Gaza Flotilla Organizer Puts Lie To “Humanitarian” Purpose

Gaza Flotilla Organizer Puts Lie To “Humanitarian” Purpose

Adam Shapiro, one of the organizers of flotillas to break the sea blockade of Gaza in 2009 and again in 2010, was interviewed on PBS. In the interview, Shapiro made clear that the primary purpose of the flotilla was political.

Only upon prompting by Gwen Ifill did Shapiro even mention a supposed humanitarian purpose:

see video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJoKlLOHPcY&feature=player_embedded#!

Shapiro was right to the extent that he recognizes the blockade as political, and the flotilla’s purpose primarily as political. The shipping of humanitarian supplies merely was the excuse and the tactic.

Much like the internationalists who have aligned themselves with Islamists on the West Bank to protest the barrier built by Israel to stop suicide bombers, the goal is the destruction of Israel.

Whatever it takes they will do, and it if means putting civilians in harms way to gain publicity and international condemnation of Israel, they will do that.

Hamas: The Terror Elite

Hamas: The Terror Elite
By: Steven Plaut
Friday, June 19, 2009

 


A new pamphlet the details the brutal history of Gaza’s jihadist rulers.

It is one of the oddities of the global war on terrorism that while al-Qaeda is almost universally condemned, its Sunni terrorist counterparts in Hamas continue to attract a devoted following. Former president Jimmy Carter annually sings Hamas’s praises, insisting to all who will listen that Western governments must reach out to Gaza’s jihadist rulers. At “peace” demonstrations and on college campuses, banners are waved in honor of the group openly sworn to the destruction of Israel and the extermination of Jews worldwide. All this and more is the subject of Steven Plaut’s devastating new pamphlet, “Hamas: The Terror Elite.”

 

In a sweeping survey of Hamas’s bloody history, Plaut reveals that the terror group remains unwaveringly committed to its goal of carrying out a new genocide against Jews. Plaut also describes the little-mentioned reality that the self-described “legitimate” representative of the Palestinian people is also their most brutal tormentor. Terrorizing its own, Hamas tortures Gaza’s residents, forces them to live under oppressive Islamic law, and dispatches “vice squads” to deal with those who dare to defy its fanatical rule. It’s little wonder that Hamas has found its firmest allies in the mullahs of Iran and Osama Bin Laden’s terrorist shock troops. As Plaut’s pamphlet shows beyond any doubt, “Hamas and al-Qaeda are basically two sides of the same Jihad.” To read “Hamas: The Terror Elite,” please click here.


Steven Plaut is a professor at the Graduate School of the Business Administration at the University of Haifa and is a columnist for the Jewish Press. A collection of his commentaries on the current events in Israel can be found on his “blog” at www.stevenplaut.blogspot.com.

Editor of the Egyptian Government Daily Al-Gumhouriyya: Hamas, Syria, Iran – The New Axis of Evil

THE MIDDLE EAST MEDIA RESEARCH INSTITUTE

Special Dispatch – No. 2184

January 12, 2009 No. 2184

Editor of the Egyptian Government Daily Al-Gumhouriyya: Hamas, Syria, Iran – The New Axis of Evil

The editor of the Egyptian government daily Al-Gumhouriyya, Muhammad ‘Ali Ibrahim, who is also an Egyptian MP, wrote a series for the paper titled “Hamas, Damascus, Iran – The New Axis of Evil.” In the series, he criticized Hamas, Syria, and Iran for their position vis-à-vis Gaza and the opening of the Rafah crossing. Ibrahim stated that Iran and Syria had conspired to keep the Palestinian problem unresolved and to take advantage of it to promote their interests in the region, and argued that Hamas was a tyrannical religious movement which was, like the Nazis in mid-20th-century Europe, pushing its people towards catastrophe by preferring Syria’s and Iran’s interests to those of the Palestinians.

Also in his articles, Ibrahim came out against Qatar, accusing it of sympathizing with the Iran-Syria axis and of airing anti-Egyptian programs on the Qatari TV channel Al-Jazeera. A few days later, the editor of the Egyptian weekly Roz Al-Yousef, ‘Abdallah Kamal, wrote in a similar vein. Both editors called Qatar hypocritical for criticizing Egyptian policy while at the same time attempting to forge ties with Israel and the U.S.

