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January 17, 2017 / 19 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘deputy mayor’

Israeli Arabs Terrified of Joining Palestinian State

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman’s Monday interview with Al Quds revived Israeli Arab fears of his proposal, which he has been promoting for several years, that a future peace deal will see a swapping of Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria for Israeli Arab towns in the Arab triangle in central Israel.

On its face, the Liberman “Umm Al-Fahm proposal,” named after the thriving Israeli Arab city, is logical: why not swap a 100% Arab block of settlements in Israel for a 100% Jewish block of settlements in what has been designated the future Palestinian State? Let the Jews become part of the Jewish State and the Arabs be reunited with their brethren in the Arab State?

MK Ayman Odeh, Chairman of the Joint Arab List, told Israeli Radio Tuesday that Liberman’s suggestion is unacceptable, since the Jewish communities of Judea and Samaria are illegal, and so they are not a viable bargaining chip in the negotiations. In other words, in order for a deal to be acceptable to Odeh, there must be a purely Arab state next door to a partially Arab state.

MK Odeh did not mention that, despite his gushing Palestinian patriotism (he refers to himself as an Israeli Palestinian), he and his voters have no intention of substituting life in a third world Palestinian State for their lives in democratic Israel.

Umm Al-Fahm’s deputy mayor Wisam Agbariya was irate back in 2014, when Liberman first proposed his swap, which would keep the city intact, only switch its political allegiance to the much heralded new Palestinian State. “I admit that I feel Palestinian, but I do not feel that the day of liberation has arrived. I don’t want to undergo another Nakba (the 1948 ‘catastrophe’)” he told Al Monitor. “For 65 years, part of the Palestinian nation has been formed here, let’s call it a population group under special conditions. Now you come to harm us again?”

How would becoming proud citizens of a Palestinian State harm this proud Palestinian? Apparently, he was insulted by being compared with the settlers and by being turned into “a bargaining chip.”

Naturally, he did not mention his understandable aversion to becoming part of a ruthless Arab tyranny that spends all its resources on maintaining the PLO in control and invests nothing in infrastructure and very little in healthcare and education.

Ahmed Machmid, a bookkeeper and nursing student, father of two daughters, told Al Monitor, “I am worried what will be if it does happen, what will be with us? How will we live? How will we become part of a state that has not been established yet? And if it [a Palestinian state]is established, that will be the beginning of our destruction. How does a country that calls itself democratic, dare to expel 300,000 people? Are we supposed to be the victims of this peace?”

Machmid then added, with rare candor, “It is annoying and depressing. There’s no doubt that the State of Israel is the strongest country in the Middle East and everyone wants to live here. I was born here and am connected to the country economically, socially and emotionally. Why am I responsible for the antics of [Arab] Knesset members [Azmi] Bishara or [Ahmad] Tibi? They don’t represent me, and I tell you that they also do not represent the majority. Go out to the street to talk to the people and ask who is willing to become part of the Palestinian Authority. No one.”

Why then would Israeli Arabs wish to see their brethren next door become the subjects of such an undesirable Palestinian State? Apparently, even honest Machmid did not have enough honesty on hand to answer that question.

David Israel

Jerusalem Deputy Mayor: I Killed Housing for Arabs as Punishment for Terror Attack

Monday, October 10th, 2016

Jerusalem Deputy Mayor Meir Turgeman, who also chairs the City Planning Commission, on Monday morning told Jerusalem Radio that he plans to “punish” the Arabs of eastern Jerusalem for Sunday’s terror attack, and has already deleted from his committee agenda all the construction plans for the city’s Arab neighborhoods. “We’ve arrived at the moment of truth,” Turgeman said. “Let’s put our cards on the table — the people in eastern Jerusalem want to kill and annihilate us. Why should we give them new opportunities every day?”

“The whole time we’ve been living with the false hope that these people, if we give them and help them and support them, would change their bestial behavior,” Turgeman continued. “But it turns out that nothing helps. Why should people die in Jerusalem, where is it written, who said it? We need to accept responsibility around here. And I’m going to make an example. I removed from the agenda all the construction plans for eastern Jerusalem. I took down all the plans. They say we should use carrots and sticks, well we’re fresh out of carrots, only the sticks are left.”

“It’s over, I take the responsibility, and if you don’t like it, fire me,” Turgeman said.

