May 24 2011

Bibi hits a homerun

Category: Hamas,Hizbullah,Islam,Israel,jihad,liberty,middle east,Palestineharmonicminer @ 8:11 pm

Watch it.  It will be time well spent.

Jul 09 2010

Beyond Understanding

Category: Israel,Palestineamuzikman @ 8:55 am

Ha’aretz reports on a soon-to-be-released documentary by an Israeli reporter, Shlomi Eldar, about a Palestinian Arab baby with a rare disease being treated in Israel.

In Sheba’s pediatric hemato-oncology department was Mohammed Abu Mustafa, a four-and-a-half-month-old Palestinian infant. Protruding from his tiny body were pipes attached to big machines. His breathing was labored.

“His days may be numbered. He is suffering from a genetic defect that is causing the failure of his immune system,” said the baby’s mother, Raida, from the Gaza Strip, when she emerged from the isolation room. “I had two daughters in Gaza,” she continued, her black eyes shimmering. “Both died because of immune deficiency. In Gaza I was told all the time that there is no treatment for this and that he is doomed to die. The problem now is how to pay for the [bone marrow] transplant. There is no funding.”

“I got to her after all the attempts to find a donation for the transplant had failed,” [Eldar] relates. “I understood that I was the baby’s last hope, but I didn’t give it much of a chance. At the time, Qassam rockets falling on Sderot opened every newscast. In that situation, I didn’t believe that anyone would be willing to give a shekel for a Palestinian infant.”

He was wrong. Hours after the news item about Mohammed was broadcast, the hospital switchboard was jammed with callers. An Israeli Jew whose son died during his military service donated $55,000, and for the first time the Abu Mustafa family began to feel hopeful. Only then did Eldar grasp the full dramatic potential of the story. He told his editor, Tali Ben Ovadia, that he wanted to continue accompanying the family.

…Nevertheless, this idyllic situation developed into a deep crisis that led to the severance of the relations and what appeared to be the end of the filming. From an innocent conversation about religious holidays, Raida Abu Mustafa launched into a painful monologue about the culture of the shahids – the martyrs – and admitted, during the complex transplant process, that she would like to see her son perpetrate a suicide bombing attack in Jerusalem.

“Jerusalem is ours,” she declared. “We are all for Jerusalem, the whole nation, not just a million, all of us. Do you understand what that means – all of us?”

She also explained to Eldar exactly what she had in mind. “For us, death is a natural thing. We are not frightened of death. From the smallest infant, even smaller than Mohammed, to the oldest person, we will all sacrifice ourselves for the sake of Jerusalem. We feel we have the right to it. You’re free to be angry, so be angry.”

And Eldar was angry. “Then why are you fighting to save your son’s life, if you say that death is a usual thing for your people?” he lashes out in one of the most dramatic moments in the film.

“It is a regular thing,” she smiles at him. “Life is not precious. Life is precious, but not for us. For us, life is nothing, not worth a thing. That is why we have so many suicide bombers. They are not afraid of death. None of us, not even the children, are afraid of death. It is natural for us. After Mohammed gets well, I will certainly want him to be a shahid. If it’s for Jerusalem, then there’s no problem. For you it is hard, I know; with us, there are cries of rejoicing and happiness when someone falls as a shahid. For us a shahid is a tremendous thing.”

That was enough to drain Eldar’s motivation and dissolve all the compassion he had felt for Raida and Mohammed.

“It was an absolutely terrible rift,” he recalls. “After I saw how intensely she fought for her son’s life, I could not accept what she said. I had seen her standing for hours, caressing him, warming him up, kissing him. At the time I also had an infant of Mohammed’s age at home. I couldn’t understand where it came from in her. I was devastated. It was all so paradoxical, too, because just as she was talking about the shahids, two Jewish women entered the room and brought her toys and a stroller as presents.”

Raida’s confession was totally at odds with Eldar’s perception of her until then: “The whole time I accompanied her, I saw a caring mother who was at her baby’s bedside night and day. She didn’t eat, she lost weight and she cried. I myself saw to it that she ate. I saw her faint when she was informed there was a small chance her son would get well. I saw her when she was told there was no longer a chance, and she stood there and caressed Mohammed, with tears, as though parting from him.

“So I was unable to explain how on the one hand, she fought for her child’s life, but at the same time told me that his life is not precious. I never believed I would hear that from her. That’s why I decided to stop shooting. I had come to tell a lovely story, not a story about a mother who destines her son to be a shahid.”

