on the table?

The guy at the back desk is the one providing the 'honey' for this year's Rosh Hashana customs.


The Deconstruction That Is Dangerous

The movie Bulworth is hilarious. Warren Beatty plays it with aplomb and obvious inside comprehension.  In it, the Bullworth character says:

All we need is a voluntary, free-spirited, open-ended program of procreative racial deconstruction. Everybody just gotta keep f*ckin' everybody 'til they're all the same color.

Now, with my comprehension, that applies to the philosophy of our post-modern, progressive, radical humanist forces.

And Israel, with all its Zionist roots as the modern expression of a 3000+ year old Jewish nationalism, stands in the way of their plan, more than any other religion and ethnic uniqueness.

Think about that.


Real Good Journalism - Not

Such a good journalist:-

Al Jazeera Afghanistan Bureau Chief Samer Allawi Convicted

Farik Muhammad Allawi, born in 1966, from Sebastia, who resides in Pakistan and serves as Al Jazeera's Afghanistan bureau chief, was arrested on 9.8.11 at the Allenby Crossing, on suspicion of involvement in Hamas activities. During his investigation by the Israel Security Agency, Allawi admitted that was recruited in 1993, while in Pakistan, to Hamas. Until 2004, he served there as a member of the "Supreme Palestine Committee", which supervises and directs Hamas institutions.

He also collected donations for Hamas-affiliated organizations such as "Al-Aqsa Association" and the "Palestinian Information and Media Center." In the framework of his activities for the SPC, Allawi went to Syria in 2001 and 2003 in order to report on his activities to Musa Abu Marzook, deputy to Hamas Political Bureau Chairman Khaled Mashal. In 2004, Mashal asked Allawi to work for him...

Allawi also admitted that in 2000, during a meeting with a Hamas operative in Dubai, he agreed to carry out military or organizational activity for Hamas. He even proposed, on his own initiative, to work to aid Hamas in advancing its goals by utilizing his position as a journalist with Al Jazeera.

In 2006, Allawi met with Hamas operatives in Qatar, who served as Al Jazeera correspondents, and agreed with them that they would exploit their work with Al Jazeera in order to strengthen Hamas by – inter alia – criticizing American operations in Afghanistan and expressing support for the Palestinian "resistance."

In 2010, during an additional meeting with Hamas operatives in Qatar, Allawi was asked to work to strengthen public opinion in support of Hamas and the Palestinian struggle by – inter alia – criticizing American activities.Allawi's investigation shows that Al Jazeera is exploited by Hamas, which makes use its journalists in order to advance its goals.


Two Good Letters at the NYTimes

From today's NYTimes:-

To the Editor:

Re “The Palestinians’ Bid” (editorial, Sept. 23):

How many times must we go through the same charade? Israel is labeled the obstacle to peace, and pressure is put on its leaders to offer a settlement to this endless conflict. Israel’s leader of the day (Ehud Barak, Ehud Olmert) offers a comprehensive proposal consistent with the parameters broadly accepted by all intermediaries as the fair solution.

The Palestinian leadership, with no constructive reason or counterproposal, walks away from the offer. And then after the briefest of moments, we again find the world sympathizing with the oppressed Palestinians and their “understandable frustration” with Israel’s “refusal” to make the concessions for peace.

When will we learn? The only true obstacle to peace, which has been demonstrated time and again, is the Palestinian unwillingness to reach any resolution that accepts Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish homeland.

White Plains

To the Editor:

Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, claimed in his speech at the United Nations that the Palestine Liberation Organization is the “sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people,” and yet it could not even rule the Gaza Strip after Israel withdrew from that territory.

Rather, the terrorist organization Hamas, which is not a member of the P.L.O. and openly calls for the destruction of Israel, is the ruling entity in Gaza. If Israel were to withdraw from the West Bank without a negotiated agreement, there is nothing to prevent another Hamas takeover.

Stony Brook, N.Y.

At least they get published.


New Mutant of "Replacement Theology"

As Daniel Greenfield makes clear:

...the left tries to insist that its version of Christianity and the right one, because it’s compassionate and spiritual...consists wholly of following a left of center ideology while claiming that their grab bag of the welfare state, anti-war activism and environmentalism is highly spiritual.

...The paradox of a paragon of a humanistic un-religion making common cause with men who believe that their specific revelation entitles them to commit genocide is baffling. Or it would be if Waskow really was a humanist. In reality Waskow is a socialist with a pulpit. Even if it’s only an imaginary one.

Waskow’s idea of Judaism exists only as a metaphor for left of center ideology...The Waskowites, Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan’s bastard spawn, support Hamas, denounce Israel and join hate groups such as J-Street and Jewish Voice for Peace...many of them will mount pulpits to explain why Israel is the enemy and why it must be destroyed in the name of Jewish values...They will hardly mention Hamas, except to sigh that it hasn’t chosen the path of non-violent resistance, but that won’t stop them from supporting its goals anyway.

Rabbi Mordecai the [1958] Rabbinical Assembly of America, he sounded positively hawkish as he warned that Israel might be becoming the Czechoslovakia of this era.

He warned that Western countries would scapegoat Israel through a “futile policy of appeasing Arab nationalism” and that Zionism was the force best qualified to “reconstitute the continuity, spirituality and structure of Jewish life.”

Could he have foreseen that Israel would become a scapegoat within his very own movement, which would view Zionism as its sworn enemy?

...Abstraction is the left’s game, it turns everything into a metaphor, removes the context, replaces it and dares you to identify whether you’re drinking coffee or crystals. But Jewish history is very much a concrete thing. As is Jewish identity...This is who we are. This is how we have survived. The left may try to replace us, but it can never succeed no matter how many collaborators it recruits and how many warped ideas it puts forward...


Action Call - Make Our Roads Safe



Today Tuesday we will patrol the Efrat-Nokdim road (details below) New signs have been put up all over Judea in Hebrew and Arabic urging all drivers to drive safely "because on the road , we are all equal". But that does not seem the case. Asher and Jonathan Palmer HY"D were brutally murdered by Arab who threw stones in a drive-by car stoning. This seems to be the new tactic for Arab terror against Jews in our area. After the security forces lied and tried to pretend that the Palmers had been killed in a car crash and not in a terror attack, they were forced to admit it was terror. That is when we also found out that in the previous days no less than 18 complaints to the police had been made by Jews in Judea who had been attacked in a similar way.

