Friday, July 28, 2006
Lessons Of The Katyushas
By: Steven Plaut
Israel invaded Lebanon in 1982 to drive out the terrorists. It
In the late 1990's, some Israelis, led by the Labor Party, began
What began as mere disagreement by the Left over tactical issues
It was Labor prime minister Barak who in the summer of 2000
Barak's withdrawal took place under fire, with Hizbullah and
Barak's capitulation was a parody of Dunkirk. But the Israeli
This writer, like many others, predicted for years that northern
I also warned that when that happened, no southern Lebanese
It occurs to me that now would be as good a time as any to sum
Here are 40 lessons from the Katyusha war on the Jews:
1. Nice fences do not stop missiles, rockets, and mortars.
Sunday, July 23, 2006
This week, the Spanish Foreign Minister felt compelled to defend Prime
Zapatero had donned the black-checked keffiyeh that is the symbol of
It was all too familiar.
On any given day one can find some eminent European . a university
And their protestations sound plausible. After all, this is not your
At least that is what I assumed until someone did the study.
Two Connecticut professors got curious about the constant denials that
Kaplan and Small ask whether individuals expressing strong anti-Israel
The correlation was almost perfect. In a survey of 5,000 Europeans in ten
The study.s other interesting finding was that only a small fraction of
For Americans who do not read the European press, the level of raw
A couple of years ago the French Ambassador at the Court of St. James,
Those people? Moderates heard echoes of old-fashioned anti-Semitism. But
The British press agreed. Columnist Deborah Orr defended Ambassador
Columnist Richard Woods summed up the attitude of the European
Kaplan and Small have shown otherwise. When you read, for example, the
1 .Spanish Minister Objects . Says Criticism of Israel Not anti-Semitic.
2 Kaplan, Edward H. and Small, Charles A., .Anti-Israel Sentiment Predicts
3 Tom Gross, . .A Shitty Little Country,. Prejudice and Abuse in Paris and
4 ..Anti-Semitic. French Envoy Under Fire,. BBC Dec. 20, 2001
5 Deborah Orr, .I.m fed up being called an anti-Semite,. Independent,
6 Richard Woods in the, .When silence speaks volumes. London Sunday Times,
7 Davis, Avi, .A Star-Crossed Resignation,. Washington Times, Jan 2, 2002,
2. National Review Declares: Bibi saw it coming:
4. Noam Chomsky Celebrates the Hezbollah:
5. Fighting Amalek:
6. What innocent Lebanese civilians?
7. Think Chomsky will attend?
8. Treason Chic - the Jews for a Second Holocaust are already out with
9. Israel's film producers are the closest thing the Hezbollah has to a
In an open letter, dozens of these "film producers" expressed their
The YNET piece has 1600 talkbacks at the moment and almost all of them are
Saturday, July 22, 2006
1. While katyushas rain down on Israel, Ran HaCohen from the literature
Notice the bio on the right of that page,
If you are upset that TAU has someone on its faculty promoting the
Friends and Alumni Associations: http://www.tau.ac.il/friends-eng.html
Public Affairs: http://www.tau.ac.il/affairs-eng.html
2. A couple of days back, al-Jazeera ran a special on defending Hezbollah
3. An End to Peace thru Fantasizing?
The dangerous fantasy of peaceful Arab intent
By Edward Alexander
The two-front war launched against Israel by the Hamas and Hezbollah
Is there any hope that it will also shatter illusions tenaciously held by
For nearly 40 years, academic Middle East experts and State Department
How, then, is it that, starting the very day after its withdrawal from
Would it not be closer to the truth to say that terror is caused far less
Complete removal of Israeli forces and Jewish residents from an area
This is why the idea -- promoted by virtually every recent American (and
What, except historical amnesia, could have made the experts forget that
Fences afford Israel only temporary and partial protection; they cannot
Can anything positive emerge from the current carnage? Perhaps. Since
Perhaps the incessant nattering about "the occupation" will finally give
Perhaps the Israeli politicians who were so proud of their flight from
Perhaps -- but maybe this is too much to hope -- even our Middle East
Edward Alexander is emeritus professor of English at the University of
6. A new grad from the University of DUH?
8. Israel's 1982 Invasion:
9. The Enemy is Iran:
10. The David Duke Left:
Thursday, July 20, 2006
Deck Beirut with bombs, by Golly
NasraLlaLa La La La Lala La
'Tis the napalm makes us jolly
FadlaLlaLa La La La Lala La
]2. As many of you know, I wrote a biography about a Bedouin scout in Israel. He called us yesterday to check that we are all ok. Seems a katyusha landed in his own back yard - no one hurt and no damage.
Why The Left Hates Israel
By: Vasko Kohlmayer
Few facets of today.s politics are more obvious or more startling than the Left.s hatred of Israel. Be it the United Nations, elite universities or The New York Times, the Left unashamedly uses its institutions as forums from which to conduct its relentless campaign of vilification.
What makes the Left.s behavior especially puzzling is that it runs counter to one of its supposedly most cherished principles . concern for oppressed minorities. Its opprobrium of the country sheltering a group that has been persecuted longer, more unjustly and more cruelly than any other thus presents a seemingly irreconcilable contradiction.
To see what.s behind it, we need to begin with the Left.s overall disposition, which is one of entrenched anti-westernism. Making no secret of its contempt for the West.s traditions, values and achievements, the Left is as much offended by the West.s Judeo-Christian religion as it is by its moral code. The Left deems the West.s cultural triumphs no more unique than those of other societies and sees its past as little more than a story of oppression, exploitation and ignominy. And the Left despises free market capitalism . our socio-economic foundation . which it claims to be exploitative, unfair or worse.
The Left does not confine itself to criticism, but also expresses itself in practical action. These efforts take place on two fronts. Internally, it seeks to undermine the West by corroding its values and institutions. Externally, it renders assistance to its enemies which is why, for instance, many on the Left sided with the Soviet Union during the Cold War. Belligerent and armed, the Soviets vowed to consign the West to the abyss of history and large numbers of leftists relished the prospect. Needless to say, the collapse of the Soviet Empire came as a bitter setback.
