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December 11, 2016 / 11 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘speech’

The Bane Of Evil Speech

Friday, November 4th, 2016

Even though this article is appearing in November, it was written right before Yom Kippur to accommodate Yom Tov deadlines.

As I stare at the keyboard, I know that this Yom Kippur, I will be thinking of my classmate, Meyer Weiss, a’h (as I have done for over 40 years) who was killed during the Yom Kippur War in 1973. Meyer died defending the State of Israel. He was 19 and the son of Rabbi Weiss, a Holocaust survivor and a beloved rebbe in the day school we attended.

A brilliant, sweet-natured young man, mature beyond his years, his was a life of so much promise, a life that would have enhanced and benefited the well-being of both Jew and gentile alike – but that potential was not allowed to come to fruition.

Twenty-nine years later, another young soldier, only 20 years old, Ari Weiss, a”h, the son of another Rabbi Weiss, also had his life and future stolen from him as he defended his beloved people and land. When I saw Avi’s picture, I was struck by his resemblance to Meyer. Both had boyish good looks and their big smiles radiated an inner sweetness and a love of life.

History had tragically repeated itself. Another budding young eagle senselessly cut down before it could soar.

Both Meyer and Ari had been destroyed by an uncompromising, rigid hate created by lashon harah.

When you hear the term “lashon harah,” you automatically think of petty gossip and mindless yakking.

There is, however, another more insidious meaning to lashon harah. It is beyond gossip or tale bearing. It is undiluted, supreme evil speech that morphs into unspeakably evil actions.

One would think that the words assigned to talk that is negative or denigrating would be “lashon rah.” For example, we say shavua tov, have a good week – not shavua hatov.

Why is the Hebrew letter “hey” which means “the” – a word that emphasizes – added to lashon rah?

The way I see it, any words that denigrate, minimize, deride, ridicule and insult are superlatively evil, because they can encourage and lead to horrifically evil doings and deeds that damage, destroy and desecrate with no reversibility or undoing.

Words of lashon harah – ultimate evil speech – do not dissipate; they rather hang like a blinding toxic fog, clouding the judgments of both individuals and nations. Pure evil speech is a weapon of mass destruction that has led to millions upon millions of hapless people being murdered, mutilated, impoverished, starved, displaced, and disenfranchised. In our recent past, tens of millions of Jews and non-Jews alike, of all religions and ethnicity and across all borders, were the tragic victims of lashon harah – from the Holocaust in Europe to the killing fields of the Far East to genocide in Africa and mass abductions and disappearances in South America. When extremely demonizing words are directed against a person, a group or a nation, the inevitable outcome is extreme destruction, chaos, and physical and emotional death.

As Jews, our divinely given mandate is to be a “light unto the nations” and to model good behavior. Before we improve the world, however, we must improve ourselves. On Yom Kippur we “afflict our souls” by depriving our bodies of food and water for 25 hours while we focus on our deeds and misdeeds. We hit our chests contritely, declaring our many sins and offenses, sincerely determined to do teshuva. But “lip service” for a day, or a week or two is not enough. We must be consistent and it must be long term. We must be conscientious of the guidelines Hashem has given us via the Torah in terms of serving Him properly and tikun olam.

A huge step in that direction would be restraining our natural impulses and editing the words that come out of our mouth when we are annoyed or upset with someone. Think before you yell, criticize, mock, denigrate, disparage, belittle, make fun of or deride another human being – be it a spouse, child, student, employee, neighbor or even a stranger.

Because when you make an acerbic, blistering, vitriolic remark to someone, it is not just lashon rah, negative talk, but lashon harah – heinous utterances that lead to a heinous outcome. Caustic words are like acidic drops that erode the recipient’s psyche, slowly eating away at the mental stamina and emotional resilience needed to deal with life. Lashon Harah cripples people and keeps them from realizing their G-d-given potential as their self-belief and confidence withers away. Frequent bullying and belittling can so demolish and undermine an individual’s sense of self that he/she is afraid to take the risks necessary to grow and achieve. Some may become reclusive and invisible; others stay in jobs beneath their abilities, repressing their talents and dreams. Then there are those who are afraid to marry and have children, believing themselves to be incompetent or not worthy – the inevitable consequence of being told over and over again that they are worthless and unlikeable.

Every person, male and female, was created in Hashem’s image. Everyone is worthy of respect. Would you feel comfortable screaming at a prince or teasing a queen?

Lashon harah is not necessarily verbal. Like sign language, it can be communicated through body language and facial expressions. A friend recently shared with me that she had decided to speak to an estranged relative. Both were at a family simcha and “Leah” thought that might be a good time to start over. As she approached the relative, the relative looked her up and down, and a huge sneer distorted her face as her finger pointed down at a run in “Leah’s” pantyhose – the result of someone’s shoe snagging it during the first dance.

My friend walked away red in the face, a combination of shame and fury. That scenario was a stark reminder, she told me, of why the relationship had not existed for so many years and would continue that way. As children, this cousin had often ridiculed her looks, her clothing and her choice of friends. Leah’s husband wisely suggested that she “amputate ” this unhealthy relationship for her own well-being. She had hoped that with time her cousin had evolved. Bullies age, but unless they get therapy to help them achieve self-awareness and insight as to why they are the way they are, their lashon harah likely will continue.

Many spewers of evil speech were likely the recipients of the very same intense negativity. They denigrate those they perceive as being weaker or vulnerable in a twisted attempt to feel better about themselves. Verbal abuse begets hate, which begets more hate.

Meyer Weiss and Avi Weiss were killed by an avalanche of hatred, triggered by blatant lashon harah – unmitigated evil speech. In their merit, fight the temptation to denigrate somebody, even if they “messed up.” Words of correction can be gentle and spoken in a soft voice – the way you would want to be addressed if the situation was reversed. According to Hillel, that is the essence of Torah, treating others the way you would want to be treated, and not treating them the way you would not want to be treated.