If we thought that the murder of Asher and Jonathan would push the security forces to increase the deterrence against Arabs, sadly that is not the situation. It is with shock and horror that we woke up this morning reading the news about Rabbi Yaron Durani from Nokdim who was attacked last night by Arabs in a similar way; his front windshield was smashed . Thank G-d he wasn’t hurt too badly. In addition, two more Jews were attacked too. The Arabs want us to capitulate to terror. The Left is already wringing its hands in pleasure saying: "we told you that if we don’t capitulate there will be terror". The media is collaborating with the Arab enemy, inviting terror, marches against yishuvim and funerals.

We the residents of Judea and Samaria know the script all too well. Our determined stand has prevented the Land of Israel to be abandoned. The residents of Judea and Samaria are the defensive shield protecting all of Israel. We will continue to stand firm defending our homeland. We will not agree to return to the stone-age. We must put a stop to the Arab stone throwing before another funeral G-d forbid.

TODAY, TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 27th at 5:00pm we will patrol The Efrat- Nokdim road with a car convoy We will demand from the government of Israel to apply Israeli sovereignty in Judea and Samaria, to expand the Jewish settlements, to build, and to knock out ,once and for all Arab terror with heavy punishments to the terrorists.

Departure from Efrat southern gate: 5:00 pm
Departure from Tekoa on main road: 5:15pm
Departure from Nokdim gate: 5:20 pm
Women For Israel's Tomorrow (Women in Green) – Efrat and Gush Etzion Action Committee

For details:
Yehudit Katsover 050-7161818 Nadia Matar 0505500834
Ina Viniarsky 0545620017 Karni Eldad 0545210549

Oh, and this is the group's new poster:

Next Year - Israel Sovereignty

Over Judea and Samaria

Quotable Words

In its obsession with the Palestinian statehood bid, the world seems quite prepared to let the entire rest of the Middle East implode.

Evelyn Gordon


From the New Dead Sea Scroll Presentation

From here:

The Dead Sea Scrolls have made their way online some 2,000 years after
they were written through a partnership between Google and Israel’s
national museum.

The important documents are available in searchable, high-resolution
images, accompanied by informative videos, background information, and
historical data. So far five of the scrolls have been digitized,
including the biblical Book of Isaiah, the Temple Scroll, and three

Here's one selection I made from the War Scroll:


Monday, September 26, 2011

So Ignoble; So Highflying

LA Times reports:

William Wyler's 1959 epic, "Ben-Hur," getting the superstar treatment in Warner's 50th-anniversary ultimate collection edition arriving Tuesday in both regular DVD and Blu-ray.

Based on the novel by Lew Wallace, the period drama revolves around Judah Ben-Hur (Heston), a Palestinian nobleman who is enslaved by the Romans, engages in one of the most thrilling chariot races ever captured on screen, and even encounters Jesus Christ.

I left this comment there:

Reminds me of Hanan Ashrawi at the 1991 Madrid Conference referring to Jesus as a "Palestinian". There's no Palestine in the New testament but in Acts 8:1 you'll read the geographical terms of "Judea and Samaria". Yes, Palestine - Prima, Secunda and Tertia - came from the Philistines but Jesus, like Ben-Hur, for all intents and purposes, was a Judean. And Jewish.

But who needs a "Palestinian" when we have an Israeli:-

Ayelet Zurer to soar alongside Superman

Israeli actress wins major role in next Superman sequel - Superman's iconic red cape will be joined by a blue and white one when the superhero takes to the skies for his next movie battle with evil.

As Israeli actors continue to rise in the international movie scene, Ayelet Zurer, 42, is soaring above them all. Zurer has won a major role in the coming Superman movie sequel, which is set to feature Hollywood stars Russell Crowe and Kevin Costner, both Oscar winners. The sequel, “Man of Steel,” has begun production and is being directed by Zack Snyder, of “300” and “Dawn of the Dead” fame.

Zurer is confirmed to be in the cast, although her role is still the subject of speculation. She is rumored to play Superman’s Kryptonian mother, Lara Lor-Van, after the exit of Julia Ormond, who was originally cast in the role.


And Robert Avrech inserted it at Breitbart's Hollywood.


CAMERA informs us that the LATimes has corrected itself.


Obama: The Jews, Er, the Janitors

Seems that when President Obama addressed the Congressional Black Caucus awards banquet  and spoke about rich people paying their fair share of taxes.

According to the White House transcript, the president said:
If asking a billionaire to pay the same tax rate as a janitor makes me a warrior for the working class, I wear that with a badge of honor. I have no problem with that.

But if you watch the C-SPAN video, at 19:56, what the president actually said was:
If asking a billionaire to pay the same tax rate as a Jew, uh, as a janitor makes me a warrior for the working class, I wear that with a badge of honor. I have no problem with that.

That's a big muff. I'm miffed.

Some may have a problem with that, though.




Erekat - Who Exactly is Dictating?


In an interview with voice of Palestine, Erekat called on the international quartet members who have not yet recognized Palestine to do so as soon as possible in order to save the peace process.

He said that so far the Israeli government is not a peace partner; it only wants to dictate.

He stressed the Palestinian leadership’s position to return to negotiations based on clear terms of reference; the 1967 borders and a complete halt of the settlement activities.

So, who is dictating?



Not Quite All Black-and-White

I was in the Braslav (Breslov/Bratzlav) bookstore in Meah Shearim (^) today. No men were behind the counter as the Frank family which runs in are quite central to the annual Rosh hashana pilrimage to Umman and so they are already there preparing.

As I came in, I thought I saw two "Taliban women" in the back but it turned out to be a different story entirely.

Here they are leaving:

Photo credit: YMedad

As they left, they asked the girl if she forgave them and she replied in the positive.

So, who were they? What did they purchase?

The were two Russian Orthodox nuns.

And they has purchased a set of the Selichot order of service, the special penitential prayers said just before the High Holiday season until the eve of Yom Kippur.

Oh, and here is the Bet Medrash of Braslav getting reading, hiding the 'tribunes' (*) used by the women to enter the Ezrat Nashim from the outside as the building's internal architecture is all male:

Photos credit

Tribunes is the term used to describe the stands or bleachers on which the Chasidim stand en masse high up to watch the action, as in this usage:

Hundreds of Hasidim stand on the tribunes and watch the Purim Spiel together with their Rebbe.


