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April 19, 2014 / 19 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Force 17’

13th Anniversary of Binyamin Ze’ev Kahane’s Murder

Monday, December 9th, 2013

Today is the 13th anniversary of the murder of Binyamin Ze’ev Kahane and his wife Talya. Binyamin was the son of Rabbi Meir Kahane.

The couple were killed by Palestinian Authority terrorists from the PLO’s “Force 17″ who sprayed 60 bullets into their car as the family were driving near Ofra in 2000.

A number of the terrorists involved in the attack were captured in 2001 and 2007. At least one of the terrorists was released in the Gilad Shalit deal.

Five of their six children were in the car at the time of the attack, and were injured, but survived. The six children are being raised by Talia’s sister’s family in Kfar Tapuach.

Binyamin, a dual US-Israeli citizen, made Aliyah from New York in 1971 at age four.

Convicted Terror Leader Appointed PA Advisor On Eve of Negotiations

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas Monday appointed a convicted terrorist as his advisor for local governments on Monday, the eve of the PA’s internationally-brokered meeting with an Israeli representative in Amman.

Mahmoud Awad Damra, “Abu Awad”,  was released from his 15 year prison sentence in October as part of Israel’s deal with Hamas to exchange 1,027 convicted criminals and terrorists for kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit.  Damara is the former commander of the PA presidential guard, Force 17, established by former PLO chief Yasser Arafat.  Damara was arrested outside of Ramallah and convicted in 2006 for his role in planning and coordinating numerous terror attacks, choosing locations, training killers, and supplying weapons.  His victims include US citizens Esh-Kodesh Gilmore and Rabbi Binyamin and Talia Kahane.

Rabbi Kahane was the son of the controversial Jewish activist Rabbi Meir Kahane, who was also murdered in 1990.  The “presidential decree” promoting Damra came just 2 days after the 11th anniversary of the murders of Binyamin and Talia, whose 6 children are now being raised by Talia’s sister.

Two years ago, while Damra was in prison, Abbas promoted him to the rank of major-general.  Damra served only a third of his sentence prior to release.

Israeli and Palestinian representatives will meet for the first time in 16 months to determine whether and how diplomatic negotiations would proceed.  Expectations from both sides have been reported as low.

Terror Chief Nabbed By Israel Received U.S. Training, Arms

Wednesday, May 30th, 2007

RAMALLAH – A long-wanted terrorist chief captured this week by Israeli forces was trained by the U.S., served in a senior capacity on Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s U.S.-backed security detail, and was a ranking member of a team that received and distributed American arms shipments the past two years, The Jewish Press has learned.
 
Khaled Shawish, an officer in Abbas’s Force 17 presidential guards, was arrested Sunday by undercover Israeli police forces following scores of shooting attacks Shawish is suspected of carrying out.

Shawish doubles as Ramallah chief of the Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades terror group. He previously boasted of involvement in a West Bank shooting attack in December 2000 that killed Israeli nationalist leader Benjamin Kahane and Kahane’s wife, Talya.

The Brigades, the declared “military wing” of Abbas’s Fatah party, took credit along with the Islamic Jihad terror group for every suicide bombing in Israel the past two years and for multiple deadly shootings and rocket attacks.

After the Kahane murder, Shawish was invited by Arafat to live in the late PLO leader’s Ramallah compound, widely known as the Muqata. 

Shawish lived in the Muqata for the past seven years. From there, according to Israeli security officials, he directed scores of shootings against Israelis driving on West Bank roads. 

Israel says Shawish also directed a number of suicide bombings that killed eight Israelis.

According to Israeli and Palestinian security sources, Shawish, as a member of Force 17, received U.S. training in 1997 at an American-managed military base in the West Bank city of Jericho.  The base continues to train Force 17 members. Many other Brigades members who also double as Force 17 officers have received U.S. training.

The U.S. in recent months reportedly transferred large quantities of weapons to Fatah, purportedly to back Abbas’s military organizations in recent deadly clashes with Hamas.