Following are excerpts from the series by Muhammad ‘Ali Ibrahim, and from the article by ‘Abdallah Kamal:

Al-Gumhouriyya Editor: Hamas, Syria, and Iran Are Trying to Distort Egypt‘s Image

In the first article of his series, published December 22, 2008, Ibrahim wrote: “Since Damascus, Teheran, and Hamas are criticizing Egypt and accusing it of treason, [1] feel compelled to offer some clarification, in order to [help] the public understand the facts… which the Persians and the Syrians have been trying to distort…

“[When it was mediating the negotiations for a calm (tahdia)], Egypt believed that the tahdia was the top interest of the Gaza [residents]… However, [Hamas leaders, including] Khaled Mash’al, Isma’il Haniya, and other Hamas members, did not understand the [nature of the] tahdia that Egypt was working for… These heroes believed that the innocuous missiles that they were firing at Sderot would compel Israel [to agree to a tahdia]…

“When the [Palestinian national] dialogue failed, Egypt halted its mediation [between the Palestinian factions, thereby] destroying the hope of intra-Palestinian conciliation and exposing the political support that Hamas was getting [from Iran and Syria. However,] despite all Iran’s and Syria’s support [for Hamas], everyone must know that in Hamas’s [conflict] with Israel, it was Egypt that was providing it with the strongest political [leverage]. Therefore, when Cairo halted [its mediation,] the main political buttress for the tahdia was shaken – and as a result, [the tahdia] was never attained…

“One reason for the failure to achieve a hudna [ceasefire] was Hamas’s refusal to make peace with Fatah and its rejection of the two-state solution [to the Palestinian problem] for which the entire world had been hoping…” [1]

 

Syria and Iran Have Conspired to Exploit the Palestinian Cause for Their Own Interests

Ibrahim’s second article of the series, published December 23, 2008, stated: “When, in late January and early February 2008, Hamas began urging the Gaza residents to breach [the Egyptian border], it became clear that [Hamas] was hoping to establish an Islamic Emirate in Sinai… Hamas is well aware that Egypt would never agree to take it upon itself to govern Gaza – which is what Israel is trying to do; however, if Egypt is subjected to Arab and Islamic pressure to accommodate Hamas in the Sinai for humanitarian reasons – [that is,] in order to save [it] from starvation, siege, and repeated attacks – the international agreements [in control of the border crossing will be invalidated]…

“[The latter scenario was devised] jointly by Damascus and Teheran, for a number of reasons. Firstly, [they wanted] Egypt to be preoccupied with its national security. In this case, the Palestinian problem would not be resolved as desired by the largest Arab country [Egypt] and the international community – that is, by establishing two states, each with its own capital.

“Secondly, [Damascus and Teheran wanted] the Palestinian problem to be gradually removed from the hands of the Egyptian negotiator – who had become familiar with its minute details and whose reputation inspired Arab, regional, and international [circles] with respectful admiration – so that it would become a bargaining chip for Damascus and Teheran. At the same time, [Damascus] was trying to make [the Palestinian problem] part of a Golan Heights deal, meaning that the Palestinian people would be dependent not only on Lebanon’s wishes but on Syria’s as well. [The outcome] would be that Syria would bring the Palestinian problem back to its starting point…”

Ibrahim further stated: “It is in Iran’s interest to keep the Palestinian problem unresolved until the Iranian nuclear crisis is over, because Iran believes… that it can trade Hamas for political gain, while at the same time significantly improving its own image … We have before us a well-planned conspiracy, as well as an agenda, devised by Damascus and Teheran to pin the Palestinian problem to Iran’s and Syria’s interests, and for this purpose they have been using Hizbullah and Hamas to great effect…” [2]

 

“Religious Movements [Such As Hamas and Hizbullah] Contain Elements Similar to Nazism – As Do Many Tyrannical Parties That Brought Disaster Upon Their Respective Nations

In his third article, published December 24, 2008, Ibrahim wrote: “Hamas believes, as do the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, Hizbullah, and other religious organizations, that everything it does is always right… Hamas, like any other ideological movement, believes that because it was elected by the people, the people no longer have a say, and that because it won the election, it can treat the people [as it sees fit]. Religious movements contain elements similar to Nazism, as do many tyrannical parties that brought disaster upon their respective nations…

“Hamas’s [statements] and actions are [characteristics of a group that is] trying to bring destruction upon its people… Egypt is concerned about the Palestinians, while Hamas is not – not one bit. Hamas is holding the entire Palestinian people hostage, saying: ‘We will live together, or die together.’ Hamas is imposing suicide [ideology] on the Palestinians, because it sees itself as their legitimate ruler.

