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December 20, 2014 / 28 Kislev, 5775
 
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Posts Tagged ‘massacre’

Defense Minister Barak Meets with U.S. Senators, Discusses Syria and Iran

Monday, May 28th, 2012

Defense Minister Ehud Barak met with a delegation of U.S. senators in Tel Aviv on Monday, and reiterated his government’s conviction that the recent nuclear talks in Baghdad were yet another example of Iran “dragging its feet while attempting to deceive the world.”

Barak was referring to the fruitless negotiations that took place last week, where the West saw its glimmer of hope dashed by Iran’s rejection of the P5+ 1′s proposal (the U.S., the U.K., France, Russia, China, Germany) to rein in Iran’s nuclear program. He also took the opportunity to emphasize that “All options remain firmly on the table.”

Barak also discussed the massacre perpetrated by the Assad regime in Houla on Friday. “Israel supports the UN Security Council’s condemnation of the atrocities in Syria.  The pictures of the children’s mutilated bodies are both shocking and disturbing.  We call upon the nations of the world to unite and act immediately to stop the ongoing massacre of innocents.”

A Heartfelt Plea for Increased Light by Chava (Eva) Sandler of Toulouse

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

My heart is broken. I am unable to speak. There are no ways for me to be able to express the great and all-consuming pain resulting from the murder of my dear husband Rabbi Jonathan and our sons, Aryeh and Gavriel, and of Miriam Monsonego, daughter of the dedicated principal of Ozar Hatorah and his wife, Rabbi Yaakov and Mrs. Monsonego.

May no one ever have to endure such pain and suffering.

Because so many of you, my cherished brothers and sisters in France and around the world, are asking what you can do on my behalf, on behalf of my daughter Liora and on behalf of the souls of my dear husband and children, I feel that, difficult though it may be, it is incumbent upon me to answer your entreaties.

My husband’s life was dedicated to teaching Torah. We moved back to the country of his birth to help young people learn about the beauty of Torah. He was truly a good man, loving, giving, and selfless. He was sensitive to all of God’s creatures, always searching for ways to reveal the goodness in others.

He and I raised Aryeh and Gavriel to live the ways of Torah. Who would have known how short would be their time on this Earth, how short would be the time I would be with them as their mother?

I don’t know how I and my husband’s parents and sister will find the consolation and strength to carry on, but I know that the ways of God are good, and He will reveal the path and give us the strength to continue. I know that their holy souls will remain with us forever, and I know that very soon the time will come when we will be together again with the coming of Moshiach.

I wholeheartedly believe in the words of the verse: “The Lord has given, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the Name of the Lord.” I thank the Almighty for the privilege, short though it was, of raising my children together with my husband. Now the Almighty wants them back with Him.

To all those who wish to bring consolation to our family and contentment to the souls of the departed: Let’s continue their lives on this Earth.

Parents, please kiss your children. Tell them how much you love them, and how dear it is to your heart that they be living examples of our Torah, imbued with the fear of Heaven and with love of their fellow man.

Please increase your study of Torah, whether on your own or with your family and friends. Help others who may find study difficult to achieve alone.

Please bring more light into the world by kindling the Sabbath candles this and every Friday night. (Please do so a bit earlier than the published times as a way to add holiness to our world.)

The holiday of Passover is approaching. Please invite another person into your homes so that all have a place at a Seder to celebrate the holiday of our freedom.

Along with our tearful remembrance of our trials in Egypt so many years ago, we still tell over how “in each and every generation, they have stood against us to destroy us.” We all will announce in a loud and clear voice: “God saves us from their hands.”

The spirit of the Jewish people can never be extinguished; its connection with Torah and its commandments can never be destroyed.

May it be God’s will that from this moment on, we will all only know happiness.

I send my heartfelt condolences to the Monsonego family for the loss of their daughter Miriam, and I pray for the speedy recovery of Aharon ben Leah, who was injured in the attack.

Thank you for your support and love.

(text provided by Chabad.org)

UN Secretary General Pleads for Security Council Action

Monday, January 16th, 2012

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said in Abu Dhabi Monday that he hopes “the UN Security Council handles Syria in a coherent manner and with a sense of gravity.”

