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HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 12:22 am

Rock Solid Reporting Down Under?
FEBRUARY 9, 2014 16:28
BY SIMON PLOSKER
stonethrowingIn advance of an Australian Broadcasting Corporation program to be aired on February 10, The Australian’s John Lyons has produced two articles and an accompanying video interview on the subject of Israel’s treatment of Palestinian children in the West Bank.

The Australian articles most likely offer a preview as to what will be seen on the television.
To our Australian readers – please tune in on February 10, 8.30pm to Four Corners on ABC1 and see whether this topic is handled fairly and appropriately.
Central to Lyons’ report is the following:
At the heart of the issue is that Israel enforces two legal systems in the West Bank, one for Jews and one for Palestinians. About 2.5 million Palestinians live under Israeli occupation in the West Bank – also known as the Palestinian Territories – which Israel has occupied since 1967.
Palestinian children appear before the military court, while Jewish children face a civil court with full legal protections.
Contrary to Lyons’ statement, the two legal systems in operation are divided between Israeli citizens (which, of course, includes both Jews and Arabs) and non-citizens. This is not a division based on race, ethnicity or religion but on the legal status of the disputed territories. The reason why Palestinians, both children and adults, are not subject to Israeli civil law is that Israel has never annexed the West Bank and therefore, Israeli law does not apply to the area. Instead, military law is applied.
It’s safe to say that Lyons would not advocate Israel’s annexation of the West Bank and it’s also safe to assume that were Israeli law to be administered in the disputed territories, there would be an international outcry and accusations of breaching so-called international law.
So it’s hardly surprising that Jewish children face a civil court. After all, how many Jewish children would find themselves in front of a military court charged with throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails at Israeli cars or IDF soldiers?
In addition, contrary to Lyons’ statement that “2.5 million Palestinians live under Israeli occupation,” needs clarification, especially when discussing the legal rights of the Palestinians. Some 2.4 million Palestinians live under Palestinian Authority rule and are subject to the PA’s domestic laws.
To Lyons’ credit, he interviews Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesperson Yigal Palmor who refutes the charge that Israeli policy is designed to make life intolerable for the Palestinians:
Let me say this very clearly. There is no such policy. A policy to create fear? There is no such thing. The only policy is to maintain law and order, that’s all. If there’s no violence, there’s no law enforcement.
But who exactly are the Palestinian “children” that Lyons refers to? These aren’t 8 year olds but Palestinian youths, perhaps 17 years old who are engaged in the same terror activities as Palestinians who are legally considered to be adults. Israel does not arbitrarily arrest minors for the sake of it. It isn’t “only” stone throwing that Palestinian minors are involved in.
In response to a Guardian article on the same subject, the spokesperson for the Israeli Embassy in London wrote in January 2012:
But you omit the horrific nature of the atrocities that minors, some as young as 12, can be arrested for.
Hakim Awad, 17, is a minor. Last March [2011] he and his 18-year-old cousin, Amjad, brutally murdered the Fogel family while they slept. No mercy was shown to three-month-old Hadas, her two brothers (aged four and 11) and their parents. The scene of the crime, including the severed head of a toddler, left even the most experienced of police officers devastated. The duo proudly confessed to their killings, and they have shown no subsequent remorse.
Between 2000-04, 292 minors took part in terrorist activities. Shocking images of Palestinian infants dressed in explosive vests are only the tip of the hate industry that Palestinian children are exposed to. Ismail Tsabaj, 12, Azi Mostafa, 13, and Yousuf Basam, 14, were sent by Hamas on a mission chillingly similar to the one involving the Fogels, aiming to penetrate a Jewish home at night and slaughter a family in their beds. In this case, the IDF fortunately stopped them in time. …
In the face of ever younger minors committing ever greater numbers of crimes, its efforts to maintain and even increase legal protections are impressive. When a minor involved in terrorist activity is arrested, the law is clear: no torture or humiliation is permitted, nor is solitary confinement in order to induce a confession. …
Furthermore, a special juvenile court has been established to guarantee professional care for minors in detention. The above and other measures have succeeded in making legal proceedings easier for minors, and have almost halved their duration. …
It would be our wish that no minor would ever find themselves in Israeli custody. Unfortunately, we have to deal with the reality, not our dreams.
Much criticism is made of Israeli arrest operations of children in the middle of the night. Lyons may wish to consider the probable outcome of an arrest operation carried out during daylight hours. This would most likely result in violence as Palestinians in the immediate vicinity engage IDF soldiers leading to injuries or worse on both sides. Is the arrest of children during nighttime hours unpleasant? Certainly. But it still preferable to the alternative.
Lyons also states in his video interview that the Israeli authorities have been very receptive to the criticisms of the treatment of Palestinian children. Israel recognizes that improvements need to be made to the system and are continuously striving for this.
The discussion is undoubtedly a sensitive and emotive one. Nonetheless, it should be carried out in an accurate manner that avoids demonizing Israel.
To our Australian readers – please tune in on February 10, 8.30pm to Four Corners on ABC1 and see whether this topic is handled fairly and appropriately.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Sun 09 Feb 2014, 10:26 pm

Israel Daily News Stream 02/09/2014
FEBRUARY 9, 2014 15:39
BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. Rockets hit the Negev, and then Israel struck back. Don’t be surprised if we see reports along the lines that It All Started When Israel Fired Back.
2. Confidence building measures, Tehran style: Iran state TV airs simulated attacks on Israeli and US targets. Backstory at the Jerusalem Post. Oh yeah, Iranian warships now heading towards the Atlantic Ocean will sail to the US maritime border as part of of a mission to make illicit deliveries with Cuba and/or Venezuela “send a message.”

3. With no clear line of political succession, who are the Palestinians jockeying to take over the PLO “after Abbas?” The Times of Israel looks at the behind-the-scenes contenders.
4. Rock Solid Reporting Down Under? Australian media investigates Israeli treatment of Palestinian children. But is the subject being treated fairly?
Israel and the Palestinians
• A Washington Post interview with John Kerry is getting some media attention because the Secretary of State said Israelis and Palestinians will be able to express their reservations about US-drafted parameters. Ooooh.
• President Obama’s approval ratings are plummeting among Israelis. Time looks at why.
• Britain’s high court rules against Ahava boycotters
• The PA cracked down on the radical pan-Islamic group, Hizb ut-Tahir after it issued a leaflet slamming Mahmoud Abbas for proposing a NATO involvement in security arrangements. More at the Jerusalem Post.
On the next page:
Inside the Israeli-made security system at Sochi.
Why is Spain granting Jews a “right of return?”
Ex-CIA chief: Anti-Semitism a factor in Jonathan Pollard’s continued imprisonment.

Continued on page 2
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Sun 09 Feb 2014, 12:57 am

• Is Israel squandering Jewish refugees' chances for restitution?
• John Kerry to retire in 2016. What does it mean for peace efforts?
• Is Gen. Al-Sisi teasing Egyptians with his ambition?
Today’s Top Stories

1. Compensation for Jewish refugees who fled Arab countries is one of the most-overlooked issues of peace talks. Now Israel’s state comptroller says the government is squandering the opportunity to obtain billions of dollars in restitution.  Haaretz explains why:
In 2010, a law was passed stating that compensation for the lost property would be included in any future Arab-Israeli peace agreement. But the report shows that even if peace were to break out tomorrow morning, Israel would be hard-pressed to present a solid claim because the state does not know what property is at issue. The possible reasons for this are many and absurd . . .
John Kerry
John Kerry flying to Davos.

2.  John Kerry will retire from politics at the end of Barack Obama’s presidential term. Not sure what this means for his Mideast and Iranian diplomacy, but here’s what he told CNN‘s Jake Tapper towards the end of a wide-ranging Q&A:
KERRY:  One of – one of the joys of this job is I’m out of politics.
TAPPER:  Forever?
KERRY:  I’m out of politics.  I have no plans whatsoever.  This is my last stop.  I’m going to serve the country in the extraordinarily privileged position the president has given me, the great challenges that I have and move on.
3.  The Egyptian army denies Arab media reports trickling back to the West that military chief Abdul Fattah al-Sisi has decided to bow to the people’s wishes and run for president. Is al-Sisi teasing Egyptians with his ambition?
Read the full roundup here
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Thu 06 Feb 2014, 11:01 am

Israel-Bashers Eyeing UN Job
FEBRUARY 5, 2014 17:08
BY PESACH BENSON

Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. This week’s withdrawal and confused redeployment of Hamas squads along the Gaza border to prevent rocket fire was the result of a rift within Hamas, according to documents obtained by YNet.
2. The UN’s resident Israel-basher and 9/11 truther, Richard Falk, is nearing the end of his term as the Human Rights Council’s special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories. Hillel Neuer previews “the rogues gallery of anti-Israel activists and academics” clamoring for the job.
The UNHRC’s rules are clear: only Israel gets investigated, only Israel gets condemned.
Richard Falk
Richard Falk briefing journalists in 2012.

3. Mohammed Javad Zarif’s having a rough day. Just follow the bouncing ball:
Iranian Foreign Minister Lays Out Condition for Iranian Recognition of Israel.
Iranian FM in hot water for taking softer tone on Israel
Iranian FM denies reports hinting at recognition of Israel if conflict with Palestinians settled

News breaks fast. Get HonestReporting alerts by e-mail 
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4. Comments and the Roar of the Crowd: How to thank Scarlett Johansson? And what the heck does BDS stand for anyway?
5. NY Times’ Tom Friedman Calls BDS the Third Intifada: Is a peaceful two-state solution really the endgame of the boycott movement’s activities?
6. What’s Behind the Recent Success of the Dutch BDS Movement? A guest post by Yochanan Visser explaining Dutch divestment decisions.
7. HR Reader Gets NY Times Letter Published: Jason Levinson is on a roll.
Israel and the Palestinians
• SodaStream CEO David Birnbaum went toe to toe with Oxfam’s Ben Phillips on BBC Newsnight. Oxfam did not look good because when Jeremy Paxman pressed him on the issue, Phillips wouldn’t straight up say that it would be better for the factory to be gone and the plant’s Palestinians unemployed.
VIDEO PLEASE CLICK HERE
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cd9ioQrTqoY

• PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah presented a draft budget of $4.2 billion, with a deficit of $1.3 billion. If the PA wants to cut its deficit, it could stop paying civil servants to do nothing in Gaza, end stipends for terrorists, and tackle corruption.

• Israel busted a Palestinian terror cell planning to open fire on guests in a Jerusalem wedding hall.

• Gotta like PassNotes‘ funny take on Roger Waters and Scarlett Johansson.
• For more commentary/analysis, see Khaled Abu Toameh (why Jordan’s resisting Kerry’s peace proposals), Jonathan Schanzer (Israel’s qualitative military edge ain’t what you think), Investor’s Business Daily (Kerry’s diplomacy), Jake Wallis Simons (Oxfam funding BDS), Joe Klein (American Studies Association boycott) and a NY Post staff-ed’s withering take on US peacemaking efforts.
On the next page:
Just how deeply has Erdogan’s anti-Semitism penetrated Turkey?
When Europe speed-dates Iran, sanctions are just an afterthought.
Foreign press in Egypt is running scared.

