The Muslim Council of Britain on the Peshawar Massacre

Posted December 20, 2014 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Fairy tales, Foreign policy, Islam, Islamic slaughter, Jews, Middle East, Moral equivalence, Multiculturalism

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The Muslim Council of Britain on the Peshawar Massacre, American ThinkerPaul Austin Murphy, December 20, 2014

(Islam is taqiyya all the way down. Examples of the same sorts of Islamic distortion and public acceptance of them as true are commonplace and guide foreign policy in the United States of Obama and Europe. — DM)

The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) seems to spend almost its entire time publishing apologies for Islamic slaughter, killing, terrorism, violence, misogyny, sexual-grooming gangs, and so on. And it usually does so with Islamic taqiyya: lies, prevarications, evasiveness, equivocations, ambiguity, deceit, dishonesty, obfuscation, deception, dissembling and dissimulation (all used to advance and/or protect Islam).

Predictably, in the aftermath of the Islamic slaughter in Peshawar, the MCB has given its own response to the event in a very short piece entitled, ‘A Massacre of Children: An Ummah in Shock’. And equally predictably, it quotes the one quote that Muslims always use in such circumstances.

Basically, you hear this passage all the time at Interfaith meetings, in the Guardian, on the BBC, etc. Try Googling the phrase and you’ll get literally dozens of links; almost all will be from Muslim or interfaith groups.

This is a passage from the Koran which even many non-Muslims will recognize. The MCB version goes:

“Whosoever kills a human being, it shall be as if he had killed all mankind, and whosoever saves the life of one, it shall be as if he had saved the life of all mankind.”

This quote is a perfect and despicable example of Islamic taqiyya and it is so for many reasons.

What surprises me, however, is that — after the deceitful nature of this passage has been demonstrated so many times and in so many different places — Muslims and Islamophiles are still using it. The MCB, for example, must think its non-Muslim supporters/readers are either stupid or even (fellow) liars.

This following is the MCB’s lead-up to its citation:

“While it is very hard to find the words to respond to the tragedy before us, I can only quote a verse from the Koran in which it says…”

And then we have the passage itself:

“Whosoever kills a human being, it shall be as if he had killed all mankind, and whosoever saves the life of one, it shall be as if he had saved the life of all mankind.”

(The passage is verse 32 of sura/chapter 5.)

Virtually no religion or ideology believes or accepts what is purported to be the meaning of that Koranic statement. In order to fully accept it, the religion or ideology concerned would have to be fully pacifist in nature (e.g., Jainism or Quakerism); which makes its use by Muslims all the more ironic or even somewhat sick.

This passage — at least within a MCB and indeed Islamic context — is at best meaningless (a mere soundbite) and at worse a piece of gross deceit.

The relevant point is that the MCB has cynically removed the middle clause knowing full well that it more or less negates the surrounding clauses. After all, the erased central clause isn’t long: it’s a mere ten words in length. This, I suggest, is classic Islamic taqiyya or deceit. And no Islamic organization does that better than the Muslim Council of Britain.

Here’s the passage in full:

“… We ordained for the Children of Israel that if anyone slew a person – unless it be for murder or spreading mischief in the land [my italics] – it would be as if he slew the whole people.”

Immediately after that, we have:

“And if anyone saved a life, it would be as he saved the life of the whole people. Then although there came to them our messengers with clear signs, yet even after that, many of them continued to commit excesses in the land.”

It can be seen that the opening clause is also always deleted by Muslims when they quote it at non-Muslims. That is, for a while I didn’t even know — because of the deliberate misquotations from Muslims (or their use of Kitman) — that the passage begins with the clause: “We [i.e., Allah] ordained for the Children of Israel…” That is followed by: “…. that if anyone slew a person…”.

So not only is this supposedly peaceful — or even pacifist — passage not aimed at Muslims in the first place (it was aimed at Jews), on only a tiny bit of analysis it can be seen not to be very peaceful or positive in the first place!

(This well-used passage is from Jewish scripture (Mishnah, Sanhedrin: 4:5) anyway. It was stolen from Jewish sources by Muhammad and his immediate followers (something they often did).

