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September 2, 2014 / 7 Elul, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Israel’

Soldier Dies from Wounds in Rocket Attack

Friday, August 29th, 2014

An IDF soldier who was critically injured last week by a rocket that hit Ashdod died from his wounds today. He is Israel’s 71st casualty in the war.

Sergeant Natanel Maman, 21, from Gan Yavne, an Ordnance Corps soldier, was critically injured by a rocket that hit Ashdod last Friday.

He was promoted posthumously from the rank of Corporal to Sergeant and is being buried Friday afternoon in the military courtyard of the Gan Yavne cemetery.

 

 

 

 

Funeral Begins from Lakewood Yeshiva Student Aaron Sofer

Friday, August 29th, 2014

Thousands of mourners turned out Friday morning for the funeral of Lakewood, New Jersey yeshiva student Aaron Sofer whose body was found Thursday after seven days of searching since he was reported missing last Friday evening.

His parents said they were “overwhelmed” by the sad news, which also brought a certain relief from the week-long anxiety that was deepened by fears that Sofer, 23, had been kidnapped by terrorists.

The funeral began with eulogies in the Ezrat Torah neighborhood of Jerusalem, and Sofer is to be buried later in the day in Beit Shemesh.

His disappearance, after he and a hiking friend had separated in the hills of Jerusalem, brought out passionate pleas from New Jersey community and political leaders for the IDF and the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) to conduct massive search for Sofer.

Search and rescue workers found his partially decomposed body Thursday afternoon. Sofer did not have a cell phone, and if he was alive after he fell, the inability to communicate by phone may have left him doomed to death by dehydration.

“Ever since Aaron went missing, communities throughout the United States, Israel, and beyond gathered in worship on behalf of Aaron,” said New Jersey Democratic Senator Robert Menendez.

“During this period of mourning, I hope the Sofer family can be comforted with the knowledge that countless people, friends and strangers alike, prayed for Aaron’s well-being, and those acts of devotion will only continue,” he added. “It has become clear to me that everyone who knew Aaron saw tremendous promise in this young man who was committed to his family, his Jewish faith and his community of Lakewood.”

Dutch Pension Fund Rejects BDS

Friday, August 29th, 2014

The Netherlands’ third largest pension fund, ABP, rejected on Thursday demands from the Boycott Israel movement to disinvest from three Israeli banks that allegedly finance an Israeli presence in Judea and Samaria..

The anti-Israel Avaas organization, along with South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu had pleased with ABP to sell off shares worth more than $75 million in Bank HaPoalim, Bank Leumi and Bank Mizrachi.

ABP decided to follow the example set by another Dutch pension fund, PGGM, in January when it sold off investments in five Israeli banks.

The board of ABP, which is the pension fund for Dutch public workers, said that its investment policy bars holding shares in companies that violate the U.N. Global Compact, AFP reported. The fund’s spokeswoman pointed out that the United Nations, despite its opposition to Israel’s including Judea and Samaria as part of the country, has not declared that the banks are breaking international laws.

The Boycott Israel movement, often terms BDS for Boycott, Disinvestment and Sanctions, has caused some damage to Israel and is a long-term threat, even a strategic threat, but its effect is exaggerated by isolated “victories.”

Selling off shares in banks and companies such Caterpillar, which sells equipment to the IDF, has had a marginal effect in depressing the price on the stock market.

BDS’s “successes” often get more attention than they deserve, and one of the reasons is the inherent bias against Israel in certain media.

The New York Times ran an article on Thursday under the headline “With Gaza War, Movement to Boycott Israel Gains Momentum in Europe.”

The “momentum” referred to a British grocery store’s removing kosher products from its shelves, a London theater’s decision to boycott film funded by the Israeli government, and a plug for Britain’s national embarrassment, known as Member of Parliament George Galloway, who declared that one city in England will be an “Israel-free zone.”

Anti-Israel activists undoubtedly used the war in Gaza to fuel some local boycotts, but the exposure of Hamas for what it is – a regime of war criminals – has mooted the anti-Israel sentiment to some effect.

The anti-Israel spin on the war convinced some governments to reconsider their sales of weapons to Israel, but the long-lasting effect is questionable, especially in light of the chaos among ISIS and fellow Islamic radicals in Syria and Iraq.

After quoting several experts on the threat of a large-scale boycott of Israel, the Times admitted that “the economic impact has been small” and that “the European Union, which has been looked to for leadership on the issue, does not support the idea.”

