The United Nations Must Take Its Own Medicine Re the Palestinian Authority

On July 10, 2019, the United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres delivered a speech regarding the horrible situation of terrorism in Africa which outlined a multi-step approach to tackling the growing problem.

Should he truly believe that those are the best methods for combating terrorism globally, he must begin to implement them in the region where the U.N. has tens of thousands of employees working for decades in an area where terrorism reigns under its blind eyes: among the Palestinian Arabs in the Arab-Israel Conflict.

Secretary General Antonio Guterres talks about fighting terrorism in Africa, July 2019
(photo: UNEP, Duncan Moore)

Below are Guterres’s main points on combating terrorism, and the situation in Gaza, West Bank and other areas where the United Nations cares for Palestinian Arabs:

  1. Working Together and Information Sharing. Guterres said that the global community should be “working together to share counter-terrorism information.” He noted that terrorism in Africa, such as the Kenya-Ethiopian border, could be best fought by sharing “information, expertise and good practices.”The U.N. agency for Palestinian Arab “refugees,” UNRWA has nearly 32,000 employees in Gaza, the “West Bank,” Lebanon, Syria and Jordan (a figure which grows even faster than the number of registered persons). Yet the UN limits its activities to education and healthcare, and does not provide any information to Israel about terrorists from Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah or other known terrorist groups in the effort “to detect, identify and disrupt violent extremism and to bring terrorist to justice.” Regrettably, over the past several decades, the U.N. has never acted to stop terrorism – even with basic information sharing which Guterres called for in Africa. The UN has actually done the opposite, leaving its schools open to store weapons and as launching sites for missiles against Israel.
  2. Halting the Narrative of Grievance and Promoting Good Governance and Good Jobs. Guterres outlined some of the underlying causes which allow terrorism to thrive, saying that it is important to stop the  “narratives of grievance, actual or perceived injustice, and promised empowerment” as well as changing the dynamics “wherever human rights are being violated, good governance is being ignored and aspirations are being crushed.”Yet the U.N. has actively promoted the narrative of “grievance and injustice” in telling the Palestinians that they have a right to move to a house where a grandparent once lived, regardless as to whether they had actually owned any property and for how long. As such, the U.N. has fueled the Gaza riots for the past years with the promise that through the United Nations, the Arabs will get to move into Israel.Regarding “good governance,” the U.N. operates in Gaza in concert with Hamas, just as it operates in Syria with mass murder Bashar al-Assad and coordinates in Lebanon with operatives of Hezbollah. Rather than make any attempt at fostering human rights and good governance, UNRWA turns a blind eye as it hands out jobs and benefits to the stateless Arabs from Palestine (SAPs).Further, rather than heed Guterres’ comments regarding terrorism in Africa of “strengthening State institutions and civil society, building durable peace and promoting sustainable development to tackle the poverty, inequality and lack of opportunity that feed despair,” the U.N. has been active in promoting the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) of Israel movement, pulling good jobs out of the West Bank. It has similarly made light of the Trump administrations efforts to invest billions of dollars into the Palestinian economy, thereby helping fuel poverty and lack of opportunities.
  3. Engaging Women in the Fight Against Terrorism. Guterres sees a particular role for women to play in fighting hatred and violence, saying “We must fully engage women, who play multiple roles in relation to violent extremism and its prevention — as victims, as those recruited and radicalized, but most importantly as influencers and leaders in prevention and agents of peace.”But the U.N. has stood by while women are championed as murderers, not as “agents of peace.” All one has to do is look at schools and squares named after female terrorists. The U.N. stands by while official Palestinian Authority TV broadcasts mothers who say they are proud of their terrorist children. It is not as though the U.N. offers no opinions; it complains bitterly when the U.S. and Israel try to stop the pay-to-slay program which encourages terrorism.And as a simple matter of decency which must start on the local level, how has the U.N. said or done nothing while Gaza leads the world in honor killings of women on a per capita basis? Instead the U.N. produces long papers describing the plight of Palestinian women are solely because of Israel.The U.N. hasn’t enlisted Palestinian women to combat terror; it has promoted them to be part of the terror. It is well past time for this to change.
  4. Stop the Online Provocations and Hate Speech and Promote Jobs. It many ways, this point is similar to halting the narrative of grievance Guterres mentioned above. He said “youth unemployment not only limits personal fulfilment and drains away hope, it also undermines social cohesion and could threaten security.” Further, “With the rise of misinformation on social media and the Internet, young people also need education and empowerment to denounce manipulative narratives, xenophobia and hate speech, which can all lead to online radicalization.”As described above, the U.N. has effectively worked in concert with the BDS movement to kill good jobs for Palestinians in the West Bank fueling unemployment. It also makes little or no effort to stop or condemn the incitement on Palestinian TV and Facebook pages. In fact, it does the opposite, as many UNRWA officials use Facebook to post calls for terrorism against “Zionist dogs”.In regards to the swelling ranks of young people, the United Nations has actively been involved with “creating” the youth, by not advancing the U.N.’s own stated goals of birth control, even though UNRWA touches 99.4% of all Arab women. The U.N. gives Palestinians first world medical treatment while they have children at the rate of third world countries, which has inflated the Palestinian Arab refugee population by 1 million people – under the care of the United Nations.
  5. The Victims of Terrorism as Advocates for Peace. Guterres continued that the UN must “support the victims and survivors of terrorism, including victims of sexual violence and children exploited by terrorist groups,” who must be central to the fight against terror.So the United Nations builds a portal on the victims of terrorism. It writes about victims in Afghanistan, Iraq, Nigeria, Somalia and Syria, places of horrible terrorist attacks (each almost 100% Muslim, except for Nigeria which is about 50/50 Christian/Muslim). Israel doesn’t get a mention.
  6. Stopping the Flow of Money to Terrorists. Guterres said “mitigating the threat of foreign terrorist fighters, empowering and engaging youth, countering terrorist financing and improving aviation security” are critical in the efforts to combat terrorism.An interesting read on the subject of halting the flow of money to terrorist is “Harpoon” by Nitsana Darshan-Leitner. Israel actively is involved in the fight to stop the flow of funds to terrorists, but it is done despite the United Nations. The circus of the UN has countries including Kuwait and Indonesia (both almost completely Muslim) condemning Israel for withholding monies which the Palestinian Authority pays to terrorists’ families.

If the UN Secretary-General really believes in his formula for stopping terrorism, and desires peace in the Middle East, he should begin using his 32,000-person force on the ground servicing Palestinian “refugees” and the global forum to follow his principles including: sharing information on Palestinian terrorist groups with Israel; stopping the narrative that descendants of people who once live in Israel have any ‘right of return’; not facilitating or participating in any manner with the BDS movement; refusing to provide any services in Gaza as long as Hamas is in power and there are schools named after terrorists; having Israeli victims of terror address the United Nations; and backing Israel in suspending payments to the Palestinian Authority as long as it continues its pay-to-slay activities.

Guterres laid out his plan to stem terrorism around the world. As the Palestinians are his adopted wards, he can actively stop the terrorism in Israel. If he only showed the will to follow his own advice.


