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Post  Admin Yesterday at 10:28 pm
IsraBite News by HonestReporting
Another Peace Deal In Days Says US Ambassador To UN; Israel To Go Into Total Lockdown
United States Ambassador to the United Nations Kelly Craft said that another Arab state could sign a peace deal with Israel within days.

Craft framed Israel’s normalization deals with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain signed earlier this month as crucial to countering the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Read more ➞
TODAY! HonestReporting CEO to Address Prestigious Confab

The first known direct commercial flight between Israel and Bahrain landed in the island kingdom.

Israir Airlines Airbus A320 touched down at Bahrain International Airport after a nearly three-hour flight from Tel Aviv’s Ben-Gurion International Airport.

Read more ➞
Israel is heading back into a complete lockdown, which will begin on Friday and is likely to last until at least the end of the High Holidays.

After eight hours of deliberations, the coronavirus cabinet made its recommendations, which were brought to the full cabinet for a late-night vote. The government subsequently approved the stricter measures.

What the expanded lockdown will entail ➞
Antisemitism Watch: Organizers at San Francisco State University said they will livestream their videoconference with infamous Palestinian hijacker Leila Khaled over Facebook, after the online communication platform Zoom moved to nix the event.

Khaled's terrorist activities ➞
Sbarro Massacre: When Media Turns a Terrorist Into a Heroine (VIDEO)
The world’s largest collection of Holy Land postcards has been donated to the Folklore Research Center at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Mandel Institute of Jewish Studies.

See what the postcards look like ➞
A mixed martial arts and kickboxing champion from India is moving to Israel, and he plans to represent the Jewish state in international competition.

Obed Hrangchal's fascinating Jewish journey ➞
Recommended Content

An Interest-based Peace (Yoram Ettinger, Jewish News Syndicate)
Lessons Ignorance About Holocaust Should Teach Us (Michael Laitman, Israel Hayom)
Israel’s Mobileye, Dubai’s Habtoor Partner on Self-Driving Cars (Tova Cohen, Ari Rabinovitch, Alexander Cornwell, Reuters)
OECD: Israel Is Healthy, Happy but Highly Unequal – and COVID Is Making It Worse (Simona Weinglass, Times of Israel)
Yuval Noah Harari’s ‘Sapiens’ To Be Adapted Into Graphic Novel (Marcy Oster, Jewish Telegraphic Agency)

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Post  Admin on Tue 15 Sep 2020, 1:37 am
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IsraBite News by HonestReporting
Israel to Enter 3-week Lockdown from Friday

Israeli ministers have approved a three-week nationwide lockdown to contain the resurgent coronavirus outbreak. The lockdown will commence hours before the start of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, and last for three weeks.

Learn about the restrictions here ➞
PM Netanyahu has landed in Washington to sign normalization agreements with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, only four days after the latter announced official ties with Israel.

Meanwhile, the Palestinians have announced the formation of a group called The Unified National Leadership of Popular Resistance, which calls for a “comprehensive popular struggle.”

Does the new group herald another Intifada? ➞
The Trump Administration has reportedly pledged to the United Arab Emirates that it would not recognize any Israeli move to annex parts of the West Bank until 2014 at the earliest.

The White House made the promise during the Israel-UAE normalization negotiations, which Trump unveiled last month.

Read more ➞
The Israel Defense Forces has set up a team tasked with assembling a "wish list" of technologies and systems to help it maintain its regional defensive superiority.

Israeli officials are concerned by the prospect of the United States government approving the sale of the fighter jets and other advanced military technology to the United Arab Emirates under the Israel-UAE normalization deal.

Find out how fears of an arms race sparked the move  ➞
Israeli model Bar Refaeli, 35, was found guilty of tax evasion on Sunday on Sunday. Her sentence: nine months of community service and a large fine.

Refaeli, who previously dated Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio, was found guilty earlier this year of making false statements pertaining to her time residing abroad. She presented herself as a non-resident of Israel, thereby evading Israeli taxes.

Read more about Refaeli's conviction ➞
Stephane Legar - I'm in Dubai (VIDEO)

Recommended Content

Jordan is harboring brutal terrorists wanted by France and America (Ben Cohen, Jewish News Syndicate)
The EU must adapt to the paradigm shift in the Middle East (Yossi Lempkowicz, Jerusalem Post)
Israel's eyes - How the drone went from a toy to the IDF's greatest tool (Yaakov Katz, Jerusalem Post)
On the Brink of Escalation: The UNIFIL Mandate Renewal is a Victim of the Beirut Explosion (Assaf Orion, The Institute for National Security Studies)

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Post  Admin on Sun 19 Jul 2020, 5:26 pm
IsraBite News by HonestReporting
Two Cyber Attacks Carried Out Against Israel

Two cyber attacks were carried out against Israeli water infrastructure in recent weeks, Israeli media reported over the weekend. 

Is this connected to the recent 'incidents' in Iran?

Read more ➞
The cabinet on Sunday is set to approve Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s proposal to disburse NIS 6 billion ($1.75 billion) to all Israelis to help cope with the economic crisis caused by COVID-19.

Read more ➞
The second hearing in Prime Minister Netanyahu’s corruption trial is set for Sunday at the Jerusalem District Court.

What is Prime Minister Netanyahu on trial for?

Read more ➞
Everything You Need To Know About Israel's Prime Ministers

The Israeli government is set to finalize the agreement signed in January with Cyprus and Greece to advance the EastMed gas pipeline project.

Once completed, the 1,900 km. pipeline will be the longest in the world.

Are Israel and Turkey On a Collision Course in the Eastern Med?

Some 236 American members of Congress and European lawmakers called on the European Union to “designate Hezbollah in its entirety as a terrorist organization.”

Antisemitism Watch: Two synagogues in Sarasota, Florida, were vandalized with swastikas.

A far-right politician in Canada is under investigation over an antisemitic video.

Over a dozen California school boards have adopted resolutions in support of an ethnic-studies model curriculum, despite it having come under fire for containing antisemitic and anti-Israel content.

Recommended Reading

Coronavirus unleashes new wave of antisemitism, xenophobia (Jonathan Harounoff, Stephanie Posner, Arman Amini)
Everything you need to know about the Netanyahu trial and Israel’s rule of law (Paul Shindman)
Far more unites Black and Jewish Americans than divides them (Ethan B. Katz and Deborah Lipstadt)
BDS can be defeated on the political battleground (Asher Fredman)
How exactly does Hezbollah threaten Israel? (Pesach Benson)

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Post  Admin on Sun 16 Feb 2020, 5:36 pm
IsraBite NEWS
Your bite-sized Israel news roundup
First Israelis Test Positive For Coronavirus

The Health Ministry confirmed the first Israelis testing positive for the rapidly spreading coronavirus. The two -- a couple aboard the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship docked in Yokohama -- are now hospitalized in Japan. Another 15 Israelis aboard the ship have so far not tested positive.

Initial reports incorrectly said that a third Israeli had also tested positive. CNN reported 356 confirmed cases aboard the ship.

Per Ynet, "Israel is still looking into the possibility of repatriating the remaining Israelis aboard who have not displayed symptoms of the virus. The passengers will be quarantined and observed back home if Foreign Minister Israel Katz manages to persuade the Japanese authorities to release them."

Peace processing: The UN Human Rights Council was assisted by non-governmental organizations with terror ties in compiling its blacklist of businesses operating in West Bank settlements.

A Palestinian mayor was forced to resign after attending a peace conference with Israelis in Tel Aviv. Friday's gathering was to express opposition to President Donald Trump's peace plan. And the PA-funded Al Quds University apologized for publishing a map of Palestine that only included the West Bank and Gaza.

Israel is worried that European Union member states are gearing up to recognize a Palestinian state in a backlash against President Donald Trump's peace initiative.

The IDF struck terror targets in Gaza on Saturday night and cancelled several humanitarian gestures in response to rocket fire.

Meanwhile, in response to reports of an Israel-Hamas "understanding," Hamas told Arab media it only agreed to reduce, not stop, Gaza terror balloons. On Thursday, several bombs carried by terror balloons exploded over Israeli communities near the Gaza border, including a school in Sderot. Children were immediately rushed to bomb shelters. Nobody was injured by any of the bombs.

Related reading: Gaza Balloons A Bursting Terror Problem

An Israeli plane flew in Sudanese airspace for first time.

A coalition of non-governmental organizations has joined together to demand the end of terror groups using Palestinian children soldiers.

"For decades, the letter states, Palestinian children 'have fulfilled the role of combatants, human shields, rioters, laborers, support staff, and even as suicide bombers – and as a result, their childhoods have been shortened by death, severe injury, or imprisonment.'"

Meanwhile, the Mail on Sunday takes a closer look at Hezbollah's scout movement, which is "grooming children as young as four to become Islamic terrorists."

Damascus was rocked by explosions attributed to a Belgian air strike (!?) on Thursday night.

Antisemitism Watch: The Mossad ended Jeremy Corbyn's campaign, tweeted a newly elected Sinn Fein lawmaker. The San Diego Padres ditched a 'swastika cap' due to fan backlash. In Sweden, ‘Big Brother’ contestants confess Jew hatred. And the JTA takes a closer look at some of the sometimes-offensive Jewish-themed words and phrases you can now find in the Oxford Dictionary.

"Viral: Antisemitism in Four Mutations" described by some as a "powerful new documentary," is due to hit theaters later this month. Newsweek posted a clip, which features president Bill Clinton, Prof. Deborah Lipstadt, and a former FBI investigator.

Video: Palestinian Child Soldiers

Commentary I'm reading

- UN blacklist: BDS wins but the Palestinians lose (Ben-Dror Yemini)

- The UN’s anti-Israel blacklist will harm a lot of Palestinians (New York Post staff-ed)

- The UN once again proves its antisemitism (David Harsanyi)

- The UN blacklist, US laws and US policy (Orde Kittrie)

- Is Israel heading to another Gaza war or will it wait until after the election? (Mati Tuchfeld)

- Why non-Arab states dominate the Mideast (Amb. Zvi Magen)

- Turkey and Israel: Can pragmatism defeat 'bad blood'? (Burak Bekdil)

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Post  Admin on Sun 10 Dec 2017, 11:53 pm
Israel Uncovers, Destroys Another Cross-Border Terror Tunnel

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Today’s Top Stories
1. The IDF destroyed another cross-border terror tunnel. According to Jerusalem Post and Haaretz coverage, the tunnel stretched a few hundred meters into Israel, leading “into agriculture fields near Kibbutz Nirim,” but did not yet have an opening.

The tunnel destroyed on Sunday was found deeper into Israeli territory than the tunnel belonging to [Palestinian Islamic Jihad], which was found on the border and was in advanced stages of construction, Manelis said, stressing that Hamas had put significant effort into it.

More at the Times of Israel and Ynet.

2. Responding to weekend rocket fire from Gaza, the IDF struck four Hamas targets in the Strip, including two weapons manufacturing sites. One rocket hit a kindergarten in Sderot. Nobody was there, but the building was damaged.

And today, an Israeli security guard is fighting for his life after being stabbed at Jerusalem’s central bus station. Security cameras caught the attack on video. The attacker was apprehended.

And this morning, 9-year-old Israeli girl was injured in a Gush Etziyon rock throwing incident.


Anna Ahronheim
Replying to @AAhronheim
Picture of the knife used today by a 24yr old #Palestinian resident of the #WestBank who stabbed an #Israeli security guard at #Jerusalem’s central bus station

Anna Ahronheim
Security camera footage of #Jerusalem stabbing attack catches moment where #Palestinian stabbed #Israeli in the upper body

1:05 PM - Dec 10, 2017

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So while clashes broke out around the West Bank and along the Gaza border, Jerusalem remained relatively calm until the afternoon stabbing.


Anna Ahronheim
Replying to @AAhronheim
Picture of the knife used today by a 24yr old #Palestinian resident of the #WestBank who stabbed an #Israeli security guard at #Jerusalem’s central bus station

Anna Ahronheim
Security camera footage of #Jerusalem stabbing attack catches moment where #Palestinian stabbed #Israeli in the upper body

1:05 PM - Dec 10, 2017

77 77 Replies 377 377 Retweets 184 184 likes
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3. Qais al-Khazali, the commander of an Iranian-backed Iraqi militia was seen on the Lebanese-Israeli border. An analyst told the Jerusalem Post:

But, he added, “You also have to wonder, where is UNIFIL? The visit of the leader of a foreign militia funded and trained by the IRGC [Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps] is another example of the UN mission’s overall failure to create a buffer zone in southern Lebanon, where the Lebanese state is [supposed to be] the main (and only) actor,” he added.

View image on Twitter
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The Jerusalem Post
Commander of Iranian-backed Iraqi militia seen in south Lebanon

8:31 AM - Dec 9, 2017
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4. History Channel Flunks Jerusalem 101: If journalism is history’s proverbial first draft, what are we to make of the History Channel’s distorted take on Jerusalem?

5. Jerusalem Fallout: More Media Muckups: Between the West Bank clashes, Gaza rocket fire and international anger, there was no shortage of warped news and commentary.

6. The Toronto Star’s False ‘Facts’ on Jerusalem: Are Tony Burman’s views are so divorced from reality that he must change facts?

Israel and the Palestinians
• According to the Times of Israel, one important reason for Jerusalem’s overall calm was a decision not to place restrictions on Friday’s Temple Mount prayers:

On Thursday and Friday at the Damascus Gate, often a focal point of protest and violence, journalists outnumbered the protesters — a sign that news editors had taken Hamas’s repeated entreaties for a new intifada more seriously than the Palestinians themselves.

On Saturday in Jerusalem, the protests were smaller still.

And outside of this one congested point in the city, life has gone on as normal . . .

Without Arab Jerusalemites taking a central part in protests surrounding the fate of their city, it may be that the furious demonstrations elsewhere — in the West Bank, the region and beyond — may fade away as well.

• The IDF accused the Palestinians of using ambulances as cover for stone-throwing. Backstory at the Times of Israel.

View image on Twitter

Earlier today, during violent riots in Ramallah's main square, Palestinians threw stones at security forces. The rioters shielded themselves with an ambulance, knowing that security forces wouldn't employ dispersal tactics against it

8:53 PM - Dec 9, 2017
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• Weekend’s best headline, courtesy the Times of Israel.


• Jerusalem Post: The White House believes it can ride out temporary Arab anger because the Palestinian Authority is too reliant on the US.

• Now that the US has recognized Jerusalem’s capital status, the Associated Press notes what isn’t changing: Americans born in Jerusalem still will not be able to list “Jerusalem, Israel” as their place of birth, official State Department maps won’t be redrawn, and it’s not clear what’s in store for wording on future policy papers, transcripts, announcements, etc.


• The Czech Republic wants to move its embassy to Jerusalem now and accused other EU leaders of “cowardice.”

• Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrived in Paris for talks with President Emmanuel Macron, then he’s off to Brussels for meetings with European Union leaders. Jerusalem Post coverage.

• EU vows push to make Jerusalem capital for Palestinians too.

• At an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council on Friday, US Ambassador Nikki Haley didn’t back down from widespread criticism, telling council members “Change is hard.”

The debate unfolded at a largely symbolic emergency meeting of the council — no vote on a resolution was planned, as the US has veto power — two days after Trump reversed two decades of US policy on the holy city . . .

Asked what he expected to come from the UN meeting, one diplomat said: “Nothing.”

Haley and Danon
Israeli Amb. Danny Danon (right) and US Amb. Nikki Haley (left) speak prior to the Security Council meeting on Jerusalem on Dec 8, 2017.
• Palestinians to make play for Dead Sea scrolls at UNESCO

• An IDF commander was suspended after being caught on film stealing fruit from Palestinians in Hebron on Saturday.

• Although Israel doesn’t have diplomatic relations with the Gulf states, Israeli media reports a group of Bahraini religious leaders arrived over the weekend “to send a message of peace.”

Around the World
• Swedish state TV ties Trump’s Jerusalem recognition to ‘incredibly strong Jewish lobby.’

In a broadcast Wednesday immediately following Trump’s address about Jerusalem, the broadcaster SVT asserted that the “Jewish Lobby in the US is incredibly strong,” and said the lobby “has championed this issue for a long time.”

“It was an unfortunate choice of words that immediately was corrected by our senior news commentator,” Charlotta Friborg, executive editor and publisher SVT News, told JTA in an email.

