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September 16, 2014 / 21 Elul, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘BOMB’

IDF Foils Terror Attack on Gaza Border

Monday, April 7th, 2014

Two suspects were caught planting a bomb near the security fence separating southern Gaza from southern Israel, according to the IDF Spokesperson’s Office.

Soldiers noticed the two men working on the ground near the fence in a suspicious manner and “chased them away” from the area, the IDF said.

A short time later, there was an explosion at the site. No one was injured and no damage was reported.

No further details were available on the identities or fate of the two suspects.

Prague Police Rule Out Presumed Accidental Cause of PA Bomb Blast

Monday, March 31st, 2014

The bomb explosion that killed a Palestinian Authority official at his office and home in Prague January was not caused by a safety mechanism in a safe, as previously claimed, the Prague Post reported Monday.

Police initially had ruled out a terrorist act or other foul play, but now everything is open to question, although police still say they are treating the explosion as an accident.

Jamal a Jamal was killed in the blast, and officials immediately downplayed the incident by saying the envoy was moving a safe when it exploded, supposedly because of a mechanism against anyone trying to tamper with its contents.

However, a Palestinian Authority official said at the time that the safe had not been in use for 20 years.

Prague police spokeswoman Andrea Zoulová said that the conclusion that the safe was not the source of the blast “was also drawn from a test carried out within the investigation. It has proved that the explosion did not occur inside the safe.”

Shortly after Jamal was killed, his daughter Rana said she was convinced that her father had been murdered.

Moreover, Czech police look into a suspicion of illegal arms possession as they have found 12 unregistered firearms from the 1980s in the embassy building.

The Palestinian Authority explained that the weapons were gifts from representatives of the then communist Czechoslovakia.

Explosive Thrown at Rachel’s Tomb

Thursday, March 6th, 2014

Arabs threw a bomb into the area of Rachel’s Tomb on Thursday night. No injuries or damage was reported.

Rachel’s Tomb is located at the edge of Bethlehem, and is the burial site of the Matriarch Rachel.

While Bethlehem is under control of the Palestinian Authority, the tomb itself is under Israeli control.

Report: IDF Foiled Large-Scale Terrorist Attack at Gaza Fence

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

The IDF reportedly killed two terrorists and foiled a large-scale terrorist attack that included the murder of an Israeli worker at the Gaza security fence on Wednesday according to Channel 10.

Palestinian Authority media did not report that any terrorists were shot by Israeli fire, and a military spokeswoman told The Jewish Press it could not confirm or deny the report at this time.

Channel 10 claimed that the sniper fire that killed the worker, who was repairing the security fence, was part of a larger operation involving the planting of a very large bomb that was to be detonated when an IDF vehicle were to pass by.

Soldiers allegedly opened fire and killed two terrorists.

Later, the IDF retaliated for the murder and bombed terror targets, killing two people. Hamas said one of the victims was a three-year-old girl, but it frequently falsifies reports on deaths by claiming that victims are handicapped, pregnant women, mentally disturbed people and children.

Peace Must Be Near: Embassy Ordering Americans to Avoid Israeli Taxis

Tuesday, December 24th, 2013

The following email was sent out by the US Embassy in Israel:

From: mailto:amctelaviv@state.gov
Sent: Tuesday, December 24, 2013 7:19 AM
Subject:
Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Response to December 22 Bus Bombing in Tel Aviv

U.S. citizen employees of the U.S. Embassy and their families are temporarily prohibited from using sheruts, the mini-bus shared taxis. The temporary prohibition on sheruts is in effect for the next two weeks as we assess the security implications of the December 22 bomb attack on a public bus in the Bat Yam neighborhood of Tel Aviv. This restriction is in addition to the longstanding prohibition on the use of public buses and their associated terminals and bus stops in Israel.

No mention that this minor transportation disruption is the result of Secretary of State Kerry trying to force negotiations on the Palestinian Authority, and this is their official response.

Incidentally, the reason only mini-buses are mentioned is probably because the embassy staff wouldn’t be caught dead on an Israeli public bus — probably for fear of being caught dead.

So far, according to the Shin bet, Israel’s internal security agency, the monthly acts of terrorism have risen from 82 back in July, when public opinion wasn’t so aware of the negotiations between Tzipi and her Pal Pals, to 167 in November, when it’s becoming clear that the U.S. may manage to squeeze some form of an agreement out of the two sides.