אגודת משך הנחל
רחוב מאה שערים 110
ת.ד. 5719 ירושלים 91056
טלפקס: 02-6273120


Weiss - Wipe Yourself

Anti-Zionist and anti-Israel Philip Weiss of Mondeweiss illustrates the mindset of his ilk in this description of how he sneaks back into Israel from Ramallah at the Hizma crossing:

A soldier stood strangely bent over a semiautomatic weapon at the ready, the barrel gleaming in the streetlights. “Pure racial profiling,” said my Israeli friend. And of course a checkpoint on our side too, to keep the Palestinians on the West Bank. I didn’t even notice the soldier's wave, as we slid through. He did this with his hand, my friend mimed. "Because we look Israeli." Behind us a car with a woman wearing a hijab got pulled over for questioning.

This is not racial profiling.

It's is ratiomnal logic.

If you are at a security crosspoint looking for Arab terrorists do you look for Arabs or Jews? Do you stop and strip search everyone?

And, by-the-by, he throws this in:

The new electric tram to bring settlers into the city from the Jerusalem settlements.

But his geography is weak:

And let's be clear. I say Jerusalem, but the municipal border is miles east of those 1967 lines that President Obama mentioned back in May, and then had to eat. We passed through several gleaming Jewish neighborhoods built to encircle the city-- Givat Benjamin. French Hill. Pisgat Zeev.

a) "miles"? Not really.

b) Givat Benjamin? Where is that?

And then he returns to his hate and self-hate speech:

...when you are driving an hour out of your way past the hilltop settlements and the divided roads, and the barbed wire festooned with tattered plastic bags and the wall and the guard towers, you think of apartheid, and of ancient ghettoes in Europe...the architecture of East Jerusalem, of racial separation and colonization and cultural anxiety and persecution. Some day the American press will discover it.

Wheter its spittle or worse, Philip Weiss, wipe yourself.


The Spreading of Lies

The truth will out:

Police: Fatal West Bank crash caused by rock throwing

The police and army traded accusations on Sunday over who was responsible for issuing a statement attributing the accident in which a man and his infant son were killed near Kiryat Arba on Friday to excessive speed. Police later said the car that Kiryat Arba resident Asher Palmer was driving rolled over after Palestinians threw rocks at the vehicle.

...About 20 minutes after the car was found the Israel Defense Forces Spokesman's Office informed media outlets that soldiers stationed nearby had not seen any stone-throwing and that the incident was merely a road accident. That in itself was unusual, as the army doesn't usually investigate road accidents.

That evening the Israel Police announced that the car had flipped over after taking a turn too quickly. Yet initial findings at the site of the accident did not support this conclusion.

While the car did flip over while on a curve there were no skid marks on the road to indicate braking, which would be characteristic in such an accident.

Three rocks were found in the car, and one had blood on it. Palmer's pistol had been removed from the car.

The steering wheel bore signs of having been hit by a rock, and Palmer's face had a wound that would not normally ensue from an overturned car.

...Later Friday evening, police reviewed the incident with Col. Guy Hazut, commander of the IDF's Hebron Brigade, and concluded that the Palmers were probably killed in a terror attack.

...Police said a gash on Asher Palmer's face could have been caused by a rock thrown from a passing vehicle. Investigators believe that he lost control of the vehicle as a result, causing his car to run off the road, hit a wall and overturn.

On Sunday afternoon, when the minutes of the court proceedings were published, the police and the army issued a statement admitting that the incident was probably a terror attack.

Police officers said the army gave too much weight to the statements of the soldiers who found the car, while the army said it merely reported the soldiers' statements and that it was the Israel Police that invented the speeding claim.

At a meeting with GOC Central Command Avi Mizrahi on sunday, settlers were furious. "There's no other way to say this: The IDF didn't tell the truth," said Danny Dayan, chairman of the Yesha Council of settlements.

The truth is that all of the authorities didn't want an 'incident' to bother them at the height of the tensionb with the Pals. and the UN affair.

Oh. And they don't like Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria, too.


Controversy and anger surrounds the incident, in that after the accident security services said there was suspicion that the accident may have been caused by stone-throwers, a statement that was later retracted, only to emerge again on Sunday. Across the settlements of Judea and Samaria, voices were claiming that security officials covered up the stone-throwing in order to prevent “price tag” actions by settlers on the same day that the Palestinians were presenting their statehood bid at the United Nations.

Details of the incident began to emerge on Sunday, after the family of Palmer, 25, reached an agreement with the state to allow for blood samples to be taken from his body and that of Yonatan, in order to determine the cause of death. Palmer's family had initially refused the state permission to conduct an autopsy on the bodies, and the state petitioned the Jerusalem Magistrates' Court against the family's decision. When the court refused the petition, the state immediately appealed the lower court's ruling directly in the High Court of Justice.

The High Court issued a temporary injunction delaying the Magistrates' Court ruling ahead of a hearing scheduled for Sunday, but the hearing was cut short after both sides reached an agreement that blood samples could be taken from the bodies.

Police Spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said Sunday that “based on finding of the external autopsy, the main direction of the investigation is that he [Palmer] was hit by a stone which caused him to lose control of the vehicle.”

Rosenfeld added that police found the stone, but that they don’t know when it was thrown at the car and the investigation is still ongoing.

The IDF spokesperson’s office said Sunday evening that their findings have reached the conclusion that stones were not thrown at the car from the side of the road, but that findings that have turned up since then have raised the possibility that a stone was thrown at the vehicle from a passing car. They added that it is still under investigation.

Anger at the incident was palpable on the way to Kiryat Arba on Sunday, where traffic crawled to a half for several kilometers while clashes broke out between settler youth and Palestinians next to the Palestinian village of Beit Anoun. In addition, well over a hundred people took part in a protest held at the site of the accident on Sunday afternoon, before marching to Kiryat Arba.

Head of the Kiryat Arba local council Malachi Levinger said Sunday that “there must be an investigation into why the police changed their story within less than 48 hours. The rock-throwing, which is a growing phenomenon in recent days has become unbearable. We are demanding that security forces work to completely end this phenomenon which constitutes a mortal threat not only to human lives but also harms the honor of the state and its citizens.”


Areikat - Phony? Or JJ Goldberg?

