While the UNSC Debates Israel-or-Hamas Regarding Gaza, Gazans Debate Whether to Stay-or-Go

On May 30, 2018, US Ambassador to the United Nations placed most of the blame for the latest violence and terrible living conditions in Gaza on the de facto ruling party there, the terrorist group Hamas. Haley stated:

“The Palestinian people of Gaza are facing desperate humanitarian hardships. We want to help address their needs. We support Special Coordinator Mladenov’s engagement to restart initiatives that could improve conditions in Gaza…. The Palestinian people deserve a better life. That can only happen if we acknowledge and reject the terrorist actions of Hamas and if we encourage more responsible Palestinian leadership.”

Haley continued to comment at the UN Security Council against the biased narrative that the problems in the region stem from Israel. She declared that the primary problem was Hamas.

Is Haley correct that Palestinians truly want to live in peace with Israel, and it is just the ruling terrorist party that foments violence in an attempt to destroy the Jewish State?

Palestinian Poll

The Palestinian Arabs poll themselves every quarter. The public opinion poll #67 was published on April 1, 2018, with interesting findings about Palestinians’ views of Israel, the peace process, Hamas and the leader of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

  1. Israel is a leading democracy. Remarkably, Palestinians are incredibly impressed with the democratic institutions that they see in Israel. When voting on “good” democracies, Turkey garnered a 64% approval; Israel 57%; France 55%; Palestinian Authority 23%; and Egypt 10%.
  2. No real desire for Peace. Despite considering Israel as a leading democracy, Palestinians are not particularly interested in peace with the Jewish State. 48% want a return to an armed intifada. 50% oppose a two-state solution. 52% want to cancel recognition of Israel and a suspension of the Oslo Accords. 63% of Palestinians oppose the idea of allowing any Jew to live in a future Palestinian state as either a citizen or resident.
  3. The Arab world has moved on from Palestinian Cause. Because of the “Arab Spring” upending countries in the region and the emergence of a Sunni-versus-Iran regional confrontation, 74% of Palestinians believe that the Palestinian cause is no longer a primary concern in the Arab world.
  4. Hatred for Abbas. 68% of Palestinians want Abbas to resign, not much of a change from the 70% that wanted him to resign in December 2017. If Abbas ran against the leader of Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, in presidential elections he would lose, just as he would have lost in every poll conducted over the past several years.
  5. Done with the US. 88% of Palestinian Arabs believe that the US is biased towards Israel and 65% oppose resuming any talks with the US administration.
  6. Expectations for peace. Only 9% of Palestinians believe that there will be peace in 10, 25 or even 100 years.
  7. Time to move. A growing percentage of Gazans want to immigrate to other countries, now at 45% of the population, up from 41% in December 2017. The percentage is only 19% for Arabs in the West Bank.

According to the polls, Palestinians are indeed fed up with their leadership, but more with Abbas than Hamas. That sentiment is more pronounced in Gaza (81%) than the West Bank (62%).

So when Haley calls out for encouraging “more responsible Palestinian leadership,” the answer must be a COMPLETE overhaul of the Palestinian leadership including the current acting-president Abbas and the ruling government in Gaza, Hamas. In the current configuration, no relief will come to Gaza and no peace between the Israelis and Palestinian Arabs.

At the UN Security Council, the US is debating the rest of the council in a Hamas-versus-Israel narrative as it relates to Gaza. But in Gaza, the conclusions are in: they are fed up. They hate Abbas even more than Hamas and have no interest in coexistence with Jews or the Jewish State. For Gazans, the debate is only whether to stay or to go.


Gazans attempt a “reverse flotilla” to leave Gaza and break
the Israeli navy blockade on May 30, 2018 (photo: Associated Press)


Related First.One.Through articles:

An Inconvenient Truth: Palestinian Polls

What do you Recognize in the Palestinians?

Nikki Haley Channels Robert Aumann at the UN Security Council

Nikki Haley Will Not Equivocate on the Ecosystem of Violence

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The UN Must Pay to Repair the Gaza Fence

The United Nations has long encouraged a deeply flawed directive which stands against global international law, that descendants of Palestinian Arabs who left homes in 1948 have a right to move back to such houses inside Israel.

In addition to that particular Palestinian-only ruling, the UN created a unique definition for a “refugee” as it relates to Palestinian Arabs, coupled with a unique refugee agency, UNRWA, distinct from the global refugee agency. These convoluted UN initiatives have encouraged the Palestinian Arabs to view the borders of Israel as permeable, as mere temporary and arbitrary lines with no meaning. The UN has educated generations of these Stateless Arabs from Palestine (SAPs) that with the help of the United Nations, they will all move into Israel.


Key on top of UNRWA camp in Bethlehem,
encouraging the “Right of Return” for Palestinian Arabs

Together with the incitement of their leaders from the terrorist group Hamas, Gazans have taken the next small step to view the border fence with Israel as not just irrelevant, but completely illegitimate.