This is the pattern in Israeli-Arab peace talks since 1994, when we were blessed by the Oslo accords, and since then every time we hear of another phase in the negotiations, more blood is shed.

Michael Wolfowicz, who blogs for the Times of Israel, suggests this is not unique to the Palestinians, and all over the world terrorists try to prevent peace and stability by doing what they do best: murdering civilians.

Except that over here we’ve seen that these acts of terror are being committed by government decree, both in Gaza and in the PA. Calls to arms are official on the part of our negotiations partners, who wants peace with us like we want a hole in the head.

Sadly, both sides have been receiving more holes in the head than anything else, since this madness began, back in 1993.

Terror Attack: Bomb on Bus Lightly Injures Police Bomb Squad Officer

Sunday, December 22nd, 2013

A bomb exploded in Bat Yam, on a Dan company bus #240 on Sunday afternoon.

Passengers had noticed a suspicious object on the bus, and informed the driver, who got everyone off the bus.

The bomb was left in a bag on a seat in the back of the bus.

The bomb exploded just as a police bomb squad member approached the bus, lightly injuring the officer. The passengers and driver were 15 meters from the bus when the explosion went off.

The Chief of Police has confirmed that the bomb was a terror attack.

Shooting the Syrian Elephant

Tuesday, September 10th, 2013

Originally published at Sultan Knish.
The majority of Americans do not want to invade or bomb Syria. The majority of American leaders do. Such a disparity between the leaders and the people is not wholly unique, but it arises in this case not from the usual disparities of power or corruption.

Americans don’t want to fight Syria because it is no threat to them. American leaders admit that Syria is no threat to America. They want to bomb Syria because they feel that they ought to do it. And they feel that way because behind the power of the West stands the will of the East.Long before Animal Farm of 1984, George Orwell wrote a short essay about his time in the east. It’s titled “Shooting the Elephant.”

Orwell’s narrator is told of an elephant that has run riot and he dutifully follows up the report. “We began questioning the people as to where the elephant had gone and, as usual, failed to get any definite information. That is invariably the case in the East; a story always sounds clear enough at a distance, but the nearer you get to the scene of events the vaguer it becomes.

“Some of the people said that the elephant had gone in one direction, some said that he had gone in another, some professed not even to have heard of any elephant.”

Substitute chemical weapons for elephant and the story becomes a familiar one.

Eventually, Orwell encounters a dead body and sends back for an elephant gun while a crowd gathers behind him eagerly waiting for him to shoot the elephant. “I had halted on the road,” he writes. “As soon as I saw the elephant I knew with perfect certainty that I ought not to shoot him. It is a serious matter to shoot a working elephant – it is comparable to destroying a huge and costly piece of machinery – and obviously one ought not to do it if it can possibly be avoided.”

It is likewise a serious matter to start a war. But the issue, whether with Obama’s red line or Orwell’s elephant is credibility.

“But at that moment I glanced round at the crowd that had followed me. It was an immense crowd, two thousand at the least and growing every minute. It blocked the road for a long distance on either side. I looked at the sea of yellow faces above the garish clothes-faces all happy and excited over this bit of fun, all certain that the elephant was going to be shot. They were watching me as they would watch a conjurer about to perform a trick. They did not like me, but with the magical rifle in my hands I was momentarily worth watching. And suddenly I realized that I should have to shoot the elephant after all. The people expected it of me and I had got to do it.”

We now have to go into Syria because the crowd expects it of us. They have been clamoring for us to do it forever, listening impatiently to our excuses and dismissing them. And our function in the region has come down to shooting the elephant. It’s what the crowd wants us to do. And our leaders find themselves with no other role in international affairs except the hollow role of puppets.

“And it was at this moment, as I stood there with the rifle in my hands, that I first grasped the hollowness, the futility of the white man’s dominion in the East.

“Here was I, the white man with his gun, standing in front of the unarmed native crowd – seemingly the leading actor of the piece; but in reality I was only an absurd puppet pushed to and fro by the will of those yellow faces behind.

“I perceived in this moment that when the white man turns tyrant it is his own freedom that he destroys. He becomes a sort of hollow, posing dummy, the conventionalized figure of a sahib. For it is the condition of his rule that he shall spend his life in trying to impress the “natives,” and so in every crisis he has got to do what the “natives” expect of him. He wears a mask, and his face grows to fit it.”