Related First.One.Through articles:

The UN Fails on its Own Measures to address the Conditions Conducive to the Spread of Terrorism

The United Nations Once Again “Encourages” Hamas

Stopping the Purveyors of Hateful Propaganda

What do you Recognize in the Palestinians?

The New Salman Abedi High School for Boys in England and the Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel Soccer Tournament in France

Related First.One.Through video:

The 2002 Massacres of Netanya and Jenin (music by Gorecki)

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

Advertisements

Muslim Women Debate Anti-Semitism

Ayaan Hirsi Ali wrote an article in The Wall Street Journal on July 12, 2019 called “Can Ilhan Omar Overcome Her Prejudice.” It was an article written by a black Muslim woman refugee from Somalia who fled to the Netherlands to enter politics as a converted Christian, about another black Muslim woman refugee from Somalia who fled to the United States to enter politics as a Muslim.

Hirsi Ali’s comments were stark. And bleak. And frightening.

She wrote about how anti-Semitism is instilled into the Somalian community from the youngest age, and how hating Jews is as natural as breathing air. This, despite the fact that almost no Somalian ever encountered a Jew in their lives. Hirsi Ali wrote how she had to unlearn her prejudice, and she wonders whether Ilhan Omar (and presumably all people from Somalia) will ever be able to unlearn the deep Jew-hatred endemic in that society.

“White Jews”

Linda Sarsour, a Palestinian-American Muslim woman came to Omar’s defense on the charge of antisemitism and said that “white Jews” tried to characterize Omar as an anti-Semite just because she’s a black Muslim woman – inverting the charge to white Jews being the racists. Sarsour contended that Jews think that Muslims are anti-Semites by default, “guilty until proven innocent.” Sarsour seemed to skip the uncomfortable fact that Omar made anti-Semitic statements again and again and again (let alone black non-Jews like Hirsi Ali pointing out Omar’s antisemitism).

As to Sarsour’s contention that “white Jews” think all Muslims are anti-Semites, she must be referring to the Anti Defamation League poll done in 2014 of countries around the world. There were 25 Muslim-majority countries reviewed, which showed that an average of 69% of the people in those countries were antisemitic. That compares to an average of 24% anti-Semites in non-Muslim majority countries, almost three times the rate of hate.

According to the ADL, once a country passes the 95% Muslim population threshold, almost every single man and woman hates Jews. In countries like Somalia (homeland for Omar and Hirsi Ali which was not polled by ADL which is 98% Muslim) including Yemen, Iraq, Algeria and Libya, the percentage of antisemitic adults in those countries are 89%, 92%, 87% and 89%, respectively. Sarsour’s Palestinian territories are 92% antisemitic.

For Sarsour, a Jewish organization which shows the antisemitism in Muslim societies must itself be racist, as well as those who read and believe the poll’s findings.

Israeli Jews of Color

Omar, Sarsour and fellow Muslim woman Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) are proud anti-Zionists who attack Israel with “apartheid” charges, perhaps failing to realize that the “white Jews” who descended from Europe and Russia are a minority in Israel, while the majority of Jews are from Arab, Muslim and African countries, Jews of color. They fully engage in the most liberal country of the entire MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region, making a new life in the Jewish State after they and their families were expelled and forced to flee Muslim lands.

White Jewish Men

By constantly calling themselves “Muslim women of color”, combining every minority element in the U.S., these women are directing their bile not just at non-Muslim white people, but men in particular.

Interestingly, the ADL polls of 2014 and 2015 show that in almost every single country and for every question, men are indeed more likely than women to be antisemitic. However, in a few instances, such as in the United States and the United Kingdom, women are more likely than men to believe that: Jews are hated for the way they behave; don’t care about anyone but fellow Jews; are more loyal to Israel than their country; and that they talk about the Holocaust too much. These antisemitic attitudes are in contrast to men who are more focused on perceived Jewish “control” over the financial markets, the media and US government. Like most antisemitic women, Omar, Tlaib and Sarsour clearly don’t think much about Holocaust appropriation, and are seemingly leaning in to cover all manner of antisemitic tropes as well.

X-Muslims

And for a moment of clarity, it is worth noting that Hirsi Ali’s conversion from Islam to Christianity is not simply an affront to Muslims, but an act of apostasy that is illegal throughout the Muslim world. In some societies – like Sarsour’s and Tlaib’s Palestinian Arab community – the majority of people believe that apostates should be subject to the death penalty. It seems that for these intersectional women, there is nothing worse than breaking from the narrow wisdom breast-fed since birth.

With such orientation, it makes the discussion of antisemitism between Muslim women and a former-Muslim woman that much more interesting. Did Hirsi Ali need to leave Islam to purge her prejudice? One data point does not make for a compelling argument for 1.8 billion Muslims worldwide.

Muslim women calling “white Jews” in America and Jews of color in Israel “racists” does not make any of the Jews racists; it simply adds to the long list of antisemitic smears from a handful of anti-Semites who should be given no air. And it leads one to unfortunately conclude that many leading American Muslim women may never unlearn their antisemitism, as much as a leading Dutch apostate might desire.


Related First.One.Through articles:

As Ilhan Omar Clearly Demonstrates, Not Every “First” is Jackie Robinson

Examining Ilhan Omar’s Point About Muslim Antisemitism

Ilhan Omar Isn’t Debating Israeli Policy, She is Attacking Americans

Rep. Ilhan Omar and The 2001 Durban Racism Conference

The Insidious Jihad in America

Linda Sarsour as Pontius Pilate

The Mourabitat Women of Congress

Apostasy

Republican Scrutiny and Democratic Empowerment of Muslims in Minnesota

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

The Media Cares Much More About Journalists Than Children

The media is writing every day about the conditions of children at the southern U.S. border. They are upset and angry that in families entering the country illegally, children are being torn from their parents, being put “in cages” and living in unsanitary conditions.

Perhaps they have turned a new leaf. In the past, the welfare of children never seemed to be a focus of the “progressive” media.

For years, The New York Times profited off of tours to countries like Saudi Arabia and Iran as part of its “Journeys” program. It profiled the Islamic countries in glowing terms as reviewed in “NY Times Disgraceful Journeys,” despite the fact that both countries EXECUTE MINORS. Such heinous activity – beyond the countries other reprehensible records regarding human rights – should have put the countries beyond the pale in terms of destinations for fun and profit.

Nope. The New York Times proudly boasted and promoted the tour packages… until something truly terrible happened.

What could be worse than torturing and executing minors? For the New York Times, it would be killing a journalist.

In October 2018, after the disappearance of controversial Washington Post reporter Jamal Khashoggi, the Times opted to suspend its trips to Saudi Arabia. His murder was viewed as a red line whereas the habitual torture and beheadings of children was a trifle to ignore.

A few weeks later, the Times would also cancel its trips to Iran because of difficulties related to obtaining visas for their “experts.” Being the leading state sponsor of terrorism, which also hanged gays – including minors – in city squares was viewed as not consequential.

