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December 21, 2014 / 29 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Oslo Accords’

Aryeh Deri Feints Right

Friday, December 6th, 2013

Aryeh Deri, the head of the Shas party, has been trying to paint himself as a right-winger these past few weeks, or at least not a leftwinger, in an attempt to rid himself of the deeply ingrained image that he supported and enabled the Oslo Accords.

While Deri toured sites in Gush Etzion on Wednesday with his family, Deri’s close associates were busy conveying messages of love for the Settlers, according to a report in Makor Rishon.

Everyone who went through the Oslo years remembers Shas and Deri’s support for Oslo as they sat and enabled the Rabin-led government, allowing Oslo to pass. Deri’s associates told Makor Rishon that Deri and Shas never actually voted for Oslo, but rather they abstained from voting for it.

But they never add that Deri and Shas didn’t vote against Oslo either.

In fact, at the time, Shas’s 6 seats were absolutely required to keep the Labor-Meretz coalition alive, and if Shas has pulled out of the government, Oslo could never happened.

For good measure, as part of the rehabilitation of Deri’s image, Deri’s associates added the stain of Oslo on Deri are just lies spread by the extreme right.

Binyamin (Kerry) Netanyahu Freezes New Homes for Maaleh Adumim

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has ordered Housing Minster Uri Ariel to cancel plans for 1,200 housing units that could accommodate thousands of people in the “E-1” area of the city of Maaleh Adumim, located 10 minutes east of Jerusalem and overlooking the Dead Sea.

The cancellation was ordered shortly after the Haaretz newspaper reported that the Housing Ministry has hired an architect to plan construction of residential units for a reported 20,000 people in Maaleh Adumim and in smaller communities in Judea and Samaria. The cancellation affects only E-1 and not other areas.

The Office of the Prime Minister was unusually honest, although inaccurate, in explaining the order to Ariel, a leading Jewish Home minister.

“There is no need to pay international prices for a process that does not have great significance,” it told the Yediot Acharonot newspaper.”

Not of “great significance?” Apparently, the Prime Minister’s office was being sarcastic. More probable, it was being cynical.

E-1 has become a flashing red line for the Palestinian Authority. Building Jewish homes in E-1 would guarantee that the Palestinian Authority would not endanger Israeli security with a contiguous land mass from eastern Jerusalem to Judea and Samaria.

Constant reports that E-1 would “cut off” the Palestinian Authority are patent lies because highways connect Arab villages and cities in all directions.

It has been a political ping-pong ball within Israel, with nationalists such as Ariel fighting tooth and nail for Israel to stand up and take a position that the mostly vacant 4.5 square mile area, which is part of the city of Maaleh Adumim, will be a home for Jews, sooner and not later.

Almost everyone except the Obama administration knows that it will happen. Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas once upon a time may have had little hope that he could prevent E-1 from being developed, but the Obama administration has effectively become his spokesman and is dead set against its development.

The Bush administration gets the first “credit” for opposing construction in E-1 after President George W. Bush came out with his “Roadmap Plan,” which eventually fell off a cliff, a better result than the Oslo Accords that literally exploded in Israel’s collective face.

The saga of E-1 is a prime example of why Israel cannot depend on promises from the United States. President Ronald Reagan once wrote Prime Minister Ariel Sharon a letter that promised recognition of Israel’s right to build there. The promise was not a legal document, and its worth was only as long as Reagan was in office. The Obama adminstration has said it is not committed by the letter.

It was none other than Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin, whose memory has been defaced into an image of Peace Now, who in 1994 provided Maaleh Adumim Mayor Benny Kashriel with documents to make E-1 an official part of the city.

Nearly 30 years later, all that Israel has built on E-1 is a police station. The Arabs have woken up and have sent Bedouin families to dot the area so they can tell foreign and local reporters how they have been living on the land for centuries.

E-1 has been a toy, or pawn, for Prime Minister Netanyahu.

He has defied nationalists and has toed the line in Washington to keep the bulldozers out of the area.

True, after Abbas went to the United Nations last November to upgrade the PA’s status in the General Assembly to that of a non-member state, Netanyahu unleashed the E-1 pawn and announced plans to build 5,000 residential units there.

So much for hot air.

Not a single house has been built there. In fact, Netanyahu inflicted an unannounced building freeze on almost all of Judea and Samaria until last month, one hour after Israel freed the second batch of terrorists in the four-step program to release 104 murderers in return for the privilege of officially arguing with the Palestinian Authority.

Netanyahu’s policy on E-1 sounds like a broken record.