In addition, the passage doesn’t appear to have been abrogated like so many other “peaceful verses” in that book. Perhaps this is so precisely because of the surgically removed central clause.)

Here’s another equally-positive translation used by Muslim:

“That whosoever killed a human being, it shall be deemed as though he had killed all mankind.”

The actual version (again) is:

“That whosoever killed a human being, except as punishment for murder or other villainy [sometimes ‘mischief’] in the land, shall be deemed as though he had killed all mankind…”

This, of course, prompts the question: What would be deemed as “villainy” by Muslims?

What about what the Taliban has claimed about the Pakistani Army and others?

Anyway, here’s a list of what has been — and still is — classed as “villainy in the land” by millions of Muslims:

apostasy, churches, the possession of Bibles, homosexuality, preaching a religion other than Islam, all criticism of Islam, Muhammad, the Koran, not going to the mosque, sex outside marriage, atheism, Zionism, materialist philosophies and political views, secularism… basically anything non-Islamic and certainly everything anti-Islamic.

Let’s not mess about here.

Millions of Muslims today believe the very existence of people who aren’t Muslims — or lands that aren’t Islamic — are examples of “villainy in the land”.

 

Imperialism, Obama style

Posted December 20, 2014 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Abbas, Antisemitism, Caliphate, European Union, Foreign policy, Gaza, Hamas, Iran, Islam, Islamic jihad, Islamic slaughter, Israel, Israeli elections, Jewish occupation of Israel, Kerry, Leftists, Middle East, Netanyahu, Obama, Palestinians, Peace process, Settlements, Two state solution

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Imperialism, Obama style, Dan Miller’s Blog, December 20, 2014

Obama condemns “wicked” U.S. imperialism for supporting American values such as freedom and democracy abroad. Simultaneously, he tries to precipitate “regime change” in Israel so that she will support His values and those of Palestinians rather than American and Israeli values of freedom and democracy.

The Palestinians have placed before the United Nations Security Council a “peace proposal” intended to force Israel to agree to creation of a Palestinian state and “an Israeli withdrawal to the pre-1967 lines” by the end of 2017. Secretary Kerry has argued that the matter should not be considered until after the Israeli Knesset elections in March. According to an article in Foreign Policy,

Speaking at an annual luncheon with the 28 European Union ambassadors, Kerry cautioned that any action by the U.N. Security Council would strengthen the hands of Israeli hardliners who oppose the peace process. . . . [Emphasis added.]

“Kerry has been very, very clear that for the United States it was not an option to discuss whatever text before the end of the Israeli election,” according to a European diplomat.

The diplomat, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the luncheon was confidential, said that Kerry explained that Israel’s liberal political leaders, Shimon Peres and Tipzi Livni, had expressed concern that a Security Council move to pressure Israel on the eve of election would only strengthen the hands of Israeli hardliners, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Naftali Bennett, an implacable foe of a Palestinian state and leader of the right-wing Jewish Home party. Netanyahu is also fiercely opposed to the Palestinians effort to secure Security Council backing for its statehood drive. [Emphasis added.]

Kerry said Livni had “told him that such a text imposed by the international community would reinforce Benjamin Netanyahu and the hardliners in Israel,” as well as the hardliners in Palestine, according to the European diplomat.

The message, said another European diplomat, was that U.N. action would “give more impetus to more right-wing parties, that there was a risk this could further embolden the more right-wing forces along the Israeli political spectrum.” [Emphasis added.]

Kerry’s remarks highlight the Obama administration’s delicate balancing act when it comes to its tense relationship with the Israeli government. On the one hand, senior  administration officials make little attempt to hide the personal dislike between Netanyahu and President Barack Obama or their sharp disagreements on issues ranging from the peace process to Iran. On the other hand, Kerry and other top policymakers have tried to avoid saying or doing anything that could be seen as meddling in the Israeli election in an effort to oust Netanyahu and replace him with a more centrist prime minister. [Emphasis added.]

On an open microphone in March of 2012, Obama

told Dmitry Medvedev that he would have more flexibility after November’s election to deal with contentious issues such as missile defence. . . .

