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News Analysis from Israel: Mr. Olmert’s Little War and the Winds of Change

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The wind is starting to blow in Ma'aleh Levona and the wind of change is coming over the land. The issue is what is the change, and how is it being brought about?

Before we explore this all it is necessary to do two things: one is to note when the serious fighting with HizbAllah began; the second is to return to a seemingly stale story out of Samaria from early July.

The fighting in the north began exactly three weeks before the fast of Tish'a B'Av. This is also a fast day, Yud Zayin Tammuz (17th of Tammuz) albeit a "half fast," the kind of fast the Moslems modelled the Ramadan fast on. This fast day remembers when the Babylonians broke into the city walls 2,500 years ago before destroying the Temple on the 9th of Av. This period marks the beginning of what is known as "the three weeks" of mourning the loss of Jerusalem and various restrictions on behavior are imposed progressively during it, all leading to the full fast on 9 Av.

In addition, one is supposed to remember and seek forgiveness for errors committed in the past. An example of this would have been for government leaders to admit openly that the expulsion of Jews from Gush Qatif a year ago was wrong, along with the withdrawal from southern Lebanon six years ago. We are, after all, paying for those acts in blood now, and were paying for them then in July.

This did not occur. Indeed the opposite happened. Mr. Olmert, who holds the title prime minister here, insisted several times that the actions of expelling Jews from Gush Qatif was the right thing to do. Indeed, in speaking with several expellees from Gush Qatif, Mr. Olmert was quoted saying, "I just came from speaking with the parents of the pilot who was killed in the Israel Air Force helicopter crash a few days ago. Their son we sent not [on a mission of] settlement, and neither did he come back with compensation; he came back in a coffin!" The other Ehud, Ehud Barak, who oversaw the withdrawal (or sudden flight) of Israeli troops from southern Lebanon six years ago also insisted that he had been right. So much for sackcloth and ashes.

The second item WorldNet Daily's "Rocket War in the West Bank" deals with the efforts of the Al Aqsa Martyr's Brigades to fire rockets all over Israel, particularly after Olmert's planned withdrawal from towns like Ma'aleh Levona and expulsion of its residents. Let's remind you all that the Al Aqsa Martyr's Brigade is associated with good old Uncle Mahmoud Abbas, the Arab who so many western leaders would have us cut a deal with.

Now, we can move to the next stage of covering what just what is going on here. Friendly Uncle Mahmoud endorsed the efforts of HizbAllah a couple of days ago.

BREAKING STORY- ABBAS ENDORSES HEZBULLAH
Byline: David Bedein, Special to the Evening Bulletin
EXCERPTS OF REMARKS BY MAHMOUD ABBAS, PALESTINIAN PRESIDENT, (AL ARABIYA TV, 17:45 (GMT+3) AUGUST 06, 2006)
"We definitely perceive the resistance in Lebanon as noble Arab resistance".
Note – The following was translated from Arabic by the Middle East News
Line (MENL)

I don't have a URL link to this, but I'll limit myself to the main facts. The anchor of the brodacast, which originated out of San'a, Yemen, stated that "The Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has noted that members of the Palestinian government are either being arrested or pursued by the Israelis. His declarations came in a press conference that was held in Sana'a, as he was carrying out an official visit."

Mr. Abbas was quoted as saying the following:

"The Palestinian issue is the source of all the other issues, not only in the region but in the world. And I believe that every wise and rational person believes that it is important to return to the negotiating table. But this is not for going back to what is called the negotiations process.

The Arab people's resistance leads to the same issue. This means that anyone who defies the occupation is going to the same target and will get the same result. Therefore, we definitely perceive the resistance in Lebanon as noble Arab resistance. There is no doubt about that."

So now we have Mr. Abbas and Sheikh Nasrallah singing from the same song-sheet, though Abbas sings the contralto and Nasrallah the bass. In the end, the idea is that Israel is to be destroyed and replaced with "Palestine".

Meanwhile we see that Israeli Arabs are "happy" with the Katyushas hitting Israel. 25 July, 2006 Arutz Sheva. My son Avi translated the lead paragraph from this Hebrew article:

Muezzins (the people who broadcast the call to prayer to Moslems) in Shvaram are happy at the Katyusha fire (over the north).
Christian residents of Shvaram are appalled at the attitude of the Muezzins.

Last Friday the Christain residents of Shvaram (a mixed Druze Arab town) were appalled to hear the day's lectures given at the mosques in their city. According to them the muezzins' voices were raised in incitement and happiness at the firing of Katysha rockets at the Jewish residents of the north.

Indeed, they (the Christians) were also appalled at the joyfulness of the authorities who do not forbid this incitement against Americans and Israelis and which are supposedly required against the "enemies of Islam".

In the meantime, the war of distortion continues against Israel. WorldNet Daily contues to uncover the distortion of the facts by the Grey Lady, The New York Times, and by the Associated Press, the huge newspaper-owned news cooperative that provides an immense amount of information to the press. The title of the article is "AP, N.Y. Times raising the dead?  News agencies run photographs of 'deceased' who 'appear alive'"

Obviously, these news agencies are not raising the dead. The "miracles" can probably be faulted to bad prop placement and bad acting on the part of the "deceased". But in this part of the world, where olive oil can be made to flow unendingly from a small flask, one never knows…

It's bad enough that the foreign media are out to slit our throats with lies and distortions. The local media joins in the blood fest, with its own particular brand of lie and viciousness. This e-mail came from IMRA, run by Dr. Aaron Lerner. [And the hate goes on] Israel Radio attacks budget for study hall

Gabi Gazit opened the second hour of his daily program on Israel Radio this
morning with a scathing attack against a decision today by the Knesset
Finance Committee to authorize the transfer of NIS 2 million for a study
hall in Carmel – a "settlement" located in the West Bank.

The transfer was within the framework of political agreements made for the
passage of the 2006 budget.

While the NIS 2 million is one of a myriad of budget allocations going
through the committee, Gazit and the correspondent covering the item saw fit  to imply that the payment was at the expense of various budgetary needs not yet approved that are associated with the war – budgetary needs that the Olmert team has failed so far to submit to the committee for approval.

It is not clear if the decision to renew attacks on settlers was made in
order to offset the favorable coverage they were receiving because of their  heavy representation among IDF casualties or that this was simply an indication of a return to business as usual at Israel Radio.

Caroline Glick, who writes for the Jerusalem Post, wrote two articles over the past six days dealing with the leadership of Mr. Olmert. One, on 4 August, called "Amateur Hour is Over," calls upon our leaders to act as if they are real professionals, something that they have had trouble doing for the last 60 years.

The second, called "Talkin' About a Revolution" on 8 August, discusses Olmert's attempts to push the title of "failure" away from himself and how the leftist press, the majority of the media in the country, are singing along with him. It even raises the possibility of vacating the Heights of Golan – a ridiculous possibility now. But if someone raises it on the agenda tomorrow, all the peacenik vulures will flock to it, trying to peck out the eyes of the residents there just like they did to the residents of Gush Qatif when Sharon opened his fat trap about "disengagement" after winning the elections in 2003.

Ms. Glick does not go far enough in her analysis – I suppose that is why she still has her perch in at the Post. She calls for attacking Lebanon and advancing to the Litani. But the enemy has his base in Syria and the soldiers we Israelis are fighting are not just Arabs but Iranians sent to stiffen their spines.

DEBKAfile’s military sources disclose: Hizballah’s rocket offensive against Israel is orchestrated from a rear command located in the Syrian town of Anjar.
August 7, 2006, 12:41 PM (GMT+02:00)

But Stratfor Reports tells us that there is a new phase in the war, and the news from Debka, and other sources indicate that indeed this is so.

Does that mean that Israel should expand its war and attack Syria? Or could there be a nasty surprise lurking in them thar Syrian hills? I suspect there might be.

A fellow from Brojon.org wrote an interesting essay covering just this issue. His dates are off and his predicitions are not quite on the money, but the essay is worth a look, just the same…

He points out that;

"The Hezbollah army is not a local rag-tag army but is completely controlled by Iran (Persia). The Hezbollah troops are a highly trained army with modern weapons and advanced command and control systems, and for six years have buried their advanced systems in bunkers and tunnels in southern Lebanon. When the Hezbollah army trains, local observers have reported that the military commands are given in Farsi, the Persian or Iranian language, not the local Arabic language of Lebanon. Hezbollah is simply a division of the Iranian Army."

Now we need to return one more time to that story from nearly a month ago "Rocket War in the West Bank" to understand something about what is going on here. Mr. Olmert's Little War is not about securing Israel. Olmert is just as aware of the intents of Abu Oudai, that fellow who wants to target our entire country with missiles, as is Abu Oudai's boss, Mahmoud Abbas. As I wrote a month ago, our soldiers will march forth and die. And too many of them who die come from Judea and Samaria. Yet we see that the missiles continue to fall on Israel. Both from the north and the south. If Ehud Olmert were being directed to clean up the missile threat against Israelis, he would have achieved it already. Abu Oudai would be dead and Damascus would be a rubble, as would Anjar. Mahmoud Abbas, Haniyeh, and the entire crew of scum who comprise the "Palestinian Authority" would also be dead and an American-financed Israeli Civil Administration would take up the reins of making sure the garbage was picked up in Jenin and Ramallah.

Mr. Olmert's Little War is all about destabilizing this country. The government in the north is barely working, aside from security. There are over one million people who are internal refugees, 100 times the number of people expelled from Gush Qatif last year. For a time this will all be a vacation for them. But eventually, they will want to go home. And for the time being, they cannot. More and more people talk about the "tashlúm" the payment they are making for the mistake of pulling out of Gush Qatif.

Olmert may or may not know it, but Sheikh Nasrallah is deadly serious about attacking Tel Aviv. More likely, as he sees that time is on his side, he will attack the international airport at Lod first. At least that is what I would do in his shoes. That would chase away the tourists and leave the hotels with billions of shekels in cancelled reservations to cover. Economic pressure of the right type will bring down the country slowly, exhausting its resources, and hopefully, in the eyes of the enemy, our desire to fight. Olmert, who has been quoted as being "tired of winning" seems just the pigeon to deal with.

Whenever I ride the bus into Jerusalem, I the see 'Otef (wrap) for Jerusalem. I see an international border post being constructed. I see proofs of Ehud Olmert's planned withdrawal from Judea and Samaria and expulsion of its Jewsh residents. I see why Abu Oudai will have no trouble whatever firing missiles into Jerusalem, Mevasseret Tzion, Motza and other towns. There will be no Jewish towns to hold the strategic points of the land.

Does Ehud Olmert understand all this? Does he even care? Frankly, I suspect that so long as he thinks there is a US Air Force transport plane to get him, his wife and daughter out of here, he could care less. For him, so long as the bucks don’t stop, the “buck” can stop with Shimon Peres.

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About Ruvy

Hi!! Thanks for coming to my article! I was raised in Brooklyn, was graduated from the City University of New York in 1978 with a BA in political science and public administration there. I lived in Minnesota for a number of years. There I managed restaurants and wrote stories. We moved with our children family to Israel where we now reside. My work can be found at Ruvy's Roost, Jewish Indy,, and on Facebook under my full name, Reuven Kossover
  • http://parodieslost.typepad.com Mark Schannon

    Ruvy, it’s hard to know even what to say. What a horrible irony that both our countries are being led by people who haven’t a clue…and yet, that seems too trite. How could they not know? How could your PM & our President not understand the folly they’ve created?

    It’s enough to make one a conspiracy theorist. Where’s Oliver stone when you need him.

    Great post.

    In Decaf Veritas

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Thanks for the kind words, Mark. You don’t need Ollie Stone around when you have Barry Chamish…

  • Dean

    Why is it so important to occupy land in violation of UN Resolutions and international law?

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Ruvy, why don’t you consider campaigning for a secure Palestine with agreed borders? That would completely remove any possible argument, motivation or excuse for hostility towards Israel and make any subsequent actions starkly apparent.

    It would also make it impossible for any other nation or organization to plausibly characterise Israel as the bad guy, a charge to which it is completely vulnerable as things currently stand.

  • gazelle

    I think ruvy’s stuck at the wrong spot on the planet with the wrong story. what luck !

    n o t h i n g can make this r i g h t !

    best

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Nobody has an ironclad claim to the land called Israel by some and Palestine by others.

  • JustOneMan

    Chris…you are missing the point…zealots from Ruvy’s cult and HizbAllah DO NOT WANT PEACE. Both are convinced that this is the “end of times”. These acts will fullfill their prophecies…so both sides of the extreme are heading full steam ahead praying for armageddon

  • gazelle

    #7

    when will this show end ?

    best

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Dean, you got a great question – for Ehud Olmert. He’s the guy ordering the invasion of Lebanon.

    Chris, there is already a secure territory that is the eastern half of the opriginal Palestine mandate called JORDAN.A great iea would be to grant Jordaniasn citizenship to all the Arab residents of this country and gradually move them – making sure that they have a decent living and opportunities to improve their economic situation – to the eastern bank of the Jordan River. That would provide peace.

    Gazelle, what can I say? In a different timeline, I might be in a different part of the world with a different story. But right now I have to cope with this one.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Victor, if you do not believe in either the Bible or the Qur’an, what you say is true. But for those of us who are believers, there is a divine destiny assigned this land.

    And Chris, you still haven’t figured it out? Our leaders for sixty years were willing to compromise our aims and goals, always accepting half a piece of pita in place of a whole one. Our neighbors have not. We’re tired of holding our hands out offering peace, only to get them chopped off at the wrist by some maniac screaming “Allah is great!”

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Ruvy, I don’t recall any time when Palestine had secure borders so your “response” is meaningless. Care to try again to address my point or are you blinded by your rancid, aged dogma?

  • Dean

    At the end of the 1967 Israeli-Arab war, Ariel Sharon said, “We have peace – a piece of Egypt, a piece of Jordan, a piece of Syria, a piece of Lebanon.” Asked what he would do with the Palestinians on the West Bank which was occupied by 1.2 million Palestinians, Sharon said, “We will make a pastrami sandwich out of them – we will put settlements through them so that in 25 years they will be no more.”

    There is no indication that this objective has really changed. There is no reason to believe it will change.

    For no rational reason, the United States has made this objective, its objective.

    Therein lies the problem.

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Ruvy, I’m aware of Biblical arguments in favor of Zionism. To whom does the Qur’an grant the land of Israel, in your opinion? That could be an interesting line of reasoning.

    When I say nobody has an ironclad claim, I’m simply stating the fact that there is not yet any claim everyone can agree upon.

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Chris, it seems you’re confused by the term “Palestine” as are so many others.

    When radical Islamists talk about Palestine, they usually mean everything currently under Israeli control: the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, the Golan Heights, and the entire territory of the modern state of Israel. They want all the Jews dead or gone from all of that land, and will accept no compromise short of that goal.

    When moderates on both sides talk about Palestine, these days they often mean only the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, and possibly some narrow corridor of land to connect them. Thus there is some overlap between their definition of Palestine, and the radical Islamist definition of Palestine. Not that this overlap will make it any easier to persuade the radicals to compromise.

    On the rare occasions when hard-line Zionists like Ruvy are willing to allow that something called “Palestine” could exist at all, they are not talking about any of the land mentioned above. They are instead talking about the territory currently held by the modern state called Jordan. This is a state with secure borders, just as Ruvy said. If ideology could be laid aside, and international assistance channeled into the project, it would be quite practical for all the Palestinian refugees to find a home and a future in that land.

    Sadly, nobody in the Arab world seems willing to lay aside their ideology just to find a home and a future for the Palestinians. It is far easier to keep the Palestinians in misery and manipulate world opinion so all the blame gets placed on Israel.

    Of course the Israelis are not entirely blameless, but neither are the Arabs who happen to be bent on Israel’s destruction. Both share equally in the guilt for the plight of the Palestinians.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Dean @ Comment #12;

    I was with you most of the way in your comment. Sharon did indeed express the sentiments he did, and “fathered” many yishuvím, which is the appropriate name for the Jewish towns and villages that dot the hillsides of Yehudá and Shomrón.

    For many years the policy he expressed was the policy or the government of Israel, at least officially.

    In 1992, “secret” negotiations began in Oslo which were carefully monitored from Washington (they said the precise opposite and made a big stink about not knowing hat had happened in Oslo). The resulting “Oslo Accords” set down as policy the evacuation of ALL yishuvim in Gaza, Yehudá and Shomrón.

    Those policies represented in large part the policy initiatives of the State Deparetment since 1967, iniatives that had been laid down in policy papers of the Council of Foreign Relations.

    Budging the Israeli government from following “Oslo” like a lemming committing suicide by jumping over a fjord, has been nigh impossible. This is why there will have to be régime change in this country, a coup d’état that eliminates the secular élite that is ruining the nation.

  • Dean

    Rationally, the only claim on the land has been, and should be, determined by the UN and international law.

    There is war because there is no law.

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Dean, the UN determined borders for Israel and Palestine in 1947. Are those the borders you have in mind? If so, why? If not, why not?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The folloing essay was written by Aryeh Y. Gallin, President of the Root & Branch Association, Ltd and published today. It represents the claim of our people to this land, not merely according to the Bible, but more importantly also according to the Qur’an.
    ————————————————-

    VICTORY, VICTORY TO ISRAEL OVER THE ENEMIES OF G-D

    MAY THE UNBELIEVERS AHMADINEJAD, ASSAD AND NASRALLAH SOON BE BEHEADED ON THE SLOPES OF MOUNT ARAFAT NEAR MECCA

    copyright © 2006 by Mr. Aryeh Yosef Gallin
    http://www.rb.org.il

    Victory to Israel over the Enemies of G-d

    “and David said to him [the Amalekite], ‘How did you not fear to stretch forth your hand to destroy the Lord’s anointed? [Saul, King of ISRAEL]'”.
    [II Samuel 1:14]

    “Then said Samuel: ‘Bring you here to me Agag, the King of the Amalekites’. And Agag came to him in chains. And Agag said: ‘Surely the bitterness of death is at hand’. And Samuel said: As your sword has made women childless, so shall your mother be childless among women’. And Samuel hewed Agag in pieces before the Lord in GILGAL”‘.
    [I Samuel, 15:32-33]

    “when Gog and Magog are let loose and rush headlong down every hill; when the True Promise nears its fulfillment; the Unbelievers shall stare in amazement, crying: ‘Woe betide us! Of this we have been heedless. We have assuredly done wrong'”.
    [Qur’an, The Prophets, 21:95-96]

    May the Unbelievers Ahmadinejad, Assad and Nasrallah soon be beheaded on the slopes of Mount Arafat near Mecca

    “When you come running from Arafat, remember G-d”.
    [Qur’an, The Cow, 2:198]

    “and David ran and stood over the Philistine [Goliath], and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and slew him, and cut off his head therewith”.
    [I Samuel 17:51]

    “By G-d’s will they [Israelites] routed them [Philistines]. David slew Goliath, and G-d bestowed on him [David] sovereignty [over the Land of ISRAEL] and wisdom and taught him [David] what He pleased”.
    [Qur’an, The Cow 2:251]

    YERUSHALIYIM, Israelite Tribal Territories of Judah and Benjamin, Kingdom of David and Solomon, United Israelite Kingdom of Judah and Joseph, Yom Chamishi, 16 Av, 5766 (Thursday, August 10, 2006), Root & Branch Information Services – http://www.rb.org.il:

    Contents

    1. Victory to Israel over the Enemies of G-d

    2. May the Unbelievers Ahmadinejad, Assad and Nasrallah soon be beheaded on the slopes of Mount Arafat near Mecca

    3. People Covenant — The Children of Israel are G-d’s Chosen People

    4. Torah Covenant — G-d gave the Children of Israel the Torah

    5. Land Covenant — G-d gave the Children of Israel the Land of Israel

    6. David Melech Yisrael (David King of Israel)

    7. Acharit HaYamim (End of Days)

    ************

    1. Victory to Israel over the Enemies of G-d

    “and David said to him [the Amalekite], ‘How did you not fear to stretch forth your hand to destroy the Lord’s anointed? [Saul, King of ISRAEL]'”.
    [II Samuel 1:14]

    “Then said Samuel: ‘Bring you here to me Agag, the King of the Amalekites’. And Agag came to him in chains.
    And Agag said: ‘Surely the bitterness of death is at hand’. And Samuel said: As your sword has made women childless, so shall your mother be childless among women’. And Samuel hewed Agag in pieces before the Lord in GILGAL”‘.
    [I Samuel, 15:32-33]

    “I have heard the taunt of MOAB, and the revilings of the Children of AMMON, wherewith they have taunted My People, and spoken boastfully concerning their border. Therefore, as I live, says the Lord of hosts, the G-d of Israel: Surely MOAB shall be as SODOM, and the Children of AMMON as GOMORRAH, even the breeding place of nettles, and salt pits, and a desolation, for ever; the residue of My People shall spoil them, and the remnant of My Nation shall inherit them. This shall they have for their pride, because they have taunted and spoken boastfully against the People of the Lord of hosts. The Lord will be terrible to them; for He will famish all the gods of the earth; then shall all the isles of the nations worship Him, every one from its place”.
    [Zephaniah 2:8-11]

    “I will gather all nations against JERUSALEM to battle…”
    [Zechariah 14:2]

    “Then shall the Lord go forth and fight against those nations…”
    [Zechariah 14:3]

    “It is ordained that no community We have destroyed shall ever rise again. But when Gog and Magog are let loose and rush headlong down every hill; when the True Promise nears its fulfillment; the Unbelievers shall stare in amazement, crying: ‘Woe betide us! Of this we have been heedless. We have assuredly done wrong'”.
    [Qur’an, The Prophets, 21:95-96]

    “G-d has laid his curse on the Unbelievers and prepared for them a blazing Fire. Abiding there forever, they shall find none to protect or help them. On the day when their heads roll about in the Fire, they shall say: ‘Would that we had obeyed G-d and obeyed the Apostle [Muhammed]! And they shall say: ‘Lord, we obeyed our masters and our great ones, but they led us away from the right path. Lord, mete out to them a double scourge, lay on them a mighty curse’. Believers, do not behave like those who slandered Moses. G-d cleared him [Moses] of their calumny, and he [Moses] was exalted by G-d”.
    [Qur’an, The Confederate Tribes, 33:64-71]

    ************

    2. May the Unbelievers Ahmadinejad, Assad and Nasrallah soon be beheaded on the slopes of Mount Arafat near Mecca

    “It shall be no offence for you to seek the bounty of your Lord. When you come running from Arafat, remember G-d as you approach the sacred monument. Remember Him who gave you guidance when you were in error. Then go out from the place whence the pilgrims will go out and implore the forgiveness of G-d. G-d is forgiving and merciful. And when you have fulfilled your sacred duties, remember G-d as you remember your forefathers or with deeper reverence”.
    [Qur’an, The Cow, 2:198-199]

    “and David ran and stood over the Philistine [Goliath], and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof,
    and slew him, and cut off his head therewith”.
    [I Samuel 17:51]

    “when Saul had crossed the river with those [Israelites] who shared his faith, they said: ‘We have no power this day against Goliath and his warriors [Philistines]’. But those of them who believed that they would meet G-d replied: ‘Many a small band has, by G-d’s grace, vanquished a mighty army. G-d is with those who endure with fortitude’. When they met Goliath and his warriors they cried: ‘Lord, fill our hearts with steadfastness. Make us firm of foot and help us against the Unbelievers. By G-d’s will they [Israelites] routed them [Philistines]. David slew Goliath, and G-d bestowed on him [David] sovereignty [in the Land of ISRAEL] and wisdom and taught him [David] what He pleased. Had God not defeated some by the might of others, the earth would have been utterly corrupted. But G-d is bountiful to mankind”.
    [Qur’an, The Cow 2:249-252]

    ************

    3. People Covenant — The Children of Israel are G-d’s Chosen People

    “Children of ISRAEL, remember the favor that I [Allah] have bestowed upon you, and that I [Allah] exalted you above the nations”.
    [Qur’an, The Cow, 2:47]

    “G-d made a Covenant with those [Children of ISRAEL] to whom the Scriptures [Tanach/Bible] were given”.
    [Qur’an, The Imrans, 3:187]

    “G-d made a Covenant with the Israelites and raised among them twelve chieftains [Twelve Sons of Jacob/ISRAEL]”
    [Qur’an, The Table, 5:12]

    “We [Allah] revealed Our will to Moses, saying: ‘Set forth with My [Allah’s] servants [Children of ISRAEL]”.
    [Qur’an, Taha, 20:76]

    ************
    4. Torah Covenant — G-d gave the Children of Israel the Torah

    “To Moses We [Allah] gave the Torah”.
    [Qur’an, The Cow, 2:87]

    “We [Allah] have revealed the Torah, in which there is guidance and light. By it the prophets who surrendered themselves judged the Jews, and so did the rabbis and the divines, according to G-d’s Book [Torah] which had been committed to their keeping and to which they themselves were witnesses [at MOUNT SINAI]”
    [Qur’an, The Table, 5:44]”

    “We [Allah] gave Moses the Book [Torah] and made it a guide for the Israelites, saying: ‘Take no other guardian than Myself. You [Children of ISRAEL] are the descendants of those whom We carried in the ark with Noah. He was a truly thankful servant”.
    [Qur’an, The Night Journey, 17:2]

    “We [Allah] gave Moses the Book [Torah], so that they [Children of ISRAEL] might be rightly guided”.
    [Qur’an, The Believers, 25:49]

    ************

    5. Land Covenant — G-d gave the Children of Israel the Land of Israel

    “We [Allah] gave Abraham’s descendants [Children of ISRAEL] scriptures [Torah] and prophethood and an illustrious kingdom [of David and Solomon in the Land of ISRAEL]”.
    [Qur’an, Women, 4:55]

    “Bear in mind the words of Moses to his People [Children of ISRAEL]. He said: ‘Remember, my People, the favor which G-d has bestowed upon you. He has raised up prophets among you, made you kings, and given you that [Torah] which He has given to no other nation. Enter, my People, the Holy Land [Land of ISRAEL] which G-d has assigned for you. Do not turn back, and thus lose all'”.
    [Qur’an, The Table, 5:20-21]

    “We [Allah] settled the Israelites in a secure land [Land of ISRAEL] and provided them with good things”.
    [Qur’an, Jonah, 10:93]

    “To Moses We [Allah] gave nine clear signs. Ask the Israelites how he [Moses] first appeared among them. Pharaoh said to him: ‘Moses, I can see that you are bewitched’. ‘You know full well’, he [Moses] replied, ‘that none but the Lord of the heavens and the earth has revealed these visible signs. Indeed, Pharaoh, I can see that you are doomed’. He [Pharaoh] sought to scare them [Children of ISRAEL] out of the land [of ISRAEL]: but We drowned him [Pharaoh], together with all who were with him [Egyptians]. Then We said to the Israelites: ‘Dwell in the land [Land of ISRAEL]. When the Promise of the Hereafter comes to be fulfilled [at the End of Days], We shall assemble you all together [in the Land of Israel]”.
    [Qur’an, The Night Journey, 17:101-105]

    ************

    6. David Melech Yisrael (David King of Israel)

    “We [Allah] have exalted some prophets above others. To David We [Allah] gave the Psalms”.
    [Qur’an, The Night Journey, 17:55]

    “And tell of David and Solomon, how they passed judgement regarding the cornfield in which strayed lambs had grazed by night. We [Allah] gave Solomon insight into the case and bore witness to their judgement. We [Allah] bestowed on both of them wisdom and knowledge and caused the mountains and the birds to join with David in Our praise. All this We [Allah] did. We taught him [David] the armorer’s craft, so that you might have protection in your wars. Will you then give thanks? To Solomon We [Allah] subjected the raging wind: it sped at his bidding to the Land [of ISRAEL] which We [Allah] had blessed. We [Allah] had knowledge of all things”.
    [Qur’an, The Prophets, 21:76-81]

    “We [Allah] bestowed knowledge on David and Solomon. The two said: ‘Praise be to G-d who has exalted us above many of His believing servants”.
    [Qur’an, The Ant, 27:14]

    “remember Our [Allah’s] servant David, who was both a mighty and a penitent man. We [Allah] made the mountains join with him in praise evening and morning, and the birds, too, in all their flocks; all were obedient to him. We made his [David’s] kingdom [in the Land of ISRAEL] strong, and gave him wisdom and discriminating judgement”.
    [Qur’an, Sad, 38:20]

    ************

    7. Acharit HaYamim (End of Days)

    “When the True Promise nears its fulfillment, the Unbelievers shall stare in amazement, crying: ‘Woe betide us! Of this we have been heedless. We have assuredly done wrong'”.
    [Qur’an, The Prophets 21:96]

    “The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning JUDAH and JERUSALEM. And it shall come to pass in the End of Days, that the mountain of the Lord’s House shall be established as the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow to it. And many people shall go and say: ‘Come you, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the House of the G-d of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths’. For out of ZION shall go forth the Torah, and the word of the Lord from JERUSALEM. And He shall judge between the nations and shall decide for many peoples; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore. O House of Jacob, come you, and let us walk in the light of the Lord”.
    [Yeshayahu/Isaiah 2:1-5]

    Shabbat Shalom from Yerushaliyim,

  • JustOneMan

    more ranting from a relogious fanatic…Must be suffer through this….

    Moe begat Larry, who begat Curly who begat Shemp who begat Curly Joe (should have stopped that begatin at Shemp)!

  • gazelle

    #18

    This is the Quran affirming that Moses and David were Allah’s prophets and the Bani Israel were guided by them, and then they went astray, and there are lessons for humankind in that, and that there are jews who have stayed on the right path pleasing to Allah …
    _____________________
    from ‘the cow’

    O children of Israel! call to mind My favor which I bestowed on you and be faithful to (your) covenant with Me, I will fulfill (My) covenant with you; and of Me, Me alone, should you be afraid.

    “2.41”: And believe in what I have revealed, verifying that which is with you, and be not the first to deny it, neither take a mean price in exchange for My communications; and Me, Me alone should you fear.

    “2.42”: And do not mix up the truth with the falsehood, nor hide the truth while you know (it).

    “2.43”: And keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate and bow down with those who bow down.

    “2.44”: What! do you enjoin men to be good and neglect your own souls while you read the Book; have you then no sense?

    “2.45”: And seek assistance through patience and prayer, and most surely it is a hard thing except for the humble ones,

    “2.46”: Who know that they shall meet their Lord and that they shall return to Him.

    “2.47”: O children of Israel! call to mind My favor which I bestowed on you and that I made you excel the nations.

    “2.48”: And be on your guard against a day when one soul shall not avail another in the least, neither shall intercession on its behalf be accepted, nor shall any compensation be taken from it, nor shall they be helped.

    “2.49”: And when We delivered you from Firon’s people, who subjected you to severe torment, killing your sons and sparing your women, and in this there was a great trial from your Lord.

    “2.50”: And when We parted the sea for you, so We saved you and drowned the followers of Firon and you watched by.

    “2.51”: And when We appointed a time of forty nights with Musa, then you took the calf (for a god) after him and you were unjust.

    “2.52”: Then We pardoned you after that so that you might give thanks.

    “2.53”: And when We gave Musa the Book and the distinction that you might walk aright.

    “2.54”: And when Musa said to his people: O my people! you have surely been unjust to yourselves by taking the calf (for a god), therefore turn to your Creator (penitently), so kill your people, that is best for you with your Creator: so He turned to you (mercifully), for surely He is the Oft-returning (to mercy), the Merciful.

    “2.55”: And when you said: O Musa! we will not believe in you until we see Allah manifestly, so the punishment overtook you while you looked on.

    “2.56”: Then We raised you up after your death that you may give thanks.

    “2.57”: And We made the clouds to give shade over you and We sent to you manna and quails: Eat of the good things that We have given you; and they did not do Us any harm, but they made their own souls suffer the loss.

    “2.58”: And when We said: Enter this city, then eat from it a plenteous (food) wherever you wish, and enter the gate making obeisance, and say, forgiveness. We will forgive you your wrongs and give more to those who do good (to others).

    “2.59”: But those who were unjust changed it for a saying other than that which had been spoken to them, so We sent upon those who were unjust a pestilence from heaven, because they transgressed.

    “2.60”: And when Musa prayed for drink for his people, We said: Strike the rock with your staff So there gushed from it twelve springs; each tribe knew its drinking place: Eat and drink of the provisions of Allah and do not act corruptly in the land, making mischief.

    “2.61”: And when you said: O Musa! we cannot bear with one food, therefore pray Lord on our behalf to bring forth for us out of what the earth grows, of its herbs and its cucumbers and its garlic and its lentils and its onions. He said: Will you exchange that which is better for that which is worse? Enter a city, so you will have what you ask for. And abasement and humiliation were brought down upon them, and they became deserving of Allah’s wrath; this was so because they disbelieved in the communications of Allah and killed the prophets unjustly; this was so because they disobeyed and exceeded the limits.

    “2.62”: Surely those who believe, and those who are Jews, and the f Christians, and the Sabians, whoever believes in Allah and the Last day and does good, they shall have their reward from their Lord, and there is no fear for them, nor shall they grieve.

    “2.63”: And when We took a promise from you and lifted the mountain over you: Take hold of the law (Tavrat) We have given you with firmness and bear in mind what is in it, so that you may guard (against evil).

    “2.64”: Then you turned back after that; so were it not for the grace of Allah and His mercy on you, you would certainly have been among the losers.

    “2.65”: And certainly you have known those among you who exceeded the limits of the Sabbath, so We said to them: Be (as) apes, despised and hated.

    “2.66”: So We made them an example to those who witnessed it and those who came after it, and an admonition to those who guard (against evil).

    “2.67”: And when Musa said to his people: Surely Allah commands you that you should sacrifice a cow; they said: Do you ridicule us? He said: I seek the protection of Allah from being one of the ignorant.

    “2.68”: They said: Call on your Lord for our sake to make it plain to us what she is. Musa said: He says, Surely she is a cow neither advanced in age nor too young, of middle age between that (and this); do therefore what you are commanded.

    “2.69”: They said: Call on your Lord for our sake to make it plain to us what her color is. Musa said: He says, Surely she is a yellow cow; her color is intensely yellow, giving delight to the beholders.

    “2.70”: They said: Call on your Lord for our sake to make it plain to us what she is, for surely to us the cows are all alike, and if Allah please we shall surely be guided aright.

    “2.71”: Musa said: He says, Surely she is a cow not made submissive that she should plough the land, nor does she irrigate the tilth; sound, without a blemish in her. They said: Now you have brought the truth; so they sacrificed her, though they had not the mind to do (it).

    “2.72”: And when you killed a man, then you disagreed with respect to that, and Allah was to bring forth that which you were going to hide.

    “2.73”: So We said: Strike the (dead body) with part of the (Sacrificed cow), thus Allah brings the dead to life, and He shows you His signs so that you may understand.

    “2.74”: Then your hearts hardened after that, so that they were like rocks, rather worse in hardness; and surely there are some rocks from which streams burst forth, and surely there are some of them which split asunder so water issues out of them, and surely there are some of them which fall down for fear of Allah, and Allah is not at all heedless of what you do.

    “2.75”: Do you then hope that they would believe in you, and a party from among them indeed used to hear the Word of Allah, then altered it after they had understood it, and they know (this).

    “2.76”: And when they meet those who believe they say: We believe, and when they are alone one with another they say: Do you talk to them of what Allah has disclosed to you that they may contend with you by this before your Lord? Do you not then understand?

    “2.77”: Do they not know that Allah knows what they keep secret and what they make known?

    “2.78”: And there arc among them illiterates who know not the Book but only lies, and they do but conjecture.

    “2.79”: Woe, then, to those who write the book with their hands and then say: This is from Allah, so that they may take for it a small price; therefore woe to them for what their hands have written and woe to them for what they earn.

    “2.80”: And they say: Fire shall not touch us but for a few days. Say: Have you received a promise from Allah, then Allah will not fail to perform His promise, or do you speak against Allah what you do not know?

    “2.81”: Yeal whoever earns evil and his sins beset him on every side, these are the inmates of the fire; in it they shall abide.

    “2.82”: And (as for) those who believe and do good deeds, these are the dwellers of the garden; in it they shall abide.

    “2.83”: And when We made a covenant with the children of Israel: You shall not serve any but Allah and (you shall do) good to (your) parents, and to the near of kin and to the orphans and the needy, and you shall speak to men good words and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate. Then you turned back except a few of you and (now too) you turn aside.

    “2.84”: And when We made a covenant with you: You shall not shed your blood and you shall not turn your people out of your cities; then you gave a promise while you witnessed.

    “2.85”: Yet you it is who slay your people and turn a party from among you out of their homes, backing each other up against them unlawfully and exceeding the limits; and if they should come to you, as captives you would ransom them — while their very turning out was unlawful for you. Do you then believe in a part of the Book and disbelieve in the other? What then is the re ward of such among you as do this but disgrace in the life of this world, and on the day of resurrection they shall be sent back to the most grievous chastisement, and Allah is not at all heedless of what you do.

    “2.86”: These are they who buy the life of this world for the hereafter, so their chastisement shall not be lightened nor shall they be helped.

    “2.87”: And most certainly We gave Musa the Book and We sent apostles after him one after another; and We gave Isa, the son of Marium, clear arguments and strengthened him with the holy spirit, What! whenever then an apostle came to you with that which your souls did not desire, you were insolent so you called some liars and some you slew.

    “2.88”: And they say: Our hearts are covered. Nay, Allah has cursed them on account of their unbelief; so little it is that they believe.

    “2.89”: And when there came to them a Book from Allah verifying that which they have, and aforetime they used to pray for victory against those who disbelieve, but when there came to them (Prophet) that which they did not recognize, they disbelieved in him; so Allah’s curse is on the unbelievers.

    “2.90”: Evil is that for which they have sold their souls — that they should deny what Allah has revealed, out of envy that Allah should send down of His grace on whomsoever of His servants He pleases; so they have made themselves deserving of wrath upon wrath, and there is a disgraceful punishment for the unbelievers.

    “2.91”: And when it is said to them, Believe in what Allah has revealed, they say: We believe in that which was revealed to us; and they deny what is besides that, while it is the truth verifying that which they have. Say: Why then did you kill Allah’s Prophets before if you were indeed believers?

    “2.92”: And most certainly Musa came to you with clear arguments, then you took the calf (for a god) in his absence and you were unjust.

    “2.93”: And when We made a covenant with you and raised the mountain over you: Take hold of what We have given you with firmness and be obedient. They said: We hear and disobey. And they were made to imbibe (the love of) the calf into their hearts on account of their unbelief Say: Evil is that which your belief bids you if you are believers.

    “2.94”: Say: If the future abode with Allah is specially for you to the exclusion of the people, then invoke death if you are truthful.

    “2.95”: And they will never invoke it on account of what their hands have sent before, and Allah knows the unjust.

    . . . .

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Gazelle, I’m just curious. Which verse says Israel has been taken away from the Jews, and that now it has to be called Palestine instead?

    It seems both the Torah and the Qur’an agree on the part about God giving Israel to the Jews.

    Is there anything in the Qur’an that directly and clearly says God took Israel away from the Jews later on? If so, please help me to understand it.

  • Dean

    And God gave America to the Indians.

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Are you saying all the palefaces in America should go back to Europe, Dean?

  • Les Slater

    The writers of these documents, were trying to justify historical observations, making up stories, and making predictions (prophecies), to further their side’s desires for developmet to proceed as they wished.

    They made up their God as they went along.

    Arguing that a a particular fictitious entity said that you have a right to a particular piece of real estate should wind one up in the looney bin.

    This is about as serious as a Monty Python skit.

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Brilliant, Les. I’m sure you’ll achieve a historic compromise by insulting and dismissing the most deeply held beliefs of both sides in the dispute.

    Why didn’t anybody think of that before?

  • Les Slater

    Victor #25

    You believe this shit? Are you insulted?

    We will understand, and acccept, more generally what many Christians are now admitting, that the world is not 8,000 years old just because the Bible says it is.

    The reactionary interpretations of the holy books are fanned by political forces with particular agendas. These are the ones that insult the believer.

    Les

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Victor #25 — You believe this shit? Are you insulted?

