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December 6, 2016 / 6 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘warning’

FAA Warning Against Boarding with Samsung Galaxy Note 7

Friday, September 9th, 2016

The FAA singled out Samsung Electronics’s Galaxy Note 7 smartphone as a potential fire hazard in mid-flight, practically killing the company’s device’s recovery efforts. The agency’s statement released late Thursday said that “in light of recent incidents and concerns” involving the smartphones, the FAA “strongly advises passengers not to turn on or charge these devices” on planes and “not to stow them in any checked baggage.”

The Wall Street Journal noted that the FAA statement comes less than a week after the world’s largest smartphone maker had announced a global recall and replacement program for millions of Galaxy Note 7 devices because the batteries exploded or caught fire during recharging.

David Israel

US Warning Israel Not to Demolish Mythical Arab Village

Wednesday, August 10th, 2016

The US Administration has warned Israel against demolishing the Arab village of Susiya in south Mt. Hebron, according to a story in Ha’aretz this week. Both Israeli and American senior officials have warned that should Israel go ahead and demolish the village, US response would be harsh.

Susiya is a legitimate archaeological site in the southern Judean Mountains that bears the archaeological remains of a 5th century CE enormous synagogue, one of the largest and most magnificent ever discovered, which was turned into a mosque by the Arab invaders in the 8th century.

The name has bee usurped by Bedouins who have stayed in area caves during grazing season. It is also the name of a religious Jewish community established in 1983 under the jurisdiction of Mt. Hebron Regional Council. In 1986, the area of Susiya claimed by the Bedouin shepherds was declared an archeological site by Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), and the IDF expelled the Bedouins, who then moved a few hundred yards southeast of the original location.

The Zionist Regavim movement, whose goal is to reclaim areas of the land of Israel from Arab occupiers, has been conducting a bitter court battle to declare Bedouin Susiya illegal and to remove its structures, which are, for the most part, tents and lean-tos. It should be noted that since 1994 the Arabs have been establishing illegal settlements in the entire area between Jerusalem and Susiya, which Israeli governments have failed to challenge for more than two decades. Susiya is only the tip of the sand dune (somehow using the iceberg metaphor in August, just doesn’t work).

As Jewish Press Online reporter Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu wrote back in 2013 (The Saga of Ancient ‘Palestinian Susiya’ – The Town That Never Was), “None of the land was ever registered as owned by anyone. During the Ottoman Empire, and under the British Mandate, the rulers of Hebron would sit in their living rooms and parcel out lands arbitrarily. That was the extent of ‘ownership.’

“When Jews came to Beit Yatir, the Arabs followed. Three families from Yatta, a city adjacent to Hebron, fled because of family crimes, such as rape, and set up camp on a hill adjacent to Yatir, Their village quickly became known as the ‘Thieves’ Village,’ for obvious reasons. They claim, of course, that they have been living there from time immemorial.”

And now, apparently, the future of the Middle East depends on those few dozen shepherds getting to graze their flocks on rightfully owned Jewish land, and so, following intense propaganda from the Palestinian Authority, the US, the UK and the EU, as well as several international NGOs have been threatening that should Susiya be wiped off the map, they, Israel’s friends in the world, would find it difficult to continue defending it in international forums.

Israeli senior officials have told Israel’s many friends that at this point it has no intention to demolish the Susiya “homes” (a term that is being used generously), and that Israel would act based on the expected ruling of the Supreme Court. While Regavim has been pushing the case against the Bedouin enclave, a group called Rabbis for Human Rights (RHR) has appealed the pending evacuation and demolishing of Susiya in the high court.

RHR is a foreign agent representing anti-Zionist entities in Europe and the US. Its annual budget of $1.6 million (most recently reported in 2014) is funded by AECID (Spain), European Commission, Misereor (Germany), Trocaire (Ireland), Norwegian Church (Norway), Kerk in Actie (Netherlands), Church of Sweden, Foundation for Middle East Peace (US), New Israel Fund, Social Justice Fund, and Moriah Fund (source: NGO Monistor).

David Israel

Continental Chutzpah: EU Building on Israeli Land, Warning Against Demolitions

Wednesday, June 1st, 2016

The European Union over the past few years has been erecting illegal structures in Area C, which according to the Oslo agreement is under Israeli control. After several rightwing NGOs have complained, the IDF set out to demolish some of those structures. By rights, they should have taken all of them down, what with their being built without a permit. Israeli media publicized the demolition of those structures, some of which actually flew the EU flag — like those mythical cat burglars who leave their personal business card in the open safe. But last week the EU chutzpah has reached unprecedented highs when Lars Faaborg-Andersen, the Danish diplomat who since 2013 has been the ambassador of the European Union to Jerusalem, met with Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Gen. Yoav Mordechai, to warn him that if Israel keeps demolishing those “Palestinian homes” it would damage relations with Brussels.

