June 19, 2015

Let ISIS speak for Palestine

In the run-up to this weekend’s visit by French foreign minister Fabius, one of his diplomats has been warning about the dangers of inertia in the peace process saying: If the conflict remains unresolved radical groups such as Islamic State will make the Palestinian cause their own'.

Well … would this be such a bad thing?

ISIS as standard-bearer for the PLO might actually work a lot better for Israel, both in terms of its international relations and national security.

When Abbas took over as PLO chief, he was dubbed: ‘Arafat in a suit and tie’. And yet, he presides over the same machine of incitement to murder Jewish civilians, more recently by street stabbings and car rammings. His Hamas partners throw people off buildings, drag them to death through the streets tied to car fenders and force women and children into the line of Israeli anti-rocket fire.
If ISIS took over the PLO cause as their own, the world might better understand what Israel was dealing with. Not Armani suits but pure evil.

The same goes for internal security. Not long ago, the Oslo dreamers were begging to give up the Golan Heights. Many of them will still have their heads in the sand even as ISIS and Al Qaeda establish footholds along the Syrian border. With these barbarians beheading their way through Kuneitra, I doubt many foreign leaders will be expecting us to cede them any territory.

Although there are a myriad factions involved in the Middle East power struggle, it really comes down to a simple choice: good versus evil. Many in the West can’t or won’t acknowledge the good side as long as Jews are on it. So they turn a blind eye to the all the slaughter, bombing, homophobia and misogyny that’s common to all the groups from PLO and Hamas, to Hizbullah and ISIS; the only differences being management and scale.

Winning any war starts with identifying the enemy.

The ISIS flag is quite striking.

April 24, 2015

Happy 67th … but when’s the Barmitzvah ?

72 year-old Laurence Baehr recently celebrated his barmitzvah. 
The son of assimilated refugees from Nazi Germany it took him a lifetime to discover who he really was – it’s never too late.

Maybe the same should be said for Israel.
67 years ago the declaration of Israel’s independence was delayed at the last moment because of a disagreement over one word …. God.  
They settled on the word “Rock”.

A few hours later the newborn Jewish State was attacked in its cradle by five Arab armies. Its survival and deliverance from that war was the beginning of a succession of open miracles that have blessed our people for the last 66 years.

Whether it was the Six-Day-War which still defies analysis in military academies, or the Yom Kippur War’s extraordinary turnaround … or last summer’s rocket war; over 4,500 missiles fired into our tiny state in 50 days, and how many Jews were hit?

How about the so-called Arab Spring? Whilst our Arab neighbors were steeped in bloody wars and Islamist barbarism, tiny Israel went about its daily life almost as in a protective bubble. Yes, some bad things have happened inside that bubble, but consider this: whilst all this Arab and Islamist mayhem was going on around us for the last 6 months, Israelis had time only for party politics and electioneering. What a blessed life!

The upheaval in the Arab world also shut down our vital fuel supplies from Sinai pipelines which were being attacked almost on a monthly basis by insurgents. We could expect no help from the newly elected Muslim Brotherhood president of Egypt who was actively supporting Hamas in Gaza and turning a blind eye to their rocket smuggling. How lucky for us that Morsi was thrown out almost as suddenly as he got in?

In the end, we didn’t even need the Sinai oilfields. By some amazing coincidence, oil and gas which had been sitting off our shores for billions of years happened to be discovered just in time to insure us against these Arab stoppages and, more importantly, the worldwide sanctions now being threatened against us for simply building houses in our own homeland.

A wise man once said: Coincidence is God’s way of staying anonymous.