The most harmful damage so far has been Judea and Samaria, whose products my not bear the stamp “made in Israel” in some countries.

Al Qaeda and ISIS are Israel’s New Northern Neighbors

Friday, August 29th, 2014

Al Qaeda, ISIS, Syrian rebels, and soldiers loyal to Syrian President Bassar al-Assad are engaged in free-for-all and barbaric war that is taking place dangerously close to the Golan Heights border with Israel.

The Syrian government announced Sunday that it has reclaimed control only parts of Kuneitra, on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has jumped on the chaos to thump his comparison of ISIS with Hamas, while President Barack Obama shocked Americans with a candid appraisal that the United States “does not have a strategy yet” to deal with the New Middle East, light years away from what then-President Bill Clinton promised when he sold the snake oil known as the Oslo Accords.

So long as terrorists kill each other in Syria, Israel can relax, but if and when one terrorist group survives and takes over, the IDF will be wishing for the good ‘ol days of fighting Hamas in Gaza, despite Netanyahu’s description that if a rose is a rose is a rose, ISIS is Islamic Jihad is Hamas. To paraphrase his famous “duck” statement in the United Nations, concerning a nuclear Iran, “if it looks like a wild animal, and if it walks like a wild animal, and if it talks like a wild animal, it is a wild animal – and not a duck.”

The radical Islamic movement has proven that extremism and barbarity are relevant terms, and the ISIS has made Assad look human, more or less, and made Al Qaeda look like middle-of-the-road Islam.

The Syrian government has not admitted the ISIS massacre of approximately 150 of its soldiers, who dropped their weapons and ran for what they thought was their lives in a battle. Instead, the ISIS caught up with them and murdered them. Before their deaths, several of them were “convicted” after their admissions of sins against Islam by not having raped and murdered enemies.

Naughty, naughty radical Muslims, they were.

It is difficult to express ”good news” when beheadings and kidnappings are common are Syria, but Obama’s “we do not have a strategy yet” comment on Thursday should be interpreted positively and not negatively.

It is a bit shocking that the Obama administration’s foreign policy gurus have been standing aside for more than three years during the bloodbath in Syria, after initially siding with Assad.

However, considering that everything his administration touches turns to you know what, Israel and the rest of the world might be better off to the let animals act like animals, pity the innocent civilians who are caught in hell on earth, and let the United States worry about Ferguson and immigrants from Mexico.

Israel also is undoubtedly anxiously preparing for a potential future battle against ISIS or Al Qaeda domination on the Golan Heights.

ISIS, Al Qaeda and Syrian rebels have common enemies in Basher Assad and Israel, but they also are battling each other in order to stake a claim of which terrorists will rule whatever is left of Syria in the future.

The Al-Nusra terrorists long ago split off from Al Qaeda, engaged in its own civil war while fighting both rebels and Assad.

It is all in the name of Allah.

“We in the Al Nusra Front only fight to raise the word of Allah, to make the oppressed triumphant,” one fighter said, according to Fox News. “We only fight to get rid of the enemy Bashar and his soldiers. We have come to fight them so that we can impose Allah’s laws on the country.”

Al Qaeda distances itself from ISIS and announced that ISIS “is not a branch of the Al Qaeda group [and] does not have an organizational relationship with it and is not the group responsible for their actions.”

Netanyahu Meets with House Armed Services Members

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu likened Hamas to radical Islamists in Iraq and Syria in a meeting with members of the U.S. House of Representatives Armed Services Committee Thursday evening.

“We’re faced with common enemies, radical Islamic terrorists who have absolutely no inhibitions on executing people, terrorizing people, targeting innocent civilians,” Netanyahu said at the meeting with a bipartisan delegation led by chairman Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.). “These are common enemies of Israel, the United States and all the civilized countries. And I think we should take a common stand to defeat them.”

McKeon in his response pledged continuing support for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system, credited with deflecting over 80 percent of targeted missiles in the recent war with Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

“On the House Armed Services Committee, we’re happy with the work we’ve been able to do, working with you on [Iron] Dome and how you’ve used it to protect human life,” he said. “And we will keep that bond and that friendship and that special relationship that we have forever.”

A recent report in the Wall Street Journal outlined tensions between the Netanyahu government and the Obama administration over Israel’s direct lobbying of Congress and the Pentagon for supplementary weapons supplies.

