Tag Archives: Israel

An attack on Israel coming?

Two stories this morning suggest that an attack soon on Israel from either Iran- or ISIS-backed forces, or both, may soon take place.

The first would be a large attack from the north, near the Golan Heights, planned with the hope of grabbing and holding territory from Israel. The second would be a small terrorist attack. meant only to distract and cause harm. Supposedly Iran and the Islamic State oppose each other, but here they would be working together. Good thing the Obama administration sent Iran $33 billion in cash to help them in this effort.

To get a feel for the hate held by Islamic leaders of all stripes for Jews, watch this excerpt from a Friday sermon by a Hamas MP. Their goal is simple: Kill all the Jews. I wonder how Israel is going to negotiate a two state solution faced with that.

Chinese company agrees to buy Israeli satellite company

Wheels within wheels: A Chinese company, managed by a Luxembourg company that in turn delegates management of its satellites to an Israeli-based company, has made a deal to purchase Spacecom, a different Israeli company that operates and owns the Amos fleet of communications satellites.

Observers said the deal could meet up with opposition from regulators, including the Communications Ministry. But Pollack said the transaction would be done in accordance with Spacecom’s license terms, which require the satellites be operated from Israel and that the company remain Israeli. The sale would put Spacecom under the direct control of an Israeli-domiciled company called Big Bird, which is managed by Major General (Res.) Ami Shafran, a former head of the Israel Defense Forces communications branch. Big Bird is 100%-owned by a Luxembourg company, which in turn is owned by Beijing Xinwei.

To say this financial deal is complicated is to understate the situation. Though it appears most everyone here is probably focused on making money, if I was Israeli I would be somewhat concerned that ownership of these crucial communications satellites is now going to be outside the country.

I also note the presence of Luxembourg in this space deal, illustrating again that this small European country is very much a big player in the commercial space industry.

Iran reveals the Iran deal facilitated aiming 100,000 missiles at Israel

So how’s that Iran deal doing, Washington? Iran’s leaders reveal that the Iran deal was their way to make it easier to make and aim missiles at Israel.

They claim they have 100,000 missiles in Lebanon aimed at the West Bank, and are enthusiatic about their possible use.

Israel eases its restrictions on gun use

Faced with rising violence from Islamic and Palestinian terrorists, Israel this month has eased its gun control rules so that more citizens can own and use guns.

Under the new policy, all IDF officers above the rank of 2nd lieutenant and non-commissioned officers from the rank of first sergeant and up can obtain a permit, even if they hold those ranks in the reserves. Parallel ranks in the police and other security services have been given the same access.

This doesn’t help those who came to the country later in life and never served in the military, but it is still a step in the right direction. The Palestinians wish to live by the sword. They then face the increasing possibility that they will die by it.

Iran writes its own bill

The bill approved by Iran’s legislature this week is not the deal negotiated by John Kerry and approved by Obama.

Instead, the Majlis approved by a 161 to 59 vote, with 13 abstentions, a nine point document they created which authorizes the Iranian government to move forward on a path that will do at least two things: one, remove international sanctions against Iran, and two, end Israel’s nuclear weapons program.

Got that?

End Israel’s nuclear weapons program. Not end Iran’s nuclear weapons program. Ending Israel’s program is apparently point one of the nine point document approved by the Majlis on Tuesday.

Read it all. Rather than agree to limit their nuclear production, as declared by the idiots in the Obama administration, the legislation allows them to accelerate it. As the article notes, the only person sticking with Obama’s Iran nuclear deal is Obama.

Facebook to provide internet access to Africa

The competition heats up: Using an Israeli communications satellite built by the European satellite company Eutelsat and slated to be launched by SpaceX in 2016, Facebook will provide internet service to the African continent.

Under a partnership announced Monday, Facebook and European satellite operator Eutelsat will buy all of the broadband capacity on the AMOS-6 satellite owned by Israeli company Spacecom. The mission has no confirmed launch date, with SpaceX still recovering from a Falcon 9 launch failure in June, but the partners expect the satellite to begin service in the second half of 2016, according to a press release.

What I like about this is the number of companies involved, all trying to make money, with Facebook the newcomer to the space industry. And the more the merrier, I say!

The terrible political consequences of Iran deal to the Democratic Party

Several stories in the news today outline for me the terrible political consequences faced by the Democratic Party by their support for the nuclear deal with Iran:

This quote from the middle article however highlights how bad the consequences for the Democrats will be:

if Obama is left with a deal that is opposed by a majority of either the Senate or the House, the Democrats will be stuck with it. They will then be on the defensive with every hostile move Iran makes with the $150 billion the mullahs are going to get.

