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December 2, 2015 / 20 Kislev, 5776
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘US State Dept.’

Israel Caves in to US and Frees Tax Money for PA without Erasing Debt

Saturday, April 18th, 2015

Israel has agreed to fork over to the Palestinian Authority $450 million in frozen funds it collects for the Abbas regime in a compromise that only reduces without erasing Ramallah’s $500 million debt for electricity and other services.

The monthly transfer amounts to approximately 70 percent of Palestinian Authority revenues.

The agreement was reached Friday, the same day Al Quds’ journalist Said Arikat said at the daily US State Dept. briefing:

There was a meeting today between the European and American consul-generals with the Palestinian prime minister to discuss the financial situation. The Israelis are holding 1.7 billion shekels, or $500 million. But they’re saying that the American consul general suggested that there may be a resolution in the next 24 hours.

Spokeswoman Marie Harf did not comment except to say, “We think this just needs to be resolved.”

The United States has been pressuring Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to change his position that the funds would be released after Israel deducts the huge amount of money the Palestinian Authority owes the country. Israel reportedly agreed to the compromise for “humanitarian” reasons.

PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas rejected the chance to erase the debt, which would have been meant waiting for approximately four months before receiving more tax money. He also would have been able to have a clean slate, although it is difficult to assume he would not have instantly begun to rack up a new debt.

The compromise agreement only partially reduces the debt. Moreover, previous transfers of tax money with debt reductions have been followed by a larger debt, just like any other deadbeat who ostensibly stays solvent by borrowing money to cover a debt.

This game has been going on for years, and the United States wants Israel to keep playing along. It might be to Israel’s advantage because it only is a matter of time before the Palestinian Authority goes belly-up, possible in sync with the European Union.

Israel has frozen the transfers for tax revenues several times and for different reasons, such as terror and Abbas’ failure to honor commitments during the illusion “peace process. The latest reason, in January, was Abbas’ declaration that the Palestinian Authority was applying for membership in the International Criminal Court (ICC)

Nickolay Mladenov, the United Nations special coordinator for the Middle East peace process, blamed Israel’s four-month freeze on tax revenue transfers for having “undermined the stability of the Palestinian institutions.”

The other side of the coin, the one that Israel has given Abbas, is that his own corrupt and inept regime has undermined stability.


US and Herzog Try to Reincarnate the ‘Peace Process’

Tuesday, March 10th, 2015

The U.S. State Dept and Yitzchak Herzog, who wants to be rotating Prime Minister with Tzipi Livni, are on the same page when it comes to the never-never world of the Peace Process.

It has not existed for several years. Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas has ditched it, but there still are two voices who have not heard the news.

Let’s begin with Herzog, the co-leader of so-called “Zionist Union” party, while Livni has more or less gone into hiding during the campaign in order not to scare voters away from the left.

She failed to form a government when she beat Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu by one seat in the elections five years ago, and her only accomplishment since then has been to throw spit balls at Netanyahu at every opportunity.

Herzog is the visible opponent of Netanyahu, and he told Kol Yisrael (Voice of Israel) radio in a softball interview Tuesday that he, and only he, can resume negotiations with the Palestinian Authority.

Yes, he really said “negotiations” with the Palestinian Authority, which has stated that the only issue to be negotiated is who will be the village idiot who signs on the dotted line to surrender half of Jerusalem and all of Judea and Samaria, accept millions of foreign Arabs as new immigrants and live in peace and quiet forever with Hamas and Fatah on the borders of what is left of  Israel

And how can Herzog pull off this trick of bringing Abbas back from the United Nations and to the “negotiating” table when Israelis are under attacks from his citizen-terrorists every day.

Here’s how:

We are the only ones who can stop the tsunami against Israel, defend the IDF and force the Palestinians to face an international coalition to return to the process.

The entire anti-Israel international community will be so happy to see Netanyahu out of office that it will tell Abbas he has to start negotiating? No, the entire anti-Netanyahu international community will be so happy to see Netanyahu out of office that it will tell Herzog and Livni to sign, in whatever color ink they choose.

The Kol Yisrael interviewer didn’t dare ask Herzog Prime Minister Netanyahu honest questions, such as what about Hamas, and what about Jerusalem, and what about refugees, and what about “settlement blocs” that Herzog says he would keep as part of Israel?

And what about nearly 300,000 Jews living in Jerusalem neighborhoods such as Ramot, French Hill, Gilo, Talpiot and Pisgat Ze’ev?

And what land would he “trade” to the Palestinian Authority in return for keeping Jerusalem united? And how many Arabs with Israeli citizenship would agree to give up their freedom to vote for anti-Zionist MKs and join a Palestinian Authority where criticizing Abbas is an invitation to arrest, after a good beating?

Herzog may be counting on the United States to answer these questions.

Jen Psaki, State Dept. spokeswoman, told reporters at Monday’s press briefing after being remanded that Netanyahu that a Palestinian Authority country would open the door for the Islamic State (ISIS):

I would say that – just to reiterate, of course, our commitment to achieving an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through a two-state negotiated solution remains strong. We count on having Israeli and Palestinian partners who are also committed to that goal.