The last confirmed U.S. weapons transfer to the Palestinians took place last May and consisted of 3,000 assault rifles, but The Jewish Press reported that several other transfers were later made to Fatah – including a cache of 7,000 rifles last January and about 8,000 assault rifles in February.

The weapons mostly arrived in convoys through the Jordan-Israel border and were then reportedly trucked by the Israeli Defense Forces to the Gaza Strip and to Ramallah.  The Ramallah shipments were received at the Muqata and at a neighboring Force 17 base in which Shawish lives, according to Israeli and Palestinian security sources.

The sources said Shawish was part of the Force 17 team that inspected and distributed the American weapons to other Fatah militia members.  According to the sources, Shawish over the past two years has taken possession of a number of American assault rifles.

Congress last month approved $59 million in aid to Fatah’s militias after an earlier Bush administration pledge of $86.4 million was blocked for fear the money might reach terrorists. The vast majority of the U.S. aid is slated to bolster Abbas’s Force 17 security forces in clashes with Hamas.

After forging a unity government in February that ended several rounds of deadly factional Palestinian infighting, Fatah and Hamas have engaged in heated gun battles over the past three weeks, with dozens of Palestinians killed and wounded in the clashes.

Israel has raided U.S.-backed Force 17 compounds on several occasions and arrested wanted terrorists from the units. Earlier this month, the IDF arrested 18 Fatah fighters in the West Bank wanted for shooting Israeli civilians. Seventeen of those arrested were also members of the Brigades, Israeli and Palestinian security officials said.

Abbas last June appointed senior Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades leader Mahmoud Damra as commander of Force 17. Damra, who was arrested by Israel in November, was on the Jewish state’s most-wanted list of terrorists.  According to Force 17 sources, Shawish was Damra’s main deputy.

According to Israeli and Palestinian security officials, U.S.-backed intelligence and security organizations associated with Fatah, including Force 17, are heavily infiltrated by Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other terrorist organizations.

A top Palestinian intelligence official admitted: “We are leading a large number of investigations and some of the results prove that such an infiltration by Hamas (of Fatah’s security and intelligence forces) exists.”

The official oversees intelligence for Fatah’s police forces in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. “I can say that in some cases we diagnosed a deep infiltration to high posts in some Fatah security services,” he said. “In some cases we believe there are officers that are exposed to very sensitive information.”

He acknowledged that in the past month “dozens” of members of Hamas, the Popular Resistance Committees and Islamic Jihad were found operating in the Fatah forces.

The Popular Resistance Committees regularly carries out rocket and shooting attacks and took credit for a 2003 bombing in Gaza that killed three American contractors.

Muhammad Abdel El, spokesman for the Committees, said Fatah’s attempts to discover militants from his group “have not even scratched the surface of our infiltration.”

Quick Takes: News From Israel You May Have Missed

Wednesday, February 7th, 2007

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has given Jordan permission to build a large minaret adjacent to a mosque on the Temple Mount to call Muslims to prayer at the holy site. The minaret will stand at a site on the Mount where Jewish groups here had petitioned to build a synagogue.

A minaret is a tower usually attached to a mosque from which Muslims are called to the five Islamic daily prayers.

There are four minarets on the Temple Mount, the holiest site in Judaism. The new minaret will be the largest one yet. It will be the first built on the Temple Mount in over 600 years and is slated to tower 130 feet above the walls of Jerusalem’s old city. It will reside next to the Al-Marwani Mosque, located at the site of Solomon’s Stables.

Aryeh Eldad, a Knesset member from Israel’s National Union party, last year drew up plans with Jewish groups to build a synagogue near the Marwani Mosque. The synagogue was to be built in accordance with rulings from several prominent rabbis, who said Jews can ascend the Mount at certain areas.

A top leader of the Wakf – the Islamic custodians of the Mount – told WorldNetDaily that Olmert’s granting of permission to build the minaret in the synagogue’s place “confirms 100-percent that the Haram al-Sharif [Temple Mount] belongs to Muslims.”

“This proves Jewish conspiracies for a synagogue will never succeed and solidifies our presence here. It will make Muslims worldwide more secure that the Jews will never take over the Haram al-Sharif,” the Wakf official said.

Rice Ripped For ‘Resistance Movement’ Remark

A U.S. Jewish group this week demanded that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice immediately retract remarks she made during a press conference in Europe two weeks ago in which she called Hamas a “resistance movement.”

In speaking to reporters in Berlin on Jan. 18, Rice commented on the situation of Palestinians prior to 2000, saying, “You had Hamas, of course, sitting out as a resistance movement, not at all, by the way, involved in the politics at all.”

Rice’s comments went largely unreported by the American media.

Hamas is classified by the State Department as a terror organization and is responsible for  scores of suicide bombings and shooting and rocket attacks that have killed more than 500 Israelis and 27 Americans.

A State Department spokesman claimed Rice “forgot” to use the word terrorist when describing Hamas during her Berlin press briefing. But the Zionist Organization of America wants more. It has asked Rice to clarify her remarks and apologize to Hamas’s terror victims.

“Calling Hamas a resistance group and not a radical Islamic terror group which murders Jews and calls for the destruction of Israel seems to reveal that Rice may have some sympathy for Hamas’s cause,” ZOA President Mort Klein said.

One top Jewish leader told WND he was “horrified” Rice called Hamas a resistance group, but said his organization would not comment because he didn’t want to upset his relationship with the State Department. Several other prominent U.S. Jewish groups refused to comment on Rice’s statement.

Known Terrorist On Abbas’s Guard Unit

A well-known terrorist has been discovered by this column to be working for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s Force 17 presidential guard unit.

Abbas has long claimed that his presidential guard, which receives large sums of U.S. aid and weapons, is not infiltrated by terror organizations.

Hamas last week ambushed a Force 17 convoy that the terror group claimed was transporting American weapons delivered to militias associated with Abbas’s Fatah party. Four Force 17 officers were killed.

The Islamic Jihad terror group told this column that among those killed serving with Force 17 was Nidal Tlaa, the chief commander of Islamic Jihad’s so-called military wing.

“Our commander Nidal Tlaa was serving with Force 17. He was killed when Hamas ambushed the Fatah convoy,” said Abu Muhammad, Islamic Jihad’s spokesman.

Islamic Jihad sources said Tlaa was wearing a Force 17 uniform when he was shot by Hamas gunmen while protecting Fatah convoys.

Egyptian Forces Aided Suicide Bombing?

Israel and Egypt are studying the possibility that the Palestinian terrorist who carried out last week’s suicide bombing in Eilat was aided in entering the Jewish state by Egyptian security forces.

Israeli authorities say the suicide bomber, who originated in the Gaza Strip, entered Israel from Egypt, which runs alongside long sections of Israel and also borders Gaza.

According to Egyptian security sources speaking to WND, Egyptian authorities this month discovered 17 cases of Egyptian guards aiding infiltrators into Israel. They say in most cases the guards were paid off and were either not aware of the infiltrators’ intentions for entering Israel, or were told the intentions were for employment or studies.

A Palestinian security official said Egypt found “many, many more cases this month [of guards aiding infiltration into Israel] than the 17 they admit to.”

The Egyptian sources said that only in “small numbers” of cases during the past year did they discover Egyptian forces who knowingly collaborated with Palestinian terror groups.

But Israeli security sources say it is “impossible” for the vast quantity of weapons that regularly flows into Gaza from the Egyptian Sinai desert to reach the territory without at least the tacit knowledge of Egyptian forces in the Sinai.

“We’re talking about extremely sophisticated smuggling rings that bring large quantities of weapons from Egypt into Gaza, in some previous cases even in convoy trucks. Don’t tell me Egyptian forces don’t know,” said an Israeli security official.
 
Aaron Klein is Jerusalem bureau chief for WorldNetDaily.com. He appears throughout the week on leading American radio programs.

Quick Takes: News From Israel You May Have Missed

Wednesday, December 6th, 2006

In her meeting last week with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice pledged the U.S. would provide Abbas’s Force 17 security units with new weapons to bolster the group against Hamas, according to senior Palestinian officials.

The officials, who took part in the meeting, said Rice told Abbas the U.S. would fulfill an earlier pledge to bolster Force 17 with American training and with new weapons, including 6,000 assault rifles. According to multiple media reports, the U.S. is aiming to enhance security forces associated with Abbas’s Fatah party.

Force 17 serves as Abbas’s personal security detail and as de facto police units in the West Bank and Gaza. Many of its members, including its former commander, also openly serve as militants in the Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades terror group, the declared “military wing” of Abbas’s Fatah party.

The U.S. considers Fatah moderate, even as the Brigades is labeled by the State Department as a terror organization.

Abu Yousuf, a senior member of Force 17, told WorldNetDaily that any U.S. aid and weapons given to his security organization will be used to attack Jews and “fight Israeli occupation.”

“We will not use these weapons against our brothers in Hamas unless they try to attack [Abbas]. The U.S. is working with the Zionists to try to generate civil war in the Palestinian territories but that will not work. These weapons will BE put to use against the Israelis,” said Abu Yousuf.

Abu Yousuf said the latest planned U.S. weapons transfer was meant to spark a Palestinian civil war and ensure Palestinian security forces are “friendly” to the West.

“We are aware that a civil war is the dream of the Zionists and the Americans, but it will not happen so quickly,” he said.

He hinted that U.S. weapons transferred last May were used in a spate of shooting attacks against Israelis.

“The fighters who were arrested by the Israeli army in relation to these attacks are Force 17 men,” Abu Yousuf said.

Israel Considers Freeing Intifada Planner

According to sources in Olmert’s office, Israel is considering the release of a convicted murderer, terror group founder and alleged planner of the second Palestinian intifada, Marwan Barghouti, in exchange for the freedom of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit

In a national address last week, Olmert said in exchange for Shalit’s release, his government is willing to release “many, many” Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails, including those serving lengthy sentences.

Diplomatic sources told WND that in his meeting with Israeli officials this week Egypt’s intelligence chief Omar Suleiman presented the Jewish state with Hamas’ latest demand – the release from Israeli prison of Barghouti, along with at least 1,000 other Palestinian prisoners.

Barghouti, a member of the Palestinian parliament and founder of the Al Aksa Brigades, is serving multiple life terms for his role in killing five Israeli civilians. Barghouti has boasted of being one of the main architects of the Palestinia intifada that began in 2000, killing 993 Israelis and 3,777 Palestinians. He successfully ran in Palestinian elections earlier this year, stressing as part of his election platform his efforts in planning the intifada.

Sources in Olmert’s office said Israel is considering Hamas’ request to free Barghouti. “The request was not immediately rejected,” said a source.

Message to U.S.: Don’t Sell Lebanon Short

The United States should not sell Lebanon short while debating changes in American policy in Iraq and the Middle East region, Samy Gemayel, brother of assassinated Lebanese politician Pierre Gemayel, told WND in an interview.

Gemayel’s brother, Lebanon’s industry minister, was murdered last month while driving through a Christian suburb of Beirut, prompting street protests many fear could destabilize the country.

Samy Gemayel, who is expected to seek his slain brother’s seat in parliament, said he is “concerned” by possible changes in America’s Middle East policy, including talk of withdrawal from Iraq following the Democratic election victories last month and calls by some in the U.S. government for dialogue with Iran and Syria.

“Dialogue can be helpful if it is the right kind of dialogue with the right people. But please don’t sell Lebanon short during this dialogue or any policy changes,” said Gemayel.
 
Aaron Klein is Jerusalem bureau chief for WorldNetDaily.com. He appears throughout the week on America’s top radio programs.

Palestinian Militant: We’ll Use American Weapons Against Israel

Wednesday, October 11th, 2006

JERUSALEM – Weapons and financial aid the United States is considering giving to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s Force 17 security detail to bolster it against Hamas may be used instead to attack Jews and “fight Israeli occupation,” a senior officer of Force 17 said in an exclusive interview.
 