• Firebombs were thrown at a Swedish synagogue following a demonstration against Trump’s Jerusalem declaration. Protesters called to kill Jews. Unfortunately, CNN‘s headline needed a little copy editing:


• ACLU sues Arizona over law barring boycotts of Israel

• Come on, Stephen Daisley, tell us what you really think:

The international community is obsessively ignorant about the Jewish state, checking in occasionally to lecture an embattled liberal outpost on the proper etiquette for preventing its children from being blown up. This engenders a reflexive idiocy that treats absurd banalities as wise statecraft. Those who insisted for years that the peace process was dead now say that Trump has killed it. Those who asserted that US foreign policy was controlled by the Israel lobby now lament the surrender of America’s neutrality. Those who championed recognition of Palestine without negotiations are suddenly sceptical about unilateralism. Senator Dianne Feinstein wrote to Donald Trump to warn that implementing the Jerusalem Embassy Act would ‘spark violence and embolden extremists’. Dianne Feinstein voted for the Jerusalem Embassy Act.

The Palestinians have threatened to respond with rage and unrest. Or ‘Thursday’ as it’s otherwise known. So little is expected of them that the threat of violence is seen as a reasonable response to Trump’s proclamation.

After looking at all this commentary, the HonestReporting staff’s eyes were glowing in the dark (I’m upper left).
• Lots of spilled ink, burnt pixels, hot talk and hot air over Jerusalem, Trump and the peace process. Don’t worry, I save a few for tomorrow’s roundup.

– Mayor Nir Barkat: Israel’s eternal capital gets is long overdue recognition
– Bret Stephens: Jerusalem denial complex
– Spengler: Who’s following Trump’s lead on Jerusalem?
– Elliott Abrams: The Palestinian violence is not spontaneous
– Dennis Ross and David Makovsky: Moving US embassy to Jerusalem is not a disaster
– Avi Issacharoff: To date, Palestinian protests are a case of ‘intifada lite’
– Yoram Hazony: Trump recognizes that humiliating Israel didn’t bring peace (click via Twitter)
– Fraser Nelson: Trump’s Jerusalem move will not derail Mid-East peace – not now the Saudis are leading the charge
– Bernard Avishai: Palestinians reject Trump’s Jerusalem declaration
– Jonathan Schanzer: Jerusalem is already Israel’s capital. Trump just made it official.
– Melanie Phillips: A historic watershed shames Britain and Europe
– Kenneth Lasson: Why Trump is right on Jerusalem

• Gotta like this take from the Chicago Tribune‘s Scott Stantis.

View image on Twitter

Scott Stantis
Since 1995 the U.S. has recognized Jerusalem as the capital of the state of Israel. The government of Israel is in Jerusalem. Perhaps putting aside this absurd kabuki will inject a strong dose of reality to a peace process that has been stalled for so long

3:26 PM - Dec 7, 2017
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– Yaakov Katz: How Trump’s Jerusalem decision was a defeat for terror
– Alan Dershowitz: Violence should not determine policy
– Oded Granot: Palestinians not gung-ho for 3rd intifada
– Mordechai Kedar: 20 reasons why every foreign embassy should move to Jerusalem
– Daniel Shapiro: On Jerusalem, Trump just offered talk. Does Kushner’s peace plan offer real substance?
– Michael Totten: Jerusalem is Israel’s capital and always will be
– Mark Patinkin: The president and the passions of Jerusalem

• Staff editorials weighed in on the Trump declaration, including the Toronto Star, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Boston Herald, Baltimore Sun, San Diego Union-Tribune, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, The Guardian, and Irish Times.

• For a sense of what the critics are saying, see Hanan Ashrawi, Diana Buttu, Ramzy Baroud, Raja Shehadeh, Mairav Zonszein and Aziz Abu Sarah, and the poison pen of Patrick Chappatte.

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NYT Opinion
By @PatChappatte

11:53 PM - Dec 7, 2017
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Featured image: CC BY Jon S; passports CC BY-SA Tim Sackton; Haley and Danon via UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe; eyes via YouTube/OB1KXB;


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Post  Admin on Thu 07 Dec 2017, 6:15 pm
Trump Recognizes Jerusalem’s Capital Status: What It Means
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American and Israeli flags hanging on Jerusalem's King David St. in 2008. Photo by Nati Shohat/Flash90
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Today’s Top Stories

1. As expected, President Donald Trump reversed US policy and recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, setting in motion the process of relocating the US embassy from Tel Aviv. Here’s the speech (video or transcript) as well as the text of the official proclamation Trump signed if you want to judge the president’s words for yourself. More at the Times of Israel and New York Times.
2. White House officials acknowledged to CNN that Trump’s move could cause a “derailment — temporary” in peace efforts. Concerned for international backlash and the security of its diplomatic missions, the US asked Israel to temper its response to the Jerusalem recognition, according to State Department documents seen by Reuters. Foggy Bottom also set up an emergency task force to deal with potential fallout.

Meanwhile, clashes and scuffles broke out in the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem. Police were widely deployed throughout Jerusalem, but “As of Thursday morning, the army had not called up reserve units, which would have indicated an expectation of greater violence,” the Times of Israel reported.

3. Will other countries follow the US lead and move their embassies to Jerusalem too? Israeli officials believe The Philippines, Czech Republic and Hungary may be next.

4. Trump’s Embassy Move: Behind the Hysteria: Forget the media frenzy. Here are the basic facts you need to know.

5. Trump Jerusalem Declaration: Media Muck Ups: On a day the US addressed the realities of Jerusalem, journalists didn’t.

6. Trump’s Jerusalem Embassy Move: Legal? Dangerous? Or Justified? HR’s Daniel Pomerantz discussed the latest developments with i24 News.
Trump's Jerusalem Embassy Move: Legal? Dangerous? Or Justified?

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Post  Admin on Wed 06 Dec 2017, 2:13 pm
Trump to Recognize Jerusalem’s Capital ‘Reality’
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Today’s Top Stories

1. The White House confirmed that the US will recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and begin the process of relocating its embassy from Tel Aviv. According to Israeli media reports, Netanyahu and his aides were ‘active partners’ with President Donald Trump’s team on making the move happen. Trump is due to discuss Jerusalem in a speech (at 1:00 PM Eastern time) after this roundup was published. Haaretz explains the timeframe:

In addition, the senior officials said that moving the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem could “take years,” and that Trump could possible sign the presidential waiver delaying that move once again in the future, in order to allow the logistical process of moving the embassy to be carried out accordingly. Trump’s speech will not include a strict timeline for the process of moving the embassy.
The Palestinians announced they would hold three days of rage. The extended days of rage might make up for the missing rage over Russia’s and Vanuatu’s recognition of Jerusalem’s capital status months ago. Meanwhile, the Philippines has me going hmmmmm.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte tells Israel he's interested in moving his country's embassy to Jerusalem – @ReshetBet

— Dan Williams (@DanWilliams) December 6, 2017
2. The US House of Representatives passed the Taylor Force Act, which would cut US aid to the PA over stipends to terrorists and their families. The bill now moves to the Senate, which is expected to vote on it this month. Taylor Force, the bill’s namesake, was a US national stabbed to death by a Palestinian in March, 2016.

US Capitol

3. At the request of Syrian doctors, the IDF launched a maternity field hospital on the Syrian side of the Golan border. The Jerusalem Post explains:

According to the commander, the hospital opened two weeks ago in the village of Bariqa in the Quneitra region of the Syrian-controlled portion of the Golan Heights. While it is staffed entirely by Syrian doctors, the incubators, beds and ultrasound equipment come from Israel. . .

Since it opened, more than 200 women have been treated at the hospital, more than 30 of whom gave birth. “It’s a great thing we have made with the Syrian doctors. A lot of women are very grateful,” the lieutenant-colonel said.
In the News

• Too little, too late? Abbas calls for Palestinian reconciliation, hours before Trump’s Jerusalem announcement.

• US expats in Jerusalem will be intrigued by Uri Blau.

Sources suggest @POTUS speech about Jerusalem might include a statement allowing Jerusalem-born Americans to register "Israel" as place of birth

— Uri Blau (@uri_blau) December 6, 2017
• After Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer confirmed to Politico that he was in contact with members of Donald Trump’s transition team (possibly including Michael Flynn) during last year’s fight against UN Security Council resolution 2334, the Jerusalem Post takes a closer look at whether Dermer legally entangled Trump and Jared Kushner.

But whatever his status – and whether or not he chooses to waive any immunities – his public admission of his role in the events underlying the case could give momentum to force him to testify as a fact-witness, which might not have been the case if he had said nothing.
• Good luck to Stephen Farrell, the new Reuters’ Jerusalem bureau chief.

Glad to welcome the inestimable @farrellreporter to @Reuters and as my successor in Jerusalem, his old stomping ground. Best of luck to the man affectionately known as Robohack

— Luke Baker (@LukeReuters) December 5, 2017
• Iran reportedly operates Yemen-Gaza weapons smuggling ring

• A survey picked up by the Times of Israel found declining support for Israel among Evangelical millennials.

• Berlin art show sparks outrage with jihadi ‘martyrs’ display.

• Israel’s F-35 stealth fighters declared operational, a year after their arrival.


• Pundits didn’t forget thee, O’ Jerusalem . . .

Jerusalem– Anshel Pfeffer: Trump set to recognize Jerusalem – but don’t panic just yet
– Shmuel Rosner: Of course Jerusalem is Israel’s capital
– Zvi Bar’el: Let Trump recognize Jerusalem already
– Avi Issacharoff: For Abbas, come hell or intifada, Jerusalem is the hill to die on
– Charles Bybelezer: On Jerusalem: Denying reality & the absence of ‘Palestine’
– Jeremy Ben-Ami: Trump is bringing bloodshed, not peace to Jerusalem
– Emmanuel Navon: Jerusalem is the test of US leadership in the Middle East
– Josh Rogin: Trump’s Israel-Palestine policy is at war with itself
– Chemi Shalev: President Trump, don’t do us any favors on Jerusalem
– Eliora Katz: The Zionist case against an embassy move (click via Twitter)
– Jeffrey Salkin: Don’t mess around with Jerusalem
– Yoram Ettinger: For the sake of national security
– Alex Fishman: In battle against Jerusalem recognition, Palestinians united by Al-Aqsa
– Fred Lucas: US not allowing Palestinians to control the terms of the peace process

• Staff-eds weighed in on Jerusalem too.

– New York Times: Does President Trump want to negotiate Middle East peace?
– Los Angeles Times: Trump’s Jerusalem ploy could ruin the ‘ultimate deal’
– The Australian: Trump’s candour on Israel
– New York Daily News: Jerusalem is Israel’s capital: Applaud President Trump’s recognition of the city’s rightful status

• For a sense of what the critics are saying, see Robert Fisk, Nicholas Blincoe and Patrick Cockburn.

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Nathan Diament: Finally in sight, an end to US taxpayer sponsorship of Palestinian terrorism
– Yonah Jeremy Bob: Four main take-aways from ICC report on Israel-Palestinians

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Post  Admin on Tue 05 Dec 2017, 7:36 pm
Trump Delays Decision on Recognizing Jerusalem
Today’s Top Stories
President Donald Trump
1. The Trump administration is delaying a decision on relocating the US embassy to Jerusalem, despite a Monday deadline to sign a waiver. The Times of Israel talked to experts about the significance of the missed deadline. Bottom line: Don’t expect any legal consequences, but the delay could cost the president politically.

Meanwhile, Israeli security forces are on high alert. I liked CNN‘s backgrounder on why the possible move is so controversial.

2. According to Syrian reports picked up Reuters, Israel struck another Syrian military facility on Monday night.

Jamraya contains a military research facility which was hit by what was believed to have been an Israeli attack in 2013.

US Supreme Court
3. The latest issue the US Supreme Court is weighing: Can a group of Americans injured in a 1997 Jerusalem bombing seize Persian artifacts loaned to a Chicago museum in order to collect a $71 million judgment against Iran, which the Islamic Republic refuses to pay?
Judging from Reuters and SCOTUSblog coverage, the justices were quite skeptical.

4. HR Corrections: November 2017: With 20 significant media corrections during November, take a look at what you helped us achieve!

5. Watchdog of the Week: Fixing a CNN Map: Watchdog of the Week Michael Mendelsohn alerted HonestReporting to a CNN map error, resulting in a correction.

6. VIDEO: Is Europe Promoting the Next Mideast Massacre? Hezbollah is internationally recognized as a terror organization and a proxy for Iran. Yet in nearly every European country, it is free to openly raise funds and recruit followers.
Israel and the Palestinians

• So how’s the world reacting to possible US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital? Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened to cut diplomatic ties with Israel if the US follows through. (One Israeli official responded to that by pointing out Jerusalem was the Jewish capital for 3,000 years.) Israeli Arab leaders threatened protests. And rattled European leaders are joining the chorus of warnings.

On the other hand, Israeli officials spoke up for the recognition, and Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat filmed his own plea from outside the White House gates.

Mayor Nir Barkat
As we await a decision, share this message to @realDonaldTrump:

Do not be deterred by threats of terror; move the US embassy to Jerusalem! @USAmbIsrael
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• Plenty of buzz around this New York Times report on the latest Mideast peace efforts. Unfortunately, the crux of the article is based almost entirely on secondhand anonymous accounts of Mahmoud Abbas’ version of what happened when he was urgently summoned to Riyadh:

According to Palestinian, Arab and European officials who have heard Mr. Abbas’s version of the conversation, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman presented a plan that would be more tilted toward the Israelis than any ever embraced by the American government, one that presumably no Palestinian leader could ever accept.

The Palestinians would get a state of their own but only noncontiguous parts of the West Bank and only limited sovereignty over their own territory. The vast majority of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, which most of the world considers illegal, would remain. The Palestinians would not be given East Jerusalem as their capital and there would be no right of return for Palestinian refugees and their descendants.

The White House on Sunday denied that was its plan, saying it was still months away from finalizing a blueprint for peace, and the Saudi government denied that it supports those positions.

That left many in Washington and the Middle East wondering whether the Saudi crown prince was quietly doing the bidding of Mr. Trump, trying to curry favor with the Americans, or freelancing in order to put pressure on the Palestinians or to make any eventual offer sound generous by comparison. Or perhaps Mr. Abbas, weakened politically at home, was sending out signals for his own purposes that he was under pressure from Riyadh.
Mahmoud Abbas
• Jared Kushner: Israel needs peace with the Palestinians before it can form an alliance with the Arab states. Oh yeah, the president, says Kushner, still hasn’t made a decision on moving the US embassy to Jerusalem. The Washington Post writes:

President Trump’s push for a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians stems from a belief that his broader goals of stopping Iranian aggression and Islamist extremism will not be possible without it, presidential adviser Jared Kushner said in a rare public appearance Sunday.
• Two Bedouin arrested over murder of IDF soldier in Arad.

• Golan ISIS threat looms large over Israel and Syrian rebels.

• Zambia is set to host the first ever Africa-Israel Summit slated for 2018 (or maybe not).

A leopard in Zambia’s South Luangwa National Park
Around the World

• An alliance of dozens of European centrist political parties called for cracking down on Hezbollah activity in Europe, cutting off its finances and more.

taxes• With Congress slashing corporate taxes, will Israeli businesses relocate to the US?

In Israel, the corporate tax rate is at 24%, with plans to go down to 23% next month. The new American rate closes the gap and supersedes Israel in offering a competitive rate, granting more incentives to reincorporate and expand operations in the United States.
• Teen facing charges in theft of Holocaust memorial sculpture in Milton, Mass.

• Court documents show Missouri man made bomb threats against local Jewish organizations

• Holocaust memorial vandalized in Athens, not the first time

• Jewish leaders are criticizing a Boston Globe cartoon of Sheldon Adelson they say used anti-Semitic images.

• Israelis told to remove Western Wall photo at Bulgaria charity event.

• Iranian hackers have set up a news outlet to court possible targets, security firm says.

A significant mainstay of the group’s activity was the establishment of a media outlet called The British News Agency. Much effort went into creating a seemingly legitimate website, including details about the agency and a contact list of the management team. The purpose of the site was to attract the targets and infect them with malware.


• Brig.-Gen. Shachar Shohat (Res.) details the strategic threat of Iranian bases in Syria. Among the issues he raises is the opening of a western front against Israel.

From a geographical, military perspective, Iranian airbases in next door Syria would be a game changer. Presently, the Iranian enemy is located mostly to the east, and can, to a limited extent, attempt to attack from Israel’s north and south. But it cannot come from the West.