It’s sad that so many secular Israelis still stubbornly rationalise God out of every scenario. They and their Darwinists, Big-Bang theorists and Humanists all seem to know so much better.  With all their brains and brilliance, they can’t bring themselves to say anything close to the Nishmat prayer we gush every Shabbat:
“Even if our mouths were as full of song as the sea, and our tongues as full of joyous song as its multitude of waves, and our lips as full of praise as the breadth of the heavens, and our eyes as brilliant as the sun and the moon, and our hands as outspread as the eagles of the sky and our feet as swift as hinds -- we still could not thank You sufficiently, HaShem our God, and God of our forefathers, and to bless Your Name for even one of the thousand thousand, thousands of thousands and myriad myriads of favors, miracles and wonders that you performed for our ancestors and for us …”   .  The prayer goes on to list all the miracles and kindnesses, like the Manna in the desert which, in the present era, we’ve now found in the sea.

Outside our little bubble of miracles, we watch the rest of the world paralysed in the face of radical and violent Islam, overwhelmed by hordes of new refugees and mired in national debt.
So - in contrast to the US Democratic Party which in 2012 removed all reference to God from its convention platform - would it be so terrible if next Independence Day the government of Israel corrected that unfortunate and ungrateful choice of words 67 years ago?  
Like for Laurence Baehr, it’s never too late to rediscover yourself.
Speaking of rocks, it seems ironic that Moses was denied entry into the Land of Israel because of an incident with a rock. The explanation at the time was that Moses did not sanctify Hashem in the presence of his people.

Well, isn’t this the same thing?

April 19, 2015

Label West Bank Produce With Pride

To mark the 80th anniversary of the Nuremberg Laws, 16 European Union foreign ministers have called for labeling (read: boycotting) of Jewish products made in the West Bank. 

I say we should label settlers’ produce with pride.

Remember Gush Katif?  Jewish farmers turned sand dunes into world-beating crops. They made up 15 percent of Israel’s total agricultural exports. 

The 400 farms in its 20-odd settlements pioneered bug-free lettuce and exported 70% of Israel’s organic vegetables and 60% of Israel’s prize-winning cherry tomatoes. 
That was until Hamas converted the greenhouses into rocket launching pads.

Now that same blessed produce is being grown in our ancient lands of Judea and Samaria. They are much too good to export to Jew-hating Europeans. They should be labelled proudly and reserved for their most worthy and deserving consumers … Israelis.

Let Israel export the produce of the Galil and Negev to the Europeans, and let our people eat Mituv Haaretz.


In the words of Isaiah: if you follow in my commandments you shall eat from the best of the land.

March 22, 2015

For Once – Let’s have a peace plan with OUR name on it.

All Israelis want peace, from the hard left to the far right. The main concern is who we make that peace with and what price we are prepared to pay in land and security.

Another hard fact is that Hamas and Fatah, under the control of Teheran and the Muslim Brotherhood, will not sign up to any agreement that leaves a viable Jewish state in place that cannot soon be overrun by military or demographic means.

Israel has co-operated with each and every peace plan but, despite all the confidence-building measures, settlement freezes, clearance of checkpoints and ill-advised prisoner releases, the Arab leadership has taken them all for nothing in return.

The list of peace plans is long: Rogers, Oslo-1, Oslo-2, Taba, Wye, Tenet, Mitchell, Zinni, Annapolis and of course the Saudi initiative. Not an Israeli name among them.

Perhaps it’s time to say what WE want. What suits US in OUR land and for the generations to come.

By this I don’t mean an Olmert plan which was yet another response to someone else’s initiative. It needs to be an Israeli initiative from the very start and until it is, inevitably, rejected along with all the rest.

As he becomes Israel’s longest-serving prime minister, let it not be said that there was no ‘Netanyahu Plan’. 

Whatever that plan may be, it will show that we are being proactive and no longer the passive partner to every ill-conceived initiative cobbled together by foreign leaders looking for a Mid-East legacy to eclipse their other failures.



March 19, 2015

Did they vote FOR Bibi .. or AGAINST Obama ?


I have to admit I was very pessimistic throughout this election day.

With all the knives out for Netanyahu and foreign money busing thousands of Arab students into polling stations, it was like a Yom Kippur War on all fronts, with ballots instead of bullets.

Well, that's democracy - you may well say.

But not when foreign governments and viscerally anti-Jewish fatcats and NGOs are blatantly undermining that democracy with public or tax-exempt funds.

I'm glad that the Republican senate has launched its inquiry to track this money back to its shadowy sources with subpoena powers. Let these folks be exposed for what they are: vile anti-Semites who cannot stand to see Israel thriving as a bold, secure and independent Jewish state.

There's no doubt in my mind that many Israelis changed their vote as a protest against this egregious foreign interference in their most prized process as the region's only true democracy.

Whatever the coalition endgame and whatever issues you may have with Bibi Netanyahu  ... and I have a few of my own ... there can be no doubt that this man is a real fighter.  And in the world's most dangerous neighborhood boldness and steely resolve is more important than ever. 

Chazak !

Labels: , ,

March 18, 2015

Likud 2015

Mazeltov Bibi.
You're a star !

February 28, 2015

Spock and Birkat Cohanim

As a devoted Star Trekker, I was saddened to hear of the death of Leonard Nimoy ... a nice Jewish boy who made good and created a unique and unforgettable screen persona.

Here he is talking about his Judaism and the origin of his famous hand greeting. 

RIP





Labels: , ,

January 27, 2015

Auschwitz - to visit is to defy the evil

As I watch scenes from Auschwitz on this 70th anniversary of its liberation, I remember my own visit 11 years ago for the memorable IAF flypast. 

It coincided with a bitter time in Israel when the Cafe Hillel bombing took the life of a young bride and her father the night before her wedding in Jerusalem. 

This is the memoir I wrote at the time for the American Jewish Press ....

FLIGHT OUT OF DENIAL



January 20, 2015

The Iconic Message to Liberal Appeasers of Evil

As America goes into yet another round of appeasement talks with Teheran, and its nuclear centrifuges spin inexorably towards the Islamic apocalypse, this message by an outstanding US president is as fresh today as it was 50 years ago when it was delivered.

 

"We cannot buy our security, our freedom from the threat of the bomb by committing an immorality so great as saying to a billion human beings now enslaved behind the Iron Curtain, "Give up your dreams of freedom because to save our own skins, we're willing to make a deal with your slave masters." Alexander Hamilton said, "A nation which can prefer disgrace to danger is prepared for a master, and deserves one." Now let's set the record straight. There's no argument over the choice between peace and war, but there's only one guaranteed way you can have peace—and you can have it in the next second—surrender. 

Admittedly, there's a risk in any course we follow other than this, but every lesson of history tells us that the greater risk lies in appeasement, and this is the specter our well-meaning liberal friends refuse to face—that their policy of accommodation is appeasement, and it gives no choice between peace and war, only between fight or surrender. If we continue to accommodate, continue to back and retreat, eventually we have to face the final demand—the ultimatum. And what then—when Nikita Khrushchev has told his people he knows what our answer will be? He has told them that we're retreating under the pressure of the Cold War, and someday when the time comes to deliver the final ultimatum, our surrender will be voluntary, because by that time we will have been weakened from within spiritually, morally, and economically. He believes this because from our side he's heard voices pleading for "peace at any price" or "better Red than dead," or as one commentator put it, he'd rather "live on his knees than die on his feet." And therein lies the road to war, because those voices don't speak for the rest of us.

You and I know and do not believe that life is so dear and peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery. If nothing in life is worth dying for, when did this begin—just in the face of this enemy? Or should Moses have told the children ofIsrael to live in slavery under the pharaohs? Should Christ have refused the cross? Should the patriots at Concord Bridge have thrown down their guns and refused to fire the shot heard 'round the world? The martyrs of history were not fools, and our honored dead who gave their lives to stop the advance of the Nazis didn't die in vain. Where, then, is the road to peace? Well it's a simple answer after all.

You and I have the courage to say to our enemies, "There is a price we will not pay." "There is a point beyond which they must not advance." And this—this is the meaning in the phrase of Barry Goldwater's "peace through strength." Winston Churchill said, "The destiny of man is not measured by material computations. When great forces are on the move in the world, we learn we're spirits—not animals." And he said, "There's something going on in time and space, and beyond time and space, which, whether we like it or not, spells duty."

You and I have a rendezvous with destiny.

We'll preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth, or we'll sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness. "







January 15, 2015

Hey YouGov: Why Am I Not Surprised ?


This week’s hot topic is the YouGov poll which found 45% of UK adults believing at least one anti-Semitic view presented to them was "definitely or probably true".

Why am I not surprised ?

London is after all the world headquarters of the Boycott-Israel movement, home to the Isra-phobic BBC and the place where academics and trade unionists love to indulge their ugly prejudices under the guise of caring for Palestinians more than any other genuinely oppressed group in the world’s darkest trouble spots.
As a British Jew who has lived and worked in the country for over 60 years, I’d like to respond to the half of the train carriage, bus queue or movie audience that quietly harbors such feelings about me and my people.

To the 25% who think we ‘chase money more than others’ I say that we also give away a heck of a lot more than those others. It’s well known that Jews have been consistently more charitable than any other ethnic group. Just take a drive through Manhattan and see how many scores of hospitals, colleges and institutions of science and the arts bear the names of their Jewish endowers. In Britain our Jewish benefactors prefer a lower profile with the majority of endowments not well known. But when HRH Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, gives birth to her second child, it will be in the same hospital as her first; endowed by the Jewish philanthropist Charles Lindo.

To the 17% of my fellow citizens who think we have ‘too much power in the media’ I ask: Are you serious? When the Jewish state is consistently maligned by TV news reporters and pilloried in nearly every publication and when editors routinely throw our letters in the bin … that’s power we don’t need.
To the 11% who say we’re ‘not as honest as others’ in business, I guess a lot of that’s about Bernie Madoff. But then again every ethnic group has its rogues and derelicts.  We may have spawned history’s biggest Ponzi schemer but I know of no Jewish ax-murderers, child killers, bank robbers or serial rapists serving time in Britain’s prisons.

To the 13% who say we use the Holocaust to ‘get sympathy’ I say – sympathy for what? To get promotion somewhere? Or a better job? Did you ever see someone putting ‘Holocaust Survivor’ on their CV?
We want from the Holocaust just three things.


  • For people to respect our 6 million dead by not denying the meticulously documented facts and crimes whose perpetrators and abettors have long since acknowledged and admitted their guilt.
  • For the world to understand that this horrendous crime was carried out by  the most cultured and well-educated nation of that era, which the evil of  anti-Semitism was powerful enough to turn into the most vile beasts.
  • To remind all of you that we are the canary in the coalmine of civilization, so that what starts with the Jews ultimately brings the whole civilised world down with it.


To the 10% of you who would ‘be unhappy if a relative married a Jew’ I can only say, my rabbi will be delighted to hear that.

And finally, to the 20% who think that our support for Israel makes us less loyal to the UK, I can only speak for myself. I am the son of an Auschwitz survivor who was fortunate enough to come to Britain as a refugee. I have enduring gratitude to Britain for that and for the privilege of bringing up my own family in this peaceful and tolerant country. 

We the Jewish people bless Her Majesty the Queen and her royal family in our synagogues every Shabbat even though, after 6 decades of state visits to every sheikdom and tinpot dictatorship, the tiny democracy of Israel remains off the royal itinerary.

But, when I hear that nearly half of this country harbors such prejudices against my people and that the same survey found 54% of Jews seeing no future in the UK, I have no choice but to support Israel as a lifeline that never existed for the Jews of the Holocaust era.

So, as I see history inexorably set to repeat itself in Europe, I very much hope Britain will once again be able to stand firm and be in the forefront of repelling this ugly resurgence.



January 11, 2015

No - you are NOT Charlie !


Today’s mass rally in Paris is a spectacular event for the French people and guaranteed to leave them aglow and refreshed after a most traumatic week.

It’s also a useful PR boost for Francois Hollande who has probably been the most inept and farcical figure ever to have occupied the Elysee Palace. As for the other visiting dignitaries, the photo-ops won’t do Netanyahu any harm in his upcoming election and, as for the King and Queen of Jordan, Paris shopping will be a welcome distraction from ISIS forces knocking on their door back home.

Mahmoud Abbas is also making an appearance – doubtless in gratitude for Hollande’s support of his UN bid for PLO statehood. Welcoming such a man to this celebration of tolerance and harmony is like inviting the grim reaper to a shiva.

But beyond all these ulterior motives and the feelgood factor for the citizens of France, this will not change anything where it counts. The crowds will drift away and life will go on, down the slippery slope to dhimmitude.

As Paris gets back to its daily routine, some may realise that a great opportunity was missed. That France passed up the chance to send the best possible answer to those who seek to destroy the free Republic. A simple and collective act of courage we might reasonably have expected from journalists in the mainstream print media.

That each and every one of them should have printed the offending cartoon somewhere in their newspaper or magazine.

I am not talking front pages here. I am talking about announcing in advance that these would appear inside every Sunday newspaper so that French Muslims who felt they might be offended needn’t buy it.
Every non-assimilating citizen would clearly get the message that the host country reserves the right to such freedom of ex‎pression and that if this does not suit them, they may freely emigrate to the nearest Sharia state.

This would have sent the clearest message of solidarity with the slain journalists and entitled the French media to genuinely claim: “Je Suis Charlie”.  As things stand, they are far from being Charlie. In fact I’d bet Charlie’s departed souls would be grossly disappointed with what they have seen from their peers. Sheer collective cowardice.

It’s the same cowardice that infects the BBC and other news media who still can’t utter the term Islamist terrorist no matter how monstrous is the massacre or how barbaric is the beheading.

Had the French media demonstrated this purest of all solidarity with Charlie, they would have almost certainly been supported with print runs across the continent. Instead of being the first in line for dhimmitude France would have been the standard-bearer leading Europe back from this dark abyss.

So, L’ExpressLe Figaro and Le Monde you are most certainly not Charlie.

And tonight as you print lovely pictures of flag-waving citizens, know that you have let most of them down very badly.


January 08, 2015

Waving pencils in Paris

Stuck in a traffic jam the day after France’s 9-11, I listened to the LBC radio host trading arguments for over an hour with callers on the subject of free speech and the equivalence of Mohammed cartoons as against Holocaust denial and burning Remembrance Day poppies.

Why is it that every time a heinous crime is committed, we get into this hand-wringing analysis of what motivated the perpetrators and how we must be responsible for provoking such acts? This reflexive inquest into our own failings and culpability distracts us from the simple truth that gross evil has been done.

Wednesday’s slaughter in Paris was, deep down, no more about a Mohammed cartoon than the US embassy massacre in Benghazi was about a Mohammed video. In both cases the killers were incited by the same Islamist preachers of hate as inspired 9/11, 7/7, Madrid, Mumbai and Bali.

The twin towers weren’t brought down because someone insulted a prophet. They were brought down as a symbol of Western culture that Islamists abhor and want to subdue and totally destroy. Cartoons and videos, Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib are just convenient excuses by which we are expected to blame ourselves.

The proper debate on talk shows should be about the stark choice such murderous events present to us. The simple and eternal choice between good and evil.

The chants of ordinary people in France and other world cities saying ‘We are all Charlie Hebdo’ will not carry much weight if they are the same people as were ‘All Hamas Now’ just a few months ago.

You have to be blind, deaf or a hopeless anti-Semite to deny that Hamas and Hezbullah are part of the same Jihadist death cult as Al Qaeda, ISIS, Boko Haram, the Taliban and whichever group incited this week’s massacre in Paris.

Instead of waving symbolic placards and cartoonist’s pencils, the good citizens of Europe should be calling on their leaders to take bold steps to seriously confront and subdue the Islamist enemy within.

Before it's too late.

Which it probably is anyway.



Add to Technorati Favorites Tweets by @ZalmiU