    Les, you write like a true disciple of those great comedians of history, Lenin and Marx (not you Gonzo – you make sense).

    I look at the work of Karl Marx and Friederich Engels – particularly their prescriptions for the problems of 19th Century Europe and say to myself, “Reuven, you used to believe this shit?”

    I’m afraid to tell you this, but Gazelle and I both thake this “shit” very seriously, and with each passing year, the historicity of the claims of the Bible becomes more and more confirmed.

    And we, far more than you, are parties to the conflict. Gazelle may not agree with me in the details, but in the outlines – that there is one G-d who created the universe and all that is in it, and Who will judge the behavior of His sentient creatures – we do.

  • http://theglenblog.blogspot.com Glen Boyd

    Ruvy,

    My prayers are with you and your people my brother.

    -Glen

  • Bliffle

    “Victor, if you do not believe in either the Bible or the Qur’an, what you say is true. But for those of us who are believers, there is a divine destiny assigned this land.”

    Madness.

  • troll

    this bloodlust infecting the Jews and Muslims is enough to drive a person to…the gospel of Thomas

    troll

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Troll, family fights are the worst kinds…

    This just in from my friend Sergio Tezza.

    Palestinian Media Watch Bulletin – Aug. 10, 2006

    Israeli Arabs in support of Hezbollah

    In Nazareth Israeli Arabs Demonstrate in support of Hezbollah
    “Occupation and invasion = terror”
    “Resistance = right and obligation” [photo from Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 16, 2006

    by Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook

    As Israel counts more than 100 dead in its war against the Hezbollah terror organization, numerous Israeli Arabs, including Arab Knesset members, have come out in support of the enemy. A number of demonstrations and marches in support of Hezbollah have likewise been held by Israel’s Arabs.

    One Member of the Knesset, Azmi Bishara, even refers to the members of Hezbollah as “heroes.” He calls for Hezbollah to fight Israeli soldiers, saying, “One must settle accounts with their murderers and resist [fight] its aggression.”

    The following are 15 statements by Israeli Arab leaders and victims of Hezbollah terror in support of Hezbollah, all said during the war:

    Ra’oda Att’allah, Director of the Arab Culture Society in Haifa:
    “The popularity of Hezbollah has grown substantially among the Arabs in Israel… the first time there is a feeling of returning the honor, and that the people are feeling for the first time that there is a group which resists [fights-ed.] and stands firm against the Israeli army.”[Al-Ayyam, August 8, 2006]

    Ali Mana, relative of 2 Israeli Arabs killed by Hezbollah missile:
    “Hezbollah raised our heads and lifted our spirit.” [Al-Ayyam, August 8, 2006]

    Wasil Taha, Arab Knesset Member:
    “Resistance [Hezbollah attacks] is not terror but it is a moral value. As for terror, the state [Israel] carries it out.” [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, August 6, 2006]

    Arab Knesset Member, Chairman of Balad Party, Azmi Bishara:
    “Solidarity with these heroes [Hezbollah and Palestinian terrorists] is the least [we can do].” [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 16, 2006]

    Muhammad Hasan Kan’an, Chairman Arab National Party:
    “America, Britain and Israel will not succeed to defeat the peoples in Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq and Afghanistan… This is a war against Islam and against the Arabs”. [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, August 6, 2006]

    Arab Knesset Member, Chairman of Balad Party, Azmi Bishara:
    “The Palestinian and Lebanese resistance returned the confidence to the Arab-Islamic identity after years of defeats.” [Al-Ayyam, August 8, 2006]

    Raa’d Salah, Head of the Islamic Movement in Israel:
    “’A look at the region in which we live teaches that the two biggest liars are Ehud Olmert and George Bush, who lead the world to carnage, destruction, and massacres.’ He called the peoples of the world to expose the lies of those who burn children.” [Al-Ayyam, August 8, 2006]

    Raa’d Salah, Head of the Islamic Movement in Israel:
    “The Palestinian people and the people of Lebanon are the winners because they have justice, whereas Bush and Olmert are the losers because they have falsehood”. [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, August 8, 2006]

    Raja Aghbariyah, Secretary of Israeli Arab Movement, “Abna Al-Balad”:
    “This war forced all the factors to choose between the imperialistic Zionist and reactionary Arab camp [on one hand] or the ‘peoples’ and their resistance [movements]. We chose the ‘peoples’ and their resistance [movements] in Beirut, Palestine, Iraq and Somalia.” He sent a greeting to Hassan Nasrallah “because he upraised our heads” and added, “We are not just against the war, but we are also in favor of the resisting people [i.e. terror]. Therefore, we do not want their fake democracy in Iraq.” [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, August 8, 2006]

    Family of young Arab girl, Du’a Abbas, killed by Hezbollah rocket:
    “Blamed the government of Israel for the killing of their daughter.”
    [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 27, 2006]

    Dr. Mansur Abbas, Chairman, Conference of the Southern Wing of the Islamic Movement in Israel, and cousin of the young girl mentioned above:
    “The Israeli politicians chose war and they are responsible for what is happening.” [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 27, 2006]

    Arab Knesset Member, Chairman of Balad Party, Azmi Bishara:
    “Israel’s goal has been to expel civilians after organized massacres, of which the most well known are Dir Yassin and dozens more like it. To expel them in order to settle in their place in 1948… [Now] Israel targeted the civilians in Lebanon as a direct continuation of the historic chain, in a bloody red moment in Qana: First, to punish those who supported the resistance, second to expel the civilians in the South to the North in order to cause additional communal tension in Lebanon and third, to nourish the barbaric desire for revenge. This was a planned and intended attack. Israel is a terrorist state.” [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, August 4, 2006]

    Nimer Nimer, Israeli Arab author:
    “What happened in Nazi Germany 60 years ago occurs today in Baghdad, Gaza and Beirut.” [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, August 6, 2006]

    Arab Knesset Member, Chairman of Balad Party, Azmi Bishara:
    “They [Lebanese children] are victims of a culture of criminal, savage and barbaric [Israeli] aircraft. One must settle accounts with their murderers and resist [fight] its aggression.” [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, August 4, 2006]

    Popular support for Hezbollah:

    “In the city of Nazareth a public conference was held the day before yesterday in support of Lebanon and of Palestine.” [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, August 6, 2006]

    “Thousands of Palestinians from “the interior” participated yesterday in a demonstration that was organized by Balad [Israeli Arab political] party to protest the Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people in Gaza strip and to protest the barbaric offensive against the Lebanese people.” [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 16, 2006]

  • gazelle

    He gives
    and he takes.

    just like he gives
    he takes.

    this there all the way through for all time for everybody without exception.

    best

  • troll

    agreed – if it works at all then it must work for all

    troll

  • gazelle

    24

    this “fictitious entity” is pretty amazing.

    best

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This article from Haaretz by Avi Shavit has hit my inbox several times. I post it here because there was a time that Haaretz would have never printed a column with these kinds of opinions. Even the “loony lefties” at Haaretz are waking up and smelling the shrapnel This article was on the front page of the weekend Hebrew edition of Haaretz.

    This version of the article came courtesy of Aryeh Zelasko who got it from IMRA which picked it up from Haaretz
    ————————————————-
    Olmert must go
    By Ari Shavit Haaretz 11 August 2006 [front page of Hebrew edition]

    Ehud Olmert may decide to accept the French proposal for a cease-fire and unconditional surrender to Hezbollah. That is his privilege. Olmert is a prime minister whom journalists invented, journalists protected, and whose
    rule journalists preserved. Now the journalists are saying run away. That’s legitimate. Unwise, but legitimate.

    However, one thing should be clear: If Olmert runs away now from the war he initiated, he will not be able to remain prime minister for even one more day. Chutzpah has its limits. You cannot lead an entire nation to war promising victory, produce humiliating defeat and remain in power. You cannot bury 120 Israelis in cemeteries, keep a million Israelis in shelters
    for a month, wear down deterrent power, bring the next war very close, and then say – oops, I made a mistake. That was not the intention. Pass me a cigar, please.

    There is no mistake Ehud Olmert did not make this past month. He went to war hastily, without properly gauging the outcome. He blindly followed the military without asking the necessary questions. He mistakenly gambled on
    air operations, was strangely late with the ground operation, and failed to implement the army’s original plan, much more daring and sophisticated than that which was implemented. And after arrogantly and hastily bursting into
    war, Olmert managed it hesitantly, unfocused and limp. He neglected the home front and abandoned the residents of the north. He also failed shamefully on the diplomatic front.

    Still, if Olmert had come to his senses as Golda Meir did during the Yom Kippur War, if he had become a leader, established a war cabinet and called the nation to a supreme effort that would change the face of the battle, a penetrating discussion of his failures could be postponed. But in blinking first over the past 24 hours, he has become an incorrigible political personality. Therefore, the day Nasrallah comes out of his bunker and declares victory to the whole world, Olmert must not be in the prime
    minister’s office. Post-war battered and bleeding Israel needs a new start and a new leader. It needs a real prime minister.
    ————————————————-

    The kind lady who published this for Eric Olsen took out my references to Olmert being a thief and an incompetent lawyer. But Olmert was never more than an idiot with his hand out for money. Unfortunately, over 120 good Israelis have had to die to prove that point. And now, Haaretz, on its front page Hebrew weekend edition has said that he must go.

    Pass me a cigar folks. A good Cuban cigar. I need me victory smoke. The fat lady is singing…

    Shabbat Shalom from Ma’aleh Levona, just an hour’s bus ride from Jerusalem, the Eternal Capital of the Jewish people

  • Dean

    If God didn’t want people to blow up others and kill them, he wouldn’t have given them bombs.

    On the other hand, he gave them free will and the intelligence to find ways to avoid doing it.

    Well, maybe not the intelligence.

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Les, it doesn’t matter what I believe. If I want to have a conversation with the people involved in this dispute, I am rational enough to know I won’t learn anything by dismissing and belittling their most deeply cherished beliefs.

    I wonder, why aren’t you rational enough to know that?

    I also wonder why Gazelle neglected to answer my question, but perhaps that’s partly because of all the rude interruptions here.

  • Dean

    Correction.

    Definitely not the intelligence.

  • Les Slater

    Victgor #37

    Imperialism is playing both sides against each other. This is an old trick. For centuries the imperialists used the divide and rule technique. Religion was and is how they played local forces against each other.

    Religion is not the cause of problems in the mid-East. And of course, the imperialists laugh all the way to their coffers.

    They laugh at those that try to understand anything through quoting ancient books about a dispute, wich by fact of its existance, profits them. There is no harm done to them.

    Les

  • Clavos

    Les,

    Just out of curiosity, what political philosophy do you believe in/follow?

  • Les Slater

    Clavos #40

    Communist

  • Clavos

    Les,

    Thanks for the reply.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Les in #41 ..yer kidding, yes?

    i mean, i have never actually *met* a real, card carrying communist…

    your Choice, of course.. i don’t mean anything disparaging… but i just gotta know if yer Joking…

    Excelsior?

  • Les Slater

    gonzo #43

    Not kidding, but do not carry card, well, except for the usual driver’s license, credit cards, etc.

    Never have been member of Communist Party, nor would I be. I think they are no more than a bunch of treacherous liberals.

    Les

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    interesting take… and here all the comunists i have known about in history (Stalinist-Maoist) have been hypocritical authoritarian fascists…

    so, i’m guessing you mean in a more philosophical sense…

    ah well, to each their Own… thanks fer the Answer

    Excelsior?

  • Les Slater

    gonzo,

    “so, i’m guessing you mean in a more philosophical sense…”

    No, in a Leninist sense.

    Les

  • Dean

    Les:

    Do you live in a kibbutz?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Got this a little bit ago from my friend Sergio Tezza…

    The text of Olmert’s surrender.

    Nota Bene:
    1) ONLY Lebanon gets international recognition of the damage of the war and help to repair it;
    2) NO immediate implementation of UNSC Resolution 1559 is demanded;
    3) UNIFIL – the main collaborator of Hizbollah after Syria and Iran – is not dismantled but extended;
    4) There is a comparison of so-called “Lebanese prisoners” (who are just tried and condemned child murderers) and our two kidnapped soldiers;
    5) There is no DEMAND to IMMEDIATELY RELEASE our kidnapped soldiers;
    6) There is NO DEMAND TO IMMEDIATELY DISARM HIZBOLLAH;
    7) Israel will not be allowed to defend herself if Hizbollah launches missiles on Israel, since flying in Lebanese territory will mean going against the resolution.
    8) NO MENTION of the Iranian and Syrian weapons used against Israel by the terrorists or of those countries’ responsibilities

    ====================================

    Text of U.N. Draft Resolution

    Friday , August 11, 2006

    UNITED NATIONS — The Security Council,

    PP1. Recalling all its previous resolutions on Lebanon, in particular resolutions 425 (1978), 426 (1978), 520 (1982), 1559 (2004), 1655 (2006) 1680 (2006) and 1697 (2006), as well as the statements of its President on the situation in Lebanon, in particular the statements of 18 June 2000 (S/PRST/2000/21), of 19 October 2004 (S/PRST/2004/36), of 4 May 2005 (S/PRST/2005/17) of 23 January 2006 (S/PRST/2006/3) and of 30 July 2006 (S/PRST/2006/35),

    PP2. Expressing its utmost concern at the continuing escalation of hostilities in Lebanon and in Israel since Hezbollah’s attack on Israel on 12 July 2006, which has already caused hundreds of deaths and injuries on both sides, extensive damage to civilian infrastructure and hundreds of thousands of internally displaced persons,

    PP3. Emphasizing the need for an end of violence, but at the same time emphasizing the need to address urgently the causes that have given rise to the current crisis, including by the unconditional release of the abducted Israeli soldiers,

    PP4: Mindful of the sensitivity of the issue of prisoners and encouraging the efforts aimed at urgently settling the issue of the Lebanese prisoners detained in Israel,

    PP5. Welcoming the efforts of the Lebanese Prime Minister and the commitment of the government of Lebanon, in its seven-point plan, to extend its authority over its territory, through its own legitimate armed forces, such that there will be no weapons without the consent of the government of Lebanon and no authority other than that of the government of Lebanon, welcoming also its commitment to a UN force that is supplemented and enhanced in numbers, equipment, mandate and scope of operation, and bearing in mind its request in this plan for an immediate withdrawal of the Israeli forces from Southern Lebanon,

    PP6. Determined to act for this withdrawal to happen at the earliest,

    PP7. Taking due note of the proposals made in the seven-point plan regarding the Shebaa farms area,

    PP8. Welcoming the unanimous decision by the government of Lebanon on 7 August 2006 to deploy a Lebanese armed force of 15,000 troops in South Lebanon as the Israeli army withdraws behind the Blue Line and to request the assistance of additional forces from UNIFIL as needed, to facilitate the entry of the Lebanese armed forces into the region and to restate its intention to strengthen the Lebanese armed forces with material as needed to enable it to perform its duties,

    PP9. Aware of its responsibilities to help secure a permanent ceasefire and a long-term solution to the conflict,

    PP10. Determining that the situation in Lebanon constitutes a threat to international peace and security,

    OP1. Calls for a full cessation of hostilities based upon, in particular, the immediate cessation by Hezbollah of all attacks and the immediate cessation by Israel of all offensive military operations;

    OP2. Upon full cessation of hostilities, calls upon the government of Lebanon and UNIFIL as authorized by paragraph 11 to deploy their forces together throughout the South and calls upon the government of Israel, as that deployment begins, to withdraw all of its forces from Southern Lebanon in parallel;

    OP3. Emphasizes the importance of the extension of the control of the government of Lebanon over all Lebanese territory in accordance with the provisions of resolution 1559 (2004) and resolution 1680 (2006), and of the relevant provisions of the Taif Accords, for it to exercise its full sovereignty, so that there will be no weapons without the consent of the government of Lebanon and no authority other than that of the government of Lebanon;

    OP4. Reiterates its strong support for full respect for the Blue Line;

    OP5. Also reiterates its strong support, as recalled in all its previous relevant resolutions, for the territorial integrity, sovereignty and political independence of Lebanon within its internationally recognized borders, as contemplated by the Israeli-Lebanese General Armistice Agreement of 23 March 1949;

    OP6. Calls on the international community to take immediate steps to extend its financial and humanitarian assistance to the Lebanese people, including through facilitating the safe return of displaced persons and, under the authority of the Government of Lebanon, reopening airports and harbours, consistent with paragraphs 14 and 15, and calls on it also to consider further assistance in the future to contribute to the reconstruction and development of Lebanon;

    OP7. Affirms that all parties are responsible for ensuring that no action is taken contrary to paragraph 1 that might adversely affect the search for a long-term solution, humanitarian access to civilian populations, including safe passage for humanitarian convoys, or the voluntary and safe return of displaced persons, and calls on all parties to comply with this responsibility and to cooperate with the Security Council;

    OP8. Calls for Israel and Lebanon to support a permanent ceasefire and a long-term solution based on the following principles and elements:

    — full respect for the Blue Line by both parties,

    — security arrangements to prevent the resumption of hostilities, including the establishment between the Blue Line and the Litani river of an area free of any armed personnel, assets and weapons other than those of the government of Lebanon and of UNIFIL as authorized in paragraph 11, deployed in this area,

    — full implementation of the relevant provisions of the Taif Accords, and of resolutions 1559 (2004) and 1680 (2006), that require the disarmament of all armed groups in Lebanon, so that, pursuant to the Lebanese cabinet decision of July 27, 2006, there will be no weapons or authority in Lebanon other than that of the Lebanese state,

    — no foreign forces in Lebanon without the consent of its government,

    — no sales or supply of arms and related materiel to Lebanon except as authorized by its government,

    — provision to the United Nations of all remaining maps of land mines in Lebanon in Israel’s possession;

    OP9. Invites the Secretary General to support efforts to secure as soon as possible agreements in principle from the Government of Lebanon and the Government of Israel to the principles and elements for a long-term solution as set forth in paragraph 8, and expresses its intention to be actively involved;

    OP10. Requests the Secretary General to develop, in liaison with relevant international actors and the concerned parties, proposals to implement the relevant provisions of the Taif Accords, and resolutions 1559 (2004) and 1680 (2006), including disarmament, and for delineation of the international borders of Lebanon, especially in those areas where the border is disputed or uncertain, including by dealing with the Shebaa farms area, and to present to the Security Council those proposals within thirty days;

    OP11. Decides, in order to supplement and enhance the force in numbers, equipment, mandate and scope of operations, to authorize an increase in the force strength of UNIFIL to a maximum of 15,000 troops, and that the force shall, in addition to carrying out its mandate under resolutions 425 and 426 (1978):

    a. Monitor the cessation of hostilities;

    b. Accompany and support the Lebanese armed forces as they deploy throughout the South, including along the Blue Line, as Israel withdraws its armed forces from Lebanon as provided in paragraph 2;

    c. Coordinate its activities related to paragraph 11 (b) with the Government of Lebanon and the Government of Israel;

    d. Extend its assistance to help ensure humanitarian access to civilian populations and the voluntary and safe return of displaced persons;

    e. Assist the Lebanese armed forces in taking steps towards the establishment of the area as referred to in paragraph 8;

    f. Assist the government of Lebanon, at its request, to implement paragraph 14;

    OP12. Acting in support of a request from the government of Lebanon to deploy an international force to assist it to exercise its authority throughout the territory, authorizes UNIFIL to take all necessary action in areas of deployment of its forces and as it deems within its capabilities, to ensure that its area of operations is not utilized for hostile activities of any kind, to resist attempts by forceful means to prevent it from discharging its duties under the mandate of the Security Council, and to protect United Nations personnel, facilities, installations and equipment, ensure the security and freedom of movement of United Nations personnel, humanitarian workers, and, without prejudice to the responsibility of the government of Lebanon, to protect civilians under imminent threat of physical violence;

    OP13. Requests the Secretary General urgently to put in place measures to ensure UNIFIL is able to carry out the functions envisaged in this resolution, urges Member States to consider making appropriate contributions to UNIFIL and to respond positively to requests for assistance from the Force, and expresses its strong appreciation to those who have contributed to UNIFIL in the past;

    OP14. Calls upon the Government of Lebanon to secure its borders and other entry points to prevent the entry in Lebanon without its consent of arms or related materiel and requests UNIFIL as authorized in paragraph 11 to assist the Government of Lebanon at its request;

    OP15. Decides further that all states shall take the necessary measures to prevent, by their nationals or from their territories or using their flag vessels or aircraft,

    (a) the sale or supply to any entity or individual in Lebanon of arms and related materiel of all types, including weapons and ammunition, military vehicles and equipment, paramilitary equipment, and spare parts for the aforementioned, whether or not originating in their territories, and

    (b) the provision to any entity or individual in Lebanon of any technical training or assistance related to the provision, manufacture, maintenance or use of the items listed in subparagraph (a) above,

    except that these prohibitions shall not apply to arms, related material, training or assistance authorized by the Government of Lebanon or by UNIFIL as authorized in paragraph 11;

    OP16. Decides to extend the mandate of UNIFIL until 31 August 2007, and expresses its intention to consider in a later resolution further enhancements to the mandate and other steps to contribute to the implementation of a permanent ceasefire and a long-term solution;

    OP17. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Council within one week on the implementation of this resolution and subsequently on a regular basis;

    OP18. Stresses the importance of, and the need to achieve, a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East, based on all its relevant resolutions including its resolutions 242 (1967) of 22 November 1967 and 338 (1973) of 22 October 1973;

    OP19. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

  • Dean

    Conclusion:

    Information overload.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    If that is your attitude towards a live resolution of the UN you love so much, Dean, you shouldn’t be commenting at all…

    Someone else, with more brains than you, took the trouble to read through this work of art and make notes. I read through it as well, and agree with him. If it’s too hot in the kitchen and you can’t handle it, get the hell out.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This is the “celestial omnibus” news report from Rabbi Rachamim Pauli. It just came in a minute ago on my e-mail.

    =================================================

    I really don’t know what is going on here!

    A few minutes before candle lighting time in Yerushalayim, Olmert gave the green light to go into Lebanon. The Chief of Staff suddenly says the Udi Adam is a good General. There were terror attempts from Gaza, Yehuda and the Shomron but not making much waves because of other headlines.

    It is rumored that the Mossad had its hand in the intelligence work between, Pakistan, M5 and others. There are still planes heard in the skies here.

    A cease-fire leaving Hizballah with their weapons, prisoners, etc. is to go into effect supposedly Monday morning our time. Hizballah ‘agrees’ nice of them. However, if Israeli troops are in Lebanon, fighting will continue. All we will get is French, Russian and Lebanese troops on our border in return for nothing. Guess who wins?

    In the meantime rockets fall. Overhead on my Yeshuv from a woman staying here talking on her cellphone to her neighbor up north. “What the house of Yose Alon was destroy and the house of so and so hit! You must be crazy for staying there.”

    Seven Soldiers died on Shabbos in Lebanon and a helicopter with 4 on board was supposedly hit Motzei Shabbos in Lebanon. More and more troops are now pouring into Lebanon. Our advance was getting closer to Tzur (Tyre) in the west and deeper in the East. We will probably reach the Litani by Tuesday Morning and begin cleaning up the area.
    ————————————————-
    Israeli forces are pressing forward with the wide-scale operation against Hizballah which DEBKAfile reports was launched four days ago on Wednesday, Aug. 8.

    The campaign will continue until the ceasefire called for in Security Resolution 1701 approved Friday, Aug. 11, is enforced on the ground – if and when that happens.

    It is carried forward by four expanded divisions of 11 brigades, about 12,000 fighting men. Head of the Ground Forces Branch Maj.-Gen Benny Gantz is leading the IDF’s South Lebanon command.

    The first stage of the new operation has succeeded in its objective of encircling Hizballah’s 1,500-strong force in a large swathe stretching from the Litani River in the north, to Tyre in the southwest.

    This tactic follows Israel’s 1982 Lebanon War stratagem of pushing Palestinian forces out of South Lebanon up to Beirut and then holding them to siege.

    Now, Israeli troops are pushing Hizballah into the Tyre enclave that also encompasses the Palestinian refugee camps of Rashidiya and Bourj al-Shamali, in order to contain it there. In central and northern Lebanon, Hizballah strength will be left intact with two of its three rocket brigades – medium and long range – for the time being. They will be left to the Air Force to destroy.

    In the last few hours, Hizballah’s command and control in the south is showing signs of distress after finding itself cut off from reinforcements and re-supply from the north by the rapid Israeli advances of the last four days.

    DEBKAfile’s military sources update Israel military movements:

    The Northern Division: From Wednesday, this division has been advancing north from Israel’s northernmost town of Metulla towards the plain of Nabatea, north of the Litani River, taking the town of Marjayun en route. Early Friday Aug. 11, when Israeli PM Ehud Olmert and defense minister Amir Peretz gave the go ahead for the expanded offensive, the division split in two. One headed north and entered the village of Blat east of the crook in the Litani River – a vantage point for artillery control of the Nabatean plain to the west, and Hasbaya to the east.

    The second segment of the Northern Division has been positioned since Thursday on the southern bank of the Litani after capturing Qantara.

    For the moment, this division is positioned on a number of hilltops along the river bank with fire control over parts of the Nabatea plain.

    Saturday or Sunday morning, these troops should reach the Hardaleh bridge, one of the two linking central Lebanon to the south.

    In this part of the front, Israeli troops are fighting Hizballa’s Sector No. 5.

    Our military sources report that the Northern Division has encountered little Hizballah resistance in its push north. They are estimated to have gone to ground to await their moment to counter-attack. Local inhabitants in this area are friendly, some even point Israeli troops to possible Hizballah hideouts and arms caches.

    Division 162: Since Wednesday, this division under the command of Brig.-Gen Guy Tsur, has been driving north along the eastern bank of Wadi Saluki in the Eastern Sector of South Lebanon up to the Central Sector. Saturday, this division fetched up at Froun village on a hilltop opposite the Litani and west of Taibe and Deir Mimas. This high point affords the division fire control of the Qeaqea bridge, the second most important one spanning the Litani.

    The bridge was destroyed by an Israeli air strike at the outset of the war.

    This division is fighting Hizballah’s Sectors 3 and 4.

    DEBKAfile’s military sources report that the division commanded by Tsur is now following a westerly route along the Litani’s southern bank up to the Mediterranean coast and a place called Burj el Haoua, which is midway between Sidon and Tyre south of Beirut.

    Once in position there, the IDF will be able:

    1. To tighten the siege of Tyre from the north.

    2. Be ready to cross the Litani and head north of the river if ordered to do so.

    Division 91: Under the command of Brig. Gen Gal Hirsch, this division has also been in motion since Wednesday heading west to the Mediterranean coast from a point north of Bin Jubeil. The members of this division fought heavy battles at Ras Baida north of the Israeli town of Rosh Hanikra, and at the villages of Shmaa, Majdel Zun and Mansura south of Tyre. By Saturday morning, this division had managed to stabilize a line south of Tyre from a point north of Bin Jubeil up to Ras Baida, thereby completing the siege of Tyre from the south.

    A fourth division operating mostly undercover with special operations units took control Friday and Saturday of sections of the dividing seam between Divisions 162 and 91. This gap covers the war arenas of Qana village, Jouiya and Maarake. This division has been entrusted with tightening the eastern section of the siege enclosing Tyre and preventing Hizballah harassing the flanks and rear of the two divisions.

    Late last week, Hassan Nasrallah managed to rush several hundreds of fighters of his Bader Force to reinforce this arena.

    DEBKAfile’s exclusive sources report that this broad IDF campaign is planned to proceed over the weekend and early next week, on the assumption that Washington and the United Nations will step in at some early point and threaten to declare Israel in violation of the ceasefire resolution until it is stopped.
    ————————————————-

    Seven Israeli soldiers killed, more than 100 injured – 11 seriously – in combat against Hizballah Saturday, Day 2 of wide-scale offensive up to Litani

    Number of Katyusha rockets fired into northern Israel Saturday drops by more than half.

    An Israeli soldier was killed in Labuna Friday morning by anti-tank fire.

    Another 7 were injured slightly in clashes in other parts of South Lebanon – 2 in the central region, 5 from a bomb explosion in Qantara.
    ————————————————-

    Hizballah shoots down an Israeli Sikorsky helicopter over S. Lebanon’s Central Sector. First report of casualties
    Renewed Hizballah rocket fire injures 7 people in N. Israeli town of Safed Kiryat Shemona, Carmiel and other parts of Galilee are under fire Saturday
    Friday, more than 120 Hizballah rockets ravaged N. Israel Friday – 70% striking Kiryat Shemona. Several people were injured and the damage to buildings, roads and vehicles was substantial. Earlier, Haifa suffered three volleys including a heavy, long-range Khaibar-1 DEBKAfile’s military sources: The long-range missile landing near Haifa port Friday was a new, unknown type of Khaibar. This means that Hizballah is either taking fresh supplies, and getting them transported to South Lebanon, or still has large, undiscovered caches there. A total of 3,650 Hizballah rockets fired into civilian locations of northern Israel in month of Lebanon conflict.

  • Les Slater

    The increased political power of Hezbollah will bring with it pressure to Hezbollahize the Lebanese armed forces. Hezbollah cadre may find themselves in key command and training positions within the Lebanese armed forces.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Thereby advancing further into positions of power, eventually bringing about a communist revolution from within the governmental hierarchy of the decadent Lebanese state, right Les?

    One thing which you’ve got to consider when looking at all of these islamic terrorist groups is that they take their inspiration from the nazis and their politics from the communists – sort of the worst of both worlds. This is why so many on the American left are sympathetic to them, because they know that groups like Hamas and Hezbollah and even the Ba’athists, only pay lip-service to Islam and are basically communist revolutionary movements. They are the last great hope of a failed political philosophy. It’s also one of the reasons why Al Qaeda and these groups have never gotten along well together, because Al Qaeda doesn’t trust them or see them as true Muslims.

    Dave

  • Les Slater

    Dave #53

    “Thereby advancing further into positions of power, eventually bringing about a communist revolution from within the governmental hierarchy of the decadent Lebanese state,”

    They are likely to get into greater positions of power within the Lebanese stae. There influence will go beyond Lebanon, but this will not accomplish any social revolution.

    Hezbollah is a capitalist party that calls for an “Islamic Republic.”

    For the liberation of the region, these parties, Hezbollah included, will have to renounce the goal of an Islamic state. That is the obstacle to a lasting unity. To bring the Jews on their side would require for the calling of a Democratic Secular Palestine.

    Even that would not bring socialism, never mind communism, to the region.

    It will neutralize much of the power of imperialism in the region; only then will the struggle for socialism be on the agenda.

    Militant working class parties will be formed ahead of the struggle for socialism, but will not be able to proceed while parties of different nationalities and religions continue to fight each other.

    Les

  • Dean

    Ruvy:

    We know where to find UN Resolutions when we want to read them, and they are in a more intelligible format.

  • Dean

    Some of the rants here remind me of Jack D. Ripper.

    Remember him?

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    Militant working class parties will be formed ahead of the struggle for socialism, but will not be able to proceed while parties of different nationalities and religions continue to fight each other.

    You just don’t get the Middle East at all, Les. There is NO working class in the Middle East. The paradigms designed for 19th century Germany don’t apply there. It’s a tribal society with a bit of feudalism thrown in. Princes and peasants. No factories, no mills, no workshops.

    Dave

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Les, Dave is right in his analysis of the Middle East, at least so far as the Arabs go.

    Arab society is largely a tribal society, and this fact cuts across all the “class” lines that a Leninist like you would like to draw. This is not 19th century Germany.

    So your proposals, nice as they are, are just not relevant to the situation on the ground. A whole generation of Arabs tried to import Marxism and socialism and found themselves failing miserably.

    They are the political dinosaurs here. Bashir Assad tries to survive by being the son in what is really a monarchy. But like the son at the beginning of the Book of Ecclesiastes, he is wasting the father’s hard efforts.

    Sorry to burst your bubble, Les, but Marxist Leninism, heady opium for the masses that it is, is just not what the doctor ordered.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Now for some news.

    This is from the English language version of Haaretz. The full article can be viewed here.
    ————————————————-
    Syria still transferring supply of rockets, missiles to Hezbollah
    By Amos Harel, Haaretz Correspondent 13/08/2006

    Syria continues its efforts to transfer large quantities of war materiel, including rockets, to Lebanon, in an effort to assist Hezbollah in its war against Israel, a senior Israel Defense Forces source told Haaretz on Saturday.

    According to the IDF source, the air force has succeeded in partially stemming the arms transfers, but intelligence shows that supply convoys have managed to cross into Lebanon from Syria.

    Senior Syrian army and intelligence officers are involved in the arms smuggling, according to the senior IDF source, who says it is unlikely this
    continues without the explicit support of the regime in Damascus.

    Two specific types of weapons – anti-tank missiles and rockets used to target Israeli civilians – are of concern.

    The alert levels of the Syrian army, especially on the Golan Heights, is at its highest levels since the Lebanon War in 1982. The Syrian preparedness is mostly defensive, but the IDF is not excluding the possibility that Damascus
    will initiate a limited ground operation during the closing stages of the war.
    ————————————————-

    This next piece comes from IMRA.

    It is a press release from the Israel Foreign Ministry supplemented with comments from Dr. Aaron Lerner.

    [Dr. Aaron Lerner – IMRA: The folks at the Israel Foreign Ministry declined to share with their readers that the resolution:

    #1 Does not require the release of the Israeli hostages.
    #2 Includes no time element for the disarming of Hizbullah (this while the resolution is peppered with phrases such as “as soon as possible”,
    “urgently”, “immediate steps”).
    #3 Provides for UNIFIL to protect human shields (“authorizes UNIFIL to …without prejudice to the responsibility of the Government of Lebanon, to protect civilians under imminent threat of physical violence”)

    #2 + #3 = formula for armed conflict between the IDF and UNIFIL.

    This and more.

    Question: If you are preparing a press release and know that there are problems with the UNSC resolution why hide them when the odds are good that you will later find yourself trying to explain to the very same audience about the problems with the UNSC resolution when the situation sours?

    Wouldn’t it be more honest to say: “there are good points and bad points to the resolution as detailed below. The Government of Israel will meet on Sunday to decide if, after due consideration, the resolution should be
    accepted.”?]
    ====================

    Behind the Headlines: UN Security Council Resolution 1701
    Information Department, Israel Foreign Ministry – Jerusalem
    Website: http://www.mfa.gov.il
    Jerusalem, 12 August 2006

    UN Security Council Resolution 1701, adopted on 11 August 2006, contains the essential elements that Israel believes can build a more stable and secure situation and will prevent Hizbullah from ever again being able to create the sort of regional crisis we have witnessed in the past month.

    The preamble of the resolution:
    – clearly puts the blame for the current crisis on Hizbullah
    – calls for the unconditional release of the Israeli hostages, and
    – calls for the implementation of UNSC 1559

    In the operative paragraphs, the resolution:
    – calls for the cessation of all Hizbullah armed attacks
    – creates a new, strengthened UNIFIL (15,000 troops)
    – gives UNIFIL a improved mandate (to take “all necessary action” to prevent hostile activities of any kind in its area of operations)
    – calls that there be no armed groups, foreign or domestic (i.e. armed Hizbullah militia or Syrian and Iranian military advisors) in Lebanon
    – establishes an embargo of weapons to Lebanese groups other than the government, enforced by UNIFIL (at airports, seaports and border crossings), and
    – forbids Hizbullah armed elements from returning to southern Lebanon, from
    the Blue Line to the Litani River.

    Thus the resolution contains the fundamental elements which Government of Israel set out to achieve following Hizbullah’s unprovoked cross border attack and bombardment on 12 July:
    – the return of its hostages
    – the removal of the Hizbullah threat to northern Israeli cities, and
    – the implementation of UNSC Resolution 1559 calling for Lebanon extend its
    sovereignty to all its territory, deploy its army south to the
    Israel-Lebanon border and disarm Hizbullah.

    Israel expects the international community to take all the concrete steps required in order to bring about the full and effective implementation of the resolution just adopted.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The following is from Rabbi Rachamim Pauli’s “Celestial Omnibus”* series. Received by e-mail

    *my title for it, based on the catholic nature of the news posted

    ————————————————-

    Israeli losses in South Lebanon Saturday rise to 24. They include 5 crew members of a Yasur (Sikorsky) helicopter shot down by a Hizballah anti-air missile in the Central Sector

    The chopper’s crew are designated missing in action. More than 100 soldiers were injured – 12 seriously.

    Hizballah counted 45 dead.

    Prime minister Ehud Olmert will ask cabinet Sunday to endorse his acceptance of the UN Security Council resolution ordering a cessation of hostilities. The Lebanese government approved the resolution – with reservations – Saturday night.

    DEBKAfile adds Criticism is mounting in the Israeli public and army of the way prime minister Ehud Olmert, defense minister Amir Peretz and the cabinet conducted the Lebanon war now going into its second month, because of which Israel must forego its primary war goals.

    Senior IDF officers blame the high proportion of fallen men at the front 1:2 against the Hizballah in the first two days of the broadened ground offensive to the tight time frame Olmert accepted for meeting an arbitrary ceasefire deadline set by the UN secretary for 0800 hours Monday, Aug. 14.

    The army was given 60 hours to attain all the tactical goals of its final mission. The result in the last 48 hours has been slapdash improvisations and cut corners. The officers say the time remaining is too short for completing the vital siege of Tyre, Hizballah’s main S. Lebanese stronghold. A large stock of rockets and launchers has still to be eliminated there. Neither can the army finish by Monday morning, the clearing out of Hizballah fighters from the south – even from its bases in the more-or-less empty villages close to the Israel border. Hundreds of buildings are therefore being flattened by air or close-range fire.

    In Saturday night media interviews, top-ranking generals made their disapproval of the government known. The chief of staff Lt. Gen Dan Halutz and OC northern command Maj Gen Udi Adam, in particular, let it be understood that the wide-scale ground finally permitted to go forward Friday shortly before the Security Council resolution had come two weeks too late and precious time had been lost.

    Twelve of the 24 names have been released: Capt. Shay Bernstein, 24, from Beersheba
    – 1st Sgt Itay Steinberger, 21, from Carmei Yosef

    – Cpl Yaar Ben Giyat, 19, from Nahsholim

    – Sgt Yosef Abutbul, 19, from Gan Ner

    – 1st Sgt Tzahi Kripps, 20, from Hamaapil

    – Sgt Ankonina, 21, from Netanya

    – Cpl Tomer Amar, 19, from Julis

    – Sgt Yaniv Tamerson, 21, from Tzipori

    – Sgt-Maj Aharon Yehezkiel, 32, from Kfar Yedidya
    ………………………………………….

    The Worst Government in the History of Israel
    Naomi Ragen

    We finished a quiet Sabbath in the relative safety of Jerusalem, only to check the news and find out the heartbreaking news that seven more Israeli soldiers have been killed and
    eighty-four injured in the worst-led war in Israel’s history. In addition, the government who interfered with the military (i.e.go win the war without upsetting CNN and the BBC), imposing guidelines that have helped get not only our
    boys killed left and right, but our civilians as well, has now decided to accept a Security Council resolution which ensures that Israel’s soldiers and her people have made their ultimate sacrifice for nothing: our kidnapped soldiers
    will not be returned. Hezbollah will not be disarmed. And Israeli forces will be replaced by some U.N. force and a bunch of European anti-Semites who will allow Hezbollah to rearm.

    The full text of the resolution has been published in YNET.

    So far, 1,784 Israelis have responded. The overwhelming majority have this to say:

    We went to war to free our kidnapped soldiers. Why aren’t they mentioned?
    For shame.

    Olmert, Peretz, Halutz, the triumvirate of losers. Let me add this: Mr. Olmert, Mr. Peretz, Mr. Halutz: You have squandered the lives of our soldiers. You have squandered our opportunity to free the nation of Israel from
    a deadly enemy. You have set the stage for the next war. By September, we will be under attack once more. Do the decent thing: Resign, all of you, and let Mr. Netanyahu, General Alon (who was kicked out because he refused to go along with the disengagement) take over.
    Resign Mr. Olmert. Resign in shame for your incompetence.