According to a senior Israeli official who spoke to Ha’aretz, the meeting was tense and loaded. The ambassador accused Israel of hurting the “weakest Palestinian populations.” What the senior official did not share was that those structures are a means by which the EU has been challenging Israel’s claim to sovereignty in Area C (the PA is currently in charge in Areas A and B). It has to do with the diametrically opposed views of Israel and the EU of what constitutes the “two-state solution.”

Essentially, the Israeli politicians who are now in government, as well as more than a few in the opposition, envision a future peace deal that turns Areas A and B into an independent Palestinian entity, either as a state or an autonomy. The same Israeli leaders envision some permanent legal solution for the upwards of 400 thousand Jews living in Judea and Samaria, all of them in Area C, most likely with Israel annexing the large settlement clusters and giving away the rest of the land.

Virtually no one outside Israel supports this idea at the moment. Even Israel’s best friends in the world envision the ousting of the Jews from Area C, possibly while allowing Israel to retain eastern Jerusalem. How would that actually be done—no one cares to say, nor where would Israel gather the tens of billions of dollars required for such a move, never mind whether the settler population would acquiesce or opt instead for resistance that would make the traumatic evacuation of 8,000 Jews from Gaza’s Gush Katif look like a picnic. Meanwhile, while Area C in Israel’s view is eventually going to be annexed as part of a peace deal — to the Europeans Area C is Palestinian land ready to be redeemed.

Which is why the EU has been relentless at challenging Israel’s claim to Area C. And it’s why they’ve come up with the delusional notion that taking down 531 illegal Arab structures in 2015, 75 of which had been built by the EU, was damaging the two-state solution. Because the two-state solution the Europeans envision is without any Jews in Area C.

For the same reason, Ambassador Faaborg-Andersen was complaining that Israel is quick to condemn and demolish those illegal structures, but at the same time refuses to give Arabs permits to build legally in Area C. Because while the Arabs view Area C as soon to be part of free Palestine, Israelis plan to keep most of it, thank you very much.

There’s going to be another meeting with the EU envoy, on June 15, this time at the Israeli foreign ministry. The Europeans are going to demand a freeze on demolishing Arab structures in Area C, while at the same time also demanding a freeze on Jewish construction in the same Area C. And at some point something will have to give.

David Israel

Security Guards Who Killed Brother and Sister Terrorists in Qalandiya to Be Interrogated with a Warning

Thursday, May 5th, 2016

Police is going to interrogate with a warning the security guards who shot dead an Arab brother and sister duo at the Qalandiya check post outside Jerusalem on April 27, Israeli media reported Thursday. The investigation has been assigned to the central police unit in Judea and Samaria. The courts have imposed a gag order on the story.

The two Arabs, a pregnant woman, 23, and her brother, 16, were on their way to Jerusalem to receive medical treatment for the sister, having obtain the necessary permit from the Israeli authorities. According to police reports at the time, the sister approached the cops and the security guards at the check point with a knife drawn in her hand, tossed the knife at them and was shot dead. Next her brother was shot and killed as well, and police said he, too, was carrying a knife and a penknife.

But the dead terrorists’ family members, as well as Arab eyewitnesses, are insisting the two were not in possession of knives, and were shot simply because they failed to use the pedestrian walkway and moved down the vehicle lane instead, raising the security force’s suspicion. The family is demanding the release of the check post’s CCTV tapes to prove they are right.

A preliminary examination of the case initially found that police personnel had acted properly and in accordance with the police rules of engagement, and it was the security guards, who are under police personnel supervision, who opened fire at the two terrorists. According to the Arab version, the sister was riddled with ten bullets and her brother was shot when he had rushed to her side.

According to the police version, the security guards indeed were the shooters, but used only three bullets, and only after warning shots in the air.

David Israel

A Warning To The Jews – From ‘The Waltons’

Sunday, May 1st, 2016

The passing of a television writer is not the sort of event that usually raises questions about the future of American society. But the recent death of Earl Hamner, Jr., creator of the 1970s series “The Waltons,” coming as it did in the midst of an exceptionally tumultuous political season, invites fresh consideration of the state of the country – and its implications for American Jewry.

