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November 23, 2014 / 1 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Gaza’

No Promotion for IDF’s Inspiring Givati Commander

Monday, October 6th, 2014

One of the most inspiring IDF army commanders to have led his troops into battle against the terrorist enemy during Operation Protective Edge this summer is being left off the list to be promoted, according to the Hebrew-language NRG news website.

Givati Brigade Commander Col. Ofer Winter was in line to be promoted to the rank of Brigadier General, but it is apparently not to be, according to the report — at least, not this year — due to two controversial incidents that took place during his wartime leadership this summer.

One cause of the holdup is rumored to be a letter of inspiration he wrote to the men under his command on July 9, just prior to entering Gaza.

The other is allegedly his involvement with the implementation of the Hannibal protocol in Rafah in response to the murder-abduction of Lt. Hadar Goldin by Hamas terrorists during a supposed cease-fire in Gaza.

Hamas is still holding the body parts of Goldin’s corpse it captured during the attack, for some ghoulish ransom, such as the exchange of who knows how many live Palestinian Authority terrorist prisoners held in Israeli jails. Or perhaps in trade for a huge number of dead Muslim terrorist bodies. After the Second Lebanon War, Hezbollah returned the bodies of two kidnapped and murdered IDF reservists to Israel in exchange for both.

The letter of inspiration Winter wrote for his soldiers during Operation Protective Edge this past summer contained Biblical references, making it a controversial item for secularist groups but one that was lauded by others.

Deputy Religious Services Minister Eli Ben-Dahan praised the commander for the letter of encouragement sent to soldiers under his command. Winter wrote of their ‘great merit’ to be at the forefront of the battle against “the terrorist enemy that dares to curse, blaspheme and scorn the God of Israel.”

Summing up his trust in his men, his commanders and in his Creator, the Givati Brigade commander wrote, “In the name of the fighters of the IDF and in particular the Brigade and the commanders, may the verse be fulfilled for us that ‘the Lord your God goes with you to fight for you with your enemies to save you,’ and we will say ‘Amen.’ Together – and only together – we will win.”

Winter’s letter stirred and inspired many by its deep and abiding faith but was slammed by at least two secularist groups who insisted Israel can not mix religion with military affairs.

Nevertheless, the vast majority of lawmakers spoke out in support of the commander, saying his call for Divine aid in time of battle against an implacable enemy was entirely appropriate.

As far as his implementation of the Hannibal protocol, that issue is being considered separately along with all other such matters by the IDF investigating committee.

Netanyahu: Talking to Hamas Means How Israel Should Commit Suicide

Sunday, October 5th, 2014

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu declared that negotiating with Hamas means nothing except how to commit suicide, and Hamas proved his point this morning with another “cease-fire” rocket explosion that was heard by Gaza Belt residents but denied by the IDF.

He said in an interview to be aired Sunday by CNN, “As long as Hamas remains committed to our destruction, what’s there to negotiate with? The method of my suicide or what?”

The Jewish Press reported here earlier this morning that a rocket was launched but did not land in Israel, prompting the IDF to declare it was a “false alarm” and leading the public to think that there was no rocket launch. IDF spokesmen insisted there was no rocket fire, but residents in the Gaza Belt reported they heard an explosion.

The military’s definition of a “false alarm” is a bit fuzzy.

Spokesman told The Jewish Press Sunday, “The term means that an alarm was activated, though without any launch from Gaza.  It is important for me to emphasize that each incident is a case of its own and any more information about a ‘false alarm’ is not connected to the use of the term itself.”

In clearer language, “false alarm” means there was no rocket launch – unless there was a rocket launch.

Nearly half a dozen rockets have been launched since the end of the recent cease-fire, and all of them fell in Gaza or in the sea. Several times, the IDF confirmed the launch along with stating that the Color Red siren was a”false alarm.” It appears the IDF spokesmen’s response depends on the political atmosphere.

The last cease-fire may or may remain the last one in a war that was escalated in 2005, immediately after the Sharon government expelled all Jews and withdrew all IDF personnel from to ensure safety for southern Israel.

In return, Hamas placed all of Israel within range of missile attacks until the temporary “cease-fire” two months ago that was to be followed by negotiations for a long-term halt in violence.