If Syria becomes home to Iranian aerial platforms, Iran could head west to the Mediterranean Sea, and then fly toward any Israeli coastal city; be it Haifa, Tel Aviv, or Ashkelon. The same holds true for Iranian drones.

This would mean opening a new western front against Israel that requires an entirely new line of defense—a front that does not exist today. Such a development would represent significant danger to Israel.
Iranian bases in Syria threat

• In a lengthy interview, Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer discussed with Politico’s Susan Glasser why relocating the US embassy won’t undermine peace prospects. Dermer also discussed Syria, the Iranian nuclear deal and his dealings with the Trump transition team (possibly including Michael Flynn) and more. The full Q+A is worth listening to, or read Politico‘s summary.

• Trump and Jerusalem make for lots of spilled ink and burnt pixels . . .

– Raphael Ahren: The president’s guide to recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital
– Amb. Alan Baker: 10 reasons for recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital
– Ben Lynfield: Arab states will likely cave if US declares Jerusalem Israel’s capital
– Aaron David Miller: Recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is a dangerous gambit
– Prof. Eyal Zisser: Jerusalem is a non-issue
– Shimon Shiffer: Trump’s Jerusalem declaration could ignite a major fire
– New York Post (staff-ed) Recognizing the obvious: Jerusalem is Israel’s capital
– Moshe Arens: Israel must not divide Jerusalem
– Dan Schnur: The best thing Trump could do for Israel is grow up
– Arsen Ostrovsky: Enough is enough: Jerusalem must be recognized as Israel’s capital
– Ron Kampeas: Jared Kushner talks about his peace plan, and leaves everyone guessing
– Jennifer Rubin: Kushner has no idea what he is saying about the Middle East

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

thinking– Zvi Bar’el: Alleged Israeli strike in Syria: Why Iran’s silence speaks volumes
– Seth Frantzman: Can suffering be sexy? Pitfalls in monetizing the Palestinian struggle
– Jesse Fried and Eugene Kontorovich: Anti-Israel activists subvert a scholarly group (click via Twitter)
– Nitsana Darshan-Leitner: To stop North Korea, act like Israel
– Bassam Tawil: Palestinians: More missed opportunities
– Moshe Dann: Living with the Palestinian ‘no!’
– Robin Sears: Saudis break 70 years of solidarity
– Ron Traub: South Africa and Israel: Time to set the record straight
– Orit Efraim: From Ethiopia to Israel, living the dream
– Richard Cohen: American Jews vs. Israel

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Post  Admin on Sun 03 Dec 2017, 6:59 pm
Trump to Recognize Jerusalem as Israeli Capital?
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Today’s Top Stories

1. Media reports continue buzzing that Trump will recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and possibly move the US embassy there from Tel Aviv. He’s expected to lay out his plans in a speech on Wednesday. The Washington Post shed the most light on the administration’s decision-making process. Trump faces a Friday deadline on whether to sign a waiver that would leave the embassy in Tel Aviv. More at the New York Times.

Reactions were swift: The Palestinian Authority said the peace process will end and sought an emergency meeting of the Arab League. launched its own diplomatic campaign, while Hamas threatened a renewed intifada, and Jordan said it would strengthen terror groups. And the UN General Assembly’s response? Well, 151 states disavowed Israeli ties to the Jerusalem.

Meanwhile, CNN reports that the State Department is preparing for the possibility of violent protests outside American embassies and consulates.

2. Arabic media reports say Israel carried out an airstrike on an Iranian base in Syria, killing 12 Iranians.

Israeli Air Force jet taking off in November 5, 2017 Blue Flag exercise.

3. Hundreds of Israelis paid their respects as Sgt. Ron Yitzak Kokia was laid to rest in Tel Aviv. The 19-year-old was stabbed to death at a bus stop in Arad on Thursday night in what police suspect was a terror attack. Security forces are still searching for the attacker.

Sgt. Ron Yitzhak Kokia
4. Messing Up History at the Daily Mail: It’s hard to decide whether the errors are the result of sheer ignorance, poor copy editing or a mixture of both.

5. Success! Oxford Dictionary Removes Offensive Examples: Editors revise Oxford Dictionary after conceding examples were rude.

Israel and the Palestinians

• Israel pulled out of a Dead Sea scrolls exhibit in Frankfurt after German officials said they couldn’t guarantee the artifacts would be returned if Palestinians or Jordanians made a claim on them. Jerusalem Post coverage.

“If Germany is unwilling to clearly express the legal status of the fragments of Qumran as Israeli world-cultural-heritage goods, it would dramatically change the coordinates in our German-Israeli relations. And it would mean the construction of a wall toward the places of the birth of Christianity in the holy country, because it would be the same for Bethlehem, Jericho, east Jerusalem and many other places of Jesus’s work,” [Deputy Mayor Uwe] Becker said.
Dead Sea Scroll
The Commentary on Habakkuk Scroll written in Hebrew
• Is Trump eyeing a plan to expand a Palestinian state into Sinai?

• International Criminal Court prosecutor Fatou Bensouda closed the chapter on a Mavi Marmara war crimes probe. The Jerusalem Post explains that her decision effectively ends years of Palestinian and Turkish attempts to prosecute Israeli military and political officials over the affair. Ten Turkish nationals were killed when the IDF intercepted the Gaza-bound flotilla in 2010.

Crucial to her decision was her finding that “there was no reasonable basis to believe that the identified crimes were committed on a large-scale or as part of a plan or policy.”
New Zealand• A group of 24 international law experts have concluded that last year’s UN Security Council 2334, which condemned Israeli settlements, was flawed, and is a “blemish” on New Zealand’s diplomatic reputation. The New Zealand Herald picked up on their report:

A report from 24 international law experts has now said the resolution “fell short of an open, balanced, and thorough consideration of all the relevant factual and legal issues [which] resulted in legal findings that did not adequately take into account the legal, historical, political and military complexities of these territories and peoples”.

The experts met at a forum at The Peace Palace at The Hague in June this year at the invitation of The Hague Initiative for International Cooperation (Thinc) and the International Conference for Truth, Justice, and Peace (ICTIP). Its report was released at the end of October.
• A delegation of African parliament speakers is due to visit the Knesset on Tuesday. According to Ynet, “The parliamentarians will be arriving from such countries as Uganda, Benin, Ghana, Cameroon, Tanzania, Seychelles and South Sudan. The Israeli parliament is also still waiting to hear back from parliament speakers of several additional countries.”

• Globes: A memorandum of understanding for an Israel-Europe gas pipeline will be signed on Tuesday in Cyprus. Connecting Israel and Italy through the territorial waters of Cyprus and Greece, the 2,000 km pipeline would be the world’s longest underwater pipeline. It’s due to be completed in 2025.

offshore gas
An aeriel view of the Israeli ‘Tamar’ gas processing rig 24 km off the Israeli southern coast of Ashkelon. Noble Energy and Delek are the main partners in the Tamar gas field, estimated to contain 10 trillion cubic feet of gas. June 23, 2014. Photo by Moshe Shai/FLASH90
Around the World

• Labour suspends ANOTHER activist over anti-Semitism allegations after claims she runs a Twitter account that said Jews ‘wring shekels’ out of the ‘holocaust industry’

• Argentine TV celebrity fired over anti-Semitic tweets. “Ursula Vargues was fired recently from ‘Us In The Morning’ a day after tweeting that Jews control the media.”

• Dutch Jews say former prime minister peddles anti-Semitism.


• The possible US embassy move to Jerusalem was on my mind this weekend . . .

– Scott Anderson, Yishai Schwartz: On waiving the Jerusalem Embassy Act (or not)
– William Jacobson: Next week in Jerusalem?
– Wilson Shirley: Move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem
– Carolina Landsmann: Toward Israeli-Palestinian peace: The two-embassy solution
– Uri Friedman: Foreign policy by symbolic half-measures
– Prof. Abraham Ben-Zvi: A mistaken notion

• Plenty of spilled ink and burnt pixels on the latest airstrike in Syria . . .

– Ron Ben-Yishai: Strike on Iranian base in Syria: Dealing with problem while it’s still small
– Seth Frantzman: Airstrike on Iranian base in Syria raises questions
– Avi Issacharoff: With reported airstrike, Israel puts Syria, and Iran, on notice
– Amos Harel: Alleged Israeli strike in Syria is a signal to Iran and Russia
– Yoav Limor: A line in the sand
– Amb. Ron Prosor: Christmas has come early for Hezbollah chief Nasrallah

reading• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Elliott Abrams: Israel’s mythical “isolation”
– Pinhas Inbari: Is reconciliation between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority possible?
– Bassam Tawil: Saudis fed up: ‘Palestinians milking us for decades’
– Peter Berkowitz: A plan to start disentangling Israel and the Palestinians (click via Twitter)
– Gil Troy: The UN didn’t create Israel. We did.
– Raphael Ahren: Jerusalem ignores the UN’s forgotten partition plan of 2012 at its peril
– David Hirsh: This new definition of anti-Semitism is only a threat to anti-Semites
– Shira Ruderman: Israelis know nothing about American Jews
– New York Post (staff-ed): The perversity of the Israel-boycott blacklist

Featured image: CC BY-NC-ND gato-gato-gato; jet CC BY-NC Israel Defense Forces; Dead Sea scroll via Wikimedia Commons; reading CC BY Georgie Pauwels;


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Post  Admin on Thu 30 Nov 2017, 7:27 pm
Giro d’Italia Backs Down on Jerusalem After Angering Israel
Today’s Top Stories

Giro d'Italia
Map of Giro d’Italia’s Israeli stages that was removed.
1. After angering Israeli government ministers, organizers of the Giro d’Italia cycling race issued a clarification after their web site and promotional material said the first leg of the race would take place in West Jerusalem. They also removed at least one tweet featuring this map of the route.

Sports Minister Miri Regev and Tourism Minister Yariv Levin said they threatened to back away from their partnership in the race, if the wording did not change.

“In Jerusalem, Israel’s capital, there is no east or west. There is one unified Jerusalem,” a joint statement read, calling the use of the term “a breach of the agreements with the Israeli government.”
The upcoming race will be the first time a stage of the Giro will take place outside of Europe. Palestinian groups denounced race organizers for bringing the Giro to Israel. Racing begins on May 4.

2. Mired in a dispute over civil servants and looming Friday deadline for the transfer of government ministries to the PA, Hamas and Fatah opted to delay the handover 10 days. It’s a perfect storm of conflicting patronage, payroll and politics:

After the 2007 power shift, the Palestinian Authority continued to pay around 60,000 staff in Gaza, despite the vast majority not working.

Hamas has hired around 50,000 civil servants to replace them in the past decade, and the future of those staff is a key sticking point.

US embassy in Tel Aviv
3. The White House dismissed as “premature” Israeli media reports that the US will recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital next week and instruct staffers at the embassy in Tel Aviv to begin preparing for a relocation. This doesn’t sound like an all-out denial, so draw your own conclusions.

“This is a premature report. We have nothing to announce,” said press secretary Sarah Sanders.
At an event celebrating the 70th anniversary of the UN Partition Plan paving the way for Israel’s statehood on Tuesday, Vice President Mike Pence said President Donald Trump is actively considering “when and how” relocate the embassy.

4. Success: CNN Fixes Sexual Harassment Map: Editors got their bearings, acknowledging that Israel is not an Arab state.

5: Corrected: The Palestinian ‘Ambassador’ to the US: The Independent corrects the record with a little help from HR.

6. On the i24 News program The Spin Room, HonestReporting’s Daniel Pomerantz — along with The Israel Project’s managing director Omri Ceren and journalist Marc Schulman — discussed the rift between American Jews and Israel, the possible US embassy move, and whether Linda Sarsour is anti-Semitic.

Israel and the Palestinians

• Israeli tanks and aircraft fired on four Hamas positions in retaliation for a number of mortars fired from the Gaza Strip. Train service between Ashkelon and Sderot was briefly halted as a precaution. More at Ynet and the Times of Israel.

• The Interior Ministry is recommending a plan to unite four settlements in the northern West Bank into a single municipality with a combined population of 20,000. The area includes the settlements of Elkana, Oranit, Shaarei Tikva and Etz Ephraim. The settlement city would be the fifth, joining Ariel, Ma’aleh Adumim, Betar Illit and Modi’in Illit as having municipal status. Jerusalem Post coverage.

• Leila Khalid, the poster child of Palestinian terrorism, was blocked from entering Italy at Rome’s Leonardo Da Vinci Airport. She was due to give talks in Rome and Naples marking the 50th anniversary of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

Italy’s Department of Public Security issued a statement insisting that the stopping of Khaled was a purely administrative act, not a political decision. “The Jordanian citizen arrived to Rome from Amman without a valid Schengen visa [allowing passage through European borders], and was sent back in compliance with national and international Schengen regulations,” the statement read.
One of the PFLP hijackings she participated was TWA 840 in 1969, from Rome to Tel Aviv.

• AP: Israel eases restrictions on US-bound Gazan travelers.

• To all the grammar Nazis out there, is Ynet‘s use of the word “attacked” in the active or passive voice, and what difference does it make?


Around the World

• Russian military working on deal to use Egyptian air bases.

• Jews are minority most targeted by hate crimes in Canada according to data picked up by the JTA.

• As Jewish activists protested outside, Linda Sarsour participated in a panel discussion on anti-Semitism at the New School. The JTA was on hand.

Tuesday’s panelists offered plenty of attacks on Israel while insisting that such views are being labeled anti-Semitic in order to silence criticism of the country and its policies.

Ozraeli Dave
Pro-tip: If you want to reject accusations you are antisemitic by speaking about the “Jewish” media, and minimizing the antisemitism of vile Jew haters like Louis Farrakhan (of whom you are clearly a fan), then you are doing it all wrong.
5:37 AM - Nov 30, 2017

WATCH: Linda Sarsour Showing How NOT To Reject Antisemitism
Speaking about the “Jewish” media, and minimizing the antisemitism of Louis Farrakhan
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• Holocaust survivors are demanding to know how artists received permission to film a group of naked people playing tag in a gas chamber — of all places — in the former Nazi death camp of Stutthof, in Poland. Artistic expression, you know . . .


• Israel’s controversial columnist, Haaretz’s Gideon Levy, was interviewed on Australia’s Lateline. As Levy tries to avoid and evade any mention of Palestinian terrorism or responsibility, host Emma Alberici admirably dogged “Israel’s most hated man” on the hard questions.

oped word cloud• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Smadar Perry: The new peace partners in the next war
– Elliott Abrams: Mr. Kerry should apologize
– Seth Frantzman: Israel zigzags on Iranian bases in Syria to give Russia room
– Avraham Neguise: An open letter to Mandla Mandela
– Elie Podeh: Palestinians’ biggest missed opportunity
– Evelyn Gordon: Gaza’s latest lesson in self-inflicted misery
– Dr. Reuven Berko: Extremism, from Sinai to Al-Aqsa
– Yoram Schweitzer, Ofir Winter: The war on terrorism in Sinai: A watershed?

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Post  Admin on Wed 29 Nov 2017, 8:06 pm
Israel to Appoint New Envoy to Jordan to Mend Fractured Ties
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Today’s Top Stories

1. According to Reuters, Israel will appoint a new ambassador to Jordan in a bid to heal ties. Relations between the countries dived when an Israeli security guard at the embassy in Amman killed two people in what the guard described as self-defense. But will replacing the ambassador be enough to assuage Jordan?

But Israel has shown no sign of meeting Jordan’s demand that it launch criminal proceedings against the guard, who killed two Jordanians in what he called self-defense.
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2. An unhappy Iranian wrestler admitted his coach told him to throw a match to avoid facing Israeli at a tournament in Poland. More at the New York Times.
Thomas Erdbrink
Iranian wrestler Alireza Karimi about to beat Russian, but will have to face Israeli next round. His coach his calling him from the sidelines, telling him to “lose.” Iran forbids its athletes to play Israeli’s. Iranian wrestler gives up.
1:42 PM - Nov 27, 2017
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3. According to Palestinian media reports, the PA ordered its former Gaza civil servants to return to their posts, angering Hamas and casting doubt on national reconciliation and the future of thousands of Hamas’ own civil servants.

4. CNN Sexual Harassment Map: Israel an Arab State: CNN makes a mess of a Mideast map.

Israel and the Palestinians

Israel Rwanda• In yet another upgrade of African ties, Israel will open a new embassy in Rwanda, and is considering direct commercial flights there as well. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced this in Nairobi, where he joined celebrations for the inauguration of Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta. According to African media reports, the embassy will likely open in June or July. The Times of Israel explains:

At the sidelines of the luncheon in Nairobi, Netanyahu also met the presidents of Gabon, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, South Sudan, Botswana and Namibia, and the prime minister of Ethiopia.

