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January 29, 2015 / 9 Shevat, 5775
 
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘UN’

Severe Rains In Gaza May Mean Terror Tunnels Are Flooded

Friday, November 28th, 2014

Published on Jewish Business News

The UN Palestine refugee agency UNRWA on Thursday evening declared a state of emergency in Gaza City amid massive rains that have shut down normal life in the city, Ma’an reported. This could also mean damage to the hundreds of underground tunnels that are still being dug fastidiously by Hamas, in preparation for the next war.

Thursday marks the fourth straight day of unusually heavy rain across the region, causing temperatures to dip across the coastal region.

In early November, the Egyptian army launched a program to destroy newly discovered hundreds of tunnels leading from Gaza into the Sinai, which had been used by Gaza jihadists to attack Egyptian security forces. In only a matter of days, the Egyptians cleared 10,000 residents from about 800 homes along the strip’s southern border, to erect an 8-mile buffer where anyone entering would be shot without a warning.

Unlike Israel, the Egyptians can be decisive on fighting terrorism, and they don’t catch international flak for it, either.

Since Israel evacuated its military and civilians from Gaza, in 2005, the PLO and then the Hamas governments have not invested a penny in upgrading the sewer systems and the roads, and so each rainy season sees the strip sitting under lakes of water and human waste. The major storm that brought a blessing to Israel this past week has filled the streets of Gaza City once again with water and sewage, causing further misery for the more than 100,000 Palestinians left homeless, including an estimated 30,000 in emergency shelters.

UNRWA announced that 63 schools across Gaza City and 43 schools across the northern Gaza Strip had been closed Thursday due to the flooding.

Hundreds of residents in the Sheikh Radwan neighborhood of Gaza City had also been evacuated due to the rise of a “storm water lagoon” that had flooded many homes in the area.

“The flooding is exacerbating the already dire humanitarian situation in Gaza caused by blockade and the unprecedented destruction from the latest Israeli offensive,” the UN agency said in a post on its Facebook page.

Back in 2013, Egyptian forces flooded the tunnels under the border with the Gaza Strip in a campaign to shut them down. A Reuters reporter saw one tunnel suddenly fill with water, sending workers rushing for safety. Locals said two other tunnels were also flooded, as the Egyptians were deliberately pumping in water.

“The Egyptians have opened the water to drown the tunnels,” Abu Ghassan, who supervised the work of 30 men at one tunnel, 200 yards from the border, told Reuters. And an Egyptian security official in the Sinai told Reuters: “We are using water to close the tunnels by raising water from one of the wells.”

But when it rains heavily, as it did this week, Gaza is prone to severe flooding, leading to the displacement of thousands. The floods are exacerbated by a chronic lack of fuel that limits how much water can be pumped out of flood-stricken areas.

Which means that the effect the Egyptians achieved by diverting well water into the tunnels is now achieved by natural forces.

The tunnels into Israel were constructed using the expertise of the Rafah families who have specialized in digging tunnels into Egypt for commerce and smuggling, and have been described by former Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniya as representative of “a new strategy in confronting the occupation and in the conflict with the enemy from underground and from above the ground.”

The Israeli military has estimated that Hamas spent as much as $90 million, pouring 600,000 tons of concrete, in building three dozen tunnels. Some of these tunnels were estimated to have cost $3 million to construct.

Israel Okays Ban’s UN Commission on ‘UNRWA Incidents’

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

The Israeli government has decided to cooperate with a United Nations commission set up by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to investigate events this summer near facilities in Gaza owned by the UN Relief and Works Agency. The commission is to be headed by Patrick Cammaert, the former commander of the UN peacekeeping mission to the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo and a retired Dutch general.

Hamas has yet to confirm whether it will cooperate with the panel in its investigation.

