These are all the Blogs posted on Sunday, 2, 2012.
Sunday, 2 December 2012
Not Your Grandfather's Public Service
Susan Rice, like so many of our selfless public servants these days, has somehow found a way to get rich, very rich. She also happens to own stock in several companies doing business with Iran. From the Washington Free Beacon:
The portfolio of embattled United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice includes investments of hundreds of thousands of dollars in several energy companies known for doing business with Iran, according to financial disclosure forms.
Rice, a possible nominee to replace Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when she steps down, has come under criticism for promulgating erroneous information about the September 11, 2012, attacks in Benghazi, Libya, that killed four Americans.
Rice has the highest net worth of executive branch members, with a fortune estimated between $24 to $44 million, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. A Free Beacon analysis of Rice’s portfolio shows thousands of dollars invested in at least three separate companies cited by lawmakers on Capitol Hill for doing business in Iran’s oil and gas sector.
The revelation of these investments could pose a problem for Rice if she is tapped by President Barack Obama to replace Clinton. Among the responsibilities of the next secretary of state will be a showdown with Iran over its nuclear enrichment program.
“That Susan Rice invested in companies doing business in Iran shows either the Obama administration’s lack of seriousness regarding Iran or Rice’s own immorality,” said Michael Rubin, a former Pentagon adviser on Iran and Iraq. “Either way, her actions undercut her ability to demand our allies unity on Iran.”
Sydney, Australia: Naive Jewish Schoolgirls Being Groomed For Dhimmitude
This article by one Michelle Favero, which appeared on November 2 2012 in Jwire, a clearinghouse of news for Jewish Australians, has got to be read to be believed. I reproduce it here because it forms such a perfect companion-piece to the article just posted here at NER by our friend Jerry Gordon, 'Deciphering Muslim Taqiyya'.
Read it, and weep. Read it, and wince. Read it, and then click on the link to see the picture of (bare-headed) Jewish girls sunnily smiling alongside two cute little heavily-be-hijabbed mini-Muslimahs, and remember Sol Hachuel, of Morocco, and her sweetly-smiling Muslim 'friend', and feel nauseated.
'Throughout this year 24 Year 7 students from Sydney's Emanuel School have met with Year 7 students from Iqra Islamic College to learn about each other's cultures and beliefs, as well as to forge friendships.
'Friendships'. Somehow I suspect the Jewish girls were not told about Surah 3: 28, or about Surah 48: 29. And I doubt that anyone told them about Safiyyah, Jewish teenager of the Khaybar Oasis, aged 17, taken to Mohammed's bed by force on the night of the day that Mohammed had ordered and overseen the torture-murder of her husband Kinana. - CM
'The students met in a variety of places, including Emanuel Synagogue, The Big Kitchen, and Iqra College in Minto.
'As the year progressed, the students were able to break down the barriers to their initial shyness and to build meaningful friendships with each other.
Query: I wonder what happened to those "friendships", when the rockets started flying in vollies from Gaza, and when Israel finally, goaded beyond endurance, responded in an attempt to protect its civilian population from the genocidal Jew-hatred of the Arab Muslims of Gaza? Did any of those sweet little hijabettes, or their brothers, or cousins, or parents, or teachers, take part in the rallies where people could be heard screaming 'Kill the Jews!' 'Death to Israel!'?- CM
'Year 7 Emanuel School student, Mikayla Sacks, said, "The Interfaith experience was really interesting and educational. It taught my friends and me about Muslim people and how they are actually quite similar to us Jews."
AAARGH! This poor, deceived child. - CM
"The project was meaningful to me because now, when I see Muslim people, I won't see them as 'different' anymore, because I have learnt that, in fact, we are all human beings, and we should all be friends".
Oh, Mikayla. Did they tell you that in the Quran, surah 48: 29, it says: "Muhammad is allah's apostle, and those who follow him are ruthless to the unbelievers (that's you, Mikayla, and all of us who are not Muslims ) but merciful to one another." ?- CM
'Both groups have asked for additional meetings in 2013, and have vowed to stay in touch through email and Facebook.