Netanyahu may also have conducted secret meetings with African nations with which Israel does not have diplomatic ties.
• The World Chess Federation is vowing to go all-out for Israeli players to be included in a Saudi-hosted tournament at the end of December. Reuters reports that seven Israelis have requested visas to compete, while Haaretz adds that another three Israeli grandmasters will join other international chess players boycotting the Saudis over the kingdom’s human rights record and dress codes for women competitors.

But even if some Israeli players end up going, other competitors might refuse to play against them. Many times over the years pairings in tournaments have been switched around to let an Arab or Muslim player skirt a match against an Israeli.
• In recent weeks, leading Saudi wonks have been tweeting nice things about Israel. The Jerusalem Post rounds up what they’re saying.

• I can only imagine the nastygrams circulating around the Beirut news room of the Al Liwaa daily paper. A story about about Colette Vianfi — an alleged Mossad agent accused of recruiting a prominent Lebanese comedian/actor — was mistakenly illustrated with a photo of Israeli actress Gal Gadot.

Best known for her role as Wonder Woman, Gadot’s only known association with the Israeli spook agency was her role as a former Mossad agent in the Fast and Furious series. Oops.

A senior newspaper executive described the incident as “embarrassing” in a telephone interview with Arab News.
Gal Gadot
Gal Gadot in Fast & Furious
• Israel is barring Swiss officials from visiting Gaza after a delegation of diplomats held a pair of meetings with Hamas leaders, according to Israeli media reports. Swiss envoys are still free to enter the Strip from the Sinai.

• The leader of an Iran-backed militia in Syria says his forces are now “fully prepared” to fight Israel:

Hezbollah al-Nujaba is reportedly controlled by Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) elite foreign operations unit, the Qods Force.

Ka’abi, who controls a reported 10,000 men in Syria, also said his group was prepared to defend the Lebanese terror group and fellow Iranian proxy Hezbollah from any Israeli attack.
• The IDF declared maritime Iron Dome operational.

Naval Iron Dome
Testing a ship-mounted Iron Dome
• Tensions are rising between Hamas and the Saudis. The Media Line reports that Riyadh is piqued that Hamas hasn’t really distanced itself from Iran and Hezbollah:

As attention is fixed on the Palestinian reconciliation between the Fatah and Hamas factions and the prospect of elections for a unity government are atop the agenda, the Saudis are deeply concerned about the impact the incorporation of Hamas members into the Palestinian government will have given the Hamas commitment to warming its ties to Iran.
Around the World

missile• North Korea test fired a new intercontinental ballistic missile that experts said is capable of reaching anywhere in the US or Europe. It’s a major escalation for Kim Jong-un, but the Washington Post explains why the sky isn’t necessarily falling yet:

Although it may be cold comfort, it is still unlikely that North Korea is capable of delivering a nuclear warhead to the U.S. mainland — despite Wednesday’s claims. That still requires mastering reentry technology and the difficult task of fitting a nuclear warhead into a missile and have it survive the extremes of temperature and vibrations involved with leaving and coming back into the Earth’s atmosphere.

But Pyongyang has been making rapid progress toward achieving that goal . . .
News reports continue to indicate Iranian cooperation with North Korea on missile technology. I wonder what conclusions Tehran will draw from the world’s response to Pyongyang.

• Come on, tell us what you really think!
– John Kerry: Israel, Egypt pushed US before deal to ‘bomb Iran’
– Michael Oren: Kerry has an ‘acrid and obsessive’ place in his heart for Israel

cow• The JTA examines why more and more kosher butchers in Western Europe are preparing to close their shops. If current trends hold, kosher meat is going to disappear from Europe.

But like other producers of kosher meat in Western Europe, the Levys are no longer certain of the viability of their business. In recent years they have been suffering both from declining revenues due to emigration from France by Jews fearful of jihadist violence and anti-Muslim measures targeting the ritual slaughter of animals.

“I want Maurice to learn a trade because with the meat industry, who knows what tomorrow will bring,” Levy told JTA about his 17-year-old son. “All kosher delis, they will be a thing of the past within one generation either because they’re made illegal, suffocated by anti-kosher regulations or defeated by supermarkets.”
On a related note, the Belgian Jewish community filed a lawsuit to overturn a ban on the religious slaughter of animals.

• German Jews stop wearing kippot due to Muslim attacks.

• Russian bishop: Jews killed Czar Nicholas II, the last czar, in a “ritual murder.”

• A Florida man who confessed to planning to bomb a synagogue last year “will be locked up while he undergoes medical treatment and is expected to serve a maximum of 25 years in prison,” the Sun-Sentinel reports.

• I haven’t been this excited since Scarlett Johannson freed the bubbles:

Gwyneth Paltrow likes Israeli Pesek Zman chocolate spread


• David Makovsky weighs in on settlements and land swaps in a Washington Post video.

• Today marks the 70th anniversary of the UN Partition Plan, which paved the way for Israeli independence. Here’s what they’re saying about it:
– Martin Kramer: Why the 1947 UN partition resolution must be celebrated
– Michael Goodwin: The miracle of Israel lives on 70 years later
– Liora Chartouni: 70 years after UN resolution 181: An assessment

• Best line of the day goes to Benny Avni:

At Turtle Bay, meanwhile, the General Assembly will solemnly mark the date on Wednesday, as it does every year, by conducting an “international day of solidarity with the Palestinian people” — remembering one of the only consequential decisions the UN ever took by celebrating those who rejected it.
• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Avi Issacharoff: With victory assured, why is Assad suddenly wary of Iran’s embrace?
– Efraim Inbar: For how long will peace treaty with Egypt be robust?
– Yossi Shain: The Israeli embrace of ‘Zionist anti-Semites’
– Peter Reitzes: Duke University Press and the demonization of Israel
– Gil Troy: Hotovely’s faux pas: Telling the truth about American Jews
– Rachel Avraham: Israel should arm the Kurds
– New York Daily News (staff-ed): Queens Museum mystery as to who tried to cancel Israel’s celebration

Featured image: CC BY; Rwanda via Twitter/Government of Rwanda; chess CC BY Christine Kongsvik; Gadot via YouTube/Movieclips; Iron Dome via IDF Spokesperson’s Unit; missile CC BY-SA Wikimedia Commons; cow CC0 Pixabay;
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream and join the IDNS on Facebook

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Post  Admin on Thu 23 Nov 2017, 7:47 pm
Deputy FM to Be Fired Over Remarks About American Jews?
Israel Daily News Stream3 hours ago

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Today’s Top Stories
1. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is reportedly considering firing Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely over critical comments she made about American Jews.

Hotovely was discussing tensions between Israel and US Jewry over peace efforts and mixed prayer at the Western Wall on i24 News when she accused American Jews who criticize Israel of “not understanding the complexities of the region,” said that they “never send their children to fight for their country,” and “don’t feel how it feels to be attacked by rockets.”

Watch the full interview and draw your own conclusions.

2. Israeli-Saudi diplomatic flirting continued as Riyadh’s ambassador France visited the Grand Synagogue of Paris. Ambassador Khalid bin Mohammed Al Angari and the Secretary General of the Muslim World League were hosted by France’s Chief Rabbi Haim Korsia and the synagogue’s rabbi, Moshe Sebbag, the Jerusalem Post reports.

In recent days, IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot gave an unprecedented interview to a Saudi newspaper, and cabinet minister Yuval Steinitz disclosed covert ties between the two countries.

There's more! #Saudi Ambassador just happened to drop into a Paris synagogue. As you do, or not, because there isn't a single synagogue in #SaudiArabia
— Ken Dodd (@KendoDodd) November 23, 2017

3. Israel deported a Turkish journalist, reportedly on the grounds that he was one of the passengers aboard the Mavi Marmara. Hurriyet didn’t seek any explanation from Israel.

“I am being deported from Tel Aviv where I came to go to Jerusalem on grounds that I was a Mavi Marmara passenger,” Gümü? said in a tweet.
“The tyrant captivity in Israel is finally ending. I am now returning to Istanbul on a Turkish Airlines flight after I was kept for six hours. Moreover, I witnessed that the Mavi Marmara, which led to my deportation tonight, opened a deep wound in the heart of Zionism that will never heal,” he added.
Kemal Gumus

4. Politicizing a Family Death in the New York Times: It’s incredibly cynical to turn a family death into an opportunity to bash Israel on behalf of a politicized organization such as Amnesty International.

5. Ill-Defined: Google and Oxford Dictionary’s ‘Jew’ Issues: HonestReporting prompted a correction with Google Translate, but found the problem goes deeper.

Israel and the Palestinians
• According to an Arab media report picked up by Haaretz, Mahmoud Abbas refused to take a phone call from Jared Kushner following the PA’s decision to sever ties with the US. The White House denied the report.

Meanwhile, the State Dept. said that its warning about the closure of the PLO’s Washington office was mandated by law. A few Arab American groups have offered the PLO office space if it’s shut down.

• Palestinian factions agreed to hold general election by the end of 2018. But don’t hold your breath waiting; the last time the Palestinians were set to vote, balloting was cancelled thanks to Hamas-Fatah feuding and a court ruling, providing ample opportunities for finger-pointing in all directions. The Palestinians haven’t held national elections since 2006.

• Kuwaiti writer Abdullah Al-Hadlaq called Israel a legitimate sovereign state, insisted that there’s no occupation, and even said the Jews are “a people returning to its promised land.” MEMRI (video or transcript) flagged his comments on Kuwait’s Alrai TV.
• Brussels says construction of Palestinian schools remains suspended even though a Belgian official was spotted at the inauguration of a new West Bank institution.

• US Vice President Mike Pence plans to address the Knesset during his mid-December Israel trip.

Around the World
Donald Trump
President Donald Trump

• Vanity Fair sheds new light on the Israeli intelligence which US President Donald Trump disclosed to Russian diplomats earlier this year — and the consequences of that leak.
What further exacerbates Israel’s concerns—“keeps me up at night” was how a government spymaster put it—is that if Trump is handing over Israel’s secrets to the Russians, then he just might as well be delivering them to Iran, Russia’s current regional ally . . .
“Trump betrayed us,” said a senior Israeli military official bluntly, his voice stern with reproach. “And if we can’t trust him, then we’re going to have to do what is necessary on our own if our back is up against the wall with Iran.”
• Britain’s Ministry of Defense is spending £78m on Israeli technology for Falkland Islands missile defense, reports the Daily Mail reports.

• Virginia synagogue burlary/vandalism suspect turns herself in to police.

• Tweet of the day from journalist Michele Chabin:

One of the strangest things about living in Israel: There are #BlackFriday sales everywhere but most Israelis have never heard of #Thanksgiving (though the local store is selling turkey!). Happy Thanksgiving.
— Michele Chabin (@MicheleChabin1) November 23, 2017
• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .
– Alex Fishman: Why Russia must take Israel’s interests in Syria into account
– Udi Dekel, Zvi Magen: Israel’s red lines on Iran’s foothold in Syria
– Herb Keinon: Israel’s concerns absent regarding Syria’s fate
– Ofir Haivry: A Saudi house of cards
– Prof. Victor Lieberman: Why was my voice silenced at the U. of Michigan?
Featured image: CC BY-NC smilla4;; Gumus via Facebook/Kemal Gumus; Trump CC BY-SA Gage Skidmore;

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Post  Admin on Wed 22 Nov 2017, 3:09 pm
Lebanese PM Freezes Resignation: Now What?
Israel Daily News Stream32 mins ago
Today’s Top Stories
1. Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri returned to Beirut and suspended his resignation. What happens next isn’t clear, but nebulous feelgood words like dialogue, partnerships and discussion figured prominently in Reuters and Asharq al Awsat coverage.

Robert Mueller and Jared Kushner

2. Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian meddling in the US elections has led him to start questioning Jared Kushner’s dealings with foreign officials during the presidential transition period — especially Israeli leaders.
The Wall St. Journal (click via Twitter), which broke the story, explains that Mueller’s Israeli interest stems from Jerusalem’s efforts to kill UN Security Council resolution 2334 condemning West Bank settlement activity.

Israeli officials had asked the incoming Trump administration to intervene to help block it. Mr. Trump posted a Facebook message the day before the U.N. vote—after he had been elected but before he had assumed office—saying the resolution put the Israelis in a difficult position and should be vetoed . . .
The motivation for the Mueller team’s questions about the U.N. is unclear. Investigators typically ask a host of questions over the course of a probe, and inquiries don’t necessarily indicate suspicion.
The story was widely picked up in the Israeli press; see more at the Times of Israel, Jerusalem Post and Haaretz.

3. The State Department denied PA claims that Ramallah froze communications with the US.

“In our view, communications are not frozen,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert told reporters in a briefing Tuesday afternoon.
“Conversations will be taking place,” she went on. “We are in contact with Palestinian officials about the status of that PLO office in Washington, as well as having conversations with them about our larger efforts on the part of a lasting and comprehensive peace process.”
Israel and the Palestinians
• An Israeli girl injured in a Jerusalem terror attack six years ago died Wednesday morning. Hodaya Asulin had been comatose ever since a terrorist planted a bomb at a bus stop near the International Convention Center in 2011. Asulin, of Mevo Dotan, was 14 at the time of the bombing. A British national, Mary Jean Gardner, was also killed in the bombing.
Hodaya Asulin

• For the first time, Israel is treating Syrians said to have been injured in a chemical weapons attack. According to the Jerusalem Post, the three Syrians rebels were transferred to Ziv Hospital in Safed.

• Times of Israel: Soldiers opened fire at two Gazans crossing into Israel on Wednesday, hitting one. One of the Palestinians was found with a knife.

bomb• An attempt to smuggle tons of explosive material into Gaza was thwarted thanks to a new laboratory set up at the Kerem Shalom crossing. The Jerusalem Post explains:

During the laboratory’s initial trial period, a truck transporting motor oil raised the suspicions of the border crossing’s security inspectors.
Chemical testing subsequently revealed that the supposed vehicle oil was actually a dangerous substance, destined to assist the production of large quantities of explosive material by terror groups in the Gaza Strip.
• An Israeli parole board denied a Palestinian security prisoner’s request for early release, tying the rejection to Hamas’s refusal to return the bodies of two Israeli soldiers killed during the 2014 Gaza war:

“It is not the job of the parole board to produce levers to pressure Hamas for their (Shaul and Goldin’s) return, but the board believes that the early release of the prisoner who is affiliated with the Hamas terror organization could and would be harmful to the public’s confidence in the judicial system.”
Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul

Around the World
• The Dutch parliament killed two motions that would have recognized Palestinian statehood and Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. According to the JTA, “Both motions were submitted in connection with annual negotiations over the foreign ministry’s budget, which in the Netherlands also features scrutiny of the kingdom’s foreign relations.”

• Outrage over German Green Party partnership with upcoming Hamas events in Gaza and Beirut. “It is unclear whether the Green Party’s funds for the event will be investigated for terror finance,” the Jerusalem Post adds.

• Police charge four students in Penn State menorah theft, vandalism.

• France’s Socialist Party expelled one of its top officials, Gerard Filoche, for tweeting an image of President Emmanuel Macron with anti-Semitic tropes.

Kuwait Airways• Irish columnist Lindy McDowell denounces a German court ruling allowing Kuwaiti Airlines to refuse service to Israelis simply because they’re Israelis.

To sum up then, a court in Germany, forever synonymous with the Holocaust, finds that it is perfectly acceptable in 2017 to discriminate openly against someone solely for being a citizen of Israel, the Jewish state.
As darkly ominous as the court finding, I think, has been how little debate this ruling has elicited in the media.
Had an airline refused to carry a passenger on the grounds that they were say, black or Irish or transgender or Christian or overweight you imagine this would have been way higher up the headlines.
But it’s okay when it’s the Israelis. It’s okay when it’s the Jews.
• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Yonah Jeremy Bob: How the ICC going after the US for war crimes impacts Israel
– Ron Kampeas: The Trump administration says it wants to shut down the PLO mission. Now what?
– Grant Rumley: Why Trump threatened to close Palestine’s D.C. headquarters
– Ben-Dror Yemini: Why Trump’s Mideast peace plan is doomed
– Lital Shemesh: Linda Sarsour, feminism and terrorism
– New York Post (staff-ed): John Kerry’s Mideast idiocy
– Jonathan Spyer: Tehran is winning the war for control of the Mideast

Featured image: CC BY dulnan; Mueller via Obama White House; Kushner CC BY Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; bomb CC0 Pixabay; Kuwait Airways CC BY-ND Bill Wilt;

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Post  Admin on Tue 21 Nov 2017, 8:12 pm
Palestinians Freeze Contacts With US
Israel Daily News Stream5 hours ago

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Today’s Top Stories
1. The Palestinian Authority froze contacts with the US over the Trump administration’s decision to “close down” the offices of the PLO mission in Washington, Palestinian sources confirmed to the Jerusalem Post and AFP. The Washington office isn’t exactly shuttered just yet.