That is lashon hatov and, I believe, the cure to humanity’s woes.

Cheryl Kupfer

NGO Monitor, Australian Jews, Pose Disturbing Questions to Christian Charity Chief on Eve of Hadassah Speech

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016

On Wednesday night, the CEO of the charity World Vision, Rev. Tim Costello, will be the keynote speaker at Hadassah Australia’s annual oration at Glen Eira Town Hall in Caulfield, Victoria, Australia. The Jewish Labor MP for Melbourne Ports, Michael Danby, on Tuesday “slammed” the appearance, in light of World Vision’s dubious ties with Hamas, The Age reported. Danby said it was time for people to “stop weeping about World Vision” and to focus on how “Australian taxpayers’ money” ended up in Hamas coffers.

Costello, for his part, confirmed that he still plans to speak at the Hadassah event, calling the allegations against his group a “storm in a teacup.”

And Hadassah Australia president Ron Finkel told The Australian Jewish News, “There’s a saying in football that you play the ball, not the man, and so it would be terrible if Tim is attacked because someone may have perpetrated a fraud within World Vision.”

Let’s play ball.

World Vision’s senior official in the Gaza Strip Mohammed el Halabi was arrested last August by Israel’s GSS and confessed to usurping some 60% of World Vision’s Gaza budget on behalf of the terrorist organization Hamas. Since then, World Vision has declared its support for el Halabi, then made public a smattering of information regarding its finances in Gaza, while heatedly denying the accusations of its anti-Israel bias. NGO Monitor on Tuesday published an extensive list of concerns regarding World Vision’s conduct, which is critical both of its political and ideological agendas as well as its financial management and due diligence.

Under the World Vision agenda issues, the NGO Monitor article points out the following issues:

World Vision officials have a record of pro-Arab bias and hostility to the Jews’ right to a share of the land of Israel. Some recent attacks on Israel and on Christian Zionism made by World Vision officials, while virtually ignoring the Hamas policy of terrorism, as noted by Australian Rabbi James Kennard, were “highly problematic.” World Vision, particularly its CEO Rev. Costello, must address this problem, preferably before Costello’s scheduled Hadassah keynote speech.

According to NGO Monitor, a number of officials working for WV-IL, the Israeli branch of World Vision, are also working for vehemently anti-Israeli NGOs:

Sami Khoury, WV-IL’s financial manager, is senior member of Sabeel, an anti-Semitic theological group.

Raffoul Rofa, WV-IL’s board member since 2008 and chair since 2009, is also the director of anti-Israel NGO Society of St.Yves.

WV-IL founder Michel Sabbah co-authored the 2009 Kairos Palestine document, promoting BDS in churches, comparing Israel with South African apartheid, and denying Jews’ historical connection to Israel.

Anton Asfar, member of the WV-IL board of directors, also serves on the board of St. Yves.

NGO Monitor notes that, according to Sabeel’s 2013 Report to the Israeli Non-Profit Registrar, World Vision provided financial support to Sabeel, although the exact amount is omitted. World Vision has informed NGO Monitor that it “does not fund or partner with the Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center.” Would the charity organization care to explain this discrepancy?

As to World Vision’s financial involvement in Gaza and the PA, NGO Monitor observes:

WV-IL’s financial report shows it spent about $1.5 million in 2014 on the salaries of its “150 staff across Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza,” 120 of whom work in Gaza — out of its overall local budget of $14.7 million. How are the other employees being paid, out of what budget? World Vision says its Gaza budget was $22.5 million over the past 10 years, so how much of it went to salaries and how much to projects? This is crucial, considering el Halabi’s confession that 60% of this budget in reality went to Hamas.

Also, World Vision says its overall expenses during the same 10 years came to more than $100 million, a figure supported, and then some, by the WV-IL financial reports. So how much out of this amount was used for Gaza, how much for the PA, and how much for overhead?

It turns out that when the Israeli Registrar for NGOs asked WV-IL those questions, WV-IL repeatedly failed to comply with the requirements for proper reporting, and would not provide “details on the transfer of funds to projects, including the purpose of the transfers.”

What if they just stole all this money and stashed it in numbered Swiss bank accounts? Can World Vision enlighten the world and its generous donors, including Australian taxpayers, with an accounting for those funds?

In 2014, the WV-IL reported to the registrar that it made “local donations” to the tune of $790,000, none of which supposedly exceeded about $5,000. When the Registrar asked for precise documentation, the WV-IL attorney responded that the association “is not dependent on any Israeli [financial] sources.” So what are those sources? Would World Vision come clean regarding the origin of those funds?

Finally, according to news reports, the el Halabi corruption was no surprise to World Vision: an accountant he had fired went and complained to the home office that his boss was stealing money for Hamas. World Vision sent an outside investigator in 2015 to look into those allegations, but the investigator, according to the charity, didn’t find anything suspicious. Would World Vision care to share who hired this investigator and who received and processed their report? Were the Israeli authorities questioned in connection with the investigation? In short, was the el Halabi multi-million-dollar corruption known and supported by someone inside World Vision?

MP Danby told The Australian Jewish News: “While this Hamas/World Vision trial is in process, it is disturbing that a local meeting is taking place to promote the contentious Hadassah/World Vision relationship.” He added: “At a time when one of its senior managers stands accused of engineering and concealing – for years – a massive diversion of funds to the Hamas terror organization that has cost Israeli lives, this is not the right moment for a local communal organization to promote the interests of World Vision.”

“Nor is it a time for public apologia concerning what World Vision has been doing in Gaza,” Danby concluded.

JNi.Media

YouTube Versus Conservative Speech

Friday, October 28th, 2016

Last week The Wall Street Journal published an editorial about YouTube restricting access to 16 videos – down from 21 – that were created and posted online by my nonprofit educational organization, Prager University. The subheading read, “YouTube thinks Dennis Prager’s videos may be dangerous.”