“For Hamas, it doesn’t matter that balance of forces is completely against them – they remain arrogant. The Palestinians did indeed elect [Hamas]; however, [Hamas] did not make Palestinian wellbeing [its top priority], but rather chose to join the axis that is opposed to the moderate Arab [countries] – the Syria-Iran axis, which is against Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

“Hamas’s position and Egypt’s position are diametrically opposed. Cairo believes that it is imperative to rescue the Palestinians from the catastrophe, while Hamas holds that there would be nothing wrong if [all] the Palestinians perished, because then they will be martyrs and enter Paradise. [Hamas also believes] that it is more important to strengthen the Syria-Iran axis of evil, which sponsors the religious movements in Iraq, Lebanon, and Palestine…

“Hamas is pushing Gaza towards a massacre, while all the while shouting that the Arabs or the Egyptians have failed to come to their aid. The Palestinians must realize the truth – that [Hamas's] actions are pushing [Gaza] towards a massacre…

“This shows that Hamas is part of Tel Aviv’s plan to eliminate the [Palestinian] problem. Hamas may not be aware of this; or possibly it is, but it considers Syria’s and Iran’s interests a hundred times more important than the interests of those who voted it [into power].” [3]

 

The Iranian-Syrian Axis Will Not Drag Egypt Into War with Israel In a January 1, 2009 article in Al-Gumhouriyya, Ibrahim wrote: “[Opening] the [Rafah] crossing is [only] one of the many objectives of this Iranian-Syrian conspiracy against Egypt. The Iranian-Syrian axis aims to rapidly drag Egypt into a confrontation with Israel. However, they [i.e. Iran and Syria] forget that Egypt long ago decided to embrace peace. Egypt has fought enough, and it will never [sacrifice] its life to defend others…

“If Hizbullah leader [Hassan Nasrallah] thinks that Egypt should join the front [against Israel], then we must ask [him]: Where are the funds that you are accumulating? Where are the Shihab 1, Shihab 2 and Shihab 5 missiles, and all the other missiles that Tehran test-fired in order to frighten the enemy of Allah and your enemy? Do you wage war only in front of the television cameras? Are Tehran’s missiles [only] for show? [While] the Israeli war machine attacks Gaza, you attack Egypt. Your heroes [sit] trembling in your hideouts -[yet] you ask, ‘Where is Egypt?’…

“[Hamas leader Khaled] Mash’al, in his folly, considers himself a hero, issuing orders from his hideout in Damascus or Tehran to his counterparts in Gaza to kill themselves.

“No resistance [movement] has its decisions made by others. Khaled Mash’al is not a free [agent], [for] his decisions are controlled by Tehran. He is not murdering the Palestinians to liberate Palestine – which he is completely incapable of doing [i.e. liberating Palestine] – but to prevent [Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud] ‘Abbas from negotiating with Israel. Can there be greater folly than this?…

“Egypt will never [let itself] be dragged into confrontation with Israel while Iran sits quietly [far away], issuing orders that are carried out by its lackeys. Our armed forces will never fight to defend Syria, whose army, as far as I know, has not fired a single bullet since 1973…

“Hamas has no future in Palestine. What it has done to the Palestinians, not even Israel has done. [The Hamas government] is the first [Muslim] government in the world to prevent its citizens from making the Hajj, and it the third [Arab] regime to massacre its own people, after Saddam Hussein’s and Hafez Al-Assad’s. Must the Egyptian army defend it? Must we defend lunatics who have butchered their own people, held the wounded hostage, prevented [their citizens] from making the Hajj, and, worse yet, murdered one of our sons [i.e. the Egyptian officer killed in a clash with Hamas at the Rafah crossing]?…”

Ibrahim also criticized Qatar, calling it hypocritical for attacking Arab countries while itself striving to establish relations with Israel and the U.S.: “Washington once had one protectorate in the Middle East – Israel – but now it has two: Doha and Tel-Aviv… Qatar is the Arab country with the most intensive trade relations with Israel… Qatar was the first country to sell Israel more [natural] gas than Egypt, and at lower prices – and nobody opposed this. Qatar’s prime minister and foreign minister, Hamad bin Jasim bin Jaber Aal Thani, is friendly with Israel’s foreign minister, Tsipi Livni. The letters and gifts he sent her on her birthday indicate a belated adolescent [crush on her]. He [even] preferred to buy a summer house in Nahariya to vacation with his Israeli friends, whom he likes more than the British…

“The U.S. military operations base [in the Middle East] is in Doha – and it is the largest U.S. military base outside the U.S. It was from there that [the U.S.] launched its artillery attack on Iraq prior to its 2003 invasion, and there that it conducted maneuvers in preparation for this [operation]… Qatar built this base for the Americans at its own expense… True, Qatar is occupied by the U.S. – but this is by [Qatar's] its own consent and by the demand of [Qatar's] masses. [This occupation] pleases [Qatar], and is based on its mutual interests [with the U.S.]… [Now] this occupied country is acting to convene an Arab summit, and is calling upon the large Arab countries to attend it. Sometimes it even goes so far as to think it can issue orders…” [4]

 

Roz Al-Yousef Editor: Iran, Syria, and Qatar Strive for Regional Hegemony – At Egypt‘s Expense

In a January 3, 2009 article, the editor of the Egyptian daily Roz Al-Yousef, ‘Abdallah Kamal, likewise attacked the Syrian-Iranian-Qatari axis: “Several years ago, and its longstanding alliance with Iran notwithstanding, Syria became the third member of the troika, that comprises the leading Arab [countries] and was formed in the wake of the Second Gulf War…

“The first member of this troika was Egypt; the second was Saudi Arabia. However, [since then], Syria has slowly… fallen into the embrace of Iran – whose [policies are blatantly] at odds with Arab interests because of its Persian ethnicity, its Shi’ite faith, and its political agenda – which is completely opposed to that of the Arabs.

