Friday, January 30, 2015

Islamic terror and anti-Semitism versus Israel

When you live in Israel, you get to view the world through the prism of daily life in a Jewish state. You quickly learn that there is a world war against Israel’s very existence.

You can’t avoid it.

Hamas and Fatah pledge to destroy Israel. Hamas pledges to kill all Jews, everywhere. The 57 Muslim Member-states of the international Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OCI) all pledge to fight Zionists and re-establish ‘the Caliphate’ (“ORGANIZATION OF ISLAMIC COOPERATION (OIC)”, Erkam Koca,, no date).

For the entire Arab world, fighting ‘the Zionists’ means one thing: destroy the ‘Zionist entity’.

They’re not alone. Humanitarians, the UN and the EU join them.

Don’t you read the news? Israel is evil.

A new essay by Denis MacEoin, on the Gatestone Institute website, takes a close look at this Israel-is-evil story. It’s entitled, “Is Israel Guilty of War Crimes?” It was published January 29, 2015.

It’s extremely long. But it’s worth your time. It cites sources to prove that this story is false. It’s very thorough.

Here is a heavily edited version of that essay. Changes to the essay reflect my own opinion. Read the full essay yourself.

It begins: On November 4, 2014, Amnesty International published a scathing report on Israeli "war crimes" in Gaza during the 2014 war between Hamas and Israel. Entitled, "Families under the rubble: Israeli attacks on inhabited homes," the report accuses Israel of displaying "callous indifference" in launching attacks on homes in the densely populated coastal strip. It argued that in some cases this conduct amounted to war crimes.

The following day, the recently retired UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, published an article in the New York Times. She called for Europe to allow "Palestine" to be admitted to the International Criminal Court [ICC] (to be able to bring war crimes charges against Israel).

One day later, November 6, 2014, the chief military commander of the U.S., General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, a man with lifelong military experience, including senior service in Iraq, flatly contradicted both Amnesty and Pillay. He said, "I actually do think that Israel went to extraordinary lengths to limit collateral damage and civilian casualties".

Dempsey's remarks are a direct echo of sentiments expressed by a former British commander in Afghanistan, Col. Richard Kemp: "The way that this conflict [Operation Protective Edge] is being portrayed in many, many media outfits by many reporters, by some politicians round the world, is the mirror opposite of reality. Israel has been demonized. Israel has been accused of committing war crimes. The real war crimes have been committed by Hamas" ("The Gaza War in 5 Minutes: Thoughts from Col. Richard Kemp", YouTube, 10 November 2014).

The fundamental issue here is whether any of the accusations against Israel are true. Has Israel been committing terrible crimes in Gaza? Or were the war crimes in this conflict actually committed by Hamas?

There’s another question here: are claims of Israeli war crimes born, not from humanitarian concern, but from a revival of anti-Semitism?

For me, this essay goes a long way to suggest that anti-Semitism plays a far more important role in these accusations than we’ve been led to believe. For example, most people know that Islamist groups such as al-Qaeda, the Islamic State, Hizbullah and Hamas are considered terrorists because they do not abide by the terms of international or domestic law. That, as well as the acts they commit, is what identify them as terrorists rather than "freedom fighters". But with Islamic terror groups, there is another factor at work: religion.

All the norms of the Geneva Conventions, UN resolutions, international treaties, the protection of refugees, and all things that govern military action and aspects of internationally accepted norms of law, are all rejected by Islamic terrorists. They are rejected because these terrorists only recognize one legal system--Islamic Shari'a law.

Shar’ia law is distinct. It doesn’t recognize international law as we define it. It sees only the law of jihad.

The embrace of Islamic law frees Hamas and other such groups from any obligation to abide by any international standards, which they demonize as "Western" or "Christian" and therefore "Satanic." Because of Shar’ia, Hamas is free to break every clause in every Charter ever written for International law.

The Islam of these terrorists is also virulently anti-Semitic.

The West ignores terrorist rejection of international law. It ignores the Jihadi content of Islamic terror. It ignores the Jew-hate. Instead, it criminalizes Israel.

Israel, meanwhile, more than any other nation, understands the need to stay on the right side of the law. It knows that the eyes of the world are on it. That’s why virtually every decision made in the 2014 war had an Israeli lawyer looking at it.

Hamas freely sneers at ethical norms. It rejects the Geneva conventions. It disregards international law in every way.

This disparity leads one to ask a simple question: why would the world condemn Israel, yet give Hamas billions of dollars to build more missiles and tunnels?

Anti-Semitism, anyone?

Arabs and humanitarians accuse Israel of "indiscriminate" attacks against civilians. But these accusations mock the reality that Israel's military equipment is second to none with regard to its technological sophistication. Given Israel's international reputation as one of the most technically advanced countries in the world, we should expect Israel to hit its target with precision.

Mostly, it did.

Israelis aren’t stupid. They understand the danger of civilian casualties. Every civilian casualty harms Israel's standing in the world. It makes no sense at all for such a technically competent country to fire indiscriminately on civilians.

Is it possible that such an accusation is just more anti-Semitism, designed to criminalize and ‘Satanize’ the Jewish Israel?

Read the essay. Decide for yourself.



Thursday, January 29, 2015

Will Israel’s elections redefine Zionism?

In 1890, Zionism meant only one thing: returning to land from which we had been expelled by non-Jews. Zionism had nothing to do with social justice, democracy or equality.

It was about Jews. It was about Israel. It was about ‘return’.

To borrow a modern phrase, its focus was ‘a Jewish settlement enterprise’. It dreamed to return to and resettle our Jewish-national-ancestral-Biblical homeland.

In 1890, there was no formal Zionist Party. There was no formal religious Zionist Party. There were only ‘Zionists’.

That’s no longer true. Today, there are all kinds of Zionists. Today, even anti-Zionists call themselves Zionists.

If we’re not careful, anti-Zionists could win the upcoming elections--in the name of ‘Zionism’. Look at the anti-Zionist Labor-Hatnua unity Party. It calls itself ‘The Zionist Camp’. It leads the supposedly (on paper) Zionist Likud in pre-election polls (“Poll: Labor Still Strong as Jewish Home Weakens”, Arutz Sheva, January 27, 2015).

If we’re not careful, these anti-Zionists could un-Zion us. If they win, they could end the ‘settlement enterprise’. They could take Jewish ancestral-Biblical homeland away from us.  They could destroy Jewish Israel. 

Look at Likud. Likud is Israel’s largest, most powerful political party—at least as of January 2015. Likud is Israel’s largest Zionist Party. We know it’s ‘Zionist’ because—somewhere on its Homepage—it asserts that its goal is “to strengthen and promote the values of Zionism in Israel”. 

But then, look at party head (and current Prime Minister) Benjamin Netanyahu. He says he promotes the ‘settlement enterprise’. But he maintains a de facto settlement freeze. He says he believes in Israel. But he negotiates to give away ancestral Judea-Samaria. 

Likud abandons the Zionist dream.

Israel’s Dati Leumi (Religious Zionist) parties also have a problem. Religious Zionists believe that Zionism has a Divine origin. They link G-d to Israel.

After all, we didn’t return to Israel because the UN needed a place to send displaced Jews after the Holocaust—and chose Israel for us to go to. We returned because of G-d, Torah and heritage.