The Journal said:

“Tech giants like Google and Facebook always deny that their platforms favor some viewpoints over others, but then they don’t do much to avoid looking censorious.… Dennis Prager’s ‘PragerU’ puts out free short videos on subjects ‘important to understanding American values’ – ranging from the high cost of higher education to the motivations of Islamic State.

“The channel has more than 130 million views.… As you might guess, the mini-seminars do not include violence or sexual content. But more than 15 videos are ‘restricted’ on YouTube…. This means the clips don’t show up for those who have turned on filtering – say, a parent shielding their children from explicit videos. A YouTube spokesperson told us that the setting is optional and ‘based on algorithms that look at a number of factors, including community flagging on videos.’

“PragerU started a petition calling for YouTube to remove the restriction, and more than 66,000 people have signed. YouTube is free to set its own standards, but the company is undercutting its claim to be a platform for ‘free expression.’”

It is a good sign that YouTube’s censorship of respectful and utterly nonviolent and nonsexual videos made it to The Wall Street Journal editorial page. It is a very bad sign that it had to. And it is a very bad sign that it made the editorial page of The Wall Street Journal but not that of The New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times or any other mainstream newspaper that still purports to support the classic liberal value of free speech.

To understand what YouTube, which is owned by Google, has done, it is necessary to briefly describe what it has restricted access to.

Every week, PragerU (the generally used name for Prager University) posts at least one 5-minute video presentation online. These presentations are on just about every subject and are given by important thinkers – some very well known, some not.

The list includes dozens of professors at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Notre Dame, Princeton, Dayton, Boston College, Stanford, UCLA, Harvard, and West Point, among other universities; a black member of South African Parliament; Pulitzer Prize winners George Will, Bret Stephens, and Judith Miller; Ayaan Hirsi Ali; Arthur Brooks; Jonah Goldberg; Alan Dershowitz; Nicholas Eberstadt; Larry Elder; Steve Forbes; Walter Williams; Christina Hoff Sommers; George Gilder; Victor Davis Hanson; Amity Shlaes; Col. Richard Kemp, former commander of British troops in Afghanistan; and many others. I also present some videos.

Any responsible person, left-wing or right-wing, would have to acknowledge this is a profoundly respectable list of non-bomb-throwing presenters. It’s hardly conducive to censorship.

YouTube placed restrictions on the following videos.

* Two videos on race: “Are The Police Racist?” and “Don’t Judge Blacks Differently.”

* Six videos on Islam: “What ISIS Wants,” “Why Don’t Feminists Fight for Muslim Women?” “Islamic Terror: What Muslim Americans Can Do,” “Pakistan: Can Sharia and Freedom Coexist?” “Radical Islam: The Most Dangerous Ideology” and “Why Do People Become Islamic Extremists?”

* Two videos on abortion (the only two offered): “Who’s More Pro-Choice: Europe or America?” and “The Most Important Question About Abortion.”

* Two videos on Israel: “Israel: The World’s Most Moral Army” and “Israel’s Legal Founding” (the latter video, presented by Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz, was reinstated after much publicity).

* Three videos on America: “Why Did America Fight the Korean War?” “Did Bush Lie About Iraq?” and “What is the University Diversity Scam?”

* One on politics: “Who NOT to Vote For.”

* And one (which I present) on men and women: “He Wants You.”

Think of these topics. Do you see anything you wouldn’t want your minor child to view? The only possible “yes” might be to the video titled “He Wants You.” Though void of any explicit content, it deals with the subject of men looking at other women yet most still wanting their own wives. It has almost 4 million views and has helped a lot of couples.

Obviously, then, the explanation is not that “algorithms” catch violence and sex. Rather, YouTube doesn’t want effective conservative videos to be posted (each video has at least 1 million views). Does that mean that it has left-wing censors looking for every widely viewed conservative video? If so, it doesn’t have to. Left-wing viewers simply flag our videos and others’ as inappropriate, and YouTube does the rest.

I had never devoted a column to PragerU. But I have done so now because if YouTube gets away with censoring as big a website as PragerU – after a major editorial is published in The Wall Street Journal, after coverage in the New York Post, The Boston Globe, Fortune, National Review, and many other places, and after a petition signed by over 70,000 people (which is on the PragerU website) – what will happen to other conservative institutions?

For the probable answer, see your local university.

The question, then, is this: Will YouTube do to the internet what the left has done to the university?

Dennis Prager

The Jay Shapiro Show – A Tale of Three Speeches [audio]

Thursday, September 29th, 2016

Obama, Netanyahu and Abbas spoke at the UN.
Each speech was an indication of the speaker’s attitude. Netanyahu was strongest and most realistic. The others engaged in fantasy and wishful thinking. Find out why.

Jay Shapiro Show 27Sept2016 – PODCAST

Israel News Talk Radio

A Soldier’s Mother: Netanyahu’s Speech in Layman’s Words

Monday, September 26th, 2016

Across Facebook, Israelis are proud and loud today. We have waited a long time to hear our Prime Minister tell the United Nations a message we have never quite been able to say so eloquently. I can try to translate the thought behind his words but I would likely fail because rarely have I seen someone use every four letter word in the book, without once actually giving them voice.

I’ll try to explain. Here’s Bibi’s speech:

Mr. President,

Ladies and Gentlemen, what I’m about to say is going to shock you: Israel has a bright future at the UN.

There, right there. Did you hear it? That’s Bibi using the F word, and I don’t mean “future.” He’s saying – for all you thought you could destroy us with your endless resolutions, condemnations, threats and sanctions, not only are we still hear, we’re strong, we’re proud, we’re united, and, oh yeah, we’re doing the work YOU are supposed to be doing. It is OUR doctors that arrive in times of disaster, not yours. It is our rescue forces that dig under the rubble to find life, and our compassionate representatives that don’t give up, that keep working even when we know we are likely to only pull out bodies. 