“The casualties have reached such an unacceptable stage we cannot let the situation continue this way,” he added.

These statements come a day after he implored Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to “stop the massacre of his people.”

Remember 2002? (Part II)

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011
   Last week we noted that with the recent brouhaha over Judge Richard Goldstone’s backtracking on the most sensational charge leveled against Israel in his 2009 report to the UN, “much has been made of the damage done by that document to Israel’s standing in the court of international opinion.”
   But the fallout from the Goldstone report paled in comparison to the outrage directed at Israel in the spring of 2002 when then-Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, following a wave of increasingly bloody suicide bombings, dispatched Israeli forces to Palestinian areas.
   The reaction in the U.S. media was bad enough (several salient examples were highlighted in last week’s column), but it was in Britain, particularly after the IDF attacked terrorist nests in the town of Jenin, that journalists descended into an all-out anti-Israel feeding frenzy theretofore seen only in the most rabid precincts of the Arab media.
And so you had The Guardian calling Israel’s behavior in Jenin “every bit as repellent” as Osama bin Laden’s attack on New York on September 11.
And here was London’s Evening Standard: “We are talking here of massacre, and a cover-up, of genocide.”
Read the words of The London Times’s Janine di Giovanni: “Rarely in more than a decade of war reporting from Bosnia, Chechnya, Sierra Leone, Kosovo, have I seen such deliberate destruction, such disrespect for human life.”
And pay attention the Independent’s Phil Reeves: “A monstrous war crime that Israel has tried to cover up for a fortnight has finally been exposed…. The sweet and ghastly reek of rotting human bodies is everywhere, evidence that it is a human tomb. The people say there are hundreds of corpses, entombed beneath the dust.”
In articles published by The Jewish Press among other news outlets in May and June of 2002, media critic Tom Gross accused The Evening Standard’s Sam Kiley of “conjur[ing] up witnesses to speak of Israel’s ‘staggering brutality and callous murder.
The aforementioned Janine di Giovanni, wrote Gross, “suggested that Israel’s mission to destroy suicide bomb-making factories in Jenin (a town from which at the Palestinians own admission 28 suicide bombers had already set out) was an excuse by Ariel Sharon to attack children with chickenpox.”
And Gross quoted The Guardian’s Suzanne Goldenberg, who alleged that “The scale [of destruction] is almost beyond imagination” as well as Evening Standard columnist A. N. Wilson, who accused Israel of “the poisoning of water supplies.”
   Even when subsequent investigations by the UN, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Time magazine and the BBC – not exactly a Who’s Who of pro-Israel propaganda – all concluded that there had been no massacre, there was a general lack of accountability, let alone remorse, among those who had written tens of thousands of words defaming and slandering Israel.
   The Independent’s Justin Huggler wrote that “The UN report is carefully worded not to give offence to Israel or its allies.”
   The Guardian ran an editorial refusing to concede anything: “As we said last April, the destruction wrought in Jenin looked and smelled like a crime. On the basis of the UN’s findings, it still does.”
   And an article in The Guardian implied the UN report was untrustworthy because “Israel objected to members of the fact-finding team and then imposed a series of conditions which led the secretary-general, Kofi Annan, to call off the mission.”
   On the other hand, The London Times, no doubt recognizing the sheer absurdity of the idea that the UN would give its imprimatur to a flawed report that failed to find evidence of an Israeli massacre, bit the bullet and wrote: “A United Nations report broke new ground yesterday by accusing Palestinian militants of violating international law when they fought attacking Israeli troops in the Jenin refugee camp.”
   And The Independent’s Phil Reeves filed what had to be painful mea culpa titled “Even Journalists Have to Admit They’re Wrong Sometimes.”

   Reeves confessed that his reporting on Jenin “was highly personalized” and added, “It was clear that the debate over the awful events in Jenin four months ago is still dominated by whether there was a massacre, even though it has long been obvious that one did not occur.”