Like Obamacare, only Democrats are going to support this Iran deal. They will own it entirely. Thus, the first time Iran does something to violate the treaty or to use the $50 billion or more of cash they will get for signing the deal to promote terrorist attacks, it will be Democrats and only Democrats who will share the blame.

Yet, like Obamacare, the Democratic Party seems oblivious to these political risks. Come hell or high water, they are, as described in the first story, working as hard as they can to get the votes to sustain an Obama veto and make this deal law.

As much as I want these Democrats kicked out of office, I think having the Iran deal approved will be worse for the nation and the world. It will immediately dump billions of dollars into the hands of Iran’s radical terrorist leaders, surely resulting in more violence against many innocents across the globe. And it will announce to the world our willingness to allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons, which will almost certainly instigate a nuclear arms race in the Middle East and probably prompt Israel to attack Iran, possibly with its own nuclear weapons.

None of this is good. Better that the Democrats should save themselves the political cost and oppose this horrible deal.

Unfortunately, I am not hopeful. The track record of today’s Democratic Party is that of a group of people willing to put ideology ahead of everything, even if it means they will lose elections like crazy afterward. I see nothing to make me think they will do different here.

Our only option afterward then will be to throw them out of office. I pray that come 2016, the election results will make the Republican landslides of 2010 and 2014 look like mild rebukes in comparison.

Iran: We “reject the existence of any Israeli on this Earth.”

Hey, let’s sign a deal wth them allowing them to build nuclear weapons! A major Iranian official made it clear this week that his nation remains committed in destroying Israel, and all the Jews that live there.

Hussein Sheikholeslam, a senior adviser to Iran’s Speaker of Parliament, told the Hamas-affiliated newspaper al-Resalah that Tehran “reject[s] the existence of any Israeli on this earth,” a position he says Iran relayed to the P5+1 powers during the nuclear negotiations, The Times of Israel reported Wednesday. According to Sheikholeslam, Iran “will do everything to renew” its support for Hamas, which Tehran lessened in retaliation to the Sunni group’s opposition to the regime of Bashar al-Assad after the outbreak of the Syrian civil war.

Sheikholeslam’s comments are the latest in a series of threats issued against Israel by Iran since the Islamic Republic signed a nuclear agreement with the P5+1 powers last month.

There’s really not much to say, except to note the mental bankruptcy of any American politician who decides to support Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran.

Obama lets stand Iran’s goal of destroying Israel

Whose side is Obama on? During an NPR interview, President Obama said that it would be a “fundamental misjudgment” to require that Iran recognize the Jewish state of Israel as part of the nuclear deal.

Israel meanwhile is required to make deals, give up land, restrict its military strengths, and do nothing when attacked. Iran, the Palestinian Authority, Hamas, Hezbollah, and a host of other Islamic terrorist organizations can have the goal of killing all the Jews so that we can make nice with them.

Madness. It is all madness, and it is the same kind of naive madness that put us into a bloody world war in the 1930s that killed millions.

Jordan and Israel agree on Dead Sea water project partnership

On February 26 Israel and Jordan signed an partnership agreement to build a pipeline to bring water from the Red Sea to the Dead Sea as well as build a desalination plant in the Gulf of Aqaba.

Proves once again that it is all lies when the Palestinians and Islamic radicals claim that Israel’s existence causes the violence in the Middle East. Work with the Israelis, and your lives will improve. Hate them, and everyone’s lives gets worse. Apparently Jordan’s leadership understands this.

Iran military chief insists it will retain the goal of destroying Israel

Hey, let’s make a deal with these guys! A militia chief in Iran said yesterday that “erasing Israel off the map” is non-negotiable.

In other words, any deal Iran signs will do nothing to change its goal of killing all the Jews in Israel. This at least makes them consistent with other Arab entities we have negotiated with in the past. Neither Hamas nor the Palestinian Authority have ever eliminated from their ruling documents their sworn goal of wiping Israel off the map, even when deal after deal has demanded that they do so. Why should Iran be any different?

No wonder Obama wants to make a deal with them. Maybe they have like goals!

Seed from ancient extinct plant planted and brought back to life

Israeli scientists have successfully gotten a 2000-year-old seed of an extinct date plant to grow and now reproduce.