Now I know that hearing that from me must surely come as a surprise, because year after year I’ve stood at this very podium and slammed the UN for its obsessive bias against Israel. And the UN deserved every scathing word – for the disgrace of the General Assembly that last year passed 20 resolutions against the democratic State of Israel and a grand total of three resolutions against all the other countries on the planet. Israel – 20 ; rest of the world – 3!

This is Bibi saying – do you see how stupid you’ve been? Do you see what jerks you are?

And what about the joke called the UN Human Rights Council, which each year condemns Israel more than all the countries of the world combined. As women are being systematically raped, murdered, sold into slavery across the world, which is the only country that the UN’s Commission on Women chose to condemn this year? Yep, you guessed it – Israel. Israel. Israel where women fly fighter jets, lead major corporations, head universities, preside – twice – over the Supreme Court, and have served as Speaker of the Knesset and Prime Minister.

And now Bibi is again using the “F” word, combined with just plain stupid and a bit of an A word that tells them they have been the backside of a donkey.

And this circus continues at UNESCO. UNESCO, the UN body charged with preserving world heritage. Now, this is hard to believe but UNESCO just denied the 4,000 year connection between the Jewish people and its holiest site, the Temple Mount. That’s just as absurd as denying the connection between the Great Wall of China and China.

Circus, hey, I like that! Oh, wait – translation. Okay, so this is Bibi telling them that there are few things more idiotic than denying irrefutable fact. The Great Wall of China is in China; the Temple Mount is where OUR Holy Temples were. God, could you get any dumber, UNESCO?

Ladies and Gentlemen, the UN, begun as a moral force, has become a moral farce.

All of Israel just snorted the most wonderful snort ever. Bibi, wow. Moral force to moral farce! Oh, man, Bibi is nailing it today! Go, Bibi!

So when it comes to Israel at the UN, you’d probably think nothing will ever change, right? Well think again. You see, everything will change and a lot sooner than you think. The change will happen in this hall, because back home, your governments are rapidly changing their attitudes towards Israel. And sooner or later, that’s going to change the way you vote on Israel at the UN.
More and more nations in Asia, in Africa, in Latin America, more and more nations see Israel as a potent partner – a partner in fighting the terrorism of today, a partner in developing the technology of tomorrow.

Here is where Israelis sit back and relax. He did it. He went there and told them the truth. The world IS changing. It is only in the hate-filled halls of the United Nations that this reality is being denied. Around the world…OMG…they are naming babies Israel as thanks for our rescue teams; they are blessing us for coming, for helping, for caring. From this point on, Israelis are simply enjoying the show. Yalla, Bibi, we’re listening even if they aren’t!

Today Israel has diplomatic relations with over 160 countries. That’s nearly double the number that we had when I served here as Israel’s ambassador some 30 years ago. And those ties are getting broader and deeper every day. World leaders increasingly appreciate that Israel is a powerful country with one of the best intelligence services on earth. Because of our unmatched experience and proven capabilities in fighting terrorism, many of your governments seek our help in keeping your countries safe.

Many also seek to benefit from Israel’s ingenuity in agriculture, in health, in water, in cyber and in the fusion of big data, connectivity and artificial intelligence – that fusion that is changing our world in every way.

You might consider this: Israel leads the world in recycling wastewater. We recycle about 90% of our wastewater. Now, how remarkable is that? Well, given that the next country on the list only recycles about 20% of its wastewater, Israel is a global water power. So if you have a thirsty world, and we do, there’s no better ally than Israel.

Did he mention how hard we’ve been working to counter limited rainfall, diminishing seas? Oh yes he did! Bibi, tell ’em! Our problems today, are you problems tomorrow and as we are solving them, you’re gonna need us a hell of a lot more than we need you!

How about cybersecurity? That’s an issue that affects everyone. Israel accounts for one-tenth of one percent of the world’s population, yet last year we attracted some 20% of the global private investment in cybersecurity.

I want you to digest that number. In cyber, Israel is punching a whopping 200 times above its weight. So Israel is also a global cyber power. If hackers are targeting your banks, your planes, your power grids and just about everything else, Israel can offer indispensable help.

Oh, yeah. Water? Well, how about security in the cyber world in which we are living more and more. Oh, man, you guys are in trouble if you don’t listen up. We’re there – 200 times greater, stronger, ready.

Governments are changing their attitudes towards Israel because they know that Israel can help them protect their peoples, can help them feed them, can help them better their lives.

This summer I had an unbelievable opportunity to see this change so vividly during an unforgettable visit to four African countries. This is the first visit to Africa by an Israeli prime minister in decades. Later today, I’ll be meeting with leaders from 17 African countries. We’ll discuss how Israeli technology can help them in their efforts to transform their countries.

In Africa, things are changing. In China, India, Russia, Japan, attitudes towards Israel have changed as well. These powerful nations know that, despite Israel’s small size, it can make a big difference in many, many areas that are important to them.

But now I’m going to surprise you even more. You see, the biggest change in attitudes towards Israel is taking place elsewhere. It’s taking place in the Arab world. Our peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan continue to be anchors of stability in the volatile Middle East.

But I have to tell you this: For the first time in my lifetime, many other states in the region recognize that Israel is not their enemy. They recognize that Israel is their ally. Our common enemies are Iran and ISIS. Our common goals are security, prosperity and peace. I believe that in the years ahead we will work together to achieve these goals, work together openly.

This is Bibi remembering that he’s a diplomat. He said our common enemies are Iran and ISIS. He didn’t say that Israel’s enemy is also the UN, which is bullied and controlled by Iran and those that support that terrorist nation. Oh, Bibi…well, maybe next time.

So Israel’s diplomatic relations are undergoing nothing less than a revolution. But in this revolution, we never forget that our most cherished alliance, our deepest friendship is with the United States of America, the most powerful and the most generous nation on earth.

Yeah, see, here he’s remembering that idiot in the White House and rumors that he wants to be the next General Secretary of the United Nations. But he’s also reminding them all that we’ve survived 8 years of Obama and if we have to, God forbid, we’ll survive Clinton (though judging by recent health coverage, I’m not at all sure she will).

