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January 22, 2017 / 24 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Middle East’

Iran Received ‘Billions’ From Obama Administration in Cash, Gold & Assets

Sunday, January 15th, 2017

The Islamic Republic of Iran has received more than $10 billion in cash, gold bullion and assets from the Obama administration since 2013, according to reports by the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Free Beacon.

The payments were made primarily to keep Iran at the negotiating table, to ensure that American hostages were freed and finally, to secure and keep the July 2015 nuclear deal in place. For most of the time U.S. lawmakers did not know the payments were to be made in cash, and the White House did not return calls from concerned members of Congress.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Bahram Ghasemi was quoted by the Wall Street Journal as saying the amount of $10 billion just “scratches the surface” of the total paid to Tehran over the past several years.

According to the Washington Free Beacon, Ghasemi was quoted in Persian language reports independently translated for the news outlet as saying that figure was actually a “stingy” estimate. Cash, gold and other assets were transferred by Washington DC to Iran’s Central Bank, where they were “spent,” he said.

“After the Geneva conference and the resulting agreement, it was decided that $700 million dollars were to be dispensed per month” by the U.S., according to Ghassemi. “In addition to the cash funds which we received, we [also] received our deliveries in gold, bullion, and other things,” he said, Free Beacon quoted.

What’s important to remember in reading these figures is where this money goes when it’s “spent.” Iran uses these and other resources to fund its regional terrorist operations in the Middle East, and to support the military operation in Syria.

That means the Obama administration was indirectly funding the support of Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Hezbollah – and their attacks on Israel.

Hana Levi Julian

UK Sends Junior Delegation to Paris Summit in Deference to Trump

Sunday, January 15th, 2017

Number 10 Downing declined to send its senior ministers to Paris on Sunday, making it clear that for the moment, at least, it won’t support any major moves against Israel in an international forum.

Last week senior advisers to President-elect Donald Trump reportedly told French government officials in a meeting at Trump Tower they “strenuously objected” to the Paris conference, scheduled just five days before Mr. Trump’s inauguration into office and presenting what the president-elect sees as unfair pressure on Israel along with an unjustified reward to Ramallah.

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson did not attend the summit, nor did the UK Ambassador to France, according to a report published Sunday by The Guardian. Likewise, Canada announced that it, too, would refrain from sending senior government officials to the conference.

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini was scheduled to attend, as was Arab League secretary-general Ahmed Aboul-Gheit and German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, along with his counterparts from Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Turkey and Sweden. Of the 74 delegations that were scheduled to attend, only 36 included foreign ministers.

Outgoing U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry traveled from Vietnam to attend the summit, where he was expected to speak.

French Foreign Minister Jean Marc Ayrault said in his opening remarks that he was aware of the doubts about whether the conference should have been held.

But Ayrault also reiterated his support for last month’s UN Security Council resolution 2334, which condemned Israel’s presence in Judea, Samaria, the Golan Heights and in much of Jerusalem, including the Jewish Quarter of the Old City.

Ayrault said there is NO solution other than the “two state solution” and said the conference was aimed at seeing how the participants can “contribute” to the relaunching of peace talks.

Ayrault also told France 3 television later in the day that President-elect Trump’s promise to move the American Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem would be considered a “provocation.”

Ayrault said “I don’t think he will be able to do it,” adding that such a move would have “extremely serious consequences.”

The French official said “It’s not the first time that it’s on the agenda of a U.S. president, but none have let themselves make that decision.”

Ayrault went on to say, “One cannot have such a clear-cut, unilateral position. You have to create the conditions for peace.”

A draft of the summit declaration seen by the DPA news agency called for “two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security.”

Hana Levi Julian

(Even More Horrific) Anti-Israel UNSC Resolution Expected

Thursday, January 12th, 2017

For years the United States, the country most even-handed towards Israel, has insisted that only the two parties at issue – Israel and the Palestinian Arabs – can make a final decision about their future relationship. But as the sun sets on the Obama administration, the administration is setting fire to that position. As well as to several others.