'Emanuel students were warmly welcomed by an Iqra College teacher, Mr Ahmad Sari, who stated that although the two faiths have differences, they actually have more similarities.
Franz Rosenzweig didn't think so. He classified Islam as a subspecies of 'paganism', that is: as an entirely non-biblical faith, based on fundamentally different and indeed antithetical presuppositions. And will Emanuel College encourage these Jewish girls to research what the great Moses ben Maimon said about Islam, and Muslims, and the very differing - indeed radically contrasting - conceptions of God the Creator, that are found in Judaism and in Islam? Will it allow them to read his 'letter to the Jews of Yemen'?- CM
'He noted that both Jews and Muslims were 'peoples of the book' and added that he hopes that this generation will find a pathway to peace.
'Peace', in Islamspeak, being that state of affairs which obtains when Muslims rule, everywhere, and non-Muslims (those who have not converted to Islam or been killed) are ruled, as near-slave dhimmis, and pay the jizya tax to their Muslim overlords (as the price of being - sometimes, grudgingly - permitted to remain alive), and when the sharia of Islam - complete with stoning for adulterers and death for apostates and 'blasphemers' and the cutting off of hands of those accused of theft - is the sole law of the land. - CM
'Anne Hastings, Principal of Emanuel School, commented, "Our teachers and school ethos encourage students to explore their beliefs and develop a set of personal values based on experience and understanding. This Together For Humanity project has provided our students with a unique opportunity to open their minds and broaden their experiences, helping them to understand other peoples and religions".
They would have been better off pairing the girls with Christians, or with Hindus, or with Buddhists, than with Muslims. - CM
'This is the second year that Emanuel School has participated in the program that was created by Together For Humanity. The organisation is dedicated to bringing disparate groups together for the purpose of understanding and harmony.
Without Muslims, these terribly well-meaning and high-minded people would probably cause no particular harm and might even do a small measure of good. With Muslims on board, alas, this organisation becomes dangerous, and a means (as we see here) by which non-Muslims - in particular, young children - can have the wool well and truly pulled over their eyes, and be 'groomed' for dhimmitude.- CM
ISRAEL is close to completing a missile defence shield that will destroy Iranian ballistic missiles in space or on their launchpads, a development that has sharply increased the odds of an attack on Iran's nuclear sites.
Israel's Iron Dome rocket defence system successfully knocked out 421 rockets - an 84 per cent success rate - in a stunning demonstration of its capabilities during the conflict with Gaza last month.
It is one part of a multi-tiered missile shield being developed by Israeli scientists that will defend the Jewish state from a variety of threats, including the vast stockpile of rockets held by Hezbollah in southern Lebanon and Syria's armoury of Scuds and SS-21 ballistic missiles.
A second defensive system, Magic Wand (known outside Israel as David's Sling), was successfully tested last week and will be fully operational next year. A third tier consists of Arrow-2 and the soon-to-be introduced Arrow-3 interceptors which are designed to destroy Iranian long-range ballistic missiles in space before they re-enter the atmosphere.
Israel has deployed three Arrow batteries with a total of 144 interceptors. In addition it has several batteries of American-made Patriot PAC-2 and PAC-3 surface-to-air guided missiles that were last used in 1991 against Saddam Hussein's Scud missiles.
Leaps in technology mean the new systems will be far more effective than those used against Saddam. Ben Goodlad, an analyst at IHS Jane's, said: "What we're seeing now is a far higher success rate of interception than in the first Gulf War; it's a significant step forward."
The Arrow batteries are capable of dealing with multiple-warhead missiles. Some defence experts believe the ability to protect its civilian population will give Israel a freer hand in dealing with the Iranian threat.
Shashank Joshi, a research fellow at the Royal United Services Institute, said Israel's new systems represented a "renaissance" in missile defence. He added: "It could give Israel a degree of isolation behind which it could conduct military operations." But he warned that "Arrow is a different technology from Iron Dome; the nature of what they are trying to intercept is different".
Israel's early warning system relies on the American X-band radar system deployed deep in the Negev desert, which can detect an Iranian missile on its launchpad 1600km to the northeast. The X-band system gives Israelis up to 13 minutes' warning.