“The main impediment to Iran’s influence in the region is Egypt’s political prominence. [This is why Iran] has been trying to remove Egypt from the arena for the past quarter century or more… [it is attempting] to push it into a military confrontation with Israel that will undermine its economic and political stability for the next 25 years at least, and will trap it into a no-exit security situation (by pushing the Palestinians into Sinai and making them a demographic time bomb for Egypt)…

“Iran is even trying to topple the Egyptian regime, or at least to [challenge its] moral [legitimacy], so as to exert every [possible] pressure on it, making it lose its political influence in the region… The optimal arena for accomplishing this goal has been Gaza…

“Iran has helped Hamas manufacture rockets, [for example] by smuggling warheads and [missile] guidance systems into Gaza – made in China, Korea, or wherever. Hamas manufactures the rockets with the gunpowder, pipes, and tail sections it receives.

“[Iran] also supplies $40 million a month in funds ($25 million for Hamas and $15 million for [Palestinian Islamic] Jihad)…” [5]


[1] Al-Gumhouriyya (Egypt), December 22, 2008.

[2] Al-Gumhouriyya (Egypt), December 23, 2008.

[3] Al-Gumhouriyya (Egypt), December 24, 2008.

[4] Al-Gumhouriyya (Egypt), January 1, 2009.

[5] Roz Al-Yousef (Egypt), January 3, 2009.

Playing to Win in Gaza

Playing to Win in Gaza

Created 2009-01-09 10:12

As the Israeli attack on the Gaza Strip nears the end of its second week, two things are clear: first, that it will come to some sort of internationally brokered end; and second, that it will end thus because there is no other end that Israel will countenance. This is not to say that there is no other end Israel wants, but it cannot have what it wants — Hamas will neither be destroyed nor neutered — and so the question of the end is a question of what it may have. For all the vitriol the Jewish state receives every time it attacks those who attack it — be it a Vatican hierarch invoking the Holocaust(!), or the United Nations harrumphing about the sanctity of its property — the ground truth is that Israel lacks the bloody-mindedness to end things as it might, and as its enemies certainly would.

To illustrate this, we must look to the terrible numbers from the field of battle — or rather, the alleyways and gutted apartment blocks wherein Hamas chooses to fight. For all the grief and horror at the deaths of “civilians” in Gaza (and the word must be in quotes, not because there are none, but because apart from the young they are so tremendously difficult to definitively identify), the cold fact is that the IDF has done an admirable job of safeguarding the lives of the Gazan population. If, after nearly two weeks of modern war, only a few hundred out of just under 1.5 million, in a region with an average density of over ten thousand persons per square mile, are dead — and if the number of dead includes combatants — this is nothing short of extraordinary. To state this is not to belittle or dismiss the very real and legitimate horror of the dead, nor the grief that their loved ones endure. A keening mother in Gaza is comforted by the assiduousness of the IDF no more than the grieving mother in Colorado is soothed by America’s historically low casualties in Iraq. In acknowledging the commendably few deaths in Gaza, we must also acknowledge the lonely black pit of loss that renders the death of one indistinguishable from the end of the world.

The careful restraint of Israel at war is not a regrettable thing, except in the realm of amoral power politics: indeed, it is a signal reason we of the non-Jewish, non-Israeli world ought to prefer Israel to its neighbors in sentiment and policy. However much the Muslim population of Israel and Palestine might resent its fate under Jewish rule, it nonetheless enjoys a better existence than Jewish populations under Muslim rule — which is to say, it has a meaningful existence to speak of. Again, this is not to ignore the baleful realities of that existence, which is, after all, rife with petty humiliations ranging from the insensate bureaucracy of movement controls to the banal abuse of fanatic Zionists. Yet if the Xhosa have not exterminated the Afrikaners, nor the Southern blacks the Southern whites, why demand or expect less of the Palestinians? Are they not, to borrow a phrase, men and brothers? Why, then, the peculiar degradation of culture and impulse that compels a relentless violence? The notion, so fondly adhered to by so many, that both sides in this war are moral equals, or at least equally morally degraded, is a fiction that rests upon an invincible ignorance of history.

