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December 26, 2014 / 4 Tevet, 5775
 
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Posts Tagged ‘region’

Getting the Message out to the Innocent Victims

Thursday, November 15th, 2012

As massive as the fighting is, the count of dead on the Palestinian Arab side has three, perhaps two, civilians. Let’s hope the effectiveness of the Israeli fighters continues at that exemplary level.

Let’s also hope some of the irresponsible reporting emanating from such luminaries as Wyre Davies of the BBC who tweeted this a little earlier this morning:

@WyreDavies: In this “limited operation” at least 13 #Palestinians and 3 #Israelishave been killed – nearly all civilians. #Gaza

In reality, as distinct from the ideology-driven distortions of reporters like Davies, most of the Gazan dead (seven at least, out of a total of eleven dead which is the media figure now being quoted everywhere) are acknowledged terrorists. Perhaps the confusion comes from the way the BBC normally calls them militants; in Gaza, they are all martyrs. But terror is what they do, and terror is what brought their lives to an untimely end.

The fresh screen shot image from our computer (below) shows an Israeli aircraft dropping leaflets over Gaza this morning.

The the leaflets read:

“Important announcement for the residents of the Gaza Strip:

For your own safety, take responsibility for yourselves and avoid being present in the vicinity of Hamas operatives and facilities and those of other terror organizations that pose a risk to your safety.

Hamas is once again dragging the region to violence and bloodshed. The IDF is determined to defend the residents of the State of Israel. This announcement is valid until quiet is restored to the region. Israel Defense Forces Command.”

This illustrates what we wrote in an earlier post [here] this morning.

The IDF via its air force has been distributing Arabic-language leaflets over Gaza this morning warning residents to keep far away from terrorist bases and weapons depots (the locals know exactly where they are). The message which is echoed by ordinary Israelis is that Palestinian Arab civilians, even those who hate us, are not the targets of the Israeli actions.

Visit This Ongoing War.

List of Roads Closed Due to War in South

Thursday, November 15th, 2012

As reported by Ynet: Road 34, Road 232, Road 25 and Road 241 are closed due to fighting and concern for public safety in the event of rocket attacks.

Traffic control police are directing drivers at the region.

IAF Drops Warning Leaflets over Gaza Strip

Thursday, November 15th, 2012

The IAF dispersed leaflets above several locations in the Gaza Strip. These leaflets warn the residents of the Gaza Strip to stay away from Hamas, and other terror organizations’ operatives and facilities that pose a risk to their safety.

The leaflets state:

“Important announcement for the residents of the Gaza Strip:

“For your own safety, take responsibility for yourselves and avoid being present in the vicinity of Hamas operatives and facilities and those of other terror organizations that pose a risk to your safety.

“Hamas is once again dragging the region to violence and bloodshed. The IDF is determined to defend the residents of the State of Israel. This announcement is valid until quiet is restored to the region. Israel Defense Forces Command.”

The leaflets stress that Hamas is dragging the region toward violence, and that the IDF is prepared to defend the residents of the State of Israel until quiet is restored to the region.

 Military Sources report that similar message was also transferred via the liaison channels.

Saudi Editor: Israel Trying to Save Assad, Drown the Region in Chaos

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

Tariq Alhomayed is the Editor-in-Chief of Asharq Al-Awsat, wrote on Tuesday that it is clear from the Israeli military response – even if this is a limited one – against the al-Assad forces in the Golan Heights that Israel is trying to save Bashar al-Assad and is working to drown the region in an ongoing state of chaos. Alhomayed suggests this is being done in order to complicate the Syrian crisis, which in turn would prevent critical decisions being taken to hasten the toppling of the tyrant of Damascus.

Alhomayed argues that since the start of the Syrian civil war, in January, 2011, Assad’s responses have been completely predictable: setting Lebanon on fire, pushing refugees to Turkey and Jordan, exploiting Turkey’s Alawite community, dragging Iraq into the crisis, and playing the “sectarian card” in Syria.

