PA minister defends payments deemed incentives to murder by US senators
Reuters quoted Sen. Bob Corker, the committee’s Republican chairman, as saying he hoped it would prevent innocent people “being murdered by someone who’s being incentivized to do that by his own government.”
Sen. Lindsey Graham, the bill’s sponsor, said: “I insist that they stop paying their young people to become terrorists and I don’t want our tax dollars used to support any government that would do that.”
But Qaraqe termed the committee vote “an incorrect decision” and said “the reason for it is Israeli incitement against the prisoners and martyrs. It cannot be implemented. We as Palestinians reject the accusation that the prisoners are terrorists. We consider the occupation the reason for terrorism in the region and that these prisoners are victims of the presence of the Israeli occupation.”
“Legally, the responsibility is individual, not collective. The individual is in prison but he has a family” that needs support, he said. He said that about 7,000 families receive monthly payments.
Qaraqe voiced confidence that Abbas would not cave in to American pressure over the payments. “Abu Mazen can’t give up on thousands of families that fell victim to the Israeli occupation. The authority cannot accept this decision.”
Over the weekend, Husam Zomlot, chief representative of the Palestinian General Delegation to the US, told a gathering of Palestinian expatriates that he had informed the US administration and members of Congress that “if there is a choice between the American aid and our responsibilities to our people we will choose the latter” the Bethlehem-based Ma’an news agency reported.
But officials in the PA are deeply concerned about the impact of a halt to the American aid. An official in the Social Affairs Ministry, who requested anonymity, said it would harm the PA’s ability to keep making its welfare payments to 110,000 families living below the poverty line. “We refuse this decision. It will affect the poor families our ministry supports, most of which don’t have income and live off of our assistance.”
Daniel Pipes: Weakening Palestinian rejectionism
The discrepancies between the two responses point to a deep Palestinian reluctance to accept Israel as the Jewish state. Very few accept that “Jews have some rights to this land” and great majorities insist that, some day, “Palestinians will control almost all of Palestine.” Ritualistic denial of Israel’s legitimacy is standard; it is more noteworthy that such denial only partially interferes with recognizing Israel’s inescapable existence.
Confirming this point, note the dramatic change in attitudes over just two years. Asked if two states means the “end of the conflict” or whether it must continue “until all of historic Palestine is liberated,” West Bank residents voted 35% to 55% in favor of continued conflict, while Gazans voted 47% to 44% in favor of resolution. Back in May 2015, West Bank residents voted almost as they did this year but Gazans 2-to-1 preferred continued conflict, prompting Pollock to note that, in the intervening two years, “many Gazans have probably come to regret the lasting damage of the disastrous 2014 war on their territory, and shifted their views in a relatively peaceful direction.” More proof: Asked whether Hamas should maintain its cease-fire with Israel, the 55% and 80% affirmative replies point to the impact of many rounds of warfare in Gaza.
When it comes to Washington, “pressure on Israel to make concessions” is not the Palestinians’ priority. For West Bank residents, the priority is U.S. pressure on the PA to make it “more democratic and less corrupt”; for Gazans, it is ”increased economic aid.”
These replies suggest that some Palestinians have moved away from grand anti-Zionist ambitions and that they are not imbued with an infinite spirit of resistance; they are not supermen. Like everyone else, they are prone to despair, a collapse of will, and defeat.
This conclusion points to the utility of an Israel victory strategy that increases the pressure on Palestinians until their dictators in Ramallah and Gaza accede to this turn toward the practical. This could potentially start the long process of ending the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
The contemporary Palestinian national movement is reaching its end. As its institutions wither and its leaders fade away, there is no obvious successor to take its place. With the passing of Arafat and most of his colleagues, Fatah’s ability to hold its fractured parts together waned.
The social and political milieu of the West Bank and Gaza – steeped in clannish and personal influences – highlighted local fiefdoms as Fatah became mired in narrow and parochial turf wars. With no new leaders, no marked success in government, and no progress toward peace, Fatah fundamentally disappeared as a real political agent.
Abbas’ peace policy has provided the PA with a formidable firewall against the kind of international pressure associated with the Palestinian national movement’s past violence and, since 1994, many of the day-to-day governing affairs of municipal, health, education, and other functions have been in Palestinian hands.
Perhaps most important, Abbas has succeeded in insulating the Palestinian people from much of the violence and destruction of the “Arab Spring” and from the growth of Salafi and jihadist movements in the West Bank. However, as a result of the failure to make diplomatic progress even in the shadow of a relatively friendly U.S. administration, the entire notion of peace negotiations has been discredited.