There are a thousand illustrative anecdotes to call upon, but one suffices: that of the Israeli conquest of Jerusalem’s center in 1967. For the preceding twenty years of Muslim rule, Jews were barred from their holy sites therein, and the majority of the Jewish graves in the millennia-old cemetery on the Mount of Olives were destroyed or paved over. By contrast, when the Israeli infantry drove the Jordanians from the medieval warren of the Old City, the conquering General Uzi Narkiss refused a clerical plea to reclaim the Muslim Dome of the Rock — and Moshe Dayan ordered its administration handed to the Muslim Waqf. To imagine that Israel’s enemies would treat it as well is to indulge in fantasy. We have little data on the fate of Jews and Jewish sites in Muslim hands after 1967, but what have seen — notably in the 2000 ransacking of Joseph’s Tomb — justifies no hope.

If we prefer Israel, then, it falls to us to ensure that its deficiencies in the amoral realm of power politics are not fatal. The long-term survival of the Jewish state is a factor neither of righteousness nor morality, except inasmuch as that survival is righteous or moral. We may forgive Israelis for believing this, but we ourselves need not. Rather, it befits Americans to enable Israel to survive and flourish without subsuming its behavior to those imperatives. Precisely because we do not wish for Israel to conclude, as it rationally might, that its survival depends upon the end of Palestinian, Arab, and Muslim habitation of old Palestine, we should conduct our policy now with an eye toward precluding that conclusion.

This is easier said than done, and it may not be do-able at all, but it has the virtue of being the moral course. We can do our best to make the coming ersatz peace something more than it will be; we can foster economic development for the great masses of idle Palestinian labor; we can cooperate in the strangling of fanatic movements like Hamas; and we can demand more of Palestine than it demands of itself.

The ultimate success of these efforts, though, is out of our hands. In the end, the Palestinian polity is the creation of Palestinians. This is simultaneously as it should be, and the most dreadful portent for the future. Yielding the great dream — of the end of Zionism, of the destruction of the Jews, of the ravaging of their holy places — makes sense only in the definitive demonstration of its unattainability. The enemies of Israel are unpersuaded, having seen the Zionist state yield mile upon mile in the past decade, having seen Israel lose a war in Lebanon, having compared the raw facts of demographics, and having seen the world weary of this Jewish statelet and its inconvenient struggles. They rightly believe they will be a majority in time. They rightly believe their material weakness is not perpetual. They rightly believe that Israel wants to stop playing this game: and so they play to win it.


Lies, Dammed Lies and CNN’s Mideast Reporting

Lies, Dammed Lies and CNN’s Mideast Reporting

Granted we are in a recession and all media outlets have trimmed staff, but CNN REALLY Needs a fact checker. Since Israel began the bombing of Gaza last week, the Cable Nonsense Network has been doing its best to spread misinformation about Gaza War. CNN’s Lies included blaming Israel for breaking the cease fire and accusing Israel of not letting necessary medical supplies into Gaza. But then again, CNN has never been big on the truth:

Who Broke the Ceasefire? CNN’s “Fact Check” Falls Short-CAMERA
by Alex Safian, PhD

