The bear is loose

No, not the self-designated ursus in the White House, but the Kremlin’s ruler.

Having launched a program attempting to reinstate Moscow’s hegemony over the former Tsarist/Soviet Empire, Vladimir Putin now has been hoisted on his own petard.

When his naked aggression in Georgia in 2008 elicited no significant American-EU response, he followed it with his 2014 annexation of Crimea. When that produced little more than Western denunciation, he mobilized for further aggression, attempting to use the Russian-speaking minority in eastern Ukraine.

But he has now become a prisoner of his own rhetoric and aggression.

True, like the European dictators of right and left of the 1930s, he has gained wide popular support at home. But the chauvinistic reaction of the Russian public is a false flag. Shamed and humiliated by the implosion of the Soviet Union [“the greatest catastrophe of the 20th century”, Putin has said], a catastrophic declining population, a start-and-stop economy, and an enormous flight of capital, Putin has used aggressive nationalism to try to reinvigorate a failed regime with all too well remembered demagoguery.

But he is now riding a tiger. Earlier he seemed to have won in Ukraine with an administration succumbing to pressure to back away from the overwhelmingly popular demand to move closer to European Union’s prosperity. [Even relative objective polling of Russian-speakers in Ukraine show their choice is to move into the EU orbit rather than to tie their destinies to a failing Russia.] Then when a popular movement overthrew that Kyiv administration and installed a new pro-European Union executive by a democratically elected parliament, reinforced now with new elections, Putin grabbed Crimea and began to try to manipulate the Russian-speaking minority in eastern Ukraine for his program to reestablish empire.

Op-Ed: Don Imus – We’re in The Same Boat With Israel: Jack Engelhard

Good morning, Don Imus. Caught you this morning on the Fox Business Network and as usual you were right about everything. Except Israel.

If the Jewish State can’t count on America, what’s left?
Dig it, as our guy Lenny used to say, I am touchy on the subject for a thousand different reasons so I won’t even name one. But for the topic at hand, the Arabs versus Israel, you are hugely important. On radio, TV, you’re fast, you’re smart and millions pay attention even when you’re cranky. You’re the last hipster. You grew out of Lenny Bruce.

You’ve got the “undecided” in the palm of your hands. One word from you can tip the scales.

If America equivocates between right and wrong, between Israel and the savages, I fear not only for Israel. I fear for America as well. We are in the same boat.

So on the Gaza crisis, when it came up, I was hoping you would take sides. Staying neutral is the same as taking sides, in this case the wrong side.

Around the world the asylums have emptied out. If the Jewish State can’t count on America, what’s left?

This is a conflict between good and evil. This should not be difficult to separate. On 9/11, when Muslims murdered 3,000 of our people a few blocks from where you were broadcasting in Manhattan, those Hamas Muslims and Fatah Muslims cheered. We wept. They danced and they laughed.

That’s the same crowd that’s been shooting rockets at Israel. That’s the war Israel is fighting and when it comes to evil there is no choice but to crush it entirely.


Diana West, author of American Betrayal: The Secret Assault on Our Nation’s Character, delivers a one-two punch in her July 25th syndicated article, “Israel and the U.S.: Whose Survival Instinct is Stronger?”

The subject is the use of children by terrorists in Gaza as “human shields,” and the use by President Barack Obama of children as “invasion shields” at the U.S. and Mexican border.

Terrorists and Obama lie; children die.

Children have been used as a Trojan Horse for all sorts of statist and collectivist initiatives: to ban smoking, to ban guns, to ban obesity, to ban Barbie Dolls and other “dangerous” toys, and so on. But West discusses the nearly unprecedented use of children as weapons of war in the Middle East and in the U.S. As she describes the phenomena:

There’s something darkly coincidental in the fact that the latest weapon to be deployed against the survival instinct of both Israel and the United States is an alleged “heartlessness” when it comes to children.