JJ Goldberg, someone I know for over 40 years - he in Habonim and I in Betar - has an opinion about the reported statement by a PLO official that no Jews will be allowed to live in the maybe-state of Palestine:

the phony blow-up over the statement by the Washington representative of the Palestine Liberation Organization, Maen Areikat, in which he’s supposed to have called for a “Jew-free” Palestinian state.

Why phony?

It fits with previous statements from Abbas on down (and here and also here).

It fits with the ethnic cleansing policy of the Arabs during the Mandate period.

It fits with the behavior of the Arabs of the Mandate during the War for Israel's Independence in Gush Etzion, Jerusalem's Old City, Atarot and Neveh Yaakov and other places.

It fits with the Hadassah Convoy results.

It fits with PLO ideology, as Efraim Karsh notes:

The PLO’s hallowed National Covenant envisages the permanent departure of most Jews from Israel.

And, as he further writes, there's more:

In June, Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas told the Arab League that the future Palestinian state should be free of Israelis (that is Jews, since virtually no other Israelis live in the West Bank). He reiterated this vision of a Judenrein Palestine last month, telling a delegation of visiting members of Congress that “I am seeking a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with Jerusalem as its capital, empty of settlements.”

There's a pattern here. A MO.

ChallahHuAkbar did research:

In 2010, in an interview with Tablet Magazine the following interaction took place.

[TABLET]: When you imagine a future Palestinian state, do you imagine it being a place where Jews, if they wish to become Palestinian citizens, could own property, vote in elections, and practice their religion freely?
[AREIKAT]: I remember in the mid-’90s, the late [PLO official] Faisal Husseini said repeatedly “OK, if Israelis choose to stay in a future Palestinian state, they are more than welcome to do that. But under one condition: They have to respect and obey Palestinian laws, they cannot be living as Israelis. They have to respect Palestinian laws and abide by them.” When Faisal Husseini died, basically no Palestinian leader has publicly supported the notion that they can stay.
What we are saying is the following: We need to separate. We have to separate. We are in a forced marriage. We need to divorce. After we divorce, and everybody takes a period of time to recoup, rebound, whatever you want to call it, we may consider dating again.
[TABLET]: So, you think it would be necessary to first transfer and remove every Jew—
[AREIKAT]: Absolutely. No, I’m not saying to transfer every Jew, I’m saying transfer Jews who, after an agreement with Israel, fall under the jurisdiction of a Palestinian state.
[TABLET]: Any Jew who is inside the borders of Palestine will have to leave? [AREIKAT]: Absolutely. I think this is a very necessary step, before we can allow the two states to somehow develop their separate national identities, and then maybe open up the doors for all kinds of cultural, social, political, economic exchanges, that freedom of movement of both citizens of Israelis and Palestinians from one area to another. You know you have to think of the day after.

It is explicit in this sequence of statements that Areikat was calling for a Jew-Free State of Palestine..

JJ, can I ask you to review this material, do your own research and then report back if you've perhaps changed your mind - or not.


Sunday, September 25, 2011

What Goes for Freedom of Religion in Jerusalem


Jew Arrested for Praying on Temple Mount

Police on Sunday arrested a Jewish man whom they accused of trying to pray on the Temple Mount. The man was taken in for questioning, and was being held by police Sunday afternoon. Police also arrested an Arab who shouted at a Jewish group that was visiting the site. He, too, was being questioned by police.

But I think there's a possible solution. We call Judaism a form of Islam and then go according to the principle of worship at this mosque:

The historic Ulu Mosque in Diyarbakır is often referred to as another Temple Mount for Muslims due to its square dome and monumental structure. The oldest and biggest mosque in Anatolia, the Ulu Mosque, which has been used simultaneously by the followers of the four schools if Islamic law within Sunni Islam -- Hanafi, Shafi’i, Hanbali and Maliki -- is undergoing restoration by the Diyarbakır Regional Directorate of Foundations.

...Metin Evsen said: “The Ulu Mosque is a very important structure for Turkey and the world because this mosque was used together by people following the four schools of Islamic law within Sunni Islam for the first time in history. Four different imams were on duty in the mosque and each led the prayers according to the school of law he followed. They prayed in separate parts of the mosque at the same time. It was this way throughout Islamic history. More than 5,000 people can pray in the mosque at the same time. Today, Hanafis and Shafi’is still perform their prayers in the Ulu Mosque. Right now the section for Shafi’is at the north of the mosque is open. We are planning to open the part that belongs to Hanafis before Eid al-Adha [the Feast of the Sacrifice].”

Maybe something like Yahudi?



He was a 76-year-old Jewish man who had recited a brief blessing over a bottle of water while touring Jerusalem's Temple Mount, Yosef Hacohen.  He was part of a group of religious Jews visiting the most holy site in Judaism when he began to feel ill. Being religious, he wanted to say a quiet blessing before drinking his water in hopes that both the prayer and the refreshment would help him feel better.


Have We A "Between-The-Sheets" Affair? Milky Blair?

That's what's claimed.

Story here:

Tony Blair’s intriguing friendship with one of the richest divorcees in Israel... and how Cherie was warned of ‘a sexy conspiracy’

...Ofra Strauss, 51, who divorced her second husband last year, is the head of a £1.3billion food company whose high prices triggered the biggest social protests in Israel’s history.  She has been seen so often in Mr Blair’s company that the Israeli press has even speculated openly that they are having an affair.

It is an allegation Ms Strauss’s spokesman yesterday angrily denied, while Mr Blair too is adamant there is ‘nothing improper’ in the pair’s relationship.

...The apparent closeness between Ms Strauss and Mr Blair is such that earlier this year a columnist for Maariv, a highly respected daily Hebrew newspaper, went so far as to write an ‘open letter’ to Mr Blair’s wife Cherie, suggesting she might like to clarify the nature of the relationship.

‘For the information of Mrs Blair,’ the article began. ‘Very, very quietly this weekend, the official car allocated to Tony Blair by the Quartet glided through the gates of Ofra’s house, which is protected by tight security measures… all kinds of bad people have called me trying to suggest this visit had the character of a sexy conspiracy, so I’m handing the matter over to you to handle personally.’

...Ms Strauss’s spokesman, Rani Rahav, said it was ‘ridiculous’ for anyone to suggest there was any romantic element to her dealings with Mr Blair. ‘There was never any skin between them, never. I have never been asked such an ugly question before.’