“What is the use of holding any meetings with them when they close our office? Our meetings begin from our office, and the arrangements are there,” Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki told AFP . . .
US President Donald Trump now has a 90-day window to decide whether “the Palestinians have entered into direct, meaningful negotiations with Israel” — in which case he can waive the requirement to shutter the office.
2. Hezbollah chief Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah admits group smuggled advanced weapons to Gaza. Nasrallah said weapons “transferred” included Russian-made Kornet anti-tank missiles. But talk about burying the lede. Here’s Reuters‘ headline:


3. Iran’s putting the “finishing touches” on its land bridge to the Golan, reports Jonathan Spyer:

Abu Kamal is the last link in the much-discussed Iranian “land bridge” from the Iraq-Iran border to the Mediterranean Sea and the border with Israel.
Control of the border crossing at al-Qaim/Abu Kamal and of the roads leading west from it will enable the Iran-led regional alliance to transport fighters and weaponry in both directions, according to choice. It will mean that in a future confrontation with Hezbollah, Israel could see its enemies reinforced by supplies and volunteers from among other Iranian clients, in precisely the way that took place with such effect in the Syrian war.
Iranian land bridge

4. HR Book Review: Beyond the Green Line: Vivid thoughts of an Israeli soldier serving his new country during the Second Intifada while seeking meaning and self-identity.

5. Israel’s Economy Grows and #BDSfail: Israel’s economic data came out and guess what? The campaign to destroy Israel through economic boycotts is not only unfair, misleading and wrong, but it’s also failing.

Israel and the Palestinians
• In an interview on Israeli radio, cabinet minister Yuval Steinitz confirmed covert Israeli-Saudi ties. Steinitz didn’t elaborate. Officials in Jerusalem and Riyadh refused to comment.

“It’s the other side that is interested in keeping the ties quiet. With us, usually, there is no problem, but we respect the other side’s wish, when ties are developing, whether it’s with Saudi Arabia or with other Arab countries or other Muslim countries, and there is much more … (but) we keep it secret.”
• An IDF patrol along the Israel-Egypt border came under fire on Monday morning, injuring one soldier.

The IDF suspects that the gunfire was “spillover” from internal fighting between Egyptian forces and a Sinai-based Islamic State affiliate, but was investigating whether it may have been a deliberate attack, the army said.
• Israeli media aired unprecedented footage of Syrian mothers crossing into Israel with their sick children seeking medical treatment. Several mothers expressed deep appreciation for Israel’s assistance and said many more Syrians want to come. The Times of Israel summed up the full footage which is in Hebrew.

Speaking to the TV reporter, one Syrian mother said that, in the past, “Israel was thought of as the enemy… Now that you are helping us, most [on the Syrian side of the Golan] are with you. They love Israel. They see the true face… the reality.”
So who do they think of as “the enemy now?” the reporter asked.
“All of them: Islamic State, Hezbollah, Bashar [Assad]. They’re all the same,” answered one of the mothers.
A Syrian mother and child crossing the border into Israel for medical treatment

• The army rescued three Israelis after Palestinians torched their car in Nablus on Tuesday night. It’s not clear why the three entered Nablus; it’s illegal for Israelis to enter PA-controlled Area A of the West Bank. More at the Times of Israel.

• The Saudis are facing a conundrum over possible Israeli participation in the World Chess Championship, due to be held in Riyadh next month. The Media Line explains:

If Saudi Arabia approves the visas, however, it will place itself in an awkward position regarding normalization with Israel. On the other hand, if the Saudis reject the Israeli delegation, it might lose the right to host further matches and the International Chess Federation confirmed it would not pay the tournament prizes, estimated to be millions of dollars.
The Israeli participation in the championship is based on an invitation received from the World Chess Federation.

• Seeking international help for their son’s freedom, the parents of Avera Mengistu, an Israeli held captive by Hamas, met with officials at the the United Nations and the White House, prompting Foreign Policy to ask if the Trump administration help.

• This is satire, and you have permission to laugh.

Facts That Support Israel’s Version Of Events Should Not Be Dismissed As ‘Israel Claims,’ Israel Claims

Mideast Matters
• The Pentagon says it’s staying in Syria even though Islamic State appears defeated. According to US Defense Secretary James Mattis:

The intention, he said, is to prevent the appearance of “ISIS 2.0.”
Meanwhile, the Wall St. Journal (click via Twitter) reports that the US is looking to bolster Saudi Arabia’s missile defense to deter Iran and its proxies.

Around the World
• The New York Post reports that a kids’ book called ‘P is for Palestine’ is stirring up outrage among moms.

Her book, which features colorful illustrations of Palestinian families, associates each letter of the English alphabet with Palestinian culture: “A is for Arabic, my tongue, a language that’s the 4th biggest ever sung!”
But some of the phrases and illustrations are clearly anti-Israel.
“I is for Intifada, Arabic for rising up for what is right, if you are a kid or grownup!” It shows a child on her father’s back standing before barbed wire and flashing peace signs.

• Rutgers University president: Rash of campus anti-Semitism is protected by the First Amendment.

• France’s Socialist Party is moving to oust a lawmaker for tweeting an image of President Emmanuel Macron widely denounced as anti-Semitic.

Gérard Filoche’s account last week showed Macron wearing a Nazi-like armband with a dollar sign and three well-known European Jews – the French economist Jacques Attali, entrepreneur Patrick Drahi and the British banking magnate Jacob Rothschild — in the background, towering over the earth, while flanked by an Israeli and American flag.
• BBC radio personality Reggie Yates apologized for an anti-Semitic comment. Earlier this month, in a podcast about today’s musicians, Yates said, “They’re independent, they’re not managed by some random fat Jewish guy from north west London, they’re managed by their brethren.”

• Plenty of commentary on the shifting sands of Mideast politics.

– Ron Ben-Yishai: The old agreement that will keep Iran away from Israeli border
– Dr. Mordechai Kedar: The 10 commandments of Israeli negotiations with Saudi Arabia
– Amos Harel: Israel may demand Iran leave Syria, but Russia sets the rules of the game
– Yonah Jeremy Bob: It’s a new world — where Israel shares intelligence with the Saudis
– Alex Fishman: IDF chief’s Saudi interview: A gesture from Riyadh
– Prof. Hillel Frisch: The desperate Saudi bid to prepare the state for all-out war
– Benny Avni: It’s not the Saudis destroying Lebanon — it’s Iran
– Josh Rogin: Preparing for Iran’s next move in Syria
– Bassam Tawil: Palestinians: If you do not give us everything, we cannot trust you

Begin Sadat Katzir
Egyptian president Anwar Sadat (center) flanked by Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin (left) and president Ephraim Katzir (right), Nov. 19, 1977.

– Charles Bybelezer: Sadat’s visit, the peace process and the future of Israel-Arab relations
– Zev Chafets: Needed for Middle East peace: Another Anwar Sadat
– Smadar Perry: As Israel marks 40 years since Sadat’s visit, Egyptians refuse to join the party
– Yehuda Yaakov: Remembering Sadat’s legacy
– Dr. Martin Kramer: Sadat and Begin – the peacemakers
• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Ben-Dror Yemini: When you get money from pro-BDS bodies, you become part of BDS
– Daniel Seaman: In the coverage of a minor scandal, British media exhibit major anti-Semitism
– Jean Patrick Grumberg: When was the “Palestinian people” created? Google has the answer.
– Simone Rodan-Benzaquen: Muslim anti-Semitism threatens France’s democracy
– New York Post (staff-ed): The New School’s fake panel ‘to combat anti-Semitism’

Featured image: CC0 Pixabay; Syrian mother via Mako; chess CC BY-SA Edith Soto; Sadat visit via Government Press Office;

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Post  Admin on Mon 20 Nov 2017, 12:03 am
Palestinian Offices in Washington to Be Closed?
Israel Daily News Stream9 hours ago
1. The Associated Press reports that the Trump administration put the Palestinians on notice that the PLO’s Washington offices may be shut down if there isn’t sufficient progress in Mideast peace talks. A State Dept. official also told Haaretz that the move didn’t mean the US was severing all ties with the Palestinians.

Angry PA officials called the move “extortion” and threatened to suspend all communication with the US.

The PLO has offices in various countries around the world, but only the missions located in countries that formally recognize Palestine have the legal status of an “embassy.” The Trump administration is currently crafting a Mideast peace plan. Elise Labott of CNN explains how this development unfolded.

2. Jerusalem court rules PA equally liable with terrorists to pay NIS 62 million ($17.6 million) for the 2001 murder of three Israelis. Sharon Ben-Shalom, her husband Yaniv, and her brother, Doron Sviri were killed when Palestinians opened fire on their car on Route 443, between Jerusalem and Modiin.

3. Germany’s Justice Ministry called for Kuwait Airways’ landing rights to be revoked after a Frankfurt court ruled Kuwait Airways is allowed to ban Israelis.

Israel and the Palestinians
• For the first time in a decade, the Gaza-Egypt border opened under PA control.

• Two injured, one seriously, in West Bank car ramming attack near Efrat on Friday morning.

• An Israeli tank fired warning shots at Syrian army forces “constructing a fortified position in the demilitarized zone that runs along the border.” No injuries were reported in the Saturday incident, which took place near the Syrian Druze village of Hader.

Last month, Israel pledged to protect the village after a suicide bomber killed nine Druze, triggering skirmishes between Islamist rebels and government forces; a number of Israeli Druze anxious for the safety of their families unsuccessfully tried to rush across the border.

• Journalist Jonathan Spyer described to the Times of Israel the risks and rewards of writing from Syria and Iraq while hiding the fact that he’s a national of Israel (and Britain).

Spyer used somewhat of a false identity to get onto the trip, and agreed that it was “gross incompetence” on the part of the Syrian authorities that his real identity was not uncovered at any point.

The closest moment came when his fellow Brit, one of a number of Assad-supporting internationals invited to Damascus by the regime, leaned in and said, “There are rumors of Zionist infiltrators on this trip.”

“Oh f***, is this guy toying with me,” Spyer said he thought at the time, and considered making a quick dash for nearby Kurdish-held territory.
Nick Cave
Nick Cave

• Discussing a pair of concerts in Tel Aviv this week, Australian singer Nick Cave explained how the shows came about because he wanted to take a stand against the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions campaign against Israel.
Cave explained he truly decided on his position regarding Israel after being contacted by English musician BDS supporter, Brian Eno. “Eventually I got a letter three years ago from Brian Eno, who asked me to sign a list of people called ‘Artists againt,’ no, ‘Artists for Palestine.’ And he sent me that list, and I just didn’t—on a very intuitive level—did not want to sign that list. There was something that stunk about that list. And so I wrote back and said, ‘I don’t like lists, I don’t want to sign your list,'” he said.

“And then it occurred to me that I’m not signing the list, but I’m also not playing Israel, and that to me felt cowardly. So after a lot of thought, a lot of consideration of the whole thing, I rang up my people and said, ‘We’re doing a European tour—add Israel,’ because it suddenly became very important to me to make a stand against those people who are trying to shut down musicians, to bully musicians, to censor musicians and to silence musicians,” Cave explained.
Around the World
• German banks closed accounts for a political party with ties to Palestinian terrorists. The Marxist-Leninist Party (MLP) had campaigned with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) in last September’s elections but failed to get the minimum five percent of the vote necessary to secure a seat in the Bundestag. The European Union designated the PFLP as terror organization. Jerusalem Post coverage.

• U. of Maryland student government scraps BDS bill before vote. I liked Reuven Bank’s satirical response to the whole controversy:

Breaking: Israeli-Palestinian conflict unexpectedly solved during SGA debate

• Swastika found at U. of Michigan hours after divestment vote against Israel.

• French courts punishing promoters of anti-Semitic hate speech.

• The UK Labour Party removed activist Nasreen Khan from a candidate list for making an anti-Semitic remark about Adolf Hitler on Facebook. The party separately reinstating philosopher Moshe Machover, who once wrote that Nazism and Zionism had a “basic agreement.” Details at the JTA, BBC and Jewish Chronicle,

• Today’s the 40th anniversary of Egyptian president Anwar Sadat’s historic visit to Israel. Jeff Abramowitz recalls Israeli optimism tinged with and wariness, along with the ad hoc preparations carried out on short notice:

The army had another problem – or at least its orchestra did. No one had the score for the Egyptian national anthem. The snag was finally solved when someone taped it off the radio. Rehearsals began using the tape until the US managed to fly a copy of the score in from Cyprus.

The streets of Jerusalem were to be decorated with Egyptian flags, but there weren’t any. Flags were snatched from the sewing machines as fast as they could be made.
#OTD 1977 Israeli PM Menachem Begin welcomed Egyptian President Anwar Sadat to #Israel: a milestone in the journey towards the 1st Arab-Israel peace treaty. ????
— Mark Regev (@MarkRegev) November 19, 2017
• Plenty of commentary on the shifting sands of Mideast peace . . .

– Hussein Ibish: How a Saudi-Israeli alliance could benefit the Palestinians
– Elliott Abrams: The Saudis and Israel
– Yaroslav Trofimov: Israel sees rising threat from Iran after ISIS (click via Twitter)
– Ron Ben-Yishai: The real Iranian threat on Israel’s northern borders
– Daniel Shapiro: America’s AWOL on coordinating anti-Iran allies, so Saudis are taking over
– Lior Akerman: Can Israel maintain an alliance with moderate Sunni Arab states?
– Carl Bildt: How Donald Trump is making things worse in the Middle East

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Meir Deutsch: Myths and facts: Palestinian Bedouin encampments in the Jordan Valley
– Prof. Jeffrey Herf: A BDS resolution is defeated at the University of Maryland
– Robert Fulford: I watched anti-Semitism wither. Now I’m seeing it come back to life
– Bret Stephens: Steve Bannon is bad for the Jews
– Julie Burchill: Is Prince Charles so fond of Islam because he distrusts Jews?
– New York Daily News staff-ed: Ground the anti-Semites: Kuwait Airways won’t let Israelis fly; Germany must stand up to the prejudice

Featured image: CC BY Kamyar Adl; Palestinian flag CC BY-NC Jack Steffen; US flag CC BY-SA Tim Wang; Cave via YouTube/sebastianF129;


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Post  Admin on Thu 16 Nov 2017, 10:49 pm
Taylor Force Act Clears Key Legislative Hurdle
Israel Daily News Stream6 hours ago

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Today’s Top Stories
1. The Taylor Force Act, which would sharply reduce US aid to the PA if it continues paying stipends to Palestinian terrorists and their families, made it through a key legislative hurdle when the House Foreign Affairs committee passed the bill without any opposition. The bill is named after Taylor Force, an American student and military veteran who was stabbed to death by a Palestinian in 2016. Reuters notes:

Force’s attacker was killed by Israeli police, but his killer’s family receives such a monthly payment.
The bill still needs to be approved by the full House of Representatives and Senate before it can go to the White House for President Trump’s signature.

The same committee also passed a bill to sanction the financial backers of Hamas, sending the measure to the full House.

2. Call it a selfie for peace. Over at the Miss Universe pageant, Miss Israel and Miss Iraq posed together on socia, gushing about their new friendship. Idan’s already catching flak back in Iraq, but the beauty queen isn’t backing down.

“I want to stress that the purpose of the picture was only to express hope and desire for peace between the two countries,” wrote Miss Iraq Sarah Idan (in Arabic) in her latest Instagram post.

She added that the photo of the two Miss Universe contestants, which she did not remove from her Instagram account, “does not signal support for the government of Israel and does not mean I agree or accept its policies in the Arab homeland.”

3. IDF chief of staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot gave an unprecedented interview with the Saudi media.

