Friday, August 1, 2014

Life in Israel: Givati Commander Ofer Vinter talks about the ananei kavod protecting the soldiers

This commander of Givati, Ofer Vinter, who got criticized for his pre-battle letter to his soldiers in which he said they will be fighting God's battle and should say Shema Yisrael when going out to battle, is something special.

NRG excerpts part of an interview Vinter has given to Mishpacha magazine (I assume the Hebrew edition - you probably should go out and buy this week's edition to see the whole thing). As well, Ynet has some video talking to Vinter and more of his comments on the battle.

Vinter said that now, during this time of war, when the desire to join the armed forces is strong, now it must be stressed that what is really needed for the nation is that the yeshiva students should be learning Torah even more and with more force. It is the Torah that protects the nation of Israel more than anything else. Whoever can sit and learn - must do so now.

Vinter also describes how his forces have seen miracles in their battles. One story he relates is when they were fighting in Hirbat Hizaah, Vniter says he saw something he had not seen during his entire career in the army to date. Vinter describes that they had decided to attack the area in the week hours of the morning, before daybreak, so the enemy would not notice them. The extraction team arrived at the location on time, but the fighters arrived late. Vinter says they did not know what to do, as the sky was already starting to light up and the soldiers were becomign visible, yet they needed to attack. Suddenly, Vinter says, a cloud cover came over them and protected them. Clouds of glory (ananei kavod). Suddenly it covered us, the fighters, a heavy fog, that stayed there throughout the attack.Nobody saw us. Only after the houses targeted were destroyed and there was no longer any danger to the soldiers did the fog disperse. Exactly as it says "For Hashem will go with you to save you".

There is more on NRG, and I assume there will be more in the full interview in Mishpacha.

It is with the increasing number of people like Ofer Vinter in command positions in the Israeli army that they IDF will become not just Israeli but more Jewish in nature.

Joan Rivers Epic Interview for Channel 10 Israel

Neturei Karta Members Doing Inverted Nazi Salute At Anti-Israel Protest

At a pro-Palestinian demonstration in Manchester, England members of the rabidly anti-Zionist haredi group Neturei Karta did the the Quenelle – as an inverted Nazi salute and an anti-semitic gesture – countries across Europe are trying to ban because of its association with anti-Semitism and Nazism.

Neturei Karta doing inverted Nazi salute the Quenelle  with Arabs at anti-Israel rally in Manchester, UK 7-2014

Book Review: Making David into Goliath

Making David into Goliath: How the World Turned Against Israel by Joshua Muravchik is a wonderful overview of the history of how Israel went from being the darling of the left in 1967 to becoming the victim of the UN's infamous "Zionism is Racism" resolution in 1975. 

Muravchik expertly identifies, and dissects, the factors that turned the Left against Israel in such a short time. 

It isn't pretty.

Muravchik identifies a number of key factors that caused this stunning public relations victory for the anti-Israel crowd. The first is Yasir Arafat, who brilliantly modeled the PLO after the anti-colonialist movement of Algeria and then cultivated, and took advantage, of relations with communist China and the Soviet Union, which crucially provided the PLO with extensive propaganda support that started bleeding into Western leftist journalist writings. Suddenly, the Arab cause turned from one explicitly geared towards destroying Israel into a "Palestinian" struggle against colonialism and imperialism. These "progressive" codewords were eagerly taken up by Western socialists and leftists, especially in Europe.

The second factor in giving the PLO legitimacy was, ironically, terrorism. Muravchik enumerates every airline hijacking and airport attack in the late 1960s and early 1970s, exposing how easily European leaders caved to the hijackers' demands, in the hope that they would be left alone next time.

The twin to that strategy was the Arab oil embargo that started in 1973. The EEC (precursor to the EU) responded with a pro-Arab position  on the Middle East: calling on unconditional full Israeli withdrawal from lands gained in 1967 without negotiations or border adjustments envisioned in UNSC 242 and did not call on Arabs to make peace with Israel.

In other words, during these two crucial tests of European nations to either stick to their principles or to cave to blackmail, the European nations caved.

Psychologically, one does not want to think of oneself as a craven hypocrite who knuckles under to threats.So the only way to not fall into self-loathing is to find "human rights" justifications for cowardice.

Muravchik also details how the Non-Aligned Movement took over the UN, and brought the Palestinian issue as the single biggest agenda item in that body. He also highlights how Jewish born antisemite Bruno Kreisky, chancellor of Austria and vice president of the Socialist International, singlehandedly turned that body from pro-Israel to anti-Israel.

Finally, Muravchik details how the academic Left fell under the spell of a fraud: Edward Said. Said managed with his one work, Orientalism, to seduce generations of students into the romantic ideal of the East as being ruthlessly exploited and subjugated by the West. Said later admitted was really meant specifically to help Palestinian nationalism.

The remaining favor that the Left held towards Israel disappeared when it elected its first non-Labor government, led by Menachem Begin, a figure that most on the Left disliked viscerally. Even after the peace agreement with Egypt they didn't warm up to him, and the Lebanon war solidified the direction that they were already going in.