...In Israel, being friends with Ms Strauss is seen as politically controversial.

Oh well, chalk that up to money, if you ask me, not sex appeal.


Hayovel in the Vineyards

A video slideshow of the great work being done by HaYovel, led by Tommy Waller and family:


Jews in Palestine

What was will be?

The Jewish travelogue writer J. J. Binyamin recorded the following account after his 1847 sojourn in Palestine — the plight of the Jews he witnessed being consistent with their sacralized degradation under Islamic Law, and despite putative “reforms” of the Sharia imposed upon the Ottoman Muslim rulers in 1839 by the Western European powers:

Deep misery and continual oppression are the right words to describe the condition of the Children of Israel in the land of their fathers … They are entirely destitute of every legal protection and every means of safety. Instead of security afforded by law, which is unknown in these countries, they are completely under the orders of the Sheiks and Pashas, men whose character and feelings inspire but little confidence from the beginning. It is only the European Consuls who frequently take care of the oppressed, and afford them some protection. …

With unheard of rapacity tax upon tax is levied on them, and with the exception of Jerusalem, the taxes demanded are arbitrary. Whole communities have been impoverished by the exorbitant claims of the Sheiks, who, under the most trifling pretences and without being subject to any control, oppress the Jews with fresh burdens …

In the strict sense of the word the Jews are not even masters of their own property. They do not even venture to complain when they are robbed and plundered …

Their lives are taken into as little consideration as their property; they are exposed to the caprice of any one; even the smallest pretext, even a harmless discussion, a word dropped in conversation, is enough to cause bloody reprisals. Violence of every kind is of daily occurrence. The chief evidence of their miserable condition is the universal poverty which we remarked in Palestine, and which is here truly astounding … It even causes leprosy among the Jews of Palestine, as in former times.

Robbed of their means of subsistence from the cultivation of the soil and the pursuit of trade, they exist upon the charity of their brethren in the faith in foreign parts … In a word the state of the Jews in Palestine, physically and mentally, is an unbearable one.

Found here linked from here.


The Abbas Speech - Where Are The "Two States"?

As spotted:

As Bayefsky noted, "There is not too much left to the imagination here: Israel is 'wiped off the map.' ...

As the Palestinians seek statehood status from the United Nations, they claim to be interested in peace. But the logo reveals a more sinister goal: Palestinian unilateral statehood efforts go hand-in-hand with a desire by the rulers of such a state to champion the continued rejection of the Jewish state, Israel. That’s what the U.N. – with its automatic majority of Muslim countries and their undemocratic allies – is being asked to endorse."

Two states?



Just received Minister Benny Begin's article:

A 63 year occupation?

On Friday, Sept. 16, in Ramallah, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas explained his decision to ask the U.N. Security Council to recognize a Palestinian state: “The Palestinian people have been abused for 63 years, generation after generation, under occupation.” The Palestinian news agency WAFA reported a slightly different version in English: “We are going to the U.N. in order to put an end to 63 years of injustice, during which the people of our nation live under an occupation.”

...on Sept. 5, as reported by The New York Times, Abbas told a meeting of Israeli “intellectuals” that “we are going to the U.N. in order to complain that we have lived under occupation in Palestine for 63 years.” Oy, another mistake. But here is what Abbas told the Egyptian newspaper Al-Youm al-Sabea on Aug. 27: “We are the only nation to still be under occupation after 63 years.”

The magic number here is 63. But what does he mean?...why does Abbas insist on saying it has been a 63-year occupation? Is it a coincidence that this is the number of years that the state of Israel has existed?

...Abbas has not made a mistake in his calculations: Since the establishment of the state of Israel and the occupation of Lod, Ramle, Haifa, Jaffa and Acre, it is true that 63 years have passed. Abbas is not confused at all. He is the head of the PLO, the organization for the liberation of Palestine from Jewish presence. As far as he is concerned, the Palestinians in the Galilee and the Negev have been occupied for 63 years.

As long as they convince their children that the Jews are just another religious group and do not constitute a nation, and they teach the next generation that the Jews have no right to exist as sovereigns in some part of Palestine, even based on the 1949 armistice lines, there can never be a peaceful border. A majority at the U.N. supporting the PLO will only encourage their leadership to maintain their tough stance. It has been made clear, yet again, that the abandonment of the cradle of our people in Samaria and Judea will not bring about peace, but rather just the opposite.



The Palmer "Accident"

From David Wilder of Hebron:-

...The area of the accident is quite prone to rock attacks. Cars are stoned daily, many times in areas known from their vulnerability. Unfortunately, very little, if anything, is done to prevent these attacks. Very high ranking officers, during instructions to lower-level commanders, have been quoted as saying that ‘rock attacks are sufferable.’ In other words, the IDF really doesn’t have any responsibility to stop such attacks or apprehend the terrorists hurling the rocks. The ‘settlers’ can and will just have to live with this reality.

However, lately, our enemies have begun using a new method in their continued attempts to kill Jews. Instead of standing on the side of the road and throwing a rock, they are heaving them from moving cars, coming at you from the opposite direction. They toss a rock out their window, in front of your car, just prior to passing you.

The impact is tremendous. The rock is flying at the speed at which the car was driving. When it impacts with the car moving in the other direction, the force is phenomenal.

I’ve been told of numerous such incidents in recent weeks, in the exact area where the ‘accident’ killing Asher and Yonatan Palmer occurred.

On Friday afternoon, this is exactly what happened. That’s why no one was seen fleeing on foot, because the rock was thrown from a moving vehicle. It hit the windshield, breaking it, hitting Asher in the face, causing him to lose control of the car. The rock was found in the wrecked car. A hole, the type of which caused by a thrown rock, was also identified in the windshield. Yet the police and army climbed up a very high tree, claiming that the ‘accident’ was Asher’s fault. They claimed that the rock entered the car as it flipped over in a rock-bed on the side of the road. All this in an effort to cover up the murder of two Jews by Arabs. According to my sources, the police have already concluded that the ‘accident’ was not an accident, that it was cold-blooded murder; the killing two Jews.

There are other details which have not yet been released, and I’m hesitant to fully publicize them for the moment. Some of Asher’s possessions seemed to be missing and have not yet been found at the scene of the crash. There are also signs of possible additional violence at the site. These details prove, without any doubt, that the accident was Arab terror.

