February 28, 2007

No Bones About This Prejudice

It’s well know that rabid Islamists like Ahmadinejad do not acknowledge the existence of the state of Israel. They never refer to it by name, just as an entity.

But this denial problem is not limited to the barbarians of the Middle East. It is also alive and well amongst the intellectuals of Middle England.

He is an extract from a piece in today’s Daily Mail, written by the much respected writer and biographer of Tolstoy, CS Lewis and Belloc, Mr A.N.Wilson. It’s about the discovery of the alleged Jesus Ossuary in East Talpiot, Jerusalem which – to the best of my knowledge – is still in Israel and comfortably within the Green Line.

About 25 years ago, a casket was found in Jerusalem marked with inscriptions to say it contained the bones of someone called Jesus, Son of Joseph. This casket, or ossuary (bone-container), was discovered in what seems to have been a family vault, containing other boxes.

Palestine is absolutely crammed with tombs, graves and fascinating archaeological remains. One of the most extraordinary I ever saw was the so-called 'Jesus boat', a large fishing vessel of about the time of Jesus, which was dragged up from the bottom of the Sea of Galilee.

And for the rest of the entire article, this man cannot bring himself to type that awful word ‘Israel’.

Wake Up Israel !

Another day in Israel when the headlines are filled with the most pressing national priorities.

Not defense, crime or health but – again – the issue of ministerial appointments. In most countries the appointment of ministers is a process that is all sorted within a couple of weeks after a general election.

But in the land of Israel it can go on for a year. Especially when the whole purpose of the maneuverings is to prop up a totally worthless coalition of self-interested lackeys.

Today it’s the cabinet’s nomination of Estherina Tartman as new Minister of Tourism. Looking more like a beauty consultant than a minister, Tartman is not an establishment figure like Peres or Pines-Paz. She is number two in the far right Yisrael Beiteinu (Israel is our Home) party, which wants to deport Arabs from within the green line. (Not much tourism involved here, but quite a lot of travel.)

So the establishment sleuths quickly set about searching for dirt. After most likely drawing a blank on the usual suspects of sex, bribes and free match tickets from Gaydamak, they dug into her résume. Allegedly she had fabricated a bogus BA and MBA.

Her boss Avigdor Lieberman is furious. He was the latest arrival to this disreputable and scandal-ridden government and was charged with drawing up an Iran strategy for Israel. What he said yesterday reveals his sense of priorities as this affair unfolds:

"We have waited to take care of the Iranian threat and the kidnapped soldiers, whose fate is no less important than that of Estherina."

‘No less important’ huh?

What a revealing and sickening choice of words!

Over 80 percent of the time, energy and focus of this government since last summer’s war seems to have been on coalition tinkering, pitched battles over ministerial appointments, the Katsav scandal and the Peres accession, Olmert’s various corruption charges and the Ramon trial, the Winograd hearings and the replacement of the Chief of Staff, the police scandal and the further investigation of the disgraced police chief’s designated replacement on previous corruption charges. It doesn’t end.

But for all the clamor in the Knesset corridors, don’t you notice the silence? That deafening silence from Hassan Nasralla in the North. After the war, Israel mocked him for going into hiding and dared him to come out. It’s true that we have not seen much of him since the cease fire. But that’s not because he fears an IDF bullet. Olmert is the very last person to order such a bold move.

The truth is that whilst Olmert and his pals have been playing with their toys, Nasralla’s focus has been 99 percent on ‘round two’ in Lebanon. He has witnessed weak leadership in our government and disarray in the IDF. At the same time he saw the enormous potential of missile warfare. He is totally focused on delivering the final victory to his paymasters in Iran and Syria. They have seen that Sharon’s unexpected demise was an Allah-given opportunity to achive a stunning victory over Israel. After all, what were the chances of a Rottweiler like Sharon being replaced by two incompetent pooches like Olmert and Peretz? Nasralla sees that it is only a question of time before Israel wakes up to the reality that there is something a lot more important than the appointment of ministers.

You might have thought that planning the next war day and night might leave poor old Nasrallah stressed out. But I am sure he takes time out for some light entertainment.

Like watching the evening news on Israel TV.

February 27, 2007

Begin Beloved


In Suddenly Begin is beloved by allAnshel Pfeffer misses the great leader’s most important quality: a love and abiding compassion for his people.

Of which other leaders since Golda Meir can the same be said?