    Your inability to carry out a single one of the objectives you so stirringly announced at the beginning of this war. With all of you and your incompetent Kadima-led government out of
    office, we will all be safer and better prepared when the rockets start to fall once again, as they inevitably will with the U.N. and the French guarding our borders.

    And if you won’t do the honorable thing, We will do everything we can to get you fired. You make me sick. I am ashamed to be a citizen of my country under your leadership. I am appalled to have a son in the IDF under your leadership. For shame, for shame, for shame!

    ………………………………………….

    Cease fire or no cease fire, once we reach the Litani or further and clean up operations begin, we expect fighting to continue in pockets of Hizballah resistance for about 2 weeks until almost 100 percent clean. We can still expect many losses. I predict not out of prophecy but out of logic that Hizballah could send the Zelzal Missiles to Tel Aviv, Beer Sheva and Dimona tomorrow close to 8 AM when the cease fire is to take effect. I have warned some people about the idea.

    Our soldiers need your prayers and Torah learning now more than ever please pick up a Tanach, Mishnah, Rambam, Gemara or something and get cracking.
    Be well,
    Rachamim Pauli

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The following are a series of analyses of the events that have occurred here and how the Israeli government has totally and ineptly blown this opportunity to wipe out the threats we face.

    ————————————————-
    Date: Sat, 12 Aug 2006 23:07:54 EDT
    Subject: What were you doing while Israel crumbled?

    Ehud Olmert is single-handedly destroying the Jewish State. As the article below describes, he made crucial gross errors in his handling of the war that have left Israel in an extremely weak, perilous position, instead of destroying her enemies, striking a severe blow against terrorism and bolstering her standing in the international community.

    In addition, during the month-long war, he has succumbed to international pressure that was based on Hizbullah lies and severe media bias, and he has damaged the confidence of the IDF and encouraged disunity among its soldiers and Israel’s citizens. Ten days ago, speaking with the Associated Press, he said, “I’ll surprise you. I genuinely believe that the outcome of the present [conflict] and the emergence of a new order that will provide more stability and will defeat the forces of terror will help create the necessary environment that will allow me… to create a new momentum between us and the Palestinians (referring to more unilateral withdrawals).” From Arutz Sheva:
    Word of Olmert’s statements quickly spread through the ranks of the IDF units fighting in Lebanon. Army Radio featured a father from Ofrah, one of the communities slated for destruction due to its proximity on the “other” side of the Partition Wall. “I text-messaged my two sons serving in Lebanon to tell them to come home,” he said. “It is outrageous that the man sending them to war states that the victory they are risking their lives for will result in their family being expelled from their home, allowing it to become exactly what Gaza and southern Lebanon have become.”

    This past Wednesday, despite the war in the north, the call-up of reserves and the needs of children and their parents in bomb shelters, 30 IDF soldiers, police officers and riot policemen were dispatched to destroy the foundations of a Jewish home in Samaria! It was being built by retired IDF officer Shaul Halfon, who served with former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in the elite Unit 101. Apparently the war in the north and south is going so well that Olmert decided he had plenty of soldiers to spare to send to destroy a Jewish home, Halfon told Arutz-7.
    ————————————————-
    [Olmert, Peretz and Peres Prevent IDF from Destroying Hizbullah]

    Aug. 10, 2006 23:44 | Updated Aug. 11, 2006 15:00
    Analysis: IDF fumes over denied victory
    By YAAKOV KATZ (1) – The link to the story is at the end of the email; below is a brief excerpt:
    …Only when all that failed did Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and his cabinet approve a large-scale incursion into Lebanon and the re-creation of the security zone.

    This wishy-washy decision-making process cost the IDF lives, according to one senior officer. “A military force always needs to be on the offensive, pushing forward and keeping the enemy on its toes,” he said. “When you sit still for too long, you turn into a target and you begin to get hit again and again.”
    Most sadly, Defense Minister Amir Peretz and Deputy Prime Minister Shimon Peres have exacerbated the situation created by Olmert’s colossal errors in judgment through their unthinking, untimely words. (2)
    “The IDF, in its present state, is not capable of beating Hizbullah. When one adds the supposed ethical code the IDF is charged with – “where the Defense Minister praises a soldier for refraining from shooting at a terrorist holding a child on one hand and his gun in the other – there is nno chance for victory.” [A quote from Manhigut Yehudit director, Michael Fuah, speaking about Mr. Peretz]
    ————————————————-
    ‘It’s Hard to Have the Same Confidence’
    By Jonathan Finer and Molly Moore

    Washington Post Foreign Service
    Friday, August 11, 2006; Page A10
    (3)

    “Fifteen casualties in one day proves what price we could pay if we do not try to make the most of the political move,” Deputy Prime Minister Shimon Peres said, referring to both the reserve and active-duty deaths on Wednesday.

    In light of Olmert’s devastating flaws in military strategy and his anti-leadership role during the war, Jewish leaders worldwide must demand of Israel that he be immediately ousted from his position as Prime Minister, and insist as well on Peretz’s and Peres’ removal from their positions as Defense Minister and Deputy Prime Minister. In addition, international Jewish leaders must reject the UN cease-fire for what it is — a timeout for Hizbullah to regroup, acquire another huge cache of even more advanced weapons and plan for the future destruction of Israel. THERE IS NO TIME TO LOSE!

    Little Falls, NJ
    August 12, 2006
    ————————————————-
    ANALYSIS: GOVERNMENT AND IDF RACKED BY UNPRECEDENTED LEADERSHIP CRISIS
    By Jonathan Ariel August 9, 2006
    (4)

    Relations between the country’s political and military leadership are at the lowest point in the country’s history, on the verge of a crisis. In addition, there is a growing lack of confidence between Chief of Staff Dan Halutz, the first CoS to hail from the air force, and many of his general staff colleagues from the ground forces, who say he and his “blue clique” [blue being the color of the air force uniform-ed] do not fully appreciate the nature of ground warfare.

    According to informed sources, there is an almost total breakdown in trust and confidence between the General Staff and the PM’s office. They have described the situation as “even worse than the crises that followed Ben Gurion’s decision to disband the Palmach, and Golda Meir and Moshe Dayan’s cynical decision to place all the blame for the Yom Kippur fiasco on the IDF’s shoulders.

    Senior IDF officers have been saying that the PM bears sole responsibility for the current unfavorable military situation, with Hezbollah still holding out after almost a month of fighting.

    This plan was supposed to have begun with a surprise air onslaught against the Hezbollah high command in Beirut, before they would have had time to relocate to their underground bunkers. This was to have been followed immediately by large scale airborne and seaborne landing operations, in order to get several divisions on the Litani River line, enabling them to outflank Hezbollah’s “Maginot line” in southern Lebanon.

    According to these officers, Olmert was presented with an assiduously prepared and detailed operational plan for the defeat and destruction of Hezbollah within 10-14 days, which the IDF has been formulating for the past 2-3 years.

    This plan was supposed to have begun with a surprise air onslaught against the Hezbollah high command in Beirut, before they would have had time to relocate to their underground bunkers. This was to have been followed immediately by large scale airborne and seaborne landing operations, in order to get several divisions on the Litani River line, enabling them to outflank Hezbollah’s “Maginot line” in southern Lebanon. This would have surprised Hezbollah, which would have had to come out of its fortifications and confront the IDF in the open, in order to avoid being isolated, hunted down and eventually starved into a humiliating submission.

    This was exactly what the IDF senior command wanted, as Israeli military doctrine, based on the Wehrmacht’s blitzkrieg doctrine, has traditionally been one of rapid mobile warfare, designed to surprise and outflank an enemy.

    According to senior military sources, who have been extensively quoted in both the Hebrew media and online publications with close ties to the country’s defense establishment, Olmert nixed the second half of the plan, and authorized only air strikes on southern Lebanon, not initially on Beirut.

    Although the Premier has yet to admit his decision, let alone provide a satisfactory explanation, it seems that he hoped futilely for a limited war. A prominent wheeler-dealer attorney-negotiator prior to entering politics, he may have thought that he could succeed by the military option of filing a lawsuit as a negotiating ploy, very useful when you represent the rich and powerful, as he always had. Another motive may have been his desire to limit the economic damage by projecting a limited rather than total war to the international financial powers that be.

    Whatever his reasons, the bottom line, according to these military sources, is that he castrated the campaign during the crucial first days. The decision to not bomb Beirut immediately enabled Nasrallah to escape, first to his bunker, subsequently to the Iranian embassy in Beirut.

    The decision to cancel the landings on the Litani River and authorize a very limited call up of reserves forced the ground forces to fight under very adverse conditions. Instead of outflanking a heavily fortified area with overwhelming forcers, they had to attack from the direction most expected, with insufficient forces. The result, high casualties and modest achievements.

    This is the background of yesterday’s surprise effective dismissal of OC northern Command Maj. General Udi Adam. According to various media sources, Olmert was incensed at Adam’s remarks that he had not been allowed to fight the war that had been planned. Adam allegedly made these remarks in response to criticism against his running of the war, and the results so far achieved.

    Olmert’s responsibility for inaction goes much further. The US administration had given Israel the green light to attack Syria. A senior military source has confirmed to Israel Insider that Israel did indeed receive a green light from Washington in this regard, but Olmert nixed it.

    The scenario was that Syria, no military match for Israel, would face a rapid defeat, forcing it to run to Iran, with which it has a defense pact, to come to aid.

    Iran, which would be significantly contained by the defeat of its sole ally in the region, would have found itself maneuvered between a rock and a hard place. If it chose to honor its commitment to Syria, it would face a war with Israel and the US, both with military capabilities far superior to Iran’s. If Teheran opted to default on its commitment to Damascus, it would be construed by the entire region, including the restless Iranian population, as a conspicuous show of weakness by the regime. Fascist regimes such as that of the ayatollahs cannot easily afford to show that kind of weakness.

    As previously mentioned, Iran’s military capabilities are no match for Israel’s. Bottom line, all Iran could do is to launch missiles at and hit Israel’s cities, and try and carry out terror attacks. If there is one thing history has shown, it is that such methods do not win wars. Israel would undoubtedly suffer both civilian casualties and economic damage, but these would not be that much more than what we are already experiencing. We have already irreversibly lost an entire tourist season. Any Iranian and Syrian missile offensives would be relatively short, as they are further form Israel, and therefore would have to be carried out by longer range missiles. These, by their very nature are much bigger and more complex weapons than Katyushas. They cannot be hidden underground, and require longer launch preparations, increasing their vulnerability to air operations. In addition it is precisely for such kinds of missiles that the Arrow system was developed.

    The end result would be some additional economic damage, and probably around 500 civilian casualties. It may sound cold blooded, but Israel can afford such casualties, which would be less than those sustained in previous wars (for the record, in 1948 Israel lost 6,000, 1% of the entire population, and in 1967 and 1973 we lost respectively 1,000 and 3,000 casualties).

    The gains, however, would be significant. The Iranian nuclear threat, the most dangerous existential threat Israel has faced since 1948, would be eliminated. It would also change the momentum, which over the past two decades as been with the ayatollahs. This could also have a major impact on the PA, hastening the demise of the Islamist Hamas administration.

    Instead, according to military sources, Israel finds itself getting bogged down by a manifestly inferior enemy, due to the limitations placed on the IDF by the political leadership. This has been construed by the enemy as a clear sign that Israel is in the hands of a leadership not up to the task, lacking the required experience, guts and willpower. In the Middle East this is an invitation to court disaster, as witness by Iran’s and Syria’s increased boldness in significantly upping the ante of their involvement in the war.

    Some senior officers have been mentioning the C-word in private conversations. They have been saying that a coup d’etat might be the only way to prevent an outcome in Lebanon that could embolden the Arab world to join forces with Syria and Iran in an all out assault on Israel, given the fact that such a development would be spurred entirely by the Arab and Moslem world’s perception of Israel’s leadership as weak, craven and vacillating, and therefore ripe for intimidation.

    Seeing the once invincible IDF being stalemated by Hezbollah’s 3,000 troops is a sure way to radiate an aura of weakness that in the Middle East could precipitate attacks by sharks smelling blood. [ed. Olmert and Peretz have neither the foresight nor courage to erase this aura of weakness.]

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    I should have noted that the previous comment was received courtesy of Aryeh Gallin, of the Root & Branch Assn Ltd.

    Apologies Aryeh!

    Mea culpa, mea culpa!

  • Les Slater

    Dave #57

    “There is NO working class in the Middle East. The paradigms designed for 19th century Germany don’t apply there. It’s a tribal society with a bit of feudalism thrown in. Princes and peasants. No factories, no mills, no workshops.”

    Dave, you have your head burried in the sand.

    From CIA factbook:

    Lebanon Industry – “banking, tourism, food processing, jewelry, cement, textiles, mineral and chemical products, wood and furniture products, oil refining, metal fabricating”

    This does not mention ports, transportation, etc.

    There is a working class in Lebanon.

  • Les Slater

    Ruvy #58

    “Arab society is largely a tribal society, and this fact cuts across all the “class” lines”

    As I pointed out in my reply to Dave, Lebanon has a working class.

    You seem to admit there are classes in Arab Mid East society, but maybe they do not manifest themselves as a concious class. This also is not true.

    From the U.S. State Department 2004 Human Rights Report on Lebanon:

    “On May 27, the General Confederation of Labor called for a general strike to protest high fuel prices. The protest turned violent when protestors in Beirut closed roads with burning tires. LAF troops attempted to open roads; however, protestors pelted them with stones, and LAF troops opened fire on demonstrators killing 5 persons and wounding at least 17 others (see Section 2.b.). Several of the protesters were arrested and sentenced to 30 to 60 days in jail for disturbing the peace and resisting the army; however, no legal action was taken against any of the soldiers.”

    Sounds like a councious class to me. ‘General Confederation of Labor’? Something immagined by the State Department? Sounds like they had authority and organization sufficient to take on the military in a particular protest.

    Les

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Les, you may actually have to take the needle off the record player playing “The Internationale” to understand this.

    Lebanon has a modern society. By modern, I mean far more advanced than 19th Century Germany. It has a General Confederation of Labor. But that modern society is restricted to certain cities in the country. The rural areas of Lebanon, like those of Syria Jordan and Israel (in those parts where Arabs predominate) are largely tribal societies.

    Dave, who has lived in Lebanon, Jordan and Syria, can confirm all this.

    You can go back to singing “The Internationale” to the vinyl disk now.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    History sometimes does repeat itself…

    Palestinian Media Watch Bulletin – Aug. 13, 2006

    History repeats itself: 1948 & 2006
    Arabs called to leave Haifa
    to facilitate the killing of Jews
    1948 – Arab League tells Arabs to leave Haifa to facilitate the killing of Jews
    2006 – Hezbollah tells Arabs to leave Haifa to facilitate the killing of Jews

    by Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook

    Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah’s request of Arabs to leave Haifa to facilitate the bombing and killing of Jews in Haifa is the identical call heard by the Arabs of Haifa and other cities by the Arab League attacking the new State of Israel in 1948.

    2006 – Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah:

    “I have a special message to the Arabs of Haifa, to your martyrs and to your wounded. I call you to leave this city. I hope you do this. … Please leave so we don’t shed your blood, which is our blood.”

    1948 – Palestinian journalist describes Arab leaders action in 1948:

    “To the [Arab] Kings and Presidents: Poverty is killing us… yet you are still searching for the way to provide aid… like the armies of your predecessors in the year of 1948, who forced us to leave [Israel], on the pretext of clearing the battlefields of civilians… ”
    [Fuad Abu Higla, columnist official PA daily Al Hayat Al Jadida, in an article before an Arab Summit, critical of Arab leaders for a series of failures. Al-Hayat Al-Jadidah, March 19, 2001]

    Please feel free to forward this bulletin, crediting Palestinian Media Watch

  • Les Slater

    Ruvy #65

    “Lebanon has a modern society. By modern, I mean far more advanced than 19th Century Germany. … But that modern society is restricted to certain cities in the country. The rural areas of Lebanon, like those of Syria Jordan and Israel (in those parts where Arabs predominate) are largely tribal societies.”

    I pay close attention to the countryside. Don’t forget I am a Leninist.

    21st Century Lebanon and 1917 Russia have more in common with each other than either does to 19th Century Germany.

    There are limitations to that comparison, but it is head and shoulders above boiling it all down to religion and tribal relations.

    Les

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Limits to the comparison? Yeah, like the limits to the comparison of night and day.

    21st Century Lebanon – modern, cosmopolitan urbanites surrounded by medieval throwback tribal nomads. No industry or significant agriculture with an economy based on entertainment and service industries. A tiny, farmed out coastal country with no natural resources.

    1917 Russia – heavily industrialized but socially primitive urban areas surrounded by peasant farmers. A primarily industrial and agricultural society. A huge, mostly land-locked country with rich agricultural and natural resource potential.

    Yeah they’re like clones.

    Dave

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Re comment #68. You tell him, Dave. Just make sure he isn’t singing The Internationale when you do tell Les. He may not pay attention.

    I wanted to post more news, but there isn’t much more to post. Well, there is one item rom Arutz Sheva English edition…

    ————————————————-By Ezra HaLevi

    Arabs and Muslims from Iran, Hizbullah and the PA are celebrating Israel’s acceptance of the UN ceasefire, dubbing it a “surrender” and calling on Arab states to attack the new “weak” Israel.

    “After one month of war against Lebanon’s resistance, Israelis are the absolute losers and Hizbullah is the absolute winner of the war,” Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamida-Reza Asefi said Sunday. “The occupiers of Jerusalem failed, despite their military, economic, intelligence and diplomatic backings.”

    The Iranian official said the Islamic Republic of Iran is “very pleased” with the ceasefire, according to state-run Iranian news agency IRNA. He warned, though, that attacks on Israel would continue as long as “occupation lingers.” He declined to outline whether occupation included retaining sovereignty in regions such as the Galilee – which Hizbullah chief Hassan Nasrallah has termed “settlements” in his wartime addresses. “Let us not forget that as long as there is occupation there is resistance,” he added.

    Hizbullah central council member Ahmed Barakat told Qatari newspaper al-Watan Sunday, “Today Arab and Muslim society is reasonably certain that the defeat of Israel is possible, and that countdown to the disappearance of the Zionist entity in the region has begun… If a mere organization succeeded in defeating Israel, why would Arab nations not succeed in doing so if they allied? Many Arabs and Muslims viewed Israel in a fictional way and the resistance has succeeded in changing this.”

    Barakat boasted that none of Hizbullah’s leadership were injured, and that the group still possesses thousands of rockets and other “surprises” for use in the days following the implementation of the UN ceasefire. He added that the remaining missiles and weapons allow Hizbullah to strike Israel from afar and do not require the group to be near Israel’s border.

    Photos of Hizbullah-leader Hassan Nasrallah “hang everywhere in Ramallah,” according to Al-Jazeera, “covering the walls and shop fronts and plastered across T-shirts and demonstration banners.” The number-one song in Ramallah this summer, “blaring [repeatedly] out of shops and streets stalls,” is “The Eagle of Lebanon,” referring to the Hizbullah chief.

    “Secularists, Christians and Muslims alike refer to the Hizbullah leader as Palestine’s newest and truest hero,” the Al-Jazeera report states. “Back at Manara square in Ramallah, Waleed Ayyoub is still selling the Nasrallah images to ‘all people of all ages – even little children.’ He is especially proud of a sale made to an Arab-Israeli woman from Haifa, fleeing the Katyusha attacks on her city.”

  • Dean

    Ruvy says:

    “Ehud Olmert is single-handedly destroying the Jewish State.”

    Does that mean the threat from Iran is moot?

  • Les Slater

    Dave #68

    This whole thing started with my #52 simply observing that some of Hezbollah might find itself in important positions within the Lebanese military.

    Your #53 turned that into a communist revolution.

    My #54 dismissed your caricature of a communist revolution and pointed out that several steps would be needed before any struggle for power could even begin. I stated that working class parties would appear before the actual battle for socialism.

    Your #57 flatly denied the existence of any working class at all, “There is NO working class in the Middle East.” Note the capitalization of ‘NO’. You even said that there are not any workshops in the Middle East.

    Ruvy in #58 chimes in and agrees, at least as far as the Arabs.

    Both of you flatly stated that there is no Arab working class in the Middle East.

    My #63 and #64 not only showed conclusively that there is indeed a working class in Lebanon (Middle East, no?), but it is conscious and organized too.

    So Ruvy in #65 changes gears and says, oh well, maybe, but they are only in some cities, the countryside is tribal.

    From listening to Ruvy, Israel is tribal, so what the fuck is he talking about? Is everything tribal? Actually, classes and class relations transcend any ethnic, tribal, religious or national boundaries. This is where the 19th Century working class slogan ‘Workers of the World Unite’ comes from.

    First the two of you deny a working class even exist and now are trying to pretend class antagonisms do not exist outside of the cities. Nonsense!

    So, what are your objections to comparing 1917 Russia with 21st Century Lebanon? I said there were limitations on that comparison, but your arguments against the possibility of socialist revolution in Lebanon are the same as were put forward by some against the Bolsheviks putting forward the idea that the working class could lead the broader masses to take power.

    There have been revolutions since 1917 where the weight of the working class was even numerically weaker than Russia.

    So what the two of you are saying is that there is no possibility of a socialist revolution in Lebanon. First you say that there is NO working class, then point to its relative weakness.

    You also have to look at the strength of the capitalist forces. Civil war, defeats of imperialist stooges, etc. put the working class, in conjunction with toiling masses in the countryside, where it will have the objective conditions to take power from the capitalists.

    Les

  • Les Slater

    From BBSNews, August 13, 2006.

    Hezbollah May be Folded into Lebanese Army

    This conservative source ends with:

    “The only thing that could possibly make it worse for Israel would be if Hezbollah is fully integrated into the Lebanese forces, effectively changing uniforms. Then it would truly be a war between a united and seemingly very capable resistance from Lebanon against Israeli aggression the likes of which the world has never seen.”

  • Clavos

    Les,

    Don’t know where you got the idea that Bbsnews, the site you cite in #72 is conservative.

    Despite its claim on its masthead, even a cursory reading of some of its posts reveals it to be anything but conservative.

    Humbug.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Les, thanks for keeping the article going. I am going to leave off the class arguments for the moment. There is news to report.

    This came in to INN last night. The boys in Bet-El are (where Israel National News is headquartered) not yet really awake.
    ————————————————-

    Northern Command: Hizbullah Has Not Accepted Ceasefire
    22:29 Aug 13, ’06 / 19 Av 5766

    (IsraelNN.com) A senior officer in the IDF’s Northern Command says that as of now, the Hizbullah has not accepted the ceasefire, making it one-sided.

    Israel has said the ceasefire will take effect Monday at 7:00 A.M.

    ————————————————-

    Since five thirty in the morning, when I woke up, I’ve heard three waves of planes going north…

    This is from MEMRI, courtesy of Sergio Tezza.
    ————————————————-

    http://WWW.MEMRITV.ORG , VIEWED IN ALL 192 COUNTRIES AROUND THE WORLD

    Special Dispatch-Palestinian Authority
    August 13, 2006
    No. 1246

    Hamas Columnist: Hizbullah’s Victory in Lebanon Opens the Door for a Third Intifada

    In his August 7, 2006 column in the Hamas semiweekly Al-Risala, under the title “Victory in Lebanon – Towards a Third Intifada,” Ibrahim Abu Heija’ encourages Hamas to use what he sees as Hizbullah’s victory as a springboard for a third Palestinian intifada.

    The following are excerpts from the article:(1)

    “The Greatest Beneficiary [of the Victory in Lebanon] Will Ultimately Be the Palestinian Resistance”

    “What has become evident from the ongoing battles in the proud and resistant south of Lebanon is the confirmation of Israel’s failure in achieving its goals, and the confirmation of the decline in its deterrence capability in comparison with what it was before it got embroiled in the Lebanese quagmire – despite the bloody slaughters that Israel committed against unarmed civilians…

    “What is noteworthy here is not only the collapse of the Israeli defense doctrine in the face of a well-organized community possessed of faith and will, such as Hizbullah, but what is more important in the Israeli loss is to examine the consequences of the victory and its implications on additional levels.

    “Hizbullah, which achieved the victory, will be the least of those who benefit from this victory, due to certain considerations relevant to the Lebanese arena, which is based on sectarian division. This does not mean that it will not gain greater strength and legitimacy than it had before, particularly since the Israeli aggression, as is evident, proceeds without direction and without any reckoning of consequences, and therefore gets itself entangled in guerilla warfare, in which Hizbullah is unsurpassed in its skill, and has a Syrian and Iranian backing that denies it nothing in terms of arms, money, support, and protection.

    “It detracts nothing from Hizbullah’s standing that it should benefit from the honor of victory and that it should be a shield protecting Syria and Lebanon from breaking apart, and should be a shield for Iran against an attack on its nuclear reactor.

    “However, the greatest beneficiary will ultimately be the Palestinian resistance – because all of the Arab, regional, and international equations, whether they are at variance or in agreement, revolve around the Palestinian cause, either in order to liquidate it or to defend it.”

    “This is an Important Moment, That the Palestinian Resistance Must Seize”

    “This is an important moment, that the Palestinian resistance must seize. It benefited from [a similar moment] at the beginning of the Al-Aqsa [Intifada], when the West Bank and Gaza spoke the Lebanese language, after they had long been immersed in American and Israeli illusions. And following [the Al-Aqsa Intifada], the incomplete [Israeli] withdrawal from the Gaza Strip was carried out.

    “And now, after the ceasefire [hudna] has been tried and the experience of changing the [Palestinian] Authority reached its peak, the door will be opened for a third Palestinian intifada, that will transform the resistance from the stage of reaction [to Israeli] actions to [resistance] that is carried out at our initiative.”

    “The Arab Regimes… Showed Solidarity With Israel… and Placed Their Bets on an Old Horse and a Losing Card”

    “The intifada will be honed on [several] sides: 1) victory in southern Lebanon; 2) the necessity of developing elites and Islamic and [pan-Arab] nationalist movements, according to their service to the masses. This is especially true after the Arab regimes have lost the thin patriotic coating under which they had hidden, and openly showed solidarity with Israel and manifested their dissatisfaction with the resistance [i.e. Hizbullah] – and it did not occur to them that they had placed their bets on an old horse and a losing card.

    “This will fling the door wide open for the strong elites and movements to [make] radical changes in the structures of Arab [society], and the Palestinian resistance will benefit from this, anyway you look at it.

    “On the third side, the spectacle of failure in Lebanon will increase the bungling of the American administration in Iraq, and will expose its selective method of reform. This will affect America’s Mediterranean plans, and will lead it either to recoil and flee, or else will lead it to measures and solutions which aim to patch together the Palestinian issue through fragile regional and international coalitions. Neither course will save the United State’s standing, and will not turn back the clock.

    “The Victory in Lebanon Will Weaken Those Palestinian Voices… Calling for Making Concessions… and Ceasefires”

    “The fourth side is this: The victory in Lebanon will weaken those Palestinian voices that are heard from time to time, sometimes calling for making concessions, at other times calling for fortuitous ceasefires. Hamas will be given a significant margin to gain legitimacy for carrying out [armed] resistance on various fronts where [at present] the Palestinian Authority objects and the resistance desists.

    “The Israeli Defeat in Lebanon Will Force Israel to Move Towards Partial Withdrawals From the Shab’a Farms, the West Bank, and Perhaps the Golan Heights”

    “The fifth side: The Israeli defeat in Lebanon will force Israel to move towards partial withdrawals from the Shab’a Farms, the West Bank, and perhaps the Golan Heights, in order to diminish the effects of its defeat – but this will in no way deceive the Palestinians, the Syrians, or the Lebanese. Rather, it will push them all to make yet another move towards achieving their rights.

    “In general, it is important for the Palestinian resistance to exploit the effects of the victory in Lebanon for its own interests in order to achieve its rights and move forward towards its objectives, and to encourage the whole public to unite behind its program.

    “The growing aggression in the Gaza Strip against children and women is the most important incentive for accomplishing the equation of the new resistance and taking it beyond the merits of the prisoners’ document and the consideration of being in authority… towards a third intifada.”

    Endnote:
    (1) Al-Risala (Gaza), August 7, 2006.

    ————————————————-

    The final piece is by Dave Bedein, Israel’s foremeost English speaking independent investigative reporter. Bedein is a social worker by training, and this shows in his piece, called “THINK POSITIVELY”

    Note: Elul is the month on the Hebrew calendar that one seeks forgiveness from other people for the sins that he has committed against them. Astrologically, it is associated with “The Maiden,” a symbol of purity and innocence.

    1. Peace Now had the chance to run Israel’s security system and showed, once and for all, what would happen under their rule, while the “social justice” lobby of the Labor Party had their chance to assume power and showed that they would not even take care of the social welfare ministry, leaving it with no minister and leaving Israel with no social policy, with thousands of people left to suffer. The collapse of Israel’s social work system in the North has given way to a new Hesed system, which may become a permanent fixture.

    2. On the other hand, if a Bibi or an Effie Eitam were PM, “Peace Now” would have brought 400,000 to Kikar Rabin to demonstrate after Kfar Kana and destroyed any national unity.

    3. ‘Am Yisrael is en route to being united, albeit by a new Haman, yet united.

    4. Red Haifa is less pink. And bombed Kibbutzim in the north and in the Negev will be less likely to dispatch people to peace rallies in the future.

    5. The permanent schism between the Zionist and anti-Zionist left is now evident. Wait for those high profile treason trials those who supported the enemy during a time of war. “All the noose that’s fit to print…”

    6. The Israeli Arab leadership and the PA leadership have showed their total support for the genocidal policies of Hizbullah/Iran against the State of Israel. The restoration of military rule over the Israeli Arabs is in the offing, and the disbanding of the Palestinian Fourth Reich may also be in the cards. .

    7. The dire consequences of Israel’s unilateral surrender policy are being felt by at least half of the Israeli population. Any government that would dare suggest any such policy now will have to cope with a seething population who will not tolerate any such suggestion.

    8. Wait for the ultimate investigation commissions to be empowered and convened. It will dwarf the post- Yom Kippur War Investigation commission. Who gave the order for the IDF to run out of Lebanon on May 20th and leave their best equipment for the Hizbullah? Who covered up the warnings of the 12,000 missiles in place? Who gave orders not to prepare the shelters?

    9. Aliya of thousands of Jews continues during this time.

    10. In IDF units and in many places in Eretz Israel, people who had never prayed to God are now calling out to the Almighty for sustenance. “It’s beginning to look alot like Elul, everywhere you go…”

    DAVID BEDEIN, Beit Agron, Jerusalem Shel Matah.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The following is from the Jerusalem Post, confirming the newsbrief from Israel National News in the previous comment…

    ————————————————-
    Hizbullah refuses to disarm in south Lebanon
    JPost.com Staff, THE JERUSALEM POST Aug. 13, 2006

    The Lebanese government was scheduled to meet on Sunday to discuss the
    disarming of Hizbullah south of the Litani River, but postponed that meeting
    following indications by the guerrilla group that they would not do so.

    Hizbullah’s refusal was conveyed to Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Saniora
    through the group’s representative in the Lebanese parliament, Nabih Berri.

  • Les Slater

    Clavos #73

    “Don’t know where you got the idea that Bbsnews, the site you cite in #72 is conservative.”

    The masthead. Most media and politicians have been moving to the right for some time. Did this BBSNews not move right fast enough for you to consider it conservative?

    Les

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    Clavos, a hint for dealing with Les. When your mainstream is Castro and Hugo Chavez then anything in the US is right-wing.

    Dave

  • Les Slater

    DAVE #77

    I would consider Bush mainstream. He is a moderate Republican.

    Les

  • SHARK

    Hi kids and comrades!

    I’ve been missing in action lately — and I’ll be darned —

    …I start to go on a news diet and a Blogcritics fast (not as significant and meaningful as Ruvy’s silly prehistoric little tribal rituals described at length in his irritating article above (James Joyce meets Isaac Bashevis Singer… oy!), but still, I was doing without input and output — and lo and behold, a preview of the FRIGGIN’ APOCALYPSE once again rears its ugly head!

    What the fuck?!

    The little dark-skinned, big-nosed FIRST COUSINS in the Middle East are fighting again!?

    ~AGAIN?!

    noooo, say it ain’t so!

    ============

    God: Um… am I going to have to separate you two?!

    Jews: He started it. He hit me first!

    Hebollah: He took my toy! It’s MINE!

    [Cut to mushroom cloud over planet Earth]

    ============

    For the intellectually curious — and before I punch out of the internet and return to what’s known in the non-virtual world as “A LIFE” — I thought I’d share…

    …da-ta-daaaaaaaa!

    SHARK’S THOUGHTS ON THE MIDDLE EAST:

    1) The history of Mankind is the story of a retarded ape playing with matches in a dynamite factory. Intelligent people discussing a solution to the problems of the Middle East is sorta like going over the grooming options for a dead dog.

    2) I ain’t pickin’ sides. I don’t have to pick sides. If everybody’s right, then everybody’s wrong.

    3) Israel and The World: I have a few suggestions:

    a) Let’s extend that WALL blocking the Palestinians from crossing into what was recently their land — let’s extend it from say…. oh, the ground to about… oh, the FUCKING TOP OF THE STRATOSPHERE.

    b) Then we extend the wall horizontally to include… oh… say THE ENTIRE FUCKING MIDDLE EAST.

    c) Then we make ONE DOOR as the only IN & OUT.

    d) Then we lock it.

    e) Then we wait 25 or 30 years.

    f) Then one day, we open the door, glance inside and say, “WHOOPS. You’re still fighting?! See ya!”

    g) Then we lock the door again.

    f) repeat until End of Time.

    =========

    There. Hope that helps. And Have a Nice Day!

    oh, and by the way, I’ll be announcing my candidacy sometime in the fall.

    xxoo,
    SHARK

  • Clavos

    Les 76:

    Obviously, you missed the last half of my 73–too eager to get back to your zillionth reading of “Revolution At The Gates”, I guess.

    Anyway, as a public service, here it is again:

    Despite its claim on its masthead, even a cursory reading of some of its posts reveals it to be anything but conservative.

    Humbug.

    Spasebo, Comrade. We now return you to your regularly scheduled brainwashing.

  • Clavos

    Shark 79:

    Very funny! Really!

    Cynical.

    But funny. :>)

  • troll

    Les – consider your audience

    pearls before swine and all…well maybe it’s zircons but the principle is the same

    troll

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Clavos,

    What is the big deal over BBS News anyway? If they provide something that looks like the truth, does it matter what their orientation is?

  • Clavos

    I’m not objecting to their orientation, Ruvy. Only to their deceptive self-characterization as being conservative, and Les’ perpetuation of that deceit in his comment that cited them.

    Mas nada.

  • Clavos

    Troll,

    Considering the source, more like fool’s gold…

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Looks like the Shark came up for air and discovered that some not so favorite people were killing each other again. Next time war breaks out here, I’ll have to send him a nice tasty bass to let him know… That way he can eat the messenger as he chews over the message.

    I don’t really care what you think bout the fightin’ in this neck of the woods. Nobody invited you to join in (even though your little tin shit emperor and his noisy little snatch from Alabammy can’t seem to keep their noses out), so don’t worry about it. It’s just us Jewboys and A-rabs getting our asses killed. Just open up the nozzle on the keg, have a few and kick back and cheer when one of us drops dead from a bullet, a bomb or a missile. You’re footing the bill, so you might as well enjoy the entertainment. There’s a belly dance later on in the show, by the way…

    But keep the crap about my prehistoric rituals to yourself. You weren’t invited to them either, and when it comes time, you’ll understand just how the leviathan relates to the shark…

    By the way. This was just the opener to the show. There’s gonna be lots of fireworks for you to enjoy later on after the belly dance. I’d move that lawn chair back some, little fishy. Them boys with the fireworks have itchy fingers…

    Ruvy,
    the Leviathan from Ma’aleh Levona

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Some of the fallout from Mr. Olmert’s Little War

    Olmert faces rebellion over Lebanon

    EHUD Olmert is likely to face a “second war” to force him to resign as Israel’s Prime Minister as soon as a lasting ceasefire in the Lebanon conflict takes effect.

    A political and military rebellion is growing over what is seen as his catastrophic handling of the war against Hezbollah.

    “The day after this war, there will be a second war — that of the opposition against Olmert,” one senior Israeli politician said.

    “We will launch a huge inquiry into the way this war was handled. During war you support the Prime Minister, but we have all seen his mistakes.”

    The Deputy Prime Minister, veteran Israeli politician Shimon Peres, is the highest profile figure to have fallen out publicly with Mr Olmert, having already broken ranks in a crucial security cabinet vote on broadening the ground offensive in Lebanon.

    Meanwhile, the hawkish opposition Likud Party, led by former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, has ended its wartime political truce, with senior members privately condemning Mr Olmert, 61, for his “massive mistakes”.

    Critics have accused his Government of entering the war blindly, waiting too long to launch the ground operations and depending instead on air strikes that failed to stop more than 1000 Hezbollah missiles hitting Israeli towns.

    Likud’s former foreign minister, Silvan Shalom, said Mr Olmert’s strategy had left northern Israeli residents “hostages” to Hassan Nasrallah, the Hezbollah leader.

    “Not disarming Hezbollah is a tremendous prize to extremists in the Arab and Muslim world and a death blow to moderates,” Mr Shalom said. “We will work to bring down the Government.”

    Likud may team up with the influential far-right Yisrael Beitenu (“Israel is our home”) party to form a unified opposition bloc.

    Yisrael Beitenu politician Esterina Tarman said Mr Netanyahu, rather than Mr Olmert, had proved the country’s true leader during the crisis. “The words of Netanyahu have been inspirational to many during this time of war, and the nation appreciates his leadership,” she said.

    Mr Olmert, a career politician with little military experience, has suffered by comparison with his hawkish predecessor Ariel Sharon, who suffered a catastrophic stroke in January.

    A professional soldier and hero of the 1973 Yom Kippur War, Mr Sharon had won the confidence of a security-obsessed nation.

    The crisis has caused Mr Olmert’s public approval rating to plummet in recent polls. In one, fewer than half of those questioned said he was doing a good job, down from more than three-quarters at the beginning of the fighting a month ago.

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Hey Ruvy, now you and Ahmadinejad can duke it out blog to blog, lol! From a BBC news report:

    Iran’s president launches weblog

    Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has joined a burgeoning international community – by starting his own weblog.

    The launch of http://www.ahmadinejad.ir was reported on state TV, which urged users to send in messages to the president.

    Mr Ahmadinejad’s first posting, entitled autobiography, tells of his childhood, Iran’s Islamic revolution, and the country’s war with Iraq.

    The blog includes a poll asking if users think the US and Israel are trying to trigger a new world war.

    There is a postform for users to send in questions for the president, and a picture gallery containing a series of images of the blogger himself.

    The move by Mr Ahmadinejad comes amid continuing internet censorship by the Iranian government.

    In a country where the media is strictly controlled, the internet has become the main forum for dissident voices.

    But in its bid to crack down on anti-government bloggers, the government uses one of the most sophisticated internet censorship systems in the world.

    Such restrictions will not pose a problem for the president. However, at the end of his first posting – which runs to more than 2,000 words in English – he promises to try to keep things “shorter and simpler” in future.

    “With hope in God, I intend to wholeheartedly complete my talk in future with allotted 15 minutes,” he writes.

    Mr Ahmadinejad’s first entry on his blog, which is available in Persian, Arabic, English and French and includes an RSS feed to get future new entries to readers, is dated Friday.

    He begins by telling users of his humble origins. “During the era that nobility was a prestige and living in a city was perfection, I was born in a poor family in a remote village of Garmsar – approximately 90 kilometres west of Tehran,” he writes.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Received by e-mail, courtesy of Steve Klein…

    The following are the final paragraphs of Anshell Pfeffer’s article in today’s J. Post. If there is any reason to be at least temporarily hopeful, it is this:

    ….Meanwhile, it’s hard to see where Olmert goes from here. Save for a dramatic military operation, perhaps a well-deserved attack on the Iranian nuclear project, he has no way to regain his lost credibility.