The militant, Abu Yousuf, hinted that any new weapons provided by the U.S. to his group could be shared with the affiliated Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades terror organization. Abu Yousuf, like several Force 17 members, is also a member of the Brigades.

“There is no chance that we will use force and violence against our brothers in Hamas unless they will endanger [Abbas]. There is a chance that Israel will attack the Palestinian territories and in this case these weapons and others provided [by the U.S. to Force 17] will be directed toward the [Israeli] occupation,” Abu Yousuf said.

Abu Yousuf was responding to reports the U.S. is planning to transfer weapons and aid to Force 17, which protects Abbas and also serves as special security forces on behalf of his Fatah party.

Hamas and Fatah have been fighting in the Gaza Strip and West Bank since last weekend, after negotiations to establish a national unity government between the two appeared to have fallen through. At least 14 militants were killed and over 150 Palestinians were wounded in the clashes over the last 10 days, the deadliest since Hamas won the majority of Palestinian parliamentary seats earlier this year.

A senior Palestinian official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told WordNetDaily that Fatah security officials noted in recent firefights that Hamas members used weaponry more advanced than what was known to have been in the Hamas arsenal, including newer styles of assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenades.

Following a meeting with Abbas in Ramallah last week, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told reporters America would “do what it can” to bolster Abbas.

Last week the New York Times reported that the U.S. proposed expanding Abbas’s Force 17 from 3,500 men to 6,000 as part of a $26 million plan to strengthen the Palestinian leader.

The Associated Press and Israel’s leading daily, Yediot Aharonot, reported last week that new training facilities for Force 17 are slated to be set up in the West Bank town of Jericho and in Gaza, at a cost of $2 million each, according to the U.S. proposal.

Senior Palestinian officials said the U.S. is planning to transfer ammunition and new assault rifles to Force 17 this week and is considering procuring about $28 million in aid to Abbas. They said the U.S. would help train Force 17 members in the operation of the new weapons and in advanced combat techniques in facilities already in use in Jericho.

The last known weapons transfer to Force 17 took place this past May and reportedly consisted of 3,000 assault rifles and over one million rounds of ammunition.

At first the U.S., Israel and the PA denied the reports of the weapons transfer, but in June Prime Minister Ehud Olmert announced he had approved the shipment of U.S. weapons and ammunition, explaining the transfer was meant for Abbas’s personal protection.

“I did this because we are running out of time and we need to help Abu Mazen [Abbas],” Olmert told reporters. The shipment needed Israeli consent to pass through checkpoints. It was delivered by a convoy protected by the IDF, according to Israeli and Palestinian officials involved in the transfer.

Abu Yousuf told WorldNetDaily this week that the latest planned U.S. weapons transfer was meant to spark a Palestinian civil war and ensure that Palestinian security forces are “friendly” to the West.

“We are aware that a civil war is the dream of the Zionists and the Americans, but it will not happen so quickly,” said Abu Yousuf.

“The Americans see their situation in Iraq and in Afghanistan and they know that a war against Iran is a matter of time and they want to guarantee that in Palestine there will not be a regime that will be hostile to the U.S. and will not endanger Israel.”

Continued the Force 17 member: “They [Americans] hope that these arms will be used against our brothers in Hamas but we ask Allah that our brothers are also aware of this issue and will not play into the hands of the Americans and the Israelis.”

Like Abu Yousuf, many Force 17 officers are also members of the Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades. In June, Abbas appointed senior Brigades leader Mahmoud Damra as commander of Force 17. Damra, who was arrested by Israel last month, was on the Jewish state’s most-wanted list of terrorists.

Sources close to the Al Aksa Brigades told WND the American assault rifles transferred in May were used in three separate anti-Israel shooting attacks in June. Israel arrested two members of Force 17 in connection with the shootings. Abu Yousuf refused to confirm whether the American weapons were used in the spate of highway attacks, but he hinted the information was accurate.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/palestinian-militant-well-use-american-weapons-against-israel/2006/10/11/

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