Our unbreakable bond with the United States of America transcends parties and politics. It reflects, above all else, the overwhelming support for Israel among the American people, support which is at record highs and for which we are deeply grateful.

The United Nations denounces Israel; the United States supports Israel. And a central pillar of that defense has been America’s consistent support for Israel at the UN. I appreciate President Obama’s commitment to that longstanding US policy. In fact, the only time that the United States cast a UN Security Council veto during the Obama presidency was against an anti-Israel resolution in 2011. As President Obama rightly declared at this podium, peace will not come from statements and resolutions at the United Nations.

This is Bibi warning Obama, just a bit. The US has stood by Israel in the past and our friends in the US are watching. They won’t let you abandon Israel and yes, as Bibi said, we are grateful for that support. If you go against Israel, Bibi signals Obama, you won’t have the support of the American people.

I believe the day is not far off when Israel will be able to rely on many, many countries to stand with us at the UN. Slowly but surely, the days when UN ambassadors reflexively condemn Israel, those days are coming to an end.

Ladies and Gentlemen, today’s automatic majority against Israel at the UN reminds me of the story, the incredible story of Hiroo Onada. Hiroo was a Japanese soldier who was sent to the Philippines in 1944. He lived in the jungle. He scavenged for food. He evaded capture. Eventually he surrendered, but that didn’t happen until 1974, some 30 years after World War II ended.

For decades, Hiroo refused to believe the war was over. As Hiroo was hiding in the jungle, Japanese tourists were swimming in pools in American luxury hotels in nearby Manila. Finally, mercifully, Hiroo’s former commanding officer was sent to persuade him to come out of hiding. Only then did Hiroo lay down his arms.

Ladies and Gentlemen, distinguished delegates from so many lands. I have one message for you today: Lay down your arms.

Bibi saying stop being so F****** stupid! You’re running out of time. You’re redefining the meaning of moronic!

The war against Israel at the UN is over. Perhaps some of you don’t know it yet, but I am confident that one day in the not too distant future you will also get the message from your president or from your prime minister informing you that the war against Israel at the United Nations has ended.

Yes, I know, there might be a storm before the calm. I know there is talk about ganging up on Israel at the UN later this year. Given its history of hostility towards Israel, does anyone really believe that Israel will let the UN determine our security and our vital national interests?

Oh, this. Just this. Perfect. Sarcasm at its best. Does ANYONE really believe we will let the UN control our destiny, our security. Um…no way, UN. just no way! And that sound you just heard? Millions of Israelis yelling, “YESH!” – a word that is basically equivalent to “GOAL” or “GRAND SLAM” because with this simple sentence, Bibi hit the ball out of the park!

We will not accept any attempt by the UN to dictate terms to Israel. The road to peace runs through Jerusalem and Ramallah, not through New York.

So shut the F up. We aren’t listening; and more. Did you notice – JERUSALEM is ours; Ramallah is theirs! Those are the possible sources from which talks will emanate. Not New York (and, by the way, not Washington either).  

But regardless of what happens in the months ahead, I have total confidence that in the years ahead the revolution in Israel’s standing among the nations will finally penetrate this hall of nations. I have so much confidence, in fact, that I predict that a decade from now an Israeli prime minister will stand right here where I am standing and actually applaud the UN.

But I want to ask you: Why do we have to wait a decade? Why keep vilifying Israel?

Perhaps because some of you don’t appreciate that the obsessive bias against Israel is not just a problem for my country, it’s a problem for your countries too. Because if the UN spends so much time condemning the only liberal democracy in the Middle East, it has far less time to address war, disease, poverty, climate change and all the other serious problems that plague the planet.

And this is where Bibi’s speech simply turns to brilliant. Maybe, he suggests to the UN, you forgot completely why you exist – you’ve forgotten, while we’ve been busy doing YOUR job. And shame on you!

Are the half million slaughtered Syrians helped by your condemnation of Israel? The same Israel that has treated thousands of injured Syrians in our hospitals, including a field hospital that I built right along the Golan Heights border with Syria.

Are the gays hanging from cranes in Iran helped by your denigration of Israel? That same Israel where gays march proudly in our streets and serve in our parliament, including I’m proud to say in my own Likud party.

Are the starving children in North Korea’s brutal tyranny, are they helped by your demonization of Israel? Israel, whose agricultural know-how is feeding the hungry throughout the developing world?

The sooner the UN’s obsession with Israel ends, the better. The better for Israel, the better for your countries, the better for the UN itself.

And, of course, the better for ALL the world. Hypocrites and liars and thieves that you are. Worthless people sitting around while millions suffer. 

Ladies and Gentlemen,

If UN habits die hard, Palestinian habits die even harder. President Abbas just attacked from this podium the Balfour Declaration. He’s preparing a lawsuit against Britain for that declaration from 1917. That’s almost 100 years ago – talk about being stuck in the past.

And the sound you heard was millions of Israelis laughing. Abbas is going to sue Britain for the Balfour Declaration. Oh, is that rich! And, made richer by the next few lines because in a world where the Palestinians pull the “PAST card”

The Palestinians may just as well sue Iran for the Cyrus Declaration, which enabled the Jews to rebuild our Temple in Jerusalem 2,500 years ago. Come to think of it, why not a Palestinian class action suit against Abraham for buying that plot of land in Hebron where the fathers and mothers of the Jewish people were buried 4,000 years ago? You’re not laughing. It’s as absurd as that. To sue the British government for the Balfour Declaration? Is he kidding? And this is taken seriously here?

Bibi is at his greatest when he’s sarcastic, isn’t he? Are you so stupid you’ll take this nonsense seriously? 

President Abbas attacked the Balfour Declaration because it recognized the right of the Jewish people to a national home in the land of Israel. When the United Nations supported the establishment of a Jewish state in 1947, it recognized our historical and our moral rights in our homeland and to our homeland.

