Monday, April 30, 2012

Iran As Satire

The irreverent and, in my opinion, disgraceful at times satirical show, Eretz Nehderet (It's A Wonderful Country), has been treating the threat from Iran as a joke or, to be more accurate, as a subject for laughs.

We have seen in previous episodes the atomic reactor workers in Persian accents getting things wrong, worrying about delays, oversight from their superiors, etc.

Tonight we had the singer Rita as Zita Kogrian, an investigator.  She appears in the long, buttoned-up black coat and disrobes down to a scanty but fancy bustier:

Rita, being Persian, at least got the accent perfect.

The question, though, is whether the program is preparing Israelis for the possible eventuality or asking us to disregard it or at best, ridicule those who view it as a threat.


Hail Trans-Jordania That Was!

Ever heard of a country named Trans-Jordania?


Well, if you believe "Palestine" existed, do believe then that "Trans-Jordania" existed.

From the Report by Herbert Samuel, High Commissioner and Commander-in-Chief. 30th July, 1921: officially entitled


Included in the area of the Palestine Mandate is the territory of Trans-Jordania. It is bounded on the north by the frontier of Syria, placed under the mandate of France; on the south by the kingdom of the Hejaz; and on the west by the line of the Jordan and the Dead Sea; while on the east it stretches into the desert and ends--the boundary is not yet defined--where Mesopotamia begins. Trans-Jordania has a population of probably 350,000 people. It contains a few small towns and large areas of fertile land, producing excellent wheat and barley. The people are partly settled townsmen and agriculturists, partly wandering Bedouin; the latter, however, cultivate areas, more or less fixed, during certain seasons of the year.

When Palestine west of the Jordan was occupied by the British Army and placed under a British military administration, over Trans-Jordania and a large part of Syria there was established an Arab administration, with its capital at Damascus. The ruler was His Highness the Emir Feisal, the third son of H.M. King Hussein, the King of the Hejaz. When Damascus was occupied by French troops in July, 1920, and the Emir Feisal withdrew, it was necessary to adopt fresh measures in Trans-Jordania. I proceeded to the central town of Salt on August 20th, and, at an assembly of notables and sheikhs of the district, announced that His Majesty's Government favoured the establishment of a system of local self- government, assisted by a small number of British officers as advisers.

...Five British officers were appointed to assist the councils and their officials and to aid in organising a gendarmerie. No British troops were stationed in the district. It cannot be claimed that the system of administration so set up was satisfactory. The authority of the councils was flouted by large sections of the population; taxes were collected with difficulty...

Some progress was beginning, however, to be made when, in the month of November, H.H. the Emir Abdallah, the second son of King Hussein, arrived from the Hejaz at Ma'an, to the south of Trans-Jordania. His purpose was declared to be to restore a Shereefian government in Damascus. His arrival caused much disturbance in the minds of the people of Trans- Jordania and further impaired the authority, already slight, of the local authorities. From Ma'an the Emir proceeded on March 2nd to Amman, a town on the Hejaz Railway to the east of Salt, and there established his headquarters.

The Secretary of State for the Colonies being in Palestine in the month of March, a Conference was held with the Emir, who came to Jerusalem for the purpose. An arrangement was reached by which the Emir undertook to carry on the administration of Trans-Jordania, under the general direction of the High Commissioner of Palestine, as representing the Mandatory Power, and with the assistance of a small number of British officers, for a period of six months pending a definite settlement. Order and public security were to be maintained and there were to be no attacks against Syria. Since that time a close connection has continued between Palestine and Trans-Jordania. British representatives remain in the principal centres.

I paid a visit to Amman on April 18th as the guest of the Emir...The Emir came to Palestine again in the month of May. The political and technical officers of the Palestine Administration have made frequent visits to Trans-Jordania and have assisted the local officials with their advice...The political and economic connection between Palestine and Trans-Jordania is very close...

Well, how about that.

A Saudi Arabian tried to assist his brother in Damscus (who was shifted to Iraq and you can see the two of them here in a 1923 newsclip - Abdallah is the short guy in white), threatened the French, bothered the British who then installed him across the Jordan River and in doing so, got the League of Nations to suspend the Mandate Provisions to reconstitute the Jewish national home from Trans-Jordania, making it a "country" which eventually became an "independent" Emirate in 1928 and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.  That Kingdon in April 1950 illegally annexed Judea and Samaria putting an end to any Arab state in the former Mandate for Palestine territory.

In 1933, TIME Magazine was aware of Trans-Jordania:

Smooth olive skin, enormous brown eyes, a close black beard and hennaed locks carefully plaited distinguish Emir Abdullah of Transjordania. Annoyed by torrid questions put to him by one of the few U. S. women he has ever received, His Highness answered coldly:

"To the desert Arab, the American or European woman is utterly devoid of charm. There is no mystery about her. She shows not only her thoughts but her bones..."

How the country looked in 1930-

and earlierAnother.  A notation of a 1923 clip:

RULER OF 60 MILLION MOSLEMS The Caliph of Transjordania ( Jordan ) - King Hussein - seen inspecting his soldiers [that's Abdallah's father].

And before Abdallah came, here's how it was described in The 1911 Classic Encyclopedia update:-

>"TRANSJORDANIA, EMIRATE OF, sometimes called Kerak, a dominion extending some 200 m. S. from the Yarmuk and from the Jordan eastwards to the desert. It comprises Gilead, Amman, Moab and part of Edom of the Old Testament, and El Belga, the southern portion of the former Turkish vilayet of Damascus. After forming the independent kingdom of Ghassan under a succession of Arab dynasties from A.D. 165 onwards it was conquered by the Moslems [not, Arabs weren't originally Muslims] during the joint reigns of Amr IV. and Jabala V. and VI. in 637, and under the name of Kerak became one of the six kingdoms into which Syria was divided under the khalifs of Bagdad and the Seljuk Turks. As the Emirate of Kerak it was a separate State during the Middle Ages and again became an independent principality in 1920 with its capital at Amman (pop. 2,300). The other principal towns are Kerak (pop. 2,500), Madeba (pop. 2,000), Es Salt (pop. 8,000), Ma'an (pop.3,000), Jerash (pop. 1,500). Its inhabitants possibly number 180,000, varying according to the season and the movements of the nomads; they are partly settled Arabs - many of whom are Christians - with some colonies of Circassian Moslems and a number of nomads. It contains many interesting classical and mediaeval ruins. The physical features, flora and fauna are similar to those of southern Syria.

In 1929, we learn that

Captain Playfair, commander of the Royal Air Force at Amman. Testifying Monday Captain Playfair declared...that while...arrangements were being carried out disquieting reports were received from Amman, stating that the sheiks of Transjordania had decided to march on Palestine, being eventually restrained by Emir Abdullah, ruler of Transjordania. Upon the heels of these disquieting reports, Playfair asserted, came the Arab attack upon the police of Nablus and the raiding of Talpioth. The news of the massacre at Hebron reached him an hour after its occurrence. Nevertheless an armed tender was immediately ordered to proceed to Hebron. Enroute it encountered armed bands heading for Jerusalem. As a result the tender did not arrive in Hebron until the afternoon of the massacre. His main object, Playfair stated, was to prevent the incursion of Moslems from Transjordania, Egypt and Syria.



