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July 25, 2016 / 19 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Golan’

Spokesman Says US Committed to Returning Golan Heights to Syrians — No Matter Which Syrians

Tuesday, April 19th, 2016

One of the minor victories of Israeli rightwing pundits has been fueled by the gruesome holocaust taking place over the past five years in Israel’s northern neighbor, Syria. Back in April 2008, then Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert agrees to fully withdraw from the Golan Heights in return for peace with Syria. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad confirmed Olmert’s remarks at the time that Jerusalem and Damascus were holding talks through a third-party in an attempt to resume the negotiations between the two countries.

“There are efforts exerted in this direction,” Assad told reporters. “This is nothing new, and we have discussed this in the past.” Assad added that “Syria takes every opportunity to express its willingness to establish just and comprehensive peace in accordance with the international decisions… The criterion for the acceptance of any negotiations is that they will be held seriously and that there will be a commitment to implement the UN resolutions, particularly as the Israeli side knows very well what is acceptable and unacceptable by the Syrian side.”

What was acceptable to the Syrian ruler back then was a complete return of every last inch of the Golan Heights to Syrian control, removal of every last Jew and Jewish property from the area, and a return to the 1967 borders, when Syrian snipers ruled the lives of Israeli farmers along the eastern shores of the Kinneret.

Imagine, a long string of Israeli columnists, bloggers, Facebookers and Tweeters have been saying, if Israel had indeed returned to the 1967 border just before the scum of the Middle East — Sunni rebels, Hezbollah, Al Qaeda, ISIS, and Syrian chemical warfare operators were to crowd the basalt hills overlooking Tiberias — where would we be today?

It’s a winning argument, open and shut, other than Gideon Levi and a couple other useful idiots there really is no Israeli who would ever entertain returning the Golan Heights.

But at Foggy Bottom, where life behaves according to more sublime rules than the Jewish aspiration to stay alive, no lessons have been learned regarding the wisdom of returning Syrian murderers of whatever ilk to the hills above the Kinneret.

It began during the State Dept. Monday press briefing this week. Spokesman John Kirby was asked about the official US recognition of Syria. Essentially, the reporter wanted to know, if the US is so invested in ousting President Bashar al-Assad as a prerequisite for ending the civil war in Syria, why does it still recognize him as the legitimate sovereign of that tortured land?

The reporter asked (redacted): “Legally and diplomatically you only recognize Syria, as you have in the past. In fact, you still issue press briefings in the name of the US Embassy in Syria and so on. From time to time I see that you recognize the government of the Arab Syrian Republic. You have not recognized anyone else as exercising any kind of authority or any kind of sovereignty over any territory of Syria.

Kirby: I’m not sure I understand your question.

Reporter: My question is very simple. Do you recognize any other entity in Syria to have sovereignty over that territory?

Kirby: We recognize that there is a Syrian Government in place. We also recognize that it’s led by a dictator who continues to barrel bomb and gas his people. And the government that’s in place right now, led by Bashar al-Assad, can’t be part of the long-term future of Syria, which is why we’re doing this entire political process to begin with. It’s why so many nations have come together to try to resolve the civil war and the conflict there so that people can have a government in place that they’ve actually had a voice in putting there and that is responsive and responsible for them.

David Israel

Get to Grips with Fruit Flavors in Wine on Tu B’Shvat

Friday, January 22nd, 2016

Market stalls along the cobbled alleys in the Machne Yehuda shuk (market) in Jerusalem are overflowing with dried fruit. As the sudden abundance of donuts reminds Israelis that Chanukah is coming, so the mounds of dried fruit are synonymous with the arrival of Tu B’shvat.

Not well known outside of Israel, the minor Jewish holiday of Tu B’shvat celebrates the ‘New Year of the trees’ from which the correct tithes were calculated in the times of the Temple. Today, many Israelis take Tu B’shvat as an opportunity to eat exotic dried fruits. Some even go as far as to hold Tu B’Shvat seder, a Chassidic custom that traditionally included fruits and wine from the seven Biblical species.

Alongside the piles of dried fruit in the market are bottles of homegrown Israeli wines also ready to grace the Tu B’Shvat table. The relationship between fruit and wine is clear. Fruit is transformed into wine. But from there things become more complicated. Wine is frequently described in terms of fruit. We hear phrases like, ‘notes of cherry.’

But, what do these terms really mean? If no artificial flavors are added to wine, then how can the simple grape produce a flavor with ‘a hint of orange blossom?’

Fruit flavors as described in wine actually only refer to the scents that are identified as we smell the wine. They could be classified by the chemical names, but would hardly appeal to the average wine drinker.

Instead, a common language of wine tastes that uses common scents as analogies to the flavors present in wine has developed. Referring to such association enables the experience of wine taste to be universal and allows the exchange of knowledge and impressions.

To experience a wine’s true scent, you should smell the wine twice. First, gently swirl the wine in the glass, then sniff deeply; this is called the ‘first nose.’ Then swirl the wine again and smell a second time, the ‘second nose’, which allows you to identify a greater range of flavors in the wine. The best sommeliers are able to identify as many as 60 flavors in one wine.

Once identified, each fruit flavor teaches us something about the wine. Fresh fruit flavors like apple, pear, quince, peach, apricot and strawberry are usually signs of a young wine.

Cooked fruit flavors like compote or jam indicate a very ripe harvest year with hot weather conditions during the fruit ripen period.

Exotic fruits such as papaya, mango, pineapple, passion fruit and litchi are only found when the grapes were very ripe at the time of harvesting.

As you might expect, sour fruit flavors, such as citrus, green apple, kiwi, red currant and raspberry indicate a wine that was produced from grapes with a greater acidity.