Yet today, nearly 70 years later, the Palestinians still refuse to recognize those rights – not our right to a homeland, not our right to a state, not our right to anything. And this remains the true core of the conflict, the persistent Palestinian refusal to recognize the Jewish state in any boundary. You see, this conflict is not about the settlements. It never was.

And this is Bibi reminding Obama that it was never about the settlements. And more, this is Bib turning to the Israelis and saying, “Okay, okay, you were right all along and it’s time I just say what we all know. They won’t listen, but who cares. The joke is on them. Obama and Abbas and the Iranians are on them so yeah, let’s all smile and be proud.”

The conflict raged for decades before there was a single settlement, when Judea, Samaria and Gaza were all in Arab hands; the West Bank and Gaza were in Arab hands and they attacked us again and again and again.

And when we uprooted all 21 settlements in Gaza and withdrew from every last inch of Gaza, we didn’t get peace from Gaza. We got thousands of rockets fired at us from Gaza. This conflict rages because for the Palestinians, the real settlements they’re after are Haifa, Jaffa and Tel Aviv.

Truth time yet again. A “duh” moment when Bibi states what every Israeli knows.

Now mind you, the issue of settlements is a real one and it can and must be resolved in final status negotiations. But this conflict has never been about the settlements or about establishing a Palestinian state. It’s always been about the existence of a Jewish state, a Jewish state in any boundary.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Israel is ready, I am ready to negotiate all final status issues but one thing I will never negotiate: Our right to the one and only Jewish state.

Wow, sustained applause for the Prime Minister of Israel in the General Assembly? The change may be coming sooner than I thought.

Had the Palestinians said yes to a Jewish state in 1947, there would have been no war, no refugees and no conflict. And when the Palestinians finally say yes to a Jewish state, we will be able to end this conflict once and for all.  Now here’s the tragedy, because, see, the Palestinians are not only trapped in the past, their leaders are poisoning the future.

I want you to imagine a day in the life of a 13-year-old Palestinian boy, I’ll call him Ali. Ali wakes up before school, he goes to practice with a soccer team named after Dalal Mughrabi, a Palestinian terrorist responsible for the murder of a busload of 37 Israelis. At school, Ali attends an event sponsored by the Palestinian Ministry of Education honoring Baha Alyan, who last year murdered three Israeli civilians. On his walk home, Ali looks up at a towering statue erected just a few weeks ago by the Palestinian Authority to honor Abu Sukar, who detonated a bomb in the center of Jerusalem, killing 15 Israelis.

When Ali gets home, he turns on the TV and sees an interview with a senior Palestinian official, Jibril Rajoub, who says that if he had a nuclear bomb, he’d detonate it over Israel that very day. Ali then turns on the radio and he hears President Abbas’s adviser, Sultan Abu al-Einein, urging Palestinians, here’s a quote, “to slit the throats of Israelis wherever you find them.” Ali checks his Facebook and he sees a recent post by President Abbas’s Fatah Party calling the massacre of 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics a “heroic act”. On YouTube, Ali watches a clip of President Abbas himself saying, “We welcome every drop of blood spilled in Jerusalem.” Direct quote!

Over dinner, Ali asks his mother what would happen if he killed a Jew and went to an Israeli prison? Here’s what she tells him. She tells him he’d be paid thousands of dollars each month by the Palestinian Authority. In fact, she tells him, the more Jews he would kill, the more money he’d get. Oh, and when he gets out of prison, Ali would be guaranteed a job with the Palestinian Authority.

Ladies and Gentlemen, all this is real. It happens every day, all the time. Sadly, Ali represents hundreds of thousands of Palestinian children who are indoctrinated with hate every moment, every hour. This is child abuse.

And though the delegates are not clapping, millions of Israelis are. Child Abuse. That’s what you call what they’ve been doing to their children. In your face, Abbas – this is what you’ve been doing! And in your face, United Nations delegates – this is what you’ve been celebrating and rewarding all these years. Nothing more and nothing less than absolute child abuse!

Imagine your child undergoing this brainwashing. Imagine what it takes for a young boy or girl to break free out of this culture of hate. Some do but far too many don’t. How can any of us expect young Palestinians to support peace when their leaders poison their minds against peace?

We in Israel don’t do this. We educate our children for peace. In fact, we recently launched a pilot program, my government did, to make the study of Arabic mandatory for Jewish children so that we can better understand each other, so that we can live together side-by-side in peace. Of course, like all societies Israel has fringe elements. But it’s our response to those fringe elements, it’s our response to those fringe elements that makes all the difference.

Take the tragic case of Ahmed Dawabsha. I’ll never forget visiting Ahmed in the hospital just hours after he was attacked. A little boy, really a baby, he was badly burned. Ahmed was the victim of a horrible terrorist act perpetrated by Jews. He lay bandaged and unconscious as Israeli doctors worked around the clock to save him.

No words can bring comfort to this boy or to his family. Still, as I stood by his bedside I told his uncle, “This is not our people. This is not our way.” I then ordered extraordinary measures to bring Ahmed’s assailants to justice and today the Jewish citizens of Israel accused of attacking the Dawabsha family are in jail awaiting trial.

Now, for some, this story shows that both sides have their extremists and both sides are equally responsible for this seemingly endless conflict. But what Ahmed’s story actually proves is the very opposite. It illustrates the profound difference between our two societies, because while Israeli leaders condemn terrorists, all terrorists, Arabs and Jews alike, Palestinian leaders celebrate terrorists. While Israel jails the handful of Jewish terrorists among us, the Palestinians pay thousands of terrorists among them.

So I call on President Abbas: you have a choice to make. You can continue to stoke hatred as you did today or you can finally confront hatred and work with me to establish peace between our two peoples.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I hear the buzz. I know that many of you have given up on peace. But I want you to know – I have not given up on peace.