It has been two weeks since the United States allowed the United Nations Security Council to pass a resolution blaming Israel for the lack of peace in the Middle East and punishing the Jewish State for continually refusing to place the neck of its people on the chopping block to the world’s favorite coddled victims – the Palestinian Arabs.

UNSC Resolution 2334, of course, was followed up by Secretary of State John Kerry’s turgid speech, a lowlight of which was his insistence that Israel can be either Jewish or Democratic, it cannot be both. Kerry’s speech castigated Israel for the failure to make peace and recommended serious repercussions only to Israel, which constitute rewards to the violent, terrorism glorifying and perpetuating Palestinian Arabs.

But something worse is coming.

Actually, two things.

Those who spend the bulk of their waking hours focused on the Arab-Israeli conflict are warning the Jewish State that the Paris Peace Summit slated to begin on Sunday will produce a document hog-tying the parties to the failed concept of the “Two State Solution.”

Oh, there is language in the document which pays lip service to the concept of a solution “not being imposed” on the parties, yet that is precisely what UNSC R2334, the Paris Peace Summit “Agreement,” and the upcoming UNSC Resolution seek to do.

The anticipated Paris agreement not only states that the Two State “Solution” (TSS) is the only way to solve the conflict, but it will demand that both sides will not only have to restate their commitment to the TSS, but they must “disavow official voices on their side that reject this solution.”

The Paris Agreement will do more.

It moves the goal post even further into the Palestinian Arab’s fantasy world than it ever has been before. The Agreement will state that the borders between the Palestinian state and Israel will be set on the 1949 Armistice Lines (the Green Line), and that there can be no changes unless the two parties agree to such changes.

Even the UN Resolution recognizing Israel, back in 1947, said that the Old City of Jerusalem should be an international city. Now it’s all part of “Palestine.”

What does that mean? It means “Palestine” only has to negotiate for land once it already has all the territory it could possibly gain ever through negotiations. Got that?

But wait, there’s more.

The Paris Agreement also elevates a “peace” initiative that has always been a non-starter for Israel, the “Arab Peace Initiative,” also known as the Saudi Peace Plan. This new Paris Agreement states that the participants will “restate the validity of the Arab Peace Initiative and highlight its potential for stability in the region.”

Just as with the chimerical Two State Solution, the Arab Peace Initiative will unquestionably make the region far less stable, not more stable. For example, it demands the return of the Golan Heights to Syria. Oh sure, coming right up.

So what new catastrophes for Israel has the Obama administration allowed – some say orchestrated – as it waltzes off the dance floor? The pronouncement that all of the land Israel acquired in defensive wars from the party which was not in possession of that land (nor has it ever been sovereign over any land) now belongs, according to the international community, to the Palestinian Arabs.

The Western Wall, the Mount of Olives, all of the Oslo Accords areas C, B and A, all of it will now be deemed “Palestinian” land, occupied by Israel. The only permissible path to end the Arab Palestinian – Israeli conflict, according to the 72 countries expected to attend the Paris coven, is the one path that has been proven repeatedly to lead not to peace but to more bloodshed.

And once the Paris Peace Partiers approve the document already waiting for their sweaty signatures, it’s off in a flash to the United Nations for yet another calamity.

Why the rush? That’s right. It’s because January 20th is coming. Once Obama leaves office and there’s a new sheriff in Dodge (i.e., D.C.), signing a death warrant for the Jewish State and granting the feverish wishes of the prig-elite who couldn’t be bothered with protecting the hundreds of thousands of Syrians who have been slaughtered on their watch will come to an end. So the rush is to do all possible damage before hand, with as much of it as possible impossible to undo.

The whispered fears of another, final anti-Israel UNSC resolution before the end of the Obama era have increased in volume and velocity.