It is therefore no surprise that Gazans attacked the border fence with Israel in their “Great March of Return” during the spring of 2018. The Palestinian Arabs have been given tacit approval of such actions for decades by the United Nations.

It is therefore highly appropriate that the United Nations take active steps to correct the violation of Israel’s sovereignty which the UN itself implicitly inspired.

The UN must contribute funds to Israel’s repair of its border fence with Gaza. It must make clear to the people of Gaza and around the world that Israel’s borders are inviolable and no threat to the country will be tolerated.

Unless it really believes otherwise.


Related First.One.Through articles:

Delivery of the Fictional Palestinian Keys

The “Great Myth of Return”

Removing the Next Issue – The Return of 20,000 Palestinian Arabs

Stabbing the Palestinian “Right of Return”

UNRWA Is Not Just Making “Refugees,” It’s Creating Palestinians

UNRWA’s Ongoing War against Israel and Jews

Help Refugees: Shut the UNRWA, Fund the UNHCR

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Thomas Friedman is a Peddler of Racist Fiction and Adolescent Fantasy

Thomas Friedman, the three-time Pulitzer Prize winner for Middle East reporting seems to never be shy at demonstrating his complete ignorance, his willful naivete, and racist views on the region.
Friedman wrote an op-ed on May 22, 2018 that he “appreciate[s] the Gazans’ sense of injustice. Why should they pay with their ancestral homes for Jewish refugees who lost theirs in Germany or Iraq?” I am perhaps slightly glad he laid out that the basis for his sympathies was on a completely flawed view of reality.

Complete Ignorance

The international community made a declaration that the Jewish state should be reestablished in the Jewish holy land decades before the Holocaust. The San Remo Conference in 1920 and the Mandate of Palestine of 1922 made it clear in international law that the Jews had a long history throughout the holy land, not just in the western part of the holy land.
More specifically, to correct Freidman:
1. Jews came back to reestablish themselves in their holy land. They did not come as interlopers into someone else’s homes.
2. The movement of Jews to Palestine was established in international law. This was not a Jewish invasion or act of Britain alone.
3. The international laws were passed decades before World War II and the Holocaust. Israel was not created as a reaction to the Holocaust.
4. Jews did not seek to evict Arabs. It was the Arabs that went to war with the Jews to keep them from moving back into their Jewish holy land. The state of Israel welcomed all Arabs to become citizens of the state and help in its development. The 160,000 that stayed (18% of the population in 1948) have grown to 25% of the population in 2017. The Arabs that left in 1948 went to war to destroy Israel and continue to threaten it generations later.

5. The Jews that left homes in Germany and Iraq were hunted and persecuted by their governments. The Arabs that left homes in Israel were those that opted to launch a civil war to destroy a new country at its rebirth.

6. More Arabs than Jews moved to Palestine under the British between 1924 and 1948. Why deceptively call out Arabs’ “ancestral homes?” Because the New York Times wants to constantly pretend that Jews are not native to Israel, only Arabs are?

Friedman inverted plain facts. He proclaimed his sympathies with the Palestinians on the basis of lies.
Further, his prescription for a solution was packed with both falsehoods and racist ideas.

Willful Naivete

7. Hamas is not just “the Palestinian Islamist organization that rules the Gaza Strip.” It is recognized as a terrorist group by the US, Israel and many countries. And it was voted into a majority of parliament by Palestinians with full knowledge of these facts including having the most anti-Semitic charter in the world.

8. To state that Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority is “secular, more moderate” than Hamas is to compare the fifth and ninth rings of Hell. Abbas is way more radical and extreme than Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (who Friedman paints as being just like Hamas). Abbas is a Holocaust denier, denies the history of Jews in the holy land, calls for a country to be Jew-free, has laws that call for the death sentence for any Arab selling land to a Jew, pays for people to kill Israeli Jews, and names tournaments and squares after terrorists. How does this man and the PA remotely resemble anything moderate?

Racist Views

Friedman added to his fiction with jaundiced views about Jews and Arabs.

9. Why is Gaza Israel’s responsibility? Israel left the region in 2005 for the local Palestinian Arabs to rule themselves (for the first time in their history). Is the US responsible for Mexico’s welfare? Why isn’t Egypt called upon to handle the derelict region at its border? Does Friedman believe that Jews are uniquely responsible for neighbors?

10. “Two states for two people” as Friedman suggests means either that Jews can become a minority in Palestine the same way that Arabs are a minority in Israel, or it means that each country must be “pure.” Is Friedman suggesting that Israel expel its 2 million Arabs or is he suggesting 1.5 states for Arabs and 0.5 for Jews because Jews should be banned from the eastern part of the holy land, but not the Arabs in Israel? Either way, it sounds pretty racist to either expel non-Jews or ban Jews.