Nevertheless, Religious Zionists don’t talk about G-d in public. They abandon G-d.

Some say that Naftali Bennet, leader of the Jewish Home Party is, by virtue of the seats he controls in Israel’s Knesset, Israel’s most prominent Religious Zionist leader. How many times has he spoken of G-d and Israel in public?  How many of his decisions, public statements and votes support a universally-accepted definition of religious Zionism?

Zionism—both secular and religious—drifts. It has no definition. It no longer inspires us.

We had better re-kindle that inspiration because if we don’t, the Left will do it for us. It will appropriate what is naturally ours and use it to take the leadership of Israel away from us.

In fact, the Left has already begun to do just that. If ‘Zionists’ have walked away from Zionism, the Left has taken over the empty shell.

The Left redefines ‘Zionism’ as the Leftist message (Yair Rosenberg, “Watch the Knesset Speech That Shows How Israel’s Left Can Win”, The Tablet Magazine, January 26, 2015). It undercuts the Zionist enterprise. It rejects any Divine link to Zion. It takes our hollowed-out Zionism and dumps ‘democracy and social justice’ into the hollow (“Labor-Hatnua defends its Zionist cred from Likud, Bayit Yehudi attacks”, Jerusalem Post, January 22, 2015).

Right now, only the Left talks about Zionism. Only the Left uses Zionism to inspire. It may have even found its ‘Zionist’ stump-speech’ to inspire voter attention (Tablet, ibid). It’s a speech some feel could break the political Right (ibid).

It’s a very simple speech. It redefines ‘Zionism’.

For this speech, ‘Zionism’ has nothing to do with settling Israel. It has nothing to do with making a Jewish Israel strong. It has nothing to do with maintaining the integrity of the Jewish national homeland. It has nothing to do with G-d or the Divine Promises of the 3,300+ year-old Tanach.

For this Leftist speech, ‘Zionism’ is all about social justice for Israelis, wealth redistribution and stamping out the corruption of the political Right (ibid). As articulated in a brief, 3-minute speech in the Knesset last week by Leftist Labor MK Sava Shaffir, this new ‘Zionism’ is the “true Zionism”.

“True Zionism”, Shaffir said, means “to distribute the budget equally among all citizens. “True Zionism” is to be concerned for the weak. “True Zionism” is about fixing relationships between people. It’s about peace. It’s about equal rights and equal portions for all Israelis (ibid).

This so-called “true Zionism” is, in other words, the Leftist agenda repackaged for your vote. It redefines ‘Zionism’ to its own agenda.

Secular and Religious Zionists are going to have to talk about Zionism. They’re going to have to explain that Zionism is about Jews. It’s about homeland. It’s about G-d. It’s about settling ancient Jewish Biblical land. It’s about protecting Israel’s Jewish character. If the real Zionists of Israel fail to do that, Israel’s voters could elect a Leftist “Zionism” that will destroy Jewish Israel.

For this election, Israel has the chance to re-ignite the Zionist dream as the way we prepare the land for Redemption. But Israel also has the chance in this election to redefine Zionism—and thereby destroy Jewish Israel.

What will you vote for?

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Jerusalem also has ‘no-go’ zones

There’s been a tempest in America.  Last week, Fox News had to apologize for reporting that Europe had ‘no-go zones’, where police fear to go (“No No-Go Zones? Really?”, Front Page Mag, January 20, 2015). These ‘zones’ are typically Muslim areas where local, militant Muslims enforce their own law in place of existing national law.

Militant Muslims rule these zones with an iron fist. Western authorities have no control over them.

Fox News was called ignorant and Islamaphobic for reporting that Europe had no-go zones. It had to recant.

Western journalists have been writing about these lawless ‘zones’ since at least 2005 (“Urban Islamic terror--and you”, Arutz Sheva, January 20, 2015). All across Europe, militant Muslims terrorize citizens (ibid). European authorities are so paralyzed, they cope by staying away from the zones as much as possible.  

Nevertheless, no one is allowed to reveal how helpless the police are. Officially, no-go zones don’t exist.

Israel follows Europe. If you ask officials in Israel about ‘no-go zones’, chances are they’ll tell you they don’t exist.

But they do. To a great extent, much of Arab East Jerusalem is a no-go zone. If you drive into Jerusalem from certain directions, you’ll even spot a ‘no-go zone’ sign.

A ‘no-go zone’ sign is easy to spot. It’s red, with white letters. It warns Jewish drivers that the road they enter at this or that turn-off goes into an Arab ‘village’. Going into this village is dangerous for Jews. You enter at your own risk.

That’s Israel’s version of a ‘no-go zone’ sign. Like the no-go zones of Europe, the Muslim populations in these Israeli enclaves are simply too dangerous for non-Muslims. If Jews enter, the police cannot protect them.

The problem is, Israel isn’t Europe. For Europe, ‘no-go zones’ tear at the fabric of social order. For Israel, they threaten Israel’s ability to survive.

Jerusalem is ringed with Muslim no-go zones. You may have seen some of the names of these ‘zones’ during last summer’s Gaza-Israel war, where Arab rioting exploded: Shuafat, Beit Hanina, Qalandia, An Nabi Sanwil, Issawiya, Abu Tur, Al Sawana, Beit Iksa, Silwan, Ras Al-Amoud, Beir Safal, At Tur.

Like all no-go zones everywhere, the Israeli zones are hot-beds of militancy. If Jews live there, they do so at their own risk.

Emergency and city officials who enter these zones can be attacked (“Israeli ambulance stoned in East Jerusalem”, Times of Israel, August 6, 2013). Jewish vehicles can be stoned (Amir Cheshin, et al, Separate and Unequal: the inside story of  Israeli rule in East Jerusalem, 2009, p. 162). Public buses can become ‘Israeli targets’ (ibid). Even security forces are at risk (“Border Police stoned by e. J'lem Arabs”, Jerusalem Post, May 30, 2010).

Israel’s no-go zones threaten Israel’s existence. These mini- ‘Muslim territories’ aren’t just neighbourhoods scattered randomly in Jerusalem.  They surround Jerusalem.

Their growing independence from Jewish control will soon make it easier for Muslim residents to identify themselves as part of a Muslim ‘greater Jerusalem’. That sense of a ‘greater Muslim Jerusalem’, in turn, will make it easier for Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority to claim that Jerusalem is the capital of ‘Palestine’.

Abbas might even be able to claim that Jerusalem is already his. The Muslim no-go zones could be his proof.

Once Abbas makes that claim, he can then demand the Temple Mount. After all, the Temple Mount sits on the Western side of East Jerusalem. It’s near all those mini ‘Muslim territories’.

European nations will see nothing wrong with such a demand. It makes sense: Muslims already control Arab East Jerusalem. The Temple Mount is part of East Jerusalem. Why shouldn’t the Arabs have it?

Given the EU’s pro-Palestinian bias, it’ll be easy for it to support such a demand. It’ll be difficult for Israel to resist it.

With the help of the EU, Abbas will fight to divide Jerusalem. In Biblical terms, this is Edom helping Yishmael to conquer Jerusalem.

Once the EU gives Abbas a tacit nod to become more aggressive, he will initiate the final Muslim battle—to conquer the Temple Mount for Islam.