It is therefore a bit rich to read the Op-ed columnist Roger Cohen’s July 13, 2019 column about human rights. Roger Cohen was one of the “experts” of the Times’ profitable Journeys tours, who suddenly became “woke,” writing angrily about the conditions of children who happily traded their soap in Honduras where they feared for their lives, for a chance to find sanctuary in the United States.

Dear Roger and the cast of “progressives” at the New York Times, when you gladly walked over the corpses of children in Saudi Arabia and Iran to make a few dollars, you lost all credibility and moral authority to lecture anyone. And when you suddenly found your spines and moral compass when a fellow “journalist” was killed, you proved your allegiance was to your profession, not human rights or decency.


Related First.One.Through articles:

Nicholas Kristof’s Crocodile Tears

If you Only Loved Refugees as Much as you Hate Donald Trump

Murderous Governments of the Middle East

Losing Rights

Ban Ki Moon Defecates on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Apostasy

Paying to Murder Jews: From Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Iran to the Palestinian Authority

Reuters Can’t Spare Ink on Iranian Anti-Semitism

The Press Are Not Guardians of the Galaxy

Related First.One.Through video:

Drive, Saudi Arabia (music by The Cars)

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

The NY Times Will Not Write About the Preferred Violence of Palestinians

The New York Times sets the gold standard for a pro-Palestinian Arab narrative in the United States mainstream media. It never stops trying to make the point that Palestinians are non-violent resistance fighters against the horrible Israeli-occupation machine. Here’s a link from FirstOneThrough to appreciate the breadth and depth of the Times bias.

In the latest example, on July 9, 2019, the Times wrote an article on page A4 with two pictures and a map called “As Weary Protesters Turn to Pocketbook Issues, West Bank Quiets.” The online version had three more pictures of Palestinian Arabs “protesting before Israeli soldiers.”

The 1,200-word article used the word “protest” 8 times, not including the title. It used the word “resistance” 6 times. “Violence” appeared only twice.

Pretty remarkable for the people who launched a stabbing and car ramming intifada throughout 2015 on the heels of an all-out war from their cousins in Gaza in 2014, who continue to stone people and cars, and who have a leadership which continues to use its scant resources to pay terrorists who maim and murder Israelis.

A particularly choice paragraph captures the NYT’s #AlternativeFacts portrayal of the Palestinians as despondent about their peaceful strategy and anger at the United States:

“An opinion poll by the Ramallah-based Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research in June found that only 23 percent of Palestinians saw nonviolent resistance as the most effective way of achieving statehood, while three-quarters said the Palestinian leadership should reject the American peace plan.”

Fewer than one in four Palestinian Arabs believe there is any effectiveness of “nonviolent resistance.” The majority of Palestinians believe prefer other actions. According to the actual opinion poll:

“The public is divided over the role of negotiations and armed struggle in the establishment of a Palestinian state next to the state of Israel: 38% think armed struggle is the most effective means; 35% think that negotiation is the most effective means; and 23% believe that non-violent resistance is the most effective.”

But the Times wrote a huge article about the Palestinians’ LEAST PREFERRED method of establishing a new Palestinian state, well behind violence and negotiations.

Which begs the question, why not write a 1,200-word article about Palestinians preference for violence? Their attitude has been consistent in EVERY Palestinian poll, taken over the last several years. (Well, in actuality, they are Palestinian polls, so the words “violence” and “terrorism” are only used in connection with Israelis, whereas Palestinians engage in an “armed intifada” or “armed struggle“).

Further, the Palestinians oppose a two-state solution, with 47% in favor and 50% against as of June 2019. It is also a point that the NY Times never mentions.

The Times presents a fake narrative to its readership that the Palestinians are in favor of a two-state solution and are valiantly engaged in nonviolent protest to achieve their aims, despite every Palestinian poll which shows the opposite. But facts do not matter for the Times; the editors have chosen the good people and the bad people in every story. And in case you’ve been buried under a Palestinian rock and missed it, the Chosen People are the very bad people.


Related First.One.Through articles:

The New York Times Excuses Palestinian “Localized Expressions of Impatience.” I Mean Rockets.

The Palestinians aren’t “Resorting to Violence”; They are Murdering and Waging War

For The NY Times, Antisemitism Exists Because the Alt-Right is Racist and Israel is Racist

The New York Times Whitewashes Motivation of Palestinian Assassin of Robert Kennedy

The Real “Symbol of the Conflict” is Neta Sorek

The New York Times Knows It’s Israeli Right from It’s Palestinian Moderates

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

 

 

The Insidious Jihad in America

Yesterday’s post called “Linda Sarsour as Pontius Pilate” got quite a bit of pushback. People wanted to know what was the point of attacking a Muslim woman who wasn’t even elected to office. They asked why there wasn’t an article written about President Trump and other calls of whataboutery.

Linda Sarsour is just one data point about an insidious jihad taking place in the United States.

On April 20, 2019, another Muslim woman – this one, an elected official, Ilhan Omar (D-MN) – posted a feed on her Twitter account that rebuked Christians for not realizing that Jesus was a Palestinian, the same sort of inanity produced by Sarsour on July 6.

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) before Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
A few days later on May 9, the most power Democrat in office, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, invited Imam Omar Suleiman to give a prayer before Congress. Suleiman was the original source of Omar’s retweet.

In reaction to Suleiman addressing Congress, Rep Lee Zeldin (R-NY) rebuked Pelosi for inviting such a divisive person to address the august body, stating.

“Totally unacceptable that had Omar Suleiman give the opening prayer yesterday in the House. He compares Israel to the Nazis & calls them terrorists, supports Muslim Brotherhood, incites violence calling for a Palestinian antifada & the end of zionism, etc. Bad call”

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) went into high gear with accusations of “Islamophobia,” rather than address the issue that a national platform was given to a virulent basher of a strong American ally. As described in cnsnews.com:

“Ekram Haque, acting executive director of CAIR’s Dallas-Fort Worth chapter, accused “anti-Muslim and anti-Palestinian groups” of having “launched a smear campaign against yet another person of color and American Muslim leader in the hope of maligning and marginalizing our communities.”

A brilliant continuation of lies whereby the anti-Zionists deflected the charge with charges of Islamophobia.

The CNS news site continued that Suleiman has 1.35 million followers on Facebook and 282,000 followers on Twitter where he posted comments like these:

  • Facebook post, May 15, 2018: “Apartheid Israel, with American funding and cover, continues to terrorize with impunity.”
  • Facebook post, 10 August 2015: “Want to know what its [sic] like to live under Nazis? Look no further than how the Palestinians are treated daily by apartheid Israel. Sickening.”
  • Twitter post, 30 October 2014: A third intifada is near insha’Allah.”
  • Facebook post, 3 August 2014: “How symbolic: 2 books buried in the rubble of a destroyed home in Gaza: One about Moses and the other about Muhammad (peace be upon them both). The Zionists are the enemies of God, His Messengers, sincere followers of all religions, and humanity as a whole.”
  • Twitter post, 24 July 2014: “God willing on this blessed night as the 3rd Intifada begins, the beginning of the end of Zionism is here. May Allah help us overcome this monster, protect the innocent of the world, and accept the murdered as martyrs. ameen.”