"We'll try to 'kill' them at the booster stage - the moment their engines are ignited,"said an Israeli military source.
To launch a pre-emptive attack on Iranian missiles, the Israelis would use giant Eitan drones, which have a wingspan almost as big as a Boeing 737 and can hover for more than 24 hours at a time.
Newham Council will make their decision on the latest planning application for the Riverine Mosque in Newham, better known informally as the megamosque. The date is fixed for this Wednesday 5th December at 7pm in the Old Town Hall Stratford. The doors will open to the public at 6pm. The Council are expected to follow the advice of the planning officials and reject the appplication.
Haitham al-Haddad the islamic preacher, well known for his support of Hamas and the statement (koranically based) that Jews are the descendants of apes and pigs, gave out a message last week whic was videoed.
He called for all Muslims, at least 15,000 to gather outside the Old Town Hall by 5pm on Wednesday. The idea is that as the councillors enter ready for the meeting they will see the level of support for the mosque and vot eaccordingly.
He said " Is the duty, I would say in my heart obligation for all Muslims to attend, even bring your women and children (it must be important if he's allowing the women out!). . . even if this is a mosque to be used by another group it is still a big Muslim symbol in the heart of London . . . and we are all one ummah, one body. . . If we lose this chance to have a big masjid, we will lose other chances to have big masjid in London."
The police have been made aware of his video which is below - I hope the council do not succumb to intimidation.
The Daily Star reported thus earlier: Critics said his comments prove those behind the mosque plan have extremist tendencies. Last night Alan Craig, campaign director of MegaMosque No Thanks and a former Newham councillor, said: “Sheikh Haitham al-Haddad wants all Muslims to rally in support of the mega-mosque because he brags it will be ‘a big Islamic symbol in the heart of London’.
“His call illustrates the hostile and extremist domination closely associated with the mega-mosque project.”
HAIFA, Israel – If there was one clear winner in the latest round of hostilities between Israel and Hamas, it was the Iron Dome -- the Jewish state's complex defense system that plucks rockets out of the sky before they can threaten civilian targets.
As daily rocket attacks from Gaza leapt from a handful to hundreds earlier this month, the vaunted system was deployed to near universal praise, intercepting an estimated 400 potentially deadly missiles. In an exclusive interview with FoxNews.com, "Ari," an Iron Dome engineer whose real name is being withheld, described what it is like to be part of the team of cutting edge technology developers, and the challenges faced by the team at Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, which worked with two other Israeli companies, Elta, and mPrest Systems on the program.
“I’m an engineer and not a politician, but I can tell you there were a tremendous amount of lives saved," Ari said of the Iron Dome, a system for detecting launches, determining the rockets' trajectory and intercepting those that pose a threat with counter-missiles fired from strategically-located batteries.
The defense system, under development since 2007, had never been deployed until the latest round of hostilities broke out just after the U.S. elections. Israeli Defense Forces used airstrikes to take out several of Hamas' launch sites, many of which were stationed next to hospitals and schools. For several tense days, there were indications the Israeli army could go into Gaza with tanks. According to Ari, by neutralizing the impact of rocket attacks, the Iron Dome may have prevented a deadlier confrontation in the Palestinian territory and helped pave the way for a ceasefire.
"The [political] situation, had there been more casualties and more damage done, would have been greatly different," he said. "The lives beings saved were not only those of Israeli citizens and soldiers, but of the Palestinians in Gaza who would have tended to suffer the most had there been an incursion.”
In the past, rockets from Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza had never reached Tel Aviv. But after it became clear that more advanced Iranian technology had reached Gaza there was a furious rush to ensure the metropolis would be protected. It wasn't a sure thing that the Iron Dome would work, he said. There were kinks to be worked out even after it was deployed.
“It should take about two weeks to put up a battery” Ari recalled. “I spoke to people on the Thursday morning who were told they had to make a battery in Tel Aviv, and when I spoke to them on Sunday they told me they had finished on the Saturday afternoon. They didn’t go to sleep for 48 hours...a group of about 10 people managed to do it all in just two days.”