Well, yeah, hundreds of thousands of Israelis just snorted again because really, how many of us really believe in peace anymore? Or, more accurately, how many of us believe the Palestinian leadership will ever wake up and help bring peace to their people? Yeah, not many, thus that snort.

I remain committed to a vision of peace based on two states for two peoples. I believe as never before that changes taking place in the Arab world today offer a unique opportunity to advance that peace. I commend President El-Sisi of Egypt for his efforts to advance peace and stability in our region.
Israel welcomes the spirit of the Arab peace initiative and welcomes a dialogue with Arab states to advance a broader peace. I believe that for that broader peace to be fully achieved the Palestinians have to be part of it. I’m ready to begin negotiations to achieve this today – not tomorrow, not next week, today.

President Abbas spoke here an hour ago. Wouldn’t it be better if instead of speaking past each other we were speaking to one another?

And this is another of Bibi’s “duh” moments – saying what is obvious and yet will not be.

President Abbas, instead of railing against Israel at the United Nations in New York, I invite you to speak to the Israeli people at the Knesset in Jerusalem. And I would gladly come to speak to the Palestinian parliament in Ramallah.

Ladies and Gentlemen, while Israel seeks peace with all our neighbors, we also know that peace has no greater enemy than the forces of militant Islam. The bloody trail of this fanaticism runs through all the continents represented here.

It runs through Paris and Nice, Brussels and Baghdad, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, Minnesota and New York, from Sydney to San Bernardino. So many have suffered its savagery: Christian and Jews, women and gays, Yazidis and Kurds and many, many others.

You thought it was only buses in Jerusalem and restaurants in Tel Aviv. It didn’t bother you when the blood in the streets was Jewish blood, did it? But now, now it is your blood, your people. Now it is happening in your countries, in your cities. Now they have brought terror to your doors.

Yet the heaviest price, the heaviest price of all has been paid by innocent Muslims. Hundreds of thousands unmercifully slaughtered. Millions turned into desperate refugees, tens of millions brutally subjugated. The defeat of militant Islam will thus be a victory for all humanity, but it would especially be a victory for those many Muslims who seek a life without fear, a life of peace, a life of hope.

But to defeat the forces of militant Islam, we must fight them relentlessly. We must fight them in the real world. We must fight them in the virtual world. We must dismantle their networks, disrupt their funding, discredit their ideology. We can defeat them and we will defeat them. Medievalism is no match for modernity. Hope is stronger than hate, freedom mightier than fear.

We can do this.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Israel fights this fateful battle against the forces of militant Islam every day. We keep our borders safe from ISIS, we prevent the smuggling of game-changing weapons to Hezbollah in Lebanon, we thwart Palestinian terror attacks in Judea and Samaria, the West Bank, and we deter missile attacks from Hamas-controlled Gaza.

That’s the same Hamas terror organization that cruelly, unbelievably cruelly refuses to return three of our citizens and the bodies of our fallen soldiers, Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin. Hadar Goldin’s parents, Leah and Simcha Goldin, are here with us today.

They have one request – to bury their beloved son in Israel. All they ask for is one simple thing – to be able to visit the grave of their fallen son Hadar in Israel. Hamas refuses. They couldn’t care less.

I implore you to stand with them, with us, with all that’s decent in our world against the inhumanity of Hamas – all that is indecent and barbaric. Hamas breaks every humanitarian rule in the book, throw the book at them.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the greatest threat to my country, to our region, and ultimately to our world remains the militant Islamic regime of Iran. Iran openly seeks Israel’s annihilation. It threatens countries across the Middle East, it sponsors terror worldwide.

This year, Iran has fired ballistic missiles in direct defiance of Security Council Resolutions. It has expended its aggression in Iraq, in Syria, in Yemen. Iran, the world’s foremost sponsor of terrorism continued to build its global terror network. That terror network now spans five continents.

So my point to you is this: The threat Iran poses to all of us is not behind us, it’s before us. In the coming years, there must be a sustained and united effort to push back against Iran’s aggression and Iran’s terror.

With the nuclear constraints on Iran one year closer to being removed, let me be clear: Israel will not allow the terrorist regime in Iran to develop nuclear weapons – not now, not in a decade, not ever.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I stand before you today at a time when Israel’s former president, Shimon Peres, is fighting for his life. Shimon is one of Israel’s founding fathers, one of its boldest statesmen, one of its most respected leaders. I know you will all join me and join all the people of Israel in wishing him refuah shlemah Shimon, a speedy recovery.

I’ve always admired Shimon’s boundless optimism, and like him, I too am filled with hope. I am filled with hope because Israel is capable of defending itself, by itself, against any threat.

I am filled with hope because the valor of our fighting men and women is second to none. I am filled with hope because I know the forces of civilization will ultimately triumph over the forces of terror. I am filled with hope because in the age of innovation, Israel – the innovation nation – is thriving as never before. I am filled with hope because Israel works tirelessly to advance equality and opportunity for all its citizens: Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze, everyone. And I am filled with hope because despite all the naysayers, I believe that in the years ahead, Israel will forge a lasting peace with all our neighbors.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am hopeful about what Israel can accomplish because I’ve seen what Israel has accomplished. In 1948, the year of Israel’s independence, our population was 800,000. Our main export was oranges. People said then we were too small, too weak, too isolated, too demographically outnumbered to survive, let alone thrive. The skeptics were wrong about Israel then; the skeptics are wrong about Israel now. Israel’s population has grown tenfold, our economy fortyfold. Today our biggest export is technology – Israeli technology, which powers the world’s computers, cellphones, cars and so much more.

And this is Bibi reminding them that not one of them, not one, lives without OUR technologies, OUR contributions.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the future belongs to those who innovate and this is why the future belongs to countries like Israel. Israel wants to be your partner in seizing that future, so I call on all of you: Cooperate with Israel, embrace Israel, dream with Israel. Dream of the future that we can build together, a future of breathtaking progress, a future of security, prosperity and peace, a future of hope for all humanity, a future where even at the UN, even in this hall, Israel will finally, inevitably, take its rightful place among the nations.