Mashaal Vows Cease-Fire a Step to New ‘Resistance’ War against Israel

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Hamas’ supreme leader Khaled Mashaal dashed any hopes of long-term peace with Israel in a speech in Qatar on Thursday in which he shot from the hip at Israel and also at his terrorist organization’s new partner, the rival Fatah movement headed by Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas.

His lengthy speech in Qatar, which has financed Hamas terror and which fought Egyptian cease-fire proposals, followed by one day a “victory” speech by Ismail Haniyeh, the senior Hamas political leader in Gaza. Mashaal’s silence while Haniyeh accepted the cease-fire is a clear sign of a fierce power struggle between Hamas in Gaza and between Mashaal and Qatar, which holds the purse strings.

Mashaal also claimed victory, with lies that Hamas missiles hit the Ben Gurion Airport, which is not true, and that more than 5 million Israelis hid in bomb shelters, a gross exaggeration. However, there is no doubt that Hamas succeeded in scaring the daylight out of millions of Israelis, interrupting a few flights and generally turning half of Israel into sitting ducks.

And this won’t be the last time, regardless of a cease-fire, he warned.

“Whatever happened [in Gaza] is not the end to this story, and this is not the last operation to free Palestine. It was an important stop on the way to victory,” Mashaal declared.

His speech threw every obstacle possible on the road to negotiations with Israel. The talks are supposed to begin in a month, leaving open the possibility, or probability, that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is carrying on secret negotiations that will be formalized in 30 days.

The Prime Minister suffered another blow to any trust that Israelis may have for him with a report on Thursday that he met secretly with Jordanian King Abdullah, and perhaps Abbas, prior to the cease-fire, circumstantial evidence that Israel negotiated under fire, contrary to Netanyahu’s promise.

If Mashaal gets his way, there won’t be any talks because one of the new powers in Gaza is slated to be Abbas, whose security forces would patrol Gaza borders, according to the Egyptian proposal. That would provide Cairo with another tactic to get rid of Hamas.

Mashaal nailed Abbas to the wall in his speech, accusing him of throwing cold water on the resumption of the intifada during the war by allowing his security forces to limit protests.

“The next operation needs to use all of the Palestinian capabilities, not just part of them,” Mashaal said. “The resistance is holy and weapons are holy. There is no such thing as a country without weapons.”

A country or not, Gaza still has at least 2,000 rockets as well as anti-tank rockets and presumably anti-aircraft missiles. It still has rocket factories, one of which was filmed in production by Hamas during one of the failed cease-fires during the war.

Netanyahu had demanded that any halt in violence would be accompanied by disarming Hamas, but this week’s cease-fire only left the issue to be put on the negotiating table, along with Hamas’s demands for a deep-sea port and an airport.

Mashaal’s speech was full of hate and crude accusations that Israel inflicted a “Holocaust” on Gaza by “destroying schools and hospitals,” which all but the most extreme anti-Israel media now know were used by Hamas as rocket launching and terrorist command centers.

“We are against what Hitler did to the Jews, and Israel committed a second Holocaust in Gaza. Israel is an embarrassment to Jews and to the entire world,” according to Mashaal.

His rhetoric was aimed at Abbas as well as Israel. If and when negotiations begin, Egypt and the United States will be on the side of Abbas, who despite his unity government with Hamas has proved politically smart by a patient and single-minded tactic of using international support to slowly but surely win concession after concession from Israel until there is nothing left to negotiate.

Run Away… Run Away… [photos]

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

UN troops guarding the border between Israel and Syria were caught on camera today fleeing their posts and running away into Israel with their armored vehicles, after it became too dangerous for them to actually guard the border.

The Rebel forces of the Jubhat al Nusra faction took over an area along the border with Israel, on the Golan Heights, after fighting with Syrian troops.

Some of the UNDOF forces were captured by the Syrian rebels.

Next time someone suggests embedding international troops to protect Israel from our enemies – just think of this picture.

UPDATE: Filipino forces have not laid down their weapons, and are still defending 2 UN positions, which is a credit to the Filipinos soldiers, and not the UN.

Here are some of the Syrian rebels:

Syrian Rebels along Israeli Border

 

And here we see IDF troops still at their posts along the Syrian border.

IDF tank protecting Israel along the Syrian border.

IDF tank protecting Israel along the Syrian border.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/run-away-run-away-photo/2014/08/28/

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