What did you feel when she said that to you?

“That I had been betrayed, that it was a knife in the back. I didn’t want to see Raida any more. It also drove me to greater despair. I asked myself, ‘Well, is that the conclusion that comes from this story?’ But in the end I started filming again. Why? I don’t have a good answer; I think it was from curiosity. I wanted to solve the mystery for myself.”

Golda Meir once said, “We will have peace with the Arabs when they love their children more than they hate us.”  She was right.  But will that day ever come?

Jun 20 2010

Telling the truth with satire

You really need to check out this Powerline post, and watch the videos they linked here (don’t be impatient, the ad is short) and here.

Entertaining.  And educational.

Jun 01 2010

Headlines and Israel

From the Drudge Report, headlines, May 31, 2010:

Israel faces int'l fury over flotilla...
Bloody raid...
Israel: Passengers were armed, 'no peace activists'...
Turkey warns of 'consequences'...
Israel in eye of storm...
Thousands protest, clashes in Athens...
Paris: Demonstrators tried to break into Israeli embassy...
Netanyahu defends...

From the Drudge Report, headlines, May 31, 2010, in an alternate universe:

Palestinians faces int'l fury over flotilla...
Bloody set-up...
Hamas: Passengers were armed, 'no peace activists'...
Turkey warns of 'consequences'...
Iran in eye of storm...
Thousands protest, clashes in Athens...
Paris: Demonstrators tried to break into Iranian embassy...
Amadinejad defends...

We have come to this – instant global condemnation of Israel every time an incident occurs.  Israel is now officially presumed guilty until proven innocent.  Not many facts are yet known about this incident, but in our world today facts are little more than an annoyance.  No, what seems to matter most is to lay the blame on Israel.

And a sitting U.S. President has become a part of the condemnation chorus virtually from the day he took office.  All the while the terror-sponsoring state of Iran, whose own President has sworn to wipe Israel from the face of the earth, rushes full tilt toward becoming a nuclear power. And when they do I imagine our president’s reaction will be to bow a little deeper to Amadinejad, and he’ll wag his finger a little longer at Netanyahu.  Madness.

Mr President, your words and actions have emboldened not only our enemies but the enemies of one of our closest allies.  And at least in part, the blood shed today is on your hands.  Words have meaning, Mr. President.  You know that.  And your obvious lack of support for the State of Israel coupled with your failed attempts at diplomacy towards our enemies has made this world in which we live a less safe place.  This incident is just a drop in the bucket compared to what I fear is is coming.  And the headlines do not bode well for the State of Israel.

Apr 06 2010

Obama vs. Netanyahu: what you won’t read in the media

Category: Fatah,Hamas,Israel,middle east,Obama,Palestine,terrorismharmonicminer @ 8:03 am

Yoni The Blogger is a veteran of Israeli Special Forces. He can’t talk about much of what he used to do.  He is unapologetic in his defense of Israel, appropriately so.  He knows things about what goes on in Israel that seem rarely reported in US media.  Here is his take on the recent “summit” of Obama and Netanyahu.

Yoni the Blogger

We have seen the way President Obama treated Prime Minister Netanyahu during the recent visit.

It is clear that if Obama can’t push the Prime Minister into doing what he wants him to do, then Obama would like to force regime change in Israel.

Bibi must, make up his mind if he wants to be the Prime Minister.

I have my doubts.

Bibi upon return to Israel had the rules of engagement for our soldier tightened. Our soldiers if they are in a bullet proof vehicle can no longer shoot at Palestinians that are throwing molotov cocktails at them, it is now even prohibited to fire warning shots in the air at stone throwing Palestinians.

I have learned that IAF pilots stationed in the south are prohibited from travel alone from Tel Arad to Beer Sheva because of the Israeli citizen Beduin shooting at Jewish cars.

Let us not forget the multiple dozens of Buses that came from the north and south full of Israeli Arabs wanting to riot at the Temple Mount along side there Palestinian brothers.

So here is my advise to Bibi.

1. Declare that due to the financial situation in America, Israel is canceling the aid from America

2. Israel must start of PR campaign with ads on American TV showing the value of Israel to America

3. Declare an end to the peace process and annex Judea and Samaria

4. Behind closed doors tell American Military and CIA we will no longer going to give intel to America if the administration is anti Israel . George the first and Webster

5. Tell all Israeli citizens that if Palestinians throw stones at them it is a crime not to return fire. Allow more Jews to own guns

6. Order the IDF to remove all illegal Arab building in all parts of Israel

7. Lastly order the Chief of Staff of the IDF to hit Iran as soon as possible using any and all of the weapons at the disposal of the IDF as the situation warrants.