Suleiman/Omar/Pelosi are far cries from an innocuous and impotent “social activist” making silly remarks about Jesus being a Palestinian. This is a man calling for the destruction of Israel who is parroted by a congresswomen and speaking before Congress.

Sarsour herself has many other friends at the top of the Democratic Party that are furthering the demonization of Jews and the Jewish State.

Linda Sarsour and Cornel West, right, listen as Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks in a roundtable discussion April 16, 2016, at the First Unitarian Congregational Society in the Brooklyn borough of New York. (Mary Altaffer / AP)

Sarsour has developed a very close relationship with one of the leading Democratic presidential candidates, Sen. Bernie Sanders. Sanders proudly posted her endorsement of his 2020 presidential run on his website. He clearly believes that her voice carries weight and will win him votes. (It should be noted that Sanders also posted the support of another loud anti-semite, former British MP George Galloway as well as Cornel West and James Zogby.)

Another 2020 Democratic Party presidential candidate Kirsten Gillibrand loudly and proudly complemented Sarsour for her role in the Women’s March stating: “It was an honor to write about them.” In addition to Israel-hater Sarsour, the other women Gillibrand wrote about were people like Tamika Mallory who is proud of her relationship with noted anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam. (Gillibrand has company in another Democratic presidential hopeful Senator Cory Booker who also stands with Farrakhan).

Sarsour is also close to current Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, a fellow Israel-basher (who happens to be Muslim) who was the Vice Chairman of the Democratic National Committee. The two back each other all the way.

In short, Sarsour is not some low-level un-influential community organizer. She has a loud platform and ears of the leaders of the Democratic party.

These pages have focused on far-left wing anti-Semitic and anti-Zionist elected officials including “The Democratic Party is Tacking to the Far Left-Wing Anti-Semitic Fringe,Black Lives Matter Joins the anti-Israel “Progressives” Fighting Zionism,An Open Letter to Non-Anti-Semitic Sanders Supporters and “Farrakhan’s Democrats” among others.

This problem is systemic and growing.

The “progressive” intersectionality movement is merging the radical Muslim jihadist sect like Sarsour/ Omar/ Ellison with the far-left Democratic leadership like Sanders, Booker and Gillbrand as well as Senators Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris who both excused Ilhan’s Omar’s anti-Semitic and anti-Zionist comments. Rather than criticize the essence of the hateful American jihadists comments, the Democratic leadership is opting to condemn the targets of the smear attacks (including pro-Israel Republicans, religious Christians and and Jews) as racists. Appreciating the results, the jihadists do it again, further binding the alt-left to its cause, as the Democratic leadership seems unwilling or unable to pull itself out of the tailspin.

The insidious jihad is just getting started, and will roll over the Democratic Party should it elect a member of the far-left as its presidential nominee.


Related First.One.Through articles:

Considering Nazis and Radical Islam on the 75th Anniversary of D-Day

Bernie Sanders is the Worst U.S. Presidential Candidate for Israel Ever

#NeverGillibrand #NeverSanders #NeverHarris #NeverDeBlasio

Please Don’t Vote for a Democratic Socialist

As Ilhan Omar Clearly Demonstrates, Not Every “First” is Jackie Robinson

Ilhan Omar Isn’t Debating Israeli Policy, She is Attacking Americans

Rep. Ilhan Omar and The 2001 Durban Racism Conference

Politicians React to Vile and Vulgar Palestinian Hatred

Ben & Jerry’s New Flavor: Milano Zio

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

Linda Sarsour as Pontius Pilate

The term “cultural appropriation” (or sometimes “cultural misappropriation” ) is defined by Dictionary.com as “the act of adopting elements of an outside, often minority culture, including knowledge, practices, and symbols, without understanding or respecting the original culture and context.” It has been used by some “social justice activists” to attack the majority culture who use certain foods, clothing or symbols of a minority ethnic or religious group in a manner that is viewed as demeaning.

How much worse is it to not just use articles of clothing or food but to abuse a group’s ancestors and history? How much more sinister is it to do it to deliberately anger and attack a group, rather than take an action meant with no malice?

Leaders of the Palestinian Authority and its founder Yasser Arafat had often declared that Jesus was a Muslim Palestinian Arab in interviews, press releases and their official TV. Their transparent goal was to make it sound that Jesus was not a Jew but a Muslim Palestinian Arab like themselves. They manufactured a fake history that not only did Jews have no history in the region, but Palestinian Arabs did, in an effort to undermine the claims of Jews as being indigenous to the holy land.

The argument was also designed to enable Muslim Arabs to assert control of Christian holy sites in the holy land, not just Muslim ones, and align themselves with billions of Christians around the world. The actual Judeo-Christian history in the holy land with Muslim Arabs as foreign invaders over six centuries later was repackaged and retold as a Palestinian Muslim Arab-Christian story, with Jews coming as the foreign invaders two millenia later in creating Israel.

But you can almost forgive the Palestinian Authority for their insults and lies. They have cornered themselves into asserting that their entire claim to the land is that they are indigenous. The much older and deeper Jewish history undermines the very foundation to their claim.

Further, the Palestinian Authority lives in a third world backwater of their own making in the Middle East. Rather than create a liberal society like Israel, they cling to their repressive brothers which afford little to no rights for women and minorities.

So how should one consider the same remarks coming from a “progressive, social justice activist” like Linda Sarsour on July 6, 2019?

Sarsour lives in the United States of America, a predominantly Christian country. She was a co-founder of the “Women’s March” in Washington, D.C. and claims to care about oppressed minorities – even Jews, the most persecuted group on the planet. She has the background to know better and speak clearer than a bunch of old Arab men in the Middle East.

So why did she choose to insult billions of Christians and a couple of million Jews with the notion that Jesus wasn’t a Jew but a Muslim Arab? Why attack the faith of billions of others?

Sarsour is part of a new wave of Muslim jihadists. Not the ones who used physical force to invade lands like the jihadists from Arabia who swept through the Jewish holy land and north Africa in the 7th and 8th centuries killing and converting non-believers. Sarsour describes herself as a jihadist in the mold of using words “of truth” to form a particular narrative. As she said in July 2017:

“What is the best form of jihad, or struggle? And our beloved prophet … said to him, ‘A word of truth in front of a tyrant ruler or leader, that is the best form of jihad. I hope that … when we stand up to those who oppress our communities, that Allah accepts from us that as a form of jihad, that we are struggling against tyrants and rulers not only abroad in the Middle East or on the other side of the world, but here in these United States of America, where you have fascists and white supremacists and Islamophobes reigning in the White House.”

Are her words “of truth”?

  • Jesus was not an Arab. Arabs didn’t come to the holy land en masse until they invaded in the seventh century, over 600 years after Jesus lived.
  • Jesus was not a Muslim. He was a Jew and father of the Christian faith.
  • Jesus was not a Palestinian. In the time of Jesus, the area was known as Judea. After the Bar Kochba Revolt (132-135CE), well after Jesus lived, the Roman conquerors changed the name of the province to “Syria Palestina.” The word “Palestine” didn’t even exist while Jesus was alive.