Most stories appearing in the MSM in the U.S. and overseas are nearly maniacal in their focus on the “civilian casualties” of “Palestinians” in Gaza as a result of Israel’s campaign against Hamas, with “personal” stories accompanied by photographs of devastated streets and homes, sorrowful pictures of Gazan children sitting in the rubble, and even faked photographs of supposedly dead children, or second-hand, recycled faked photographs used in Syria.

Is Hamas’s use of children as “human shields” unprecedented? No. Hitler, when he began to run out of adults to fight the Allies, filled his shrinking armies with adolescents and boys. Japan counted on women and children to fight the expected invasion by Americans, with guns, if available, with bamboo sticks, if necessary. Mao employed uncounted children to enforce, by violence and force, his “cultural revolution.” Islamic jihadists have employed children to don suicide vests and blow themselves up among Jews and American soldiers. So, the “human shield” tactic isn’t new.

But all that is conveniently forgotten by the MSM. It’s easy to decide whether that forgetfulness is a symptom of a short-term memory or deliberate repression. It’s deliberate repression.

Discussing an article in the London Telegraph about Israel’s alleged war crimes, West writes that the Telegraph headline is not untypical: “Israel’s offensive in Gaza has ‘killed more children than fighters,’ say human rights groups. Israel has been accused of waging ‘war on the children’ of Gaza …”

Dr. Anna Geifman on “Life in Israel Under Siege” — on The Glazov Gang

Dr. Anna Geifman on “Life in Israel Under Siege” — on The Glazov Gang
The author of “Death Orders” shares life in Jerusalem during a state of war — and what it means to confront a death cult.


Defaming Israel: Bigotry or electoral strategy?

Former UK Foreign Secretary Jack Straw has a lot of nerve slamming Israel over civilian deaths. How many civilians died in Britain’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? Perhaps it’s bigotry, perhaps it’s pandering to the rising Muslim electorate

This is Jack Straw, UK foreign secretary at the launch of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, speaking in parliament last week:

“For all the vacuous words of the Israeli government and the IDF spokesman, they have no regard for international humanitarian law; they place a completely different and much lower value on Palestinian life compared to Israeli life” and “the actions that they are taking are completely outwith the United Nations Charter and any idea of how a civilised nation ought to behave.”

Are these appallingly defamatory comments a result of being a) an extreme bigot or b) electoral considerations?

Given that he has announced he is standing down as an MP for Blackburn at the next election, I would strongly favour the former (though old habits may die hard in his constituency which has a significant Muslim presence).

He has form, of course.

In 2013, at the Round Table Global Diplomatic Forum at the House of Commons, Israeli politician Einat Wilf, one of the panelists at the forum, quoted Straw as having said that among the main obstacles to peace were the “unlimited” funds available to pro-Israel Jewish organizations in the US – funds “used to control and divert American foreign policy in the region” – and also Germany’s “obsession” with defending Israel.

Wilf stated: “It was appalling to listen to Britain’s former foreign secretary. His remarks reflect prejudice of the worst kind… I thought British diplomats, including former ones, were still capable of a measure of rational thought.”

Meanwhile, current Prime Minister David Cameron has been markedly less critical of Israel than in his earlier days in Downing Street when he referred to Gaza as a prison camp and to the Israeli attack on a Turkish ship attempting to break the life-saving blockade of Gaza as “completely unacceptable”.


Pressure is mounting across Europe against Sharia-inspired practices such as the wearing of the burqa. The latest move in Spain is another significant development

“While other towns in Spain have banned the veil in publicly-owned buildings, Reus is the first of the ban garments like the niqab and the burqa on the streets.

“The ban has been introduced for reasons of “security” and “coexistence”, according to El País newspaper.”

Other European countries such as Belgium and France have introduced similar, nationwide bans which were upheld as legal by a recent ruling from the EU.

The Local added:

“Spain’s Supreme Court in March 2013 annulled previous burqa bans introduced by a number of Spanish municipalities on the grounds that local authorities do not have the jurisdiction to regulate fundamental rights.”

