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November 29, 2015 / 17 Kislev, 5776
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘American Israel Public Affairs Committee’

A Tale of Two Prayers: Muslims and Clinton vs. Jews and Psalms [video]

Friday, September 4th, 2015

I am [at] peace, but when I speak, they [come] to war – Psalms 120:7).

A new video of an Arab event in the Old City that was in celebration of a new groom shows the overwhelming presence of political aspirations, with flags of both the Hamas terrorist organization and the Palestinian Authority.

If foreign media were to take off their blinders, they could understand better, if they wanted to, the essential differences between the intentions of Jews and Muslims at the Old City and on the Temple Mount.

We have no idea of what the Arabs were chanting in their flag-waving celebrations, but it is a safe assumption they were not reciting Psalms.

Up to several thousand Jews march in the same place every month, except when the police decide it might offend Arabs. They also wave flags, those depicting the Holy Temple. Two of them were destroyed centuries ago, but the Palestinian Authority likes to claim they never existed.

The monthly rallies are centered on the recital of several Psalms, which brings to mind the obvious one when comparing the Muslim and Jewish marches.

Psalms 120:67 states:

I am [at] peace, but when I speak, they [come] to [wage] war.

The literal translation is “I am peace, but when I speak, they are war,” and the words “at or “for” are necessarily inserted in the first part of the verse and “come” in the second part.

Every translation of any text is prone to interpretation, and when it comes to Israel, the interpretations come with a mindset.

The international community does not consider Israel for peace, and it likes to believe that the Arab world wants peace.

The most recent evidence comes from the newest batch of “pro-Israel” Hillary Clinton’s private e-mails.

She and her close confidantes pre-judge Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu as a man against peace. The Palestinian Authority is assumed to be a friend of peace, despite Psalms 120:7, Palestinian Authority incitement and terror, and Mahmoud Abbas’ spitting in the face of the Obama administration by openly destroying the basis of the Oslo Accords and rejecting a diplomatic solution.

The e-mails to Clinton’s private e-mail server, even though some of the information was classified, are chock full of anti-Netanyahu observations from people such as Martin Indyk, former U.S. Ambassador to Israel. He wrote Clinton about Netanyahu:

At heart, he seems to lack a generosity of spirit. This combines with his legendary fear of being seen as a ‘freier’ [sucker] in front of his people to create a real problem in the negotiations, especially because he holds most of the cards.

Another source of the e-mails is Sid Blumenthal, whom Clinton seems to have made a de facto adviser when she was Secretary of State even though the White House rejected her attempt to bring him on board in an official capacity.

Clinton insists his e-mails were “unsolicited” but one of her e-mails to him states, “Keep ’em coming,” and another beseeches him to advise her before she was to speak to AIPAC.

She liked what she read because it was nasty towards Netanyahu, and keep in mind that if Clinton is the next president of the United States, Blumenthal will be on her team.

For example:

[Netanyahu’s] father, Benzion Netanyahu; 100 years old, secretary to Jabotinsky, and denounced as too radical by Begin, adored his son Yoni, heroically killed at Entebbe. Benyamin has never measured up. Benzion has constantly criticized him in public for his deviations from the doctrine of Greater Israel.

Bibi desperately seeks his father’s approbation and can never equal his dead brother. See Benzion’s most recent scathing undermining of his son Bibi and Bibi’s tearful tribute to his brother just last month.

Obama and Biden Running after the Jews to Back ‘ObamaDeal’

Thursday, August 27th, 2015

President Barack Obama is beginning to sweat over diminishing Jewish support for the deal with Iran, especially among Congressmen.

He and Vice-president Joe Biden are shifting into high gear to convince Jews to persuade their Representatives and Senators to vote for “ObamaDeal.”

Several Jewish senators already are in the “no” camp and key Jewish Sen. Ben Cardin on the fence, and a continuing drop of support for the deal in the polls is turning the Jews into the best friends Obama ever had.

Biden is scheduled to meet with American Jewish leaders in Florida next week in an event whose organizers include Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who heads the Democratic National Committee. She has not yet announced whether she will vote for or against the deal.

President Obama is scheduled to connect with Jews with a webcast Friday. Although it is long-shot that the Senate or the House of Representatives can come up with a veto-proof majority against the deal, the  president is not taking any chances.

The webcast will be viewed through the site of the Jewish Federations of North America..More than a dozen local Federations have come out against the agreement with Iran, and approximately 100 or more have been non-committal.

