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April 19, 2015 / 30 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘agreement’

Going Home

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

Israeli soldiers were packing up their gear as they leave their staging area near the Gaza border, on the first day of the ceasefire, Friday, November 22, 2012.

This morning the Likud is holding its primaries, to select a list of candidates for the Knesset. I sincerely hope that at least those Likud members who live down south will let their leader, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, know what they think about the shameful way he sold them out.

Netanyahu kicked the can down the street, gaining a few months of quiet, after which it is obvious that these same soldiers will be called back to do the job of suppressing the Hamas violence. But the new ceasefire agreement will make it just a little bit harder for them to do the job.

Thank you, Mr. Prime Minister. We could do much better.

New Concessions to Hamas: Territorial Water Doubled, Smuggling and Infiltration Made Easier

Saturday, November 24th, 2012

Egyptian, Israeli and Hamas officials will meet next Monday in Cairo to discuss the aftermath of the ceasefire agreement, Ma’an reported.

The Office of Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said he was informed by the director of Egyptian intelligence that Israel agreed to allow Gaza fishermen to go six nautical miles off the coast of Gaza instead of three, which has been the limit under Israel’s siege.

“Israel has allowed Palestinian fishermen to fish in Gaza’s waters at a distance of six miles, up from three miles,” Haniyeh’s office said.

Israeli diplomatic sources confirmed that, subject to the understandings reached with Hamas in the ceasefire memoranda, Israel began today, Saturday, to provide relief to the civilian population in the Gaza Strip, and the first such relief came in the form of aiding the Gazan fishing industry by doubling the permitted fishing territory from three to six miles.

In practice this will mean that Israeli naval forces will not be challenging Gazan boats. And Hamas’s deputy politburo chief Mousa Abu Marzook already told AP that Hamas won’t stop making weapons in Gaza or smuggling them in from the outside.

“These weapons protected us and there is no way to stop obtaining and manufacturing them,” he said.

This was to be expected, since the main lesson Israel taught the Arabs last wee was that the only way to get results from it is by killing its innocent civilians.

Israel’s contribution to the Hamas war effort will be the further easing of limits and controls over the Gaza crossings, both into Israel and Egypt.

And, according to Ynet, Gaza residents said on Saturday they are now able to enter an Israeli-enforced buffer zone on the Gaza side of the border with Israel without fear of being fired on. A few years ago, the IDF declared a 300-meter-wide zone closed to Arab movement, in order to prevent terrorists from entering Israel.

But on Saturday, farmer Nidal Abu Dakka said soldiers stood by and watched as he and others moved close to the fence.

What a relief.

Egypt’s Morsi Hailed ‘Power Broker’

Thursday, November 22nd, 2012

International media are touting the Israel-Hamas ceasefire agreement as a political boon for Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, saying the brokering of the deal has made the new president a “major regional player”.

In an article by the Associated Press, Morsi was described as someone who “won the trust of the United States and Israel”.   This despite Morsi’s open and continuous accusation that Israel was to blame for the fighting.

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton thanked Morsi for “his personal leadership to de-escalate the situation in Gaza and end the violence”.

According to reports, Morsi made numerous meetings with international dignitaries from the US, Turkey, Qatar, Germany, and other Arab countries, but did not have any direct contact with Israeli representatives, getting and giving communications via a third party.

Germany “Relieved” That Fighting Between Israelis and Gazans is Over

Thursday, November 22nd, 2012

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle applauded the ceasefire agreement between Gaza terror group Hamas and the State of Israel, saying on Wednesday that “if the ceasefire holds, this would be a great relief for all of us, but especially for the people of Israel and Gaza”.

Westerwelle said Germany would intervene wherever possible to assure that the ceasefire stays in place.

Text of Ceasefire Agreement

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

CAIRO: Israel and Hamas agreed Wednesday to an American-Egyptian-brokered ceasefire accord to end a week of violence in and around the Gaza Strip following days of marathon talks.