Methuselah sprouted back in 2005, when agriculture expert Solowey germinated his antique seed. It had been pulled from the remains of Masada, an ancient fortification perched on a rock plateau in southern Israel, and at the time, no one could be sure that the plant would thrive. But he has, and his recent reproductive feat helps prove just how well he’s doing.

For a while, the Judean date palm was the sole representative of his kind: Methuselah’s variety was reportedly wiped out around 500 A.D. But Solowey has continued to grow date palms from ancient seeds discovered in the region, and she tells National Geographic that she is “trying to figure out how to plant an ancient date grove.” Doing so would allow researchers to better understand exactly what earlier peoples of the region were eating and how it tasted.

Obama about to make deal with Iran

Whose side is Obama on? Kerry today informed the Israel government that the U.S. and Iran are close to a deal that Israel calls “incomprehensibly” bad and will do nothing to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons.

Earlier Friday, an Israeli official told The Times of Israel that the terms of the looming agreement were “incomprehensibly” bad and rejected the Obama administration’s contention that it would keep the regime a year away from accumulating enough fissile material for a bomb.

Estimating that a framework deal would indeed be signed soon, and that a full agreement would follow in June, this official lamented the US-led negotiators’ apparent readiness to remove sanctions without Iran being required to halt its global terrorist activities, and listed a host of areas in which Tehran was working against American, Israeli and moderate Arab interests without being made to pay a price. “The deal is bad because of its readiness to remove sanctions without any American demand from Iran to stop the terror,” the official said. “I estimate that we will have a framework deal soon, and after that a full agreement in June. This is incomprehensible.” [emphasis mine]

The interesting thing here is that both parties in Congress have express loud opposition to this deal and have voted repeatedly to continue sanctions against Iran.

UN finds that only Israel violates women’s rights

Time to pull out of the UN: The women’s rights panel of the United Nations has declared that only one nation in the entire world oppresses women, and that nation is Israel.

As the article notes, this UN propaganda panel for attacking Israel somehow couldn’t notice any abuse in Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Yemen, and China, all of which have clearly known policies that persecute women in the worst ways.

Why we keep funding this travesty only suggests to me that our elected leaders approve of this and want to see Israel attacked while letting the real persecutors get away with it.

Whose side is Obama on?

I ask this frightening question because it is becoming increasingly clear that Obama’s loyalties do not seem to be firmly lodged on the side of western civilization, the United States, or even our allies in the Middle East, both Jewish and Muslim.

To give you an idea, here is a small selection of links:

The last is interesting in that it includes these comments by Obama:

In a Nowruz (Persian New Year) video address, Obama said that a “reasonable nuclear deal… can help open the door to a brighter future for you, the Iranian people. I believe that our nations have a historic opportunity to resolve this issue peacefully — an opportunity we should not miss,” added Obama.

The collection above is only a sampling in the past week. It ignores past stories, such as Obama’s snub of the Charlie Hebdo demonstrations in France, for example.

I repeat: Whose side is Obama on? The evidence sure is mounting that he is not allied with the United States.

The myth of Netanyahu’s racism

A close analysis of last week’s elections in Israel finds that the place where Netanyahu got the most votes was an Arab village.

The residents were uninterested in any of the accusations of racism being aimed at Netanyahu by the media. Instead they were interested in housing. As one resident put it, “I used to sleep in a cave with my goats. Now I ask my daughter what wallpaper she wants in her room.”

The article provides a very detailed and educational breakdown of the Arab vote, which is far more complicated than portrayed by the leftwing media. For example, in other areas the Arabs voted not for Netanyahu but for another right-wing party in his coalition. If the right was so bigoted, as the left likes to claim, why did this happen?

Obama administration considers Munich-like UN deal to partition Israel

Having failed in its effort to depose Benjamin Netanyahu as Israel’s elected leader, the Obama administration is considering making several international deals that will bypass Israel’s government and force that country to accept a Palestinian state — even though the leaders of the Palestinians are still vowing to destroy them.

More here.

Anyone with any education at all knows how well Chamberlain’s deal at Munich with Hitler worked out. Expect the same from Obama and the Palestinians.

A list of politicians boycotting Netanyahu

Link here. The list is incomplete, as it doesn’t include Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts). Nonetheless, it is instructive to note which party every single one of these politicians belongs to. I think you can guess.

But they support Israel! They said so!

In related news, it is now reported that President Obama has cut off providing Israel its intelligence information about Iran’s nuclear program.