I am not holding my breath for Bibi to do any of this because he has folded every time the going got tough.

It is clear that, among US presidents, Obama is rivaled only by Jimmy Carter in his disdain for Israel.  I expect that Israel is simply counting the days till the 2012 elections, and hoping for the best.

Nov 28 2009

Abbas: Obama isn’t putting enough pressure on Israel

Abbas accuses Obama of doing ‘nothing’ for peace in the Middle East

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday accused US President Barack Obama of doing “nothing” to achieve peace in the Middle East. Speaking to Argentinian newspaper Clarin, Abbas said he hoped that Obama would “take a more important role in the future.”

He went on to say that the Palestinian people were awaiting US pressure on Israel, “so that it respects international law and takes up the Road Map,” stressing that the peace process could not be restarted without a halt to settlement construction.

When asked what he was willing to concede for peace, Abbas told Clarin that the Palestinian people had “already made concessions.”

He opined that the current government, with Binyamin Netanyahu as prime minister and Avigdor Lieberman as foreign minister, “is not seeking peace,” though he said that 73 percent of Israelis were in favor of peace.

What Abbas wants, of course, is for Obama to be tougher on his (putatively) only friend in the Middle East, Israel, than he is on actual opponents, like Iran, Syria or Hisbullah.

If we needed any reminder of the fact, this illustrates the basic dynamic of all Middle East peace negotiations.  Israel, which has always been the attacked party, must give up land and options that were legitimately earned in acts of national self-defense from Arab aggression, self-defense against incredible odds.  In the meantime, Palestine doesn’t have to give up anything, including the intent to see the end of Israel as a Jewish nation.

Prediction:  Obama will be no more successful than any of his predecessors at convincing Palestinians that their best interests lie in normalizing relations with Israel, with reporting and fighting against the terrorists in their number, and with going about the business of building a functioning economy, without the ridiculous and unachievable destruction of Israel.  Palestinians have exactly the same opportunity now that Israel had 60 years ago, to build something out of nothing in the desert.  Further, they have a potential partner, Israel, which would help, if Palestinians could control their hatred of the Jews.  I’m not holding my breath.

In the meantime, Obama brings a student council president level of understanding to a negotiation where world class diplomats have tried and failed.  I won’t blame him for failing.  I will blame him if he manages to cripple Israel while he is busy failing to engineer an unlikely peace.

Aug 07 2009

Jihad interrupted

Category: Fatah,Hamas,Islam,Israel,middle east,national security,Palestineharmonicminer @ 9:03 am

One of our very best reporters, Michael Totten, reports that Culture War Replaces Missile War

Hezbollah launched thousands of Katyusha rockets into Northern Israel and forced hundreds of thousands of civilians to flee south toward Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. South Lebanon was punished much more thoroughly than Northern Israel, but the Palestinians in Gaza nevertheless took Hezbollah’s Baghdad Bob–style boasts of “divine victory” seriously. Hamas ramped up its own rocket war until fed-up Israelis gave Gaza the South Lebanon treatment this past December and January.

Hamas is a bit slower to learn than was Hezbollah, but seven long months after the conclusion of Operation Cast Lead, the rockets out of Gaza have finally stopped. Israelis will no longer put up with indiscriminate attacks on their houses and schools. Many Palestinians in Gaza have likewise had their fill of Hamas’s self-destructive campaign of “resistance.”

The New York Times reports that Hamas has decided to wage a “culture war” instead of a rocket war because, as one leader put it, “the fighters needed a break and the people needed a break.”

Movies, plays, art exhibitions, and poems are Hamas’s new weapons. Hamas supporters, though, aren’t the only Palestinians in Gaza using art as a weapon. Said al-Bettar skewers Hamas every night at Gaza City’s Shawa cultural center in his popular play The Women of Gaza and the Patience of Job. “We were the victims of a big lie,” he says about the doctrine of armed “resistance.”

The Israeli intelligence official I spoke to deserves some credit for predicting the replacement of terrorist war with missile war. Hamas and Islamic Jihad had already fired rockets at Israel, but they hadn’t fired many, and neither the recent Gaza war nor the Second Lebanon War had yet started.

Since then a pattern has emerged that should be obvious to anybody with eyes to see, whether they’re an intelligence official or not. After Israeli soldiers withdraw from occupied territory, Israeli civilians are shot at with rockets from inside that territory. Another pattern has just been made clear. After Israelis shoot back, the rockets stop flying.