As Hezbollah re-arms and soup kitchens abound, the undignified squabble over ministerial portfolios and the next presidency betrays our current leadership’s complete lack of interest in the security and welfare of the people.

Any love and compassion is reserved strictly for themselves.


Hans in kid gloves

Former Iraq weapons inspector Hans Blix has told a conference that it is wrong to insist on Iran’s cessation of uranium enrichment as a precondition to talks.

Blix says: "This is in a way like telling a child, first you will behave and thereafter you will be given your rewards, and I think, is humiliating."

What kind of ‘child’ plays with nuclear weapons?

And in Hans’s little wonderland, what is wrong with ‘humiliating’ a bunch of mullahs that rabidly incites the genocide of an entire country?

Blix will be remembered as the man who failed to find Saddam’s WMD. Had he taken his mission more seriously, he might have found those weapons before they were trucked to safety in Syria.

But then again, he probably didn’t want to treat Saddam like a child.

People like Blix do not seem to understand that the likes of Saddam, Bin Laden, Meshaal, Nasrallah and Ahmadinejad are not part of the human race, let alone the family of nations willing to deal honestly and fairly with one another within the framework of treaties like the NPT or Geneva Conventions.

Instead, they are primitive barbarians who subvert the freedoms and conventions created by the free world for the furtherance of their agenda of death and global subversion of all infidels through unremitting terror.

If Blix does not wake up to the reality of what he is appeasing, he will soon find the WMD that had eluded him for so long in Iraq.

It will be riding on a Shehab missile slamming into his quiet town square in Stockholm.

February 26, 2007

Iran Electric Company

Desperately worried about its dependence on scarce oil resources and the damage to the global environment from burning fossil fuels, Iran continues to race towards nuclear fuel enrichment for peaceful purposes.

Here is its latest electricity generator on test.

February 25, 2007

A Foul on Betar's Boss

Another bribery investigation and, once again it stinks of political motivation. It seems they hardly bother to hide it any more!

A few days ago, Russian billionaire Arkady Gaydamak announced that he was forming a new political party. Initial polls showed him capable of commanding 14 Knesset seats. That’s about double what Olmert’s Kadima is currently polling.

Time for another police investigation – made to order.

Now it’s over tickets to a football game, allegedly given by football club owner Gaydamak as a bribe to no less than Prime Minister Olmert’s bureau chief, Shula Zaken.

Even if taken seriously, surely it should be Zaken who should be under investigation for accepting such a ‘bribe’ and ought she not to have been suspended when the allegations were first aired?

Zaken started out as Olmert’s secretary in his private law practice more than 20 years ago. She followed him to the Jerusalem mayor’s office, the Cabinet and the Prime Minister’s Office.

This is the same Shula Zaken who was put under 10 days’ house arrest last month accused of taking bribes, breach of trust and obstructing police investigating allegations that she had abused her position to influence the appointment of senior tax officials in return for tax benefits.

Olmert seems adept in moulding his staff to his own corrupt image. Like the three other prime ministerial aides who tried to rescue his close friend and former Justice Minister Chaim Ramon in the closing stages of his trial on charges of sexual misconduct. The trio tried to discredit Ramon’s victim with testimony over a supposed cafeteria conversation. Their sworn testimony was totally discounted by the trial judges.

Where Olmert and his aides and cronies are concerned, the old Yiddish expression rings true: ‘the fish stinks from the head’.

February 18, 2007

Can you feel a Pulsa ?

There’s something very weird going on in Israel.

All these indictments and resignations: Katsav, Ramon, Halutz and today police chief Moshe Karadi falls on his sword in an underworld scandal.

Sharon lies in a vegetative coma whilst his son Omri contemplates his own jail-time.

What do all these fall guys have in common?

In one word: disengagement.

They were all complicit in the eviction of Jewish families from Gush Katif and neighbouring settlements of Gaza. Sharon and his son Omri conceived the scheme and appointed Halutz to implement it, in place of Yaalon whom they sacked for his opposing views. Moshe Karadi was the police enforcer tasked with dealing with overzealous zealots. Chaim Ramon was one of the most vociferous advocates of the scheme. And the one man who could have vastly empowered the resistance – President Moshe Katsav – instead persuaded the settlers to capitulate and make Sharon’s work a pushover.