Fantasy

Friedman has not internalized that the Palestinians are no closer to welcoming their Jewish neighbors today than they were 100 years ago. He posits that the most antisemitic people should approach the border “with an olive branch in one hand and a sign in Hebrew and Arabic in the other, saying, “Two states for two peoples: We, the Palestinian people of Gaza, want to sign a peace treaty with the Jewish people — a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders, with mutually agreed adjustments.” What a moron.
Maybe the US special forces should have shown up at Osama bin Laden’s house with girl scout cookies and asked him nicely to stop killing thousands of people. Maybe he could propose that the Bashar al-Assad, the president of Syria should drop cotton candy on his people rather than chemical weapons. Friedman’s recommendations could have been written by a second grader with no comprehension of the world.

But Friedman knows the facts. He deliberately lifted from the deceased former leader of the PLO Yasser Arafat’s (fungus be upon him) 1974 speech at the United Nations: “I come to you bearing an olive branch in one hand and a freedom fighter’s gun in the other. Do not let the olive branch fall from my hand.” Friedman chose to ignore the plain and consistent fact that the Palestinians have chosen violence over coexistence with the Jewish State as he put forward a non-solution that fails to address the situation.

Perhaps Friedman’s fourth Pulitzer will be for young adult fiction.

Related First.One.Through articles:

On Killing Terrorists

I have been asked how I feel about killing terrorists in one word. One word. A mark of society’s attention span. Even bumper stickers use more ink.

It is not simple to break down my feelings into a single word.

On one hand, I believe that every life is precious. Such sentiment would lead me to conclude that the right word would be “sad.” Sad that a human life will be extinguished.

But I cannot ignore that the targeted human being in question is a terrorist.

Palestinian terrorists carry the body of Mohammed Obied of Hamas in the central Gaza Strip on June 30, 2014 (photo credit: Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90)
A terrorist is not just someone that probably has killed and injured people in the past so their death may be viewed as a just punishment. A terrorist is someone that will likely kill again in the future. The end of such a threat would lead me to conclude that the right word is “relieved.”

I would much rather this human being not be a terrorist than wish him dead. But if this person is set on his ways, readied to harm civilians and committed to a path of death and destruction, and there is no way to stop him from his actions, well, then, maybe I do have a word.

It’s “Okay.”


Related First.One.Through articles:

Double Standards: Assassinations

Alternatives for Punishing Dead Terrorists

The Death of Civilians; the Three Shades of Sorrow

The Proud Fathers of Palestinian Terrorists

Flip-Flopping on the Felling of Terrorist Groups’ Founders

The New York Times wants the military to defeat terrorists (but not Hamas)

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Israel’s Kite Business Gets a Second Wind

A satire.

 

Duvi sat at his desk bored.

He looked past the fidgit spinner in his hand to a virtually empty production facility. Only two people moved about the large kite manufacturing assembly line that once handled 20 people. He let a long breath escape his mouth as he looked down at the fidgit spinner. He pondered whether it would be better to spin it counter-clockwise rather than clockwise as an Israeli that read from right-to-left.

The phone rang. The sound washed out every noise in the warehouse.

Alo,” Duvi whispered into the phone, with a voice dry and crackled as he hadn’t spoken in almost an hour. One of the two workers turned to listen to him.

What?! Be’emet?! (truly?)” he called out to the world as much as to the person on the other end of the conversation. He smacked his forehead and broke into a grin “Sababa! Thank you so much!” and hung up.

Hudi, you will not believe it! We are back in business!” Call Moishe and Rachel to get over here,” Duvi called out as he sprang from his desk.

What is it, what’s going on,” Hudi asked. “Who was that on the phone?

The Minister of Defense,” he said proudly. “The Israeli army just ordered 10,000 kites. It would seem that our government has been ordered to use ‘proportionate action’ against the Gazans so needs an arsenal of kites to counter Hamas’s petrol kites.

Well, we cannot use our standard kites then,” Hudi considered. “We will need to strengthen the wires to support the added weight. It’ll also need a proper basket to carry the gasoline.

The other worker Sara heard what was going on and chimed in. “We need to build something other than a basket as the lit fire would ignite the kite.” Sara pulled out a piece of paper and began to design a fire-bombing kite that would be both flight-worthy and effective.

Duvi grabbed the phone and began to dial, speaking to both Hudi and Sara. “I will call Izik to provide the latest fiber technology and Omri has an amazing lighter and stronger replacement material for nylon. The stronger and lighter materials will compensate for the weight of the gasoline.

Within ten minutes they had designed and placed orders for materials for a newly designed kite that incorporated some artificial intelligence that would help the kite fly itself in high winds. It was brilliant.

They looked at each other and did a group hug. Sara smiled and noted “You know that the air force is going to claim they own the patent on this now,” and they all laughed.

Hudi asked, “Should we decorate the kite? Hamas is sending over their kites into Israel with swastikas, apparently the group with whom they most relate. What should we use?

Do you think they use Nazi propaganda because they think like Nazis or because they believe that we will become more scared of them because of the Nazi imagery?” asked Duvi.

Probably both,” answered Sara.

Then let’s continue the measure-for-measure against them,” Hudi said defiantly. “Let them see the images of the people that will bring their destruction. Let’s use mirrors so that they see themselves.”