Hamas’ adoption of armed struggle has been no more successful than Fatah’s. The suffering of Gaza’s population has not served as a model or source of inspiration for the rest of the Palestinians.
Similarly, Hamas’ decade-long governance of Gaza has been marred by the same charges of corruption, incompetence, and heavy-handedness as its PA counterpart. Those looking to Hamas as a replacement for Fatah would find it difficult to argue that the former has delivered where the latter has failed.
According to the July 20, 2017 issue of the London-based Middle East Monitor, “Al Aqsa has been abandoned by those who profess the leadership of the Muslim World…. [Egypt’s and Saudi Arabia’s] cold indifference…is unworthy of institutions that profess to be the preeminent leaders of Muslims around the world…. The religious institutions in Makkah, Madinah and Cairo have gone absent without leave despite the dangerous situation at the Noble Sanctuary in occupied Jerusalem…. Both countries are spearheading a regional drive for full normalization of relations with Israel. Their reasoning is that friendship with Israel is the best guarantee of US support for themselves….”
The London-based Palestinian newspaper, Al-Quds Al-Arabi, published a cartoon, depicting the Arab World as an ostrich burying its head in the sand, while the Al Aqsa Mosque bleeds.
Since 1948, and in defiance of Western foreign policy, academia and media establishments, the Arab/Islamic agenda has transcended the Palestinian issue.
While showering the Palestinian issue with substantial talk, the Arab/Islamic walk has mostly been directed at other issues: the 1,400-year-old regional, intra-Arab/Islamic unpredictability, fragmentation, instability and intolerant violence; the Islamic Sunni terrorist machete at the throat of all pro-US Arab regimes; the clear and present danger, posed by Iran’s Ayatollahs, to the same regimes; the destructive role played by Qatar in the context of – and in assistance to – the Ayatollahs; the lethal, regional ripple effects of the disintegration of Iraq, Syria and Libya; the inherent, tectonic (disintegration) potential in every Arab regime; the impact of the global energy revolution on the potency of the Arab oil producing regimes; and the enhanced role of Israel in the battle against the aforementioned threats.
The dramatic gap between the Arab walk and talk on behalf of Palestinians was particularly noticeable during the Israel-Palestinian wars of 1982 (in Lebanon), 1987-1991 (the 1st Intifada), 2000-2003 (2nd Intifada) and the Israel-Hamas wars of 2009, 2012 and 2014.
Arabs have never shed blood – nor have Arabs dedicated their economic power – on behalf of Palestinians.
Muslims have killed Jews many times before, and that has not advanced the Islamic cause or religion in the slightest. Not a single death Muslims have suffered has achieved prosperity or peace for the people of Islam. You know the Jews will never leave the land Allah gave to them, as promised by the prophet Musa in Surat al-Ma’ida, aya 21: “O my people, enter the Holy Land which God has prescribed for you, and turn not back in your traces, to turn about losers.”
Have you not read the sound Hadith: “None of you has faith until you love for your brother what you love for yourself”? Do you not remember the words spoken by the Prophet in his Final Sermon: “Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you”?
You may think that killing Jews is a noble thing, that others will praise you and hold you a hero, a brave man, a batal, a true believer. Yet what you did was not brave, but cowardly. People will tell you that the slaughter you performed was heroic and that you took up arms to bring freedom for your fellow Muslims. But today, millions around the world detest what you did and call it by its proper name, a Satanic act. You took the lives of grandparents and parents, ruining the future for their little children. How can anyone be proud of that?
Arabs have fought six wars against the Jews and lost each time. You have fought intifadas to dislodge the Jews from the land God gave them, and they have survived and prospered. They have offered you everything you need to grow in peace and prosperity. They have guarded you so you can worship freely, attend your mosques, and preach your sermons, even when you have preached hatred for them. Are these not signs that Allah has protected them, given them the strength to survive, and blessed them?
Conspiracism and hysteria about Al-Aqsa has been rife since the late 1920s. Today, the “Inciter-in-Chief” (as the former Israeli Minister of Defense Moshe Arens has dubbed him) is Sheikh Raed Saleh, leader of the Northern branch of the Islamic Movement. In 2016 Salah warned, as he does every year, that “al-Aqsa mosque is in danger,” because “the occupation is … digging beneath al-Aqsa”. Above ground, the Israelis are engaged in the “daily Jewish storming of the mosque, the expelling of young Muslims stationed in al-Aqsa to protect the mosque and the propaganda according to which Israel should impose its sovereignty on Temple Mount.”