Flavors reminiscent of dried fruits or nuts are usually found in sophisticated white wines.

Obviously, every wine contains multiple flavors. For a full tour of fruit flavors this Tu B’Shvat try these suggestions, found in local wine stores throughout the UK, to bring a taste of Israel to your table this Tu B’Shvat.

Grown in the footsteps of Mt Hermon, Gilgal White Riesling is fresh and makes a great aperitif with notes of citrus, melon as well as lemon and honey. Swill the glass to see if you can identify the subtle character of lime peel.

To accompany your dried fruit, try Yarden’s T2, produced from two different varieties of Portuguese grapes – Touriga Nacional and Tinta Cao. This rich wine was fortified with brandy to stop its fermentation and increases its alcohol content while preserving the grapes’ natural sweetness. Look out for the aromatic blend of ripe cherries and plums in the scent.

Daniela Berkowitz

IDF Attacks Syrian Positions

Friday, August 21st, 2015

The IDF Spokesperson announced that the IDF attacked 14 Syrian positions in the central Golan Heights region late Thursday night using tanks, artillery and the Air Force. The IDF strikes were in response to the Syrian attacks that hit Israel earlier Thursday afternoon.

The initiating attack was done by an Islamic Jihad group, which is funded by Iran. The spokesperson said the attack was an infringement on Israeli sovereignty.

The IDF views the Syrian (Assad) government responsible for what goes on in its territory, and won’t countenance any attempt to harm Israel’s sovereignty or the security of its inhabitants.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Two Mortar Shells Explode on Golan Heights

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

Two mortar shells fired from Syria exploded in the northern Golan Heights late Monday afternoon.

No physical injuries or property damage was reported. One person suffered shock.

The IDF said that the shells exploded in an agricultural area. It estimates they were the result of stray fire in the Syrian war and were not intentionally aimed at Israel.

The Golan Heights has been hit dozens of times the past year by rifle fire and mortar shells, sometimes aimed at soldiers and civilians.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Heavy Fighting in Syria, Not Far from Golan

Sunday, February 15th, 2015

At least 93 people have died in heavy fighting in southern Syria, the British-Based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reports. Syrian troops loyal to Bashar Assad fought alongside the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah against Syrian rebels, with roughly equal casualties on each side.

The fighting took place south of Damascus and in the Deraa and Quneitra regions. Quneitra is close to the Israeli-Syrian border in the Golan.

In recent months the Golan has been hit by mortars and gunfire from Syria on several occasions. Two weeks ago an attack from Syria killed two IDF soldiers and destroyed a civilian home.

The latest round of violence is part of a large-scale assault launched by Assad’s troops and Hezbollah in southern Syria. The assault is expected to heat up in the upcoming hours and days as the weather clears, allowing for the use of airstrikes.

The south is the rebels’ last stronghold. Hezbollah has control of much of western Syria, while northern and eastern Syria have fallen to the Islamic State (Da’esh) and the Al-Nusra Front.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported Saturday that Syrian rebels have turned to Israel for help. They are asking for Israeli air support in the fight against Hezbollah and Iran.

Israel has not confirmed or denied involvement in several airstrikes against Hezbollah positions and weapons in Syria.

 

Jewish Press Staff Writer

Syrian Mortar hits Israeli Golan Tuesday Morning

Tuesday, October 21st, 2014

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A mortar fired from Syria landed in Israeli territory on the Golan Heights.

The mortar, which hit Israel on Tuesday morning, did not cause any injuries or damage.

The explosive is believed to have been fired as part of the more than 3-year-old Syrian civil war. Heavy fighting between troops loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad and rebel forces has resumed recently near the Quneitra crossing on the border between Israel and Syria.

In August, about 25 mortars fell in Israel, believed to be errant fire from the fighting between Syria’s army and the rebels. Israeli farms near the border with Syria were closed during that time due to fears for farm workers’ safety.

JTA

IDF Stands By as Al Qaeda Offensive Threatens Golan Farmers

Sunday, September 14th, 2014

The IDF warned Golan Heights farmers Sunday that they are liable to be victims of stray rocket and mortar shell fire as Al Qaeda-led rebels advance in their offensive against the army of Syrian President Bassar al-Assad.

At least one mortar shell exploded in the northern Golan Heights on Friday.

Israel has been careful to stay out of the civil war, now in its fourth year, but the IDF occasionally has responded to several firing incidents that appeared to be aimed at Israel.

So what do you do when your terrorist neighbors, whether Assad, ISIS or Al Qaeda, are killing and beheading each other, but an occasional rocket just happens to fall in your back yard?

You duck.

The IDF says, “Be careful,” and it is hard to criticize the walk-on-eggs policy.

If Israeli soldiers start showing their guns and attack rebel or loyalist positions, Israel, in a single step, or shot if you prefer, could instantly turn the ISIS, Assad and Al Qaeda into allies with the ultimate common enemy, those terrible Zionists.

You know, those are the ones who are occupying territory that was mostly uninhabited except for a Druze city and Syrian army positions used to pound Israeli farmers along the Kinneret until the Six-Day War in 1967.

Now, the shooting has shifted to the Golan Heights, where farmers have the option of being careful while they work or are being even more careful by not working.

But the IDF is not likely the bill for apples that are not picked and for cattle that are not grazing in the pasture.

The farmers are suffering, but at least they have the satisfaction of knowing that with every day, there are a few less terrorists on the other side of the border.

If the farmers can be agile enough to duck quickly, and the IDF can restrain from firing back, there might be peace on the day that the last terrorist blows himself up in frustration because there is no one else left to kill, except, of course, for Israelis.

 

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/idf-stands-by-as-al-qaeda-offensive-threatens-golan-farmers/2014/09/14/

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