The webcast is scheduled for 2:10 p.m. tomorrow, and pre-registration is available here.

The organization, in a carefully worded and neutral statement, wrote on its website:

We are hopeful that diplomatic efforts will prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons, and we appreciate the hard work President Obama, Secretary of State Kerry, and Under Secretary of State Sherman have put into crafting this agreement.

At the same time, we are concerned. Iran’s support for Hezbollah and Hamas, its human rights violations and its aggressive threats toward neighboring countries—including Israel—make the specter of a nuclear-armed Iran untenable.

President Barack Obama and his administration have repeatedly said that any deal with Iran must shut down Iran’s uranium enrichment pathway to a weapon, cut off all four of Iran’s potential pathways to a bomb, and track Iran’s nuclear activities with unprecedented transparency and robust inspections throughout its nuclear supply chain. We agree.

We urge Congress to give this accord its utmost scrutiny.

The Federations earlier this month provided Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu with a platform to speak out against the deal.

The  Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, which is a co-sponsor of Friday’s webcast, the Anti-Defamation League and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) have announced their opposition to ObamaDeal.

J Street supports it.

Language Skirmishes on the Iran Deal (‘Opposition’ May Not = Voting No)

Friday, August 14th, 2015

It is not only the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action that needs to be parsed carefully – we all know about that, at this point. “Snap-back” does not mean actually “snapping,” it will, if anything, be more like lumbering, and “immediate, 24/7 inspections” sometimes means inspections after 24 hours times 24 days.

The statements uttered about the Nuclear Iran deal by congressionally elected representatives can be almost as tricky.

For example, California Congressman Brad Sherman (D-CA-30) issued a press release on July 14, the day the JCPOA was announced. Sherman referred to the Nuclear Iran deal in pretty dismissive language, calling it “the good, the bad and the ugly.” But it wasn’t until Friday, Aug. 7, that Sherman conclusively stated he would vote against the JCPOA when it comes before Congress in September.

The latest example of this equivocal language arose when Nebraska’s Rep. Brad Ashford (D-NE-2) spoke about the Agreement. The freshman Congressman sits on the House Armed Services Committee and the subcommittees on Emerging Threats and Capabilities and on Strategic Forces.

Ashford returned from an American Israel Public Affairs Committee trip to Israel earlier this week, and immediately was quoted in several Omaha papers as opposing the Iran deal. In fact, he does oppose the Iran deal, saying it “is not good enough” and that it is “not the right deal at this time.”

Ashford spoke to several Jewish groups as well as to news reporters after returning from the Middle East, and told them exactly that.

After speaking with political, military and intelligence officials about the deal and how it could ultimately affect security in the Middle East, Ashford told the Omaha World Herald that “the agreement, as currently constituted would unfetter Iran’s ability to spread terrorism without ultimately stopping the regime from pursuing a nuclear weapon or missiles capable of reaching the United States.”

The OWH also quoted Ashford as saying,”If that’s what we get to vote on, I’m not going to vote for it the way it is.’’

That’s when people began putting Ashford in the “voting no” column.

But there still seemed to be a little bit of space between what the Nebraska Congressman was saying and a firm commitment to vote against the Agreement.

When the JewishPress.com spoke with Ashford’s communications director, Joe Jordan, it became apparent that Ashford cannot be put in the column of solid “no” votes against the Nuclear Iran deal.

What the Congressman really wants is the opportunity to vote on a different agreement, one that has more safeguards in it. He definitely does not believe this is the best deal or even that it is the one Congress should be voting on.

But it is virtually certain that the options he prefers are not ones that will be available.

Jordan tried hard to be as clear as possible and apologized for “splitting hairs,” but ultimately the best we could agree on is that Ashford goes in the “undecided” column.

Let that be a lesson for all Nuclear Iran deal list makers.

Delegation of House Democrats Meets With Pres. Reuven Rivlin

Wednesday, August 5th, 2015

A delegation of Democratic Congressional members met with President Reuven Rivlin Wednesday in Jerusalem to discuss the Iran nuclear deal signed by the U.S. and world powers.

The group, led by House Minority Whip Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) is currently in Israel for a visit to the country arranged by AIPAC. Rivlin called visit “yet another link in the long and unbreakable chain tying together the U.S. and the State of Israel.”

He quoted President John F. Kennedy, who said, “Friendship for Israel is not a partisan matter. It is a national commitment.”

