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June 26, 2016 / 20 Sivan, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘united’

A Tribute to Irving Yitzchak Moskowitz z”l

Sunday, June 19th, 2016

נפלה עטרת ראשינו

A crown has fallen from our heads….. these words were said when the great Chassidic leader Menachem Mendl from Vitebsk passed away in Tiveria in 1788. And i say these words today, with the passing to the next world, of Irving Moskowitz.

There are many Jews who know from where they came. They have history, heritage and roots, but they may not have a sense of the now – of the greatness of the hour for the Jewish People. Irving Moskowitz had both. He knew from where he came, and he knew where he was going.

His felt the energy of the returning and emerging Jewish People in her homeland and he felt as one with both the land, and her people.

Although referred to, by many as האיש של ירושלים – the man of Jerusalem, together with his loving and every so-caring wife Cherna, he was involved in Chevron, Beit El, Yesha in general, Gush Katif, Gush Etzion, educating politicians from the USA about Israel, and was even involved in ‘Operation Torah Shield’ at the outset of the Iraq war, bringing hundreds of students to Israel, to show the ultimate solidarity.

כל ישראל ערבים זה לזה – All Jews are guarantors for one another, this wasn’t just a nice concept for Irving. It was real and part of his makeup.

His unique blend of Jewish pride, emunah (faith), passion, drive, dedication, chessed and huge generosity, made him stand alone on the highest Jewish pedestal in both  Israel and abroad. He stood side by side, shoulder to shoulder, and heart to heart with  Am Yisrael at every step, in this unfolding redemption process.

From the time Irving Moskowitz walked the alleyways of the Old City with Mati Dan, nearly 40 years ago, till recently – when his soul-neshama departed to the Heavens, Irving Moskowitz had a “beautiful and pure love affair” with Jerusalem. With Jerusalem flowing thru his veins, Irving was part of the woven fabric of Jerusalem, feeling the pulse of the city, even from afar in both California and Florida. His body may have been generally in the exile, but his essence, his heart and his soul were all in Jerusalem.

Libi BaMizrach (My Heart is in the East) wasn’t just a phrase for Irving. His yearnings and dreams of Jewish life returning to Jerusalem were realized and actualized, by his own drive, committment and finances.

Beyond his own personal Jerusalem home in Yemin Moshe, Irving z”l and Cherna (May she live healthily till 120) really had many homes. Beyond his own 8 wonderful children, Irving z”l and Cherna had many many children.

Those homes and children were and are the families and students living in the heart of Jerusalem.

The hundreds of families of the Old City, the old Yemenite Village of Shiloach, Ir David, Maaleh HaZeitim, Shimon HaTzaddik, Kidmat Zion, Abu Tor, Beit Orot and the future families of Ganei Yitzchak, are all “his families and homes”.

Irving Moskowitz has redeemed and reclaimed Jerusalem for the Jewish People, and has thus ensured that a united Jerusalem stays in Jewish hands, for generations. He has been at the pioneering forefront of the unfolding realization of the redemption process and the Zionist dream in Jerusalem. A modest and humble man of peace, who believed that Jews had the natural, moral and historical right, to buy and live in any neighborhood of Jerusalem, especially in an area, from where they were evicted. He also believed, that the only way to achieve basic peace and coexistence, with our Arab neighbors, was for Jews and Arabs to live together, under Jewish and Israeli sovereignty.

He felt the pain of the Holocaust with members of his own greater family perishing in Nazi Europe, and he knew first-hand, the concept of Judenrein. (Free of Jews).

Irving Moskowitz was not going to allow that to happen in Jerusalem – where Jews should be barred or forbidden to buy and live in peace anywhere in Jerusalem.

‘Judenrein’ would not apply in united Jerusalem for Irving and Cherna Moskowitz.

So, he purchased and purchased more, he built Jewish neighborhoods, he added Jewish life to the Holy Basin and thus easily stepped into the enormous shoes of Rothschild and Montefiore.