In January 2009, Netanyahu secretly promised President Barack Obama and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that Israel would not build in E-1, according to an Al Jazeera report in 2011.

Netanyahu, of course, denied the report, prompting Maaleh Adumim Mayor Kashriel to demand that the Prime Minister “order the defense minister to submit the master plan for the neighborhood immediately and progress with development on site, as former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon did during his tenure.”

Kerry Scorched by Legal Expert for False ‘Settlements’ Narrative (UPDATED)

Monday, November 11th, 2013

UPDATE The text of the letter is reproduced at the bottom of this article

Former Israeli Ambassador and legal counsel to Israel’s Foreign Ministry Alan Baker sent a blistering letter to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Friday.

Baker did not mince words.

After listening to you declare repeatedly over the past weeks that ‘Israel’s settlements are illegitimate,’ I respectfully wish to state, unequivocally, that you are mistaken and ill advised, both in law and in fact.

Israel too can take off the gloves when shoved so far against the wall it becomes clear there is no one at her back but that wall.

Baker lays out the facts which anyone involved in Middle East diplomacy should know better than they know the back of their hands.  The so-called “settlements,” i.e. places where Jews live in previously non-sovereign territory won in a defensive war are certainly not de facto or de jure “Palestinian land” or promised for any potential future state of “Palestine.”

Baker states the what-should-be-obvious fact that ownership of that land remains an issue to be negotiated in the permanent status negotiations, as agreed to in the Oslo Accords as well as in the 1995 Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement, as witnessed and signed by former U.S. President Bill Clinton, as well as representatives of the EU, Russia, Egypt, Jordan and Norway.

Baker continued,

Your statements serve to not only to prejudge this negotiating issue, but also to undermine the integrity of that agreement, as well as the very negotiations that you so enthusiastically advocate.

Baker also gives short shrift to the square pegging of Israel into the round hole of the 49th Article of the Geneva Convention. He points out the obvious, but ubiquitously-ignored fact that the relevant article applied to the Nazis forced mass transfer of populations. Such a situation has no relevance to the expansion of a population into open areas with no gun to their heads.  The notion of any parallel between Israelis moving into open areas and the Nazis forcing those they conquered into land controlled by others is repugnant, yet repeated incessantly by those who are either ignorant of history or merely haters of Israel, take your pick.

After several more paragraphs of clear explanation as to why the position taken by the U.S., and so much of the world, is factually and legally wrong, Baker concludes with this closing salvo:

By your repeating this ill-advised determination that Israel’s settlements are illegitimate, and by your threatening Israel with a “third Palestinian intifada” and international isolation and delegitimization, you are in fact buying into, and even fueling the Palestinian propaganda narrative, and exerting unfair pressure on Israel. This is equally the case with your insistence on a false and unrealistic time limit to the negotiation.

As such you are taking sides, thereby prejudicing your own personal credibility, as well as that of the US.

With a view to restoring your own and the US’s credibility, and to come with clean hands to the negotiation, you are respectfully requested to publicly and formally retract your determination as to the illegitimate nature of Israel’s settlements and to cease your pressure on Israel.

There has been no response, as yet, from Secretary Kerry or anyone at the State Department.

Whether there is any response from Washington or not, the points made clearly and succinctly by Amb. Baker are a welcome and too long absent dimension to the general discussions about the “settlements.”  That discussion has been dominated by a narrative devoid of legal, factual and historical accuracy.

False narratives repeated endlessly by ever-increasing numbers of people, nations and diplomats do not make those narratives any more true. Majority does not rule when it comes to facts or to law.

***

Here is the text of the letter from Amb. Alan Baker to Secretary of State John Kerry, dated Nov. 8, 2013

Alan Baker, Attorney, Ambassador (ret’)
P.O.B. 182, Har Adar, Israel 90836
Tel: +972-54-3322643
E-mail: ambassador.alan@gmail.com

The Hon. James Kerry, U.S. Secretary of State,
The State Department,
Washington D.C.

November 8, 2013

Dear Secretary Kerry,

After listening to you declare repeatedly over the past weeks that “Israel’s settlements are illegitimate”, I respectfully wish to state, unequivocally, that you are mistaken and ill advised, both in law and in fact.

Pursuant to the “Oslo Accords”, and specifically the Israel-Palestinian Interim Agreement (1995), the “issue of settlements” is one of subjects to be negotiated in the permanent status negotiations. President Bill Clinton on behalf of the US, is signatory as witness to that agreement, together with the leaders of the EU, Russia, Egypt, Jordan and Norway.