It has been years since Hezbollah has dared to fire rockets at Israel or start anything else on the border. Hamas no longer dares to fire rockets at Israel either.

Israelis remain under pressure to withdraw from the West Bank. They almost certainly will withdraw from most of the West Bank eventually. Few, though, are in the mood to do so right now since they were shot at from Gaza and Lebanon after they withdrew from those places. They see the pattern even if others don’t.

It’s possible, of course, that West Bank Palestinians will never fire a significant number of rockets, if any, at Israel. They seem more sensible in general than Gazans. Hamas leaders in Gaza also talk to Hamas leaders in Ramallah, Nablus, and Hebron. I think it’s safe to say that the West Bank isn’t hearing any “divine victory” nonsense from Gaza right now.

Then again, Gazans proved themselves incapable of learning from Hezbollah’s mistakes. And the New York Times says Hamas wants to acquire longer-range missiles. So who knows?

This much, though, is all but certain: if a rocket war erupts between Israel and the West Bank, Israelis will respond as they did in Gaza and Lebanon. The jury is still out on whether the Arab world has learned the recent relevant lessons, but there shouldn’t be any doubt that Israelis have. Rocket war doesn’t work, but the military solution to rocket war does.

This phrase, “The jury is still out on whether the Arab world has learned the recent relevant lessons,” is the core of the matter. Islamic warriors have always had the notion that somehow they were blessed by Allah and absolutely guaranteed to win at some point, as long as they just didn’t give up.  Islamic military teaching allows for “peace treaties,” of a sort, but makes it clear that, when fighting the infidel, they are to be used only to rest, rearm, and get ready to go at it again.

For my part, I am glad that Hamas is making bad plays instead of bombs, if indeed that is the case.  But what I know is that Islamic war fighters have a LONG memory.  They take the long view.  They are willing to wait a generation or more for the right time to strike.

And there’s this:  “Gazans proved themselves incapable of learning from Hezbollah’s mistakes.”  In Islamic understanding, proof of whether Allah was with you in war is simple, and has nothing whatsoever to do with some kind of Augustinian-style concept of just war.  The proof is if you win.  If you don’t win, Allah was not with you.  Simple.  So Gazans could not learn from Hezbollah’s mistakes for a simple reason: they assumed that Allah was not with Hezbollah (Iranian proxies) but would be with the Gazans.  Think of Sunnis figuring that, of course, Allah would not bless the efforts of those misguided Shiites.

So the Gazans had to find out for themselves, the hard way, that Allah wasn’t blessing their war either.  Not this year, at least.

But two things to remember:

1)  Neither Hezbollah nor Hamas have given up forever.   Their entire world view simply does not make room for permanent peace and adjustment to new conditions.  Jihad is forever.  It’s just delayed, sometimes.  Jihad interrupted.

2)  Iran and other Islamic powers, by virtue of their continued existence, will learn nothing from the defeat of any OTHER Islamic power.  I’m not talking about “secular” Islamic states, which use Islam to mollify a believing populace, but are themselves essentially cynical in their pursuit of power, such as Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, or even Syria.  Syria and Libya can both be seen to have pulled back from the brink of what they perceived as their own possible destruction.  And even Syria is still trying to make trouble occasionally….  but carefully, carefully.  The big problems are Iran, and possibly Pakistan (if the extremists succeed in a takeover…  Pakistan is a really hard one to figure out), as well as Saudi Arabia (which funds more terrorism-at-a-distance than anyone, directly and indirectly).

Do you get from this that the immediate threat is Iran?  If you do, you’re probably right.  And the point:  Iran’s ruling mullahs will learn nothing from the defeat of any other Islamic entity.

The longer term threat, even if we deal successfully with Iran (or Israel does it for us) has to be Pakistan, or, worse yet, an alliance of Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.  An axis like that, controlled by Wahabist fundamentalists, would have money and LOTS of nukes.  That means that we MUST win in Afghanistan, defined as removing the pressure on Pakistan from Islamic extremists.  If Pakistan stays controlled by cynical, relatively secular powers, we win.  If Pakistan is taken over by a wave of Islamic extremism (as opposed to the expanding middle class now growing in the cities), we’ll have a huge problem, in the form of as many as 70 nuclear weapons in the hands of whackos with direct terrorist ties.

So stabilizing Afghanistan is our goal, and will be our contribution to Pakistani stability.