Here is the text of the ceasefire agreement which took effect at 1900 GMT:

“Israel shall stop all hostilities in the Gaza Strip land sea and air, including incursions and targeting of individuals.

“All Palestinian factions shall stop all hostilities from the Gaza Strip against Israel, including rocket attacks and all attacks along the border.

“Opening the crossings and facilitating the movement of people and transfer of goods and refraining from restricting residents’ free movements and targeting residents in border areas, and procedures of implementation shall be dealt with after 24 hours from the start of the ceasefire.

“Other matters as may be requested shall be addressed.”

“Implementation mechanism:

“Setting up the zero hour understanding to enter into effect.

“Egypt shall receive assurances from each party that the party commits to what was agreed upon.

“Each party shall commit itself not to perform any acts that would breach this understanding.

“In case of any observations, Egypt, as a sponsor of this understanding, shall be informed to follow up.”

How Did Eisav Sell The Bechorah?

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

Note to readers: This column is dedicated to the refuah sheleimah of Shlomo Eliezer ben Chaya Sarah Elka.

We learn in this week’s parshah of Eisav’s sale of his birthright to Yaakov Avinu. There are several questions surrounding the legitimacy of this sale. The Rivash (Teshuvos 328) questions why the sale was valid, since Eisav sold something that did not exist at that time. The halacha is that one may not sell anything that is not in the world at the time of the sale. Since the bechor did not yet exist or take effect at that time, how could the sale have been valid?

The Rivash says that he heard that the Rosh and his son, the Tur, answered that although one may not sell an item that does not yet exist at that time, he may sell an item to someone in this circumstance if he swears that he will sell it. Since the pasuk says that Yaakov made Eisav swear that he would keep his word, the sale was valid. The Rivash argues vehemently with this answer, and concludes that neither the Rush nor the Tur could have said this answer. He says that the reason one cannot acquire or sell an item that does not exist is due to a problem with the actual acquisition of the item – and that swearing cannot overcome that issue.

The Rivash answers that prior to mattan Torah one could sell items that did not yet exist. Therefore the sale of the bechorah was valid.

Some Acharonim explain the opinion of the Rosh, namely that swearing helps one to sell an item that does not exist by properly defining the reason one cannot sell an item that does not exist in the world. They explain that the underlying factor that is lacking is that one needs a certain amount of intent (da’as kinyan) in order to make a sale. When the item does not exist, one cannot reach the level of intent that is required to make the sale. However, a sworn declaration to keep his word adds to his level of intent – and the sale is valid.

On the explanation of the opinion that holds that the reason why one cannot sell an item that does not exist is because one cannot reach the required level of intention, the Ohr HaChaim points out that it only says that the purchaser cannot reach that level of intent to acquire. However, the seller can reach the required level to sell. Therefore, he asks, how can the seller’s sworn declaration help? It should only help the seller’s intent and should not aid the buyer’s intent. Thus, in the sale between Yaakov and Eisav the oath that Eisav, the seller, took should not have facilitated a sale on something that did not exist.

While this may indeed be the opinion of several Rishonim, the Shita Mekubetzes (Bava Metzia 66b) quotes from Rabbeinu Tam and the Tosafos HaRosh that explicitly say that the problem with selling an item that does not exist rests on the level of intent that the seller can reach. According to those Rishonim, swearing should aid in selling an item that does not exist since the oath will add to the seller’s level of intent.

I do not understand the Ohr HaChaim’s question. I believe that when the seller swears that he will sell the item it should increase the level of intent – even the buyer’s intent. Thus, even if the problem with the sale of an item that does not exist is with the level of intent that the buyer can reach, an oath should resolve that issue.