From his first “cheque” helping to purchase or redeem Yeshivat Chayei Olam (today Yeshivat Bratslav Shuvu Banim), till the unfolding building project of the Shefer Hotel (Ganei Yitzchak) near Mt Scopus and the Shimon HaTzaddik neighbourhood, Irving z”l and Cherna have been involved in nearly every significant building project in the eastern sectors of Jerusalem. The Moskowitz name is associated with nearly everything, from buildings like Beit Wittenberg, Beit Volero-Dolgin and Beit Knesset Ohel Yitzchak in the Old City…..Yeshivot – Ateret Yerushalayim, Shuvu Banim, Beit Orot and the Mechina in Beit Zion…neighbourhoods like Kidmat Zion and the old Yemenite Village of Shiloach and the “jewel in the crown” neighborhood of Maaleh HaZeitim.

The world would say no to Maaleh HaZeitim. The Arab League, UN, EU and even pressure from both US and Israeli authorities, would all try to stop Moskowitz. (“Stop Moskowitz Now” was their official call).

But Hashem had His own road map, and Moskowitz together with Ateret Cohanim –  was Hashem’s partner.

Maaleh HaZeitim was built and today, over 100 Jewish families live on the slopes of the Mount of Olives.

On a very personal level, it is a tragic and sad day primarily for Cherna, their eight children, many grandchildren and the wider Moskowitz family.

But also on a national level, it is day of mixed emotions. On one hand, we mourn and are greatly saddened by Irving’s passing from this world. Ateret Cohanim has lost a true friend, and a unique partner. Jerusalem has lost its pillar and builder. Am Yisrael has lost a unique idealistic individual who is referred to as Boneh Yerushalayim.

But on the other hand, one can only be inspired, stand in pride and salute a giant, who has changed the face of Jerusalem and whose achievements for the Holy City, are second to none.

We also know, that Cherna (May she live to 120 years) and the Moskowitz family, who have totally supported Irving for all these years, will continue to walk proudly in Irving’s footsteps.

If the stones of Jerusalem could speak, they would say toda raba Dr. Moskowitz. They would speak of being dusty, dirty and lonely for 2000 years, until Irving z”l and Cherna came and walked the alleyways of Jerusalem.

If the stones of Jerusalem could speak, they would say – we mourn for the Master Builder and Craftsman of Jerusalem.

Yes – today, i mourn and cry for the “loss” of Irving, but I also wryly smile to the Heavens, for i’m in awe and admiration, of what Irving z”l achieved for Jerusalem, in his lifetime of 88 years, and i truly believe that G-d, is now welcoming “His Builder of United Jerusalem” with open arms, to help with the building “Jerusalem of the Heavens”, (Yerushalayim Shel Maalah).

Thank you Irving.

Chazak U’Baruch and long life Cherna.

 

In conclusion – it will be said to the mourning Moskowitz  family – throughout the Shiva “המקום ינחם אתכם בתוך שאר אבלי ציון וירושלים

May you be comforted by HaMakom along with the other mourners of Zion and Yerushalayim.

The standard understanding is that HaMakom – G-d, who is in every place, will give you comfort. Or, as was told to me when my father z”l sadly passed away last year – the knowledge of his soul-neshama going to Gan Eden-HaMakom, that will give comfort.

I think that in Irving’s case – we all have a third meaning of this comfort. HaMakom- as referred to in the Torah – is also Jerusalem. And so – when we look around anywhere in Jerusalem, we will see Irving Moskowitz. The knowledge and sight of Irvings contributions and achievements in Jerusalem. His redeeming and building the eternal united city – that too will give all of us, and hopefully the Moskowitz Family a lot of comfort.

יהי זכרו ברוך

Daniel


LIBI BAMIZRACH was the phrase of Rav Yehuda HaLevi zt’l, regarding our yearnings for Jerusalem, from the exile, throughout the centuries.

Dr Irving Moskowitz’s heart was always facing “east” towards Jerusalem, and he too had yearnings and dreams.

But Irving was able to actualize those yearnings and dreams, for his body, soul and essence was in Jerusalem.