Panic about these non-existent threats to Al Aqsa (which is often cast as a violated woman whose honor must be restored by violent revenge) went viral on Palestinian social media and this was a factor in the so-called stabbing intifada of 2015-16. Writing about this in Fathom the Israeli journalist Elhanan Miller cited the case of Mohannad Halabi, a law student at al-Quds University in East Jerusalem, who wrote on Facebook shortly before killing Nehemia Lavi and Aharon Bennett, that “what is happening to the women of al-Aqsa and to al-Aqsa will not be stopped through peaceful measures.”
The radicalized Palestinian teenager Omar al-Abed slaughtered three Israelis at their Shabat dinner on 21 July because he thought the Jews “desecrate the Al-Aqsa mosque and we sleep.”
In the two weeks of the crisis some Muslim leaders dipped their pens in the blood. The Speaker of the Jordanian Parliament, Ataf Tarawneh, was condemned by Knesset speaker Yuli Edelstein after he called the 14 July attackers “martyrs,” saying “Their blood watered the pure land.”
Turkish President Recip Tayyip Erdogan claimed that Israel was “using the fight against terrorism as a pretext to take al-Aqsa Mosque from the hands of Muslims. There is no other explanation.” Israeli soldiers “carelessly pollute the grounds of Al-Aqsa with their combat boots,” he complained, “by using simple issues as a pretext and then easily spill blood there.”
Everyone loses when these demonizing narratives are allowed to take hold. Since the 14 July attack, six Palestinians, five Israelis, and the three residents of the Israeli Arab town of Umm al-Fahm who carried out the attack have died.
Calm was restored on the Temple Mount only because Israel removed every single security measure. But that is no answer because, as Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams famously told the Nationalist people about the IRA, those who would again bring murder to the Temple Mount “haven’t gone away, you know?” Those who worship at Al Aqsa, and those who protect the worshippers, need a very different kind of conversation about security at Al Aqsa, and they need it quickly. Because the “alternative facts” are killing people. And next time they might kill an awful lot more.
Trump has a hard row to hoe in formulating this critical framework – but do it he must if there is to be any hope of advancing peace in the Middle East.
Such Trump-defined parameters and fact-based framework need to then be mutually agreed by Jordan, Egypt and Israel before formal negotiations can commence.
Any fanfare trumpeting yet another round of negotiations without such tripartite agreement will inevitably see those new negotiations being eventually buried alongside the graves housing the failed Oslo-Roadmap and stalled Israel-PLO negotiations.
Trump, Israel, Jordan and Egypt working together can certainly succeed where Obama and the PLO ignominiously failed.
The top Democrat in the Senate, Chuck Schumer, announced Friday he will cosponsor the Taylor Force Act, legislation that would cut US funding to the Palestinian Authority if it doesn’t stop paying terrorists and their families.
The United States currently gives the PA nearly $500 million in aid annually. The legislation would allow only the portions designated for security assistance — roughly $60 million —and humanitarian aid to remain in place.
The New York senator’s endorsement is the latest sign the bill is likely to receive bipartisan support in the full chamber. On Thursday, it advanced through the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on a 17-4 vote.
Every Republican member of the panel supported the measure, as well as most Democrats, many of whom backed the bill after a revised version was introduced earlier in the week and several amendments were added during the markup session.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu met Monday with a delegation of 18 Democratic congressmen.
The delegation was led by House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (MD).
The delegation will meet with US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman and Israeli military officials, as well as tour a number of important historical and cultural sites, including the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial.
The congressmen are also scheduled to meet Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah.
Prime Minister Netanyahu is scheduled to meet on Wednesday with a delegation of Republican congressmen led by House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
Over the weekend, tireless crusader for truth Louise Mensch dropped another bombshell in her ongoing investigation of President Trump’s Russia ties:
Mensch, a former Conservative British MP turned expert on the American deep state and electoral system, has doggedly exposed the extraordinary conspiracy surrounding the 2016 campaign to her 265,000 Twitter followers. Her previous scoops include the April news that arrests of Trump administration officials would begin “next week” and that Trump adviser Steve Bannon currently faces the death penalty. In light of these claims, the more cynical might think that Mensch has simply landed where all conspiracy theorists inevitably do: on the Jews.