But Obama supports Israel! He said so!

Warren to boycott Netanyahu speech

The modern Democrat: Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) announced today that she will boycott Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress on Tuesday.

Warren voted against the Senate’s new Iran sanctions bill in the Senate Banking Committee in January, one of just four Democrats to oppose legislation that would impose new penalties on Iran in the event it reneges on any nuclear agreement with the United States.

Warren joins a handful of Senate Democratic Caucus members to skip the address, such as Al Franken of Minnesota and Bernie Sanders of Vermont, as well as dozens of House Democrats. Many are skipping because it’s election season in Israel and due to Boehner arranging the speech without consultation with the President Barack Obama, they say.

I single out Warren because she has been touted by many Democrats as their best candidate for President after Hillary Clinton. Yet, she is going to boycott hearing a speech from the only elected leader in the Middle East who happens to be our only reliable ally there. What could he possibly say that she might not like? Might he say that the policy of her Democratic president is dangerous and is allowing Iran, a country that has called for the genocidal destruction of both Israel and the United States, to build its own nuclear bombs? Could it be that she supports Obama’s policy? Her vote on the Iranian sanctions certainly suggests this.

I can tell you that the Democratic argument that John Boehner broke protocol in arranging the speech is petty fiddle-faddle. Considering the threat that Iran poses for the world, and the fact that Israel is our strongest ally to counter that threat, to not attend Netanyahu’s speech for these childish reasons is downright disgraceful. Yet, too many Democrats seem eager to show their hostility to Israel’s leader, while holding out the hand of conciliation to Iran.

Of course, when it comes election time she knows she has nothing to worry about. She knows that American Jews will continue to vote blindly for her and the Democrats.

The sideshow of Netanyahu’s speech to Congress

The report notes the increasing flood of Democrats who say they will boycott Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress next month. It also makes this cogent point:

In a sane world, as soon as Netanyahu expressed an interest in speaking, Boehner and McConnell could have responded to both the Prime Minister and our President and said it was a fine idea, set up a time and moved forward. If Obama didn’t want this to be a mess and conceivably even find a way to turn it into an advantage, he could have extended an offer to meet privately with Bibi before the speech or even show up at it with him. That would have presented a unified front between two allies for the rest of the world and the whole thing could have been a done deal by now. There’s nothing remarkable about a world leader making a speech in Washington. It’s pretty much what the place exists for.

While the House Republicans have worked this event for their own political advantages, their invitation to Netanyahu did no harm to American interests or our ally. Obama and the Democrats however have done everything they can to push back politically, even though their push back apparently threatens our ally while damaging our interests in the Middle East.

To put it another way, ask yourself whose actions are doing real harm to the diplomatic relations between the United States and Israel? Who is rejecting an ally and refusing to talk or listen to him?

Update: Check out this very pointed column noting the different reactions of the President and the Democrats to two identical invitations from Congress: “A Jew and a Catholic were invited to Congress…”

Senate Democrats consider boycotting Israeli leader’s speech

Whose side are they on? When polled, almost no Democratic senator would commit to attending Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s joint speech to Congress in March.

Essentially, these partisan hacks are telling us that they are willing to put their party ahead of the nation and the threat from Islam. I think every liberal Jew who has voted with knee-jerk regularity for Democratic politicians should read this very closely and open their eyes.

What Gazans really think about Hamas

A real journalist went to Gaza and the West Bank and rather than retype the crap that Hamas was feeding him, he interviewed the Palestinians there and found out what they really think of Hamas and its attacks on Israel. And it ain’t good.

This one quote sums it up nicely:

“Don’t get fooled. Gazans are not in love with Israel yet, but they do not want to fight Israel anymore. We do not want to embrace Israel; we just want to live normally without wars. We want to live and work in Israel like we used to. We are under Hamas occupation, and if you ask most of us, we would rather be under Israeli occupation, instead. I would welcome Netanyahu to rule Gaza so long as Hamas leaves, and I think most Gazans feel the same way. We miss the days when we were able to work inside Israel and make good money, we miss the security and calm Israel provided when it was here, but politically speaking, we just think of it as the better of two evils: Israel and Hamas.”

When did humans begin using fire?

A cave in Israel suggests that the human use of fire began around 350,000 years ago.

The researchers examined artifacts previously excavated from the site, which are mostly flint tools for cutting and scraping, and flint debris created in their manufacture. To determine when fire became a routine part of the lives of the cave dwellers, the team looked at flints from about 100 layers of sediments in the lowermost 16 meters of the cave deposits.

