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July 29, 2014 / 2 Av, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘US-Israel’

White House ‘Shocked’ that Ya’alon Criticizes Obama

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

Officials at the a White House are incredibly upset with Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, who had the audacity Monday to say that that the  United States’ foreign policy is so weak that Israel cannot depend it on it to stop Iran from obtaining nuclear capability.

President Barack Obama’s definition of ”friendship” – and everyone knows that Commander in Chief himself has said he is the greatest pal Israel has had since George Washington – means  the Israeli government must pat the president on his head every time he blinks, and he has been doing a lot of that lately.

Ya’alon said in a speech at Tel Aviv University earlier this week that allies have expressed “disappointment” at American policies leading up to the Russia-Ukraine crisis and that the United States clearly is  “demonstrating weakness.”

The Obama administration has accused the Israeli defense minister of insulting its senior officials and undermining the relationship between the US and Israel after he criticized American foreign policy for projecting “weakness” throughout the world.

“If you sit and wait at home, the terrorism will come again,” Ya’alon said. “This is a war of civilizations. If your image is feebleness, it doesn’t pay in the world. Nobody will replace the United States as global policeman. I hope the United States comes to its senses. If it doesn’t, it will challenge the world order, and the United States is the one that will suffer.”

That was not exactly harsh language. On the contrary, Ya’alon put the United States on a pedestal when he said that no one can replace it.

But the criticism was too much for President Obama, whose foreign policy blunders have brought him compliments from no one outside the State Dept.

“We were shocked,” one official was quoted as saying.

Not only was he shocked, he was “mystified” at Ya’alon, who earlier this year was reprimanded by the American government for very undiplomatic language he uttered in what was supposed to be closed meeting, where he called Kerry “messianic”” and obsessive.” Ya’alon expressed his wish that Kerry would simply go home, collect his Nobel Prize for No Peace and “leave us alone.”

Ya’alon seemed to have learned his lesson, His criticism was offered in friendly terms, but the White  House official was quoted as saying that the defense minister shows a “disturbing pattern” in which he “disparages the U.S. administration, and insults its most senior officials.

Moshe Ya’alon  has not replied to the Obama administration’s feeling sorry for itself, but one Israel minister told Army Radio “The foreign policy of the United States all over the world is collapsing. I learn from this that Israel must not be Ukraine. It is ridiculous today to hear the Americans talking about guarantees for Israel’s security.” So now it is an unnamed ministger who has not learned the Obama Commandment,”Thous shalt not criticize” – unless you are a Muslim country, Russia, China or a Republican.

 

‘The IRS Wants YOU’ and Israel Is Going to Help Them

Monday, March 10th, 2014

A mini “economic social” cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, soon will approve an agreement to share information on accounts of U.S. citizens with the Internal Revenue Service, sources told the Globes business newspaper.

The newspaper said the proposal will allow the IRS full access on Americans’ accounts in Israeli banks and other financial institutions.

The U.S. government is preparing to sign agreements with other countries as well, but Israel is high on its “hit list,” partly because Swiss banks have accounts in three Israeli banks. Switzerland is no longer a safe place for foreigners to hide their money from the tax man, and so Israel has become a favorite home for money launderers and tax evaders.

The Israel Tax Authority is expecting increased revenues if the measure is approved. “The agreement will include an option under which, subject to certain conditions, information will be sent from the U.S. tax authorities to the Israeli tax authorities about the income of Israeli residents in the U.S.,” the document states.

However, while all information on American accounts in Israel will be sent to the IRS, Israel will receive data only in special cases.

The proposed agreement contained clauses aimed at protecting individuals from the IRS misusing personal information, but it is not clear if the IRS has learned its lessons from recent scandals, such as hunting down those nasty pro-Israel groups, as reported here.

Big Brother in Israel also is waiting on deck.

Attorney Yael Grossman, an expert in money laundering, told Globes, “The decision paves the way for further harm to the separation between the management of money by a bank and disclosure to Income Tax. Although at the moment, the measure helps the banks and saves them the need to work directly with the IRS, but experience shows that it will later expose all of the public’s banking activities to the Israel Tax Authority.

“This will be the final burial of banking confidentiality on one hand and a signal for the strengthening and prosperity of alternative institutions, which will rush to offer alternative instruments to the public.”

Americans living in Israel have an alternative to leaving their tax records and financial activities accessible by your closest friendly IRS clerk. They can simply void their American citizenship, a growing trend that was reported here in December.

Approximately 3,000 did so in 2013, three times the number in 2012. That means the IRS cannot snoop on them, but it also means they lose their right to vote in American elections, assuming it would be worth voting.

Change in the Clock Cuts US-Israel Time Difference to Six Hours

Monday, March 10th, 2014

The time difference between Israel and the United States is now only six hours following the beginning of Daylight Saving Time in the United States and Canada early Sunday morning. Israel moves its clocks forward on Friday morning, March 28.

The exceptions to Daylight Saving Time in the United States are Hawaii and Arizona, but then there is the exception to the exception since the Navajo Indian reservation stays in synch with the rest of the country.

The Energy Policy Act in 2005 changed the usual switch to Daylight and Standard times and added more daylight for a few weeks.

DST will last for 238 days until the first Sunday in November.

Israeli official moves it clocks ahead at 2 a.m. Friday morning, March 28, until Sunday, October 26, one week before the United States reverts to Standard Time

Israel to Sell $500 Million of Natural Gas to Jordan

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

The Nobel Energy consortium developing Israel’s offshore “Tamar” natural gas fields has signed a half a billion dollar deal to export gas over the next 15 years to Jordan’s Arab Potash Co. and Jordan Bromine Co.

The exports could grow to $30 billion over a longer period of time.

Nobel and its Israeli partners Delek, Isramco and Alon Natural Gas. Will build a pipeline from the Dead Sea Works to the Jordanian side of the Dead Sea.

U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Diplomacy at the State Department Amos Hochstein has held more than a dozen meetings with Jordanian and Israeli businessmen and political leaders over the past 18 months to help negotiate the Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu were involved.

Jordan is increasingly dependent on Israel, which already supplies the kingdom with water, and the significance of Israel’s recent oil and gas discoveries has been under-exaggerated, both economically and financially.

The consortium operating the Tamar gas field previously have signed a 20-year contract to sell $1.2 billion worth of natural gas to the Palestinian Authority.

The purchases by Jordan and the Palestinian Authority come at the expense of Egypt, which has been a totally unreliable supplier thanks to terrorists who frequently blow up the pipeline that brings gas from El Arish to Israel and Jordan.

The deal with Jordan “will pave the way for additional export projects which could enhance regional cooperation as well as provide additional supply to the domestic market and enhanced security of supply through development of additional reservoirs and infrastructure,” said Noble Energy VP Eastern Mediterranean Lawson Freeman.

The new natural gas industry in Israel is creating thousands of jobs for laborers and engineers and also has helped turned the shekel into one of the world’s strongest currencies against the dollar.

Politically, Israel’s energy sources and water resources , thanks to desalinization plants, are creating conditions that will make the Palestinian Authority and Jordan a lot less belligerent while leaving Egypt to wallow in its own economic and political anarchy that was hastened by the Arab Spring revolutions.

Netanyahu and Kerry Likely to Meet during AIPAC Session in March

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is likely to meet with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry during the AIPAC convention in March, U.S. State Dept. spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters Tuesday.

“I would not be surprised if they have a meeting, of course, or they see each other while he’s here,” she said in answer to a question about reports of a possible meeting. “But that is decades away in the schedule. So I don’t have anything specific for you in terms of a set time or a date or anything.”

US and Israeli Air Forces Join Hands for Military Medicine

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

The IDF’s Israeli Medical Corps and the U.S. Air Force signed a Memo of Understanding Wednesday that “lays the foundation for a deep and ongoing cooperation in areas of aviation medicine, mental health, academics and research,” the Israeli military announced.

The memo was signed at the conclusion of the Surgeon General of the United States Air Force, Lieutenant General (Dr.) Thomas W. Travis’s week-long visit in Israel, in which he was introduced to t activities of the IDF Medical Corps and the Israeli Air Force.

Int’l Flavors to Buy Kibbutz Suppliers for $88 Million

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

The U.S.-based International Flavors & Fragrances (IFF) firm is buying Aromor Flavors, half-owned by Kibbutz Givat Oz, which is located southeast of Haifa.

Former executives ion the Makhteshim phosphates and  chemical giant own the other half of Aromor, which manufactures and markets specialty ingredients that are used in fragrances and flavors.

“We expect Aromor, with its strong R&D capabilities, to provide us with cost-effective, quality materials to use in our formula creations and external sales,” IFF Chief Executive Officer Doug Tough said.

Aromor is a supplier for IFF, and both management teams have worked with each other for years.

Aromor was founded  in 1982 and  has approximately 90 employees, approximately 20 of whom are members of the kibbutz.

The purchase stipulates that the Kibbutz operation will remain at Givat Oz for at least 15 years.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/intl-flavors-to-buy-kibbutz-suppliers-for-88-million/2014/01/16/

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