G-d had a partner in building Jerusalem in this world. Dr Irving Moskowitz was that blessed partner, who built the walls, homes, centres of Torah learning, communities and ‘palaces’ of Jerusalem.

Now G-d has a beautiful, graceful, humble, experienced and fully committed partner to build Yerushalayim Shel Maaleh. (Jerusalem of the Heavens)

Thank you Irving.

From the “stones” of Jerusalem, who wish to cry, mourn and also speak on this sad day.

Daniel Luria

49 Years Of A United Jerusalem: Joy, Amazement – And Concern

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016

As we mark with joy and thanksgiving the 49th birthday of united Jerusalem under Israeli sovereignty this Sunday, let us put aside our concerns for Jerusalem’s future for a moment and simply celebrate.

It was during these very days in 1967 that the IDF, with great heroism and Divine providence, liberated the Jewish people’s holy capital – and brought about its official unification under Jewish sovereignty for the first time in nearly 19 centuries.

Like Israel’s Independence Day, Jerusalem Day provides a choice opportunity to reflect on arguably one of history’s most amazing pairs of complementary phenomena: On the one hand, the consolidation of the Jewish people, dispersed around the globe for nearly 2,000 years while they underwent persecution, longing, and anticipation that their prophets’ predictions of their return would be fulfilled – and on the other hand, the unwavering “loyalty” shown this exiled nation by its homeland, which refused to accept the mastery of any other people throughout its centuries of desolation.

And finally, in our lifetimes, these two extraordinary marvels converged – and the Jewish people were again an independent nation in their own homeland. “How fortunate is the eye that these they beheld!”

Visitors to Yerushalayim on Jerusalem Reunification Day – the 28th of Iyar, the third day of the Six-Day War (the 5th of June this year) – will be treated to a display of the deep-seated joy felt by the residents, and especially by the 100,000 young people from all around the country who descend on the capital to celebrate. The now-traditional Rikudgalim will be the centerpiece of the event: two separate musical parades for males and females waving Israeli flags and dancing and singing through the streets.

The city will abound on this day with other holiday events, including a midnight march from Yeshivat Mercaz HaRav Kook to the Western Wall; the “Naaleh L’Yerushalayim” event for youth from around the country; singing and dancing at Yeshivat Beit Orot on Mt. Scopus; memorial events for fallen soldiers and Ethiopian Jewry; and events in Katamon, Kiryat Menachem, Ramot, downtown, and elsewhere.

The day will also be one of recognition and appreciation: The Moskowitz Prize for Zionism will be awarded to individuals “who put Zionism into action” in the City of David, and the “Yakir Yerushalayim” Award Ceremony, in which twelve Jerusalem residents will be bestowed with the decoration for having “influenced and contributed to the lives of all residents of the city.”

The central official event will be held at Ammunition Hill, between Ramat Eshkol and Police Headquarters, with the participation of President Rivlin, Prime Minister Netanyahu, Mayor Barkat, and others. It was there that a miraculous and decisive battle was heroically fought and won 49 years ago; though IDF troops had neither aerial nor artillery support, and despite the killing and wounding of many of the officers, they succeeded in capturing the well-protected and very strategic Jordanian fortress outpost.

To mark the anniversary, Minister for Jerusalem Affairs Ze’ev Elkin and Finance Minister Moshe Kachlon have agreed on a five-year development for the city – an 850-million shekel budget that represents nearly a 250 percent increase over the just-ended five-year plan. The money will be earmarked for economic and hi-tech development; upgrading the city as a worldwide tourist capital; academia and culture; aid for small and medium businesses; and more.