In recent days CNN has been playing an interview with Palestinian politician Mustafa Barghouti in which he claims that Israel broke the ceasefire with Hamas by launching an attack in November, and that the current fighting is therefore the fault of Israel rather than the Palestinians. Barghouti also charged that Israel’s supposed blockade of Gaza was a further violation of the ceasefire agreement with Hamas.
Barghouti’s charges are nonsense and easily disproved – but apparently not easy enough for CNN to disprove.
On Dec. 31, perhaps in response to complaints about the Barghouti interview, anchor Rick Sanchez made a great show of supposedly “fact checking” the charges “fairly [and] honestly.” Here’s the clip:
CNN’s intrepid fact-checkers found a few online articles confirming that there was an Israeli attack in November, and were satisfied and looked no further? Does CNN really believe finding such articles proves that Israel broke the ceasefire? 
Might there have been prior serious violations by the Palestinians? In fact there were many such violations, including dozens of rockets and mortars fired into Israel during the so-called ceasefire. And there was also sniper fire against Israeli farmers, anti-tank rockets and rifle shots fired at soldiers in Israel, and not one but two attempts to abduct Israeli soldiers and bring them into Gaza.
All of this was missed by Rick Sanchez, his co-anchor Jim Clancy, and the CNN fact-checkers. Here are some of the details:
(most of this data is from The Six Months of the Lull Arrangement, a detailed report by the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center, an Israeli NGO)
From the start of the ceasefire at 6 AM on June 19 till the incident on November 4th cited by CNN, the following attacks were launched against Israel from Gaza in direct violation of the agreement:
  • 18 mortars were fired at Israel in this period, beginning on the night of June 23.
  • 20 rockets were fired, beginning on June 24, when 3 rockets hit the Israeli town of Sderot.
  • On July 6 farmers working in the fields of Nahal Oz were attacked by light arms fire from Gaza.
  • On the night of August 15 Palestinians fired across the border at Israeli soldiers near the Karni crossing.
  • On October 31 an IDF patrol spotted Palestinians planting an explosive device near the security fence in the area of the Sufa crossing. As the patrol approached the fence the Palestinians fired two anti-tank missiles.
There were two Palestinian attempts to infiltrate from Gaza into Israel apparently to abduct Israelis. Both were major violations of the ceasefire.
  • The first came to light on Sept. 28, when Israeli personnel arrested Jamal Atallah Sabah Abu Duabe. The 21-year-old Rafah resident had used a tunnel to enter Egypt and from there planned to slip across the border into Israel. Investigation revealed that Abu Duabe was a member of Hamas’s Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, and that he planned to lure Israeli soldiers near the border by pretending to be a drug smuggler, capture them, and then sedate them with sleeping pills in order to abduct them directly into Gaza through a preexisting tunnel. For more details click here and here.
  • The second abduction plan was aborted on the night of Nov 4, thanks to a warning from Israeli Intelligence. Hamas had dug another tunnel into Israel and was apparently about to execute an abduction plan when IDF soldiers penetrated about 250 meters into Gaza to the entrance of the tunnel, hidden under a house. Inside the house were a number of armed Hamas members, who opened fire. The Israelis fired back and the house exploded – in total 6 or 7 Hamas operatives were killed and several were wounded. Among those killed were Mazen Sa’adeh, a Hamas brigade commander, and Mazen Nazimi Abbas, a commander in the Hamas special forces unit. For more details click here.
It was when Israel aborted this imminent Hamas attack that the group and other Palestinian groups in Gaza escalated their violations of the ceasefire by beginning to once again barrage Israel with rockets and mortars.
In light of these systematic and serious violations of the ceasefire by Hamas and other Palestinian groups in Gaza, it is absurd to claim that Israel broke the ceasefire in November or at any other time.
That CNN took Barghouti’s charges seriously and repeatedly aired them calls into serious question CNN’s competence as a news organization. It is also notable that while Sanchez said that Israelis denied Barghouti’s charges, he apparently did not see the need to have an actual Israeli appear to deny the charges in detail.
The Border Crossings  Open or Closed?
Barghouti also claimed that Israel violated the ceasefire agreement by allegedly refusing to open border crossings to allow food, fuel and other goods into Gaza. This charge is also false – Israel did open the crossings and allowed truckload after truckload of supplies to enter Gaza. Closures until November were short, and in direct response to Palestinian violations, some of which were detailed above.
To quote from the ITIC report on the “Lull Agreement” linked above:

On June 22, after four days of calm, Israel reopened the Karni and Sufa crossings to enable regular deliveries of consumer goods and fuel to the Gaza Strip. They were closed shortly thereafter, following the first violation of the arrangement, when rockets were fired at Sderot on June 24. However, when calm was restored, the crossings remained open for long periods of time. On August 17 the Kerem Shalom crossing was also opened for the delivery of goods, to a certain degree replacing the Sufa crossing, after repairs had been completed (the Kerem Shalom crossing was closed on April 19 when the IDF prevented a combined mass casualty attack in the region, as a result of which the crossing was almost completely demolished).

Before November 4, large quantities of food, fuel, construction material and other necessities for renewing the Gaza Strip’s economic activity were delivered through the Karni and Sufa crossings. A daily average of 80-90 trucks passed through the crossings, similar to the situation before they were closed following the April 19 attack on the Kerem Shalom crossing. Changes were made in the types of good which could be delivered, permitting the entry of iron, cement and other vital raw materials into the Gaza Strip. 

... Israel, before November 4, refrained from initiating action in the Gaza Strip but responded to rocket and mortar shell attacks by closing the crossings for short periods of time (hours to days). After November 4 the crossings were closed for long periods in response to the continued attacks against Israel. (Rearranged from p 11- 12)
Day to day details of the supplies delivered to Gaza and the numbers of trucks involved have been published by the Israeli Foreign Ministry and are available here. The figures confirm that the passages were indeed open and busy.
CNN conveyed uncritically – multiple times – Mustafa Barghouti’s charge that Israel violated the cease fire by not opening the crossings. Unfortunately this charge, like his charge that it was Israel that violated the ceasefire, is entirely bogus.
Too bad CNN anchors Rick Sanchez and Jim Clancy, along with the network’s fact checkers, didn’t bother to really fact check anything. Too bad CNN didn’t bother to actually interview an Israeli official or expert who could debunk Barghouti’s charges with the facts.
Judging by Rick Sanchez and Jim Clancy, viewers who want accurate, factual news from the Middle East should avoid CNN like the plague.

EARTH TO EUROPE, RUSSIA: HAMAS MUST BE CRUSHED, NOT CODDLED

December 31, 2008

EARTH TO EUROPE, RUSSIA: HAMAS MUST BE CRUSHED, NOT CODDLED

More Israelis are in range of Hamas rockets than ever before
More Israelis are in range of Hamas rockets than ever before
The Gaza war rages on with no immediate end in sight. Indeed, Israeli sources tell me a ground operation into Gaza is not yet definite, but is likely. Israel has rightfully rejected a French-proposed 48 hour cease-fire, saying the Gaza operation will continue until Israel’s goal of shutting down the terrorist rocket threat is accomplished. The leaders of the European Union, Russia, and many governments around the world are putting enormous pressure on Israel to stop defending the Jewish people and stop attacking the terrorist strongholds in Gaza. This is crazy. Why do the Europeans and Russians have such a double-standard when it comes to Israeli national security. More than 6,300 rockets and missiles have been fired at Israel by Hamas since Israeli withdrew its military forces from Gaza in 2005. Some 400 rockets have been fired at Israel just since December 19th. Would the French or Germans agree to a cease-fire if they were being hit by hundreds and thousands of rockets, missiles, and mortars by enemies sworn to annihilate them? Of course not. The Russians invaded Georgia for far, far less. “We didn’t initiate the Gaza operation in order to end it while Israeli towns are still under fire, as they were before the operation,” Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told reporters. “Israel has shown restraint for years; she gave the truce a chance; we told ourselves ‘let’s try it,’ but Hamas violated the truce. I don’t often say this, but Olmert is right. Hamas must be crushed, not coddled. Yet the world is trying to coddle these Palestinian Radical Islamic jihadists. It’s an outrage. The onus is on the Hamas terrorists to lay down their arms and stop firing rockets into Israel. Until that happens, the IDF should continue fighting. It pains me to see the suffering on both sides, but this is entirely Hamas’ responsibility. They were urged by Egypt, by Mahmoud Abbas, and by the Israelis not to let the previous cease-fire lapse, but they chose war instead. They have never been hit this hard. Indeed, Gaza has not since thisIsraelis living within rocket range are truly safe and secure. Yet, the Islamic Radicals in Gaza don’t appear ready to surrender. To the contrary, Hamas is using longer-range rockets than ever before — some of them made in Iran — putting hundreds of thousands of more Israeli at risk than in previous clashes. Hamas has already fired more than 50 rockets, mortars and missiles at Israel as of 4pm local time (9am eastern). Two hit the Israeli city of Beersheva last night, some 28 miles from Gaza. This is the first time Beersheva has ever been in range of Gaza-fired rockets. Haaretz reports that no one was injured but 40 people were treated for shock. The city is rattled, and theaters, cinemas and other shops and businesses are shutting down. Rockets also continue to hit the town of Sderot, and the Israeli coastal cities Ashkelon and Ashdod. I’m told that most of the children in Sderot have been evacuated from the town. Many are now temporarily relocated to northern Israeli cities and towns, such as Haifa. Iran, in addition to providing Hamas longer-range rockets, is also now apparently recruiting some 10,000 volunteer suicide bombers to attack Israel. Some good news: the Israeli government yesterday permitted 109 trucks filled with humanitarian relief to enter Gaza to help Palestinians caught in the crossfire.
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The people of the Holy Land are going through great pain and suffering right now. But we should not be discouraged. Rather, we must turn to the Scriptures for the Lord’s perspective, embrace His promises, and obey His commands.  

 

  • Please continue praying for real peace — not just the absence of conflict but the presence of true justice and true security on both sides of the fence.
  • Please also continue praying for the scores of children on both sides who are being traumatized by all the rockets and bombs – pray for the Lord to comfort and care for them in a supernatural way.
  • Please pray for the followers of Jesus in Israel and Gaza, that they will have courage and hope from the Lord, that they will hear from the Holy Spirit how best to love their neighbors and their enemies, and that by their words and actions they can communicate the good news of God’s great love for Israel and her neighbors
  • Please continue praying for wisdom and discernment for The Joshua Fund leadership team, as well. We are in contact with our allies on the ground in Israel and readying relief supplies to help them care for those in severe need. We are presently trying to connect with our Arab evangelical Christian allies as well to see how we can help them, too. If you would like to give securely on-line to help us bless Israel and her neighbors in the name of Jesus at this critical time, please click here.
  • Please also pray that we can recruit 100,000 allies who are willing to pray knowledgeably, faithfully and consistently for the people of the epicenter. Already some 80,000 have signed up from around the world. If you would like to sign up for (free) Flash Traffic emails with geopolitical updates and prayer requests, please click here.