The police, not yet weary of the additional pain they’ve already caused the Palmer family are continuing to torture them; they went to court to obtain an order allowing them to perform an autopsy on the two bodies. Jewish law, excluding unique circumstances, forbids autopsies. However all evidence, including examinations of the bodies, the car, and the scene of the attack are proof enough. Why continue to cause unnecessary suffering?!

The seriousness of this cannot be downplayed. Israeli security forces intentionally attempted to cover-up murder. The implications are mind-boggling. In order to prevent possible ‘disturbances’ between Jews and Arabs as the result of this terror, they killed Asher Palmer twice. First, Arabs killed him. But then Israeli police killed him again, blaming him for his own death, due to reckless driving, and being responsible for killing his one year old son, leaving his widow and family to live with this horrible reality for the rest of their lives...

The "accident" was purposeful from at least the IDF's angle.


Arab Rejectionism; Jewish Illogic

Rick Richman, writing in the blog section Contentions of Commentary Magazine, contends:

In the National Interest, Benny Morris​ succinctly summarizes the peace process, writing that there can be disagreement about tactical mistakes made over the years, but that:

[T]here can be no serious argument about what transpired in July and December 2000, when Arafat sequentially rejected comprehensive Israeli and Israeli-American proposals for a two-state solution which would have given the Palestinians (“the Clinton Parameters”) sovereignty and independence in 95% of the West Bank, all of the Gaza Strip, and half of Jerusalem (including half or three-quarters of the Old City).

And further that:

[T]here can be no serious argument either about Abbas’s rejection of the similar, perhaps even slightly better deal, offered by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in 2008. (Indeed, these rejections of a two-state solution were already a tradition set in stone: The Palestinians’ leaders had rejected two-state compromises in 1937 (the Peel proposals), 1947 (the UN General Assembly partition resolution) and (implicitly) in 1978 (when Arafat rejected the Sadat-Begin Camp David agreement, which provided for “autonomy” in the Palestinan territories).

That is six Palestinian rejections of a Palestinian state: 1937, 1947, 1978, 2000 (twice), 2008.

Actually, the correct number is seven, since Morris omitted the first one: in 1919, Chaim Weizmann​, president of the World Zionist Organization, and Emir Feisal Ibn al-Hussein al-Hashemi signed an agreement providing for Arab recognition of the Balfour Declaration, Arab retention of the Muslim holy sites, and WZO agreement to the establishment of an Arab state. Later that year, the Arabs repudiated the agreement.

Well, I would add the Woodhead Commission partition plan, even though it is a development of the Peel Partition plan which recommended

the exchange of populations between the Jewish
territory and the Arab territory: “If Partition is to be effective in promoting a final settlement it must mean more than drawing a frontier and establishing two States. Sooner or later there should be a transfer of land and, as far as possible, an exchange of population.”

The Commission envisioned a population exchange of approximately 225,000 Arabs and 1,250 Jews. The Commission asserted that partition would benefit the Arabs because it would grant them their independence, free them from the fear of Jewish domination, guarantee the protection of the Muslim holy places, and prevent their own impoverishment. The benefit for the Jews was that partition established a Jewish state free from Arab domination in which Jews constituted the majority, and with no restrictions on immigration...This plan also failed. The Supreme Muslim Council rejected the plan immediately. There would be no concession to the Jews. Palestine was Arab land and the Jews were colonizers who were unwelcome...Source. pgs. 89-90

The Woodhead Commission came to Mandate Palestine late the spring of 1938 and published its report in November. It suggested two alternatives to the Peel Partition. Plan B would have reduced the size of the Jewish State by the addition of Galilee to the permanently mandated area and of the southern part of the region south of Jaffa to the Arab State. Plan C would have limited the Jewish State to the coastal region between Zichron Yaakov and Rehovot while in the northern Palestine, including Emek Yizrael, and all the semi-arid region of the Negev would have been placed under separate mandate.

And there is also the Arab rejection at the St. James Conference in 1939.

The Arabs didn't campaign for that either.

Now, as for the Jews, it seems that there was a choice in the face of this consistent Arab intransigence but the academics and intellectuals thought they knew better, thought they were more rational and logical:

Magnes first voiced ideas on Arab–Jewish cooperation in his presidential address at Hebrew University in 1925...Magnes contrasted his position on Arab–Jewish relations in the aftermath of violence at the wall with that of Vladimir Ze’ev Jabotinsky, founder of the Union of Zionist Revisionists, who advocated the establishment of a Jewish state on both banks of the Jordan River, encompassing the land in both the mandates for Palestine and Transjordan.

Jabotinsky and Magnes occupied the poles of Zionist belief, from militarism at the one extreme to pacifism at the other. Magnes wrote to Chaim Weizmann, then chair of the Jewish Agency Executive:

I think the time has come when the Jewish policy as to Palestine must be very clear, and that now only one of two policies is possible. Either the logical policy outlined by Jabotinsky . . . basing our Jewish life in Palestine on militarism and imperialism; Or a pacific policy that treats as entirely secondary such things as a “Jewish State” or a Jewish majority, or even “The Jewish National Home,” and as primary the development of a Jewish spiritual, educational, moral, and religious center in Palestine.

A pacific policy would be based in Jewish values and would take full consideration of Arab claims. The binational state – a state neither Jewish nor Arab – was Magnes’s pacific policy.  Source here, pgs. 67-68.

Magnes lives on - in J Street, in Meretz, in Jews for Justice, et al.

Arab rejectionism goes hand-in-hand with Jewish radicalism, the blind leading the blind but bumping into all us rationalists and realists.


Pregnant, Modest and Devoted

A scene near Machaneh Yehudah market - an Orthodox female, pregnant, and devotedly reading from a religious text. So Jerusalem:-


If Our Roads Are Blocked, Then...

A quickly snapped poster, issued, it is claimed, by the Bejamin Region Actions Committee:

If our roads are blocked, then the Arabs won't be able to drive on the roads either.


Barry Rubin's List of Wrongs

Here's Prof. Barry Rubin's list of wrongs committed by "arrogant Middle East experts":

To Those Always Wrong About the Middle East and Who Never Lose A Gram of Arrogance or A Moment of Sleep Over the Tragedies They Create

On the occasion of your supporting Palestinian unilateral independence despite the dangers this presents for Israel...On the occasion of your ignoring the fact that Turkey is ruled by an Islamist party engaged in massive repression and the transformation of the country into a dictatorship...On the occasion of your whitewashing revolutionary Islamism andglorifying anti-Western forces that will yield a harvest of bloodshed and misery in future. And most of all on the occasion of your ridiculing, censoring, or ignoring far more accurate assessments of the situation.