But such a dismissive attitude overlooks the well-documented manner in which Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu actively intervened to throw the American election to Donald Trump. And if you know anything about Israel and its Mossad, you know that the folks who have successfully trained dolphins as spies are more than capable of electing a chimp president. In fact, a carefully documented timeline of the final months of the 2016 campaign makes this interference abundantly clear. Consider:
September 25, 2016: Netanyahu meets with presumptive Republican nominee Trump in New York at Trump Tower for over an hour.
September 28, 2016: Israeli founding father and former president Shimon Peres, who had been publicly critical of Trump, is declared dead after suffering a massive stroke. Asked what he thought of Trump, Peres had said, “I don’t think there is much to think about him.”
October 3, 2016: Netanyahu tasks deep cover Mossad agent “Jeremiah” with the U.S. election portfolio.
October 15, 2016: Shimon Peres, who faked his death in order to devote himself fully to the top-secret project of electing Trump, is spotted in Moscow with a notorious group of international hackers.
October 28, 2016: FBI Director James Comey sends a letter to Congress reopening the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server. Oddly, the first draft contains several lines in the ancient Hebrew code of At-Bash, which are subsequently scrubbed from the version leaked to the press.
November 5, 2016: A freak glitch in the Israeli-designed app Waze directs the Clinton campaign to Washington, D.C., instead of their scheduled appearances in battleground states Wisconsin and Michigan. They hastily pull together an emergency rally with Lady Gaga in North Carolina, but the damage is done.
In a surprising twist, Palestinians are demanding that Israeli diplomatic staff return to the Israeli Embassy in Amman, Jordan, which was vacated following the deadly shooting of two Jordanians by an embassy guard recently.
The reason: Hundreds of Jordanian passports are being held in the embassy awaiting processing for entry permits to Israel. Most of the passports belong to Jordanian citizens of Palestinian origin who want to visit relatives in Israel or the Palestinian territories, or to businessmen with direct ties to the Jordanian royal family and the office of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who are being prevented from traveling anywhere abroad without their passports.
In an incident that set off diplomatic tensions between Israel and the Hashemite Kingdom, an embassy guard, later identified as 28-year-old Ziv Moyal, opened fire and killed two Jordanians after being attacked with a screwdriver last month. As a result of the shooting, Jordanian Foreign Ministry officials said they would not allow staff to return to Amman as long as Israel did not promise the security guard would be put on trial.
A senior Palestinian official in Ramallah told Israel Hayom that the Palestinian Foreign Ministry is working with the Jordanian Embassy in Tel Aviv and the Israeli Foreign Ministry to find a solution to the crisis. According to the official, Ramallah is pressuring Jordan to allow the return of embassy staff so that operations there can return to normal.
Israel is blocking Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas from leaving Ramallah due to his failure to calm the tensions surrounding new security measures at the Temple Mount, according to senior Palestinian sources.
“The allegations are incorrect,” the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office responded.
A senior Palestinian source told The Jerusalem Post’s sister publication Ma’ariv that Abbas’s inability to leave Ramallah stems from Israeli sanctions imposed on the Palestinian leader after “failures” regarding the Temple Mount incident — and not from diminishing security cooperation with Israel, as alleged by Abbas’s spokesmen and advisors.
The official line adopted by the Palestinian Authority, in particular by Abbas’s spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeinah, is that “the leader will not leave Ramallah due to the freezing of links with Israel.”
This propaganda-like message is being used to cover up the sanctions imposed by Israel on the Palestinian Authority, the source told Ma’ariv.
Abbas, currently unpopular on the Palestinian street, emerges weaker from this incident.
Jordan’s king flew by helicopter to the West Bank on Monday for a rare visit seen as a signal to Israel that he is closing ranks with the Palestinians on key issues, such as the contested Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem.
Abdullah II met with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah in his first visit to the West Bank in five years.
Palestinian officials said the Jordanian ruler and PA president were slated to discuss efforts to revive the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, stalled since 2014.
The meeting lasted approximately two hours. Abdullah returned to Jordan immediately after the meeting. No official statements were released.
“The future of the Palestinian issue is at stake and reaching a solution is becoming more difficult,” Abdullah had said Sunday during a meeting with the speaker of the Jordanian parliament and heads of parliamentary committees. “There will be no breakthrough in the peace process if there is no American commitment to support a solution to the Palestinian issue.”