On the other hand: Our concern for Jerusalem’s future has not waned, and reasons for our perpetual vigilance continue to present themselves. Here is just a short sampling of worrisome headlines from the past week:

City councilman Aryeh King said that the ongoing and massive illegal construction by Arabs in Jerusalem is “undoubtedly the most significant platform for the de-facto creation of a divided Jerusalem.” Although illegal construction of any type must be negated, he said, “it cannot be that when a Jew builds an extra room, inspectors immediately arrive on the scene and put a stop to it, while Arabs build structures of 8, 12 and 14 stories, and barely anything is ever done to stop it. It gives the message that there is no justice and no judge, and that they can do whatever they like, not only in building illegally but also in terms of drugs, robberies, stealing water and electricity… This is what happens when we cede our sovereignty …”

Dozens of activists protested Sunday against the relocation of government offices and the public broadcasting authority outside the capital. The protestors said we are facing a “disengagement from Jerusalem” and chanted “A capital without government – a disgrace to the state…”

PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas declared yet again that he sees eastern Jerusalem as the capital of the “future state of Palestine.” He insisted that he is not even willing to consider Jerusalem as a joint capital of two states, or to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.

But worst of all is the new life that the Ramon Plan keeps receiving – the one promulgated by former Kadima Party and Histadrut leader Chaim Ramon, calling for a unilateral withdrawal from parts of Yerushalayim. The most recent expression of support came from, of all people, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, who explained this week why we should simply transfer several Arab-populated areas from the Jerusalem municipality to Palestinian Authority control.

This, despite the tremendous international pressures that would result to “keep on going” and divide the city totally, as well as the expected security and other dangers to which it would lead.

In 2005, then-Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said the following at the Jerusalem Day commemoration at Ammunition Hill:

“For us, there is only one Jerusalem, and no other. It will be ours forever, and will never again be in the hands of foreigners…. We will fearlessly face the entire world and will ensure the future of united Jerusalem. For Jerusalem is the anchor, root of life, and faith of the Jewish people and we will never again part with it.

“Whoever wishes to know this should open the Bible, read and understand. Historic Jerusalem, the heart of the Jewish people for over 3,000 years, will always be one, united, the capital of the state of Israel forever and ever.”

Many similarly beautiful and dramatic words have been expressed about Jerusalem and its eternal unity – yet we are well aware that words alone are far from sufficient. Given the current climate, how vigilant and proactive must we be to safeguard Jerusalem’s future.

 

To support KeepJerusalem’s efforts to ensure that Jerusalem remains united under Israeli sovereignty, and to take part in learning tours of critical areas of the city, send an email to tours@keepjerusalem.com and visit the Keep Jerusalem-Im Eshkachech website at www.keepjerusalem.org.

Hillel Fendel and Chaim Silberstein / KeepJerusalem.org

New Israel Fund Accuses Israel Of Torture At The United Nations

Sunday, May 22nd, 2016

Several Israeli and Palestinian organizations, including Adameer, Al-Haq, Adalah, Badil, Defense for Children International, Public Committee against Torture in Israel and Physicians for Human Rights filed shadow reports to the UN Committee Against Torture, claiming that Israel violates the Convention against Torture, to which Israel is a signatory.

On May 1, 2016 Public Committee against Torture in Israel (PCATI) announced that “Representatives of civil society are invited every four years to present a shadow report to the Committee, in response to the State Party’s official report…The aim of the report is to bring to the attention of the Committee Against Torture a full and transparent picture regarding the implementation of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment in Israel, in order to protect all citizens and residents of the State of Israel from torture and CIDT – an unacceptable norm which should not exist in well-run countries.

In this alternative report PCATI accuses Israel of torture and IDF soldiers of physically and verbally abusing detainees.  In addition, the organization harshly criticizes the investigation mechanisms of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), the Israel Police and the Shabak security forces.

 The following are a few examples:  …

  • “In spite of the long-standing criticism of Israel’s use of the “necessity defence” to justify torture in interrogations, this practice is still used extensively and it is employed to nullify any criminal investigations.”
  • “Israel has failed in its basic obligation and commitment not to use torture; it has also failed in its basic obligation and commitment to prosecute offenders, and to provide real and effective safeguards against torture or ill-treatment.”
  • Torture and other ill-treatment by soldiers Violence perpetrated by soldiers against detainees, in both physical and verbal forms, is a far from infrequent phenomenon in the Occupied Territories today. The hundreds of complaints which have reached PCATI in recent years reflect a disturbing norm of intentionally painful shackling, beatings, kicking, assault with batons and rifle butts, and curses and insults directed against the detainees, their family members, and their religion”.

This is not the first time PCATI has leveled these false, harsh allegations against Israel’s security mechanisms. The organization frequently issues accusations of war crimes, with an emphasis on torture, that Israeli security forces ostensibly commit, mainly against Palestinian detainees, and is active in spreading these accusations in the international arena.

Thus, for example, during the wave of Palestinian terror in late 2015, PCATI issued a joint statement with other organizations funded by the New Israel Fund (NIF) according to which, “it seems that too often, instead of acting in a manner consistent with the nature of each incident, police officers and soldiers are quick to shoot to kill. The political and public support for such actions endorses the killing of Palestinians in the Territories and in Israel.”

In September 2015 PCATI published a report titled, “Prosecutorial Indifference – Systematic Failures in the Investigation of Soldier Violence against Detainees in the Palestinian Occupied Territory.”

This report reached the following conclusions:

“…the complaint examination mechanisms in general … are intended to obscure systematic violations of the law. As examination mechanisms they present the façade of adherence to the law, but in practice they systematically obscure violations by the various security forces – each force and its own mechanism for covering up and erasing complaints… the false impression that complaints are investigated grants the individuals and institutions which violate the law a stamp of legal approval… The complaint is examined by an official mechanism in a sophisticated “laundering” process and the suspects are proclaimed “guilt-free.”

The actions of an “examination mechanism” which approves of almost any sin, transgression or crime at the level of the individual interrogator, police serviceperson, commander or soldier, effectively enables the “laundering” of the occupation as well – creating a façade of security forces which adhere to the law. This deceitful image of the “rule of law” has weighty consequences in the national and international public spheres.

During Operation Protective Edge PCATI Executive Director Ishai Menuchin published an article in which he cautioned that: “In order to understand what is happening and what is likely to happen now in Gaza, one has to look back to Lebanon and Operation Cast Lead and recognize the IDF’s new combat method: striking at civilians as a strategic tool…Defense Minister Yaalon would do well to remember, that perhaps contrary to the legal advice he received, systematic strikes against civilian neighborhoods is a war crime even when we [Israel] are doing it.”

Following Operation Protective Edge PCATI submitted a report to the UN Human Rights Council. In that report the organization stated that the Shabak systematically tortured Palestinian detainees during their interrogation and that “soldiers and other security forces also use violence, humiliation and sometimes also torture during the arrest and interrogation of Palestinians.

PCATI financial supporters include the Secretariat, a Palestinian fund that receives budgeting from four European countries: Holland, Switzerland, Sweden and Denmark. The Secretariat supports Israeli and Palestinian organizations that use various means to negate the legitimacy of Israel’s existence. These include calls for a boycott, slandering Israel and the IDF and filing suits for the prosecution of IDF officers abroad. The Secretariat transferred $644,206 to PCATI in 2009-2013 and $356,000 in 2014-2016.

In addition, PCATI receives funding from the American Jewish extremist organization, The New Israel Fund ($209,732 in 2005-2013).

The New Israel Fund supports organizations that accuse Israel of using torture and accuse IDF soldiers of deliberate abuse; publish these allegations openly and include them in the reports they file to United Nations committees. In addition, the organizations claim, by inference, that the report Israel filed on these issues is unreliable, and claim that they are presenting a true, alternative report, ostensibly instead of the one filed by Israel. This work harms the State of Israel gravely.

We continue to appeal to donors to the New Israel Fund to stop funding these activities that harm the State of Israel.  We say today to The Jewish Communal Fund, Julianne Heyman, Alisa Doctoroff, Yaffa & Paul Maritz, and other donors to The New Israel Fund – stop funding this dangerous group of liars.

Hank Sheinkopf, Ronn Torossian

Former Israeli Minister Presents Plan to Divide Jerusalem

Monday, March 7th, 2016

Former Labor and Kadima Party minister Haim Ramon has come up with a new proposal to divide Israel’s “indivisible” reunited ancient capital, Jerusalem.