Assad has done all of the above, and now, says Alhomayed, comes the predictable attempt on his part to involve Israel. And while Syria’s other neighbors have been resisting its repeated provocations (if you disregard Turkey’s artillery barrage in response to shells falling in its territory a few months ago), with the first Assad provocation of Israel, it took action and responded. Alhomayed, thinks this is strange. Try to follow his logic:

“We describe this as ‘strange’ because what al-Assad has done recently in the Golan Heights – which have been quiet for nearly 4 decades – is precisely what Saddam Hussein did during the occupation of Kuwait. He launched ‘Scud’ missiles at Israel in order to drag it into the crisis and ‘shuffle’ the cards. At the time, then US President George Bush Senior confronted Israel and obliged it to exhibit self-restraint and not involve itself in the crisis surrounding the Iraqi occupation of Kuwait. Today, al-Assad is doing the same thing with Israel, and along the same line as Saddam Hussein. The issue does not require an abundance of intelligence to realize that al-Assad is trying to escape forward. In this case, why is Israel getting involved now and trying to save al-Assad by serving his interests? Why now, when we are witnessing quick and dramatic progress in the Syrian file, as well as military advancement in Damascus and political development at the level of the Syrian opposition which is now united, not to mention the positive international position towards this unity, which signals that al-Assad’s days are truly numbered? We say that this is “strange” because it is bizarre that al-Assad’s allies in this crisis should include Iran, Hezbollah and Israel! Of course, each party has their own motives, however these are destructive motivates that demonstrate the threat this tripartite represents to our region, not to mention al-Assad himself!

“Al-Assad wants to drown the entire region in chaos; whilst Tel Aviv would have no objection in seeing the Syrian crisis last for decades and set fire to the entire encompassing region. Israel has no problem with Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon drowning in chaos, for the weaker Arab states become, the stronger Israel gets. This is what Tel Aviv wants, even with regards to Egypt. For so long as we Arabs our facing problems we have created with our own hands, Israel will not hesitate to pour fuel on the fire.”

This is certainly a foreign policy I would endorse. I’m only surprised that this well informed Saudi editor is able to see a difference between the government and the rebels in Syria in terms of moral superiority. From over here they seem equally blood thirsty.

Nadler: Major Disaster Declaration for NY Will Aid in Rapid Recovery

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

On Tuesday, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) welcomed President Obama’s declaration of major disaster for New York in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. The designation will allow for timely allocation of federal funds through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Nadler released the following statement:

“Hurricane Sandy hit New York and the Northeast hard last night and will complicate life in our region for the coming days. I am astounded at what I have seen in my own congressional district: flooding throughout Coney Island, Battery Park City, and other areas; widespread power outages; felled trees everywhere you look; and some very tragic fatalities. I am grateful to our local responders and laborers, who are doing a tremendous job on emergency response. And, through the President’s declaration of New York as a major disaster area, we will be able to immediately allocate FEMA funds to begin to repair the billions of dollars in damage locally and bring relief to New Yorkers whose lives have been turned upside down.”

Despite Egyptian Military Buildup, Israel Will Adhere To Accords

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

Despite the deteriorating security situation along the Egyptian-Israeli border, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has rejected Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi’s request to reconsider the terms of the 1979 Camp David Accords. Morsi wants a substantial increase in the number of Egyptian tanks and armored divisions to patrol what has seemingly become the lawless Sinai Peninsula.

“It is important for the Egyptians to get a handle on their security troubles, but there isn’t a chance that Israel will change the [Camp David] military protocols. The Egyptians should not delude themselves by repeatedly insisting on this request,” Lieberman told Kol Yisrael Radio.

News outlets in Israel and the U.S. have reported that Morsi intends to press White House officials to renegotiate aspects of the Camp David Accords during this week’s UN General Assembly meetings in New York. Morsi also reportedly sought a face-to-face meeting with President Obama during his U.S. trip, but was rebuffed after Obama allegedly upbraided Morsi less than two weeks ago in a tense phone conversation. The exchange took place following the violent attacks by protestors on the U.S. Embassy in Cairo.

The Camp David Accords stipulate that, “no more than one division [mechanized or infantry] of Egyptian armed forces will be stationed within an area lying approximately 30 kilometers east of the Gulf of Suez and the Suez Canal.” After terrorists murdered 15 Egyptian border policemen in August during an intended attack on Israeli forces and civilians, the Egyptian High Command ordered several armored and infantry divisions into Sinai to hunt down the terrorist cells operating in Sinai.

While Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak gave tacit approval to the Egyptian move, IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz has informed Barak and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the Egyptians seem to be in no rush to weed out the terrorist cells and instead are continuing to upgrade their forces in the region – a clear violation of the Camp David Accords.

A senior member of the Egyptian parliament warned the IDF against pursuing terrorist cells within Egyptian territory in the event of another cross-border incident. But General Tal Russo, commander of the IDF Southern Command, told the Israeli media that the army will bolster its forces along the border and respond to any terrorist incursion. The IDF recently added armed reconnaissance UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) – which can fire into Egyptian territory from inside Israel – as well as mechanized border patrols and at least one elite infantry division to the region.

