Archive for July 23, 2017

‘Israel is playing with fire’: Arab League chief warns amid Jerusalem tensions

July 23, 2017

Source: ‘Israel is playing with fire’: Arab League chief warns amid Jerusalem tensions — RT News

Palestinian demonstrators attempt the block the road ahead of Israeli police cars outside Lions’ Gate, a main entrance to the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem’s Old City, on July 22, 2017 © Ahmad Gharabli / AFP

The Arab League has warned Israel about crossing “a red line” in the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict over the sacred city of Jerusalem. Meanwhile, an Israeli minister said the metal detectors that triggered the violence will remain.

“The Israeli government is playing with fire and risking a major crisis with the Arab and Islamic world,” Secretary General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit said in a statement cited by Reuters.

“Jerusalem is a red line that Muslims and Arabs cannot allow to be crossed… and what is happening today is an attempt to impose a new reality on the Holy city,” he also said.

He also called on Israel not to deepen the conflict and urged the international community to “oblige the Israeli government to maintain the status quo” as its current policies “hurt the feelings” of all the Muslim world, not only the Palestinians.

Read more

A Palestinian woman argues with an Israeli border policeman at the entrance to the compound known to Muslims as Noble Sanctuary and to Jews as Temple Mount, in Jerusalem's Old City July 16, 2017 © Ammar Awad

The United Nations Security Council will meet on Monday to discuss the possible ways out of the violent Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and the Arab League is to hold emergency talks in Cairo on the matter on Wednesday.

Tensions, triggered by a shooting attack at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on July 14 , began to escalate as Israel imposed additional security measures, including metal detectors and additional CCTV cameras, outside the al-Aqsa Mosque. Palestinian worshippers have been protesting the move outside the compound.

Meanwhile, the Israeli authorities are not going to remove the controversial metal detectors, citing security reasons.

“They [metal detectors] will remain. The murderers will never tell us how to search the murderers,” Israeli Minister for Regional Development Tzachi Hanegbi told Israel’s Army Radio on Sunday, as reported by Reuters.

“If they (Palestinians) do not want to enter the mosque, then let them not enter the mosque.”

READ MORE: Israeli police clash with Palestinians in Jerusalem, RT Arabic reporter caught in violence (VIDEO)

However, Israel’s public security minister, Gilad Erdan, called for the measures to be eased for some “regular” worshippers, and to “avoid putting all of these [people] through metal detectors” and focus only on potential trouble-makers.

On Saturday, clashes broke out in Jerusalem during a hundreds-strong protest against the new security measures, staged by Palestinian worshippers. On Friday, three Palestinians were killed during rallies in the city, while Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas froze all contacts with Israel in light of the dispute. Violence also broke out in the West Bank settlement, where three members of a Jewish family were stabbed by a 20-year-old Palestinian. In retaliation to the attack, Israel sent more troops to the area, while the assailant’s home was ordered to be demolished.
READ MORE: Israel sends more troops to West Bank after deadly stabbing attack

 

Right From Wrong: Holy Terror, Turkish Delight

July 23, 2017

Right From Wrong: Holy Terror, Turkish Delight, Jerusalem PostRuthie Blum, July 23, 2017

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan makes a speech during an iftar event in Ankara, Turkey, June 27, 2016. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Erdogan responded to Abbas’ request for help by turning to President Reuven Rivlin. In a phone call Thursday evening, Erdogan urged Rivlin to remove the metal detectors from the entrance to the Temple Mount. Rivlin delicately asked that the Turkish president condemn the terrorist attack – just as Israel had done in the wake of last year’s terrorist attacks in Turkey – and acknowledge that terrorism is terrorism, whether it takes place in Istanbul or Jerusalem.

Fat chance of that. After all, a mere two months ago, Erdogan, an avid supporter of Hamas, called on Muslims to swarm al-Aksa Mosque, as “each day that Jerusalem is under occupation is an insult to us.”

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Leave it to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to portray his latest grab for regional relevance and power as a diplomatic effort to resolve a political- religious crisis in Jerusalem, inflamed by the July 14 shooting attack on the Temple Mount. The attack, which left two Israeli Druse policemen dead, was committed by three Israeli Arabs. Nevertheless, it served as yet another excuse for Palestinians to stage “days of rage” against Israel.

The ostensible reason for the violent uprising is the placement of metal detectors at the entrance to Judaism’s holiest site – where only Muslims are allowed to pray – as a way of preventing additional bloodshed.

On Thursday, while the Israeli government scrambled to placate the Jordanian Wakf (the custodians of the site) and the leaders of Fatah and Hamas by mulling a removal of the scanners, Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan said that he is concerned not only about the infiltration of Arab terrorists, but of Jewish ones seeking revenge, as well. Yeah, right.

Never mind that metal detectors are a way of life in Israel, forcing anyone who rides an inter-city bus or enters a government building, to have to go through them. What is par for the course for the rest of us simply does not fly with mobs on the ready to riot against any Israeli action, including one aimed at protecting innocent Muslims.

This is not the only truth that is being drowned out by the shouts of “Allahu Akbar” wafting through the streets of east Jerusalem. Another is the response of the High Follow-Up Committee for Arab Citizens of Israel, which criticized the terrorist attack by denouncing the “government of [Prime Minister] Benjamin Netanyahu [for] exploiting the operation to escalate its vicious incitement against our Arab masses.”

Meanwhile, the press has focused more on the “man bites dog” story of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas calling Netanyahu to condemn the attack. Of course, he did so by warning the Israeli leader not to take any security measures on the Temple Mount, the site of al-Aksa Mosque. He then appealed to Erdogan to intervene to “calm tensions” – a euphemism for making sure that Israel appears evil in the eyes of the international community, even as it engages in appeasement.

As a major beneficiary of Israeli appeasement, Erdogan has experience in how to get the Jewish state to treat him with deference – in spite of his having said last December at a conference in Ankara that Israel’s “policies of oppression, deportation and discrimination have been increasingly continuing against our Palestinian brothers since 1948.” Still, Erdogan knows that Netanyahu is peeved about that declaration, which deems Israel’s establishment as illegitimate.

HE IS also aware of the ire he aroused when, in an interview with Israel’s Channel 2 a few days earlier, he said, “I don’t agree with what Hitler did and I also don’t agree with what Israel did in Gaza. Therefore there’s no place for comparison in order to say what’s more barbaric.”

Erdogan responded to Abbas’ request for help by turning to President Reuven Rivlin. In a phone call Thursday evening, Erdogan urged Rivlin to remove the metal detectors from the entrance to the Temple Mount. Rivlin delicately asked that the Turkish president condemn the terrorist attack – just as Israel had done in the wake of last year’s terrorist attacks in Turkey – and acknowledge that terrorism is terrorism, whether it takes place in Istanbul or Jerusalem.

Fat chance of that. After all, a mere two months ago, Erdogan, an avid supporter of Hamas, called on Muslims to swarm al-Aksa Mosque, as “each day that Jerusalem is under occupation is an insult to us.”

This is a milder version of what Abbas famously said in September 2015: “al-Aksa is ours and so is the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. [Jews] have no right to desecrate them with their filthy feet. We won’t allow them to do so and we will do whatever we can to defend Jerusalem.”

It is bad enough that Israel is going through the pointless process of working with Abbas – who, on Friday, ordered the suspension of all cooperation with Israel until it removed the metal detectors – to quell an onslaught that he himself has been instigating.

But adding Erdogan to the Temple Mount mix beggars belief.

Scaramucci will you do the fandango? ‘Scaramouch’ searches up 8,000% after hire

July 23, 2017

Published 8:17 p.m. ET July 21, 2017 | Updated 9:22 p.m. ET July 21, 2017

Source: Scaramucci will you do the fandango? ‘Scaramouch’ searches up 8,000% after hire

PHOENIX — When White House director of communications appointee Anthony Scaramucci isn’t blowing kisses to the press, he’s racking up search results for a word featured in a Queen earworm.

