The Only Book on Palestinian History You Will Ever Need to Read

A historian counters mendacity with powerful satire.

By: Ari Lieberman; frontpagemag.com

There have been many books written on Palestinian identity and history but none are as scholarly and authoritative as Assaf A. Voll’s “A History of the Palestinian People, From Ancient Times to the Modern Era.” Voll’s exhaustive account of Palestinian history is summed up in 120 fact-filled pages brimming with substantive information that most will find useful.

University students working under harsh time constraints will find the book particularly suitable because it can be read cover-to-cover in a matter of seconds. That’s because all the pages are blank save for a quote in the beginning of the book attributed to the Seinfeld character George Costanza – “Just remember, it’s not a lie if you believe it.”

One comical reviewer at Amazon amusingly noted that the Voll’s book was plagiarized. “The work is identical to the book, Everything Men Know About Women: 25th Anniversary Edition,” said the reviewer. The reviewer is correct but the author’s transgression is minor compared to fantastical mendacity propagated by those pretending to be historians and academics at some of the world’s top universities.

The notion of “Palestinian history” is farcical and Voll’s understated but illuminating point unabashedly exposes this abject lie. The name “Palestine” is an invented name concocted by the Roman Emperor Hadrian.

In 132 CE, the Jews of Judea (alternatively known as Eretz Israel) launched an open revolt against Roman occupation of their land. Led by its charismatic leader, Simon Bar Kochva, the anti-Roman insurgency nearly succeeded, as evidenced by archaeological discoveries and historical accounts but was ultimately suppressed some three years later after intense and bitter fighting.

Hadrian was keenly aware and understood that the Jews could never be defeated by force of arms alone. He believed that in order to defeat the Jews, he needed to break their spirit as well. He therefore embarked on a bitter campaign of severing the Jewish nexus to the Land of Israel. Among his many cruel edicts was the renaming of the city of Jerusalem to “Aelia Capitolina” and the Land of Israel to “Palestine.” While the former name was never accepted, the latter abominable renaming unfortunately stuck and over time supplanted the land’s historical and original naming.

To be clear, there has never in the history of mankind been a Palestinian state, a Palestinian capital, a distinct Palestinian language, currency or culture. In December 2011, Newt Gingrich noted this indisputable fact and made the following observation;

“Remember there was no Palestine as a state. It was part of the Ottoman Empire. And I think that we’ve had an invented Palestinian people, who are in fact Arabs, and were historically part of the Arab community…”

Gingrich was widely criticized for his politically incorrect but historically accurate statement but none of his critics were able to upend the veracity of his comment. Ironically, Arab leaders have occasionally voiced opinions similar to those expressed by Gingrich. Those opinions were of course made in Arabic to Arabic audiences but they were nonetheless made.

In a revealing 1977 interview with the Dutch newspaper Trouw, PLO executive committee member Zahir Muhsein stated,

“The Palestinian people does not exist. The creation of a Palestinian state is only a means for continuing our struggle against the state of Israel for our Arab unity. In reality today there is no difference between Jordanians, Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese. Only for political and tactical reasons do we speak today about the existence of a Palestinian people, since Arab national interests demand that we posit the existence of a distinct ‘Palestinian people’ to oppose Zionism.

For tactical reasons, Jordan, which is a sovereign state with defined borders, cannot raise claims to Haifa and Jaffa. While as a Palestinian, I can undoubtedly demand Haifa, Jaffa, Beer-Sheva and Jerusalem. However, the moment we reclaim our right to all of Palestine, we will not wait even a minute to unite Palestine and Jordan.”

In 2012, a Gaza-based Hamas government official named Fathi Hammad noted the following while pleading for Egyptian oil;

“Every Palestinian…throughout Palestine can prove his Arab roots, whether from Saudi Arabia or Yemen or anywhere…personally, half my family is Egyptian, we are all like that.” Hammad continued, “Brothers, half the Palestinians are Egyptian and the other half are Saudis…Who are the Palestinians?” he asked rhetorically. “We have families called al-Masri whose roots are Egyptian, Egyptian! We are Egyptian! We are Arab! We are Muslim!” Hammad’s rant was curiously and conspicuously devoid of any reference to an independent Palestinian identity and that is because there simply isn’t any.

As Zahir Muhsein candidly notes, the notion of Palestinian nationalism began as a tactic following the Arab defeat of 1948. Prior to that time, most Arabs living in mandatory Palestine thought of themselves as either subjects of the Ottoman Empire or citizens of Greater Syria. The rest were transient workers from the vast Arab and Muslim expanse lured to the area by better fortunes fostered as a result of increased Jewish economic activity and business expansion.

Arabs residing in Gaza and the so-called West Bank from 1948 to 1967 had no problem living under Egyptian and Jordanian occupation. But the very notion of Jews occupying a centimeter of “Arab soil” was considered an abomination and an affront to Arab and Muslim honor.