Continued on page 2
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Thu 06 Feb 2014, 10:42 am

EXTRACT Please click link HERE for more
Seeing SodaStream For Myself
FEBRUARY 4, 2014 12:56
BY SIMON PLOSKER

This opinion piece by HR’s Managing Editor Simon Plosker is republished from The Times of Israel
SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum (r) with Simon Plosker
I’d given up all carbonated drinks over a decade ago (sorry Coke and Pepsi… and SodaStream) so I have no brand loyalty when it comes to SodaStream or any other sparkling beverage. But thanks to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement and Oxfam, SodaStream has become the latest flash-point in the demonization campaign against Israel.
So, despite the fact that Scarlett Johansson was not going to be there, I jumped at the opportunity to visit SodaStream’s factory in Mishor Adumim, some ten minutes outside Jerusalem.
I joined a group of some 40 journalists representing media outlets from across the globe, all of them drawn to a story that has received a remarkable amount of attention in recent days.
It has it all – the glamorous movie star, a dispute with a major “human rights” organization, controversy over Israeli “settlements,” an international boycott campaign, a Super Bowl ad. What more could you want from a story involving Israelis and Palestinians?
Here is a company that was not only promoting less sugary beverages and environmentalism, but also promotes peace between peoples by creating workplace coexistence.

Read more at above link
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Thu 06 Feb 2014, 10:29 am

 Kerry: Obama’s Syria Policy is Collapsing
FEBRUARY 4, 2014 17:43
BY PESACH BENSON

Today’s Top Stories
1. US officials to the Jerusalem Post: Mideast peace talks will need more time than we thought.
Kerry and his team have suggested publishing a framework for negotiations going forward that the parties would collectively roll out before the April 29 deadline. But the Americans now view the hard date they originally set to be “artificial” and suggest that even the framework might need more time, given some important gaps that still remain.
2. Kerry Tells Senators That Obama’s Syria Policy is Collapsing
3. The same Danish bank, Danske Bank, which won’t do business with Israel’s Bank HaPoalim for “legal and ethical grounds,”  didn’t have qualms when it helped finance a North Korean company that sold ballistic missiles to Iran. So much Danske Bank’s self-righteousness. Spengler connects the dots from Wikileaks.
Danske Bank
4. The Case Against “Generic” News Images: Is photo bias having a cumulative effect on the world’s perception of the Palestinians?
5. A Correction Obscuring Real BDS Goals: Why is The Guardian correcting information that was reported correctly in the original text?
6. HonestReporting Coming to Limmud Winnipeg: Don’t miss Gary Kenzer in “The Peg.”
Israel and the Palestinians
• Jordan’s foreign minister says Amman won’t recognize Israel as a Jewish state because the Hashemite kingdom fears becoming defined as a Palestinian state. The Times of Israel writes:
Now, official Jordan is concerned that defining Israel as a Jewish state may eventually lead to the forced deportation of Palestinians eastward across the Jordan river.
• BDS Movement Not Illegal, Says Israeli Official
• New Zealand’s foreign minister confirmed to Haaretz that the Batsheva Dance Company will receive visas to perform at a Wellington arts festival, despite BDS opposition.
• USA Today discussed the peace process with Israeli ambassador Ron Dermer.
• For more commentary/analysis on the peace process, see David Weinberg (Kerry’s not an equal opportunity threatener), Ron Ben-Yishai (what Abbas didn’t tell the NY Times), Max Boot (the PLO’s NATO gambit’s a non-starter), Uri Dromi (Israel as the UN’s punching bag), and Dan Margalit (recognizing Israel as a Jewish state). Weighing in on Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions issues are Matthew Kalman, Bernard Avishai, Oliver Kamm, the Albuquerque Journal, plus staff-eds in the Globe & Mail and NY Daily News.
word cloud
Rest O’ the Roundup
• Hassan Rouhani’s still moderate, right? Amir Taheri reports that Hashem Shaabani and Hadi Rashedi were hanged in an Iranian prison after Rouhani green-lighted their execution. Another 12 people convicted with Shaabani and Rashedi await their executions. What did they do to earn the regime’s wrath?
There, last July, an Islamic Revolutionary Tribunal with a single judge, Ayatollah Muhammad-Baqer Mussavi, sentenced the 14 to death on charges of “waging war on God” and “spreading corruption on earth” and “questioning the principle ofvelayat-e faqih” (the guardianship of the jurist).
• Al Jazeera’s Arabic channel is trying to get a foothold in Canada, and Jewish activists are concerned, reports the National Post:
“The primary concern of the Jewish community is that Al Jazeera Arabic is fairly notorious for broadcasting anti-Semitic comments,” he said. “Al Jazeera English is a much different channel — the content is different, the tone is different.”
“We would have no problem with Al Jazeera Arabic, provided that there would be some guarantee that anti-Semitic content would not be broadcast and I don’t think they can make that guarantee,” Mr. Sampson added.
• Another suicide bombing in Beirut. This Christian Science Monitor headline sums it all up:
 Christian Science Monitor
• Bret Stephens (Wall St. Journal via Google News) and Gabriel Schoenfeld don’t believe the West will ever detect an Iranian break-out.
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Thu 06 Feb 2014, 10:21 am

NATO To Patrol De-Militarized Palestinian State?
FEBRUARY 3, 2014 16:03
BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Israel-Daily-News-Stream/182588885185478

Today’s Top Stories
1. According to news reports in both Israel and Turkey, the two countries are close to finalizing a $20 million compensation deal for the families of nine Turkish nationals killed aboard the Mavi Marmara.
Jerusalem, however, does not expect any agreement to be reached before the Turkish local elections on March 30, since Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is said to fear that an agreement with Israel and a compromise on the compensation will hurt him politically.
2. SodaStream CEO David Birnbaum accused Oxfam of funding the BDS movement that’s been targeting his West Bank factory. The Jerusalem Post writes:
“Unsurprisingly, Oxfam has joined the BDS in this movement [to close down the West Bank factory],” SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum said. “I’m saying ‘unsurprisingly’ because we found out that some of the Oxfam branches have been donating funds to the BDS, and this money is used to demonize and attack Israel.” . . .
Birnbaum spoke out Sunday against Oxfam after the Israeli nonprofit group NGO Monitor posted information on its website claiming that in 2013, the charity’s Dutch affiliate Oxfam Novib had transferred NIS 406,300 to the Coalition of Women for Peace, which was involved in the BDS campaign against Israel.
Oxfam immediately responded, denying the claim.
BDS
3. Mahmoud Abbas to the NY Times: A US-led NATO force could indefinitely patrol a de-militarized Palestinian state to allay Israeli security concerns:

Mr. Abbas said in an interview with The New York Times at his headquarters here over the weekend that Israeli soldiers could remain in the West Bank for up to five years — not three, as he previously stated — and that Jewish settlements should be phased out of the new Palestinian state along a similar timetable. Palestine, he said, would not have its own army, only a police force, so the NATO mission would be responsible for preventing the weapons smuggling and terrorism that Israel fears.
(And Tom Friedman gives it a thumbs up.)
4. Seeing SodaStream For Myself: HR’s managing editor visits the SodaStream factory to see what all the fuss and fizz is about.
5. Shock and Horror as Israeli Embassy Supports . . . Israel! This is what The Guardian considers news?
6. Watchdog of the Week: RTE Makes On-Air Apology for Ariel Sharon Slur: Irish broadcaster corrects the record thanks to action taken by three of our UK readers.
7. Join HonestReporting’s Spring Mission: Meet the newsmakers, the journalists, and the insiders to find out the story behind the headlines. Join HonestReporting’s Spring, 2014 mission to Israel (May 20-26). Book now and qualify for our early bird special. Click for details.
HonestReporting Mission to Israel
Israel and the Palestinians
• Thumbs up to AP reporter David Mac Dougall. His dispatch on Israel returning the bodies of Palestinian suicide bombers is nicely balanced out by the impact its  having on Israeli victims of terror. This snippet speaks volumes about the burden the survivors still carry, while adding a frank and welcome transparency to his reporting:
On Sunday at the Supersol, a security guard stood in Smadar’s old spot. A plaque on the wall commemorated him and Rachel Levy, a 17-year-old Israeli also killed in the blast.
Levy’s parents declined to comment. Almagor said the Levys were upset to learn in the media about the body of their daughter’s killer being returned to the West Bank.
A Supersol cashier on the job Sunday morning was also working the day of the attack. She started to cry when an Associated Press journalist tried to talk to her about the blast. Sunday’s body transfer awakened raw memories, and her manager asked AP to leave.
terror victims
Haim Smadar and Rachel Levy, killed in a 2002 suicide bombing at a Jerusalem supermarket.

• Fatah wants John Kerry hauled to the International Criminal Court for threatening Mahmoud Abbas. Kerry was making a point to Abbas about the PLO chief’s legacy, but see the Jerusalem Post for the laughable spin Fatah’s putting on it.
• The Danish ambassador to Israel stressed that his government has nothing to do with Danske Bank — Denmark’s largest — boycotting Israel’s Bank HaPoalim. According to the Times of Israel:
“Indeed, the embassy has an account at Bank Hapoalim, and we have no plans at this stage to change that,” Ambassador Jesper Vahr was quoted by Hebrew news site Walla as saying. “It is a private decision of the bank, and the government of Denmark has no connection to it. The bank makes these decisions independently.”
• Haaretz‘s Ilene Prusher looked at a bunch of Palestinian mashup images criticizing Scarlett Johansson’s SodaStream commercial. Unfortunately, the paper’s tweet of Prusher’s piece overshadowed the link to her article with an image (one of several that illustrate the article).
Haaretz is taking flak for appearing to support BDS (and rightly so), but the offense strikes me as unintentional and certainly avoidable. What do you think? (Shortly after publishing this roundup, Haaretz tweeted a clarification.) Here’s the original tweet.
Haaretz
• The SodaStream factory hosted a scrum of reporters on Super Bowl Sunday. Among the journos there were USA Today’s Kate Shuttleworth, Bloomberg News, Daily Mail, and the Financial Times (via Google News).
• For more commentary, see YNet and Yaacov Lozowick (SodaStream), Steve Rosen (what happens when one million Palestinian refugees return to the West Bank?), and Roger Cohen (the peace process).
Rest O’the Roundup
• Iran received $500 million in frozen assets. It’s the first installment of $4.2 billion due to be unblocked as part of the Iran’s interim nuclear deal with international negotiators. AFP coverage.
• Is Israel taking secret steps to block Al-Qaida from gaining a foothold in southern Syria, asks the Jerusalem Post.
• French comedian Dieudonne banned from entering Britain. (Authorities must still feel burnt by Abu Qatada and Sheikh Raed Salah).
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Thu 30 Jan 2014, 4:02 pm

JANUARY 30, 2014 15:21
BY PESACH BENSON
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Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. Scarlett Johansson cut ties with Oxfam over her SodaStream endorsement. In the process, the actress slammed the BDS movement. AP writes:
“Scarlett Johansson has respectfully decided to end her ambassador role with Oxfam after eight years,” the statement said. “She and Oxfam have a fundamental difference of opinion in regards to the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement.”
I’m giving the last word to Alex Ryvchin.

For more on the bitter bubble beverage battle, see today’s edition of Fighting BDS.