Jordan’s King Abdullah II told Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas that US President Donald Trump is “committed” to the peace process and called for “intensifying” efforts for new talks, during a rare trip to Ramallah Monday seemingly meant to send a message to Israel.
During his two-hour meeting with Abbas, the Jordanian king highlighted “the commitment of Trump to work toward achieving peace between Palestinians and Israelis,” according to a summary of the meeting in the Jordanian government’s official news outlet Petra.
Abdullah “stressed the importance of intensifying efforts to create real political prospects for progress toward resolving the conflict,” the report said.
Abdullah’s visit to Ramallah, the first since 2012, came after a spike in Jordanian-Israeli tensions over the Temple Mount, which is holy to both Jews and Muslims, and a deadly shooting incident involving an Israeli embassy guard in Amman.
Jordan, PA form joint Al-Aqsa crisis group
Jordan was a key player in efforts to calm tensions after Israel installed metal detectors and other security measures at the Temple Mount following a July 14 terror attack there in which three Arab Israelis shot dead two police officers using guns they had smuggled into the holy site. The new Israeli measures, which Israel eventually reversed, prompted the Waqf Islamic Trust, a Jordanian government body that administers the site, to announce a boycott that devolved into daily clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces.
During their meeting, Abbas praised Abdullah’s role during a Temple Mount crisis, according to the Petra report.
The two sides agreed to form a joint task force that would learn the lessons of the last crisis and prepare for possible conflict at the Temple Mount in the future.
Terrorist groups must not be allowed to hold events in Germany, members of the Knesset and the Bundestag wrote in a letter to German Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière.
“It is unacceptable that terrorist organizations in Germany are planning events and recruiting supporters while the responsible authorities do not have any legal tools to prevent it,” the letter obtained by The Jerusalem Post reads.
The letter, spearheaded by Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid, came after a “al-Quds Day” march in June, in which participants marched with pictures of Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah and Israeli flags with the Star of David crossed out, and touted messages like “Zionists out of Israel.” Lapid wrote to Berlin Mayor Michael Müller, was unsatisfied with his response, and asked Volker Beck, head of the Germany-Israel Parliamentary Friendship Group, to write a letter with him. Five Israeli MKs and six German lawmakers signed the letter, which was sent last week.
The parliamentarians pointed to the al-Quds Day march and events organized in support of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine in Berlin, saying that both the PFLP and Hezbollah are designated terrorist organizations by the EU.
“Hezbollah and the PFLP are murderous terrorist organizations who can’t be allowed to organize, recruit supporters and fundraise in Europe,” Lapid told The Jerusalem Post Monday. “Israel needs to work with countries across the world to cut off funding to terror groups, because the money they raise abroad is used to kill Israelis at home. That’s why I organized this cross-party letter and now we expect the German government to take necessary steps.”
Should Japan buy the Arrow-3 missile defense system from Israel? Would Israel sell it to Japan? These are critical questions because Japan’s missile defense capabilities today are severely limited.
Japan has the US THAAD system, and it has Patriot PAC-3. Japan also has the Aegis naval BMD featuring the latest SM-3 (RIM-161) Block II-A missiles that can hit tactical ballistic missiles.
But none of these systems are ideal as the North Korean missile threat continues to ramp up, and as North Korea continues to pursue atomic and hydrogen bombs that can be mounted on a long-range missile.
The latest development was the successful launch of an ICBM-like missile by North Korea. Luckily, observers say that the missile’s nose-cone broke up on reentering the atmosphere indicating that the North Koreans may not yet have good reentry technology for the warheads of its exoatmospheric long-range missiles.
In any case, until North Korea can actually run a successful test series of an atomic nuclear warhead on reentry, there is no way to judge accuracy and reliability. This means it will be some time before North Korea really poses a nuclear missile threat unless, of course the North Korean’s get help from China or Russia. Anyone looking at the North Korean displays of missile prowess, or the test firings must come away with the strong sense that North Korea is getting a lot of outside help in their missile development.
When applying the strict letter of the law in the Azariya case the judges may have been correct according to their worldview. The problem is that the law being applied was not Jewish law, but a conglomeration of common (British), civil law and remnants of Ottoman law. Religious law applicable in the family courts to Jews and Muslims in Israel had no bearing on this case.
The Azariya case, unlike similar cases in the past, was brought to the world stage on the basis of Israel caring about what the world thinks. The IDF is a moral army, so the decision-makers at the top were keen to show off how moral we are. The reality is that the world does not give a damn, unless it is to the detriment of Israel. From one end of the globe to the other anti-Semitism is rearing its ugly head in the form of pro-Palestinian actions and statements. The end result of the Azariya case was the opposite of what was intended: an opportunity for Israel haters in particular Al Jazeera, to spotlight the negatives of the case.