Assaf Voll’s satirical account of Palestinian history is a book about nothing. It is nevertheless a forceful repudiation of those in academia, the media and elsewhere wishing to perpetuate historical inaccuracies to advance mendacious narratives. If there is to be a peaceful solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, we must start by recognizing and acknowledging certain unwavering and perhaps unpleasant truths, and chief among them is the myth of Palestinian history.

20th Maccabiah Games, Known as Jewish Olympics, to Open with Record 10,000 Athletes

Athletes from the U.S. delegation to the 19th Maccabiah Games celebrating during the opening ceremonies at Jerusalem’s Teddy Stadium, July 19, 2013. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90/JTA)

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A record 10,000 athletes will be competing at the 20th Maccabiah Games, the so-called Jewish Olympics.

Some 30,000 people are expected to attend the opening ceremonies Thursday at Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem, which will be nationally televised on Israel’s Channel 2. It is the third largest sporting event in the world, according to organizers.

The athletes in the 43 sports represented at this year’s games come from 80 countries. Israel and the United States have the largest delegations. The latter will have over 1,000 athletes, according to Maccabi USA. Among them will be Anthony Ervin, who won the gold medal in the 50-meter freestyle last summer at the Rio Olympics 16 years after doing so for the first time in Sydney.

In addition to the dozens of events taking place in the host city of Jerusalem, competitions will be held at 68 sports complexes throughout the country.

Soccer is the largest sport at the games, with more than 1,400 athletes from 20 countries participating.

The competition categories are youth, open, master’s and Paralympics.

Many international Jewish sports stars have launched their careers at the Maccabiah, and often return to play or coach at the games.

Canada to Apologize and Give $10,500,000 to Muslim who Murdered U.S. Soldier

By: Robert Spencer; jihadwatch.org

He pleaded guilty to killing an American soldier. This outrageous shakedown epitomizes the weakness, flaccidity and wrongheadedness of the West’s response to the global jihad.

“Omar Khadr to receive apology and $10.5M compensation package from Canada: official,” by Rob Gillies, Associated Press, July 4, 2017 (thanks to Lookmann):

The Canadian government is going to apologize and give millions to a former Guantanamo Bay prisoner who pleaded guilty to killing a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan when he was 15, with Canada’s Supreme Court later ruling that officials had interrogated him under “oppressive circumstances.”

An official familiar with the deal said Tuesday that Omar Khadr will receive $10.5 million. The official was not authorized to discuss the deal publicly before the announcement and spoke on condition of anonymity. The government and Khadr’s lawyers negotiated the deal last month.

The Canadian-born Khadr was 15 when he was captured by U.S. troops following a firefight at a suspected al-Qaida compound in Afghanistan that resulted in the death of an American special forces medic, U.S. Army Sgt. First Class Christopher Speer. Khadr, who was suspected of throwing the grenade that killed Speer, was taken to Guantanamo and ultimately charged with war crimes by a military commission.

He pleaded guilty in 2010 to charges that included murder and was sentenced to eight years plus the time he had already spent in custody. He returned to Canada two years later to serve the remainder of his sentence and was released in May 2015 pending an appeal of his guilty plea, which he said was made under duress.

Omar Khadr spent 10 years in Guantanamo Bay. His case received international attention after some dubbed him a child soldier.

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled in 2010 that Canadian intelligence officials obtained evidence from Khadr under “oppressive circumstances,” such as sleep deprivation, during interrogations at Guantanamo Bay in 2003, and then shared that evidence with U.S officials.

Khadr was the youngest and last Western detainee held at the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba….

After his 2015 release from prison in Alberta, Omar Khadr apologized to the families of the victims. He said he rejects violent jihad and wants a fresh start to finish his education and work in health care. He currently resides in an apartment in Edmonton, Alberta.

Israelis Outraged by UNESCO Decision on Hebron Holy Site

File – In this Monday, Jan. 14, 2013 file photo, Israeli border police stand guard on the site known to Jews as the Tomb of the Patriarchs, and to Muslims as the Ibrahimi Mosque, in the West Bank city of Hebron. The UNESCO World Heritage committee on Friday, July 7, 2017 put the West Bank city of Hebron on its list of world heritage in danger, a contentious decision that has drawn outrage from Israel. (Bernat Armangue, File/Associated Press)

By: Ian Deitch and Monika Scislowska/AP.org

JERUSALEM — The U.N. cultural agency on Friday declared the old city in the West Bank town of Hebron as a Palestinian world heritage site, a decision that outraged Israeli officials who say the move negated the deep Jewish ties to the biblical town and its ancient shrine.

The move was the latest chapter in Israel’s contentious relationship with UNESCO, an agency it accuses of being an anti-Israeli tool that makes decisions out of political considerations.

While the Palestinians welcomed the action, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called it “another delusional decision by UNESCO.”

Both Jews and Muslims revere the same site in Hebron as the traditional burial place of the biblical patriarchs and matriarchs — Jews call it the Tomb of the Patriarchs, while for Muslims it is the Ibrahimi Mosque.

The 12-3 vote, with six abstentions, came on a secret ballot at an annual UNESCO World Heritage Committee meeting in Krakow, Poland. The proposal came from the Palestinian side. Israel contended that its historic links to Hebron were ignored and its ambassador to UNESCO left the session.

 UNESCO spokeswoman Lucia Iglesias confirmed that Hebron’s old city was put on the agency’s World Heritage list and on the list of sites in danger. She would not elaborate, saying the exact wording would be decided later.

The decision obliges the World Heritage committee to review its status annually.

“This is a historical development because it stressed that Hebron and the Ibrahimi Mosque historically belong to the Palestinian people,” said Palestinian Minister of Tourism Rula Maayah.

But Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said UNESCO’s “automatic Arab majority succeeded in passing the proposed resolution that attempts to appropriate the national symbols of the Jewish people.”

She added: “This is a badge of shame for UNESCO, who time after time chooses to stand on the side of lies.”

Netanyahu expressed outrage that UNESCO determined the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron “is a Palestinian site, meaning not Jewish, and that the site is in danger.”

“Not a Jewish site?!” he asked sarcastically. “Who is buried there? Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Sarah, Rebecca and Leah — our patriarchs and matriarchs!”

Netanyahu pointed to extremists blowing up religious sites in the Middle East and said, “It is only in those places where Israel is, such as Hebron, that freedom of religion for all is ensured.”

Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said the vote “does no one any good and causes much harm.”

“It represents an affront to history. It undermines the trust that is needed for the Israeli-Palestinian peace process to be successful. And it further discredits an already highly questionable U.N. agency,” she said in a statement.

She had sent a letter to two senior U.N. officials before the vote, urging them to withhold the designation from UNESCO, according to the U.S. Mission to the U.N.

Hebron is part of the West Bank, a territory captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war. The international community considers it to be occupied.

Palestinians claim the West Bank is an integral part of a future independent state, a position that is widely backed internationally.

Israel says the territory’s fate, along with other core issues like security, should be resolved in negotiations.

In the meantime, Israel has built dozens of settlements in the West Bank housing about 400,000 Israelis. The Palestinians — and most of the world — consider these to be illegal obstacles to peace. Israel says the future of the settlements also must be decided through talks.

Hebron is especially contentious. Several hundred ultranationalist settlers live in heavily guarded enclaves in the city, amid about 170,000 Palestinians. There is frequent friction between the two populations.

Many viewed Friday’s UNESCO decision as the latest example of an ingrained anti-Israel bias at the U.N. and its institutions, where Israel and its allies are outnumbered by Arab countries and their supporters.

Although their rocky relationship goes back decades, recent resolutions by UNESCO also drew outrage in Israel for diminishing the deep Jewish ties to Jerusalem.

In September, Israel suspended cooperation with UNESCO after it adopted a resolution that Israel says denies the deep historic Jewish connection to holy sites in Jerusalem.

The UNESCO resolution, titled “Occupied Palestine” and sponsored by several Arab countries, used only the Islamic name for a sacred hilltop compound in Jerusalem. The compound is the holiest site in Judaism and the third-holiest in Islam, after Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia.

Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett, who heads Israel’s national UNESCO committee, said after Friday’s vote that “Israel will not resume its cooperation with UNESCO so long as it remains a political tool, rather than professional organization.”

In a statement, Netanyahu said he would cut another $1 million from the membership money Israel sends to the U.N. and use it to establish a “Museum of the Heritage of the Jewish People in Hebron and Kiryat Arba and Hebron” and for other heritage projects related to Hebron.

Yitzhak Reiter of the independent Jerusalem Institute for Policy Research said UNESCO’s decision would allow the Palestinians to “score points” in negotiations over the future of West Bank territory, since they could claim that UNESCO has sided with them.

It also could bolster their efforts to fight what they believe are Israeli attempts to take over disputed religious sites in the Holy Land.

Israel strongly rejects Palestinian claims it is trying to change the status quo in either Hebron or in Jerusalem’s Old City.

“They want to make sure that there will be an international forum to monitor the situation in Hebron and the Cave of the Patriarchs that will prevent Israel from future transgressions or overstepping its current presence in the city,” Reiter said.

Hebron has a long history of violence.

In 1929, Arabs killed 67 Jews in a rampage still seared into Israeli minds. In 1994, an Israeli settler shot and killed 29 Palestinian worshippers at the holy site before he was beaten to death.

Many of the Palestinians involved in the current wave of attacks that began in 2005 came from Hebron. The attacks on Israeli civilians and security forces since then have killed 43 Israelis, two visiting Americans and a British student, mainly in stabbings, shootings and vehicle assaults. In that period, 251 Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire. Israel identified most of them as attackers.

Israel blames the violence on incitement by Palestinian religious and political leaders, compounded by social media. Palestinians say it stems from anger over decades of Israeli rule in lands they claim for their state.

 

HU Student Develops Tool for Early Detection of Parkinson’s

By: Judy Siegel-Itzkovich; jpost.com

2017 Kaye Innovation Award won by Phd student Suaad Abd Elhadi for novel diagnostic tool.

Hebrew University campus . (photo credit:Wikimedia Commons)

A tool to better diagnose Parkinson’s disease at an early stage and improve treatment has been developed by a Hebrew University doctoral student.

For her efforts, Suaad Abd Elhadi – who is studying for her PhD at the Institute for Medical Research Israel-Canada in the university’s Faculty of Medicine – has been awarded a 2017 Kaye Innovation Award.

Abd Elhadi developed the lipid ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay). An assay is a procedure used in laboratory settings to assess the presence, amount and activity of a target entity, such as a drug, cell or biochemical substance.

ELISA is a common assay technique that involves targeting cellular secretions.

Her novel diagnostic tool could lead to earlier detection of the eventually fatal neurological disease and better tracking of the disease’s progression and a patient’s response to therapy.

Parkinson’s is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder in humans, after Alzheimer’s disease. It is typically characterized by changes in motor control such as tremors and shaking, but can also include non-motor symptoms both cognitive and behavioral.

An estimated seven to 10 million people worldwide are living with Parkinson’s, and their medication costs about $2,500 a year each. Therapeutic surgery on the brain costs as much as $100,000 per patient.

Making an accurate diagnosis of Parkinson’s, particularly in early stages and mild cases, is difficult, and there are currently no standard diagnostic tests other than clinical information provided by the patient and the results of a neurological exam. One of the best hopes for improving diagnosis is to develop a reliable test for identifying a biomarker, i.e. a substance whose presence would indicate the presence of the disease.

In the case of the lipid ELISA, the cellular secretion of interest is a specific protein called the alpha-Synuclin protein. This protein serves as a convenient biomarker that is closely associated with the tissues where Parkinson’s can be detected, along with the neurological pathways the disease travels along, causing its characteristic symptoms.

As a simple and highly sensitive diagnostic tool that can detect Parkinson’s biomarkers, the lipid ELISA could lead to a minimally invasive and cost-effective way to improve the lives of Parkinson’s patients.

Recently, Abd Elhadi has demonstrated a proof of concept to the high potential of this lipid-ELISA assay in differentiating healthy and Parkinson’s affected subjects. She is in the process of analyzing a large cohort of samples, including moderate and severe Parkinson’s, and control cases, as part of a clinical study.

The university, through Yissum – its technology transfer company – holds granted patents on the technology and has signed an agreement with Integra Holdings for further development and commercialization.

The annual Kaye Innovation Awards was established by British pharmaceutical industrialist Isaac Kaye in 1994 to encourage Hebrew University faculty, staff and students to develop innovative methods and inventions with good commercial potential that will benefit the university and society.

 

Egypt Sends Fuel to Power-Starved Gaza, Undercuts Abbas

By: Fares Akram; apnews.com

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Egypt on Wednesday trucked 1 million liters of cheap diesel fuel to the Gaza Strip’s sole power plant — a rare shipment that temporarily eased a crippling electricity crisis in the Hamas-ruled enclave but also appeared to undercut Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Abbas has been stepping up financial pressure on Gaza in hopes of forcing the militant group Hamas to cede ground in the territory. Hamas seized Gaza from Abbas’ forces in 2007, and Wednesday’s delivery was the result of a strange new alliance of old foes united against the Palestinian president.

The power plant stopped operating in April after Hamas could no longer afford to buy heavily taxed fuel from Abbas’ West Bank-based government, leaving Gazans with just four hours of electricity a day.

Abbas also asked Israel to reduce the electricity it sends to Gaza, which amounts to about a third of the territory’s needs. This electricity, paid for by the Abbas government, has been reduced by one-fourth since Monday, worsening the crunch.

The power shortage has cast a pall over the current holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims often end their dawn-to-dusk fasting with lavish family meals. With their homes in the dark and refrigerators not functioning, families have had to scale back the celebrations.

Yousef al-Kayali, a Hamas finance official, said 11 trucks delivered the fuel on Wednesday. He said a second shipment of an additional 1 million liters was expected by Thursday.

The fuel will not solve Gaza’s electricity woes, however. Israel is now providing just 88 megawatts of power each day, down from 120 earlier this week. The Egyptian fuel is expected to provide about 50 megawatts of power each day for several days, making up the cut in Israeli supplies.

In all, Gaza requires about 400 megawatts to meet its daily needs. The hot weather and Ramadan have increased demand, adding to the shortages.

“There will still be troubles, but not the maximum troubles. Re-running the power plant is better than keeping it shut down,” said Fathi Sheikh Khalil, director of the Hamas-run energy authority.