2. Hezbollah is expanding its drone use. YNet reports the UAVs patrol the Lebanese-Syrian border, and spend time over the homes of rival Lebanese politicians (!?).
Hezbollah is believed to possess close to 200 Iranian-made drones, and some are, of course, destined for Israel. A proportion of those planes are set aside for one-way missions on strategic sites inside Israel, or IAF bases in the next conflagration. Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah’s drone collection includes a variety of models, among them “suicide” model aircraft that can fly at very low altitudes, evading Israel’s radar systems.
3. An IDF officer putting Hezbollah on notice gives us Reuters‘ bungled headline of the day:
Reuters
You have to read the article to find out Major-General Amir Eshel was talking about Hezbollah’s human shields.
Israel accused Lebanon’s Hezbollah guerrillas on Wednesday of putting “thousands” of bases in residential buildings and said it would destroy these in a future conflict, even at the cost of civilian lives . . .
“Above and below live civilians whom we have nothing against – a kind of human shield,” he told the Fisher Institute for Air and Space Strategic Studies, a think-tank near Tel Aviv.
“And that is where the war will be. That is where we will have to fight in order to stop it and win. Whoever stays in these bases will simply be hit and will risk their lives. And whoever goes out will live.”
More on Eshel’s address at Jerusalem Post.
4. Anti-Normalization Absurdities: A Palestinian photographer with a history of hounding Israeli journalists out of Ramallah gets permission to enter the Jewish state.
Israel and the Palestinians
• 170,000 rockets pointed at Israel. Can we call that disproportionate?
• Gaza’s water woes are getting desperate, reports The Media Line:
“In Gaza, the first desalination plant built by the World Bank was completed in October of last year,” Bromberg said. “But the tragedy is that it has no electricity to run it . . .”
Gen. Nguyen Giap
• Worth reading: Kerry, the Palestinians, and the Vietnam model:
Giap not only taught Arafat the wonders of propaganda in the age of modern media. He also introduced him to the idea of “phased strategy.” What the Communist Vietnamese meant by “two-state solution” was the conquest of the south in phases: first sign a “two-state” agreement with the US, and then repeal it unilaterally by invading the south after the withdrawal of US forces.
Mahmoud Abbas and other PLO leaders never pronounce the phrase “two states for two peoples.” They only use the expression “two-state solution.” What they mean by this “solution,” however, is not the end of the conflict after the establishment of two distinct nation-states, but a “two-state solution” Vietnam-style. This is why Abbas refuses to recognize Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people, this is why he insists on invading Israel with the descendants of the 1948 Arab refugees, and this is why he flatly rejects the idea of a Jewish minority in a Palestinian state.
• For commentary/analysis, see David Ignatius (Kerry’s interim deal-style diplomacy with both Israel and Iran), and Professor Kenneth Lasson (demolishing the academic boycott of Israel). Last but not least, the Chicago Tribune gave George Bisharat an op-ed soapbox to plug the academic boycott.
Rest O’the Roundup
• The NY Times visited Syrians in the Western Galilee Hospital. One man, grateful for the care his five-year-old granddaughter is receiving, told correspondent Isabel Kershner:
“When there is peace, I will raise an Israeli flag on the roof of my house,” he said.
• Syria has demolished thousands of homes during the civil war. BBC picked up on this Human Rights Watch report. Can you imagine the outrage if Israel did this?
Government officials told HRW that the demolitions were carried out in order to remove illegally constructed buildings.
However, the New York-based group found that there had been no similar demolitions in pro-government districts.
• Turkish troops fire on Al Qaeda-affiliated militants in Syria
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Tue 28 Jan 2014, 8:20 pm

Did Israel Attack Syria?
JANUARY 27, 2014 15:00
BY PESACH BENSON

Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. Media reports suggest (Israeli jets?) attacked (missile launchers?) in Syria (a base?) in the area of Latakia. Nothing’s confirmed, so take your pick of YNet or Jerusalem Post coverage and draw your own conclusions. As this roundup goes to to press, this JPost is snippet is about the only one I feel comfortable quoting with confidence:
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which collates reports from opposition activists, said there had been an explosion at a Syrian air defense base near Jableh, in the Mediterranean coastal province of Latakia.
2. Great moments in political trial balloons? An anonymous official in the Prime Minister’s office told the Times of Israel that Benjamin Netanyahu will insist on West Bank settlers being allowed to choose to live in their homes under Palestinian rule.
The PA rejected the idea; some settlers told YNet they’re open to it, and AP called it’s “a novel approach to one of the stickiest issues in Mideast peace talks.”
al-Sisi
Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi

3. Egypt to hold presidential elections in April. A previously agreed upon timetable  had the vote to be held in July, after separate parliamentary elections. As Reuters aptly puts it:
Critics have campaigned for a change of the roadmap, saying the country needs an elected leader to direct government at a time of economic and political crisis and to forge a political alliance before a potentially divisive parliamentary election.
Opponents say it risks creating a president with unchecked power. Were that Sisi, who is widely tipped to win, it would put the army back in a post controlled by military men until Mursi was propelled to office by the Muslim Brotherhood.
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4. Time Magazine’s Derogatory Headline: Less than politically correct language used as Prime Minister Netanyahu’s son’s love life piques media interest.
5. Watchdog of the Week: Jason Levinson’s Letter in the Irish Times: It’s not often you see a letter from as far afield as Texas in the letters page of the Irish Times.
6. Come to Israel This Spring With HonestReporting: Discover the beauty and complexity of the Mideast and get the inside story from the newsmakers. Join HonestReporting’s Spring, 2014 mission to Israel (May 20-26). Book now and qualify for our early bird special. Click for details.
Israel and the Palestinians
• Indictments reveal Hamas trying to expand influence in Jerusalem through social welfare programs, reports YNet.
• Cyber hackers breach Defense Ministry computer
• I’m grateful to see The Independent standing up for Israeli athletics. Qatar must be hoping Israel doesn’t qualify for the 2022 World Cup, which the Gulf state is hosting:
The International Swimming Association (Fina) have issued strong warnings both to Qatar and Dubai, where Israeli athletes suffered similar discrimination. Shouldn’t Fifa be doing the same? Especially as only last week [sic] the United Arab Emirates refused permission for Israel-born defender Dan Mori to enter the country with his Dutch club Vitesse Arnhem for friendly matches in Abu Dhabi because they do not recognise Israel as a state.
• For more commentary, see Tom Wilson (the American lobby in Israel), Nadav Shragai (negotiations as a form of “resistance”), and Shimon Ohayon (Exposing the myth of the Arab bystander to the Holocaust).
Rest O’ the Roundup
• Sinai jihadis took credit for downing an Egyptian helicopter, with a video backing their claim Time gets it.

• Lebanon’s going nuts after the Beirut-based LBC TV interviewed Israeli air force pilots and officers. In Lebanon, you see, it’s illegal to directly contact Israeli officials, and this law applies to media organizations as well. YNet followed up on the fallout:

He stressed that the video was produced by a Palestinian production company and was then passed on the Lebanese channel . . .
LBC, the network that released the highly-debated interview, issued a statement on Saturday in which they claim they have fallen into an IDF trap, which used the network for its own purposes.
• More dirt on Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s Holocaust denial unearthed at Memri.
• Iranian journos urge Rouhani to re-open press association
• For more commentary on the Iranian situation, see The New Republic’s Leon Wieseltier and Ali Alfoneh.
(image of al Sisi via YouTube/M e i m a)
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Mon 27 Jan 2014, 7:35 am

Israel Daily News Stream 01/26/2014
JANUARY 26, 2014 16:56
BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.
Today’s Top Stories
1. Do Sinai jihadis now have surface to air missiles? An Egyptian military helicopter crashed in the northern Sinai peninsula and its crew is missing. According to a CBC report (which I couldn’t find online) discussed on Twitter, the jihadis apparently shot down the chopper. It was a matter of time, and Israel’s gotta be concerned some of them will turn up in Gaza. AP later reported that a group called Ansar Beit al-Maqdis (Champions of Jerusalem) claimed credit for the downing.

2. Call it collateral damage waiting to happen. According to the Times of Israel, Hamas is placing rocket launchers next to water reservoirs and attaching reconnaissance cameras to water towers and minarets. On a related note, Daniel Nisman weighs in on the likelihood of a Gaza war. See the Wall St. Journal (via Google News).
In its desperation, Hamas has made no secret of its recently revamped relationship with Tehran. Iran’s supposedly “moderate” leadership is gaining favor as a negotiating partner in defusing crises across the region. It’s hardly surprising that the Palestinian Islamic Jihad organization, Iran’s main proxy in the Gaza Strip and the second most powerful faction there after Hamas, appears to have been responsible for most of the recent rocket fire.The group has a proven track record of cooperating with Hamas and adhering to ceasefires when it sees fit, always in close coordination with its backers in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps.
3. LBC For the first time, the IDF allowed a Lebanese TV crew to film inside an air base — to warn Hezbollah against smuggling weapons into Lebanon from Syria. YNet writes:
A reporter from Lebanon’s LBC interviewed Ramat David Air Force Base commander, as well as Captain Avihai Aderi, head of Arab media at the IDF Spokesperson Unit . . .
Eventually, the message the IDF was panning on sending Hezbollah was made crystal clear: “The IDF understands that the arrival of such strategic arms to Hezbollah in Lebanon will be what sparks the next war.”
4. Bye Bye, Harriet: A correspondent expressing feelings like these should’ve been pulled a long time ago.
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Israel and the Palestinians
 Eli Lake: US envoy Martin Indyk has been reaching out to Israeli national security experts and reserve officers sympathetic to a Jordan Valley withdrawal. Is this diplomatic due diligence, or obscene interference in Israeli affairs?
• IRS Wants Gaza Caravan-Tied Charity’s Status Stripped
• Graduation speech? Where I come from, it’s called incitement and brainwashing. Ismail Haniyeh and other Hamas notables exhorted teenage graduates of Hamas camps to look forward to martyrdom, Israel’s annihilation, and global jihad. The speeches were, of course, broadcast on Al-Aqsa TV. More at the Times of Israel and Memri (video/transcript).
 
• Oxfam’s distancing itself from Scarlett Johansson. Turns out she’s an ambassador for the UK-based aid and development organization, which also opposes Israeli businesses (like SodaStream) in the West Bank. The actress took to the Huffington Post to staunchly stand by SodaStream.
Judging from the roundup of Boycott Divestment Sanctions movement’s reactions at The Lede, they’re going to make thisOxfam’s headache. For more on BDS issues, see today’s edition of  Fighting BDS.
On the next page:
Mahmoud Abbas begins 10th year of his four-year term as PA president. Why does it matter?
After interviewing Hassan Rouhani, Fareed Zakaria calls nuclear deal a “train wreck.”
 Al Qaida-linked jihadis in Syria now reportedly numbers 30,000.

Continued on page 2
 
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Thu 23 Jan 2014, 11:47 pm

Israel Daily News Stream 01/23/2014
JANUARY 23, 2014 16:51
BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. Former Hamas man behind Beirut bombings?
2. Germany’s conditioning on high-tech grants and scientific cooperation on making Israeli entities on the wrong side of the Green Line ineligible for funding. Haaretz reports that that Israeli officials are worried about a domino effect:
The German decision represents a significant escalation in European measures against the settlements. While the Horizon 2020 scientific cooperation agreement, which Israel signed with the European Union a few weeks ago, prohibited EU funding for academic research conducted in the settlements, Berlin has now extended the funding ban to private companies located over the Green Line. Moreover, the boycott against the settlements has now spread from EU institutions in Brussels to individual EU members. . .
“We also want to prevent a situation in which every decision made by the European Commission in Brussels is automatically adopted by all 28 member states,” he added . . .
3. Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif insisted to CNN that the interim nuclear deal doesn’t require Tehran to dismantle anything. It’s hard to argue, because the agreement hasn’t been made public by the Obama administration.
4. The Economist Ignores Calls for Anti-Semitism Standards: An anti-Semitic cartoon fails to prompt any soul searching.
5. Watchdog of the Week: Friends of Israel (Western Australia) Fighting Bias Down Under: This week’s Watchdog of the Week is awarded to an organization rather than an individual.
Israel and the Palestinians
• AP discovered “terror.”
Israel on Wednesday said it had foiled an “advanced” al-Qaida plan to carry out a suicide bombing on the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv and bomb other targets, in what analysts said was the first time the global terror network‘s leadership has been directly involved in plotting an attack inside Israel.
The T-word also popped up in the LA Times and CNN.
• The IDF’s launched its newest weapon in the media war: a combat camera unit documenting army operations. The Guardian‘s Matthew Kalman nicely profiled the unit, whose personnel finished a seven-month training course.
On the next page:
Drug money-laundering ring benefitting Hezbollah busted.
AP cuts ties with photographer who altered Syrian war photo.
Saudi columnist: Arab rulers way more brutal than Ariel Sharon.
Continued on page 2
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Wed 22 Jan 2014, 9:13 pm

Israel Daily News Stream 01/22/2014
JANUARY 22, 2014 17:38
BY PESACH BENSON

Today’s Top Stories
1. Israeli arrested three Palestinians from eastern Jerusalem plotting a string of terror attacks. The Jerusalem Post reports they were recruited by an Al Qaida operative in Gaza.
The intended targets included the Jerusalem Convention Center, a bus traveling between the capital and Ma’aleh Adumim, the US embassy in Tel Aviv, and emergency responders who would have arrived at the scene of attacks
2. Abbas rejects extending peace talks beyond nine-month deadline
Yossi Reshef
3. A group of students who disrupted an Israeli musician’s performance were found guilty of violating the rights of other people to express themselves. Ten students from South Africa’s Wits University were sentenced to 80 hours of community and risk being expulsion if they violate school rules again.
Yossi Reshef, the pianist whose recital last year was disrupted, called the decision a victory for academic freedom, but the students defiantly rejected it:
“As far as I’m concerned, none of the people found guilty by the kangaroo court are prepared to do community service,” he said, adding that they were doing their part “as community leaders to stand up against the injustice of Zionism”.
4. Canadian PM Turns Tables on the Media: When it comes to the media’s attitude towards Israel, Harper gets it.
5. Israel Lobby Trope in The Independent: Is it really so difficult to believe that some U.S. Congressmen may harbor genuine concerns and mistrust towards Iran without some all-powerful “Israel lobby” pulling the strings?
Israel and the Palestinians
• Payback: An Israeli airstrike killed two Gaza  thugs, including Ahmed Za’anin, who fired rockets at the end of Ariel Sharon’s funeral.
• UNESCO now looks to hold the Land of Israel Exhibit in June. The exhibit’s less likely to disrupt the peace talks in June because negotiations will likely collapse by then. Jerusalem Post coverage.
maple leaf• One of Harper’s accompanying cabinet ministers, Jason Kenney, told the Times of Israel that foreign ministries around the world tend to have an institutional bias against Israel:
It’s no secret that the foreign ministries of most Western countries have an institutional bias against Israel that is probably informed by the fact that there is one Jewish state and dozens of other Islamic and Arabic states. That frankly informs the professional public service in most Western foreign ministries.
You mean there are 20 times as many diplomats who have served in Arab countries?
And 40 times more in Muslim countries. That’s right. The prime minister more or less intimated that in his speech. That means you’ve got dozens more diplomats and foreign policy wonks who absorb a particular perspective which is frankly and obviously hostile to Israel.
So that becomes the default position. It takes a profound act, it takes great intentionality on the part of political actors, to overcome that kind of institutional bias to begin with.
• For more commentary on Stephen Harper’s visit, see Thomas Walkom, Jonathan Kay, Heather Mallick, a Globe & Mail staff-ed, plus cartoons in the National Post and Edmonton Journal.
• Following up on the controversy over the shirts used by the Chilean soccer team, Palestino: the country’s National Soccer Federation banned the shirts, which featured a map of showing Israeli territory as Palestinian. The Santiago Times reports that the team president will simply put a different map on the shirts.
However, he was quick to point out that the ANFP does not specifically prohibit the use of the pre-1947 Palestinian map on shirt designs.
“It is clear there are no rules against using the ancient map of Palestine on sportswear,” Aguad told El Mercurio. “We are going to design a new shirt with complete liberty to include the territory of, and any symbols relating to, Palestine.”
If a pro-Israel team somewhere in the world did something similar, this conversation would probably be about dual-loyalties.
Palestino football club
Palestino football club shirts

• The NY Times introduces us to Gedaliah and Elisheva Blum, American olim who are fighting the boycott of settlement products with the Orange Pages:
The Blums have since 2009 run a website promoting small businesses — mechanics, real estate brokers, caterers, etc. — in the settlements generally viewed as illegal under international law, and last fall they unveiled an online boutique selling settler art. Their approach is an attempted antidote to the “Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions” movement that has been gaining ground lately — buy local, invest, celebrate.
• Just learned that Israel’s new ambassador to Brazil, Dr. Reda Mansour, is a Druze diplomat.
Mansour joins two other Druze diplomats: Naim Aryadi, Israel’s ambassador to Norway, and Baheej Mansour, Israel’s ambassador to the Dominican Republic.
• I wonder how the BDS movement explains this: Morocco Acquired Israeli Heron Drones via France.
• For more commentary/analysis, see Ron Ben-Yishai (why Hamas and Islamic Jihad are de-escalating rocket fire), Emmanuel Navon (the Israeli-Palestinian demographic battle), Jonathan Tobin (refugees), Washington Times (UNESCO), New Haven Register (boycotts), and Yaacov Berg (Israeli reaction to boycott talk).
Rest O’ the Roundup
• As implementation of the interim nuclear deal kick in, the LA Times gauged Israeli reactions.
• I’m sure the mullahs in Iran are taking note: Israel and Kazakhstan signed a security-military cooperation deal.
 YNet: A Syrian teenager getting treatment in Haifa’s Rambam Hospital petitioned Israel’s Supreme Court that he not be returned  to Syria.
The High Court appeal states that the young girl, who was injured in battles in Syria which also claimed the lives of her mother and several other family members, fears for her life, and is requesting to be sent to relatives in another country. The petition notes that the relatives were informed of the issue and are willing to take the teen in.
• Humanitarian aid is becoming a weapon in the Syrian civil war, including the Yarmouk Palestinian refugee camp, reports the Wall St. Journal. There’s enough blame to spread around to everyone.
• For more commentary on the Syrian situation, see the Wall St. Journal (via Google News).
(Image of Palestino via YouTube/24X7BreakingNEWS)
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Wed 22 Jan 2014, 8:12 pm

Betrayed Israeli Professor Blisters UNESCO
JANUARY 21, 2014 17:37
BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. After uproar, Iran disinvited from Geneva conference on Syria. Iranian statements against the premise of the gathering made it easier for Ban Ki-moon to withdraw the invitation. Good thing too: the talks would have collapsed from the boycott of Syrian rebels and other key countries opposed to Iran’s participation. Bottom line: Iran wouldn’t “get with the program,” writes McClatchy News:
Iranian leaders failed to follow through on a promise to endorse the conference’s goal of naming a transitional government.
Scarlett Johansson
2. Heh. Left-wing yuppies just can’t get enough of SodaStream, even though the product is supposed to be so boycottable. NY Magazine finds that everyone’s got an excuse for having it. And Benny Avni credits Scarlett Johansson for going against the Tinseltown stream:
In Hollywood, where misguided radical chic hasn’t cost anyone a juicy movie part in half a century, ignoring the anti-Israel catcalls is no easy thing these days. Sticking by SodaStream in such an environment is admirable.
3. Professor Robert Wistrich, author of the Israeli exhibit that UNESO squelched bitterly slammed the organization for caving in to Arab pressure. He told the Times of Israel:
Wistrich also claimed that UNESCO only agreed to host the exhibition to improve its image in the United States, hoping to get the administration to start funding the organization again, after it stopped paying when UNESCO admitted “Palestine” as a member. The historian also took aim at the Obama administration, suggesting the State Department was schizophrenic because it had refused to cosponsor the exhibition — invoking the same reasons that Arab member states used when working successfully to torpedo it — yet later condemned the fact that it was canceled.
Israel and the Palestinians
• Time to look busy: Hamas deploys forces to prevent rocket fire on Israel. Meanwhile, the Jerusalem Post rounds up the latest rocket fire on Israel, including Grads fired at Eilat.
• Romania supports the idea of recognizing Israel as a Jewish state.
• Maybe I missed it, Ali Jarbawi, but I didn’t hear any Israeli media grumble over any lack of response from the PA about Ariel Sharon’s death.
Stephen Harper
Prime Minister Stephen Harper

• Nice of the Toronto Star to publish the text of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Knesset speech. For an opposing view, Ahmad Tibi explained to the CBC why he walked out in the middle.
• Weighing in on Stephen Harper’s visit are Shira Herzog, Andrew Coyne, David Akin, John Ivison, Michael Petrou, and staff-eds in the Toronto Star, Winnipeg Free Press, and Toronto Sun. The Globe & Mail gave op-ed space to Nabil Shaath — he’s sour grapes. Canadian cartoonists expressed themselves too in the National Post, Montreal Gazette, and Ottawa Citizen.
• For more commentary/analysis, see Danny Danon (Israel-US ties), and the Washington Times (countering illegal boycotts).
Rest O’ the Roundup
• Sanctions eased, Iran gets feelers from old trading partners.
Even when the easing begins, now set for Monday, it will continue to be nearly impossible to transfer money into and out of the country. “Most companies want to scope out the landscape,” said Rouzbeh Pirouz, the chairman of a Tehran-based investment firm, Turquoise Partners. “But I don’t think many of them will actually sign contracts and start putting money into this place very quickly.”
• The photos are disturbing to look at, and they’re damning allegations of Syrian army torture. CNN and The Guardian got exclusive looks at the evidence which war crimes prosecutors are investigating.
• Another car bomb struck a Hezbollah neighborhood in Beirut. CNN reports four dead and 27 injured.
• I wish sports wasn’t so politicized, but this is where we’re at. Big sigh.
Chile bans Palestino football club anti-Israel shirt
Nicolas Anelka to be charged by FA over ‘quenelle’ gesture
Russian police kill Islamist militant leader before Olympics
• I liked Diana Moukalled‘s take on the Special Tribunal for Lebanon.

