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  DAILY ALERT Tuesday,
October 22, 2013

In-Depth Issues:

Report: U.S. Cancels Drone Deal with Turkey over Links to Iran (Ynet News)
    The U.S. Congress canceled the delivery to Turkey of 10 Predator UAVs in June 2012 following Turkish intelligence chief Hakan Fidan's disclosure to Iranian intelligence of the identity of 10 Iranians working with Israel, the Turkish daily Taraf reported.

Report: Spike in Jihadists Entering Syria - Benjamin Weinthal (Jerusalem Post)
    France's intelligence service reported a significant spike in the number of jihadists who travelled to Syria to fight against Assad, according to a report in Le Monde.
    John R. Schindler, a professor at the U.S. Naval War College, wrote based on the report, "France is a major source, with the number of French nationals in Syria having doubled just since May, with some 400 in various forms of transit and over 200 actually in Syria as of the beginning of October."
    Fresh groups of jihadists are also travelling from Chechnya to Syria. Radical Islamists from Australia and Canada have left for Syria, while smaller numbers of jihadists have departed from Italy and Luxembourg.

Pentagon Fast-Tracks Deployment of Israeli-Designed Robot - Barbara Opall-Rome (Defense News)
    The U.S. Defense Department is fast-tracking deployment of an Israeli-designed, stair-climbing Micro Tactical Ground Robot (MTGR) to support special operations and explosive ordnance disposal forces.
    MTGR provides capabilities to identify IED threats from a safe standoff range and is produced in the U.S. by Roboteam.
    Yosi Wolf, co-founder and co-chief executive of Roboteam, is a six-year veteran of an Israel Air Force special ops unit.
    He noted, "Based on feedback from friends in the Israeli special forces, we made sure our touch screens could be operated while wearing gloves and night-vision devices."
    "For day operations, we also made sure our displays are clearly visible in the brightest sunshine."

Israeli Motion Detectors Aid Dairy Farmers - M.L. Johnson (AP)
    Every step a cow takes and every mouthful she eats at Saxon Homestead Farm in Wisconsin is recorded by an electronic device on a collar around her neck sold by Israel-based SCR.
    Since cows in heat move more and digest less, farmers can use the data to determine when to breed them.
    Farmers said the systems reduce drug use, help cut labor costs and provide early warning of illness.
    Tom Breunig, SCR's general manager in the U.S., said 2 million cows worldwide wore his company's collars at the end of last year, and that number was expected to double in two years.