It was not clear whether the Egyptian deliveries were a one-time gesture or would continue.

Egypt and Hamas have had cool relations since the Egyptian military overthrew Islamist President Mohammed Morsi in 2013. The new Egyptian government accuses Hamas of cooperating with Islamic militants in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula.

But earlier this month, Egypt hosted a delegation of top Hamas officials. The delegation also met Mohammed Dahlan, an exiled Palestinian leader and Abbas rival. Those talks led to the fuel shipments.

“Our relationship with Egypt is getting better and Egypt showed high understandings of the crisis in Gaza,” said Khalil al-Hayya, a senior Hamas official. “We agreed with Dahlan’s group on finding solutions to the humanitarian crisis.”

Dahlan, 53, was a Hamas foe when he led Palestinian Authority forces in Gaza before Hamas routed them in 2007 and took over the seaside strip. But after a falling out with Abbas in 2011, he and Hamas now have a common foe.

Dahlan is looking to make a comeback to Palestinian politics through Gaza, where he has support among many Fatah members.

Egypt wants Hamas to help secure the border between Gaza and northern Sinai, where the Egyptian military is battling Islamic extremists.

Abbas has been stepping up pressure on Hamas for several months. Earlier this year, he reinstated taxes on diesel shipments for Gaza’s power plant. The cash-strapped Hamas authorities were unable to pay for the fuel.

Abbas also slashed salaries of tens of thousands of former staff in Gaza to further hurt the faltering economy. Then he asked Israel to cut electricity supplies to Gaza by 40 percent.

With no other options, Hamas has turned to Dahlan, its longtime enemy.

“If we have the money, we would not have gone to Dahlan’s people,” al-Hayya said.

The talks between Hamas, Dahlan and Egypt have angered Abbas.

“I’m surprised, because they (Egypt) are a member of a coalition that considered Hamas a terrorist movement, and despite that, they had these meetings and agreements,” said Jamal Muheisin, a senior member of Abbas’ Fatah party.

 

Europe: Choosing Suicide?

By: Judith Bergman; gatestoneinstitute.org

  • “We need urgent, wholesale reform of human rights laws in this country to make sure they cannot be twisted to serve the interests of those who would harm our society.” — UK Justice Secretary, Chris Grayling, January 2015.
  • Swedish intelligence deemed him too dangerous to stay in Sweden, so the immigration authorities sought to have him deported to Syria. They did not succeed: the law does not permit his deportation to Syria, as he risks being arrested or executed there. Instead, he was released and is freely walking around in Malmö.
  • “It would simply never in a million years have occurred to the authors of the original Convention on Human Rights that it would one day end up in some form being used as a justification to stay here by individuals who are a danger to our country and our way of life…” — UK Justice Secretary, Chris Grayling, January 2015.

After the Manchester terrorist attack, it was revealed that there are not “just” 3,000 jihadists on the loose in the UK, as the public had previously been informed, but rather a dismaying 23,000 jihadists. According to The Times:

“About 3,000 people from the total group are judged to pose a threat and are under investigation or active monitoring in 500 operations being run by police and intelligence services. The 20,000 others have featured in previous inquiries and are categorised as posing a ‘residual risk”‘.

Why was the public informed of this only now?

Notably, among those who apparently posed only “a residual risk” and were therefore no longer under surveillance, were Salman Abedi, the Manchester bomber, and Khalid Masood, the Westminster killer.

It appears that the understaffed UK police agencies and intelligence services are no match for 23,000 jihadists. Already in June 2013, Dame Stella Rimington, former head of the MI5, estimated that it would take around 50,000 full-time MI5 agents to monitor 2,000 extremists or potential terrorists 24 hours a day, seven days a week. That amounts to more than 10 times the number of people employed by MI5. In October 2015, Andrew Parker, director general of the Security Service, said that the “scale and tempo” of the danger to the UK was at a level he had not seen in his 32-year career.

British politicians appear to have consistently ignored these warnings and allowed the untenable situation in the country to fester until the “new normal” became jihadists murdering children for Allah at pop concerts.

Given the prohibitive costs of monitoring 23,000 jihadists, the only realistic solution to this enormous security issue appears to be deporting jihadists, at least the foreign nationals among the 3,000 monitored, because they pose a threat. British nationals represent a separate problem, as they cannot be deported. Nevertheless, deportation has been an underused tool in the fight against Islamic terrorism: politicians worry too much about international conventions of human rights — meaning the human rights of jihadists and convicted terrorists, rather than the human rights of their own populace.

According to findings by the Henry Jackson Society in 2015 — as, unbelievably, the Home Office said it did not keep figures on the numbers of terror suspects allowed to remain in the UK by the courts — from 2005-2015, 28 convicted or suspected terrorists were allowed to stay in the UK and resist deportation by using the Human Rights Act. According to both the European Convention on Human Rights and the British Human Rights Act, individuals are protected against torture and inhuman or degrading treatment. As these 28 terrorists are all from countries with poor human rights records, they get to stay in the UK by claiming they would face torture if deported to their country of origin.

Robin Simcox, research fellow at the Henry Jackson Society, said:

“Being unable to deport foreign national security threats is an issue that has plagued successive governments. The coalition government has not shown itself able to resolve problems with the legislation that makes this the case any more than its predecessors. This must change – and quickly.”

There is no mysterious force preventing a change in legislation; all that is needed is the political will to leave the international conventions that currently prohibit or make impossible such deportations. Already in 2015, then Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said:

“It would simply never in a million years have occurred to the authors of the original Convention on Human Rights that it would one day end up in some form being used as a justification to stay here by individuals who are a danger to our country and our way of life.

“I do not believe that we should be in a position where we are hamstrung in a way that makes it more difficult to protect our citizens. We need urgent, wholesale reform of human rights laws in this country to make sure they cannot be twisted to serve the interests of those who would harm our society.”

LONDON, ENGLAND – MARCH 08: Secretary of State for Transport Chris Grayling leaves a Pre-Budget Cabinet meeting at Downing Street on March 8, 2017 in London, England. Today’s Budget will be the last one to take place in the spring. It is being replaced by an annual autumn Budget, the first of which is to be held later this year. The current Chancellor wants to simplify the process of setting taxes and government spending. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

Many politicians pretend that those international conventions are eternal, virtually divine, instruments of law to which they are bound forever. This kind of false pretense is not only reckless, but criminal in an age where these conventions have become tools used against the most basic freedoms — physical security, the right to life — of the citizens that they were meant to protect. None of the authors presumably intended these conventions to be abused as convenient tools in “lawfare” to protect terrorists and their supporters.

An example of such abuse is the treatment of a convicted al-Qaeda terror fundraiser, Baghdad Meziane. He had links to the Paris attacks; was jailed for 11 years in 2003 for running a terror support network, and is still residing in the UK after using the Human Rights Act to prevent deportation to his native Algeria. After serving his sentence, he is free to continue his terrorist business in the UK.

A small part of the failure of the UK police forces to deal effectively with the thousands of jihadists lies in flawed priorities, at least going by the latest reports. According to Cambridge News, a police helicopter and 10 officers were sent to a home in Cherry Hinton after a complaint from members of the public that the music was too loud. Initially, one officer was sent to the scene, but more arrived and the helicopter was deployed after the officer apparently “took offence” at a song mocking dead terrorist Osama Bin Laden being played, pressed her “panic button” and called in reinforcements. The people at the small drinking party are, according to the Cambridgeshire police spokesman, now being investigated for committing “an alleged incident of incitement of racial hatred.” What, after all, could be more urgent than investigating a drinking party where a Bin Laden parody song was played, with only 23,000 jihadists out and about on the streets of Britain?

The problem of jihadists on the loose is of course not limited to the UK. Recently, a Syrian who arrived in Sweden as a “refugee” in 2015 was acquitted in court of attacking Shia Muslims with firebombs in Sweden. However, having said in monitored conversations that he sees himself as a jihadist who wants to become a martyr and considering that he has been in touch with ISIS, Swedish intelligence deemed him too dangerous to stay in Sweden, so the immigration authorities sought to have him deported to Syria. They did not succeed: the law does not permit his deportation to Syria, as he risks being arrested or executed there. Instead, he was released and is freely walking around in Malmö. Because in Sweden the human rights of an aspiring terrorist foreigner are evidently more important than the human rights of the citizens he wishes to murder.

In short, the policy of doing nothing about the issue of deportation and its clash with outdated human rights conventions, appears to be a deliberate policy in several European countries. The question arises, is Europe actively choosing to commit suicide?

 

‘Wonder Woman,’ Big-Name Concerts Upstage Cultural Boycott of Israel

By: Adam Abrams; jns.org

As Israeli actress Gal Gadot’s “Wonder Woman” film heads toward $400 million in earnings after debuting in early June, and numerous big-name musical acts line up to perform in Israel this summer, the influence of the BDS movement’s cultural boycott of the Jewish state appears to be waning.

Gadot, who served in the IDF, has drawn ire from anti-Israel activists worldwide for her vocal support of Israel. Yet despite BDS campaigns to boycott “Wonder Woman” in Lebanon, Jordan, Tunisia and Algeria due to the “Zionist” actress’s leading role, Gadot’s Marvel comic superhero movie soared to success—earning $103.1 million in North America during its first weekend—and received overwhelmingly positive reviews.

On the musical front, while leading artists routinely receive BDS pressure to cancel their shows in Israel, the number of star-studded acts scheduled to perform in the Jewish state this summer is unprecedented.

“Most artists understand that boycott campaigns in this case are racist and destructive, and will not lead to peace,” Roz Rothstein, CEO of the pro-Israel education organization StandWithUs, told JNS.org.

“Not only is the boycott movement against Israel a failure among performing artists, but 21 [U.S.] states have already passed anti-BDS legislation because it is viewed as discriminatory and harmful,” she added.

Steven Tyler, lead singer of rock band Aerosmith, at the Western Wall in Jerusalem’s Old City, as the band makes a tour stop in Israel for a concert, on May 15, 2017. Photo by Rob Ghost/Flash90

In May, the Aerosmith rock band and pop star Justin Bieber both performed at Tel Aviv’s Hayarkon Park, resisting BDS petitions signed by thousands to cancel their concerts in Israel. Adding to their defiance of the boycott movement, the Aerosmith rockers met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at his office in Jerusalem. “You don’t want to miss a thing,” Netanyahu told the band when recommending places to visit in Israel, a reference to the group’s first number-one hit.

“Artists that come to Israel have understood that people are trying to take advantage of them because of hatred and for narrow political needs….[At their performances] they see a young, liberal, open audience…and feel that attempts to make them boycott Israel do not give credit to their intelligence,” Lior Weintraub, vice president of The Israel Project educational organization, told JNS.org.

Besides the Bieber and Aersomith performances, big-name shows hitting Israel this summer include Tom Jones, Armin van Buuren, Britney Spears, the Pixies, Guns N’ Roses, Rod Stewart, Lil Wayne, Radiohead and comedian Chris Rock.

Ahead of Radiohead’s July 19 performance in Tel Aviv, the band publicly clashed with the de facto frontman of the BDS movement, Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters, over the cultural boycott of Israel.

The public spat was instigated when Waters, along with South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu, published an open letter on Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day demanding that Radiohead cancel its performance in Israel.

The letter, co-signed by dozens of artists, stated, “By playing in Israel you’ll be playing in a state where, U.N. rapporteurs say, ‘A system of apartheid has been imposed on the Palestinian people’…Please do what artists did in South Africa’s era of oppression: stay away, until apartheid is over.”

Radiohead’s lead singer, Thom Yorke—who rarely speaks with the media—responded furiously to the letter in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine.

Yorke lambasted critics of Radiohead who assumed he and his bandmates were ignorant about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and condemned Waters for “throw[ing] the word ‘apartheid’ around.”

“The kind of dialogue that [BDS activists] want to engage in is one that’s black or white. I have a problem with that,” said Yorke, who added it is “really upsetting that artists I respect think we are not capable of making a moral decision ourselves after all these years….There’s an awful lot of people who don’t agree with the BDS movement, including us. I don’t agree with the cultural ban at all.”

Creative Community for Peace co-founder David Renzer told JNS.org, “We are pleased to see the continuation of major international artists performing in Israel, despite the ongoing efforts of the BDS movement and artists such as Roger Waters.”

Renzer, whose organization works “behind the scenes” to provide support to artists performing in Israel, added, “Thankfully, artists are recognizing that the arts are a powerful means to building bridges and aren’t allowing themselves to be manipulated.”

 

Trump to Qatar: Stop Funding Terror

By: Elad Benari; israelnationalnews.com

President Trump says Qatar has funded terror “at a very high level.”

Donald Trump (Reuters)

U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday called on Qatar to stop funding of groups that commit terrorism, saying the country had historically done so “at a very high level.”

“No civilized nation can tolerate this violence or allow this wicked ideology to spread on its shores,” Trump told reporters during a joint news conference with Romanian President Klaus Iohannis.

Earlier on Friday, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson urged Gulf states to ease their blockade of Qatar, explaining that it has “humanitarian consequences” and hinders the United States’ military efforts.

This week, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates all cut diplomatic ties with Qatar and shut down land, sea and air links. Jordan and several other countries in the region followed suit.

Those countries accuse Qatar of supporting terror groups in the region, specifically the Muslim Brotherhood, a charge denied by Qatar.

The countries should “immediately take steps to de-escalate the situation and make a good faith effort to resolve the grievances they have with each other,” Tillerson said Friday in a statement quoted by NBC News.

Meanwhile on Friday, reported Reuters, Trump spoke by phone with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to discuss Qatar and the need for Gulf unity.

It was the fourth call Trump has had with a regional leader since the crisis began on Monday.

During his phone calls, Trump has emphasized a desire for Gulf unity in the wake of the crisis but has made clear he sees a need for Qatar to improve its behavior, said a senior administration official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The spat between Qatar and the other Arab countries began late last month, when Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt all blocked the website of the Qatari-owned Al-Jazeera television network.

That move followed comments attributed to the Emir of Qatar, in which he allegedly described Iran as an “Islamic power” and criticized U.S. President Donald Trump’s policy towards Tehran.

Qatar claimed that its Emir had not made the comments attributed to him, saying the website of its official news agency was hacked.