    A month and a half ago, the IDF and police were preparing to dismantle three settler outposts, a dress rehearsal for Olmert’s master-plan, realignment. Few believe that in the current public climate, especially since the settlers’ share in the war’s death-toll has been so high, Olmert can go ahead with what was the main plank of his electoral platform.

    Painful retreats and peace-plans are only possible under popular prime ministers – Menachem Begin with the Egyptian treaty, Yitzhak Rabin at Oslo and Ariel Sharon and his disengagement. A discredited prime minister going ahead with such a controversial plan, whatever its merits, is a recipe for chaos and even civil war. And without realignment, the entire justification for Olmert’s premiership will have dissolved. Less than six months since the election and once this war is over, Olmert’s sole aim will be to survive as PM. The moment that happens to a prime minister, it’s a sure sign that the countdown to his departure has begun.

    The full article can be read here.

  • Les Slater

    Clavos #80

    I read your whole #73, both first, and last halfs, including your humbuging.

    The point of my #76 is that the term ‘conservative’ is nebulously subjective.

    Humbug?

    I consider myself conservative and that article did not seem out of place.

    Les

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    I’m not objecting to their orientation, Ruvy. Only to their deceptive self-characterization as being conservative, and Les’ perpetuation of that deceit in his comment that cited them.

    Well Clavos, Les now maintains that HE is conservative, so that explains a lot. I actually agree. Dogmatic adherence to Marxism can certainly be seen as a conservative position.

    Dave

  • Les Slater

    Dave #91

    Thanks for your wisdom.

    Judging by your remarks in #53, you ain’t got a clue what communism or Marxism are, dogmatic or otherwise.

    No working class in the Middle East, sheesh!

    Les

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Les, unlike you, I’ve actually lived under communist rule, and I’ve certainly read all the basic literature. So I know both what communism is supposed to be and what it becomes in reality.

    As for the lack of a working class in the middle east, that certainly remains true in the sense that Marx used the term. There’s too much autonomy and tribalism for most middle eastern people who are not part of the ruling elite to function as the revolutionary class you’d like to see there.

    Dave

  • Les Slater

    Dave #93

    Your first paragraph is contradictory. You say that you lived under ‘communist’ rule. You say that you read all the basic literature and concluded that what it was supposed to be and its reality were not the same.

    Did it ever occur to you that in reality they were not the same? That what you were living under was not communism?

    Les

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    You need to read a bit more precisely, Les. What I said is that having lived under communist rule AND read the literature, I know BOTH what it is supposed to be and what it really turns into.

    Obviously Soviet Russia was not real communism by the time I lived there, but no other state has been able to impose communism without rapidly becoming a dictatorship of some sort.

    Dave

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Communism has a lot in common with today’s faux-conservative movement. Both are obsessed with “family values” such as persecuting homosexuals and outlawing recreational drugs. Both destroy natural resources with thoughtless disregard (Communists in their pursuit of ideology, capitalists in their pursuit of short term profit). Both consider themselves the one true and right system for governing all human relationships everywhere.

    BBSNews strikes me as more conservative (in the old fashioned sense of actually wanting to CONSERVE something) than any of the right-wing engines of destruction that like to drape themselves in flag-pattern towels these days.

  • Les Slater

    Dave #95

    “Obviously Soviet Russia was not real communism by the time I lived there,”

    So, you were taught what communism is by an entity that you understand not to be communist but claimed to be just that.

    Who guided you in reading the basic literature? Not only was the state not communist but there were no communists.

    Where did you get the idea that Russia was ever a communist state? You claim to know that Russia was not really communist. When did Russia become not really communist?

    Russia never claimed that they had achieved a socialist, nevermind a communist society, until …

    Stalin was the first to PROCLAIM that Russia was communist. Anybody that objected was shot.

    Les

  • SHARK

    Ruvy: “…It’s just us Jewboys and A-rabs getting our asses killed.”

    SHARK: True, but once again… there goes the neighborhood!

    Ruvy: “Just… cheer when one of us drops dead from a bullet, a bomb or a missile. You’re footing the bill, so you might as well enjoy the entertainment.”

    SHARK: “one — I would never cheer death. two — I didn’t pay for shit. And three: interesting how Ruvy blames Americans for BOTH interfering and footing the bill. WHAT’S YOUR [Israel’s] FUCKING RESPONSIBILITY IN ALL THIS?

    Ruvy: “…But keep the crap about my prehistoric rituals to yourself.”

    SHARK: “Your prehistoric rituals are PART OF THE PROBLEM, Brother. Same with yer wife-beating, hand-chopping, suicide-loving, heavenly-virgin lusting, five head-butts toward Mecca per day COUSINS ACROSS THE BORDER. YALL ARE LOCKED IN A FUCKED-UP FAITH-BASED MUTUAL ASSURED ANNIHILATION. If you and those prehistoric Arab assholes cared more about your kids’ futures than you do about your fucking egos, things might could improve. But I wouldn’t bet on it.

    RUVY: “…when it comes time, you’ll understand just how the leviathan relates to the shark…”

    SHARK: “Cool. I just love the tough-guy talk/death-threats wrapped up in Biblical analogies. Yall are good at that. How fucking admirable. That must have been written by that Wrathful Guy, right?”

    RUVY: “…There’s gonna be lots of fireworks for you to enjoy later on… I’d move that lawn chair back some, little fishy. Them boys with the fireworks have itchy fingers…”

    SHARK: “Tell that to all the dead innocent Lebanese women and children. Bub.”

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    SHARK: “one — I would never cheer death. two — I didn’t pay for shit. And three: interesting how Ruvy blames Americans for BOTH interfering and footing the bill. WHAT’S YOUR [Israel’s] FUCKING RESPONSIBILITY IN ALL THIS?”

    My my, in all the snarkiness lies hidden an intelligent question. You’re falling down on the job, Shark.

    Our responsibility – our shameful responsibilty – is that we haven’t hung the bastards who have allowed us to get into this sick situation – namely Mr. Olmert and his “cabinet.”

    I can blame your government for both interfering and footing the bill in a war where Jews die, and I’ll be right. But I can’t slide out of the responsibility that we Israelis all share for not having executed traitors with no balls and having allowed them to continue in office. We could have had leaders who said “no!!!” and who employed a truly disproportionate response – one to teach not merely Arabs but the entire world not to fuck with our nation and kill our people.

    There is no reason why a single building should be standing in Anjar or Damascus, Syria, or a single bunker left undestroyed. There is no reason that an Israeli force should not have attacked HizbAllah from the north or east or west, NOT along the line of expected atttack like they did, and creamed the bastards – no matter how many civilians died in the process. There is no reason not to teach Arabs to run for their lives when they see terrorists. This is the bsasic lesson they need to learn in HizbAllahland.

    That way, we live and they die. I can scream all I want, but the blood of my fellow jews is on my hands as well…

    Jews died for nothing. That is my responsibility in all this.

  • Dean

    Ruvy dons his ten-gallon hat and solemnly announces to his crew, as the soundtrack plays a snare-drum accentuated theme song: “When Johnny Comes Marching Home”:

    Well, boys, I reckon this is it. Nuclear (pronounced ‘nookular’) combat, toe-to-toe with the A-rabs.

    Over the intercom, Ruvy delivers a memorable, patriotic speech to his men – a parody of the totally-loyal Israeli sent on a glory mission:

    Now look, boys. I ain’t much of a hand at makin’ speeches. But I got a pretty fair idea that somethin’ doggoned important’s going on up there. And I got a fair idea of the kind of personal emotions that some of you fellas may be thinkin’.

    Heck, I reckon you wouldn’t even be human beins if you didn’t have some pretty strong personal feelings about nuclear combat. But I want you to remember one thing – the folks back home is a countin’ on ya, and by golly, we ain’t about to let ‘em down.

    Tell ya somethin’ else – this thing turns out to be half as important as I figure it just might be, I’d say that you’re all in line for some important promotions an’ personal citations when this thing’s over with.

    That goes for every last one of ya, regardless of your height, weight, or your hat size. Now, let’s get this thing on the hump. We got some killin’ to do.

  • Martin Lav

    yippy kiA motha fucka

  • JustOneMan

    Well well well…another fine mess youve gotten us into!

    Dont worry the US will once again clean up mess due toe Israeli incompentence….within the next 12 months the US will be forced to bomb Iran beacuse Isreal doesnt have the balls…cut the head of the snake not the tail!

  • http://www.fifthdentist.blogspot.com The Fifth Dentist

    Ruvy–

    The world isn’t going to end. It may end for you unfortunately, but it’s not going to end for the rest of us, despite your fondest hopes. Now you want Damascus to be leveled, Olmert and his cabinet to be hanged, and all the Palestinians on the West Bank to be forcibly expelled? Granted, things look bad now, but I assure you that if any of your medieval-style solutions were implemented, things would look considerably worse: that is for the vast majority of us who don’t desire to act out a real-life version of “The Road Warrior.”

    Sharon’s unilateral disengagement strategy was far from stupid. In fact, I’d say it was pretty fucking brilliant. You can tell that from the Palestinians’ negative and scared response to it. No doubt, Israel is susceptible to missile attacks. Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do about that except retaliate. That’s what Olmert did. He also appears to be smart enough to disengage before things got completely out of hand.

    I still haven’t heard any reasonble alternatives to Sharon’s plan. In particular, your crazy-assed end of days bullshit is not what I’d call a reasonable solution to the present crisis.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    First, let’s look at the news.

    From Israel National News:

    IDF Begins Withdrawal from Lebanon; Hizbullah Refuses to Disarm
    15:01 Aug 15, ’06 / 21 Av 5766
    by Hillel Fendel

    Paratrooper brigade reservists began returning to Israel this morning. Hizbullah fired rockets at them, but missed; Israel did not respond. UNIFIL chief says he can only “beg” sides not to shoot.

    The trek home along dusty roads and brush in southern Lebanon began a short while after midnight. Around the same time, other Israeli forces began reducing their presence and taking up positions overlooking villages used by Hizbullah.

    One unit brought with it, on a stretcher, the body of the only female IDF casualty in Lebanon – 26-year-old Keren Tendler of Rehovot, a flight mechanic who was one of five soldiers killed when Hizbullah downed an Israel Air Force helicopter on Saturday night. Her body was recovered only late last night, in an emotional mission, because of heavy fire rained on the area by Hizbullah.

    The Lebanese Army says it will begin deploying its forces in the south of the country in the coming days. Israel fears, however – and this is confirmed by Lebanese officials’ statements – that Hizbullah terrorists will try to both return to the villages as early as today, and to integrate into the Lebanese Army. It has been said in Beirut that because of Hizbullah leader Nasrallah’s refusal to disarm – in violation of the ceasefire agreement – the Lebanese Army may not be able to deploy in the south. The two Hizbullah ministers in the Lebanese Government also said that the terrorist organization would not disarm.

    The London-based Al Hayat newspaper reports that a “compromise” agreement being worked on in Lebanon would allow the terrorists to keep weapons – but only in a concealed manner.

    Given Hizbullah’s refusal to abide by the disarming clause, as well as “the previous poor performance of UNIFIL, it is difficult to envisage a situation in which international peacekeepers would act vigorously to force the disarmament of Hizbullah south of the Litani.” This understatement sum-up was penned by commentator Dominic Moran for the Zurich-based ISN (International Relations and Security Network) Security Watch.

    UNIFIL Can Only Beg
    UNIFIL’s helplessness was confirmed by its chief, Maj.-Gen. Alain Pellegrini of France, speaking on BBC last night. Asked what action UNIFIL takes if it sees a ceasefire violation, Pellegrini said, “I try first to make them stop – I call both parties… and I explain to them the situation and I beg them to cease their fire; I am not strong enough to enforce any cessation of confrontation in the field.”

    Pellegrini, a former French military attache in Beirut who headed the Middle East Division of French military intelligence, said it is “urgent” that the international forces come to support the Lebanese army and reinforce UNIFIL.

    As of Tuesday, 118 Israeli soldiers and civilians remained in northern hospitals with wartime wounds. Of them 32 are in serious condition. In Rambam Hospital in Haifa alone, 26 are in serious condition. The hospital absorbed nearly 800 patients throughout the month of fighting.

    IDF Northern District Commander Brig.-Gen. Alon Friedman estimates that the reserve soldiers who were called up at the beginning of the warfare will be released in the coming days.

    Thousands of northern residents are beginning to stream home. They will be treated to free flights and bus rides home from today until Friday, at government expense. In addition, the Israel Construction Center is offering free expert advise in construction and finance to all those whose homes were damaged by Katyusha rockets.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Now, for some news analysis – from, of all places, Haaretz. Let’s all bear in mind that destroying the “settlement enterprise” in Judea and Samaria formed the core of the plank of the person called prime minister here, Ehud Olmert. Further, let’s all bear in mind that Haaretz has been pusing just this for over a decade.

    Let’s all watch as Aluf Benn devours a plateful of crow…

    Last update – 15:54 15/08/2006
    West Bank withdrawal panel: No solution to rocket threat
    By Aluf Benn, Haaretz Correspondent

    The realignment committee set up to evaluate the idea of a unilateral withdrawal from most of the West Bank presented senior political officials with its report in which they raised legal, security and economic difficulties that are likely to inhibit the plan’s implementation.

    A source with access to the report said its main conclusion is that Israel has no security solution to the threat of rockets launched from the West Bank against population centers. The report’s authors assume that following a unilateral Israeli pullout from the West Bank, Hamas will takeover and deploy rockets. Currently, the only solution to the missile threat that the Israel Defense Forces has to offer is its actual presence in the territories and control of the high ground.

    Another conclusion is that Israel will not gain international recognition for an end to the occupation if it continues to hold significant portions of the West Bank. Similarly, it is doubtful whether such recognition would be forthcoming even if it unilaterally withdraws to the Green Line.

    Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni appointed the committee late last year during her tenure as justice minister. The committee was instructed to delineate Israel’s interests in the West Bank and the considerations that need to be considered for a unilateral pullout and evacuation of settlements. The committee was not instructed to examine how a pullout following an agreement with the Palestinian Authority would look, nor was it ordered to evaluate the impact of an internal rift with settlers.

    Former director general at the Justice Ministry, Aharon Abramovitch, was appointed to head the committee. Abramovitch is now the Foreign Ministry’s director general.

    The voluminous report was presented to Livni several weeks ago, and since then, Livni and Abramovitch held two or three meetings with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert regarding its findings. Their last meeting took place before the outbreak of war.

    The committee showed that Israel’s two main interests are contradictory: on the one hand, Israel wishes to relinquish responsibility over the Palestinians as an occupying force; on the other, it would like to ensure that the territory it pulls out from is demilitarized. Controlling an “external envelope” of the West Bank borders will make it easier for Israel to prevent the transfer of weapons into the area, but will increase the level of responsibility vis-a-vis the Palestinians.

    A compromise solution examined by the committee is for the Allenby crossing on the Jordanian border to be opened to Palestinian traffic, under international supervision, similar to that which exists at the Rafah crossing on the border of Egypt and the Gaza Strip.

    Another possibility is for the Palestinian Authority to establish a state on territory evacuated by Israel, and Israel would reach an agreement with it on demilitarization.

    According to the committee, the government’s first decision will have to be the line to which it is willing to pull back. This will determine the legal (degree of Israel’s responsibility), security (IDF repositioning and demilitarization), and economic implications (compensation to settlers that would be evacuated) of such a move.

    In examining whether the model used in the disengagement from the Gaza Strip could be adopted in the case of the West Bank, the committee found there are about 20 substantive differences between the two cases.

    One of the differences is the impact on neighboring countries. Egypt agreed to participate in the disengagement, and deployed forces along the border with the Gaza Strip. Jordan, meanwhile, considers the unilateral withdrawal of Israel from the West Bank a grave threat to its national security.

    One of the alternatives examined by the committee is transfering the territory to international responsibility. Another is for the evacuation of all Israeli citizens, but maintaining an IDF presence there. A more limited settlement evacuation was also discussed.

    The committee assessed that the state economy can sustain compensation for 15,000 settler families, even though the cost would be “astronomical.”

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Fifth Dentist,

    If you wish to defend an idiot, be my guest. Take the plane over here and explain to the families of the soldiers who died, why their deaths weren’t in vain. While you are at it, you should explain why kicking out 10,000 Jews from their homes in Gush Qatif was such a fantastic idea and why kicking me out of my home in Samaria is a great idea too. You will get a less than sympathetic hearing from the many families in Judea and Samaria. I’ll come along and translate the Hebrew if you need it, But I won’t defend you when the bereaved fathers, mothers, wives, brothers and sisters of the deceased try to tear you to pieces. Even the peaceniks I know here have no use for Olmert.

    Elsewhere, I have presented a plan for peace. And I reiterate that it appears to me that any plan for peace will have to be faith based, rather than based on the bought out politicians of Israel and the Arab countries. Part of that solution will have to be based on gutting Islam of the Wahhabi influence that tales it to extremes of violence and threatens to lead all of us to a nuclear conflict.

    A second part will have to be based on taming Iran. Part of that effort will have t include destroying HizbAllah. A failure to do so will certainly lead to a nuclear conflagration. This war has done more than destroy the economy of the northern third of the country. It has placed huge obstacles in front of my own plans for peace. Destroying HizbAllah will require a disciplined force of soldiers with the kind of equipment and training using that equipment that only this country can supply.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    An FREE Israeli newspaper that has popped up at the Egged Central Bus Station in Jerusalem lately had in today’s issue a caricature of Narallah celebrating as he came out of his bunker, while showing Olmert descending into one in fear…

    The Olmert government must go
    Caroline Glick, THE JERUSALEM POST
    Aug. 14, 2006

    Copyright 1995-2006 The Jerusalem Post

    From all sides of the political spectrum calls are being raised for the establishment of an official commission of inquiry to investigate the Olmert government’s incompetent management of the war in Lebanon. These calls are misguided.

    We do not need a commission to know what happened or what has to happen. The Olmert government has failed on every level. The Olmert government must go.

    The Knesset must vote no confidence in this government and new elections must be carried out as soon as the law permits. If the Knesset hesitates in taking this required step, then the people of Israel must take to the streets in mass demonstrations and demand that our representatives send Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, Defense Minister Amir Peretz and their comrades out to pasture.

    Every aspect of the government’s handling of the war has been a failure. Take relief efforts as an example. For five weeks the government ignored the humanitarian disaster in the North where over one million Israelis are under missile assault. The government developed no comprehensive plan for organizing relief efforts to feed citizens in bomb shelters or for evacuating them.

    And then there is the military failure. The IDF suffers from acute leadership failures – brought to Israel courtesy of Ariel Sharon who hacked away at the General Staff, undermined its sense of mission and treated our generals like office boys just as he decimated the Likud by undermining its political vision and promoting its weakest members.

    Yet, guiding the generals to make the right decisions and finding the generals capable of making them in wartime is the government’s responsibility. It was the government’s responsibility to critique and question the IDF’s operational model of aerial warfare and to cut its losses when after two or three days it was clear that the model was wrong. At that point the government should have called up the reserves and launched a combined ground and air offensive.

    But the government didn’t feel like it. It wanted to win the war on the cheap. And when the air campaign did not succeed, it abandoned its war goals, declared victory and sued for a cease-fire. When the public objected, after waiting two precious weeks, the government called up the reserves but then waited another unforgivable 10 days before committing them to battle.

    All the while, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni did her best to demoralize the IDF and the public by publicly proclaiming that there is no military solution to what is clearly a military conflict.

    OLMERT’S DECISION Friday to begin the ground offensive was by all accounts motivated not by a newfound understanding that this is a real war, but by the headlines in the newspapers that morning calling for his resignation. Yet, by Friday, the IDF had only 48 hours to achieve the objectives it had waited a month to receive Olmert’s permission to accomplish.

    Diplomatically, in the space of five weeks the government managed to undermine Israel’s alliance with America; to hand Syria, Hizbullah and Iran the greatest diplomatic achievements they have ever experienced; and to flush down the toilet the unprecedented international support that US President Bush handed to Israel on a silver platter at the G-8 summit.

    The UN cease-fire that Olmert, Livni and Peretz applaud undercuts Israel’s sovereignty; protects Hizbullah; lets Iran and Syria off the hook; lends credibility to our enemies’ belief that Israel can be destroyed; emboldens the Palestinians to launch their next round of war; and leaves IDF hostages Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev in captivity.

    Israel’s diplomatic maneuvers were cut to fit the size of our Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni who believes that her job is limited to being nice to other foreign ministers when they call her up on the telephone. In an interview with Yediot Aharonot over the weekend, Livni defended her decision not to engage in public diplomacy by claiming that this is not an important enough task for the foreign minister. It makes sense that this would be her view because as one who understands neither diplomacy nor English, she is incapable of conducting public diplomacy.

    Livni argued that the job of the foreign minister is “to create diplomatic processes” – whatever that means. She also claimed that the best way to gain international support is not by publicly arguing Israel’s case, but through back door discussions devoted to developing good relations with other foreign ministers. This is ridiculous. The job of the foreign minister is to defend Israel and advance Israel’s national interests to foreigners, not to be their friend.

    ASIDE FROM the fact that the government’s bungling of the military mission meant that Olmert and Livni sprinted to the negotiating table empty handed, the reason that the UN Security Council cease-fire resolution ignores every single Israeli demand is because Israel didn’t aggressively pursue its goals. While the Lebanese and the Arabs massed all their forces and pressured the UN, the Foreign Ministry asked US Jewish leaders to say nothing about the draft resolution and to make no public objections to that diplomatic process Tzipi and Ehud “created” with their “friends.” And so Israel’s positions were ignored.

    Yet the reason that this incompetent, embarrassment of a government must go is not simply because it has delivered Israel the worst defeat in its history. This government must go because every day it sits in power it exacerbates the damage it has already caused and increases the dangers to Israel.

    Iran has been emboldened. Its success in the war is now being used by the ayatollahs to support their claim of leadership over the Arab world. In evidence of Iran’s success, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak met in Cairo with Iran’s Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki. So now, after 27 years of official estrangement, Egypt is moving towards establishing full diplomatic relations with Teheran.

    The Palestinians have been emboldened. Hamas leaders and spokesmen are openly stating that just as Israel’s withdrawal from Lebanon in May 2000 precipitated the Palestinian terror war in September 2000, so Israel’s current defeat in Lebanon will spur the outbreak of a new Palestinian terror war against Israel today.

    THE AMERICANS have lost faith in Israel as an ally. After he gave Israel every opportunity to win this war, even signaling clearly that Israel should feel free to go as far as Beirut if necessary, President Bush was convinced that Olmert simply didn’t want to fight. The Americans were shocked by Israel’s performance. They know that we can win when we set our mind to it and were flummoxed when presented with an Israeli leadership that refused to even try.

    Today we have 30,000 soldiers in Lebanon with an unclear mission. Because of the failure of this government, Israel now needs to contend with an emboldened Hizbullah protected by Kofi Annan. Already on Sunday, Annan sent a letter to Olmert instructing him that once the cease-fire is put into effect, the IDF will be barred from taking action even if it comes under attack. As far as Annan is concerned, resolution 1701 says that if Israel is attacked, all it is allowed to do is call his secretary.

    Given that both the Lebanese army and the countries which plan to send forces to Lebanon all say that they will not deploy to the south until after Hizbullah is dismantled, it is clear that the military mission is still to be accomplished.

    In its helter-skelter offensive over the weekend, the IDF performed brilliantly as it tried to accomplish in 48 hours what it had been denied permission to accomplish for an entire month. Still now, in the diplomatic minefield this government set for it, the IDF remains the only military force capable of fighting and dismantling Hizbullah. But there can be no doubt that it will not be accomplished under this government.

    There will be time to inquire into what has gone wrong in the IDF. There will be time to fire the generals that need to be fired. But we don’t need a commission to determine what we need to do. Because of the Olmert government’s failures, ever greater battles await us. As the dangers mount by the hour, we must replace this misbegotten government with one that can defend us.

    This article can also be read here.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    More fallout from Mr. Olmert’s Little War

    From: IMRA
    Date: 15 August 2006 00:25:17 GMT+03:00

    Globes poll shows drastic fall in support for gov’t

    Only 6% of those polled think that the agreement achieves most of Israel’s
    goals.
    Globes [online], Israel business news
    correspondent 14 Aug 06 17:12

    The first political outcome of the 33 days of war has been a drastic drop in support for Kadima and Labor, according to a “Globes-Smith” poll conducted by Rafi Smith.

    The survey, which was conducted just before the ceasefire went into effect, reveals that were elections held today, Kadima would win less than 20 Knesset seats (compared with 29 in the last election in February), while Labor would get 12 seats only. This result represents a marked change from the trend during the past month of war in the north, when the public expressed its support for the government and the IDF, with views that could be described as “patriotic.”

    The poll also reveals that around half the public think the ceasefire will hold up for a month, while 35% think it will last no more than a week.

    Only 6% of respondents think that UN Security Council Resolution 1701 is good and achieves most of Israel’s goals, and only a quarter of those polled think that this is the best agreement Israel could achieve, under the
    circumstances. 38% feel the agreement is not good but that there is no alternative but to accept it. In all, 66% think the agreement is not a good one.

    58% of respondents feel that Israel achieved only a few of its goals, or achieved nothing at all, against 16% who thought so 11 days ago. Only 3% feel that Israel has achieved all, or most of its goals, against more than a third who thought so a week ago.

    August 14, 2006

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This was received via e-mail courtesy of Aryeh Zelasko.

    This was received by the coordinator for an organization trying to help the internal refugees created by Ariel Sharon’s “brilliant” strategy of making settled people homeless and jobless, a “brilliant” strategy of sacrificing Israel’s security for a few pleasant slaps on the back – a lot of good that will so a man with a rotting brain, eh?
    ————————————————-
    Subject: confession – must read!!

    Enclosed is the translation of the letter I got today.

    Friends and family members are being injured and killed.
    Some of us are without a roof on our heads.
    I closed my business since the beginning of the battle and I don’t know what will happen.
    We are wandering between family and good people.
    Our family life has been impaired.
    I never thought that I, a Haifa resident for 30 years, would be a refugee in my own land.
    Every thing sound so familiar from the close past.

    During 5 years you coped with bombs – and I didn’t care.
    You buried family and friends – and I was indifferent.
    You found yourselves without a home, like that and you never had someone that listened to you.
    Even when you came to visit me to my house, to explain, to convince, to share your feelings with me – I refused to listen to you.
    It has already been a week. I am out of my house, without my regular routine, it is very hard to me – but the empathy, the support, and people identifying with our plight helped me go on.
    You , don’t even have that.
    You – In guest houses, hotels and even in tents- It’s not easy to say: “Who cares?!”

    People from Gush Katif and the Shomron!
    Forgive me!
    Forgive us for letting you on your own.
    Forgive us for not understanding you.
    I am not a religious man, and not a mystic person.
    But we cannot ignore the deep relation between my attitude towards you And the price that I am paying now for my understanding.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Arutz Sheva reports:

    Manhigut Yehudit: Chief of Staff Corrupt and Unfit to Lead IDF
    Tuesday, August 15, 2006 / 21 Av 5766

    (IsraelNN.com) The Manhigut Yehudit (Jewish Leadership) movement, led by Moshe Feiglin, has issued a call for the immediate dismissal of IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz.

    “An investigative committee is not needed in order to expose the moral decay of he who accepted his position in order to expel thousands of Jews from their homes, and thereby abandoned the country to be existentially threatened,” Manhigut states. “One who deals with selling his private financial portfolio, at a time when he is supposed to be leading the army to war, is a man who is corrupt to the core, and is unfit to stand at the head of the Israel Defense Forces.”

    The Maariv newspaper revealed Tuesday that just three hours following the kidnapping of two IDF soldiers and amidst the discussion of the start of the war, Chief of Staff Halutz instructed that 120,000 shekels worth of stocks of his be sold off. In the following days, the stock exchange fell by 8%. Halutz says the sale followed previous losses and was not connected to the threat of war.

  • http://www.fifthdentist.blogspot.com The Fifth Dentist

    Ruvy: “Elsewhere, I have presented a plan for peace.”

    For those of us who missed it, what exactly is your plan for peace?

  • Dean

    A piece of Egypt, a piece of Jordan, a piece of Syria, a piece of Lebanon. Most of all, the West Bank and Gaza.

  • Dean

    I can no longer sit back and allow Islamic infiltration , Islamic indoctrination, Islamic subversion, and the international Islamic conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids…

    –Base Commander Jack E. Ripper, a.k.a. Ruvy

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Fifth Dentist;

    I’ll get to that, but first I need to post news and news analyses.

    I gotta tell y’all, favorable comment on Olmert and company is hard to find.

    This first piece deals with our beloved neighbor, Bashir Assad of Syria.

    These are excerpts from the article, which can be read in full here.

    The president slammed out at the suggestion that “Israel has the right to
    defend itself” as a reaction due to the attack staged by the resistance
    noting” had we applied this through a math equation on the Palestinians,
    this would mean they had the right to react in a way they destroys or kills
    in Israel.”

    The president underlined the recent aggression was “premeditated” in light
    of three tracks, the first is the UNSC resolution 1559 and the assassination
    of President al-Hariri as well as pressures put on Syria, and the
    resistance for the subjugation.

    He added the second track is the failure of the US occupation in Iraq, and
    the third is the burying of the peace process and transforming it into a
    military option as to overcome the Arabs and then exempt Israel from every
    commitment towards the Arabs.

    He noted that before this tragic situation, resistance emerged in the Arab
    arena as the only solution to restore usurped rights.

    President Assad said that Israel tried many times and is still trying to
    become part of the Great Middle East depending on a main idea that every
    Arab generation to come will show more acceptance to Israel from the
    previous ones and therefore more compliance; then the issue is that of time
    which is in Israel’s interests.

    “What Israel should know is that every generation has more hatred towards it
    than the generation before. Hatred is not a good word. We don’t hate and we
    don’t encourage hatred but Israel did not leave room in our region except
    for hatred, “the president added.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The next two pieces are analyses, taking two differing views of how the HizbAllah and the Iranians have come out of this conflict.

    The first is from Stratfor Strategic Forecasting Inc.

    GEOPOLITICAL INTELLIGENCE REPORT
    08.15.2006
    Cease-Fire: Shaking Core Beliefs in the Middle East

    The emphases in the Stratfor article are mine (RiJ).

    By George Friedman

    An extraordinary thing happened in the Middle East this month. An Israeli army faced an Arab army and did not defeat it — did not render it incapable of continued resistance. That was the outcome in 1948, 1956, 1967, 1973 and 1982. But it did not happen in 2006. Should this outcome stand, it will represent a geopolitical
    earthquake in the region — one that fundamentally shifts expectations and behaviors on all sides.

    It is not that Hezbollah defeated the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). It did not. By most measures, it got the worst of the battle.
    Nevertheless, it has been left standing at the end of the battle. Its forces in the Bekaa Valley and in the Beirut area have been battered, though how severely is not yet clear. Its forces south of the Litani River were badly hurt by the Israeli attack. Nevertheless, the
    correlation of forces was such that the Israelis should have dealt Hezbollah, at least in southern Lebanon, a devastating blow, such
    that resistance would have crumbled. IDF did not strike such a blow — so as the cease-fire took effect, Hezbollah continued to resist,
    continued to inflict casualties on Israeli troops and continued to fire rockets at Israel. Hezbollah has not been rendered incapable of
    continued resistance, and that is unprecedented.

    In the regional equation, there has been an immutable belief: that, at the end of the day, IDF was capable of imposing a unilateral
    military solution on any Arab force. Israel might have failed to achieve its political goals in its various wars, but it never failed to impose its will on an enemy force. As a result, all neighboring nations and entities understood there were boundaries that could be crossed only if a country was willing to accept a crushing Israeli response. All neighboring countries — Egypt, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon, prior to the collapses of central authority — understood
    this and shaped their behavior in view of it. Even when Egypt and Syria initiated war in 1973, it was with an understanding that their
    war aims had to be limited, that they had to accept the probability of defeat and had to focus on postwar political maneuvers rather than
    on expectations of victory.

    The Egyptians withdrew from conflict and accepted the Sinai as a buffer zone, largely because 1973 convinced them that continued
    conflict was futile. Jordan, since 1970, has been effectively under the protection of Israel against threats from Syria and internal
    dangers as well. Syria has not directly challenged the Israelis since 1973, preferring indirect challenges and, not infrequently,
    accommodation with Israel. The idea of Israel as a regional superpower has been the defining principle.

    In this conflict, what Hezbollah has achieved is not so much a defeat of Israel as a demonstration that destruction in detail is not an inevitable outcome of challenging Israel. Hezbollah has showed that it is possible to fight to a point that Israel prefers a cease-fire and political settlement to a military victory followed by political accommodation. Israel might not have lost any particular battle, and a careful analysis of the outcome could prove its course to be reasonable. But the loss of the sense — and historical reality — of the inevitability of Israeli military victory is a far more profound defeat for Israel, as this clears the way for other regional powers
    to recalculate risks.

    Hezbollah’s Preparations

    Hezbollah meticulously prepared for the war by analyzing Israeli strengths and weaknesses. Israel is casualty-averse by dint of demographics. It therefore resorts to force multipliers such as air power and armor, combined with excellent reconnaissance and tactical intelligence. Israel uses mobility to cut lines of supply and air power to shatter centralized command-and-control, leaving enemy
    forces disorganized, unbalanced and unsupplied.

    Hezbollah sought to deny Israel its major advantages. The group created a network of fortifications in southern Lebanon that did not
    require its fighters to maneuver and expose themselves to Israeli air power. Hezbollah stocked those bunkers so fighters could conduct
    extended combat without the need for resupply. It devolved command to the unit level, making it impossible for a decapitation strike by Israel to affect the battlefield. It worked in such a way that, while the general idea of the defense architecture was understood by Israeli military intelligence, the kind of detailed intelligence used — for example, in 1967 — was denied the Israelis. Hezbollah acquired anti-tank weapons from Syria and Iran that prevented Israeli
    armor from operating without prior infantry clearing of anti-tank teams. And by doing that, the group forced the Israelis to accept
    casualties in excess of what could, apparently, be tolerated. In short, it forced the Israelis to fight Hezbollah’s type of war, rather than the other way around.

    Hezbollah then initiated war at the time and place of its choosing. There has been speculation that Israel planned for such a war. That might be the case, but it is self-evident that, if the Israelis wanted this war, they were not expecting it when it happened. The opening of the war was not marked by the capture of two Israeli soldiers. Rather, it was the persistent and intense bombardment of Israel with missiles — including attacks against Israel’s third-largest city, Haifa — that compelled the Israelis to fight at a moment when they obviously were unprepared for war, and could not
    clearly decide either their war aims or strategy. In short, Hezbollah applied a model that was supposed to be Israel’s forte: The group prepared meticulously for a war and launched it when the enemy was unprepared for it.

    Hezbollah went on the strategic offensive and tactical defensive. It created a situation in which Israeli forces had to move to the
    operational and tactical offensive at the moment of Hezbollah’s highest level of preparedness. Israel could not decline combat, because of the rocket attacks against Haifa, nor was it really ready for war — particularly psychologically. The Israelis fought when Hezbollah chose and where Hezbollah chose. Their goals were complex,
    where Hezbollah’s were simple. Israel wanted to stop the rockets, break Hezbollah, suffer minimal casualties and maintain its image as
    an irresistible military force. Hezbollah merely wanted to survive the Israeli attack. The very complexity of Israel’s war aims, hastily
    crafted as they were, represented a failure point.

    The Foundations of Israeli Strategy

    It is important to think through the reasoning that led to Israeli operations. Israel’s actions were based on a principle promulgated by Ariel Sharon at the time of his leadership. Sharon argued that Israel must erect a wall between Israelis and Arabs. His reasoning stemmed from circumstances he faced during Israel’s ccupation of Lebanon:
    Counterinsurgency operations impose an nnecessary and unbearable cost in the long run, particularly when designed to protect
    peripheral interests. The losses may be small in number but, over the long term, they pose severe operational and morale challenges to the
    occupying force. Therefore, for Sharon, the withdrawal from Lebanon in the 1980s created a paradigm. Israel needed a national security
    policy that avoided the burden of counterinsurgency operations without first requiring a political settlement. In other words, Israel needed to end counterinsurgency operations by unilaterally ending the occupation and erecting a barrier between Israel and
    hostile populations.

    The important concept in Sharon’s thinking was not the notion of impenetrable borders. Rather, the important concept was the idea that Israel could not tolerate counterinsurgency operations because it could not tolerate casualties. Sharon certainly did not mean or think that Israel could not tolerate casualties in the event of a total conventional war, as in 1967 or 1973. There, extreme casualties were both tolerable and required. What he meant was that Israel could tolerate any level of casualties in a war of national survival but, paradoxically, could not tolerate low-level casualties in extended
    wars that did not directly involve Israel’s survival.

    Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was Sharon’s protege. Olmert was struggling with the process of disengagement in Gaza and looking toward the same in the West Bank. Lebanon, where Israel learned the costs of long-term occupation, was the last place he wanted to return to in July 2006. In his view, any operation in Lebanon would be tantamount to a return to counterinsurgency warfare and occupation.
    He did not recognize early on that Hezbollah was not fighting an insurgency, but rather a conventional war of fixed fortifications.

    Olmert did a rational cost-benefit analysis. First, if the principle of the Gaza withdrawal was to be followed, the last place the Israelis wanted to be was in Lebanon. Second, though he recognized that the rocket attacks were intolerable in principle, he also knew that, in point of fact, they were relatively ineffective. The number of casualties they were causing, or were likely to cause, would be much lower than those that would be incurred with an invasion and occupation of Lebanon. Olmert, therefore, sought a low-cost solution to the problem of Hezbollah.

    IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Dan Halutz offered an attractive alternative. Advocating what air force officers have advocated since the 1930s, Halutz launched an air campaign designed to destroy Hezbollah. It certainly hurt Hezbollah badly, particularly outside of southern Lebanon, where longer-range rocket launchers were located.

    However, in the immediate battlefield, limited tactical intelligence and the construction of the bunkers appear to have blunted the air
    attack. As Israeli troops moved forward across the border, they encountered a well-prepared enemy that undoubtedly was weakened but
    was not destroyed by the air campaign.

    At this point, Olmert had a strategic choice to make. He could mount a multi-divisional invasion of Lebanon, absorb large numbers of
    casualties and risk being entangled in a new counterinsurgency operation, or he could seek a political settlement. He chose a compromise. After appearing to hesitate, he launched an invasion that seemed to bypass critical Hezbollah positions (isolating them),
    destroying other positions and then opting for a cease-fire that would transfer responsibility for security to the Lebanese army and a
    foreign peacekeeping force.

    Viewed strictly from the standpoint of cost-benefit analysis, Olmert was probably right. Except that Hezbollah’s threat to Israel proper
    had to be eliminated, Israel had no interests in Lebanon. The cost of destroying Hezbollah’s military capability would have been extremely
    high, since it involved moving into the Bekaa Valley and toward Beirut — let alone close-quarters infantry combat in the south. And
    even then, over time, Hezbollah would recover. Since the threat could be eliminated only at a high cost and only for a certain period of
    time, the casualties required made no sense.

    This analysis, however, excluded the political and psychological consequences of leaving an enemy army undefeated on the battlefield.
    Again, do not overrate what Hezbollah did: The group did not conduct offensive operations; it was not able to conduct maneuver combat; it
    did not challenge the Israeli air force in the air. All it did was survive and, at the end of the war, retain its ability to threaten
    Israel with such casualties that Israel declined extended combat.

    Hezbollah did not defeat Israel on the battlefield. The group merely prevented Israel from defeating it. And that outcome marks a
    political and psychological triumph for Hezbollah and a massive defeat for Israel.

    Implications for the Region

    Hezbollah has demonstrated that total Arab defeat is not inevitable — and with this demonstration, Israel has lost its tremendous
    psychological advantage. If an operational and tactical defensive need not end in defeat, then there is no reason to assume that, at some point, an Arab offensive operation need not end in defeat. And if the outcome can be a stalemate, there is no reason to assume that
    it cannot be a victory. If all things are possible, then taking risks against Israel becomes rational.

    The outcome of this war creates two political crises.