Gazan prepare their fire-bombing kites for Israel, 2018

The phone rang again. They smiled too soon.

Alo!” Duvi answered loudly. “What?! No, no, no. We’re all done. It’s brilliant!” he protested. “The world has never seen a kite like ours.” He shook his head and listened some more. “I’m sure. Yes, I get it. OK. bye.

Duvi turned to Sara and Hudi and said “We have to hold off on building these. It seems that the special United Nations representative for the Palestinians has demanded that we cannot use Israeli ingenuity in defending ourselves either. We have to use the exact same armaments as the Palestinians use. A Norwegian NGO is now dropping off kites and slingshots for the IDF and monitoring the border to ensure no sophisticated weaponry is used against the Gazans.

Sara slumped in a chair. Hudi was more defiant. “Will they also drop off knives and butcher cleavers for us to stab Arabs in mosques as they pray? Who are these morons?

Duvi tried to console her. “Stop. They are not morons. They are ‘progressives’ that have the luxury of living in a peaceful environment. We are the morons for listening to them.”

Sara whimpered “Maybe we can send our new kites to Gaza for Hamas to use?

Duvi grabbed the fidgit spinner that had fallen to the floor. He bit into it to see if it was real.


Related First.One.Through article:

Fun With Cause-and-Effect: Gaza Border Protests

Charlie Hebdo Will No Longer Sell Magazines to 20 Islamic Terrorist Groups

Netanyahu’s Doctoral Thesis on the Nakba

Silwan Circulars, Christmas 2014

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The “Great Myth of Return”

The Palestinian Arabs are engaged in a “protest” at the Gaza border with Israel to draw attention to their “Right of Return” to land in Israel. Pro-Palestinian organizations like Al Jazeera (Qatar) and Press TV (Iran) have produced videos related to the Arabs’ rights. The use of animation and live interviews however do nothing to educate people with actual facts, and how the claim of a Palestinian “Great March of Return” is a sham.

Global International Law

The United Nations developed a Universal Declaration of Human Rights that underscored the basic human rights that all people in the world possess. The UDHR states clearly in Article 13 that:

“1. Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the
borders of each State.
2. Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to
return to his country.”

Note that the relevant clause is that a person is entitled to leave his COUNTRY and then return to that country. For Jews, that means that the remaining survivors of the 850,000 people that were kicked out of Arab countries including Iraq, Egypt, Libya and Morocco have the basic human right to return to that country, should they so desire. However, the Stateless Arabs of Palestine (SAPs) have no such right, as Palestine was never a country but an administered region from 1924 to 1948.

The principle of returning to a house, land or town is not based on universal standards, but found in a niche resolution to address the SAPs several decades ago.

Specialized Resolution for Palestinian Arabs also Fail

On December 11, 1948, the United Nations General Assembly passed Resolution 194 in the middle of Israel’s War of Independence. Article 11 stated:

“Resolves that the refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the Governments or authorities responsible;”

This is the clause that the Palestinian narrative continues to call out, but it fails in many regards:

  • There are fewer than 30,000 “refugees” from 1948 are alive today. The millions of descendants that claim a right to return have no such claim as they are not refugees;
  • The actions of the Palestinians have clearly shown that they have no desire to “live at peace with their neighbors,” as evidenced by the many wars and terrorism waged against Israel, the election of a Holocaust denier to the presidency that pays people to kill Israeli Jews, and the election of the terrorist group Hamas to a majority of the Palestinian parliament

Further consider that the same UNGA Res 194 made other statements that the Palestinian Authority rejects, such as Articles 7 and 8:

“detailed proposals for a permanent international regime for the territory of Jerusalem…”

“Resolves that, in view of its association with three world religions, the Jerusalem area, including the present municipality of Jerusalem plus the surrounding villages and towns, the most eastern of which shall be Abu Dis; the most southern, Bethlehem; the most western, Ein Karim (including also the built-up area of Motsa); and the most northern, Shu’fat, should be accorded special and separate treatment from the rest of Palestine and should be placed under effective United Nations control;”

The Palestinians are seeking to turn eastern Jerusalem into its own capital, not a permanent UN town. The PA claims that it already has control of part of this Corpus Separatum – Bethlehem – which they took over in December 1995. Are the Palestinians going to abandon Bethlehem and scheme for eastern Jerusalem, or will they just cherry-pick from UN 194 to validate an invasion of Israel?


The UN’s Corpus Separatum from UN Resolution 181

One could possibly argue that around 30,000 SAPs over 70 years old who are interested in moving to Israel and living in peace should be allowed to do so, but the Friday protests at the Gaza border are full of young people. These people have no legal rights to move to Israel and their actions at the border constitute a threat of invasion and must be addressed on such basis. And if the PA acting president Mahmoud Abbas wants to quote UN Resolution 181 (which the entire Arab world rejected in 1947) and UN Resolution 194, he should be prepared to relinquish Bethlehem and dreams of eastern Jerusalem.

Palestinian Arabs’ “Great March of Return” is nothing more than the “Great MYTH of Return.”


Related First.One.Through articles:

Corpus Separatum Ended Forever in 1995

Stabbing the Palestinian “Right of Return”

Time to Dissolve Key Principles of the “Inalienable Rights of Palestinians”

Removing the Next Issue – The Return of 20,000 Palestinian Arabs

Losing Rights

Delivery of the Fictional Palestinian Keys

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Every Picture Tells a Story: No Need for #MeToo for Palestinians

The “Every Picture” series describes the use of photographs in newspapers to relay a particular narrative. For papers like the New York Times, the pictures are usually used to show Israelis as attackers and Palestinians as victims. On March 9, 2018, it opted to show the Palestinians as liberated liberals and the rest of the world as trapped in the misogyny of the patriarchy.

International Women’s Day was held on March 8, 2018. The liberal New York paper chose to write about the day’s activities as a combination of a celebration and the protest of the #MeToo movement in which women came forward to describe gender-based assaults.

In the article called “Beyond #MeToo: Pride, Protests and Pressure,” the paper chose to publish four pictures from around the world.

New York Times full page article on March 9, 2018
about International Women’s Day

The large picture on top of the page was one of protest, taken in Milan, Italy of women protesting violence. The next two pictures were much smaller and showed a memorial in Mexico dedicated to murdered women, and women taking part in a taekwondo ceremony in Kenya.

The picture of peace and happiness was reserved for Gaza in a large photograph at the bottom of the page. In the photo, a young girl rode on her horse in sheer delight, as an older man escorted her on her jaunt. The message was clear: you see what the Gazans can do on their own if Israelis were not blockading and bombarding them? They are enlightened and celebrate women.

Has the Times ever covered the fact that women in Gaza are subject to more honor killings per capita than any place in the world? Never.

Did it ever discuss the Palestinian law (inherited from the Jordanians) that gave men who killed their spouses a reduced sentence for such horrible murders. No. (The law is actually being reviewed to be overturned. Then it will probably get some air as it will make them look modern.)

Has the paper discussed the many restrictions placed on women by the ruling authority Hamas, such as veil coverings in public, banning men from cutting women’s hair, preventing women from running in marathons, etc,? No.

You see, the ills of the world and the plague of the patriarchy are found everywhere except in Gaza. That is the message of the alt-left publication. To think of Hamas and Gazans as genocidal, anti-Semitic, misogynistic terrorists is the height of Islamophobia.

Didn’t you see the picture of the happy Palestinian girl on the pony?


Related First.One.Through articles:

Every Picture Tells a Story- Whitewashing the World (except Israel)

Every Picture Tells a Story: The Invisible Murdered Israelis

Every Picture Tells a Story: The Invisible Killed Terrorists

Every Picture Tells a Story: Arab Injuries over Jewish Deaths

Every Picture Tells A Story: Only Palestinians are Victims

Every Picture Tells a Story: Goodbye Peres

Every Picture Tells a Story, the Bibi Monster

Every Picture Tells a Story, Don’t It?

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The Gulf Between the Views of Nikki Haley and The New York Times on Hamas

The US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley spoke to the United Nations Security Council on June 20, 2017. Her comments about the Palestinian group Hamas could not have been more clear about what the organization represents and how it should be treated on the world stage:

The United States reiterates its commitment to stand with Israel against these forces of terror.

Hamas is one of these forces of terror that yet again showed its true colors to the world earlier this month. It is a terrorist organization so ruthless that it will not hesitate to put the lives of innocent children on the line….

Make no mistake, Israel did not cause the problems in Gaza… we should never forget the responsibility for this humanitarian crisis rests squarely with the one group that actually controls Gaza: Hamas….

Hamas remains a terrorist organization bent on Israel’s destruction. Its goal is to defeat Israel by force. It will use all the resources it can to continue the fight.

This Security Council must stand up to condemn Hamas’ terror. Hamas represents yet another regional threat that this Council far too often ignores. While UN agencies and Member States dissect Israel’s actions, few speak out against the terror that Hamas continues to plot. Some Member States of this organization even maintain ties to Hamas and other terrorist groups that flourish in Gaza.

The Security Council must unite to say that enough is enough. We need to pressure Hamas to end its tyranny over the people of Gaza. We should condemn Hamas in this Council’s resolutions and statements. We should name Hamas as the group responsible when rockets are fired from Gaza, or when fresh tunnels are discovered. And we should designate Hamas as a terrorist organization in a resolution, with consequences for anyone who continues to support it.

Haley’s words are a sharp turn from the approach seen at the United Nations about Israel and Hamas. The past UN Security General Ban Ki Moon never said that he stood with Israel against terror, while stating that he stood with Gaza in the fields where Hamas fired rockets upon Israel. Ban Ki Moon repeatedly tried to fold Hamas into the Palestinian Authority unity government.

His actions and statements were appalling. And they were echoed in liberal media.