Yes, this is the real life. And there’s no escape from reality.

Merriam-Webster reports searches for “Scaramouch” spiked Friday after the announcement that Scaramucci was offered the top White House communications position.

He comes on board after the announcement that meme-able press secretary Sean Spicer is biting the dust. Spicer resigned Friday, saying he disagreed with President Trump’s pick.

Scaramouch, sometimes spelled scaramouche, is defined by the dictionary as a boastful, cowardly comic figure in Italian entertainment most popular from the 16th to 19th centuries. In a general sense, it was meant to convey a “cowardly buffoon” or “rascal,” the dictionary said.

Lookups for the word increased more than 8,000% online, Merriam-Webster tweeted.

They were often characterized as unscrupulous servants alongside harlequins, who were portrayed as abusive gentleman’s valets who’d beat the lesser figure with a wooden sword, the dictionary said.

Read more:

The dictionary tweeted an apology (and an explanation) for jogging internal recitals of the catchy track.

It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that most people who come across the word would say it conjures memories of Queen’s seminal hit, “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

Countless people turned to Twitter to make humorous comparisons Friday. Many made their own White House renditions of the seminal 1975 anthem.

No word yet if Scaramucci will perform the fandango.

Fake Jewish Community of Chechnya Condemns Israel

July 23, 2017

Fake Jewish Community of Chechnya Condemns Israel, The Point (Front Page Magazine), Daniel Greenfield, July 23, 2017

Chechnya is a Muslim country. There are few non-Muslims left there for obvious reasons. The authorities are a rough cross between warlords and Jihadists.

While Islamists in the West can find leftist useful idiots to condemn Israel, what happens when you’re really short of Jews? You just fake some.

While Russia’s mainstream Jewish leaders in Moscow firmly backed Israel’s actions in clashes this week with Palestinians at Jerusalem’s Temple Mount, the small Jewish community of Chechnya broke ranks with them and boldly condemned the Jewish state’s “provocations” against Muslims in the holy city.

Just one problem, the “community” seems to consist of one guy whose organizational status seems debatable.

“Those who claim that there are no Jews in Chechnya are far from being Jewish,” he said. And he presented his credentials: “I was sent to the Chechen Republic by the Council of Elders of the Jewish People to restore the Jewish community in the region. Only true believers know how right I am in my convictions.”

Okay then. Council of Elders of the Jewish People it is.

That is in no way the sort of name that would be invented by someone whose only knowledge of the Jewish people comes from copies of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

Claiming to speak for the Jewish community of Chechnya, he joined Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov in condemning Israel’s actions at the Temple Mount, where the mosque is situated. Chechen Jews, Yunayev said, “wholeheartedly support” the sharp-worded rebuke of Israel by Kadyrov.

All zero of them.

“Nonsense, I doubt there are even any Jews left in Chechnya, let alone an organized Jewish community,” Tamara Rafailova Kahlon, an Israeli who was born in the Chechen capital of Grozny, told JTA on Friday. Her father, Rafoi Rafailov, heads an association of Chechen Jews in the city of Pyatigorsk, situated 150 miles west of Grozny in the North Caucasian Federal District. “They all left, I don’t know who this man speaks for,” she said.

None of the two remaining Jews in 2013.

The scarcity of Jews in Chechnya did not prevent Kadyrov’s office from announcing the opening of a synagogue in Grozny in 2013. The announcement prompted some head scratching, including by the Russian politician and journalist Vadim Beriashvili, who said at the time that he doubted the existence of a Jewish community who might use the synagogue.

“The Chechen authorities managed to find two Jews for the opening of the synagogue, but both refused to participate,” he reported in 2013. “The reasons for their refusal can only be guessed.”

And so you have the strange paradox of Islamic violence leading to a Jewish exodus. Meanwhile a sham Jewish community is maintained for political purposes. And its chief job is denouncing Israel.