No one, except for perhaps Catherine Ashton and John Kerry, believes that will ever happen. Israel’s demand that Hamas dis arm makes great headlines for the vast majority of Israeli who are fed up with Hamas’ countless cease-fires that have proven to be nothing more than an opportunity for its terrorists to prepare to attack deeper into Israel in the next round.

Whether Hamas is testing rockets or simply is trying to prove its point that it can attack Israel if it wants, Sunday morning’s launch is a reminder that the cease-fire will last only as Hamas does not see any political, diplomatic or military gain in attacking again and suffering a devastating response from the IDF.

A stronger but less vocal reminder is Hamas’ continued attempts to smuggle by sea material for manufacturing weapons.

The Israeli Navy has foiled several maritime smuggling attempts in August, according to a Navy commander quoted by The Jerusalem Post Sunday. He told the newspaper, “We continue to see attempts to smuggle weapons or material to build them. The sea is a very convenient platform for smuggling. The terrorists still have one big smuggling tunnel, and it’s called the Mediterranean.”

An IDF Intelligence Unit Lieutenant Colonel told the Times of Israel, “Hamas will not relinquish its military capabilities or its military wing. The demand that it subordinate its military wing to the PA is unrealizable. For now, the talk of ‘one weapon,’ or ‘one authority’ is just talk.”

Update: Gaza Rocket Test Sets Off Red Alert in Israel

Sunday, October 5th, 2014

At 8:25am Sunday morning the Red Alert siren went off for Israeli communities along the Gaza border, indicating a possible rocket launch from Gaza.

Some residents in the area report hearing an explosion.

Channel 2 reported that the Gazans were testing a new rocket. They launched it and it landed within the Gazan borders.

The IDF spokesperson says it was a False Alarm, which appears to mean the siren went off because of the launch, but the siren shouldn’t have gone off, because it wasn’t going to hit in Israel.

At 8:54am An initial JewishPress.com inquiry with the IDF as to their exact definition of “False Alarm” in this case received the answer, the matter is “under investigation”.

9:14am The IDF verbally told JewishPress.com that “False Alarm” means the rocket was not going to hit an area in Israel that needed a siren, and therefore the siren should not have gone off. It does not mean that the IDF is confirming or denying whether or not there was a rocket launch within Gaza.

10:12am JewishPress.com received a written, updated definition of “False Alarm” from the army:

The term means that an alarm was activated, though without any launch from Gaza. It is important for me to emphasize that each incident is a case of its own and any more information about a ‘false alarm’ is not connected to the use of the term itself.

—-

8:38am Initial report: Rocket launched from Gaza, landed in Gaza. Possibly training or testing on their part.

Channel 2 reports that the Gazans were testing a rocket.

8:32am Still waiting for confirmation one way or another from the army.

8:25am Rocket Alert – Kissufim x2

The Red Alert rocket alarm just went off twice, for Kissufim, Nirim, Ein HaShlosha along the Gaza border.

No update yet if it is real or a false alarm.

Egypt Kills Commander in Ansar Beit al-Maqdis Terror Group

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

Egyptian soldiers have killed a field commander in the most dangerous terrorist group in the country, the Al Qaeda-linked Ansar Beit al-Maqdis.

Egyptian army personnel confiscated two tons of explosives from a tunnel connecting Sinai to Gaza during the battle in which Mohammed Abu Shatiyeh was killed. Shatiyeh was behind the abduction of seven Egyptian soldiers last year.

The shootout took place just south of Rafah, along the Egyptian border with Gaza.

Abbas At UN: Deception And Incitement

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

The dust is still settling following Mahmoud Abbas’s speech to the United Nations, and the consequences of his flat-out rejection of negotiations with Israel are as yet unknown. At this time, a short analysis of his remarks (especially those having to do with Jerusalem) is in order.

He began by accusing Israel of making this year one of “genocide perpetrated against the Palestinian people” in the recent war in Gaza. He added that some defend Israel and its “right to self-defense, without regard for the fate of the thousands of victims of our people.”

It has become difficult to be surprised by Arab double-speak (i.e., lies), but surely the above has set new standards for misrepresenting reality. Merriam-Webster defines genocide as “the deliberate and systematic destruction of a racial, political, or cultural group” – clearly nothing whatsoever to do with Israel’s Operation Protective Edge.

No rational person has ever accused Israel of setting out to destroy an entire people. Israel’s care in exclusively targeting combatants, also known as terrorists, by giving advance warning and frequently canceling attacks when civilians would be killed, proves that its intentions are precisely the opposite of genocide.

