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May 31, 2016 / 23 Iyar, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Sudan’

The Strike on Sudan: A Lesson for Iran?

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

I’ve been reading about the airstrikes in Sudan. I first read about it as part of a threat from Khartoum, that they reserve the right to strike Israel back. It was, according to the Sudanese, a foregone conclusion that Israel was responsible. My first reaction was a snicker that combined two thoughts simultaneously, “yeah, like they can reach us” and “sheesh, something explodes and they blame us.”

I stand by the first response, but retract the second one. The more I read, the more I think it could have been us – that it should have been. There were in fact two attacks – one previously that wiped out a convoy of vehicles loaded with arms for Gaza; and then last week, an arms manufacturing plant owned by Iran.

I find it rather ironic that here the Sudanese are, allowing weapons for terrorists in Gaza and Iran to be manufactured on their land, and they have the nerve to complain when the target of those weapons preemptively strikes and obliterates the factories.

One of the things I love about Elie (whose name will apparently soon be changing to Eli if I can remember to type it that way according to the preferences of the amazingly wonderful young couple…and what is wrong with Elie?…well, never mind…) – so one of the things I love about Elie is his ability to analyze, to keep up to date and digest the information he accumulates. In this case, it is part analysis and part reading the news.

One of the papers Elie read over the weekend showed two maps – a map marking the distance from Israel to Khartoum, and a map showing the distance from Israel to Iran. Significantly, the distance to Khartoum is quite a bit further and so, in this airstrike, Israel is sending another message to Iran.

Oh yes, we can hit you – and we will, if you don’t stop. We do not want war. We really truly just want to raise our children and our grandchildren in our land – and oh yes, it is our land. We were ready to share it in 1948 but you Arabs refused it. You turned down the offer of half the land in favor of war and to this day, you haven’t understood that you caused the “Middle East conflict” – not us.

Every turn of the earth bears testimony to our history in this land and promises our future. By whatever reckoning you make – history, might, right – this land is ours. It is you who came later, you who have gone to war repeatedly to take it from us instead of choosing to live here in peace.

You can choose peace and life; you can choose war and death. Whatever you choose, we have no choice but to accept your actions and deal with them. This is the lesson for Iran and the lesson for Gaza.

Last week, dozens and dozens of rockets were fired at Israel; people were badly injured, maimed by your violence. Last night more rockets, this morning four GRAD missiles were fired at Beersheva – a beautiful, quiet city in the middle of the Negev desert – where schools are canceled today because we are not willing to risk the lives of our children.

You can choose peace and life – or you will get war and death. That is the lesson Israel delivered last week in Sudan. We can reach you in Gaza; we can reach you in Sudan. We can reach you wherever you are, if the  promises you make are threats against us.

And one more thing – our patience is wearing thin. The rockets will be stopped. Four years ago, when I picked Elie up from the edges of Gaza after he’d fought in the Gaza War, he told me, “Ima, they stopped us too soon.” They stopped because Barack Obama had been elected and was coming into office in two days and Israel was feeling the pressure; knowing Obama wanted the focus on him and not a war in the Middle East.

I can only hope four years later, we are smarter. Smarter about Obama, smarter about Gaza, smarter about the Iranians. A lesson for us; a lesson for them.

Visit A Soldier’s Mother.

Paula R. Stern

Attacks on Israel and One on an Arms Factory in Sudan

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

While Americans pondered the implications of a presidential strategy involving “Big Bird, Binders, and Bayonets” over the last day and a half, things have been heating up in the Levant.

Hamas launched 68 rockets at Israel in the space of 12 hours, from the evening of 23 October to the early morning of the 24th – a sustained level of fire more consonant with a tactical offensive than with the more typical Hamas campaign of occasional “pinprick” attacks.  Most of the rockets were short-range projectiles, not susceptible to intercept by Iron Dome.  But Iron Dome intercepted 7 longer-range rockets.  Two foreign agricultural workers reportedly sustained serious injuries, and a handful of others received lighter injuries.  There was damage to some buildings.