Jonathan Hoffman, a British pro-Israel advocate, reported hearing Britain’s Col. Richard Kemp state at an anti-UNSC R#2334 rally, that the upcoming resolution, buttressed by the document produced in Paris, is expected to be introduced and passed on Jan. 17. That resolution is expected to recognize the state of “Palestine” with its borders fixed along the 1949 (Pre-’67) Armistice Lines.

Now that the Obama administration has revealed itself as determined to breathe life into a phantom Palestinian state regardless of the consequences, supporters of Israel are hoping at least one other permanent member of the Security Council will exercise its veto power.

Great Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May appears to be the single lingering hope for aborting the creation of yet another terrorist state. Perhaps sufficient lobbying by the right parties will enable her to stand up straight and prevent a disaster.

But perhaps those orchestrating these new changes are being too clever. Perhaps, because so very much damage will come from these efforts, so much of which may be irrevocable, it will force the incoming administration to pull the nuclear option – defunding the United Nations.

And by doing so much damage, the Obama Administration may create another previously unimaginable result: unfurling the fingers of those Jews still ardently clinging to the Democratic party.

Wouldn’t that be ironic.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Pres. Rivlin: Challenges Are Opportunities to Show We Can Live Together

Thursday, January 12th, 2017

President Reuven Rivlin provided some extra moral support on Thursday to Israeli Ambassadors to Jordan and Egypt, who met with the president at his official residence in Jerusalem.

Israel’s Ambassador to Jordan, HE Eynat Shlein, and Ambassador to Egypt, HE David Govrin, told the president about their ongoing work and recent experiences in their posts.

President Rivlin spoke with them about the strengthening ties and growing cooperation between Israel and her neighbors in the Middle East and Mediterranean Basin.

“Thank you for all you are doing to represent Israel, and help us strengthen ties and friendships that would have seemed impossible years ago,” the president said.

“Our relationships with Jordan and Egypt especially constitute a crucial strategic alliance for all,” President Rivlin said.

He went on to stress that the shared challenges and threats faced by many in the Middle East required close cooperation, and added that “these challenges also provide us the opportunities to show that we can live together in this region, in peace and prosperity.”

Hana Levi Julian

Catholic Patriarchs Bewail Torment, Disappearance, of Mid-East Christians

Thursday, December 29th, 2016

The Middle East’s Catholic patriarchs have issued Christmas messages lamenting the suffering of the region’s Christians from severe persecution, according to CNS, the official news organ of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Syriac Catholic Patriarch Ignace Joseph III Younan called attention to “our beloved brothers and sisters of Syria and Iraq […] deprived of the Christmas joy, having endured the horrible consequences of war, violence, and all kind of persecutions,” noting that “they suffered “all this hardship” because of their Christian faith.”

The patriarch added that Christians were “uprooted from their lands and driven out unjustly from their homes by barbarian terrorists, in Mosul and the Plain of Nineveh, Iraq,” referring to the exodus of some 100,000 Christians – including at least 60,000 Syriac Catholics – when the region was overtaken by Islamic State militants in 2014.

“How would they welcome Christmas, but in tears and anxiety for their future!” the patriarch wrote.

Cardinal Bechara Rai, patriarch of Maronite Catholics, speaking from Bkerke, the patriarchate north of Beirut, appealed to the international community to work to end terrorism “that is killing and displacing families and depriving them of their rights and dignities.”

Melkite Catholic Patriarch Gregoire III Laham stressed that “today in the Middle East, the cradle of Christianity, the Christian presence is threatened […] by wars that have given rise to this terrifying exodus, especially of Christians.”

Chaldean Patriarch Louis Sako wrote from Baghdad, that “amidst the concerns and worries of Iraqis, Syrians, and people of the Middle East, in which children and civilians are victims of a harsh war, millions of persons are displaced from their homes, driven out of their lands and are living in tragic conditions, after the destruction of their towns’ infrastructure.”

The genocide of Christian minorities in Iraq, Syria and Libya by the Islamic groups, including ISIS climaxed following the collapse of parts of Northern Iraq in June 2014. According to US diplomats, the region’s “Christians have borne a heavy burden given their small numbers.”

