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With Missile Threat Looming, Israel Successfully Tests Arrow 3 - Lilach Shoval (Israel Hayom)
Israel has in recent days successfully tested its Arrow 3 anti-missile interception system, designed to intercept and destroy ballistic missiles while they are still in the earth's atmosphere.
Aryeh Herzog, director of the Defense Ministry's Homa project which deals with missile defenses, revealed that an Arrow 3 interceptor missile was launched against an incoming projectile, successfully destroying it after a few hundred meters of flight.
Defense officials say the Arrow 3 will not be operational before 2015. The missile is planned to provide defense from unconventional missile bombardment.
GOP, Democratic Appropriators Agree on Funding for Israel (JTA)
House Republican and Democratic appropriators said assistance to Israel would continue at existing levels.
U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.), chairman of the House of Representatives' Appropriations Committee, in a joint statement with Rep. Kay Granger (R-Texas), chairwoman of its foreign operations subcommittee, said Israel's $3.075 billion in aid would remain unaffected under the 2012 State and Foreign Operations Act.
Hamas Can't Pay Full Salaries Either, Like the PA - Khaled Abu Toameh (Jerusalem Post)
Just as the Fayyad government has paid only half salaries to its 150,000 PA civil servants for June, the Hamas government in Gaza has in recent months paid only half salaries to its employees.
Four Islamic Jihad Members Killed in Gaza Car Crash (Ma'an News-PA)
Four members of the Islamic Jihad's Al-Quds Brigades were killed in a traffic accident in Gaza on Friday when their Mercedes was crushed as it collided with a truck coming from the opposite direction.
Abu Fadi Razayna, a leader of the armed wing of Islamic Jihad, was among the dead.
Mob Burns Gaza Resort (Maan News-PA)
Some 30 armed and masked men burned the Rais resort in Gaza at dawn Wednesday, said the manager, Imad Al-Wazeer.
The resort cost $120,000 to establish and has swimming pools, restaurants and other facilities. After the attack, 13 employees have lost their jobs.
IDF to Buy Urban Warfare Ladder Developed by Ex-Soldier - Yaakov Katz, Herb Keinon and Tovah Lazaroff (Jerusalem Post)
The IDF is purchasing a new tactical ladder to enable soldiers to climb high walls with greater ease during urban warfare.
The current ladder used by the IDF needs to be carried by at least two soldiers and held in place by two more soldiers.
The new ladder can be carried by a single soldier, open up to over 10 meters, and be held in place by one soldier.
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- Bomb Wounds French UN Peacekeepers in South Lebanon - Mahmoud Zayat
Three French UN peacekeepers in Lebanon were wounded on Tuesday in a roadside bombing in Sidon, and another three suffered hearing problems, French military officials said.
"A five-vehicle convoy was between Beirut and Dar Kifa when one vehicle was hit by an explosion," said a statement from staff headquarters in Paris.
In May, six Italian peacekeepers were wounded in Sidon in a similar roadside bombing.
- Iran Warns Turkey to Butt Out of Syria - Reza Kahlili
A recent article published in the weekly magazine Sobh'eh Sadegh of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards sternly warned Turkey against its stance on Syria, emphasizing that Iran stands squarely with the Assad regime. "Should Turkish officials insist on their contradictory behavior and if they continue on their present path...we will be put in the position of having to choose between Turkey and Syria. Syria's justification in defending herself along with mirroring ideological perceptions would sway Iran toward choosing Syria."
"From Iran's standpoint, the Syrian leadership is in the midst of resolving its problems, and as soon as foreign meddling stops, the Syrians will be able to revert back to normal." (Fox News)
- Tribal Rivalries Complicate Libyan War - Mathieu von Rohr
The uprising against Gaddafi is looking more and more like a civil war every day, a situation made more difficult by the fact that Libya is a tribal society, not a nation state like its neighbors. Most Libyans may be strongly opposed to Gaddafi, yet there are still important tribes that largely support him, including the Warfalla, the Tarhuna and Gaddafi's own tribe, the Gadhadhfa.
The Berbers in the western mountains, the country's original inhabitants, have liberated their traditional areas in recent months. Under Gaddafi, they were prohibited from speaking their own language. Most of the rebels in the western mountains are Arabs, members of the Zintan tribe and its allies.
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- Israel to UN: Palestinian Bid for Statehood Will Not Bring Peace - Amb. Ron Prosor
Israeli Ambassador to the UN Ron Prosor told the UN Security Council on Tuesday:
"I speak before this Council today as a proud representative of the Jewish state and the Jewish people - a people whose bond to the Land of Israel extends back 3,000 years. It is where we began and where we have been reborn, realizing the dreams of our forefathers to be a free people in our own land.
Our Nation seeks a lasting peace in which the Palestinians will have their own state, alongside - but not instead of - the Jewish State of Israel."
"Unilateral actions will not bring peace to our region. Like a false idol, the Palestinian initiatives at the United Nations may be superficially attractive to some. Yet, they distract from the true path to peace....Peace can only be achieved through bilateral negotiations that address the concerns of both sides." "This declaration will be in violation of the bilateral agreements that are the basis for Israeli-Palestinian cooperation."
"Now is the time for the international community to tell the Palestinian leadership what it refuses to tell its own people: there are no shortcuts to statehood. You cannot bypass the only path to peace. The Palestinians will have to make compromises and make hard choices. They will have to get off the bandwagon of unilateralism."
"For lasting peace to take hold, Israel's recognition of a future Palestinian state must be met with an equal acknowledgement that Israel is the Jewish state."
(Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
- Media Watchdog: "U.S. Paying Salaries to Jailed Palestinian Terrorists" - Herb Keinon
The Palestinian Authority spends more than $5 million a month paying salaries to terrorists sitting in Israeli prisons, according to a Palestinian Media Watch report presented to congressmen in Washington on Tuesday.
According to the report, written by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik, such payments contravene U.S. law, which prohibits funding of any person who "engages in, or has engaged in terrorist activity." "The U.S. funds the PA's general budget....Through the PA budget the U.S. is paying the salaries of terrorist murderers in prison and funding the glorification and role modeling of terrorists."
"A law signed and published in the official Palestinian Authority Registry in April 2011 puts all Palestinians and Israeli Arabs imprisoned in Israel for terror crimes on the PA payroll to receive a monthly salary from the PA," formalizing "what has long been a PA practice."
More than 5,500 Palestinian prisoners receive these funds.
- Hamas Terrorist Directed Attacks from Prison - Chaim Levinson
Ibrahim Hamid, a senior Hamas military commander in the West Bank, planned and saw to the carrying out of a shooting in the West Bank a year ago despite being in solitary confinement in an Israeli prison for the past five years. Hamid was arrested in May 2006 and convicted of being responsible for the deaths of 46 Israelis in suicide bombings during the second intifada. According to the Israel Security Agency, Hamid is, in fact, responsible for the deaths of 90 Israelis.
Last week, the Central District Court extended Hamid's solitary confinement by an additional six months. Information submitted by the state to support its request indicated the existence of recent intelligence "pointing to his involvement in planning, from prison, a shooting attack in which two Israelis were injured on September 1, 2010, at Rimonim Junction" when shot at from a passing car.
- Slaying the Syria-Iran-Hizbullah Hydra - Hossein Askari
If the Tehran regime were to fall, Syria's Assad would be isolated and forced to compromise with his Arab brethren and as well as with the U.S.; if Assad were to fall, Iran's mullahs would face insurmountable hurdles in supporting Hizbullah; and with the fall of either the mullahs or Assad, Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah's days would be numbered (and with the fall of both his days would be almost over).
Lower oil prices and more demands on its limited foreign-exchange earnings and reserves are the Achilles' heels of the Tehran regime. Washington should be persuading oil exporters, especially Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait, to increase exports and exceed their OPEC quota in order to lower oil prices. The U.S. has not yet sanctioned the central bank of Iran; this would help increase Iran's import costs and put a further squeeze on its foreign-exchange earnings.
- The Nightmare of International Guarantees - Barry Rubin
Israel is constantly urged to put its trust in the international community - an idea that hasn't worked out too well in the past.
Hizbullah has moved back into southern Lebanon - something the UN was supposed to prevent - and has rebuilt its system of tunnels and military strongholds. In five years, the UN force has never interfered with such Hizbullah activities - not once.
Now imagine how UN and international guarantees would work with a Palestinian state.
Would the General Assembly vote to condemn Palestine for breaking its commitments? Would any foreign force that was there as part of a peace deal ever act to stop weapons or terrorists from crossing the border into Palestine? Would they fight to stop terrorists from crossing the border from Palestine into Israel? Of course not. The writer is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center at IDC Herzliya.
- The West Bank Is Not Stolen Property - Jonathan S. Tobin
Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon has created a clever and informative six-minute YouTube video on "The Truth About the West Bank" that is driving the Palestinian Authority up the wall. PA negotiator Saeb Erekat claimed that by asserting Israel's historical rights to the West Bank and debunking claims that the territory is "illegally occupied," Israel is pursuing a "pro-conflict agenda."
Israel did not capture the West Bank in 1967 from the Palestinians but from Jordan in a war of self-defense. Jordan had illegally occupied the area as well as half of Jerusalem in the course of its participation in a war to destroy the newborn state of Israel in 1948. Jews were guaranteed the right of settlement in the West Bank by the League of Nations Mandate for Palestine.
To assert the Jewish state's rights is not the same thing as saying Israel should never retreat from an inch of the West Bank. The borders between Israel and a future Palestinian state can only be determined by negotiations. But the Palestinians' charge that the land was stolen from them is false. If the West Bank is stolen property, then it should merely be returned to its owners and not be a subject for talks.
Arab Leaders Responsible for Refugee Problem - Alexander Joffe and Asaf Romirowsky (Ynet News)
Today, the Palestinians and the Arab and Muslim worlds say it was Israel that, in 1948, attacked and expelled the Palestinians. But who did Palestinians blame for their fate in 1949?
- One of the largest Palestinian communities in the U.S. is located in Dearborn, Michigan. On December 15, 1949, the Michigan Arab newspaper As Sabah published an editorial on the question of the Palestine Arab refugees: "The poor refugees committed the crime of listening to those deceivers, they believed the liars, and went to the extreme foolishness of leaving their homes, counting on their deceitful leaders to bring them back....If there should be another war, it should be against the Arab leaders, the princes and kings who brought this catastrophe upon the poor people of Palestine."
- British officials on the scene at the time, hardly pro-Zionist, were convinced that Palestinian leaders were steadily abandoning their people. In June 1949 Sir John Troutbeck, head of the British Middle East office in Cairo, reported that while the refugees "express no bitterness against the Jews (or for that matter against the Americans or ourselves), they speak with the utmost bitterness of the Egyptians and other Arab states." "'We know who our enemies are,' they say, and they are referring to their Arab brothers who, they declare, persuaded them unnecessarily to leave their homes."
- Israeli officials maintained from the beginning that a majority of the Palestinians were encouraged to flee by their own leaders and those of Arab states, who then abandoned them before or in the midst of battle. British officials on the scene and opposed to Israel, and Palestinians in America, would not have simply parroted their enemy's assessment.
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