International inspectors discovered during the war that missiles were being stored in at least three UNRWA buildings by local terrorists. In each case, the agency immediately “ordered them removed” but it was never made public where they went, or to whom they were sent. At least six UNRWA facilities were hit by mortar shells or other types of fire during Operation Protective Edge; but the IDF identified concealed rocket launchers around all of them and even within several of the buildings themselves.

Israel intends to share its intelligence materials with the commission established by the UN secretary-general, believing its composition to be more professional than that established by the UN Human Rights Council at the outset of the war.

UNHRC High Commission Navi Pillay announced the need for a board of inquiry in a statement of outrage at the start of the conflict, accusing Israel of committing “possible war crimes” and crimes “against humanity” in Gaza.

That three-member panel, which is led by anti-Israel Canadian law professor William Schabas, is to be boycotted by the Jewish State. It was intended solely to probe events that occurred after July 17 and has not defined Gaza’s ruling Hamas organization as a terrorist group, though it is classified as such by the United States as well as Israel.

Syrian Hypocrisy

Sunday, November 16th, 2014

The Syrian envoy is very confused.

The US-Israel Crisis Created by Obama

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

As Palestinian Authority officials continue to incite their population and Arab terrorists rev up for what they hope will be a third “intifada” last night a mouthpiece for the Obama Administration has lit his own fuse on the internet.

The Atlantic columnist Jeffrey Goldberg led his column Tuesday (Oct. 28) with a comment from a “senior Obama administration official” who called Israel’s Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu “a chickenshit.”

Goldberg wrote that the comment was “representative of the gloves-off manner in which American and Israeli officials now talk about each other behind closed doors” and “yet another sign that relations between the Obama and Netanyahu governments have moved toward a full-blown crisis.”

I say it’s all hogwash, kashruth and halal notwithstanding.

On June 4, 2009 – just six months after entering the White House – Israel independently rated a grand total of just four sentences in a landmark hour-long speech delivered by President Barack Obama from Cairo. Of the four, one sentence contained a major inaccuracy.

The reference was to America’s “unbreakable” bond with Israel, which Obama insisted was based upon “cultural and historical ties, and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied.”  (ed. note: italics added for emphasis)

It’s not, and if Obama knew his Qur’an as well he claims to know to, and as well as he allegedly knows his Bible as a Christian – which perhaps he may not – he would know that last is patently untrue.

Yesterday before this brouhaha began Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin revisited this very same issue as he inaugurated a new Museum of History of Polish Jewry in Warsaw, at the invitation of Poland’s President Bronislaw Komorowski. The two men stood together as Rivlin spoke of Jewish history.

“There are those who mistakenly think that the State of Israel is compensation for the Holocaust,” Rivlin said in an ironic response to Obama’s 2009 Cairo claim. “There is no greater mistake. The State of Israel is not a compensation for the Holocaust. The State of Israel was established in its own right.” (italics added)

To be perfectly politically incorrect, Israel is the Jewish homeland because it was granted by Almighty God Himself to His Chosen People. Period, full stop. Read the Old Testament. It’s there in black and white.

Even observant Muslims know it, those who have studied their Qur’an. The passages are quoted often by those Muslim leaders who do truly understand the meaning of coexistence and peace, and even at times by those who don’t.

(Sura 5:20) “And when Moses said to his people, ‘O my people, remember the favor of Allah upon you when He appointed among you prophets and made you possessors and gave you that which He had not given anyone among the worlds.’”

(Sura 5:21) “O my people, enter the Holy Land which Allah has assigned to you and do not turn back [from fighting in Allah’s cause] and [thus] become losers.”

Clearly Obama’s speech writers were not among these well-educated people, nor did he correct them. Perhaps he was unable to, perhaps he didn’t notice.

But his priorities vis a vis Israel were made equally clear in the fact that every other reference to the Jewish State in his Cairo speech was made solely in relation to its relations with the Palestinian Authority and the Arab world.

Obama’s scorn for Israel — and in particular, for its leader — has never really been a particularly well-kept secret.

Barely a year after Obama first entered the White House, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was treated to a taste of that disdain. In 2010 America’s first black president suddenly left Israel’s top leader “on hold” in the Oval Office in a breathtakingly rude manner during an exchange over Obama’s demands that Israel cease building in Jerusalem.

Israel Wants UN to Recognize Hamas – as a Terrorist Organization

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

Israel will demand that the United Nations label Hamas a terrorist organization when the head of the IDF’s international law department and Israel’s legal adviser to the international body meet this month for the first time ever with U.N. officials.

The United Nations never has officially recognized any group as a terrorist organization, and considering the solid pro-Arab majority in the General Assembly, the chances of its labeling Hamas as a terrorist group are as high as Iran publicly turning over its nuclear development program to the United States for safe keeping.

“Operation Protective Edge serves as a serious ‘indictment’ that reveals Hamas’ international crimes with emphasis on the terror tunnels as well as the usage of civilians as human shields,” the Israel delegation said in a statement.

The meeting with senior United Nations official will take place with the IDF’s expert on law, Col. Noam Neuman, and the Foreign Ministry’s legal adviser Ehud Keinan to UN senior officials.

It added, with what must undoubtedly be a carload of sarcasm, “Surprisingly, to date the UN has not officially recognized any organization in the world as a terrorist organization.”

”Surprisingly?”

The United Nations does not even know what terrorism means. It has no official definition of the term, according to Anne Bayefsky, editor of Eye on the UN. If the United Nations were to define a country that sponsors terrorism and then expel it from the undistinguished international body, the General Assembly could move into much smaller quarters.

The United Nations, once known for its work around the world to help poor societies, especially in Africa, has turned into a front for terrorism because it protects countries that operate on terror. It even awards them with prestigious positions. Saudi Arabia is on the Human Rights Council and Iran is on the Commission on the Status of Women.

Bayefsky wrote last week in the New York Daily News:

“Since the UN has no definition of terrorism, state sponsors of terrorism happily denounce terrorism’ at the very same time as they promote it. Second, the terrorist funders and weapons suppliers redirect the world’s attention to the supposed ‘root causes’ of terrorism….

“On Oct. 7, at the legal committee meeting at UN headquarters, Hezbollah-controlled Lebanon listed ‘root causes that may lead to radicalism such as . . . poverty, social exclusion and marginalization’ along with ‘Islamophobia.’

“Iranian President Hassan Rouhani played the same card in an address to the General Assembly in September when he whined about ‘Iranophobia.’ …

“Iran is also the president of the so-called ‘Non-Aligned Movement — a group of nations routinely aligned against the West. As such, Iran speaks for 120 UN member states — a majority of the 193 UN countries.

“Here’s the Iranian speech to the UN legal beagles that was webcast Oct. 7: ‘Terrorism should not be equated with the legitimate struggle of peoples under colonial or alien domination and foreign occupation for self-determination and national liberation.’

“All 56 member states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation have signed on to the Islamic Convention on Combating International Terrorism, which gives a green light to killing Israelis, Americans and anybody else deemed fair game. The treaty says, ‘Peoples’ struggle, including armed struggle against foreign occupation, aggression, colonialism and hegemony, aimed at liberation and self-determination . . . shall not be considered a terrorist crime.’”

The United Nations Security Council has followed the Peace and Love philosophy of universal self-destruction by blaming “conditions” for the “spread of violent extremism.”

No one is responsible for his actions, except Israel of course, whose existence is alleged as the reason for terror. Get rid of Israel, and there will be no more terror.

Abbas’ UN Plan and Bibi’s Building Give Kerry Chance to Get Off the Hook

Monday, October 27th, 2014

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s announcement of big building plans for Jews in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria give President Barack Obama and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry their golden opportunity to dump their self-defeating peace process before it makes their foreign policy look almost as pitiful as it is.

“We are not going to make peace for the Israelis and the Palestinians, Obama and Kerry have said over and over again.”

The truth is they have been lying through their teeth. They have turned almost every trick in the book to pressure Netanyahu to cave in on almost all of Abbas’ demands, but they also have done the same to Abbas to back off at least an inch.

Their typical American misunderstanding of anything east of Atlantic City and west of San Diego, make that Hawaii, never has more apparent since the war in Vietnam. The only difference is that the ungodly number of casualties of American soldiers in the war finally forced a bit of common sense in Washington, which ended the debacle in 1973. The Obama administration has stubbornly hung on to the peace process to maintain its dubious diplomatic dominance in the Middle East.

Abbas’ insistence to ditch the failed negotiations, which were a charade to disguise his eventual ultimatum, royally ticked off President Obama. But he couldn’t very well kiss off a decades-old peace process project without making Israel share the blame.

Netanyahu almost gave him enough opportunities to do so with previous building projects in areas claimed by the Palestinian Authority.

May of the “projects” for new homes were the same ones announced several times, each time representing a different bureaucratic process in the nightmare to build a home in Israel, but that doesn’t matter. Headlines are headlines, and the U.S. State Dept. is more interested in its own agenda of illusions than it is in facts on the ground.

The timing never was right for Obama, and the projects for homes in Jews never represented a sweeping change in the off-and-ion de fact freeze on developing Judea and Samaria for Jews.

All of that has changed. New roads, a “boardwalk” in Gush Etzion, parks and a host of other projects, whether they ever get off the ground or not, give Obama the excuse he needs to state, “We have said all along that it is up the Israeli and the Palestinians to decide if they want the peace process to succeed.”

The funny or unfunny part is that once upon a time, most Israelis and Arabs wanted the peace process to go ahead, with reasonable compromises on both sides. Thanks to Washington’s stubbornness, even the center-leftists in Israel know that there is no sense in making another agreement that simply is a basis for another war. On the Arab side, the word compromise is not in their vocabulary. That is how they lost the wars.

The American lack of understanding of the Middle East culture, and especially of the Arab mind, forced Abbas into his no-compromise stand. Previous U.S. administrations have given the Arab world so many concessions they simply whetted their insatiable appetite for more and more.

Israel, whether under Barak, Sharon, Olmert of Netanyahu, repeatedly buckled under, However, the United States never understood that you can push Israel up against the wall, and when you do, watch out.

Washington is not used to Israel saying “no,” but the threat of breaking up Jerusalem is too much even for center-left Israelis.

Given the impossibility of Abbas returning from his one-way street to the United Nations for recognition of a Palestinian Authority state, and given Netanyahu’s fantastic nose for smelling a political opportunity, the timing could not have been better for him to declare “game over.”

Ban Says UN Will Investigate Weaponry in Its Gaza Agencies

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

A supposed independent Board of Inquiry will look into the cases of U.N. agencies hit by artillery during the Gaza conflict, as well as instances in which weaponry was found on United Nations premises, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Tuesday at the Security Council.

He also questioned the “proportionality” of Israel’s response to rockets fired from Gaza.

He ran through the standard routine of understanding Israel’s need to defend itself “from rockets above and tunnels below” but “the scale of the destruction in Gaza has left deep questions about proportionality,” he said.

He is correct.

Any normal country would have flattened an enemy for shooting missiles into its territory and threatening to fire on planes at a country’s international airport.

Ban also called for “long-term stability in Gaza,” which is a good move except that he thinks it requires “addressing the underlying causes of the conflict” an end to the occupation that has grinded on for nearly half a century, a full lifting of the blockade on the Gaza Strip and effectively addressing Israel’s legitimate security concerns.”

“Long-term stability” in Gaza existed since the Six-Day War in 1967, when Egypt was delighted to get of the impoverished hell-hole. Gaza Arabs experienced two decades of unprecedented economic growth with the freedom to travel back and forth from Israel.

JTA contributed to this report.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/ban-says-un-will-investigate-weaponry-in-its-gaza-agencies/2014/10/22/

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