In layers older than roughly 350,000 years, almost none of the flints are burned. But in every layer after that, many flints show signs of exposure to fire: red or black coloration, cracking, and small round depressions where fragments known as pot lids flaked off from the stone. Wildfires are rare in caves, so the fires that burned the Tabun flints were probably controlled by ancestral humans, according to the authors. The scientists argue that the jump in the frequency of burnt flints represents the time when ancestral humans learned to control fire, either by kindling it or by keeping it burning between natural wildfires.

There are enormous uncertainties here, but the data also appears to match with what has been found in Europe. The problem however is that this date is long after humans had already migrated to colder climates, which means that they were somehow surviving for a long time in these hostile environments without fire, something that is puzzling.

What the Middle East conflict looks like from inside Israel

As I am in Israel this week visiting family, I have had an opportunity to get a feel for the political and cultural atmosphere of the Middle East. Granted, this “feel” is very superficial and subjective, but it is nonetheless instructive, as I am viewing the situation not as a resident but as an outsider who always favors freedom and justice in any political conflict.

Anyway, my sense of the situation here comes from two immediate sources, one cultural and the second personal. First the cultural.
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Heading to Israel

This morning I will be boarding a plane to begin the long tedious airplane flight from Tucson to Jerusalem, Israel, arriving there Thursday afternoon. I might post along the way, but there are no guarantees.

For the next week I will once again be staying with my brother and sister-in-law in their apartment in the west bank settlement of Alon Shvut. It was here at the bus stop just outside the settlement, where Palestinians and Israelis routinely gather to either catch the bus or hitchhike a ride to Jerusalem, that three Israeli teenagers were kidnapped by Hamas operatives, sparking the recent conflict in the Gaza Strip. Then, just a few weeks ago an Arab terrorist when on a killing spree at this bus stop, killing one young woman before the guard at the settlement gate ran down the hill to shoot him.

I might post my impressions of the situation while I am there, or it might have to wait until I return. It depends on my schedule and my desire to work while visiting family. Yesterday’s attack in a Jewish synagogue, once again by Hamas operatives, killing five people whose only crime was that they were praying peacefully, might also touch my family directly, as I think that one of the rabbis killed was a friend of my brother, his wife, and their children. I will find out more when I get there.

Meanwhile, there were Arab celebrations in various locations in Gaza, the West Bank, and even in Jerusalem, congratulating these killers for their barbarous acts.

Hamas cedes some Gaza control to Fatah

In what appears to be evidence that the recent Israeli Gaza effort did significant damage to Hamas, the terrorist organization has agreed to give the Palestinian Authority some control once again in the administration of Gaza.

Hamas and Fatah leaders said that the agreement reached on Thursday calls for the PA government, headed by Rami Hamdallah, to “immediately” assume its responsibilities in the Gaza Strip. Palestinian sources said that the agreement allows the PA to take control over the border crossings in the Gaza Strip, including the Rafah terminal. Musa Abu Marzouk, a senior Hamas official, announced that the Palestinian Authority government would soon manage all the border crossings in the Gaza Strip.

A second quote gives as some idea of the corrupt patronage of these two organizations:
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Using government funding to finance antisemitism at UCLA

A three year study has found that federal funds are underwriting “one-sided, antisemitic programming that masquerades as scholarship,” at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

Criticizing Israel in scholarship is perfectly legitimate. It appears here that much of this criticism has morphed into hatred for Jews in general, paid for by the federal government.

The American professors who think Israel is the only evil in the Middle East

Want to know which American professors are demanding an academic boycott of Israel? Here is a list.

Even as Islamic radicals and nations commit genocide against Christians, Jews, and Muslims, these so-called intellectuals only have anger at Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East and the only place in the Middle East where Christians, Jews, and Muslims can freely practice their religion and be full citizens. As the article notes,

“How can professors who are so biased against the Jewish state accurately or fairly teach students about Israel or the Arab-Israel conflict?” asked Tammi Rossman-Benjamin, AMCHA Initiative co-founder and faculty at the University of California, Santa Cruz. “Students who wish to become better educated without subjecting themselves to anti-Israel bias, or possibly even antisemitic rhetoric, may want to check which faculty members from their university are signatories before registering.”

By signing their names to this boycott, they reveal themselves to either be willfully ignorant of the complexity of the situation, or outright anti-semites.

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