The same Roman Empire that crucified Jesus, destroyed the Jewish Temple, slaughtered the Jews of Judea and built pagan altars throughout the holy land, renamed the province to destroy the Jewish and nascent Christian spirit in the land. To call Jesus a Palestinian is not just incorrect, it is a highly charged insult which brands him with the signatures of his killers and everything he loathed.

Sarsour is seemingly happy to dress the part of Pontius Pilate, the Roman prefect of Judea who sentenced Jesus to death: destroy those who believe differently, rebrand the land, retell a new story to define a new narrative to your liking. In a “progressive social activist” world where “my truths” are more potent than facts, the alt-left audience is ripe for her fabrications. In rallying to her support, they won’t even pause to consider the outright lies or cultural appropriation.

Sarsour is not bringing words “of truth” to America, she is bringing a highly-charged jihad to destroy the Judeo-Christian roots of America.


Related First.One.Through articles:

Considering Nazis and Radical Islam on the 75th Anniversary of D-Day

Criticizing Muslim Antisemitism is Not Islamophobia

The Mourabitat Women of Congress

Bitter Burnt Ends: Talking to a Farrakhan Fan

Where’s the March Against Anti-Semitism?

“Protocols of the Elders of Zion – The Musical”

The Cave of the Jewish Matriarch and Arab Cultural Appropriation

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

Republicans Do Not Believe There is Any “Occupation”

The terminology used by the United Nations that Israel is “illegally occupying Palestinian Land” has angered Israelis for a long time. The Israelis do not believe that the land is “Palestinian,” that they are “occupying it” or that living in and controlling such land is “illegal.”

The Trump Administration agrees with this approach.

The 2016 Republican platform discussed Israel in several sections, including the B.D.S. (boycott, divestment and sanctions) movement which it labeled antisemitic, in prioritizing the security needs of allies like Israel over foes, and in moving the U.S. embassy to Israel’s capital city, Jerusalem. It also clearly mentioned Israel’s control over disputed land:

“We reject the false notion that Israel is an occupier”

The logic behind such attitude has been voiced by Israel and Israeli advocates for a long time, although it gets no air in the left-wing media. In short:

  • International law in 1920 and 1922 specifically called for Jews to reestablish their homeland throughout Palestine, covering all of the land between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River;
  • The “Green Line” or “1967 border,” is no border at all, but simply the armistice lines of 1949 which were deliberately and specifically not called borders but temporary lines too be negotiated for final settlement;
  • Jordan illegally evicted all the Jews from the area between the Green Line and the Jordan River (an area which later became known as the “West Bank”) and annexed the land in a move which was not recognized by almost the entire world;
  • Jordan broke the Jordanian-Israeli Armistice Agreement by attacking Israel in June 1967;
  • Israel took the “West Bank” in a defensive war, which makes the situation completely distinct from laws regarding taking land in an offensive war, especially when such land was not part of a sovereign nation, and was designated to be part of the acquiring country in any event

In summary, Israel took the “West Bank” back from a country which had illegally evicted all Jews, illegally annexed the land and illegally attacked it (the “Three Illegal Actions”).

Meanwhile, the Obama Administration sided with the United Nations, a group dominated by over 50 Arab and Muslim countries, the majority of which do not recognize Israel in any form. The United States, as part of the “Middle East Quartet,” co-signed a joint statement in September 2016, the final declaration before the Trump Administration took over which included the following:

“The Quartet reiterated its call on the parties to implement the recommendations of the Quartet Report of 1 July 2016, and create the conditions for the resumption of meaningful negotiations that will end the occupation that began in 1967 and resolve all final status issues.”

“The Quartet stressed the growing urgency of taking affirmative steps to reverse these trends in order to prevent entrenching a one-state reality of perpetual occupation and conflict that is incompatible with realizing the national aspirations of both peoples.”

The Obama Administration followed this up in December 2016 when it allowed UN Security Council Resolution 2334 to pass which stated:

“the establishment by Israel of settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace;”

The Republican and the Democratic Party/UN could not be further apart on this issue.

Since the Trump Administration has taken office, it has followed through on its position on this matter:

  • It has curtailed the announcements made by the Quartet, and none of them refer to an “occupation” of “Palestinian territory” being “illegal”;
  • In June 2019, the U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman said that “Under certain circumstances, I think Israel has the right to retain some, but unlikely all, of the West Bank,“; and
  • U.S. Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt also stated in June that “We might get there [to peace] if people stop pretending settlements, or what I prefer to call ‘neighborhoods and cities,’ are the reason for the lack of peace.

US Envoy Jason Greenblatt speaks at the Israel Hayom forum in Jerusalem on June 27, 2019. (photo: Gideon Markovitz)


While the two positions seem incompatible, they need not be.

The Republican position is completely logical. Further, how can there really be an enduring peace assuming the Democratic position of blessing an Arab Jew-free state? How can “progressives” support the antisemitic notion that Jews should be banned from living somewhere, let alone, in parts of their homeland?

The Democratic position also has logic. The Palestinian Arabs and the broader Arab world are insistent on Palestinian sovereignty. While sovereignty is NOT an “inalienable right” which the biased United Nations bestowed upon the Palestinians uniquely (only self-determination is an inalienable right of all people), it might not be a bad solution to the current impasse. Should the Palestinian Arabs obtain sovereignty, they will require defined borders. However, such new state of Palestine need not – and should not – be based on the antisemitic notion that Jews cannot live there.

The blend of the positions might be that Palestinians obtain sovereignty over a portion of the land, say in Gaza and land east of the security barrier which Israel built to stem the waves of Palestinian terrorists. It is consistent with both the Democrats and Republicans stated positions of caring about Israel’s security, while acknowledging the substance of the Republican position that the “1967 borders” are arbitrary and not borders, and the Democratic position that a two-state solution is the best path towards a peaceful settlement.

The Trump administration has not yet revealed the political portion of its Middle East plan and may not do so until after the Israeli elections scheduled for September 17. It might call for a new independent Palestinian State on the lines above, or it might suggest some sort of confederation with Jordan, which poses its own issues for Jordan’s King Abdullah.

Either way, the Republicans have clearly broken with the notion endorsed by the Unsavory UN and the Democratic Party that Israel illegally occupies Palestinian Land, and will advance a peace proposal on such basis.


Related First.One.Through articles:

Obama’s “Palestinian Land”

Nicholas Kristof’s “Arab Land”

Marking November 29 as The International Day of Solidarity with Jews Living East of the Green Line

The Israeli Peace Process versus the Palestinian Divorce Proceedings

“Settlements” Crossing the Line

Anti-“Settlements” is Anti-Semitism

Names and Narrative: It is Called ‘Area C’

The New York Times Major anti-Netanyahu Propaganda Piece

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

 

The United States Should NOT be a Neutral Mediator in the Arab-Israel Conflict

A “Quartet” of official bodies was set up in 2002 to help facilitate peace between Israel and the Arab world. The four entities include the United States, the United Nations, the European Union and Russia. The principal parties of the Quartet (the U.N. Secretary General, the U.S. Secretary of State, the Russian Foreign Minister and the High Representative of E.U. Foreign Affairs) meet regularly to assess the latest developments in the region.