Thank you.
Paula Stern

Israeli Envoy to UN Danny Danon Says Abbas’ UN Speech is ‘Ticking Time Bomb’

Thursday, September 22nd, 2016

Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon criticized the speech by Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas to the United Nations General Assembly on Thursday.

Danon slammed claims by Abbas in which he spouted accusations about “Israeli extrajudicial killings” of Palestinians and “Israeli aggression against our Muslim and Christian holy sites.” Israel’s Ambassador to the UN responded with a statement in which he said, “Abbas chose to use the UN pulpit to represent Palestinian terror. His dangerous words are sure to lead to even more terror attacks against Israel. The Palestinian youth listening to his speech today, will be the terrorists of tomorrow.” Danon pointed out that there is a direct link between Abbas’s hateful words, and the increase in terror attacks in Israel.

“Abbas’s words are like a ticking time-bomb,” Danon added.

Since the start of the UN General Assembly, there has been a noticeable uptick in the number and intensity of Arab terror attacks against Israeli civilians and security forces. The same phenomenon has occurred at the same time each year.

Hana Levi Julian

Netanyahu to UN General Assembly: Road to Peace Runs Thru Jerusalem, Ramallah [video]

Thursday, September 22nd, 2016

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu devoted the lion’s share of his speech at the United Nations General Assembly to his vision of a future in which “someday” Israel will be accepted by the “nations of the world.”

JewishPress.com brings you a video of the prime minister’s address in its entirety, courtesy of the United Nations website.

But one of his first declarations was to acknowledge a debt of gratitude and to reiterate Israel’s loyalty to the United States, “the most generous nation on earth.” He said the two nations have an “unbreakable bond that transcends parties and politics” and said he is “deeply grateful” for America’s “consistent support for Israel at the UN,” — perhaps also an extra bit of insurance against any ninth hour actions by outgoing President Barack Obama. It was, he reminded, Obama who declared, “peace will not come from statements and resolutions.”

Any bright future with Israel working together with its Arab neighbors, he said, would require Palestinian Authority leaders to wake up and join today’s reality, rather than continue to wallow in its love of hate. The automatic majority against Israel that the PA has recruited in its campaign to win statehood by evading direct final status negotiations, will ultimately prove useless, he explained.

“Yes, I know, there might be a storm before the calm. I know there is talk about ganging up on Israel at the UN later this year. Given its history of hostility towards Israel, does anyone really believe that Israel will let the UN determine our security and our vital national interests?

“We will not accept any attempt by the UN to dictate terms to Israel. The road to peace runs through Jerusalem and Ramallah, not through New York.”

Netanyahu also described a day in the life of a boy named “Ali,” walking the hypothetical child through his indoctrination-filled world. He talked about the child’s walk to school past the public monuments named after terrorists who murdered Jews, the curriculum and school events named after terrorists, and the TV, radio and social media programs filled with government leaders promoting murder of Israelis as a worthwhile goal to achieve. He used actual quotes from Palestinian Authority officials — including PA leader Mahmoud Abbas — to make the point.

He added that “Ali’s” mother assured him that if he killed an Israeli and was sent to a prison in Israel, the Palestinian Authority would pay “thousands of dollars” each month to him and the family — “the more Jews he would kill, the more money he would make” — and that when he gets out, the PA would also have a job waiting for him too.

All true, Netanyahu underscored.

He emphasized that it was unrealistic — in fact, impossible — for anyone to expect children raised on such a steady diet of hate to then be able to break free of such brainwashing and suddenly switch gears to “live side by side in peace” with Jewish neighbors.

He warned that the UN obsession with Israel damages the international body far more than it does Israel. “But if UN habits die hard, Palestinian habits die harder,” he said, and pointed to the current lawsuit Abbas said he is filing against the United Kingdom, over the Balfour Declaration.

“Talk about being stuck in the past,” Netanyahu said. Come to think of it, why not a Palestinian class action suit against Abraham for buying that plot of land in Hebron where the fathers and mothers of the Jewish people were buried 4,000 years ago?

“You’re not laughing. It’s as absurd as that. To sue the British government for the Balfour Declaration? Is he kidding? And this is taken seriously here?”

The truth is, the Palestinian Authority conflict with Israel is not based on the issue of settlements, the prime minister said bluntly. It never was. “It’s the persistent Palestinian refusal to recognize the Jewish State in ANY boundaries.” He reviewed the entire history of the State of Israel, beginning with the partition plan offered to both sides of the conflict by the international body, which was rejected in 1947 by the Arab side.

“One thing I will never negotiate, ” he thundered, “and that is the right to the one and only Jewish State!! Had the Palestinians said yes to a state in 1947, there would be no conflict, and when they do finally say yes to a Jewish state we will be able to end this conflict once and for all.

“Not only are they trapped in the past, their leaders are poisoning the future,” he added. Netanyahu called on Abbas to work together to establish peace. He said he is willing to sit down with Palestinian Authority leaders “not tomorrow, not next week, TODAY” for direct talks. “Wouldn’t it be better if instead of talking PAST each other, we talked TO each other? he asked.

He invited Abbas to come to Jerusalem to speak to the Israeli Knesset, and said he is willing to go to Ramallah to speak to the Palestinian Authority parliament.

“Many of you have given up on peace,” he told the assembly. “I remain committed to a vision of peace based on two states for two peoples. I believe as never before that changes taking place in the Arab world today offer a unique opportunity to advance that peace. I commend President El-Sisi of Egypt for his efforts to advance peace and stability in our region.

“Israel welcomes the spirit of the Arab peace initiative and welcomes a dialogue with Arab states to advance a broader peace. [But] I believe that for that broader peace to be fully achieved the Palestinians have to be part of it.”

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/netanyahu-tells-un-general-assembly-road-to-peace-runs-thru-jerusalem-ramallah/2016/09/22/

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