In the interview to the Saudi newspaper Elaph, Eisenkot described Iran as the “biggest threat to the region.” He said Israel and Saudi Arabia are in full agreement about Iran’s intentions, noting that Israel and Saudi Arabia have never fought each other.

4. The IDF ‘Agent’ Who ‘Clashed’ With Protesters: There’s an appropriate word for ex-members of the IDF — soldiers.

5. An Israeli Singer From ‘Palestine?’: If an Israeli Arab singer was born and raised in the Israeli city of Nazareth, why does the Irish Times say that she is from “Palestine?”

6. You don’t want to miss the latest edition of i24 News’ The Spin Room. HonestReporting’s Daniel Pomerantz joined Haaretz columnist Gideon Levy and The Forward’s editor-at-large, J.J. Goldberg, for a spirited discussion about Israel and diaspora Jewry, US peace efforts, and the media in the Trump era

Israel and the Palestinians
• Rebuffing Palestinians still seeking sanctions on Israeli soccer, FIFA says it’s ‘not a playground’ for politics.

• Israel’s attorney general gave a legal opinion that in certain circumstances, the state can expropriate private Palestinian land in order to build an access road for settlers. Details of the A-G’s opinion and its significance at Ynet, the Times of Israel and Jerusalem Post. The latter explains:

The High Court of Justice and the state, including Mandelblit, have until recently held that private Palestinian property cannot be seized for the public good of settlers.

That interpretation has stood behind every High Court of Justice decision regarding the demolition of illegal settler homes on private Palestinian property or the construction of roads . . .

The Knesset challenged that assumption in February when it passed the Settlements Regulation Law, which retroactively legalizes illegal settler homes on private Palestinian property in exchange for monetary compensation.
• Iran and Iraq rejected Israel’s offer of humanitarian assistance after a Sunday earthquake killed at least 530 people and injured thousands more. More at the Times of Israel.

• Some 150 chess players from around the world are expected to boycott an international chess tournament next month in protest of host Saudi Arabia’s human rights record and Riyadh’s requirement that competing women wear head scarves. The Saudis don’t allow the entry of Israelis, players from Iran and Qatar aren’t likely to attend either.


• Palestinians say the opening Gaza’s Rafah border crossing with Egypt is postponed and that talks are underway to set a new date.

• When play the game of drones with Hamas and Israel’s state comptroller, you win or you die. There is no middle ground . . .

– State comptroller: Israel not prepared to deal with drone danger
– Hamas: Israeli Mossad behind assassination of drone engineer

Around the World
• A Spanish court suspended a city council’s three-year-old boycott of Israeli products. You’d think La Roda de Andalucia had more important things to do than waste municipal man-hours on this:

The La Roda City Council announced its participation in BDS in August 2014, and has since been enforcing it by inspecting machine-readable barcodes from every item purchased in public tenders, and returning any product found to be Israeli-made.
• Columbia U. professor under fire for anti-Semitic Facebook posts.

Columbia University

• Ontario prosecutors charged the editor and publisher of a fringe Toronto-based web site with “two counts of willful promotion of hatred against an identifiable group, namely Jews and women,” reports the Toronto Star.

• The new editor of UK’s Gay Times was suspended for anti-Semitic, sexist, racist tweets exposed by Buzzfeed.

• Paris school room named for Jewish boys slain in 2012 Toulouse massacre.

• Interesting conversation on ties between Israel and US Jewry. It’s over at Mosaic, where Hillel Halkin responds to Daniel Gordis who was responding to Elliott Abrams.

• After returning from a visit to Israel, the UK Labour party’s shadow foreign secretary, Emily Thornberry, shared her impressions in a Jewish Chronicle op-ed. See also Thornberry’s recent Q+A with the Times of Israel.

• Dear Sutherland Springs, you deserve an apology from the news media.

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Yaron Friedman: Iranian military force taking shape right under Israel’s nose
– Charles Bybelezer: Syria, Iran and the limits of Israeli diplomacy
– Zvi Bar’el: Saudi Arabia: Israel’s dream state
– Spengler: Trump’s unsung success in the Middle East
– Efraim Inbar: A Marshall Plan for Gaza is a bad idea
– Alex Fishman: Is Gaza’s tunnel era coming to an end?
– Ruthie Blum: Europe’s collusion in Palestinian illegal land grab
– Ben-Dror Yemini: The hypocrisy of canceling Hotovely’s Princeton talk
– Adam Dison: South Africa’s student Left defends Hitler and Hezbollah, but attacks Jews like me
– James Kirchick: The new Jew hatred
Featured image: CC0 Pxhere ; chess CC BY-NC-ND Tim S; Columbia CC BY Mike Steele; reading CC0 Public Domain Clip Art;

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Post  Admin on Sun 12 Nov 2017, 11:08 pm

BBC Erases Jews from Ancient Israel
An initially positive feature on the BBC Travel website focuses on the Israel city of Caesarea, specifically the discovery of 2,000 gold coins on the ocean floor, the largest stash ever found in the region.
The author of the piece covers Caesarea’s fascinating ancient history, referring to Phoenicians and Greeks and eventually the Romans:
By 6AD, Caesarea was the capital of the Roman province of Judea and was not known as “Roman Palestine” or “Palestine.” It was only later, following the suppression of the Bar-Kokhba Revolt in the year 135AD that the Romans changed the name of the province to Syria Palaestina.
And who were the “native people” who revolted against Roman rule between 66 and 70AD?
They are the one people who are not mentioned by name in the BBC Travel article – THE JEWS.
Is it really so difficult for the BBC to acknowledge who the native people of the region were and still are?
Did the journalist responsible take her information from a Palestinian Authority history textbook?
Whether deliberate or not, this is an outrageous erasure of the Jewish people from the history of ancient Israel and feeds into the false historical revisionism that seeks to undermine Jewish links to the land.
We’ve sent a complaint to the BBC. Watch this space.
Did Satellite Photos Uncover Iranian Base in Syria?
Israel Daily News Stream7 hours ago

Today’s Top Stories
1. Satellite images show what appears to be a permanent Iranian base in Syria being built, according to a BBC report widely picked up by the Israeli and international media.

Meanwhile, the US and Russia reportedly reached an agreement to keep Iranian-backed militias in Syria away from the Israeli border. Just don’t ask about the details:

According to similar reports in Channel 10 and Israel Radio, the official did not say how far from the border the militias would be removed or under what time frame. In addition to Iran-backed groups, affiliates of both al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group, both of which count foreign fighters among their ranks, operate in Syria near the Israeli border.

2. A student group at Montreal’s McGill U. admitted using anti-Semitic propaganda to keep a Jewish student off the student government.

3. Israel shot down an aerial drone near the Syrian border on Saturday.

Israeli security officials said the drone’s operators had deliberately attempted to fly the aircraft across the Israeli border, Channel 10 reported.

The IDF later concluded that the aircraft belonged to Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime. It did not enter Israeli territory.
4. BBC Erases Jews from Ancient Israel: Why is it so difficult for the BBC to acknowledge who the “native people” of Roman-controlled Judea were?

5. How the UK Media Recently Smeared Israel: Nuance went on holiday as British journalists unpacked the controversy surrounding Priti Patel’s meetings with Israeli officials.

6. Minds No Longer Exercised in Tel Aviv: HonestReporting had to remind the International Business Times that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel.

Israel and the Palestinians
• According to a New York Times report picked up in the Israeli media, the Trump administration is actually working on a plan “intended to go beyond previous frameworks offered by the American government in pursuit of what the president calls ‘the ultimate deal.'”

Although Mr. Trump has not committed to a Palestinian state, analysts said they anticipated that the plan will have to be built around the so-called two-state solution that has been the core of peacemaking efforts for years . . .

Mr. Trump’s team sees the convergence of factors that make the moment ripe, including an increased willingness by Arab states to finally solve the issue to refocus attention on Iran, which they consider the bigger threat. With that in mind, Egypt is brokering a reconciliation between Mahmoud Abbas, who presides in the West Bank, and Hamas, which controls Gaza, a deal that would cement the Palestinian Authority as the representative of the Palestinian people. Saudi Arabia has summoned Mr. Abbas to Riyadh to reinforce the importance of a deal.
• The Times of Israel reports good news and bad news for Israeli judoka Ori Sasson. The good news: Morocco allowed him to display his country’s name and insignia, unlike a few weeks earlier, when UAE sporting officials wouldn’t allow Sasson or his teammates to display Israel’s name or flag. The bad news: Sasson lost to Frenchman Cyrille Maret, ending his medal hopes in Marrakech.

Sultan Abdul Hamid II

• This development caught my eye because I was helping my son this weekend prepare for a history test about the Ottoman Empire and its rule over the Holy Land. According to Turkish media reports, “Descendants of Ottoman sultans will join volunteers as part of a project by a central Turkish municipality to clean and maintain buildings constructed during the Ottoman rule in Jerusalem.”
Naturally, there’s a political aspect:

Turkey is among the vocal critics of what it calls the “occupation” of east Jerusalem and the “violations” of Al-Aqsa Mosque, a sacred Islamic site, by Israeli forces. Erdogan previously expressed Turkey’s support for the Palestinian fight against the Israeli occupation and called on Turks to visit the Al-Aqsa Mosque often to protect the Muslim identity of the holy site. “As a Muslim community, we need to visit the Al-Aqsa Mosque often, each day that Jerusalem has it under occupation is an insult to us,” he said in a speech at a forum on Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque held recently in Turkey.
• Israeli Intelligence Minister Israel Katz discussed a diplomatic offensive in the UN with the Associated Press.

Saad Hariri

• Worth reading: Reuters takes a closer look at why and how Saudi Arabia turned on Lebanese ex-prime minister Saad Hariri.
Sources close to Hariri say Saudi Arabia has concluded that the prime minister – a long-time Saudi ally and son of late prime minister Rafik al-Hariri, who was assassinated in 2005 – had to go because he was unwilling to confront Hezbollah.
Campus Concerns
• BDS activists covertly ‘took over’ the American Studies Association before it endorsed an Israel boycott, according to a lawsuit picked up by The Algemeiner.

The Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law — which is representing four plaintiffs suing the ASA over its 2013 adoption of the boycott — revealed that newly-uncovered emails showed how activists with the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (USACBI) “took over” and used the ASA to advance their political agenda.
More background at Legal Insurrection.


• Judge dismisses complaint alleging anti-Semitism at San Francisco State U., telling the plaintiffs to “pare down complaint and deliver something simple and concise.”

• Two U. of Illinois students face felony charges for vandalizing a menorah on campus.

Around the World
• Germany charges Palestinian with murder of Hamburg Christians over Temple Mount tensions.

• Berlin mayor slams BDS rally on Kristallnacht Remembrance Day.

• Calling Israeli children ‘Zionist terrorists in training’ is not incitement to hate, Dutch prosecutors rule

• Channeling her inner Ken Livingstone, I presume?

• Brussels Jewish museum opens first exhibition since 2014 massacre.

• The letter discovered by the Daily Mail was written in 1986. Let’s see if Prince Charles repudiates it. The heir to the British throne only blamed the Mideast conflict on “the influx of foreign Jews” and hopes that a US president will eventually stand up to “the Jewish lobby.”

Prince Charles

• Puerto Rico’s been without electricity for 50 days since Hurricane Maria wrecked the island’s power grid. So how’s Puerto Rico’s Jewish community doing?

• Memo to David Pratt: If you’re going to insinuate that Israel is deliberately and knowingly giving medical care to Syrian Islamist rebels, please at least furnish stronger proof than an unnamed Palestinian official in Ramallah. Perhaps your Herald-Scotland could arrange a visit to the IDF field hospital for a first-hand look, like Politico recently did.

• The Israeli-Saudi-Lebanese-Iranian dance is on my mind . . .

– Dr. Oded Eran: Will changes in Riyadh lead to new era in Israel-Saudi relations?
– Yoav Limor: Shaping the northern front
– Avi Issacharoff: Is war between Saudi Arabia and Hezbollah an impossible scenario?
– Yaron Friedman: Why is Saudi Arabia so determined to destroy Hezbollah?
– David Ignatius: Saudi Arabia commits the original sin of Mideast politics
– Mohamed Bazzi: Saudi Arabia comes for Hezbollah
– Dennis Ross: Iran’s ‘malign activities’ and the need to put the spotlight on its actions

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Brig. Gen. (res.) Michael Herzog: The Palestinian reconciliation agreement – context, consequences and open questions
– Yoav Limor: The Gaza gamble
– Cathryn Prince: Looking for an American bipartisan issue? Try the fight against BDS
– Melanie Phillips: The strategic importance of the argument from law
– Daniel Sugarman: Priti Patel had to go, but this wild speculation about Israel’s grip on UK politics has to stop
– Azriel Bermant: Priti Patel’s private diplomacy with Israel isn’t unique. But her case is the oddest
– Vladimir Sloutsker: Kristallnacht, and our modern-day approach to anti-Semitism
– Matti Friedman: My forgotten war and their forgotten graves

• For a sense of what the critics are saying, see Mary Dejevsky.

Featured image: CC BY-NC Jens Schott Knudsen; White House CC0 Pixabay; sultan via Wikimedia Commons; Hariri via YouTube/euronews (en francais); Prince Charles CC BY-SA Dan Marsh;yright ©️ 2017 Two Listeners, All rights reserved.

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Post  Admin on Thu 09 Nov 2017, 11:28 pm
UK Minister Resigns Over Unauthorized Meetings With Israelis
Israel Daily News Stream4 hours ago

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Today’s Top Stories
1. UK minister Priti Patel resigned amid a row over her unauthorized meetings with Israeli officials. More at the Jewish Chronicle and Washington Post.

If you’re having trouble wrapping your head around the story (your local news was preoccupied with ex-Mossad agents at Black Cube, I get it), see explainers by Haaretz, BBC and Seth Frantzman.

See also HonestReporting’s critique: There is No Palestinian ‘Ambassador’ to the UK: British papers effectively bestowed statehood on the Palestinians.

Priti Patel
Priti Patel, who resigned as Britain’s international development secretary

2. Five-year-old Palestinian child caught trying to smuggle cell phones to his terrorist father in prison.

3. Israel’s fighting a diplomatic battle to prevent the election of Iran as UNESCO Executive Board chairman. According to the Jerusalem Post:

In advance of the November 16 election, the board has been split between choosing Iran or South Korea to head the board, but it is possible that the Asia Pacific group will push the Philippines ambassador as a compromise candidate, a diplomatic source speculated in a conversation with The Jerusalem Post.

But the overall make-up of the board with the new members is seen as more hostile to Israel than the previous one.
4. HR Book Review: The Anti-Israel Agenda: Anti-Israel activists are more predictable than they think. HonestReporting reviews Alex Ryvchin’s new book.

5. HR On the Road: It’s been a big month for HonestReporting, with trips, events and appearances.

In the News
• Jewish studies Professor Barry Trachtenberg to Congress: There’s no anti-Semitism on college campuses, and there’s nothing wrong with comparing Israel to Nazis. Really?

• Gaza received the first major delivery of medicine from the PA in eight months.


• Times of Israel: A Palestinian nabbed outside settlement of Kochav Yaakov with a meat cleaver, knife and Koran told police he was going to carry out a terror attack.

• I think this is going to become an evergreen headline:

Palestinian police chief says Hamas must give up Gaza arms

• The Media Line takes a closer look at the significance of Israel holding the bodies of five Palestinian terrorists found in the rubble of a demolished tunnel.

• Congressional hearing amps up pressure on Trump to move the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. John Bolton, Dore Gold, Michael Koplow, Morton Klein and Eugene Kontorovich all testified in favor of a relocation. See Haaretz coverage or watch a video of the hearings.

• Eilat’s international airport to open in April, 2018.

The new facility is the first civilian airport to be built in the country since it was founded in 1948. The aiport is being built 19 km. north of the southern town of Eilat in the Timna Valley. It will replace Eilat’s J. Hozman Aiport located in the city itself as well as the Ouvda Airport located some 60 km. north of Eilat.
• Rutgers defends decision to employ ex-Assad regime spokesman, calling him an expert in international law.

• Holocaust memorial stones stolen from Berlin neighborhood.

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Ben-Dror Yemini: Anti-Israel activists have no interest in a dialogue
– Dr. Reuven Berko: Hamas’ moral collapse
– Yoaz Hendel: Let’s stop lying to ourselves about a Palestinian state
– Josh Cohen: ISIS losses have consolidated Iran’s strength in the Mideast

Featured image: CC BY Sjoerd Lammers Photography; Patel CC BY DFID; medicine CC BY Images Money;

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Post  Admin on Wed 08 Nov 2017, 4:25 pm
Moroccan Judo Championship to Be Canceled Over Visas for Israelis?
Israel Daily News Stream14 mins ago

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Today’s Top Stories
1. Authorities in Morocco failed to provide Israel’s judo team with visas ahead of the world championship, which begins in Marrakech on November 11.