In February, 2016, the EU recognized in a unanimous vote the persecution of Christians by ISIS as genocide. The US Congress followed suit in March 2016, also declaring, in a unanimous vote, these atrocities as genocide. In April 2016 the British Parliament voted unanimously to denounce the same actions as genocide.

A similar motion failed in Canada when it was opposed by the majority of PM Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party.

JNi.Media

Democratic Whip to Kerry: Shut Up!

Wednesday, December 28th, 2016

Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), the Democratic whip in the House of Representatives, second in ranking to Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, on Tuesday released a statement calling on Secretary of State John Kerry to cancel his Middle East peace speech scheduled for Wednesday, just days after the US had allowed an anti-Israel resolution to pass in the UN Security Council.

“I urged the Administration to veto the recently passed UN Security Council resolution regarding Israel and settlements,” Hoyer, an old friend of Israel since his election in 1981, wrote, in reaction to “reports that Secretary of State John Kerry and the Obama Administration intend to lay out a formulation that would disadvantage Israel in any future negotiations on a final settlement with the Palestinian Authority.”

“Unfortunately, they failed to do so, and Israel’s enemies were strengthened,” Hoyer continued.

“As Ambassador Power pointed out in her statement on the UN Security Council Resolution 2334 on the situation in the Middle East, ‘…as long as Israel has been a member of this institution, Israel has been treated differently from other nations at the United Nations.’ 2016 was no exception, and there were more resolutions regarding Israel than there were regarding Syria, North Korea, Iran, South Sudan, and Russia combined,” Hoyer wrote.

“”Now, it is my understanding that Secretary Kerry, in the last few days of this Administration, intends to outline the parameters of an agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. This flies in the face of the United States’ longstanding position that such a formulation should be reached only through negotiations by the parties and not by the United States, the United Nations, or any other third party.

“I urge Secretary Kerry and the Administration not to set forth a formula, which will inevitably disadvantage Israel in any negotiation. The United States must now take steps to signal unequivocally to the entire world that we will continue to stand by our ally Israel as it seeks to build a future of peace and safety as a Jewish state and an equal member of the family of nations.”

Rep. Hoyer represents Maryland’s 5th congressional district, which is 60.2% White, 30.3% Black, 3.7% Asian, and 3.5% Hispanic.

David Israel

Yesha Council Envoy Calls Kerry ‘Ignorant’

Wednesday, December 28th, 2016

Yesha Council Chief Foreign Envoy and Efrat Mayor Oded Revivi called Secretary of State John Kerry “a stain on American foreign policy” and “ignorant of the issues.” Revivi spoke ahead of the much-anticipated speech Kerry plans to deliver at 11 AM DC time, Wednesday.

Oded Revivi, chief foreign envoy of the Yesha Council, made the remarks ahead of Kerry’s final policy speech on the Middle East peace Wednesday.

“John Kerry is a stain on American foreign policy who is ignorant of the issues,” Revivi said. “He has chosen to eternalize his legacy as the worst secretary of state in history that chose to stab his closest ally in the back while rivers of blood flowed like water across the Middle-East. I can personally attest to the fact that he knows very little about the realities in Judea and Samaria and instead chooses to defame us from afar by repeating fictitious mantras against us.”

“When I met with Kerry a few weeks ago, I understood that we’re talking about a person who is disconnected from reality and looking to make headlines,” the Yesha Council official explained.

“Our rights to this land are fully legal and cannot be refuted; this is the reason that proclamations are being made instead providing solid legal arguments against us,” Revivi noted. “Nearly half a million Israelis currently reside on the strategic highlands of Judea and Samaria overlooking seventy percent of Israel’s population and industrial base, no amount of speeches or resolutions can reverse this reality.”

JNi.Media

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/yesha-council-envoy-calls-kerry-ignorant/2016/12/28/

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