    In Israel, Olmert’s decisions will come under serious attack. However correct his cost-benefit analysis might have been, he will be attacked over the political and psychological outcome. The entire legacy of Ariel Sharon — the doctrine of disengagement — will now
    come under attack.
    (it’s about time! RiJ) If Israel is thrown into political turmoil and indecision, the outcome on the battlefield will have been compounded
    politically.

    There is now also a crisis in Lebanon and in the Muslim world. In Lebanon, Hezbollah has emerged as a massive political force. Even in the multi-confessional society, Hezbollah will be a decisive factor.

    Syria, marginalized in the region for quite a while, becomes more viable as Hezbollah’s patron. Meanwhile, countries like Jordan and
    Egypt must reexamine their own assumptions about Israel. And in the larger Muslim world, Hezbollah’s victory represents a victory for
    Iran and the Shia. Hezbollah, a Shiite force, has done what others could not do. This will profoundly effect the Shiite position in Iraq
    — where the Shia, having first experienced the limits of American power, are now seeing the expanding boundaries of Iranian power.

    We would expect Hezbollah, Syria and Iran to move rapidly to exploit what advantage this has given them, before it dissipates. This will
    increase pressures not only for Israel, but also for the United States, which is engaged in combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as in a vague confrontation with Iran. For the Israelis and the Americans, restabilizing their interests will be difficult.

    Now, some would argue that Israel’s possession of weapons of mass destruction negates the consequences of regional perception of
    weakness. That might be the case, but the fact is that Israel’s possession of such weapons did not prevent attacks in 1973, nor were those weapons usable in this case. Consider the distances involved: Israeli forces have been fighting 10 miles from the border. And if
    Damascus were to be struck with the wind blowing the wrong way, northern Israel would be fried as well. Israel could undertake a nuclear strike against Iran, but the threat posed by Iran is indirect — since it is far away — and would not determine the outcome of any regional encounter. Certainly, the possession of nuclear weapons provides Israel a final line from which to threaten enemies — but by the time that became necessary, the issue already would have shifted massively against Israel. Nuclear weapons have not been used since World War II — in spite of many apparent opportunities to do so — because, as a weapon, the utility is more apparent than real. Possession of nuclear weapons can help guarantee regime survival, but
    not, by itself, military success.

    As it stands, logic holds that, given the tenuous nature of the cease-fire, casus belli on Israel’s part can be found and the war
    reinitiated. Given the mood in Israel, logic would dictate the fall of Olmert, his replacement by a war coalition and an attempt to
    change the outcome. But logic has not applied to Israeli thinking during this war. We have been consistently surprised by the choices Israel has made, and it is not clear whether this is simply Olmert’s problem or one that has become embedded in Israel.

    What is clear is that, if the current outcome stands, it will mean there has been a tremendous earthquake in the Middle East. It is cheap and easy to talk about historic events. But when a reality that has dominated a region for 58 years is shattered, it is historic. Perhaps this paves the way to new wars. Perhaps Olmert’s restraint opens the door for some sort of stable peace. But from where we sit, he was sufficiently aggressive to increase hostility toward Israel without being sufficiently decisive to achieve a desired military
    outcome.

    Hezbollah and Iran hoped for this outcome, though they did not really expect it. They got it. The question on the table now is what they
    will do with it.

    © Copyright 2006 Stratfor Strategic Forecasting Inc.
    All rights reserved.
    ————————————————-

    The second analysis comes from Debkafiles and gives a very different take in the conflict.

    Tehran Takes Gloomy View of the Lebanon War and Truce
    August 14, 2006, 3:35 PM (GMT+02:00)

    While the damage caused Israel’s military reputation tops Western assessments of the Lebanon war, DEBKAfile’s Iranian sources report an entirely different perception taking hold in ruling circles in Tehran.

    After UN Security Council resolution 1701 calling for a truce was carried Friday, Aug. 11, the heads of the regime received two separate evaluations of the situation in Lebanon – one from Iran’s foreign ministry and one from its supreme national security council. Both were bleak: their compilers were concerned that Iran had been manipulatively robbed of its primary deterrent asset ahead of a probable nuclear confrontation with the United States and Israel.

    While the foreign ministry report highlighted the negative aspects of the UN resolution, the council’s document complained that Hizballah
    squandered thousands of rockets – either by firing them into Israel or having them destroyed by the Israeli air force.

    The writer of this report is furious over the waste of Iran’s most important military investment in Lebanon merely for the sake of a
    conflict with Israeli over two kidnapped soldiers.

    It took Iran two decades to build up Hizballah’s rocket inventory.

    DEBKAfile’s sources estimate that Hizballah’s adventure wiped out most of the vast sum of $4-6 bn the Iranian treasury sunk into building its military strength. The organization was meant to be strong and effective enough to provide Iran with a formidable deterrent to Israel embarking on a military operation to destroy the Islamic regime’s nuclear infrastructure.

    To this end, Tehran bought the Israeli military doctrine of preferring to fight its wars on enemy soil. In the mid-1980s, Iran decided to act on this doctrine by coupling its nuclear development program with Israel’s encirclement and the weakening its deterrence strength. The Jewish state was identified at the time as the only country likely to take vigorous action to spike Iran’s nuclear aspirations.

    The ayatollahs accordingly promoted Hizballah’s rise as a socio-political force in Lebanon, at the same time building up its military might and capabilities for inflicting damage of strategic
    dimensions to Israel’s infrastructure.

    That effort was accelerated after Israeli forces withdrew from the Lebanese security zone in May 2000. A bunker network and chain of fortified positions were constructed, containing war rooms equipped with the finest western hi-tech gadgetry, including night vision gear, computers and electronics, as well as protective devices
    against bacteriological and chemical warfare.

    This fortified network was designed for assault and defense alike.

    Short- medium- and long-range rockets gave the hard edge to Hizballah’s ability to conduct a destructive war against Israel and its civilians – when the time was right for Tehran.

    Therefore, Iran’s rulers are hopping mad and deeply anxious over news of the huge damage sustained by Hizballah’s rocket inventory, which
    was proudly touted before the war as numbering 13,000 pieces.

    Hizballah fighters, they are informed, managed to fire only a small number of Khaibar-1 rockets, most of which hit Haifa and Afula, while nearly 100 were destroyed or disabled by Israeli air strikes.

    The long-range Zelzal-1 and Zelzal-2, designed for hitting Tel Aviv and the nuclear reactor at Dimona have been degraded even more. Iran sent over to Lebanon 50 of those missiles. The keys to the Zelzal stores stayed in the hands of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards officers who were in command of Hizballah. Nasrallah and his officers had no access to these stores.

    But Tehran has learned that Israel was able to destroy most of the 22 Zelzal launchers provided.

    That is not the end of the catalogue of misfortunes for the Islamic rulers of Iran.

    1. The UN Security Council embodied in resolution 1701 a chapter requiring Hizballah to disarm – in the face of a stern warning issued
    by supreme ruler Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in person in the early days of the war. Revolutionary Guards commanders went so far as to boast: “No one alive is capable of disarming Hizballah.”

    The disarming of Hizballah would therefore be a bad knock to the supreme ruler’s authority and prestige as well as a disastrous blow for the deterrent force so painstakingly and expensively fashioned as a second front line to protect the Islamic republic from a safe distance.

    2. Hizballah’s ejection from South Lebanon, if accomplished in the aftermath of the ceasefire, would moreover deprive Tehran of the sword hanging over Israel’s head of instantaneous attack.

    For the sake of partial damage control, Tehran handed Nasrallah a set of new instructions Sunday, Aug. 13:

    First, to find a way of evading the ceasefire and keeping up war operations against Israeli forces.

    Second, to reject the proposal to disarm before the Lebanese government meets on this Monday afternoon. In fact, that meeting was called off after Hassan Nasrallah sent a message to the Lebanese ministers flatly refusing to have Hizballah give up its weapons in the south. He also turned down a compromise proposal handed him later, whereby the Lebanese army’s first mission after deploying in the south would be to help Hizballah evacuate its fighters with their
    arms to positions north of the Litani River.

    The strategy evolving in Tehran since the ceasefire went into effect Monday morning requires Hizballah to employ a range of stratagems – not only to prevent the truce from stabilizing but to stop the Lebanese army from deploying – the south and, above all, the entry of an effective international force.

    Furthermore, Hizballah is instructed to stretch the military crisis into the next three of four months, synchronously with the timetable for a UN Security Council sanctions-wielding session on Iran.

    According to exclusive reports reaching BKAfile’s sources, the Iranian government believes that Israel and the United States are
    preparing a military operation for the coming October and November to strike Iran’s nuclear installations. It is therefore vital to keep
    the two armies fully occupied with other pursuits.

    Iranian leaders’ conviction that the Lebanon war was staged to bamboozle them rests on certain perceptions:

    As seen from Tehran, Israel looked as though it was carrying out a warming-up exercise in preparation for its main action against Iran’s
    nuclear program. The Israeli army was able to explore, discover and correct its weak points, understand what was lacking and apply the
    necessary remedial measures. They therefore expect the IDF to emerge from the war having produced novel methods of warfare.

    They also have no doubt that the United States will replenish Israel’s war chest with a substantial aid program of new and improved
    weaponry.

    From the Iranian viewpoint, Israel succeeded in seriously degrading Hizballah’s capabilities. It was also able to throw the Lebanese Shiite militia to the wolves; the West is now in a position to force Nasrallah and his men to quit southern Lebanon and disarm. The West shut its eyes when he flouted the Resolution 1559 order for the disarmament of all Lebanese militias. But that game is over. The Americans will use Resolution 1701 as an effect weapon to squeeze
    Iran, denied of its second-front deterrence, on its nuclear program.

    Tehran hopes to pre-empt the American move by torpedoing the Lebanon ceasefire and preventing the termination of hostilities at all costs.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This column is an opinion piece by former member of the Knesset, Moshe Arens, one of the few American immigrants to become successful politicians in Israel. After leaving his post as Security Minister in the Netanyahu cabinet, he wrote an analysis in the J-lem Post of how American military aid in fact damaged this country’s economy by stripping it of its self-reliance. It was not hard to see from his article in the Post six years ago, how American “aid” is used as a policy to force Israel’s dependency on the United States.

    Minister Arens’ article can be read in
    Haaretz
    .

    13/08/2006
    Let the devil take tomorrow
    By Moshe Arens

    To lead the nation in a war to victory was just too much for them. Too heavy a burden for their narrow shoulders. That trio – Ehud Olmert, Amir Peretz and Tzipi Livni – asked and received a mandate to lead the people of Israel, promising to take our fate into our own hands and unilaterally establish Israel’s borders by evacuating Israelis who live in Judea and Samaria, and turn Israel into a country “in which it will be a pleasure to live.” We do not know and probably will never know if they would have been up to that task, but we now know they are not fit to govern Israel in these trying times.

    They had a few days of glory when they still believed that the IAF’s bombing of Lebanon would make short shrift of Hezbollah and bring us victory without pain. But as the war they so grossly mismanaged wore on, as northern Israel received its daily dose of 150-200 rockets, the Galilee was destroyed and burned to the ground, over a million Israelis sat in shelters or abandoned their homes and both civilian and military casualties mounted – gradually the air went out of them. Here and there, they still let off some bellicose declarations, but they started looking for an exit – how to extricate
    themselves from the turn of events they were obviously incapable of managing. They grasped for straws, and what better straw than the
    United Nations Security Council. No need to score a military victory over Hezbollah. Let the UN declare a cease-fire, and Olmert, Peretz,
    and Livni can simply declare victory, whether you believe it or not.

    An almost audible sigh of relief could be heard from the Prime Minister’s Office as the negotiations that were supposed to lead to a
    cease-fire began at the UN. The appropriate rhetoric has already started flying. So what if the whole world sees this diplomatic arrangement – which Israel agreed to while it was still receiving a daily dose of Hezbollah rockets – as a defeat suffered by Israel at
    the hands of a few thousand Hezbollah fighters? So what if nobody believes that an “emboldened” UNIFIL force will disarm Hezbollah, and that Hezbollah with thousands of rockets still in its arsenal and truly emboldened by this month’s success against the mighty Israel Defense Forces, will now become a partner for peace? Does a cease-fire that will avoid further casualties among the IDF’s soldiers not outweigh these concerns over future events?

    Many politicians are notorious for preferring short-term considerations over a long-term view. Examples abound of the dangers of such myopic policies. From Munich in Europe of 1938 that set the stage for World War II, to Oslo in 1993 which brought Arafat and his cohorts from Tunis here, to the disengagement from Gush Katif last
    year that brought Hamas to power, and Barak’s hasty withdrawal from Lebanon in 2000, which sowed the seeds of the latest intifada and is
    the root cause of the current war – the rotten fruits of that withdrawal we have been reaping this past month.

    The long-term implications of an Israeli agreement to a UN brokered cease-fire at this time are obvious. Israel’s enemies, and they are
    many, will conclude that Israel does not have the stamina for an extended encounter with terrorism. You do not need tanks and aircraft
    to defeat Israel – a few thousand rockets are enough. Katyushas today and Qassams tomorrow. Don’t let Olmert, Peretz and Livni fool you:
    These rockets will keep coming after Israel is seen as not only punished but also defeated in this month-long war.

    “Yesterday is dead and tomorrow’s out of sight,” Dean Martin used to sing. Olmert may be humming this song as he agrees to the UN cease-fire resolution, and Peretz and Livni can sing the refrain “let the devil take tomorrow.” But tomorrow will come much sooner than they expect. And it will find Israel with nothing left of its
    deterrent capability that used to keep its enemies at bay. The war, which according to our leaders was supposed to restore Israel’s
    deterrent posture, has within one month succeeded in destroying it. That message will not be lost on Hamas, the Syrians and the Iranians, and possibly even some of our Arab neighbors who for many years had forsworn belligerence against Israel.

    The task facing Israel now is to restore its deterrent posture and prepare for the attacks that are sure to come. But not with this
    leadership. They have exhausted whatever little credit they had when they were voted into office.

  • Les Slater

    Ruvy,

    Thanks for all the information and opinion that you have been posting, as well as your views too.

    Les

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Fifth Dentist,

    Now to answer you. My proposal is to go forward from the 1919 agreement between Sherif Feisal and Haim Weitzmann.

    But the going forward is to be done by religious leaders rather than politicians. In the final analysis, it is the religious faith that has brought jews home, and IMO it is the Islamic religious doctrine that is the key to the possibility of reconciliation between the Children of Abraham.

    The concept is simple. There is to be a Kingdom of Arabia and a Kingdom of Israel. The borders of the Kingdom of Israel would be roughly the borders of the present state from the sea to the Jordan River with territory up to the Litani River added in the north and east, and with the Sinai divided, not where it is now, but at El Arish, with the Kingdom of Israel conrolling the eastern third of the Sinai.

    The Kingdom of Arabia would be ruled by Abdallah II initially from Amman, and would include Jordan, Syria (except for the Golan), and if posible, the Sunni territory of Iraq. The goal of the Kingdom of Arabia would be the reconquest of the Arabian peninsula and the reestablishment of Abdallah as Sherif of Mecca and Medina.

    The irony of all this is that there are Arabs willing to negotiate somthing like this with Jews. The Jews who can lead and pull this plan off have yet to have yet to identify themselves…

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    And who would be the King of Israel in this fanciful daydream of yours, Ruvy?

    Oh, and you still haven’t explained what a chap has to look forward to or beware of in 2026-2030?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Thanks, Les for the kind words.

    Fifth Dentist, Looks like I need to take a nap. I’m falling asleep at the keyboard and need to present my views in a clear and not hazy form, with greater completeness. My apologies…

    Later

  • Les Slater

    Ruvy,

    From the second piece of your 115:

    “Tehran Takes Gloomy View of the Lebanon War and Truce
    August 14, 2006, 3:35 PM (GMT+02:00)”

    If what debkafiles reports from Iran are true then I believe that the two reports from inside Iran are nonsense, at least the parts that were highlighted by debkafiles.

    I think that those reports do reflect nervousness within ruling circles inside Iran but I don’t think the real cause is what happened to a few rockets or the weakened position of Hezbollah’s military strength. I think their biggest concern is the expectations of many in the Middle East of Iran’s leadership role.

    No regime in the area wants to destroy Israel, least of all Iran. The destruction of Israel would require the mobilization of the masses in ALL of the countries of the region. None of the regimes would dare resort to that, at least not if they.

    Les

  • Les Slater

    Also, if there were a mobilization of the masses in the Middle East, I do not think there would many Jews living inside Israel willing to pick a fight.

  • Les Slater

    Not from Israel, but otherwise fits in this thread.

    From New York Times

    August 16, 2006
    THE OVERVIEW
    Hezbollah Leads Work to Rebuild, Gaining Stature
    By JOHN KIFNER

    BEIRUT, Lebanon, Aug. 15 — As stunned Lebanese returned Tuesday over broken roads to shattered apartments in the south, it increasingly seemed that the beneficiary of the destruction was most likely to be Hezbollah.

    A major reason — in addition to its hard-won reputation as the only Arab force that fought Israel to a standstill — is that it is already dominating the efforts to rebuild with a torrent of money from oil-rich Iran.

    Nehme Y. Tohme, a member of Parliament from the anti-Syrian reform bloc and the country’s minister for the displaced, said he had been told by Hezbollah officials that when the shooting stopped, Iran would provide Hezbollah with an “unlimited budget” for reconstruction.

    In his victory speech on Monday night, Hezbollah’s leader, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, offered money for “decent and suitable furniture” and a year’s rent on a house to any Lebanese who lost his home in the month-long war.

    “Completing the victory,” he said, “can come with reconstruction.”

    On Tuesday, Israel began to pull many of its reserve troops out of southern Lebanon, and its military chief of staff said all of the soldiers could be back across the border within 10 days.
    Lebanese soldiers are expected to begin moving in a couple of days, supported by the first of 15,000 foreign troops.

    While the Israelis began their withdrawal, hundreds of Hezbollah members spread over dozens of villages across southern Lebanon began cleaning, organizing and surveying damage. Men on bulldozers were busy cutting lanes through giant piles of rubble. Roads blocked with the remnants of buildings are now, just a day after a cease-fire began, fully passable.

    In Sreifa, a Hezbollah official said the group would offer an initial $10,000 to residents to help pay for the year of rent, to buy new furniture and to help feed families.

    In Taibe, a town of fighting so heavy that large chunks were missing from walls and buildings where they had been sprayed with bullets, the Audi family stood with two Hezbollah volunteers, looking woefully at their windowless, bullet- and shrapnel-torn house.

    In Bint Jbail, Hezbollah ambulances — large, new cars with flashing lights on the top — ferried bodies of fighters to graves out of mountains of rubble.

    Hezbollah’s reputation as an efficient grass-roots social service network — as opposed to the Lebanese government, regarded by many here as sleek men in suits doing well — was in evidence everywhere. Young men with walkie-talkies and clipboards were in the battered Shiite neighborhoods on the southern edge of Bint Jbail, taking notes on the extent of the damage.

    “Hezbollah’s strength,” said Amal Saad-Ghorayeb, a professor at the Lebanese American University here, who has written extensively about the organization, in large part derives from “the gross vacuum left by the state.”

    Hezbollah was not, she said, a state within a state, but rather “a state within a nonstate, actually.”

    Sheik Nasrallah said in his speech that “the brothers in the towns and villages will turn to those whose homes are badly damaged and help rebuild them.

    “Today is the day to keep up our promises,” he said. “All our brothers will be in your service starting tomorrow.”

    Some southern towns were so damaged that on Tuesday residents had not yet begun to return. A fighter for the Amal movement, another Shiite militia group, said he had been told that Hezbollah members would begin to catalog damages in his town, Kafr Kila, on the Israeli border.

    Hezbollah men also traveled door to door checking on residents and asking them what help they needed.

    Although Hezbollah is a Shiite organization, Sheik Nasrallah’s message resounded even with a Sunni Muslim, Ghaleb Jazi, 40, who works at the oil storage plant at Jiyeh, 15 miles south of Beirut. It was bombed by the Israelis and spewed pollution northward into the Mediterranean.

    “The government may do some work on bridges and roads, but when it comes to rebuilding houses, Hezbollah will have a big role to play,” he said. “Nasrallah said yesterday he would rebuild, and he will come through.”

    Sheik Nasrallah’s speech was interpreted by some as a kind of watershed in Lebanese politics, establishing his group on an equal footing with the official government.

    “It was a coup d’état,” said Jad al-Akjaoui, a political analyst aligned with the democratic reform bloc. He was among the organizers of the anti-Syrian demonstrations after the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri two years ago that led to international pressure to rid Lebanon of 15 years of Syrian control.

    Rami G. Khouri, a columnist for The Daily Star in Beirut, wrote that Sheik Nasrallah “seemed to take on the veneer of a national leader rather than the head of one group in Lebanon’s rich mosaic of political parties.”

    “In tone and content, his remarks seemed more like those of a president or a prime minister should be making while addressing the nation after a terrible month of destruction and human suffering,” Mr. Khouri wrote. “His prominence is one of the important political repercussions of this war.”

    Defense Minister Elias Murr said Tuesday that the government would not seek to disarm Hezbollah.

    “The army is not going to the south to strip the Hezbollah of its weapons and do the work that Israel did not,” he said, showing just how difficult reining in the militia will most likely be in the coming weeks and months. He added that “the resistance,” meaning Hezbollah, had been cooperating with the government and there was no need to confront it.

    Sheik Nasrallah sounded much like a governor responding to a disaster when he said, “So far, the initial count available to us on completely demolished houses exceeds 15,000 residential units.

    “We cannot of course wait for the government and its heavy vehicles and machinery because they could be a while,” he said. He also cautioned, “No one should raise prices due to a surge in demand.”
    Support for Hezbollah was likely to become stronger, Professor Saad-Ghorayeb said, because of the weakness of the central government.

    “Hezbollah has two pillars of support,” she said, “the resistance and the social services. What this war has illustrated is that it is best at both.

    Referring to Shiek Nasrallah, she said: “He tells the people, ‘Don’t worry, we’re going to protect you. And we’re going to reconstruct. This has happened before. We will deliver.’ ”

    Hassan M. Fattah contributed reporting from Sreifa, Lebanon, for this article, Sabrina Tavernise from Taibe and Robert F. Worth from Jiyeh.

  • http://www.fifthdentist.blogspot.com The Fifth Dentist

    Ruvy–
    I very much enjoyed reading your plan for peace. (#118) Israel gets the west bank, the gaza strip, Lebanon up to the Litani river, and 1/3 of the sinai. Jordan gets Syria, the sunni part of Iraq, and Saudi Arabia. You know, it just might work. And t probably wouldn’t take more than 200 years and 50-100 million dead to implement. Well, it’s a small price to pay for peace. Great work.

    Shark, what was your idea again about sealing all these motherfuckers in a pit and checking in on them every 30 years to see who was still alive …

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This came in my inbox, courtesy of Aryeh Zelasko.

    A Truckload of Goodwill
    Zalmi Unsdorfer

    Undeterred by the Heathrow shutdown I turned up for last Thursday’s night flight to Israel. I had no business there and no formal holiday plans. I just felt I needed to be there, perhaps to help out friends and family whose breadwinners had been called up for reserve duty.

    On the trek to the El Al gate it was bizarre not see or hear a single cellphone. In this respect at least, the Islamists were succeeding in their assault on Western freedoms and turning the clocks back on progress. Calling home, I couldn’t remember the last time I had used a normal payphone. The Chassidim looked forlorn without their oversized tallis bags and had to conform with the rest of us and our clear plastic bags.

    By the following evening I was enjoying a Friday night meal with my cousins in Jerusalem. Ronit and her son-in-law Adi are paramedics in Magen David Adom. They told me of the plight of besieged families in the North and how grateful they were for the few supplies that MDA and others were able to bring. Home Front Command seemed about as unprepared for citizens in shelters as the IDF Command were unprepared for terrorists in bunkers.

    One remarkable thing about Israel is the leverage of personal power. The vast majority of private aid organizations and soup kitchens that have helped the nation survive suicide bombings, recession and the Gaza expulsions have been created by very ordinary people with resources measured in love rather than money or influence. This week, in a small but special way, I joined that exclusive club, working with my cousins on the plan we hatched that Friday night.

    At 8 am, on the first morning of the ceasefire, we turned up at a wholesale meat plant in Jerusalem’s Romema district to load up 700 kilogrammes of pre-packed chicken and meat meals into a rental van donated by a hi-tech company. Then, on to the supermarket to fill the remaining space with diapers, rice, canned foods, sugar, oil and any other essentials we could think a family might need after a month of siege. And, for good measure, we stocked up with drinks, cookies and snacks for any soldiers we might meet along the way.

    Against a steady stream of homebound troops in their armoured vehicles, we wound our way up to Kiryat Shemona by midday, heading for the home of Ofer, an army reservist and local community volunteer. There we unloaded the perishables into ice-cream freezers Ofer had rigged up in his backyard. Within a couple of hours, 18 families had already been allocated their food and necessities.

    With the soldiers’ goodies still on board, we pressed northward towards Metulla and – what used to be called – The Good Fence. Apart from the odd Katyusha craters in the roads, damage was surprisingly light. But on closer inspection it could be seen that the rocket payloads were lethal, with signs of ball bearings having torn through even the metal barriers at the roadside. We passed an open field in which some 40 tanks were parked. Their lowered gun barrels seemed to reflect the exhaustion of their crews, tasked with vanquishing in 48 hours an enemy they were held back from engaging for over 3 weeks.

    Standing on a Metulla street corner, you can literally see into the front rooms of Lebanese houses on the opposite hillside. It was hard to believe Israelis here had been living tooth by jowl with feral Hizbullah neighbours for so many years. Pressing further we reached the Lebanese border and parked at a 100 metre gap in the fence beyond which an unmanned IDF tank stood in a ploughed-up field. I stepped into Lebanon.

    But just one step.

    Around the corner we delighted an IDF camp with gifts of drinks, cookies and snacks together with packets of wet towels to clean themselves up. Patting tankists on the back often raised a plume of dust. “From London??” they marvelled. Many just couldn’t believe that sane people would choose Israel as a destination in wartime, let alone bring goodies all the way up to the front line.

    Our cargo hold finally emptied, we headed back down towards Kiryat Shmona. But there was to be an unscheduled stop. Adi turned the van into the empty car park of Tel Chai cemetery. In the centre of the car park was a pile of rocks surrounded by memorial candles topped with a blue and white flag. This was the spot where 12 army reservists were horrifically killed by a Katyusha which landed in the middle of their briefing assembly. It was a truly heartrending scene, surrounded by bare and blackened trees scorched by the explosion. Wedged in between the rocks of the makeshift memorial I noticed the charred remnant of a pair of spectacles.

    As we wound our way back through Kiryat Shmona and Afula, the sadness of Kfar Giladi soon gave way to the heartening sight of makeshift banners on the roadside welcoming the troops on their homeward journey. An outpouring of goodwill as spontaneous as our own private mission that day.

    Whilst many soldiers will be back with their families this Friday night, the vast majority have remained on station, with few illusions about the ceasefire lasting very long.

    Over the past four weeks we may have seen the worst of Hizbulla.

    But we have also seen the best of the ordinary citizens of Israel.

    http://www.zalmi.net

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Here, we see the Israeli government returning to its normal sinful and hateful ways. The people who command these thugs, the thugs themselves and the government that gave them the orders will all face justice – either the justice of G-d, or the justice of the people, which may not be so merciful.

    16-Year-Old Girl Arrested in Kfar Tapuach
    16:54 Aug 16, ’06 / 22 Av 5766

    (IsraelNN.com) Riot squad officers and plain-clothes policemen broke into a home in the town of Kfar Tapuach a short time ago and took a 16-year-old girl into custody. According to the arrested girl’s mother, the arrest was unnecessarily violent and some of the officers were without identification tags.

    The girl’s mother told Arutz Sheva Radio that her daughter had been detained in jail for two weeks, during the period of the Disengagement from Gaza and northern Samaria. She said that the police have been searching for her daughter because, they claim, she entered an evacuated town after it had been declared a closed military zone.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Fifth Dentist;

    Looking at your comment #124, I wonder if it is even worth the time explaining my concepts of a peace plan fully to you. I was exhausted and begged off until a later time.

    But for all that, you missed the main point in it:

    “The irony of all this is that there are Arabs willing to negotiate somthing like this with Jews. The Jews who can lead and pull this plan off have yet to have yet to identify themselves…”

    The Arabs I referred to are scholars, well respected scholars, in the Arab and Moslem world, not little collaborators with the Shaba”k. But like I said, it may not be worth my effort to explain my thoughts. From what I have read of your comments, you wouldn’t even understand what I’m talking about.

    And just to be clear, I’m not calling you stupid, even though stupid people do pass bar exams and have law practices. I am calling you closed-minded. That’s a much more severe criticism – especially when aimed at an intelligent man, which you appear to be…

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Chris asks,

    “…who would be the King of Israel in this fanciful daydream of yours, Ruvy?”

    The messiah would be king, Chris. But until he shows up, you do what you do in any other kingdom in the absence of a king – you appoint a regency council and get on with business.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This was received from the Root & Branch Information Service, courtesy of Aryeh Gallin

    GUSH KATIF AND OUR FALLEN IN LEBANON
    copyright © 2006 by Rabbi Yehoshua Friedman

    Excerpt: “the technological thinking [of the Israel Defense Forces/I.D.F.] that has lost its moral foundation once again encounters reality. This time it faces an entirely different type of spiritual challenge. A primitive, religiously fanatical Arab [Sheikh Nasrallah] is ranting about his God. Once again, the I.D.F. attempts to deal with a spiritual challenge with a strictly technical solution. And once again it fails. Why? Because the moral stain that ‘defiled the I.D.F. uniform’ has blotted out the basic values that the army needs in order to win. Technology devoid of belief cannot overcome an enemy that is fighting for its values — no matter how ghastly those values are”.

    Note: This essay was written by Rabbi Friedman on August 2, 2006.

    I spent last Shabbat in NITZAN, one of the refugee camps for GUSH KATIF/NORTHERN GAZA expellees. I really wanted to say something about that, but it was both too overwhelming and overshadowed by all the events in the North. After Shabbat at some point I got some more names of the fallen from the battle of BINT JBEIL and discovered that among them was Captain Amichai Merchavia of ELI.

    Amichai was an amazing son of amazing parents. I knew his parents from the period when KOCHAV HASHACHAR was just getting off the ground. Moshe was the helping hand from the Amana settlement movement in setting up KOCHAV HASHACHAR. My wife and I were members of the original group.

    Moshe Merchavia was a legend. He lived, ate and breathed KOCHAV HASHACHAR up to his eyeballs until it got itself organized. The Merchavias lived at the time in OFRA and later moved to ELI to get it started. When Moshe was single in OFRA, he lived in a tent. When buildings with walls became available (refurbished Jordanian army camp buildings), Moshe stayed in the tent.

    Let other people have comforts first. I never knew or never noticed before that Amichai Hy”d (may HaShem avenge his blood) had been the co-editor of a volume called Ein Ganim, about the Jewish history of the area around JENIN. It was dedicated to the memory of Shmuel Weiss Hy”d, a boy from KIRYAT ARBA who fell in the battle of JENIN during the Defensive Shield operation.

    The weekly Manhigut Yehudit [Jewish Leadership Movement] e-mail newsletter just came in this afternoon with a piece on Amichai which I am passing on:

    A Chilling Answer

    The following letter was written by Second Lieutenant Amichai Merchavia on the first day of the expulsion from GUSH KATIF. He never got an answer to his letter. The Chief of Staff [Dan Halutz] promptly dismissed him from his position. Only after the soldiers under Amichai’s command intervened was he re-instated as officer of his unit. He continued to be an admirable officer and personal example for his soldiers. Amichai Merchavia was killed last week in the battle of BINT JBEL. Perhaps he finally got his answer…

    10 Av, 5765

    To Chief of Staff General Dan Halutz,

    I am writing this letter at a time of deep pain and a feeling of lack of faith in the foundation of justice and morality that is behind the army’s orders. Today’s difficult pictures of thousands of Jewish brothers being driven out of their land and robbed of their property puts a moral stain on the I.D.F. uniform.

    The decision to drive the Jews out of GUSH KATIF that passed in an immoral and undemocratic manner and was authorized by the Supreme Court with a wink of the eye to the government and police is hypocritical from its very foundation. Basic human rights were trampled in the implementation of the decision, effectively turning Israel into a corrupt dictatorship.

    I am ashamed of the army and disappointed in the commanders who hide behind empty words of the obligation to carry out orders and army discipline while they are actually working toward a corrupt and immoral goal.

    Second Lieutenant Amichai Merchavia

    Dan Halutz and Amichai Merchavia are in totally different places. The concept of “morality” comes up again and again in the young commander’s short letter. He approaches the Chief of Staff in the language of values. He points to the severe spiritual deterioration of the army and he expects the Chief of Staff to understand his language and to grapple with it.

    Amichai lived his values and was willing to put his position and personal comfort on the line on matters of principle. He actively protested the destruction of HAVAT GILAD and of AMONA. But he was naive. He didn’t understand that the army heads no longer speak about values. Army language is strictly technological.

    A year after Amichai wrote his letter, the technological thinking that has lost its moral foundation once again encounters reality. This time it faces an entirely different type of spiritual challenge. A primitive, religiously fanatical Arab is ranting about his God. Once again, the I.D.F. attempts to deal with a spiritual challenge with a strictly technical solution. And once again it fails.

    Why?

    Because the moral stain that “defiled the I.D.F. uniform” has blotted out the basic values that the army needs in order to win. Technology devoid of belief cannot overcome an enemy that is fighting for its values — no matter how ghastly those values are.

    Only soldiers like Amichai can save our nation from the Hizbollah and from the Islamic tsunami behind it. Only soldiers like Amichai can counter Nasrallah’s deity of holy war and death with the living G-d of ISRAEL — and back it up with technological know-how.

    But Second Lieutenant Amichai Merchavia, may G-d avenge his blood, was killed in the battle of BINT JBEL.

    All that we are left with is technology.

    Dan Halutz and Amichai Merchavia are in completely different places.

    Shabbat Shalom from Kochav HaShachar,
    Rabbi Yehoshua Friedman

    ABOUT RABBI YEHOSHUA FRIEDMAN:
    Board Member, Root & Branch Association, Ltd.;
    Chairman, Noahide Fellowship, Root & Branch Association, Ltd.;
    Faculty Member, chesder (military) Yeshivat Ma’alei Ephraim

    Rabbi Friedman and his wife Janet are among the original founders of Kochav HaShachar, a Jewish Pioneering Community in the Israelite Tribal Territory of Eretz Binyamin (Land of Benjamin), located in what is today known as the Shomron (Samaria).

  • http://www.fifthdentist.blogspot.com The Fifth Dentist

    Ruvy–
    I don’t agree that I’m closed minded. In fact, I think I’m as likely as any to be swayed by logical, well-reasoned arguments. I’m not an arab apologist either. I believe that their resort to terrorism combined with their unwillingness to accept the reality of Israel’s existence is perhaps 90% responsible for this intractable mess. As a jew, my personal sentiments are with Israel. But I also believe that the lives of all innocent people are equal.

    Nevertheless, in all seriousness, your peace plan seems completely bat shit insane to me. It’s as if I said that my plans for the future were to build a four story building on the sun. There are no doubt many palestinians whose plans for peace are as unrealistic as yours. They may involve reconstructing the family orange grove in downtown Tel Aviv after all the jews have been removed. To me, your dreams seem like the flip side of the same coin.

    But if you want to explain it further, I’d be delighted to listen with an open mind. And thank you for your compliments regarding my intelligence. You are obviously a very intelligent man as well.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    All right Fifth Dentist, we’ll try once more.

    But let’s start with the key point outlined in bold, so that you do not miss it.

    The irony of all this is that there are Arabs willing to negotiate somthing like this with Jews. The Jews who can lead and pull this plan off have yet to have yet to identify themselves…

    My proposal is to go forward from the 1919 agreement between Sherif Feisal and Haim Weitzmann.

    But the going forward is to be done by religious leaders rather than politicians. In the final analysis, it is the religious faith that has brought Jews home, and IMO it is the Islamic religious doctrine that is the key to the possibility of reconciliation between the Children of Abraham.

    The concept is simple. There is to be a Kingdom of Arabia and a Kingdom of Israel. The borders of the Kingdom of Israel would be roughly the borders of the present state from the sea to the Jordan River with territory up to the Litani River added in the north and east, and with the Sinai divided, not where it is now, but at El Arish, with the Kingdom of Israel conrolling the eastern third of the Sinai. The territorial ideas about Egypt are mine alone, but the other concepts have been endorsed by Arab scholars.

    The Kingdom of Arabia would be ruled by Abdallah II initially from Amman, and would include Jordan, Syria (except for the Golan), and if posible, the Sunni territory of Iraq. The goal of the Kingdom of Arabia would be the reconquest of the Arabian peninsula and the reestablishment of Abdallah as Sherif of Mecca and Medina.*

    There is to be no expulsion of Arabs from the territory of the Kingdom of Israel unless they show themselves unwilling to live in peace in the land. The Arabs would be citizens of the Kingdom of Arabia, and for the most part, under its law. They would vote in such elections as were held there, and gradually be expected to develop a fund for each family so that after a generation, it would be capable of relocating from the territory of Israel to Arabia. Aid to each family would be granted, so that when the final relocations did take place, the family leaving would be prosperous and would leave with relative wealth, rather than feeling dispossessed. It would take at least a generation for families to develop clan ties east of the Jordan.

    The economies of both Israel and Arabia would be reoriented so as to provide a mutual aid pact, and a customs union. If two different currenies were used, they would rise or fall in value in relation to other currencies together, much as did the various European currencies before the actual introduction of the Euro as a token coinage, and currency. Economically, Israel and Arabia would be one unit. To the degree that was possible, the economic influence of Europe and America would be excluded.

    The Kingdom of Israel would publicly observe Jewish law, such as kashrut, the Sabbath, the shmittah, not taking interest on loans and modesty in dress. Beyond this, observance would be a private matter. The Kingdom of Arabia would observe Islam as it saw fit.

    It is my understanding that Islam recognizes the ingathering of the Jewish people at the End of Days. That is what made the original agreement beteen Weitzmann and the great grandfather of Abdallah posible. The Sherif of the Two Holy Cities was simply being a good Moslem. The reason fdor the public observance of Judaism in the Kingdom of Israel would be two-fold. The first would be that if we Jews expect the Arabs to be good Moslems, eventually leaving our land, we need to be good Jews. The second is that it is the right thing to do – to make our own people holy enough to perform the task we will be assigned in the future, that of providing spiritual guidance to a dispirited world.

    There are issues of economy that I will not discuss here, but the essential point is to see to it that the day that an Arab is paid less than a Jew for work performed in this country ends. Economic exploitation must end.

    **The problem with this peace plan is that it requires Islam to gut itself of the Wahhabi infestation, and that the issue of the Shia vs. Sunni must be dealt with. In the final analysis, the problem of the Shia is the problem of the Persian Empire. This war with HizbAllah, what was really a war with Iran, fought through proxies, was the possible undoing of this plan.

  • Dean

    I am reminded of when Hitler and Stalin got together to carve up Eastern Europe.

  • http://www.fifthdentist.blogspot.com The Fifth Dentist

    Ruvy–
    Thanks for explaining. The most unconvincing part is your assertion that there are “Arabs willing to negotiate something like this.” Even in your description, it doesn’t sound like such a great deal for them. More importantly, even with the willingness to negotiate something like this, there’s nobody in the world with either the authority or the power to negotiate something like this. You’re talking about taking parts of four countries and wiping Saudi Arabia off the map.

    Once again, it’s not that I’m closed minded. If a guy living on a navajo reservation claimed he knew a group of Swedes willing to return the United States to him in exchange for a bag of dog crap, I would tend to doubt his claim as well.

  • Dean

    Ruvy’s proposal could be the basis for a novel — provided it is clearly labeled FICTION.

  • nugget

    “Intelligent people discussing a solution to the problems of the Middle East is sorta like going over the grooming options for a dead dog.” –shark–

    spoken like a true lazy artist.