Obama’s candid remark was considered a gaffe because He made it assuming that the microphone had been turned off and that no one other than Medvedev would hear Him. Kerry, however, candidly but intentionally told twenty-eight European Union ambassadors that it is U.S. policy to encourage the Israeli left, to diminish the Israeli right and to make it more difficult for Prime Minister Netanyahu to remain in office. Aside from his incredible naivete, why did Kerry do that?

For Obama and European leaders, Israel is reducible to the peace process. And the Israeli left depends on the support of foreign governments for its network of foreign funded non-profit organizations. The Israeli left can’t let go of its exploding version of ObamaCare [Palestine] because the left is becoming a foreign organization with limited domestic support. Its electorate isn’t in Israel; it’s in Brussels. [Emphasis and bracketed insert added.]

. . . .

Escalating a crisis in relations has been the traditional way for US administrations to force Israeli governments out of office. Bill Clinton did it to Netanyahu and as Israeli elections appear on the horizon Obama would love to do it all over again.

There’s only one problem.

The United States is popular in Israel, but Obama isn’t. Obama’s spats with Netanyahu ended up making the Israeli leader more popular. The plan was for Obama to gaslight Israelis by maintaining a positive image in Israel while lashing out at the Jewish State so that the blame would fall on Netanyahu. [Emphasis added.]

Kerry’s remarks — covered by Israeli media — seem, contrary to his intentions, likely to enhance the chances of Israeli “hardliners” on the “right,” to hurt the chances of those on the left and hence to increase PM Netanyahu’s chances of remaining in office. Even leaving that aside, how will Kerry’s remarks favoring regime change be viewed by other increasingly reluctant U.S. allies in the Middle East?

Israeli “hardliners” have already yielded to the Palestinians as much as, if not more than, they can without greatly endangering the security of Israel because there is no Palestinian entity with which peace can be made other than through Israel’s suicide.

The remarks of the Islamic preacher at the mosque in Jerusalem reflect a general Palestinian view.

Interestingly, the speaker doesn’t mention the longing for Palestinian statehood or independence. Instead, he talks of the establishment of the “Islamic Caliphate.” “Oh Allah’” he states, “Hasten the establishment of the State of the Islamic Caliphate,” and further rants, “Oh Allah hasten the pledge of allegiance to the Muslim Caliph.” He spews forth the latter statement three times to chants of “Amen!” from the large, approving crowd congregating around him.

These comments, which would register horror and revulsion in the West (at least in some quarters) are almost banal among Palestinians. In fact, a similar video featuring a different speaker some days earlier at the same venue, conveyed identical sentiment, expressing admiration for the Islamic State and calling for murder of Jews and annihilation of America. [Emphasis added.]

Here’s the other video referenced in the article:

Guttural anti-Semitism is ingrained and interwoven in the fabric of Palestinian society. Despite their minuscule numbers, 78% of Palestinians believe that Jews are responsible for most of the world’s wars while a whopping 88% believe that Jews control the global media and still more believe that Jews wield too much power in the business world. [Emphasis added.]

Much of the blame for this can be placed squarely on the doorstep of Mahmoud Abbas’s Palestinian Authority, which subjects the Palestinian population to a steady diet of hate-filled, Judeophobic rhetoric through state-controlled media and educational institutions. It is so well entrenched that the process of deprogramming, if it were ever attempted, would take generations to reverse. [Emphasis added.]

As noted in the Wall Street Journal article linked in the quote immediately above,

To understand why peace in Palestine is years if not decades away, consider the Palestinian celebrations after Tuesday’s murder in a Jerusalem synagogue of five Israelis, including three with joint U.S. citizenship. Two Palestinian cousins armed with meat cleavers and a gun attacked worshipers during morning prayers, and the response was jubilation in the streets.

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine claimed responsibility, while Hamas praised the murders as a “response to continued Israeli crimes.” The main obstacle to peace isn’t Jewish settlements in the multireligious city of Jerusalem. The barrier is the culture of hatred against Jews that is nurtured by Palestinian leaders. [Emphasis added.]

Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas condemned the killings, but not without calling for Israel to halt what he called “invasions” of the holy Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. Mr. Abbas has previously said the Temple Mount was being “contaminated” by Jews, despite assurances by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the Dome of the Rock and Al Aqsa Mosque are for Muslim worship only. The Memri news service reports that the Oct. 29 issue of the Palestinian daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida was full of false accusations that Israel is damaging Jerusalem’s holy sites. [Emphasis added.]

Moreover,

An overwhelming majority of Palestinian Arabs support the recent spate of terrorist attacks against Israelis, an opinion poll released Tuesday finds, according to The Associated Press (AP).[Emphasis added.]

The poll also found that more than half of Palestinian Arabs support a new “intifada” (uprising) against Israel, and that Hamas would win presidential elections if they were held today. [Emphasis added.]

Palestinian Arab pollster Khalil Shikaki said the results reflected anger over Israeli statements about Jerusalem, as well as a loss of hope following the collapse of U.S.-brokered peace talks and Israel’s recent war with Hamas in Gaza.

Shikaki heads the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research, which interviewed 1,270 people in the Palestinian Authority-assigned areas of Judea and Samaria and Gaza last week. The poll had an error margin of 3 percentage points.

“There is an environment in which violence is becoming a dominant issue,” Shikaki told AP. “This seems to be one of the most important driving forces.”

Hamas is, if possible, even worse than Abbas’ Palestinian Authority.

Both Hamas and Abbas’ Palestinian Authority seek the death of Israeli Jews and the destruction of Israel, the only democratic and free nation in the Middle East. Kerry’s ill-conceived efforts to assist them at the expense of Israel, most recently by actively seeking to promote Israel’s left wing, to diminish its right wing and hence to empower Palestinians intent upon the death of Israel, may well fail. Succeed or fail, those efforts are consistent with Obama’s preference for Islamic dictators over democracy coupled with freedom.

Barack Mitsvah

Off Topic: Awed by Israel, 2016 Republican hopeful Ben Carson pledges support

Posted December 20, 2014 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Dr. Ben Carson, Foreign policy, Islam, Israel, Middle East, Obama, Palestinians

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Awed by Israel, 2016 Republican hopeful Ben Carson pledges support, Times of IsraelJOSEF FEDERMAN, December 20, 2014

Mideast-Israel-Carson_Horo-e1419086784255-635x357Ben Carson visits Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem on December 18, 2014. Carson, 63, a retired African-American neurosurgeon best known for his groundbreaking work in separating conjoined twins, has not yet declared his candidacy for the Republican Presidential nomination, saying that he is “strongly considering” a bid. (photo credit: AP Photo/Dan Balilty)

Carson said the criticism of the settlements has been exaggerated, and he asserted that Palestinian hostility toward Israel is what is preventing peace in the region. Of Netanyahu, Carson said, “I think he’s a great leader in a difficult time.”

**************

JERUSALEM (AP) — In his first visit to Israel, prospective Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson said he is in awe of the Jewish state, inspired by its ancient holy sites, impressed by the resilience of people living in a perpetual conflict zone — and deeply disappointed in President Barack Obama.

“I do not believe that Obama has been one to cultivate the relationship,” said Dr. Carson, a retired neurosurgeon who has emerged as a favorite of some conservatives in the early field of possible GOP candidates.

“I would make it very clear that Israel and the United States have a long, cordial relationship, and I don’t think we should ever leave the Israelis in a position of wondering whether we support them,” Carson said in an hour long interview with The Associated Press in Jerusalem. “And that certainly is a question now.”

Carson, 63, perhaps best known for his groundbreaking work in separating conjoined twins, is largely unknown to most Americans. But he’s earned hero status among conservative activists thanks to his outspoken criticism of Obama’s health care law.

His rags-to-riches story — he had a hardscrabble childhood in inner-city Detroit — and his deep Christian faith also appeal to potential voters. While Carson has said he is “strongly considering” a bid, supporters have already opened offices in the early voting states of Iowa and New Hampshire.