(Image of Johansson via YouTube/SuperBowl 2014, Harper via Facebook/Stephen Harper)
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Mon 20 Jan 2014, 10:56 pm

Israel Daily News Stream 01/20/2014
JANUARY 20, 2014 16:58

BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.
Today’s Top Stories
1. Not all Palestinian academics support boycotting their Israeli counterparts. The Chronicle of Higher Education even found a few willing to talk. Even more significantly, the NY Times republished Matthew Kalman’s dispatch from the ivory towers of Abu Dis:
A professor in the College of Pharmacy at Al-Quds, who asked to remain anonymous because of the sensitivity of the issue, said more than 50 Palestinian professors were engaged in joint research projects with Israeli universities, funded by international agencies like the U.S. Agency for International Development. He said that, without those grants, Palestinian academic research would collapse because “not a single dollar” was available from other places. He rejected the call for a boycott as having no practical value.
2. Palestinian journalists are already piqued with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Maan News reports his bodyguards got into a scuffle with some of the stringers covering his visit to Bethlehem’s Church of the Nativity. As a result, the Palestinian Union of Journalists urged Palestinian journalists to boycott Harper’s West Bank visit.
A not-so-great moment in Palestinian sources led to two contradictory headlines. One’s based on Palestinian sources, the other based on Canada’s immigration minister. (Realizing it was burnt by the Arab reports it had relied on, the Jerusalem Post updated its coverage later in the day.)
Jerusalem Post
National Post
3. In a last-minute reversal, UN chief Ban Ki-moon invited Iran to participate in the Geneva summit on Syria this week along with Australia, Bahrain, Belgium, Greece, the Vatican, Luxembourg, Mexico, the Netherlands, the South Korea. You know what they say about too many cooks . . .
“As I have said repeatedly, I believe strongly that Iran needs to be part of the solution to the Syrian crisis,” Ban told reporters on Sunday.
4. Shades of Anti-Semitism in The Economist: Do Jews control Congress?
Israel and the Palestinians
• Relative Calm Watch: Amid concerns of continued rocket fire, 4,000 Ashdod kids were kept home from school because their buildings aren’t suitably fortified. The majority of the city’s schools are fortified, and classes went on as usual for everyone else.
• Hmmmm. Israel began returning the bodies of Palestinian terrorists. AP called them militants, but a Toronto Star headline writer decided to apply the T-word to the wire report.
 AP
Toronto Star
• Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki explained to Asharq al-Awsat (via Elder of Ziyon) why the PLO can never ever ever recognize Israel as Jewish state:
It would be dangerous to recognize this because this would mean our acceptance of the dissolution of our own history and ties and our historic right to Palestine. This is something that we will never accept under any circumstances.
• For more coverage of Stephen Harper’s visit to Israel, see the Toronto Star (links one and two), the Globe & Mail, and the CBC, plus Dow Marmur‘s commentary.
• Once it becomes acceptable to demonize Israel, it’s not long till people use Israel to falsely smear their own enemies too. Turkey’s a case point, Today’s Zaman columnist Abdulhamit Bilici points out:
There was a survey recently conducted by a university about foreign policy perceptions in Turkey. According to this survey, 42 percent of the people interviewed perceived the US as the biggest threat to Turkey while 37 percent said the top threat was Israel. Therefore, the quickest way to launch a psychological warfare operation against someone or a group is to portray them as collaborating with the US and Israel. This is best label you can affix onto someone in order to isolate and demonize them within religious and conservative groups.
• For commentary/analsyis see Avi Issacharoff (Gaza escalation) and Michael Cohen (he’s optimistic).
Rest O’ the Roundup
atom• Iran and the West began implementing the interim nuclear deal. Take your pick of AP or CNN coverage for what this means for sanctions, centrifuges and spin.
• Israel allows Egyptian army to operate in north Sinai, even lets helicopters circle over Gaza airspace. But officials told the Times of Israel that turning up the heat on Hamas has to be done carefully because a massive retaliation against the Gaza Strip will significantly hamper Egypt’s ability to curb terrorism on the Sinai-Gaza border.
• Sign of the times: As international monitors dismantle Syria’s chemical weapons program, Israel announced that it’s no longer distributing gas masks to the public. LA Times coverage.
• Reuters: Russia’s stepping up arms sales to Syria again.
• Israeli expert seeks ethics code for cyber warfare
• For more commentary/analysis, see Jackson Diehl (Egypt and the US) and Boaz Bismuth (Iran’s nuke program).
(Image of atom via deejaywill)
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Post  Admin on Thu 16 Jan 2014, 5:22 pm

Euro Spy Agencies Working With Assad
JANUARY 15, 2014 15:09
BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. Defense minister Moshe Yaalon apologized to John Kerry for criticizing the Secretary of State’s diplomacy. What would Chaim Yisraeli say?
2. Why isn’t the Obama administration releasing the text of the interim nuclear deal with Iran? Where’s the disclosure, asks the LA Times:
Critics fear the text of the implementation agreement may include terms that would allow Iran to secretly forge ahead with some aspects of its nuclear program while the next phase of bargaining goes on. On Monday, critics also began expressing concern about the accompanying side text.
Bashar Assad3. Talk about dealing with the devil: European intelligence agencies have reached out to the Assad regime to share information about European jihadis operating in Syria. The Wall St. Journal (via Google News) writes:
The talks are narrowly focused on the extremists and on al Qaeda‘s growing might in Syria and don’t represent a broader diplomatic opening, the Western and Middle Eastern officials and diplomats said.
But Mr. Assad’s opponents in Syria and in Istanbul, where the political opposition is based, said they are concerned that the information sharing suggests Western capitals are starting to accept the possibility the Syrian leader will retain power for the foreseeable future.
Opposition members also are concerned the contacts—coupled with an international effort under way to remove Syria’s chemical arms—could grow into wider cooperation in fighting terror groups in Syria.

4. Yaalon Headline Fail in the Times: How is it that the comments of one man, albeit the Defense Minister, are taken and repackaged into the claim that the state of Israel as a whole is opposed to peace efforts?

Israel and the Palestinians
• Despite a commitment to John Kerry not to, the PLO is drafting plans to unilaterally join international bodies. What it means depends on who you ask:
Israeli experts are divided on the danger of unilateral Palestinian accession to international institutions.
• Thumbs up to the NY Times and Times of Israel for looking at Hamas’s week-long military boot camp “national education” for Gaza youth. My high school never taught me how to handle an AK-47, jump over burning tires, or spot Israeli spies:
The six-day program, Futuwwa, enrolled about 13,000 boys at nearly a dozen sites across the Gaza Strip over the past week, with trainers from the Izzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas.
Hamas boot camp
Gaza teens at Hamas boot camp, 2013.

• On the eve of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s visit, Israel’s former ambassador to Canada questions Ottawa’s official policies. National Post coverage.
• Wow: Over at Forbes, Richard Behar’s takedown of the ASA boycott is devastatingly detailed.
• For more commentary/analysis, see Tom Friedman (on Ariel Sharon), Doyle McManus (Kerry’s diplomacy) and Douglas Murray (EU funding Palestinian hatred).
Arab Spring Winter
• Yesterday, we wondered about Big Media’s lack of interest in the Syrian army’s brutal siege of the Yarmouk refugee camp. Well, today, CNNAPWashington Post, and Christian Science Monitor, picked up on the story.

• The trial of Rafik Hariri’s assassin’s couldn’t have come at a worse time for anyone who wants to see justice done, points out the NY Times:

“A lot of people think they can corner Hezbollah with an international indictment,” said Kamel Wazne, a political analyst in Beirut who is distrustful of the court. “But with Hezbollah fighting an open war in Syria, sending fighters openly, who is going to come and enforce anything at this point?”
More on the upcoming trial at Der Spiegel and see also Who’s Who.
(Image of Assad via Instagram/syrianpresidency, Hamas boot camp via YouTube/Al Jazeera English)
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Tue 14 Jan 2014, 10:18 pm

Israel Daily News Stream 01/14/2014
JANUARY 14, 2014 16:00
BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. Seeing it as a national security threat, the Egyptian government is planning to undermine Hamas. Reuters got itself a heckuva scoop:
The aim, which the officials say could take years to pull off, includes working with Hamas’s political rivals Fatah and supporting popular anti-Hamas activities in Gaza, four security and diplomatic officials said.
Special Tribunal for Lebanon2. The Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) responsible for bringing Prime Minister Rafik Hariri’s assassins to justice moves to a new phase: a trial in absentia of four Hezbollah defendants, with a fifth to be possibly added to the indictment.
The tribunal was set up in an agreement between Lebanon and the UN Security Council, but Hezbollah refuses to recognize the court’s jurisdiction. Hariri and 21 others were killed in a massive 2005 Beirut car bombing. More on the story at the Jerusalem PostNOW Lebanon, and the STL web site.
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3. Israel long-claimed that Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH), the Turkish organization which organized the Mavi Marmara flotilla, had ties to Al-Qaida. Looks like the Turks finally got the message. Hurriyet reports that multi-city raids on Al-Qaida operations included an IHH storage facility near the Syrian border.
4. CNN’s Ugly Post-Mortem on Sharon: It’s bad enough that Human Rights Watch dances on Ariel Sharon’s grave. But why is CNN promoting it?
5. Sky News’s Distorted Sharon Narrative: Correspondent adds his own interpretation of Ariel Sharon’s legacy.
6. Starving Palestinians: Thousands of Palestinians in a refugee camp are threatened with starvation. But the world press doesn’t care because the bad guys are Syrian instead of Israeli.
Please support HonestReporting
Israel and the Palestinians
• Members of the Arab States Broadcasting Union gathered in Ramallah to essentially plan out propaganda for the coming year. The union’s general director, Salaheddine Maaoui, told the The Media Line:
He expressed his hope that the conference will be a turning point in the Arab coverage of the Palestinian cause. “We want to see that the Arab media is recruited to serve the Palestinian cause,” he elaborated.
• Palestinian authorities apologized for having illegal weapons in their Prague embassy.
• The academic boycott issue is fading from the mainstream media. Lingering commentary from Richard Cohen and a Baltimore Sun staff-ed (on academic boycotts). But with colleges resuming classes after winter break, the issue’s very much alive at GeorgetownNorth CarolinaNebraska universities, plus Cincinnati area campuses.
 For more commentary/analysis, see David Singer (Abbas dismantling the framework agreement), Dror Ben-Yemini (don’t say “transfer”), the LA Times (it’s transfer, stupid) and the Melbourne Herald Sun (Jamie Hyams got a right of reply to Joseph Wakim). Last but not least, Aaron David Miller discussed what the framework agreement could do for the peace process with CNN.
Rest O’ the Roundup
• Cue some ominous music while reading this. Reuters reports that international inspectors gained more access to Iranian nuclear sites, but it “still falls short of what it says it needs to investigate suspicions that Tehran may have worked on designing an atomic bomb.” And the White House confirmed that Iran “would be permitted to continue developing advanced nuclear centrifuges that will enable it to more quickly enrich uranium, the key component in a nuclear weapon.”
• A former US security official got op-ed space in the NY Times to argue against Jonathan Pollard’s release.
• Turns out that an unnamed senior Egyptian diplomat quietly attended the Sharon funeral. Details at the Times of Israel.
Ariel Sharon• Henry Kissinger reminisced about Ariel Sharon. Also commenting: David LandauJonathan KayJake Wallis Simpson, and Molly Guinness, plus staff-eds in the Seattle TimesBoston GlobeCleveland Plain DealerYoungstown Vindicator, and South Africa’s Business Day.
• I’ll leave the last word to Sharon’s son, Gilad. Time published the text of his eulogy. ‘Nuff said.
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Sun 12 Jan 2014, 5:43 pm

Ariel Sharon: Debunking the Media Myths
JANUARY 12, 2014 15:05
BY SIMON PLOSKER
With the death of former Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon, the media have produced a huge number of obituaries. Sharon has been a controversial figure and elicits a wide range of emotions from supporters and detractors alike. This, however, is no excuse for inaccurate profiles or deliberate demonization of one of the founding fathers of the modern Israeli state.

Throughout the years, and particularly since his 2001 election as prime minister, the international media has treated Ariel Sharon with more vitriol and abuse than any other democratically elected leader in the civilized world. Sharon has been depicted in less than flattering terms by many media outlets who have labeled him as a “war criminal” and a “butcherer,” a trend we are once again seeing in today’s media coverage.
Media analyst Tom Gross contends:
sharoncartoonspainIn the past, much coverage of Ariel Sharon in the European and Arab media has been accompanied by blatant anti-Semitism. In Spain, for example, on June 4, 2001 (three days after a Palestinian suicide bomber killed 21 young Israelis at a Tel Aviv disco, in the midst of a unilateral Israeli ceasefire), the liberal magazine Cambio 16 published a cartoon of Sharon (with a hook nose he does not have), wearing a skull cap (which he did not usually wear), sporting a swastika inside a star of David on his chest, and proclaiming: “At least Hitler taught me how to invade a country and destroy every living insect.”
A week earlier, El Pais, Spain’s equivalent of The New York Times, published a cartoon of an allegorical figure carrying a small rectangular-shaped black moustache, flying through the air towards Sharon’s upper lip. The caption read: “Clio, the muse of history, puts Hitler’s moustache on Ariel Sharon”.
Cartoons in the Greek press in 2004 showed Sharon as a Nazi officer. One of Italy’s leading papers, Corriere Della Sera, ran a cartoon on March 31, 2002, showing Sharon killing Jesus. (The cartoon, which was timed to coincide with Easter that year, was published as Israelis lay dying from the Netanya Passover massacre three days earlier.)
Hundreds of similar anti-Semitic motifs have been applied to Sharon in recent years. The Economist magazine in London compared him to Charles Dickens’s infamous anti-Semitic stereotype, Fagin.
In today’s obituaries, there are three common examples of bias where missing context or incorrect information are being employed to present Sharon as a “butcher” or “war criminal”:
Sabra and Shatila
A charge commonly leveled at Sharon is that he is responsible for the massacre of thousands of Palestinians in the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps during the 1982 Lebanon War.
Ariel Sharon, the Butcher of Beirut turned 
peacemaker, dies at the age of 85
Headline: Daily Mail

In fact, as detailed by Mitchell Bard’s Myths & Facts, the killings were carried out by the Lebanese Christian Phalangist militia (whose members have still not been held accountable). Israel’s own Kahan Commission found that Israel and Ariel Sharon were indirectly responsible for not anticipating the possibility of Phalangist violence. Sharon thus resigned his position as Defense Minister.
Myths and Facts states:
The Lebanese Christian Phalangist militia was responsible for the massacres that occurred at the two Beirut-area refugee camps on September 16–17, 1982. Israeli troops allowed the Phalangists to enter Sabra and Shatila to root out terrorist cells believed to be located there. It had been estimated that there may have been up to 200 armed men in the camps working out of the countless bunkers built by the PLO over the years, and stocked with generous reserves of ammunition.
When Israeli soldiers ordered the Phalangists out, they found hundreds dead (estimates range from 460 according to the Lebanese police, to 700–800 calculated by Israeli intelligence). The dead, according to the Lebanese account, included 35 women and children. The rest were men: Palestinians, Lebanese, Pakistanis, Iranians, Syrians and Algerians. The killings were perpetrated to avenge the murders of Lebanese President Bashir Gemayel and 25 of his followers, killed in a bomb attack earlier that week.
Israel had allowed the Phalange to enter the camps as part of a plan to transfer authority to the Lebanese, and accepted responsibility for that decision. The Kahan Commission of Inquiry, formed by the Israeli government in response to public outrage and grief, found that Israel was indirectly responsible for not anticipating the possibility of Phalangist violence. Subsequently, Defense Minister Ariel Sharon resigned and the Army Chief of Staff, Gen. Raful Eitan, was dismissed.
In 1985 an American jury decided that Sharon had been defamed by Time Magazine, which had inferred that Sharon either ”consciously intended” or ”actively encouraged” the killing of the civilians.
This article is continued on Page 2
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Post  Admin on Sun 12 Jan 2014, 12:10 pm

From HONEST REPORTING NEWS
http://www.timesofisrael.com/thousands-to-pay-last-respects-to-ariel-sharon-in-knesset/
Mourning Israelis file by Sharon’s body as it lies in state at Knesset
Netanyahu: He was ‘among the greatest’ military commanders in Jewish history; Joe Biden, other foreign dignitaries to attend funeral Monday; police tell drivers to avoid Jerusalem; Arab world reacts with joy
BY TIMES OF ISRAEL STAFF January 12, 2014, 6:17 am Updated: January 12, 2014, 11:53 am

The body of former prime minister Ariel Sharon was laid out in state in the courtyard of the Knesset on Sunday, and Israelis were filing by and paying their last respects to the war hero and politician ahead of his funeral. Sharon died Saturday after eight years in a vegetative state. He was 85
Police anticipate that tens of thousands of people will travel to Jerusalem in the course of Sunday to pay respects to the former prime minister. President Shimon Peres and Knesset speaker Yuli Edelstein laid wreaths in front of the casket. The public will be allowed to pass before the casket until 6 p.m.
The weekly cabinet meeting opened with a minute of silence in memory of Sharon, after which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu eulogized his predecessor and longtime colleague — and sometimes rival — in the Likud party.
Sharon, he said, “was first and foremost a warrior and a commander, among the greatest military commanders produced by the Jewish people in recent times and throughout its history.” Netanyahu then listed the military campaigns in which Sharon had participated and praised him for his contributions to Israel’s security.
“In all his roles — as defense minister, housing minister, infrastructures minster, and foreign minister — Arik contributed to the State of Israel, as he did also as prime minister of Israel. I think that he represents the generation of Jewish fighters that our people established with the renewal of our independence.”
On Monday morning, the Knesset will hold a formal mourning ceremony, attended by the nation’s leaders and notable dignitaries, before his body is taken to the family’s Sycamore Ranch for burial.
Sharon’s death was announced just after 2 p.m. on Saturday, after his condition deteriorated for several weeks. The former prime minister had been fighting kidney failure and blood infection. He had been in a coma since suffering a debilitating stroke in 2006.
Gilad Sharon announces the death of his father, former prime minister Ariel Sharon, at the Sheba Medical Center near Tel Aviv, Israel, Saturday, Jan. 11, 2014. (Photo credit: Gideon Markowicz/Flash90)
Officials requested that drivers heading to the Knesset avoid the immediate area Sunday, instead parking at Teddy Stadium in the south of the city or at Latrun, to its west, and taking public transportation from there.
Among foreign dignitaries expected to visit Israel to bid farewell to Sharon are US Vice President Joe Biden, Quartet representative and former UK prime minister Tony Blair, Czech Prime Minister Jiri Rusnok, Russian parliamentary head Sergey Naryshkin, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Spanish Home Affairs Minister Jorge Fernandez Diaz and Canadian Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander, according to a government statement.
At 2:30 p.m. Monday Sharon will be laid to rest at Sycamore Ranch (Havat Hashikmim) in the Negev. The funeral will be both a state and a military ceremony, given Sharon’s twin careers.
Though open to the public, room at the event will be limited, and seats will only be allocated to those with invitations. His casket will be carried by six major generals and he will be laid to rest alongside his second wife, Lily, who died in 2000.
Drivers planning to attend should park at Sapir College or Kibbutz Dorot and take shuttle buses from there, an official announcement said.
Sharon, whose nickname was “The Bulldozer,” cut a powerful yet divisive figure in Israeli politics for six decades. Fighting in Israel’s early wars, he earned a reputation as a maverick equally unafraid of enemies or superiors. As a security hawk and champion of the settler movement, he rose to become prime minister on a hard-line platform during the Second Intifada in 2000, yet the most lasting impression of him was seemingly left by his decision to pull out of the Gaza Strip in 2005.
After his death tributes poured in from Israeli and world leaders.
Peres issued a statement calling the 85-year-old leader a “dear friend” who had “lost his final battle.”
Former prime minister Ehud Olmert, who followed Sharon into Kadima in 2005 and replaced Sharon as prime minister and Kadima party head after the latter fell into a coma in January 2006, said his predecessor was “one of the State of Israel’s greatest soldiers and warriors before and since it was founded.”
Settler leaders and supporters were less effusive. MK Orit Strock of the nationalist-Orthodox Jewish Home party took to Facebook to say God deserved praise for removing Sharon from public life before he could uproot West Bank settlements as he had uprooted Gaza settlements.
US President Barack Obama praised “a leader who dedicated his life to the State of Israel.” In a White House statement, Obama said: “On behalf of the American people, Michelle and I send our deepest condolences to the family of former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and to the people of Israel.” The statement reaffirmed “our unshakable commitment to Israel’s security. We continue to strive for lasting peace and security for the people of Israel, including through our commitment to the goal of two states living side-by-side in peace and security.”
George W. Bush, right, and Ariel Sharon, left, walk together at the end of a joint press conference in the Cross Hall of the White House in Washington in April, 2004. (photo credit: AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)
Former US president George W. Bush, who worked closely with Sharon when their terms overlapped, called Sharon a “partner in seeking security for the Holy Land and a better, peaceful Middle East.”
“I was honored to know this man of courage and call him friend,” he said.
In the Arab world and elsewhere, though, some focused on Sharon’s hawkish past, celebrating his passing.
In the Palestinian refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila in Lebanon, where Sharon was blamed for allowing a massacre in 1982, his death was met with joy.
“My heart beats with happiness because he is dead,” a Palestinian man in Shatila was quoted saying by the Lebanese Daily Star.
Senior Fatah official Jibril Rajoub said it was a shame Sharon would never stand trial before an international tribune for his actions.
“Sharon was a criminal, responsible for the assassination of [Palestinian president Yasser] Arafat, and we would have hoped to see him appear before the International Criminal Court as a war criminal,” AFP quoted Rajoub saying.
PLO official Dr. Mustafa Barghouti told the BBC that the Palestinians had no positive memories of Sharon.
“Nobody should celebrate any death. But unfortunately I have to say that Mr. Sharon left no good memories with Palestinians. Unfortunately he had a path of war and aggression and a great failure in making peace with the Palestinian people,” he said.
Some Palestinians in the Gaza Strip celebrated Sharon’s death. Residents of Khan Younis took to the streets, burning photos of Sharon and handing out candies to passersby.

Human Rights Watch issued a statement lamenting the fact that Sharon would never stand trial. “It’s a shame that Sharon has gone to his grave without facing justice for his role in Sabra and Shatila and other abuses,” Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East and North Africa director at the NGO, said.
Sharon led the invasion of Lebanon in 1982 as defense minister, but was forced to resign the post after a commission of inquiry found him responsible for failing to prevent the massacre by Christian Phalangists of Palestinian refugees in Beirut’s Sabra and Shatila camps.
Born in 1928, Sharon fought in Israel’s War of Independence, where he commanded five ill-fated attempts to take the strategic post of Latrun.
In the 1950s he led a number of raids into Jordanian territory as reprisals for attacks on the young state.
Haim Bar-Lev (Center L) consults with Ariel Sharon (with bandage) and Moshe Dayan (cap) during the Yom Kippur War. (Photo credit: GPO/ Flash 90)
In 1967, he planned the IDF’s first divisional battle, against the Abu Agheila stronghold in the Sinai, completely on his own.
During the Yom Kippur War in 1973, he led Israeli troops across the Suez Canal, breaking the back of the Egyptian offensive. As his troops encircled Egypt’s Third Army, Sharon, a reserves officer at the time, instructed them to plant Israeli flags on the high ground, so that the Egyptians would look back across the water and see that they were trapped.
After being pushed out of the military, Sharon founded the hard-line Likud party, advocating for strong security and settlement expansion.
His visit to the Temple Mount as Likud party head in 2000 was seen by some as the spark for the Second Intifada, and several months later he was elected prime minister by a public hungry for security, amid suicide bombings and other attacks.
In mid-2005, he directed a unilateral withdrawal of Israeli troops and settlers from the Gaza Strip, ending a 38-year military control of the territory. It was a shocking turnaround for a man who had been a leading player in building Jewish settlements in captured territories.
He bolted the Likud party soon after and established the centrist Kadima party, where he was joined by Ehud Olmert and Tzipi Livni. He appeared on his way to an easy reelection when he suffered a severe stroke in January 2006. His deputy, Olmert, took over and was elected prime minister a few months later.
Sharon had a first, small stroke in December 2005 and was put on blood thinners before experiencing a severe brain hemorrhage on January 4, 2006. After spending months in the Jerusalem hospital where he was initially treated, Sharon was transferred to the long-term care facility at Tel Hashomer Hospital. He was taken home briefly at one point, but was returned to the hospital, where he had been since.
He is survived by his older sister Dita, his two living sons, Omri and Gilad, his daughter-in-law Inbal, and his six grandchildren.
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Post  Admin on Wed 08 Jan 2014, 10:44 pm

NY Times Finally Covers Palestinian Incitement
JANUARY 7, 2014 16:28

BY SIMON PLOSKER
As U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry continues his shuttle diplomacy, now and in the recent past, the international media have been only too willing to blame Israeli settlements or restrictive security practices in Palestinian areas as the biggest obstacles to Middle East peace.

Focusing on physical structures, be they houses, checkpoints or even the Israeli security barrier ignores what is ultimately needed to bring about peace.
While Israeli society has steadily moved over the years towards accepting Palestinian self-determination, this has not been reciprocated on the Palestinian side. Incitement has ensured that an entire generation of Palestinians has been fed a diet of hatred towards Jews and Israel.
To its credit, the New York Times has published a prominent story on Palestinian incitement, prompted by the Israeli government’s release of its PA Incitement and Culture of Peace Index.
The New York Times also included the full Israeli government presentation online, which you can also view below as a Slideshare (thanks to Elder of Ziyon):
NY Times Jerusalem bureau chief Jodi Rudoren reports:
Adolf Hitler is quoted on the websites of Palestinian Authority schools. A young girl appears on Palestinian television, describing Jews as “barbaric monkeys, wretched pigs” and the “murderers of Muhammad,” the Islamic prophet. Maps on the Facebook page of the Palestinian presidential guards do not show Israel. President Mahmoud Abbas himself embraced as “heroes” released Palestinian prisoners who killed Israelis.

These are among dozens of examples highlighted by Israeli officials in a new presentation documenting negative statements about Israel and Jews in official Palestinian Authority media and textbooks. As Secretary of State John Kerry departed here on Monday after an intense four-day push for a framework agreement outlining prospects for a peace deal, Israeli leaders said that such statements had not abated since negotiations began this summer and did not bode well.

On the Nov. 2 anniversary of the Balfour Declaration of 1917, in which Britain endorsed the idea of a Jewish state in Palestine, the website of Mr. Abbas’s presidential guards posted bloodied pictures of Arthur Balfour, the British foreign secretary for whom the declaration is named, and Israeli prime ministers under the banner, “A promise from one who did not own it to one who did not deserve it,” according to the presentation.
The same site, on the Nov. 29 anniversary of the 1947 United Nations vote to partition Palestine, had a headline, “Palestine Is Not to Be Divided,” with a map that did not show Israel. The presentation also included a picture of a Nazi flag hung in the West Bank village of Beit Ummar in October.
And there was a November video on a website of Mr. Abbas’s Fatah faction in which masked members of its military wing threatened to kidnap Israeli soldiers and showed off weapons, singing, “With these rockets we will liberate Jerusalem, with these rockets we will crush the Zionist enemy.”
Read the full article here.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Mon 06 Jan 2014, 1:04 pm

Hezbollah Smuggling Advanced Missiles
JANUARY 5, 2014 15:46
BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. The Wall St. Journal (via Google News) reports that Hezbollah’s smuggling advanced guided missiles from Syria to Lebanon in piecemeal fashion to avoid Israeli airstrikes:
The movements appear to serve two purposes.
Iran wants to upgrade Hezbollah’s arsenal to deter future Israeli strikes—either on Lebanon or on Iran’s nuclear program, U.S. and Israeli officials say. In addition, these officials said they believe the transfers were meant to induce Hezbollah to commit to protect Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as well as supply lines used by both his regime and Hezbollah.
2. Israel’s former ambassador to Argentina says Israel killed most of the people involved in the bombings of the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires and a the Jewish community’s headquarters. Israeli officials denied Itzhak Avidan’s comments.
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Prague
3. AP: Furious Prague residents want the Palestinian embassy gone after last week’s explosion killed the PLO ambassador Jamal al-Jamal. Police found illegal weapons inside the late ambassador’s residence.

Meanwhile, AFP reports that A) the ambassador’s daughter doesn’t believe her father’s death was an accident, and B) the PA can’t get its story straight:
Palestinian officials have given contradictory accounts of the explosion.
Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki has described the death as an “accident” caused by an old safe booby-trapped to explode if opened the wrong way. But a spokesman for the Palestinian embassy said the safe in question was new, often used, and contained “no built-in anti-theft system“.
Good thing the Czechs are investigating this. If left to their own devices, the Palestinians would bury Jamal without an autopsy, wait seven years, then let Al Jazeera dig up the body for a bogus report on polonium poisoning.
4. Hero Worship at the New York Times: “Mr. Abbas never condoned the prisoners’ crimes.” Oh really?
5. Data Apartheid in the Telegraph: An appalling example of how the false Israel “apartheid” analogy is being deployed in the least expected contexts.
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Israel and the Palestinians
• Complete this sentence in the comments section below:
If Abbas were Mother Teresa . . .
• Over at The Guardian‘s Jonathan Freedland has an interesting “what-if” take on Ariel Sharon, but I have a hard time imagining this rosy view being published in the paper eight years ago. The Daily Telegraph, Times of London, and Time also looked at the shift in Sharon’s legacy.
• The Vatican announced Pope Francis’s plans to visit the Holy Land. The pope will visit Amman, Jerusalem and Bethlehem over a three-day period in May. Reuters coverage.
 For more commentary/analysis, see Avi Issacharoff (Palestinian red lines),  Dan Margalit (the framework agreement), Bernard Avishai (recognizing Israel as a Jewish state), Jackson Diehl (Kerry’s peace efforts), Udi Segal (Kerry’s process), and Rex Murphy (ASA boycott).
Rest O’ the Roundup
• Worth reading: Natan Sharansky shared his thoughts on democracy and the Arab Spring with the Times of Israel. Bottom line: Democratic dissidents in Iran, Egypt and Syria are feeling betrayed by American inaction.
• The Washington Post picked up on an Israeli study of foreign fighters in Syria. The findings suggest Shiites outnumber Sunnis.
• At what point does Al-Qaida vs. Hezbollah in Lebanon go beyond “pass the popcorn” and become a more worrisome source of instability for Israel? Alex Fishman‘s wondering.
(Image of Prague via Flickr/Jorge Gonzalez)
For more, see Thursday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Post  Admin on Thu 02 Jan 2014, 11:34 pm

Israel Daily News Stream 01/02/2014
JANUARY 2, 2014 17:38
BY PESACH BENSON
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Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. BREAKING NEWS: A Hezbollah neighborhood of Beirut was rocked by a powerful explosion. Early reports from Reuters.
2. Czech police discovered a large cache of weapons at the Prague residence of the late Palestinian ambassador. The PLO’s got some ‘splaining to do. The Times of Israel writes:
Czech police spokeswoman Andrea Zoulova confirmed that arms had been found in the ambassador’s residence, which is located within the newly constructed Palestinian Embassy complex.
Channel 2 News reported that the stockpile included heavy firearms, that it was held illegally, and that its existence had not been previously known to the Czech authorities.
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Ariel Sharon
3. Former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s health is deteriorating with Haaretz reporting multiple organ failures. Sharon, now 85, has been in a coma ever since suffering a massive stroke eight years ago. The Jerusalem Post writes:
Doctors at Sheba reportedly told Gilad and Omri that their father had no more than a few days left to live.
Sharon served in all of Israel’s wars, and was elected prime minister in 2001.
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Israel and the Palestinians
• John Kerry arrived in Israel to push the peace process and a framework agreement. Even before he landed, the Palestinians said they’ll reject any framework agreement (see Jerusalem Post) and prefer unilaterally pushing  the UN (see Haaretz).
• According to a PA report obtained by YNet, the PA security services are worried about an explosion of intifada-level violence, should current peace efforts collapse. It’s a sobering read of Hamas’s continuing desire to abduct an Israeli, and Hezbollah and Salafists trying to get a foothold in the West Bank. For anyone in Israel during the during the second intifada, this snippet is deja vu all over again:
According to the report, if the current round of negotiations fails, there will be marked rise in “spontaneous attacks” in 2014.
• Coming attractions on the academic boycott front: expect fireworks at the Modern Language Association’s annual convention next week in Chicago. A Chicago Tribune op-ed slams the MLA for politicizing itself:
Even worse, this MLA boycott “conversation” doesn’t even pretend to examine both sides of the question. All of the announced speakers are on record favoring an Israeli boycott. In fact, presiding officer Samer M. Ali informed The Chronicle of Higher Education that Israel’s guilt is not open to doubt but rather, “(t)he question that panelists will be debating is not whether Israel is violating the rights of Palestinians, but what to do about it.”
On the next page:
Did Hamas conspire to attack Sinai churches?
No end to the backlash against the ASA boycott.
Ariel Sharon’s health deteriorates.