 

Jason Maoz can be reached at jmaoz@jewishpress.com

Consequences Of Dissipated Rage

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011

You were enraged by the massacre of the Fogel family in Itamar. You asked how a civilized people could behave in such a way. You were shocked that the world, for the most part, didn’t care, and you realized that Israel was alone. And then you were enraged by the Jaffa bus stop bombing. You asked how a civilized people could behave in such a way. You were shocked that the world, for the most part, didn’t care, and you realized that Israel was alone. And yet again, you were enraged by the rogue rocket bus attack and the barrage of rocket fire on Israel from Gaza. You had the same question, emotion, and thought as you had in the first two cases.

 

This reiterating is tiring, and the next time this type of news occurs please realize that if you become angry or shocked at what Arabs living in Israel are capable of, you have been drawn once again into the fantasy of the Israel wonderland. The rage that you feel during these times of consecutive barbaric atrocities should carry you throughout your activism, because the story does not change. Naturally, our westernized mindsets become desensitized to pain in the interest of peace with a civilized people. But this is not the case here, for with whom we are dealing, optimism is an immoral virtue.

 

Two recent unrelated studies in Israel contrast the extreme moral differences between Israelis and Arabs living in Israel. The first study, a Hebrew University poll, questioned the Arabs on whether they agreed with the Itamar Massacre. And the poll results demonstrated the uncomfortable truth: over 30 percent responded that they agreed with the massacre.

 

The second study focused on an Israeli reality show called “What do you think?” The show wanted to see how Israelis would react to a Muslim woman being discriminated against by an owner of an Israeli grocery store. The results were astoundingly different. Israeli customers unaware of the staged event overwhelmingly offered to pay for the woman’s coffee. They even started crying.

 

The incredible difference cannot be ignored if we are to retain our composure when incidents like these occur, and use that composure to enable us to justify our pro-Israel positions with logic and confidence. For example take the 2005 Soroka incident, when a pregnant Arab woman detonated herself at a checkpoint. Thankfully, she was stopped before making her way to Soroka Hospital. The woman was saved at Soroka two years earlier.

 

Just weeks ago, the Palestinian Authority’s minister for prisoners’ affairs awarded the family of Hamas suicide bomb mastermind Abbas Al-Sayed with an official plaque celebrating the anniversary of the infamous 2002 Passover massacre. These recurring examples clarify the issue. There are two very distinct visions for Israel, the Israeli’s vision of peace and, in too many instances, the Arab’s vision of destruction. Those living in the Israeli wonderland will constantly adjust their idea of peace with the constant spoilers of reality, and those who accept our neighbors for who they really are will be able to have real peace only by adequately defending themselves.

 

Practical activism must begin with your mindset. It means remembering what happens when you forget events. It means maintaining the passion you have during difficult times even when Israel is in a state of relative calm. Carrying Itamar with you will enable you to be unabashedly unapologetic when Israel pursues peace through building barriers, retaining checkpoints – and keeping our land.

The Beginning Of The Left’s End

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

I was filled with an uncomfortable feeling in the face of the Itamar massacre. Everyone is in shock. I feel horrible pain. But I am not shocked.


Shock is the result of surprise – and I am not surprised by what happened. I honestly don’t understand why others are surprised. We didn’t read what they did to the bodies of the 35 Gush Etzion martyrs? We didn’t live through years of suicide bombings? Just recently, Israel released the terrorist Samir Kuntar, who smashed the skull of four-year-old Einat Haran on the Nahariya beach years ago. What is the difference between this murderer and the murderer of Hadas Fogel? What has changed? This is how many Arabs act. There is nothing to be surprised about.


The shock most severely affected those people who, with all their might, insisted on deceiving themselves. They convinced themselves that we are in a peace process, that all the Arabs want are political rights, sovereignty, self-definition and the like. They wanted so badly to be normal. On the way, they fashioned an enemy for themselves who demanded what they wanted him to demand. Now they are shocked. For a moment they had to face the truth: This enemy is not normal, and his goal is not what their Western minds are trying to force into reality. Logical goals like self-definition and other palatable concepts are not part of the true picture.


The slaughter of a sleeping baby is unacceptable as a tool in the struggle for any type of liberation. It comes from a dark place, from a place that simply wants to destroy you. It is behavior with which we are quite familiar – behavior that says to the shocked Israeli, “What are you talking about? I do not want you out of Shechem and Ramallah. I have them, anyway. All the money that you invest there will not make me like you. I simply want you out of this world. Go back to the Ukrainians, the Polish, the Austrians and the Germans. Let them take care of you. I did not slaughter the baby because she is an occupier on my sovereign soil. I slaughtered her because she is a Jew.”


The source of the shock is the understanding that there is nobody with whom to make peace – because they do not want to. The Arabs simply cannot stand the fact that we live anywhere in the world – certainly that we live in the Land of Israel.


In the past, the leftist elite managed to deal with the shock engendered by terror attacks. Their quintessentially demagogic and confusing slogan, “We will not let the enemies of peace achieve their goal” (and so we will continue with the retreats euphemistically known as the peace process) worked quite well with the public. But now it seems that something is starting to change. The massacre in Itamar shocked Israeli society more than similar attacks in the past because it no longer has anywhere to hide from the conclusions. The Oslo spin no longer works.


The Itamar massacre was perpetrated on the backdrop of the collapse of the regimes in Arab lands. Hosni Mubarak’s ouster revealed the fragility of our peace agreement with Egypt. It brought to the surface the fact that the dictators sold us the illusion of peace in the lowest dosage possible to keep us ignoring how their countrymen really felt about Israel. That is what made the Itamar massacre so shocking, brought all of our top statesmen to the funeral, and created the new perspective in the reporting of the tragedy and the live coverage on Army Radio.


“And so, since yesterday, I sit here in the corner, frustrated and frightened, internalizing that it is possible that in the end we will not have the peace that we dreamed of,” wrote Guy Maroz in Maariv after the massacre.


He even gives a tongue in cheek clue as to the only hope that he can think of: “Since yesterday, I want to hide under the wide Messianic dress of [settler leader Daniella Weiss].”


We are at the threshold of a new reality. On one hand, we are still firmly meshed onto the Western, Oslo playing field. We do not attack, but only retaliate. We are completely subordinate to the Western values that always force us to try to prove that we are the most miserable victims on the block. We are still very far from the ability to substantially change direction. On the other hand, though, the entire playing field is crumbling away.


We do not expect to win a political victory that will allow us to change the rules of the game in Israel. On the contrary, the game itself is about to change. The only relevant players in the new game will be those of us who have toiled throughout the years for a genuinely Jewish state.

Islamist Wordplay 101

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

The early months of 1948 did not bode well for the Yishuv. Arab marauders roved the countryside seeking out soft, isolated targets and attacked with ruthless barbarity. The situation was particularly acute in Jerusalem, where supply convoys on the roads leading to the ancient Jewish city were subjected to daily ambush.

 

As part of a wider effort to clear the roads leading to Jerusalem, the pre-state paramilitary forces of the Irgun and Lehi were charged with capturing the village of Deir Yassin, a strategic position that dominated the city’s western approaches.

 

By any measure, Deir Yassin was a hostile Arab village whose residents partook in the Battle of Kastel, exchanged daily fire with the Jewish neighborhood of Givat Shaul, provided refuge to Arab irregulars, and engaged in the almost ritualistic daily ambushes of Jewish vehicular traffic.

 

On April 9, 1948 Jewish forces attacked the village and advanced under withering fire from entrenched and well-armed Arab irregulars. Several hours later the village was secured. Four Israelis and approximately 110 Arabs, combatants as well as civilians, were killed. The very nature of close-quartered urban combat made civilian casualties inevitable. Moreover, Arab combatants had turned nearly every house into a fortification – with some actually disguising themselves as women. Arab propagandists soon swooped in and conjured up fantastic stories of rapes, baby killings, and wildly inflated civilian casualty figures.

 

Contemporary assessments of the battle have mostly debunked these spurious allegations. Yet today in Arab folklore, Deir Yassin is synonymous with “massacre,” and every Arab schoolboy is spoon-fed this lie from the moment he’s able to attain the most rudimentary form of comprehension.

 

The word “massacre,” when used as a verb, describes “the unnecessary and indiscriminate killing of a large number of persons.” However, for Islamists, the word carries an entirely different meaning and addresses every lawful attempt by Israel to defend its citizenry from aggression.

 

Deir Yassin is but one example of Islamist wordplay. More recent illustrations include the Battle of Jenin, Operation Cast Lead and the Israeli naval interception of the Mavi Marmara. During Israel’s Operation Defensive Shield in the spring of 2002, Israeli forces entered the city of Jenin in search of terrorists and their infrastructure. The Israelis could have just leveled the place with airstrikes but negated this option because the risk of collateral damage was deemed too great. Some 20 soldiers and 50 terrorists died in bitter close-quartered urban combat, but this minor detail did not prevent the PA’s Saeb Erekat from declaring that a “massacre” occurred and that 500 civilians were killed.

 

In December 2008, prompted by a surge of Hamas provocations, Israel launched Operation Cast Lead. The former commander of British forces in Afghanistan, Colonel Richard Kemp, noted the following of Israel’s actions during the war: “During Operation Cast Lead, the Israeli Defense Forces did more to safeguard the rights of civilians in a combat zone than any other army in the history of warfare. Israel did so while facing an enemy that deliberately positioned its military capability behind the human shield of the civilian population.”

 

But the Islamists, who provoked the war, saw it differently. Gaza chieftain Ismail Haniyah stated that, “Palestine has never witnessed an uglier massacre.” There’s that word again – massacre – rearing its ugly head over and over, and repeated ad nauseam.

 

Perhaps the most extreme example highlighting the absurdity of Islamist wordplay is evidenced by Turkey’s response to the Mavi Marmara incident. Video footage of the incident clearly demonstrates that the IDF resorted to deadly force only after its troops were violently attacked by Islamist mercenaries. Nine mercenaries with various extremist affiliations were killed. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey referred to the incident as a “massacre,” and compared it to the murder of the 3,000 victims of the 9/11 attacks. The offensiveness and ludicrousness of the comparison is readily apparent, and demonstrates the length to which Islamists have distorted the meaning of “massacre.”

 

But the Islamists have not limited their corruption of language to a single word. On the contrary, they have enlarged and expanded it. For instance, take the word “victory.” It is defined as “a success or triumph over an enemy in battle or war.” However, the Islamists attach an entirely different meaning to the word. To them, if you survive an Israeli assault with your capital intact, it’s considered a victory.

 

A stunning example of this absurdity is amply demonstrated by Israel’s Operation Cast Lead. During the course of the battle, the IDF quickly established military dominance, achieved a combat kill ratio of nearly 80 to 1 and sent the stalwart and proficient warriors of Hamas scurrying like frightened rabbits. Following the battle, Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal, speaking from the safety of his luxurious Damascus headquarters, almost comically said, “the resistance won the battle in Gaza, and the enemy failed in the field as it failed in politics.” That sentiment was echoed by various Gazan leaders who, after emerging from their basement hideout at Shifa Hospital, declared Hamas “victorious.”

 

The Arab-Israeli conflict is peppered with examples of Arab leaders proclaiming phantom victories that are divorced from reality. Arab reality is rooted in a convoluted mixture of lies and fantasy, and Arab linguistics merely reflect this skewed and deeply flawed perception.

 

Words carry with them powerful meanings and, if repeated often enough, begin to take root in our everyday vernacular. The modern city of Ariel, built on barren land untouched in over 1,000 years and which boasts a prestigious university and over 17,000 residents, is referred to as a “settlement” in the “occupied” territories. The word “settlement” conjures up images of colonialist takeover, while the term “occupied” completely negates the argument that these territories are in fact the subject of a bona fide dispute. Yet supposedly neutral media outlets – and even some Israelis – parrot these words simply because they’ve infected our everyday manner of speaking. The next time you hear someone speak of “massacre,” “occupation,” or “settlement,” take the time to correct them and politely inform them of the power and misuse of words.

 

ACTION

E-mail Columbia University President Lee Bollinger at bollinger@Columbia.edu, and voice your outrage over Columbia’s continued sponsorship of Professor Rashid Khalidi, an outspoken terrorist sympathizer who is currently attempting to organize an American flotilla to Gaza.

 

            Yossi Cukier is co-founder of The Activist Network, along with Dina Kupfer and Ari Lieberman. Please note that all petitions, letters, phone numbers, etc., can be found at theactivistnetwork.wordpress.com. The group invites suggestions for pro-Israel and pro-Jewish projects and events.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/islamist-wordplay-101/2010/08/18/

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