The president of the International Judo Federation said he would cancel the entire world championship if the Israeli delegation would not receive its visas.
More at Israel HaYom.

With Israeli athletes getting snubbed in various ways by United Arab Emirates, Lebanon, Malaysia, Algeria, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Egypt, why the heck do world sports bodies allow these Arab countries to continue hosting or participating in sporting events that Israelis also compete in?

2. Congress is mulling legislation that would change how US universities deal with anti-Semitism — by requiring the Education Department to adopt the State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism. The Times of Israel was on hand as the bill’s supporters and critics testified to the House Judiciary Committee:

The Anti-Semitism Awareness Act (ASAA) would require federally funded education programs to employ the State Department’s standards in assessing whether civil rights laws have been violated when dealing with hate crimes.

The controversy over the legislation stems from its provisions regarding Israel. The ASAA would ban the Department of Education from “claiming Israel for all inter-religious or political tensions” and “applying double standards by requiring of it a behavior not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation.”

Opponents of the legislation argue the clauses on Israel would infringe free speech on campus.
US Capitol

3. It’s been a week since Hamas ceded control of Gaza’s border crossings to the PA, and the two are already bickering. Haaretz explains:

Hamas expressed anger at Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah’s comments that the PA couldn’t guarantee the crossings’ orderly operation without assuming full security control over Gaza . . .

People in the Gaza Strip speculated Tuesday on whether the PA was referring to control not only of the crossings but to the entire issue of security in the Strip, which has also yet to be arranged. Policemen employed by Hamas are still operating in the area.

This assessment only increased the frustration and anger of Palestinians in Gaza, who recognize that any dispute between the factions only delays the opening and proper functioning of the crossings – especially Rafah, which is the Gazans’ main artery.

Another issue under dispute is the model for operating the Rafah crossing, which the PA supports and would see European observers placed at the crossing, which was the practice until 2007, when Hamas assumed control of the Strip.
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4. On the i24 News program The Spin Room with Ami Kaufman, HonestReporting’s Daniel Pomerantz along with MK Akram Hasson and journalist Tami Molad Hayo discussed Israeli-Druze ties, the peace process, and more.

Israel and the Palestinians
• Israel instructed its envoys to diplomatically campaign for the world to curb the activities of Iran and Hezbollah. According to Israeli media reports:

“The events in Lebanon, and the ballistic missile launched by [Yemen’s rebel] Houthis toward the Riyadh international airport, should cause [the world] to increase the pressure on Iran and Hezbollah on a range of issues, from ballistic missile production to its efforts at regional subversion,” the foreign ministry memo read.
• PA police chief: Security cooperation with Israel back on track.

• The Palestinians — who are already busy targeting the Giro d’Italia for a boycott — are still trying to put Israel on the back foot at FIFA. PA soccer officials got a court date for their FIFA case against Israel.

• Palestinian teen caught smuggling knife into Hebron’s Tomb of the Patriarchs.

Around the World
• The plot thickens: Downing St. reportedly knew about Priti Patel’s meetings with Israeli officials after all, according to the Jewish Chronicle.

But the JC understands, from two different sources, that Ms Patel did disclose the meeting with Mr Rotem but was told by Number 10 not to include it as it would embarrass the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
• Following up on the dust up over Tzipi Hotovely’s speaking appearance at Princeton, MK Michael Oren, a Princeton alumnus, urged Israeli officials to boycott the campus Hillel and called for the firing of its director, Rabbi Julie Roth.

Meanwhile Hillel International CEO Eric Fingerhut and Roth took to the Jerusalem Post’s op-ed section to apologize for cancelling the Deputy Foreign Minister’s speech. Hotovely’s speech went on as scheduled under the auspices of the campus Chabad.

• I think this is an important wake up call from prominent pro-Israel activist Hen Mazzig.

• Quote of the day:

“Tracking a missile is much easier than tracking a ball,” he said. “A missile is more predictable.”
Gal Oz, of SportVU, a startup whose system of high resolution tracking cameras and player tracking technology revolutionized the NBA. Interviewed by the Wall St. Journal (click via Twitter).

• Conductor Zubin Mehta discusses Wagner in Israel, Palestinian musicians and more with the Wall St. Journal (click via Twitter). Mehta is due to step down the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra in 2019, ending what will be 50 years with the ensemble.

Zubin Mehta
Zubin Mehta

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Evelyn Gordon: Why Israel threatened military action to save an enemy
– Joel Finkelstein: On Hotovely and the dangers of Princeton’s moral panic
– Jeff Jacoby: Spain clamors for a ‘two-state solution’ — but not in Catalonia
– Zvi Bar’el: Israel’s swapping bodies for bodies isn’t enough
– Khaled Abu Toameh: The Iran-Hamas-Hezbollah connection
– Dov Zakheim: Jared Kushner, Mohammed bin Salman, and Benjamin Netanyahu are up to something
– Shoula Romano Horing: Why Israelis are successful fighting terror
– Shmuel Rosner: How did ‘peace’ become a dirty word in Israel?
– Col. Richard Kemp: Israel as a strategic asset of the West
– Alan Dershowitz: The Daily Californian refuses to publish my response to an anti-Semitic op-ed
– Ron Kampeas: What Saudi and Lebanese political turmoil means for Israel
– Thomas Donnelly: Israel’s coming war with Hezbollah
– Giora Eiland: Lebanon’s last chance to save itself
– Michael Totten: Hezbollah consolidates its stranglehold over Lebanon
– Roger Boyes: Stop Iran’s march through the Middle East

Featured image: CC BY-NC-ND program monkey; Washington CC BY-SA Wikimedia Commons/Wcwoolf; Mehta CC BY-NC; Municipalidad de Santiago; Lebanon CC BY ItzaFineDay;

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Post  Admin on Tue 07 Nov 2017, 8:14 pm
Syrian Envoy Who Accused Israel of Organ Trafficking Now a Rutgers Professor
Israel Daily News Stream6 hours ago
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Today’s Top Stories
1. A Syrian diplomat who accused Israelis of trafficking children’s organs is now a professor at Rutgers. Mazen Adi served in a number of roles for the Syrian Foreign Ministry, most recently as a diplomat and adviser for Syria’s UN mission. UN Watch called for the US to deport Adi, calling him “a liar and an apologist for mass murder.”

Mohammed Sawalha
2. Turns out a prominent leader of London’s Finsbury Park Mosque was appointed to Hamas’s ruling politburo. The Times of London got the scoop on mosque trustee Mohammed Sawalha:

His role was revealed when it was announced that he was part of a Hamas delegation to Moscow in September which held a meeting with Mikhail Bogdanov, President Putin’s Middle East envoy, and a deputy foreign minister.

Hamas has been designated an outlawed terrorist organisation by the US and the EU, meaning that its assets can be seized and its members jailed. The UK has banned only its military wing, the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, meaning that Mr Sawalha has committed no offence . . .

The Sunday Times reported in 2008 [or was it 2005?] that he had been named in US court documents as having previously been “in charge of Hamas terrorist operations in the West Bank” and had met two men accused of laundering millions of dollars to finance the group.

3. Israel arrested seven Druze who tried to breach the border fence with Syria. The Israeli Druze community is agitated after a suicide bomber struck the Syrian Druze village of Hader just across the border last week. At least nine people were killed in the attack, which was carried out by a rebel militia affiliated with Al-Qaida.

Israel vowed to protect Hader’s residents, though officials haven’t disclosed how. The Media Line examines the risks of that pledge.

4. A Not So Priti Headline Fail: Guardian editors bungled a headline so we rewrote it for them.

In the News
• Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely’s scheduled talk at Princeton U. was cancelled by the campus Hillel “after a group called Alliance of Jewish Progressives (AIP) protested her scheduled appearance on campus.” Hotovely will instead speak at the campus Chabad. More at The Princetonian and Times of Israel.

• The U. of Ottawa‘s student government shoots down BDS resolution.

• Worth reading: Now that Argentine investigators have concluded that prosecutor Alberto Nisman’s death was a homicide, Haaretz nicely lays out where matters stand for the principle figures, including ex-president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, ex-foreign minister Hector Timerman, and the Iranians.

If Fernandez is charged with treason, this will be a negative turn of events for Zarif and a stain on Iran’s international standing, just as it finds itself in a major public relations campaign following U.S. President Donald Trump’s refusal to recertify Iranian compliance with the Iran nuclear deal.
Qatar• Something’s cooking with Qatar’s charm offensive with American Jewish leaders. The Jerusalem Post reports that the head of the Orthodox Union’s kashrut department is visiting Qatar along with a small group of other unspecified Jewish leaders.

The trip was organized by Nick Muzin, a prominent Jewish Republican operative who is on retainer by the Persian Gulf nation to establish ties with the American Jewish community. The group is scheduled to meet with the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.

Allen Fagin, the OU’s Executive Vice President, said that Genack’s visit was private and was not connected to his work with the Jewish organization.
• AFP looks at Israeli medical treatment for injured Syrians. Read the report or watch the video.

• Jewish author wins prominent French literary prize. Olivier Guez was awarded the Renaudot award, one of France’s top literary prizes, for his book “The Disappearance of Josef Mengele.” Details at the European Jewish Press.

• Israel sends emergency aid to plague-hit Madagascar.

• Worth reading: CNN’s Doug Criss explains why the law enforcement officials labeled the New York truck rampage as terror but not this week’s Texas church shooting.
• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Daniel Shapiro: Is Saudi Arabia pushing Israel into war with Hezbollah and Iran?
– Ben-Dror Yemini: Each nation has its own ‘Nakba’
– Martin Kramer: Who saved Israel in 1947?
– Moshe Arens: Israeli Arabs, too, benefited from the Balfour Declaration
– Daniel Gordis: As Trump goes, so does Netanyahu
– David Collier: British unions supporting anti-Semitism and radical Islamic hate

Featured image: CC BY-SA The Next Web Photos; Sawalha via YouTube/inminds; Qatar via Wikimedia Commons;

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Post  Admin on Mon 06 Nov 2017, 3:42 pm
Israel Says It Has Bodies of 5 Gaza Terrorists
Israel Daily News Stream2 hours ago

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Today’s Top Stories
1. The IDF says it has the bodies of five terrorists buried in last week’s terror tunnel demolition, adding that all were found on the Israeli side of the border. Officials in Jerusalem said they won’t release the bodies until three Israeli civilians (Avera Mengistu, Hisham al-Sayed and Juma Abu Anima) and the bodies of two soldiers (Lt. Hadar Goldin and Sgt. Oron Shaul) all held by Hamas are returned.

More at the Jerusalem Post and Times of Israel.

2. Associated Press: A new Argentine probe concludes that Alberto Nisman was indeed murdered. The prosecutor was found dead days after he accused then-president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner of covering up Iran’s role in the 1994 bombing of the AMIA building, the Buenos Aires headquarters of the Jewish community.

The new report, which was obtained by The Associated Press, bases its conclusions on controversial new evidence and sharply contradicts earlier official findings that Alberto Nisman likely killed himself . . .

The investigation listed key evidence that wasn’t mentioned in previous reports: Nisman’s nasal septum was broken. He had suffered blows to his hip and other areas. Ketamine, a substance with strong anesthetic power, was in his body.

The new report concludes the attackers tried to stage a suicide, but it notes that other experts throughout the series of probes never found any traces of gunpowder on Nisman’s hands.
Alberto Nisman

3. After hosting the resignation of Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri and cracking down on the royal family, the Saudi rulership summoned Mahmoud Abbas to Riyadh for an unscheduled meeting with King Salman and Crown Prince Muhammed Bin Salman. Hmmmmm.

Around the World
Jeremy Corbyn

• Three of Britain’s top writers, accused Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party of straying into anti-Semitism. The letter to the editor, published in the Times of London, was signed by award-winning author Howard Jacobson and historians Simon Schama and Simon Sebag Montefiore.

We are alarmed that during the past few years, constructive criticism of Israeli governments has morphed into something closer to antisemitism under the cloak of so-called anti-Zionism. We do not object to fair criticism of Israel governments, but this has grown to be indistinguishable from a demonisation of Zionism itself — the right of the Jewish people to a homeland, and the very existence of a Jewish state. Although anti-Zionists claim innocence of any antisemitic intent, anti-Zionism frequently borrows the libels of classical Jew-hating. Accusations of international Jewish conspiracy and control of the media have resurfaced to support false equations of Zionism with colonialism and imperialism, and the promotion of vicious, fictitious parallels with genocide and Nazism. How, in such instances, is anti-Zionism distinguishable from antisemitism?

Such themes and language have become widespread in Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party. So far the Labour leadership’s reaction has been derisory. It is not enough to denounce all racisms in general when this specific strain rages unchecked.
Background on the letter here.

• There must be another Anne Frank who coincidentally kept a diary too, right?

• According to Israeli media reports, “Israel has been making covert efforts to bring the remains of the venerated late Rabbi Nachman from Uman, Ukraine, to Israel,” but officials in Kiev turned down the request.

Rebbe Nachman, spiritual leader of the Breslov Hasidim, was born in the city of Medzhybizh in 1772 and died in Uman in 1810. Since then, Uman has become a mecca for Bratslavers, the name by which his followers are known. About 150,000 people visit Rabbi Nachman’s grave every year, making it an important site of tourism for Ukraine.
• Anti-Semitic posters left at Sacramento synagogue.

• Dog saves Paris-area Jewish family from ‘anti-Semitic’ suspected arson in their home.

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Yaakov Amidror: Don’t return bodies for nothing
– Alex Fishman: In protection of Druze, Israel gave up security interests in Golan
– Yaakov Lappin: Latest terror tunnel discovery spotlights the ‘real proxy of Iran’ in Gaza
– Evelyn Gordon: Will Palestinian reconciliation reduce Hamas’ cash flow?
– Smadar Perry: Hariri ‘assassination plot’ is just an excuse
– Norman Bailey: The Kurdish tragedy

Featured image: CC BY-NC-ND Antonio Trogu; Nisman via YouTube/Carlos Kalman; Corbyn CC BY Chatham House;

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Post  Admin on Sun 05 Nov 2017, 9:23 pm
Lebanese PM’s Shock Resignation and Its Implications for Israel
Israel Daily News Stream3 hours ago
Today’s Top Stories
1. Stunning the Mideast, Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri announced his resignation from Saudi Arabia, saying Iran and Hezbollah were plotting his assassination and extending their influence over the government. The Washington Post explains:

The resignation signaled an end to the shaky alliance that had underpinned Lebanon’s government between Hariri, a Sunni Muslim who is a longtime ally of Saudi Arabia, and the Shiite Hezbollah movement, which is backed by Iran. The arrangement helped Lebanon keep a distance from the violence convulsing neighboring Syria and the wider region but stirred deepening concerns among Iran’s foes about growing Iranian influence in the country.
In response, Lebanese President Michel Aoun said he won’t accept Hariri’s resignation until he returns to Lebanon. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the development a “wake-up call to the international community to take action against the Iranian aggression,” while Iran said the resignation was part of a US-Saudi plot to stir more tension.

More at the New York Times and Daily Telegraph.

According to Al-Arabiya, an attempt on Hariri’s life “had been thwarted in Beirut a few days ago,” though Lebanese security officials said they had no knowledge of any such attempt. Hariri’s father, Rafik, was assassinated in a massive car bombing in 2005, which killed 21 other people for which. Hezbollah was implicated.

Israeli columnists weighed in:

– Avi Issacharoff: Hariri resignation: Lebanon now a full on Iranian proxy for all to see
– Amos Harel: Hariri’s exit increases instability on Israel’s Lebanese border
– Yossi Yehoshua: Hariri’s speech: An accurate description of Israel’s northern challenge
– Anna Ahronheim: With Hariri resignation, Israel has more leeway in next Lebanon war
Saad Hariri

2. Israel took the unusual step of announcing it will protect the residents of the Syrian Druze village of Hader. Nine people were killed in a suicide car bombing attack said to have been carried out by Al-Qaida affiliated rebels.