It will be interesting to see what soon befalls the likes of Dov Weisglass (Sharon’s attorney and bureau chief who was widely credited with pushing the Gaza plan as a diversionary tactic relieve the pressure of corruption proceedings against his client) and Yonatan Bassi, the religious turncoat whose duty to compensate evicted families has been shown to be so miserably and woefully derelict.

Hundreds of evicted Jews still cower in freezing tents, their livelihoods trampled and their families torn apart by immeasurable stress and trauma.

Their only crumb of comfort is the ability to declare that the eviction brought war not peace and that some divine retribution is being meted out to its most complicit abettors.


February 12, 2007

An Arresting Sight

Security has been extra tight in the Old City this weekeend as the radical Islamists try to foment rioting over the rebuilding of the only Jewish access ramp to the Temple Mount. Armed troops and police are everywhere. But amid all the tension, a policeman still has time to remember what it's really all about. As we left Zion Gate on Sunday morning, my cousin snapped this photo on his cellphone.

February 03, 2007

When Ulster Sat With Israel

The throngs of tourists passing Big Ben are unaware of the tunnel beneath their feet, which connects the parliamentary committee rooms in Portcullis House to the British House of Commons. When the division bells ring, members of parliament sprint along the passage to cast their votes in the chamber. It was in one of those committee rooms last Thursday evening that a group of MPs met with foreign lawmakers to discuss boycott, divestment and the indictment of a sovereign nation with the arrest of its officials for breach of international law.

One might be forgiven for thinking ‘this has to be Israel’. But no. On this occasion, it was Israel which had called the meeting and its keynote speaker was no less than former Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. The subject was Iran and its fanatical leader, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Netanyahu introduced the plan of a group of jurists to indict the Iranian leader under Article 25(3) (e) of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court which outlaws incitement to commit Genocide. Moreover, to issue proceedings under Article 2(4) of the UN charter which forbids a member state from making statements threatening the use of force on another state.

Netanyahu recounted the rabid threats made by the Iranian leader, saying that the regime was just 1,000 days away from deployment of a nuclear weapon. In recasting his Mossad chief’s 3-year assessment into days, Netanyahu emphasised that every day counts in the elimination of a nuclear menace that is as much a threat to European cities as it is to Israel. He said that if Iran is not stopped, nuclear weapons will quickly proliferate through the entire Middle East. “If the world allows the Middle East to become a powder keg, take it from me, it WILL explode’. To emphasise that threat, he mentioned having met a British MP a few moments before who remarked: ‘Iran is turning itself into a global suicide bomber’.

Netanyahu went on to say that UN sanctions, whilst welcome as a first step, were not tough enough. He said that governments and major corporations worldwide could make a much stronger economic impact on the rogue regime by heeding a call to ‘divest from genocide’.

The next speaker was Dore Gold, president of the Jerusalem Institute for Public Affairs and - like Netanyahu - a former ambassador to the United Nations. Gold recalled the international community’s string of failures in preventing the genocide of European Jewry, Bosnians, Tutsis and now the Sudanese in Darfur. He stressed that the post-war Genocide Convention was formulated by the International Court of Justice to ‘prevent’ genocide, not merely to punish its perpetrators after the fact. Gold is the author of ‘Tower of Babblein which he criticises the UN for fuelling global chaos. He recalled Kofi Annan’s statement on the 10th anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide: “We must never forget our collective failure to protect at least 800,000 defenceless men women and children who perished in Rwanda. Such crimes cannot be repaired. The dead cannot be brought back to life, so what can we do? Ambassador Gold offered an answer to Annan’s rhetorical question. To heed the early warning signs of genocide emanating from Teheran and thereby fulfil the UN’s prime duty to prevent the perpetration of genocide.

Knesset Law & Justice Committee member Dan Naveh weighed in with his own personal account as the son of Holocaust survivors who fled their hometown of Bratislava. Their Slovak neighbors persuaded some Jews to stay, saying: ‘Why pay attention to the ravings of a madman?’ Naveh said that those who failed to take Hitler’s threats seriously all perished.

The most forceful of the speakers was Dr. Irwin Cotler, a Canadian parliamentarian and former Justice Minister. In a withering attack on Iran’s mullocracy, Cotler said that an international arrest warrant had now been issued for its former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and eight of his officials for the planning, funding and perpetration of the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires. 85 people died in the rubble of the 7-storey building and 300 were injured. Cotler called for Ahmadinejad and his officials to be put on a ‘watch list’ to be arrested at airports and other international transit points. “The legal framework is already in place,” he declared, “all that is needed is the political will.