The Bible is clear: God loves the people of Israel, as well as their neighbors. He has a wonderful plan for their lives, plans for good and not for evil, plans to give them a future and a hope. Jesus offers those who choose to follow Him true peace that cannot be found anywhere else. He promises to protect His people. He promises them an abundant life here, and in the hereafter. He promises to answer their prayers when they pray for His will to be done and pray in His Name. What’s more, He commands His followers to love their neighbors and their enemies. He commands them to feed the hungry, give water to the thirsty, and care for the suffering. Should we not draw near to Him and follow Him wholeheartedly at this critical time?

“I have loved you with an everlasting love,” the Lord says in Jeremiah 31:3. “Therefore, I have drawn you with lovingkindness.”

“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” (I John 4:8)

“For I know the plans that I have for you,” says the Lord in Jeremiah 29:11-13, “plans for welfare and not calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.”

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy, but I came that they might have life and have it abundantly,” said Jesus in John 10:10.

“Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper….The Lord will protect you from all evil; He will keep your soul. The Lord will guard your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forever.” (Psalm 121:4,5,7,8)

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you,” said Jesus in John 14:27. “I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

Jesus said, “Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also….I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me….Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father. Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.” (John 14:1-3,12-14)

“If you love me,” Jesus said in John 14:15, “you will obey what I command.”

 

Israeli PM raises spectre of military operation in Gaza

Iraqi Author ‘Aref ‘Alwan: The Jews Have an Historic Right to Palestine

Rabbi speaks out with moral clarity

Rabbi speaks out with moral clarity

Eliyahu advocates carpet bombing Gaza
Matthew Wagner, THE JERUSALEM POST

All civilians living in Gaza are collectively guilty for Kassam attacks on Sderot, former Sephardi chief rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu has written in a letter to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

Eliyahu ruled that there was absolutely no moral prohibition against the indiscriminate killing of civilians during a potential massive military offensive on Gaza aimed at stopping the rocket launchings.

The letter, published in Olam Katan [Small World], a weekly pamphlet to be distributed in synagogues nationwide this Friday, cited the biblical story of the Shechem massacre (Genesis 34) and Maimonides’ commentary (Laws of Kings 9, 14) on the story as proof texts for his legal decision.

According to Jewish war ethics, wrote Eliyahu, an entire city holds collective responsibility for the immoral behavior of individuals. In Gaza, the entire populace is responsible because they do nothing to stop the firing of Kassam rockets.

The former chief rabbi also said it was forbidden to risk the lives of Jews in Sderot or the lives of IDF soldiers for fear of injuring or killing Palestinian noncombatants living in Gaza.

Eliyahu could not be reached for an interview. However, Eliyahu’s son, Shmuel Eliyahu, who is chief rabbi of Safed, said his father opposed a ground troop incursion into Gaza that would endanger IDF soldiers. Rather, he advocated carpet bombing the general area from which the Kassams were launched, regardless of the price in Palestinian life.

    “If they don’t stop after we kill 100, then we must kill a thousand,” said Shmuel Eliyahu. “And if they do not stop after 1,000 then we must kill 10,000. If they still don’t stop we must kill 100,000, even a million. Whatever it takes to make them stop.”

In the letter, Eliyahu quoted from Psalms. “I will pursue my enemies and apprehend them and I will not desist until I have eradicated them.”

Eliyahu wrote that “This is a message to all leaders of the Jewish people not to be compassionate with those who shoot [rockets] at civilians in their houses.”

Posted by Ted Belman @ 10:13 am |

“What is your path? Jihad. What is your most lofty aspiration? Death for the sake of Allah.” “Graduation Ceremony at the Islamic Association in Gaza on Hamas TV,”

“What is your path? Jihad. What is your most lofty aspiration? Death for the sake of Allah.”

JihadKindergarten.jpg

I guess some people are tired of Pomp and Circumstance.

“Graduation Ceremony at the Islamic Association in Gaza on Hamas TV,” from MEMRITV, with thanks to Jay:

Following are excerpts from a report on Hamas’ Al-Aqsa TV about a graduation ceremony of kindergartens of the Islamic Association in Gaza. The report was aired on May 31, 2007.Host: We will now take a short break to present the Palestinian childhood, and some scenes from the celebration in the kindergartens of the Islamic Association. We followed this ceremony of the graduation of the 29th class of the Islamic Association’s kindergartens. Let’s watch the report, and then we’ll be back to complete the discussion.

[...]

Boys: Allah Akbar. Praise be to Allah. Allah Akbar. Praise be to Allah. Allah Akbar. Praise be to Allah. Allah Akbar. Praise be to Allah. Who is your role model? The Prophet. Who is your role model? The Prophet. What is your path? Jihad. What is your path? Jihad. What is your most lofty aspiration? Death for the sake of Allah. What is your most lofty aspiration? Death for the sake of Allah.

Posted by Robert at 12:06 PM | Comments (35)

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