And since Netanyahu said this week that the “two-state solution” is irrelevant, Psaki is saying that she is counting on Herzog and Livni to win the election.

And Herzog is counting on Psaki to support him.

Kerry Warns Abbas Not to Break Security Ties with Israel

Saturday, February 28th, 2015

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry reportedly warned Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas in a phone call not to suspend security cooperation with Israel, according to Arab media.

Kerry’s spokeswoman Jen Psaki did not deny the report and sidestepped confirming it.

In Friday’s daily press briefing, she was asked specifically if “Kerry during his call warn President Abbas not to suspend security cooperation with Israel?”

Psaki said:

He [Kerry] spoke to President Abbas on Wednesday. They discussed current dynamics between the Palestinian Authority and Israel and the importance of ensuring the financial viability of the Palestinian Authority. The Secretary also detailed his efforts with key stakeholders to prevent a crisis in the West Bank and the way ahead in the coming months.

PA media headlined reported, “Mr. Kerry threatening Abbas of U.S. sanctions if he even dared to stop the security cooperation with Israel.”

So did he or didn’t he?

Psaki did not deny it and simply said, “I just addressed the question of what they discussed, and I think that certainly isn’t consistent with what I just outlined in terms of their call.

That is ‘spokesmen’s talk” for “yes, he did threaten Abbas but I won’t say that.”

The idea that Kerry and Obama are against Israel is only half-true. They also are against the Palestinian Authority. They are against anyone who does not cooperate with Obama’s attempts to fulfill the expectations of the Nobel Prize establishment, which bestowed the president with the Nobel Peace Prize before he had a chance to show he does not deserve it.

State Dept. Admits Even Obama Is not ‘Infallible’

Friday, February 27th, 2015

U.S. State Dept. spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters Thursday that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is not infallible and therefore may be wrong in opposing a potential “bad” deal with Iran.

Pressed by Associated Press reporter Matt Lee if the pope and President Barack Obama also are not infallible, she admitted everyone is.

The questioning was in response to Secretary John Kerry’s testimony at Congress where he questioned Netanyahu’s judgment for supporting the 2003 war in Iraq.

Lee asked, “I’m wondering if you can explain a bit more about what he[Kerry] meant since there were a lot of people, including himself at one point, who were supporters of that war, and why this makes Prime Minister Netanyahu’s judgment suspect and does not make anyone else’s judgment suspect….. I’m sure that there may be other things that Prime Minister Netanyahu has been wrong about.”

Psaki performed some fancy verbal acrobatics and said that Kerry’s”point was about where we are with the Iran negotiations, and that we have to look at all of the options, look at all of the information that’s available, to – and have an open mind about how to approach this. And that’s what he’s asking from the prime minister.”

When Psaki agreed with Lee that “no one is infallible,” not even the pope or the president, he persisted:

if no one is infallible, how is it possible that Prime Minister Netanyahu here in his opposition to a potential Iran deal is wrong and you guys are all right?….

It’s the approach that the prime minister has an issue with, not the goal that you both – that I think he would say that you share with him. Psaki said the Obama administration does not agree that its approach to the Iranian nuclear threat is the problem. She adds that Netanyahu is wrong because he is part of an “effort to prejudge an outcome when the details are not yet known.”

But enough of the details are known.

There is a scary parallel between the “negotiations” with Iran and the U.S.-led negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Technically, details of a final agreement were not known, but the Palestinian Authority gradually ruled out compromise on virtually all issues, leaving as “details” its demands that were evolving into a de facto final agreement.

Netanyahu finally drew the line after his own administrations, as well as those under Ehud Barak, Ariel Sharon, Ehud Olmert and Tzipi Livni, caved in time after time.

Instead of a “bad deal, there was no deal, forcing the Palestinian Authority to go to the United Nations to try to force an agreement on Israel and prove to the world that Ramallah really was not interested in negotiations.

Kerry and Obama failed in the “peace process.” They blamed Mahmoud Abbas, no less than Netanyahu, for the failure.

They proved that they, even more than Netanyahu, are not infallible.

Social Media War against ISIS

Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

The U.S. State Dept. is using more than 300 of its social media accounts to monitor and try to counter the use of Twitter, Facebook and other sites to recruit people, mostly youth, into radical Islam and jihad.

“There are 90,000 pro-ISIL tweets or other social media responses every day,” State Dept. spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Tuesday.

“We’re definitely beaten by volume, but we don’t believe that ISIL is an invincible force on social media,” she added. “So what we’re working on now is aggregating and curating and amplifying existing content, so that means utilizing the 300-plus State Department social media accounts run by embassies, consulates, and individuals. It means also coordinating that with the social media accounts of other government agencies. It means expanding and giving more tools to the CSCC.

“We have a new head of CSCC who will be leading this effort to continue to improve our coordination and make sure we’re approaching this in the smartest, most strategic way. And as you mentioned, there are obviously best practices that we can learn from other countries. And part of this is not only sharing that but also determining who the right voices are.”