Your statements serve to not only to prejudge this negotiating issue, but also to undermine the integrity of that agreement, as well as the very negotiations that you so enthusiastically advocate.

Your determination that Israel’s settlements are illegitimate cannot be legally substantiated. The oft-quoted prohibition on transferring population into occupied territory (Art. 49 of the 4th Geneva Convention) was, according to the International Committee Red Cross’s own official commentary of that convention, drafted in 1949 to prevent the forced, mass transfer of populations carried out by the Nazis in the Second World War. It was never intended to apply to Israel’s settlement activity. Attempts by the international community to attribute this article to Israel emanate from clear partisan motives, with which you, and the US are now identifying.

The formal applicability of that convention to the disputed territories cannot be claimed since they were not occupied from a prior, legitimate sovereign power.

The territories cannot be defined as “Palestinian territories” or, as you yourself frequently state, as “Palestine”. No such entity exists, and the whole purpose of the permanent status negotiation is to determine, by agreement, the status of the territory, to which Israel has a legitimate claim, backed by international legal and historic rights. How can you presume to undermine this negotiation?

There is no requirement in any of the signed agreements between Israel and the Palestinians that Israel cease, or freeze settlement activity. The opposite is in fact the case. The above-noted 1995 interim agreement enables each party to plan, zone and build in the areas under its respective control.

Israel’s settlement policy neither prejudices the outcome of the negotiations nor does it involve displacement of local Palestinian residents from their private property.  Israel is indeed duly committed to negotiate the issue of settlements, and thus there is no room for any predetermination by you intended to prejudge the outcome of that negotiation.

By your repeating this ill-advised determination that Israel’s settlements are illegitimate, and by your threatening Israel with a “third Palestinian intifada” and international isolation and delegitimization, you are in fact buying into, and even fueling the Palestinian propaganda narrative, and exerting unfair pressure on Israel. This is equally the case with your insistence on a false and unrealistic time limit to the negotiation.

As such you are taking sides, thereby prejudicing your own personal credibility, as well as that of the US.

With a view to restoring your own and the US’s credibility, and to come with clean hands to the negotiation, you are respectfully requested to publicly and formally retract your determination as to the illegitimate nature of Israel’s settlements and to cease your pressure on Israel.

Respectfully,

Alan Baker, Attorney, Ambassador (ret’),
Former legal counsel of Israel’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs,
Former ambassador of Israel to Canada,
Director, Institute for Contemporary Affairs, Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs,
Director, International Action Division, The Legal Forum for Israel

Copy:
H.E. Daniel B. Shapiro, US Ambassador to Israel,
71 Hayarkon Street, Tel Aviv, Israel 63903

Israeli Human Chain to Block Palestinian Convicts’ Release

Monday, October 28th, 2013

On Monday evening, Israel time (noon, east coast time), there will be a protest against the latest Israeli release of convicted Arab Palestinian murderers as part of the “peace process.”

The protest will be held outside the Ofer Prison on Jerusalem’s northern edge, Road 443. Ofer is where the Palestinian Arab prisoners are being assembled in the next 24-36 hours, prior to being released.

The protestors will form a human chain around the prison, to symbolically “stop the release of terrorists.” Bereaved families and government ministers will join the protestors.

On August 26, the first group, which is ultimately to total more than 100 prisoners, was released.  This week another 26 Arab convicts will be released, 21 to be released to the Palestinian Authority in the Disputed Territories, the remaining five will be released to Gaza.

The list of names of those who will be released was posted Sunday evening, Oct. 27.  That posting began a 48-hour period during which people can protest the release of individual prisoners.

All prisoners who are to be released were imprisoned prior to the disastrous Oslo Accords.  They have all served between 19 and 28 years.  All were convicted either of murder or attempted murder.

The Prime Minister’s Office issued a statement asserting that it was releasing the prisoners “pursuant to the Government’s 28 July 2013 decision to resume the diplomatic negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

A small point was included, which is that should any released prisoner who “resumes hostile activity will be returned to serve the remainder of his sentence.”  That means two things.  One, the sentences have not been “commuted” or dispensed with. , So if a released murderer commits another crime, such as if he murders or is responsible for the murder of another Israeli citizen, he may be sent back to prison.  And once again act as a bargaining chip.

Monday night’s protest is organized by Almagor, the terror victims’ association, the Likud young leadership division, the young leadership of Habayit Hayehudi, and the nationalist faction of the Likud.  Bereaved families and some government ministers are expected to participate.