Both CNN and The New York Times have continued to go out of their way to avoid calling Hamas a terrorist organization in article after article. Most recently, in an article about Qatar written on June 24, 2017, the Times wrote:

“Qatar has opened its doors to the Muslim Brotherhood, which Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates consider a terrorist organization; to members of Hamas, the Palestinian militant group; and to the Afghan Taliban.”

Hamas is not simply a “militant” group, and it is certainly not “the” militant group of the Palestinians, as if there were only a single one. It is a designated terrorist group by many countries, just as the Muslim Brotherhood is labeled as such. Even more, it is one of several Palestinian groups that the United States labels a Foreign Terrorist Organization, including: Palestine Liberation Front (PLF); Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ); Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLF); PFLP-General Command (PFLP-GC); and Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AAMB).

During the course of the 2016 US presidential debate there was an argument put forth that labeling and understand a threat was essential to combating it.

Nikki Haley has taken that argument head on. She has clearly articulated the problem of the terrorist group Hamas for both Israel and the people of Gaza and has directed the United Nations to take specific actions against such organization.

It is a long overdue and welcome change that will hopefully lead to peace in the region.


New York Times article on Qatar June 24, 2017


Related First.One.Through articles:

Differentiating Hamas into Political and Military Movements

The New York Times wants to defeat Terrorists (just not Hamas)

Cause and Effect: Making Gaza  

The United Nations Once Again “Encourages” Hamas

Why the Media Ignores Jihadists in Israel

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

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Is Hillary Clinton as Pro-Israel as George W Bush?

Pro-Israel Democrats have loudly proclaimed that their candidate, Hillary Clinton, is a strong supporter of Israel. They have even stated that her pro-Israel positions are really not that dissimilar to the Republican President George W. Bush.

Really?

“Settlements” and Berating Israel

A new batch of emails from Hillary Clinton when she was Secretary of State reveals some of her positions related to Israel and her approach to dealing with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Consider the email exchange between Hillary Clinton and Sandy Berger on September 19 & 22, 2009.

“ironically, his [Netanyahu’s] intransigence over 67 borders may offer us [the Clinton’s State Department] that possibility – to turn his position against him… Sending [Middle East Peace Envoy George] Mitchell back to try to get the parties to agree on a common basis to relaunch negotiations. This includes: an end to the occupation that began in 1967. –– This 67 formulation was used in the Road Map, by Bush, Sharon and Olmert. Assuming Bibi will accept no formulation that includes 67 borders, it suggests that Bibi is the obstacle to progress and backtracking on his part on an issue that previous Israeli governments have accepted.”

The Clinton/Berger plot was clearly to undermine Netanyahu to punish him for disagreeing to set the borders that existed in 1967 as the permanent borders. They viewed those borders as concessions that had been previously agreed to.

sandy-berger-and-hillary-clinton
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and National Security Advisor Sandy Berger, 2009

But look at what President George W. Bush and the US Congress actually stated five years earlier on June 23, 2004.

“Whereas in the April 14, 2004, letter the President stated that in light of new realities on the ground in Israel, including already existing major Israeli population centers, it is unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final status negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians will be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949, but realistic to expect that any final status agreement will only be achieved on the basis of mutually agreed changes that reflect these realities;”

This House of Representatives motion, H. Con.Res 460, was passed in a landslide roll call vote 407-9.

Note that Bush clearly stated the opposite of what Clinton and Berger contended: prior agreements and assurances that the borders would NOT be along the Green Line which existed until 1967.

Further, the April letter from Bush to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon underscored that the pathway to peace and a two-state future was the cessation of all Palestinian incitement to, and acts of violence.

The United States appreciates the risks such an undertaking [Israeli withdrawal from Gaza] represents. I [President George W Bush] therefore want to reassure you on several points.

First, the United States remains committed to my vision and to its implementation as described in the roadmap. The United States will do its utmost to prevent any attempt by anyone to impose any other plan. Under the roadmap, Palestinians must undertake an immediate cessation of armed activity and all acts of violence against Israelis anywhere, and all official Palestinian institutions must end incitement against Israel. The Palestinian leadership must act decisively against terror, including sustained, targeted, and effective operations to stop terrorism and dismantle terrorist capabilities and infrastructure. Palestinians must undertake a comprehensive and fundamental political reform that includes a strong parliamentary democracy and an empowered prime minister.

Second, there will be no security for Israelis or Palestinians until they and all states, in the region and beyond, join together to fight terrorism and dismantle terrorist organizations. The United States reiterates its steadfast commitment to Israel’s security, including secure, defensible borders, and to preserve and strengthen Israel’s capability to deter and defend itself, by itself, against any threat or possible combination of threats.