Orban: “Europe must regain sovereignty from the Soros empire,’ build border wall to stop ‘Muslimized Europe’

July 23, 2017

Orban: “Europe must regain sovereignty from the Soros empire,’ build border wall to stop ‘Muslimized Europe’ Jihad Watch

(Please see also, The Jewashing of George Soros. — DM)

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has been long known to oppose allowing Muslim migrants into his country. Consequently, Hungary has experienced no “terror.” Nor has Poland, which has also restricted Muslim migration.

In 2015, Orban stated that Europe was in a “grip of madness” and warned that its “Christian identity” was threatened. Two years later, Europe has found itself in a crisis, with Sweden near civil war, Germany in dire straits with spiraling crime and billions of dollars of debt (which is still rising), and France suffering a series of deadly jihad massacres.

Back in April, Hungary announced its intention to build a second border wall to keep out migrants. Orban said at the time that “the first fence was a quick solution from the government, but not a perfect one as human traffickers come equipped with tools to cut it.” He called the new “high-tech” fence “far more serious and absolutely reassuring.”

Now Orban is rightly “calling on European nations to end their association with billionaire open-borders financier George Soros.” Orban once accused Soros of being the “strongest example of those who support anything that weakens nation states, they support everything that changes the traditional European lifestyle….These activists who support immigrants inadvertently become part of this international human-smuggling network.” In other words, Soros — who has declared himself to be “some kind of god,” and who “broke the bank of England,” benefits immensely from disrupting nation states.

Orban — who has been leading central European countries against mass immigration — highlighted his vision to save Europe from ultimate destruction via the hijrah:

In order for Europe to be able to live, it has to win back its sovereignty from the Soros Empire… Once this is done, migrants must be taken back outside the EU. It sounds strict, but those who came illegally, must be transported back.

“Orban: ‘Europe Must Regain Sovereignty From The Soros Empire’, Build Border Wall to Stop ‘Muslimized Europe,’” by Oliver JJ Lane, Breitbart, July 22, 2017:

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has made an impassioned defence of European values and identity at the Bálványos Summer University camp in Romania Saturday, calling on European nations to end their association with billionaire open-borders financier George Soros.

Speaking at the 28th Bálványos Open University camp Saturday, which was this week was hailed as “one of the most important discussion forums of the Hungarian community” by Hungary’s deputy Prime Minister, Orban contributed to an apparently new tradition of the Hungarian PM using the event as a launch pad for pro-European rhetoric and policy.

Hitting out at the Hungarian-born billionaire George Soros, who stands accused by the Hungarian government of using his vast wealth to fund pro-mass migration organisations to create a “new, mixed, Muslimized Europe”, Orban said Brussels was in an “alliance against the people’s will” with the financier.

Laying out his vision for a future Europe without the influence of Soros, Orban said: ““In order for Europe to be able to live, it has to win back its sovereignty from the Soros Empire… Once this is done, migrants must be taken back outside the EU. It sounds strict, but those who came illegally, must be transported back,” Prime Minister Orbán said. “We have to admit that the European continent cannot remain unprotected.”

Discussing immigration to Hungary in a speech that came just days after his government announced the total requests submitted for Hungarian citizenships had hit one million, Orban said he would continue to oppose migrants “who could change the country’s cultural identity”.

As long as I remain the prime minister, the fence will stay in place. We will protect Hungary and Europe.

We can never be in solidarity with ideals, peoples and ethnic groups who set out with the goal to change European culture… because the end result is collapse……

Recognising that other Western and European nations were taking many migrants and seeing their cultures change as a result, Orban declared his nation’s borders open to like minded European, declaring that Hungary is a place where “Western European Christians will always be able to find security”….

Egypt’s Sisi opens biggest military base in Middle East and Africa

July 23, 2017

Egypt’s Sisi opens biggest military base in Middle East and Africa, al-Arabiya,The Associated Press, July 22, 2017

“We can never forgive those who spend billions of dollars in support of terrorism to kill our people and then speak about brotherhood and neighborhood”.

Addressing terror sponsors, he said “killing innocent people will never go scot-free.”

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Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi launched Mohammed Naguib military base in a huge ceremony in El Hammam city west of Alexandria on Saturday.

Mohammed Naguib military base is the biggest in the Middle East and Africa, reported Egyptian media.

President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi underlined that the Arab participation in the inauguration ceremony of Mohammed Naguib military base is a cogent proof of Arab unity.

The president welcomed Arab guests who participated in the ceremony that also celebrated the graduates of colleges and military institutes.

Arab princes and ambassadors headed by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Bahrain, Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Prince Khalid Al Faisal, Emir of Mecca and Sheikh Mohammad Al-Khalid Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Kuwaiti Minister of Defense and Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar the Libyan National Army commander attended the ceremony of opening the base which is named after late president Mohamed Naguib.

Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi launched Mohammed Naguib military base in a huge ceremony in El Hammam city west of Alexandria. (Screengrab)

Sisi stressed the importance of constructive cooperation to confront the challenges besetting the Arab nation.

President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi graduated new batches of the Armed Forces propped up by modern science and high-level training to be in charge of defending the nation.

He said the base was named after late Egyptian president Mohammed Naguib in honor of his patriotic efforts.

Sisi urged new graduates to be highly vigilant and ready for fighting in view of the watershed stage through which the region and whole world are passing.

Sisi said sacrificing for the nation’s security, stability and dignity is the duty of staunch sons of the nation.

He told the graduates that they are joining an ancient patriotic institution in charge of defending the nation, noting that Egyptians have always fully trusted their army.

The president paid tribute to Egypt’s martyrs of the Armed Forces and police who sacrificed their souls for their country.

He told the families of the martyrs that they sacrificed their sons to protect Egypt and confront terrorism and extremism, cautioning that terrorists are trying to affect the morale of the Egyptians.

As for states who interfere in the Egyptian affairs, President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi said these countries will never be able to harm Egypt or regional countries, adding that no country has the right to interfere in other countries’ affairs.

He highlighted that there are billions being spent to destroy countries, including Egypt.

Addressing Arab military graduates, he said we send a message to the world that Arabs join hands to build not to destroy, connive or foment sedition.

He said Egypt is now fighting in two battles; one for countering terrorism and the other for realizing socio-economic development.

Sisi said war tactics have changed and enemies resort to panicking people and spreading desperation in lieu of direct confrontations.

President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi expounded that terrorism is a multi-facet and complicated phenomenon, underlining the role of states and organizations that nurture and bankroll terrorism.

Mohammed Naguib military base is the biggest in the Middle East and Africa. (Screengrab)

Egypt will never forgive terror-funding countries

He added: “We can never forgive those who spend billions of dollars in support of terrorism to kill our people and then speak about brotherhood and neighborhood”.

Addressing terror sponsors, he said “killing innocent people will never go scot-free.”

He said, “Egypt will remain a peace-loving nation and will never kowtow to terrorist threats and those behind them.”

Sisi added that terrorism will never be a pretext to suspend economic reform and development as well as efforts to realize sustainable development.

“Terrorism, however, will be a catalyst for exerting more efforts at all levels” added the president of Egypt.

President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi urged people to bear the burdens of comprehensive economic development to reap its fruits which is a modern state and a dignified life.

For decades, the Egyptian economy failed to realize the optimal use of resources and economic crises piled up, but now the current generation has laid down strong foundations for a new modern Egypt whose people would enjoy prosperity and welfare.

The opening ceremony of Mohammed Naguib military base in Alexandria. (Screengrab)

He said the economic reform program is well examined, noting that Egypt is opening the door for all serious investors of Egypt, Arab or foreign states, creating jobs for youths and upping state revenues to realize a quantum leap in all services offered to people, especially health and education.

Sisi said he is sure that the Egyptians are aware of their high interests and they are adamant to proceed with economic reforms.

He voiced appreciation for the Egyptian people who understand the requirements of the economic reform program.

Fusion GPS and How the News Gets Made

July 23, 2017

Fusion GPS and How the News Gets Made, The Point (Front Page Magazine), Daniel Greenfield, July 23, 2017

(Please see also, FBI relies on discredited dossier in Russia investigation. A co-founder of Fusion Fusion GPS, which wrote the “Trump dossier,” has refused to testify before the Congress.– DM)

The Fusion GPS scandal is a shocking example of how the media sausage really gets made

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Lee Smith has an extensive hardhitting piece at the Tablet on Fusion GPS and what the media has become. I’m going to excerpt a few relevant sections. Not necessarily in order.

On Wednesday, three major news organization published variations of the same story—about the line of succession to the Saudi throne. It seems that in June the son of King Salman, Mohammed Bin Salman, muscled his cousin Mohammed Bin Nayef out of the way to become the Crown Prince and next in line.

It’s a juicy narrative with lots of insider-y details about Saudi power politics, drug addiction, and the ambitions of a large and very wealthy family, but the most salient fact is that the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Reuters published what was essentially the same story, with minor variations, on the same day—not a breaking news story, but an investigative feature.

In other words, these media organizations were used as part of an information campaign targeting Riyadh, for as yet unknown reasons. Who’s behind it? Maybe an opposition research shop like Fusion GPS, or a less formal gathering of interests, like Saudi opponents foreign and domestic, as well as American intelligence officials.

The same likely goes for the flurry of media pieces claiming that the crisis with Qatar was caused by UAE hacking. That nonsense piece of Qatari propoaganda is seemingly even being promoted in paid Google ads.

Smith’s larger point is that the news is increasingly a series of hit pieces. While that’s obvious to most conservatives and independents, he discusses how organizations like Fusion GPS create them.

Fusion GPS was founded in 2009—before the social media wave destroyed most of the remaining structures of 20th-century American journalism—by two Wall Street Journal reporters, Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch. They picked up former colleagues from the Journal, Tom Catan, and Neil King, Jr., who were also well-respected by their peers. When the social media wave hit two years later, print media’s last hopes for profitability vanished, and Facebook became the actual publisher of most of the news that Americans consumed. Opposition research and comms shops like Fusion GPS became the news-rooms—with investigative teams and foreign bureaus—that newspapers could no longer afford….

Fusion GPS, according to the company’s website, offers “a cross-disciplinary approach with expertise in media, politics, regulation, national security, and global markets.” What does that mean, exactly? “They were hired by a sheikh in the UAE after he was toppled in a coup and waged an information war against his brother,” one well-respected reporter who has had dealings with the company told me. “I believe they seeded the New Yorker story about the Trump Hotel in Azerbaijan with alleged connections to the IRGC. They may have been hired to look into Carlos Slim. It’s amazing how much copy they generate. They’re really effective.”

Yet it is rare to read stories about comms shops like Fusion GPS because traditional news organizations are reluctant to bite the hands that feed them. But they are the news behind the news—well known to every D.C. beat reporter as the sources who set the table and provide the sources for their big “scoops.”

The garbage media story you’re reading wasn’t even created by the reporters whose byline is on it. It was quite possibly created and hand fed by outside experts. Obviously this isn’t a new phenomenon. But the scale and the scope of it is. None other than Ben Rhodes, Obama’s Goebbels, bragged how little reporters [k]now and how easy it’s become to feed them material.

Something like Fusion GPS takes the White House operation that Ben Rhodes ran and makes it acceptable to countries and various interests.

Essentially we have what amounts to PR firms writing major media stories. And driving the narrative.

There is no accurate accounting of how many of the stories you read in the news are the fruit of opposition research, because no journalist wants to admit how many of their top “sources” are just information packagers—which is why the blinding success of Fusion GPS is the least-covered media story in America right now.

This is something to remember as the media throws another fit about how any criticism of it is a threat to the First Amendment. What the media increasingly is, is a space for assorted activists, for profit and non-profit, to run their narratives.

Much of the media’s new blood know nothing except how to tweet sarcastic animated GIFs and to have the right left-wing politics. The media isn’t a free press. It’s a monopoly run for the benefit of special interests.

The Fusion GPS scandal is a shocking example of how the media sausage really gets made.