    I like how shark presumes to have any type of scope over the 2000-year-old “problem” in the middle east.

    Shark: you know how to stop people from fighting? Easy! Kill them. then they won’t exist. Do it yourself. Problem solved! Let’s nuke Christians, Jews, and Muslims and then all Faith-haters can live in peaceful bliss.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    And the war goes on

    10:25 : ISRAELI RADIO HAS JUST ANNOUNCED: MISSILE WARNING SIRENS ALL OVER THE NORTH!!!!!

    Well, kids so much for the cease fire. Those sirens confirm what Moshe Arens wrote in comment #116:

    “The long-term implications of an Israeli agreement to a UN brokered cease-fire at this time are obvious. Israel’s enemies, and they are
    many, will conclude that Israel does not have the stamina for an extended encounter with terrorism. You do not need tanks and aircraft
    to defeat Israel – a few thousand rockets are enough. Katyushas today and Qassams tomorrow. Don’t let Olmert, Peretz and Livni fool you:
    These rockets will keep coming after Israel is seen as not only punished but also defeated in this month-long war.”

    When the missiles hit Tel Aviv and Lod Airport. I’ll be watching from my neigbor’s yard…

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The fifth dentist writes, “Once again, it’s not that I’m closed minded. If a guy living on a Navajo reservation claimed he knew a group of Swedes willing to return the United States to him in exchange for a bag of dog crap, I would tend to doubt his claim as well.”

    I understand your predicament: If someone told you that a jet had purposely flown into the World Trade Center on 11 September five years back, would you have believed him? A clerk changing dollars to shekels told me just that and I told him he was crazy! Then I went into a pizza shop with my wife for a birthday treat (11 September 2001 was my 50th birthday) and told the counterman what the clerk changing my money had told me and he turned on CNN.

    And there it was.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Nevertheless, folks, read this article I got in the mail this morning, courtesy of Allen Mallenbaum. It looks like my ideas for peace will not happen after all – but not for the reasons I thought…

    Our TV and print news reports concentrated on the Lebanese “civilians” who were held as human shields by Hizbullah, some of whom were killed
    in the fighting which they initiated, some of whom were able to flee as “refugees.”

    But there were Israeli refugees as well. Some one million Israeli citizens fled northern Israel for safety in the south, including many Israeli Muslims, especially from Haifa.

    They soon discovered the true nature of their “brethren.” They found out why these Islamic occupiers of Israel’s ancient historic homelands of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza have been cast out of virtually every Arab or Muslim
    state in and around the middle east. They now understand why the balance of the Islamic world is so determined that they be given their own nation with “the right of return” – so that they can get rid of them!

    The Mullahs and Sheikhs and Saudi princes – none of whom like or want this trash – whisper among themselves, “Foist them on the accursed Jews!”
    Now Israeli Arab Muslims seem to agree with those evaluations….

    — Allan


    ISRAELI ARABS’ WAR EXPERIENCE
    Roee Nahmias. YNET 16 August 2006

    Several Arab families decided to act on Hizbullah Chief Hassan Nasrallah’s “recommendation” and leave rocket-stricken Haifa during the war in south Lebanon. They traveled to Palestinian towns like Bethlehem and Ramallah, and even to east Jerusalem, but soon after decided they had rather return home and face the rocket menace. The reason: The bad treatment awarded to them in hotels, restaurants and stores, as well as ongoing harassments of their wives and daughters on the part of the local residents.

    Ghani Abassi, married and a father of three daughters, decided to go with his family to Bethlehem and flee the Katyusha attacks. Abbasi traveled to the Palestinian town with some 10 other families from Haifa, who all chose to stay at local hotels. Unfortunately, this was when their true nightmare began.

    “I waited for three days until I got a room. Then it turned out that the air conditioning wasn’t working, and I was told that the reason was the high price of electricity. I decided that this wasn’t that bad, because we felt we were among our brothers at the West Bank and were willing to endure the terrible heat, knowing we’re safe and that our visit was also of financial help,” Abbasi described to the website of the Israeli-Arab newspaper al-Sinara.

    “However, the treatment we received was disgraceful and dreadful,” he said. “We walked around town for a while, but the attitude we encountered on the part of the locals was horrible. The youngsters on the street started harassing our wives and daughters and used shocking expressions that I cannot even bring myself to pronounce,” he said.

    Another Haifa resident, who went with his family to Jerusalem to escape from the rocket threat, said that the local merchants blatantly took advantage of the situation and inflated the prices in stores. A bottle of mineral water that usually sells for about NIS* 4, for instance, was being sold to the Haifa tourists for NIS 10.

    ‘Even foreigners are respected there’

    “They told us, ‘you are worse than the Jews.’ We heard expressions of joy over the fact we have fled our homes, and some even tried to attack us. We were disgusted and decided to return to Haifa,” he said, stressing that he used to be a regular donor to the Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza. According to him, after that day and the humiliation he experienced in Bethlehem, he does not plan on donating even one shekel. “We thought we are one nation and that what really hurts them, hurts us too. We went to demonstrations for them and we donated a lot of money to them because we thought they are our brothers and that is our obligation. But, what we found was exploitation and undeserving treatment toward someone supposedly from the same nation,” he told.

    The same resident added that he expected the families from Haifa and Nazareth to be warmly received in the West Bank towns, but what took place was the exact opposite. Today he speaks with regret about the two days he spent in Bethlehem.

    “While touring in Ramallah, a few youngsters said to us, ‘you are the same as, even worse than, the Jews.’ We tried to understand why they were acting that way toward us, but they attacked us and a fight broke out. We are very sorry for what happened and we couldn’t have expected such an unfit welcome from members of our nation whom we had respected and appreciated very much. But they didn’t respect us at all, and saw as worse than the Jews. We are very sorry for what happened and that we drove all the way there to see the painful truth that they don’t respect us there,” said Ghani Abassi.

    Abassi added that the restaurants jacked up prices for customers because they thought they were foreign ‘tourists.’ “Even foreigners are respected there, but we, their own brothers, felt like they don’t respect us, and my friends and I asked why? Are we unworthy of the respect due to members of the same nation?”

    Following such treatment, Abassi and his friends hurried back to the lap of the Katyushas and air raid sirens of Haifa. “‘We will never again make a donation or participate in a demonstration for the West Bank from now on,” said one of them.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    I’ve read one fellow at BC (see comment #103)call Ariel Sharon’s strategy of expelling Jews from their homes in Gush Qastif after the government lured them there with bonuses and cheap loans “brilliant.”

    These are the results of Ariel Sharon’s “brilliant” strategy. This and the Qassams from Hamas. Yep, brilliant, alright.

    Shit shines in the sun, too.

    Evacuee: I should have blown myself up in Gush Katif
    from Ynetnews

    One year after pullout from Gaza, evictees speak of their agony, familial problems, and teen delinquency
    Eyal Ben

    For many of the residents of Gush Katif and northern Samaria who were removed from their homes last summer, the displacement undermined the family unit that had once seemed so stable. Many families went through two types of disengagement, one involving removal from their homes and communities, the other involving their marriages. Dozens of couples instituted divorce proceedings, others separated, and many just haven’t been able to get along with each other or their children since then.

    “There are always disagreements between members of a couple, but when you have to deal with a crisis, things become more intense,” says Dr. Baruch Kahane, a Gush Etzion psychologist who treats couples and individuals who went through the disengagement. “After the evacuation they found themselves without a community, and in many cases the only support available to them was their spouse. Here the natural limitations of each of them begin to play a role. If someone is quieter, or it’s harder for him to listen, or he has a tendency to move on and not to experience things, there can be very great emotional repercussions that would ultimately lead to a breakup of the family.”

    What complaints do spouses have against each other?

    “Women have complaints about their husbands, husbands against their wives, that they don’t talk or they don’t listen or that one of them feels that they should fight while the other one wants to lick his wounds a bit. Coping with a very difficult crisis can bring people closer or destroy the relationship.”

    The psychologists with whom I spoke see evacuees who suffer from depression, fears, family disintegration. In addition, more than 50 percent (1,300 people) of the evacuees are unemployed, and hundreds are living in the “caravillas” in Nitzan. Nevertheless, some 80 percent of the evacuees have already received full compensation from the government.

    “When a person is unemployed, stays at home, and doesn’t go to work in the morning, the pressure in the family pressure cooker increases,” says social worker Ronit Shoham, coordinator of welfare services for the evacuees. “The wife says, ‘go do something, find work, it doesn’t matter what kind.’ And if the man is 50 or older, he can’t find work, he becomes depressed, he is in crisis, and some of them don’t get out of bed. Their wives can’t accept this.”

    Do the wives demand that their husbands leave the house?

    “There are cases in which the husband decides that the pressure is not good for him, and he himself leaves the house. All in all, you can understand the men. A person who was accustomed to working his whole life and suddenly finds himself with nothing to do feels like a failure, with feelings of inferiority, depression. It isn’t pleasant for him vis-a-vis his wife and children that he is unable to make a living. So many times the best defense is to attack, or to escape. Everyone chooses his way of responding: one person becomes violent, another depressed, and another gets high blood pressure.”

    At the caravilla site in Nitzan, Danny Demari, a father of three who is over 50 and unemployed, wakes up to a new morning. “In Gush Katif we would get up at four in the morning, go to the greenhouses, go to synagogue, and then again to the greenhouses, more synagogue, we’d return home at 3, 4, 5 p.m.,” he says. “Here we get up in the morning, go to synagogue, come back from synagogue, what do you do? What are you getting up for? What kind of day are you getting up for? For nothing. We have no reason to get up.”

    Does the fact that you and your wife aren’t working affect relations at home?

    “Things are very bad. The children have their own demands. They see other children with things that they want, but it isn’t possible because we aren’t working. Also, the children don’t listen any more to their parents. You tell them ‘no,’ and they don’t care. We went to a psychologist with the children, and we were told that things are not OK, that the evacuees are not in good shape. But what are they waiting for, a disaster?”

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Looks like the people who need to speak up are finally opening up their mouths…

    From Arutz Sheva

    Reserves Demo Calling for Gov’t to Resign

    Tonight
    Thursday, August 17, 2006 / 23 Av 5766

    (IsraelNN.com) A group of reserve soldiers, who were recently discharged and are setting up a forum, have called upon Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Defense Minister Amir Peretz, and Foreign Minister Tsipi Livni to resign. Tonight the soldiers will be holding a demonstration at Rabin Square in Tel Aviv at 7p.m.
    The demonstration is expected to be the first of several, under the banner, “You failed – resign!”

    In a petition publicized by the forum, the public is asked to sign the following: “We are very worried about the fate of the country. From all ends of the political spectrum, we are calling upon the government, headed by the prime minister, to take personal responsibility for its failure and resign. We believe that we have the power as individuals rallying together, to declare, ‘Never again!’”

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Well, the cease-fire in the north is apparently holding… Ynetnews reports that “Malfunctioning radar sets off sirens in north

    Sirens heard across north, alarmed residents rush into shelters. IDF says siren was result of malfunctioning radar. Outraged officials: ‘Army will have to provide answers for how this could happen, people are in shock'”
    Sharon Roffe-Ofir

    The full article can be read at the link above…

  • http://www.fifthdentist.blogspot.com The Fifth Dentist

    Ruvy–
    I am unconvinced by your answer (#137) to my argument that your “plan for peace” is an unrealistic fantasy (#133.) Once again, I’m trying to be open minded about this, but I believe your argument is both factually incorrect and relies on at least two logical fallacies.

    Your arguement, de-constructed, is that:
    (1) your plan for peace requires unlikely and unexpected events to occurr
    (2) 9/11 was an unlikely and unexpected event,
    therefore
    (3) your plan for peace will occurr (or is at least possible)

    Correct me if I’ve misstating your argument.

    First of all, prior to 9/11, a number of people predicted that terrorists would try to fly commercial airliners into buildings. The magnitude of this attack was shocking, but the possibility had been considered.

    More importantly however, I didn’t say that your plan for peace was unlikely. I said it’s impossible. In a way, it defies the laws of gravity. In contrast, nobody would have argued that 9/11 was impossible for a group of determined psychopaths to pull off.

    However, your primary logical fallacy is to argue that because one unlikely thing happened, a second unlikely thing will also happen. I don’t think I need to explain to you why this is a retarded piece of logic.

    Finally framing your argument (ie, learning about 9/11 in a pizza joint) as a personal anecdote doesn’t really add anything except possibly some kind of an appeal to emotion.
    Similarly when you describe unilateral disengagement from the west bank and gaza as “expelling jews from Gush Qastif” you are similarly engaging in an illogical appeal to emotion. Sharon found a realistic path to peace despite his conclusion that he could never find a palestinian negotiating partner. He untied the gordion knot by saying fuck it, we’ll do it ourselves. Now Hezbollah countered with their missile attacks. I still believe that unilateral disengagement can work provided that Israel can effectively deter missile attacks with the threat of retaliation. But we’ll see. Lebanon appears to have gotten the point they’ll be bombed flat if attacks are mounted from within their country.

    More importantly, even if unilateral disengagement is a flaed strategy, at least its a strategy. Since you are so critical of making any concession (eg, you suggested hanging the entire cabinet for treason) I really wanted to hear how you’d solve the problem. So far, in my opinion, you haven’t put forward a realistic alternative because you can’t explain how anyone could possibly implement your utopia, your feeble claim that there’s a group of Arabs willing to negotiate this notwithstanding.

    But I’m trying to be open minded. If you care enough to change my open mind, please confront my arguments directly without resorting to emotional appeals.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Fifth Dentist,

    You misunderstand my argument completely.

    The point of the whole argument is that, not having been aware of the security implications, warnings, etc., etc., I thought the clerk was crazy. My reaction to the who event that became known as “9/11″ was “it’s impossible.”

    But there it was on CNN, not only possible, but happening in front of my eyes. There was a plane stuck in a building like a cigar. Then, a few minutes later, another plane came and crashed into the other tower – also like a cigar. A little while later, one building collapsed, and then the second.

    I could not believe what I had seen. I watched it in the club room of the absorption center where we were living at the time over and over again.

    It was impossible – but it had happened.

    You’ve described my plan exactly the same way “it’s impossible.”

    The series of events needed for getting from here to there under the plans I present you include events you are seeing in Israel now but do not hear a great deal about – a collapse of authority over a large amount of the country, the displacement of over 15% of the population, the beginning of a movement to overthrow the government, a change in the attitude of many of the soldiers towards G-d and religion. The very leftists who hailed Sharon as “brilliant” are now eating their words – rueing the day that Israel withdrew from Gush Qatif and south Lebanon. Read comment #109. Read in comment #74, David Bedein’s article. Just yesterday, in the central bus station in J-lem, a whole bunch of soldiers, secular kids who would have never done this otherwise, were wrapping t’fillin (phylacteries), one after another.

    There has been a sea change here because of the bitter fruits and lies served up by the “crime minister” and all the intellectualizing by the stubborn peaceniks who think that kising Arab ass will get them anythinbg other than death have been answered by funerals.

    There is a breakdown in legitimacy, a breakdown in the recognition of the legitimacy of the authority of the State of Israel. All this is necessary in order to see a transition from the the pathetic America-dependent State that rules now to a free and independent people. But it won’t occur immediately. The very thing you see as the weakest element of the plan, the claim that there are some Arabs who will negotiate, is the strongest point.

    There is a partner to talk to who is a lot more sympathetic than the thugs who run the PA.

    The trick is to know what to say and how to say it. This partner believes in G-d and expects his interlocutor to do the same.

    That will be the tricky part. The rabbis still do not see themselves as national leaders. Only one could see himself as one, and he was killed for his vision.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The evil of the government still continues, insulting even those who put themselves in harm’s way to defend the country. This brilliant stategy will bring doen the wrath of the soldiers upon the scum who command them, as it has already brought down Divine judgment upon the fat scum who expelled 10,000 Jews from their homes in Gush Qatif in order to stay out of jail.

    This is from Arutz Sheva

    Army Threatens to Destroy Soldiers´ Homes

    By Hillel Fendel

    The bureaucracy rolls on. With its residents still in Lebanon under emergency call-up orders, the Yesha town of MaalehRehavam learned that officials were headed to post eviction orders on its doors.

    Families in Maaleh Rehavam – a small outpost community in eastern Gush Etzion – were surprised to note this morning that Civil Administration officials were on their way to post eviction orders on their homes. Of the 30 residents, including five families, five are in Lebanon after having been called up on emergency basis this past month, and two others are in the standing army.

    Some town officials believe that the army wished to take advantage of the situation in which a quarter of the men were away to give out the notices. “It is shocking to think,” town secretary Moriah Halamish said, “that with war happening on two fronts, north and south, the defense establishment finds the time to give out these orders. The State is taking advantage of the fact that our men were drafted to war in order to fulfill this new expulsion decree. Good citizens go off to fight with emergency orders, and are then forced to return to receive a slap in the face in the form of an eviction notice on their doors.”

    Others feel the truth is more mundane: “The bureaucracy has a calendar and a schedule, and no one thinks whether now is a good time to do it or not; it just gets done.” So says Nadia Matar, co-chairperson of Women in Green, a grassroots Land of Israel organization. “The previous orders expired,” she said, “and they have to be renewed, and that’s it. There’s no consideration as to whether right now, with people still on the front lines in Lebanon, it might not be a good idea to go ahead with destroying Jewish homes.”

    Postponed for a Week

    In the event, Maaleh Rehavam’s secretary Moriah told Arutz-7 this afternoon, “We were informed later today that the ‘mission’ has been put on hold. I believe this is largely due to the press coverage by Arutz-7… Zambish [Yesha leader Ze’ev Chever] called the Civil Administration, and they said they’re sorry, they didn’t realize, and they will postpone giving us our eviction notices for another week. But we will not rest; there is no reason for our homes to be destroyed.”

    Maaleh Rehavam is a mixed religious-secular community, home to five families and several singles. Residents lived in caravans for the first two years after its founding, and three permanent homes have been built in recent years. It overlooks the Judean Desert, the Herodion, Tekoa and Nokdim, home to MK Avigdor Lieberman (Yisrael Beiteinu). The community is an eight-minute drive from Jerusalem, but the residents must now drive almost an hour due to the government’s refusal to open a newly paved road.

    The community is not illegal – but neither has it been officially approved, and for this reason, the government says it plans to destroy it, in keeping with its promise to the US to raze all “unauthorized” outposts. The radical left-wing Peace Now organization has filed a court suit, demanding to know why the government has not yet implemented the demolition orders it issued regarding Maaleh Rehavam and other small communities throughout Judea, Samaria and Gaza.

    Demanding an Apology

    The people of Maaleh Rehavam recently demanded an apology from the Maariv newspaper for writing that their community is illegally located on private Arab property. “This article presents us as land thieves,” a letter from the town’s secretary states. “If a serious investigation had been done, as could be expected from a newspaper of your level, you would have found that the neighborhood is [a part of] the town of Nokdim, is totally located on state lands, and that the residents were even allocated land for planting and grazing. The neighborhood is in the process of being approved.”

    This was not the only time the Maariv newspaper has exposed itself to criticism of being anti-Yesha. Earlier this week it publicized a listing of cities and towns in which the soldiers killed in Lebanon had lived. However, though the chart listed the names of dozens of towns and cities, it concealed the disproportionately large role played by the towns of Judea, Samaria and Gaza by hiding them in the “others” column.

    Ronen Tzafrir, of the non-religious pro-Land of Israel Nahalal Forum, had strong criticism of Maariv. “When there is something positive to say about this fantastic public,” he said, “which educates towards heroism, sacrifice and love of land, suddenly Maariv forgets the word ‘settlements.'”

    Tzafrir called upon the public to boycott Maariv.

    In fact, nearly 10% of the 117 soldiers who were killed in the five weeks of fighting in Lebanon were from towns in Yesha (Judea and Samaria) – almost twice as much as their proportionate numbers in the population. Their names:

    Lt.-Col. Ro’i Klein, 31, of Eli*
    Lt. Amichai Merchavia, 24, Eli*
    Sgt. Gilad Zissman, 26, from Eli*
    Staff-Sgt. Yehuda Greenfeld, 27, from Maaleh Michmas
    St.-Sgt. Philip Mosko, 21, Maaleh Adumim
    Sgt. Yigal Nissan, 19, Maaleh Adumim
    Sgt. Bnayah Rein, 27, Karnei Shomron
    Sgt. Amasa Meshulami, 20, Ofrah*
    Corp. Ohad Kleisner, 20, of Beit Horon
    St.-Sgt. Yotam Gilboa, 21, of Kibbutz Maoz Chaim in the Jordan Valley
    Sgt. Gai Hason, 24, Naamah

    [‘Elí and ‘Ofrá are neighboring towns to Ma’aleh Levona RiJ]

    Yesha Growth

    The total population in Judea and Samaria grew by some 3% in the first half of 2006, according to Interior Ministry statistics. At the end of June, the total population in these areas stood at 260,932 people, a growth of nearly 7,200 over the previous six months. The Yesha Council welcomed the news, stating that the extra thousands of new citizens, even as the government continued to talk about uprooting them, showed the strength of the Judea and Samaria settlement enterprise.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    More fallout from the stupidity of the Olmert “government.”

    Cease-Fire Now Ensures Catastrophic Outcomes
    BY YOUSSEF IBRAHIM
    August 14, 2006

    The most baffling thing about the Lebanon war is that anyone believes a lame United Nations resolution could mitigate its momentous consequences. Stopping the fighting now ensures a new Middle East not at all like the
    peaceful pro-Western one President Bush and Secretary of State Rice have in mind.

    What looms are four catastrophic outcomes:

    . Hezbollah, with its masters in Iran and Syria, will be closer than ever to controlling Lebanon’s destiny – as well as the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea, close to Iraq and the energy-rich Gulf region.

    . Israel’s existence will be challenged repeatedly. Its borders have proved vulnerable, its army has been permanently defanged in the Muslim mind, and its political establishment has been ridiculed as recriminations over its
    incompetence commence.

    . Secularists, moderates, and heads of client states in the Muslim world will be emasculated in the face of a rising tide of jihadist challengers fashioned after Hezbollah, demanding theocratic anti-Western governments.

    . The Western world, stymied in an existential quest to eradicate jihadist Islamic fundamentalism, will sink deeper into in a true war of civilizations that in its ferocity will rival the war on communism. Even before the
    beginning of the official cease-fire, the thuggish leader of Hezbollah, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, made it clear that another reality has begun. A week ago on Al-Jazeera, he vowed revenge against “those [read: Arab governments]
    who let us down and those [read: Christians, Druze, and Sunni] who conspired against us” – which includes the 3 million unarmed non-Shiite Lebanese, out of a total of 4 million citizens in that country. That is tantamount to
    announcing another civil war. The July 12 decision by Hezbollah, a minority partner in Lebanon’s kaleidoscopic society, to confiscate the country’s right to declare war was a sign of its unwillingness to tolerate dissent.

    A few days ago, Sheik Nasrallah took things further, telling Hezbollah’s Al Manar TV that the day after the war ends is “the day we settle accounts.”

    Even the Mafia, in its heyday, was not that brazen. But who’s to stop the Nasrallah Islamic Republic of Lebanon from emerging, with its superbly armed militia that “defeated” Israel and a long arm that can assassinate any
    Lebanese?

    Israel is now perceived as fair game to jihadists. Prime Minister Olmert’s and the Israeli army’s conduct of this war has been at the very least amateur, and in all probability a criminal offense, as I hope the Knesset’s
    investigation will show.

    It is bad enough that Israel’s aura of invincibility has evaporated and its borders have been shown to be porous. What’s calamitous is that its army has empirically proved it has no staying power; it also lacks enough war tools
    to fight anything greater than disheveled Palestinian Arab militias in Gaza or dysfunctional Arab armies.

    In Hezbollah, it met an enemy Israeli generals truly feared. In the all-important macho world of Middle East hubris, the Israelis blinked. No
    one in the Arab, or Muslim, world missed that.

    Within the Muslim world, one need look no further than the demands for jihad everywhere and the outcry against “impotent” governments. The entire network of mosques, madrassas, Islamic fundamentalist institutions, charities,
    Islamic parties, and hangers-on are now in an energized frenzy, from Pakistan to Saudi Arabia. A new dawn is breaking for them and their many
    allies within the armed forces of even the friendliest states to the West, including Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, and of course Pakistan.

    In the West, liberalism, democracy, and freedom have been dealt a massive blow. The British Muslim conspiracy to bring down airplanes flying to America from Britain was hatched before the Lebanon war, but copycats can only believe the bells also are tolling for them to do what they can to bring down the infidels of the West.

    Liberals may not want to accept that a war of civilization beckons, but Muslims have and do. Westerners can choose to lull themselves into believing that a grand majority of the world’s 1.2 billion Muslims are moderates, but the Lebanon war has shown that the minority can prevail.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Children Challenge the System
    by Moshe Dann
    August 14, 2006

    This month, two 15-year-old girls, Oriah Shirel and Iska Federman, were released from N’vei Tirza, a maximum security prison in Israel, where they had been kept for eight weeks. Their crime: participating in a demonstration in a neighborhood of Hebron, where they live.

    Oriya was not charged with any violence or attempted violence; Iska was charged with throwing stones, but there is no proof.

    Oriah and Iska had come to protest the Israeli government’s decision to rebuild a wall abutting the Jewish neighborhood of Avraham Avinu and a playground. On the other side of the wall is an Arab home from which Jews have been attacked.

    When initially brought before a court, the girls refused to go along with the proceedings. They declared that they did not recognize the legitimacy of the court and what they call a system of injustice that has plagued Israel, especially those Jews living in “settlements” (Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, the “West Bank”), and in Hebron, in particular. Judge Uri Ben-Dor ordered the girls held in prison until the end of their trials in November, despite an unusual prosecution request to speed up the process.

    Even if convicted of all charges against them, the girls would not have likely been given a prison sentence, certainly not one of such length, and not under harsh conditions. It is clear that the court was punishing these girls for what they believe, not for what they’ve done.

    This is not new. Since the evacuation of Jews from their communities in Gaza and northern Samaria, hundreds of Jews have been jailed, some for months, for minor misdemeanors, civil disobedience – many without charges or trials. Recently, in anticipation of the government’s unilateral withdrawal from Judea and Samaria, scores of “activists”, most with families, have been jailed or given orders preventing them from living in the areas to be evacuated. Hebron, specifically, has had a history of alleged police discrimination against Jews for many years. A report issued more than a decade ago documenting systematic abuse was ignored by the government and the media.

    Arab snipers and gangs have murdered and wounded Jews living in Hebron’s enclaves since Jews moved back nearly three decades ago to neighborhoods once inhabited by one of the oldest and most prestigious Jewish communities in the world. These areas had been destroyed during the Arab riots of 1929, when 67 defenseless Jews were murdered and scores more wounded and mutilated.

    A few months ago, the government arbitrarily and without justification ordered Jews to vacate a building in the Avraham Avinu neighborhood that had been legally purchased from Arabs. Other buildings in the area built by Arabs in the 1950s on land owned by Jews have been slated by the government for evacuation. This, too, has been a source of contention.

    While police claim that Jews harass and provoke their Arab neighbors, local Arabs are often arrested for attacks and potential attacks. But several activists in Hebron’s Jewish community have been held in administrative detention and under house arrest for long periods of time – without charges or trials.

    Twelve years ago, Dr. Baruch Goldstein, a physician who served the entire community, both Jews and Arabs, is alleged to have killed 29 Muslim worshippers in the Machpelah Cave, the Tomb of the Patriarchs and Matriarchs built more than 2,000 years ago. As a result, the shrine was divided into exclusive areas for Jews and Muslims. A few years later, in 1997, Israel turned over nearly all areas of Hebron inhabited by Muslims to the Palestinian Authority, as part of the Hebron Agreements. In return, the Palestinian Authority committed itself to stopping all incitement and violence against Jews.

    In another case, 15-year-old Tirtza Sariel, from the Jewish community of Elon Moreh, was arrested for throwing olives at Arabs. She has been in prison for over a month and refuses to sign court documents; Judge Ben-Dor decided to keep her in prison until the end of proceedings, which may take months.

    Violations of civil (and human) rights are serious issues, especially when children are involved. A year ago and again this month, I contacted the main public organization dedicated to helping children, the National Council for the Child, directed by Professor Yitzhak Kadman. Then and now, they refused to get involved. Professor Kadman said that he thought the girls preferred to remain in prison.

    The Association for Civil Rights in Israel also refused to get involved.

    Where are the professionals, the lawyers and social workers?

    Newly elected Labor Knesset Member Shelly Yachimovich, chairwoman of the Knesset’s Committee on Children, came out strongly against the court’s decision regarding the imprisoned children. Prominent legal experts have also questioned the reasonableness and legality of the court’s decision. But nothing can be done, since there is no mechanism to challenge the court’s decisions in this matter.

    The Supreme Court, specifically Justices Aaron Barak, Ayala Procaccia and Dorit Beinish, has supported lower court decisions to imprison and restrict those who oppose government policies, some without charges or trials. This may explain why these young girls (and their parents) have chosen to suffer, in order to expose what many have called Israel’s “injustice system.”

    The only organization that provides immediate legal assistance to Jews who are arrested is Honenu, a tiny non-profit crisis-response group led by Shmuel (“Zangy”) Medad. On call day and night, Zangy is usually the only resource available to Jews, as Israel’s civil rights organizations seem paralyzed and the courts violate basic norms of democracy and justice. In addition, Civil Rights for Jews in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, directed by Mrs. Orit Struk, works with Knesset members and documents police brutality. Their reports have led to judicial and disciplinary actions against violent policemen.

  • http://indemnification.blogspot.com -E

    Congrats! This article has been selected as one of this week’s Editors’ Picks.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    I do not think too highly of the person writing this article below, but he has it on the money.

    THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA IN THE WEST DID NOT AND DOES NOT GIVE A TINKER’S DAM FOR WHAT WE HAVE SUFFERED HERE. IT HAS NOT COVERED THE COLLAPSE OF THE NORTH OR THE ECONOMIC DISASTER THE MISSILE BOMBARDMENTS OF HIZBALLAH CAUSED.

    HizbAllah has been the big media winner here. I will not comment further on David Frankfurter’s article.

    But at the end, there is a link. Go to it and find out what is in store for the “party of god”.

    When the bastards in Lebanon begin bombarding us again, we will make happen the predictions of this music video.

    Dear Friends,

    The northern border has been quiet since the cease fire with Hezbollah came into force Monday morning. People are beginning to return to their homes on both sides of the border. And now the clean-up begins.

    It is a sobering thought that the damage in Lebanon was a totally predictable outcome of that nation’s deliberate flaunting of UN resolutions demanding that it take control of its own territory and disarm the terrorists that were usurping it. Instead, it invited those same terrorists to join its government. Worse, it condoned and encouraged the war crimes of launching attacks against civilians in a neighbouring sovereign state and the use of its own citizens and civilian areas as human shields.

    Lebanese infrastructure and many private homes – including those used as weapons facilities and rocket launching pads – will need repair. Iran has stepped up to the plate, and the Hezbollah will once again be its proxy. Europe, concerned about the positive image Hezbollah will gain was quick to announce that they will set aside hundreds of millions in humanitarian aid, which it is channeling through charitable agencies, the UN and the Lebanese government.

    All in all, though, the message for those who survived will be that the war was not so bad for Lebanon. Israel got the message, and Lebanon gets lots of new infrastructure houses, and even furniture. All courtesy of international donors.

    In all this, however, where is Israel? The international community seems to have completely ignored the affect on ordinary Israeli citizens of the month of war, in which they were the direct and sole targets of Hezbollah’s war crimes. Which international charity or donor has come forward to offer even a token?

    If you are surprised by the question, consider the extent that your media reported the damage to Israel. Did you know that 500,000 Israelis fled their homes in the north, and that the rest were forced to spend long hours in bomb shelters? Have you heard of the stream of refugees returning to their homes in Israel’s north, to confront their damaged houses, destroyed businesses, lost sales. The international coverage has been almost completely focused on Lebanon. Here, though, are the statistics for Israel.

    Hezbollah rockets landing in Israel
    4,000

    Israeli civilians displaced by the war
    500,000

    Israelis killed
    157

    Israelis injured
    5,000

    Israeli civilians treated for shock and distress
    1,300

    Israeli Buildings destroyed
    12,000

    Israeli Trees destroyed
    750,000

    Financial cost of the war and related damage in Israel
    NIS 25 billion

    Of this: military budget
    NIS 7 billion

    One of the reasons that the media did not cover the story is that Israel moved its civilians out of danger to the extent possible. All around the country not only did people take in friends and relatives, but also complete strangers. The stories are many and heartwarming. The stark contrast on the other side of the border, where civilians were used as human shields, and in some cases even physically prevented at gunpoint from fleeing is clear.

    Of course, as is the case in the Palestinian Authority, international aid will be interpreted as tacit support for the war crimes that created the humanitarian disaster. And Israel will be left to cope on its own.

    David

    At http://www.jewlicious.com, go here for the future of HizbAllah…

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    I forgot to give fellow blogger Mike Wallin the credit he deserves for the Jewlicious link.

    Shabbat Shalom, Mike!

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    -E,

    Thank you very much. I feel honored… I’m debating between writing an article detailing the corruption of the present Israeli “government” or waiting for HizbAllah to break the cease-fire with a rocket attack. “If it bleeds it leads” is the general standard that most folks following the news follow. But staying ahead of the news is what interests me…

    Now, on another topic, I just wanted to straighten this out. Do I get that bottle of Hennessey’s Cognac from you or from Mark Schannon?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Let’s see if Olmert has learned anything about political survival. This should be an interesting test of the man’s learning skills…

    DEBKAfile Exclusive: Bush administration acts fast to bring France aboard the Lebanon multinational force, gives Israel tacit go-ahead for air strikes against arms trucks from Syria

    August 16, 2006, 11:53 PM (GMT+02:00)

    Washington took two quiet steps to prop up the Siniora government and retrieve the vanishing multinational force ordered by Resolution 1701.

    The first was the promise of an air surveillance wing for UNIFIL to keep a watch over South Lebanon and the border crossings into Syria. This has brought France around to consenting to send troops to the expanded international force. UNIFIL was also promised intelligence data gathered by US satellites on military movements in Lebanon.

    Some 1,700 French troops will be deployed in the first stage. This promise led French defense minister Michele Alliot-Marie to announce Wednesday night that France is willing to lead a new UN presence in Lebanon at least until February, so long as it has a clear mandate, real means and strong powers.

    The second step taken by the Bush administration was a quiet go-ahead given by US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice to Israel’s Dep. PM Shimon Peres for the Israeli air force to destroy trucks suspected of carrying rockets and other arms from Syria into Lebanon. Siniora agreed to turn a blind eye to this continuing Israeli air activity over Lebanon as he has for Hizballah’s continued armed presence south of the Litani River.

    The first elements of the Lebanese army’s 2nd 3rd and 12th Battalions crossed the Qasmiyeh Bridge over the Litani into South Lebanon before midnight Wednesday, August 16.

    France has given itself six months to test how the web of undercover accords and understandings between the US and Israel and the Lebanese government and Hizballah are holding up. Only then will Paris decide whether to extend the mandate of its contingent in Lebanon or even boost it.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    LETTER FROM SALAH CHOUDHOURI ON THE POSSIBLE PLACEMENT OF BANGLADESHI TROOPS IN SOUTH LEBANON AS PART OF UNIFIL (released through the Root & Branch Information Service on 18 August 2006, 24 Av 5766)

    A little background here. Salah Choudhoury is a Bangladeshi author who was honored by a group of Israeli authors for reaching out his hand in peace to Israel and was invited to Israel to participate in a conference there. The response of the Bangladeshi government was to imprison the author and revoke his passport. This occurred late in 2003. He has since been released from prison.

    On his e-mails, the following appears

    Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury
    Journalist, Columnist, Author & Political Analyst
    PEN USA Freedom to Write Award 2005
    American Jewish Committee Moral Courage Award 2006
    Editor & Publisher, Weekly Blitz
    Chief Editor, Weekly Jamjamat
    Chief Editor, Daily frontline

    Aryeh Gallin, the president of Root & Branch, Ltd. in Jerusalem, invited Salah to comment on the possibility of Bangladeshi troops being stationed on the south Lebanon border as part of UNIFIL. That story is contqained at this Arutz Sheva article.

    Aryeh’s letter follows below:

    Dear Salah,

    No, this is NOT a bad joke, this is HAPPENING.

    Here comes a contingent of storm troopers of the Gog and Magog globalist New World Order, ala Ezekiel 38 and 39 (on their way in reality to Jerusalem and the Temple Mount).

    Please send me a Personal Message for Root & Branch Readers about this for distribution through the R&B Information Services.

    Shabbat Shalom from Liberated Yerushaliyim,
    Aryeh

    Salah’s comments follow.

    Shalom Uvracha!

    First of all, I would like to draw the kind attention of my friends to a fact that, recently a bridge at country’s eastern port city was inaugurated in the name of Hezbollah. And the bridge was inaugurated by the state minister for Communication Salauddin Ahmed (unfortunately this man has a good name with evil soul). So, personally I am disturbed to see that the Hezbollahs in Lebanon are not totally eliminated and they stand as potential threat to the blessed Land of Israel. This is a terrible news for the peace loving people around the world. I would rather cherish if there was a complete eliminated of these nasty devils and if we could see a world without seeing the fangs of Islamist millitants, anywhere. The UN resolution to seize fire will actually give a refheshing chance to Hezbollahs to gather more power from their masters in Syria, Iran and many other pro-terrorist countries. In this case, for obvious reason, I can not see any reason for Bangladesh to be over enthusiastic in sending 2,000 troops to southern Lebanon. I shall be happy in true sense, if one day, my home land would send troops to fight against Hezbollah and Hamas for the cause of global peace. But, anyway, one thing is positive here. Bangladeshi troops will now have the chance to witness the atrocities of Hezbollah in Lebanon, during their stay and this will surely open a new door of understanding for our mighty armed forces and the people of Bangladesh.

    Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The following article is a backup to comment #152.

    Offers by anti-Israeli countries to patrol Lebanon, Hizbullah’s welcoming of Lebanese troops and the abandonment of vows to disarm the terrorist group leave Hizbullah stronger and Israel weaker.

    Arutz Sheva

    Anti-Israel Nations Offer To Patrol Lebanon
    09:06 Aug 18, ’06 / 24 Av 5766
    by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu

    Any hopes that the United Nations Security Council cease-fire resolution ending the hostilities between Hizbullah terrorists and Israel would make Israel safer continue to dissipate. “Villagers throwing rice and Hezbollah supporters holding banners welcomed the [Lebanese] army to south Lebanon,” according to the Associated Press.

    Hizbullah terrorists also made it a point to attack the United States and Israel during funeral processions in southern Lebanon. At the village of Kila, several hundred yards from the Israeli border, Hizbullah supporters waved their flags.

    In another village, residents scorned American Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. “You will not see your new Middle East,” said one sign addressed to Rice. One man told the Reuters News Agency, “Let them [the Lebanese army] come. We are all Lebanese.”

    Further complications for Israel are the almost across-the-board abandonment of the UN resolution’s vow to disarm Hizbullah south of the Litani River.

    Israel has verbally criticized the violation and complained about the failure to bring about the return of two IDF soldiers kidnapped by Hizbullah terrorists. But beyond statements, Israel seems powerless to stop what is shaping up as a charade.

    “I would say the show is on the road,” said Mark Malloch Brown, the UN deputy secretary-general.

    France disappointed the U.N. with its surprise announcement that it is sending only 200 troops instead of thousands that were anticipated. The absence of the French and the refusal of Germany to place its soldiers in the situation of a direct confrontation leaves Muslim nations with a larger percentage of the proposed force.

    Indonesia and Malaysia each have offered to send 1,000 troops. Neither country has diplomatic ties with Israel, and Malaysia as recently as last week encouraged the world to cut off diplomatic ties with Jerusalem. Israel has objected to the placement of troops from countries with which it does not have diplomatic relations.

    Turkey has offered to send 5,000 men, more than any other country. However, Turkey also has been a major transit point for Hizbullah terrorist weapons, according to Israeli intelligence and comments made at an American State Department briefing Thursday.

    Italy has proposed sending between 2,000 and 3,000 soldiers but also has made statements indicating sympathy for Hizbullah. A government minister termed the terrorists’ kidnapping of IDF soldiers a military action, and the government emphasized it would not try to disarm Hizbullah.

    Prime Minister Romano Prodi told an Italian news service, “The fact that it won’t be Italy who will disarm Hezbollah militia seems to me to be a moot point, also because I don’t think the attempt would not be productive.”

    Morocco, which has ties with Israel and has a growing militant Muslim population, has offered to send 1,500 to 2,000 troops. Like many other nations, it wants a clearer definition from the UN what is expected of the soldiers and when they can open fire.

    One of the major problems in the UN force that is shaping up is its lack of experience which, accompanied with the presence of a poorly-trained Lebanese army, leaves the area free for Hizbullah to mobilize. Israel already has committed itself to leave southern Lebanon once the UN force is in place.

    Brown admitted, “We have it [the force] in quantitative terms but the issue is which battalions we can get there in the timeline required. Are they the right battalions with the right skills and equipment?”

    He also explained that the international force, which will join the 2,000-member UNIFIL unit which has proven to be ineffective if not pro-Hizbullah since its introduction to the area in 1978, would not try to disarm the terrorists because of an agreement between Hizbullah and the Lebanese government.

    American Secretary of State Rice also has backed down from her previous insistence that Hizbullah cease to be “a state within a state” and that a ceasefire would not leave Israel with the status quo situation that existed before the war.

    She told USA Today, “I don’t think there is an expectation that this force is going to physically disarm Hezbollah. I think it’s a little bit of a misreading about how you disarm a militia. You have to have a plan, first of all, for the disarmament of the militia, and then the hope is that some people lay down their arms voluntarily.”

    Hizbullah terrorist leaders have made it clear they will keep their weapons, and its terrorists have vowed to continue their war against Israel. One man, Mohamed Ballout, told Reuters, he is “ashamed that my son was not martyred.”

    Hizbullah official Sheikh Mohammed Yazbik said, “We will preserve the resistance. We won’t give up our weapons, our dignity and our honor.”

    Pro-Syrian Lebanese President Emile Lahoud clearly defined the Lebanese intentions. “The weapons of the resistance are the only ones, of all Arabs, that succeeded in standing up to Israel and defeating it. No one can take away the weapons of the resistance,” he told his cabinet.

    The Lebanese army Friday morning continued to take up positions south of the Litani River, the first time it has been deployed in the area for more than 30 years.
    Hizbullah has gathered the support of more than 600,000 Shi’ite Muslims in the area and has built weapons and command centers in the last six years, after former Israeli Minister Ehud Olmert Barak ordered a sudden unilateral withdrawal of IDF troops.

    Even a senior American official expressed pessimism about the future. “Our history in Lebanon has not been a happy one,” lamented American Assistant Secretary of State David Welch.”

    Published: 05:54 August 18, 2006
    Last Update: 09:06 August 18, 2006

  • Martin Lav

    How do 4000 rockets destroy 12,000 bldgs and 750,000 trees?

  • Dean

    With great imagination.

  • JustOneMan

    Again the world has to bail out Israel due to their left wing incompetent government…

  • Dean

    When did Shimon Peres become PM?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Dean,

    Shimon Peres is the eminence grise behind the sick charade that is called the government of Israel. He is like J. Edgar Hoover. He has the goods on everybody and knows where all the skeltons in the closets are, particlularly the the ones he himself caused to exist. He has his own little death squad, too. He has to his credit, one former congressman from the States, a popular singer, a judge, a member of the knesset, a retired general, a whole slew of rabbis and two prime ministers and the wife4 of one prime minister. He has managed to have all these people knocked off in one way or another for opposing his policies or becoming useless in his eyes.

    The only Israeli that any government official really fears is Peres. His name means vulture and he is as vicious as a shark – and as murderous, too.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    I’m disgusted with writing the same article in different words. The government of Israel needs to be overthrown, and the sooner the better. So, I’m resurrecting this article on Mr. Olmert’s Little War to pile line upon line, line upon line of reality. Truth – a healthy antidote from the lies of the mainstream media that you receive in America.

    This first piece is from Emmanuel Winston who forwards an editorial from Ha’aretz – which until recently was a government mouthpiece.

    ————————————————-

    WINSTON MID EAST ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY August 21, 2006 Please disseminate & re-post. If you publish, send us a copy. Many of our articles appear on Websites at Gamla & freeman.org.

    NO CONFIDENCE IN THE COMMANDER by HA’ARETZ EDITORIAL forwarded with comments by Emanuel A. Winston, Mid East Analyst & Commentary

    For once Ha’aretz has put aside its consuming interests in maintaining politics as usual. Some saw the collapse of a government without ethics, let alone competence. Ha’are tz is at last using its professional capabilities to tell the people what really happened and how the enablers are now scrambling to save their jobs and power of office.

    Hopefully, the other news journals will join Ha’aretz in demanding a full and honest accounting coupled with the demand of an immediate dismissal of those responsible for a war lost, unnecessarily, because the men were courageous and willing. Those must be dismissed who are responsible for the buildup of confidence among Hezb’Allah, Hamas, Iran and Syria that Israel can easily be driven from the field of battle – with more to come. Let the three families who control Ha’aretz, Ma’ariv and Yediot Achranot come together to demand a new doctrine that starts with a clean government.

    Last update – 10:02 21/08/2006

    NO CONFIDENCE IN THE COMMANDER by HA’ARETZ EDITORIAL August 21, 2006

    For now, the weekend papers are taking the place of a commission of inquiry. The frustration and anger expressed by both reservists and regular soldiers who took part in the fighting may never be heard by any official investigative body, but they will echo throughout Israeli homes for many months to come.

    The impressions from the battlefield – the confused decision making, the helpless feelings of the untrained and improperly equipped soldiers, the contradictory and constantly changing orders, the lack of coordination and the lack of understanding of the missions and goals – have all caused a loss of confidence in the command ranks and the leadership. Too many fighters have said that if they are called up to fight again, they may not go.

    There are many ways to express no-confidence, and this threat by reservists is perhaps the most severe of all. Lack of confidence in the chief of staff cannot be concealed via supportive advertisements organized by his comrades-in-arms. Dan Halutz may be an excellent friend and an outstanding warrior, but his claim that he is “more ethical than many others” does not meet the test of taking responsibility. “A victory on points, not a knockout,” as Halutz summed up the war, is not good enough for a small, threatened country such as Israel.

    Either we should not have embarked on this war at all, and we should settle accounts with the prime and defense minister over this point, or we should have won it in a way that would deter our neighbors from another round. A war to restore our deterrent power that ends with the feeling that there will soon be another round is a clear failure.

    The chief of staff is responsible for the public’s lack of confidence in the Israel Defense Forces’ ability to win, and he will be responsible for reservists who fail to show up in the future. He is responsible even if other people, both above and below him, are also responsible. The politicians will be judged in the Knesset and in the next elections, and perhaps also by a commission of inquiry, and the day is presumably not far off when Kadima will fade away as if it had activated a self-destruct mechanism on July 12. But all the things that may yet happen must begin with the resignation of the chief of staff, so that it will be clear that change is imminent.

    The chief of staff is responsible, according to the definition of his job, for all the failures that emerged in the IDF’s operational deployment, training and equipment. Targeted assassinations of Hezbollah’s leadership now will not change this impression, and it seems that that idea is meant to serve the army’s and the government’s public relations. The gap between the exhibitionist appearances of the IDF spokeswoman in the early days of the war, accompanied by senior officers who preached to the enemy in front of the cameras instead of fighting him successfully, and the flight of spokespeople from the screen as the rain of missiles on Israel intensified, teaches that failure is an orphan, and those responsible are now entrenching themselves in a sense of injury – as if the very demand that they take responsibility were an effrontery. Taking responsibility, it seems, requires no less courage than fighting a war.

    Israel’s culture of government does not encourage resignations or ousters after failures. And the results are clearly visible. The prime minister is already promising to set up a mechanism for learning lessons; the defense minister is appointing an inquiry committee devoid of any authority; and the government is establishing a committee to deal with the home front. Those who should be investigated are dressing up as investigators. Between this and what ought to be happening lies a yawning abyss.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This next piece was forwarded to me by my friend, Sergio Tezza.

    ————————————————

    Critics of Olmert complain he lived up to his word when he said “we are tired of winning.” The government is weakened by scandals and attacks on several fronts, but there are no signs it will fall.

    Olmert Slammed For Being True to Word: We Are Tired of Winning
    08:17 Aug 22, ’06 / 28 Av 5766
    by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu

    Reservists have complained that the government and military establishment prevented a solid victory against Hizbullah terrorists by blunders in carrying out the war. The results were in keeping with a speech by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in June 2005, when he was Vice Prime Minister to Ariel Sharon.

    He told the Israel Policy Forum, “We are tired of fighting; we are tired of being courageous; we are tired of winning; we are tired of defeating our enemies.”

    His words have come back to haunt him amid mounting attacks from several fronts on the government, which has been wracked by complaints of soldiers and even senior commanders, bitterness by northern residents who charge they were abandoned, an uncertain ceasefire, lack of return of IDF hostages and scandals in the government.

    Justice Minister Haim Ramon was forced to resign because of charges of sexual misconduct. Minister Tzachi HaNegbi had to resign following an announcement that he will be indicted on charges of making political appointments when he was Environment Minister. The investigation was known when he switched from the Likud party to join former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s new Kadima party, in which Olmert was the number two man.

    Journalist Yoav Yitzchak has been publicizing for several months documents that suggest the Prime Minister received financial favors in a property deal.

    Another scandal likely to damage the reputation of the government involves President Moshe Katzav, who is to be questioned by police on charges by 20 workers that he is guilty of sexual misbehavior. Two women have charged he slept with them, and Channel 2 television reported Monday night that the President will be forced to resign to avoid embarrassment. President Katzav’s office called the report a lie.

    The harsh condemnation of the government weakens its ability to take leadership but the government is not likely to fall unless enough Kadima Knesset Members, most of whom jumped ship from the Labor and Likud parties, switch again.

    “I think Olmert will simply allow the anger to pass and get on with his business,” Gadi Wolfsfeld, a professor of political science at Hebrew University, told the The Associated Press.

    Olmert has found himself trying to snuff out one brush fire after another, but the multi-prong attacks have been increasing more rapidly than his responses. He weathered the crisis of IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz’s selling stocks two hours after Hizbullah terrorists kidnapped two IDF soldiers by saying that he had complete faith in the Lt. General.

    However, several days later top commanders and more than a thousand soldiers came forward with evidence of army mismanagement, irresponsibility and failure to provide troops with basic needs.

    The Prime Minister tried to answer the criticism by letting Defense Minister Amir Peretz set up an investigative committee, despite public questioning of how his own appointees could fairly question the minister and the government. The Defense Minister appointed his closest war advisor, former Lt. General Amnon Lipnik-Shahak, to head the panel.

    Less than 48 hours later, Prime Minister Olmert ordered the committee to halt its work after the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee almost unanimously said it wants a Knesset committee to conduct the investigation. The only voices of dissent came from three Kadima party members.

    Kadima leaders were able to stymie a committee decision by pointing out a technicality that the 11-3 vote was not valid because the issue was not on the agenda.

    Other voices are demanding a national inquiry headed by a Supreme Court judge who would have power to summon witnesses and bring charges against them if officials are found to have violated their responsibility.

    Prime Minister Olmert rejected the need for an inquiry, saying, “I won’t play this game, the game of beating ourselves up.” But no sooner had he blamed his predecessors for being lax and said that energies must be focused on supporting the army, former Chief of Staff Moshe (Bogie) Ya’alon stated, “Whoever is responsible should take responsibility and not try to throw it on others.”

    Outgoing infantry and paratrooper commander Brigadier General Yossi Heiman said this week that the reservists were not trained properly and that senior IDF commanders are “guilty of arrogance.”

    On the diplomatic front, Prime Minister Olmert is saddled by a United Nations Security Council ceasefire that has become weaker in reality than in writing. Instead of 15,000 troops slated to join the international UNIFIL force in Lebanon, the U.N. is having trouble coming up with 3,500 it vowed will be deployed by the end of the month.

    The northern border remains tense and Galilee residents are uncertain about their lives despite the Prime Minister’s promise in his 2005 speech that the future is “more security [and] greater safety.” He said that the destruction of Jewish communities in the Gaza and northern Samaria areas, which he and Ariel Sharon called disengagement, would be followed by “a lot of joy for all the people that live in the Middle East.

    “We are confident that this disengagement will be successful and that it will then lead to the beginning of a new pattern of relations between us and the Palestinian Authority,” he said.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This piece also comes from my friend Sergio Tezza. Now that the government has gotten its ass whipped by Iranian puppets supplied by Syria, the police minister wants to hand over the Heights of Golabn to Syria. Such a genius he is… GSS means General Security Service and is the English translation of Shaba”k, Sherút BitaHón Klalít
    ————————————————-

    Ex-GSS Chief Causes Uproar With Call for Golan Withdrawal
    15:33 Aug 21, ’06 / 27 Av 5766
    by Hillel Fendel

    Cabinet Minister Dichter: “After all, we paid similar prices for peace with Jordan and Syria.” Just last week, Syrian Pres. Assad said, “Each generation hates Israel more than the preceding one.”

    Public Security Minister Avi Dichter [pictured], a former head of the General Security Service, says that Israel should give up the Golan Heights in exchange for “true peace” with Syria. Israel annexed the Golan, from which Syria often attacked Israel prior to the 1967 Six Day War, in 1982.

    Dichter joined the Kadima Party shortly after its formation late last year.

    Speaking with Army Radio today, Dichter did add that the “question of water rights and the Kinneret Sea are matters that I would not cede so easily.” But he said that Israel should initiate a diplomatic move to talk with Syria.

    “We know the prices,” Dichter said. “We are experienced in paying the prices; we faced Egypt and Jordan, and we arranged things. We tried to do this with the Palestinian Authority, but to our sorrow, it did not work. But this doesn’t mean that with other countries such as Lebanon or Syria it won’t work, and perhaps this will make it clear to the Palestinians that there is no chance for any country to make gains by warring against us.” Dichter did not explain how this principle applied to the unilateral withdrawal from Gaza.

    Dichter’s remarks drew a storm of outcry, even within his own party. “This is pure amateurism,” one unnamed Kadima member said. “No discussion has been held on our diplomatic goals. It sounds like a close-out sale, precisely when Assad sounds such firm threats.”

    Kadima MK Otniel Shneller said, “Everyone has his own personal agenda, but we have one country, and we are facing a storm; we must first of all abandon our personal agendas and stabilize our ship.”

    Likud MK Yuval Shteinitz, former Chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, said that to cede the Golan Heights is utter foolishness: “Minister Dichter’s proposal is a reward to the Syrians for the speech that Assad just delivered and the hundreds of Katyushas they gave Hizbullah with which to strike Israel… The Golan is critical for the existence of the State of Israel.”

    Some left-wing MKs, as well as the radical left-wing Peace Now, came to Dichter’s defense. Education Minister Yuli Tamir said that Israel must begin negotiations with Syria, and MK Zahava Gal’on of Meretz said that this would remove Syria from the Iranian “axis of evil.”

    Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said, “We will be happy to talk with Syria once it stops supplying rockets and weapons to those who use them against Israel.”

    The Gush Katif Residents Committee expressed strong opposition to Dichter’s approach. “In light of the deterioration of our national security in the year following the retreat from Gush Katif,” Chairman Lior Kalfa said, “we now must face the shocking idea that our sacrifice was for naught. How can it be that our ostrich-like government leaders continue to bury their heads in the sand as they consider replicating the failure of the Disengagement? Will they then sacrifice, as well, our brothers in the Golan or Yesha (Judea and Samaria), just because they are afraid to climb down from the tall tree they climbed and admit to the public they made a mistake?”

    MK Effie Eitam (National Union), a resident of the Golan and a former IDF Northern Formation Commander, said that Syria cannot be a partner for dialogue. “Our dispute with Syria is not just territorial,” Eitam said today, “and therefore a retreat from the Golan will endanger Israel’s security. Syria has tied itself with the axis of evil of Hizbullah and Iran, whose goal is to destroy Israel, and cannot be a partner for negotiation.”

    “The government refuses to learn the lesson of our retreats from Lebanon and Gaza,” Eitam said, “which merely increased the danger to Israel.”

    MK Aryeh Eldad (National Union):
    “Using Dichter’s logic, he would probably offer to give the Galilee to Iran, if Iran would deign to shoot 4,000 Katyushas at us. Whoever doesn’t understand that ‘territories for peace’ never worked and has brought us only bloodshed, would be advised not to give advice on security matters.”

    Former MK Yehuda Harel, who served one term in the Knesset for a party (Third Way) whose raison d’etre was essentially to oppose a retreat from the Golan, said he fears that the Golan Heights residents do not realize the danger inherent in Dichter’s remarks.

    ———————————————
    The following piece came in the same e-mail. The point of the two articles, taken together is that the police minister shoots his mouth off one way and the “prime minister” shoots his outh ff another.

    Published: 15:19 August 21, 2006
    Last Update: 15:33 August 21, 2006

    Olmert: Syria most aggressive member of the axis of evil
    jpost.com staff and ap, THE JERUSALEM POST
    Aug. 21, 2006

    Syria is the “single most aggressive member of the axis of evil,” Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Monday, ruling out a resumption of negotiations with Damascus at this time.

    “I am the last person who will say I want to negotiate with Syria,” Olmert said in unusually harsh comments. In a visit to northern Israel, Olmert noted that rockets that hit the town in 34 days of Israel-Hizbullah fighting came from Syria.

    According to the prime minister, “When Syria stops supporting terrorism, when it stops giving missiles to terror organizations, then we will be happy to negotiate with them.”

    His comments were made hours after Internal Security Minister Avi Dichter said that he was in favor of withdrawing from the Golan Heights in return for true peace with Syria.

    The former head of the Shin Bet told Army Radio, “We have paid similar territorial concessions in the past when we signed peace treaties with Jordan and Egypt.”

    “Any diplomatic initiative is preferred over war, whether in Syria or Lebanon,” Dichter said. “With regards to Lebanon, conditions are even more welcoming than they are with Syria. Lebanon can today begin talks with Israel without the Syrians.”

    According to the minister, “Talks with Syria are legitimate. If there is someone to talk to on the other side, we should talk. Israel can initiate this or turn to a third party.”

    In response, Olmert said, “I recommend not to get carried away with any false hopes.”

    “We are not going into any adventure when terror is on their side,” Olmert said of Syria. “We’re not going into any negotiations until basic steps are taken which can be the basis for any negotiations.”

    Syrian Information Minister Mohsen Bilal said there was “no significance” to talk of peace with Israel as long as it does not withdraw from all territory in conquered in 1967. He stressed that Syria would accept the Arab peace initiative only after an independent Palestinian state is established with Jerusalem as its capital.

    Dichter’s comments also elicited a flurry of responses from MKs – among them MK Effi Eitam (NU/NRP), a Golan resident, who protested that “withdrawing from the Golan Heights will only endanger the security of Israel.”

    “Syria associates itself with the evil axis of Hizbullah and Iran, and its goal is to destroy Israel,” Eitam said, and declared that Syria “cannot be a partner for discussion.”

    Fellow NU/NRP MK Aryeh Eldad claimed that “by the same logic, Dichter will certainly suggest we give the Galilee to Iran if they would be so kind as to shoot 4,000 rockets at us. Whoever doesn’t understand that the equation ‘land for peace’ never worked and has only brought about more bloodshed, would do better not to give advice on security matters.”

    Meretz MK Ran Cohen, however, supported Dichter’s calls for negotiations with Syria, demanding that the government “discuss immediately the initiation of negotiations with Syria and Lebanon for peace agreements.”

    He added, “We must not sit and wait for the next war. A [peace] agreement in exchange for giving back the Golan would disconnect Syria from Iran and disarm Hizbullah.”

    Vice Premier Shimon Peres said Monday that the time was not right to resume negotiations with Syria, arguing that Israel was too busy trying to deal with Lebanon and the Palestinians.

    Peres said he believes it’s unlikely Syrian President Bashar Assad was even contemplating a return to negotiations. “The Syrians, if they are serious (about peace talks), should come and say ‘we are interested in holding negotiations,'” Peres said. “I don’t see Assad doing this.”

    Last week Syrian President Bashar Assad warned Israel that peace was not the only way to achieve Syrian goals, referring to the territory Israel captured from Syria during the Six-Day-War, the Golan Heights.

    Defense Minister Amir Peretz suggested the possibility of negotiations last week when he said the conflict with Hizbullah may have created a new opportunity for renewed dialogue with Syria.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This came yesterday from Sergio Tezza. If memory serves, Hllel Fendel writes for Arutz Sheva.
    ————————————————–

    Lebanese war reserve soldier veterans, newspaper columnists on right and left, MKs, new Russian immigrants and more – are calling for the government to resign in the wake of the recent Lebanese War.

    Calls Intensify for Government´s Resignation
    17:11 Aug 21, ’06 / 27 Av 5766
    by Hillel Fendel

    A group of reserve soldiers who fought in Lebanon will set off on a protest march today (Monday), calling upon Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz to resign. The soldiers say that Olmert and Peretz failed in managing the just-ended war in Lebanon.

    The march will set out from the Kastel – an Independence War battle site near Mevaseret Zion – and will head towards the Prime Minister’s residence in Jerusalem, a 7-kilometer (4.5-mile) trek. The soldiers explain that the confused and contradictory orders handed down to them during the course of the war indicate an unclear strategy and set of objectives. They also claim that severe problems in logistics, manifest in outdated equipment and lack of food, helped lose some battles.

    Two Thursdays ago, some 50 people gathered in Rabin Square to demand “personal responsibility” from the government ministers, and their consequent resignation. This past Thursday, the number grew to 150 – and this coming Thursday, the organizers expect even more. “Among them will be at least one busload of new immigrants from Russia,” Ariella, one of the chief organizers, told Arutz-7. “This is apparently the first time they are really taking to the streets for a political cause.”
    Ariella explained that the people represented at the Thursday rallies are from all parts of the political spectrum.

    Haaretz reported that some 160 infantry reserve soldiers accuse their commanders of preventing them from participating in the demonstration. The reservists say their release from the army was delayed just long enough to keep them from taking part.

    Just a few days ago, MK Nissan Slomiansky (National Religious Party) said, in response to the government decision to push off a Knesset vote on a budget cut, “In continuation of the general public atmosphere that the time has come to replace this government, it turns out that the government doesn’t even have full support within the coalition.” MK Aryeh Eldad (National Union) called for Olmert to suspend himself.

    Columnist Uzi Benziman of Haaretz wrote, towards the end of the war:
    “Whichever way you look at it, if the prime minister opposed the broadening of the war, why did he succumb to the pressure of the military establishment? And, if he did approve it, how dare his aides attempt to clear him, in retrospect, of the responsibility for its painful results…?

    “Furthermore, how does the decision to rush toward the Litani River fit with the frenzied disposition at the IDF, as the flames are dying, to withdraw ‘quickly and carefully’ most of the troops from Lebanese soil? And, if Olmert indeed did not intend to broaden the war and was more inclined toward a ceasefire, why did he agree to the dismissal of the head of the Northern Command a day earlier? After all, if the war is about to end, why is it necessary to humiliate the commander of the war front during the last day of the fighting? …

    “When Olmert announces that he, above all others, is responsible for the way the war was carried out, but avoids reaching the necessary personal conclusions, he is behaving according to norms that have dominated public life in recent years: the declaration is enough. In other words, there is no need to pay the price that problematic behavior demands.”

    The Jerusalem Post’s Caroline Glick has written that there is no need for an official commission of inquiry to investigate the war – simply because it is obvious that “the Olmert government has failed on every level. The Olmert government must go.” If the Knesset does not topple the government, “the people of Israel must take to the streets in mass demonstrations” to demand this.

    “It was the government’s responsibility,” Glick writes, “to question the IDF’s operational model of aerial warfare and to cut its losses when after two or three days it was clear that the model was wrong. At that point the government should have called up the reserves and launched a combined ground and air offensive. [Instead,] it abandoned its war goals, declared victory and sued for a cease-fire. When the public objected, after waiting two precious weeks, the government called up the reserves but then waited another unforgivable 10 days before committing them to battle.”

    Glick says that Foreign Minister Livny “did her best to demoralize the IDF and the public by publicly proclaiming that there is no military solution to what is clearly a military conflict,” and chose not to publicly argue Israel’s case.

    Ari Shavit of Haaretz wrote:
    “You cannot lead an entire nation to war promising victory, produce humiliating defeat and remain in power. You cannot bury 120 [159] Israelis in cemeteries, keep a million Israelis in shelters for a month, wear down deterrent power, bring the next war very close, and then say, ‘Oops, I made a mistake, that was not the intention, pass me a cigar, please.’ There is no mistake Ehud Olmert did not make this past month. He went to war hastily, without properly gauging the outcome. He blindly followed the military without asking the necessary questions. He mistakenly gambled on air operations, was strangely late with the ground operation, and failed to implement the army’s original plan, much more daring and sophisticated than that which was implemented. And after arrogantly and hastily bursting into war, Olmert managed it hesitantly, unfocused and limp. He neglected the home front and abandoned the residents of the north. He also failed shamefully on the diplomatic front…”

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This was received yesterday, tough as you can see, it is four days old…

    Column One: The coming wars
    Caroline Glick, THE JERUSALEM POST Aug. 18, 2006

    Sine the cease-fire was implemented in Lebanon, we have heard scattered reports indicating that a prisoner swap with the Palestinians may be in the works. In exchange for hundreds if not
    thousands of Palestinian terrorists now held in Israeli prisons, IDF Cpl. Gilad Shalit, who has been held hostage by Palestinian terrorists for nearly two months, may be released from captivity.

    These reports lend weight to the view that things are back to normal. Terrorists kidnap Israelis and hold them hostage and Israel releases terrorists in order to free them. It is a comforting thought for people like Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and his colleagues and the
    members of Lt.-Gen. Dan Halutz’s General Staff who continue to believe that it will be possible for Israel to sign on a dotted line and achieve “a normal existence.” Unfortunately, the chance that Shalit will be released is almost as small as the chance that Israel will be able to achieve a “normal existence.” Palestinian sources explain that the decision of whether or not to release Shalit is firmly in the hands of the Iranians and Syrians, and they are not in
    any mood to horse trade with the Jews.

    Today the Palestinian Authority is nothing more than yet another Iranian proxy. During the past month of war in Lebanon, it was the supposedly moderate Fatah terror group and the supposedly moderate Fatah-led Palestinian security forces that organized mass rallies in the streets of Ramallah and Gaza cheering on Hizbullah and calling for Hassan Nasrallah to bomb Tel Aviv.

    Now, in the aftermath of the cease-fire, which handed Hizbullah and its state sponsors Syria and Iran the greatest victory in their history, forces in the PA are actively preparing for a new round of war against Israel. As Hamas spokesmen have put it, Israel’s defeat
    in Lebanon has convinced them that it is possible to adopt Hizbullah’s methods to destroy the Jewish state. Amid false reports that he was planning to dissolve the Hamas government and replace it with a government of technocrats, Abbas went to Gaza on Monday morning and asked Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh if Fatah could join his government.

    As instructed by his commanders in Teheran and Damascus, Haniyeh has not yet agreed to Abbas’s offer. Rather he set humiliating conditions
    which Abbas must accept first. Abbas already agreed to Hamas’s demand that he allow the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization to also join the government. He is similarly expected to agree to Hamas’s demands that Fatah join the government as a junior partner and that it
    abandon its negotiations with Israel.

    Throughout the Gaza Strip and the Palestinian areas of Judea and Samaria, the Palestinians are gearing up for their next round of jihad with Israel. As was the case six years ago, they are beginning with public executions of Palestinians accused of helping Israel combat terrorism. Just this week, a crowd of hundreds hooted and
    stomped their feet in ecstasy as unmasked murderers killed one such Palestinian “collaborator” in Jenin.

    So while all eyes are glued on Lebanon, the Palestinians may well start the next war. And we know exactly how that war will look. They will use missiles, mortars and rockets that they will smuggle in from Egypt to kill Israelis in their homes in the South. They will infiltrate Israeli cities by digging tunnels under the security fence around Gaza, and from Egypt and from towns and cities in Judea and Samaria and murder us in ever growing numbers. They will receive money, weapons and combat instruction from Hizbullah and Iranian operatives in Gaza and abroad and they will attack us while protesting their everlasting dedication to jihad and their anger over Israel’s “aggression.”

    Then there is Syria. Syrian President Bashar Assad’s address Tuesday was a watershed event. After 14 years of beating around the bush,
    Syria finally came clean. Peace, Assad said, is dead. We hate Israel and we want to destroy it. If not us, then our children will destroy it. All the Arabs that want peace with Israel are traitors. Long live Hizbullah and we’re going to war to conquer the Golan Heights as a first step towards destroying Israel.

    So Syria is planning to attack us. Perhaps it will do so while Hizbullah is carrying out what Nasrallah called the “building and reconstruction jihad” where with Iranian funding Hizbullah will rebuild Lebanon for the Lebanese and so nail one more nail in the coffin of the Lebanese nation state and move 10 steps ahead in the Iranian colonization of Lebanon. Yes, while Hizbullah goes forward with Lebanese reconstruction, and with Iranian and Syrian assistance reequips and upgrades its arsenal of war and rebuilds its force structure, Syria will likely open a new front on the Golan Heights.

    Like the Palestinians, the Syrians will be following the Hizbullah model. Assad knows that his antiquated conventional forces are
    incapable of conquering and holding the Golan Heights. But, if Israel fights Syria the same way it just fought Hizbullah, then that doesn’t
    matter. Syria, with its arsenal of Scud missiles whose range covers the entire country and armed with its chemical and biological arsenals that can act in the best case as a deterrent force, will be able to kill thousands in not tens of thousands of Israeli civilians and soldiers in the coming battle and cause property and economic damage to the tune of tens of billions of dollars.

    Syria believes that it will be able to cause sufficient damage to make Israel sue for a cease-fire as we just did with Hizbullah. So like Hizbullah, Syria expects to gain at the UN Security Council what it could never hope to achieve on the battlefield. Specifically,
    given the precedent of Resolution 1701, Syria no doubt believes that in exchange for its aggression, it will receive international
    recognition for its territorial demands against Israel; an international force on the Golan Heights that will make it difficult for Israel to respond to future attacks; a major upgrade in its international profile; and billions of dollars in international assistance to rebuild in the wake of any damage caused to Syrian
    infrastructures by IDF operations.

    Behind the Palestinians and the Syrians lies Iran, the guiding light behind the present jihad. Iran, with its burgeoning nuclear weapons
    program, is the single greatest danger to international security. It is the single greatest danger to Israel’s survival. To date, Iran has made do with fighting Israel through its proxies, to great advantage. But Iran has made it absolutely clear that it intends to join the fray directly – when it is good and ready. And of course it will be good and ready when it has nuclear weapons.

    If Iran is allowed to attain nuclear weapons, there is no reason to doubt that it will use them. If Iran attacks Israel with nuclear
    weapons, then of course we are looking at a future war scenario involving not thousands of dead, but millions.

    As all of Israel’s leaders have been quick to point out over the years, the threat of a nuclear armed Iran is not just dangerous for
    Israel but for the entire world. Iran has its Persian Gulf neighbors in its gun sites. It has directly threatened the US and Europe.

    Although this is true, the fact that Iran is a threat to the entire world does not give Israel the ability to shirk from its responsibility to contend directly with Iran. Doing so would be
    tantamount to signing the death warrant of the Jewish people.

    In the not so distant future, we will find ourselves at war with Iran. Today, the choice of whether we fight that war in our own time,
    and before Iran gets nuclear weapons is in our hands. If we hesitate, if we and the rest of the free world waste precious time with worthless diplomatic wrangling with the ayatollahs, war will come to us, but on the enemy’s terms. And we will have only ourselves to blame.

    All of these future wars present us with a clear challenge as a country. We must prepare for war. This means, that technologically, we must engage in a crash program to find means to protect our cities from missile attack. We got off relatively easy this time. Hizbullah chose not to attack our industrial centers but showed it has the ability to do so through its missile attacks near Haifa’s port and its attacks near Hadera’s power plant.

    Militarily, we must not relent in targeting our enemies. The IDF must target every Palestinian terrorist. It must reassert control over the
    international border between Gaza and Egypt. Israel must accept the reality that the PA is a terrorist organization, not a legitimate
    regime, and stop viewing Abbas and his associates in Fatah as potential peace partners. Obviously, Israel must give up the idea of
    transferring Judea and Samaria to Palestinian control and take all necessary measures to stabilize the situation on the ground in a
    manner that neutralizes the threat of Palestinian jihad.

    Furthermore, the war in Lebanon exposed the results of years of neglect of the IDF reserve forces. These forces must be properly equipped, properly trained for war, and properly led. The talk of releasing men from reserve duty at 35 must be abandoned. The IDF has to accept that it is a fighting force in war. Commanders have to stop acting like yuppies in uniform and understand that they have a war to train for and fight and win.

    Finally, Israel needs a political leadership that will be capable of telling the Israeli public the truth that has been ignored for the
    past decade and a half. We are not a “normal” nation and we are not going to get peace in the coming years. We are an abnormal nation in
    our neighborhood and in the world and will always remain so, as is our right. Our people must be ready to sacrifice for the survival of
    the state and the defense of our freedom to be abnormal. We need leadership that will tell the Israeli people that a struggle awaits us but that our democracy, our freedom, and our values give us the power of creative thought that will allow us to beat the dull forces of jihad that surround us.

    In response to Assad’s speech on Tuesday, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni said that Assad has to decide if he’s on the side of peace or
    on the side of war. Defense Minister Amir Peretz outdid even that when he said that now that the war is over, it is time for Israel to get down to the real business of peace and to set the conditions for a renewal of the peace negotiations with Syria.

    In so responding to Assad’s unequivocal warmongering, our leaders again have shown us that they have learned nothing and are incapable
    of learning anything from the disaster into which they led us with Hizbullah in Lebanon. There is no missile that is capable of
    penetrating their walls of self-deception and delusion. They are blind and deaf to all evidence that their way of appeasement has
    failed.

    With the Olmert government’s stubborn insistence that Israel won the war it just lost, with the General Staff’s absurd statements that the
    mission was successful, it is clear that both our political and military leadership must be replaced as quickly as possible. Our enemies give us no time for hesitation. They plan their next wars in broad daylight as our leaders squawk in the darkness of their ideological stupor.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This piece, like many others today is from Sergio Tezza. Sarah Feld puts her finger on the problem with her title “Lions of Judah or Ghetto Mice?”
    —————————————————

    Lions of Judah or Ghetto Mice
    by Sarah Feld
    Aug 22, ’06 / 28 Av 5766

    The left-wing Kadima party-led government proclaims that it is too tired to fight and too afraid to succeed. Incongruous with their status as heads of the Jewish state, it seems they are embarrassed to be genetically identified as Jews. Ehud Olmert’s ghetto mentality disregards the legendary military might Israel has developed, with G-d’s blessing. He is copiously supported in his desperate policies by Mrs. Olmert and her “Peace Now With No Concern For the Future”-sponsored Women in Black. It was that fearful ghetto outlook that harassed the government into a hasty retreat six years ago, preparing the way for this latest volatile war, extensive terrorist arsenals and so many deaths.

    In inverse contrast are the Israelis who have withstood the delusional left-wing media spin of the withdrawal-surrender-war cycle. These include, but are not limited to, the wonderful families in the idealistic “orange” communities. They are not afraid to win.

    Jewish tradition lists rules for warfare that military strategists have often referred to. “The best defense is a good offense” is a derivative of “rise first to kill the one who is coming to kill you.” The bottom line is evident: those who are tolerant of depravity will become cruel to those who are good. We must annihilate evil people before they can destroy the innocent.

    The liberated Jewish mentality accepts triumph with pride. With G-d’s help, we are capable and determined to defend our lives and our land. There are liberated, thinking Jews and their supporters who are not afraid to defend themselves, their families or their homes. They do not have a fear of appearing as ruthless occupiers. They aren’t running from tyrants. They are committed defend truth, justice and their nation with strength and courage.

    My son shared the dilemma of the emergency call up to war with thousands of others. He was recently released from the regular army, where he was trained to fight on the front lines as a demolitions expert in the elite parachutist corps. When the Israeli government’s declared mission was to rescue kidnapped soldiers, protect Israeli citizens and annihilate the terrorist invaders, he was resolute to join the war effort.

    Then, the politicians of small, ghetto mentalities distorted the objectives. They could not stomach offending the non-Jewish world: ‘Israel would just like to push Hizbullah back a bit, if you please, until about the Litani River, more or less. We would not want to seriously hurt the terrorist infrastructure, just get a little breathing space, if you please. Maybe we’ll check out how the kidnapped soldiers are faring and then we’ll try to figure out some kind of diplomatic resources so maybe they can be released at some future time. Then, when everything is just like it was, without us conquering anyone, of course, we’ll go ahead and give away some more land in the territories so that everyone will like us even more.’

    Tens of thousands of reservists were milling at the border awaiting orders to fight. Simultaneously, many soldiers at the front were being targeted as they sat, pending orders to proceed – or not. Many of our finest were victims of disastrous, politically correct considerations.

    What was a courageous soldier to do? Should he go to fight a hasty, poorly organized, strategically shoddy war with irresolute objectives? Would his sacrifice make any difference?

    Thanks to the prime minister’s untimely declaration, my son learned that if they won, they were potentially laying the groundwork for the removal of 100,000 Jews, including his own family, from their lands and homes. If he would not come home, then his widow and as-yet-unborn first child would be at the mercy of those who sent him to fight.

    Clearly, as we learned from Gush Katif, this government does not exhibit mercy. David Hatuel, whose pregnant wife and four young daughters were murdered at point blank range by Hamas terrorists, was evicted. Chanan Vizner, whose father was stabbed to death while coming home from the synagogue on the Passover holiday, was evicted. The bereaved families of fallen soldiers, whose exhumed remains caused excruciating anguish, were evicted.

    It is criminal that our heroic young men should be demoralized by the frightened, indecisive ghetto thinking of his country’s prime minister.

    It is criminal to fight a war that we strategically aim to lose – or minimally, are too tired to win.

    It is criminal that we have agreed to a cease-fire that excludes release of our kidnapped soldiers, the disarming of Hizbullah and destruction of the terrorist infrastructure, including their sources in Syria and Iran, and establishing sane borders.

    It is criminal that the precious lives of our soldiers and citizens are deemed by the ghetto thinkers to be less worthy than lives of non-Jews and non-Israelis, including our enemies.

    It is criminal to know that this war could lay the groundwork for another withdrawal, forcing some 100,000 Jews to become the new refugees.

    It is criminal to set the stage for missiles to attack our entire nation from a third front, the decimated communities of Judea and Samaria.

    Those who are behind these criminal actions against the Jewish nation should be brought to justice now.

    It is time for the Land of Israel to be ruled by proud Jewish leaders who have exorcised the ghetto fear of fighting to destroy evil. It is time for the Jewish people to roar like the Lion of Judah and stop squeaking like a ghetto mouse.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This was received in the inbox frfom Aryeh Zelasko – another hardhitting piece by Caroline Glick. He received this courtesy of IMRA

    ————————————————–
    Tuesday, August 22, 2006
    War hero Emanuel Morano’s legacy vs Olmert’s war against the Jews

    Our World: Emanuel Morano’s legacy
    Caroline Glick, THE JERUSALEM POST Aug. 22, 2006

    At around 4 a.m. Saturday, Lt. Col. Emanuel Morano, a senior commander in the General Staff Reconnaissance Unit (Sayeret Matkal), was killed in a fierce battle with Hizbullah fighters near Baalbek in the Bekaa valley not
    far from the Lebanese-Syrian border.