Images of Iron Dome’s interceptors taking out incoming missiles over the skies of Tel Aviv and in the south of the country were beamed around the world and demonstrated clearly just how effective the system was in negating incoming enemy missiles.
“Iron Dome is an active defense system, which means that for each rocket that is fired at us we send up an interceptor to shoot down that rocket," Ari said. "It sounds quite simple, but in order to do that we first need to be able to identify that there is a threat – you need radar for that - then you need to determine the trajectory of the threat, which direction it’s going to go, and if it’s going to hit a place we need to defend? If it’s going to fall in open fields we’re certainly not going to waste an interceptor on it”. Each interceptor costs in the region of $50,000.
“If we do need to intercept, we have to determine the best way to do it and we always want to be sure that we blow up the warhead. All of these things fit together in a system of radar, fire controls, launchers, and interceptors, and all have to talk to each other and talk to a central command. This has to be very finely tuned.”
Back in 2007 when the revolutionary ‘Star Wars-like’ concept was commissioned, many people in Israel and around the world scoffed. Indeed, a team of U.S. military experts returned from a visit to Israel and reportedly stated, “This is something that cannot be done”.
Israel’s Defense Minister at the time was Amir Peretz of the left-wing Labor party, a man whose tenure in the key job was perceived as anything but a success. He was best known - and mercilessly ridiculed in the Israeli media - for viewing a military exercise through his binoculars without removing the lens covers. But the success of the Iron Dome has gone a long way toward vindicating Peretz.
New technology runs the constant risk of becoming obsolete, Ari said the Iron Dome team, and more recently Raytheon, a U.S.-based defense contractor, are well aware that staying ahead of the game in missile technology is crucial for their systems to continue to prove effective.
“Iron Dome has been modified numerous times since it became operational in 2011," he said. "To make it better it is simply a case of modifying software; that’s what is so great about this system. There’s a tremendous amount of potential that we haven’t even begun to use.”
The "Magic Wand," or alternatively "David’s Sling," is the next stage of Israel’s defense program and is claimed to be capable of intercepting missiles that might come from Syria or anywhere else within a 125-mile radius. The third stage will be the combined Arrow 2 and Arrow 3 systems that will have the capacity to shoot down longer range missiles from countries such as Iran.
Iron Dome success hasn’t gone unnoticed by various governments around the world with speculation that countries such as South Korea, Singapore, and even Turkey are seriously interested in obtaining the system. Its ongoing development seems set to provide some peace of mind for Israeli citizens and may one day even be the trump card in persuading all those in the conflict to sit down and try to reach a negotiated solution.
"Iron Dome was not created to fight yesterday or today’s war. Iron Dome was created to fight tomorrow’s wars," Ari said. "We always try to stay eight or nine steps ahead of the enemy.”
Will Israelâ€™s Long Delayed E-1 Project Finally Begin?
Source: New York Times
The UN General Assembly (UN GA) on November 30, 2012, passed a motion granting the Palestinian Authority an upgrade from observer to non-member status. PA President Mahmoud Abbas engaged in duplicitous victimhood rhetoric in his remarks:
The Palestinian people, who miraculously recovered from the ashes of Al-Nakba of 1948, which was intended to extinguish their being and to expel them in order to uproot and erase their presence, which was rooted in the depths of their land and depths of history. In those dark days, when hundreds of thousands of Palestinians were torn from their homes and displaced within and outside of their homeland, thrown from their beautiful, embracing, prosperous country to refugee camps in one of the most dreadful campaigns of ethnic cleansing and dispossession in modern history. In those dark days, our people had looked to the United Nations as a beacon of hope and appealed for ending the injustice and for achieving justice and peace, the realization of our rights, and our people still believe in this and continue to wait.
November 29th, was the 65 Anniversary of the UN GA vote approving the partition of the League of Nations British Palestine Mandate into Jewish and Arab states west of the Jordan River. The Arabs rejected that UN proposal instead gathering five armies to invade the embryonic State of Israel on the declaration of its independence May 15, 1948. They failed to conquer Israel then, losing decisively again in 1967 and 1973. The fourth generation of 700,000 Palestinian arabs who fled in 1948, now numbering over four million, live in squalor and hatred in UNWRA refugee camps in the West Bank, Gaza, Jordan, Lebanon and Syrian. UNWRA camps are funded at more than half a billion dollars annually from internatitonal donor nations including the US.
PA President Abbas received a standing ovation from his claque, the 132 members of the Non-Alignment Movement bloc including the 57 Muslim members of the Saudi backed Organization of Islamic Cooperation . A celebration immediately erupted in Ramallah, Nablus and Bethlehem on the West Bank at news of the UN GA vote. The Palestinians had struck back at Israel effectively ending the 1993 Oslo Accords that failed to achieve a negotiated two state peace agreement. While, the newly empowered PA might file legal matters with the International Criminal Courts at the Hague, the reality is that it still does not meet the legal definitions of a State under the 1933 Montevideo Convention. The PA may be granted an upgrade in its legation status with UN Members.
Upon Abbas’ return to Ramallah on Sunday he said “now we have a state” noting:
“They told us that if we go the world would explode,” he added. “They asked us to postpone the move. Finally, they told us to change our policy and project. But we remained steadfast and triumphed because the world heard the voices of our people.”
Abbas said he was presenting the UN “victory” as a gift to the “soul of the late leader Yasser Arafat.” He said that the Palestinians would continue to march in the footsteps of Arafat.
Abbas said the Palestinians would continue their struggle until the Palestinian flag is raised over the walls of Jerusalem’s Old City and churches. He said that Jerusalem was the “eternal capital of the State of Palestine.”
Israel strikes back with the E-1 Development Announcement.
PM Netanyahu didn’t waste any time in punishing Abbas for his actions. Netanyahu announced approval of a development of 3,000 apartments in an area east of Ma’aleh Adumim, designated E-1 . E-1 is the undeveloped area of 11.9 sq.kilometers located on the opposite side of Route 1 from the built-up parts of Ma’aleh Adumim.
Reuters noted Netanyahu’s defiance of the UN GA‘s upgrading of the PA to non-member status, equivalent to that held by the Vatican and some NGOs:
"We will carry on building in Jerusalem and in all the places that are on the map of Israel's strategic interests," a defiant Netanyahu said at the weekly cabinet meeting.
In another blow to the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank, Israel announced it was withholding Palestinian tax revenues this month worth about $100 million.
Israel said the reason for the move was a Palestinian debt of $200 million to the Israeli Electric Corporation, an obligation that has existed for some time.
Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz cautioned last month that if the Palestinians went ahead with the U.N. bid Israel would "not collect taxes for them and we will not transfer their revenues".
Yasser Abed Rabbo, a senior Palestinian official, said confiscation of the tax funds due the cash-strapped Authority, vital to meeting its payroll, was "piracy and theft".
The Obama White House and Secretary of State Clinton commented in a New York Times report:
“We reiterate our longstanding opposition to settlements and East Jerusalem construction and announcements,” a spokesman for the National Security Council, Tommy Vietor, said. “We believe these actions are counterproductive and make it harder to resume direct negotiations or achieve a two-state solution.”
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, in a Saban Forum speech on Friday night at a Washington hotel, criticized Israel’s decision to proceed with plans for construction without referring to any settlements directly by name. “These activities set back the cause of a negotiated peace,” Mrs. Clinton said.
The New York Times, in its report on the E-1 project announcement, presented its view on what the consequences might be of this latest Israeli action:
. . . the government would pursue “preliminary zoning and planning preparations” for a development that would separate the West Bank cities of Ramallah and Bethlehem from Jerusalem. If such a project were to go beyond blueprints, it could prevent the creation of a viable, contiguous Palestinian state.
East Jerusalem project could bury two-state solution.
Plans to build in Area E-1 would effectively bisect the West Bank and severe the physical link between the Palestinian territories and Jerusalem.
Former Israeli PM Ehud Olmert, who also attended the Washington Saban Center conference, decried Netanyahu’s actions as, "the worst slap in the face of a U.S. president." Olmert, despite his legal entanglements is one of a number of opponents of Netanyahu seeking to run in the January 22, 2013 Knesset elections.
What is the Reality of these Criticisms?
CAMERA, the Boston-based Middle East reporting monitoring group published a rebuttal of these assessments, today. It noted in a 2005 analysis, “The Contiguity Double-Standard” the fallacies of the criticisms of E-1:
Palestinian contiguity in the West Bank would be no more cut off with the so-called E-1 corridor than would Israeli contiguity if Israel were to withdraw to its pre-1967 borders, even with slight modifications.
Those who charge that Israeli building in Ma'aleh Adumim severs north-south contiguity disregard the fact that Palestinian-controlled areas would be connected by land east of Ma'aleh Adumim (marked on the map) that is at its narrowest point ~15 km wide.
Moreover, Israel proposes to build tunnels or overpasses to obviate the need for Palestinians to detour to the east through the corridor.
Ironically, many of those who argue for greater contiguity between Palestinian areas, at the same time promote Israeli withdrawal to its pre-1967 boundaries, which (even with minor modifications) would confine Israel to a far less contiguous territory than that of the West Bank. As shown on the map above, there is a roughly 15 km wide strip of land separating the Green Line (and the Security Fence) from the Mediterranean Sea (near Herzliya). Also shown is the circuitous route necessary to travel via this corridor between northern and southern Israel. (e.g. from Arad to Beit Shean.)
Nor is it true that the construction would cut off Palestinian areas from Jerusalem. Access to Jerusalem through Abu Dis, Eizariya, Hizma and Anata is not prevented by the proposed neighborhood, nor would it be precluded by a string of neighborhoods connecting Ma’aleh Adumim to Jerusalem.
E-1 is the legacy of PM Yitzhak Rabin
The E-1 project ironically had first been proposed by the late Israeli PM Yitzhak Rabin in 1975. That was noted in comments by PM Netanyahu in his weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday:
The response to the attack on Zionism and the State of Israel must reinforce and underscore the implementation of the settlement plan in all areas in which the Government decides regarding settlement.
“These are not my words. These are the words of the government of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and this is the language of the Cabinet’s 1975 decision in the wake of the UN decision that equated Zionism with Racism.
“The Palestinian Authority’s one-sided step at the UN constitutes a gross violation of the agreements that have been signed with the State of Israel; accordingly, the Government of Israel rejects the UN General Assembly decision.”
A January 2011 Jerusalem Post report on E-1 noted the positions of moribund Israeli PM Sharon in 2005 and later PM Ehud Olmert:
Right before the Gaza withdrawal in 2005, then-prime minister Ariel Sharon advanced long-standing plans to build 3,500 apartment units in E-1, but didn’t authorize them, although he did allow for the construction of a regional police station at the site.
In September of that year, Ehud Olmert, who was then vice premier, told The Jerusalem Post that Israel had promised the US it would not build apartment buildings there. That didn’t stop Olmert from pledging to build in E-1 when he campaigned to be prime minister. It was a promise he never kept.
Netanyahu’s Turnaround from Earlier E-1 positions
PM Netanyahu’s position on E-1 represents a turnaround from his prior stands. In January 2011, The Jerusalem Post reported that Ma’aleh Adumim Mayor Benny Kashriel called for immediate construction of the E-1 neighborhood after learning from "Palestine Papers" that Netanyahu promised US Secretary of State Clinton to freeze the project in May 2009. This after Netanyahu had campaigned in his successful Knesset election in 2009 saying that he would eventually build E-1. The Palestine Papers containing the alleged secret negotiations between the PA and Israel over the period from 1999 to 2010 were released by the Al Jazeera Transparency Unit, endeavoring to embarrass Palestinian leaders for concessions made in response to alleged Israeli government pressures.
Now, in the wake of Israel’s outrage at the UN GA conferring the PA with non-member status, we will see if Netanyahu’s resolve will eventuate in the long promised E-1 project actually beginning development. Ma’aleh Adumim’s Mayor Kashriel and others, including right wing National Union Knesset member Arieh Eldad, will be waiting to see if the first permits are let and construction finally begins after 37 years of broken promises.