At Netanyahu’s side was a powerful parliamentarian at least as well-known in the UK as Bibi is in Israel. Nobel peace prize-winner Lord Trimble was appointed First Minister of Northern Ireland after the ‘Good Friday’ peace accords. David Trimble’s Ulster Unionist Party was opposed to the Irish Republican Army’s campaign for a united Ireland free of British rule and came to prominence by joining the fiery Protestant leader Ian Paisley in an ‘Orange Order’
march through Republican strongholds in County Armagh. Trimble spoke forcefully in support of the jurists’ initiative and urged lobby groups to bring pressure on their governments to take action against Ahmadinejad.

As the co-chairmen answered questions I found the scene quite warming. Jerusalem and Ulster sitting side-by-side. I thought of how many times I had heard parallels drawn between the Irish troubles and those in Israel? A struggle between two religious groups, the common element of British rule, car bombs and targeted killings and yes, the eternal dispute over historical claims to the land. Even the loathsome Ken Livingstone feted IRA leaders just as he now embraces Jihadist clerics as London’s mayor.

So much in common but so very different. Because for all those coincidences between the conflicts, it is a fact that never during the centuries-old struggle was any part of Ireland ever threatened with total annihilation. Until that fundamental distinction is fully appreciated, we will continue to suffer the fools who believe that the square peg of Irish peace can be hammered into the round and bottomless hole of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Trimble the Ulsterman is a realist and also a member of the Henry ‘Scoop’ Jackson Society. The late US congressman was a fierce opponent of détente with the repressive Soviet regime and advocated the maintenance by the world’s leading democracies of strong military capabilities with the means and will to protect freedom wherever it is under threat. I found this quote by Trimble’s biographer in a publication of Dore Gold’s own Jerusalem Institute for Public Affairs:

"However, the British government does not put Palestinian terrorism or Northern Irish terrorism into that category. The British state is well-nigh unique in advertising, quite openly, that it does not really mind if it is dismembered. To ensure the IRA's abandonment of violence, the British will maintain the pace of concessions, at least for as long as the Unionists are prepared to tolerate them. In recent years, PLO flags and large wall murals of Arafat can be seen in Catholic-Republican neighborhoods, while Unionist-Protestant zones are covered with Israeli flags. In fact, Northern Ireland is one of the very few parts of Europe where there is a very wide measure of popular support in the majority community for the State of Israel. "

An unlikely affinity, but an important alliance in the war against Islamic terror and the means to stop the global suicide bomber in his tracks.

[This article first appeared in the Jewish Press]

February 01, 2007

A Crush on Ramon

This is Chaim Ramon who was this week found guilty of indecency by the unanimous verdict of three judges. Let's not make a big deal of the charge - let's face it, there's no shortage of indecency in politics and lots of powerful people right up (or down) to Bill Clinton have committed indecent acts whilst in office.

What interests me is the unanimous guilty verdict. For it confirms in the view of the three judges that Ramon's sworn testimony was false. It has also been said that the last minute testimony of a staffer in Ehud Olmert's own office was not given any credence in its blatant attempt to discredit the complainant and her reputation.

So, this supposed perjurer is the man Olmert chose as his Minister of Justice.
No more fitting than choosing Union Boss Peretz as his Minister of Defense.
While shifting the highly decorated General Mofaz to Transportation.

But let's not forget who Ramon is. Or, rather 'what' he is.
Shortly after the Rabin assasination, he took part in a panel debate on American TV's Nightline show with Rabbi Shlomo Riskin, formerly of Lincoln Square Synagogue in New York and later the founder of the now thriving city of Efrat in Gush Etzion.
Losing traction in one exchange with the soft-spoken Rabbi, he leaned forward and with clenched fists he snarled: "We will crush you people....".

One would normally expect that kind of hate to be unleashed by any Israeli against the likes of Fatah or Hizbulla rather than one's own bretheren.

But Ramon is something different altogeher. He cannot control his tongue either when it's halfway down a girl's throat or cursing out his own people. Both are acts of equally gross indecency.

The law requires a custodial sentence for up to 3 years in jail.
But Ramon will not serve time. He looks to be getting off with a fine and parole.

Jail it seems is reserved for religious settlers.
And they don't even have to be tried and found guilty.


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