As chairman of the city planning commission, Turgeman  actually has the authority to change his committee’s agenda and prevent plans from coming up for a debate. Naturally, what would ensue are countless lawsuits by contractors and land owners who would argue the delays are rooted in external motives. For now the planning commission is going to be on hiatus for the Jewish holidays, so the chairman will have a chance to gracefully walk back his angry statement.

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat’s office has released a statement saying Turgeman’s plan had not been “coordinated with the mayor and does not reflect City policy. The way to prevent terrorism is by fighting in an uncompromising manner and with a strong hand against those who choose the path of terror, incitement and violence — and concurrently by bolstering the moderates and serving those residents who want to obey the law.”

David Israel

Exacting Vengeance on the Gentiles?

Wednesday, August 21st, 2013

Once again we are treated to the sight of very religious looking Jews acting like a street gang. A statue of a cross with a figure of Jesus on it was defaced by a group of Breslover Chasidim in Uman. The cross was recently erected opposite the grave of the founder of this Chasidus, Rav Nachman of Breslov – located in the Ukrainian city of Uman. From JTA:

“To exact vengeance on the gentiles,” reads the message, which was scrawled across the torso of a figure of Jesus. A further inscription on Jesus’ leg reads, “Stop desecrating the name of God.”

This kind of thing would not surprise me if it were being done by extremists from a community that embraces an isolationist lifestyle. But although they are hardcore Chasidim who dress and look much the same as Satmar Chasidim – Breslovers do a lot of outreach. I would expect them to know how to behave in a more civilized manner. They must have had a socialization process that taught them that or they could not do outreach. And yet here they have acted in a completely uncivilized way.

So it comes as a bit of a surprise that a Christian symbol near their venerated Rebbe’s grave site was desecrated with graffiti. I guess their socialization process goes just so far. A statue of Jesus so close to their Rebbe’s grave site was too much to handle.

I don’t know why the Ukrainian Government chose that site for its statue. I don’t think it was a wise decision. But at the same time, I don’t think it was necessarily meant to ‘stick it’ to the Breslovers either. It was probably just not a well thought out plan.

I can understand why these Chasidim felt outrage. They consider the Breslover Rebbe’s gravesite to be so holy that make annual pilgrimages to it. Tens of thousands of Jews (mostly Breslover Chasidim) from all over the world visit it during Rosh Hashanah – one of the holiest times of the year. It is almost as though they were making a pilgrimage to Jerusalem’s Holy Temple. Seeing the sight of Jesus on a cross must have made them feel like they were seeing Avodah Zara in the Beis HaMikdash.

The outrage is understandable. But their expression of it is inexcusable. It is the kind of behavior that can bring tragedy upon the Jewish people. Uman is not Jerusalem. R. Nachman’s gravesite is not the Beis HaMikdash. The citizens of Uman are their hosts. Breslovers are guests. And the guests have just defaced the image of the god their hosts worship.

The more responsible Breslover leadership has apologized. Sort of. From JTA:

“We respect other religions, and don’t wish to damage symbols of other religions. But, unfortunately, not all of our coreligionists understand this. They could break or destroy the cross. That would lead to a genuine war between hasidim and Christians. We cannot allow that, so we request that the cross be moved to a different location,” said Shimon Busquila, a representative of the Rabbi Nachman International Fund…

It may have been a legitimate request. But it was made too late. If made at all it should have been made politely before the statue was vandalized. Nonetheless the deputy mayor of Uman agreed with it.

On the other hand the citizens of Uman were so outraged by the vandalism – that they will have no part of moving the statue. They promised retaliation against Rav Nachman’s grave if it is moved. I can’t say that I blame them.

I think the point to be made here is contained in the response made by Shimon Busquila: ‘…not all of our coreligionists understand this’.

That is exactly the problem. Why don’t they understand this? It is not enough for a leader to simply say that some of their co-religionists do not understand the consequences of being uncivilized – thereby damaging the property of their hosts.  Especially their religious symbols. No matter how upsetting it is to them.

The Chasidim who did this are taught to hate non Jewish religious symbols much more than they are taught to behave in civilized ways when encountering them. So when they get upset at the sight of one of those hated symbols, they react in ways that bring ill repute upon – and ill will against – our people. They do so without thinking or perhaps even caring about the consequences.

Harry Maryles

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/haemtza/exacting-vengeance-on-the-gentiles/2013/08/21/

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