Given that Obama has abdicated any responsibility to deal with iran, we’d better hope that Israel does, and soon.  There are, of course, people who disagree.  (Being anti-Israel creates strange bedfellows, doesn’t it?)  I find it likely, however, that Israel’s intelligence estimates on the real state of the Iranian nuclear bomb program are better than anyone else’s.  And they have a stake in the accuracy of those estimates that is shared by no one else.

Jul 29 2009

Hiding behind the innocent

Category: Hamas,Islam,Palestine,UNharmonicminer @ 12:49 am

Officials say that Hamas is tunneling near UN facilities

Hamas is digging tunnels next to United Nations facilities under the assumption that the IDF will not target them during a future conflict, defense officials warned on Sunday.

The idea of tunneling near the UN school, the official said, was a lesson Hamas had learned from Operation Cast Lead earlier this year, during which the IDF did its utmost to avoid targeting UN facilities.

“Hamas uses civilian infrastructure to hide behind,” explained the official. “This is another example of Hamas’s cynical use of a school.”

This is not the first time Palestinian terrorists have used the Beit Hanun school. In October 2007, an IAF drone videotaped three terrorists preparing and then launching mortars from within the UN school compound in Beit Hanun.

Clearly, the Palestinians need to choose between supporting Hamas and having a UN presence in Gaza. And the UN needs to force that choice, by simply leaving until Hamas is gone. It is unconscionable for the UN to allow itself to be used as a shield for Hamas terrorists.

Will the UN force the choice? You’re kidding, right?

Jun 11 2009

Enforcing family discipline in Palestine

Category: Israel,Palestineharmonicminer @ 12:30 pm

Palestinian family kills son for ‘collaborating with Israel’

In the first incident of its kind, a Palestinian family has killed its 15-year-old son in the West Bank after accusing him of “collaboration” with Israel.

The boy’s body was discovered near Kalkilya on Wednesday.

The Palestinian Authority security forces announced that they have arrested a number of the boy’s family members in connection with the killing.

The victim was identified as Raed Wael Sawalha.

PA security sources said the suspects confessed to the killing, claiming that they decided to kill Masalha because of his alleged connections with the Israeli authorities.

Sawalha is the youngest Palestinian to be killed on suspicion of “collaboration” with Israel.

Hundreds of other suspected collaborators have also been killed by Palestinians over the past few years.

The boy’s body was discovered in the basement of a house in his village of Hijjah in the Kalkilya area.

A preliminary investigation launched by PA security forces revealed that Sawalha had been brutally tortured before he was hanged to death.

Villagers initially believed that the boy had either committed suicide or hanged himself accidentally while playing with friends.

Gen. Adnan Damiri, spokesman for the PA security forces in the West Bank, said the perpetrators were all members of the boy’s family, including the father, uncle and cousin.

He expressed outrage over the crime and pledged that those involved would be brought to trial and punished.

I don’t know what it can mean to call this murder “the first incident of its kind” when the article admits that “Hundreds of other suspected collaborators have also been killed by Palestinians over the past few years.”

Maybe it’s the first time the entire family has gotten in on performing its civic duty.

Question: how many Israelis have been murdered by other Israelis for collaborating with Palestine?

Mar 05 2009

US Aid to Terrorists

Category: Fatah,Hamas,Islam,Israel,Palestineharmonicminer @ 10:54 am

After describing US aid planned to “rebuild” Gaza, Yoni asks very simple questions:

Yoni the Blogger

Why are the American tax payers being forced to pay almost 1 billion dollars to help the Palestinians rebuild?

Is it because the Palestinians have seen the error of supporting terrorism and have entered into a path of peace?

No, it is clear from multiple rocket attacks coming out of Gaza once again on an almost daily basis and daily rock and molotov cocktail attacks in Judea and Samaria that the Palestinians are still supporting terrorism.

So the question remains why give them any money?

The fact is that Hamas and Fatah are both terrorist organizations at their root, though Fatah has been more circumspect lately. Any US aid that is given is certain to prop up Hamas and Fatah in power, and will not buy ANY goodwill to the USA from Islamic radicals in control of Gaza (Hamas).

What benefit is there in giving Hamas any help of any kind, when Hamas has not withdrawn its stated intent to destroy Israel?

Indirect aid to Gaza, if that is even possible, will still allow Hamas breathing room to hatch further terror. The people of Gaza must throw Hamas out of power. They are less motivated to do that when the consequences of Hamas policy are not fully felt by them.


Next Page »