The United States, which had never intended to become an empire, now finds itself wearing a mask. Its leaders assert that it has to shoot the Syrian elephant to protect its credibility because the crowd of the Saudis, Qataris, Emiratis and the Turks want us to do it.

They expect us to do it. They have gathered to see us do it. They will see us do it.

Even Obama, for all his complicity with the power plays of the Muslim Brotherhood, seems unenthusiastic about shooting the Syrian elephant. But he knows that it has to be done because what else is there to do? Either we bomb Syria or admit our impotency. Either we play imperialists or get laughed at.That was the dilemma of Orwell’s narrator. It is also our dilemma. Orwell’s narrator was playing his part in a decaying empire that had lost its sense of purpose. It could do little else except order around the natives only to find that it was the one being ordered around.

America has no sense of purpose. Its leaders want to bomb Syria, but can articulate no sensible reason for doing so. They resort to humanitarian gibberish, but they would never move to stop genocide in Africa. Their motives are not humanitarian, they are conformist. They are conforming to the expectations of the foreign pressures of a region that they hope to order and govern.

“When the white man turns tyrant it is his own freedom that he destroys,” Orwell warned. In attempting to civilize the Muslim world, we have instead been forced to live by its rulers. We have not brought our order to them. They have brought their order to us.

Our interactions with them take place along the predetermined paths of their choosing. They decide what they want from us and we decide how quickly to give it to them. They decide that we should shoot the elephant and we stand around playing with the elephant gun, hoping that we can avoid this whole mess.

“And afterwards I was very glad that the coolie had been killed; it put me legally in the right and it gave me a sufficient pretext for shooting the elephant. I often wondered whether any of the others grasped that I had done it solely to avoid looking a fool,” Orwell writes.

That is the admission of the moment. We must bomb Syria to avoid looking like fools.

Obama drew his red line and now he must shoot the elephant. Even he doesn’t seem particularly enthusiastic about it, but he will shoot it.

To buy time, he has turned to Congress, hoping its proceedings will immunize him from the fallout or somehow convince Assad to step down. But he knows better. Despite his anti-colonialist roots and despite his membership in a radically anti-imperialist movement, he has been drafted once again in the cause of shooting elephants, carrying the white man’s burden and the liberal man’s burden to the east.

The question is not whether Syria ought to be shot, but why are we shooting it. And the answer is that it isn’t our choice. That answer reveals a great deal about our dysfunctional international policies and where they have gotten us.

We have been penned up, not by Haliburton or secret oil deals, so much as by our own need to live up to our own image abroad. Americans, who for the most part live insular lives, are unmoved by the elephant-shooting currents that tug at the likes of Obama or McCain. They feel no need to go shoot an elephant in some other country because the natives expect it of them. But our leaders increasingly live foreign lives with little consideration for the natives of the country that they govern. They give in to impulses like amnesty and gay marriage because of a steady pressure from a narrow crowd that insists that they are inevitable. Now they will give in on Syria because of that same crowd.

That sense of pressure reveals the hollowness of the men within. Men of strong moral courage do not commit crimes because the crowd expects them to. It does not kill to avoid being mocked. It is the hollow empire of hollow men that is compelled to such final extremities, acting out a farce to avoid the inevitable revelation that the emperor is naked and his empire has run out of pants.

The Republican Party is what it is because it lacks that sense of moral conviction. It takes positions for convenience. Its leaders respond to the pressure of the crowd, whether it is to oppose Obamacare or to support amnesty, they take on positions which they do not believe because they are expected of them.The Syrian elephant is only one more such position. One more hollow act of political conformity by men with political instincts but no sense of greater direction.

It is not so much that bombing Syria is wrong as that the armed forces of a nation cannot and should not be in the hands of men who take serious steps without any conviction that they are doing the best thing for their country, who act only because they are told that it is expected of them. Nothing rots the morale of an army faster than such commanders and nothing destroys a nation faster than the knowledge that, in the words of Hillary Clinton, nothing truly matters but the politics of it.

If we are going to shoot elephants then we should do so for our own reasons. Once we begin shooting elephants because it is expected of us, we become little better than the masters of a hollow empire waiting to be told by the world what to do.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/sultan-knish/shooting-the-syrian-elephant/2013/09/10/

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