Ramon told reporters this week that Israel cannot depend on its enemies “being stupid forever.” If the Arabs were clever, “they would decide instead of the knife to use the vote,” he warned. Ahead of that disaster, Ramon said he has come up with a unilateral plan to stymie the chance of an Arab-majority win in local Jerusalem mayoral elections some day.

His plan, dubbed “Saving Jewish Jerusalem,” has had the interesting effect of at least uniting nearly all people, Jewish and Arab, against the proposal if nothing else.

IDF reserve colonel Shaul Arieli, a map specialist, helped formulate the plan, which would unilaterally separate the two populations. He sees this as an interim solution in the absence of final status talks, and told the New York Times that it shows the Israelis “nothing is holy.”

The bottom line for Arieli is as he says, “What is it we want to keep?”

MK Michael Oren likewise has proposed his own measures to address the problem, at least in an interim fashion. But he too acknowledges the issue is one of demographics: Israel has a strategic interest in maintaining a Jewish majority in the capital of the Jewish State,” he said. He added, however, there are many ways to do that.

Ramon’s plan calls for all of the areas in which Jews are living – some 200,000 people – to stay on the Jewish side of Jerusalem.

But not so for some 300,000 Arab residents who comprise a third of Jerusalem and hold permanent residency status. Despite having been offered Israeli citizenship, they have chosen to reject it for various reasons – and Ramon would now allow their choice in full.

These people would remain on the other side of the fence, where the PA has for so long demanded territory for a capital to lead the development of a new Jew-free Arab state cheek-and-jowl with Israel.

Trumpeted as a “solution” by the left-leaning Labor party and promoted by Israeli liberals, the plan would involve walling or fencing off the Arab-majority neighborhoods in the city.

The fate of their residents would be handed over to the tender mercies of the Palestinian Authority administration in Ramallah, together with the mitigating influence of the IDF’s Civil Administration in Judea and Samaria.

So far, all sides have rejected it, including leaders in the Palestinian Authority.

Former Likud Defense Minister and Israeli Ambassador to the United States Moshe Arens wrote in a column that such a move “has become essentially impossible.” Withdrawing residency rights from Arabs living in Jerusalem is “legally questionable and morally reprehensible,” Arens points out.

Former head negotiator for the Palestinian Authority Saeb Erekat (who recently advocated a “complete economic separation” from Israel) called the plan “racist.” Erekat is currently the secretary-general for the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and possibly the heir apparent to PA leader Mahmoud Abbas.

The New York Times quoted Erekat who angrily pointed out that “thousands of Jerusalemites will be separated from their schools, hospitals, religious sites and also their properties… even members of the so-called progressive Israeli camp are falling into the same policies of the Israeli right.”

The leftist ‘Ir Amin’ group also charged the plan was “detached from any understanding of the fabric of daily life in Jerusalem” – and that from a group that wants to see the holy city as a dual capital for the Jewish State and a Palestinian Authority State too.

So far, no one actually agrees with this plan; but no one has yet reached any other solution either, including the Arab residents of Jerusalem, many of who quietly confide when asked, they would vastly prefer the entire question simply disappear into thin air. None really want to move into the Palestinian Authority and live there “for good.”

Hana Levi Julian

What Will Happen Now with US Middle East Policy?

Thursday, October 3rd, 2013

Originally published at Rubin Reports.

Turkish Reader: Haven’t you understood yet that the US does not care about whether a Muslim country is ruled by Sharia [dictatorship] or by secular [democracy] law as long as that regime is pro-American? Isn’t this U.S. interests “über alles”?

Me: Yes I do care. First, no Islamist government is really going to be pro-American or pro-Western. Second, it won’t be good for that country’s people. Why should I feel differently to handing over Czechoslovakia to Nazi rule or Hungary to Communist rule than Turkey to Islamist rule?

Already there are starting to appear evaluations of what President Barack Obama’s second term will be like. I think that even though the Obama Administration doesn’t know or have a blueprint it is clear and consistent what the Middle East policy would be. It is a coherent program though as I say it is not necessarily fully or consciously thought out. The plan would be for a comprehensive solution which will leave the Middle East situation as a successful legacy of the Obama Administration.

There are three main themes of this plan, though as I say I’m not sure it has really taken shape. By 2016 they will all fail, and leave the West weaker.

The first is with Iran policy. The goal would be to “solve” the nuclear weapons’ issue by making a deal with Iran. One thing that is possible is that the Iranians just deceitfully build nuclear arms. The other that the will go up to the point when they can get nuclear weapons very quickly and then stop for a while. Probably either result will be hailed as a brilliant diplomatic victory for Obama.

This is how the nuclear deal is interpreted by Iran, in a dispatch from Fars new agency: “It seems that the Americans have understood this fact that Iran is a powerful and stable country in the region which uses logical and wise methods in confrontation with its enemies.” In other words America is an enemy of Iran that has backed down.

One thing Iran might get in a deal for “giving up””its nuclear ambitions would be something in Syria perhaps. It would probably look like this. It is possible that this deal would be in the shape of an unofficial partition of Syria, with the Bashar Assad regime surviving in 40 percent of the country including Aleppo and Damascus; another 40 percent would be controlled by a U.S.-backed rebels, mainly Muslim Brotherhood; and 20 percent would be a Kurdish autonomous area. I want to stress that I don’t believe that this would work and would in fact be the object of another Iranian stalling technique.and effort to gain total victory..

Iran wants primacy at least in the Shia world – meaning Iraq, Lebanon and Syria. It would just require Iranian patience if Iran is willing to devote extensive resources to this enterprise until it could seize the whole country. The U.S. probably won’t provide ground troops, which is understandable. And would the U.S. provide military and economic aid to an al-Qaida-Salafi-Muslim Brotherhood regime? At any rate the Iranians would either develop nuclear weapons or simply get to the point where they could if they wanted to and then stop, knowing that they could so at any time. Of course, this would relatively ignore Israel’s security needs.

And if a nuclear deal with Iran doesn’t materialize you can tell who will be blamed by an article named, “A Nuclear Deal With Iran Is Within Reach, If Congress Plays Its Part,”” in the prestigious magazine, Roll Call.

The second theme would be an illusion that it would be possible to resolve the Israel-Palestinian conflict as a two-state solution but actually moving toward the Palestinian real goal which is an Arab Palestine. Period. Regarding this issue it is probably that both sides would stall. Only Secretary of State John Kerry believes otherwise.

The Israeli side would mount a strategic retreat by gradual concessions hoping that the Obama Administration would end before too much damage was done. It is clear, for example, that prisoner releases, the granting of economic benefits and the entry of more laborers would be among the concessions given.Of course, this would also relatively ignore Israel’s security needs.

Barry Rubin

What War with Syria?

Thursday, August 29th, 2013

There’s nothing more dangerous for world peace than a bunch of trigger happy, inexperienced Leftists.

United States President Barack Hussein Obama should never have been elected. It was the most racist elections in the history of the United States. If he had been 100% white, with his experience and qualifications, he never would have been elected. People voted for him because he’s colored. Now he may be causing a very dangerous war in the Middle East by totally overacting in how he wants to “punish” Syria for using chemical weapons.

Obama doesn’t even have the support of the American Military. Listen to this Fox report, which I can’t get the embedded link for. Anyone with a minimum of military/diplomatic experience will easily point out how senseless the threats are. And just like with Bush The First’s Iraq/Gulf War, it will just be an excuse for Israel to be attacked. The Syrians will take out their anger on us, not on the Americans which are spearheading the threats against them.

The internal (within a foreign country) use of chemical weapons is immoral by popular western standards, but it’s certainly no reason to plan on bombing the said/guilty country. How will that show, teach moral superiority?

It’s like beating up a kid because he hit another kid.

“Don’t you ever hit,” smack! “anyone ever” bang! “again!!”

First of all, there should be emergency United Nations Security Council meetings called to condemn Syria and institute a full range of sanctions, including closing all foreign embassies in Syria, sending their diplomats packing, etc. If the point is to punish the Syrian regime, then they are the ones to be punished, not the Syrian citizens. The fallout from an American-led attack would land on Israel, while Bashar al-Assad would be emboldened and strengthened for standing against America.

All foreign aid and NGO programs to Syria must cease. That’s how you use moral superiority against an enemy regime. You don’t use military weapons.

Thankfully, the more other foreign leaders think about the issue, the more sense they are making.

“To see a government in the 21st century gassing its own citizens is an abomination and the world has to move against that, Mulcair said. “That should be done through the institutions of international law, in particularly the United Nations.”

So, G-d willing, we won’t have to search through our attic for the old gas masks and then exchange them for new ones.

Visit Shiloh Musings.

Batya Medad

America’s Impending Defeat in Syria

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

Originally published at Rubin Reports.

It’s really pretty simple. The American people understandably don’t want to go to war with Syria, not to mention Syria’s patron of Iran and especially not to put into power the Muslim Brotherhood and murderous Islamists. Going to war is a serious matter to say the least. There’s no assurance how long it will take, how many lives it will cost, and what turns it may take.

In fact the Middle East has just had several examples of these wars. Iraq and Afghanistan cost a lot of money and lives as they extended for a much longer time than had been expected. In addition they derailed the Bush Administration’s electoral fortunes and domestic programs. With the main emphasis of the Obama Administration being a fundamental transformation of America such distractions are not desired.

There is one other important consideration. The Obama Administration does not accept the traditional diplomatic and great power strategies. It believes that it can reconcile with Islamist states; it does not comprehend deterrents; it does not keep faith with allies; and it does not believe in credibility, which is the belief that only power exerted can convince a foe of seriousness.

Of course, that wouldn’t rule out a one -time targeted attack but even if that were to be done is America going to fight a full-scale war on the ground with the American allies (including al-Qaeda) never satisfied and eager to stab them in the back?

The administration has trapped itself with two problems. One is that the rebels who are being supported in Syria are extreme radicals who may set off blood baths and regional instability if they win. The other is that a challenge has been given to very reckless forces: Iran, Syria, and Hezbollah. When the United States threatens these three players the response is “make my day!”

So this is the situation. The United States is bluffing, it does not want to exert force and probably won’t. In other words, Iran and Syria would be quite willing to fight a war but the United States and its government doesn’t have the will to do so.

What is the optimum option for the Obama Administration ? To try to negotiate – as unlikely as it is – a deal in which some kind of interim or coalition arrangement would be arranged with Russia and Iran to make a transition from the current regime. And that mainly means stalling for time.

That could work, though, if the regime does not actually win in the war. Aid to rebels and some gimmicks, perhaps but no decisive action. Remember. though, that Iran cannot be said to have won as long as the civil war is continuing. The Administration can simply depend on denial, which should be sufficient for domestic purposes.

There is, however. a problem. The two sides Syrian sides want to wipe each other out. Why should the Russians and Iranians make a deal if they have a winning hand? No diplomatic arrangement is possible. In fact the diplomatic option is fictional or, to put it flatly, there is no alternative.

It is not inconceivable that the White House would consider easing sanctions on the Iranian nuclear program to have a chance on making a deal on Syria.

What is likely then is stalling, with the probability that the civil war will settle into stagnation for several years and thus a de facto partition of Syria. The United States simply can’t win given what it is willing to do. And in a great power standoff that’s a very dangerous situation.

Remember. though, that Iran cannot be said to have won as long as the civil war is continuing. The Administration can simply depend on denial, which should be sufficient for domestic purposes.

Finally, ask yourself one question: Will the United States under Obama dare a confrontation with Iran, Syria, and Russia to keep up American credibility, deterrence, and confidence of allies who it is already opposing on Egypt?

Of course not. This is already a president who could barely decide to kill Osama bin Laden.

Barry Rubin

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/rubin-reports/americas-impending-defeat-in-syria/2013/08/27/

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