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News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • U.S.: Assad Showing New Strength Against Fractured Opposition
    Bolstered by infighting among Syrian opposition groups, U.S. officials say Syrian President Assad has a stronger grasp on power now than he did just months ago, when the U.S. and Russia called for a new round of talks to settle the Syrian civil war. How to persuade Assad to step down will be part of the focus Tuesday at a London meeting of 11 nations from the West and Mideast seeking a negotiated settlement to the war.
        A senior State Department official on Monday accused extremist groups, including the al-Qaeda-linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, of helping Assad by hobbling the moderate rebel groups and diverting aid and focus from the battle against his government. (AP-Washington Post)
  • Ismailia Explosion Raises Fears for Suez Canal Safety - Abdelsitar Hetieta
    An explosion at the headquarters of the Egyptian intelligence service in Ismailia on the Suez Canal on Saturday has raised fears for the safety of navigation in the international waterway, especially in light of previous attempts to attack ships in the canal. (Asharq Al-Awsat-UK)
  • Americans Performing Hajj Pilgrimage Attacked in Saudi Arabia - Rahat Husain
    A group of Americans mostly from Dearborn, Michigan, who visited Saudi Arabia last week to perform the Hajj pilgrimage were threatened and attacked by a group of extremists. In the city of Mina, the Americans, who are Shiite Muslims, were attacked by men armed with knives, who shouted: "Our [holy pilgrimage] will be complete once we have killed you, ripped out your hearts and eaten them, and raped your women."
        The victims reported the attack to the Saudi police and showed them video footage taken on their cell phones. A Saudi officer confiscated the phones and deleted the videos. (Washington Times)
  • Tradition of Not Voting Keeps Palestinians Politically Powerless in Jerusalem - Jodi Rudoren
    There are perhaps 160,000 Arab residents of Jerusalem eligible to vote in Tuesday’s municipal elections, yet in the 2008 election, only 2,744 east Jerusalem Arabs voted. As part of a broader "anti-normalization" campaign, the Palestinian leadership has for decades warned residents against casting ballots.
        "The whole thing is not really rational," said Sari Nusseibeh, president of Al Quds University. Nusseibeh once advocated Palestinian voting, backing an Arab newspaper publisher who ran for mayor in 1987 but withdrew after his cars were burned and his home vandalized. (New York Times)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • IDF Kills Terrorist Who Planned 2012 Attack on Tel Aviv Bus
    On Tuesday, Israeli forces killed Islamic Jihad terrorist Mohammad Asi, who was among the planners of a bomb attack on a Tel Aviv bus on Nov. 21, 2012, that injured 29 civilians. When IDF forces approached his hideout in the West Bank, Asi opened fire and IDF forces returned fire. Two accomplices were also arrested. (Israel Defense Forces)
  • Kerry: PA-Israel Talks Intensifying, Qatar to Give Palestinians $150M for Debt Relief - Tovah Lazaroff (Jerusalem Post)
    To support the peace process, Qatar agreed on Monday to give $150 million in debt relief to the PA, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announced in Paris after meeting with Qatari Foreign Minister Khalid al-Atiyah. "The pace [of the talks] has intensified. All the core issues are on the table, and they [Israelis and Palestinians] have been meeting with increased intensity," Kerry said.
  • Released Palestinian Prisoners Head Terror Groups - Alex Fishman
    Ayman Sharouna, who was sentenced to 38 years for involvement in deadly terror attacks in Beersheba, was released in the Gilad Shalit deal in 2011 and arrested again in 2012 for breaking release conditions. Following a hunger strike, Israel released Sharouna in March 2013. He has since become a central figure in a special Hamas unit established to coordinate terror attacks in the West Bank.
        Another released Hamas prisoner, Saleh Al Arouri, did several stints in Israeli jails before being released in 2010. Today, he heads up terror activity for Hamas in the West Bank and Gaza while operating out of Turkey, with the backing of the Turkish government. (Ynet News)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):
  • Iran's First "Charm Offensive" - Dore Gold
    Just before Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini arrived in Tehran in 1979 from his place of exile in France, he succeeded in waging a successful deception campaign that completely hid his true intentions from the West. Professor Richard Falk wrote an op-ed in the New York Times entitled "Trusting Khomeini," where he noted that the people around Khomeini were "moderate" and even "progressive," with "a notable concern for human rights."
        Professor Bernard Lewis revealed Khomeini's extremist positions in the Washington Post when he reviewed Khomeini's book Islamic Government, based on lectures he had delivered in 1970 in Najaf. These included calls for "armed jihad" and the need to "take the lead over other Muslims," while suggesting that the Jews were seeking "to rule over the entire planet." Henry Precht, who was head of the Iran desk at the U.S. State Department, called the book that Lewis found a forgery and criticized the Washington Post for publishing excerpts from it.
        Thus, some Western experts were charmed into believing that Iran, after the fall of the Shah, would adopt a moderate course. The consequences of their miscalculation were disastrous for the Iranian people and the world. The writer, a former Israeli ambassador to the UN, is president of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. (Israel Hayom)
  • The Idiocy of the Cultural Boycott of Israel - Ray Hanania
    The extremists, who are a minority faction in our Arab community, step in and bully the mainstream Arabs into silence. Arabs are afraid to stand up to the extremists who often direct their hate and anger against Arabs even more than they do against Israel. It's better to not say anything, the moderates mistakenly conclude, than to stand up to the fanatics.
        That's why the fanatics hate me so much. I reject their failed leadership and their absence of commonsense strategies to achieve a Palestinian state. And I reject their idiotic mob mentality that denounces anyone who does anything in Israel. For years they loved me when I criticized Israel but kept my mouth shut about their extremist fanaticism that enabled violence.
        The Arabs are failures at fighting for Palestinian rights. Their emotion overcomes logic and reason so they are incapable of being effective. They can't establish a Palestinian state because they are consumed with destroying Israel. (Saudi Gazette)
  • Iraq Tips toward the Abyss - Bret Stephens
    Iraq, where 4,488 Americans bravely gave their lives, has effectively ceased to exist for the purposes of U.S. politics. Some 7,000 Iraqi civilians have been killed so far this year. Most of the killing has been done by Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), a group that in 2009 had been thoroughly beaten. The conventional wisdom had been that it was America's presence in the country that strengthened AQI, and that America's departure was therefore bound to weaken it. (Wall Street Journal)

Iran's Strategic Landmine - Ron Ben-Yishai (Ynet News)

  • At Geneva, Iran proposed that within 3-6 months it will stop or significantly reduce its activities related to uranium enrichment and allow tight international supervision. Iran is demanding that the world powers officially recognize its right to enrich uranium and declare that its nuclear program is solely for peaceful purposes. These two demands expose the "strategic landmine" in Iran's proposal.
  • The demand to recognize Iran's right to enrich uranium is meant to allow it to retain the capabilities it has accumulated thus far, so that in the future it will be able to restart the development of nuclear weapons within 8 to 10 weeks. Iran is in possession of at least seven tons of low-level uranium and some 180 kilograms of medium-level uranium, which is enough to build 5-6 nuclear warheads.
  • The demand that the world powers grant Iran's nuclear program full legal legitimacy means that, should Iran resume its military nuclear activity in the future, the world powers or the Security Council will have difficulties imposing new sanctions on Iran or enforcing the ones that have been lifted.
  • Iran has no intention of relinquishing the military capabilities it has obtained. Tehran merely plans to temporarily suspend its nuclear activity until it will be able to resume its race toward a bomb in a more comfortable international environment.

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