While he’s doing that, Hamas will join him. Hamas is the other half of the Hamas-PA unity government. Hamas will start its own final battle--to conquer Jewish Jerusalem for Islam.

This is what Abbas and Hamas talked about during the Jerusalem rioting in July-August, 2014. It’s their game-plan: the conquest of Jerusalem.

That’s what will happen if Israeli authorities continue to abandon these parts of Jerusalem to Muslim rule.  It’s what will happen if authorities continue to abandon, neglect or ignore Jews who live in or near these zones.

Already, these Muslim enclaves begin to morph. Slowly, they  grow from neighbourhoods to no-go zones to mini Muslim territories.

If Jewish leaders refuse to defend Jerusalem, Jerusalem’s Jewishness will continue to be eaten away. Militant Islam will devour it.

Ask Mahmoud Abbas. Ask Hamas.




Tuesday, January 27, 2015

European hypocrisy and the Arab-Israel conflict

Here’s a good essay. It presents a fair look at how Europe treats the Arab-Israel conflict. It’s called, “Europe Offers Israel the Peace of the Dead”. It’s by Kenneth Levin. It appeared January 19, 2015 at Front Page Mag.

I have edited it:

As parliaments in more and more European nations vote to recognize “Palestine,” European politicians insist they are doing so to promote an independent Palestinian state living in peace beside a secure Israel. But both the declared aims of Palestinian leaders and…[ongoing]  European [behaviour]…give the lie to European [expressions] of benign intent.

Neither party of the divided Palestinian leadership has … demonstrated an interest in peace with Israel. Hamas, now controlling Gaza and enjoying extensive popularity in the West Bank, openly trumpets its objective not only to destroy Israel but to annihilate all the world’s Jews. The Palestinian Authority under Mahmoud Abbas repeatedly insists it will never recognize Israel’s legitimacy as the national homeland of the Jewish people and will never give up its demand for implementation of the so-called “right of return” of millions of descendants of Palestinian refugees to Israel – thereby demographically destroying the Jewish state…. 

Palestinian Authority media, mosques and schools, like those of Hamas, incessantly indoctrinate their audiences in the message that the Jews are colonial usurpers and their presence, and their state, must be expunged, that Palestinians who attack and kill Israeli civilians are heroes, and that it is the responsibility of all to emulate those heroes in the struggle for Israel’s annihilation. Abbas, like Arafat before him, has made clear his goal in seeking recognition of “Palestine” by European nations and by others is to force the establishment of a Palestinian state without any bilateral agreement with Israel that would require Palestinian foreswearing of additional claims against the Jewish state.

While declaring its support for a two-state solution, European leaders, in promoting their parliaments’ recognition of “Palestine,” are actually advancing the Palestinian leadership’s goal of a single, Muslim Arab state…. But then, the policies of the European nations have long been to advance the Palestinian agenda and to undermine any possibility of a genuine, durable two-state agreement. Consider:…

1) [Palestinians insist on the “right of return”. This] obviously precludes an agreement that allows for Israel’s continued existence. Any genuine peace would require whatever resettlement there is of Palestinian refugees and their descendants to take place within the territories allotted to the Palestinians. If the Europeans were truly interested in a two state solution, they would insist [on that resettlement]….But they have not done so.

2) The United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) has provided for Palestinian refugees and their descendants for sixty-five years. Every other refugee population in the post-World War II era has been cared for by another UN organ, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). In addition, with all other refugee populations, whose total numbers over the decades have been orders of magnitude greater than the Palestinian number, “refugee” is defined as an individual actually displaced by hostilities or related events, not his or her descendants as well. The special status accorded the Palestinians has…been orchestrated by the Arab states and their allies to use as a permanent weapon in the fight for Israel’s annihilation.

Were Palestinian refugees defined in the manner of all other refugees, they would now number at most less than 50,000 and Israel might even entertain offering those individuals the option of return in the context of a peace settlement. But the Europeans continue to support and generously fund the unique UN treatment of Palestinian “refugees” and continue to help Palestinian leaders wield this cudgel against Israel’s continued survival.

Moreover, UNHRW schools, often employing Hamas-affiliated and PA-affiliated teachers, contribute to the indoctrination of Palestinian children in the cause of pursuing Israel’s annihilation, and UNHRW facilities have served as recruiting, training and logistical centers for Hamas and other Palestinian terror organizations. Yet this, too, has elicited virtually no objection, or curtailment of support, from European nations.

3) As noted, PA media, mosques and schools are focused on indoctrinating their audiences in anti-Israel and anti-Jewish hatred and on the necessity of pursuing Israel’s destruction. Yet many of the relevant PA institutions enjoy European financial support.

4) The PA provides extensive financial support to the families of Palestinian terrorists--both of those killed and of those imprisoned by Israel–and the European states have done little to prevent the use of European funds for this purpose.

5) Genuinely moderate Palestinian voices, those who would support a viable two-state solution, are an endangered lot. After twenty years of indoctrination by PA and Hamas media, mosques and schools, the great majority of Palestinians, according to opinion polls, support anti-Israel violence…. What moderates remain in the territories are either cowed into silence by the PA and Hamas, or are subject to harassment, assault and arbitrary arrest. This has been the fate, for example, of Palestinian journalists who have dared to report on PA corruption or to question PA policies that preclude a peaceful settlement with Israel. European nations have done virtually nothing to come to the aid of Palestinian moderates, to support the different, often genuinely peace-promoting, course they seek to advance, or even to pressure the PA to end its abuse of them.

6) European states directly finance a plethora of anti-Israel NGO’s, including NGO’s that openly call for Israel’s destruction.

7) Areas Israel has not already ceded to the Palestinians – either via agreement, as in Areas A and B now governed by the PA, or unilaterally, as in Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza – have the status in international law of disputed territory. UN Security Council Resolution 242, unanimously passed in the fall of 1967, calls for the negotiation of new “secure and recognized boundaries,” and the authors of 242 argued that the pre-1967 lines were merely armistice lines, were indefensible, and left Israel vulnerable to future aggression. Yet many European states insist on referring to those lands as Palestinian, precluding the negotiated agreement on boundaries envisioned in Resolution 242 and seeking to deprive Israel of defensible borders.

8) The recognition of “Palestine” by European parliaments obviously violates prior endorsement by European states and the European Union of agreements calling for resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict via bilateral negotiations. At the same time, in a further demonstration of shameless European anti-Israel hypocrisy, Europe threatens measures against Israel if it does not re-engage in bilateral negotiations with the Palestinians. In fact, it is Israel that has most sought to advance such negotiations and the Palestinians that have shunned them.    

For all the self-righteous doubletalk from Europe about seeking to promote a peace that will serve both the Palestinians and the Jewish state, what the Europeans are promoting by their actions is the exterminationist agenda of the Palestinian leadership and reeks of age-old, murderous European anti-Jewish bias.

Israel, Gaza and the Arab narrative

According to press reports, the Palestinian Authority (PA) played a major role in rebuilding Gaza after Gaza-Israel fighting in 2012 (“Ruined Gaza Will Not Be Rebuilt By Hamas, But International Aid”, International Business Times, August 7, 2014). The PA did this even though it had been kicked out of Gaza in 2007 (ibid). It took a leadership role working with donors and wealthy Arabs to help reconstruct homes and businesses that had been destroyed in Gaza by Israel (ibid).

At least, that’s the Arab narrative.

Now, after another war with Israel in 2014, the PA says it will once again play a major role in rebuilding Gaza. At least, that’s the Arab narrative.

The fifty-day 2014 conflict created at least 273,000 internal refugees in Gaza and caused at least $5 billion in damage (“The fourth Gaza War: 5 predictions”, Jewish Journal, October 14, 2014). The actual cost to rebuild Gaza could be closer to 8 billion (“Will this be the last time the world is willing to rebuild Gaza?”, EMAJ Magazine, October 8, 2014). So far, pledges for Gaza have reached $5.4 billion (“Donors Pledge $5.4 Billion to Rebuild Gaza”, Wall Street Journal, October 12, 2014).

That’s a lot of cash. The Arab narrative is, it’ll all be used to rebuild Gaza.

Of course, the PA and Hamas have world-class reputations for corruption. But the Arab narrative is, that 5.4 billion won’t disappear.  

The official challenges of rebuilding focus on how funds and construction materials will be used. Israel is concerned about that rebuilding. Israelis are worried about what actually will be ‘rebuilt’.

Israel has good reason to be concerned. During the 2014 fighting with Gaza, Israel discovered more than 36 ‘terror tunnels’. These tunnels were extremely well-built. Israeli officials have estimated that each one of these tunnels had required at least 350 truckloads of material, mostly cement and mortar (“Palestinian Authority: Reconstructing Gaza will cost at least $ 6 billion), Palestine Monitor, August 8, 2014). Israel wants to control the flow of such material into Gaza. It doesn’t want to see these materials diverted to rebuild these tunnels. 

We’ve been down this road before.  The Arab narrative has been that, after 2007, Israel had unfairly restricted cement imports into Gaza; the Israelis, they claimed, were preventing Gaza from rebuilding homes, schools, and hospitals. Anti-Israel advocates demonized Israel over these restrictions (“Genocide: The Israeli-Egyptian Siege against the People of Gaza”, Global Research, December 17, 2013). The argument was, Israel refused to allow building materials into Gaza. Poor people were being left homeless (ibid).

At least, that was the Arab narrative (ibid).

As it turns out, a large share of the cement that did reach Gaza didn’t go to homes, schools, infrastructure or factories, as the Arab narrative claimed “(“Gaza's Next Disaster: No Cement for Rebuilding”, Bloomberg Business Week, July 31, 2014). Instead, as the Israelis had said all along, those materials went towards the building of underground lairs and attack tunnels for fighters from Hamas (ibid).

After the 2014 Gaza fighting, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) estimated that, if some 350 truckloads of building material(above) had been used for each tunnel discovered, that added up to something like 12,600 truckloads. Since the average cement-truck carries a lot of cement, that meant that more than 300,000 tons of cement had been diverted from homes, schools and infrastructure in order to complete military-use construction.

As one pro-Israel site explains this problem, if you want to see how Gaza has in fact used its past reconstruction donations and rebuilding materials, consider what Hamas has built since 2007: 2 hospitals, 20 schools, 3 ‘towers’, 3 malls—and perhaps as many as 1,370 terror tunnels (“Pot calls kettle black: Hamas accuses PA of 'misusing' Gaza reconstruction funds”, Israel Matzav, January 7, 2015).

Of course, anti-Israel advocates don’t give a damn about Israel’s concerns. They don’t care that Hamas and the PA have used cement for terror tunnels instead of schools and homes. Their attitude is, “It’s impossible not to allow construction materials into Gaza. You cannot leave 1.7 million people without homes, schools, clinics, a working sewage system” (Bloomberg Business Week, ibid).

Well, it now seems that Hamas has its own narrative about the rebuilding of Gaza. Three weeks ago, Hamas accused the PA, not Israel, for ‘harming’ the rebuilding effort (“Hamas: The PA uses Gaza reconstruction funds for other purposes”, Palestine Information Center, January 6, 2015).

Here are some of Hamas’ accusations against the PA:

-The PA has taken money away from the rebuilding donations fund. The PA uses this money instead to pay salaries—but only to civil servants who had been appointed by the PA, not by Hamas (ibid).

-the main reason (Hamas’s words) behind the failure to reconstruct the post-war Gaza Strip wasn’t Israel. It was the PA’s misusing grants which had been provided for reconstruction projects (ibid).

-A report released by Oxfam, a global UK charity, has already warned that, despite $5.4 billion in pledges at a 2014 international donor conference--and despite an agreement between the Palestinian Authority, Israel and the UN to allow for the transfer of building materials-- only a few truckloads of materials have actually found their way into the Strip (ibid). Already, most have had their loads diverted for black-market sale or unauthorized use (ibid).

The Arab narrative states that the PA-Hamas unity government works for the good of its people. It doesn’t. It has no concern for its people whatsoever.

This so-called ‘government’ misleads, lies to, and steals from its own people. On a daily basis, they do more damage to their people than Israel.

Unfortunately, no one gives a damn. They’re too busy reciting the Arab narrative.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Israel, US prestige and some very ugly behaviour

(The idea for this piece comes from a reader)
The Boston Globe has an opinion-piece about Israel’s Prime Minister (“Benjamin Netanyahu goes too far”, January 23, 2015). The essay doesn’t criticize him. It attacks him personally.

It blames him for ‘blind-siding’ the US President by accepting an invitation to speak to Congress. It describes him as a man who has repeatedly gone out of his way to stick ‘his finger in the President’s eye’. It claims his behaviour reveals an “ingratitude and hubris rarely seen before in the annals of the US-Israel bilateral relationship.”

For this Boston Globe essay, Netanyahu’s ungratefulness seems to know no limit. For example, Netanyahu had the gall to refuse to obey America’s demand for ‘a settlement freeze’. He had the effrontery to deliver “an infamous ‘history lesson’ to Obama in the Oval Office in 2011 on the security challenges facing Israel.” He didn’t just criticize a 2013 US-Iran nuclear agreement. He “disparaged” it. He rejected a wonderful agreement the US had completed for Israel’s benefit.

In this essay, Netanyahu looks like a man who bites the hand that helps him.

The essay makes Netanyahu look unprincipled for ‘disparaging’ that agreement. That’s strange because last year, the Boston Globe itself had sung a different song. It wrote that many in the US Congress feared this Iran deal was more a ‘bad deal’ than a good one (“Nuclear deal could reset US-Iran relations”, November 19, 2014).

So why do we now see this attack on Netanyahu?  More to our point, why is that attack so personal?

This Boston Globe attack sees Netanyahu’s rejection of the Iran agreement as a kind of personal betrayal aimed specifically at President Obama. It’s a strange accusation. At the time that deal was made—when Netanyahu expressed such distaste for it--some at the prestigious Brookings Institute in the US essentially agreed with him (“Brookings Scholars Weigh In On The Nuclear Deal With Iran”, Brookings, November 28, 2013): the deal quite literally scared the Saudis, would intensify violence in the Middle East and left the players in the Middle East feeling bewildered and likely angered (ibid).

Netanyahu’s response to the deal wasn’t ‘ingratitude’. It wasn’t betrayal. It was realistic, especially when one considered Middle East geopolitical realities. The Saudis were potentially just as upset as Netanyahu. Why was the Boston Globe suddenly attacking only Netanyahu over Iran?