It remains to be seen how the Supreme Court will now respond.



The failure of many Gazans to leave their homes and seek safer shelter after ignoring Israeli leaflet drops, mobile phone calls and even the firing of harmless warning shots as a last resort has been a major contributor to the increasing number of civilian deaths and casualties in Gaza.

This phenomenon has presented a perplexing problem for Israel as it continues its determined drive to destroy the Hamas arsenal of rockets, rocket launchers, weapons caches and extensive network of tunnels located in, under or in the vicinity of densely populated housing areas of Gaza.

Former US President Bill Clinton hit the nail squarely on the head with this prescient statement on 17 July:

“Hamas was perfectly well aware what would happen if they started raining rockets on Israel. They fired a thousand of them, and they have a strategy designed to force Israel to kill their own civilians so that the rest of the world will condemn them…

… In the short to medium term, Hamas can inflict terrible public relations damage on Israel by forcing it to kill Palestinian civilians to counter Hamas.”

The strategy was given expression by Hamas MP Fathi Hammad in 2008:

“[The enemies of Allah] do not know that the Palestinian people has developed its [methods] of death and death-seeking. For the Palestinian people, death has become an industry, at which women excel, and so do all the people living on this land. The elderly excel at this, and so do the mujahideen and the children. This is why they have formed human shields of the women, the children, the elderly, and the mujahideen, in order to challenge the Zionist bombing machine. It is as if they were saying to the Zionist enemy: “We desire death like you desire life.”


U.S. Evacuates Tripoli Embassy Personnel by Land to Tunisia Posted By Bridget Johnson

The Defense Department was called in to evacuate all staff from the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli in what the State Department called a “temporary staff relocation” to Tunis.

Pentagon press secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby said “at the request of the Department of State, the U.S. military assisted in the relocation of personnel from the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli” today. There were reportedly 150 staff there including 80 Marines.

“All embassy personnel were relocated, including the Marine security guards who were providing security at the embassy and during the movement,” Kirby said. “The embassy staff was driven in vehicles to Tunisia.”

“During movement, F-16′s, ISR assets and an Airborne Response Force with MV-22 Ospreys provided security. The mission was conducted without incident, and the entire operation lasted approximately five hours.”

State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said the U.S. is “grateful to the Government of Tunisia for its cooperation and support” and that the staff would travel “onward” from there.

“Due to the ongoing violence resulting from clashes between Libyan militias in the immediate vicinity of the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, we have temporarily relocated all of our personnel out of Libya,” Harf said in a statement this morning. “We are committed to supporting the Libyan people during this challenging time, and are currently exploring options for a permanent return to Tripoli as soon as the security situation on the ground improves. In the interim, staff will operate from Washington and other posts in the region.”

“Securing our facilities and ensuring the safety of our personnel are top Department priorities, and we did not make this decision lightly. Security has to come first. Regrettably, we had to take this step because the location of our embassy is in very close proximity to intense fighting and ongoing violence between armed Libyan factions,” she continued.

“We will continue to engage all Libyans and the international community to seek a peaceful resolution to the current conflict and to advance Libya’s democratic transition. We reiterate that Libyans must immediately cease hostilities and begin negotiations to resolve their grievances. We join the international community in calling on all Libyans to respect the will of the people, including the authority of the recently-elected Council of Representatives, and to reject the use of violence to affect political processes. Many brave Libyans sacrificed to advance their country toward a more secure and prosperous future. We continue to stand solidly by the Libyan people as they endeavor to do so.”



Spine support cage gets US & EU approval. Formal US and European clearances have been granted to FLXfit, the world’s first 3D expandable interbody cage, developed by Israel’s Expanding Orthopedics. The minimally invasive implant corrects spine deformities.

Safer cancer radiation therapy. Israeli startup Convergent RNR has developed MercyBeam, to improve radiation therapy for patients. A patented lens collects most of the X-rays from any standard X-ray generator and focuses them at the tumor. It increases the therapeutic dose where it’s needed and not at surrounding tissue.

New process to diagnose blood clots in pregnant women. Researchers at Soroka University Medical Center and Ben-Gurion University have developed a simple way to identify clotting problems early in pregnant women. The team used a point system to determine a baseline to diagnose clotting disorders.

Eating whey protein before a meal helps control diabetes. (Thanks to Michael H) Israeli researchers have discovered that consuming whey protein before a regular breakfast reduces blood sugar spikes after meals and also improves the body’s insulin response. Thus whey protein could help diabetics control blood sugar.

An app for diabetics to get immediate help in a crowd. (Thanks to Israeli Shlomi Aflalo developed HelpAround, a crowdsourcing application for people with diabetes and other chronic diseases. It allows them to communicate and get immediate help from people in the vicinity.


$1.75 million donation to Israeli disabled charities. The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust is giving $1 million to SHALVA, The Association for Mentally and Physically Challenged Children in Israel. Also, $750,000 to Beit Halochem-Tel Aviv, which provides services for disabled IDF veterans.

Israeli re-elected to UN committee on women. (Thanks to Hazel) For the third year in a row, Professor Ruth Halperin-Kaddari of Bar Ilan University has been elected as a member of the United Nation’s Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women.

Israel named Tier 1 nation in combating human trafficking. Israel has been awarded the highest ranking for its efforts to combat human trafficking in the U.S. State Department’s 2014 Trafficking in Persons Report. It praises Israel’s efforts to identify and rescue trafficking victims and take punitive steps against traffickers.

Muslim Zionist and an IDF officer. Ala Wahib is the operations officer at a key IDF ground forces training base and the highest-ranked Muslim officer in the Israeli army. He said, “I believe in the Muslim faith, and I will never abandon it, but I think that Zionism is more than a religion.” Please read his amazing story.

IDF field hospital for injured Gazans. The IDF has set up a field hospital at the Erez border crossing between Israel and the Gaza Strip, mainly for women and children from Gaza. It will include a delivery room.

Israel allows aid into Gaza. Despite ongoing rocket fire at Israel from Gaza Strip, some trucks of goods including medicines, food and basic products entered Gaza from Israel’s Kerem Shalom crossing with Gaza.,7340,L-4541153,00.html

Hebrew University of Jerusalem 22nd best in the world. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem has ranked 22nd among the world’s top universities according to the Saudi Arabia-based Center for World University Rankings. CWUR evaluates the top 1,000 universities using objective academic and research indicators.


Green fabric printing. Israel’s Kornit Digital Printing has developed water-based inks that are entirely organic, 100% non-toxic, vegan friendly and compatible with all types of fabric. The company’s high-speed DTG printers are “revolutionizing” the industry with single step fabric printing and no additional finishing.

Student villages built from recycled shipping containers. The Ayalim Association has built a series of ‘student villages’ throughout Israel. The latest in the city of Lod, not far from Israel’s international airport, has been constructed out of recycled shipping containers.

Mini-farms can feed a hungry world. (Thanks to Hazel) Israelis Moti Cohen and Mendi Pollak won the $20,000 top prize in the Pears Challenge. Their Livingbox “mini-farm” can grow vegetables anywhere, with a self-sustaining “closed loop” of energy and nutrition. The idea can help feed a billion needy people.

Saving water in agriculture. Israel’s Netafim has completed a successful international pilot project of its uManage platform, which helps farmers to monitor irrigation/fertilizer performance and yields. The software analyzes wind direction, weather forecast, temperature, radiation, soil moisture and fertilizer.

The world’s first photonic router. (Thanks to Nevet – Scientists at Israel’s Weizmann Institute have demonstrated for the first time a photonic router – an atom-based device that enables routing of single photons. It is a step towards building quantum computers that can process huge amounts of data.

Graduating in the greenest building in the Middle East. 32 Tel Aviv University Environmental Masters graduates received their MAs and MSc’s at a ceremony in the brand new Porter School of Environmental Studies Building.

Israeli designs Singapore Airport’s bio-dome. (Thanks to Israeli architect Moshe Safdie is building a huge bio-dome at Singapore’s Changi Airport. It will contain lavish gardens and fluid waterfalls that will pour down from the dome’s roof. The dome will connect Changi Airport’s terminals 1, 2 and 3.


Israel employment rate rise is highest in the OECD. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has reported that between 2010 and 2014, Israeli employment rose 13% compared to the OECD average of 2%. The employment rate for Israeli women was 6.5% higher than the OECD average.

Tel Aviv Stock Exchange joins Europe. The General Assembly of the Federation of European Securities Exchanges (FESE) unanimously approved the application of Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) to become an Affiliate member. FESE has 21 Full members, 20 Affiliates and two Observer members.

We’re at war, and the stock market is up? Go figure! Jon Medved, CEO of Israel’s OurCrowd is extremely bullish about the financial resilience of Israel’s economy during the current fighting against Hamas terrorists.

China boosts Israel ties. A Chinese delegation, headed by Ren Zhiwu – deputy director-general of the High-Tech Industry Department of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) – arrived in Israel, the first time the high-level government team has come to Israel.

Vietnam’s trade with Israel surges 53 per cent. Trade between Vietnam and Israel increased significantly during the first half of this year, reaching US$426 million or increasing 53 per cent year-on-year.

Unlimited coffee is now available in New York. Israeli start-up “Cups” is expanding its virtually unlimited coffee supply to New York. Using Cups app, individuals pay a fixed rate of $45 dollars a month to receive a coffee of their choice at participating shops every half hour. Or $27 dollars a month buys one coffee per day.

25 Israeli start-ups to watch. Forbes magazine has listed 25 Israeli startups to keep your eye on in 2014. It says that Kaltura is most likely to be “one of the next billion-dollar exits” thanks to its wide-ranging video solutions platform. It also likes Petbnb, which pairs traveling pet owners with caretakers for their pets.

Google’s $100m Europe fund to invest in Israeli startups. Five years after launching its Google Ventures investment fund, the Internet giant announced yesterday that it was launching a similar fund in Europe. sources informed “Globes” that Google will also use the fund to make investments in suitable Israeli start-ups.

Mobileye is a $3-5 billion company. Israeli collision avoidance solutions developer Mobileye is looking to raise $150 in funding from its US public listing. Mobileye has developed a camera-based system mounted in vehicles that reads the road ahead and is designed to help drivers avoid accidents.

Leviathan gas field is larger than expected. The estimated size of Israel’s largest natural gas reserve was raised by 16 percent. An updated analysis based on 3D seismic surveys has calculated the field to hold 21.93 trillion cubic feet (620 billion cubic meters.


Israeli caves named UNESCO World Heritage site. UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee added Israel’s 2,000-year-old Beit Guvrin-Maresha caves to its prestigious list, during its annual meeting in Qatar. The bell caves consist of thousands of chambers and networks. Israel now has a total of eight World Heritage sites.,7340,L-4533844,00.html

Good Vibrations – The Beach Boys to perform in Israel. The Beach Boys are coming to Israel in 2015. “America’s Rock Band” has produced a record thirty-six US Top 40 hits, selling over 100 million records worldwide. Rolling Stone Magazine ranks the Beach Boys as the 12th greatest artist of all time.

Tony Bennett due in Israel in September. After a 60-year musical career, Tony Bennett is finally coming to Israel. The 88-year-old American singer, known for his deep baritone voice, will perform at Tel Aviv’s Charles Bronfman Auditorium on September 14.,7340,L-4536763,00.html

David Blatt is the first Israeli to coach in the NBA. David Blatt has accepted an offer to coach the Cleveland Cavaliers. Blatt, who steered Maccabi Tel Aviv to the Euroleague basketball championship this season, is the first Israeli head coach to make it to America’s NBA.


Visit Nahal Teninim – Nature reserve and Roman aquaduct. Nachal Teninim (Aligator stream) is a wonderful national nature reserve and is home to a Roman dam and aquaduct that brought fresh water to Caesarea. Also features an ancient rock quarry, a byzantine flour mill and waterfalls.

New mosaic discovered in ancient synagogue. A mosaic depicting a non-biblical battle scene has been uncovered in a 5th century CE synagogue in Northern Israel. It features a group of soldiers and elephants clad in armor. It might be a depiction of Alexander the Great meeting Jewish high priest Jaddua (Simon the Just).

IDF rescue team honored 20 years after AMIA bombing. AMIA leaders came to Israel to mark AMIA’s 120th anniversary and the 20th anniversary of the attack on AMIA’s center in Buenos Aires that killed 85 and injured hundreds. Ariel Cohen Sabban, AMIA treasurer, said, “We will never forget that Israel helped us.”

Six new bus lines in Judea and Samaria. As residents of Judea and Samaria express concern over the frequency of public transportation and the resultant need to hitchhike, the Egged bus cooperative has launched six new routes and announced improvements to several others.

Christian NGO brings Sderot Holocaust survivors to Jerusalem. Israel Always, a US-based Christian NGO, is caring for a group of 20 Holocaust survivors who have been bombarded by rockets in Sderot. It has taken them to Jerusalem, where it is providing free hotel accommodations, meals and activities.

1.75 million friends of Israel. With nearly 1.75 million members, Christians United for Israel (CUFI) calls itself the largest pro-Israel organization in the United States. At their annual summit in Washington, CUFI leader David Brog said, “we have to speak out and be a voice for Israel”.

Open Hearts, Open Homes. (Thanks to Howard) As in previous years, the Jewish Community Center, Bergen County, Washington, New Jersey is running a program that provides respite and fun to Israeli teens that live along the Gaza border. Please can other communities in the USA offer this kind of mitzvah (good deed).



The prime danger, the second half of the terror strategy that has required us to send our troops into Gaza, has turned out to be Hamas’s cross-border tunneling, the scale of which was not publicly known until the last few days. Labor Party leader Isaac Herzog spoke Tuesday of the “unimaginable” mega-terror attack Hamas is believed to have been planning — sending hundreds of terrorists swarming through those tunnels to massacre Israelis in the Gaza-envelope kibbutzim and moshavim. Netanyahu said Sunday that the intended Hamas attacks on kibbutz kindergartens, homes and dining halls would have been “catastrophic.”


Maariv – Israel’s third largest circulation daily – is confirming that Hamas planned a mass terror attack on southern Israel on Rosh HaShannah, the Jewish New Year, a little more than two months from now.

According to the report, Hamas planned to send up to 200 terrorists through many tunnels that lead into six different kibbutzim, moshavim and villages around Gaza’s borders. The terrorists’ mission was to have been the mass murder and kidnapping of as many Jews as possible. Although the newspaper does not make the connection, I suspect that this map likely shows some of the places involved, and explains why the battle of Shejalya earlier this week was so important.

The IDF was aware of the tunnels, and as a result, the soldiers who were sent to destroy them over the past week knew exactly where to go. But the IDF was not aware of the specific plan for a mass terror two months from now – that came from interrogating Hamas terrorists who were captured this pas week.

During the course of Operation Protective edge, the IDF discovered that the tunnels did not go straight as it assumed, but the tunnels intersected with each other, to allow the transfer of terrorists from one tunnel to the next. The tunnels inlcuded storage rooms for weapons, tranquilizer drugs, anc cables to tie the hands of potential kidnap victims. The idea was to kill as many people as possible, and bring back many more to ransom for “Palestinian” terrorists languishing in Israel prisons.

According to Maariv, the tunnel digging started several years ago, and in the last year Hamas terrorists have been working three shifts per day, around the clock, in order to add 15 meters per day to each tunnel. Hamas has spent hundreds of millions of dollars (actually, euros) on the tunnels, which money could have gone to pay for schools, hospitals, bomb shelters, etc.