In the past few days alone the Australian Labour Party voted for a Palestinian Arab State, based not on their convictions but on the number of Muslims in their voting areas. The tide has turned against the Jews and Israel everywhere with blame and anti-Semitic incidents occurring daily. The world bends over backwards to pacify and encourage supporters of the anti-Jewish/Israel agenda really believing that this will quiet down the flames of the current war of civilizations.
That is what the world thinks.
Military prosecutors on Monday said they opposed a request by former IDF soldier Elor Azaria to defer his entry to prison until the chief of staff rules on whether to commute his manslaughter sentence.
After a military court rejected his appeal last month, Azaria asked IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot to commute or shorten his 18-month sentence.
On Sunday, he filed a request with the Military Court of Appeals for the start of his sentence to be deferred until after Eisenkot announces his decision.
But military prosecutors rejected the requested delay, citing legal norms and the severity of Azaria’s crime.
“Deferring a punishment is the exception to the rule,” the prosecutors wrote in their decision. “A soldier who has committed an offense, and certainly one who has committed such a serious offense like the one the defendant has been found guilty of, should serve their sentence immediately.
“The position of the military is consistent with effective law enforcement practices and public interest,” the prosecutors said.
Yehoshua Abutbul, a 50-year-old Jewish man who was brutally beaten by an Arab in Jerusalem’s Old City yesterday, spoke with Arutz Sheva about his ordeal.
“As I do every day, I was making my way to the Shuvu Banim Yeshiva near the Western Wall when I felt a blow on my head. I saw a strong man. He threw me to the ground and ripped off my shirt.
Abutbul had worn a bicycle helmet during the attack, which he credits with saving his life. “If I had not been wearing a helmet I would have died. I told the police that there were people who saw [the attack] – and that they should take testimony from them.”
Abutbul is convinced that the beating had a nationalistic motive. “I have anxieties now. I can’t sleep. I’m afraid and I’m constantly on edge. There is no possibility other than that this was a nationalistic event.”
An Israeli man narrowly escaped a lynch mob which had formed near the town of Tekoa in eastern Gush Etzion, south of Jerusalem, over the weekend.
On Saturday, Arabs in the Gush Etzion region held a funeral for an Arab terrorist who was eliminated while attempting to stab an IDF soldier.
Shortly after the funeral service, dozens of local Arabs set up a makeshift roadblock on Route 60, the primary north-south traffic artery in Judea and Samaria.
Holding cement blocks, bricks, and rocks, dozens of masked terrorists inspected passing Arab vehicles for any Jewish passengers, and attacked vehicles bearing Israeli license plates.
Even an armored police jeep came under assault, and was forced to call up the IDF for backup.
One Israeli driver who ran into the roadblock before the IDF deployed soldiers to take control of the situation came under a barrage of rocks and bricks, hurled by the masked Arab terrorists.
As can be seen in footage released by Channel 2 on Monday, the Arabs spotted the driver as he made his way towards the roadblock, and formed a lynch mob, hoping to block his escape and force him out of his car.
Three East Jerusalem residents suspected of firebombing an armored security car were arrested on Sunday night, police said.
While on a patrol of the Arab neighborhood of Silwan in Jerusalem, the armored car was bombarded with Molotov cocktails, causing it to catch fire, police said.
The civilian security guards were rescued from the burning vehicle unharmed, the police said.
Searching the area after the firebombing attack, the police found evidence pointing to three suspects. Detectives arrested the three suspects in their homes on Sunday night, police said.
The three were brought to police headquarters for interrogation. On Monday, they were set to be brought before a judge in order to keep them in police custody.
Al Jazeera‘s support for terrorism goes far beyond on-air cheerleading. Many of its employees have actively supported Al Qaeda, Hamas and other terrorist groups. In fact, concerns over the network’s consistent pro-terrorist positions prompted several Gulf States to demand that Qatar shut the network down in June.
Sheikh Said Bin Ahmed Al-Thani, director of Qatar’s government information office, called such demands “a condescending view [that] demonstrates contempt for the intelligence and judgment of the people of the Middle East, who overwhelmingly choose to get their news from Al Jazeera rather than from their state-run broadcasters,” in Newsweek.
But a week earlier, United Arab Emirates Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash detailed Al Jazeera‘s connections to terrorists and terror incitement in a letter to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Al Jazeera constantly violates a 2005 UN Security Council resolution that called on member states to counter “incitement of terrorist acts motivated by extremism,” Gargash charged.
The network has given a platform to terrorists such as Osama bin Laden, Hamas leaders Khaled Meshaal and Mohammed Deif, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah and others, Gargash wrote.
“These have not simply been topical interviews of the kind that other channels might run; [Al] Jazeera has presented opportunities for terrorist groups to threaten, recruit and incite without challenge or restraint,” Gargash claimed.
Al Jazeera incites terrorism
Israel said Sunday it plans to ban Qatar’s flagship Al Jazeera satellite network from operating in the country over allegations that it incites violence.
In response, Al Jazeera denounced Israel’s decision to close the network’s Jerusalem bureau, saying the measure is “undemocratic” and that it will take legal action.
Israel’s move follows in the footsteps of four Arab countries that are aligned against Qatar as part of a months-long political dispute over its politics and alleged support of terrorism. Al Jazeera and its affiliate sites have been blocked in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain.
On Sunday, Communications Minister Ayoob Kara (Likud) said he plans to revoke the press credentials of Al Jazeera journalists, effectively preventing them from working in Israel. The minister has also asked Israel’s cable and satellite providers to stop carrying the channel.
Speaking to reporters on Sunday at a press conference to which Al Jazeera was not invited, Kara said that “when all these [Arab] states take action and we just stand idly by, in Arabic it translates into [Israel] being on the side of terrorism, with Iran, Hezbollah and Hamas. I am the only member [of the coalition] who speaks Arabic, understands Arabic, and Arabic is my mother tongue. They can’t fool me. I can tell when a [news] report goes from falling under freedom of speech to being incitement.”
The Hamas organization, which rules Gaza, has accepted a unity deal with the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) Fatah party proposed by Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi, i24news reported Sunday, citing Arabic media.
According to the report, PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas, who heads Fatah, has not accepted the proposal after it was offered to him by Sisi in July. The deal stipulates that the PA would be committed to ending the actions it has taken against Gaza since April.
Abbas initially accepted the deal but then refused and presented a counter offer for a reconciliation agreement, according to i24news.
Hamas and Abbas’s Fatah faction have been at odds since 2007, when Hamas violently took control of Gaza in a bloody coup.
A unity government between Hamas and Fatah collapsed in 2015 when Abbas decided to dissolve it amid a deepening rift between the sides.
PreOccupiedTerritory: How Many Bullets Can The Posts Of This Crib Hold? By Al Nusra, expectant father (satire)
Hi, good morning. Sorry to bother you with so many basic questions about baby furniture and supplies – my wife and I are new at this. Hey, thanks. Two months to go. The doctors think it’s a boy, and we’re into traditional gender roles, so what I need to know is, how many bullets can we hide in the legs and posts of this crib?
I’m sure you get that question a lot. But yeah. We need to know, since that’s one of those fundamental things. We got the coconut-layer mattress, and the matching blue trim to go with the sheets, but that’s just details. Do you think we could squeeze an entire AK-47 into the space between the mattress and the board without it bulging too much, or are we going to need to disassemble the weapon to stow it there?
I see you sell changing tables with drawers underneath. Tell me, which ones come with false backs so we can conceal suicide bomber vests in there, if necessary? What’s the standard depth for such a space? How many vests can fit?
We’re going to need some other accessories, such as rattles. Do those come with grenades pre-concealed in them, or do we have to supply them ourselves? And the sippy cups – we need a recommendation for which kinds are best for converting into Molotov cocktails.
In a sweeping essay, Henry Kissinger surveys the various challenges to the global order across Eurasia. Here are some of his comments on the Middle East:
The Middle East affects the world by the volatility of its ideologies as much as by its specific actions. The outside world’s war with Islamic State (IS) can serve as an illustration. Most non-IS powers—including Shiite Iran and the leading Sunni states—agree on the need to destroy it. But which entity is supposed to inherit its territory? . . . If the IS territory is occupied by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards or Shiite forces trained and directed by it, the result could be a territorial belt reaching from Tehran to Beirut, which could mark the emergence of an Iranian radical empire.
The Western calculus has been complicated by the emerging transformation of Turkey, once a key moderating influence, from a secular state into an ideologically Islamic [one]. At once affecting Europe by its control over the flow of migrants from the Middle East and frustrating Washington by the movement of oil and other goods across its southern border [to aid various factions in Syria], Turkey’s support of the Sunni cause occurs side by side with its efforts to weaken the autonomy of the Kurds, the majority of whose factions the West has supported heretofore.
The new role of Russia will affect the kind of order that will emerge. Is its goal to assist in the defeat of IS and the prevention of comparable entities? Or is it driven by nostalgia for historic quests for strategic domination? If the former, a cooperative policy of the West with Russia could be constructive. If the latter, a recurrence of cold-war patterns is likely. Russia’s attitude toward the control of current IS territory . . . will be a key test.
Iran’s newspapers were dominated on Monday by accusations lawmakers had embarrassed themselves by clamoring to take selfies with EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini during her visit to their parliament.
Mogherini was among dozens of foreign guests in Iran for the inauguration of President Hassan Rouhani on Saturday, but she appeared to capture the most attention as members of parliament crowded round to grab a snap with her.
Images of the lawmakers perched on desks and lining up with their smartphones in front of the Italian diplomat triggered a storm of anger and ridicule on Iranian social media under the hashtag “selfies of humiliation.”
“Dear MPs, thank you for disgracing 80 million people,” wrote one Twitter user.
Others drew comparisons with iconic images such as Walt Disney’s seven dwarves lining up to fawn over Snow White.
Iran signed the country’s biggest-ever car deal, worth several hundred million dollars, with French manufacturer Groupe Renault on Monday to produce 150,000 cars a year, the latest advance by a European company into Iran’s sizable consumer market.
The €660 million — or $778 million — deal follows the lifting of the UN and European Union sanctions after Iran’s 2015 nuclear agreement with world powers to curb its controversial uranium enrichment program, a possible pathway to nuclear weapons.
It also comes just days after new US sanctions on Iran were signed by US President Donald Trump, who spoke with French President Emmanuel Macron over the weekend about ways to counter Iran’s influence in Mideast conflicts. The US legislation, first passed by Congress, imposes penalties on people involved in Iran’s ballistic missile program and anyone who does business with them.
Unimpeded by US sanctions that apply to American businesses, Asian and European companies have raced for a share of Iran’s market since international sanctions were lifted. Iran, with its population of 80 million people, sits atop the world’s fourth-largest oil reserves and the second-biggest reserves of natural gas. It also has well-established manufacturing and agricultural industries.
Iran mocked the US push for inspections of the country’s military sites, calling it a “ridiculous dream that will never come true.”
The comments came after US officials said last month that the Trump administration was pushing for inspections of suspicious Iranian military sites in a bid to test the strength of the nuclear deal that Tehran struck in 2015 with world powers.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, Bahram Ghasemi, told reporters on Monday in Tehran that this request was “possibly something that a satirist wrote up.”
The inspections are one element of what is designed to be a more aggressive approach to preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. While the Trump administration seeks to police the existing deal more strictly, it is also working to fix what US President Donald Trump’s aides have called “serious flaws” in the landmark deal that — if not resolved quickly — will likely lead Trump to pull out.
That effort also includes discussions with European countries to negotiate a followup agreement to prevent Iran from resuming nuclear development after the deal’s restrictions expire in about a decade, the officials said last month. The officials weren’t authorized to discuss the efforts publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.
The Islamic State has begun posting Syrian children outside of car bomb factories as part of an attempt to stave off U.S.-led coalition airstrikes, according to the Pentagon.
Col. Ryan Dillon, spokesman for the anti-ISIS campaign, told the Washington Free Beacon on Friday the U.S. military has seen video of militants ordering young children to stand outside of several known factories around Raqqa that are used to manufacture vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices.
Dillon said while this has prevented coalition forces from directly striking the factories, American-led troops are able to take out many of the bomb-ridden vehicles before they reach crowds of civilians or Syrian Democratic Forces.
“We know of a particular factory where anything that drives out of there we’ll strike as soon as it’s clear and free from places where we think they’re going to have civilian casualties,” he said over the phone from Baghdad.
“We’ve also tried to crater main roads throughout the city so that these vehicle-born IEDs can’t just spring down a road at 50 miles-per-hour—they have to go around potholes and other things strewn across the streets.”
Dillon said a key reason the United States issued arms and antitank weapons to both Arab and Kurdish factions of the SDF is to enable local forces facing an eminent threat to blow-up vehicle-borne IEDs when American troops are unable attack in time.
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