He is one of more than a dozen Republicans eyeing the presidency, and those with little international experience, such as Carson, are working to strengthen their resumes before formally announcing their 2016 plans.

Carson at Israeli hospitalBen Carson visits in Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem, December 18, 2014. (photo credit: AP Photo/Dan Balilty)

Speaking to the AP, Carson expressed views that are common among Israel’s nationalist right wing. He showed sympathy for Israel’s much-maligned settlement movement and questioned the desire among Palestinians for peace. He even suggested that instead of Israel relinquishing captured land to make way for a Palestinian state, neighboring countries such as Egypt should provide the space for a future Palestine.

“That’s one possibility,” he said.

Carson is visiting Israel as a guest of “The Face of Israel,” a private group that sponsors trips for “influential decision makers” to promote a positive image of the country and counter “threats to Israel’s international legitimacy.” The trip has included visits to Israel’s northern front with Syria and the southern border with Gaza, and meetings with military officials and everyday people.

Although the U.S. remains Israel’s closest and most important ally, Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have little personal chemistry and have frequently clashed. The U.S. has been outspoken in its criticism of Israeli settlement construction in the West Bank and east Jerusalem — captured areas claimed by the Palestinians as parts of a future state. At the same time, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has made numerous trips to the region and elsewhere to try to broker a peace deal.

Carson said the criticism of the settlements has been exaggerated, and he asserted that Palestinian hostility toward Israel is what is preventing peace in the region. Of Netanyahu, Carson said, “I think he’s a great leader in a difficult time.”

While he expressed sympathy for the plight of Palestinians, Carson said Israeli security concerns were more important in the short term, noting that after Israel’s withdrawal of troops and settlers from the Gaza Strip in 2005, the territory was overrun by Hamas militants. An Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank, he said, would be even riskier, given its proximity to major Israeli cities.

“Until such time as their neighbors are no longer desirous of their elimination,” he said, Israel’s continued control of the West Bank “makes perfectly good sense.”

There is little disagreement among the GOP’s top prospects on American policy toward Israel, given religious conservatives’ overwhelming support for the Jewish state and the influence of conservative donors like billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, an outspoken Israel supporter who donated more to Republicans in the last presidential contest than anyone else.

Carson said he expects to make a decision on seeking the presidency by May. If he wins the job, he promised a different approach toward Israel.

“I would make sure that Israel knew that we had their back,” he said. “Because if their neighbors know that we’re backing them up, they’re not going to be anywhere near as aggressive.”

 

Israeli aircraft strike Gaza targets after rocket attack

Posted December 20, 2014 by josephwouk
Categories: Uncategorized

Israeli aircraft strike Gaza targets after rocket attack | The Times of Israel.

No reports of injuries as planes bomb Hamas-controlled territory for first time since summer war

December 20, 2014, 12:48 am

An Israel Air Force F-16 warplane. (photo credit: Ofer Zidon/Flash90)

An Israel Air Force F-16 warplane. (photo credit: Ofer Zidon/Flash90)

The Israel Air Force on Friday night struck Hamas targets in the southern Gaza Strip for the first time since the summer’s war.

The air force reportedly struck a Hamas training ground near Khan Yunis.

There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.

Gaza residents reported low-flying Israeli aircraft over the Palestinian enclave and multiple airstrikes. Unconfirmed reports indicated Israeli warships may also have shelled the Gaza Strip.

A spokesman for Gaza‘s Hamas-run Health Ministry said there were no casualties in the attack, the first air strike by Israel on the Palestinian enclave since the summer truce that ended the 50-day war between the sides.

The IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said in a statement that Israeli planes “struck Hamas terror infrastructure site in the southern Gaza Strip” in response to Friday’s rocket attack, and that a direct was confirmed.

“The IDF will not permit any attempt to undermine the security and jeopardize the well being of the civilians of Israel,” Spokesman Lt. Col. Peter Lerner said. “The Hamas terrorist organization is responsible and accountable for today’s attack against Israel.”

Friday night’s airstrike came following a rocket attack on southern Israel on Friday afternoon. Palestinians in Gaza fired a Kassam rocket at an Israeli community in the Eshkol region near the Gaza Strip, causing neither casualties nor damage.

It was the third time that Gaza terrorists have fired rockets at Israel since the conclusion of Operation Protective Edge, last summer’s war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

IDF soldiers swept the area Friday and found the remains of the rocket.

A rocket fired from the Gaza Strip on Friday December 19, 2014 lands in an open area in the Eshkol region. (Photo credit: Israel Police)

AFP contributed to this report.

Kerry: UN vote on Palestinian bid would strengthen Israeli right-wing

Posted December 20, 2014 by josephwouk
Categories: Uncategorized

Kerry: UN vote on Palestinian bid would strengthen Israeli right-wing | The Times of Israel.

US diplomat says Peres, Livni warned him such a move before March elections would benefit Netanyahu, Bennett, according to Foreign Policy

December 20, 2014, 9:47 am

PM Benjamin Netanyahu meets with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Rome on December 15, 2014 (photo credit: Amos Ben Gershom / GPO / Flash90)

PM Benjamin Netanyahu meets with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Rome on December 15, 2014 (photo credit: Amos Ben Gershom / GPO / Flash90)

US Secretary of State John Kerry told European Union diplomats that a UN vote in favor of the Palestinian resolution asking for recognition and an Israeli withdrawal to the pre-1967 lines would, at this stage, only strengthen Israel’s hardline politicians, like Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett.

Kerry said the US would not allow the resolution to come to a vote before the Israeli elections, set for March 17, according to a report in Foreign Policy.

At a recent annual luncheon with the 28 European Union ambassadors, Kerry reportedly said such a move would benefit those who oppose the peace process, and intimated that the US may support a Security Council resolution if the wording were appropriate, but he did not elaborate.

“Kerry has been very, very clear that for the United States it was not an option to discuss whatever text before the end of the Israeli election,” a European diplomat told Foreign Policy.

The diplomat also said that Kerry spoke about a warning issued to him by former justice minister Tzipi Livni (Hatnua) and former president Shimon Peres that a favorable UN vote “imposed by the international community would reinforce Benjamin Netanyahu and the hardliners in Israel.”

Another European diplomat said Kerry’s message was that UN action would “give more impetus to more right-wing parties, that there was a risk this could further embolden the more right-wing forces along the Israeli political spectrum.”

The diplomat said the US has been too “vague” on what steps could be taken at the Security Council after the Israeli elections.

“Secretary Kerry made clear in private as he has in public that we don’t think any steps should be taken that would interfere with the Israeli election — that’s what he conveyed earlier this week,” a senior State Department official told Foreign Policy in response. “He continues to discuss with foreign partners the options for advancing the goal we all share of preventing a downward spiral of events on the ground and creating conditions for resumption of negotiations on a two state solution.”

On Thursday, the US said it will not support the current resolution put forward by the Palestinians setting the terms of a peace deal with Israel.

Washington has seen the text of a draft resolution circulating in the UN Security Council and “it is not something that we would support,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters.

“We wouldn’t support any action that would prejudge the outcome of the negotiations and that would set a specific deadline for the withdrawal of forces,” Psaki said.

She did not rule out a statehood-related resolution per se, saying the United States wanted “further consultations.”

Psaki noted that the Palestinians “are not pushing for a vote right now,” and said it was unlikely the measure would face a vote soon.

Jordan presented the measure on Wednesday to the UN Security Council on behalf of the Palestinians, who said they were open to negotiations on the text.

Netanyahu said Thursday that Israel would never accept “unilateral diktats” while his Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman dismissed the draft as a “Palestinian gimmick.”

Washington has repeatedly vetoed Security Council resolutions seen as undermining its close ally Israel.

The Palestinian draft resolution sets a 12-month deadline for wrapping up negotiations on a final settlement and the end of 2017 as the time frame for completing an Israeli withdrawal to the pre-1967 lines.

A final peace deal would pave the way to the creation of a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as a shared capital, according to the text.

“There is no basis for consensus on the text as drafted and that is why we need to do some work,” said a Security Council diplomat.

France, working with Britain and Germany, is pressing on with a separate text on reviving the peace process, but it was unclear when that effort would yield results.