Just one example of the type of person being released from the Israeli prison system this week is Massoud Issa Rajib Amer. Amer is a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.  He was convicted of hacking to death an Israeli Jewish lawyer, Ian Feinberg, who worked in Gaza, seeking to cultivate ties to the local Palestinian community while trying to promote economic projects.

Peres Stains the Memory of Rabin with the ‘Status Quo Fallacy’

Wednesday, October 16th, 2013

Wednesday was “let’s fight over the meaning of Yitzchak Rabin’s death” day in Israel, with President Shimon Peres and leading center-leftists still defaming the memory of the slain Prime Minister and exploiting it for its agenda that was signed long ago by the U.S. State Dept.

President Peres headed the hit parade at the Mount Herzl Cemetery in Jerusalem and began by rightfully noting that Rabin was a veteran warrior who fought for Israel’s independence and survived the enemy, only to die at the hands of a Jew whose “crime never will be forgiven.”

He then went on the usual peace tangent, equating Rabin with the quest for peace as if he knows better than God what Rabin would have said had he lived long enough to see dozens of suicide bombings, missiles on Jerusalem neighborhoods and trading 1,000 terrorists, many of whom returned to their favorite pastime of killing Jews, for some bodies of soldiers or the return of one live soldier.

But this is nothing new. We go through this every year, for 18 years now, since Rabin was gunned down. The inherent assumption is that there is no peace because the government does not do enough for peace. The government, if it’s not headed by Labor, is to blame and never mind the Arabs’ rejection of Labor government leader Ehud Barak’s offer to give it almost everything it supposed wanted plus the silver platter.

Everyone is entitled to an opinion, but when Peres “remembered” Rabin on Wednesday by declaring, “Those who delude themselves that the status quo between us and the Palestinians will continue may become a victim of their delusions,” the only one who suffers delusions are Shimon Peres and his  flock of cluckers.

It was 25 years ago, in mid-1988, when the Intifada was six-months old. Any armchair Zionist from the United States or Europe who drove through the winding hills of Judea and Samaria saw the isolated Jewish communities under the shadow of hundreds of Arab villages tucked away in every valley and exposed in every turn of the back road.

“This cannot continue” was the refrain I remember hearing.

On the surface, nothing much has changed. There are dozens more Jewish communities, but there also are hundreds more Arab communities.

Politically, the same gap remains.

But the status quo has changed because what really matters is not Bush’s Roadmap nor John Kerry’s peace plans. United Nations resolutions in favor of the Palestinian Authority don’t matter. Not even Israel’s “goodwill” gestures matter.

What matters is that the Arab population at large couldn’t care less about a Palestinian Authority state.

If there is a status quo that exists and cannot continue it is the corrupt and impotent Palestinian Authority. The only meaningful riots among the Arabs are those against their own so-called leaders.

There is not one dominant urban center in the Palestinian Authority. There is Ramallah north of Jerusalem, Jenin further north, and there is Jenin even further north, closer to Lower Galilee than to the Ramallah.

There is Kalkilya bordering Kfar Saba on the northern edge of metropolitan Tel Aviv; there is Jericho, in the middle of nowhere in the Jordan Valley; and there is Tulkarm overlooking Netanya. In between all of these cities, there are miles and miles of rural villages.

Each city has its only culture and identity. Hevron Arabs never would feel at home in Jericho, and those in Shechem would not feel at home in Hevron. They all have different mentalities, as different as Ashkenazi and Sephardi Jews.

But those two Jewish tribes are bound together by Jewish blood and the need for a State of Israel.

The Arabs are not.

Nothing binds them. Even a common hate of Israel does not bind them because facts on the ground show that while they would love to see Israel annihilated, they would choose three square meals a day if given the choice between the two. They can’t have both because the Palestinian Authority never has had a will to become a ruling entity.

Israel has relinquished rule over most of the Palestinian Authority, but it cannot function. The security it provides for its own people is far less than Israel provided before the Intifadas.

PA Mourns Failure to Take over Rachel’s Tomb as Muslim Holy Site

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

Tens of thousands of Jews are visiting Rachel’s Tomb Tuesday, the anniversary of her death as described in the Torah, to pray for Rachel to cry for them that their prayers be answered.

No tears need be shed for the Palestinian Authority, which can mourn for itself for not being able to hoodwink the world to believe Rachel’s Tomb is a Muslim holy site.