Third, Israel will retain its right to defend itself against terrorism, including to take actions against terrorist organizations. The United States will lead efforts, working together with Jordan, Egypt, and others in the international community, to build the capacity and will of Palestinian institutions to fight terrorism, dismantle terrorist organizations, and prevent the areas from which Israel has withdrawn from posing a threat that would have to be addressed by any other means. The United States understands that after Israel withdraws from Gaza and/or parts of the West Bank, and pending agreements on other arrangements, existing arrangements regarding control of airspace, territorial waters, and land passages of the West Bank and Gaza will continue. The United States is strongly committed to Israel’s security and well-being as a Jewish state. It seems clear that an agreed, just, fair, and realistic framework for a solution to the Palestinian refugee issue as part of any final status agreement will need to be found through the establishment of a Palestinian state, and the settling of Palestinian refugees there, rather than in Israel. “

Bush focused on the cessation of Palestinian Arab terrorism and incitement, as he underscored that Israel would NOT return to the 1967 borders.

What happened between the 2004 Bush/Sharon letter and the 2009 Clinton/Berger email?

  • In 2005, Israel withdrew every Israeli civilian and soldier from Gaza
  • In 2006, Hamas, the anti-Semitic terrorist group sworn to Israel’s destruction swept legislative elections, gaining 58% of the seats in the Palestinian Authority
  • In 2007, Hamas routed the competing political party Fatah, and seized total control of Gaza
  • In 2008/9, Israel launched Operation Cast Lead to stop the incessant missile fire into Israel from Gaza
  • And in September 2009, as Clinton and Berger exchanged emails, the United Nations was preparing to release the Goldstone Report, a 452-page report where the world body would demonize Israel for committing war crimes in Operation Cast Lead

It was in that environment, where Israel was feeling the condemnation of the world, that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sought to add fuel to the fire by berating Benjamin Netanyahu as an “obstacle to progress.” Not a single criticism of Palestinian Arab terror, which WAS the focus of the assurances between the US and Israel.

At best, pro-Israel Clinton supporters may claim that she was simply following the direction of President Barack Obama to rewrite facts and history in the hope that no one would notice.

Democrats can claim that there was no malice in rewriting the long-standing Democratic platform in 2012, removing the historic clause that had been the party’s approach for years, “All understand that it is unrealistic to expect the outcome of final status negotiations to be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949.”  The entire language that was lifted verbatim from the 2004 Bush/Sharon letter was deleted in its entirety. It was as if it never existed.

Democrats comfortably pretend that Israel moved to the right, rather than the party’s positions that moved counter to facts and history, because they BELIEVE their cause to be just. They believe that the settlements are the primary obstacle to peace because they get terrible advice from left-wing groups like J Street that claim to be pro-Israel and pro-peace. (J Street just released a foolish video making fun of Donald Trump’s ties to the settlements, in time for the elections.)

The reality, is that the Democratic party under Obama’s leadership moved sharply away from Israel and the truth.  And Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State followed that caustic approach to attack Israel while it was vulnerable on the world stage.


Related First.One.Through articles:

J Street: Going Bigger and Bolder than BDS

An Open Letter to Non-Anti-Semitic Sanders Supporters

The United States Joins the Silent Chorus

The Invisible Anti-Semitism in Obama’s 2016 State of the Union

On Accepting Invitations, Part 2

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The UN’s Ban Ki Moon Ignores Civilians Killed by the US and KSA

There are no shortages of wars in the Middle East; just a selective application of sympathy and condemnation.

US-Syria July 2016

On July 20, 2016, U.S.-led forces killed dozens of civilians, including children who were in their homes.  That strike brought the total Syrian civilians killed by U.S.-led forces to over 100 people in July.

The story was barely covered in mainstream media like the New York Times, where one would have to dig inside the paper for reports of the killings.  The liberal paper continued to protect its liberal president, especially as his former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton campaigned to become the next U.S. president.

The United Nations, whose headquarters is hosted in the United States, also remained almost completely silent on the mass murder of civilians.

The United Nations Secretary General (UNSG) Ban Ki-Moon did not utter a word.

Instead, his deputy spokesman, Farhan Haq, spoke about the civilian deaths in passing, the middle of various other reports.  He never mentioned that the killings were committed by U.S.-led forces.

The approach of the UN could not be more different than its approach to Israel two summers earlier.

Israel – Gaza July 2014

On July 22, 2014, the UNSG flew into Ramallah where he reported to the United Nations Security Council.  While he condemned Hamas’s firing of rockets into Israel, he only spoke of Palestinian Arab civilians who were impacted by the fighting:

I have also discussed Israel’s legitimate security concerns with Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ya’alon, and I am going to continue my meetings with President Peres as well as other Ministers.

I once again strongly condemn the indiscriminate rocket fire launched by Hamas and Islamic Jihad from Gaza into Israel. I am also alarmed by Israel’s heavy response and the corresponding high civilian death toll.

Since this Council was briefed on Sunday the violence has reached even more alarming levels.

Yet again, too many civilians, including many children, are paying the price for this latest escalation

I want to stress how deeply proud I am of our many UN colleagues, with UNRWA in the lead, courageously assisting the people of Gaza under such difficult circumstances.

They are providing crucial relief and shelter to civilians in imminent danger. The escalation of violence is now acutely affecting UNRWA’s regular operations.