“We are continuing our work on a consensus text. We are working on the European text and we will see if we can make progress,” said a European diplomat.

AFP and JTA contributed to this report.

Kerry Tells European Envoys U.N. Action on Palestine Can Wait till Israeli Election | Foreign Policy

Posted December 20, 2014 by josephwouk
Categories: Uncategorized

Kerry Tells European Envoys U.N. Action on Palestine Can Wait till Israeli Election | Foreign Policy.

Kerry Tells European Envoys U.N. Action on Palestine Can Wait till Israeli Election

Secretary of State John Kerry has privately told European Union envoys that Washington will not permit the passage of any U.N. Security Council resolution on the Middle East peace process until after Israel’s March elections, according to three diplomats briefed on the meeting.

The move risks heightening U.S. tensions with the Palestinians, who have expressed growing skepticism over Washington’s ability to broker a political settlement with Israel that guarantees the creation of a future Palestinian state. It is also likely to subject European governments to increased domestic criticism over their inability to help advance the Palestinians quest for its own homeland.

Speaking at an annual luncheon with the 28 European Union ambassadors, Kerry cautioned that any action by the U.N. Security Council would strengthen the hands of Israeli hardliners who oppose the peace process. Kerry left open the possibility that the United States might ultimately support some sort of U.N. Security Council resolution that didn’t prejudge the outcome of stalled political negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians. He didn’t offer any details of what that kind of resolution would have to look like.

“Kerry has been very, very clear that for the United States it was not an option to discuss whatever text before the end of the Israeli election,” according to a European diplomat.

The diplomat, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the luncheon was confidential, said that Kerry explained that Israel’s liberal political leaders, Shimon Peres and Tipzi Livni, had expressed concern that a Security Council move to pressure Israel on the eve of election would only strengthen the hands of Israeli hardliners, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Naftali Bennett, an implacable foe of a Palestinian state and leader of the right-wing Jewish Home party. Netanyahu is also fiercely opposed to the Palestinians effort to secure Security Council backing for its statehood drive.

Kerry said Livni had “told him that such a text imposed by the international community would reinforce Benjamin Netanyahu and the hardliners in Israel,” as well as the hardliners in Palestine, according to the European diplomat.

The message, said another European diplomat, was that U.N. action would “give more impetus to more right-wing parties, that there was a risk this could further embolden the more right-wing forces along the Israeli political spectrum.”

Kerry’s remarks highlight the Obama administration’s delicate balancing act when it comes to its tense relationship with the Israeli government. On the one hand, senior administration officials make little attempt to hide the personal dislike between Netanyahu and President Barack Obama or their sharp disagreements on issues ranging from the peace process to Iran. On the other hand, Kerry and other top policymakers have tried to avoid saying or doing anything that could be seen as meddling in the Israeli election in an effort to oust Netanyahu and replace him with a more centrist prime minister.

“Secretary Kerry made clear in private as he has in public that we don’t think any steps should be taken that would interfere with the Israeli election — that’s what he conveyed earlier this week,” a senior State Department official said in response to a request for comment on his remarks to the European envoys. “He continues to discuss with foreign partners the options for advancing the goal we all share of preventing a downward spiral of events on the ground and creating conditions for resumption of negotiations on a two state solution.”

Kerry’s Thursday remarks came on a day in which the Palestinians’ U.N. envoy, Riyad Mansour, submitted a resolution demanding the withdrawal of Israeli forces from Palestinians lands by the end of 2017.

The U.S. has made clear to its counterparts that the Palestinian initiative was unacceptable. But Washington said it was open to discussing the adoption of some sort of resolution that reinforced peace efforts. Such a measure would almost certainly lack the strict deadline set out in the Palestinian measure.

With the U.S.-brokered peace talks stalled, European governments have come under mounting domestic pressure to do something at the U.N. to advance the Palestinians’ drive for statehood. France, which is seeking a broader diplomatic role in the Middle East, has proposed an alternative draft Security Council resolution which calls for the resumption of immediate political talks between the Israelis and Palestinians with the aim of concluding a comprehensive settlement within two years.

The United States and Israel oppose the imposition of hard deadlines. But the United States participated in a closed-door meeting Thursday in New York on the French draft with French, British and Jordanian envoys.

Diplomats familiar with those talks say that the United States has been willing to engage in general discussions about the possible role for the Security Council role but that it has been unwilling so far to engage in substantive negotiations over the French text. Those discussions may continue next week and beyond, but there “is no sense of urgency,” according to one diplomat.

Some diplomats expressed concern that the U.S. is merely engaging in stalling tactics. The United States already convinced the Palestinians to put off a decision to move ahead with its resolution in the weeks leading up the U.S. midterm elections last November. The United States has provided little clarity on what it would be willing to support in the Security Council following the Israeli election. Even the U.S. commitment to consider Security Council action after the election has been frustratingly “vague,” according to a European diplomat.

Slow rocket fire from Gaza after Hamas goes back to accepting Tehran’s domination

Posted December 19, 2014 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Gaza, Hamas, Iran, Israel, Jerusalem, Temple Mount

Tags: , , , , ,

Slow rocket fire from Gaza after Hamas goes back to accepting Tehran’s domination, DEBKAfile, December 19, 2014

Hamas-on-Temple-Mount_19.12.14Hamas flexes its muscles on Temple Mt., Jerusalem

The red alert for the incoming rocket from Gaza which exploded in the Eshkol District Friday morning, Dec. 19, may well be the harbinger of more to come. In parts of Beersheba too the dull thumps of explosions were heard on Thursday.

According to DEBKAfile’s military and intelligence sources, Hamas has once again fallen under Tehran’s sway after patching up their quarrel.

Iran lost no time in directing the Palestinian terrorist group to revoke the ceasefire it accepted in June for halting Israel’s summer operation in the Gaza Strip and revive low-key rocket fire. An apparently “anonymous” organization will take responsibility – in reality it will be Hamas’ military wing.

Israel’s security authorities are aware of this ominous turn of events, but prefer to keep it quiet for the time being.

Hamas is reverting to its old terrorist ways, DEBKA reports, after not only spurning, but omitting to send a reply, to a Saudi package which Riyadh believed would be too generous to resist. The Saudis offered to put up the funds for Hamas’ entire annual budget, including military spending, as well as covering the full cost of rebuilding the Gaza Strip after the ravages of the summer war.

There were two conditions:

1. The Palestinian extremists must throw their unreserved support behind Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi and henceforth synchronize its operations with Cairo – i.e. desert its traditional allegiance to the Muslim Brotherhood.

2.  They must totally sever their military, political and financial ties with Iran. In token of this action, Hamas’ political chief Khaled Meshaal must call off his impending trip to Tehran, scheduled to mark the public announcement of the organization’s reconciliation with Iran and its leading ally, Syrian President Beshar Assad.

Instead of any sort of direct response to Riyadh’s offer, Hamas opted to use its 27th anniversary celebrations on Sunday Dec. 14, for a display of loyalty to Iran by 2,000 marching Izz e-din al-Qassam fighters. Every detail of the event was cleared in advanced by Tehran and broadcast live over all of Iran’s TV channels – an unprecedented honor.

As we first reported last week, a high-powered Hamas delegation visited Tehran on Dec. 9 to draft with Iranian officials the text of the Hamas reconciliation accord with Assad and map out future operations.

The most prominent members were Meshaal’s right hand, Muhammed Nasser; two members of the Hamas overseas military branch, Maher Abdullah and Jemal Ismail; and Lebanese agent, Osama Hamdan.

One item on this accord provided for the gradual resumption of rocket attacks on Israel from the Gaza Strip.

Hours after the first rocket was launched Friday, Hamas staged its first ever parade on Temple Mount, Jerusalem, marching around the golden Dome of the Rock, and shouting calls to revive the Palestinian rocket offensive against Israeli locations. They were clad uniformly in green with jihadi headbands and hoisted Hamas banners aloft.

Hamas’ riotous demonstration of defiance contrasted sharply with the calm observed in Friday worship at Al Aqsa in the last three weeks.


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