“The Waltons,” which debuted on CBS in 1972, was an hour-long drama that followed the lives of a family in rural West Virginia during the Great Depression. Based on Hamner’s own childhood, “The Waltons” highlighted values such as hard work, religious faith, modesty, and the importance of family togetherness.

Throughout its nine-year run, “The Waltons” was one of the most popular shows on television. It’s not unreasonable to conclude that the values it promoted were held in high esteem by most Americans in the 1970s.

When “The Waltons” was cancelled in 1981, Hamner began writing a new series for CBS, called “Falcon Crest.” One might say that it was the moral opposite of “The Waltons.” Set in contemporary times, “Falcon Crest” featured corrupt family members battling each other for control of a winery in northern California’s Napa Valley. Greed, cruelty, deceit, backstabbing, and marital infidelity were among its major themes. Like “The Waltons,” “Falcon Crest” lasted for nine years.

Of course, television shows rise and fall for all sorts of reasons, but with the benefit of hindsight, one can see Hamner’s two shows as indications of a certain transition in American culture. The wholesome Waltons family appealed to a generation that revered old-time values. The fact that “The Waltons” was supplanted by “Falcon Crest” and similar shows was symbolic of the erosion of traditional values and an increasing coarseness in American society.

That coarseness has been on full display in the current political season. Donald Trump has pioneered a new political style that is awash in vicious insults, wild threats, and crude vulgarities – yet he continues to maintain a significant base of support.

And some would argue that the problem is more than just a matter of his distasteful style. Trump’s harsh manner, together with his suggestions that he would take extreme steps such as placing restrictions on the press, have prompted some critics to warn that a Trump presidency would move America in the direction of authoritarian rule.

Such fears may not give enough credit to the various legal and other safeguards that are in place to prevent any substantial changes to America’s democratic system. Still, it would be foolhardy not to acknowledge that some of those safeguards could prove fragile if they are seriously tested.

The question of “Can It Happen Here?” – could Americans embrace totalitarianism – has long been the subject of heated discussion, in the Jewish community and beyond. A classic novel in this genre was Sinclair Lewis’s 1935 bestseller It Can’t Happen Here.

Written just two years after Adolf Hitler’s rise to power, the book chronicles how a corrupt but charismatic politician, Buzz Windrip, rises to the presidency by appealing to nationalist sentiment and making pie-in-the-sky promises (such as giving every American a $5,000 government grant each year). Aspects of Windrip’s platform are somewhat similar to what one hears today from both Trump and Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders. Once in power, Windrip crushes all dissenters and imposes totalitarian rule.

All of which brings us back to “The Waltons,” which was set in the same time period as Sinclair Lewis’s novel. In one particularly memorable episode, the family’s eldest son, John-Boy, hears on the radio about book-burnings in Nazi Germany. He exclaims, “Burning books is like burning people! Why would people do such craziness?” A local clergyman then attempts to organize a public burning of Hitler’s Mein Kampf and other German-language books. But John-Boy forestalls the burning at the last moment when he points out that one of the books thrown into the pile to be ignited is a German edition of the Bible.

Leaving aside the question of whether burning Mein Kampf is the moral equivalent of the Nazis burning great works of art, literature, and science, the writers of that “Waltons” episode did raise a valid point about what can happen when a mob mentality takes over.

And Jews, probably more than anyone else, understand that the abandonment of civility, combined with social and economic anxiety and appeals to extreme nationalism, can be a lethal mix indeed.

Dr. Rafael Medoff

Labor Boss Herzog Interrogated with a Warning for 2nd Time

Sunday, April 17th, 2016

MK Yitzhak Herzog, chairman of the Zionist Camp (Labor) party and leader of the Knesset opposition, on Sunday was interrogated with a warning by the police anti-corruption unit Lahav 433 on suspicion of receiving illegal donations, failing to report donations and providing a false affidavit. The interrogation focuses on Herzog’s activity during the primaries for Labor Party Chairmanship in 2013, when he competed against incumbent chairman MK Shelly Yachimovich. The special police unit received the approval of Attorney Genral Avichai Mandelblit to pursue the interrogation.

Police want to know whether Herzog set up a parallel campaign center whose assignment was to find out and publish dirt on Yachimovich. Police suspect that Herzog funded that “dark headquarters” through copanies and business people whose interests he had served as minister of social services.

In May 1999 police investigated former prime minister Ehud Barak over alleged violations of the Party Funding Law, which later involved the interrogation with a warning of Herzog, who then served as cabinet secretary. In his interrogation Herzog maintained his right to keep silent. The prosecution eventually decided to close the case against Herzog, despite police objections. At the time Herzog was criticized severely for his conduct both during the campaign and in his interrogation by AG Elyakim Rubinstein (now Supreme Court Justice) and state prosecutor Edna Arbel (former Supreme Court Justice). But despite their rebuke, they let him get away with it.

Herzog’s office issued the statement: “Head of the opposition and chairman of the Zionist Camp MK Yitzhak Herzog arrived this morning to offer his version of events in response to a request from law enforcement officials. From the moment his investigation had been leaked, Herzog stressed and requested to be allowed to offer his version of events in order to leave the matter behind him, which he has done. Herzog has full confidence in the law enforcement officials and he is grateful for their dignified and decent conduct.”

MK Yachimovich said on Sunday that she is “convinced Herzog has the best interests of the party and the opposition on his mind.” She promised to “act in cooperation with him and with my colleagues in the party to decide what steps to take next. There is no doubt that an interrogation with a warning of the chairman of the party and the opposition makes the situation worse. I trust completely the police and law enforcement authorities.”

Last week Herzog referred to the possibility that he would be invited for an interrogation with a warning and said that the job of a leader is to “deal with crises, deal with criticism and also deal with libel.” Speaking at a ceremony of raising a glass in honor of the approaching Passover organized by MK Amir Peretz, Herzog added that “there are few leaders who have endured personal and political upheavals, absorbed nasty criticism, dealt bravely with a complex reality and still managed to carve out one of the most impressive success stories in military history ever — I believe Amir is familiar with all of the above up close.”

As defense minister, Amir Peretz endured a punishing war against Hezbollah in Lebanon and was ridiculed worldwide for looking through a pair of covered binoculars pretending to be seeing something. Eventually, though, he made his reputation as the man who dreamed up the concept of Iron Dome, the computerized defense system that allows Hamas to continue amassing and shooting rockets at Israeli civilian centers without Israel’s having to retaliate for it because few civilians are ever hurt.

Herzog told his party pals on that occasion: “You’ve followed me since I entered politics, you know my clean hands and honesty are the values in whose light I’ve walked and in which I believe. Since the announcement of the authorities’ looking into the party primaries became public knowledge, I’ve been telling all of you, publicly and personally, that this is part of the role of a leader: to also deal with libels that always rise up on the eve of elections. The job of the leader is to deal, lead and win. You elected me to lead this party and this camp towards governing and I intend to continue marching on this path, even if it is difficult and full of obstacles.”

David Israel

Europe on High Alert After Terror Warning by ‘Friendly’ Intelligence Service

Sunday, December 27th, 2015

In France, more than 48,000 police officers have been deployed to targeted sites during the school holidays from Dec. 19 through Jan. 4. France has also announced plans to recruit 2,000 more police officers next month.

All across Europe, governments have placed their security personnel on high security alert in response to a “friendly” warning of a terror threat.

A number of major European cities are being targeted in possible attacks that would involve explosives and/or gunfire sometime between Dec. 25 and Jan. 1, according to a warning by an unnamed intelligence service, CNN reported.

The warning described by police in Vienna, Austria included the names of several possible attackers, according to a statement released Saturday.

Police did not name the cities that were warned by the “friendly intelligence service,” but said “this is a lead which stipulates a higher than general abstract state of danger.”

Vienna and other European police responded to the warning by beefing up surveillance at public venues, particularly at high-traffic areas and major events. In addition, Vienna police said in a statement they will be more thorough in security checks, and increase their attention to empty bags and suitcases.

On December 15, the European Commission presented a package of proposals to manage the EU’s external borders and protect the Schenge area. This move is aimed at “reinforcing security controls at the EU’s external borders“ while “improving the EU’s internal security,” according to a new policy statement by the European Commission.

“The European Border and Coast Guard will bring together a European Border and Coast Guard Agency built from Frontex and the Member States’ authorities responsible for border management, who will continue to exercise the day-to-day management of the external border,” the European Commission said in its statement.

“The Agency will [also] have a new mandate to send liaison officers to and launch joint operations with neighboring third countries, including operating on their territory,” according to the new policy.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/europe-on-high-alert-in-response-to-terror-warning-by-friendly-intelligence-service/2015/12/27/

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