Then, on 9/11, radical Islamists burst on the scene. Their attacks and subsequent statements left no doubt that their goal was the West.s destruction. Perceiving a unique opportunity, the Left sprang into action and since then has done all it can to undermine our ability to prosecute the war. Impugning the president, attacking our military, calling for the closure of detention centers and outing secret programs are all part and parcel of this effort.
Intent on using Islam as a battering ram against the West, the Left has pressed on with hopeful zeal, for the terrorist attacks in America and Europe revealed just how vulnerable we are. Even more significantly, most Western nations are quite obviously unwilling to defend themselves and they castigate the one country willing to confront the threat head on. The West has shown itself weak and vacillating, and there is indeed much reason for optimism as far as the Left is concerned. The Left.s hopes, however, are being seriously threatened from an unexpected quarter: Israel.
The Islamic movement derives much of its impetus from the belief in the coming of a worldwide caliphate which, most Muslims believe, is ultimately destined to rule this earth. One of the great obstacles on the road to this vision is Western civilization, which will have to be overcome if Islam is ever to reign supreme.
Given the West.s economic and military superiority, conquering it is a task whose magnitude could easily discourage even the most ardent believers. In order to shore up the fighting spirit of their followers and unleash their destructive passions, Islamic ideologues employ a two-pronged strategy. They portray the West not only as a beehive of godless infidels, but also as a decadent, corrupt, depraved and dysfunctional culture. This ensures that many are driven to jihad as much by their outraged moral sensibilities as by a desire to bring about Allah.s kingdom and securing their place in paradise should they die on the way.
But this strategy of vilification has one profound weakness. It is based on lies.
Nothing makes this more obvious than the State of Israel, a flourishing Western-type democracy in the heart of the Middle East. Decent, just and fair, the country.s mode of existence is completely at variance with Islam.s claims about the West.s inherent wickedness. Furthermore, Israel.s success and prosperity accentuate the backwardness, poverty and stagnation of the Islamic regimes themselves.
Israel thus puts the lie in devastating fashion to Islam.s claims about the West while throwing into sharp relief the depth of its own failures. Situated right in their own backyard, the Jewish state continually threatens to expose Islamic ideologues for the demagogues they are in the eyes of the very populations they seek to manipulate.
This in turn poses a grave danger to radical Islam itself, because once it is shown for a fraud in its own hotbed of the Middle East . the place from which it draws much of its impetus and energy . it may as well abandon its aspiration of ever becoming a force that can seriously challenge the West.
This possibility alarms the Left deeply. Having enlisted Islam as its closest ally in the anti-Western crusade, the Left naturally wants it to remain as strong and robust as possible. By undercutting the viability of radical Islam, Israel thus endangers the Left at the point of its ultimate hope and desire . the West.s destruction. Only when we grasp this will we understand the true reasons for the Left.s bitter dislike of the Jewish state. The Left.s virulent attacks on the country that is home to a long-persecuted minority will then no longer seem so bewildering.
One of the Left.s most salient characteristics is that its concern for the causes it outwardly espouses extends only insofar as those causes further leftist objectives, which, in the case of minorities, is the weakening of Western culture through balkanization. The moment a minority happens to benefit the Western cause . as Israel does in this clash of civilizations . the Left not only abandons it, but turns against it with a vengeance.
There can be little doubt that the elimination of Israel is what the Left is ultimately after. Statements by many of its spokesmen make this amply clear. Noam Chomsky, Ralph Nader and their ilk speak of Israel as a land whose malignant influence can only be checked by severe measures. And the liberal elites throughout the West back that kind of rhetoric with action. In a gesture so twisted as to defy belief, it awarded the Nobel Peace Prize to a terrorist who had devoted his life to Israel.s obliteration.
The United Nations, the Mecca of the international Left, passes resolution after resolution condemning Israel while turning a blind eye to the barbarism of its enemies. Attempting to force terms that would make its survival untenable, the UN tries to box Israel into a position from which it would be unable to defend itself. At the same time, the Left.s media organs put out editorial after editorial castigating Israel.
Few examples better reveal the Left.s duplicity than its stance on Israel, a country whose only offense is that it is a successful practitioner of the Western tradition. A Western outpost in the very heart our enemy.s base, the Jewish state is a crucial battleground in this war of civilizations. And the Left, fully cognizant of its seminal importance, is doing all it can to tear it down.
As the West.s strategic ally, Israel must not be abandoned if we are to emerge victorious from the life-and-death conflict in which we are currently engaged. But there is another, equally important, reason why Israel must survive. An enlightened and decent country, its demise would be a tragic setback not only for Jews but for all who fight on the side of humanity and enlightenment against terror, fanaticism and darkness.
Vasko Kohlmayer defected from Communist Czechoslovakia at the age of 19. He lives in London and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
4. Hizbollah is Here:
5. Richard Cohen's parents made a very serious mistake. Why did they not pull out?
6. Only at Counterpunch. The Cockburn-Cockroach Jonathan Cook, an anti-Semite that Israel for some reason has not arrested nor deported, sits in Nazareth and spews out neo-nazi propaganda. In his latest, http://counterpunch.com/Cook07192006.html, he takes Israel for task in using Arab towns in the Galilee as human shields. I guess he means rather than treating them in a more humane manner and expelling their inhabitants altogether?
Leftists: Born to Run
By Ann Coulter
FrontPageMagazine.com July 20, 2006
I knew the events in the Middle East were big when the New York Times devoted nearly as much space to them as it did to a New York court ruling last week rejecting gay marriage.
Some have argued that Israel's response is disproportionate, which is actually correct: It wasn't nearly strong enough. I know this because there are parts of South Lebanon still standing.
Most Americans have been glued to their TV sets, transfixed by Israel's show of power, wondering, "Gee, why can't we do that?"
Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean says that "what's going on in the Middle East today" wouldn't be happening if the Democrats were in power. Yes, if the Democrats were running things, our cities would be ash heaps and the state of Israel would have been wiped off the map by now.
But according to Dean, the Democrats would have the "moral authority that Bill Clinton had" . no wait! keep reading . "when he brought together the Israelis and Palestinians." Clinton really brokered a Peace in Our Time with that deal . "our time" being a reference to that five-minute span during which he announced it. Yasser Arafat immediately backed out on all his promises and launched the second intifada.
The fact that Israel is able to launch an attack on Hezbollah today without instantly inciting a multination conflagration in the Middle East is proof of what Bush has accomplished. He has begun to create a moderate block of Arab leaders who are apparently not interested in becoming the next Saddam Hussein.
There's been no stock market crash, showing that the markets have confidence that Israel will deal appropriately with the problem and that it won't expand into World War III.
But liberals can never abandon the idea that we must soothe savage beasts with appeasement . whether they're dealing with murderers like Willie Horton or Islamic terrorists. Then the beast eats you.
There are only two choices with savages: fight or run. Democrats always want to run, but they dress it up in meaningless catchphrases like "diplomacy," "detente," "engagement," "multilateral engagement," "multilateral diplomacy," "containment" and "going to the UN."
I guess they figure, "Hey, appeasement worked pretty well with ... uh ... wait, I know this one ... ummm ... tip of my tongue...."
Democrats like to talk tough, but you can never trap them into fighting. There is always an obscure objection to be raised in this particular instance . but in some future war they would be intrepid! One simply can't imagine what that war would be.
Democrats have never found a fight they couldn't run from.
On "Meet the Press" last month, Sen. Joe Biden was asked whether he would support military action against Iran if the Iranians were to go "full-speed-ahead with their program to build a nuclear bomb."
No, of course not. There is, Biden said, "no imminent threat at this point."
According to the Democrats, we can't attack Iran until we have signed affidavits establishing that it has nuclear weapons, but we also can't attack North Korea because it may already have nuclear weapons. The pattern that seems to be emerging is: "Don't ever attack anyone, ever, for any reason. Ever."
The Democrats are in a snit about North Korea having nukes, with Howard Dean saying Democrats are tougher on defense than the Republicans because since Bush has been president, North Korea has "quadrupled their nuclear weapons stash."
It wasn't that difficult. Clinton gave the North Koreans $4 billion to construct nuclear reactors in return for the savages promising not to use the reactors to build bombs. But oddly, despite this masterful triumph of "diplomacy," the savages did not respond with good behavior. Instead, they immediately set to work feverishly building nuclear weapons.
But that's another threat the Democrats do not think is yet ripe for action.
On "Meet the Press" last Sunday, Sen. Biden lightly dismissed the North Koreans, saying their "government's like an eighth-grader with a small bomb looking for attention" and that we "don't even have the intelligence community saying they're certain they have a nuclear weapon."
Is that the test? We need to have absolute certainty that the North Koreans have a nuclear weapon capable of hitting California with Kim Jong-Il making a solemn promise to bomb the U.S. (and really giving us his word this time, no funny business) before we . we what? If they have a nuclear weapon, what do we do then? Is a worldwide thermonuclear war the one war Democrats would finally be willing to fight?
Democrats won't acknowledge the existence of "an imminent threat" anyplace in the world until a nuclear missile is 12 minutes from New York. And then we'll never have the satisfaction of saying "I told you so," because we'll all be dead.
The End of Israel's "Peace Through Weakness"
By Michael Reagan
FrontPageMagazine.com July 20, 2006
(let us hope he is correct)
9. Presbs back off, for now:
10. Jihad at U-Wisconsin
11. Ayn Rand Institute Press Release
Israel Should Wage a Real War
July 19, 2006
Irvine, CA--What will it take for Israel to wage a real war? How many more Israelis will have to be murdered, kidnapped, or maimed?
Israel says the killing and kidnapping of Israelis by Islamic terror groups Hezbollah and Hamas are acts of war. But is Israel prepared to wage a real war in self-defense?
Hezbollah and Hamas have been launching attacks against Israelis for decades--yet Israel has not used its military capability to inflict massive destruction on these groups and obliterate the terrorist states that harbor and sponsor them.
"It is long past time for Israel to wage a real war against these terrorist groups and states," said Dr. Yaron Brook, executive director of the Ayn Rand Institute.
"And it is long past time for the United States to join Israel in waging this war."
### ### ###
Dr. Yaron Brook is executive director of the Ayn Rand Institute and a recognized Middle-East expert who has written and lectured on a variety of Middle-East issues. Dr. Brook has served in the Israeli Army Intelligence and has discussed the Israeli-Arab conflict and the war on Islamic totalitarianism on hundreds of radio and TV programs, including FOX News (The O'Reilly Factor, Your World with Neil Cavuto, At Large with Geraldo Rivera), CNN's Talkback Live, CNBC's Closing Bell and On the Money, and a C-SPAN panel of experts on terrorism.
To book Dr. Brook for your show, please contact Larry Benson:
949-222-6550 ext. 213 (office)
Copyright 2006 Ayn Rand Institute. All rights reserved.
12. From David Brotsky
Subject: "I was BANNED from a "pro-Israel" rally!
I am very disappointed in my fellow Jewish people this evening, as I printed out hundreds of fliers (on my own time and dime) and I went to a "Rally for Israel" here in Dallas today. I expressed my intentions prior to the "rally" to some of its organizers beforehand, and no one told me I had to get some sort of approval to hand out a sheet of paper with words on it.
After I shared the flier with some of the organizers and while waiting for "rally" to end, many of them approached me to tell me I could not hand out the flier. I said that I was waiting for it to end so I could hand it out as people were leaving. They told me I could not be on the premises distributing it because it was not "pre-approved," and if I gave them a hard time, they'd get the police involved. So I stood outside the property (just outside the main parking lot) and waited for the few people trickling down into that direction to leave and handed them the following words:
LEBANON RETREAT = TERROR IN THE NORTH
GAZA RETREAT = TERROR IN THE SOUTH
WEST BANK RETREAT = TERROR IN THE MIDDLE
i.e. JERUSALAM AND TEL AVIV
We support Olmert.s military self-defense.
We can no longer tolerate giving .land for terror..
Olmert is planning to retreat from the West Bank.
The West Bank to the north of Jerusalem is elevated ground in the heart of the country.
It will make the terror from the north and south seem minimal.
Members of large Jewish organizations,
tell your leaders to tell Olmert...
"The Convergence/Realignment Plan" = National Suicide"
13. Aussie for Terror:
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
The View from Haifa September 10th Syndrome
By: Steven Plaut
"All you do all day is threaten that there will be Katyusha rockets landing in Ashkelon. Would you mind telling me why there are no rockets fired from Aqaba to Eilat?"
. Foreign Minister and Labor MK Shimon Peres, Knesset minutes, September 9, 1993
I could still hear Peres's words echoing when Katyusha rockets began exploding in Haifa a few days ago, some of them just several blocks from my home. Filled with thousands of lead pellets to maximize the carnage, one of them ended the lives of nine people in a Haifa train depot.
I contemplated those words while Patriot missile batteries were being erected on my campus at the University of Haifa. The college was shut down for the duration of the attacks, but I proposed to the powers-that-be that all leftist professors be forcibly kept on campus to serve as human shields.
The e-mails and phone calls come in nonstop. Why are you online and not down in the bomb shelter, you meshugena? asks a friend from California. I reply that there are too many spiderwebs down there.
The Katyushas landing in Haifa were, for all intents and purposes, dropped here by Ehud Barak.
In the summer of 2000, in what amounted to a cowardly unilateral retreat, then-Prime Minister Barak ordered the IDF to abandon its positions in southern Lebanon. Hizbullah terrorists had been sniping at Israeli troops inside Lebanon and the toll was slowly mounting. With a bit of initiative Israel could have put a stop to that, but instead Barak opted for placing all of northern Israel within the rocket sites of the terrorists.
Ever since that withdrawal, the Israeli Left had been patting itself on its collective back, insisting that the unilateral retreat had not only worked but could serve as a role model for Gaza and the West Bank.
The abandonment of Gush Katif in the Gaza Strip was largely based on that notion, as is Prime Minister Olmert's current plan for "contraction" in the West Bank. After all, the retreat from Lebanon had "worked" in the sense that the Lebanese border seemed to be "relatively" tranquil, with a death toll below what it had been when the Israeli army was still on the ground in Lebanon.
Six years have passed since the retreat from southern Lebanon. The attitude of the Israeli chattering classes toward that "success" is illustrative of what I call the September 10th Syndrome. On September 10, 2001, there were many public figures in the U.S. convinced that there was no chance terrorists could or would strike America. Their conclusion, to quote Mark Twain, was just a little premature.
Israel has suffered from a mass infestation of September 10th Syndrome ever since the capitulation to Hizbullah in 2000. But in recent days it's become clear that there can be something even worse than such an affliction . namely, suffering from September 10th Syndrome on September 12, i.e., not even realizing how wrong one had been even after events should have removed all doubt.
True, the Lebanese border remained "relatively" quiet after the Barak withdrawal, but not for the reasons marketed by the Israeli political establishment. All that had happened was that Syria was cowed into keeping the Lebanese border quiet for a while after 2001 due to its fears of being targetedby an enraged America on the warpath against Middle East terrorism.
The supposed success of the Lebanese capitulation was also the official theology behind Israel's security fence in the West Bank. The security fence along the Lebanese border was thought to have demonstrated that all Israel now needed to do with Gaza and the West bank was get itself out and build similar fences, replete with all manner of electronic gizmos, just as it had done along the Lebanese border. After all, the politicians kept chanting, once there were no Israeli troops in "Arab lands," the Arab side would have no reason to engage in terror and military aggression against Israel.
Of course, the Barak withdrawal never really solved anything. The Lebanese border was not calm. Thousands of state-of-the-art rockets were sitting there, ready to strike. Shelling and cross-border incursions by Hizbullah were regular occurrences, and Hizbullah agents were freely wandering the Gaza Strip, helping Hamas build its bombs. In short, the Lebanese border was as secure and as calm as the World Trade Center towers were on September 10, 2001.
There is no diplomatic way of putting this. The kidnapping of Israeli soldiers in Gaza and along the Lebanese border is the direct result of Israel's rewarding and appeasing terrorism over the past few decades. Long gone are the days when Israelis boasted that their government never negotiated with terrorists.
The 1976 Entebbe rescue was the greatest and, alas, the last serious use by Israel of force to deal with the kidnapping of Israelis by Arab terrorists. Since then, Israel has more often than not dealt with hostage situations by capitulating and conceding.
Such situations, of course, are never easy, both from a strategic and a moral perspective. There is a complex trade-off between the desire to free hostages at once and the need to deter and punish hostage grabbers. The understandable human . and humane . instinct to seek the immediate freeing of hostages must be weighed against actions that will put other lives in jeopardy. Decision makers face the dilemma that saving a single life today may well produce scores of deaths tomorrow.
. In 1985, the Likud-led government of Yitzhak Shamir carried out a prisoner exchange with the "Jibril" terrorists. Israel agreed to release more than a thousand Arabs incarcerated for terrorist activities in exchange for three Israeli soldiers. Just three days after the trade, one of those released Arabs was brought into an Israeli hospital. He had accidentally blown himself up while preparing a bomb intended for Israeli shoppers. Others among the released terrorists would, in the months and years to come, participate in a number of attacks and murders.
. On October 16, 1986, while on a mission over southern Lebanon, Israeli air force navigator Lieutenant Colonel Ron Arad and his pilot were forced by a technical problem to parachute out of their plane. The pilot was rescued by an Israeli chopper, but Arad fell captive to terrorists belonging to the Lebanese Shi'ite Amal militia. All trace of Arad was lost. Since 1986, Israel has engaged in feeble and pointless attempts at "quiet diplomacy" in order to win the release of Arad or at least learn of his fate. The efforts have produced nothing.
. In 1992, Yitzhak Rabin launched his "peace plan" of legitimizing and recognizing the PLO and at the same time ordered the expulsion of 400 Hamas terrorists from the West Bank and Gaza to Lebanon. The expulsion had near-universal support in Israel. Shortly thereafter, however, Israel permitted almost all the expelled terrorists return to the West Bank and Gaza Strip, where they resumed their leadership roles in terror organizations. It was a yet another goodwill gesture for which Israel got nothing in exchange. Not even information on Ron Arad.
. In 1994, in the middle of Rabin's "peace initiative," Palestinian terrorists kidnapped Israeli soldier Nachshon Wachsman. The kidnappers held him hostage in the West Bank village of Bir Naballah, which had long been a hotbed of terror.
On October 7, 1994, villagers violently attacked Israeli soldiers who were trying to storm the Bir Naballah home in which Wachsman was being held. The terrorists had enough time to murder Wachsman before his would-be rescuers got into the house. Israel did not bulldoze the village in retaliation, just as it has not bulldozed other West Bank villages in which soldiers and civilians have been murdered.
These days, Israeli leftists are busy assisting the residents of Bir Naballah in sabotaging the security wall Israel is constructing, because it offends the sensitivities of the Arab villagers.
. In July 2003 the Israeli cabinet decided in a 14-9 vote to buy Ariel Sharon a Kodak moment in Washington by releasing more than 500 Palestinian prisoners, including Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Fatah terrorists, again as a "goodwill gesture." Few of the released terrorists took up quilting.
. In January 2004, Israel agreed to an exchange with Hizbullah. More than 400 Arab prisoners, many accused of killing civilians, were released in return for a single Israeli civilian hostage and the bodies of the three soldiers who had been murdered in cold blood by Hizbullah.
The prisoner exchange was widely opposed in Israel, and passed the Israeli cabinet by a single vote. Afterward, Israel never avenged the three soldiers murdered by Hizbullah. A suicide bombing that killed 10 Israelis took place the very day of the prisoners' release, but Israel went ahead with it anyway.
Two of those set free had been high-ranking Lebanese terrorists, directly involved in the kidnapping, torture, and reported "sale" of Ron Arad to Iran. Israel did not even demand information on the whereabouts of Arad in exchange, just an empty promise of some information in the future, which, needless to say, has never materialized.
At the time, the Arab media crowed in smug satisfaction at Israel's humiliation in the prisoner release. Al-Ahram called it a "new notch in Hizbullah's belt!" In Israel it was seen as a debacle. Even Yoel Marcus at Israel's far-left daily Haaretz called it a "License to Kidnap."
Yuval Arad, Ron Arad's daughter, said she felt Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon had abandoned her father. In a letter to Sharon, she wrote: "I can't understand how you can sleep at night ... you're about to release the man who tortured him [her father]."
In the early stages of the Allied invasion of Iraq, a number of Western hostages were grabbed by terrorist groups. Some were murdered by beheading. The U.S. and Britain did not release any captured terrorists in exchange for any hostages, nor did they make any other concessions to the terrorists. On the contrary, in cases where hostages were not released unharmed, allied troops went after the kidnappers with a special vengeance and ferocity. The result was an end to the wave of kidnappings.
The Israeli strategy of appeasing terrorists by releasing prisoners has caused more kidnappings and more terrorism. The lessons of recent years are as simple as they are absent from Israeli policy thinking. Releasing prisoners to appease terrorists causes more kidnapping. Refusing to capitulate to terrorist demands stops the kidnapping. Cutting and running when rockets fall causes them to fall in much larger numbers.
Yes, Jewish tradition has always allowed, indeed mandated, payment for the redemption of Jewish captives. Buried in the Aramaic in every marriage contract is a clause that obligates husbands (male readers, be warned!) to ransom their wives should they be taken captive.
But there were always clear limits on what could be paid for ransom . for two reasons. The first was to "avoid placing onerous economic burdens on the community." But the second was more for strategic considerations, and in some ways is the more important. Paying out large ransoms creates incentive for further kinappings and inspires escalated ransom demands. The Talmudic sages understood what Israel's politicians do not.
During the Middle Ages, Rabbi Meir of Rothenberg, one of the last Tosophists, was the leader of German Jewry. He prohibited women from wearing tefillin but at the same time was a strong defender of wives against abusive husbands. Some of his elegies are still part of the prayer book. (Interestingly, there are reports that he claimed to be a direct descendent of the evil emperor Nero.)
Convinced that Jews had no future in Ashkenaz (Germany), Rabbi Meir was leading a contingent of families to the Land of Israel when he was abducted by the authorities in Basel and held for ransom. He prohibited the Jewish community from paying for his release, fearing it would encourage more kidnappings of Jews. He died in a prison near Colmar in 1291, and some years later his body was ransomed and then buried in Worms. Rabbi Meir chose death over putting the burden of frequent abductions on the entire Jewish population.
At the time of the capitulation by the Israeli government to Hizbullah in the 2004 mass release of terrorists, Israeli politicians insisted that they had no choice and were just following the dictates of Jewish ethics. While it is nice to hear Israeli politicians (uncharacteristically) acknowledge the importance of Jewish ethics, they had no idea what those ethics actually say about hostage redemption (or anything else). They were simply looking for a pseudo-ethical argument to use as a fig leaf for their appeasement of terrorists.
Speaking of Jewish ethics, Judaism unambiguously supports the death penalty for murderers, whereas Israeli politicians are pusillanimously opposed to it. Let us take note of the fact that no terrorist has ever murdered anyone else after being executed.
Had convicted terrorists and murderers been executed in Israel all along, there would be few terrorist prisoners frolicking in Israeli jails, serving as bait and incentive for Palestinian militias and Hizbullah to kidnap Jews.
Had Hizbullah villages been turned into parking lots years ago, there would be no Katyushas falling on northern Israel.
2. Proportionate and Disproportionate:
3. Bomb Damascus, not Beirut:
4. Stop playing and make a ground invasion:
Tuesday, July 18, 2006
http://www.tnr.com/> The New Republic Online
WHY ISRAEL SHOULD BOMB SYRIA.
by Michael B. Oren
Only at TNR Online
Post date: 07.17.06
N <http://www.tnr.com/images/dropcaps/N.gif> early 40 years ago, Israel and the Arab world fought a war that altered the course of Middle Eastern history. Now, as the region teeters on the brink of a new and potentially more violent cataclysm, it is important to revisit the lessons of the Six Day War, a conflict that few Middle Eastern countries wanted and none foresaw.
By 1967, ten years after the Sinai Campaign, the Arab-Israeli dispute had settled into an uneasy status quo. The radical Egyptian regime of Gamal Abdel Nasser still proclaimed its commitment to liberating Palestine and throwing the Jews into the sea, as did its conservative rivals in Jordan and Saudi Arabia, but none of these states made any attempt to renew hostilities. On the contrary, Egypt remained quiescent behind the U.N. peacekeeping forces deployed in Sinai, Gaza, and the Straits of Tiran since 1957. Jordan maintained secret contacts with the Israelis. Israel, for its part, had long learned to ignore bellicose Arab rhetoric and to seek backdoor channels to even the most vituperative Arab rulers. As late as April 1967, officials at Israel's foreign ministry were speculating whether Nasser might be a viable partner for a peace process.
But one Arab state did not want peace. Syria, then as now under the rule of the belligerent Baath Party, wanted war. Having tried and failed in 1964 to divert the Jordan River before it crossed the Israeli border--IDF jets and artillery blasted the dams--the Syrians began supporting a little-known Palestinian guerrilla group called Al Fatah under the leadership of Yasir Arafat. Using Lebanon as its principal base, Al Fatah commenced operations against Israel in 1965 and rapidly escalated its attacks. Finally, at the end of 1966, Israeli officials felt compelled to retaliate. But, fearing the repercussions of attacking Soviet-backed Syria, they decided to strike at an Al Fatah stronghold in the Jordanian-controlled West Bank.
The raid unfortunately led to a firefight between IDF and Jordanian troops, and to Jordanian claims that Nasser had not done enough to protect the West Bank Palestinians. Desperate to restore his reputation, Nasser exploited a spurious Soviet report of Israeli war plans to evict U.N. peacekeepers. He closed the Straits of Tiran to Israeli shipping, concentrated 100,000 of his troops along the Israeli border, and forged anti-Israeli pacts with Syria and Jordan. The Arab world rejoiced at the prospect of annihilating Israel, and even the Soviets, eager to find some means of distracting American attention from Vietnam, were pleased. Israeli leaders had no choice but to determine when and where to strike preemptively.
And so, suddenly and unexpectedly, a regional war erupted that the principal combatants--Israel, Egypt, and Jordan--neither desired nor anticipated. The lesson: Local conflicts in the Middle East can quickly spin out of control and spiral into a regional conflagration.
The lesson is especially pertinent to the current crisis. Then, as now, the Syrians have goaded a terrorist organization, Hezbollah, to launch raids against Israel from Lebanon. Then, as now, the rapid rise of terrorist attacks has forced Israel to mount reprisals. If the Soviets in 1967 wanted to divert America's attention from Vietnam, the Iranians--Syria's current sponsors--want to divert American attention from their nuclear-arms program. And once again Israel must decide when to strike back and against whom.
Back in 1966, Israel recoiled from attacking Syria and instead raided Jordan, inadvertently setting off a concatenation of events culminating in war. Israel is once again refraining from an entanglement with Hezbollah's Syrian sponsors, perhaps because it fears a clash with Iran. And just as Israel's failure to punish the patron of terror in 1967 ultimately triggered a far greater crisis, so too today, by hesitating to retaliate against Syria, Israel risks turning what began as a border skirmish into a potentially more devastating confrontation. Israel may hammer Lebanon into submission and it may deal Hezbollah a crushing blow, but as long as Syria remains hors de combat there is no way that Israel can effect a permanent change in Lebanon's political labyrinth and ensure an enduring ceasefire in the north. On the contrary, convinced that Israel is unwilling to confront them, the Syrians may continue to escalate tensions, pressing them toward the crisis point. The result could be an all-out war with Syria as well as Iran and severe political upheaval in Jordan, Egypt, and the Gulf.
The answer lies in delivering an unequivocal blow to Syrian ground forces deployed near the Lebanese border. By eliminating 500 Syrian tanks--tanks that Syrian President Bashar Al Assad needs to preserve his regime--Israel could signal its refusal to return to the status quo in Lebanon. Supporting Hezbollah carries a prohibitive price, the action would say. Of course, Syria could respond with missile attacks against Israeli cities, but given the dilapidated state of Syria's army, the chances are greater that Assad will simply internalize the message. Presented with a choice between saving Hezbollah and staying alive, Syria's dictator will probably choose the latter. And the message of Israel's determination will also be received in Tehran.
Any course of military action carries risks, especially in the unpredictable Middle East. But if the past is any guide, and if the Six Day War presents a paradigm of an unwanted war that might have been averted with an early, well-placed strike at Syria, then Israel's current strategy in Lebanon deserves to be rethought. If Syria escapes unscathed and Iran undeterred, Israel will remain insecure.
Michael B. Oren <http://www.tnr.com/showBio.mhtml?pid=227&sa=1> is a senior fellow at The Shalem Center in Jerusalem and the author most recently of Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern Middle East (Oxford University Press).
2. From National Review:
Hezbollah's Casualties, The Cynical View [Jonah Goldberg]
I should have mentioned this in the original post. But several readers have raised the other possibility that some of the "civilians" are in fact members of Hezbollah and the Western press takes casualty reports at face value. Maybe. It's not like we haven't see that before. Still, most of these casualties must in fact be civilians . the refugee caravan for example . and Israel has not denied as much.
Posted at 9:42 AM
3. Eradication Now:
4. We are all Israelis now:
5. Police detain Al-Jazeera news team in Haifa
Etgar Lefkovits Jul. 16, 2006
The Israel Police on Sunday detained an Al-Jazeera news team after it
broadcast live footage which disclosed the area of Sunday's deadly
attack in Haifa, in violation of military censorship rules, police and
security officials said.
Eight people were killed and dozens were wounded in the mid-morning
attack, the most lethal Hizbullah rocket attack since Israel's withdrawal from South Lebanon six years ago.
The station's Israel correspondent, Elias Karram, was among those
detained by police.
6. While the Israelis for a Second Holocaust are holding anti-Israel rallies to oppose Israeli aggression and imperialism against Lebanon, some of the academic moonbaterie are also active.
Rachel Giora is a fanatic anti-Israel pro-terrorist from Tel Aviv University in linguistics, having taken over as TAU's leading linguistics cheerleader for terror now that Talya Reinhart has been forced into requirement.
Her web site is at http://www.tau.ac.il/~giorar/index.htm
She is distributing a petition denouncing Israel for defending itself in Lebanon and demanding that the US take action against Israel, not against the Hezbollah.
Here is what she wrote:
From: Rachel Giora
Sent: Monday, July 17, 2006 8:16 PM
Subject: Fw: petition
Please sign & forward this petition:
" Israel attacks Lebanon"
"Believing that the current actions by the State of Israel in
invading/attacking the State of Lebanon is both an unlawful and
unwarranted attack upon innocent civilians by an aggressor nation, we call
upon the United States of America and the United Nations to condemn the
State of Israel, and the actions thereof, and to demand the immediate
cessation of all military action by the forces of the State of Israel
within the borders of the state of Lebanon, and to demand the immediate
withdrawal of all personnel of the State of Israel from the State of
If you wish to tell the heads of TAU what you think of this, or to describe to them your intentions regarding future contributions to TAU, contact these people:
Tel Aviv University:
Friends and Alumni Associations: http://www.tau.ac.il/friends-eng.html
Public Affairs: http://www.tau.ac.il/affairs-eng.html
7. Oh what sad news for the Israeli Left:
Israelis overwhelmingly support IDF's Lebanon op.
Associated Press, THE JERUSALEM POST Jul. 18, 2006
Nearly nine out of 10 Israelis say the IDF's week-old operation against Hizbullah is justified and nearly 60 percent say the operations should continue until the movement is destroyed, according to an opinion poll published Tuesday.
The Dahaf poll, published in Yediot Ahronot, found that 81 percent of Israelis want the military campaign to continue. Another 78 percent said they were satisfied with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's functioning.
The poll of 513 Israelis taken Monday was the first since the start of Operation Changing Direction on Wednesday. The poll had an error margin of 4.2 percentage points.
(Remember that one in 6 Israelis is an Arab)
More bad news for the moonbats. Take a look at http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/739042.html
and read the talkbacks there!
8. Please forgive me.
I have been under katyusha attack all day so forgive me for this poor taste. But the news reports say that Israeli ground troops at long last entered Lebanon but were very quickly ordered to withdraw.
Please be advised that there are significant penalties for early withdrawal. (Frankly, I would term the 2000 Barak withdrawal from Lebanon as "premature ejaculation")
9. Soviet Joke Telling:
10. Think this is relevant?
In late April, Arab terrorists affiliated with the Fatah terrorist group, headed by Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas, issued a communique in which they call for kidnapping Israelis, as well as Jews outside of Israel.
"This is an open call to all our fighters in the homeland to focus on kidnapping Israeli soldiers and civilians inside our occupied land," the Fatah's Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades declared. "If the enemy does not release our prisoners, then Zionists outside Palestine will be an easy target for our fighters."
11. Or this?
ROM WND'S JERUSALEM BUREAU
No. 2 for Israeli PM's party
in U.S. a convicted criminal
Kadima rep with history of forgery, grand
larceny speaking in synagogues, debates
Posted: July 15, 2006
5:27 p.m. Eastern
By Aaron Sichel
WASHINGTON . The man who has been serving as the No. 2 representative in America for Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's Kadima Party is a convicted criminal facing a possible lengthy prison sentence after pleading guilty to felony grand larceny and has in the past been convicted of forgery, WorldNetDaily has learned.
Marc Mishaan, who was listed as the vice president of Kadima USA, has been representing Olmert's political party at various public events the past few months.
According to criminal conviction documents obtained from the New York state court system and to community leaders and associates of Mishaan speaking to WND, the Kadima representative has a long history of fraud, forgery and financial improprieties. One Jewish leader accused Mishaan of embezzling from his charity fund.
Kadima USA is the American fundraising and public support branch of Olmert's party.
Jewish community leaders said they informed Kadima USA officials of Mishaan's documented criminal past, but they said Mishaan continued to serve in an official capacity even after they delivered their warnings.
12. Nice political cartoons at
13. Axis of Appeasement:
14. Bay Area Jews for a Second Holocaust:
15. Juan Cole cheers the Hezbollah to punish the Jews for blocking his gig at Yale:
16. The Enemy is Iran:
17. Stalin's ghosts at The Nation
1. SO how bad is it?
Death statistics and probabilities are always hard to explain to
But let us keep something in perspective. This is about the same as
Another way of putting this is that a week of katyushas has produced
True, the katyushas tend to frighten people more and are more
SO get a grip everyone. And I say that from Haifa, in the top floor
2. Ground troops
It is a complete delusion to think that Israel can resolve the
Only Israeli ground troops can stop the rockets. So far, the Israeli
Having said that, there is another way to read the Olmert reluctance
For the past 58 years, almost every armed confrontation between Israel
So someone less cynical than me might attribute that consideration
3. The Demise of the Left?
Israel's anti-Israel Jewish Left, led by the tenured traitors, is out
And there are other signs.
This past Friday, for the very first time, a mainstream columnist in
Sure, I have been saying that for years, but it sounds better coming
4. I continue to believe that there are some important advantages in
5. Israel's Moronic Leaders:
6. Haaretz Columnists for a Hezbollah Victory:
7. The Israel Enigma:
8. A University of Haifa Leftist prof defends Israel's battle against
By FANIA OZ-SALZBERGER
War does not preclude clear thinking. When Israel withdrew from southern
First and most crucial, a majority of Israelis consider this sad
Israel certainly responded, as any sovereign state would; and it did so
Which leads to a second clearheaded point. Why is Israel's response not
They are not set to be gently pushed into moderation, or to hammer out an
Negotiation? For sure. It worked with Egypt and Jordan. It would work with
And here is a sad, third clearheaded point: Democracy, in the Middle East
But the adults? Are these men and women hostages of live-in terrorists,
Arab democracy is not hopeless, a fourth clearheaded reflection suggests.
My final point may be news to both friends and foes of Israel: This
Ms. Oz-Salzberger is a senior lecturer at the University of Haifa.
URL for this article:
9. Metropolitan News-Enterprise
Monday, July 17, 2006
Court of Appeal Allows Suit Over Rabbi.s Alleged Attack on Writer
By KENNETH OFGANG, Staff Writer/Appellate Courts
A Jewish writer who claims that a prominent local rabbi attacked and
Reversing a contrary ruling by Los Angeles Superior Court Judge James A.
Neuwirth sued Seidler-Feller along with Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish
The suit resulted from a brouhaha outside Royce Hall on the Westwood
Outside the hall were some Palestinian or pro-Palestinian demonstrators.
Neuwirth, who has suggested in her writings that peace between Israel and
She alleges in her complaint that she .calmly. told the rabbi that
Neuwirth claims that Seidler-Feller then .flew into a rage,. called her .a
The rabbi had to be pulled off Neuwirth by .three or four large college
Neuwirth alleged causes of action for battery and infliction of emotional
Violent Tendencies Alleged
The plaintiff asserted that attending the Dershowitz event, of which
Bascue sustained Hillel.s demurrer to the claims of vicarious liability,
Neuwirth appealed, but only as to the issue of vicarious liability.
He cited a case in which the Court of Appeal held that a car rental agency
.Although the alleged attack here was not as directly related to
Attorneys on appeal were Charles L. Fonarow for the plaintiff and Matthew
The case is Neuwirth v. Los Angeles Hillel Council, B18505.
10. Too little too late:
11. From columnist JAMES TARANTO
"Some have criticized Israel for not responding proportionately to
12. A Cycle of Nonsense:
13. Prager sums things up:
14. Hollywood Airhead:
Monday, July 17, 2006
1. Pity the Left:
2. Juan Cole, the anti-Semitic professor of Middle East studies at the
3. The OTHER crime of Ehud Barak:
Barak claimed the danger had passed.
4. MK Matan Vilnai: Israel could not deal with rockets until hit by them
Aaron Lerner Date: 16 July 2006
Labor MK Matan Vilnai explained in a live interview on Channel Two
5. Israeli leftist general tells the world off:
6. Haifa University has been closed for the katyusha duration but I have
The residents of Sderot offered residents of Haifa shelter there if they
7. The Israeli Moonbatocracy, filled with leftist professors, declared
Bombing that demonstration would have done more to stop the war than
8. KENNEDY: VOTE SHOWS 93 SENATORS OUT OF MAINSTREAM
WASHINGTON -- After the Senate voted 93-6 today against setting a timeline
Senators Kennedy and John Kerry of Massachusetts voted for the timeline,
.The six of us represent the heart.s cry of every red-blooded American,.
Senator Kerry, the presumptive runner-up for the 2008 Democrat
.I have a plan for a strategic withdrawal from Iraq,. said Sen. Kerry. .I
-- Scott Ott, courtesy Scrappleface, Copyright 2006 Scrappleface. All
8. Here is a peace instrument:
Sunday, July 16, 2006
People have very short memories. Most Israelis do not even recall the
In 1982, Israel invaded Lebanon after a long wave of terror attacks on
The army actually advanced more than 40 kilometers. It eventually took
At one point, Israeli snipers had Arafat in their sites. Ariel Sharon
Meanwhile, in Lebanon after 1982 Israeli casualties mounted. Because
The Israeli Left underwent a process of radicalization that has been
What had began as mere disagreement by the Israeli Left over tactical
Meanwhile, Israel eventually moved its forces back from Beirut and set
While Israel probably could have stopped the attrition attacks against
Ehud Barak implemented a cowardly unilateral withdrawal of all Israeli
Barak's withdrawal took place under fire, with the Hezbollah and others
Ehud Barak's 2000 capitulation in Lebanon was a parody of Dunkirk.
Even before the 2000 capitulation by Barak, there were countless
Because of 9-11, the showdown was delayed. The US was on the war path
Meanwhile, Syria was partly forced out of Lebanon by US pressure, and
And that was all it took. The Hezbollah had its proof. The Jews had
As a direct result of the cowardice and shortsightedness of Ehud Barak
I admit that I thought the rain of rockets would come sooner. Here is an
*Israel's Nightmare Is Not Saddam*
I am about to reveal to you a great revelation, a huge scoop, so you had
In the coming Gulf War conflagration, the security threat and danger to
Let me explain.
First, Iraq probably has far fewer SCUD launchers than it had in 1991 and
Then even if Iraq DOES manage to shoot the missiles, it will probably be
So should Israelis take a deep breath and laugh off the security threat? The
The Hizbollah is itching to convert the US attack on Iraq into an all-out
The Hizbollah of course is little more than a puppet of Syria. Syria is
All of this is now more than likely because of the policies of Ehud Barak
In fact the Arabs have never needed "anything to fight over". They have been
The "nothing to fight about" doctrine has of course also long been the
Even if Israel granted the Palestinians absolutely everything the EU
What became of Ehud Barak? The same dim-witted fellow who says that had he
There seems little doubt the Hizbollah will rain missiles down on northern
*Plaut teaches at the University of Haifa in northern Israel.*
Here are some other earlier pieces on Lebanon: