Think-tank offers Trump policy recommendations on Israel

Posted March 29, 2017 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Heritage Foundation, Israel, Palestinians, Peace process, Trump and Israel

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Think-tank offers Trump policy recommendations on Israel, Israel National News, Mordechai Sones, March 29, 2017

Aerial view of Capitol HillUS gov’t / public domain)

Heritage recently released a report authored by James Phillips, Heritage’s Senior Research Fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs, and a latest volume of Mandate, outlining specific policy recommendations for the Trump Administration. Four topics treated are Iran, the defeat of Islamist terrorist groups, the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, and President Trump’s promise to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.

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Weeks after President Ronald Reagan’s first election victory, the U.S. was engulfed in problems and the new President was confronting challenges unparalleled in nearly a half-century. At that time, the prominent conservative Heritage Foundation produced a detailed road map designed to help the fledgling administration steer the nation into a sound future, guided by conservative principles, called Mandate for Leadership. By the end of President Reagan’s first year in office, nearly two-thirds of Mandate’s more than 2,000 specific recommendations had been or were being transformed into policy.

Since then, Heritage has produced the Mandate series for incoming administrations, marshaling the talents of scores of experts.

Heritage recently released a report authored by James Phillips, Heritage’s Senior Research Fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs, and a latest volume of Mandate, outlining specific policy recommendations for the Trump Administration. Four topics treated are Iran, the defeat of Islamist terrorist groups, the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, and President Trump’s promise to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.

Regarding Iran, the report finds Iran to be “the chief long-term regional threat to the U.S. and Israel. While the Obama Administration turned a blind eye to many of Iran’s malign activities to avoid jeopardizing its flawed nuclear agreement with Tehran, the Trump Administration is committed to confronting and pushing back against Iran.”

Findings regarding Iran state that “Cooperation on missile defense should be an especially important agenda item. Iran’s medium-range missiles already can reach Israel with a 1,000-pound payload. On February 4, Mojtaba Zonour, a member of Iran’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, helpfully reminded the world that ‘only seven minutes are needed for an Iranian missile to hit Tel Aviv’ and that 36 U.S. military bases in the Middle East are within range of Iranian missiles. Israel is now deploying the Arrow-3 interceptor, developed jointly with the United States, and the two leaders should agree to support cooperation in further enhancing missile defenses.”

Heritage recommends: “President Trump should discuss plans to hold Iran accountable for its hostile regional policies and roll back its influence, outlining the Administration’s strategy for ratcheting up sanctions on Iran and particularly on the IRGC, which controls Iran’s ballistic missile program and efforts to export terrorism. President Trump and Prime Minister Netanyahu should also coordinate on interdicting the flow of Iranian arms to Hezbollah, Hamas, and other terrorist groups.”

On the Islamic State (ISIS) and the war in Syria, Heritage concludes, “Both the U.S. and Israel seek the rapid destruction of ISIS in Syria, but Israel is concerned that President Trump’s intention to cooperate with Russia in Syria could strengthen the influence of Iran and Hezbollah there.” Explaining Israel’s needs, Heritage councils the Trump Administration that “Netanyahu will want to gain an understanding of U.S. plans for Syria, efforts to split Russia from Iran, and the implications for Israeli security. At a minimum, Jerusalem wants to prevent Iran and Hezbollah from establishing a military presence near the Israeli–Syrian border.”

Recommendations: “Israel has legitimate concerns about the increasing role that Iran and Hezbollah are playing in Syria. Trump needs to ensure that U.S. policies in regard to Syria will not inadvertently harm Israel’s security.

“Islamist terrorist groups pose a significant threat to the U.S. and Israel. Both countries can benefit from better coordination. Trump and Netanyahu should coordinate policies on fighting ISIS in Syria and explore ways to reduce the ISIS threat to Jordan and Egypt. Jordan needs intelligence and counterterrorism help in uncovering terrorist plots and economic support to lighten the burden of more than 600,000 Syrian refugees. Egypt has sustained heavy losses fighting ISIS in the Sinai Peninsula, and the group claimed responsibility on February 9 for a cross-border rocket attack on the Israeli city of Eilat. Cairo needs quiet help in defeating the ISIS insurgency, which has received extensive aid from Hamas and other Islamist extremist groups in Gaza.”

The Israel-Palestinian conflict is summed up thus: “In contrast to the Obama Administration—which allowed the passage of U.N. Security Council Resolution 2234 condemning Israel and added insult to injury with a blistering anti-Israel speech from Secretary of State John Kerry—the Trump Administration will be much more supportive of Israel at the U.N. and elsewhere. Trump should publicly underscore that the U.S. will veto any one-sided U.N. Security Council resolutions and assert that only direct bilateral negotiations, not the U.N., can produce a peace agreement.

“President Trump should also stress that Palestinian terrorist attacks, not Israeli settlements, are the chief obstacles to peace. Although the Administration has not taken an official position on settlements, it did release a statement saying that new settlements “may not be helpful” in achieving a peace agreement. A senior Administration official later told The Jerusalem Post that new settlements could undermine Trump’s plans to engineer a final status agreement.

“Trump has described an Israeli–Palestinian peace agreement as ‘the ultimate deal,’ but the situation is not ripe for such a deal. The Palestinian Authority is unwilling to make the necessary concessions and too weak to enforce any agreement in the face of Hamas’s implacable opposition to Israel.”

Recommendations include: “The Administration should focus on managing rather than resolving the conflict, which is impossible for the immediate future. Trump should consult with Netanyahu about how to restore calm, undermine Hamas and other Islamist extremist groups, and create a more stable environment for future step-by-step negotiations.” However, Phillips adds, “Refraining from establishing new settlements would be helpful in this context.”

Regarding the embassy move, Heritage says, “President Trump’s commitment to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem would correct a historic anomaly: The United States has never recognized any part of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. However, moving the embassy could ignite protests, riots, and anti-American backlashes among Palestinians, Arabs, and Muslims.”

Therefore, Heritage recommends to “Ensure that certain standards are met before moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem. To mitigate the risks of the move, Trump should consult with Netanyahu on the timing; pick a site in West Jerusalem, which has been controlled by Israel since 1948; and explain that the move does not change other aspects of U.S. policy. The U.S. should make it clear that the borders and final status of Jerusalem should be determined through negotiations; that the embassy move would not preclude a Palestinian state; that the U.S. consulate-general in Jerusalem would continue to function as the U.S. representative to the Palestinian Authority; and that no changes would be made in the status of Muslim holy sites, which would continue to be administered by Jordan.”

In conclusion, the Heritage report says that “Israel is America’s foremost ally in the Middle East. Both countries are democracies, value free-market economies, and uphold human rights at a time when many other countries in the Middle East reject those values.” It says recent developments represent “a promising opportunity to reassert American leadership in the Middle East and strengthen U.S.–Israel strategic cooperation on foreign policy, defense, and counterterrorism issues.”

A Times Source Outs Herself

Posted March 29, 2017 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Democrat agenda, Democrats and Russia, Democrats and Trump, Intelligence community, Intelligence leaks, Spies, Trump agenda, Trump presidency, Trump transition, Weaponized intelligence

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A Times Source Outs Herself, Power Line, Scott Johnson, Power Line, March 29, 2017

(Weaponizing intelligence information for political purposes:

Meanwhile, the Democrat media continue to try to shift public focus to alleged Russian ties of Trump and his colleagues while ignoring the very substantial ties of the Clintons, Podestas, et al. — DM)

Evelyn Farkas is the former Obama administration deputy secretary of defense — and now an MSNBC analyst. Appearing on air among her friends at MSNBC yesterday, she all but outed herself as a key source for the seminal New York Times story on the Obama administration’s efforts to subvert the incoming Trump administration.

The March 1 Times story ran under the headline “Obama administration rushed to preserve intelligence of Russian election hacking” under the byline of Matthew Rosenberg, Adam Goldman and Michael Schmidt. The Times reporters noted that they protected the identity of their sources because, you know, their cooperation with the Times was criminal or because their actions were otherwise legally problematic. The Times reporters put it this way in their March 1 story:

More than a half-dozen current and former officials described various aspects of the effort to preserve and distribute the intelligence, and some said they were speaking to draw attention to the material and ensure proper investigation by Congress. All spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were discussing classified information, nearly all of which remains secret.

In her comments on MSNBC Farkas uses one term of art that requires translation. The term of art is “the Hill,” i.e., Capitol Hill. By “the Hill” Farkas means congressional Democrats and their staffers. As MSNBC flashed an image of the Times story on the screen, Mika Brzezinski states that Farkas “actually knew about this attempt to get and preserve information…and were doing some work yourself.” That’s nice “work” if you can get it.

Thus spake Farkas:

Well, I was urging my former colleagues, and, and, frankly speaking, the people on the Hill, it was more actually aimed at telling the Hill people, get as much information as you can – get as much intelligence as you can – before President Obama leaves the administration. Because I had a fear that somehow that information would disappear with the senior [Obama] people who left. So it would be hidden away in the bureaucracy, um, that the Trump folks – if they found out HOW we knew what we knew about their, the Trump staff, dealing with Russians – that they would try to compromise those sources and methods — meaning we would no longer have access to that intelligence. So I became very worried because not enough was coming out into the open and I knew that there was more. We have very good intelligence on Russia. So then I had talked to some of my former colleagues and I knew that they were also trying to help get information to the Hill…That’s why you have the leaking.

The video of Farkas’s response is below. The entire segment including Senator Debbie Stabenow is posted here.

(The video is at the link. A longer video, with similar but longer content is at the Fox News article linked below.– DM)

I have lifted the video and slightly modified the transcript of Farkas’s response from the post here by Sundance at the The Conservative Tree House site. Sundance has more in the way of commentary in an update that may or may not be on point or withstand scrutiny. I agree with Sundance on this point: “Looks like Devin Nunes and the House Intelligence Committee ha[ve] a new person to bring in for testimony.” Yes, indeed, let us hear more from Ms. Farkas regarding “the Hill people” and her underlying project under oath.

UPDATE: FOX News covers the story here. (Here is the video embedded in the Fox News post. — DM)

 

Dems Behind CMP Charges Received $47,000 From Planned Parenthood Supporters

Posted March 29, 2017 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Abortion, California, California courts, Organ harvesting, Planned Parenthood

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Dems Behind CMP Charges Received $47,000 From Planned Parenthood Supporters, Washington Free Beacon, , March 29, 2017

(Please see also, TYRANNY: California Criminally Charges Undercover Reporters Who Exposed Planned Parenthood’s Baby Body Part Sales. Where’s The Outrage? — DM)

WASHINGTON, DC – MARCH 01: Activists participate in a rally to support Planned Parenthood March 1, 2017 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

The Democratic attorneys general who investigated and charged the two videographers behind the 2015 tapes revealing Planned Parenthood’s efforts to sell fetal tissue have received tens of thousands of dollars from abortion supporters.

Attorney General Xavier Becerra filed 15 charges against David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt of the Center for Medical Progress for violating the privacy of Planned Parenthood employees and abortion doctors by publicizing candid comments about their operations.

“The right to privacy is a cornerstone of California’s Constitution, and a right that is foundational in a free democratic society,” Becerra said in a statement announcing the charges. “We will not tolerate the criminal recording of confidential conversations.”

This is not the first time that Daleiden has faced criminal charges in connection to the series of videos, which featured Planned Parenthood executives and doctors discussing how to “line item” body parts harvested from aborted babies to maximize profits. A Texas grand jury approved charges against the videographers in January 2016; a judge later called the grand jury decision a “defective indictment” before dismissing all charges in July.

Daleiden said that California’s decision to charge him is just as politicized and empty as the Texas case. He also highlighted the case of DV Biologics, one of Planned Parenthood’s California partners featured in the undercover videos. DV Biologics executives have been charged by the Orange County District Attorney’s office with turning massive profits from the organ trade. A judge dismissed the defense’s bid to drop the charges on March 25.

“The bogus charges from Planned Parenthood’s political cronies are fake news. They tried the same collusion with corrupt officials in Houston, TX and failed: both the charges and the DA were thrown out,” Daleiden said in a statement. “The public knows the real criminals are Planned Parenthood and their business partners like StemExpress and DV Biologics—currently being prosecuted in California—who have harvested and sold aborted baby body parts for profit for years in direct violation of state and federal law.”

A review of federal campaign records reveals that Becerra and his predecessor, now-Sen. Kamala Harris (D., Calif.), have received tens of thousands of dollars from Planned Parenthood and other abortion activists over the years.

Harris was the 12th largest recipient of contributions from pro-choice groups, receiving $39,855 from the abortion industry as her office was investigating Daleiden, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Becerra served in the House of Representatives for six terms before being appointed to Harris’ seat. He received more than $7,600 from Planned Parenthood and NARAL, which also gives him a 100 percent rating on pro-choice positions.

Planned Parenthood Orange and San Bernardino Counties and Planned Parenthood Northern California each ranked among the top 10 of all pro-abortion campaign contributors in 2016.

The Attorney General’s office did not return a request for comment about the donations.

Daleiden said the donations reflect the political nature of the charges, adding that the $45,000 is “equivalent to about 842 little baby hearts, lungs, livers, and brains purchased at Planned Parenthood per their contracts with StemExpress” in an email to the Washington Free Beacon.

Daleiden said that the charges would not affect the Center for Medical Progress’ activities, saying in a Tuesday press release that he looks “forward to showing the entire world what is on our yet-unreleased video tapes of Planned Parenthood’s criminal baby body parts enterprise, in vindication of the First Amendment rights of all.”

The group made good on that promise by releasing another undercover video on Wednesday. The video features Dr. DeShawn Taylor, who has worked at Planned Parenthood Los Angeles and Planned Parenthood Arizona, allude to the fact that saving the life of a baby who survives an abortion—in accordance with Arizona law—is dependent on who is in the room.

“If the fetus comes out with any signs of life, we’re supposed to transport it to the hospital,” she said, prompting a CMP videographer to ask if there is “any standard procedure” to such a situation.

“The key is, you need to pay attention to who’s in the room, right?” Taylor said in response.

Planned Parenthood has denied all wrongdoing in connection to its organ harvesting operations, though it did stop charging money for body parts after the video’s release. Spokeswoman Mary Alice Carter said that the prosecution against Daleiden vindicates the nation’s largest abortionist.

“The California attorney general filing criminal charges sends a clear message that you cannot target women and you cannot target health care providers without consequences,” she said in a release.

Planned Parenthood did not return request for comment about Taylor’s comments in the latest video.

All 15 Arab Summit resolutions blast Iran

Posted March 29, 2017 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Arab summit, Iran

Tags: ,

All 15 Arab Summit resolutions blast Iran, DEBKAfile, March 29, 2017

All 15 resolutions passed by the Arab summit which took place in Jordan Wednesday, March 29, were devoted to an indictment of Iran, its Revolutionary Guards Corps and Lebanese surrogate, Hizballah. They were a testament to the depth of Arab-Iranian animosity and exposed the extent of the rift between the Sunni and Shiite Muslim worlds.

Iran was accused of meddling in the internal affairs of Arab nations, inciting Shiites against Sunnis, and arming and training Shiite terrorist groups for operations against legitimate Arab governments. The Arab rulers combined to put Tehran in the dock for its interference in the Syrian civil war and assault on its sovereignty.

None of the formal resolutions addressed the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. As DEBKAfile reported earlier, this issue is the subject of active exchanges between the US, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Israel and the Palestinian Authority. King Abdullah of Jordan, who hosted the summit and Egyptian President Abdel-Fatteh El-Sisi will travel to Washington to report to President Donald Trump on the private discussions on this issue at the session and launch the next stage of the Arab-Israeli peace initiative.

DEBKAfile lists the 15 resolutions submitted to the Arab summit.

1: Good neighborly relations should prevail between Iran and Arab countries and Iran’s meddling in the affairs of Arab countries condemned as a threat to the security and stability of the region.

2: The Islamic Republic of Iran should assume responsibility for an attack on Saudi Arabia’s embassy in Tehran and its consulate in Mashhad and abide by the laws of diplomacy.

3: The Iranian government must tell its officials to desist from hostile, inflammatory remarks against Arab countries.

4: Iran must stop fomenting sectarian rivalries and withdraw support from groups who destabilize the Gulf countries and armed groups inside Arab countries.

5: Iran’s invasion of three Emirate islands (Abu Musa and the Greater and Lesser Tunbs) is condemned. They must be restored to lawful ownership by peaceful means.

6: Iran must stop supporting and training terrorists and sending arms and ammunition to rebel groups fighting the Bahrain government.

7: Bahraini security agencies win praise for foiling a terrorist plot in December 2016 supported by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards and terrorist Hizballah.

8: Iran’s nefarious meddling in the Syrian crisis has threatened its sovereignty, future stability, security and unity.

9: Iranian meddling in Yemen’s affairs by backing forces fighting the legitimate government negatively affects the security of the country, its neighbors and the wider region.

10: The importance of the initiative taken by the Assistance Council of the Arab Gulf Countries is underlined and calls for a positive response from Iran

11: Iran must be bound to compliance with Security Council Resolution 2231 of 2015 and penalized swiftly with effective sanctions for any violations. Iran must be held to its commitments under the nuclear and regional environment treaties.

12: The Secretary General is entrusted with managing the commission of four Arab foreign ministers set up to thwart Iranian interference in Arab affairs.

13:  Arabic assistance forums with countries, regional, and international groups will highlight the ill effects of Iranian meddling in their affairs.

14: This issue will be placed on the UN agenda under Section 2 of Article 7

15: The Arab League Secretary General will monitor the implementation of these resolutions and report on progress to the next Arab summit.

EXCLUSIVE: First Liberty Institute Seeks Justice for Air Force Colonel Targeted for His Faith

Posted March 29, 2017 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Christianity, Freedom of religion, Homosexuals, U.S. Military

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EXCLUSIVE: First Liberty Institute Seeks Justice for Air Force Colonel Targeted for His Faith, Breitbart, Penny Starr, March 29, 2017

(Thought experiment: The victim here was a Christian who apparently held, but did not express, what many see as traditional Christian views on homosexuality. See, e.g., the Roman Catholic Church. What if the victim were instead an adherent to the Islamic religion, held and expressed Islamist views on homosexuality and the proper way of dealing with homosexuals. Would he have been dealt with in similar fashion? — DM

First Liberty Institute, a national law firm committed to protecting religious liberty, is taking up the case of Air Force Col. Michael Madrid. He has been targeted by his commanding officer for reprimand involving a closed investigation that cleared the colonel of false claims by a court-marshaled soldier that Madrid had made disparaging remarks about his homosexuality.

Two years after the case was closed and Madrid had continued his exemplary military career, including the promotion to colonel, he was placed under a new commander, Maj. Gen. John E. McCoy. McCoy accessed the report and without any new evidence decided that Madrid was guilty and issued a letter of reprimand —  crippling, if not ending, his chance for future promotions.

On Wednesday, the institute sent a demand letter to the U.S. Air Force stating that Madrid had been denied due process and that the Letter of Admonishment should be rescinded. If not, the letter said the institute is prepared to take legal action.

“Col. Madrid submitted to an extensive military investigation and the Air Force cleared him,” Mike Berry, Director of Military Affairs for the First Liberty, said. “Major General McCoy has no right to ignore the rule of law and arbitrarily decide, more than two years later and without any new evidence, that he can punish Col. Madrid.”

Berry said that McCoy never provided reasons for sending the letter, but that this is not the first case of what seems like institutional hostility toward military personnel who openly express their religious beliefs.

“At First Liberty Institute, we’ve seen multiple cases in which military officials have refused to tolerate service members’ traditional religious beliefs,” Berry said. “That shouldn’t happen to anyone.”

“Col. Madrid doesn’t hide the fact that he is a devout Christian,” Berry said. “We are concerned that Major Gen. McCoy judged and punished Madrid – a decorated Air Force officer – because he became aware of Col. Madrid’s traditional religious views. If so, that not only harms the military, but it is illegal.”

“I feel like I’ve been singled out because of my faith,” Madrid told Breitbart News. “Now I’m afraid if I say anything about even being a Christian, I’ll step on a landmine that could blow up my career.

“I hate feeling like I have to constantly look over my shoulder to see if someone is coming after me because of what I believe,” Madrid said. “We have many good service members who are people of faith and they shouldn’t have to live in fear of being punished for what they believe.

“I don’t want to see this happen to anyone else,” Madrid said. “I just want to resolve this situation and have the letter removed from my record so I can continue to serve our nation with honor.”

The Background of the Case:

In August 2012, Madrid was transferred to Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming. Soon after, a young Airman arrived on base who was struggling with his medical career. Col. Madrid worked to support and mentor the young man.

In 2013, the Airman was charged with multiple criminal offenses, including illegally bringing a loaded weapon onto the Air Force base, prescribing narcotics illegally, and performing duties while under the influence of narcotics. He was soon court-martialed and found guilty of the charges.

Despite mentoring the young Airman, Madrid supported the court-martial because the Airman committed such serious crimes. During his court-martial, the Airman, who is gay, filed a complaint alleging that Madrid had made derogatory comments about homosexuality.

Madrid, whose has never hidden his traditional Christian beliefs about marriage as the union of one man and one woman, denied the accusations, but submitted to a thorough Air Force investigation.

Based on records, interviews, and fact-finding, the Air Force found the allegations “unsubstantiated” and closed the investigation in 2014.

“Religious intolerance and discrimination against anyone in the military is inexcusable,” Berry said. “We ask the Air Force to take immediate action to hold Major General McCoy accountable and to provide justice and due process for Col. Madrid.”

Palestinians: We Have the Right to Poison the Minds of our Children

Posted March 29, 2017 by joopklepzeiker
Categories: Uncategorized

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by Bassam Tawil
March 29, 2017 at 5:00 am

Source: Palestinians: We Have the Right to Poison the Minds of our Children

 

  • The Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas wish to continue teaching children that the conflict with Israel is not over a two-state solution, but the “liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea,” which means the annihilation of Israel. The goal is for the students to believe that Israel is one big settlement that has no place in the Middle East.
  • Along with Hamas, Abbas and his PA plan to continue inculcating Palestinian children with the idea that they should look to terrorists who kill Jews as their role models. It might be illuminating if the conversation between Trump and Abbas were to be informed by these uncomfortable facts.

In an ironic turnaround, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA) is now the object of intimidation and threats made by many Palestinians.

UNRWA is reportedly planning to introduce some changes to the curriculum in its schools in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and the Palestinians are rather unhappy about it. They claim that UNRWA has “succumbed” to Israeli pressure to make the changes.

The proposed changes are based on leaks to Palestinians and have not been confirmed by UNRWA. Palestinians claim that they learned about the plans to introduce the changes during meetings with senior UNRWA officials.

According to the Palestinians, the changes are intended to “eradicate” their “national identity” and “history” and distort their “struggle” against Israel.

The Palestinians claim that the new textbooks have replaced the map of “historic Palestine” (including Israel) with pictures of a pumpkin and a bird. Palestinian textbooks often feature maps of “historic Palestine” without Israel. Cities inside Israel, such as Haifa, Jaffa, Tiberias and Ramle, are referred to as “Palestinian cities.” The Palestinian Authority (PA) media also refer to these cities as “Palestinian cities inside the 1948 Land.”

In one fourth-grade textbook, the Palestinians charge, UNRWA has replaced the map of Palestine with a picture of a traditional Palestinian woman’s dress.

The new textbooks make no reference to cities in Israel; they mention only cities in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, such as Nablus, Jenin, Gaza City, Jericho and Ramallah.

Unsurprisingly, an UNRWA revision of the Palestinian presumption of Jerusalem as the “capital of the State of Palestine” to Jerusalem as a “Holy city for the Abrahamic religions” did not go over well with Palestinians. In addition, they are angry because the UNRWA textbooks make no mention of the Jordan Valley along the border between Israel and Jordan.

The controversial textbooks have also removed photos of Israeli soldiers patrolling near schools and references to Palestinian prisoners held in Israel for terrorism. Moreover, the new textbooks are missing the previous references to “Palestinian Prisoners’ Day” — an annual event marked by Palestinians in solidarity with imprisoned terrorists.

Palestinians are also protesting the removal of words such as “occupation” and “checkpoints” from the new textbooks.

If true, the proposed changes to the Palestinian textbooks should be welcomed as a positive development towards ending anti-Israel incitement in Palestinian schools, including those belonging to UNRWA. In light of the widespread Palestinian protests and threats, however, it is doubtful whether UNRWA will succeed in making the proposed revisions.

A girls’ school run by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees. (Image source: UNRWA)

A recent study into schoolbooks used by UNRWA-run schools found that the texts consistently delegitimize and demonize Israel. The schools do not teach Palestinian children to recognize Israel. The research was conducted by Dr. Arnon Gross, who translated the books, and Dr. Roni Shaked, both from the Harry Truman Research Institute at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

In these currently-used books, Zionism is defined as a colonialist movement that was founded by European Jews in order to gather Jews from all around the world and bring them to Palestine. No mention is made of the religious or historical connection of Jews to the Land of Israel or to Jerusalem. Instead, the UNRWA textbooks teach that Jewish holy sites such as the Western Wall, Rachel’s Tomb and the Cave of the Patriarchs are Muslim holy sites.

Not surprisingly, vicious rivals though they are, Hamas and the Palestinian Authority have joined forces to thwart UNRWA’s planned changes to the textbooks. This is an issue that these two corrupt regimes can agree on: inciting children against Israel and denying its existence.

Ahmed Bahr, a senior Hamas official in the Gaza Strip, warned that any changes to the curriculum would “harm the history and national rights of the Palestinian people, as well as their resistance” against Israel. By “resistance,” the Hamas official means terrorism against Israel, including suicide bombings and the launching of rockets at Israel.

According to the Hamas official, UNRWA and the international community need to understand that “the option of resistance is the only and shortest way for restoring Palestine and liberating our land.”

In other words, Bahr wants to go on teaching Palestinian children to continue perpetrating terror attacks, in order to destroy Israel and replace it with an Islamic empire. In fact, Hamas has long been teaching precisely this in its own schools in the Gaza Strip. Yet Hamas is making it manifest that UNRWA is to follow suit in its schools. Children studying in the UN agency’s schools are to continue learning that Israel is nothing more than a figment of the imagination.

The past few days have seen Palestinians in the Gaza Strip staging a series of protests against UNRWA. They warned the agency against making the changes, which are designed to “distort the minds of Palestinian children” and which “do not comply with the culture of Palestinian society.”

Hamas has refused to allow UNRWA to teach about the Holocaust in its schools. From Hamas’s point of view, the UN agency seeks to “poison the minds of our children by taking steps that only serve” Israel. “UNRWA is trying to justify Israeli crimes against the Palestinians by teaching the so-called Holocaust in the context of human rights in UNRWA-run schools,” Hamas said. This attitude is far from surprising: Holocaust denial has always been an integral part of Palestinian and Arab narratives.

It is easy to see why Hamas and other extremist Palestinian groups would be opposed to changing textbooks that delegitimize and demonize Israel. More difficult to understand is that the Palestinian Authority, whose president, Mahmoud Abbas, says he is opposed to anti-Israel incitement, also came out against UNRWA’s planned changes.

A statement issued by the Palestinian Ministry of Education in Ramallah warned that it would take “punitive measures” against anyone who tries to change or tamper with the curriculum. “Any attempt to change the Palestinian curriculum will be considered an assault on Palestine and an eradication and dilution of our national identity,” the ministry cautioned.

The language used by the PA is strikingly similar to that used by Hamas to threaten an organization that has for decades helped millions of Palestinians to survive. In this regard, the Palestinians are once again biting the hand that has fed them. Ask Kuwait and other Gulf countries that used to give Palestinians billions of dollars before the Palestinians supported Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait.

In his meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump in Washington in mid-April, Abbas is expected to renew his commitment to combating anti-Israel incitement, according to senior PA officials in Ramallah. One wonders how Abbas plans to account for the PA’s threats against UNRWA regarding the textbooks.

The PA, like Hamas, plans to continue indoctrinating their children through poisonous textbooks that depict Jews as evil occupiers and land-thieves who build “racist walls” and demolish houses for no reason. They also wish to continue teaching children that the conflict with Israel is not over a two-state solution, but the “liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea,” which means the annihilation of Israel. The goal is for the students to believe that Israel is one big “settlement” that has no place in the Middle East.

Moreover, along with Hamas, Abbas and his PA plan to continue inculcating Palestinian children with the idea that they should look to terrorists who kill Jews as their role models. It might be illuminating if the conversation between Trump and Abbas were to be informed by these uncomfortable facts.

Bassam Tawil is an Arab scholar based in the Middle East.

Oh, How the Mighty Have Fallen

Posted March 29, 2017 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Appeasement, Establishment elite, Europe and Islamist terror, European values, European weakness, Globalism, Islam - submission, Islam and conquest, Islamisation of Europe, Islamist objectives, Islamist terror attacks, Islamists in Europe, Multiculturalism, Obama and Islamists, Obama's affinity for Islam

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Oh, How the Mighty Have Fallen, American Thinker, Rabbi Aryeh Spero, March 29, 2017

(Please see also, Pope Francis Tells EU Leaders: Populism Is ‘Egotism.’ — DM)

Instead of fighting and becoming angry, we light candles and turn off the lights in tall buildings. We vow to fight a nonspecific theory called “terrorism” instead of protecting our borders from whom and where it is precisely coming. In response to the terrorism in our cities, we call for even more multiculturalism and appeasement. We have become the pitiful we, pathetic, because of Barack Obama’s repeated sermonette of: “That’s not who we are.” Whenever suggestions were made for the urgent need to monitor some of the mosques or the young men most likely to commit future terrorist acts against us, Obama would declare: “That’s not who we are.”

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The fear and scrambling of citizens in London a few days ago was a humiliating scene, wherein a powerful city and its entire government came to a halt because of one man, an Islamist with an axe and a truck. We have seen similar things happen in other major Western cities. Humiliating the West is one of the primary goals of militant Islam. It is a victory for their deity, as demonstrated by the ubiquitous shouts of “Allahu Akhbar” prior to the terror act, a time-worn declaration of Islamic victory and humiliation of the infidel. The multiculturalists do not see it as a humiliation against us, for the us — an us with an identity — is no longer important or recognized by them. In contrast, those on the other side killing and reshaping us have a confidence and pride in their identity.

Instead of fighting and becoming angry, we light candles and turn off the lights in tall buildings. We vow to fight a nonspecific theory called “terrorism” instead of protecting our borders from whom and where it is precisely coming. In response to the terrorism in our cities, we call for even more multiculturalism and appeasement. We have become the pitiful we, pathetic, because of Barack Obama’s repeated sermonette of: “That’s not who we are.” Whenever suggestions were made for the urgent need to monitor some of the mosques or the young men most likely to commit future terrorist acts against us, Obama would declare: “That’s not who we are.”

When it comes to Islamic terror or shariah imposition, Obama and other globalists preach a type of defenselessness and impotence: something we have to abide. For many liberals, virtue signaling, the epitome of vanity, is more important than saving lives, even the lives of their countrymen.

Heroic people, however, know exactly who they are: They are those who defend their country and families from terrorism, death and injury. People with an identity know who they are and thus fight for it. Transnationalists don’t… and, with sophistry, try to stop others from doing so.

As uber-multiculturalists, these globalist leaders are making a nation’s accommodation to Islam, and the incorporation of Islamic ways and demands, the litmus test of multicultural compliance. Islam is their fast-track tool for transforming Western societies and is being catapulted by them into religious and cultural stardom. It is being romanticized as the new global commonality and outlook, a catchall for all that is right-minded and progressive. By being the new “victim” of Western intolerance and oppression, Islam is automatically elevated and ennobled as something enlightened and most tolerant, especially by those abandoning and running from their Christian ancestry and upbringing and seeking an exotic system in which to pour all their utopian and rebellious yearnings.

Many in the political class demonizing Americanism and nationalism are celebrating transnationalism, which is being pushed today by global multiculturalists. Until now, Western countries retained with pride their distinctive culture and norms, while recognizing and enjoying the varied qualities found in nations different than their own. Transnationalism is radically different. It wishes to denude each Western country of its uniqueness and severely marginalize that segment of the population wishing to preserve and live by the historic values and customs of their country. It is banal uniformity on a global scale, often a consequence of embarrassment and repudiation of anything overtly Christian or Old Testament.

Transnationalism takes power away from a country’s people and imposes laws and norms from above by an almost interchangeable global ruling class which treats its country’s patriots as malcontents and second class, as “unenlightened” citizens entitled to fewer freedoms than anti-nationalists or preferred minorities. The ruling class has more sympathy and identity with the ruling class of other countries than with citizens of their own country. It is cosmopolitanism run riot, so that American liberals, for example, feel a kinship more with Parisians than those from Peoria.

Whereas until very recently, highly patriotic leaders were chosen to lead countries, under the mantle of transnationalism leaders are advanced who downplay and characterize as “extreme” the patriotic members within society. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in America, Angela Merkel in Germany, as well as the Scandinavian and Flemish leaders, the EU and the Hague, are representative of those in an expanding political class and club who see their power deriving from a global multiculturalism that marginalizes conservative voters to ineffective fringes.

These leaders reinforce and aid each other by speaking to voters beyond their own country. They speak of the need of voters elsewhere to elect those candidates who will be part of a globalist order and fraternity upon which rests the “guarantee of peace, harmony, prosperity, and environmental purity”. Transnationalism is the age-old universalist and socialist dystopia come true, just under a new nomenclature. Those opposed are labeled xenophobic; those questioning open borders are labeled racist. No one has a right any longer to an opinion except those issuing leftist, transnational creeds. These accusations, the name calling, are some of the most powerful weapons in the globalist arsenal.

Many making the accusations of xenophobia live in rarified societies and neighborhoods or in high-end and fashionable apartment buildings with security guards and doormen, immune from the consequences of Open Borders, loss of manual jobs, overseas nation-building, and the harmful effects arising from perfunctory background checks and superficial vetting.

It is not American nationalism that warrants our alarm, rather transnationalism and fierce multiculturalism. In the name of faux morality and twisted tolerance it seeks to erase the identity, touchstones, and values that made us who we are. It imperils our future.