Israeli forces took out two of the Hamas teams firing rockets from Gaza, and attacked tunnels through which weapons are smuggled.

In the early dawn of 24 October, meanwhile, an arms factory in Sudan was attacked.  The arms factory is located in the Yarmouk Industrial Complex approximately 6 miles south of central Khartoum (see map below).  Video of the exploding building makes it clear that it was an arms factory, with an extended series of powerful secondary explosions characteristic of ammunition dumps. (H/t: Challahu Akbar)  A Sudanese official claims that four Israeli aircraft conducted a strike on the factory.

Site of Yarmouk Industrial Complex south of Khartoum; Wikimapia map.

Media reporting has suggested for more than a decade that Iran set up an arms factory in Sudan in the 1990s.  (U.S. intelligence suspected a Sudanese factory of producing weaponizable chemical agents in the ‘90s, and the Sudanese government of complicity in supplying al Qaeda.  This led to a Tomahawk missile attack on the factory by Bill Clinton after the 1998 attacks on the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.  Iran was not implicated by U.S. intelligence in this installation.)  Tehran is Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir’s chief foreign patron – well suited to his penchant for atrocities against his non-Muslim population – and of course is also the main supplier of arms to Hamas and Hezbollah.

Members of the Sudanese opposition have told reporters the arms factory that was hit was Iranian-sponsored.  This is very probable, and it is equally probable that the attack was, in fact, conducted by the IAF.  Sudan to Egypt to Gaza is a known arms route, and during Operation Cast Lead in 2009, when Israeli forces were going after Hamas in the wake of more than 4400 rocket attacks from Gaza up through December 2008, two arms convoys intended for Hamas were attacked on the roads through northern Sudan. Another convoy for Hamas was reportedly attacked in Sudan in December of 2011.  (A peculiar report from early 2009 also suggested that a ship – possibly carrying arms – had been sunk in or near a Sudanese port.  While fun to analyze, the report could not be considered definitive.)

Cutting off the flow of Iranian arms to Hamas is clearly a national security interest for Israel.  The 24 October attack may or may not have been launched “because of” the rocket barrage from Hamas; it was certainly planned much earlier, but was probably executable on short notice, pending the weather conditions.  Perhaps a more reliable construction to put on the Yarmouk attack, however, is that Israel sees a need to accomplish something more definitive than interdicting convoys.  The time has come to administer a setback from which Hamas – and Iran – can’t recover quickly.

Another consideration for Israel may be that the window for unopposed action in Sudan might close in the not-too-distant future.  Getting strike-fighters into Sudan means routing them over the Red Sea and keeping an airborne tanker aloft there, with its own fighter protection.  Saudi Arabia and Jordan have the means to know the IAF aircraft are there, but they aren’t likely to interfere with Israeli attacks on Iranian arms facilities or arms bound for Hamas.

Potential path of an IAF strike package to Sudan; GraphicMaps.com map.

Egypt, however, also has the means to know the IAF aircraft are operating – and Egypt’s posture could well be changing.  Mohammed Morsi is not a naïve target for an Iranian charm offensive, but for his own reasons – Islamist ideology and his designs on Jerusalem – he will reach the point at which he will not be willing to stand by quietly for Israeli operations in Sudan.

J. E. Dyer

Operation Homecoming

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012

South Sudanese illegal migrant workers on their way to the airport, following action by the police immigration unit. The operation is actually dubbed “Chozrim HaBaita” (Homecoming). Give that copywriter a raise for innovation…

Estimates are that only some 1,500 South Sudanese citizens reside in Israel, compared with 35,000 infiltrators from Eritrea and 15,000 from the Sudan.

Israel cannot deport citizens of Eritrea (refugees from tyrannical state) and Sudan (enemy state, no relations). But unlike other western countries, where a process of refugee status verification is in place, in Israel government has decided to take measures ten years too late, and only after residents began to react with violence to the presence of tens of thousands of jobless Africans in their midst.