A total of 23 UNRWA installations are closed as a result of the conflict. A total of 77 UNRWA installations have been damaged since 1 June as a result of the conflict.

The premises have been used to store weapons. This is unacceptable.

Today, about 100,000 people – more than 5 percent of the population of Gaza – are seeking shelter with UNRWA.

In the past, our premises in Southern Lebanon and Gaza have been hit with serious loss of life. I call on Israel to exercise particular care to avoid another unfortunate incident….

This is the third time as Secretary-General that I have had to come on an emergency mission to the region to help end a crisis.

That means the children of Gaza are now living through the third major assault in the last five years of their young lives.

The horror and upheaval is beyond imagination.

The cycle of suffering must end.

The parties must seize the opportunity to not only renew a ceasefire but also support durable political, security, institutional and socioeconomic progress that stabilizes Gaza.”

Ban Ki-Moon never recognized that almost 80% of Israelis were being fired upon by Hamas rockets. He did not recognize the Israeli civilians hiding in shelters.  He did not remember the children of Israel “living through the third major assault in the last five years of their young lives,” but only the Palestinian Arabs. He did not seek global support for the security and stability of Israel.

Why is the UNSG’s so deeply engaged on behalf of Palestinian Arabs?  Why does Ban Ki Moon continue to call out Israelis?  In comparison, why doesn’t he even mention the United States’ killing of 100 civilians?

UNRWA and Money

As detailed in “The United Nations’ Adoption of Palestinians, Enables it to Only Find Fault with Israel,” the UN has a unique relationship with Palestinian Arabs.  The UN has become the guardians to these stateless Arab wards. As the UN has set up unique institutions just for this group of Arabs, the UN is put in the position of always defending them.

The UN shelters and protects the Palestinian Arabs, so attacks on them result in attacks on the UN.  The voices that the UN hears each day are of Palestinian Arabs, not Israelis.  As such, The UN Can’t Support Israel’s Fight on Terrorism since it Considers Israel the Terrorists.

This is in sharp contrast to every other conflict in the world, where the UN can act as an unbiased neutral party.

The comparison becomes more dramatic when the UNSG deals with permanent members of the UN Security Council, or other countries where the UN seeks to gain influence and money.  Such as Saudi Arabia.

On June 9, 2016, the UNSG made a rare public admission that he dropped listing the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) as a country that has killed many civilians, during KSA’s airstrikes in Yemen.  In defending his removal of KSA, Ban Ki-Moon saidI also had to consider the very real prospect that millions of other children would suffer grievously if, as was suggested to me, countries would de-fund many U.N. programs.

In other words, the UN is not an arbiter of right-and-wrong. It is a political beast that must move towards money and power.

ban ki moon2
UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon

US and Afghanistan, The Obama War

To further underscore the point, the United Nations reported on the state of war in Afghanistan on July 25, 2016. The first half of 2016 saw the greatest number of civilian casualties – including 1,509 children – since US President Obama took office in January 2009. The total number of civilian casualties since 2009 stood at 63,934, a number that the report claimed was very conservative.

The US-led war broke apart a country.  The US’s pro-government forces were responsible for 40% of the civilian casualties – and growing.  The first six months of 2016 saw a startling increase of 47% more civilian casualties from pro-government forces, even while casualties from the anti-government forces saw a decline.

But the UN report never called out the United States publicly.  It never suggested that the US attacked civilians intentionally, as the UN does for Israel.  Just consider this language from the report:

“While noting international military forces’ efforts to minimize civilian casualties during aerial operations, UNAMA encourages the NATO/Resolute Support to increase the level of transparency during investigations into civilian casualties and provide adequate and timely redress for civilians impacted by their operations.

Did the UN ever highlight the phone calls, leaflets dropped, “knock on the roof” ordinances that Israel deployed in Gaza? A door-to-door effort without aerial bombardment to minimize civilian casualties at great risk to the lives of Israeli soldiers?

Nope.


That is the sorry state of the United Nations.  Rich and powerful countries, and those with large voting blocks (like the block of Islamic countries) get to dictate the agendas and avoid condemnation, while small countries with a fraction of the budget get picked on.  In the case of Israel, the dynamic is compounded by a biased judge.

Yet remarkably, a call that should be easy for progressives – fighting back against power and money – is lacking.  US progressives should rally to Israel and against the UN.  Instead, they united with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

It is well past time for an overhaul of the United Nations. It is also time for progressives to rethink their anti-Israel attitudes.


Related First.One.Through articles:

Ban Ki Moon Has No Solidarity with Israel

The United Nations’ Ban Ki Moon Exposes Israeli Civilians

The United Nation’s Ban Ki Moon is Unqualified to Discuss the Question of Palestine

UN Press Corps Expunges Israel

UNRWA’s Ongoing War against Israel and Jews

Help Refugees: Shut the UNRWA, Fund the UNHCR

Delivery of the Fictional Palestinian Keys

The Left-Wing’s Two State Solution: 1.5 States for Arabs, 0.5 for Jews

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