Well, on January 20, 2015, the US President drew an Iran line in the sand. He announced during his State of the Union address that he would veto any legislative attempt to impose new sanctions against Iran.

The very next day, January 21, 2015, House of Representatives (Republican) Speaker John Boehner gave two responses to that threat. First, he said of the President, “He expects us [Congress] to stand idly by and do nothing while he cuts a bad deal with Iran. Two words: 'Hell no!' …We're going to do no such thing" (“Boehner, White House Clash Over Netanyahu Invite”, National Journal, January 21, 2015).  

Boehner’s second response was to send an invitation to Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak before a joint session of Congress about the ‘grave threat of radical Islam and Iran’ (“White House: Boehner’s Invitation To Netanyahu Was A “Breach Of Protocol,” BuzzfeedNews, January 21, 2015).

In Washington, everyone knows that Netanyahu believes that Iran’s nuclear program is extremely dangerous to world peace. Everyone knows that Obama disagrees with Netanyahu. Everyone also knows that Obama wants to stamp out any effort to become harsh with Iran.

John Boehner believes Iran is dangerous. Does he have no right to seek help to make that case?

Pro-President advocates believe that Boehner has no such right. What he did, they say, is “unprecedented. It's hitting below the belt. It's taking partisanship to a whole new level…It is a way for [Republicans] to embarrass and humiliate the Obama administration" just as they, the Republicans, prepare to dig in against the President (“Boehner's Netanyahu Invite Is An 'Unprecedented' Diss Of Obama”, TPM DC, January 21, 2015).

Democrats were furious at Boehner. But then, it was Netanyahu who was savaged: a news story broke immediately that Netanyahu’s own Mossad (intelligence Agency) disagreed with him over sanctions.

This story was an attack against Netanyahu. It made him look like he couldn’t control his own Intelligence Agency. It claimed that a Mossad leader had told US officials that, in fact, more sanctions would “tank the Iran nuclear negotiations”, (“Israeli Mossad Goes Rogue, Warns U.S. on Iran Sanctions”, Bloomberg News, January 21, 2015).

The next day Israel got angry. It said the story was completely false (“Fury in Israel Over Obama's Mossad 'Lies'”, Arutz Sheva).

Israeli officials were furious. They had reviewed the minutes of the meeting the Mossad head had attended. There was nothing in those minutes to substantiate the leaked story.  

Then, there was the matter of secrecy. "Leaking the Mossad Head's statements, even if they had not been falsified, is a serious breach of all the rules,” [a senior Israeli said]. “Friends do not behave like this. Information from a secret meeting must not leak out” (ibid).

The next day, January 23, 2015, we saw where all of this was going: Netanyahu (not Boehner) was going to be ‘punished’ for ‘disrespect’ (“The White House Makes It Clear That Netanyahu Will Pay For Disrespecting President Obama”, PoliticusUSA, January 23, 2015). It seems that some ‘unnamed US officials’ saw Netanyahu’s accepting the Boehner invitation as ‘spitting’ in the President’s face—and for that, he would pay a price (“US Says Netanyahu Will Pay ‘Price’ for Upcoming Visit; Obama and Kerry Refuse to Meet Israeli PM”, United with Israel, January 23, 2015).

That’s strange. Several months ago, an ‘unnamed Administration official’ was reported to have called Netanyahu ‘a chickens**t’ (“Senior Obama official: Israeli PM Netanyahu is 'chicken[s-ip]'”, freerepublic, October 28, 2014). Now, an ‘unnamed official’ claims that Netanyahu shows disrespect for Obama?

One of the first manifestations of the ‘price’ for that ‘disrespect’ was the Boston Globe attack (above): Netanyahu isn’t a real ally. Instead, he’s a selfish ingrate who betrays all the good things President Obama has done for him. He spits in the President’s face. He sticks his finger in the President’s eye. He accepts invitations he shouldn’t accept.

This story isn’t about diplomacy. It isn’t about foreign policy. For the US, it’s about respect.
Is this what the debate over Iran is about--respect for the US President?

This invitation incident has provoked some very disrespectful behaviour indeed. The US Administration seems so intent to stifle opposition to the President’s Iran policy, it will turn ugly to get its way: it will falsify secret conversations. It will make public a secret interview. It will have friends call an ally ‘an ingrate’. It will convert legitimate diplomatic differences into a question of ‘respect’ for the US President.

The US sends a message. If you disagree with me in public, I will smear you.

The US makes the word, ‘’Superpower’ look ugly. It makes a great office look venal.

No wonder the US loses its prestige.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Physicians for Human Rights: more false testimony against Israel

The Non-Government Organization (NGO) Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, has just published a new Report. It focuses on injuries, fatalities and damage to civilians and hospitals in Gaza during the July-August, 2014 Gaza-Israel war. The Report is entitled, “Gaza 2014. Findings of an Independent Medical Fact-Finding Mission”. It was published January 20, 2014.

The Report claims to be both independent and objective. It assures us that, “PHR-Israel recruited 8 independent international medical experts, unaffiliated with Israeli or Palestinian parties involved in the conflict” (Report, p. 8). That sounds good. It suggests that independent experts went to Gaza with an open mind, free from influence by any of the combatants.

The statement continues: : “four [of the experts have]  special expertise in the fields of forensic medicine and pathology; and four [are] experts in emergency medicine, public health, paediatrics and paediatric intensive care, and health and human rights” (ibid).

But a closer look at these experts reveals that they may not be so ‘independent’ after all.  Yes, the Report seems to showcase their individual medical expertise. But at the end of its list of medical fields we discover, ‘health and human rights’, as if human rights was an expertise separate from the medical expertise listed. It isn’t.  

For too many of these ‘experts’, medicine and human rights go together. They appear to have drunk the proverbial kool-aid of an anti-Israel Human Rights ‘humanitarianism’—along with their medical work (“Preliminary Critique of PHR-I´s "Independent Medical Fact-Finding Mission", NGO Monitor, January 21, 2015). They are, for the most part, involved with Human Rights advocacy (ibid). Many of the fact-finding members are political activists with a history of biased remarks (ibid). One is a member of the advisory board of the anti-Israel PHR (which produced this Report). They are not simply doctors. They use their medical expertise to dig for human rights violations (ibid).

Certainly, PHR-Israel is not objective. It has a bias—and it’s clear about that bias. It says on its Homepage, under the heading, ‘Who we are’, that, “It is PHR-Israel’s view that Israel’s prolonged occupation over Palestinian territory is the basis of human rights violations.”

According to this statement, PHR-Israel approaches its human rights work in Israel with three unsubstantiated assumptions: first, all of the territory claimed by ‘Palestinians’ is in fact ‘Palestinian territory’; second, all of that ‘territory’ is truly ‘occupied’ by Israel; and third, if Israel ‘occupies’ it, there will be human rights violations.

PHR-Israel is not objective. It has an agenda. That agenda is anti-Israel.

PHR-Israel isn’t even as ‘unaffiliated’ as its Report purports. This Report was completed in affiliation with Hamas and Palestinian medical organizations known for their ties to the virulently anti-Israel Hamas (NGO Monitor, ibid). These organizations ‘coordinated’ both the field work and the research completed by the experts (Report, p. 8). These organizations are political advocacy NGO’s that push delegitimization campaigns against Israel--and may lack true medical expertise (NGO Monitor, ibid).

True to its anti-Israel bias, this new PHR-Israel Report is one-sided (ibid). For example, the Report concludes that the evidence it has collected should be used to investigate Israel for violations of International human rights and humanitarian law (Report, pp 98-99). The Report does not ask if Hamas played a role in injuries to Gazans or damages to Gazan hospitals.

The Report ignores actions by Hamas that endangered both civilians and hospitals. Instead, the Report does what most Human Rights advocates do. It says, look at the damage theses Israeli bombs did to these hospitals and patients. Israel must be investigated (Report, p.99).

By contrast, a very different report appeared four months ago, in the Daily Mail, which came to very different conclusions about civilian injury and hospital damage in Gaza (“Hamas admits it DID use schools and hospitals in Gaza Strip as 'human shields' to launch rocket attacks on Israel”, September 12, 2014).

First of all, this earlier report didn’t begin with the anti-Israel bias that if Israel did something in a ‘Palestinian territory’, it must have automatically committed human rights violations.  Instead, it began with a look at Hamas’ use of human shields, hospitals, and residential areas to launch rockets at Israel  (ibid).

The Daily Mail reported that Hamas admitted it had used human shields and hospitals. It admitted that it had fired rockets from heavily populated areas. It admitted, in other words, that it had committed war crimes.

PHR-Israel ignored all thought about Hamas culpability in war crimes which could have led to hospital and patient damages.

The Report doesn’t bother to investigate how both combatants in this war might have caused damages to hospitals and civilians. It simply went for the Jewish jugular: it ignored Hamas and determined that Israel is no doubt guilty of humanitarian violations. It recommends that Israel alone be investigated for these violations.

The Report claims that more than 2,100 Palestinians were killed in the war, and more than 11,000 were wounded (Report, p. 8). But it demonstrates that Israel was responsible for “patterns of injury and attack” [emphasis mine] (Report, p. 26) by interviewing only 68 hospitalised patients (Report, pp. 9 and 31) and looking at digital images of only 75 killed individuals (Report p 31).

While more than 11,000 were injured in Gaza and more than 2,100 killed (Report, p. 14), these medical experts draw their anti-Israel conclusions based on interviews with only 68 injured and an examination of 75 deaths--in digital format. They learn of ‘patterns’ of injury from just 6 tenths of one per cent of total injuries. Is that a scientifically valid sampling?

The Report doesn’t say. It neglects to validate that this number of injured and dead constitutes a scientifically representative sampling of all injuries and deaths. Such a representation is significant because the Report focuses on patterns--which can only be discerned by analysing large numbers. If the injured and dead they studied do not accurately represent the total pool of injured and dead, how can one be certain that their conclusions are accurate for anyone other than the group studied?

The Report forgets something else: it neglects to tell us which of the dead and injured were civilians, combatants or human shields used by Hamas. Israel might be culpable if these injured and dead were innocent by-standers. But Israel, by international law, is not culpable for the death of combatants or human shields used by an enemy. Those are Hamas’ responsibility.

The inference of the Report, however, is that all the injured and dead are civilians. All were killed by Israeli ordinance (and not by Hamas misfires). None were human shields. We are simply asked to assume that all were innocent victims of inhumane Israeli war tactics. We are offered no evidence to suggest that such inference is true.

The Report even accuses Israel of not providing safe haven for Gazan civilians who had been exposed to danger by their own leaders’ deliberate use of civilian areas for combat purposes.

There is much about this Report that is false, misleading, unscholarly and unprofessional. It isn’t objective. It’s so badly executed, it brings professional shame to the ‘experts’ who signed it.

This Report serves only one useful purpose. It illustrates what false testimony looks like when it’s dressed up as ‘fact-finding’.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Did you read these essays?

Here are excerpts from three essays that appeared last week. You might not have seen them. 

From Legal Insurrection:

“#CharlieHebdo after-assessment: A bleak analysis of a bleak reality”

  by William A. Jacobson

January 14, 2015  

The Obama administration has engaged in absurd linguistic gymnastics to pretend that the terrorists who shot up Charlie Hebdo and the HyperCasher supermarket merely were individuals who happened to adopt radical Islamic extremism almost by chance.  Could have been any extremism, we’re told.

Generic “extremism” is the problem, as if it lived out of body.

By playing these word games, the administration does no favor to those in the Muslim world who recognize the reality and want it to stop.  To the contrary, the administration’s word games constitute an abandonment.

[One Arab voice against Islamic extremism is] Hisham Melhem, the Washington bureau chief of Al-Arabiya.  In late September 2014, [William Jacobson] wrote about an article by Melhem, “The Barbarians Within Our Gates”. Melhem made points as a Muslim examining the Muslim world that would get him labeled “Islamophobic” and “racist” by groups like CAIR and the Southern Poverty Law Center: 
Arab civilization, such as we knew it, is all but gone. The Arab world today is more violent, unstable, fragmented and driven by extremism…than at any time since the collapse of the Ottoman Empire a century ago. Every hope of modern Arab history has been betrayed….And let’s face the grim truth: There is no evidence whatever that Islam in its various political forms is compatible with modern democracy. …


From The American Thinker:

“The Proliferation of Online Anti-Semitism” 

By: C. Hart

January 15, 2015 

…With an uptick in anti-Semitism, not just in Europe, but also in the United States and throughout the world, concerned leaders are analyzing how to stop these vicious acts against the Jewish People.

One place that anti-Semites have been misinforming the public, encouraging negative attitudes towards Jews, is on the Internet. But in the name of First Amendment rights, Internet companies have refused to take material off of their sites that encourage racism, incitement, and lies. Much of this classic anti-Semitism is full of fabrications and blood libels. Moreover, cyber demonization of Jews could be poisoning the minds of fanatics and fueling the fire for more attacks.

According to Israeli Ambassador Gideon Behar, “Every new development in the cyber world is being used to integrate this kind of hate”. 

Behar is the Director of the Department on Combating Anti-Semitism for the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He is raising public awareness of cyber discrimination and prejudice against Jews, while also pressing Internet companies to get the hate material off the Web.

In his office, Behar and others conduct searches on You Tube, Facebook, Google, Yahoo Answers, Instagram, and Wikipedia to prove how prevalent the bias is. The propaganda is massive. Articles, caricatures, videos, and photos are aimed at defaming the Jewish race and spreading falsehoods.

According to Behar, the Internet is an important platform, especially for vulnerable school children who are being given tasks by their teachers to find out information. A child may pose a question on Yahoo Answers, and an anti-Semite may answer their question. The answer is not challenged and the information remains on the Internet. Behar says that anti-Semites use this for their own purposes in every language.

For example, an app was created about two years ago for The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. You could download it onto mobile phones in Arabic before the app was finally removed from the Internet.

Another example is that a Twitter account was created for Adolf Hitler. There were 770,000 followers before Twitter stopped it. 

“The Internet influences life on the ground,” Behar states. “It creates more motivation to attack Jews. It gives legitimization to that. Then, you have more motivation to attack them verbally or physically.”…


From Jewish Journal: 

“Tough love for Islam”

by David Suissa

January 13, 2015

We’re conditioned to respect all religions. But what happens when we’re confronted with a religion that looks more like a political ideology? When I criticize Islam, I don’t criticize its spiritual beauty; I criticize the fact that in too many places around the world, the religion has morphed into a violent and totalitarian movement.

It’s not a coincidence that, since 9/11, more than 24,000 terrorist acts have been committed under the name of Islam. After the latest murderous attacks in Paris, even a staunch liberal like Bill Maher had the politically incorrect nerve to say what so many of us are afraid to say: “When there’s this many bad apples, there’s something wrong with this orchard.”

What’s wrong with this orchard? Well, for starters, it harbors an extremist and literalist interpretation of Islam that has morally contaminated large segments of the Muslim world.

While practices and beliefs in Islam are hardly monolithic, it’s disheartening to see such widespread support among Muslims for strict religious law (Sharia) as the official law of their countries. According to polling from the Pew Research Center, this support is most prevalent in places like Afghanistan (99%), Iraq (91%), the Palestinian territories (89%), Pakistan (84%), Morocco (83%), Egypt (74%) and Indonesia (72%).

When you consider that a strict interpretation of Sharia law can often mean cutting off the hands of thieves, lynching gays, stoning adulterous women and the death penalty for apostates, it’s not a pretty picture.

And yet, in much of the West, we act as if Islamic terrorism is simply the result of some “bad apples,” and, well, every religion has its fanatics. This cozy and convenient narrative has run its course. Islamic terrorism is not an isolated phenomenon — it’s a violent outgrowth of a global, triumphalist and totalitarian ideology that is on the march and hiding behind the nobility of religion.

When French President Francois Hollande says, “These terrorists and fanatics have nothing to do with the Islamic religion,” he’s being politically correct, but not accurate. Islamic terrorism has very much to do with the extremist interpretation of classic Islamic texts. Until we acknowledge that inconvenient truth, we have no chance of combating this disease. …

These are excerpts. But there are also food for thought. Go ahead--Google the essays. Read them in their entirety.



Another look at Joan Peters, z”l--and the Arab narrative

(This is the second of two essays on Joan Peters. The first was posted on January 11, 2015).

Jonathan Tobin has written an essay about Joan Peters, who died two weeks ago (“Joan Peters and the Perils of Challenging the Palestinian Narrative”, Commentary, January 13, 2015). I’d like to share portions of it with you.

More than 30 years ago, Joan Peters defended Israel. But her defense had errors. She made mistakes. She was pilloried for those mistakes.

But her thesis, Tobin argues, was sound.

Tobin’s essay might be the most objective view of Ms Peters’ work you will see. Here is my reading of that essay:

The death of author Joan Peters recalls one of the most intense and bitter literary controversies in the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Her 1984 book, From Time Immemorial, set off a memorable scuffle. But like many such politically-motivated scuffles, it didn’t illuminate anything. Instead, it helped Palestinian advocates to obscure the truth about the origins of the Arab-Israel conflict.

Peters had wanted to write a book sympathetic to the Palestinian refugees. But in the course of her research, she stumbled across information that had been ignored by Westerners: though the Arabs claim to have possessed Palestine for many centuries, a significant number of Arabs in British Palestine were actually immigrants who had crossed into what is now Israel during the last years of Ottoman rule--and during the era of the British Mandate for Palestine (1922-1947).

The idea that numbers of Arabs and Jews both arrived in the country at approximately the same time contradicted the most basic argument found in all attacks on Zionism. Instead of the Palestinians losing a country that had been theirs “from time immemorial,” this revelation placed both sides in the conflict on a far more equal footing. It gave Jews a greater standing in pre-state Israel than Arab apologists had credited.

Yes, there were always more Arabs in Israel than Jews during this period. But those Arabs never self-defined as a ‘Palestinian people’—and a large number of them were as new to the land as the Jews.

A second discovery she made, which Tobin doesn’t mention, is that as many Jews fled Arab countries as Arabs fled Israel. This was also a blow to the Palestinian narrative because, if a great many of those Arab refugees who fled Israel during Israel’s War of Independence had been immigrants to begin with, then, surely, it shouldn’t have been so difficult to reintegrate them back to their origin countries. After all, Jewish refugees from Arab countries had resettled in Israel; why couldn’t Arab refugees resettle?

Those who defended the ‘Palestinian narrative’ couldn’t admit that Palestinians were, in many, many instances just as new to Israel as Jews. The narrative allowed for no nuance. It required that this conflict was between two ‘peoples’ fighting over the same land, with Palestinians as indigenous victims and Jews as foreign aggressors. It was a narrative of dispossession that had become a catechism that could not in any way be questioned.

Peters questioned the catechism. She called into question one of the basic Palestinian myths (that only Arabs had been dispossessed in the Arab-Israel war). She had committed an unpardonable sin. She had to be punished. And so she was.

Her problem was, she had made errors in the course of her research. These mistakes didn’t negate her premise (that Palestinians weren’t an ancient people, indigenous to Israel). But they allowed critics to claim that the entire work was fraudulent.

It wasn’t. But once doubt was cast on the authenticity of one of the statistics she had used, detractors were able to shut down the entire discussion.

Tobin cites the scholar Rael Jean Isaac who, he says, may have provided the best analysis of this controversy in a July 1986 article in COMMENTARY. Isaac unpacked both the motives of Peters’s foes as well as the mistakes she had made. As she noted, Peters’ book does indeed deserve some of the criticism it has received. But the frustrating aspect of all this is that, as Isaac wrote, there was no need for Miss Peters to overstate her projections. There was overwhelming evidence, some of which she used in her book, of extensive Arab migration into Jewish-settled areas [and there is also evidence of a massive dispossession of Jews from Arab countries].

Scholar Isaac concluded that, despite her errors, Peters’ thesis was ‘generally sound’.

Nevertheless, the truth at the heart of the book was lost.  Critics piled on and wrongly accused Peters of constructing a myth that sought to delegitimize the Palestinians. The truth she had discovered was suppressed. Her attackers protected the false notion that Palestinians were an ancient and indigenous people who had been thrown out to make way for foreign Jewish interlopers.

The lesson dished out to Joan Peters was clear. If you doubt the Palestinian narrative, you’ll be ruthlessly trashed.

Peters had dared to question. For that, she had to be attacked-- whether or not she made mistakes in her book.

Her mistakes made the attacks easier.

Today, more than 30 years after the publication of this book, ‘Palestinians’ and their increasingly virulent supporters are still committed to their false catechism. They are no more willing to examine the truth about their origin myths today than they were in 1984.

While Joan Peters’s book was far from perfect, it attempted to alert the world to the reality that the Palestinians had built their anti-Zionist ideology on a foundation of sand. Her basic facts are generally correct. She deserves, Tobin writes, to be remembered for her discoveries, rather than for the smears that were hurled at her.

You can read the whole essay in Commentary.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Urban Islamic terror--and you

If you work to assure that your country ignores those committed to destroying your country, you build for yourself a road to Hell. By refusing to confront those who attack you, you ignore the reasons behind those attacks. By ignoring the reasons behind the attacks, you give a free hand to tyrants to tyrannize until they take over.

Then where are you?