Reb Moshe Shmuel Shapiro, zt”l, suggests an alternate explanation of the Rosh and the Tur’s opinion. He says that we must first understand how a regular acquisition works. In every sale the buyer and the seller reach an agreement, with the buyer then required to perform a ma’aseh kinyan (action of acquisition) on the item. For example, if one is buying a small movable item he will perform hagbah (lifting it up). However, the ma’aseh kinyan is not what actually transfers ownership of the item to the buyer; rather it is the agreement that actually transfers the item to the buyer. A ma’aseh kinyan solidifies one’s words into a binding agreement, and that binding agreement is what actually transfers property ownership. That is the reason why whenever the Gemara is discussing whether a kinyan has occurred, the Gemara uses the words “eino yachol lachzor” (he cannot retract). Why? Because his kinyan produces an agreement from which he may not retract. And that is what transfers ownership.

So Now What?

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

There it is: four more years of Barack Obama. What does it mean for Israel?

The bilateral talks with Iran run by Valerie Jarrett will continue. One can hope for the best, but it is very unlikely that an agreement will be reached that will include the effective dismantling of Iran’s bomb-building capability. It’s not at all comforting to think that Israel’s security will be in the hands of Jarrett, Obama’s Chicago fixer. One can speculate what Romney might have done differently, but that is not an option now.

It’s certain that the Iranian regime will not abandon the goal which will bring it geopolitical primacy in the region and for which it has striven (and its people have suffered) mightily, except if it is forced to do so by a credible threat of force. Will Obama make such a threat? What if the Iranians call his bluff? Will he be prepared to take action that would triple the price of oil, and destroy any chance of success for his domestic agenda? Will he be prepared to risk American lives in what would be called a “war for Israel?”

He will make a deal, a deal that will be satisfactory for the US and for Iran. For the US, it will have to appear as though the Iranian program has been derailed, or at least put on hold for the foreseeable future (a few years, in today’s world). For Iran, it will have to allow the regime to continue to put the pieces together to allow a rapid breakout as a nuclear power. It will naturally include a relaxation of economic pressure on Iran — the only thing more important for the regime than getting nuclear weapons is staying in power.

As far as Israel is concerned, nothing is as important as the Iranian question. It’s unlikely that a US-Iran deal will satisfy Israel, because Israel is not at the table. The question originally posed by Ehud Barak will remain: when will Iran enter the “zone of immunity,” when will it reach the point that no practical Israeli action can prevent the Iranians from obtaining nuclear weapons? The deal may change the point at which this occurs, but it will not change the logic of the situation.

The deal will bring prestige to the Iranian regime — it will be played as though Iran forced the Great Satan to blink — and will improve their economy, thus making regime change less likely. Obama may have succeeded in holding off an Israeli strike against Iran so far, but it is still almost certain to occur.

I doubt that Obama will do much about the Palestinian issue  the short term. He must understand by now that there is simply no overlap between Israeli and Palestinian positions of such things as refugees, Jerusalem and the continued existence of a Jewish state. On the other hand, there is a danger that unfettered by electoral considerations, he and his advisers will give free rein to their undisguised pro-Palestinian ideology, and  move even further in their direction. I think it’s harder to predict what the administration will do in this area, because it is almost entirely determined by ideology, and not perceived interests. The administration does not appear to see the fate of Israel as especially relevant to practical US interests.

I do expect continued pressure for ‘regime change’ in Israel. Obama apparently feels that PM Netanyahu is an obstacle, and will do his best to help the opposition. His poorly-hidden dislike and disrespect for Israel’s Prime Minister is remarkable, especially compared with his attitude toward other foreign leaders, especially Islamists like Turkey’s Erdogan and Egypt’s Morsi — not to mention his remarkable obeisance to the king of Saudi Arabia, one of the countries whose political ideology and human-rights behavior is about as far from American ideals as can be imagined.

In these areas, I think a Romney victory would have made a significant difference. Romney clearly understands the Palestinian lack of interest in coexistence — he explained it eloquently at one point — and apparently has a warm relationship with PM Netanyahu. He does not appear to share the academic leftist view that characterizes the Obama Administration, one in which Israel plays the role of a colonial power, and the main cause of conflict is Palestinian ‘rights’ rather than Arab rejectionism. But again, this is not an option now.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/fresno-zionism/so-now-what/2012/11/07/

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