    From the details of the commando raid that have filtered into the media, we learned that Morano and his men were airdropped into the area by helicopter along with their two Hummer vehicles, with the mission of attacking a Hizbullah base in the nearby village of Bodei used by the Iranian-sponsored guerrilla fighters for weapons smuggling.

    Iran is now working steadily to replenish Hizbullah’s surface to surface and anti-tank missile stocks and augment them with anti-aircraft missiles.

    Israel’s continued sea and air blockade of Lebanon, which Kofi Annan is pushing the Olmert government to lift, forces Iran to resupply Hizbullah by land through Syria and into the Bekaa valley.

    Morano and his men were discovered by Hizbullah fighters around the heavily guarded enclave and a pitched battle ensued. Morano was killed, another officer was seriously wounded and a third was wounded lightly. At least three Hizbullah fighters were killed and two were reportedly taken prisoner.

    Close air support from helicopters and fighter planes prevented Hizbullah reinforcements from participating in the battle or encircling the IDF commandos who were extracted – with their casualties and prisoners – after a prolonged firefight.

    Morano, 35, was a hero. He was admired and respected by his soldiers and officers. Those who knew him well agree that his most outstanding features were his humility and his Zionism. Morano lived modestly with his wife Maya and three young children in Moshav Tlamim by Sderot. He never wore his uniform in his community – he wasn’t interested in people knowing how senior an officer he was. He was in the IDF to serve his country and his people,
    not for the glory. He was a loyal son of Jerusalem.

    EXACTLY A year before his death, Morano’s humility and dedication to serving his country brought him to perform a different sort of nocturnal mission.

    Every night last August – until precisely 52 weeks before his death – he snuck into Gush Katif to bring food to his brother David and his family who were besieged along with the rest of the residents of Gush Katif by a force of some 50,000 IDF and police forces. These forces, who outnumbered the forces sent into Lebanon to fight Hizbullah a year later by 20,000, were
    under orders not to fight Israel’s enemies, but to expel loyal, patriotic Israeli citizens from their homes and communities, destroy their homes and communities and abandon their land to Hamas and Fatah control.

    David Morano is a major in reserves in another elite IDF unit. Last year in Neve Dekalim he challenged the IDF to find one soldier who would be capable of throwing him and his family out of their home. Taking David’s point and seeking to avoid embarrassment, the senior brass of the IDF beat a steady path to his door, attempting to convince him that he must leave. Sitting in a modestly furnished, book-lined living room, David repeatedly demanded to be told the strategic rationale of the expulsions. Why were
    these senior commanders following orders to surrender land to terrorists? Why were they turning 8,500 Jews into refugees in the Land of Israel in order to carry out a mission conceived by a prime minister desperate to avoid a felony indictment on corruption charges from the radical leftist state prosecution? David kept repeating over and over again that this was
    not the reason he and his four brothers served as combat officers in the IDF. He warned over and over again that expelling the Israelis from Gaza would strengthen Israel’s enemies and lead directly to another war.

    NONE OF the officers who spoke to David could provide him with answers. The most they could do was lend a sympathetic ear as they suggested he start packing his bags. They could not convince him to leave.

    In the end, the events had their own momentum. By Friday afternoon, David and his family were more or less the only family left on their street.

    Everyone else had been expelled Thursday. Over the Sabbath, the remaining Jews of Neve Dekalim darted around in the shadows avoiding arrests by
    soldiers and police. When they gathered in the synagogue, they were momentarily heartened to see that a couple hundred were still on hand.

    But their spirits were broken. By the end of the next week, they were all refugees, their homes and communities laid to waste by IDF bulldozers. Their abandoned synagogues awaited destruction at the hands of Palestinian mobs which came three weeks later.

    Some of the most charged moments at David’s home last summer came when he expressed his indignation over the way that IDF Chief of General Staff Lt. Gen. Dan Halutz and his generals daily insulted the religious Zionist
    community. Halutz threatened to bar the youths who protested the expulsions from serving in the military. Maj. Gen. Dan Harel, who as then OC Southern Command commanded the expulsions, talked about “a lost generation,” and
    demanded an accounting by the heads of the religious Zionist public for their children who refused to accept the legitimacy of the expulsions. Maj. Gen. Benny Ganz, who then served as OC Northern Command, claimed that the
    youth who protested the expulsions were a greater danger to Israel than Hizbullah.

    And yet, over the past year, after in many cases having to submit to humiliating interrogations by the Shin Bet, and repeated rejections by draft boards due to their “ideological fervor,” thousands of the youths who protested last summer’s expulsions were drafted into the army. Like Emmanuel and David Morano and their three older brothers, these soldiers make up the
    backbone of the IDF’s regular combat and Special Forces units. Like Emmanuel Morano, a disproportionate number of religious Zionist soldiers have died in the past month of war.

    LAST WEEK, Vice Premier Shimon Peres tried to silence the growing calls for the government and the members of the General Staff to resign by saying that this is no time for a war between the Jews. His statement is an insult to
    the intelligence. Demanding accountability from incompetent political and military leaders who
    led us into defeat against an enemy we could and should have beaten is not opening a civil war. It is the proper response from a responsible public that understands our leaders are incapable of defending the country.

    Indeed, if Peres is concerned about the possibility of a war between the Jews, then he should be the first one calling for the government to resign.

    The Olmert government was elected with a platform explicitly committed to carrying out a war against the Jews through the conduct of mass expulsions of up to 100,000 Israelis from their homes and communities in Judea and Samaria.

    In the midst of this month’s Lebanon war, as it became increasingly clear that he lacked the will to prosecute the war to victory, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert attempted to buck up his support in Europe and among the radical
    Israeli Left (of which his children and wife are proud members), by saying that the war in Lebanon would pave the way for the mass expulsion of Israelis from Judea and Samaria.

    Saturday, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni appointed a senior diplomat Yaacov Dayan as her point man for future negotiations with Syria. Her decision to appoint an envoy for talks on surrendering the Golan Heights to Syrian dictator and Iranian toady Bashar Assad came just days after Assad announced that he hates Israel, wants nothing to do with peace and is committed to Israel’s destruction. In light of Assad’s statements, there are two logical explanations for Livni’s move. First, like her colleagues in the Olmert government who also are pushing peace talks with Assad, Livni may be stupid.

    Second, Livni may have appointed Dayan in the hopes of stirring up internal fissures over the issue of land for peace. Already the radical leftists who run Israel’s media are engaging in surrealistic debates about the possibility of making peace with Assad the warmonger. These debates immediately place religious Zionists on the hot seat for their stubborn insistence on settling the land which makes giving it to Israel’s sworn enemies all the more difficult for people like Livni and her friends.

    Last summer in Gush Katif, there was no war between the Jews. Last summer, under orders from Ariel Sharon and Olmert, the IDF and the police fought a war against the Jews. David and Emmanuel Morano didn’t fight against Israel.
    They didn’t fight against the IDF.

    The Moranos fought against insane policies that victimized 8,500 patriots for no reason other than Leftist anti-religious prejudice, and that caused Gaza to become a new base for global jihad. And then, when war came from our
    emboldened enemies, as they warned it would, the Moranos loyally served beside their brothers and countrymen in defense of Israel.

    When the outraged Israeli public sends this incompetent government and General Staff home, it will not be starting a war between the Jews. It will be preventing another war against the Jews.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    It’s about 21:00 in Israel right now and my kids managed to pick up the BBC.

    The bastards are as anti-Israel as I’ve alleged. The conversation was about the “peacekeeping” force in Lebanon. The only person who was thanked by the host – and cut off – was a fellow who reminded everyone about how Israel had left Lebanon in 2000.

    Everyone talked about how Lerbanon had been devastated by an American led war but there was not one peep about how severe the damage of the katyushas was in Israel.

    I see easily now how people can think like Chris Rose and others on BC – assuming always that Israel is in the wrong no matter what it does.

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Ruvy, you’re still overly sensitized on this. I watch the BBC News along with several other channels including ITV, Fox, CNN and EuroNews. If you watched more of it you would see that it covers all sides of a story and is quite persistent and demanding with all parties.

    AS I told you when you complained that the BBC was reporting more about the death and the damage done in Lebanon than about what happened in Israel, there was simply more of it, a lot more.

    We are all aware of the death and damage done to Northern Israel but surely even a zealot like you wouldn’t try to say that they were at all on a similar scale or extent to that suffered by Lebanon.

    Your excessively partisan nature is confirmed by your closing paragraph in which you, yet again, misrepresent my views despite us having been over this ground more than once.

    I have NEVER, EVER said, nor thought, that Israel is always in the wrong. So which is it on your part, outright lies or mere excessive bias? Whichever, you may want to have a think about that before criticising anybody else…

  • Martin Lav

    outright lies or mere excessive bias

    One man’s lie is another man’s truth and if you are convinced that everyone is against you, then you have no space in your head or your heart for a different view.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Martin, for many years I tried to dismiss the “the world is against us” attitude. It was relatively easy to do when I wasn’t religious, and when I didn’t identify too strongly with being a Jew, particularly in the vanilla white culture that was Minnesota 15 years ago.

    You just turn your head and ignore – the truth.

    But here, it is harder to ignore. Many secular Israelis do try, but the katyushas falling round their heads have made it hard of late. The Israelis in Zion Square who spent a month in internal exile will not forget it – neither will the Jerusalemites around them.

    The truth is that the much of the Moslem world wants us dead, and that many Christian would not mind at all, much of the rest of the world doesn’t give a damn, and much of the media is intimidated by Moslem violence. Those truths stand, whether you like them or not.

    And you cannot escape the truth. Ask Daniel Perle’s widow.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    As if to prove my point, Marc, this arrived in my inbox this morning from 18 August…

    Special Dispatch-Egypt/Antisemitism Documentation Project
    August 18, 2006 No. 1255

    The Mufti of Egypt: The True Face of the Blood-Sucking Hebrew Entity has Been Exposed

    In an article in the Egyptian government daily Al-Ahram, Egyptian Mufti Sheikh Dr. ‘Ali Gum’a expressed his support of the resistance in Lebanon and stated that the lies of the “Hebrew entity” expose “the true and hideous face of the blood-suckers… who prepare [Passover] matzos from human blood.”(1)

    The following are excerpts from the article:

    “Greetings to the Lebanese people, to the Lebanese government, and to the Lebanese resistance – to the small and beautiful country that has proved to the world that the ideals of determination, bravery and self-dignity still exist in this era that has been taken over by the blood-sucking murderers.

    “Anyone who follows the news will discover that the Hebrew entity has turned into a [source] of [empty] talk, while the Arab discourse, which was characterized in the sixties [as empty talk], has developed significantly. [The Arabs] have learned a lesson and have moved from talk to action, and from the fostering of illusions to honesty, transparency, realistic goal-setting and ability to change. The Israeli discourse, [on the other hand], has turned to false declarations based on illusions, with wishful thinking taking precedence over facts.

    “These lies have exposed the true and hideous face of the blood-suckers who were described by Filmange in his book ‘The Treasure Hidden in the Talmudic Laws’ [sic], which tells how [the Jews] planned [to prepare] a matzo [unleavened Passover bread] using human blood.(2) If we follow events, the most important thing [that we discover], in my opinion, is that the war going on [today] plants hatred in the next generations, as though one of its goals is to perpetuate the conflict for many years to come.

    “A number of questions have been echoing in my mind. I tried to put them out of my mind several times, but they would not let go: Why do these foreigners come from all over the world, [speaking] many different languages, [and settle] in this small and narrow region of Palestine, in order to create so much mayhem and spill innocent blood in such a stupid manner? Why do they so unjustly insist on harming and rejecting the peace process, attacking their neighbors and occupying their lands, [while] constantly hollering that it is they who are threatened and oppressed? [Why do they insist on] destroying property, killing people, keeping the [entire] world busy [with the conflict], and violating all the principles accepted by the human [race]?

    “Why are they here? Why do they receive all this support, which costs the U.S. [so much] money? What emotional or practical benefit does [the U.S.] gain [from this support]? Is it [trying to appropriate] the region’s natural resources? After all, [it obtains these resources] anyway with the [full] consent [of the countries in the region], based on accepted agreements with which it is satisfied. Is this a clash of civilizations, or [is America acting] out of fear that some force will return to the region? [Is it acting out of] crazy fundamentalist tendencies, in anticipation of the [second] coming of the Messiah? Why is there need for such a large number of Israeli nuclear weapons, which threaten the existence of the entire region?…

    “[I convey my] greetings to Lebanon, to the resistance, and to the [Lebanese] people, so unified and dignified, and say to them: You are
    writing the pages of the nation’s history, [pages of] jihad that will not be in vain. The blood of those you have lost will be a curse on your enemies. You are not only a model for people living [today], you are also lighting the path for the future generations and finding the way to repulse aggression and set priorities, teaching [us] how to fight honorably and fairly, and how to endure the crimes and sins that have taken hold of people’s minds…

    “All the Lebanese victims of the [Israeli] crimes were civilians, while those killed on the enemy’s [side] were all soldiers. This is reality that speaks for itself, and not [empty] talk [that comes to] justify [actions], and will later be exposed as lies…”

    Endnotes:
    (1) Al-Ahram (Egypt), August 7, 2006.
    (2) The Treasure Hidden in the Talmudic Laws (1899) is a compilation of two books, translated into Arabic by Dr. Yusuf Hana Nasrallah. The first is Der Talmudjude (1871), by the antisemitic professor August Rohling, and the other is a history of Syria from 1840, edited by Achille Lorraine. asharqalarabi.org.uk

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Martin,

    The piece above is just a small sample of the steady barrage of Jew-hatred that infects the Egyptian main-stream media. While the accusations come from an Arab source, do note that the original idea of Jews using the blood of children to make matzot is a Christian invention. It shows up every now and then among Christians as well, who still drink the poison in their own wells…

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    More Fallout from Mr. Olmert’s Little War

    As anyone who has studied the history of the American Revolutionary War knows very well, wars cost money. Raising the money to pay for them is often problematic. Lord North’s solution to paying for Britain’s conquest of French Canada and French India 2½ centuries ago cost the British Empire its most valuable piece of real estate, the 13 colonies that became the United States.

    The efforts of those infant states to pay for their own war expenses caused the original Articles of Confederation that bound them together to be scrapped in favor of a reform document – now known as the Constitution of the United States of America.

    So, to restate, wars cost money. And the State of Israel is having a hard time coming up with the more than small change required… There is one item I put in bold in the article that follows below – a bit of hope for this immigrant living on the Hill of Incense in the mountains of Binyamín.
    ————————————————–

    from Arutz Sheva (Israel National News).

    Coalition Head Has Had It With Labor, Threatens New Government

    By Hillel Fendel

    Coalition head Yitzchaki (Kadima) says Labor’s refusal to back Kadima’s proposed budget cuts, to be used to pay for the war & northern recovery efforts, means Labor must be thrown out of coalition.

    Coalition whip and Kadima MK Avigdor Yitzchaki, responsible for coordinating the coalition in the Knesset, says that the refusal by two Labor MKs to back the proposed budget cuts in the Finance Committee is just about the last straw.

    Labor MKs Avishai Braverman and Orit Noked said they would not vote for the proposed 1.8-billion shekel cut that would affect almost all government ministries. “I cannot continue to vote against my conscience,” Braverman said. The former President of Ben-Gurion University in Be’er Sheva entered politics on the Labor list late last year, promising to make the budget more weaker-class friendly.

    The proposed budget cuts called for a 6% slash in most government ministries, except for the Public Security ministry (3%) and the Welfare and Health ministries (no cut at all). A spokesperson for MK Orit Noked explained to Arutz-7, however, that the cut would really have been an average of 9%.

    For instance, the spokesperson said, 33% of the budget for housing aid for the needy was to have been cut, as well as large amounts from the Veterans Law, the development of the Galilee, the development of new industrial zones and Torah education. “The cuts would have affected the people who need the money most,” she said, “cutting salaries, jobs and [money for] suppliers.”

    When Yitzchaki saw that he did not have the required majority for the cut, he had the vote postponed. This is the second time that Labor has thwarted the proposed cuts – and it infuriated Yitzchaki, who said he would recommend that Kadima begin coalition negotiations with other parties that might replace Labor. “The Labor Party’s ministers in the government approved the cuts,” he said, “and now two MKs come along and vote against?! I’m tired of these games!”

    Finance Ministry officials were upset by the lack of a decision, and announced that as of tomorrow, they would not transfer reserve soldiers’ salaries to their employers.

    MK Braverman said he must be loyal to his voters, namely, the weaker classes, and not merely “get back to them in three years, at the next election.” He said he knows that the State of Israel has the money to prevent the welfare cuts.

    His party colleague, Minister Yitzchak Herzog, said in response, “This is not the time to dismantle the coalition.” He said that the emergency needs now are the war effort and rebuilding the north, and other needs must take a back seat. “If you try to pull the rope from both ends, it will end up ripping,” Herzog said.

    The coalition currently numbers 67 MKs, comprising Kadima (29), Labor (19), Shas (12), and the Pensioners (7). Kadima has been flirting with Avigdor Lieberman’s right-wing Yisrael Beiteinu party (11), and with the hareidi-religious United Torah Judaism (6). Both these parties would be required to ensure a majority for a Labor-free

    —————————————————

    By the way, tomorrow there will be a demonstration of reservists in Jerusalem protesting the conduct of the war and demandiong a thorough investigation (along with heads on a silver platter – figurative heads, we’re Jews after all).

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Ruvy: I am still waiting your answer to my 167.

    Which is it, you are telling lies or are being overly partisan? Or are you simply going to ignore the ugly truth of it, as you normally do when reality is too inconvenient for your religious extremism?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Follow-on to the previous article about a crisis in the coalition. Lots of pisssed off reservists who are not paid are one formula for a coup d’état. This is from Debkafiles

    Swelling groups of protesters, led by Israeli army reservists who served in Lebanon, begin gathering outside the Knesset and prime minister`s office Tuesday

    August 22, 2006, 11:27 PM (GMT+02:00)

    They began organizing after hundreds of officers and men of the crack Alexandroni Brigade hurled charges against the Chief of Staff, Lt. Dan Halutz at a meeting in Hadera. One carried a banner with the motto: You prevented us from winning.

    Halutz received them after signs of mutiny appeared among the brigade’s reservists – the first ever staged by a complete Israeli combat unit against the high command.

    Brigade officers signed a letter in which they warned that if their willingness to fight for their country continues to be trampled on, there will be no one left to fight the next war. They spoke of a deep crisis of confidence and alienation between the officers and soldiers of the brigade and its commanders, the northern command and the general staff. The reservists repeated the grievances of other units that they were sent into battle without appropriate equipment, food or water. Worst of all, their orders were confused, contradictory and unrelated to what they found in the field. Tactical intelligence data was missing throughout the campaign, forcing them to fight blind.

    Last week, the brigade’s commander, Col. Shlomi Cohen, called the protesters “impertinent” and threatened them with court martial.

    When the chief of staff promised that every complaint would be thoroughly investigated, one of the participants at the showdown burst out: “Who needs an inquiry – government or judicial? The Lebanon fiasco is so glaring that it cries to heaven. We all know where responsibility lies – in the military and national leadership. They should all resign and not hide behind some probe else the crisis of confidence in the army will deepen.”

    In contrast to the chief of staff, the Chief Infantry and Paratroop Officer, Brig. Yossi Maimon, admitted: We have sinned. He confessed to a deep sense of responsibility for failing to better prepare the army and reserve units for battle. “Notwithstanding the heroism the army demonstrated in combat, we are left with a strong sense of missing out,” he said.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Chris,

    This is from a different thread.

    RiJ: “It’s about noon in Spain right now. Why don’t you have a spot of lunch and a glass of wine, listen to some soothing music. Don’t, whatever you do, listen to breaking news. I hear the planes overhead for the second or third time today. Those nasty Zionists must be up to no good again…”

    You responded: “As to your closing remark, I really hope Israel is not breaching the current uneasy ceasefire, again…”

    Now let’s review comment #151 on this thread.

    “DEBKAfile Exclusive: Bush administration acts fast to bring France aboard the Lebanon multinational force, gives Israel tacit go-ahead for air strikes against arms trucks from Syria…

    The second step taken by the Bush administration was a quiet go-ahead given by US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice to Israel’s Dep. PM Shimon Peres for the Israeli air force to destroy trucks suspected of carrying rockets and other arms from Syria into Lebanon. Siniora agreed to turn a blind eye to this continuing Israeli air activity over Lebanon as he has for Hizballah’s continued armed presence south of the Litani River.”….

    So, you follow the BBC (and a slew of other useful idiots in the mainstream media) and call this a truce violation. I follow Debkafiles and see that it is not exactly a truce violation, it is an American attempt to shore up the government of Prime Minister Siniora of Lebanon (and possibly that of Olmert as well).

    This is just one isolated example of what I’m talking about. Now the point here is not that you view Israel at fault all the time – you may not – but based on the kind of news coverage you get from the BBC and CNN (can’t comment on the others) it is easy to see why you would have the views you do.

    And while you may not view Israel at fault all the time, in all your correspondence with me that is how it appears, even though you may never have written those words.

    I call it as I see it, Chris. I have 20/30 vision in both eyes with corrective lenses, and that is not perfect vision. And as you well know, I’m big enough to apologize when I’m wrong.

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    More evasion, Ruvy. You said you could hear planes overhead – obviously Israeli planes, right? So I said I hope Israel isn’t breaking the ceasefire , which it has done before – that is a fact, not propaganda.

    You said “I see easily now how people can think like Chris Rose and others on BC – assuming always that Israel is in the wrong no matter what it does.” Which is untrue and you know it.

    Saying “I call it as I see it” is an intellectually lazy copout, which I’m also sure you know.

    So, if you are big enough to apologise, go ahead and do it.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This piece received from the author. It is filled with the generalizations and labelling which I generally eschew, but it is also filled with a very real statement about what is acceptable in Europe as opposed to America – and where the dangers for Jews are. And unfortunately, we Jews do have to look after each other, as some blogger at the Daily Kos stated. One of the big lessons of World War II and the events leading up to that war and immediately after that war is that we can rely only upon ourselves – and G-d. If you are a Jew and you do not believe in G-d, you have only your fellow Jew to save your ass.

    For you, Mr. Rose; enjoy.

    —————————————————

    Is the Democratic Party Going European?
    by Jonathan Rosenblum
    Yated Ne’eman
    August 23, 2006

    Anti-Israel fervor in America still has a long way to go to catch up with that in Europe. Popular opinion in America, for instance, remains largely sympathetic to Israel. No one would make that claim for Europe.

    No mainstream American paper would publish a screed like that of Norwegian novelist Jostein Gaarder in Norway’s Aftenposten, which employed ancient anti-Semitism canards to attack Israel and deny its right to exist. Gaarder berates Israel for failing to accept Christianity’s humanitarian message and for clinging to the primitive law of “an eye for an eye.” He appears unaware that Jewish history might have given Jews some cause to doubt the sincerity of that humanitarian message, and does not know that lex talionis is not Jewish law.

    Gaarder berates Israel for treating its citizens’ blood as redder than that of Lebanese – as if there were any nation in the world that does not view its first duty as the preservation of the lives of its citizens – and lays the blame on the “ridiculous” idea that Jews are G-d’s Chosen people.

    While it is doubtful that any major American paper would publish an opinion piece invoking so many classic anti-Semitic stereotypes, and attacking Israel in specifically religious terminology, such views are being expressed in America. On the angry Left blog sites, which play an ever larger role in Democratic Party politics, attacks on Jews are commonplace.

    After spending several months campaigning for Senator Joseph Lieberman in Connecticut, Lanny Davis, former special counsel to President Clinton, revised his lifelong view that intolerance and hate-speech are more likely to be found on the Right. In a piece in the Wall Street Journal, Davis provided a sampler of the anti-Semitic attacks on Senator Lieberman posted on some of the most widely read and influential Democratic blog sites.

    Lieberman was accused of supporting the war in Iraq so that American soldiers, not Israeli ones, would die. One post on Daily Kos, the most influential Democratic blog, read, “Jews only care about the welfare of other Jews . . . Ignore all the Jewish propaganda about participating in the civil rights movement of the ‘60s.” Another Daily Kos reader described Lieberman as a “racist and religious bigot.” And a reader at Huffington Post opined that Lieberman “cannot escape the religious bond he represents. His wife’s name is Haggadah or Diaspora or something you eat at Pesach.” Yet another blogger made fun of the beard Lieberman grew during the Three Weeks, and suggested that he dye it “blood red.”

    Venomous caricatures of Israel as the new Third Reich have long been standard fare in respectable papers in Europe, but the migration of such views across the Atlantic is deeply worrying, if only because America is Israel’s one absolutely indispensable ally.

    A deep ambivalence towards Israel has infected the Democratic Party, which many political analysts are currently projecting to take over one or both houses of Congress in the next elections. A recent Bloomberg/Los Angeles Times poll comparing voter attitudes on the war in Lebanon and towards Israel shows Republicans to be far more supportive of Israel than Democrats. Though the Democratic Party is the political home of the vast majority of American Jews, 54% of Democrats advocate that the United States adopt a more neutral – i.e., less pro-Israel – stance to the Middle East, as opposed to only 29% of Republicans. Nearly two-thirds of Republicans felt the Israeli bombing in Lebanon was fully justified, as opposed to only 29% of Democrats.

    Increasingly, mainstream Democrats are adopting the attitudes of the European Left. In the recent Senate hearings on John Bolton’s nomination as ambassador to the United Nations, Senator John Kerry, the 2004 Democratic standard-bearer, repeatedly criticized Bolton for the fact that America is consistently the odd-man out at the United Nations, and stands outside the consensus of our European “allies.”

    One shudders to think where Israel would be if the United States ceased to be the “odd-man-out” at the U.N. Recall that six of those so-called European allies, including France, voted in favor of a resolution of the U.N. Human Rights Commission specifically legitimizing terrorism against Israeli citizens to further Palestinian liberation. Bolton’s U.N.-skepticism is a welcome antidote to the European view that only legitimate use of force is that sanctioned by the U.N. Security Council. That is especially true given that most of the resolutions passed by that august body are condemnations of Israel, and its Secretary-General barely conceals his visceral animus for Israel, while being only to happy to be photographed together with Hassan Nasrallah.

    INCREASINGLY, THE AMERICAN LEFT shares with its European counterparts a naïve Enlightenment belief that all problems can be solved by rational men around a conference table. In that view, there are no irreconcilable goals; all men are basically interested in increasing their allotment of material goods, and all conflicts can be resolved by slicing the pie slightly differently.

    In this happy world, talk is always good, and military action is always bad. On a recent BBC Hardtalk program, the supercilious British interviewer kept haranguing Binyamin Netanyahu about the necessity of a ceasefire and a political solution. (Netanyahu’s restraint in not wiping the smile off his face seemed to this viewer almost superhuman.) It never occurred to the BBC interviewer that there could be circumstances in which defeating an enemy must precede talk. And he chided Netanyahu for constantly reminding him of how ruthlessly (and rightly) the Allies in World War II pursued a policy of unconditional surrender against Germany and Japan.

    The automatic rejection of the use of force explains the obsession of the Europeans and The New York Times with body counts in any conflict – whoever kills the most is automatically the bad guy, regardless of who started the war. It was left to Netanyahu to point out to another BBC interviewer that Germany suffered more casualties in World War II than America and Britain combined, without its superior moral position being thereby established.

    Terms like good and evil, when applied to nations, fill liberals with disgust because they suggest that there are nations that seek more than incremental goals – like imposition of Sharia on infidels around the world, for instance. The liberal worldview cannot comprehend why a nuclear Iran would be any less deterred than the FSU by mutual assured destruction. Liberals simply cannot credit the impeccable religious logic of the late Ayatollah Khomeini (quoted in Iranian textbooks) – either we will annihilate the infidel powers and become free or we will die trying, and go to the greater freedom of martyrdom – as being serious. And the mindset of a young British-born Muslim couple who planned to blow up a passenger plane by igniting their infant’s baby formula is beyond them.

    This sterile vision of all men as pursuing limited goals as rational game-players leads to consistently downplaying the importance of will in affairs of state. In 1938, Europe chose to believe that Hitler, ym”Sh, would be satisfied with the Sudetenland, and failed to recognize that he was testing the will of the West before embarking upon his plan for world conquest. Similarly, Nasrallah tested Israel five months after the 2000 withdrawal from Lebanon with the kidnapping of three soldiers, and was astounded by the meekness of the response. That weak response proved to be disastrous for Israel.

    Those who assume that all grievances can be assuaged will inevitably fail to comprehend the jihadists’ all-consuming rage or to recognize that they terrorize the West, not because they have some demands that can be negotiated, but because terror is the only thing that they do well and that provides them with a sense of power. Westerners would prefer to believe that if only the Israeli “occupation” ended – or in the worst case, the mistake of Israel’s creation reversed – that Islamic rage would disappear, just as they once hoped that Hitler would stop with Czechoslovakia.

    People who believe such things are a long-range danger to themselves. But they are an immediate danger to Israel. Let us pray that the American Left does not follow its European counterparts in that direction.

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Ruvy, your remarks here are frankly total bullshit. If it wasn’t for the Europeans and the Americans, the fate of the Jews in Europe during WW2 would have been even worse than it actually was.

    Therefore your statement that “One of the big lessons of World War II and the events leading up to that war and immediately after that war is that we can rely only upon ourselves” is either another lie or more blind propaganda. Either way, it’s pure bullshit.

    Furthermore, some Norwegian newspaper is hardly the European mainstream and you seem to now be calling for some repression of freedom of speech for Europeans. Again, frankly, please stop such stupid bullshit.

    If you actually took the trouble to search the term “Israel as the new Third Reich” in Google News, you’d find the majority of the results are from American sources, so where you get the idea from that this is a common European view I have no idea at all.

    Clearly you’re still under the twin evil influences of cult zeal and war fever – an increasingly ugly combination in my opinion.

    Let’s not forget that you are the one that has repeatedly called for an end to USA involvement in your adopted homeland, a country that still doesn’t recognise the nuclear non-proliferation treaty and has quietly built up an arsenal of over 300 nuclear weapons.

    Iran is not currently able to deliver a nuclear weapon of any kind anywhere, so your hypothetical situation is entirely moot. Even if it was, the prospect of being annihilated by the USA and your own country’s arguably illegal nuclear weapons would undoubtedly stay its hand.

    You have also repeatedly called your own democratically elected government traitors and even endorsed the idea of a nuclear strike by Iran on Tel Aviv. I think you need to urgently address your own conscience and part in all this rather than making entirely bogus accusations.

    I have already rebutted your bogus allegations of the BBC being anti-Israel, in response to which you have done no more than switch targets to some obscure Norwegian newspaper.

    Furthermore, I still await your apology for your insulting and either deliberate or merely dogmatic misrepresentation of my views, a thing you have said you have no problem doing but have not in fact actually done.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The following post was received ia e-mail. It’s author is a Christian Lebanese Arab, an American publisher…

    Israel’s terminal illness
    By Joseph Farah, WorldNetDaily.com
    August 18, 2006

    We’ve all known brave soldiers who fought courageously in multiple conflicts only to succumb to lingering and debilitating illnesses
    years later.

    Likewise, history tells us of nations that never lost a battle in combat only to die because they lost their sense of purpose, their will to survive.

    I think that’s what is happening in Israel today. I think the Jewish state is terminally ill.

    Israel may have won three major wars in its 60-year history, but it will be lucky to survive another decade of morally bankrupt leadership.

    It’s not just former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon who is comatose. It seems the whole current Israeli government is brain dead.

    How else can one explain Israel’s agreement to Lebanon cease-fire terms that amount to unconditional surrender?

    I know few other commentators who have explained the development in these stark terms, but this is the reality of what Ehud Olmert’s
    government has done. It represents, in my opinion, one of the biggest strategic blunders in the history of the country.

    Let’s review what Israel has done:

    It launched a war on Iran-directed Hezbollah terrorists after they kidnapped two Israeli soldiers, killed eight others and rocketed
    northern Israel towns. From the beginning, Israel demanded the return of its troops and the disarming of Hezbollah terrorists.

    What did Israel get in the cease-fire deal? No return of the kidnapped troops and Hezbollah terrorists remain under arms.

    For the life of me, I don’t understand why Israeli civilians are not massing in the streets of Jerusalem demanding the immediate resignation of Olmert and his Cabinet. The Israeli army is returning from Lebanon with its tail between its legs.

    How can you ask soldiers to kill and die for a simple objective that is later abandoned without explanation or reason?

    Does Olmert not understand what his surrender means? It means he has given aid and comfort to Israel’s enemies. He has handed Hezbollah its biggest victory since former Prime Minister Ehud Barak unilaterally withdrew from Lebanon, handing the southern part of the country to Iran’s proxy army and positioning it to claim it had defeated the Jewish state.

    He has also proved to Israel’s other terrorist enemies – those in Hamas and the Palestinian Authority – that rocket attacks, assassinations and kidnappings are winning tactics against the Jewish state. Prepare to see more of them under the terms of this “cease-fire.”

    He has demonstrated for the entire world that Israel has lost the kind of resolve it had in previous military campaigns. When the going
    gets tough, today’s Jews evidently will just sue for peace.

    Hezbollah has won. That’s the unimaginable bottom line after this conflict. The terrorists have won – not in the battlefield, mind you.
    But they won before the war ever began because weak-kneed, cowardly, morally unfit leaders in Jerusalem would never permit Israel to win.

    With Hezbollah’s victory, Iran and Syria have been emboldened as well. This is bad news not just for Israel, but for the entire world.

    If you think I overstate the case, ask yourself this fundamental question: Is Israel more secure after abandoning its conflict in Lebanon or less secure?

    You know the answer. Everyone knows the answer.

    Israel may have one of the greatest military machines in the world. It may have an intelligence apparatus that is the envy of
    superpowers. It may even have right on its side.

    But Israel is being led by men unworthy of its history, unworthy of its sacrifices, unworthy of its hard-fought victories of the past and
    unworthy of God’s sovereign promises to bless the Jewish state forever.

    It’s clear the only enemy that could ever destroy Israel is the kind of internal moral rot we are witnessing today in Jerusalem. Israel
    has just one shot at surviving its terminal illness – cutting out the cancer that is the Olmert government.

    ————————————————–

    I firmly agree with the author’s diagnosis – but the cure will have to be far more radical surgery than replacing one bought out thief with another…

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    This piece is about a UN assessment of the “Palestinian Situation.” It is the ususal anti-Israel UN trash that has earned this organization the moniker of “Useless Nothings.”

    Th idiots appear to have learned nothing from the events occurring around them and continue to make excuse after excuse for the thugs who oppress the Arabs under their charge.

    ————————————————–

    UN OFFICIAL PAINTS GRIM PICTURE OF PALESTINIAN SITUATION; URGES RENEWED
    INTERNATIONAL EFFORT New York, Aug 22 2006

    4:00PM

    Briefing the Security Council today on the situation of Palestinians in the Middle East, the
    top United Nations political officer painted a grim picture of developments over the past 12 months, warning that the vision of Israel and Palestine living peacefully side-by-side has slipped “further away,” and stressing the need for a renewed international effort in the region.

    In an open meeting of
    the Council
    , which also heard speeches from almost 30 countries, the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Ibrahim Gambari, listed six main reasons why the situation had changed so much from a year ago, when Israel was
    disengaging from Gaza and part of the northern West Bank and the world community was working to ensure both sides would return to the Road Map for the region.

    “Far from advancing towards the vision of two States, Israel and Palestine, living side-by-side in peace and security, we have seen that vision slip further away during the past year.”

    Listing the reasons for such developments, he said the first was the “political positions and actions of the parties,” noting that the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority has not fully committed itself to basic principles of the peace
    process, while Israel has itself failed to implement Road Map obligations, including freezing settlement activity.

    Mr. Gambari also highlighted the financial difficulties faced by the Palestinian
    Authority, but said that the “most terrible” measure of the state of the peace process was the death and destruction from violence, as he cited examples of the suffering on both sides.

    “The cycle of attack and counter-attack leads only to increased human suffering which is intolerable on all sides. In the past year a total of 41 Israelis have been killed, and nearly 480 injured, by Palestinian violence. In the same period, over 450 Palestinians have been killed, and over 2,500 injured by
    Israeli violence.”

    He highlighted also that no progress has been made in securing the release of Israeli Corporal Gilad Shalit, despite calls for his nconditional release, while efforts to secure the release of Palestinian prisoners have also been unsuccessful.

    A fourth reason for the lack of progress towards a negotiated two State solution, said Mr. Gambari, was the fact that settlement activity continues and so too does the building of The Barrier, large parts of which are on occupied
    Palestinian territory.

    He also highlighted the high degree of poverty, noting that “impoverishment in the Palestinian territories is more severe now than it has ever been,” but concluded by saying that perhaps the most worrying development of the past year
    was in the attitudes of ordinary people.
    “The sixth measure of the state of the peace process is perhaps the most worrying development. Difficult to quantify, but easy to discern – in the attitudes of ordinary men and women. Opinion polls suggest a woeful decline in
    confidence in the peace process and in the prospects for a negotiated settlement on both sides.”

    “Positions may be hardening, and could harden further unless a credible political process is somehow revived,” he said, as he emphasized the importance of Security General Kofi Annan’s recent call for greater global involvement and
    the need to look at peace in the whole Middle East region as a whole.

    “There are many concrete steps, some immediate, which need to be taken in order to get out of the current crisis and back towards a political path. And as the Secretary-General stressed on 11 August, something more is needed – a renewed
    international effort, in which the various crises in the region are addressed.as
    part of a holistic and comprehensive effort, sanctioned and championed by this Council.”
    2006-08-22 00:00:00.000

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Still waiting…

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Mr. Olmert Reaping the Winds of Change He Has Sown

    Arutz Sheva’s lead story

    IDF Reservists, Protestors: ´Olmert, Peretz, Livni – Resign!´

    By Hana Levi Julian

    A group of 500 reservists and supporters called for the top three officials in the government to resign during a protest held outside Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s Jerusalem office Tuesday night.

    With reservists protesting outside the Knesset, and politicians in the opposition and even many from Olmert’s coalition calling for a comprehensive investigation into the management of the war, the continuing special session of the Knesset began to address the issues faced by reservists both during the war and after.

    IDF Deputy Chief of Staff Gen. Moshe Kaplinski addressed the special Knesset session on the current status of reservists and those who were released after their stint in Lebanon, as well as the issue of the reservists who were called up to Lebanon on emergency orders. He acknowledged that there were failures.

    He told the reservists’ lobby at the Knesset, “We succeeded in correcting many of the errors [that became evident in the early days of the war], but it remains to be determined if we are moving in the right direction. We have a step-by-step plan to return to preparedness and we are now beginning the process of returning to fitness.”

    A daily demonstration by a group from Haifa is slated to begin Wednesday near the central bus station in Jerusalem under the banner, “Olmert must resign immediately.” Supporters are being handed petitions to sign demanding the Prime Minister’s resignation.

    Another protest is scheduled for this coming Friday and is to be led by the family of Sgt. Refanael Muskal who was killed in southern Lebanon a month ago. Marchers will present Olmert with a letter demanding his resignation at the end of the demonstration.

    “The leadership failed and it must go,” said Riva Muskal, mother of the fallen soldier. “We don’t need public inquiries to tell us that.”

    Still another march is scheduled for this coming Sunday, August 27th at 10:00 a.m. Marchers will start off from Rabin Square in Tel Aviv and walk to Jerusalem, ending their march across from the Prime Minister’s Office.

    Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Defense Minister Amir Peretz were not spared criticism, as the ranks of protestors demanding the resignation of all three top government officials continue to swell. Reservists are lining up to join demonstrations together with dead soldiers’ grieving families and other civilians, some of whom lost homes or other property destroyed by Katyusha rocket fire.

    A group of 20 reservists supported by the bereaved families of soldiers who fell in the war marched on Monday in protest of the government’s mismanagement of the war, beginning at the entrance to Jerusalem and ending at the Prime Minister’s Office, where they called for the resignation of the Prime Minister and Defense Minister Peretz. They then moved to the Rose Garden later in the evening.

    Some 150 demonstrators crowded Rabin Square in Tel Aviv last week to demand that the political leaders responsible for managing the military operations step down.