 

The UK and Jihad

By: Rachel Ehrenfeld; americanthinker.com

As with the car and stabbing attacks on the Westminster Bridge on March 22, 2017, media reports on Saturday night highlighted the terrorists’ “new tactic” of using cars to mow down a large number of pedestrians, and knives to stab as many as they can. There is nothing new about this tactic. As with other forms of terrorism, the Palestinians used them first on Israeli civilians. Despite decades of advancing Palestinian terrorist tactics in Israel (suicide belts and vests, and car bombs with nails and screws, car mowing pedestrians, and stabbing, to name but a few), the political leadership of most Western nations seemed oblivious to the emerging patterns of Islamic terrorism. They failed to recognize their jihad against Israel for the deadly contagious disease they spread. This has been going on for decades.

Instead of pressuring the Palestinians to stop, Arab and Western nations have been rewarding the Palestinians who employ terrorists and fund their activities with billions of dollars while pressuring Israel for concessions. Incredibly, since the rise of global Islamic radicalism, the Palestinians have successfully managed to falsely argue that the creation of the state of Palestine, an Islamic terrorist state, would somehow influence other radical Islamic groups to give up their jihad. The Saudis and the Gulf States that have been funding the Palestinian jihadists know better, but are finding it difficult to change their longtime habits, they apparently encouraged President Trump to renege on his promise to recognize Jerusalem as the legitimate capital of Israel by relocating the American embassy to the city, while legitimizing the Palestinian leaderships that fund terrorism. (The Saudi agreement to purchase some $400 billion worth of U.S. weapons and technology has probably helped their appeal).

The Saturday night Islamic terrorist car and knives attack in East London should signal the end of multiculturalism in England. But don’t hold your breath.

For many decades, radical Islamist ideology was allowed to flourish in England, mostly under the guise of pro-Palestinian, anti-Israeli activities. Those, however, allowed the expansion of Islamic networks with Saudi and Gulf funding of mosques, madrassas, and Islamic centers and with Muslim Brotherhood political guiding laid down a global network. After the 9/11 al Qaeda attacks on America and the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan supported by the United Kingdom and Canada, Islamic organizations in Britain, including the Palestinians, have increased their activities, raising money for future widows and orphans and expanded their base through the dawa.

Law enforcement officials privately voiced their concern but there was no political will to confront the problem. Not even after fifteen Islamic terrorist attacks beginning on July 7, 2005, on London’s transportation systems killing 52 and wounding many others.

The threat of Islamic takeover has been clear to many and mostly ignored by British politicians. A few, like Baroness Cox, protested the imposition of Sharia courts in England. In March 2014 she described the Islamic modus operandi: Sharia law, imported from theocracies like Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia, began to be used here in a strictly limited form, dealing mainly with narrow issues like Islamic financial contracts. But as the Muslim population has grown, and the pervasive creed of multiculturalism has become ever more powerful, so Sharia law has rapidly grown in influence within some communities. ‘There are now estimated to be no fewer than 85 Sharia courts across the country — from London and Manchester to Bradford and Nuneaton. They operate mainly from mosques, settling financial and family disputes according to [Islamic} religious principles.” The government of David Cameron, like that of Tony Blair before, paid little attention and refused to outlaw the Muslim Brotherhood, which has been collecting funds for Hamas for decades.

Radical Islam spreads in large Muslim communities everywhere in the West. The Islamic ideology is preached and enforced in Mosques and schools, usually with no interference from the local secular authorities. For example, on May 18, 2015, sharia became the law officially in the Muslim-majority Barking & Dagenham Borough in East London, where the Metropolitan Police has been hunting for potential supporters of the latest car and knife attacks this past Saturday night that killed seven and injured at least 48 people, many critically.

At that time, the local council took this step to “welcome our Muslim immigrants and nourish a multicultural society.” Imposing sharia on all residents, Muslim and non-Muslim alike prohibited “the consumption of pork or alcohol. All businesses required to desist all their operation during Islamic prayer time, or else they will incur fines. All women, whether they are Muslim or not required to wear hijabs (the local government [was] in the process of sewing tens of thousands for non-Muslim women)” Representatives of the council saw the move to Sharia “as a natural next step.” Moreover, Linda Gayle, a local representative declared: “It was only a matter of time before Sharia Law became reality in London and we’re happy to be the forerunners of this very tolerant and multicultural governing process. Barking is home to tens of thousands of Muslims, and we could no longer ignore the richness that they have brought to our little part of town. Implementing Sharia Law is honoring all the people of Muslim faith who make this community thrive. Now they will finally feel home!” The Saturday night attacks on the infidels was another bloody reminder that radical Muslims do not honor others.

Prime Minister Theresa May described Saturday’s attackers as bound together by the single evil ideology of Islamist extremism that preaches hatred, sows division and promotes sectarianism.” She went on to say: “It is an ideology that claims our Western values of freedom, democracy, and human rights are incompatible with the religion of Islam.” She was right. Islam, as taught and practiced today is incompatible with Western values. And unless is it forced to change it will continue to incite for jihad. It’s about time to declare war on all Jihadists.