Roughly 17 years later, there has been little advancement towards a broader peace agreement.

Lately, the acting-President of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas (whose term expired a decade ago) said that the United States was too biased in Israel’s favor to be considered a mediator in the conflict sayingby recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel the US government has proved that it is not neutral, which led us to reject its peace plan.” Other complaints include America cutting aid to the Palestinian Authority and U.N. agencies which provide assistance to Palestinians (Abbas did not mention that the aid was cut because he helps fund terrorism).

However, the United States is just one member of the Quartet. Why shouldn’t it have its own bilateral relationship with Israel and approach toward the peace process?

Consider that the United Nations is extremely biased in favor of the Palestinians, essentially adopting them as a child decades ago. It has set up separate agencies just for the Palestinians, condemned Israel more than any country in the world, created new forms of “inalienable rights” uniquely for Palestinian Arabs, and generally has taken actions that make clear it regrets its role in helping establish Israel. The global body has over 50 Arab and Muslim countries, of which the majority do not even recognize the existence of the Jewish State. It is unlikely to ever side with the Jewish State in negotiations with a Muslim state.

The European Union has also been a biased actor in favor of the Palestinians. Several of its members have recognized the State of Palestine, and have promoted boycotts of Israeli goods and services. The proposed incoming High Representative of E.U. Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell Fontelles is a major critic of Israel.

Russia is an ally of several countries at war with Israel including Syria and Iran, which has threatened to destroy Israel. Russia has stated that it will propose an alternative peace plan than the one due to be proposed by the U.S.A.


Russian President Vladimir Putin (left) greets Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas at the Bocharov Ruchei residence in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, Russia,
May 11, 2017. (Alexei Druzhinin/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)

With three of the four members of the Quartet biased in favor of the Arabs, it would be a travesty of justice for there to be no party biased in favor of Israel. It is as though the court only has a prosecution with no defense, and the judge is the brother of the prosecutor.

In truth, not only should the United States be highly biased in favor of its strong ally, Israel, there should be at least one other member of the Quartet to be pro-Israel to have a balanced approach. As the United Nations is hopelessly biased against Israel, it should be removed from the Quartet and replaced with another country of Israel’s choice – perhaps Australia, Canada or even India.

Should the United States become the sole mediator of the Arab-Israeli conflict, then it would be worth a discussion of America playing a more neutral role. However, as long as there are four parties playing that role, the U.S. should forcefully advance the cause of Israel, and the U.N. should be replaced in the Quartet by another pro-Israel party to properly balance the discussions.


Related First.One.Through articles:

The Legal Israeli Settlements

Both Israel and Jerusalem are Beyond Recognition for Muslim Nations

Time to Define Banning Jews From Living Somewhere as Antisemitic

Jerusalem’s Old City Is a Religious War for Muslim Arabs

Ending Apartheid in Jerusalem

The Custodianship of a Child and Jerusalem

Arabs in Jerusalem

The Arguments over Jerusalem

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

Should the ZOA Sponsor a “Birthright” Trip

Birthright Israel has been a phenomenal success in achieving its goal of ensuring “the vibrant future of the Jewish people by strengthening Jewish identity, Jewish communities, and connection with Israel.” The group, founded in 1999 with the financial support of Charles Bronfman and Michael Steinhardt, has brought over 650,000 Jews from 67 countries to better understand their common tie to the Jewish holy land.

However, the left-wing group J Street felt that the free trips gave the 18 to 26 year olds too many highlights and not enough lowlights.

At first, J Street demanded that the trips include discussions regarding Israel’s relationship with Palestinian Arabs. After being rebuffed that it was not the mission of Birthright, J Street launched its own trip called “The Let Our People Know Trip.” The itinerary includes a focus on “Israel’s minority communities,” “pluralism,” an afternoon in “East Jerusalem,” a full day called “The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the Occupation 101,” and another day called “Israel and Palestinian Perspectives Over the Green Line.” The trip is designed to split the Jewish holy land into areas that are Israeli and those that are occupied.

J Street map of Israel excluding Israeli territories in Judea and Samaria

I imagine that the right-wing Zionist Organization of America might pull together its own Birthright trip to further educate people about the nature of the conflict, which might have a different orientation than J Street. Here’s a possible itinerary:

Day 1: Terrorism in the 1970’s

  • Land in Ben Gurion Airport.
  • Get a briefing on the various security measures that Israel must deploy because of the threats of hijackings and bombings. Include a speaker who freed over 200 Jews who were hijacked by members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine in 1976, and review the various hijackings perpetrated by Palestinian terrorists over the years.
  • Drive up road towards Netanya and stop at the location of the Coastal Road Massacre of 1978, in which 38 Israeli civilians, including 13 children, were killed under direction of the dominant Palestinian party, Fatah. Learn about Dalal Mughrabi, a woman who planned and fought in the terrorist attack who is celebrated by Palestinians to this day with schools and public squares named after her.
  • Night in Netanya

Day 2: The British Mandate and the Separation Barrier as Peace-Builder

  • Visit the Park Hotel in Netanya where a Palestinian suicide bomber killed over 30 people having a Passover seder in 2002. Hear from soldiers who fought to eliminate the terrorists in Jenin after the massacre, who went door-to-door on foot to minimize civilian casualties. Read reports from CNN who falsely charged the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) with killing hundreds of civilians.
  • Visit a section of the separation barrier which was built as a result of the Second Intifada to curtail the infiltration of Palestinian Arab terrorists. Review the statistics of the bombings and killings in Israel from Arabs coming from the east of the barrier before and after the barrier was erected and discuss Israel’s security needs.
  • Visit the Arab city of Umm al-Fahm, which some Israeli politicians want to swap to a future state of Palestine due to their glorification of terrorists.
  • Tour Atlit, a displaced persons camp used by the British to lock up Jewish immigrants to the holy land in the 1930’s and 1940’s who were trying to escape or had just escaped the Holocaust in Europe. Sit near the barbed wire fence and hear from a historian how the British ignored international law established in 1920 (San Remo Conference) and 1922 (British Mandate) to facilitate the immigration of Jews to reestablish their homeland, and instead instituted the White Paper of 1939 at the urging of Palestinian Arabs which limited Jewish immigration over five years to just 75,000 people, resulting in the deaths of over 100,000 Jews in the Holocaust.
  • Drive to the combined Jewish-Arab towns of Ma’alot-Tarshiha where Israel has tried to promote coexistence. Visit the Netiv Meir Elementary School where members of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine took over a school in 1974, taking over 100 hostages, almost all children. A total of 25 hostages were killed, including 22 children.
  • Sleep in Ma’alot-Tarshiha