The NYTimes and Ze'ev Jabotinsky's Cause of Death

In the NYTimes' web site obituary of Ben-Tzion Netanyahu, you can read this about Ze'ev Jabotinsky now:

In 1940, Mr. Netanyahu went to the United States to be secretary to Mr. Jabotinsky, who was building American support for his militant brand of Zionism. Mr. Jabotinsky died that same year

However, originally, it appeared thus:

In 1940, Mr. Netanyahu went to the United States to be secretary to Mr. Jabotinsky, who was building American support for his militant brand of Zionism. Mr. Jabotinsky died in a car accident that same year,

I tried to correct it and wrote to the paper and its employees and received two reactions:

thanks. we are fixing


Thanks. we are fixing it.

Jabotisnky died on August 4, 1940 and in a New York Times' article on Aug. 7, we read:

Mr. Jabotinsky, who died of a heart attack Saturday night at Camp Betar, Zionist Youth Camp at Hunter, N.Y...

At the official Jabotinsky Institute site we read:

On August 4, 1940, while visiting the Betar camp in New York, Ze'ev Jabotinsky suffered a massive, fatal heart attack.

So, we can conclude one or more of the following:

(a) the NYTimes does not trust me.

(b) the NYTimes does not trust its own archives.

(c) the NYTimes does not know how to find material in it own archives.

(d) the NYTimes does not know how to search for material either onlione or in the two main biographies of Jabotinsky, Lone Wolf by Shmuel Katz and that of Joseph Schechtman.

(e) the NYTimes never really will admit an error in connection with the Jewish right-wing.

Do you have any other suppositions?


You can send a note to the author of the obit via - Send an E-Mail to Douglas Martin.


Why Did She Write What She Wrote?

In her latest op-ed over at The Times of Israel, Sara Hirschorn quotes both Michael Sfard and Shlomo Ben-Ami on the issue of Israel's government decisioin to seek a legal alternative to the embroglio it managed to find itself vis a vis the various Jewish communities the courts have adjudged to be destroyed.

First, Sfard

...the day had arrived where, “this government only now reaches the crossroads, the dilemma: it has to choose between the rule of law and ideology.”

and then Ben-Ami

A normal state is not supposed to settle beyond its legitimate borders...we still continue to behave as if we are a Yishuv. The entire peace enterprise of this government is aimed at leading the nation to choose, once and for all, between being a state or a Yishuv.

and she clarifies herself on the matter:

...the choice between settlement and statehood is a fundamental characterization of the Zionist project.

And asks, a bit ominously ot, to be generous, employing a rather loaded term:

Does the state, in the form of authorizing settlement outposts, continue as an expansionist enterprise?


We have tried concessions, contraction, reducation.  Even pre-state Israel, the "Yishuv" of Ben-Ami, accepted territorial compromoise.

It hasn't worked very well, if at all.  That approach has not elicited moderation either in rhetoric (i.e., halting the incitement) nor action (i.e., stopping terror).  And now, after the fall of Mubarek and the Al-Qeidazation of the Sinai Beduin and the empowerment of the Muslim Brotherhood, even the Egyptian peace is, at gthe least, shaky.

But beyond all this practical view, are Jewish rights to be demeaned and ignored?

And although we know that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, Hirschorn applies the adjective to The Times of Israel editor's writing and suggests Israel choose "adult stability" and hoping

that the leadership and people of Israel will chose from this year, ad meah v’esrim and far beyond, to be a state.

Let's get back to the article's opening.  Is there a legal alternative?

There is.

Should Jews be able to live in the area?

They should.

Has the author at least hinted that there are many other problems which affect a future peace?


Does the author know better?

She does.

Is her dependence on those she quoted sufficient to establish a neutral observation and analysis?


Do the Arabs perhaps seek to revert us into the pre-state Yishuv via 1967-then-1947 border with refugee influx?


Is the real argument not borders, in any configuration, but Zionism as a nationalism and Israel's existence?


So why did she write this oped?


It's Simple, Sometimes

Ilana Brown's summary of a situation:

...the standard to which Israel is held is not one of mere democracy, but rather a saintly, benevolent form of democracy. The standard required of Israel by Israel’s critics is that we must allow foreign nationals to come into our country to protest Israeli policies; that anyone who has an opinion must be allowed free and full access to the media regardless of motive or accuracy; that any defensive measure should be considered a violation of human rights; and most of all, that Israel must accept any and all criticism without recourse or explanation. Moreover, any suggestion of hypocrisy against the accuser simply invites more vitriol.

Read her op-ed here.


Political Pornigratification of MJRosenberg

Here (k/t=JW):

The man is sick, although worse was the Israeli politician Yonatan Gefen, the author and columnist, who, in the 2006 election campaign, said that Bibi was "the wrong brother who was killed left alive". (k/t=VelvetUnderground)


Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Jew Presumes; I Respond

Here's a letter from April 9 in The Guardian:

Binyamin Netanyahu and Avigdor Lieberman (Report, 9 April) should realise that a fair proportion of the world's Jewry feel the same way as Günter Grass about the Israeli government's policies – which are in breach of Jewish law ("Do not mistreat an alien or oppress him, for you were aliens in Egypt", Exodus 22:21) and the Jewish tradition of support for the oppressed, especially at this time of Passover – and feel that it is they who are "sacrificing the Jewish people" in their militaristic and intransigent policies towards the Palestinian people in Gaza and the West Bank. Many of us who were supporters of Israel and the Zionist project have become disillusioned by the injustice of the present government, and their failure to take steps to achieve a lasting peace.

Michael Ellman

Here's my reaction:

Michael Ellman (Letter, April 10), asserts that "a fair proportion of the world's Jewry feel the same way as Günter Grass about the Israeli government's policies" of Binyamin Netanyahu and Avigdor Lieberman and that these two leaders failed "to take steps to achieve a lasting peace".  How to judge what is a "fair proportion" and if Ellman is correct on this point is beyond me, but on his second point, I can assure him that he is quite wrong.

Besides misusing a Biblical instruction which has no relevance to the Arabs of Mandate Palestine's 90-year terror campaign against Jews and Zionism, Mr Netanyahu in handing over Hebron at the 1999 Wye Agreement, which permitted Arabs to snipe at Jewish residents eventually killing an infant girl, his announcement in 2009, repeated, accepting the two-state principle and also his 2010 construction moratorium did, in the face of constant incitement, lawlessness as well as even internal Palestinian Authority corruption against its own residents, I would suggest, more than necessary in the face of Arab intransigence.  And surely no more than the Bible would demand in the situation, a Bible, incidentally, that views Judea, Samaria and Gaza as part of the historic Jewish homeland wherein Jews, like myself, should be able to reside and flourish.

Was it ever published?

What do you think?

This one though was.  And this, too.  But those were a while ago.


Hareidi Girls Caught Outdoor Bathing

At the Lions' Fountain next to the Begin Center this morning:

(photo credit: YMedad)

Can't Jews at least play football?

Notice how, in discussing the ridiculous position taken by some Muslim religious authorities to ban Islamic pilgrimage to the Temple Mount to protest Israel, the lack of free access and worship, aka "pilgrimage" as a Jewish right is somehow ignored:

While Islam's birthplace is in the Arabian peninsula, Jerusalem is intimately tied with Islam's beginnings. Muhammad's first followers prayed toward Al-Aqsa and only later turned their prayers east to Mecca. For centuries, Muslim pilgrims visited Jerusalem while on their way to the holy cities of Mecca and Medina, now in Saudi Arabia. Many Muslims believe visiting Jerusalem deepens the sanctity of their pilgrimage.

But that pilgrimage route was abruptly halted after Israel captured east Jerusalem in the 1967 Mideast war. East Jerusalem is home to the hilltop compound housing both Al-Aqsa and the Temple Mount, Judaism's holiest site. As a result, many Muslims believe visiting the mosque would amount to recognition of Israel's claim to the area and be inappropriate when Israel prevents many Palestinians from entering...In February, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas urged Muslims to visit Jerusalem. Abbas said it would underscore the city's importance to the Islamic world and bolster Palestinian claims to east Jerusalem, which they seek as their capital. "The flow of crowds and congestion in (Jerusalem's) streets and holy sites will strengthen the steadfastness of its citizens," Abbas said.

..."Visiting the state of the Zionist enemy – for non-Palestinians – is forbidden," Yousef al-Qaradawi, a widely influential Muslim cleric, wrote on his website. He said Jerusalem needs warriors not tourists. "Muslims are ordered to liberate (Jerusalem) and save it from (Israel's) hands."...
Doesn't anyone care about the Jews?

Can't they do this:

The compound is sacred to both Jews and Muslims. It is one of the most sensitive religious sites in the world, and control over the area is one of the thorniest issues at the core of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. It is revered as the holiest site in Judaism as home to the two biblical Jewish Temples. Jews today pray at the Western Wall located at the foot of the compound. Palestinians use the area to worship and rest – one of the few open spaces in the intensely crowded walled Old City of Jerusalem. They sit under the soaring pine trees and walk among the intricately painted turquoise tiles adorning the Dome of the Rock. Children play football nearby.

Even a little football?


Academic Subterfuge

I do not read Spanish. Well, not that well. But this article of academic subterfuge caught my attention (bear with me).

It starts with a "premise assumption" which means the author asserts a definition that is made up and goes on from there to misrepresent a reality.
Here is an abstract from an academic article from Madrid, Más allá del “conflicto”: Palestina y las estructuras profundas de la colonización global by John Collins and notice all the academic gobbledygook:

This article seeks to relocate the analysis of violence in Palestine within an alternative paradigm that emphasizes long-term processes of global colonization. Beginning from the premise that Palestine is a site of an ongoing settler-colonial project (Zionism) rather than a simple “conflict,” it views contemporary realities as overdetermined by the deep structures that this project has put in place. Using the work of Paul Virilio as a key theoretical touchstone, it explores Palestine’s microcosmic and often prophetic embeddedness in three overlapping colonial modes: exocolonization (the colonization of territories outside one’s own), endocolonization (the colonization of specific populations within the territory under one’s control in the context of permanent or “pure” war), and dromocolonization (the colonization of humanity by techno-scientific acceleration). Examination of these three modes not only sheds light on Zionism’s specific colonial practices (e.g., the exclusion and confinement of Palestinians), but also encourages us to think beyond actor-centered conceptions of politics and consider the impact of processes (e.g., militarization or acceleration) that stretch beyond the control of rational actors. In particular, we see how Palestine has become a laboratory for new forms of warfare and social control whose global implications cannot be overestimated. With this in mind, the article concludes by arguing that an exploration of the challenges and possibilities of decolonization in Palestine can help us think through what global decolonization might mean.

By the way, do you think this - "how Palestine has become a laboratory for new forms of warfare" - refers to suicide bombing?

I am assuming it is a version of this article of his, Between Acceleration and Occupation: Palestine and the Struggle for Global Justice in Vol 4, No 2 (2010), a Special Issue on Opening a Dialogue on Migrant (Rights) Activism of Studies in Social Justice.

Oddly enough, on the background of the claim of "illegal settlements" is this article there: "No One is Illegal Between City and Nation" by Peter Nyers which highlights this:

I’m illegal. So what?” — T-shirt slogan, “A Day Without Immigrants,” New York City, May 1, 2006

Although the issue is citizenship of immigrants, I found this conclusion quite relevant to the matter of Jews asserting rights in their historic national homeland:

...On the one hand, the most immediate concern is to pressure governments, both local and national, to regularize the legal status of all non-status migrants. While contesting territory within the zone of illegality, the movement nonetheless grounds its key demands within the law. On the other hand, these are clearly acts that call the law into question, and even break it. To become recognized as responsible it would seem that acts of irresponsibility must be undertaken. Street protests need to be organized; the offices of bureaucrats with authority to stop a deportation need to be occupied; claims must be made by those without the authority to speak; rights must be taken by those who have no right to have rights. In these ways and many others, politicized groups of non-status migrants are enacting themselves as citizens even when the law does not recognize them as such.

Again, we witness not only the corruption of language, the perverting of historical chronicles, the presentation of irrational logic and more but also the hypocrisy of the liberal/progressive approach to society and politics.

We Jews resident in Judea and Samaria have so much more rights to be where we are than any "illegal immigrant" but what is offered as a correct policy - adoption of illegal acts - is denied to us.


What Beinart Is Spawning: Brave New "Zionism"

Is this becoming the new Brave Beinart World?

From a NYTimes oped:-

Yes, there are risks for Israel in allowing a Palestinian state. But as Jews, we cannot tolerate a Jewish state that ignores its own Declaration of Independence and the teachings of our sages over thousands of years. A state that persecutes, deprives and denies its neighbors in a manner so similar to what our tormentors did to us cannot be acceptable.

That was from Stephen Robert, formerly a principal owner of the investment bank Oppenheimer & Co. and chancellor of Brown University, who currently chairman and cofounder of the Source of Hope Foundation. In Israel, it supports Hand-in-Hand, a center for Jewish-Arab education in Israel:-

Hand-in-Hand's mission is to build a network of integrated schools in Israel bringing together Arab and Jewish children for an education that spans both culture and languages. Classes are taught both in Hebrew and in Arabic...The organization's vision "Learning together – Living together", reflects the goal of creating a more peaceful, pluralistic and democratic society in Israel.

And in "Palestine", supports three programs:

...helping Palestinian trained engineers develop a software outsourcing industry similar to the Indian model...a sports group which helps disabled Palestinian athletes. This endeavor has sent Palestinian athletes to the International Para-Olympics competition...The Parent's Circle...

Peter Beinart seems to have let loose all the devils pent up in liberal, humanist, progressive Jews who now are making common cause with Israel's enemies. Robert also thinks:-

...can the Jewish people segue from deeply ingrained victimhood to the moral and practical dictates of being a major power?...Israel is losing the moral high ground through much of the world.  How can a people persecuted for so long act so brutally when finally attaining power? Will we continuously see the world as 1938, or can we use the strength of our new power to forgive, while never forgetting the lessons of our past?

Much of the world, of course, just like in 1938, couldn't care about the Jews.  And how could Israel be "brutal"?  Well, a 90-year old Arab terror campaign, continuing today, refusal to accept diplomatic overtures, specifically targeting civilians, mendacious propaganda, et al., could be the cause.  Mr. Robert, the Arabs are the primary cause and it is their responsibility to right it.  But for someone who thinks like this:

Palestinians will have to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, essentially abandoning the right of return...Ideally, Fatah and Hamas will form a unity government and Hamas will rewrite its untenable charter.

and presume it will happen is someone who is ideologically lost.