Several Arab and European newspapers have reported that several jihadist cells operating in Sinai are comprised of Hamas soldiers who were trained in Gaza by operatives of the al-Quds Brigades. The force is Iran’s so-called foreign legion, as it is greatly influenced by the Revolutionary Guards.

Israeli political commentators have expressed the view that while Morsi is determined to show his Muslim Brotherhood allies that he is willing to challenge strategic aspects of the Camp David Accords, he must also confront radical Islamic terror organizations in Sinai (one columnist wrote that Sinai has turned into “a latter- day Wild West).”

The Sinai terror attacks have greatly impaired Egypt’s tourist industry in el-Arish and Sharm el-Sheikh, major sources of revenue for the country’s economy. The Sinai’s increasingly dangerous atmosphere has prompted Israel’s security services to recommend the closing of the Eilat-Taba border crossing to Israelis and foreigners wishing to enter the Sinai coastline. While the crossing remains open for now, Israeli border guards are discouraging their countrymen from entering the region.

Theory of Palestinian Centrality no Longer Viable

Monday, September 24th, 2012

While the entire Middle East explodes around us and the states which traditionally waged open war on us, such as Egypt, are in the process of returning to their aggressive postures (with a little help from an Obama-led bailout in Egypt’s case), there may be a silver lining for Israel: The theory of Palestinian centrality is no longer viable.

According to the theory, the main Arab/Muslim/Middle Eastern claim against the United States and the reason for violence in the region is the lack of justice for the Palestinians. If a peace accord between Israel and the Palestinian Authority can be reached and a Palestinian state established all of the hatred will melt away and the region will be at peace.

In an interview I conducted with Elliot Abrams for the Jerusalem Post, for example, Abrams recounted how immediately after the 9-11 attacks, officials in the State Department proposed to President Bush that he pursue an Israeli-Palestinian peace accord, on the grounds that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was the main source of Arab hatred for the United States.

(Abrams said Bush rejected this argument, but not that long after 9-11, Bush adopted the Road Map for Peace).

Another example is the Iraq Study Group report, which was commissioned by President Bush to find solutions to the violence in Iraq. One of the report’s key recommendations was pursuing Israeli-Arab peace.

The theory of Palestinian centrality has been put forward by many in the diplomatic field, probably because  this is what their Arab counterparts are telling them.

For example, in July 2008 then-Senator-and-candidate Barack Obama explained to NBC’s Tom Brokaw on Meet the Press why Jordan’s King Abdullah was correct in asserting that Iran was not the number one threat to peace but that “the lack of peace [between Israel and the Palestinians] is the major threat.”

Obama said as follows:

[O]ne thing I want to pick up on, because I think King, King Abdullah is as savvy a analyst of the region and player in the region as, as there is, one of the points that he made and I think a lot of people made, is that we’ve got to have an overarching strategy recognizing that all these issues are connected.  If we can solve the Israeli/Palestinian process, then that will make it easier for Arab states and the Gulf states to support us when it comes to issues like Iraq and Afghanistan.

It will also weaken Iran, which has been using Hamas and Hezbollah as a way to stir up mischief in the region.  If we’ve gotten an Israeli/Palestinian peace deal, maybe at the same time peeling Syria out of the Iranian orbit, that makes it easier to isolate Iran so that they have a tougher time developing a nuclear weapon.

In other words, because of Palestinian centrality an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement is the silver bullet to all the problems of the Middle East.

(Side note: Brokaw asked Obama if he told Abudulla that as president he “would appoint a presidential envoy who would report only to you to work exclusively on the issues of peace between the Palestinians and the Israelis.” Obama said ” I told him something approximating that.” Obama also told former President JimmyCarter that he wouldn’t wait a month to make a peace agreement a top priority. Two days after being sworn in as President, Obama appointed George Mitchell as a special envoy and pressured Israel for the next two years).

But as Barry Rubin noted in his article today on the JewishPress.com:

Remember the old argument that the Arab-Israel or Israel-Palestinian conflict was the centerpiece of the region; all the Arabs cared about, and what they judged the West by? Now there are a dozen other issues more important to the extent that this cannot even be hidden by the Western mass media and “experts.”

With Muslims attacking American U.S. embassies in the Middle East and rioting all over the world over an obscure youtube video, and various Muslim factions vying for power, the State Department, the E.U., etc., can no longer seriously contend that regional volatility and violence is related to Israel – either Western support Israel or the fact that a Palestinian state has not been established or that Israeli-Palestinian/Arab peace accords have not been signed.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/theory-of-palestinian-centrality-no-longer-viable/2012/09/24/

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