Then Rivlin went on to say, “We stand together in a partnership established on the strong foundations of common values and a shared vision, rooted in the long-standing commitment to democracy, liberal values, and human rights for each and every citizen.

“These are not just slogans,” he stressed. “For us in Israel, we strive each and every day, to achieve our goal of a Jewish, democratic state. Democratic and Jewish. Where the historic traditions and values of the Jewish people, and the individual rights of each and every citizen of this land, are protected and safeguarded.”

Rivlin also spoke about the concerns of Israeli citizens over the Iranian nuclear deal signed by the U.S. and world powers in Vienna last month.

“Along with Israelis on all sides of the political spectrum; I am deeply concerned about the recent nuclear deal signed with Iran… We fear this agreement is a first step in the legitimization of Iran’s policies and strategies, and only acts to further destabilize a chaotic region,” he said.

Nevertheless, he added, “We know that Israel does not stand alone. Whatever the Congress decides, it will be your decision as representatives of the American people. We, as your allies and partners, must make sure that whatever the result of this vote, our strategic alliance stands, and grows even stronger.”

Rep. Hoyer thanked Rivlin for his warm welcome and said the visit came not only as a means of learning about the present-day facts, politics and strategic and security issues “that we all must focus on” but also as a “reaffirmation of the unbreakable bond that exists between Israel and the United States of America. We come to reaffirm that bond, even though there may be differences of opinion today between our leaders on issues of great importance to not only our two countries, but to this region and the entire world.

“We think it is critical now more than ever to let it be known by those who would undermine democracies, those that would undermine free peoples, that we are united and not divided.”

Second Take on Iran by AIPAC: Congress Must Stop this Bad Deal

Friday, July 17th, 2015

Following the announcement of the Iran- P5+1 nuclear deal, JewishPress.com summarized the major Jewish American organizations’ positions on the Iran deal. The American Israel Public Affairs Committee initial statement was rather pareve, but today’s statement, based on a fuller review of the document, is a clear thumbs down and call to action.

AIPAC has concluded that the deal falls short on all five areas it had concluded were critical: inspections, possible military dimensions, sanctions, duration and dismantlement.

The deal, AIPAC told its membership, “would facilitate rather than prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon and would further entrench and empower the leading state sponsor of terror.”

AIPAC concluded that the deal would further destabilize the Middle East, including encouraging an arms race in the region.

In contradiction to what the negotiators and President Obama told the nation, AIPAC insisted that the alternative to the proposed deal is not war.

Calling on its members to inform their legislative representatives, AIPAC said the agreement must be rejected and sanctions on Iran must be maintained while efforts are made to negotiate “a better deal that will truly close off all Iranian paths to a nuclear weapon.”

Black Monday: Iran and P5+1 to Sign Deal

Sunday, July 12th, 2015

It’s all over except for the shouting and the crying, according to an Associated Press report that a deal with Iran has been completed and will be signed on Monday.

However, a senior State Dept. official maintained that “major issues remain to be resolved in these talks.”

AP’s Matt Lee, a veteran and highly reliable journalist, reported Sunday:

Negotiators at the Iran nuclear talks are expected to reach a provisional agreement Sunday on a historic deal that would curb the country’s atomic program in return for sanctions relief, diplomats told The Associated Press.

The two diplomats cautioned that final details of the pact were still being worked out Sunday afternoon and a formal agreement still awaits a review from the capitals of the seven nations at the talks. They said plans now are for the deal to be announced on Monday.

The regime’s PRESS TV headlined, “Iranian MPs hail nuclear negotiators’ resistance against US’ excessive demands.”

The legislators issued a statement that included a rejection of “any inspection of the Iranian military sites, interviews with Iranian scientists and imposing restrictions on the country’s nuclear research and development.”

The key issue of inspections will be examined with a microscope, especially by Congress, which will have 60 days to review a final agreement.

A deal will be bitter if not deadly pill for Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to swallow, and Israel can be expected to hound Congressmen to try to torpedo it, which will not be simple.

President Barack Obama undoubtedly will dismiss as rhetoric for local consumption the belligerent sneers from Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that the United States is “the absolute embodiment of arrogance” and an enemy of Iran.

Politico reported last week it is “very unlikely” that Congress can kill the deal unless there is a full-scale rebellion by Democrats. Americans, already gearing up for next year’s Congressional and presidential elections, view the ISIS , the economy and immigration policies as more serious issues than a nuclear-armed Iran, which President Obama will claim won’t happen under the agreement.