Here’s the record


You were wrong about Iran’s revolution.

You were wrong about Saddam not invading Iran.


You were wrong about Saddam becoming moderate and wrong about him invading Kuwait.


You were wrong about the 1990s peace process (me, too, but I learned real fast in 2000).

You were wrong about the unilateral withdrawal from southern Lebanon.

You were wrong about the promise that you’d support Israel if it took risks for peace and then things got bad.

Early 2000s

You were wrong about the rise of a stealth Islamist regime in Turkey.

You were wrong about Islamist terrorists attacking America (ridiculing the idea before September 11)

You were wrong about Iran’s nuclear program (during the initial years, you said it wasn’t happening when Israel was warning about it).

You were wrong about letting Hamas participate in the Palestinian election even though it didn’t qualify.

You were wrong in thinking Fatah would win the Palestinian election.

You were wrong in not supporting moderate force in Lebanon and strenuously opposing the power of the Iran-Syria-Hizballah alliance there.

You were wrong in encouraging or even participating in a massive campaign of slander against Israel.

You were wrong in encouraging or even participating in a massive campaign of slander against the United States.

Obama Era

You were wrong about the Egyptian revolution.

You were wrong about Turkey (being Islamist).

You were wrong about Iran again (engagement).

You were wrong about Syria (being winnable from Iran).

You were wrong about Lebanon (not being taken over by Iran, Syria, Hizballah).

You were wrong about Obama (sorry, I only get 800 words total here).

You were wrong about Israel, (a country you never understand).

You were wrong about Islamism (understanding what it’s all about—revolution, not hurt feelings).

You were wrong about Pakistan (helping in a war against terrorism when it sponsors terrorism).

You were wrong about Obama’s policy in the Middle East making America popular there.

You were wrong about flattering Islamists into becoming moderate.

You were wrong about the whole settlement freeze mess (including the wrong claim that it would win moderate gestures from the Arab world).

You were wrong about throwing a tantrum regarding east Jerusalem construction which you’d already agreed was okay to continue.

You were wrong in not throwing a tantrum about the Turkish regime’s sponsoring terrorists on the Gaza flotilla, sabotaging sanctions on Iran, an creating a virtual state of war with Israel.

You were wrong in opening the door to the Taliban in Afghan politics.

You were wrong in opening the door to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egyptian politics (saying the United States had no objection to its being in government without anyone even askin).

You were wrong about moving away from Israel making Arabs and Muslims more moderate and pro-American.

You were wrong to waste almost a year by not dealing with the Palestinian unilateral declaration of independence strategy.

You were wrong in sabotaging any possibility of America becoming more energy independence.

You were wrong in not pressuring the Palestinian Authority to negotiate seriously with Israel.

You were wrong in not giving Israel strong support when it has faced broken agreements, a massive terrorist onslaught, and the rejection of peace in response to its concessions.

That’s just a partial list.

Rub it in, Rubin!


Yedida Singing Bloody Truth



This Is Satire But You Could Have Fooled me


Am I A Provocation?

According to the Statement of the Middle East Quartet

...The Quartet recalled its previous statements, and affirmed its determination to actively and vigorously seek a comprehensive resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, on the basis of UN Security Council Resolutions 242, 338, 1397, 1515, 1850, the Madrid principles including land for peace, the Roadmap, and the agreements previously reached between the parties.

...The Quartet reiterated its urgent appeal to the parties to overcome the current obstacles and resume direct bilateral Israeli-Palestinian negotiations without delay or preconditions. But it accepts that meeting, in itself, will not reestablish the trust necessary for such a negotiation to succeed. It therefore proposes the following steps:

1. Within a month there will be a preparatory meeting between the parties to agree an agenda and method of proceeding in the negotiation.
2. At that meeting there will be a commitment by both sides that the objective of any negotiation is to reach an agreement within a timeframe agreed to by the parties but not longer than the end of 2012. The Quartet
expects the parties to come forward with comprehensive proposals within three months on territory and security, and to have made substantial progress within six months...
...5. The Quartet calls upon the parties to refrain from provocative actions if negotiations are to be effective. The Quartet reiterated the obligations of both parties under the Roadmap.

Now, what would be considered a provocation?


From Benjamin Netanyahu's UN speech:-

...President Abbas just stood here, and he said that the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is the settlements. Well, that’s odd. Our conflict has been raging for — was raging for nearly half a century before there was a single Israeli settlement in the West Bank. So if what President Abbas is saying was true, then the — I guess that the settlements he’s talking about are Tel Aviv, Haifa, Jaffa, Be’er Sheva. Maybe that’s what he meant the other day when he said that Israel has been occupying Palestinian land for 63 years. He didn’t say from 1967; he said from 1948. I hope somebody will bother to ask him this question because it illustrates a simple truth: The core of the conflict is not the settlements. The settlements are a result of the conflict. (Applause.)

The settlements have to be — it’s an issue that has to be addressed and resolved in the course of negotiations. But the core of the conflict has always been and unfortunately remains the refusal of the Palestinians to recognize a Jewish state in any border...

Shelly Yachimovitch's Win

Poor Peretz.


Saturday, September 24, 2011

We Didn't Hand Over Sinai?

Didn't Israel hand over Sinai to Egypt to the last grain of holy sand?

Maybe not?

Prominent Egyptian Politician: Camp David Accord No More Valid

TEHRAN (FNA)- A leading Egyptian political activist underlined the necessity of revising Camp David Accord between Cairo and Tel Aviv, stressing that the deal is no more valid.

"Camp David is annulled and has no credit and value," member of Egypt's
National Association for Change George Ishaq told FNA in Cairo.

"Since the Zionist regime attaches no respect to the accord and in order to
reclaim Egypt's sovereignty over the Sinai region…the agreement should be reviewed and revised," underlined Ishaq, a former coordinator of Kefaya Movement, a political movement opposing Hosni Mubarak's regime.


A 1937 Congressional Resolution

Earlier this month, Republican Congressman Joe Walsh introduced a resolution to recommend the extension of Israeli sovereignty to sections of Judea and Samaria, which I blogged.