And is Beinart to blame?   Well, at Mondoweiss they think so:

I keep underestimating the Beinart effect. Three recent developments show Beinart's power. 1, Huffpo ripping off Beinart's Open Zion blog at the Daily Beast, 2, Stephen Robert's "God help an infant born in Palestine" op-ed in the IHT yesterday, and 3, Paul Krugman's support for Beinart in the Times. The liberal Zionists are having their moment...The Stephen Robert piece in the IHT, "A Reset in Jewish Thinking," borrows a lot from Beinart: for a start, the Hail Mary pass for the two-state solution. And also the idea that Jews are powerful in a way we've never been before...Beinart's book is allowing Jews to come out in a way they refused to do when Walt and Mearsheimer said it, because Walt and Mearsheimer made the mistake of being goyim.

And we learn that Robert had published an earlier version of his op-ed piece in The Nation which includes this:

...What I witnessed in the West Bank—home to about 2.5 million Palestinians and 400,000 Israeli settlers—exceeded my worst expectations. While the world’s statesmen have dithered, Israel has created a system of apartheid on steroids, a horrifying prison...How can Jews, who have been persecuted for centuries, tolerate this inhumanity? Where is their moral compass? How can this situation be acceptable to Judaism’s spiritual and political leaders? I don’t have that answer; except to say that Israel’s biggest enemy has become itself...That Israel has the upper hand now portends nothing about the future. A small state of 7 million holding 4 million neighbors in prison, without opportunity, sufficient medical care, food, water and equal justice is not a sustainable situation. When, eventually, stasis gives way to unimaginable change, it will be too late to alter course. Israel, “right or wrong,” a position taken by many, will lead to a catastrophe. It represents a suspension of critical thought; characteristic of many radical ideologies. Friends of Israel would serve it better to know the true facts and then drive Israel toward a moral and practical solution...Israel must regain the moral imperative, to disarm its enemies and secure its friends. Many believe there is an international campaign to delegitimize the Jewish state. At this point Israel is delegitimizing itself.

Yes, Beinart's Brave New Zionism is a rerun of Jewish anti-Zionism.  It ignores the threats even while noting them but dismissing them.  It promotes a liberalism that seeks to install a decidely undemocratic and oppressive regime in power.  It subverts the true demands of morality in international relations.  It derides any authentic expression of the rights of Jewish nationhood. 

In short, it is embarrassed by Jewish bravery and seeks the 'comfort' of the traditional Jewish postion amongst the nations which only can lead to a repeat of attempts to destroy the state of Israel and annihilate Jews by promoting the "it's the Jews' fault" calumny.


Friday, April 27, 2012

My Letter, in Hebrew, at Haaretz

I rebutt Tom Segev who attacked Abba Ahimeir last week. ^

Israel's Latest Double-Barreled Weapon

No, not Bar Rafaeli.

Nor Moran Gross.

Or the many more.

It's a gun.

Israeli arms manufacturer Silver Shadow will display its new double-barreled assault rifle at the Eurosatory international defense exhibition in Paris in June, according to a report by Israel Defense on Thursday.

Silver Shadow manufactured the Gilboa assault rifle, which according to the company was "specifically developed to provide a superior modern assault rifle," and will soon present another Gilboa-line product with a double barrel.

The report says the new rifle was designed for increased firepower and accuracy using standard ammunition.

And you recall the Israeli-manufactured rifle that shoots around corners?


Arabs Admit Name Absconding: Form of Colonialist Ethnic-Cleansing of Jews

Arabs admit engaging in name absconding.

In a story here:

Taybeh's roots are deep, and for Christians, important: the biblical name of the village is Ephraim. According to the Bible, Jesus Christ came to Taybeh from Jerusalem before his crucifixion. John 11:54 states: "Jesus therefore walked no more openly among the Jews; but went thence unto a country near to the wilderness, into a city called Ephraim *, and there continued with his disciples."

The name of the village was changed from Ephraim to Taybeh around 1187, by the Islamic leader Saladin.

Is name alteration not a form of colonial ethnic-cleansing?



Was this this Ephraim:

 hill-country of Ephraim

in Judges 19? and also in I Samuel 1?

But most scholars identify Taybeh with Ofra, the home village of Gideon, Judges 6, and, too, the home village of Avimelech in Judges 9, a border delineation location, mentioned also in I Samuel 13.


What's The BCEIRPP?

It stands for:

The Bureau of the Committee on the Exercise of the
Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People 

as in this:

The Bureau of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People is deeply troubled by the recent decision by the Israeli Cabinet to "legalize" three unauthorized settlement outposts in the West Bank: "Sansana," "Rechelim" and "Bruchin." While Israel, the occupying Power, has blatantly supported and engaged in the expansion of illegal settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, these brazen actions, spearheaded by Prime Minister Netanyahu himself, amount to the first official establishment of new settlements in the West Bank in 20 years, according to the Israeli watchdog organization Peace Now. In the meantime, the Israeli Government is also intensifying its efforts to thwart the evacuation of the "Ulpana" outpost ordered by the Supreme Court.

It must be clearly reiterated that all Israeli settlements remain illegal under article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, as reaffirmed in numerous Security Council and General Assembly resolutions and the 2004 advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice on the Wall. Israeli settlement activities also run directly counter to Road Map obligations...

Sites for Pal. news:
Palestine Times
Palestine Chronicle
Palestine Review



Pal. Telegraph

Pal. Solidarity




They Are Using Now Percussion Bombs

The police used batons, pepper spray and percussion bombs to disperse the crowd.

Was this here in Israel and was the IDF's Shmuel Eizner involved with pro-Pal. internationalists?


A "Who Said That?" Quiz

Who said this?

He said that scholars had lost touch with what was "right and just"

Was it

(a) Bibi Netanyahu referring to members of the Hebrew University's Political Science Department or the Tel Aviv University Political Science Department or the Ben-Gurion....?

(b) Chief Rabbi Yonah Metzger on the archaeological studies concerning the delineation of the Temple precenicts within the Temple Mount compound?

(c) Tony Blair on another EU condemnation, based on an analysis of human rights, of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria?

(d) Mahmoud Abbas complaining about the criticism of an Egyptian cleric and Jordanian royals who recently went to al-Aqsa mosque?


Ofran's Reverse Irrationality

Peace Now's Hagit Ofran of its Settlement Watch Project is now arguing backwards:

The right wing, in order to justify continuation of Israeli control over the West Bank and of the expansion of settlements, is trying to claim that 1967 and 1948 are essentially equivalent: if 1948 was justified, then 1967 must also be accepted. Or, most simply: Once Zionism is what we call support for Israel as a homeland of the Jewish people, then Israeli occupation of the West Bank is merely a logical extension of the Zionist doctrine.

Paradoxically, by invoking Zionism in support of the settlements and the occupation, the right wing is joining the biggest opponents of Israel, who argue that if, as they believe, Israel's occupation of the Palestinian people in the territories is illegitimate, then, by logical extension, so is the entire Zionist enterprise.

That is a neat trick.

I have argued for over three decades with all of Hagit predecessors that

(a) indeed, 1967 was an extension and continuation of the 1948 war;

(b) it was so, since the Arabs, who began their terror campaign in 1920, rejected Zionism and the establishment of a Jewish state, had launched a war in 1948, actually on the morrow of the UN Partition recommendation adoption, and had never stopped all throughout the 1950s and 1960s;

(c) by doing so, the Arabs had displayed implaccable hatred that had simply intensified and led to the 1967 conflict triggered by Fatah/PLO terror;

(d) the only conclusion was that anything post-1967 could not be blamed for the hostilities and violence that ocurred pre-1967 and that  includes "settlements", "outposts", "occupation", "illegal construction", "East Jerusalem neighborhoods", et al.;

(e) and now, Ofran seeks to reverse all that in an irrationality that astounds.  If, as she writes

the right wing is joining the biggest opponents of Israel, who argue that if, as they believe, Israel's occupation of the Palestinian people in the territories is illegitimate, then, by logical extension, so is the entire Zionist enterprise.

by logic, the opposite is true, which is the position I outlined above.

If the Arab opposition was a principled one, one that began in 1920 in a political sense, and if the Arab behavior was consistently negative and violent and was not at all dependent on what Jews did but ipso facto an attempt to prevent any Zionist achievement, then no only is the presence of Jews in Judea and Samaria justified by historic and legal right, but the Arab demand for a state is irrelevant to any solution to the conflict.

Their "Palestinianism" is illegitimate.  And by their attempt at inventivity, not only of manufacturing their own "history" but of denying the identity of Jews as possessing full national characteristics, the Arabs lose any legitimacy they may have - and shouldn't have - and Ofran loses her own credibility.

Backwards thinking really doesn't behoove her.  And it makes no sense.

Can't Ofran grasp that?


Thursday, April 26, 2012

Hard-Core Feminism

Reported: May 2011...Moroccan cleric Zamzami Abdul Bari said marriage remains valid even after death. He also said that women have the right to have sex with her dead husband, reported. It seems the topic, which has sparked outrage, has now been picked up on by Egypt's politicians.

Egyptian husbands could soon have sex with their dead wives if a new law is approved.  TV anchor Jaber al-Qarmouty slammed the notion of letting a husband have sex with his wife after her death under the so-called 'Farewell Intercourse' draft law...This is unbelievable. It is a catastrophe to give the husband such a right! Has the Islamic trend reached that far? Is there really a draft law in this regard? Are there people thinking in this manner?'

No comment.


Is Gaza Still "Occupied" By Israel?

From Is the Gaza Strip Still Occupied by Israel? by Col. (Ret.) Pnina Sharvit Baruch, a Former Head of the International Law Department of the IDF Military Advocate General's Office:

...The question I will refer to is whether Israel is under the duty to provide for the wellbeing of the residents of the Gaza Strip? This is the practical question. The legal answer stems from the determination of whether the Gaza Strip is still occupied by Israel. A quick analysis of the law leads to a sound conclusion that the Gaza Strip does not fall into the definition of being occupied by Israel, as will be shown below.

...This does not necessarily mean that Israel has no legal obligations towards the population of the Gaza Strip, but that to the extent that there are any such legal obligations, they are limited in nature and do not include the duty to actively ensure normal life for the civilian population...
...Article 42 of the Hague Regulations...states that:

Territory is considered occupied when it is actually placed under the authority of the hostile army. The occupation extends only to the territory where such authority has been established and can be exercised.

It is commonly agreed that, at its core, territory will be considered occupied when it is under the “effective control” of the foreign army...fulfilling “effective control” usually requires the occupier to have forces present on the ground or at least to have the ability to send, within a reasonable time, forces into the area to exercise the authority therein.

If one applies the ICJ’s formulation of the law to the situation in the Gaza Strip, it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to see how Israel could still be considered an occupier....
...Moreover, it is clear that there is an already existing government in control of the Gaza Strip which is both capable and does in fact exercise exclusive governmental powers vis-à-vis the local population – the Hamas government. The fact that the Hamas is recognized as a terrorist organization and that this government is not formally accepted does not change this reality....

...the fact that Israel controls its land border with the Gaza Strip cannot serve as an indication of control over the area itself. Israeli control over the Israeli side of the crossing points between Israel and the Gaza Strip is a natural reflection of Israel’s sovereignty within its own territory, which includes the prerogative to set policy for movement of people and goods from and to its own territory, and therefore cannot be regarded as proof of control over the Gaza Strip. This is similar to the right of control that any sovereign state has over its borders and border crossings.

As for the border between the Gaza Strip and Egypt and the Rafah crossing point located therein, these are clearly not under Israeli control, but rather are under Palestinian and Egyptian control.Another contention that is sometimes made is that Gaza’s economic dependence on Israel is significant and entails Israel’s effective control over the Strip. However, on the basis of its own internal economy, the flourishing trade through the tunnels and with the reopening of the Rafah Crossing between Gaza and Egypt mentioned above, the Gaza Strip is in fact much less dependent on Israel than in the past...

As for the contention that since Israel still controls the West Bank, the Gaza Strip is also still occupied, this has no legal basis whatsoever. Firstly, these are separate geographical units which are in fact administered by separate governments. More importantly, even if both areas are regarded as forming one political entity, it is important to note that occupation law clearly recognizes that an occupation can extend to a part of a state or territory only while other parts remain unoccupied. Thus, there is no reason not to accept that part of the Palestinian entity could be considered to be occupied while another part is not.

...Rockets have been fired towards Israeli localities from the Gaza Strip almost on a daily basis (with limited periods of calm). Under these circumstances, Israel has a clear interest and right to take firm measures aimed at weakening the Hamas government that is actively involved in such acts of armed hostility towards Israel and its civilians. This was the rationale for imposing limitations on the transfer of goods between Israel and the Gaza Strip in 2006. (In this regard it should be noted that in June 2010, Israel lifted the majority of these restrictions, allowing the flow of all goods except those whose passage represents a concrete security threat to Israel.)

...Israel has certain obligations arising from the laws of armed conflict, such as the obligation to allow for the passage of goods of a humanitarian nature...


Gideon Levy: Settlement is Legal! Residences in Great Taste

Well, this one at least:

We cross through the legal settlement of Elazar

And he admits:

at least some of the residences have been built with great taste.


The Rabbi Spent Time With Drew Barrymore

No, not one of those Kemelman mysteries.

An upcoimg wedding:
Drew Barrymore...37-year-old actress is said to have set the date for her nuptials to fiancé Will Kopelman with the couple said to be wed on June reports the pair are marrying at her Montecito estate in California in a ‘personal and intimate’ affair.

in keeping in line with the traditional values of Kopelman's close-knit family, his family rabbi is expected to conduct the service.


An AquaSkort?

An aquaskort you know?

It's the latest in modesty fashion recreation-waer.

waist with shirred elastic; three sizes - stretches to fit size XS/S, (6-10US), S/M (12-16US), L/XL (16-22US); looks like a skirt but has a split & has "tictacim" to clip the legs together; drawstring on bottom hem to enable you to tie tighter below the knee suitable for exercising, biking, hiking, yogo, and of course, swimming.



A Note of Demography


Since Independence Day last year, 161,000 babies have been born, an all-time record for the country.

Do You Use Your 'G-Spot'?

Sorry, that should be "God-Spot":-
Researchers at the University of Missouri have found that the so-called “God spot,” an epicenter of the brain responsible for feelings of spirituality and connection to a higher power, doesn’t exist. Their study instead shows that several regions of the human mind work together to produce religious experiences and the desire to connect with an omnipotent creator.

“Spirituality is a much more dynamic concept that uses many parts of the brain,” said Brick Johnstone, professor of health psychology at the university and the report’s prime author. “Certain parts of the brain play more predominant roles, but they all work together to facilitate individuals’ spiritual experiences.”

...Impairment of the right side of the brain, the report says, decreases feelings of selfishness, often sparking spiritual quests. It also can cause people to focus less on themselves and more on the well-beings of others, a cornerstone of virtually all major religions.

I guess maybe a Bratslav Hassid in hitbodedut would appreciate this.

But then, that would be a G-d Spot.


The Pictures of Shiloh's Independence Day

From Miriam-Feyge Bunimavich:

(a) the the evening prayers at our main synagogue and festive event on the theme of Torah at Shiloh.

(c) the Memorial Day ceremony.

ChallahHuAkbar's word cloud:


Don Futterman's "Brave" Beinart

Don Futterman has come to the defense of Peter Beinart.  Futterman is program director for Israel of the Moriah Fund, established by Robert and Clarence Efroymson, a private American foundation that works to strengthen civil society in Israel, and supports dozens of NGOs, including Open Zion, Beinart's new blog site.  You can hear him here.  As it happens, he once undertook a contracted job with the Begin Center some 10 years ago to review, analyze and value a pedagogical program we had just initiated, the Junior Knesset, and which I supervised.

He had published in Haaretz on April 6 (sorry for my belatedness), ,an oped, The important message of Peter Beinart.  The short summary is (with my comments in brackets and italicized) -

The Zionist boycott is a proposed wake-up call designed to counter the subliminal campaign to erase the term ‘occupied territories’ from our lexicon.

[I am not sure the grammar there is correct or what the meaning of "Zionist boycott" is.  Is the boycott "Zionist" or is Zionism being boycotted? Is Beinart a Zionist and if so, is that why he is brave?]

In any case, he makes the following points in his article, among many:-

Peter Beinart has been pilloried because of his call in a recent New York Times op-ed and in his newly published book, "The Crisis of Zionism," for a Zionist boycott of West Bank settlements. tackling the concealed heart of our government's strategy: its campaign to erase any distinction between the occupied territories and Israel. Beinart has staked out a brave position, particularly in today's Zionist landscape.

["brave"?  wait, didn't Paul Krugman just now use that term?  here.  is that plagiarism? and as for "concealed", is this a new conspiracy theory?  odd.  i've been reading about this for years. and even Gershom Gorenberg recently wrote, in Open Zion (!), of the "...notion that erasing the Green Line is a recent or accelerating phenomenon. It’s not."  But in any case, he is being pilloried not so much for his opinion as for his lack of rigorous basis for his opinion, his sloppy research, his misrepresenting history and current politica and facts and for that he deserves some pillorying]

...What's left of the left is portrayed as a group of impotent nudniks who won't let go of the old squabbles, or as radical post-Zionists ready to dismantle the state.

[well, that is encouraging.  at least those of the Left have an ability for self-caricature]

As an Israeli citizen, I'm forbidden by law from supporting the Zionist boycott of the West Bank - and in fact, I don't endorse it, although I couldn't equate boycotting settlements with delegitimizing Israel. But the very existence of a law limiting freedom of speech and dissent should trouble American Jews concerned about Israel's democracy at least as much as any challenge to settlement supremacy.

[supremacy is rather a loaded term, is it not?  and as for that law and what's prohibited, Futterman has it wrong. Here: "numerous NGOs have released misleading and false statements about the new law, including the New Israel Fund, which wrongly claimed that the bill 'criminalizes freedom of speech,' and Gush Shalom, which says the law is 'a death sentence for the right to freedom of expression.' The anti-boycott law does not specifically address boycotts of 'settlements;' it is meant to address calls for boycotts anywhere in and against Israel."]

Critics of Beinart's boycott call complain that a Zionist boycott - one focusing exclusively on West Bank settlements while encouraging investment in Israel proper - would be ineffective or exacerbate the divides in Israel or between Israel and Diaspora Jewry.

[i admit it, i'm still trying to figure out what he means by "Zionist boycott".  is it a  boycott practiced primarily by Zionists?  why would Zionists do that?]

Zionist boycott is a proposed wake-up call designed to counter the subliminal campaign to erase the term "occupied territories" from our lexicon...Beinart argues persuasively that Prime Minister Netanyahu, despite his 2009 Bar-Ilan speech endorsing a Palestinian state, has never wavered from his vision of a Palestinian entity as a series of cantons easily controlled by Israel. Beinart's critique extends to the official leadership of American Jewry, documenting how right-wing Likud supporters came to dominate AIPAC, and how that lobby has achieved disproportionate status and celebrity among American Jewish institutions...

[even if that 'hostile' takeover is true, for arguments sake, when AIPAC was dominated by Labor Party stalwarts, was that okay?  if Moriah Fund supportees take it over, is that okay? is there a value-quotient no-pass barrier here?]

Rather than engage the rest of the Zionist spectrum, critics on the right prefer to belittle a "leftist" straw man of their own creation - a deluded and self-hating Jew who blames only Israel for all that has gone wrong in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It is as if by demanding accountability of ourselves and criticizing our own crimes, we are excusing Palestinian atrocities, as if leftists do not lose loved ones to Palestinian terror, or haven't noticed that Hamas controls Gaza...that doesn't mean we must allow our urgent security needs to be twisted to justify land grabs and the daily intimidation of Palestinians. Nor must we ignore construction of outposts, which are illegal even under Israeli law, or provocative settler incursions into Palestinian neighborhoods.

[there is nothing wrong with introspection and self-criticism.  "our crimes", however, is another matter.  there Futterman is going off his own edge of extremism and shrillness, if not stridency. it is the Left that impugns ad personem, which seeks to blame all on the Right with fanaticism, extremism and fundamentalism.  and which assumes no accountability for its failed policies in the past, from Brit Shalom, to Ihud, and other progressive/liberal ideas that have failed.  Amos Oz was extraordinary in his use of language to malign and condemn.  as for 'land grabs', besides delving into the whole question of state lands, the crimes the Arabs are responsible for more than enough negate their demand for a state and surely, the immorality of allowing them a political framework, the essence of my criticism of Beinart as a liberal and progressive, is that he facilitates the establishment of a state that would be infinitely increase the evil and immoral actions of these Arabs, from Fatah to hamas to Islamic Jihad, with Hezbollah assisting in the north to do damage not only to Jews but to continue to repress their own populace.]

Although I doubt a "Zionist boycott" is the right tactic, "The Crisis of Zionism" is a remarkably articulate and compelling statement about what has gone haywire in Israeli politics and at the top of some American Jewish organizational leadership. Refusing to accept the settler map, calling for an honest debate...these are Jewish and Zionist acts of the highest order, the acts of "free people" who have left the slave mentality of bondage behind.

[i like that left-wing finegling: the boycott is wrong but go ahead and defend the guy anyway for promoting it. and the map?  it's either the Hamas map - no Israel whatsover - or our map.  Israel cannot permit the hill region of Judea and Samaria to revert to terrorists.]

All in all, Futterman does not present any truly reasoned coherent position supported by facts and data.  His admiration for 'Beinart The Brave' cannot provide an excuse for the lack of rationality in his article.



And I thought I'd add this information as it a topic that Beinart has exploited, the so-called younger Jewish generation abandoning, or being turned off, Israel:

Social scientists who study contemporary Jewry are engaged in an intense debate over trends in American Jewish attachment to Israel. The dominant view has been that age-related differences reported in surveys indicate intergenerational decline, with successive birth cohorts less emotionally attached to Israel than their predecessors. An alternative view has been that age-related differences reflect stages of the lifecycle, with members of each birth cohort becoming more emotionally attached to Israel as they grow older. Drawing on evidence from four sets of surveys administered to comparable samples at ten-year intervals, the present paper weighs the evidence for the “generational” versus “lifecycle” hypotheses about the nature of changes in attachment. The findings indicate that, across the four sets of surveys, emotional attachment increased between Time 1 (the first survey, administered in the 1990s) and Time 2 (the second survey, administered in the 2000s). The increases were for respondents as a whole as well as most age cohorts. In each of the four surveys sets, the largest increases occurred as respondents transitioned from their 30s to their 40s, i.e., from young adulthood to mature adulthood. Although increasing attachment to Israel throughout the period as a whole complicates the analysis, we conclude that the preponderance of evidence supports the view that emotional attachment to Israel increased over the lifecourse rather than declined across the generations. That said, future trends may be influenced by new dynamics including increased intermarriage, more widespread Israel travel, and a highly fluid political situation.

That's from


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

My Response To David Makovsky Is Up at Sh'ma

Here, at Sh'ma, entitled

Guest Blog Post: In response to David Makovsky’s “A History of Hatred”

It starts off:

David Makovsky suggests (“A History of Hatred”, Sh’ma 42/689, April 2012) that the small group of “Price Tag” hooligans are “the closest inheritor of the Sicarii mantle” that “it is possible they are enjoying the tacit support of a wider group” and they must be stood up to “just as [is done] with Palestinian terrorism.” Makovsky is not only misleading his readers but is engaging in the very sinat chinim he rails against...

Read it all.


Another Low Intensity Conflict Report Source

I have been republishing Yehudit Tayar's reports on terror attacks taken from the logs of the ambulance and emergency services units and I have entitled them Low Intensity Conflict.  Here is #10.

Another source of information is "News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict" contained in The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center Newsletter.

Here is from the report of April 18-24, 2012:-


Rocket fire from the Gaza Strip targeting Israel's south continues (one rocket hit identified this past week); a yeshiva student was stabbed in Jerusalem, apparently for nationalistic reasons; two Palestinians from Nablus were detained at the Tapuach junction (south of Nablus) with four IEDs, a gun and ammunition in their possession.

On April 17 the Israeli prime minister met with a delegation of Palestinians who brought him a letter from Mahmoud Abbas. Salam Fayyad, the Palestinian prime minister, did not attend the meeting because relations between him and Mahmoud Abbas have become strained. Hamas denounced the letter and called on the Palestinian Authority to end its "useless contacts" with Israel.

The Palestinians have begun preparations for the May 15 marking of Nakba Day. Demonstrations and marches are planned for the territories and along Israel's borders.

Israel's South Important Terrorism Events

Rocket Fire Targeting the Western Negev

Rocket fire from the Gaza Strip targeting the western Negev continues. One rocket hit was identified in an open area. There were no casualties and no damage was done.

Infiltration from the Sinai Peninsula along the Israeli-Egyptian Border Prevented

On the afternoon of April 23 an IDF force engaged in routine security operations along the Israeli-Egyptian border identified a suspicious vehicle driving along the security fence and called to the vehicle to halt. When the driver and passengers ignored the order, the force opened fire. A number of suspicious persons were wounded and were taken to a hospital in Israel for treatment (IDF Spokesman, April 23, 2012).

Judea and Samaria

Stabbing in Jerusalem

On April 19 in Jerusalem a 20 year-old yeshiva student was stabbed in the stomach, incurring serious wounds. Two young Arab men were detained as suspects. The initial investigation revealed that the motive for the attack was apparently nationalistic.

Other Events in Judea and Samaria

On April 21 Israel border policemen saw two Palestinians about 17 years old alighting from a taxi at the Tapuach junction (south of Nablus), carrying a suspicious-looking bag. The policemen ordered them to halt but the two turned and ran. The youths, both residents of the Balata refugee camp near Nablus, were found to be carrying four IEDs, a gun and ammunition (Israel Border Police Spokesman, April 21, 2012).

Stone Throwing

There has recently been a rise in the number of stones and Molotov cocktails thrown at Israeli vehicles south of Jerusalem in the Gush Etzion district; on April 19 there were five such attacks. In one instance Palestinian youths threw stones and rocks at an Israel car at the Gush Etzion junction. One of the rocks hit the car and shattered the front windshield. Riding in the car were a couple and their two-year old son (Ynet, April 20, 2012).

There's a picture there of the April 21 IEDs and weapons found in the possession of the two Arab teenagers.


New Season of Archaeological Digging at Tel Shiloh

A new season of excavations has begun at Tel Shiloh and at a new location, the north-east section of the plateau, north of the summit. I cannot as yet report on particulars but here are some pictures I took:

a) going down:

b) what's at the bottom of that cistern?

c) to where are those steps leading?

d) can you discern the lining of a taboun, which is a clay-lined oven built into the ground?

(photo credits: YMedad)

The season will extend until October or when the rains come.

Details to be forthcoming about any significant finds.

P.S.   Could this be part of an anti-UNESCO campaign?  Remember the infamous "chicken bones" tale from the PA's Director of Archaeology? Background here, also here, and here


Israel's "Territorial Expansion" - 1958

The Abba Eban interview with Mike Wallace on Israel threatening world peace.

And five decades later...


Found: Apartheid in "Palestine"

Apartheid, that is, in an academic article about "Palestine".

About tourism in "Palestine".

This one:-

Factors Impact on Religious Tourism Market: The Case of the Palestinian Territories by Jafar Subhi Hardan Suleiman, Badaruddin Mohamed

It appeared in the International Journal of Business and Management and this is its abstract:-
Palestine, the home of the world’s three major religions: Islam, Judaism, and Christianity. Hence, is considered as the first center of tourism due to the coming of these three major world faiths flocking to Palestine to engage in sacred pilgrimages. Some of these sites which are frequently visited are Jerusalem, Nazareth, Jericho, Bethlehem and Hebron.

Palestine was for many centuries a destination of pilgrims and visitors of Muslims and Christians from all over the world. Unfortunately, Palestine after the 1948 War fell under the Israeli Occupation and was exposed to many catastrophes up until this time; all this led to the instability and the decrease in the number of tourists to Palestine; which had become a dangerous area which reduced the flow of tourism in general. At the same time, came the peace negotiations between the PLO (Palestinian liberation organization) and Israel in Oslo which was signed in Washington in 1993. In this period there was an economic recovery and tourism in the Palestinian Territories, especially in the West Bank and Gaza Strip started to once again flourish.

The Primary purpose of this paper is to show the significance of the religious tourism in Palestine and influence of conflict on Palestinian tourism; also indicated which factors impacts on Palestinian tourism as well. This paper concludes that Palestine is unique, due to its history, heritage, culture, geographic location, environment and religions. This study suggests to the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities in Palestine to create new forms to protect the Islamic and Christian places in Palestine as well as to encourage more tourists to visit. Peace is considered as a vital strategy for enhancing the Palestinian tourism industry.

Is there an ombudsman for complaints on material appearing in academic articles?

First, "Palestine" as a country never existed. It was a Mandate territory and it was decided by a body with international law standing to become the reconstituted Jewish national home. And the Arabs consistently rejected all attempts at compromise, including yielding of territory in partition schemes, not to mention their political terror campaign beginning in 1920. And after 1948, Jordan occupied "Palestine".

If Israel, for these academics, is still "Palestine", and after all, Jordan was formerly TransJordan and formerly, "Palestine", as well, what is being presented, at least subliminally, is the eradication of Israel.

Secondly, since we know that the PA is intent upon reaching out to international bodies in an effort to supplant Jewish historical and religious sites with an Islamic identity (see the "follow-up" section here), this eradication is already at work. And if what concerns the authors are the Islamic and Christian places, well, that is apartheid to me.

Cultural apartheid.
Historical apartheid.
Religious apartheid.


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Are Arab Communities Illegal?

As per the BBC

Israel has decided to make legal under Israeli law three settlement outposts in the West Bank, the prime minister's office has said in a statement.  It said that a ministerial committee had decided to "formalise the status" of Bruchin and Rechelim, in the north, and Sansana, near Hebron in the south.

I wouldn't term those communities "outposts" and I think Rechalim was made legal; already years ago. And as for Rechalim, I was there at its founding about a month after the terror incident (from which my wife was saved, being in another bus) on the eve of the Madrid Conference at the end of October 1991 when our neighbor here at Shiloh was murdered, Rachela Druck.
In any case, we have a response:

The Palestinian Authority strongly condemned the decision. "Every single settlement built on Palestinian land is illegal", Chief Negotiator, Saeb Erekat, told the BBC..."I don't want to get into a discussion about what the Israelis use as an excuse for what is legal and what is not," says Mr Erekat, who handed the letter to the Israeli Prime Minister. "The Israeli government must choose between peace and settlements. It cannot have both."

I wonder, according to his thinking, is every single Arab community built in Israel...illegal?  Are they "settlements"?

Where's the logic, if not?



Foreign Secretary condemns Israel’s legalisation of illegal outposts
24 April 2012

Foreign Secretary William Hague comments on the news that the Israeli government has legalised three outposts in the West Bank.

Foreign Secretary William Hague said:

“I strongly condemn the Israeli government’s decision yesterday to turn three illegal outposts in the West Bank into settlements. I urged the Israeli government in my statement on 5 April to remove - not legalise - outposts across the West Bank. I fully appreciate the difficult political discussion within Israel such action would require. However, the official sanction being given by Israel, designating outposts as settlements for the first time in over 20 years, sets a dangerous precedent for other outposts, which are illegal under both international and Israeli law.

“By seeking to entrench illegal settlements in the West Bank, as this decision does, the Israeli government risks sending the message that it is not serious about its stated commitment to the goal of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The United Kingdom, in common with all our European Union partners, urges the Israeli government to listen to Israel's international friends. The UK calls on the Israeli government to focus their efforts on a lasting resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, to which this further shift in settlement policy presents one more obstacle. I call on the Israeli government to rescind this decision."


A Haaretz Poem: "Auschwitz Settlements"

At my Hebrew-language blog, I have posted an outrageous poem by Amir Or entitled "And The City Overturns", recalling Ninveh:

 וְנִינְוֵה נֶהְפָּכֶת
and Nineveh shall be overthrown

It is a cry from the extreme left-wing, on social issues, politics and whatever else fits his agenda. A placard of propaganda.

Amongst his objects of scorn and distaste, are

"...rats and men,
eyes that are cast down at roadblocks,
the dead, conquerors of the hill-country,
a picture-reflection of their homeland,
with its Auschwitz settlements, and Masada settlements,
the Holocaust that was, and that will be...
...the Kaddish of our graves and the Kadish of their grave.

And let us not say Amen, and let us not speak in their language,
And let us not go any more according to their method, their statutes, their crimes...".

Contemporary culture on the pages of Haaretz.


Negotiations Assist?

I think I found something that may facilitate Israel-Arab negotiations, or completely mix us all up:


Intercultural Communication Defined

Intercultural Communication is the management of messages for the purpose of creating meaning across cultures. Culture, according to Philipsen, is defined as “A socially constructed and historically transmitted pattern of symbols, meanings, apprentices, and rules.” In other words, culture is a code (Griffin, 3rd ed. 404).

Unit of Analysis

The unit of analysis for intercultural communication is the culture itself.

List of Representative Theories
Anxiety Uncertainty Management Theory
Critical Theory (Habermas)
Critical Theory (Deetz)
Cross-cultural Adaptation
Cultrual Critical Studies
Face Negotiation
Feminist Genre
Marxist Theory
Meaning of Meaning Theory
Muted Group Theory
Nonverbal Typologies
Standpoint Theory


Get Ready: The New Unilateralism

The New York Times does it again.  Another op-ed from the left.  Despite attempts, has the NYTimes ever published an op-ed from someone, not an elected politician or government official, supporting the viewpoint that Israel has a right and need to be in Judea and Samaria, and Gaza, and to contruct communities there?

Well, today, we have "Peace Without Partners" from Ami Ayalon, Orni Petruschka and Gilead Sher (Ayalon is a former commander of the Israeli Navy and head of the Israeli domestic security agency and a failed politician, Orni Petruschka is an entrepreneur (?!), and Sher was a peace negotiator and chief of staff to Prime Minister Barak from 1999 to 2001.


...Israel doesn’t need to wait for a final-status deal with the Palestinians. What it needs is a radically new unilateral approach: It should set the conditions for a territorial compromise based on the principle of two states for two peoples, which is essential for Israel’s future as both a Jewish and a democratic state.

Israel can and must take constructive steps to advance the reality of two states based on the 1967 borders, with land swaps — regardless of whether Palestinian leaders have agreed to accept it. Through a series of unilateral actions, gradual but tangible changes could begin to transform the situation on the ground.

That is a recipe for disaster, see: Unilateral Disengagement and Yossi Beilin:

"The greatest risk underlying unilateral action is the strengthening of extremists," wrote Yossi Beilin, a former Israeli justice minister and one of the architects of the Geneva Accord, an unofficial peace plan.
Israel...should create a plan to help 100,000 settlers who live east of the barrier to relocate within Israel’s recognized borders. That plan would not take full effect before a peace agreement was in place.

But, what "recognized borders"?  If unilateral and, regardless if the Pals. accept it, ...are they crazy?

...Israel should also enact a voluntary evacuation, compensation and absorption law for settlers east of the fence...

Can we do so to Arabs west of the new "recognized borders"?  Why not?

Our organization, Blue White Future, holds regular meetings with settlers. We have found that many would move voluntarily if the government renounced its sovereign claims to the West Bank, because they would see no future for themselves there.

Actually, that sounds like the Black-and-Blue Future.

Critics will argue that unilateral moves by Israel have been failures — notably the hasty withdrawal from the Gaza Strip in 2005, which left settlers homeless and allowed Hamas to move into the vacuum and launch rockets into Israel. But we can learn lessons from those mistakes. Under our proposal, the Israeli Army would remain in the West Bank until the conflict was officially resolved with a final-status agreement. And Israel would not physically force its citizens to leave until an agreement was reached, even though preparations would begin well before such an accord.

Oh, they read my mind.  Have they read the Pals' minds?  No way will that be acceptable to the other side.  Have they read Hamas' latest "we won't accept a [peace treaty" statement?
And after reading this, ask youselves, out of 360,000 Jewish resident revenants in Yesha, how many are the "many" of whom they write?

We don’t expect the most ideologically motivated settlers to support this plan, since their visions for Israel’s future differ radically from ours. But as a result of our discussions and seminars with settlers of all stripes, we believe that many of them recognize that people with different visions are no less Zionist than they are. We have learned that we must be candid about our proposed plan, discuss the settlers’ concerns and above all not demonize them. They are the ones who would pay the price of being uprooted from their homes and also from their deeply felt mission of settling the land.

There's more but it is platidudinal prose.  No logic, no realpolitik.

Too bad the NYTimes wastes column inches on such.