Monday, December 31, 2007

Israel gets warned: Al-Qaida coming!


What can I say other than, “Get in line.”

There are many many many groups trying to destroy Israel from inside and outside that run the gambit from Hamas to the Greek Orthodox Church to our own government ministers to our neighbors with nuclear bombs. What makes Al-Qaida any different or more frightening?

Israel is ever vigilant. It is our nature, our heritage, our calling to survive. We were here long before Al-Qaida or Islam existed, and we will be here long after Al-Qaida and their merry band of madmen are dead and forgotten.

Osama needs to read his own book. Does it not state implicitly that Israel belongs to the Jews?

Indications terror network sending cells to Jewish state using foreign passports
Posted: December 31, 2007
1:00 a.m. Eastern
By Aaron Klein
© 2007

JERUSALEM – Israel in recent months received warnings from foreign intelligence agencies that al-Qaida operatives were seeking to infiltrate the Jewish state to set up cells to carry out large-scale attacks, WND has learned.

The warnings were followed up by the release this weekend of a new audiotape in which al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden made an unusually sharp threat of attacks against Israel.

According to Israeli security officials, Israel several times received general warnings indicating al-Qaida was attempting to fly operatives into the Jewish state's international airport disguised as tourists carrying foreign passports. The latest warning was received a few months ago and indicated the passports may be from Britain, Australia and the United States.

The security officials said al-Qaida has come to the conclusion Palestinian terror groups operating in the Gaza Strip and West Bank have had great difficulty infiltrating Israel due to the country's security barrier and antiterror measures and that Palestinians who do successfully infiltrate are not capable of carrying out large-scale attacks inside the country.

The Israeli security officials said the latest warning, which was shared with Palestinian intelligence agencies, indicated al-Qaida has made a strategic decision to attempt to send foreign cells into the Jewish state instead of relying on Palestinian militants.

The warning also listed other countries aside from Israel that al-Qaida may attempt to infiltrate using the same methods, the officials said.

Groups ideologically aligned with al-Qaida are widely suspected to be operating in the Gaza Strip and there have been some reports of similar groups attempting to establish themselves in the West Bank.

But with strict border controls in place at airports and crossings, Israel is largely thought to be difficult for al-Qaida to infiltrate.

Israeli security officials did not indicate there were any thwarted al-Qaida attempts to infiltrate the country. A Palestinian security official familiar with the report also said he was not aware of any recent attempts.

Israel previously acknowledged it arrested suspected al-Qaida infiltrators. In August 2003, Israel's mission to the U.N. submitted a report stating the country had thwarted several attempts by al-Qaida operatives carrying foreign passports to enter Israel in order to gather intelligence and conduct attacks. The Jewish state also noted in the report it had captured Palestinians recruited by al-Qaida abroad to conduct attacks in Israel.

The latest al-Qaida warning was received here just a few months before bin Laden's videotape was released this weekend vowing to "expand jihad to Palestine."

"I would like to assure our people in Palestine that we will expand our jihad there," said bin Laden. "We intend to liberate Palestine, the whole of Palestine from the (Jordan) river to the sea," he continued, threatening "blood for blood, destruction for destruction."

While bin Laden and other Al-Qaida figures many times vowed to attack Israel, the latest comments were a more direct language than bin Laden usually uses.

"We will not recognize even one inch for Jews in the land of Palestine as other Muslim leaders have," bin Laden said.

The majority of the terror chieftain's message dealt with Iraq, including a warning to Iraq's Sunni Arabs against joining tribal councils fighting Al-Qaida or participating in any unity government.

Israeli officials said they were taking bin Laden's latest threat seriously. After yesterday's meeting here of the government's security cabinet, Tzachi Hanegbi, chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, told reporters, "The threat of al-Qaida is real. They've struck in Lebanon, Australia, Indonesia, Madrid, New York and London. They can easily target the Middle East and we need to be prepared for that."

Al-Qaida at Israel's border
While al-Qaida is not thought to have infiltrated Israel, the global jihad group is suspected of operating in Gaza and previously carried out numerous attacks near the Jewish state's borders.

Al-Qaida took responsibility for a series of hotel bombings in Amman, Jordan in November 2005 killing 60 and injuring over 115 others. While Jordan, which borders Israel, has had some successes fighting al-Qaida cells, security officials fear the terror group still maintains a significant infrastructure there capable of carrying out attacks.

Egypt has had difficulty eliminating al-Qaida cells, particularly those operating among Bedouin villages in the Sinai desert bordering the Gaza Strip.

Al-Qaida has been widely blamed for several Sinai attacks the past three years including the bomb blasts in April 2006 that killed 24 people and injured over 85 in the Sinai town of Dahab, and deadly bombings in the resort centers of Taba and Ras Shitan in October 2004 as well as in Sharm el-Sheik in July.

Last April, al-Qaida was blamed for two bombings near multinational peacekeeping force in the Sinai adjacent to Gaza. Almost simultaneously inside Gaza, the Popular Resistance Committees attempted to carry out a large-scale car bombing at the Karni Crossing, the main cargo passageway between the Gaza Strip and Israel. The attack was foiled at the last minute after Palestinian forces became suspicious and opened fire at an approaching vehicle. Some security officials told WND the thwarted Karni attack was planned in conjunction with al-Qaida elements in Gaza.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

The "Settlers" are LEGAL, got it?


One of the best articles I have ever read about the historical validity of the "settlers" in Israel. They are legitimate Israeli citizens living on the land, and protecting Israel by their presence.

Not only are they legal and justified by religious law, they are also legal and justified by Israeli and International law.

The arabs have plenty of places to go. Let's help them pack.


Guest Column: On the rights of 'settlers'

Shmuel Katz , THE JERUSALEM POST Dec. 27, 2007

US Ambassador Richard Jones was recently reported to have asked Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch about the legal status of the "settlements."

This is indeed a subject which has long been neglected - or simply ignored. The answer to the question is a simple one, but in view of the obfuscation which has for years gathered around it, it is essential to examine its roots. They lie comfortably in the text of the Mandate for Palestine which was conferred on Britain in 1922 by the League of Nations.

The Mandate's objective was to facilitate the "reconstitution" of the Jewish National Home in Palestine. It was intended to serve as the legal instrument for implementing Britain's 1917 Balfour Declaration. The essential obligations of the mandatory were to facilitate the immigration of Jews and encourage their "close settlement" on the land, including state and waste lands. (In accordance with the Balfour Declaration, "the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities" were to be protected.)

The vision of the Balfour Declaration was encapsulated a couple of years later by cabinet minister Winston Churchill, who wrote that "a Jewish state will arise in our day on the banks of the Jordan."

At that time, too, the League of Nations conferred on Britain a Mandate for Mesopotamia (Iraq); and Mandates for Syria and Lebanon were conferred on France, presaging the establishment of sovereign Arab states. Thus did the Allied nations complete the sharing out of the territories they had captured from the Turks in the Great War of 1914-1918.

ADDED UP, these Arab states-to-be accounted for some 99 percent of the total conquered area. In its capture during the war it may be said the Arabs themselves played practically no part. The so-called Arab Revolt against the Turks, heavily financed by Britain and brilliantly portrayed by T.E. Lawrence (of Arabia), did not in fact take place at all. Eighty percent of the Arabs who fought in the war did so on the side of the Turks. The Jewish people not only fielded a Jewish fighting legion in Palestine, but also a most effective intelligence service in Palestine and Syria.

Nevertheless, when peace came Arab voices were raised against the British undertaking to the Jews. Balfour admonished them. He pointed out that it was the British who had established an independent sovereignty in Hejaz (the Mandates came two years later), and he added:

"I hope they will remember that it is we who desire in Mesopotamia to prepare the way for the future of a self-governing Arab state and I hope that, understanding all that, they will not grudge that small notch being given to the people who for all these hundreds of years have been separated from it."

Yet - in 1922 at the last moment, the British inserted a clause (Number 25) excluding the provision of the Jewish National Home from the area east of the Jordan River. Zionist protest went unheeded; and so the almost-empty eastern Palestine, renamed Transjordan, ultimately became the Kingdom of Jordan, adding another state to the tremendous Arab domain. The fact that it was a Palestinian state could not be erased, nor that the majority of its inhabitants have come from western Palestine. Thus was executed the first partition of the Land of Israel.

THE STATUS of Jewish settlement in what remained of Palestine remained unaffected. But as the years went by, the steady British retreat from their obligations, particularly by severe limitations on Jewish immigration, finally led to the White Paper of 1939. Apart from new land laws, it projected that Jewish immigration would be allowed at 15,000 souls a year for five years and then completely frozen. There would be no Jewish National Home. There would be an Arab majority, and some form of British overlordship to protect Jewish minority interests.

The White Paper, fiercely attacked in Parliament, was passed - by a reduced majority. But any change in British policy in Mandatory Palestine was subject to the approval of the League of Nations. The League, it was true, had for some years already been seen as an effete body, but its constitutional authority had remained intact. For monitoring the progress of the various mandates it maintained a kind of watchdog commission, and considered any proposed changes in the terms of the Mandate only if approved by the Mandate Commission. When in 1939 the British government submitted the White Paper to the commission, it refused its approval on the grounds that it did not conform to the terms of the Mandate.

Angry British Foreign Office senior officials exchanged notes and discussed among themselves the desperate policy of proposing a change in the Mandate itself. But they were stymied. It was too late - nearly the end of August 1939, and on the first of September World War II broke out. The Council of the League of Nations never met again. With it died the White Paper. The Mandate remained the defining document for governing Palestine.

THE BRITISH government, frustrated, did not relent. It launched a bitter campaign, using diplomatic channels in Europe to prevent Jews escaping and employing the Royal Navy to intercept boats carrying Jewish refugees from Europe and prevent their reaching the Jewish National Home. Indeed, when Churchill was prime minister he wrote in an internal instruction that "the White Paper stands."

The Mandate, however, with its injunction to assist Jewish settlement, remained intact and after World War II was "inherited" by the United Nations. It was a period of considerable unrest which, despite much repressive effort, the British could not subdue. Under the pressure of a highly effective Jewish underground fighting force (and consequent reactive political pressure at home) the Labor government finally returned the Mandate to the UN (in the spring of 1947).

The UN, in a dramatic special session, in effect accepted Britain's resignation and later that year decided to recommend the partition of Palestine between Jews and Arabs. (Not Palestinians. Nobody had heard of such a separate entity.) The Arab states rejected that offer. Thus Palestine, with the rights of Jewish settlement, remained undivided as the Jewish state between the Jordan and the Mediterranean.

The Arab refusal was not a whim. The idea of a non-Arab state (and specifically a hated Jewish state) "in the heart of the Arab world" was anathema to them. It was reflected by a claim of possession of the whole country. Immediately after the UN session, the League of Arab States decided to go to war to destroy the Jewish state at birth.

In the meantime a preliminary campaign of terror was launched against the Jewish community. Then on May 14, 1948, the day the British left, five well-armed Arab states - Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq - invaded the country. The losses Israel sustained in that war of nine months exceeded, in proportion of population, the losses sustained by Britain and America in World War I. The invasion success was limited not only by the inordinate valor of the youth of Israel, but in time by the supply of much-needed arms by Czechoslovakia (with Soviet permission) and France.

HOWEVER, Jordan succeeded in holding on to the eastern highlands (primarily Judea and Samaria) and then even presumptuously announced their annexation. Egypt captured the Gaza "Strip." It is not irrelevant to mention that in the next 19 years of Jordanian and Egyptian occupation, neither Jordan nor Egypt proposed, nor did the Palestinian Arabs demand from Jordan and Egypt, the establishment of a Palestinian state. To the contrary, Palestinian Arab terror continued to operate as before against Israel.

Then in 1967, Egypt, Syria and Jordan again attacked Israel, again with the repeated announcement that the objective was its "annihilation." Israel turned the tables and won the war. Soon after that victory, Israel offered the Arabs to hand them all the territory it had regained, in return for peace. At a conference in Khartoum the unanimous Arab reply was: No negotiations. No peace. No recognition.

So once again Jewish settlement rights had been endangered, and once again had been saved by Arab intransigence.

It was shortly afterward that the movement of Jewish settlers was launched. It is noteworthy that the last defining document that underwrites the legality was the Geneva Convention of 1949. It dealt with occupied territories. Its second clause, stating its scope, makes it clear that it does not apply to the Jewish presence in Judea and Samaria - because Jordan was not a sovereign possessor but an illegal invader, and similarly was Egypt an illegal invader of Gaza. Israel liberated both areas, restoring them to the territory of the Palestine Mandate of 1922.

From the point of view of international law these settlers are as legal as any resident of Manhattan or of Shreveport, Louisiana.

The writer, who co-founded the Herut Party with Menachem Begin and was a member of the first Knesset, is a biographer, essayist and veteran Post contributor. His latest book, The Aaronsohn Saga (Gefen), has just been released.

Marky Ramone at Zappa in Tel Aviv on January 10


Here's one of the first interviews in advance of Marky Ramone's concert in Tel Aviv. I love the Ramones, I love punk, and I'm religious. It's OK.

Punk is an authentic Jewish music. Read Heebie Jeebies at the CBGB if you don't believe me!

Dec 30, 2007 8:10

Marky Ramone stays back in rock & roll high school

Their songs were never longer than two minutes or so of adrenaline-fueled, sped-up pop... and then immediately onto something else. So it's a little surprising that Marky Ramone, the drummer for Rock and Roll Hall of Famers The Ramones, is so calm and thoughtful.

KEEPING PUNK alive. Marky believes if the other members of the group were around, there would have been a reunion.

Marc Bell, along with "brothers" Johnny, Joey and Dee Dee who all 'adopted' the last name Ramone, made up the longest line-up of the Ramones career; he joined the band in 1978, replacing Tommy and keeping the beat until their demise in 1996, with a just a brief break in the mid-'80s when Richie took over the skins.

The Ramones were like a club. The uniform was black leather jackets, t-shirts and torn jeans, and the sound was just as regimented and alluring - three basic chords, a relentless rhythm, a buzz saw guitar attack, and the catchiest songs imaginable featuring simple, often nonsensical rhyming lyrics. When they debuted from the bowels of famed punk club CBGB with their eponymous album in 1976, nobody out in radio land knew what to make of them. Too loud, too strange, and the songs were too short!

But for rock fans in the mid-'70s numbed by the dominance of progressive rock on the one hand and laid back glossy LA pop on the other, The Ramones brought back fun and attitude to rock & roll with their "Buddy Holly on Marshall amps at 78 speed" sound.

So despite very little radio play or mainstream attention, The Ramones forged a musical revolution that resounded around the world - especially in England, where kids like Joe Strummer and Johnny Rotten heard and adopted the minimalist sound. It acquired the banner name "punk rock," and the rest is history.

Like most pioneers, the originators never received their deserved recognition or reward at the time, but for Marky, belated accolades are just as sweet.

"Back then, radio ignored us. We persevered through loyal fans, and that's why The Ramones are more popular now than ever. Today there's a new generation of youth that's into The Ramones. They see something they can relate to," Marky said with a distinctive hometown accent during a phone conversation from his base in Brooklyn Heights, New York.

"Despite not having big hits while we were performing, over the years, we've ended up selling a lot of records. Our biggest selling single is "I Wanna Be Sedated" which has sold about two million, and "Blitzkreig Bop" which has sold almost as much. And we have quite a few gold albums [including Rock and Roll High School]."

MARKY IS now the living legacy of the Ramones. Vocalist Joey and guitarist Johnny both died of cancer earlier this decade and bassist Dee Dee succumbed to years of substance abuse. The band members did not have great relations either during or following their career (animosity between Johnny and Joey was fanzine gossip fodder for years), but Marky said that he's reasonably confident there would have been a Ramones reunion if the other members had survived.

"We retired in 1996 after being together for 22 years. It was a long haul and we went out still at the top of our game. I think if the three of them were still alive, we would have gotten back together," he said.

In lieu of The Ramones, Marky has kept the punk flame alive by forming "Marky Ramone and Friends" which plays 30 classic Ramones songs. He also tours as a guest DJ and hosts his own radio show on Sirius Satellite Radio where he plays a variety of punk classics as well as the Ramones repertoire.

"My show is the biggest punk rock radio show in America," Marky stated without sounding like he was bragging. "I'll play new school and old school punk. I want to give new bands a chance, and give older punk bands that never got played in their day some exposure. I would never do this on general airwave radio, because they would end up telling me what to play."

There's no question of what Marky's going to play when he brings his "friends" to Tel Aviv for a January 10 show at Zappa. He says that people will be surprised at how much the band sounds remarkably like The Ramones.

"I was receiving a lot of email and comments on my site that were coming out of interest in my radio show - things like 'Marky, come out and play, we miss the Ramones.' I thought, 'It's possible, but it has to be done right.' It has to sound good, but it needs to have its own sound too, but close to The Ramones," he recalled.

"I would never call it The Ramones. There's too many bands going out there with one original member and calling it by the original name. I would never do that, out of respect to Joey, Dee Dee and Johnny."

Playing with musicians half his age, Marky, in his mid-fifties, says he follows the same regimen in order to play the pummeling beats that drive the songs.

"I learned to pace myself, even back then when I was young. It's like being an athlete, you need to rehearse and exercise and be in good shape. I continue to do that, and I think it shows in the performances.

"I'm the only one out there still playing Ramones music today. It's fun to continue doing it as long there's a demand for it. But I won't do this forever."

'Marky Ramone and Friends' will appear at the Zappa in Tel Aviv on January 10.

Jewish Agency to introduce "trial immigration"


This is such a good idea, that I'm betting it won't be allowed to proceed--some government minister will nix it or some organization will find a lawyer to challenge it. It's just too good to be true.

Imagine being allowed to actually try finding a job and a place to live before making aliyah. Wow.

Program allows Jews to give immigration a chance
By Daphna Berman

The Jewish Agency will introduce a "trial immigration" program to Jews from abroad, as part of a broader strategy to make the move less intimidating for potential immigrants from the West.

As part of the new flexible immigration program, participants will become "trial residents" - a status that will make them eligible for financial benefits that ordinary tourists are not. JAFI officials say they are working with the Ministry of Interior and plan to introduce the program within the next six months.

The plan is part of a larger restructuring of the Jewish Agency's immigration and absorption department, as well as an indication of JAFI's decision to broaden their definition of immigration to meet the changing needs and realities of Western Jews.

"With immigration by choice, people need to be willing to close a chapter and say goodbye to their family, their culture, their job and their friends," said Oded Salomon, director general of the immigration and absorption department. "Not everyone is ready for that."

The program, which will not obligate participants to immigrate, aims to provide a supportive framework for job searches, as well as expose potential immigrants to various living options if they were to move here. Jewish Agency officials say they are hoping to create living quarters for young Jews in Tel Aviv and Haifa. Participants in the program will also be assisted with travel and living expenses.

"Afterward, they can decide if they want to change their status (to become Israeli citizens) or go home," said Salomon "We believe that exposing people to life here will increase their chances of immigrating."

As part of the program, Jewish Agency officials will now also be encouraging what they call "partial immigration" so that Diaspora Jews can work and spend several months a year here, without necessarily taking on Israeli citizenship.

"We see partial immigration and immigration in stages as very positive things," said Moshe Vigdor, director general of JAFI. "People are buying apartments, bringing their children for the summer and spending a few months a year in Israel. This encourages people to think about immigration and it makes it less threatening."

The program will also be designed to provide support for people who come to Israel for a sabbatical year.

The changes will also include what JAFI officials describe as a greater focus on customer service and immigrant absorption. The Jewish Agency also plans to maintain closer ties with graduates of MASA and Taglit-birthright Israel, increase partnerships with various religious movements in the Diaspora and streamline their emissary system.

Vigdor said restructuring was not part of the larger downsizing trend. The changes and upgrades, he said, will be enabled by growing partnerships with the International Fellowship for Christians and Jews - which last week pledged some $45 million to the Jewish Agency over three years.

$150 Million in Hamas Carry-on Luggage


Not a well translated article, but an important one.

It seems that Hamas was collecting large donations at the yearly hajj and intended to deliver that money to Gaza in order to finance another few months of terror against Israel.

No telling how many of those 3000 detained “Palestinians” are members of Osama’s new Jihad campaign.

It wouldn't be that hard to substitute a few terrorists from Osama's club with terrorists from Hamas's club--just find two terrorists of a similar builds, similar ages, and similar looks and trade travel documents, right? Who would be the wiser?

Then, the new terrorists just need to wait a few weeks eating Hummus in a coffee shop in Gaza City until some "human rights group" complains that the roadblocks are hurting the "poor innocent Palestinian people," the US pressures the Israeli government to "ease restrictions," dress as a businessman and enter Israel, kill some Jews, and escape.

Remember, they are our "partners in peace" OK?

I guess Bush doesn’t mind a few more dead Jews if it means he can hang a picture of him “making peace” on the wall of his den.

Egypt transfers to El Arish detention center more than 3,000 Palestinians taken off two Red Sea ferries, including 1,000 Hamas operatives
December 30, 2007, 12:57 PM (GMT+02:00)

The number of passengers proved greater than estimated when they disembarked at Nuweiba, on the Sinai shore of the Gulf of Aqaba Sunday, 30 Dec. After being herded together they were bussed to a detention center in the northern Sinai town of El Arish.

The Hamas group, carrying app. $150 million collected during the Mecca hajj, had held the two Aqaba-Nuweiba ferries hostage under threaten to scuttle them. They rejected Egypt’s demand to first sign undertakings to enter Gaza through one of the crossings controlled by Israel and submit to searches.

A 62-year old Palestinian female passenger, Shafiqa Bahisi, died under the strain. Saturday, as Egypt stood firm, Hamas gathered tens of thousands of supporters from around the Gaza Strip to ram the Rafah gateway to Egyptian Sinai, while Cairo beefed up its security units at the terminal.

According to DEBKAfile’s military sources, Hamas leaders tried to smuggle suitcases packed with Jordanian and Egyptian currency into Gaza from the end of the Mecca pilgrimage last Friday.

If delivered, the money is enough to keep Hamas’ military operations going for another three to four months, including missile and other attacks. Our intelligence sources report that several Hamas operatives aboard the ferries are high on Israel’s wanted terrorist list.

They collected around $50 m from Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a secret rendezvous at a Saudi shrine on Wed. Dec. 19; the rest from Hamas’ parent, the Muslim Brotherhood, which was handed over under cover of the pilgrimage. In September, Brotherhood branches worldwide launched a secret fundraising drive under the slogan: “Contribute to save Hamas rule in Gaza.”

Saudi authorities permitted the cash to be brought into the kingdom and handed to Hamas leaders. Egypt allowed Hamas leaders to leave the Gaza Strip for the hajj but prevented them from returning with their war chest. This resolve was the outcome of Mubarak’s talks with visiting Israeli defense minister Ehud Barak last week and their decision to join forces to combat the war activities mounted from Gaza by Hamas and its allies.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

MKs to Prime Minister: Keep Jews in Hevron's Peace House


I am convinced that the only answer to terror is to build and build and build. For every person killed by a terrorist, we must establish a new community. They want to destroy, we want to create. This is the message.

If we back down to terror (which is what the US wants Israel to do), we lose and terror wins. We must not let them have our land, our places of worship, our heritage, and our souls.

Evacuating Jews from Jewish land is always a mistake--doubly so in the shadow of a terror attack.

by Hillel Fendel

( Knesset Members of both the coalition and opposition have signed on a letter to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, asking him to halt proceedings to evict Jews from their Hevron home.

The MKs, fresh off a Wednesday session of the Knesset State Audit Committee on the topic of Beit HaShalom (Peace House) in Hevron, sent the letter on Thursday night. They wrote that in light of what they had learned from government representatives, the State Comptroller must be allowed to investigate the matter before legal proceedings are taken to evict the Jewish residents.

In March of this year, it was announced that the structure - an impressive 3,500 square-meter (roughly 3.5 million square feet), four-story building along the route between Kiryat Arba and the Jewish neighborhoods of Hevron - had been purchased for the Jewish Community of Hevron for about $700,000. Though the purchase papers have been meticulously reviewed and searched for any errors or forgeries, nothing has been found to invalidate the sale.

Despite this, the government is interested in throwing the residents out - based on an order given months ago by former Defense Minister Amir Peretz. A brake was put on these efforts on Thursday when a military committee turned down a Civil Administration request to throw them out.

The State Control Committee meeting was held at the request of another Knesset committee, the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, which dealt with this issue behind closed doors two weeks ago. In light of what the committee members felt were problematic details revealed at that meeting, they asked the State Control Committee to use its authority to request that the State Comptroller investigate the governmental administrative processes concerning Beit HaShalom.

Representatives of the police and State Prosecutor's office stated that the building was indeed purchased as the Jewish Community of Hevron maintained, and that the Arab who claims otherwise lied to the police and court. Asked why, then, the Prosecutor's office is demanding that the Jewish owners be thrown out, the MKs were told by the Civil Administration director and a Defense Ministry representative that they are simply following the orders of a "State Directive" issued by former Defense Minister Amir Peretz.

Illegitimate Political Behavior
The MKs therefore concluded that a political agenda is being implemented on an "operational level" and not on a "state level," rendering it illegitimate.

The MKs' letter to Olmert states, "During the committee session, we learned that the authorities have acted unfairly and inappropriately responding Peace House. Representatives of these authorities told us that their actions were the result of a political decision made by former Defense Minister Amir Peretz, and that in essence his orders continue even now to be the basis of very strange government behavior."

Signatories to the letter are coalition party MKs David Rotem (Yisrael Beiteinu), Otniel Shneller (Kadima), and Nissim Ze'ev (Shas), as well as opposition MKs Michael Eitan and Limor Livnat (Likud), and Yitzchak Levy, Aryeh Eldad and Uri Ariel (National Union). Two participating committee members, MK Avshalom Vilan (Meretz) and Arab MK Taleb A-Sana, did not sign the letter.

Comptroller Must Review
The committee also voted, 6-2, to use its authority to ask State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss to prepare a report detailing the decision-making process regarding Peace House in Hevron.

"Those who object to a review by the Comptroller," said Committee Chairman Zevulun Orlev (National Religious Party), "raise the suspicion that they have something to hide. It appears that government authorities yield to various pressures and violate codes of conduct simply to promote a left-wing political agenda. A report by the Comptroller can clear the air and erase suspicions."

The funeral of the two wonderful boys from Kiryat Arba is being held NOW



I received this message via e-mail from
MATTOT ARIM this evening. I am publishing it, as it contains important information about how you can help stop the spread of terror--both from the arab thugs and from our own Israeli government.

It seems that no matter how much horror, death, and destruction is at our door, our leaders refuse to see. They are not blind. They are REFUSING TO SEE. There is a big difference there. When one refuses to see they are choosing to allow the terror to continue. They are traitors, not leaders.

The funeral of the two wonderful boys from Kiryat Arba is being held NOW.

If you, too, are furious about this, as is the person writing these lines on behalf of Mattot Arim, please act now so we can make SOME good come out of this evil. Please do two important things as per the requests a few moments ago of leaders of Kiryat Arba and other settler leaders SMSing to us directly from the funeral:

a. Please make an immediate gift to the URGENT needs of the settlement movement; the exact purpose of the gifts (Bet Hashalom in Kiryat Arba communities newly established on Hannuka etc.) in memory of the two dead boys -- it is particularly important for those of us who are NOT settlers to do this so the settlers will not -- G-D FORBID be alone at this difficult hour.

Write your cheque out to "HaYishuv haYehudi beChevron" (Jewish Community of Hebron) or "Women in Green" and tomorrow, the heads of the Kiryat Arba/Hebron/Women in Green/Mattot Arim organizations will sort out what exactly is the most urgent thing to do with the money. (All the heads of the organizations are now as we speak marching in the funeral and the person writing these lines has simply made up with them by SMS, the bare outline of this special message to you).

*Mail your cheque URGENT to Mattot Arim, POB 1588 Rehovot (do NOT make out your cheque to Mattot Arim - cheque must be made out to "Jewish Community of Hebron or Women in Green").

* When thinking what sum to write -- think of the parents of these two young men, how are they feeling at this moment attending their own sons' funerals, "in honor of" Annapolis and President Bushs' visit - disgusting!!! -- and think how their only small consolation -- the only one -- is going to be the generosity of you and me who are reading this right now and decide we are WITH THEM

*Send an IMMEDIATE email to saying "Am sending urgent contribution of xxx in memory of David & Achikam, signed (NAME, WHERE U LIVE)" so we will know THIS EVENING that money is coming in, at least 2 of the needs are really urgent (you know how the settlement movement works, unfortunately it goes from one crisis to the next). If you do not want your name used please so indicate. Otherwise we would like to maybe use the names, the names will help persuade Israel's foolish government how strongly the people support our brothers and sisters in Yehuda veShomron.

b. Olmert and his ministers are on the verge of forcing 10 young families out of newly purchased Bet Hashalom, between Kiryat Arba and Hebron.


Fax numbers (phones are excellent too, but only from tomorrow (Sun.) morning -- now offices are closed unfortunately):

Olmert -- faxes 02-5664838, 02-6513955, 02-6535178, tel 02-6705555,
Minister Eli Yishai -- Fax 02-6662909 Phone 02-6662255
Minister Avigdor Liberman - Fax 02 6547101 Tel 02 6547100
Please fax NOW to Olmert's office and the offices of Ministers Yishai (Shas) and Avigdor Liberman: Word your own fax or you can use our words if you don't like making up your own:

Friday, December 28, 2007

PARASHAT SHEMOT: Redemption, Kiddush Hashem, and justice

By Daniel Pinner

“G-d said to Moshe:…You will come – you and the elders of Israel – to the king of Egypt, and you shall say to him: Hashem, the G-d of the Hebrews, happened upon us; so now, let us make a three-day journey into the desert, and we will sacrifice to Hashem our God” (Exodus 3:13-18).

“…Moshe and Aharon came and said to Pharaoh: Thus says Hashem, G-d of Israel: Send out My people, for them to celebrate to Me in the desert. And Pharaoh said: Who is Hashem, that I should hearken to His voice, to send out Israel? I do not know Hashem, neither will I send Israel out. And they said: The G-d of the Hebrews happened upon us. Let us make a three-day journey into the desert, and we will sacrifice to Hashem our G-d, lest He smite us with the plague or the sword. And the king of Egypt said to them: Why, Moshe and Aharon, do you disturb the people from its work? Go and mind your own business” (Exodus 5:1-4).

Moshe and Aharon’s approach to Pharaoh was foredoomed to failure. It was obvious that Pharaoh would refuse a demand made in the name of the G-d of the Hebrews. Had they demanded emancipation of the slaves in the name of Ra, or Ptah, or Anubis, that might have got Pharaoh’s attention. But speaking in the name of Hashem, the G-d of the Hebrews? This is the equivalent of Nat Turner approaching President Andrew Jackson with the demand: “In the name of Yemoja and Oshun, the gods whom we worship, free the slaves!” Obviously, any national leader thus confronted will kick the petitioners out.

Why, then, did Moshe and Aharon choose to confront Pharaoh in a way that virtually ensured that he would refuse their demands?

I suggest here two reasons, which complement and resonate with each other.

First of all, the fundamental purpose of the redemption of the nation of slaves was Kiddush Hashem – sanctification of the Name of G-d. Therefore, it inevitably had to be wrought in the name of Hashem, G-d of the Hebrews. After all, just as G-d brought ten plagues on Egypt, He could just as easily have freed the slaves in a seemingly natural manner: a foreign power could have invaded Egypt and thrown open the borders; Pharaoh could have died, and his successor could have had a more liberal policy; the Jews in Egypt could have mounted an armed insurrection; Moshe himself, according to Midrash Divrei ha-Yamim de-Moshe, had become king of Midian in the decades that he had lived there – he could have raised an army and freed the Jewish slaves.

But none of these would have sanctified the name of Hashem, G-d of Israel. Though the Jews would have been redeemed, the purpose of that redemption would not thereby have been fulfilled.

There is another reason that Pharaoh had to hear that the demand to free the Hebrew slaves came from Hashem, the G-d of the Hebrews, a reason of simple justice. Four hundred and thirty years earlier, G-d had forged His covenant with Abraham, promising him: “Know for sure that your seed will be a stranger in a land that is not theirs; they will serve them, and they will oppress them for four hundred years. And also the nation that they will serve, I shall judge. And after this, they will go out with great property” (Genesis 15:13-14).

G-d’s precise words are important here: not “the nation that they will serve, I shall punish” but “the nation that they will serve, I shall judge” – they will be judged for good or for bad. As the Ramban expresses it: “Even though I decreed upon your seed to be strangers in a land that is not theirs, that they will serve them and they will oppress them, nevertheless I will bring the nation that they will serve to justice for what they will do to them. And they will not be acquitted by reason of having done My will” (commentary to Genesis 15:14). The Ramban goes on to explain that the Egyptians were eventually punished because they went way beyond what G-d had decreed: oppression did not include murdering all the baby boys; their cunning and duplicity in preventing the Jews from multiplying (Exodus 1:10) was not part of G-d’s plan. “The meaning of the phrase ‘I shall judge’ is that I will judge whether they did according to what was decreed upon them, or if they committed additional evil” (Ramban, ibid.).

It is possible that even with the additional evil that the Egyptians added on their own initiative, the fact that the very slavery was Divinely pre-ordained might have been a mitigating factor. For this reason, Pharaoh and all Egypt had to be given a fair chance of acquitting themselves before G-d judged them: “Thus says Hashem,
G-d of Israel: Send out My people”. Pharaoh and Egypt could have decided at that moment that they would, indeed, heed the word of Hashem, the G-d of Israel, and send the Jews back to Israel; after all, the same G-d Who had decreed slavery upon them, now decreed that the time had come to release them. They could also have looked at the conclusion of the prophecy – “after this, they will go out with great property” – and fulfilled their end of the bargain by paying us for the generations of slave labour.

Had they done so, they might indeed have been judged and exonerated – or at least, condemned to a lesser punishment than what they actually received.

But Pharaoh’s response was “Who is Hashem, that I should hearken to His voice, to send out Israel? I do not know Hashem”. This was not only monumental arrogance; it was also the death sentence for him and his nation. It was his arrogant declaration that “I do not know Hashem” that ensured that upon being judged, they would be found guilty. After this confession, there was no way that Pharaoh and the Egyptians could ever claim that they were persecuting the Jews in order to fulfil the decree of Hashem.

And the result was slow, painful destruction – a destruction so complete that Egypt would sink into obscurity for the next five hundred years: we would not hear anything else from Egypt until King Solomon would forge an alliance with the rebuilt Egypt by marrying a much later Pharaoh’s daughter (1 Kings 3:1).

“Thus may all Your enemies, O Hashem, be destroyed” (Judges 5:31).

Shabbat Shalom

Two Kiryat Arba men killed by terrorists outside Hebron


I bet, when they find these terrorists, they will be some of the terrorists who were released by Olmert.

The Jewish Community of Hebron
December 29, 2007

Shortly after 12:00 this afternoon Arab terrorists, shooting from a jeep, shot and killed to young Israel men, both in their twenties, between the communities of Telem and Adura. The two men, both serving in the IDF, were hiking with a young woman. At the time of the shooting she managed to hide, thereby saving her life.

The exact site of the attack is a wadi, leading to a spring, near Telem. Telem is a small community located adjacent to the transJudea highway, about 10 kilometers west of Hebron.

The identities of the two men have not yet been made public. The funerals will be at Har Hertzel at 9:00 PM Saturday night.

Details of the attack:
Two men from Kiryat Arba, soldiers serving in an elite unit, on vacation, were hiking near a stream near Telem. A vehicle, with four terrorists, began shooting at them. The soldiers fired back, killing one terrorist at the scene and critically wounding another. The other two were slightly wounded and managed to escape. Both men were killed and their weapons stolen. The critically wounded terrorist died in a Hebron hospital.
Their blood-stained terrorist's car was found, but the other two terrorists have not yet been found.
A woman with the two men who hid during the attack made contact with the authorities, who then began searching for them. She was taken to hospital in shock.

A Hebron spokesman issued the following statement:
It's started again. Israeli concessions lead down only one road: Killing.
Only a few weeks ago Ido Zoldan was shoot down near Kedumim. Now two young men, both serving their country in an elite army unit, are dead, having been betrayed by their country, by their leaders, by the Prime Minister and Defense Minister.
The concessions Israel is making, the refusal to build in Judea and Samaria, the willingness to abandon more of our sacred Land, the determination to expel more Jews from their homes, the willingness of the Prime Minister to 'make difficult sacrifies for 'peace'' is the perfect recipe for Arab terrorists: we will get whatever we want, so let's kill some more Jews - what difference does it make. Olmert won't allow Jewish blood to stand in the way of 'peace.' After all, Israel has all butdecided to release terrorists with 'blood on their hands' as a 'gesture' to Abu Mazan and his 'moderate' colleagues. So again, why not kill Jews? What have they got to lose?

The injustices facing Jews, such as the determination to again expel Jews from a building legally purchased in Hebron, is a clear message to the terrorists: Israel is willing to go the whole way, giving whatever the terrorists demand in return for... more dead Jews.

The Olmert government must go. Olmert, Barak, and Livni are leading Israel down a path of bloodbath, a path of communal suicide, a path of injustice, a path leading to grief, a path leading to extended war. The time has come to replace these traitors with leaders of faith, leaders who believe in G-d, who believe in our right to our land, in our right to live in true peace, without continued concessions to evil. comments

The Jewish Community of Hebron
POB 105 , Kiryat Arba-Hebron 90100
Tour Hebron: Tel 972-52-431-7055 or write:

The Hebron Fund
1760 Ocean Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11230

Web: Ma'arat HaMachpela:

You too can Help Hebron -

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Haaretz Editor Asked US Secretary of State to "Rape" Israel


OK, this is really really creepy. First, there is no such thing as a woman or a nation or a group “wanting to be raped” as Landau has put it. This attitude is the attitude of persons who want to blame the victim (“Your honor, I’m not guilty! She was wearing a short skirt, so she WANTED to be raped!”). This is the attitude of someone who is living in a backward state of reality.

I guess it will be most interesting to see how the liberal groups deal with this, right?

They want to support their champion, Landau. They want to show how his ideas about Israel being the aggressor are so true, so real, so good. However, he has just admitted that Israel is not the aggressor, she is the victim (Remember, she “wants to be raped” by the PA and America, not she “wants to rape” the PA and America). Also, he is showing some very piggy tendencies here that, I would hope, no feminist or believer in real human rights could love. (Next, perhaps he will suggest that Israel be convicted to six months in prison and 200 lashes for WANTING TO BE RAPED, right?)

But, I am a realist. I know that the liberal groups will stand beside him and support him, whether he is suggesting that rape can be WANTED or not.

He thinks we are only capable satisfying the carnal urges of the secular left when we are forced to our knees by the US and raped in the interest of "peace." After all, what’s important is the complete persecution of Israel--not free speech, democracy, rule of law, religious freedom, the rights of women, or the protection of innocent victims.

If those other things were important, the left wouldn’t be supporting Islamofacists who stand against all of those ideals, right?

It’s nice that, at least, through Landau, we know exactly where the the secular left stands, right? They stand for victimization. They stand with rapists. They stand with the enemies of Israel.

by Ezra HaLevi

( Haaretz’s Chief Editor asked US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to “rape” Israel, using other unsavory terminology as well in his request for American pressure.

The comments were made during a confidential briefing by Rice on September 10, during one of many visits to the Jewish state. The meeting was attended by about 20 heads of the most senior Israeli think tanks and media leaders, including Landau, at the residence of US Ambassador Richard Jones.

Following the briefing, those present at the dinner offered their views and comments on the state of affairs in the Middle East.

Landau, who was seated next to Rice, referred to Israel as a “failed state” politically, and said that a US-imposed settlement is the only thing that can save it. He asked Rice to intervene, going so far as to say that the Israeli government wanted “to be raped” and that it would bring him much satisfaction to see this happen.

The comments were first revealed by Channel 2’s Arab-affairs expert Ehud Ya’ari, who refrained from naming who spoke them, but confirmed them with colleagues who were present and termed them “embarrassing” in his report. Former World Jewish Congress leader Isi Leibler then went public, saying it was Landau and was joined by New York Jewish Week Editor Gary Rosenblatt, who criticized Landau in his weekly column.

“What is contested is not the raw language Landau used but the context of his impassioned comments,” Rosenblatt wrote.

Contacted by the Jewish Week, Laundau confirmed the statements, but said his views had been delivered “with much more sophistication.” He admitted: “I did say that in general, Israel wants to be raped — I did use that word — by the U.S., and I myself have long felt Israel needed more vigorous U.S. intervention in the affairs of the Middle East.”

Landau acknowledged his other crass remark as well, though said it was aimed at the experience of influencing US policy and not at seeing Israel be pressured to make concessions. “I told [Rice] that it had always been my wet dream to address the secretary of state [on these vital matters –added by Jewish Week],” Landau said.

According to Landau, Rice’s response was “fantastic [in that she was] completely unfazed” by his remarks, and remained “urbane and diplomatic.” Others present said Rice proceeded to say the US has no intention of imposing a settlement on Israel. Landau told Rosenblatt that he had been congratulated by several professors at the dinner who felt he “articulated what many Israelis feel.”

“By any benchmark, Landau’s behavior as an Israeli citizen would be deemed unacceptable,” wrote Leibler of the affair. “But it is surely unconscionable that the editor of one of Israel's most influential newspapers, which also appears in an English and global Internet version, could urge an American Secretary of State to ‘rape’ his own government. If ever there was a crossing of every red line in terms of propriety, national integrity, and civic responsibility, this extraordinary intervention tops the bill. This is surely not behavior befitting the editor of a major newspaper.”

The former World Jewish Congress official who made Aliyah (immigrated to Israel) from Australia, continued: “For the US Secretary of State to partake in such an exchange with the editor of a major Israeli newspaper is mind boggling. Whilst Ms. Rice rejected Landau's entreaties for the United States to force Israel to act in what he perceived to be Israel's best interest, there is little doubt that his remarks would have subsequently been widely aired in US State Department circles.”

“Of course, Landau is entitled to his personal opinions. But it is surely a staggering act of reckless arrogance and a reflection of utter contempt for the democratic process when the editor of Haaretz newspaper at such a venue to have passionately conveyed such views to the American Secretary of State at this most sensitive diplomatic juncture. I have no doubt that the vast majority of Israelis across the entire political spectrum would condemn his action as irresponsible and immoral. Mr. Landau should apologize or resign.”

JNF rejects Orthodox applicant for failure to work on Saturday


I haven't given to JNF since I heard they don't plant trees over the green line.

Then I heard that they have incredible amounts of land in Jerusalem that they have allowed Arab squatters to live on.

Then I heard they were going to give land to Arabs--land that Jews paid for with their blood, sweat, tears, and pennies.

Now, this.

They are an embarrassment. Why is their office allowed to be opened on Shabbat?? Now I know that they are just part of the secular left. Too clueless to be believed.

Interviewee for post as assistant JNF spokeswoman finds it demands work on Saturdays, is unsuitable for Orthodox Jews. JNF spokeswoman: ‘The office is busiest on Saturdays’,7340,L-3487318,00.html
Tani Goldstein
Published: 12.27.07, 10:02 / Israel Jewish Scene

Liron (pseudonym), a 34-year old orthodox woman, came in to interview for the assistant spokeswoman position with the Jewish National Fund (JNF). During the interview, JNF spokeswoman, Orit Hadad, informed her that the job demanded “atypical work hours” including both evenings and weekends.

The applicant then told Hadad that she was religious and could not work on Shabbat. Hadad “immediately told me that she was sorry, but she could not hire me. She asked the manpower company that sent me to send her someone who was able to help her out on Shabbat,” Liron told Ynet.

The Orthodox applicant said that she was “stunned” by this entire situation. “I can’t believe that this happened in a government institution that strives to represent the Jewish people,” she lamented.

On her end, the JNF spokeswoman claimed that this was a simple matter of convinience. “The JNF spokesperson’s office is extremely busy, especially on Saturdays because we often organize weekend nature trips. I have another assistant who works only during the week, and so I am especially in need of help on weekends,” she said. "I really don't see what the fuss is about."

Hadad also noted that she does not understand why they (the manpower company) sent her an applicant for the job that cannot work Saturdays. “I come from a religious background as well, this is not about discrimination,” she maintained. “Liron’s inability to work on Shabbat was only one factor in my decision.”

Against the law?
According to the “Work Hours and Rest Law”, however, there might be more to Hadad’s decision then a simple matter of personal preference.

This law requires employers to apply for a special permit to employ Jews on Shabbat, a permit which the JNF never applied for. As a matter of fact, such a permit was never issued for any spokesperson or assistant spokesperson in any Israeli government institution.

Liron’s story infuriated Industry, Trade and Labor Minister, and Shas Chairman, Eli Yishai.

“This is a harsh and shameful occurrence especially since the JNF is an institution that supposedly showcases the Jewish character of the State of Israel,” he said.

“I will not stand by and allow this to occur in government institution; both from a religious as well as a human rights perspective… soon as a formal complaint is lodged I will give it my undivided attention,” said Yishai.



How do you spell survival?


Of course they aren’t going to admit their fellow Jews escaped. If they did admit it, or if they (even secretly) showed some sympathy for the idea that their fellow Jews escaped, they would put themselves, their families, and their community in danger.

Let’s all pretend we believe them, OK? Sometimes the truth is not the most important thing.


December 27, 2007 -- Jewish leaders in Tehran said yesterday that reports of 40 Iranian Jews secretly fleeing to Israel in a dramatic exodus are "an outright lie."

Ciamak Mosathegh, head of the Tehran Jewish Committee, said the reason Israeli media did not show the faces of 40 immigrants when they arrived Tuesday is that there were no Iranians.

"This is a misinformation campaign, a campaign of lies against Iran and its Jewish community," he said.

He was reacting to Israeli and Western news reports of how 40 Iranian Jews abandoned their homes and belongings and slipped into a third country before they arrived at Israel's Ben Gurion International Airport at the end of a covert, year-long operation.

Iranian news media carried a statement yesterday by Mosathegh and Maurice Mo'atamad, the Jewish representative in the Iranian parliament, in which they denied Jews are mistreated in Iran.

With Post Wire Services

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

TEST YOUR PPIQ (Palestine/Peace Intelligence Quotient)

by Daniel Pinner

Test your Palestine IQ

If, like most people, you have clear views on the Arab-Israel conflict, and you are convinced that you know how to bring peace to the Middle East, then you are invited to try the following simple quiz. To see how much you really know about the subject, answer these twenty questions, then check your score.

1. As is well known, Palestine is the Holy Land for Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Palestine‚s sanctity in Islam is expressed in the fact that the Koran mentions Palestine:

a) 1,034 times;
b) 837 times;
c) 408 times;
d) 1 time;
e) never.

2. Jerusalem is the third holiest city for Islam (after Mecca and Medina). In honour of this status, the Koran refers to Jerusalem as:

a) Al-Kuds ("The Holy");
b) Al-Medina al-Kuds ("The Holy City");
c) Urusalim ("Jerusalem");
d) Al-Kibla al-Awalani ("The First Direction [of prayer]");
e) By no name, because Jerusalem is never mentioned in the Koran.

3. The Dome of the Rock, on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, is one of Islam‚s holiest shrines. To emphasize this sanctity, Moslems pray on the Temple Mount:

a) facing the Dome of the Rock;
b) in the north-west section, to face the Dome and Mecca simultaneously;
c) standing facing the Dome of the Rock, kneeling facing Mecca;
d) facing the Dome of the Rock for certain prayers, Mecca for others;
e) kneeling facing Mecca, their backsides facing the Dome of the Rock.

4. The Jewish claim to the Holy Land is that God promised it to them. Moses ˆ the Jewish national leader ˆ is quoted as saying: „O my people! Remember the bounty of God upon you∑and gave you that which had not been given to anyone before you amongst the nations. O my people! Enter the Holy Land which God has decreed for you‰. This speech of Moses is recorded in:

a) the Book of Exodus;
b) the Book of Isaiah;
c) the Talmud;
d) the Midrash;
e) the Koran (Sura 5:20-21).

5. In popular literature, historical discussions, political debates, and other forums, the Palestinians‚ standard claim is that they are:

a) the descendants of the Biblical Philistines (a tribe originating in Crete, who invaded the Holy Land in the early Biblical period);
b) the continuation of the Biblical Canaanites (a Hamatic tribe, in perpetual warfare against the Philistines);
c) the descendents of the earliest Christians (i.e. Jews);
d) an integral part of the Arab nation (a Semitic nation originating in Arabia, and entirely unconnected to the Philistines, the Canaanites, and the Jews);
e) all of the above.

6. In the period of history that Palestine was an independent country, its capital city was:

a) Jerusalem;
b) Jaffa;
c) Haifa;
d) Ramallah;
e) meaningless, because there was never in history an independent country called Palestine, so there was never a capital city.

7. The earliest mention of Palestine in history is:

a) in the Hebrew Bible, in the Book of Genesis, when God commanded Abraham to go to Palestine;
b) in the Hebrew Bible, in the Book of Joshua, when the Israelites conquered Palestine;
c) in a stone plaque dating from about 600 BC, commemorating the Babylonian conquest of Palestine;
d) in the New Testament;
e) in the year 135, after the European Roman invaders defeated the Jewish revolt, and re-named the province Palestine.

8. "There is no such country [as Palestine]! ŒPalestine‚ is a term the Zionists invented! There is no Palestine in the Bible. 'Palestine‚' is alien to us." Who said these words?

a) Golda Meir, Prime Minister of Israel, in a speech to the American Zionist Organisation, 1972
b) Moshe Dayan, Minister of Defence of Israel and former Chief of Staff of the Israel Defence Forces, addressing the General Staff, 1968;
c) Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of Israel, in his election victory speech, 1996;
d) Abba Eban, Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations, in a speech in 1981;
e) Auni Bey Abdul-Hadi, a local Arab leader, addressing the British Peel Commission, 1937.

9. "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." Who said this?

a) Egyptian dictator, President Gamal Abdul Nasser, addressing the Egyptian parliament, a month after the Six Day War, July 1967;
b) Jordanian King Hussein, a week before the Six Day War, May 1967;
c) Syrian dictator, President Hafez al-Assad, addressing the Arab League, 1994;
d) Iraqi dictator President Saddam Hussein, addressing the Iraqi nation in a televised speech, 2002;
e) Zahir Muhsein, executive member of the PLO, in an interview with the Dutch newspaper Trouw, March 1977.

10. On the eve of Israel‚s independence in May 1948, approximately 600,000 Arabs lived in the areas that would soon become the State of Israel. When the War of Independence was over (March 1949), 150,000 Arabs were still there. This is why the UNRWA (United Nations Relief Works Agency) officially recognized that the number of Arab refugees was:

a) 450,000;
b) 600,000;
c) 850,000;
d) 1,000,000;
e) 1,300,000.

11. In June 1982, the Israel Defence Forces entered south Lebanon to fight against the PLO, which had invaded Lebanon in 1975. The total population in southern Lebanon was about 400,000, of whom vast numbers 'perhaps as many as 10%' fled northwards to escape the fighting. UNIFIL (United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon) officially estimated the number of refugees as:

a) 40,000;
b) 80,000;
c) 120,000;
d) 250,000;
e) 600,000.

12. The Palestine National Covenant (the constitution of the PLO) states that "Palestine, with the boundaries it had during the British Mandate, is an indivisible territorial unit" (Article 2). 77% of this indivisible territorial unit is today:

a) the State of Israel, and the remaining 23% is Judea and Samaria (the „West Bank‰) and Gaza;
b) Israel (including Judea, Samaria, and Gaza, i.e. the „occupied territories‰), and the remaining 23% are the border areas of various neighbouring Arab states;
c) Judea, Samaria, and Gaza (the „occupied territories‰), and the remaining 23% is divided between Israel and Jordan;
d) Judea, Samaria, and Gaza, and the remaining 23% has been annexed to the State of Israel;
e) The Kingdom of Jordan, and the remaining 23% is Israel (including Judea, Samaria, and Gaza).

13. As its name suggests, the raison d‚etre of the PLO (Palestine Liberation Organisation) is to liberate Palestine. Accordingly, the PLO has fought to establish its independent state in:

a) the whole of Israel, starting with Judea, Samaria, and Gaza (the "occupied territories");
b) sovereign Israel alone, rejecting any claim to Judea, Samaria, and Gaza (prior to the Six Day War);
c) Jordan (in the late 1960s and early 1970s)
d) Lebanon (from the mid-1970s until 1982);
e) All of the above.

14. The PLO‚s purpose, as they and their supporters make clear, is to liberate the "occupied territories" which Israel captured in the Six Day War (5th-10th June 1967). This claim is proven by the historical fact that the PLO was founded:

a) in Ramallah, the biggest city in the West Bank, a month after the Six Day War;
b) in Gaza City, which has traditionally been a centre of Palestinian nationalism, on the first anniversary of the Six Day War;
c) as a response to the establishment of the first Israeli settlement in Hebron in 1969;
d) on the 10th anniversary of the Six Day War, in June 1977, in Hebron;
e) 3∏ years before the Six Day War, on 1st January 1964, in Cairo (the capital of Egypt).

15. In the 25-year period 1950-1974, the Arab countries (including Iran) donated a total of $26,476,750 in aid to Palestinian refugees, representing 0.04% (i.e. $1 out of every $2,500) of their combined oil revenue for 1974 alone. The only country in the entire Middle East which gave no aid at all to Palestinian refugees was:

a) Israel;
b) Iran;
c) Libya;
d) Jordan;
e) Algeria.

16. Israel has often been accused of "ethnic cleansing" of the Arabs in the "occupied territories". The demography bears this out, because the Arab population of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza has:

a) plummeted from 6,500,000 in 1967 to 3,000,000 in 2006;
b) plummeted from an estimated 5,000,000 in 1967 to less than 2,000,000 in 2006;
c) remained steady at 3,000,000, despite huge natural growth in the rest of the world;
d) increased at one tenth of the pace of natural population growth;
e) increased from about 750,000 in 1967 to an estimated 3,500,000 in 2006, a population growth of nearly 500% in less than 40 years, which is one of the highest rates of increase anywhere in the world.

17. Israel has also been accused of "ethnic cleansing" of Arabs who are citizens of the state, and deliberately enforcing policies designed to keep the Arab population small. This, too, is shown by the demography, in that the Israeli Arab population has:

a) dropped from slightly over 1,000,000 (40% of the overall population) in 1948 to 750,000 (20% of the population) in 2006;
b) remained at a steady 1,000,000 from 1948 to 2006, while the overall population has increased seven-fold;
c) increased from 500,000 in 1948 to 1,000,000 in 2006, representing a drop from 35% of the overall population to just 12% in 58 years;
d) decreased steadily by 2% per year from 1948 onwards;
e) increased from 150,000 (15% of the overall population) in 1948 to about 1,400,000 (22% of the overall population) in 2006.

18. As of 2007, there are five universities (the Islamic University of Hebron; Bir Zeit University; Bethlehem University; Al-Najah University in Shechem [Nablus]; and Al-Ahzar in Gaza), and five religious higher education academies, throughout the "occupied territories". These institutes are:

a) all that remain of 25 institutes of higher education, the others having been destroyed by the Israeli occupation forces;
b) some of the oldest in the Arab world, with the Islamic University of Hebron having been founded under the original Caliphate in the 8th century;
c) forced to operate secretly, because the Israeli authorities have banned them;
d) barely tolerated by the Israeli authorities;
e) all founded since the Israeli "occupation" of 1967, under Israeli auspices, the oldest one being the Islamic University of Hebron, founded in 1971.

19. Since the Israeli "occupation" of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza in 1967, nine Palestinians have been sentenced to death by the courts and judicially executed. All of them, without exception, were executed:

a) by the Israeli military occupation authorities;
b) by the Israeli Army after military courts-martial;
c) by the Israeli civil administration, following criminal trials in civilian courts;
d) by Israeli civilian courts, acting under special emergency regulations;
e) since September 1993 by the Palestinian Authority, in the autonomous zones, because Israel, alone in the Middle East, does not use the death penalty.

20. In early October 2005, an estimated 650 people charged the security fence/separation barrier, and an estimated 350 succeeded in crossing it. Security forces responded with bayonets, shotguns, and rubber bullets, killing between ten and fifteen people. This incident was given minimal media attention, and has been entirely forgotten, because:

a) the world media is biased in Israel‚s favour;
b) a dozen Palestinians killed is so commonplace, it is not even newsworthy;
c) the Israeli authorities imposed a media blackout;
d) Jewish settlers intimidated the journalists and photographers into silence;
e) the incident occurred along the security fence in Morocco, separating sovereign Morocco from the Spanish Sahara, and the security forces in question were Spanish.

Every a) is worth 1 point; every b) is worth 2 points; every c) is worth 3 points; every d) is worth 4 points; every e) is worth 5 points.

Now add up your score. If your score is 20, then you answered a) to every question. You are politically correct, and base your ideas of the Middle East on standard anti-Israel and pro-Arab propaganda lies, rather than on the truth. Since you cannot think for yourself, are more concerned with Israel-bashing than truth, and swallow every cheap slogan peddled, you are ideally suited to become a European career diplomat accredited to the Middle East or a BBC or CNN reporter.

If your score is between 21 and 99, then you might have a slightly more open mind than others, and you might know slightly more than the average media report contains. You might be interested in studying more on the subject.

If your score is 100, then you answered e) to every question. You answered every question correctly, have a good, solid knowledge of the issues involved, and are uninfluenced by official propaganda. Be careful: independent and honest thought might make you a target of Islamic terrorists and their left-wing cohorts.

If your score is below 20 or above 100, this means that you cannot even count properly. You are perfectly suited to become the Secretary General of the United Nations.