This was not a unique involvement by an American elected representative.  Back in 1937, New York Senator Roger Copeland, Democrat, protested the British suggested partition as reported by the JTA on August 12, 1937:-

Copeland Introduces Senate Resolution Protesting Partition

This, after denouncing earlier reports in May, calling it 'impracticable'

Senator Royal S. Copeland, attacking reported plans to partition or cantonize Palestine, declared tonight that "its utter impracticability would be apparent even to the writer of the craziest fairy tales."...Recalling the United States-Great Britain treaty on Palestine, Mr. Copeland spoke of Americans' "national responsibilities" to support the Jewish homeland.

In his August remarks, he condemned the partition proposals of Palestine as "outrageous" and introduced a resolution asking for the Senate's "forthright indication of unwillingness to accept modification in the Mandate without Senate consent."  He was supported by Senator William H. King, (Dem. Utah) who condemned Partition by declaring that Britain was "dishonoring pledges and violating the Balfour Declaration" and that this was a "perfidious policy.  King, who visited Mandate Palestine in 1925, had sent a cable to the British Parliament protesting the "unjust and cruel measure" that was partition.  Interestingly, he said this action was warranted "by all Christians."  In 1939, he again sought Congress intervention to protect Jewish rights in Palestine.

Copeland was of the opinion that the territory allotted the Jews by the partition was insufficient to maintain even a small number of Jews.  The etablishment of a small Jewish state

might result in a war between the Jews and Arabs.

And most relevant to those concerned about legal issues, Copeland said Great Britain had not done its duty and pointed to

Article 7 of the British-American Treaty which stipulates that all changes in the Mandate must be approved by the United States....England was absolutely disregarding this country

The Senate should not sit idly by while

England made a scrap of paper of the treaty.

So, there has been a long history of action by members of Congress and the Senate championing the internationally legal rights of the Jewish people in and to its national home.

And we salute those continuing that tradition.


Qusra - The Ecstasy of Violence

Haaretz reported:

Report: Palestinian killed in West Bank clashes with Israeli forces

Palestinians report 35-year-old man killed near Nablus by IDF fire

Israeli security forces shot dead a Palestinian in the West Bank on Friday during a confrontation between Palestinians and settlers in the village of Qusra, a local Palestinian official said.

Hany Abu Murad, the mayor of the village where the violence occurred, named the dead person as Essam Kamal Badran, 35. The incident occurred in Qusra, southeast of the Palestinian city of Nablus.

The JPost adds:

The Ma’an News Agency identified the dead man as Issam Kamal Odeh, 33, and said he was shot by two bullets in the neck and shoulder during clashes with the IDF troops near Qusra and not far from the city of Nablus.

The IDF confirmed that it was operating in the area and had been working to quell violent protests which erupted outside the village with the participation of around 300 Palestinians. The military said that soldiers used various riot dispersal means including live fire. Two other Palestinians were also reported to have been injured.

Here's the IDF report:

IDF Spokesperson AnnouncementFor Immediate Release
September 23rd, 2011 17:45
Events Following Violent Riot near Qusra

A mutual rock hurling incident that occurred earlier this afternoon between Israeli civilians and approximately 300 Palestinians near the village of Qusra incited a violent riot, during which Palestinians hurled rocks at security personnel. During the riot, security personnel used riot dispersal means and eventually, live fire. As a result, Palestinian sources reported that three rioters were injured. Initial reports suggest that one of them was wounded and subsequently, passed away.  The IDF and the Palestinian Security Authority is jointly investigating the

The Pal. version, with pictures, is here.  Note - not one displays a burning field or damaged olive trees.

There are ridiculous claims, like this one:

Once arrested, Fathi Hassan explained, settlers from the outpost had asked the soldiers detaining them for permission to beat the two boys. The soldiers did not interfere and so the settlers began stoning the boys whilst their hands where cuffed behind their backs.


Remi Yusef Faiz Hassan, age 35, was shot with 4 rubber bullets and one dum dum from 2 meters as he peacefully walked to soldiers to ask why they allow the settlers to enter his village and burn his trees.

One correction of this:

the nearby outpost of Esh Kodesh (“Holy Head”)

The Hebrew, אש קדש, translates as Holy Fire, and is refers to the book of Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Shapira.

Just a week ago, there was an incident and as I have blogged, there is a heightened frenzy in Qusra.  In March, it was claimed

In the afternoon of the 7th of March 2011, villagers from Qusra, south of Nablus, were attacked by settlers from the surrounding illegal outposts who shortly were accompanied by the Israeli army.

Silly.  Last August, though, Arabs from Qusra/Kuzra burned Jewish fields.

A group of 8 have banded together and are leading a 'home guard' and are imagining attacks when there are none and are leading to provocations which only cause themselves damgae and injury and now death.

We know this from hearing the phone calls Arab residents receive, alerting them to supposed burnings and destructions, whipping them up.

Will someone intervene with Qusra Arabs and put them into proportion?


And Who Argues Against a Palestinian Arab State?

Who wrote this?

The Case Against Palestinian Statehood

...the decision of Mr. Abbas to pursue official statehood undermines the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

...Any elevation of the Palestinians’ status at the U.N. is unacceptable. Upgraded status could allow the Palestinians recourse against the Israelis through U.N. institutions such as the International Criminal Court or the International Court of Justice.

The Palestinians are not in a position to become a sovereign nation. They have failed to commit to serious negotiations with Israel that are necessary before statehood and full U.N. membership can even be discussed. They have failed to demonstrate any commitment to eradicating terrorism; the Palestinian Authority does not even control its own “territory” as the Gaza Strip is controlled by Hamas, a designated terrorist organization. Furthermore, they have failed to demonstrate, through their negotiations with Hamas that they are seriously interested in peace in any way.

I call on President Obama to address the Palestinians’ bid with swift and meaningful action, instead of merely calling it a “distraction.” Opposing the Palestinians’ attempt to be recognized as a state is an opportunity for the United States to stand with Israel and support a true peace process...

...The fact remains that the Palestinians refuse to recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish State, promote violent extremism and do little to encourage a peaceful settlement. Until these disturbing issues are resolved in a completely satisfactory manner, there is no reason the Palestinians should be recognized as a sovereign state.

Michele Bachmann.