Ironically, it is William Schabas – chairman of the committee charged by the UN to investigate Israeli “war crimes” in Gaza, who has expressed anti-Israeli bias in the past – whose learned definition of genocide belies Abbas’s ridiculous claim. A professor of international law and expert on human rights law and genocide, Schabas maintains that the only genuine genocides in recent history were the Holocaust and those in Armenia and Rwanda. He explains that it is not genocide every time members of a group are killed within a given time frame.

Back to Abbas: In light of Israeli efforts to spare civilian lives, the claim by the PA chairman that Israel has no regard for “the fate of the thousands of [Gaza] victims” unwittingly draws attention to those who truly have no regard for them – Hamas itself. It was Hamas that instructed its citizens to ignore Israeli warnings and remain in buildings housing terrorists. And it is Hamas terrorists who use their own families and neighbors as human shields, thus causing their deaths. A famous cartoon from a number of years ago depicts the situation perfectly: A Hamas/PLO terrorist takes cover behind a baby in its carriage as he fires at an Israeli soldier – who is ready to fire back as he stands in front of a baby carriage to protect it.

In this connection, Abbas uttered his most ridiculous comment at the end of his speech, when he quoted this line from a contemporary Arab poet: “We love life if we are given the chance for it.” They love life?! How many mothers of Arab “martyrs” have rejoiced at the deaths of their sons? In these very pages we recently quoted a young Arab mother who told an Israeli, “Life is valuable – but not for us. Life is zero, life is worthless. That is why we have all the suicide bombers…. All of us, even our children are not afraid of dying. It is natural for us.”

Or consider the words of Hamas commander Raed Sa’ad : “We have succeeded in raising an ideological generation that loves death like our enemies love life.”

Regarding Jerusalem, Abbas at the UN accused Israel of having specifically targeted the holy city “and its inhabitants, attempting to artificially alter [its] spirit, identity and character… focusing on Al-Aqsa Mosque, threatening grave consequences. ”

How bizarre. Jerusalem has absolutely no “Palestinian” history. It is rather embedded in the world’s consciousness as home to Kings David and Solomon, the Holy Temples, and the center of Jewish yearning and national existence for the past 3,000 years. Yet Abbas charges Israel with trying to change the city’s spirit and identity. Even toward the close of the Jewish people’s long exile, and consecutively for the last 170 years, there has been a Jewish majority in the city. As is well known by now, Jerusalem does not appear even once in the Koran, and was the capital of no nation in history other than the Jewish nation. So which side is trying to alter Jerusalem’s spirit and character?

PA Demands Nov 2016 Deadline for UN to Force Israeli Surrender

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

The Palestinian Authority has set its deadline for its desired withdrawal by Israel from all parts of Jerusalem and the entire regions of Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley that it is claiming for its hoped-for new state.

A draft resolution circulated by the PA to members of the United Nations Security Council calls on the body to require Israel to expel all of residents and military forces and transfer them within the 1949 Armistice Line by November 2016.

This would entail the expulsion of nearly 400,000 Jews from their communities, homes, businesses, fields and farms – not to mention the massive security risk involved as well.

In addition, the resolution drafted by the PA also calls for a “just resolution” of the status of Jerusalem as the capital of two states.

This would mean dividing the holy city of Jerusalem, abandoning the Western Wall and the Temple Mount, in addition to numerous other Jewish and Christian sacred sites as well.

The relevant territory was restored to the city of Jerusalem during the 1967 Six Day War – a defensive conflict in which Jordan’s occupying forces lost the city after attacking Israel – and was annexed by the Knesset as a means of reuniting Israel’s ancient capital in a legislative process following the conflict. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has stated unequivocally from the outset – as have other Israeli leaders – that the issue of Jerusalem is not negotiable.

The draft also calls for a “just resolution” of the issue of the “right of return” of more than five million so-called Palestinian refugees.

The PA is demanding that Israel absorb and allow the return of the Arab residents who once lived in the area prior to the establishment of the Jewish State and their millions of descendants. Some were forced to flee due to combat conditions and others simply left on their own initiative; a total of 700,000 residents left their homes.

Since that time, the figure has grown to five million-plus so-called “refugees” who continue to retain that status without ever having even seen the premises from which they are purported to have fled. They comprise the only group of refugees in the entire world ever to retain such a status throughout the generations and are aided and abetted in this endeavor by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, (UNRWA).