The Torah states in Genesis (B’reisheit’), “And Rachel died, and was buried on the way to Efrat, which is Bethlehem. And Jacob set a pillar upon her grave: that is the pillar of Rachel’s grave unto this day.”

Before the Palestinian Authority campaign to rewrite the Bible and ancient history, Muslim authorities for centuries had acknowledged that Rachel’s Tomb is Jewish.

Excited by their blood-letting suicide bombings, firebomb and shooting attacks on Jews in the 1990s, the Palestinian Authority suddenly stopped referring to the site as “Rachel’s Dome” and called it the Mosque of Bilal ibn Rabah.

The manufactured tradition became more popular as Muslim clerics in the Arab world pounded the pulpit that the binding of Isaac (Yitzchak) actually is the binding of Ishmael, that the Holy Temples never existed and that the Western Wall really was the hitching post for the Muslim prophet Mohammed’s horse, may his and it memories be forgotten.

More amazing than the fibs that the Palestinian Authority invented was the acceptance of them by the anti-Israel crowd, especially  UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization). Last year won UNESCO support that the ancient site also belongs to Muslims even though the Tomb, “Kever Rochel” in Hebrew, existed long before Islam came into existence.

In December 2012, UNESCO director Irina Bokova accepted the view of its chief critic of Israel, Robert Serry, who also serves as UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process. He warned that Israel’s defining Rachel’s Tomb and the Patriarchs’ Cave in Hevron as holy sites would be bad for the sacred ghost known as the peace process.

UNESCO said Rachel’s Tomb also belongs to Christians and Muslim, which at one time built over the Tomb. That is like saying that JFK airport is a Jewish site because there is a synagogue there.

Two years before UNESCO’s sentence to the Jewish site, Palestinian Authority  chairman Mahmoud Abbas warned that there would be a “holy war” over Rachel’s Tomb if Israel did not accept the Muslim claim that that is was an ancient mosque.

Iran went one step further  with its foreign ministry declaring that Israel’s decision to make Rachel’s Tomb a national heritage site “rises from the regime’s strategy for cleaning all the sanctities of the Muslims and Christians in the occupied Palestine to give them a Zionist identity.”

The Palestinian Authority succeeded 13 years ago in taking over Joseph’s Tomb in Shechem, a direct violation of the Oslo Accords, but the efforts of Jewish leaders in the Shomron (Samaria) the past two years have enabled Jews to worship there under IDF guard.

The Oslo Accords interim agreement in 1995 states that security arrangements must “ensure free, unimpeded and secure access to the relevant Jewish holy sites.”

The Palestinian Authority has no problem with that. All it has to do is drive out the Jews with terrorist attacks and then convince UNESCO that Rachel’s Tomb is not a Jewish holy site.

That is the impetus for the Palestinian Authority to call Kever Rachel the  Bilal ibn Rabah mosque.

Jews traveling to pray at Rachel’s Tomb on her yahrzheit Tuesday can thank none other than former Haredi Knesset Member Menachem Porush that they are able to do so.

During the height of the Oslo mirage in 1995, Chief Rabbi Israel Meir Lau and MK Porush appealed to Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin not to go through with his plan to turn Rachel’s Tomb over to the Palestinian Authority.

Rabbi Lau told the Prime Minister, “One does not part from one’s mother, and MK Porush broke down in tears, crying on Rabin’s shoulders.

Rabin surrendered, and today, the Palestinian Authority can mourn to Mohammed that truth has triumphed over at least one of its lies.

Thousands of Jews at Rachel's tomb on the even of the anniversary of her death.

Thousands of Jews at Rachel’s tomb on the even of the anniversary of her death.

EU Aiding Arabs To Dig in for Winter to Take Over Area ‘C’

Sunday, October 13th, 2013

The European Union has donated tents to dozens of Arabs in Area “C” in the southern Hevron Hills to help them dig in for the winter in their attempt to create “facts on the ground” and take over the region that officially is under Israeli control as agreed in the Oslo Accords.

The Arabs, most of them squatters on acreage that was state land during the Jordanian occupation from 1949 until 1967, have used the tents for livestock and not just for families. The EU has donated tens of millions of dollars in recent years to move Arabs from the Hevron area into more remote areas of Area C to increase the Arab population.

Many of the Arabs go back to their former homes in the winter, but the sudden presence of the tents indicates that the EU wants to make their presence permanent.

The campaign has been accompanied by reports by Palestinian Authority media of alleged attacks on Arabs by Jewish residents in the area.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/israel/eu-aiding-arabs-to-dig-in-for-winter-to-take-over-area-c/2013/10/13/

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