The West is committed to the road to Hell. The West seems completely committed to ignoring the Islamic assault against democracy. Personally, I don’t know if Islam is a religious of peace or a religion of something else. I can’t say. All I know is, the specific tyranny that threatens us always comes with,  ’allah akhbhar’.

Allah akhbhar means, essentially, Islam.

We can’t talk about an Islamic threat without being accused of being ‘Islamophobic’.  We can’t call Islamic Jihadists ‘terrorists’. We can’t acknowledge that Britain and France have Islamic enclaves which have become, for all intents and purposes, ‘no-go zones’ for police.

According to a new essay, (Robert Spencer, “No No-Go Zones? Really?”, front page mag, January 20, 2015), the Left in America is celebrating today. The American Left is a leader in the battle to keep the words, ‘Islamic terrorists’ out of the public eye. They celebrate because Fox News--not a Leftist stronghold—has been forced to ‘apologize’ for referring to some Muslim neighbourhoods  in Europe as ‘no-go zones’.

“Fox Report host Julie Banderas stated: Over the course of this last week we have made some regrettable errors on air regarding the Muslim population in Europe, particularly with regard to England and France. Now, this applies especially to discussions of so-called ‘no-go zones,’ areas where non-Muslims allegedly aren’t allowed in and police supposedly won’t go” (ibid).

The apology went on to say that there are no officially designated ‘no-go zones’ in Britain or France. There are also no areas which officially exclude individuals based solely on their religion.

The Fox statement continued: There are certainly areas of high crime in Europe as there are in the United States and other countries — where police and visitors enter with caution. We deeply regret the errors and apologize to any and all who may have taken offense, including the people of France and England (ibid).

That’s right. Islamic crime, coercion and brutality don’t exist.

One American newspaper chortled that “Fox News admits ‘no-go zones’ are fantasy” (ibid).  The New York Times declared, “Fox News Apologizes for False Claims of Muslim-Only Areas in England and France” (ibid).

Clearly, the Left would have you believe that ‘no-go zones’ don’t exist. But the Left is wrong. In Britain, France, Sweden and other countries, there are Muslim areas which local police and/or journalists call ‘no-go zones’.

For example, as writer Spencer points out (above), “Newsweek, hardly a conservative organ, reported in November 2005 that, ‘according to research conducted by the government’s domestic intelligence network, the Renseignements Generaux, French police would not venture without major reinforcements into some 150 ‘no-go zones’ around the country–and that was before the recent wave of riots began on Oct. 27, [2005]” (ibid).

Spencer’s point is simple: “The police wouldn’t venture into these areas without major reinforcements in 2005. Does anyone really think that the situation has improved in the intervening years?” (ibid).

In fact, reports of these Islamic ‘no-go zones’ in Europe have appeared for years. For example, in November last year, PatroitsBillboard reported that police in Sweden had ceded control to Islamist ‘gangs’ in many neighbourhoods (“Muslims take over 55 neighborhoods where police are afraid to go in Sweden”, November 3, 2014). The report called these ceded areas, ‘no-go zones’.

Last year, 2014, we saw ‘no-go zones’ on the website, (“No-Go’ Zones, soon coming to a neighbourhood near you…..”, January 11, 2014). The website described these ‘no-go zones’ as areas that “have been formed by Muslims using ‘ethnic cleansing’ harassment tactics” (ibid).

In 2013, Arutz Sheva reported that there are areas in the Dutch capital, The Hague, which have become  “orthodox Muslim territory” into which not even the Dutch police dare venture (“If It Happened in the Hague, It Can Happen Anywhere”, June 10, 2013). The situation there had become so bad that “Dutch judges ordered the authorities to release to the public a list of 40 "no-entry" zones” (ibid).

Remember, Fox News last week felt forced to apologize for referring to ‘no-go zones’. French officials criticized Fox for using that term (Spencer, above). But in 2012, The Jewish Press published, “France’s ‘No-Go’ Zones: Where Non-Muslims Dare Not Tread”, August 28, 2012). That essay described Muslim-controlled ‘crime districts’ in France where lawlessness reigned (ibid). These ‘no-go zones’ were now (in 2012) being labelled by French authorities as ‘Priority Security Zones’.

These ‘Priority Security Zones’ just happened to ‘coincide’ with Muslim neighborhoods that previous French governments had termed ‘Sensitive Urban Zones’—which, it turned out, were also "no-go" zones for French police (ibid).

The French have been wrestling with these ‘no-go zones’ for years. The French are very much aware of the criminal and Muslim ‘content’ of these zones. But they objected to Fox’s coverage. They “objected to claims that these areas were outside their control” (Spencer, ibid). Fox had to apologize.

 In 2011, The Gatestone Institute published “European 'No-Go' Zones for Non-Muslims Proliferating” (Gatestone Institute, August 22, 2011). This essay reported that Islamic extremists had been stepping up the creation of "no-go" areas in European cities that are off-limits to non-Muslims (ibid). That same month, Front Page Mag published, “The Rise of Islamic No-Go Zones” (August 31, 2011). This essay began with the comment that, in 2008, “one of the Church of England’s most senior bishops, Pakistani-born Michael Nazir-Ali, warned that Islamic extremists had created “no-go” areas across Britain too dangerous for non-Muslims to enter” (ibid). That comment—like last week’s Fox comment-- sparked a torrent of denial and criticism. The essay then went on to document how those ‘no-go zones’ were, in fact, real: all across Europe, “the story is the same: Islamic supremacists refuse to assimilate into the Western melting pot; instead they carve out a foothold in a neighborhood, and then, through intimidation or outright violence, push out the infidels whose failed secular values are no longer acceptable. Even public services such as police, firefighters and ambulances are often driven out of such neighborhoods with stones, bottles or bullets” (ibid).

In 2009, EuropeNews published, “Danish Psychologist: “The one thing Muslim immigrants fear is being deported” (December 9, 2009). The essay discussed Muslim ‘no-go areas’ where even police would not venture (ibid).

In 2006, Militant Islam Monitor reported that Islamic militants were terrorizing citizens in Dutch neighbourhoods (“Islamist target evicted by residents of building in Holland - terrorists use apartments and neighborhoods as HQ's unhindered”, May 4, 2006). Radical Islamists terrorized citizens into fleeing their homes (ibid). The police, this report stated, “are terrified of going into Muslim neighborhoods” (ibid).

In 2005, The Brussels Journal published “Ramadan Rioting in Europe's No-Go Areas”, (November 2, 2005). This essay reported from Sweden that police, fire and emergency responders feared going into certain Muslim neighbourhoods. That fear had changed the way police, firemen and emergency workers did their jobs. For example, Swedish ambulance drivers would enter those neighbourhoods only with a police escort. ”Angry crowds threatened them, telling them which patient to take and which ones to leave behind” (ibid). In Brussels, “The police has been told [by the Mayor] that it is ‘not expedient’ to patrol [in the Brussels suburb of Molenbeek] and officers are not allowed to drink coffee or eat a sandwich in the street during ramadan” (ibid).

So now Fox News has to apologize for referring to Europe’s ‘no-go zones’? Yes, they have to apologize because—according to Leftist political correctness--what they said was false, ignorant and Islamophobic (Spencer, ibid).

The road to Hell is paved with such apologies. Every such apology empowers the terrorists. Every apology brings their tyranny closer to your front door.

Lock your doors.