UNRWA continues to support the “refugees”and by doing so appears also to nurture a culture of helplessness and dependency in the generations of descendants in all the lands to which their ancestors moved.

But the real issue not about the details of the PA demands for the UN to force Israel to abandon its capital or its homes, and ti is not about allowing its Arab neighbors to carry out an ethnic cleansing without any resistance at all.

As Prime Minister Netanyahu said in his speech to the UN General Assembly on Monday, it’s about the real goal of Hamas – a terrorist group which is a full partner together with PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas in the unity government. Abbas has not denounced Hamas, nor has he abandoned it in any way – and the Hamas charter calls for the annihilation of the State of Israel and those who dwell within.

But that’s not all. Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal articulates very clearly that the goals of Hamas are precisely those of ISIS: “We say this to the West… By Allah you will be defeated. Tomorrow our nation will sit on the throne of the world.”

Israel’s prime minister reminded world leaders on Monday of those words, and reminded Americans of the destruction they witnessed just 13 years ago:

“Hamas has a broader objective. They also want a caliphate. Hamas shares the global ambitions of its fellow militant Islamists. That’s why its supporters wildly cheered in the streets of Gaza as thousands of Americans were murdered on 9/11. And that’s why its leaders condemned the United States for killing Osama Bin Laden, whom they praised as a holy warrior. So when it comes to their ultimate goals, Hamas is ISIS and ISIS is Hamas.

Netanyahu, Obama Focus on Different Priorities in White House Talk

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and U.S. President Barack Obama met for about 75 minutes Wednesday evening began shortly after the Israeli leader’s arrival at the White House, and following a brief news conference with the press corps.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and National Security Adviser Susan Rice were also present in the Oval Office during the meeting.

On the agenda for discussion were the American-led air strikes against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), Iran’s nuclear development program and the ongoing question of how to resolve the dilemma of what to do about the Palestinian Authority. It was not known whether the American president planned to discuss security concessions over Gaza as well.

The meeting began at 11 am, and several commentators noted on the Twitter social networking site that Obama didn’t offer any lunch to the Israeli prime minister. “Perhaps Bibi, unlike (India’s Prime Minister) Modi, insisted on food for himself and wasn’t happy to just watch Obama eat,” tweeted one individual.

In a clearly determined bid to maintain a cordial tone, Netanyahu said that he appreciates Obama’s efforts to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon of mass destruction, according to the Reuters news agency.
Obama told Netanyahu that efforts are needed to change the status quo between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, according to LBCI News.

Israel is committed to a “two-state solution” with the Palestinian Authority, Netanyahu told reporters during their pre-meeting briefing. But any agreement, he said, will require “thinking outside the box” and must include “rock solid” security arrangements. Obama and Netanyahu reportedly discussed during their meeting the current status of the relationship between Israel and the terrorist factions in Gaza, including the region’s ruling Hamas terrorist organization.

The two men are clearly focused on different priorities, with Obama keeping his eyes on the threat posed by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and against whom the U.S. is leading coalition air strikes in Syria and Iraq. Netanyahu, meanwhile, has remained concerned about the overriding progress of Iran’s nuclear development program and putting a full stop to the centrifuges that are working overtime to enrich uranium at progressively higher levels.

The Israeli prime minister also noted while speaking to a group of Jewish leaders yesterday in New York that it is important for the U.S. to realize there isn’t much difference between Gaza’s ruling Hamas terrorist organization and ISIS, against whom Obama has declared war.

Both share a “fanatic ideology,” he pointed out, and both use “savage” methods. He warned, “The more they have the capability to realize their ambitions the more they will unleash their pent-up aggression against our common civilizations.”

To emphasize the similarities, Netanyahu shared a photo of an impending public execution of a man whose head was covered with a sack, shot in Gaza.

“This isn’t ISIS,” he pointed out. “This is Hamas.” During Israel’s counter terror Operation Protective Edge this summer, Hamas executed dozens of Gaza residents “just to impose fear and force the population… into submission.” The only difference, Netanyahu said, is that ISIS “beheads its victims,” and Hamas “puts a bullet in the back of their heads.”

To the families of those murdered, the horror is the same, he asserted.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/netanyahu-obama-meeting-at-white-house/2014/10/01/

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