Continued on page 2
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Wed 01 Jan 2014, 9:53 pm

Israel Daily News Stream 01/01/2014
JANUARY 1, 2014 17:04
BY PESACH BENSON
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Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. BREAKING NEWS: Shortly before today’s roundup was published, it was reported that the Palestinian ambassador to the Czech Republic, Jamal al-Jamal, died of injuries from an explosion at his Prague residence. A second person was also hospitalized. According to Reuters:
The Palestinian Foreign Ministry said ambassador Jamal al-Jamal had been trying to open a safe that was recently moved to his new home and a Czech government source told Reuters that the explosion was probably caused by a security device on the unit.
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2. Israel broached the idea of transferring a cluster of Israeli Arab towns to the PA in exchange for annexing West Bank settlement blocs. At stake is an area known as The Triangle, where 300,000 Israeli Arabs live in towns like Kafr Qara, Umm al-Fahm, Tayibe and Qalansawe. What do you think? The Times of Israel writes:
Israeli legal officials have begun investigating legal aspects of such an arrangement, the newspaper said. It added that the Americans have apparently not assented to the idea, and that the Palestinians are likely to reject it.
The idea is aimed at addressing two central issues in a possible peace agreement: first, land swaps between Israel and a Palestinian state that would enable Israel to expand its sovereignty to encompass major West Bank settlements, while compensating the Palestinians with territory that is currently part of sovereign Israel; and second, preserving Israel’s Jewish majority.
The Triangle
3. John Kerry is going to push a framework deal with Israeli and Palestinian officials while in the region. According to AP, there won’t be much hard info about Kerry’s framework proposal:
Any agreed framework would not be a signed document, but would address all core issues, including the borders between Israel and a future Palestine; security; Palestinian refugees; and conflicting claims to the holy city of Jerusalem, the official said. The official also said if the parties agreed on a framework for negotiating a final peace deal, it might not be made public to avoid exposing the leaders to political pressures at home.
But the NY Times says the framework might be made public “to prepare Israelis and Palestinians for what a potential peace treaty might look like.”
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Israel and the Palestinians
• Once again, Mahmoud Abbas is threatening to bring in the UN against Israeli settlements, even though he committed to the US not to internationalize the conflict.
 Israeli media: Pressure from Washington may leave Israel with no choice but to concede a total settlement freeze. Or maybe not?
• Headline of the Day, from Buzzfeed:
Buzzfeed
• Sign of the times in Hamastan:
Gaza: Hamas Lawmakers Approve Large Budget Deficit
• As 2013 ends, 91 universities rejected the ASA’s Israel boycott.
On the next page:
Soccer player’s anti-Semitic gesture has world asking, What’s a quenelle?
Mideast peace and Iranian nukes: the insight and ignorance of linkage.
US to allocate $440 million to the PA.

Continued on page 2
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Wed 01 Jan 2014, 9:25 pm

Egypt to Label Hamas a Terror Group?
DECEMBER 31, 2013 15:06
BY PESACH BENSON
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Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. Israel released 26 Palestinian prisoners last night. Now what?
The Palestinians are demanding that in the next batch Israel include Israeli-Arabs who carried out terrorist attacks, something Jerusalem has until now adamantly refused to do. The Prime Minister’s Office said that Israel never committed itself at any stage to release Israeli Arabs. A decision to do so would entail another cabinet vote.
But Israel’s tying the release of its own citizens to Jonathan Pollard. The Jerusalem Post explains:
Netanyahu reportedly told Kerry that while Israel was not willing to release Israeli-Arab prisoners as a gesture to the Palestinians, it would be willing to release them as a gesture to the US, in return for the release of Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard.
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2. Terror attacks in Volgograd put a spotlight on the Russian Winter Olympics now six weeks away. Time got the Israeli team’s perspective on Sochi security. (Yes, Israel’s sending a five-man team to the winter games.)
“We have to remember that the terror attacks in Russia are because of internal tension between the Caucasus republics and Russia. It has nothing to do with Israel and the Jews,” says Shklar. “But of course we have to remember, wherever we are, we attract fire.”
Israeli Olympics
3. Now that Egypt has dubbed the Muslim Brotherhood a terror group, will Cairo slap that designation on Hamas too?
The new status of the Brotherhood does not apply to Hamas, Egypt’s ambassador to the Palestinian Authority Yasser Othman told Ma’an news agency on Monday, but added that Hamas’s conduct towards Egypt will determine his country’s treatment of it.
4. The People’s Choice: The Top 10 Stories of 2013: What was HonestReporting’s most popular content of the year?
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Israel and the Palestinians
• Haaretz looks at the 32 remaining pre-Oslo prisoners to be released in April — assuming peace talks stay on track.
• The Jerusalem Post and YNet weigh in on last night’s release.
• One prisoner release report that stood out was Australia’s ABC News. What was the thinking behind Hayden Cooper’s backdrop in an otherwise decent piece?
ABC News
• AP updates the latest on John Kerry’s imminent Mideast visit. See Aaron David Miller‘s optimistic take on the diplomacy.
On the next page:
Might international law allow Israel to annex the Jordan Valley?
Palestinians starving to death in Syrian refugee camp.
Lebanon’s on eggshells.

Continued on page 2
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Tue 31 Dec 2013, 10:51 pm

John Kerry’s Diplomatic Trade-Off
DECEMBER 30, 2013 15:02
BY PESACH BENSON

Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.
Today’s Top Stories
1. Let’s make a deal: According to Arab reports picked up by the Times of Israel, John Kerry will propose the following tradeoff: The Palestinians will recognize Israel as a Jewish state, while Israel accepts the 1967 borders as the basis for negotiations:
“The coming weeks will be difficult for the Palestinian and Israeli sides, since they will need to make tough decisions,” a source told Al-Watan. “On the one hand, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will need to live with a text speaking of the 1967 borders, and the Palestinians, for their part, will need to live with a text speaking of Israel’s Jewishness.”
2. The Saudis are aggressively throwing their weight around in Lebanon. The kingdom pledged $3 billion to counter Hezbollah’s influence boost the Lebanese army, and is reportedly pushing a fait accompli cabinet that Hezbollah’s resisting.
3. Iran, Turkey’s New Ally?
Now that America and Iran are talking seriously, things could be different. In sharp contrast to Israel and the Persian Gulf monarchies, which have been alarmed by the interim deal on Iran’s nuclear program, Turkey sees benefit in serving as a bridge between Iran and the West and in providing the gateway to the world that Tehran needs as it emerges from isolation.
4. Headline Fails Over Lebanon Rockets: Big Media serves up your daily dose of sensationalism.
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Rest O’ the Roundup
• Following the assassination of former finance minister and Hezbollah critic Mohamad Chatah, Asharq al-Awsat reports rising calls to exclude Hezbollah from the government. But ongoing political paralysis plays into Hezbollah’s hands:
Lebanon has been without an elected government for more than eight months, being ruled by a caretaker cabinet led by interim Prime Minister Najib Mikati. Prime minister-designate, Tammam Salam, has been unable to form a cabinet since his appointment in April, the longest any appointee has held the post without forming a government.
Chatah had just completed an open letter to Iran to be presented to Iranian president Hasan Rouhani, and was about to gather the signatures of Lebanese parliamentarians. The Wall St. Journal published the text of Chatah’s letter.
• Memri found and translated a video of the blast rattling Future TV’s studio during a live broadcast. I would have been just as spooked.

• 300: That’s the IDF’s estimate of the number of Hezbollah operatives killed in Syria.
• Egypt arrested three journalists from Al-Jazeera English for airing “false news,” possessing inciting materials, and illegally meeting with the banned Muslim Brotherhood. The NY Times elaborates on the charges, while the BBC identifies two of the reporters.
• Rivka Carmi, Jonathan Marks and the Summerside Journal-Pioneer weigh in on the ASA boycott.
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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Re: HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES

Post  Admin on Fri 27 Dec 2013, 11:51 pm

Israeli Journos Kicked Out of Bethlehem
DECEMBER 25, 2013 17:46

BY PESACH BENSON
Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.

Today’s Top Stories
1. Goodwill to men took a hit in Bethlehem on Christmas when the PA expelled Israeli journalists covering the holiday celebrations. The anti-normalization campaign (which dominates Palestinian journalists) struck again. The Jerusalem Post fills in the sorry details:
The PA Ministry of Information said the decision was taken at the request of Palestinian journalists, who protested against the presence of their Israeli colleagues at Manger Square in the city.
The journalists who were kicked out of Bethlehem worked for Haaretz, i-24 News, Channel 1 and Arutz Sheva, the ministry said.
2. The IDF launched retaliatory air strikes on Gaza terror sites after a Palestinian cross-border sniper killed an Israeli civilian doing repair work on the border fence. Salah Shukri Abu Latyef, a 22 year-old Bedouin, was on his first day of work for a defense contractor. A three year-old Palestinian girl was also killed by shrapnel. Jerusalem Post coverage suffices.
The NY Times got the chronology right, but vague, non-judgmental cycle of violence references give me an allergic reaction.
NY Times
3. A coalition of Palestinian journalists in Gaza wants to shake off the chains of groupthink and partisan press. An admirable goal, but judging from veteran AP reporter Mohammed Daraghmeh’s comments to The Media Line, the group’s starting from a frighteningly low base line:
“These journalists work in media that has a lot of propaganda and little information,” he told The Media Line, adding that some have never been introduced to media founded on facts.
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4. Molhem Barakat: From Al-Qaida Reject to Reuters: Minor seeking to become suicide bomber instead became a martyr for Reuters.
5. Backlash Against ASA Boycott Gaining Momentum: Academia’s not buying into the boycott.
6. Palestinians Falsely Co-opt Mandela’s Legacy: Who benefits when Big Media inaccurately quotes Nelson Mandela?
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Israel and the Palestinians
• Ambassador Ron Dermer was in Florida visiting the editorial board of the Miami Herald. The editors were especially interested to hear why Israel controversially blocked an intelligence official to testify in a Florida family’s anti-terror lawsuit against the Bank of China.[url=http://mfa.gov.il/MFA/ForeignPolicy/Terrorism/Victims/Pages/Daniel Wultz.aspx] Daniel Wultz[/url] was killed in a 2006  Islamic Jihad suicide bombing. The lawsuit tied the Bank of China to the terror group.
Dermer expressed sympathy for the family but said the decision to keep the intelligence official from testifying was a matter of national security.
“If your courts decide that an intelligence official can be subpoenaed to speak in open court about information he received . . . how are you going to be able to continue any intelligence relationships with countries around the world?” Dermer said. “So, for sure, Israel cannot allow someone to testify on information he got in an official capacity. There’s no question about it.”
•  I hope Santa leaves lumps of coal in the stockings of everyone responsible for Bethlehem dispatches in The Independent and Times of London. Bah humbug indeed.
• Why is this occupation different from all other occupations?
The EU insists that Turks in Cyprus and Moroccans in Western Sahara ‘cannot be compared’ to Israelis in the West Bank. Two legal scholars are fighting a losing battle to find out why.
U. Maryland-Baltimore County• More universities are coming out against the ASA boycott. The list starts with a a shout-out to my alma mater, U. Maryland-Baltimore County and my old hometown’s Johns Hopkins U.  The universities of Connecticut   and
Michigan also spoke out.
For related commentary, see Gary Kulik, Frida Ghitis, and Richard Cravatts. Last but not least, Ben Gurion U. president Rivka Carmi shared her thoughts with Al-Monitor.
• Israeli-Arab Knesset member Ahmed Tibi took to The Hill to claim Israel’s ‘Jim Crow’ treatment of the Palestinians continues. Druze Knesset member Hamad Amar replied back that Israel offers full rights to all.
• Lead screed goes to Ali Jarbawi, a former PA cabinet minister who accuses Israel for robbing the Palestinians of hope and violating human rights, but not for PA insolvency or the Arab Spring. This NY Times commentary posits that all these factors are contributing to an upcoming intifada.
• For more commentary, see Elliott Abrams, and Ron Ben-Yishai.
Rest O’ the Roundup
• Reuters: Israel’s coordinating international efforts to monitor Western jihadists fighting in Syria. I feel more comfortable having a task like this entrusted to Israel.
• Islamist rebels reportedly forced Druze in 14 Syrian villages to convert. The Israeli Druze community is trying to help their co-religionists, but options are limited. Times of Israel coverage.
• Dore Gold and Ben Fishman weigh in on a possible Israeli-Saudi partnership. See also Haim Saban, Clifford May, and Timon Dias (winner of HonestReporting’s Blankfeld Award).
For more, see Monday’s Israel Daily News Stream.
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