Keep Mahmoud Abbas out of the U.S. for funding terror
If someone paid a terrorist in order to murder an American, the US would certainly prohibit that person’s entry into the country. If someone who funded terror against Americans traveled to the US, the US would certainly be expected to arrest him as soon as he set his foot on American soil.
If someone paid a terrorist after he murdered an American, the treatment should be no different. Americans would expect their government to prohibit the entry of that person who rewards killers of Americans, and should he arrive at America’s borders they would expect that he be detained for interrogation.
Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, who plans to come to New York City this week, does exactly that. He pays terrorists after they murder not only Israelis but also Americans.
Abdallah Barghouti built the bombs that murdered 67 people. One of his bombs was planted at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem in 2002 and also killed five Americans: Janis Ruth Coulter, David Gritz, Marla Bennett, Dina Carter and Benjamin Blutstein. Under PA law from 2004 and regulations instituted by Abbas himself in 2011, terrorist murderer Barghouti has been rewarded with a monthly salary which by today exceeds over $200,000 in payments.
Ibrahim Hamed planned bombings in which 53 people were murdered, and Americans were among them. Shoshana Judy Greenbaum, aged 31, who was murdered in the Sbarro Pizza shop suicide bombing in 2001, was 5 months pregnant when killed. Another American citizen who was murdered in that bombing was Malki Roth, aged 15. Under Abbas’ “Pay for Slay” program Hamed has already received $143,000.
Boston teenager Ezra Schwartz and two others were murdered by terrorist Muhammad Al-Hroub in 2015. Abbas’ reward program has already paid him nearly $16,000 in salary payments.
Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan on Sunday suggested barring Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas from returning to the West Bank when he next travels abroad, claiming the PA leader was “one of the main instigators of violence on the southern border” and contributed nothing to the diplomatic process.
Abbas, Erdan told Israel Radio, was responsible for the ongoing turmoil on the Israel-Gaza border through his ongoing economic pressure on Hamas as he tries to break the terror group’s grip over the enclave.
“The one really responsible behind the scenes for all that is happening is Abu Mazen,” he said, using Abbas’s nickname. “He is the one to move inspectors out of the Rafah Crossing, he is the one sanctioning Hamas in order to pressure Hamas — pressure that is bleeding over to us.”
The Likud minister said the government should consider taking action against Abbas in the coming months as his policy is “undeniably to foment unrest and incite against Israel, whether directly or through sanctions on Hamas.”
“Maybe we should go as far as to consider one of the next times Abu Mazen leaves not to allow him to come back, because today he makes no contribution to the diplomatic process. He’s only doing damage with his attitude toward Hamas,” he said.
Many conservatives despise the United Nations. “The Secretariat building in New York has thirty-eight stories,” John Bolton said in 1994 while a lawyer in the private sector. “If it lost ten stories, it wouldn’t make a bit of difference.” Bolton’s subsequent tenure as ambassador to the United Nations and now National Security Advisor has not changed his attitude. While Bolton focused his criticism on UN inefficiency, criticisms of the almost seventy-five-year-old institution range the gambit: encroachment on sovereignty, impunity of its officials, corruption, anti-Semitism , obsession with if not malice toward Israel, and even violations of the Geneva Conventions.
The Many Criticisms of UN
On most counts, critics are correct. The UN of today bears little resemblance to the body envisioned at its creation. The UN had its beginnings against the backdrop of World War II, when the United States, United Kingdom, Soviet Union, and Republic of China met at the Dumbarton Oaks Conference to begin the process that would culminate in the UN’s formation on October 24, 1945. The original UN had four goals : To keep peace throughout the world; to develop friendly relations among nations; to help nations work together to improve the lives of the poor, and to encourage respect for each other’s rights and freedoms; and to harmonize nations to achieve these goals.
In practice, such broad and heady ambitions have given cover to an ever-expanding array of organizations, easy to form, easier to expand, and almost impossible to end. The UN created the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) in 1949, for example, to address Palestinians displaced by Israel’s 1948 War of Independence. In 1951, UNRWA outlined a three-year plan to resettle Palestinian refugees and, yet, sixty-five years later, UNRWA has a nearly $1 billion budget , even as the number of first generation displaced or refugees dwindles to just a few thousand. Or, consider the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO), created in 1991 to survey Sahrawi refugees about desired final status for the Western Sahara. Almost thirty years later, the UN has spent hundreds of millions of dollars, and no referendum has been held. The UN funds special rapporteurs to promote the Venezuelan model, even as millions of Venezuelans choose between flight from their socialist paradise or starvation. The UN has only retired one specialized agency—the International Refugee Organization—but that quickly replaced by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). A quarter century after Palau, the last trustee, won independence, the UN Trustee Council technically still exists . Put another way, when founded, the UN Secretariat included three hundred persons, a number which expanded ten-fold in its first six months. In 1991, the UN more broadly employed fifty-two thousand people worldwide. Twenty-five years later, the number was approaching one hundred thousand.
In Congress, many Republicans seek to curtail, if not end U.S. funding of the United Nations over that organization’s inefficiency. Rather than effectively supervise the UN’s internal operations, successive secretaries-general have viewed their position as an invitation to jet set and bloviate. Other UN officials saw in budget talks an opportunity to drink free booze rather than promote accountability.
The United Nations says it’s running out of cash, with a budget deficit that comes as experts observe a steady decline in the organization’s influence in many parts of the world.
Late last week, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned that member states have been slow to pay their dues to the UN, with 81 countries still owing a total of $810 million to the world body as of late July.
What’s more, the cash shortfall is worse than in previous years, Guterres said, and appears to highlight a disturbing pattern in late payment by member countries.
“Our cash flow has never been this low so early in the calendar year, and the broader trend is also concerning: we are running out of cash sooner and staying in the red longer,” the Portuguese diplomat wrote in a letter to member states.
Canada is one of 113 member states to have paid their budget assessments in full. Countries are assessed according to their capacity to pay and gross national income — Canada’s assessment for 2018 came to just over $71 million.
But 81 states are yet to pay. These include under-developed and conflict-ridden states like Afghanistan, Syria and Somalia, as well as richer countries like Saudi Arabia and the United States, which pays 22 per cent of the UN’s core budget — some $1.2 billion — and traditionally pays later because of its budget year.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday confirmed that Israel conducted an airstrike against Iranian targets in Syria over the weekend, which he said destroyed a number of weapons caches in the Damascus airport.
“The Israel Defense Forces has attacked hundreds of Iranian and Hezbollah targets. Just in the past 36 hours, the air force attacked Iranian depots full of Iranian weapons in the Damascus International Airport,” Netanyahu said, speaking at the weekly cabinet meeting in his Jerusalem office, in a rare acknowledgement of such a raid.
The prime minister appeared to be referring to an attack on the airport on Friday night in which the Syrian military said that “Israeli warplanes coming from the direction of the Galilee fired several missiles toward the vicinity of Damascus.”
Israel typically refrains from commenting on individual airstrikes in Syria, but does generally acknowledge that it carries out raids against Iranian- and Hezbollah-linked targets in the country.
During the meeting Sunday, the cabinet bade farewell to outgoing IDF chief Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot.
The prime minister praised the general for blocking Iran’s attempts to establish a permanent military presence in Syria.
The IDF announced the end of Operation Northern Shield on Sunday after it discovered a sixth cross-border attack tunnel belonging to Hezbollah in northern Israel.
According to the military, the tunnel was the largest tunnel discovered so far, stretching hundreds of meters from the southern Lebanese village of Ramiya and infiltrated several dozen meters into northern Israel.
The tunnel, which had been dug at a depth of 55 meters (180 feet), was the most important one detected since the operation began in December, IDF spokesman Brig.-Gen. Ronen Manelis said.
According to him, the stairs were built in the tunnel which contained “railroads to transport equipment, garbage, lighting equipment and ladders to enter Israeli territory. A lot of resources were invested in this tunnel.”
With the discovery of this latest tunnel and its destruction set for the coming days, he added, “the threat posed by the tunnels has been eliminated.”
Sixth cross-border Hezbollah tunnel discovered over the weekend to be destroyed in coming days.Sixth cross-border Hezbollah tunnel discovered over the weekend to be destroyed in coming days.
Israel launched Operation Northern Shield in early December to discover and destroy tunnels dug by the Lebanese Shi’ite terror group into northern Israel. The IDF has so far destroyed at least four cross-border tunnels, two by explosives and another two by flooding with liquid concrete.
Lebanon’s Naharnet news site said that Israel poured liquid concrete into a tunnel on Friday near the village of Adaisseh, across from the Israeli town of Misgav Am.
“Operation Northern Shield deprived Hezbollah of the unique offensive abilities it had built for years as part of its planned attack on Israeli territory,” the army said in a statement, adding that “the operation reflected advanced operational and intelligence technological capabilities and multi-stage detection of underground areas that have developed even more over the past few weeks.”
We have now exposed all attack tunnels dug by Hezbollah from Lebanon into Israel. pic.twitter.com/AU0zNbmCCM
— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) January 13, 2019
An adviser to the Iranian speaker of parliament rejected reports that Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of the Iranian-backed Lebanese terror group Hezbollah, was suffering from health problems.
Israeli media cited Lebanese reports over the weekend saying that Nasrallah was hospitalized in Beirut, having suffered a heart attack, while other reports added that he is also fighting cancer.
Nasrallah has not been seen in the media since November, and there has been speculation that his long public absence is tied to the IDF’s launch of “Operation Northern Shield” to neutralize Hezbollah terror tunnels infiltrating Israel. The reports on Nasrallah’s health would seem to provide another explanation for his absence.
According to Kan, however, reports that Nasrallah is sick were soundly rejected by the Special Adviser to Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani, who called such an assertion “the biggest lie of the year.”
“The recent claims by the Zionists that Nasrallah is sick are the biggest lie of the year,” he wrote.
A male nurse from the Israeli Arab city of Nazareth in northern Israel was arrested recently, authorities revealed Sunday, for plotting to assassinate a Knesset Member.
According to Israel Police, the suspect plotted a number of terror attacks across Israel, including the murder of Likud MK Oren Hazan.
Security around the MK has been beefed up in response to the plot, with the MK’s home also placed under security watch.
After police censors cleared the story for publication, Hazan accused the Palestinian Authority and Hamas terror organization of inciting against him personally.
“The assassination plot which was revealed today is the result of the ongoing incitement by Hamas and the terrorist Palestinian Authority, which have for years hoped for my death.”
Border Police overnight Saturday arrested a Palestinian man suspected of firing at a guard post at a Border Police base near East Jerusalem.
The suspect, a resident of the town of Abu Dis, east of Jerusalem, was arrested near the Israeli settlement of Ma’ale Aumim.
The gunfire incident in which he is suspected occurred on November 27, 2018, and did not cause any casualties.
The suspect, in his 30s, has evaded several previous attempts to arrest him.
Last week four pipe bombs were hurled at the base. Only one exploded, causing no damage or injuries. Officials said they were still seeking those involved.
Numerous children were spotted participating in the violent disturbances today along the border with #Gaza. Seeing them there makes us wonder – what future does #Hamas want for Gaza’s children? A future of education and opportunity, or a future of violence and terror? Watch: pic.twitter.com/PieyEKhqyV
— COGAT (@cogatonline) January 11, 2019
The Palestinian Authority as policy demonizes Israel in numerous ways, often blaming Israel for its problems within Palestinian society and even the problems of the entire Arab world.
At a recent conference, a PA minister and two Palestinian university leaders blamed Israel for the Palestinian drug problem, saying that Israel deliberately spreads drugs among Palestinian youth to harm the young generation and “create frustration, illness, and economic and social consequences.”
PA Minister of Local Authorities Hussein Al-A’araj stated that Israel deliberately lets drugs into Palestinian society to harm it:
PA Minister of Local Authorities Hussein Al-A’araj: “We as a government, the leadership, a civil society, and municipalities must pay attention to this scourge [of drugs] that has infiltrated our society through the Israeli occupation, which is striving to create a situation of frustration, illness, and economic and social consequences that diminish our resolve and the realization of our national project.” [Official PA TV News, Dec. 24, 2018]
Both the president and the dean of Al-Quds University repeated this PA libel, stressing that Israel “inflicts the scourge of drugs” on Palestinian society and that Israel is using drugs to wage “a war” against young Palestinians. The Dean of Higher Education and Scientific Research even claimed that Israel has “special agencies” that “distribute the drugs and ease their transfer”:
The World Food Programme has suspended or reduced aid for some of its Palestinian beneficiaries in the West Bank and Gaza Strip due to funding shortages, an official with the organization said Sunday.
Some 27,000 Palestinians are no longer receiving aid through the United Nations program since January 1 in the West Bank, said Stephen Kearney, the organization’s director for the Palestinian territories.
Another 165,000, including 110,000 in Gaza, are receiving 80 percent of the usual amount, he said.
The cuts were decided upon after a gradual reduction in donations over the past nearly four years, with US cuts having the biggest effect.
In 2018, the WFP assisted 250,000 people in Gaza and 110,000 in the West Bank.
In the village of Yatta near Hebron in the southern West Bank, Maha Al-Nawajah said she is buying fewer necessities.
“In December, they did not renew my card,” said the 52-year-old mother, referring to the WFP card that allowed her to buy groceries for 12 members of her extended family. She said family members were unemployed.
Khaled Abu Toameh: Hamas: ‘We seized technical devices and equipment during botched IDF raid’
Hamas’s Izaddin al-Qassam military wing claimed on Saturday that its members have seized technical devices and equipment “containing big secrets” during the botched IDF operation in the southern Gaza Strip November 11, 2018. Hamas refers to the clash with the IDF unit as Sword’s Edge Operation and boasts that its members were able to uncover the Israeli commandos while they were operating inside the Gaza Strip.
An IDF lieutenant-colonel was killed and another officer was moderately wounded after a firefight erupted with Hamas terrorists during a Special Forces operation east of Khan Yunis. The IDF explained that the purpose of the operation was not to kill or capture terrorists. The troops, it said, were exposed while they “carried out a lengthy operation.”
“The enemy and its security forces should be very worried,” said Abu Obeidah, spokesman for the Qassam Brigades, during a press conference in the Gaza Strip. “The treasure of information we gained will give us a strategic advantage on the level of the battle of wits with the Zionist enemy.”
He offered a one million dollar reward and a pardon to any Palestinian “collaborator” with Israel who assists in the capture of IDF soldiers and officers.
The IDF elite unit that infiltrated the Gaza Strip was on a mission to plant espionage devices in order to spy on his group’s telecommunication network, Abu Obeidah claimed.
Al-Aqsa radio, the Gaza-based station run by the Hamas terror group, has reportedly begun broadcasting into Israel through a powerful broadcasting tower set up along the Israeli-Lebanese border.
The tower was put up in cooperation with the Iran-backed Lebanese terror group Hezbollah, an Israeli satellite imagery company said.
It is located across the border from the Israeli village of Zar’it, near the Lebanese villages of Marwahin and Ramyeh.
Nissan Cohen, CEO of Sat View, told Army Radio on Sunday that “three media outlets turned to us and said there was something disrupting [their broadcasts] on frequency 101.6 [FM]. So we went to check. We followed [the broadcasts] north, got to the Lebanese border and realized it’s coming from there.”
The tower near Marwahin was sending a “very, very powerful” signal, Cohen said.
The Daily Beast has reported that the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has decided not to partner with the Women’s March this year.
SPLC considers Nation of Islam, which is led by Louis Farrakhan, a hate group. Women’s March leaders Tamika Mallory and Linda Sarsour are some of Farrakhan’s biggest supporters.
Nation of Islam is a hate group. Farrakhan has no problem vomiting his anti-Semitism everywhere he goes.
Unlike NOW and local chapters of the Women’s March, SPLC has not made a big announcement. They have taken this action quietly:
Jen Fuson, a spokeswoman for the SPLC, said “other projects were a priority,” but added they would continue to be involved in marches at the local level in areas where they have offices.
The third annual march, to be held on January 19, comes amid criticism of the March leadership’s past affiliation with and failure to fully denounce Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, as well as other allegations of anti-semitism from its former organizers. The SPLC has designated the Nation of Islam as a hate group. Asked whether the Farrakhan connection played a part in the decision not to partner with them, Fuson reiterated that the group had other priorities.
The same Daily Beast article noted that EMILY’s List, the group that wants to elect pro-abortion Democratic women, is no longer part of the list of Women’s March partners.
I guess better late than never? I mean, the leaders have never kept it a secret they worship Farrakhan or hidden their anti-Semitic views. Look at what the SPLC said a few years ago about the Women’s March:
“As an official partner of the march, the Southern Poverty Law Center stands in solidarity with its organizers’ vision — that ‘women’s rights are human rights’ — and with the march’s mission to bring together communities ‘insulted, demonized and threatened by the rhetoric of the past election cycle,’ the SPLC said in January of 2017, calling itself “dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry and to seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of our society. Through our core issues, we work to protect the rights of the working poor, LGBT, and undocumented immigrant women whom the Women’s March on Washington seeks to unite.”
AFL-CIO, NARAL, GLAAD, Human Rights Campaign, NRDC, OXFAM, Greenpeace, Amnesty and other major orgs are no longer listed as @womensmarch partners.
Out of over 500 orgs that were previously listed as a sponsor or partner of the @womensmarch, only 200❗️ remain affiliated. (1/2)
— Tali Goldsheft (@TaliGoldsheft) January 12, 2019
It wasn’t that long ago that actress and progressive activist Alyssa Milano bailed on the Women’s March until it cleaned house at the top of the organization, and as Twitchy reported earlier Saturday, even the freaking Southern Poverty Law Center doesn’t want to be associated with the Women’s March due to its affiliation with the Nation of Islam.
If even the SPLC agrees that the Women’s March has affiliated itself with an anti-Semitic hate group, you know the March has problems, many of which were detailed in an exposé in Tablet magazine.
The following tweets aren’t new, but after the SPLC pulled out of the Women’s March, they seemed to take on a special significance, what with Linda Sarsour being one of the leaders of the Women’s March. Take it away, Cameron Gray:
While her mf-er comment is worthy of scorn and shows how vile she is, don’t forget that Rashida Tlaib supports the destruction of Israel, advocates for BDS, and proudly stands with Linda Sarsour, which is a nothing more than a big mother f–k you to Jews in America and Israel pic.twitter.com/G0nEYb1fls
— Cameron Gray (@Cameron_Gray) January 4, 2019
Yisrael Medad: One for the Dumb Jews Category
Should we inform her that the only reason a “Palestine” was created by the League of Nations was to reconstitute the historic Jewish national home?
Ariel, and if you read the Hebrew word for Palestine on the top right of the passport, you would see, in parentheses, the abbreviation, also in Hebrew, for “the land of Israel” (א״י) as the description for what Palestine was.
First, as @MossadIL pointed out, Jews whose families originally hail from the Middle East account for around half of Israel’s Jewish population.
Wow. It’s almost as though half of Israel’s population is a conglomeration of the dozens of Middle Eastern nations they were ethnically cleansed from. https://t.co/7fgI3dyjcD
— The Mossad (@TheMossadIL) January 12, 2019
Also, there’s another problem with the mockery coming from the anti-Israel camp. The criticism attacks a straw man, as nobody – including the author of the Haaretz article in question – is claiming that the food originated in Israel. Rather, the piece was simply stating that shawarma is a popular Israeli street food, a simple fact that anyone who lives here – or who has spent any time in the country – could tell you.
Indeed, when you think of classic American street food, most didn’t originate in the US. Hot Dogs, for instance, were invented in Frankfurt. Soft Pretzels go back centuries to Vienna, and elsewhere in Europe. Pizza is an extremely popular street food almost everywhere in the country, yet of course comes from Italy. Saying that a specific food is now a popular street food in a particular country means just that: that it’s currently popular and ubiquitous.
Moreover, this isn’t by any means the first such accusation against Israel. American celebrity cook Rachael Ray tweeted a photo of “Israeli nite,” with hummus, stuffed grape leaves and other edibles, to which James Zogby, the founder of Arab American Institute literally accused Israel of “cultural genocide”!
An Orthodox Jewish man was violently assaulted on Saturday night in Brooklyn’s Crown Heights neighborhood — the latest in a series of hate crimes over the last two months on the Haredi community in the area.
The 19 year old man told police that he was walking along Empire Boulevard near Schenectady Avenue at approximately 9:00 pm, when he passed a group of teenage males.
One of the group approached the Jewish man and asked him, “Do you want to fight?” The black teen then began to punch the Jewish man in the face and knocked him to the ground, community website COL Live reported.
The group then fled eastbound on Empire Boulevard. The victim was treated for minor injuries at Maimonides Hospital.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center in Jerusalem called on Croatian authorities to ban works which deny crimes committed by the Ustasha regime in Croatia during World War II.
The Center condemned the event to take place at a Zagreb church sponsored by the Society for Research of the Threefold Jasenovac Camp, which denies the mass murders of Serbs, Jews, Roma and Croatian anti-fascists that took place at the Jasenovac concentration camp during World War II.
Jasenovac is referred to as “the Auschwitz of the Balkans” and “the Yugoslav Auschwitz.”
“The Society for Research of the Threefold Jasenovac Camp which is sponsoring this event was created to hide the horrendous crimes committed by the Ustasha, which were unparalleled in the Balkans,” said Dr. Efraim Zuroff, the chief Nazi-hunter and Director of Eastern European Affairs at the Wiesenthal Center.
“These crimes are corroborated by historical documents, testimonies of survivors and the scholarly research of numerous reputable historians,” said Zuroff.
The event, The Jasenovac Lie Revealed, is scheduled for January 16.
An escape room in Thessaloniki, Greece offers visitors a “Schindler’s List”-like experience, as they race to find a list of “innocents” to save from Nazis.
A report on the room was published this week in Medium, with writer Margarita Gokun Silver questioning the ethical and educational implications of turning the story of real-life tragedy and suffering into a form of mass entertainment.
Escape rooms have become popular all over the world in recent years, with small groups of players given a standard 60 minutes to solve puzzles in a themed space and find their way out.
The room in question is one of at least eight offered by Thessaloniki’s Great Escape company. It was previously titled “Schindler’s List,” though the reporter’s investigation has since led it to be renamed “Secret Agent.”
A YouTube trailer for the room’s original name remained available, however.
The room’s content does not appear to have changed. On the Great Escape’s website, visitors are teased with the story of a businessman who hires “innocents” to work in his factory and “save the lives of hundreds of innocent people” during World War II.
During World War II, Wojciech Narebski and his fellow Polish servicemen had to lift crate after heavy metal crate of artillery. Fortunately for them, one of the soldiers had superhuman strength: Corporal Wojtek, a Syrian brown bear.
“When he saw that we were struggling, he’d want to help… He’d come over, grab a crate and carry it to the truck,” Narebski, now 93, told AFP of his days with Wojtek in the 22nd Artillery Supply Company.
This can be heavy work, even for a bear. When Wojtek got tired, he would simply stack one crate on top of the other, “which also helped us, because we didn’t have to lift the crate off the ground,” recounted the veteran who spent two and a half years with the friendly giant he considered a brother.
“Of course he got a reward. Honey, marmalade. That was his favorite.”
Wojtek the Bear also liked to drink beer and smoke (or rather eat) cigarettes, take showers, snuggle with his handler at night, and wrestle with his comrades.
When an opponent lost, Wojtek would lick their face in apology.
Old photos show the bulky beast — who grew to be over 1.8 meters (six feet) tall and weighed about 220 kilograms (490 pounds) — giving bear hugs, opening his toothy jaw wide for food, and enjoying a day at the beach with smiling soldiers.
Plan for an evening of laughs and guffaws next autumn as British funnyman John Cleese, 79, arrives in Israel as part of his “Last Time to See Me Before I Die” tour, with a performance on September 1, 2019, at Tel Aviv’s Charles Bronfman Auditorium.
The “writer, actor and tall person,” as Cleese refers to himself on his website, has been touring the world with the show.
The one-man performance has been reviewed as a meandering tour of his career with a montage of clips from “Fawlty Towers” and “Monty Python,” live comedy and spontaneous chats with the audience.
Plans for a future war are drawn up by the IDF’s Operations Directorate in what is known in Israel as the Bor (Pit), the heavily-fortified underground command center hidden beneath the Kirya Military Headquarters in Tel Aviv.
Back in 2007, just a few months after the end of the Second Lebanon War, Gadi Eisenkot convened a series of debates there to discuss what the IDF would do if a new war broke out with Hezbollah. Eisenkot had served during the war as the head of IDF operations, but was named head of the Northern Command just a month after the fighting had ended in a shaky United Nations-imposed ceasefire.
Eisenkot was pushing the military to approve a new policy, one he believed would ensure that a future war with Hezbollah would end quickly but painfully, although this time just for Lebanon. He called it the Dahiya doctrine.
It was named for the Dahiya neighborhood in Beirut which, until the 2006 war, could only be accessed by card-carrying Hezbollah members. During the Second Lebanon War, the IDF bombed large apartment buildings there, claiming that they were being used as Hezbollah command centers, and covered a series of bunkers where the organization’s top leaders, including Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, were hiding.
The idea was simple: Israel’s answer to a future war, Eisenkot explained, was disproportionate damage to Lebanon.
“What happened in the Dahiya quarter of Beirut in 2006 will happen in every village from which Israel is fired on,” Eisenkot said at the time. “We will apply disproportionate force and cause great damage and destruction there. From our standpoint, these are not civilian villages, they are military bases.”
Outgoing IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot revealed in an interview with The New York Times that Israel has not only been undertaking pinpoint strikes against Iranian targets in Syria, but following a general strategy of “the campaign between the wars” to thwart Iranian entrenchment, and Eizenkot believes Israel is winning.
“We struck thousands of targets without claiming responsibility or asking for credit,” Eizenkot told Times columnist Bret Stephens.
“We operated under a certain threshold until two-and-a-half years ago,” he explained. “And then we noticed a significant change in Iran’s strategy. Their vision was to have significant influence in Syria by building a force of up to 100,000 Shiite fighters from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq. They built intelligence bases and an air force base within each Syrian air base. And they brought civilians in order to indoctrinate them.”
As a result of this, when Iran fired rockets across the border, Israel undertook a series of massive airstrikes against Iranian targets.
Eizenkot’s strategy is also the reason for Israel’s relatively limited approach to Hamas in Gaza. “When you fight for many years against a weak enemy,” he said, “it also weakens you.”
Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps leader Qassem Suleimani, who has been directing Iranian operations in Syria, has failed in his attempts to threaten Israel, Eizenkot asserted.
“His error was choosing a playground where he is relatively weak,” he said. “We have complete intelligence superiority in this area. We enjoy complete aerial superiority. We have strong deterrence and we have the justification to act. The force we faced over the last two years was a determined force, but not very impressive in its capabilities.”
40 Years of Defending the State of Israel
The outgoing Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot is wrapping up 40 years of service in the IDF. This is his story in never-before-seen pictures:
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