In the aftermath of the attack, a number of Israeli Druze tried to breach the border to fight alongside relatives. One Israeli Druze lawmaker, MK Akram Hasson, said four of the Hader victims were members of his extended family. Israeli Druze spiritual leader Shaykh Muwaffak Tar?f discussed the issues with Ynet.

See reactions from Prof. Eyal Zisser, Amos Harel, and Yoav Limor.

3. Islamic Jihad said five more of its operatives were killed last week when the IDF destroyed a cross-border tunnel from Gaza, raising the death toll to 12. The five were initially unaccounted for, raising fears they were inside Israel.

Also, Israel refused a Hamas request to search the Israel-Gaza buffer zone for the missing men, insisting first on progress on the issue of returning three Israeli civilians who wandered into Gaza and the bodies of two IDF soldiers killed in the 2014 Gaza conflict.

Meanwhile, senior Palestinian officials told Israel HaYom that the PA has neither the ability nor the will to prevent Gaza terror groups from digging more cross-border tunnels.

“What you in Israel and the United States do not understand is that we want to give this reconciliation a chance to succeed, even if not everything goes smoothly,” he said. “Therefore we are not interested in a confrontation with Hamas, certainly not because of the tunnel issue. We will be able to restrain Hamas in Gaza just as it is restrained in the West Bank, but it is a lengthy process that will take time [to implement], and for the time being it is not in our interest or desire to prevent Hamas from continuing its security-related activity in the Gaza Strip.”

In the News
• While in the UK, Prime Minister Netanyahu discussed the peace process, the Iranian threat, and Israeli-British in an interview with the BBC’s Andrew Marr. If you’re unable to hear the full interview, see the Times of Israel‘s summary.

• Kyle Mizokami delves into how Israel is modifying its new made-in-the-USA F-35 fighters.

Israeli F-35 Adir delivery flight, Dec. 5, 2016

• A Balfour Declaration event at a Florida Jewish museum was cancelled due to a bomb threat

• Daily Mail: Dossier unveiled by Jewish Labour members reveals scale of anti-Semitism claims inside the party amid drive to stamp out online abuse from activists.

• If you’re trying to prove a point about anti-Semitism, don’t do it by telling a joke about the Holocaust. Labour MP Harriet Harman is no anti-Semite, she was just seriously lacking in political judgment during an interview with the BBC’s Andrew Neil. The row described by the Daily Telegraph is no laughing matter.

• Israeli businessman claims anti-Semitic ‘hounding’ in Scotland.

• A Jewish student at Montreal’s McGill U. embroiled in anti-Semitism row will maintain his leadership position — for now.

McGill U.

• Shout out to all my Balfour junkies:

– Itamar Marcus: Had there been no Balfour Declaration, the PA would have had to invent it
– Efraim Karsh: Turks, Arabs welcomed Balfour Declaration
– Bernard Avishai: The Balfour Declaration century

dog at laptop• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Bassam Tawil: Meet Abbas’ new partners
– Washington Post (staff-ed) Can Hamas and the PA reconcile in Gaza? Be skeptical
– Yoni Ben Menachem: The operational coordination between Hezbollah and Hamas
– Daniel Schwammenthal: Why is the West financing Palestinian terrorism?
– Amb. Alan Baker: What goes for UNESCO goes also for the UN
– Hussein Ibish: Why Bahrain is leading Gulf Arab outreach to Israel
– Shimon Koffler Fogel: You can’t analyze Israel without understanding the experiences of its people
– Rosemary McLeod: Deniers incite hatred

Featured image: CC BY Mo Riza;; Hariri via YouTube/TeleLiban Montage; F-35s via Wikimedia Commons; dog CC0 PublicDomainPictures;

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Post  Admin on Thu 02 Nov 2017, 10:42 pm
Are 5 Missing Islamic Jihad Operatives in Israel?
Israel Daily News Stream9 hours ago

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Today’s Top Stories
1. Five Islamic Jihad goons are still missing after Israel destroyed a cross-border tunnel from Gaza on Monday. Ynet reports that they may be in Israel and the IDF’s looking for them.

2. Neutrality is Swiss cheesy:

Switzerland’s Defense Ministry has admitted sending staff to test reconnaissance drones in contested land held by Israel – an embarrassing blow for the neutral European country’s status as an honest broker in the Middle East.

Swiss officials visited an airfield in the Golan Heights region on three occasions in 2012, 2013 and 2015 to monitor tests of the Israeli-built Hermes 900 aircraft that they are buying for $265 million . . .

The officials’ visits, which lasted several days, took place in an area that Switzerland does not recognize as being part of Israel, as it was seized from Syria in the 1967 Six-Day War.
An Israeli Hermes drone

3. Ahead of Benjamin Netanyahu’s arrival in London for celebrations marking the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, UK media reports say that British Prime Minister Theresa May will use the occasion to denounce anti-Semitism masked as Israel criticism:

Mrs May will tell the dinner: “There is today a new and pernicious form of anti-Semitism which uses criticism of the actions of the Israeli government as a despicable justification for questioning the very right of Israel to exist . . .

Highlighting the UK’s role in pressing for a new international definition of anti-Semitism, she will add: “Criticising the actions of Israel is never – and can never be – an excuse for questioning Israel’s right to exist, any more than criticising the actions of Britain could be an excuse for questioning our right to exist.

“And criticising the government of Israel is never – and can never be – an excuse for hatred against the Jewish people – any more than criticising the British government would be an excuse for hatred against the British people.

4. Balfour Declaration: State or Homeland? If The Independent is going to opine about the Balfour Declaration’s alleged evils, the least it can do is get the facts right. HonestReporting gets a correction.

5. Spotting Fake News on Israel: HR’s CEO, Joe Hyams, discussed fake news and how to spot it in a podcast with Israel360’s Daniel Seligson.

Israel and the Palestinians
• According to Arab reports picked up by the Israeli media, Israeli jets struck targets in Syria, near the Lebanese border, including an alleged weapons depot. Israeli officials declined to comment. See Ynet for more on the nature of the target.

• The IDF raided a pair of Palestinian workshops in Hebron which manufactured guns.

• If you thought that PA control over the Gaza border crossings would lead Egypt to reopen the Rafah crossing to the free movement of Palestinians and goods, don’t hold your breath. CNN notes:

An Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs official told CNN that Cairo does not yet have a schedule to resume operations at the Rafah crossing, citing security issues. The official added that the situation will be assessed and a timetable released in due course.
• Does Australian ABC News reporter Sophie McNeill really believe the Palestinians would’ve accepted an Israeli invitation to commemorate the Battle of Beersheva? Participating would’ve been too “normalizing” for Ramallah’s tastes.

Around the World
• Israel’s embassy in Australia protested a Canberra Times cartoon critical of the Battle of Beersheba memorials.

Canberra Times

• Student petition to suspend anti-Semitic Rutgers professor gains momentum, as swastika appears on campus

• 4 Jewish things you need to know about Catalonia.

• Rocker Nick Cave faces BDS heat ahead of Tel Aviv concerts

• US Jews have disproportionate influence over politics, says ex-British politician with close Trump ties.

• A trove of declassified Osama Bin Laden documents reveal Iran’s secret dealings with al-Qaeda. The Daily Telegraph writes:

A never-before-seen 19-page document purportedly written by a senior member of al-Qaeda details an arrangement between Iran and members of the group to strike American interests in “Saudi Arabia and the Gulf.”

In exchange, Shia Iran offered Sunni militants “money, arms” and “training in Hizbollah camps in Lebanon.”

Iranian intelligence facilitated the travel of some operatives with visas, while sheltering others.
• In the last two days, The Guardian’s op-ed section has attacked the Balfour Declaration with a staff editorial, commentaries by Mahmoud Abbas, Hanan Ashrawi and Yasmeen el Khoudary, plus this cartoon from the poison pen of Steve Bell.

But before you accuse The Guardian of unfairly giving a disproportionate soapbox to the Balfour bashers, Ambassador Mark Regev had a letter to the editor published, so everything’s fair and square, right?

Meanwhile, the Daily Telegraph published a letter in support of Balfour signed by more than 100 MPs. And Newsweek reprinted President Reuven Rivlin’s speech marking the anniversary.

• Worth reading on the occasion of Balfour 100 . . .

– Henry Kissinger: Balfour gave hope not just to Jews but to mankind
– Ron Prosor: A century of missed opportunities
– Clifford May: The 100-year-old promise
– Martin Kramer: The forgotten truth of the Balfour Declaration
– Alan Abbey, Benjamin Emmerich: Balfour Declaration: A century old and as disputed as ever
– Zev Chafets: The UK stands up for Israel’s right to exist
– Dan Margalit: The barren efforts to revoke the Balfour declaration
– Seth Lipsky: A crucial step in recognizing Jews’ ancient right to their homeland
– Ruth Wisse: When Britain renewed the promise to the Jews (click via Twitter)
– Aviva Klompas: In a year of anniversaries, it’s time to look forward
– Yuval Rotem: Balfour Declaration centennial honors Jewish peoples’ rights in their ancient homeland
– Daily Telegraph (staff-ed): Jeremy Corbyn shows little sign of accepting Israel’s right to exist
– Times of London (staff-ed) Sixty-seven words

Tom Gross discussed the Balfour Declaration with i24 news.

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Liel Leibovitz: Ramming attacks were pioneered by Palestinian terrorists
– Avi Issacharoff: Hamas pragmatism in Gaza handover hints at a new future for the Strip
– Amos Harel: Israel has to Egypt to thank for Hamas not retaliating over Gaza tunnel attack
– Oded Granot: Palestinian unity: Hamas’ Halloween costume
– Alex Benjamin: Palestinian leaders need to have ‘that’ Santa conversation with their people
– Bassam Tawil: Gaza Strip: Breeding ground for radical terror groups
– Bernard Avishai: Why Israeli nuclear experts disagree with Netanyahu about the Iran deal
– David Watson: I’m a student at McGill. Our problems with anti-Semitism are far from over

Image of drone CC BY-NC Israel Defense Forces;

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Post  Admin on Wed 01 Nov 2017, 10:24 pm

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8 Killed in New York Terror Attack
Israel Daily News Stream7 hours ago

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Today’s Top Stories
1. Eight people were killed and 11 injured when a terrorist driving a pickup truck plowed for a mile along a busy Manhattan bike path, hitting bikers and pedestrians. Sayfullo Saipov was eventually shot by police while running, waving what turned out to be a paintball gun and a pellet gun and yelling “Allahu akbar.”

A 29-year-old Uzbek national, Saipov is hospitalized and expected to recover. He left behind a note claiming allegiance to Islamic State.

New York officials called it the city’s deadliest attack since 9/11. More at the New York Times, whose headline calls it terror.

Among the fatalities were five Argentinians, one of whom was Jewish businessman, Ariel Erlij.

An Associated Press backgrounder on vehicular attacks around the world included a deadly Palestinian truck attack on soldiers in Jerusalem in January.

New York
The scene of Tuesday’s car-ramming attack in New York City

2. The Palestinian Authority began taking control of Gaza-Egypt border crossings from Hamas. More on the story at Haaretz and the Times of Israel. And the Daily Telegraph adds:

The Rafah crossing is almost always closed but PA officials said a deal had been reached with Egypt to permanently open it in mid-November. If Rafah is opened permanently, it could potentially ease the humanitarian suffering of Gaza’s two million residents and allow them to travel more freely through Egypt to the outside world.

3. Times of Israel: A UN plan calls for $18m to aid Palestinian legal efforts against Israel.

In a recently released plan that outlines the world body’s support for the Palestinian Authority from 2018-2022, the UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) includes a budgetary framework that would allocate millions of dollars to specifically help Palestinians pursue international legal avenues against Israel.
4. HR In a Minute: How to Be a Media Watchdog: How can you know what’s really happening in the Mideast? Here are some tips you can use at home.

4. ‘Attack’ on a ‘Militant Tunnel’: Parroting Terrorist Propaganda: The Independent plumbs new depths with false claims of an Israeli air strike based on terrorist propaganda.

5. HR Prompts Telegraph Correction to ‘Tel Aviv Government’ Error: Editors needed reminding that Tel Aviv isn’t Israel’s capital.

Israel and the Palestinians
Temple Mount• Israel is setting up special police unit to safeguard law and order on the Temple Mount. More at the Jerusalem Post:

The Temple Mount Unit will be equipped with advanced technology and will gather intelligence in order to protect visitors to the holy site, the ministry said.

The unit will include approximately 200 policemen, in which 100 will be specially recruited to the police in the course of the next year.
• Islamic Jihad confirmed that the cross-border terror tunnel destroyed by the IDF earlier this week was intended to be used to abduct Israeli soldiers.

• The IDF ruled out terror in yesterday’s incident near Halamish. Soldiers opened fire on a Palestinian car that failed to comply with orders to stop. The driver was killed and his sister was injured.

• With Kurdish independence rallies in mind, the Iraqi parliament criminalized the display of ‘Zionist symbols’ across the country. Kurds demonstrating for independence often unfurled Israeli flags; Israel is the only government that openly declared support for Kurdish independence.

• Duke University Press is under fire over book claiming Israel has policy of maiming Palestinians to dominate them.

• David Pope, the staff cartoonist at the Canberra Times, had this take on the Battle of Beersheva. The imagery of Benjamin Netanyahu riding on top of the donkey with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s face has a whiff of fatuous claims that Zionist neocons control the government of (fill in the blank here). Israel is protesting the cartoon.

Canberra Times

• Hold your nose: Mahmoud Abbas (or his ghost writer) got op-ed space in The Guardian to elaborate on why “Britain must atone for the Balfour declaration – and 100 years of suffering.”

Plenty more Balfour 100 commentary.

– Dore Gold: The historical significance of the Balfour declaration
– Ben Cohen: Year zero: The Palestinians and the Balfour Declaration
– David Parsons: No apologies for Balfour
– Gil Troy: We don’t need no Balfour declarations . . . or celebrations

• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .

– Avi Issacharoff: Islamic Jihad doesn’t want to rain on the reconciliation parade
– Elior Levy: Islamic Jihad’s unpredictable response
– Alex Fishman: Tunnel explosion puts Palestinian reconciliation to the test
– Hanin Ghaddar: Shiite unrest in Hezbollah’s Beirut stronghold

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Post  Admin on Tue 31 Oct 2017, 8:39 pm
Terror Tunnel: The Media’s Selective Omission
Featured Media Critiques UK8 hours ago
A view of a tunnel reportedly dug by Palestinians beneath the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel and uncovered by Israeli troops, on October 13, 2013. Photo by David Buimovitch/Flash90
Following our complaint, the BBC has added a correction to its story, which now includes the sentence: “The army said the destruction took place on the Israeli side of the border with Gaza.” The story also includes the following footnote:

On Monday, a terror tunnel leading from Gaza under the border into Israel was destroyed by the IDF. As a result seven Palestinians – Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists – were killed and another twelve wounded. The Times of Israel reports:

The tunnel, which the IDF described as a “grave and unacceptable violation of Israeli sovereignty,” started in the Gazan city of Khan Younis, crossing under the border and approaching the Israeli community of Kibbutz Kissufim, the army said.

“The tunnel was detonated from within Israel, adjacent to the security fence,” the military said in a statement.
TOI also reports:

“The explosion took place inside Israeli territory. The majority of the dead were activists that entered the tunnel after it was exploded and died in the Gaza Strip, and not as a result of the explosion,” said an IDF spokesperson Avichay Adraee.
Reuters also reports:

Israel was at pains to point out that its action against the tunnel was carried out on its own side of the border.
Why is this information concerning the exact location of the detonation important?

Israel is regularly and falsely portrayed as an aggressor, particularly when responding to Gazan terrorist threats. In this case, Israel did not mount any actions within Gazan territory.
Palestinian terrorist organizations may feel compelled to respond militarily and will portray such action as a legitimate response to IDF “aggression” even though this is a false narrative.

Source: IDF

Yet, some media failed to include the relevant information.

The Washington Post, BBC and The Guardian all fail to mention that the tunnel had been destroyed from the Israeli side of the border. Instead, references to the 2014 Gaza conflict, which took place, in the main, within the Gaza Strip itself, do nothing to dispel the impression that that the IDF has once again taken action against Palestinian territory.

The BBC’s headline (note the use of the word “militants”), with the stress on Gaza, also implies that this incident took place there rather than on Israeli territory.
Ultimately, this incident clearly shows that Palestinian terrorists are still working towards carrying out acts of violence and terror against Israelis. It is clear who the aggressors are. The media should also make it clear.

We’ve contacted the media outlets above asking for clarifications.

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