Government by shouting-the-loudest is a time-honored Israeli political tradition.

Yori Yanover

Immigration Police Round Up Sudanese for Deportation

Monday, June 11th, 2012

Israeli immigration police arrest dozens of South Sudanese illegal immigrants in Eilat on Monday morning in a raid intended to curb the influx of unauthorized entrants from Africa.

At approximately 5:00 AM, immigration police raided a neighborhood which has become known as a way station for the hundreds of migrants who breach Israeli borders from the south.  Police gave the individuals time to gather and pack their belongings before being deported.  Eight South Sudanese migrants were arrest by the Immigration Authority on Sunday.

Last week, a Jerusalem court ruled that Israel could deport South Sudanese citizens back to their country.

The Knesset on Monday will dedicate special sessions to dealing with strong Israeli reactions to violence and theft brought on by the wave of Sudanese and Eritrean illegal immigrants, in particular in South Tel Aviv and the port city of Eilat.  Discussions will include ways to deal with the various classifications of immigrants – including opportunists as well as asylum-seekers – as well as Israeli violence against the migrants sparked by public outrage at immigrant conduct.

On Sunday, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation supported a bill to punish Israelis who employ or migrants and Palestinians who are inside Israeli illegally.

Though it is difficult to estimate how many illegal immigrants from Africa are currently in Israel, Ministry of Interior estimates, as of April 2012, 59,858 Illegal immigrants who were never imprisoned in detention facilities have infiltrated into Israel.  A fraction of those are entitled to refugee status, while Eritreans – comprising a whopping 34,000 of those – will not be deported due to the opinion of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees that Eritrea has a difficult internal situation and a forced recruitment and that Eritrean immigrants should be defined as a “temporary humanitarian protection group”.

Malkah Fleisher

Peace Now: MKs Protesting Illegals Promoted Racism, Violence

Thursday, May 24th, 2012

The general director of Peace Now, Yariv Oppenheier, has urged Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein to open a criminal investigation into MKs Miri Regev (Likud), Danny Danon (Likud), and Michael Ben-Ari (National Union), for making speeches Wednesday in Tel Aviv he says incite racism and violence.

The speeches were made to approximately 1,000 protesters in South Tel Aviv’s Hatikva neighborhood, in response to a wave of illegal immigration and associated surge in crime in the area.  While some illegal immigrants have made the trek to Israel from Sudan and Eritrea to escape persecution, others have taken advantage of Israel’s high level of humanitarian aid and labor opportunities.

In her speech, Regev made comments such as “the infiltrators are a cancer in our body”, and advocated their deportation from Israel.  Twelve protesters were arrested during the event, which deteriorated into rioting.

According to local residents in south Tel Aviv, the streets have become unsafe, with women and the elderly afraid to walk outside.    On May 15, 4 Eritrean men were charged with raping a 19 year old Israeli woman in a parking lot in the area, one of several such incidents which have reportedly occurred since the area become a haven for illegal African immigrants.

Malkah Fleisher

Interior Minister: We Must Deport African Refugees

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

The day after police arrested four Eritrean and Sudanese men for robbing and raping a 19 year-old woman in south Tel Aviv’s Neve Sha’anan, Israeli Interior Minister Eli Yishai said most African illegal immigrants should be rounded up and either deported or arrested.

Speaking to Army Radio on Wednesday, Yishai (Shas) distinguished between those seeking asylum and those who came to Israel as opportunists, interested in taking advantage of Israeli  humanitarian benefits or engaging in crime.  All those involved in crime should be jailed, according to Yishai, and the majority of the remainder deported, except for those who are truly threatened in their countries of origin.  “One cannot forsake the security of Israelis,” Yishai said.  Under his plan, the deported would be provided financial assistance by Israel.

South Tel Aviv has become a center of African illegal immigrants, who primarily enter the country with the aid of Bedouins through Sinai.

MK Danny Danon (Likud) on Wednesday wrote on his Facebook page that he will take steps to remove the illegal immigrants from the country.  “I intend to hold a national emergency hearing on the issue of the illegal infiltrators. The current situation is intolerable! We should expel all the infiltrators before it’s too late,” he wrote.  Danon advocates evicting over 80% of illegal immigrants from Africa and Eastern Europe.

Haaretz published parts of a report on Tuesday in which Israel’s Foreign Ministry recommended investigating the possibility of deporting refugees whose lives would not be threatened by the measure.

MK Dov Hanin (Hadash) called Yishai comments “incitement and populism”.

There are between 700 and 2,000 South Sudanese illegals in Israel, according to estimates.

On June 3, the government will issue a response to the District Court for Administrative Matters in Jerusalem regarding Israel’s ability to withdraw protection from South Sudanese asylum seekers.

Malkah Fleisher

Beyond Politics: Inspirational People of Israel

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

Title: Beyond Politics: Inspirational People of Israel
Author: Ronda Robinson
Publisher: Mazo Publishers

Beyond Politics: Inspirational People of Israel is a compact introduction to decency. Its eighteen personality profiles illustrate how Israelis from all walks of society improve the Holy Land’s quality of life, and then some. Author Ronda Robertson is a freelance journalist who decided to offset mainstream media’s negative stereotyping of today’s Israelis with a book. She did an outstanding job of presenting the goodness of Israel to the world at large in a mere 144-page paperback.

Unlike formulaic biographies from popular publishing houses in the Orthodox Jewish world, Beyond Politics is not predictable. The vignettes of individual men and women who trekked through Ethiopia and Sudan, flew in from Austria, India, and Algeria, or were born on Israeli soil are gritty, adventurous, and heartwarming.

Robinson lets her readers see, hear, and taste the efforts that her subjects undertook to become part of Israel. Shlomo Malla rose from being an illiterate desert dweller who walked 485 dangerous miles to become an Israeli and later a highly educated politician; former Algerian Sara Lanesman made aliya to unify Israel’s deaf citizens with a sign language they can share, ending the confusion of multiple signing dialects in one tiny country; Dr. Lior Sasson leads the way in healing indigent children around the world of heart defects – at no cost to their families; terror attack survivor Liora Tedgi helps people cope with tragedy with her Terror Victims Support Center. Each of them explains the gut-wrenching moments that changed their lives forever, and how they chose to help others to cope with fear, social alienation, life-endangering illness, and grief. Other people lift just as vividly off the page to inspire you and the information-challenged critics of Israel’s Jewish population.

Younger readers will have material for book reports as they marvel over Chicken Lady Clara Hammer, docent Rena Quint, skateboard king Elchanan Davidson (he’s far more accomplished in amazing ways) and shepherd/diplomat Yisrael Avidor. Adults will also appreciate peace-promoting teacher Miri Flusser, Azerbaijan-born violin maker Lev Strinkovsky, biblically-inspired chef Moshe Basson, Scottish-born Sam Greene, therapist Davina Davidson, happily married Joe and Marion Goodstein, Hevron’s beloved tzabarit leader Sarah Nachshon, plus Faydra Shapiro and her pro-Israel education of non-Jewish tourists. Completing the inside look at Israel are interviews with story-teller Rabbi Hanoch Teller and founder of world-famous B’erot Bat Ayin holistic school for women Rabanit Chana Bracha Siegelbaum.

Enjoy the read. Buy Beyond Politics: Inspirational People of Israel to arm yourself with responses to the next nasty reporter who maligns Israel. And consider sending him or her a copy.

http://itsmycrisisandillcryifineedto.blogspot.com/

Yocheved Golani

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/books/book-reviews/beyond-politics-inspirational-people-of-israel/2012/04/18/

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