Day 3: The Golan Heights and Syria

  • Drive to the Golan Heights and visit Mount Hermon. Look out on Damascus, Syria and hear from army experts how the Syrians had used the Golan to shell Israeli farmers in the Galilee before being evicted from the heights in 1967.
  • Visit various ancient synagogues which dot the Golan Heights, attesting to the historic Jewish presence in the region, and stop by Ramat Trump, a new town named after U.S. President Donald Trump.
  • Afternoon in Safed where doctors detail caring for Syrians fleeing the civil war which has killed over 500,000 people.
  • Visit the town of Capernaum, where Jesus is said to have lived, and tour a lovely intact fourth century synagogue.
  • Night in Tiberias

Ancient synagogue in the Golan
(photo: FirstOneThrough)
Day 4: Jews and Christians in the Galilee

  • Tour the various tombs of famous Jewish rabbis including Maimonides (1135-1204) and Yohanan Ben Zakkai (c. 10CE – 90CE) and learn about their persecutions and journeys to the Galilee.
  • Visit Tzippori, a Jewish city established in the first century BCE which became the center for the Sanhedrin (Jewish courts) after the destruction of the Second Jewish Temple. It was from this location that the Christian Crusaders rode out to defeat in 1187 to the Muslim sultan Saladin.
  • Visit Nazareth, the place where Jesus lived which was mostly a Christian town for many years, and now has a Muslim Arab majority.
  • Night in Tel Aviv

Day 5: Terrorism from the Oslo Accords to the Second Intifada

  • Visit the bus station where the Palestinian group Islamic Jihad detonated a bomb in 2006 which killed eleven people, and launched twin bombings in 2003 killing 23 civilians and injuring over 100.
  • Visit the popular Allenby Street where a suicide bomber from Hamas blew up a bus in 2002, killing six and injuring 70.
  • Visit the popular Dizengoff Center, where a suicide bomber blew himself up on the eve of the festive Purim holiday in 1996, killing 13 and injuring 130. Hear from experts about the wave of killings after Israel and the Palestinian Authority signed the Oslo Peace Accords in 1995.
  • Dinner near the beach, and then a visit to the shell of the Dolphinarium discotheque, where Palestinian terrorist killed 21 Israelis, 16 of them teenage girls out dancing in 2001.
  • Night in Tel Aviv

Day 6: Addressing Terrorists: Palestinians and Americans

  • Visit the site of the “Seafood Market attack” of 2002 in which two civilians and a police officer were killed in an attack by the terrorist group Tanzim. Hear from a leading expert on terrorism about the head of Tanzim, Marwan Barghouti, who led that attack as well as several others which killed a number of civilians, who is currently serving five life sentences in an Israeli prison. Learn how Barghouti is one of the most famous Palestinians today who calls for a third “intifada” and how Palestinians want him to become the next president of the Palestinian Authority (PA). Discuss how, despite his murderous past and calls for additional terrorism against civilians, the New York Times thinks Barghouti could be a Noble Peace Prize winner.
  • Visit the Tel Aviv promenade where an expert in the funding of terrorism will relay the story of Taylor Force, an American visiting Israel who was stabbed to death by a Palestinian terrorist. The U.S. Congress passed a law in his name (H.R. 1164) which de-funds the PA unless it can show that it no longer finances terror.
  • Stop by a Christian monastery near Beit Shemesh and hear the story of Neta Sorek, an Israeli feminist who worked to bring peace with Palestinian Arabs, who was murdered for being Jewish by Palestinian terrorists while she walked in the gardens.
  • Afternoon tour of Yad Vashem in Jerusalem
  • Night in Jerusalem

Day 7: Terrorism throughout Jerusalem

  • Morning tour of Shaare Zedek Hospital where Jewish and Arab doctors and patients work and are treated side-by-side. Hear the story of Dr. David Appelbaum who ran the emergency room which treats dozens of terrorist victims, and how he and his daughter were killed in a Palestinian terrorist bombing while eating at a restaurant the night before her wedding. Dr. Appelbaum had just arrived from New York the day before where he was training first responders in how to deal with mass emergencies.
  • Go to downtown Jerusalem to the former location of a Sbarro restaurant where Hamas and Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine executed a bombing in a pizza store, killing 15 people including 7 children and a pregnant woman.
  • Drive over to Hebrew University in the eastern part of the city and learn about the school which was founded in 1925 and included Albert Einstein among its founders. Hear from a school historian about how buses with professors were often shot at in the 1940’s and how Hamas blew up the cafeteria in 2002, killing 9 people including five Americans.
  • Head back to the western side of the city to a small synagogue in the Har Nof neighborhood where two Palestinian men walked into prayer services with axes and slaughtered worshipers in 2014.
  • Night in Jerusalem

Day 8: Jerusalem, America and Democracy

  • Tour the Israel Museum and the Shrine of the Book to see the Dead Sea Scrolls and learn how Judaism was practiced 2,000 years ago and about early Christianity.
  • Visit the Israeli Knesset, the parliament, to see how a democracy functions in the turbulent Middle East. Uniquely in the region, it has Jews, Muslims, Christians and Druze all serving in the parliament.
  • Tour the modern Supreme Court building and get a briefing about the most liberal country for thousands of miles in any direction.
  • Stop by Yad Kennedy, a large monument in the Jerusalem forest dedicated to the memory of U.S. President John F. Kennedy.
  • Visit the only 9/11 memorial in the Middle East which includes the names of every person killed in the terrorist attacks in America of 2001.
  • Dinner at the new American embassy in Jerusalem, which President Donald Trump moved to Israel’s capital in 2018.
  • Night in Jerusalem

Day 9: 3,000 Years of Jewish Jerusalem

  • Visit the Old City of Jerusalem, including the Western Wall (the Kotel) and the Jewish Temple Mount. Witness that only Jewish visitors need armed guards to visit their holiest site, and experience the Mourabitat women who harass Jewish pilgrims.
  • Visit the Davidson Center and the City of David which detail the 3,000-year history of Jews in their holiest site. Tour the recently uncovered “Pilgrimage Road.” Read quotes from the leaders of the Palestinian Authority which claim that Jews have no history in Jerusalem and from the United Nations which declares that Israel has no rights to the site.
  • Pray at the Hurva Synagogue, rebuilt in 2010 after the Jordanians destroyed it in 1949 right before they evicted all of the Jews from the Old City and the eastern portion of Jerusalem. Read Jordan’s 1954 Nationality Law which specifically excludes Jews from obtaining citizenship.
  • Visit the Tiferet Yisrael development site, another synagogue destroyed by the Arabs which is now being rebuilt despite loud Palestinian protest.
  • Exit the Old City and climb the tower of the YMCA to get a 360-degree view of Jerusalem. Review the expansion of the city westward towards Jaffa in the 1860’s and the demographics which have seen Jews as the majority in Jerusalem since 1869.
  • Take a bus to Bethlehem and visit The Tomb of Rachel, now under heavy guard.
  • Dinner with a political expert to review the various debates about Jerusalem.
  • Night in Jerusalem