The good news from Foggy Bottom is that the experts understand they cannot use an American approach to counter a Middle East mentality.  Psaki said, “We certainly are not under the illusion that the United States is the best voice in many of these cases.”

If they had taken that approach towards the “peace process” long ago they would look a lot less dumb today.

US Insists Israel in the Loop on Nuclear Talks with Iran

Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

The Obama administration is keeping Israel up to date on talks with Iran for an agreement to contain and supervise its nuclear program despite reports that Washington is fed up with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu because of his planned speech in Congress next month.

“Conversations continue with Israel on the Iran nuclear negotiations, State Dept. spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters Tuesday.

She cited as examples a meeting between Under Secretary Sherman and Israeli NSA Cohen and the Minister for Intelligence and Strategic Planning Steinitz in Munich and a subsequent meeting this week. “Iran negotiations were obviously the main topic of negotiations,” according to Psaki.

“As you know, Secretary Kerry regularly speaks to the prime minister about this issue, as well as many others,” she added, “And as our NSC colleagues have noted, NSA – National Security Advisor Rice maintains regular contact with her Israeli counterpart, National Security Advisor Cohen, on the full range of issues, including, of course, this issue…

“And reports that that has been cut off or we are no longer consulting are simply inaccurate…. As it relates to our relationship with Israel, our consultations on Iran are ongoing at many levels and many, many high levels, and reports over the weekend are just inaccurate.”

‘OneVoice’ Used US Grant to Promote ‘Non-Violent Resistance’

Monday, February 2nd, 2015

American taxpayers’ money helped fund a pro-Palestinian Authority group to encourage “non-violent resistance to end the occupation,” according to material gleaned from the website OneVoiceMovement website, which is involved in the “V15” campaign against Prime Minister Netanyahu, as reported here.

“OneVoicePalestine” received grants from the U.S. State Dept. until last November, weeks after most political observers said it was only a matter of time before the Netanyahu coalition would collapse and new elections would be held.

The hammer fell in December, and two months before, OneVoicePalestine (OVP) launched “The Land is Ours” campaign last September 25 to promote the stated American policy of a “two-state solution” and the un-stated policy of deciding the borders for a Palestinian Authority country.

The OneVoice site, in a blurb on the video it produced, stated its aim is to “encourage young Palestinians to participate in non-violent resistance to end the occupation, realize the two-state solution, and establish an independent Palestinian state on the 1967 lines with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

It added:

The campaign builds on the 2012 mobilization effort – “The Land is Ours, Leave Us Be” – which addressed the expansion of settlements by planting hundreds of trees in a number of areas threatened by confiscation.

Planting trees, borrowing the Jewish National Fund campaign decades ago to plant trees in Israel,  is the message of “non-violence resistance.” The video does not show Arabs waving the PA’s Fatah movement flag, emblazoned with a rifle.

Instead, the film shows Arabs marching in Judea and Samaria and planting trees but carefully omits facts that many if not most of the campaigns have been carried out on land where violence is likely because Arabs trespasses on land where Jews live. Their justification is that their claim on the land is valid and that Jews’ claims are not valid.

The Palestinian Authority has backing from the Obama administration, which always says that it is up to both sides — the Palestinian Authority and Israel — to determine borders. However, government grants over the decades, as with the OneVoice video “The Land Is Ours, Leave Us Be,” have been used to contradict the supposed policy that the “final borders” are not to be settled by unilateral actions but by negotiations.

By that definition, Israel also has taken “unilateral actions” every time a Jew builds a home in Judea and Samaria or in areas of Jerusalem claimed by the Palestinian Authority.

The difference is that when Jews take action, the Obama administration complains it is an obstacle to peace; when Arabs take action, it is considered their right.

Against this background, the call for “non-violent resistance” is at best naïve.

Official Palestinian Authority encouragement and promotion of violence has been documented at least every week by The Jewish Press and other media, often based on research by the Palestinian Media Watch.

Al Monitor, a predominantly pro-Arab organization, wrote nearly a year ago:

Although major Palestinian nationalist and Islamist movements publicly support and endorse what they call the “popular resistance,” there is little evidence that this support is more than lip service….

Two other problems have prevented nonviolence from becoming the major force in Palestine….Leaders of the movement have been unable or unwilling to show the kind of discipline that Mahatma Gandhi or Martin Luther King Jr. showed in keeping the movement totally nonviolent. This partial nonviolence [sic] that features throwing stones at Israeli troops — often at the end of a mass demonstration — not only results in a brutal Israeli crackdown, but more importantly, it weakens the stance of a nonviolent movement.

It added that the second problem that silences the nonviolent movement “has been its inability to involve Israeli peace activists” because of “the lack of clarity about cooperating with Israelis and the ready accusation of ‘normalization” with Israel.

The bold statement that throwing stones is only “partial” non-violent illustrates where the American-funded OneVoice campaign is headed, whether intentional or not.

Violence becomes “non-violence” simply by changing the definition of the term, just as The Jewish Press pointed out here that the White House defeats terror by re-defining it.

Below is the OneVoice video, funded by American taxpayers.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/one-voice-used-us-grant-to-promote-non-violent-resistance/2015/02/02/

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