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Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations

by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
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  DAILY ALERT Tuesday,
October 28, 2014

In-Depth Issues:

Israeli Innovations Help Combat Ebola - Udi Etsion (Ynet News)
    Special inflatable isolation tents manufactured by the Israeli company SYS Technologies have been installed recently in Guinea to help contain the spread of Ebola.
    The company has also developed an incubator-like stretcher for the safe transfer of patients to the isolation tents.
    In addition, Israelis are also providing Africa with an infra-red camera that measures the body temperature of passengers at airports to quickly diagnose potential Ebola patients.

Poll: 86 Percent of Americans View Radical Islamic Terrorism as Threat (Rasmussen Reports)
    A new Rasmussen Reports survey finds that 86% of likely U.S. voters now consider radical Islamic terrorism a threat to the U.S., up 11 points from January, while 12% disagree.

Israeli Islamist Leader: Jerusalem Will Be Caliphate Capital (MEMRI)
    In an interview with official PA TV on Oct. 17, Sheik Kamal Khatib, deputy leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel, said:
    "Jerusalem will not be only the capital of the Palestinian state, but also the capital of the coming righteous Islamic caliphate."
    Interviewer: But throughout the history of Islam, Jerusalem has never been the center or capital of any Islamic caliphate. Cairo, Baghdad, Damascus, and other cities were caliphate capitals, but not Jerusalem.
    Khatib: "Its time will come....The Prophet Muhammad said that the Islamic caliphate would encompass the Earth.... The whole world will become subordinated to the Islamic caliphate one day."

Islamists Concede Elections in Tunisia - Carlotta Gall (New York Times)
    The secular Nidaa Tounes party won the largest number of seats in Tunisia's parliamentary elections on Monday, defeating its main rival, the Islamist party Ennahda, which just three years ago swept to power.

NYC Building Super Gets 15 Years for Hizbullah Weapons Plot - Antonio Antenucci (New York Post)
    Patrick Nayyar, 50, convicted in 2012 for trying to arm Hizbullah terrorists following his 2009 arrest in an FBI sting operation, was sentenced on Monday by a federal judge to 15 years behind bars.
    He and an accomplice had sold an informant a handgun, a box of hollow-point bullets and a truck they thought would be used to transport missiles.

Pro-Palestinian Motion at McGill Fails - Janice Arnold (Canadian Jewish News)
    An anti-Israel resolution was shelved indefinitely by the McGill University undergraduates' association at its general assembly on Oct. 22. A motion to prevent the resolution from being debated passed 402-337.

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News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • Netanyahu: Israel Will Build in All of Jerusalem - Aron Heller
    Israel's prime minister pledged Monday to keep building in Jerusalem. Speaking to the Knesset, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said there was a wide consensus in Israel to continue building throughout the city, just as every Israeli government has done since Israel captured east Jerusalem in 1967. "Even the Palestinians know that these places will stay in Israeli sovereignty under any agreement," he said. "The French build in Paris, the English build in London and the Israelis build in Jerusalem. To come and tell Jews not to live in Jerusalem - why?"
        A government official briefed on the latest construction plans said building would take place in Har Homa and Ramat Shlomo, two areas that are already well developed. (AP)
        See also Netanyahu Rebuffs Criticism of Jerusalem Construction as "Disconnected from Reality" - Barak Ravid
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday called the condemnations of plans for new housing in Jewish neighborhoods of Jerusalem "statements disconnected from reality." "The criticism is that it distances us from peace. These statements infuse the empty rhetoric of the Palestinians," said Netanyahu.
        The EU and the U.S. are applying a double standard when it comes to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, he said. "When Abu Mazen [Mahmoud Abbas] incites murder of Jews in Jerusalem, the international community remains silent. And when we build in Jerusalem, they become indignant."  (Ha'aretz)
  • Israel: Leaving Iran on the Threshold of Nuclear Weapons Is Not a Good Deal - Dave Bender
    Israel's ambassador to Washington, Ron Dermer, said Sunday: "It's one thing when fanatics are armed with axes, but it's quite another when they are armed with a nuclear bomb, and this danger is approaching as the world approaches the agreement with Iran."
        "Israel is very concerned. We're concerned because a year ago some hoped that the tough sanctions regime on Iran would be dismantled only if Iran's nuclear weapons program were dismantled. Today, the international community is prepared to make a deal that would suspend and ultimately lift the sanctions. But no one is talking about dismantling Iran's nuclear weapons program anymore."
        "You don't have to be a nuclear expert to understand that reducing pressure on the world's most dangerous regime and leaving it on the threshold of developing the world's most dangerous weapons is not a good deal. The international community is prepared to leave Iran with thousands of centrifuges to enrich uranium - when Iran doesn't even need a single centrifuge to have peaceful nuclear energy."
        "We're told not to worry, that UN inspectors will prevent Iran from breaking out or sneaking out to build the bomb. Well, I'm sure you all feel as safe as I do knowing that a few Inspector Clouseaus at the UN is all that stands between fanatic ayatollahs and nuclear bombs."  (Algemeiner)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • Netanyahu: Palestinians Are Demanding a State Without Peace - Jonathan Lis
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the Knesset on Monday: "I don't see pressure on the Palestinians. I see only pressure on Israel to make more and more concessions....The Palestinians are demanding of us to establish a Palestinian state - without peace and without security. They demand withdrawal to the 1967 lines, admitting refugees and dividing Jerusalem - and after all these exaggerated demands they are not prepared to agree to the basic condition for peace between two peoples - mutual recognition."  (Ha'aretz)
        See also Abbas Wants Palestine Without Peace - Herb Keinon
    For some time, the assessment in Israel has been that Abbas has given up on believing that by talking to Israel he will get it to make the concessions that meet his minimal goals. So his tactic is getting the world to foist a solution on Israel. But this approach is not grounded in reality. The recognition of "Palestine" by the Swedish government and the British parliament is not going to force Israel to withdraw from the West Bank if it feels that to do so would endanger its security.
        Even taking Israel to the International Criminal Court will not force the country to do that which it feels will place it at risk. And with the Middle East crumbling before their eyes, and the precedent of the Gaza withdrawal still in the nation's collective memory, a not-insignificant part of the nation believes that such a withdrawal would indeed put their security at risk.
        Abbas' recent speeches - including his "Israel is committing genocide" speech at the UN last month, and his call on Palestinians to prevent Jews from desecrating the Temple Mount - have led to an updated assessment. If in the past the idea was that a Palestinian state with Israel would also mean peace, now the assessments in Jerusalem are that Abbas wants a state, but is not interested in peace. (Jerusalem Post)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):
  • The White House Risks a Strategic Relationship - Bret Stephens
    Since coming to office in 2009, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has agreed, against his own inclination and over the objections of his political base, to (1) recognize a Palestinian state; (2) enforce an unprecedented 10-month settlement freeze; (3) release scores of Palestinian prisoners held on murder charges; (4) embark on an ill-starred effort to reach a final peace deal with the Palestinians; (5) refrain from taking overt military steps against Iran; and (6) agree to every possible cease-fire during the summer's war with Hamas.
        In exchange, Mr. Kerry publicly blamed Israel for the failure of the peace effort, the White House held up the delivery of munitions at the height of the Gaza war, and Mr. Obama is hellbent on striking whatever deal the Iranians can plausibly offer him. (Wall Street Journal)
  • The UK, Swedish and Irish Parliamentary Recognition of Palestine - Legally, Historically and Politically Questionable - Alan Baker
    The British House of Commons, the Irish Upper House and the Swedish prime minister would appear to contradict themselves by recognizing that negotiations are still pending, but nevertheless at the same time prejudging the outcome of the very negotiation they purport to support, by calling for recognition of the state of Palestine. Clearly no such Palestinian state or sovereign entity exists and thus cannot logically be recognized.
        Similarly, no international treaty, convention or binding international resolution or determination has ever been adopted or entered into, that determines that the territories in dispute are indeed Palestinian. In this context, the Palestinian leadership itself is committed, pursuant to the Oslo Accords, to negotiate the issue of the permanent status of the territory. Accordingly, the outcome of such negotiations and the ultimate status of the territory cannot be arbitrarily imposed by external parties, including the UK, Irish or Swedish parliaments, or the UN.
        The accepted norms and requirements of international law regarding the characteristics of statehood are set out in article 1 of the 1933 Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States. The Palestinians clearly do not meet the requirements set out in this convention. Amb. Alan Baker participated in the negotiation and drafting of the Oslo Accords with the Palestinians, and served as legal adviser and deputy director-general of Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs. (Institute for Contemporary Affairs-Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)

No Shortcuts to Middle East Peace - Gilad Erdan (Washington Times)

  • Israel is rightfully seen (and sees itself) as part of the West, as the only democratic "responsible adult" in the area. Treating the Palestinians as children - guiltless and unaccountable - is the surest way to perpetuate the conflict, not end it. No serious demands are made of the Palestinians, because as "children," expectations of them are low, and they are never taken to task for their misdeeds.
  • When the Palestinian Authority (PA) signs a pact with extremists who reject Israel's very right to exist, we are told that the Palestinian leadership is weak and seeking internal legitimacy. When the PA officially turns terrorist killers into Palestinian national heroes, we are told not to undermine their narrative. If the West continues to treat Palestinians as children, giving them a pass on these and other issues, what motivation do they have to grow up?
  • If the Palestinians have their "state" recognized by the UN, the UK or Sweden without having to compromise or even negotiate, what incentive do they have to make peace? Unilateral Palestinian steps in the international arena will not end the conflict with Israel. They will set the stage for its continuation and escalation.
  • Western states that seek a real peace between Israelis and Palestinians can play a constructive role in resolving it by demanding that the Palestinians take responsibility for their behavior like grown-ups. This requires insisting that extremism will not be rewarded and that there is no substitute for direct negotiations on all the core issues.
  • The West should make its generous aid to and diplomatic support for the Palestinians contingent on Palestinian willingness to negotiate in good faith and to compromise, unequivocal rejection of violence, and recognition of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people. These are the fundamental requirements for a secure and enduring peace.

    The writer, Israel's minister of communications, is a member of the Security Cabinet.

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