Congress would have to come up with a solid majority, perhaps even a veto-proof two-thirds majority, in order to nullify the agreement. Ironically, it is the Arab countries that might be able to twist Congressmen’s arms against the deal.

South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham told Politico:

If the Arabs come out and say this is a bad deal, if AIPAC says this is a bad deal, if public opinion says we don’t trust this deal, then our Democratic colleagues will hopefully come forward to say, ‘We can do better.’

Israel Saved Obama’s Neck on Assad’s Chemical Weapons

Thursday, June 18th, 2015

Israel let President Barack Obama off the hook on which he hanged himself by saying he would bomb Syria because of Bashar Assad’s’ use of chemical weapons, former Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren wrote in his new book.

The man behind the covert plan was none other than Yuval Steinitz, who at the time was Minister of Intelligence. He also is one of the loudest hawks when it comes to warning that President Obama and the other P5+1 powers are in the midst of making a terrible if not lethal mistake by dealing with Iran over its nuclear weapons program.

Assad’s use of chemical weapons, a war crime – as if he were not guilty of others – was discovered in 2013.

President Obama had done everything possible to avoid getting directly involved in the war in Syria, where any result would be a bad result.

However, the use of chemical weapons was a red line President Obama could not ignore.

Obama threatened several times to bomb Syria, and after a month he suddenly changed course 180 degrees.

Oren said it was due to Steinitz, who with the approval of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu came up a plan for Assad to turn over his chemical weapons stockpile to Russia, Assad’s ally.

Bloomberg News reported that Oren wrote in his new book “Ally: My Journey Across the American-Israeli Divide,” to be launched next week but not yet released to the public, that Israel was not against an American aerial attack but was willing to help the president avoid it.

Steinitz was the source of the idea even if it was not a plan so much as an off-the-cuff remark that set off a domino chain reaction.

According to Oren, Steinitz mentioned the idea to the Russians, and then to the State Dept., which did not take him too seriously. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov took it very seriously, and the plan quickly moved forward in the United States and United Nations, with Prime Minister Netanyahu’s blessing.

Oren wrote:

The idea originated with an Israeli minister, Yuval Steinitz, who first pitched it to the Russians, who were eager to avoid an American intercession that they could not stop. Netanyahu next brought it to Obama and received a green light.

Before Obama changed course, he had gone so far as to ask the pro-Israel AIPAC lobby to lobby for a war resolution, Oren writes.

Obama never credited Israel, which Steinitz and Netanyahu agreed would not be a good idea,

Steinitz told The New York Times that that he and Prime Minister Netanyahu kept their mouths shut about their role in helping Obama so that no one would say “it’s an Israeli strike [or] Israeli conspiracy, [and] maybe it’s a reason to stop it.”

He told the newspaper:

They never asked if they can give us credit, and we never asked them to give us credit,” he added. “Until today, it was a secret.”

Israel didn’t want credit, giving both Russia and Obama the opportunity to boast.

Oren wrote:

In subsequent interviews, Obama rarely missed the chance to cite the neutralization of Syria’s chemical capabilities as an historic diplomatic achievement.

Russian president Vladimir Putin also took credit for the initiative and praised this ‘vivid example of how the international community can solve the most complex disarmament and non- proliferation tasks.’

Israel’s role remained unmentioned, but its citizens were relieved not to have to sign up for more gas masks.

Granted that President Obama may not think that Israel should bow down to him for not bombing Syria instead of risking retaliation against Israel and the horrendous scene of Israelis walking around with gas masks on their faces because of a chemical attack.

And granted that Obama should not let Israel dictate policy on key issues just because Israel helped him in another area.

But it is one thing not to thank Israel, at least not in public so the the Arabs won’t get upset, and it is another matter to create an image of hate of the leader of an ally that, intentionally or not, may have saved President Obama from one of the worst of the many disasters of his foreign policy.

No one is asking him to say, “Thank you,” but it is reasonable to expect a bit of civility. Obama simply can’t get over his control trip complex.

The president’s obsession with the non-existent “peace process” and with a deal with Iran, no matter what, has blinded him into treating Netanyahu like a voodoo doll in which he has to stick pins.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israel-saved-obamas-neck-on-assads-chemical-weapons/2015/06/18/

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