The book then goes on to describe how Israeli post-Zionism started to affect both Israeli and international views of the Jewish state. he goes into detail on how B'Tselem was founded and how it tried to be both a human rights organization and an political advocacy group - which is contradictory. Muravchik describes the importance of Israel's "New Historians" on Israel's self-image as well as how the world looked at the state. And he shows how Ha'aretz is complicit in demonizing Israel from the inside.

The author then masterfully takes apart the hypocrisy of the new Left's organizations that have taken on their anti-Israel cause. He dismantles the ISM, exposes HRW's insane anti-Israel stance (pointing out how their MENA head Sarah Leah Whitson went out of her way to praise Moammar Qaddafi,) and destroys Walt and Mearsheimer and their ideological cousins from Richard Falk to J-Street.

The remarkable penultimate chapter lays out the best liberal pro-Israel arguments against its critics, going from the outbreak of the second Intifada through the building of the separation barrier (and the bias of the ICJ,) the Lebanon war, Operation Cast Lead, Goldstone and beyond. The very arguments raging today against Israel in Gaza are all discussed and masterfully defeated.

Making David into Goliath is one of the best liberal defenses of Israel ever written.

Statement of Robert Rechnitz, Chairman of the Iron Dome Tribute

Congress approved the bill today adding another $225 Million of funds to the Iron Dome.
While this bill had overwhelming bipartisan support and was expected to pass, it did encounter some difficulties which required immense lobbying in the last 10 days. One has to wonder why this became a political issue at a time when Israel is under siege from the Iran backed Hamas.
The attempt to attach the Iron Dome funding to a larger spending bill was a blatant partisan move that undermines the strong relationship between the US Congress and Israel. We are thankful to the Members of Congress, Democrats and Republicans alike, who sought to detach the requests and achieved victory. Israel's relationship with the United States and the US support of Israel is not a partisan issue. Any attempt to make it an issue ignores the common democratic interests of these two countries.
According to the IDF, the Iron Dome advanced anti-missile system has successfully destroyed 90 percent of its targets since the onset of the assault by Hamas three weeks ago.  
Countless lives are being saved by the Iron Dome. Each time it is deployed, the danger to life is quite literally blown out of the sky. The project to develop the Iron Dome has been a close collaboration between Israel and the United States - Two countries for which there is no higher value than the sanctity of life. The initiative came to fruition after our friends in the US Congress, led by the late Senator Daniel Inouye fought with great commitment for its implementation.  
Years of energetic lobbying efforts went into the eventual funding of the Iron Dome. Bringing the project to completion has required a committed bipartisan effort which continues to this day. Republicans and Democrats alike continue to show that when it comes to the security of the State of Israel, the United States stands as one.  
We thank the United States Congress for its friendship, support, and sharing of democratic interests in the Middle East.
G-d bless America, G-d bless Israel.

Sen. Booker Delivers Floor Speech in Support of Supplemental Funding for the Iron Dome

Since coming to Washington, Sen. Booker (D-NJ) has been committed to building the strongest possible security and diplomatic partnership with Israel.
On Tuesday, Sen. Booker delivered a floor speech in support of supplemental funding for the Iron Dome.
“I come before you in support of the $225 million in additional funding requested by the Department of Defense to ensure that the Iron Dome in Israel remains equipped to protect civilians from Hamas-fired rockets,” Booker said. “Now, as a terrorist organization has evil ends to destroy the State of Israel, we must stand with our ally.”
Also this week, Sen. Booker joined his colleaguesto criticize the UN Human Rights Council’s one-sided, inflammatory statement accusing Israel of “disregard for international humanitarian law” while failing to acknowledge violations of the same laws by Hamas. Last week he also joined Sen. Boxer and 78 other members of the Senate in co-sponsoring the U.S.-Israel Strategic Partnership Act.
Finally, Sen. Booker together with Sens. Graham, Menendez, Ayotte, and Schumer co-sponsored a resolution condemning the unprovoked rocket fire at Israel; calling on Hamas to immediately cease all rocket and other attacks against Israel; and calling on Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to dissolve the unity government with Hamas and condemn the attacks on Israel.
Sen. Booker is committed to Israel’s security, its right to defend itself, and the strong, historic U.S.-Israel relationship. He will continue to look for ways to engage in bi-partisan efforts to ensure that the U.S.’s longstanding partnership with Israel will endure.
(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)
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The Neturei Karta Card is Not One You Want To Pick

Much too much ink has been spilt on the odious and intentionally provocative statement tweeted by the Liberal Democrat MP David Ward. A tweet where he envisioned himself in some twisted alternative life, shooting rockets at innocent civilians; conveniently posted on the day Parliament ended for recess.
Browsing through his most recent images on his Twitter profile, it was something else though that cried out for more attention. It was almost too predictable a photo op: David Ward posing with members of the ultra-Orthodox Neturei Karta sect.
I can’t claim to be surprised and in fact my past conversations on this conflict ultimately ended when my interlocutor called on the Neturei Karta as the golden flush trumping all else. “Even Jews oppose what I believe”, they clamour, demanding that I change my tune and start behaving like a ‘Good’ Jew. This trump card is flashed so often you can almost suspect the player is gaming the system.
However, this phenomenon needs to be closer examined. Professor Menachem Friedman, an expert on the ultra-Orthodox at Bar Ilan University claims that Neturei Karta is a very small group in Israel.[1] He estimates their numbers in the range of 200-300.[2] While they are indeed an extremely small group, marginalised as well as ostracised within the ultra-Hassidic community, that in itself is not reason enough to fully cast them aside. Their closest ideological cousins, the Satmar movement, have been ruffled by its radical behaviour and were actually driven to publish a column to that effect in its most widely read Yiddish-language newspaper – Der Blutt.
The philosophy of the movement is inherently built on opposition to the existence of the State of Israel in any form, from a religious foundation. They come not from the uber left wing or anti-nationalist camp. They are not driven by lofty principles of denying any state an ethnic identity. Thus their alignment to the anti-Zionist movement is not based on shared values but one of mutual benefit, although I suspect one side is getting the better end of the deal. Here again, although their values are rooted in extreme religious dogma, that in itself is not a reason they should be fully marginalised.
But alas, there is something more sinister at play.
In 2006, Iran hosted the “International Conference to Review the Global Vision of the Holocaust,” a conference attracting infamous holocaust deniers. These included David Duke, former Ku Klux Klan (KKK) Grand Wizard, Michèle Renouf, prevented from addressing a BNP event because they were concerned ‘her presence would put the BNP in a bad light’, and Ahmed Rsami, jailed six months in Sweden for hate speech. The conference attracted strong criticism from UN`s Kofi Annan, Ban Ki-moon, as well as many country leaders horrified by the conference’s premise.
The conference did have one unique prize for its far-right and far-left conspiracy hungry audience. The ultimate golden catch. The event was graced by Neturei Karta key UK figure, Rabbi Aharon Cohen. A Rabbi, no less!
Rabbi Cohen doesn’t have a particular affinity exclusively for  far left neo-Nazis. In 2012, as recounted by Gerry Gable, editor of anti-fascist group Searchlight, Rabbi Cohen was a guest speaker at an event run by “The New Right”, a fascist group led by Troy Southgate, an ex-National Front activist.
Just so there is little ambiguity, Rabbi Cohen laid out his most abhorrent thoughts on the Holocaust [with the following]: “There is no question that there was a Holocaust and gas chambers. There are too many eyewitnesses.
“However, our approach is that when one suffers, the one who perpetrates the suffering is obviously guilty but he will never succeed if the victim did not deserve it in one way or another.”
“We have to look within to improve and try to better ourselves and remove those characteristics or actions that may have been the cause of the success of the Holocaust.” [3]
Because of such despicable sentiments, he was banned from speaking at Wolfson College, Oxford.[4]
Another spokesperson, Rabbi Yisroel Dovid Weiss captured the headlines when he travelled to France in order to lay flowers at the sickbed of Yasser Arafat. He shared the following on Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, founder of Hamas: “And so we are reminded of one of the exceptional attributesof Sheikh Ahmad Yassin. How he constantly drew a clear distinction between true Judaism and Zionism and between the practitioners of Judaism and Zionist perpetrators” [5].
Befittingly, he was a guest speaker at Nation of Islam’s (NOI) annual convention in 2000 [6]. The founder of NOI, Louis Farrakhan, had this to say of Jews, “And don’t you forget, when it’s God who puts you in the ovens, it’s forever!” [7] Not to be outdone, Rabbi Weiss elaborated in Wardesque manner during an interview, that he ‘understands’ needs for direct violence against innocent citizens of Israel [8].
Get the picture yet?
Rabbi Yisroel Hersh, leader of the Israel branch delivered this gem during an interview with Journalist Larry Dafner in 2006. When asked if he would like to talk things over with Osama bin Laden: “It’s hard for me to say what his intentions are, but certainly, yes, I’d like to explain our views to him, and I believe that if I could talk to him, I could make him understand.” [9] He continued elaborating on his belief that Anti-Semitism does not exist today but all apparent forms, including Neo-Nazism and the KKK are “Influenced only by the Zionists’ crimes, not because of hatred of the Jews”.
London-based spokesperson Rabbi Yosef Goldstein, testified in defence of Abu Hamza al-Masri, who was ultimately sentenced to seven years in prison for inciting his congregation to murder non-Muslims. During the trial, Masri testified that Jews were “blasphemous, treacherous and dirty” and were the reason “why Hitler was sent into the world.” Goldstein, taking the stand on Masri’s behalf, testified to their “friendly and cordial relationship.” [10]
They have fully strained from the once close relationship with the Israeli Edah HaChareidis community umbrella organization, after marching with Hezbollah in Lebanon during the annual “Global March to Jerusalem.”[11] They were deemed too extreme for the Edah HaChareidis movement, themselves raising international fervour two years back, when Edah HaChareidis members from Beit Shemesh hit the news after bullying 8 year old Naama Margolese for her lack of ‘modesty’. [12] Hardly the circle of saints!
Earlier this year, Yitzhak Bergel – a Neturei Karta member – was convicted to four-and-a-half-years jail in Israel after offering to spy for Iran. He told the Iranian officials that he denies the existence of the State of Israel. He also explained to the officials that he was not interested in asylum, and was “willing to murder a Zionist.” [13] After the 2008 Mumbai massacre where six Jews were murdered in a Jewish community centre, they distributed leaflets declaring the attack a form of divine punishment for the organization’s ‘collaboration’ with the Zionists.[14] In January 2014, they were out in force aligning themselves with the fascist, Neo-Nazi Hungarian Jobbik party in London.[15]
The list is endless but fascist, racist and nihilistic groups from both ends of the political spectrum have called on the Neturei Karta movement for the token Jewish support. From Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood to Islamic Jihad and Hezbollah. Version 2.0 of “I can’t be racist, I’ve got many Jewish friends,” if you will.
Absorbing all of above, lends a damning picture of what the Neturei Karta movement actually stands for. Posting images in support of this group to sanitise ones reputation will, at the very least, throw a damning marker on how little an understanding one carries, of the global Jewish community.
Next time someone does indeed throw this card on the deck, know of whom they are calling upon.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

How to Save Civilians in Gaza By: Rabbi YY Jacobson

Over the last few days, As Israeli troops entered Gaza to search for the Hamas tunnels and rocket launching sites, 32 Israeli soldiers have been killed. Many civilians in Gaza lost their lives too.

I am afraid Israel may be repeating a mistake it has made thrice before.

On July 26, 2006, nine Israeli soldiers died and 27 others were injured as they were searching homes for Hezbollah fighters in the hardest day of fighting in southern Lebanon since the war began two weeks earlier. The Israeli press reported at the time that officers in the Israeli army brigades charged that the IDF employed insufficient force before the soldiers were deployed. Once civilians had been told to leave the town, the officers said, the army should have regarded Bint Jbail as a battlefield and destroyed from the air any home where Hezbollah guerrillas were suspected of hiding, instead of sending the soldiers into the line of fire.

Israel committed the same error in Jenin, in April 2002. As the suicide bombings created rivers of blood in Israel, the IDF finally entered Jenin, the stronghold of the terrorists. The hand-to-hand, door-to-door combat among dozens of houses booby-trapped by Palestinian fighters claimed the lives of 23 Israeli soldiers. Israel did not want to cause the civilian casualties that come with aerial bombardment, as has happened everywhere from Dresden, to Grozny, to Kabul, involving nations from Russia to Britain, to the United States. So it sacrificed its soldiers to save Arab lives. Notwithstanding this, civilians who chose not to leave were caught in the crossfire, and Israel was charged with perpetrating a massacre, and was investigated by the UN.

Israel should not repeat the same mistake in July 2014, subjecting its children to death in order to please pacifists who will criticize the Jewish state regardless.

The main battle is presently taking place in the Gaza border neighborhoods — Shejaiya, Beit Lahiya, Beit Hanoun and others — where thousands of Israeli soldiers are searching, house to house, for the tunnel entrances. Hamas gunmen have sought to surprise the Israeli soldiers by rising out of the earth from these openings, and firing, and Israel is paying a heavy price. Soldiers have been killed in booby-trapped buildings. Many died when their armored personnel carrier was hit by an anti-tank missile in Shejaiya. The losses are mounting. 

IDF soldiers mourning at the funeral of Sergeant Benaya Rubel, at the Holon Military Cemetery on July 20, 2014. The 20 year old paratrooper was killed by Hamas gunmen in Gaza on the second day of Operation Protective Edge. (Photo credit: Hadas Parush/Flash90)

Israel ought to consider changing its strategy. After instructing civilians to leave these regions, Israel should reduce these sections of Gaza to rubble. When the civilian population will be convinced that Israel is serious, it will leave, despite Hamas warning them to stay and die (Obviously, those who choose to stay by volition are naturally responsible for the results). After a complete bombing of these locations, ensuring that the Hamas fighters are gone, Israeli troops will be able to enter and destroy the terror infrastructure of tunnels and rockets with less casualties.

This would not only spare the lives of Israelis, but also of Arab civilians in Gaza, who will not get caught in the crossfire with Hamas.

Why should Jewish mothers be burying their children who are fighting like lions for their homeland, just because we are afraid of world-opinion to bomb Gaza from the air? Why are we sending our children to confront Hamas in face to face battles? We have made this error before and paid for it dearly.

What is more, this strategy will end the conflict quicker and will allow Israel to eliminate much of the Hamas terror infrastructure. If not, the present war will end with no decisive victory, and will only create a lull till Hamas decides to strike again, which will only cause the deaths of many more Gaza civilians.

Those who will condemn Israel for reducing regions of Gaza into rubble are doing so regardless. Even as Jewish soldiers today die to save Palestinian lives, Israel is being accused of war crimes. Israel will be blamed no matter what it does. A statement made by the United Nations Human Rights Council on July 23 accused Israel of committing war crimes in the Gaza Strip and calling for an investigation into its operation there. Rather than investigate Hamas, which is firing rockets at Israeli civilians while hiding behind Palestinian civilians, and turning hospitals into military command centers, it puts the blame on Israel.

The critics of Israel care about Arab children in Gaza less than you care about turtles in New Zealand. Where was the outcry over the thousands of children murdered in Syria? Where is the outcry against Hamas who is directly responsible for the deaths of these poor children in Gaza by hiding among them and forcing Israel to strike at these vulnerable locations?

Conversely, those who appreciate Israel’s moral right to defend its people, crave that Israel finish the job swiftly. Let Israel not hesitate of doing what is best for security because of fear of world-opinion.

Let Israel not repeat the disaster of summer 1982. In June of that year, Israel entered Lebanon to eliminate Yasser Arafat's Palestine Liberation Organization, which had been terrorizing Israel's northern cities and towns. Just as the army stood on the verge of total victory, the military's hands were tied. The Israeli army waited futilely on the outskirts of Beirut instead of swiftly completing its objectives. Israel could have warned all civilians to leave the areas of fighting and then reduced the suitable regions in Beirut to rubble, finishing the war with fewer deaths on both sides. Instead, the casualties grew from day to day, the results were catastrophic for Israelis and for Arabs, and the PLO survived and thrived.

The Palestinian Authority held popular elections across the West Bank and Gaza for the Palestinian legislature in 2006. Hamas won a majority. It has ruled in Gaza since. The people chose Hamas, knowing that its mission statement is the destruction of Israel.

Notwithstanding this, Israel rightfully wishes to protect the lives of civilians in Gaza. The best way to do so is by incessant aerial bombardment.


“Shall your brothers go out to battle while you settle here?” Moses asks the Jews who chose to live in Transjordan (Numbers ch. 32). This question, you and I must ask ourselves at such times. Just because I live in the US, am I absolved of the line of duty? We, every single Jew, is connected to Israel in a million knots; only our bodies have been exiled from that land two millennia ago, but the Jewish soul of every Jew still resides in Eretz Yisroel, in the Land of Israel. An organic and intimate connection exists between every Jew and Israel.

At such times, the entire nation must be mobilized. Mobilization means not only giving money; mobilization is directing ones essence to accomplish a single goal: Achieve victory over a ruthless enemy seeking the obliteration of our people. Just as our sacred and precious soldiers are currently battling with all their heart and soul, so too must we increase our spiritual warfare, through the study of Torah and the observance of mitzvos; through prayer, charity, and acts of goodness and kindness; through expressing solidarity without reservation. With G-d’s grace, we will triumph.

Sen. Ted Cruz: A tale of two hospitals: One in Israel, one in Gaza Israel saves its enemies; Hamas endangers its friends Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican. He is co-sponsor with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York) of S. Con. Res. 41 denouncing the use of civilians as human shields by Hamas and other terrorist organizations in violation of international humanitarian law.

Illustration for Israel's situation in the Mideast by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times
If you want to judge a nation, look at how it treats its most vulnerable civilians. Hospitals are a good place to start.
Al-Shifa, the largest hospital in Gaza, is housed in a converted British army barracks. Some 126 miles north is Israel’s Ziv Medical Center in Zefat.
Hamas, which controls Gaza, is using the civilian population as human shields. The terrorist group has placed its missiles in schools and mosques and, even more deplorably, burrowed its command center underneath the al-Shifa hospital.
Hamas‘ activities are taking place in plain sight. Just two weeks ago, The Washington Post described al-Shifa as “a de facto headquarters for Hamas leaders.” These terrorist facilities are of course well known not only to the foreign journalists who interview Hamas fighters there, but also to the Israelis, who would by necessity consider such a location a legitimate target for any action against Hamas. However, the terrorist group has tried to immunize their headquarters by digging it under a hospital, leaving Israel no option but to target al-Shifa if they want to get rid of the Hamas terrorist leadership.
Hamas sees no downside in this arrangement. Knowing that Israel prioritizes protecting civilians, the terrorists can be reasonably confident that al-Shifa will not be targeted, and they can continue their murderous activities undisturbed. If the Israelis finally decide that these activities are intolerable and that to destroy Hamas they must target their headquarters, Hamas will have pictures of the quintessentially innocent martyrs — hospital patients unable to flee — to plaster across international media in their ongoing propaganda war to demonize the Jewish state.
The medical care and even survival of the Gazan people are of no concern to these terrorists, for whom casualties are not an unintended consequence of war, but rather a deliberate objective. Like the rest of the population stationed around the many civilian institutions militarized by Hamas, they must either make do with a substandard medical facility being exploited by a terrorist organization, or die in the service of that organization’s savage campaign to destroy Israel.
Meanwhile in Israel, Ziv is a center for pediatric and orthopedic medicine. Given its proximity to Israel’s borders with Lebanon and Syria, Ziv has seen its share of violence, but despite taking direct rocket fire during the 2006 Lebanon war, it has remained in continuous operation.
During the past three years of the Syrian civil war, Ziv has treated more than 1,000 Syrians injured in that conflict — all free of charge.
In a visit to Ziv this spring, I met the social worker whose job it is to explain to the patients who wake up grievously injured and surrounded by Israelis that they are not in hell, but that the people who they have been told from birth are the devil are, in fact, working very hard to heal them.
I met a Syrian child who had lost three limbs but has been fitted with revolutionary prosthetics and will, God willing, walk again.
All of this means that many of Ziv’s hospital beds and a substantial portion of its funding are not available for Israelis, but the staff has concluded it is worth it if their work can start to reverse the intractable hate that has been relentlessly leveled at Israel by its neighbors.
The contrast in this tale of two hospitals could not be more clear: Hamas exploits their medical facilities as a human shield to launch terrorist operations against Israel, while Israel uses theirs to provide cutting-edge medical care to people whose government’s avowed goal is to destroy the Jewish state. Hamas‘ actions are a war crime.Israel’s are one of the great, unsung humanitarian missions on the planet.

Forty questions for the international media in Gaza David Bernstein

1. Have you or any of your colleagues been intimidated by Hamas?
2. Do you feel restricted in your ability to ‘say what you see’ in Gaza?
3. How do you feel about the Spanish journalist who said Hamas would kill any journalist if they filmed rocket fire?
4. Has Hamas pressured you to delete anything you have published?
5. Has Hamas ever threatened to take your phone, laptop or camera?
6. Has Hamas ever taken the phone, laptop or camera of a colleague in Gaza?
7. Have you seen Hamas fighters in Gaza?
8. If yes, why have you not directly reported Hamas fighting activity when you are eye-witnesses in Gaza, but rather indirectly reported about what the IDF says they Hamas has done?
9. Are you scared to publish photos of Hamas operatives on your Twitter page, or broadcast images of Hamas fighting and aggression on your news channel?
10. Have you published any photos of terrorists launching rockets in Gaza? If so, are these images being turned down by your newspaper or broadcaster?
11. Have you thought of interviewing the traumatised residents of southern Israel?
12. When Israeli authorities say that most of the dead in Gaza are terrorists, and Hamas says most of the dead in Gaza are civilians, how do you differentiate?
13. When Hamas Health Ministry statistics contradict Hamas’ own propaganda and reveal that mostly men of fighting age have died so far in Gaza, does it give you pause for thought?
14. Is an underage armed terrorist still counted as a terrorist or a child when killed? Or both? Do you explain to your readers how this is possible?
15. Have you put to Hamas spokespersons that firing rockets from civilian areas in a war situation will draw return fire and lead to the death of civilians?
16. Nick Casey of the Wall Street Journal tweeted: “you have to wonder with the shelling, how patients at Shifa hospital feel as Hamas uses it as a safe place to see media.” Never mind wondering; did you ask any patients how they feel?
17. And how do you feel about the fact that Casey subsequently deleted his tweet?
18. Russia Today journalist Harry Fear mentioned rocket-launching sites near his hotel. Have you noticed any terrorists or terror bases near your hotel?
19. How do you feel about Fear’s expulsion from Gaza, for tweeting about the rocket launches from civilian areas? Are you worried that you might also be expelled from Gaza?
20. Did you see any Hamas terror personnel inside Al-Shifa hospital?
21. Have you interviewed a Hamas spokesperson inside Al-Shifa?
22. Have you seen any rocket-launching sites in or around the vicinity of a hospital?
23. Have you interviewed hospital staff or patients as to how they feel about their buildings being used for terror activity?
24. Hamas’ command and control bunker is underneath Al Shifa hospital. Is this worth reporting? Have you asked to gain access to it, so you can interview Hamas commanders?
25. French newspaper Liberation reported that Hamas’ Al Qassam offices are next to the emergency room at Shifa hospital, before deleting the article. Was the reporter right to delete the article, and will the information appear in the media at some point still?
26. When the missile hit Al-Shati hospital where children were killed, did you see Hamas operatives collecting the debris of the fallen Palestinian rocket, as Gabriel Barbati reported? Did Barbati pick up on something you missed?
27. Barbati prefaced his tweet by writing “Out of Gaza, far from Hamas retaliation.” Will you also report differently about Gaza when you are out of Gaza, far from Hamas retaliation?
28. Can live journalism by reporters who are scared of retaliation from the authorities they are reporting about really count as pure journalism, or is journalism in that context fundamentally compromised?
29. Have you seen or heard evidence of Hamas using civilians as human shields, by forcing or “encouraging” them to stay inside or enter into a building that has received a knock on the roof?
30. Have you seen or heard evidence of Hamas storing weapons inside schools, houses, flats, mosques or hospitals?
31. Have you interviewed Gazan residents to find out if they have – or know someone who has – a tunnel dug underneath their house? How do they feel about this?
32. Have you tried to interview any of the parents of the 160 Palestinian children who died building the terror tunnels?
33. Have you asked Hamas spokespersons why they are setting out to murder children by firing rockets towards civilian populations?
34. Have you interviewed any UNRWA officials about why Hamas are storing weapons in their schools, and how the weapons got there?
35. Are you currently investigating how Hamas rockets ended up in UNRWA schools?
36. Are you currently investigating why UNRWA returned rockets to Hamas and their police force?
37. When Hamas breaks a ceasefire with Israel – as it has done 6 times – how easy is it to report on this from Gaza?
38. Is there any anti-Hamas sentiment in Gaza, and how is it expressed?
39. Were you aware that Hamas chose to execute dozens of anti-war protesters in Gaza, and did you not consider this to be worth
40. Is international media reporting from Gaza free from pressure and intimidation, or is there a real problem – and if so, how will you address it?

Qatar, and other American “allies”, are among the villains in Gaza Alan M. Dershowitz

American allies, especially Qatar and Turkey, have been providing material support to Hamas, which the United States has listed as a foreign terrorist organization. This support includes financial, diplomatic, media and even the provision of weapons that deliberately target Israeli civilians from behind Palestinian civilians who are used as human shields. It also includes harboring war criminals, especially leaders of Hamas, who direct their followers from the safety of Doha. Without the support of Qatar and Turkey, Hamas would never have started this bloody war that has caused so much human suffering.
Qatar, which is more of a family-owned gas station than a real country, regards itself as untouchable because of its oil wealth. Its residents—they are not really citizens because there are no genuine elections or freedom of speech or religion—are the richest in the world. It can buy anything it wants, including the 2022 World Cup, several American university campuses, some of the world's greatest art, Al Jazeera television and other luxuries. It can also buy terrorist groups such as Hamas. Indeed, after Iran, which is the world's worst state sponsor of terrorism, Qatar ranks near the top of this dishonor role of death.
Any individual who provides material support to a designated terrorist group such as Hamas commits a crime under the United States Penal law and the laws of several European countries. If Hamas were ever to be convicted of war crimes by the International Criminal Court, as it may well be, any individual who was an accessory to such crimes would be guilty as well. It is entirely fair, therefore, to describe Qatar as a criminal regime, guilty of accessory to mass murder.
In some ways Turkey is even worse. Its erratic prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has incited anti-Semitism, provoked conflict with Israel, provided material support to Hamas and undercut efforts to achieve a realistic end to the Gaza War. He has demanded that his Jewish subjects do his bidding, telling "our Jewish citizens' leaders" that they must "adopt a firm stance and release a statement against the Israeli government." He has suggested that if they fail to do so they will not be regarded as "good Turks," thus raising the old canard of "dual loyalty."
Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (right) gives a warm welcome to Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh, who travelled from Gaza to Turkey on an official visit in January 2012. (Image source: MEMRI)
Erdogan also recently said of Israel that "they always curse Hitler, but they now even exceed him in barbarism." And he responded to Americans who complain about the "comparisons with Hitler," by saying "You're American, what's Hitler got to do with you," forgetting that Hitler's forces killed thousands of American soldiers and civilians. He also conveniently forgets that Turkey, which remained immorally "neutral" in the war against Nazism, provided Hitler with the playbook for his genocide, by its own genocide against Armenians. As Hitler asked rhetorically when planning his genocide: "Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?" So Hitler matters to America, as it should to Turkey, which still mendaciously denies that it committed genocide against the Armenians.
Yet it was Qatar and Turkey to which Secretary of State John Kerry turned in his efforts to get Israel and Hamas to agree to a cease fire. This not only infuriated Israel, which considers these two countries as accessories to Hamas' war crimes, but also Jordan, Egypt and the Palestinian Authority, which also see Qatar and Turkey as allies of Hamas and enemies of moderate Arab states.
The time has come for the United States and the international community to reassess the status of Qatar and Turkey. These two countries have become part of the problem, rather than part of the solution. A nation that hosts Hamas leaders and finances their terrorism should not also host the World Cup. Nor should American universities send their faculty and students to a nation complicit in terrorism that has taken the lives of many Americans as well as Israelis.
Turkey's role in NATO must also be reevaluated. Membership in this organization entails certain responsibilities, and Turkey has failed in these responsibilities. They have become untrustworthy partners in the quest for peace.
It is a truism that we, as a nation, must deal with devils, because men and women are not angels. I do not fault Secretary of State Kerry for trying to use Qatar and Turkey to pressure Hamas into accepting a deal, although the deal they ultimately came up with was a bad one. My point is that Qatar's wealth and Turkey's size should not preclude us from telling it as it is: Qatar and Turkey are among the worst villains in the Gaza tragedy. Nor should we reward such villains, and such complicit in war crimes, by international gifts, such as the World Cup. Both Qatar and Turkey should be treated as pariahs unless and until they stop becoming state sponsors, supporters and facilitators of terrorism.

Hamas Secret Tunnels Exposed By Ted Belman

gaza tunnel

My good friend Mordechai ben-Menachem was interviewed on FOX Radio about the tunnels and he advised that:
- 60 tunnels have been found
- 5000 tunnels are estimated to exist.
- the cement for the tunnels was ordered and paid for by UNWRA
- the US funds 77% of the UNWRA budget.

Mordechai Ben-Menachem, a former researcher/lecturer at Ben-Gurion University and soldier in the IDF joined Leslie Gold for an update on the Hamas tunnels targeting Israel. Mordechai told Leslie that close to 60 tunnels have been found so far leading into Israel that Hamas could use to secretly attack Israel.

The only solution for the people of Gaza: No more tunnels! No more rockets! And no more Hamas! Watch Rabbi Marvin Hier

SWC founder and dean gave a resounding speach to a packed pro-Israel rally in Los Angeles' Saban Theater, challenging the hypocrisy of the world's leaders: "Why is it only an emergency when Israel finally defends herself and responds to the terrorists?"  … "Lets not distort history and judge Israel by a different standard in an attempt to make her the poster child for collateral damage."

SIGN THE PETITON: Join the 30,000+ who have already called on President Obama to urge Mr. Abbas to drop Hamas from the government or risk losing US funding.
If you haven't done so already, please sign the petition today ….

Woman Used As Human Shield in ‘70s: ‘Palestinians Have Perfected Propaganda War’

Brigitte Gabriel, who was used as a human shield when she was a child, was on “The Kelly File” tonight to discuss the Israel-Hamas conflict.
Gabriel said that between 1975 and 1976, she was used as a human shield in a bomb shelter.
“The Palestinians have perfected using children to win the world’s sympathy, and this goes back 30 years,” Gabriel said. “The Palestinians have perfected the propaganda war.”
According to Gabriel, Palestinians can’t win militarily so they “use their own children as disposable collateral in order to win the war of public opinion against Israel.”
She asked: what other country drops leaflets urging civilians to leave before they attack?
Gabriel said that Palestinians don’t value their children’s lives and are willing to sacrifice them in the name of jihad.

AISH.COM: Finding God in Gaza; A fresh look at God’s hand in the war in Gaza. by Rabbi Yaakov Salomon

AISH: J’Accuse It is time for Jews to say to the New York Times: we’ve had enough. by Rabbi Benjamin Blech

I write often for I write infrequently to the New York Times. Sometimes they print what I have to say. But this time I knew they weren’t going to publish my letter.
Here’s what I said:
To the editor:
In the conflict between Israel and Hamas, the New York Times has repeatedly insinuated that Hamas enjoys the higher moral ground based on the premise of proportionality – the number of its civilian victims far exceeds that of Israelis. Since my children and grandchildren live in Israel and have thus far been spared from death thanks to their shelter, the Iron Dome, and most certainly God, I beg you for some clarification. To my mind, the thousands of rockets that have targeted 6 million innocent civilians – a number that somehow resonates for me with great significance – have gratefully not succeeded in fulfilling the stated goal of those who fired them. By charter, Hamas has made clear its intention to slaughter all Israeli residents, men women and children. Were Israel not to respond forcefully to this threat, admittedly and most regretfully killing hundreds of civilians during this war they did not seek or initiate, the results would catastrophically be in the hundreds of thousands, if not millions of Israeli deaths. Please enlighten me as to how many Israelis need actually die and how many photos of butchered Israeli children would be required for Israel to regain the media’s favor? I can only hope it’s not another 6 million – because, starkly put, been there, done that.
And why was I so sure it was an exercise in futility to send this letter to them?
Because it’s now become clear that the New York Times has lost any claim to journalistic integrity by the way it continues to distort its reporting of a war initiated by an internationally recognized terrorist organization against the only democracy in the Middle East.
Ignored and completely forgotten by the supposed “newspaper of record” are the simple facts that
  • Hamas started a fight with a clear-cut goal, as affirmed in its charter, of killing every Israeli, or to be more precise every Jew. That means men, women and children. By the way there’s a name for these intended victims. They are called civilians, a term not to be selectively used only for Arab citizens of Gaza.
  • Hamas sent hundreds – by now thousands – of rockets specifically designed to maim and to murder as many of these civilians as possible and their lack of success in no way diminishes their moral culpability.
  • Hamas has refused to accept every cease-fire offered – and broken every limited humanitarian-based agreement to mutually suspend conflict.
Instead what the Times offers its readers to the point of nausea are heartbreaking photos of suffering residents in Gaza without the context of the reason for their grief – a leadership safely ensconced in luxury far from the fighting who praise death and martyrdom as the noblest aspirations for their followers.
One can only wonder if the Times would have covered World War II in the same fashion, keeping score as over 1 million Germans civilians perished as compared to only 12,000 Americans – none of whom it may be recalled were in immediate danger of missiles over the American mainland. If morality is determined solely by number of innocents dying the New York Times must truly believe that United States bears an unspeakable measure of guilt for its role in stopping Nazi Germany from its murderous plans because, after all, in order to accomplish its mission it caused the death of innocent victims.
What is perhaps most astounding about the Times’s coverage is not only its lack of objectivity and its inability to view events with any semblance of moral clarity but something that Bret Stephens pointedly noted in his column in theWall Street Journal that smacks either of amateurish incompetence or willful and evil distortion. As source for the numbers of victims in Gaza, as well as for the breakdown between combatants and civilians in this figure, the Times cites the Palestinian Health Ministry and United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Just a little digging by a responsible journalist would reveal that that the Palestinian health ministry in Gaza is run by Hamas and the United Nations group gets his information from two Palestinian agitprop groups!
So even if war has been reduced to a game of numbers by the New York Times, the information it offers its readers is nothing more than propaganda filtered through what is supposed to be a reliable newspaper.
It is time for Jews to say we have had enough. It is time for Jews to say what Emile Zola said when he could no longer stand the lies, the fabrications, the deceits and the dishonesty of the press of his day as they falsely accused the Jew Dreyfus of treason when the real reason for their attack was because Dreyfus was a Jew: J’accuse.
We, even the liberals and leftists and the intelligentsia who have so long been taken in by the prestige and the esteem the New York Times has for so long enjoyed in their circles, must finally take note of reality. Loudly and clearly, as well as by way of cancellation of subscriptions, we must shout out J’accuse! We accuse the newspaper that has built its reputation on fairness and objective reporting of losing its way as it grants the moral high ground to terrorists and to those whose admitted goals are violence and terrorism.