YMCA tower in Jerusalem
(photo: FirstOneThrough)
Day 10: The Ongoing War Today

  • Get early start and head to Hevron. Read the biblical chapters of Abraham buying the cave to bury his wife, Sarah, the Jewish matriarch. Climb the steps of the Cave of the Jewish Patriarchs up to the seventh step and learn the history of the site, from the time King Herod built the current structure (minus the minarets) over the cave, to how the Arabs took over the site when they invaded in the seventh and eighth century when they brought Islam throughout the Middle East and North Africa region turning sites holy to one religion into mosques and forbidding Jews from climbing above the seventh stair of their second holiest location. Review current history of Arabs slaughtering the Jewish community in 1929 and Britain’s forced expulsion of the remaining Jewish residents of the city, and how Israel reclaimed the area in a defensive war in 1967, allowing Jews to return to the city and pray at the Cave of the Jewish Patriarchs once again. Hear how most recently, Israel handed over almost the entirety of the city to the PA except for a small sliver, as part of the Oslo Accords, and how the remaining Jews in the city must live in an armed protective zone to prevent a recurrence of the 1929 massacre.
  • Drive to Sderot on the border of Gaza. Learn about the Hamas Charter, the most antisemitic document of any ruling governmental party ever written, and how the Palestinians elected Hamas to the majority of the Palestinian parliament in 2006 with full knowledge and support of its mission statement; and how Hamas took over Gaza in 2007 precipitating the Israeli blockade in 2008, which the United Nations Palmer Report of 2011 deemed as legal and necessary. Tour the bomb shelters where Israelis only have ten seconds to hide from missiles launched by Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and hear about the wars launched from Gaza in 2008, 2012 and 2014.
  • Visit the burnt fields set afire from incendiary balloons launched by Palestinian youths over the past year.
  • Visit a Patriot Missile battery, a United States defense system, as well as Israel’s Iron Dome system whose R&D was partially funded by the U.S. Hear about how each technology works and how the United States is now purchasing the Iron Dome system for its own defenses.
  • Drive up to the Israeli city of Ashdod and visit the site where an Israeli-American was killed in 2019 by a Gazan missile.
  • Dinner in Tel Aviv before flight home.

The ZOA should probably call their trip “Let Our People UNDERSTAND.”


Related First.One.Through articles:

The Shrapnel of Intent

Israel: Security in a Small Country

The Free Speech Nickel

What do you Recognize in the Palestinians?

The Cave of the Jewish Matriarch and Arab Cultural Appropriation

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough

The Remarkable Tel Jerusalem

Archaeologists spend their time excavating and examining sites where humans lived in an effort to better understand the nature of societies from long ago. They let the physical evidence provide clues as to how people lived, what they ate and how they existed as a community.

Some of the best places to explore ancient history are found in tels, hills where one society was built upon the ruins of an earlier society. Such ruins are common in the Middle East, where there has been continuous human presence in many of the same locations for 4-5,000 years.

The issue confronting archaeologists excavating any tel is that one layer of history must be removed to be able to explore the next layer of the human past. Removing the ruins of a floor of a 13th century mosque may reveal a 5th century church, while clearing the 5th century level may reveal a municipal building from the first century BCE. History must be destroyed to find yet more ancient history. Peeling back time yields discovery via destruction.

In the holy city of Jerusalem, the challenges for archaeologists and historians becomes further ensnared in religious and political battles. Why should the ruins of a 16th century mosque be cleared to reveal an ancient Byzantine church? Why should the church be dismantled to uncover an ancient Jewish ritual bath house? Is one truth more significant than another? Does the exposure of ancient Jewish edifices impact today’s realities and political considerations? Is the destruction of an ancient house of worship in favor of another religion’s house of worship an act of historical exploration or a crusade?

The city of Jerusalem became central to the Jewish people 3,000 years ago, when King David sacked the then-Jebusite city and made it the official capital of the Jewish people in roughly 1000 BCE. His son, King Solomon, built the First Jewish Temple in the city in 950 BCE, making the city both the religious center and the political center of the people. Jews made pilgrimages to sacrifice at the temples during both the First Temple period (950 BCE – 587 BCE) and during the Second Temple period (515 BCE – 70 CE). Since the destruction of the Second Temple, Jews continued to live in and make pilgrimages to the city to pray, but without the ritual sacrifices, as Arab Muslims and Christian Crusaders took turns dominating the landscape.


City of Jerusalem during First Temple Period covered a portion of the current
Temple Mount and an area south of today’s Old City walls

Over the last several years, a team of archaeologists has been excavating an old road used by the Jewish pilgrims of two thousand-plus years ago. The “Pilgrimage Road” was one of a series of pathways that facilitated the flow of hundreds of thousands of Jews into the Jewish Temples. It’s route must have changed during the centuries as the walls of Jerusalem changed, and as archaeologists continue their excavations, undoubtedly, more facts will emerge.


The Pilgrimage Road from the Shiloach Pool to the Temple Mount, used by Jewish worshipers in the late Second Temple period, was excavated over the course of six years and unveiled by the City of David organization on June 30, 2019.
(Source: City of David.)

The road now exists as a tunnel lying beneath a predominantly Arab section of Jerusalem, called Silwan. The area was originally settled in modern times by Yemenite Jews in the 1880’s, who were then expelled when Jordan attacked Israel in 1948 and annexed the area in a measure not recognized by almost every country in the world. Just as in ancient history, the sacking and rebuilding of the city continues to play out.

But today’s Israeli archaeologists managed a new feat: they did not destroy the layers of recent history above the Pilgrim Road; they burrowed a tunnel which left the current residents of Silwan still living in their homes. As opposed to the living history of tels which builds one reality on top of another, and excavations which destroy one history to unveil another, both the ancient Jewish history and modern Arab homes coexist.

Historians celebrated the event as did the State of Israel which plans to develop the road as a tourist attraction as an important part of understanding the history of Judaism’s holiest location. Even foreign dignitaries came to the June 30 opening dedication including U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, White House Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt and United States Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC).

But Palestinian Arabs cried foul. Palestinians like PLO veteran Hanan Ashrawi said that the United States “will go to any length to show collusion, identification with and support for all these illegal acts, for the transformation of the character of Jerusalem.” A ridiculous charge which prompted Greenblatt to reply on Twitter that “we can’t ‘Judaize’ what history/archaeology show. We can acknowledge it; you can stop pretending it isn’t true! Peace can only be built on truth.

Traditionally, archaeologists need to destroy one layer of history to reveal the more ancient, but in Jerusalem today, the Israelis managed to uncover a 2,000-year old road used by pilgrims to ascend to the Jewish Temple Mount, while leaving the homes of modern day Arabs and Jews intact. It is a feat which sustains all truths, and underscores both the deep historic and religious ties of the Jewish people to their holiest city, while also respecting the modern sensitivities and political realities of the diverse modern capital city.


Related First.One.Through articles:

The Jews of Jerusalem In Situ

Gimme that Old-Time Religion

The Cave of the Jewish Matriarch and Arab Cultural Appropriation

Squeezing Zionism

Tolerance at the Temple Mount

The New York Times will Keep on Telling You: Jews are not Native to Israel

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough