MY SAY: ON ISRAEL AT WAR

The news:
“Israeli tanks followed by soldiers rolled into the Gaza Strip after 10 days of aerial bombardment as Israel began an open-ended operation in Palestinian territory vowing to establish a new “reality” with militant group Hamas. The operation began at about 10 p.m. local time Thursday and by Friday morning one Israeli soldier and 14 Palestinian militants were dead, according to the Israel Defense Forces. Gaza officials said that the death toll for the conflict rose to 260 dead, with nearly 2,000 injured, figures they say includes high numbers of civilians.”

These sentences are excerpts from Menachem Begin’s address on Israel’s Independence Day in 1948:

“Citizens of the Hebrew State, soldiers of Israel, we are in the midst of battles. Much blood will be spilled. Fortify yourselves. Strengthen your morale. There is no other way. We cannot buy peace from our enemies with appeasement. There is only one kind of ‘peace’ that can be bought — the peace of the graveyard, the peace of Treblinka.

Be brave of spirit and ready for more trials. We shall withstand them. And you, brothers of the fighting family, do you remember how we started? You were alone and persecuted, rejected, despised and numbered with transgressors. But you fought on with deep faith and did not retreat. You were driven to the gallows but went forth with a song. But for the time-being, let us think of the battle, for only the outcome of the battle will decide our fate and future.

We shall be accompanied by the spirit of those who revived our nation, Zeev Benjamin Herzl, Max Nordau, Joseph Trumpeldor and the father of resurrected Hebrew heroism, Zeev Jabotinsky. We shall be accompanied by the spirit of David Raziel, greatest of the Hebrew commanders of our day; and by Dov Gruner, one of the greatest of Hebrew soldiers. And in this battle, we shall break the enemy and bring salvation to our people, tried in the furnace of persecution, thirsting only for freedom, for righteousness and for justice.

God, Lord of Israel, protect your soldiers… Grant blessing to their sword…..On to battle. Forward to victory. “
Amen….rsk

The Truth about Gaza -Rarely Does International Politics Present a Moment of Such Moral Clarity. By Charles Krauthammer

Israel accepts an Egyptian-proposed Gaza ceasefire; Hamas keeps firing. Hamas deliberately aims rockets at civilians; Israel painstakingly tries to avoid them, actually telephoning civilians in the area and dropping warning charges, so-called roof knocking.

“Here’s the difference between us,” explains the Israeli prime minister. “We’re using missile defense to protect our civilians and they’re using their civilians to protect their missiles.”

Rarely does international politics present a moment of such moral clarity. Yet we routinely hear this Israel–Gaza fighting described as a morally equivalent “cycle of violence.” This is absurd. What possible interest can Israel have in cross-border fighting? Everyone knows Hamas set off this mini-war. And everyone knows Hamas’s proudly self-declared raison d’être: the eradication of Israel and its Jews.

Apologists for Hamas attribute the bloodlust to the Israeli occupation and blockade. Occupation? There is not a soldier, not a settler, not a single Israeli in Gaza. Does no one remember anything? It was less than ten years ago that worldwide television showed the Israeli army pulling diehard settlers off synagogue roofs in Gaza as Israel uprooted it settlements, expelled its citizens, withdrew its military, and turned every inch of Gaza over to the Palestinians.

There was no blockade. On the contrary. Israel wanted this new Palestinian state to succeed. To help the Gaza economy, Israel gave the Palestinians its 3,000 greenhouses that had produced fruit and flowers for export. It opened border crossings and encouraged commerce.

The whole idea was to establish the model for two states living peacefully and productively side by side. No one seems to remember that simultaneous with the Gaza withdrawal, Israel dismantled four smaller settlements in the northern West Bank as a clear signal of Israel’s desire to leave the West Bank too and thus achieve an amicable two-state solution.

And how did the Gaza Palestinians react to being granted by the Israelis what no previous ruler, neither Egyptian, nor British, nor Turkish, had ever given them — an independent territory? First, they demolished the greenhouses. Then they elected Hamas. Then, instead of building a state with its attendant political and economic institutions, they spent the better part of a decade turning Gaza into a massive military base, brimming with terror weapons, to make ceaseless war on Israel.

DOUGLAS MURRAY: THE WEST HAS DRIFTED AWAY FROM ISRAEL AND ITSELF

Is Israel drifting away from the West? That was Hugo Rifkind’s claim in his column in the magazine last week. Hugo wrote:

‘Israel drifting away. Never mind whose fault it is; that’s a whole other point. But it’s happening. It’s off. No longer does it exist in the popular imagination as our sort of place. Once, I suppose, foes and friends alike regarded it as a North Atlantic nation, but elsewhere. Then a western European one, then, briefly, a southern European one. When was it, do you think, that Israel stopped being regarded as fundamentally a bit like Spain? Early 1990s? Then they shot Yitzhak Rabin, and Oslo didn’t happen, and it set off, perhaps via a sort of listless Greek interim, towards the Orientalish bafflingness of somewhere like Turkey.’

Let’s leave aside that ‘they’ (‘they shot Yitzhak Rabin’? as opposed to lone assassin, Yigal Amir, who remains in an Israeli prison, serving a life sentence after his trial by an Israeli court). And let’s also leave aside the notion that Oslo ‘didn’t happen’ for any reason other than that the terrorist leader Yasser Arafat was unwilling to give up his USP.

What is more interesting is this idea of Israel drifting away from the West. In his heartfelt and admirably frank piece Rifkind says of Israel: ‘I like it far more than Syria, China, Zimbabwe and plenty of other countries, but less than I do north London.’

I can understand why Rifkind and other westerners, Jewish and non-Jewish, might feel more culturally aligned to North London than to Israel. North London isn’t my thing, but life there seems fine. There seem to be few existential questions beyond the discussion of house prices and whether people can afford to send the kids private. Life is easy, life is good. Not especially noble, but nice.

Israel shares many of these characteristics. But it is also a nation which currently has to do what people in countries like this one — even people in North London — used to have to do but seem to have forgotten about: it has to fight for its survival. Israel is surrounded by enemies, as we have been for much of our history. But today we like to think that enemies are a thing of the past. There are no enemies, just phobias we haven’t been cured of yet.

Today Israel is also distinguished by a deep sense of its values and ethics as well as a profound awareness of their source — things we also used to have. Deep questions of survival, the tragedy and triumph of the past, present and future remain the stuff of every Israeli house I have ever been to, though are rarely heard among the residents of North London. So yes, these are very different lives.

SYDNEY WILLIAMS: IMMIGRATION IN TODAY’S AMERICA

America is about protecting the rights and freedoms of its individual citizens. In doing so, it allows them to pursue their dreams within the confines of a society that functions under the rule of law, without fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, sex or political affiliation. A government that is comprised “of the people, by the people, for the people” is, by definition, more concerned with individual liberties than administrative efficiency. As such, it has long served as a beacon for the aspirant. We all know of stories from the thousands of men and women who came to these shores with nothing but a few dollars to their name, yet who stayed, saw needs, worked hard and built fortunes.

But America is more than that. It is also a lodestar for the oppressed. More than any other nation, America is compassionate. “Give me your poor, your tired, your huddled masses,” are words on a plaque on an inner wall of the Statue of Liberty – America’s great symbol of immigration. But, keep in mind, in 1903 when that plaque bearing Emma Lazarus’s words was erected the promise of aid embedded in her words would be from individual donations. Laws for public assistance had yet to be enacted. Ms. Lazarus was not thinking of the government when she wrote those words; she was expressing the compassion of the people.

Today, about half the federal budget, or roughly $1.8 trillion, goes to social service programs like Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, unemployment, food stamps and disability payments, veteran benefits and other social programs. Additionally, according to the National Philanthropic Trust, individual Americans donated $241.32 billion to a variety of charitable causes in 2013. Because of government involvement, the definition of poor has changed dramatically from when I was young. And that has been a good thing. But it has come at a cost. One has only to drive on New York’s pothole-infested streets, or deplane at LaGuardia Airport to experience our crumbling infrastructure. One has only to consider the test scores of our students to understand how poorly we have prepared our youth for the dynamic world they will inherit.

ISRAEL’S GAZA OFFENSIVE

The country had little choice after Hamas rejected a ceasefire.

Israeli ground forces moved into the Gaza Strip Thursday, and it’s hard to see what other choices the country’s leadership had to defend its citizens from the terror group Hamas’s unrelenting missile attack.

Israel agreed Tuesday to a cease-fire proposal from Egypt and held its fire for six hours. Hamas kept firing throughout the day, while raising its demands. Among them: That Israel release Hamas prisoners and transfer funds to help Hamas pay its employees. “We will continue to bomb until our conditions are met,” said a Hamas spokesman, a statement intended to defy Jerusalem and Cairo.

Israel warned Palestinian civilians to move out of harm’s way, but there will inevitably be civilian casualties because that is part of Hamas’s political-military strategy. “For your safety you have to evacuate your house as soon as possible,” goes one telephoned Israeli warning. “Go to the center of the city before 8 o’clock in the morning on Wednesday.” But Hamas hides its immense arsenal of ever-longer range rockets in hospitals, mosques and, as we learned Thursday, even U.N. administered schools.

This will surely lead to condemnation of Israel in some international precincts, but this time Israel should stay the course until it achieves its strategic objective of neutralizing Hamas’s missile attacks. Two previous bouts of fighting in 2009 and 2012 failed to do this because Hamas was allowed to survive as the dominant power in Gaza. That needs to change this time.

This does not require a full occupation of Gaza. But it does mean seizing a zone to prevent the underground smuggling from Egypt of munitions and longer-range rockets into Gaza. It also means targeting Hamas’s military and political leadership through drone strikes and commando raids.

The claim will be made that Israel is merely making Hamas stronger and alienating moderate Palestinians. But Israel spent over a year trying to negotiate with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas under U.S. auspices, only to see Mr. Abbas abandon those talks in favor of a “unity pact” with Hamas. In any case Mr. Abbas has not exercised authority in Gaza since Hamas seized control in 2007.

WINNING THE MORAL HIGH GROUND IS A LOSER’S GAME: DANIEL GREENFIELD ****

Forget charging up a hill. Armies charge up the slippery slope of the moral high ground and they don’t try to capture it from the enemy, because that would be the surest way to lose the moral high ground, instead they claim the moral high ground by refusing to try and capture it, to establish their moral claim to the moral high ground, which they can’t have because they refuse to fight for it.

Israel has been engaged in a long drawn out struggle for the moral high ground. The moral high ground is to the modern Israel what the land of Israel was to their pioneer ancestors who drained swamps, built roads and shot bandits; some of whom were later discovered to be the oppressed peoples of the region, fresh from Syria or Jordan, and protesting the settlements built on that stretch of swamp that had been set aside in their revisionist history as belonging to their great-grandparents, complete with oversized house keys to some of the choicer logs in the swamp.

Sadly the only way to win the moral high ground is by losing. Just look at the massive Arab armies who repeatedly invaded Israel, did their best to overwhelm it with the best Soviet iron that the frozen factories of the Ural could turn out, and lost the bid to drive the Jews into the sea, but won the moral high ground. Then their terrorist catspaws spent decades winning the moral high ground by hijacking airplanes full of civilians, murdering Olympic athletes and pushing old men in wheelchairs from the decks of cruise ships.

All these killing sprees accomplished absolutely nothing useful, aside from the killing of Jews, which to a certain sort of mind is a useful thing in and of itself, but that failure won the terrorist catspaws the moral high ground. Their failure to win a war by hijacking buses full of women and taking the children of a school hostage conclusively established their moral superiority and nobility of spirit.

The world was deeply moved when Arafat waddled up to the UN podium, with his gun, wearing a mismatched cotton rag on his head that would decades hence become the modish apparel of every third hipster standing in line with a can of 20 dollar fair trade Lima beans at Whole Foods, because his commitment to killing people in a failed cause that even he didn’t believe in exchange for money from his backers in the Muslim world showed his deep commitment to the moral high ground.

In the seventies, after Israel had ton a few too many wars, Henry “Woodcutter” Kissinger, suggested that it lose a war to gain the sympathy of the world. Golda wasn’t too enthusiastic about the idea, but with the old woodcutter in charge of handing out the axes, there wasn’t much choice about it. Israel came close to being destroyed in ’73, but just when it might have won the sympathy of the world, its armies of young men dashing from synagogues into overcrowded taxis to get to the front lines, turned the tide. Israel won. The woodcutter of Washington lost and Israeli scrapyards filled up with piles of Soviet steel, which was good news for the big sweaty guys who ran them, but bad news for those pining for the lofty fjords of the moral high ground.

Obama Administration Hides the Dangerous Consequences of Illegal Immigration By Jed Babbin

By now it’s perfectly clear that President Obama is not going to do anything to stop the flood of illegal aliens across our southern border.

Though Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson told “Meet the Press” two weeks ago that our borders aren’t open to illegal immigration, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said Tuesday that the border is secure, their credibility is precisely zero.

Paul Babeu is the sheriff of Pinal County, Ariz., which sits about 50 miles from the Mexican border. Guest-hosting for Roger Hedgecock on his radio show July 9, I asked Babeu whether the border is at all secure and whether the flood of illegal immigrants is a public health risk.

Babeu said there is no enforcement of the immigration laws on our southern border. In short, the border is wide open. His deputies routinely arrest illegal immigrants who have previously been deported five, 10 or even 15 times. The border isn’t secure: It’s a revolving door.

Babeu also said the drug cartels are running across the border almost at will. They are stationing lookouts on hills and mountaintops to help drug smugglers evade sheriffs’ patrols. According to Border Patrol Union spokesman Hector Garza, drugs and criminals are coming across the border undetected because Border Patrol agents are being taken off their posts to babysit illegal children and teenagers.

I asked Babeu about the many reports that the illegal immigrant children are carrying infectious diseases and parasites. He couldn’t say whether they were, because no one except federal officials are allowed entry to the camps and military bases where the illegals are being held.

Immigrants are being shuttled around the country and temporarily kept wherever the Department of Homeland Security can warehouse them. States as far as Massachusetts are unwitting hosts. Most troubling is that there is no apparent recognition of severe danger to public health they may pose.

A doctor who is a public health expert working for the National Institute of Health told me:

“These thousands of children have traveled long distances and have been exposed to a variety of physical and infectious hardships at home or during their journey. Their immune systems are stressed. They are reportedly carrying lice, scabies and probably other parasites. Some illegals are reportedly carrying deadly diseases such as antibiotic-resistant tuberculosis. Without proper screening and treatment of these children and others with them, there could be new outbreaks of diseases that historically occur with crowding: meningitis, flu, diarrhea, cholera, polio and others.”

VICTOR SHARPE: THIS TIME TAKE BACK THE PHILADELPHI CORRIDOR

On August 23, 2011, I wrote an article titled:

“The Philadelphi Corridor: Take it Back, Israel, and Soon.”

Almost three years have passed since that article was published and enormous quantities of Iranian, Syrian and homemade missiles – all lethal – have flooded into Gaza through the smuggling tunnels under the Philadelphi Corridor.

With the possibility of yet another ceasefire coming into effect at this time of writing, the same dreary and perilous situation will likely apply again.

The first Egyptian brokered ceasefire on July 14th was accepted by Israel but immediately broken by Hamas, which launched salvos of missiles against Israeli towns and villages. Rumors abound that now Hamas seeks a 10 year hudna – another bogus ceasefire – complete with outrageous demands and conditions.

But as surely as night follows day, Hamas will attack again and again and again when it deems the moment is favorable to it.

This rumored ceasefire is based on the ten-year treaty of Hudaibiya which was ratified between Muhammad and his Quraish opponents in Mecca (628). Ten years is the maximum amount of time Muslims can be at peace with infidels and is based on Muhammad’s example of breaking the treaty after only two years. The sole function of the “peace-treaty” (hudna) is to buy weakened Muslims time to regroup for a renewed offensive.

Muhammad is quoted in the Hadith saying: “If I take an oath and later find something else better, I do what is better and break my oath.” Let us hope that Israel will not fall for this duplicitous Muslim ploy.

It is helpful to be aware of relatively recent history to better understand what is going on now. Ever since Egypt invaded and occupied Gaza in the 1948 Arab-Israel War, the area has been a perilous finger of death pointing into the very heart of the Jewish state.

In subsequent years, Arab terrorists (fedayeen) from Gaza infiltrated as far north as Rehovot and beyond, murdering hundreds of Israeli civilians including children.

JAN POLLER: ONE MAN RULE?

Contrary to what most people think, this Administration is open and transparent. You just have to see what it is open and transparent about. It is not open about legislation and ruling. It is open about the way it wishes to transform America.

The President Obama not incompetent, lazy, disinterested or naïve. He is doing what he wants to do and has been very successful at it. Opposition has been almost totally ineffective.

Obama has numerous underlings and compatriots willing to do his bidding no matter what it is. He decides what he wants whether it be Obamacare (Affordable Health Care Act) or shutting down the coal industry. Then Congress passes some legislation to that effect. It doesn’t matter what the law says because he will issue an executive order or his underlings will create a rule. Whether what he wants complies with the law, the Constitution or what the people want is of no matter: it is what he wants.

A Congress that does nothing fits in perfectly. If Congress won’t pass what he wants, he will just issue an executive order. All the Democrats applauded that in that State of the Union message. Have you ever heard of a group of people cheering at their loss of power to someone else? Speaker of the House Harry Reid is doing just fine for Obama. He blocks anything from the Republican House of Representatives rather than have a conference to try and work out differences. That guarantees a deadlocked Congress and gives justification to Obama to rule by Executive Fiat.

Various departments of the government are being used for Obama’s general agenda and for his personal agenda. He is using the EPA to force people into his idea of a “green” economy. He uses the IRS for his own, personal political gain. Most people who are reading this know all the details. Those that don’t should try a few Google searches:

Obama scandal 78,300,000 results
Obama IRS 38,600,000
Obama Benghazi 21,400,000

What we have is a Monarch-wanna-be. He tells his administration what he wants and they get it for him. If he wants to change it he does.

Understanding UNRWA by Alexander Joffe and Asaf Romirowsky

The Palestinian refugee issue has been around since 1948. UNRWA, the United Nations institution dedicated to their preservation, has been in existence since 1950.

With the recent re-approval of UNRWA’s mandate for more than three years, it is worth asking: how long have Western policy makers understood that UNRWA was a tool for Palestinians and Arab states to perpetuate the “refugee crisis” and that Palestinians would never accept anything except repatriation to Israel, an attitude that guarantees hostilities in perpetuity? The answer is, since the beginning. That is why after more than sixty years, British diplomatic documents on UNRWA and the Palestinians are still classified by the Foreign Office.

UNRWA was established to “carry out in collaboration with local governments the direct relief and works programmes as recommended by the Economic Survey Mission.” This mission, under the leadership of former Tennessee Valley Authority administrator Gordon Clapp, had recommended vocational training and regional development as the means to facilitate “reintegration” of Palestinian refugees, either through repatriation to Israel or resettlement in surrounding countries. Arab states clamored for regional development aid, hinted repeatedly that they would accept Palestinians, and throughout the 1950s, billions were poured into aid schemes that improved their infrastructure. But no Palestinians were ever resettled.

The game was apparent early on. In May 1952, the Foreign Office received a remarkable report forwarded by British diplomat Sir Edwin Chapman-Andrews that noted “Everything has been sacrificed to [UNRWA director John Blandford’s] lone effort to “sell” the three-year plan to the Arab states—and SYRIA in particular—while measures which might influence the success of the negotiations are left undone.”

The report lamented UNRWA’s lack of educational and vocational training programs, the lack of a public-relations effort, or any successful agricultural programs in Jordan. Refugee relief was well-organized, but anything related to reintegration was subject to “stagnation, waste and misuse of money and manpower.”