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  DAILY ALERT Wednesday,
April 27, 2016

In-Depth Issues:

ISIS Has Secret Cells in Europe, U.S. Spy Chief Claims - Julian Hattem (The Hill)
    Islamic extremists have more secret cells hidden throughout Europe that could be deployed in terror attacks against civilians, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said Monday.
    U.S. intelligence officials "continue to see evidence" on the part of ISIS in Germany, England and Italy.
    He added that the extremists "have taken advantage, to some extent, of the migrant crisis in Europe - something which the nations, I think, have a growing awareness of."

U.S. University Heads Oppose Academic Boycott of Israel - Shahar Chai (Ynet News)
    The chancellors of leading U.S. universities, including MIT, the University of Chicago, and all ten campuses of the University of California, have clarified that they are opposed to any academic boycott, in particular to one against Israel.
    Their comments followed an appeal from the Association of University Heads of Israel (VERA), which was intended to prevent the final adoption of the American Anthropological Association's (AAA) resolution to boycott Israel.
    See also Israeli, U.S. University Heads Combat BDS Calls for Academic Boycotts - Lidar Grave-Lazi (Jerusalem Post)

Protect Israel from Its Enemies - Stanley G. Tate (Miami Herald)
    It seems that some people don't like successful Jews, so a new movement has arisen to destroy the Jewish state and undermine the U.S. economy.
    They seek to boycott, divest and sanction (BDS) the Jewish state into submission by selling a pack of lies to a generation of uneducated youth.
    That's why I joined forces with Proclaiming Justice to the Nations (PJTN), a Christian Zionist organization that recently began a nationwide campaign to facilitate grassroots resolutions against the anti-Semitic BDS movement.
    After PJTN successfully spearheaded the first anti-BDS resolution in Tennessee, legislators in Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana, Virginia, Georgia, Alabama and Florida followed suit.
    Similar grassroots anti-BDS resolution campaigns are now underway in another 40 states, as well as in 10 other countries.
    Make no mistake - BDS isn't just about Israel, it is the new form of politically correct anti-Semitism that has led to intimidation and attacks against Jewish students nationwide.
    The writer is chairman of PJTN.

Israel to Equip U.S. F-35s with Israeli Software - Eric Tegler (Aviation Week)
    Israel has announced it will equip the F-35 fighter aircraft it starts receiving this December from the U.S. with its own command, control, communications and computing system software produced by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI).
    With the right application interface, developers can add new functionality for the F-35.

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News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • Israel's Vow to Keep Golan Brings "Deep Concern" at UN Security Council - Rick Gladstone
    UN Security Council president Amb. Liu Jieyi of China said after a closed meeting Tuesday that the council's 15 members had "expressed their deep concern over recent Israeli statements about the Golan, and stressed that the status of the Golan remains unchanged." He emphasized that Resolution 497 of December 1981 states that "the Israeli decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights is null and void and without international legal effect."
        Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asserted last week that "the time has come for the international community to finally recognize that the Golan Heights will remain under Israel's sovereignty permanently."  (New York Times)
        See also Israel: UN Announcement on Golan Ignores Reality - Moran Azulay
    The Israel Foreign Ministry responded to the UN Security Council's announcement regarding the Golan Heights: "The Security Council's announcement ignores the reality in Syria. Who is Israel supposed to negotiate with about the future of the Golan? Islamic State? Al-Qaeda? Hizbullah? The Iranian and Syrian forces which have slaughtered thousands of people? In view of the war raging in Syria and the stability and security of the Golan Heights that Israel has established over nearly 50 years, the suggestion that Israel will leave the Golan Heights is unreasonable."  (Ynet News)
        See also below Commentary - The New UN Consensus on Syria: Israel Must Pay - Benny Avni (New York Post)
  • Pentagon: Fewer Foreign Fighters Joining Islamic State
    The number of foreign fighters joining Islamic State in Iraq and Syria has decreased sharply in the past year to about 200 a month, U.S. Air Force Maj.-Gen. Peter Gersten said on Tuesday. That is a drastic decline from about a year ago when between 1,500 and 2,000 foreign fighters were joining the group each month.
        Gersten added that the number of fighters defecting from Islamic State was increasing as well. "We're seeing a fracture in their morale, we're seeing their inability to pay, we're seeing the inability to fight, we're watching them try to leave Daesh [IS] in every single way."  (Reuters)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • Two Palestinians with Knives Killed at Jerusalem Checkpoint Wednesday - Yoav Zitun
    Two Palestinians with knives were shot and killed by Israeli security forces at the Kalandiya checkpoint north of Jerusalem on Wednesday. The two, one female and one male, began to walk through a passage intended for vehicle entry and approached border policemen stationed at the scene. The female assailant threw a knife at the policeman closest to her, while the male was found to be carrying two knives. (Ynet News)
  • Israel Beefs Up Security in Jerusalem for Passover Holiday - Amos Harel
    Throughout the holiday week, great efforts are being made by Israeli security forces to prevent attacks on Jewish visitors to Jerusalem, particularly in the Temple Mount area. The police presence was greatly reinforced and the Israel Security Agency (ISA) is taking part in extensive intelligence work, along with the police. The ISA announced Tuesday the arrest of three West Bank residents who had come to the Jabal Mukaber neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem. They are suspected of planning an attack in Jerusalem.
        Dozens of young Palestinians are detained every week, following information (some of it on social media) suggesting that they are planning or considering terrorist attacks. Similar numbers are arrested by the PA. (Ha'aretz)
  • Israeli NGO Establishes Teams of Life-Saving First Responders Worldwide - Abigail Klein Leichman
    United Hatzalah/United Rescue is training neighborhood first-responder volunteers in cities across North and South America, Europe and India. Founded in 2006 in Israel, United Hatzalah's 3,000 volunteers have treated 1.6 million people. The organization also sends humanitarian-aid teams to disaster areas around the world.
        In recent years, cities in Brazil, Panama, Argentina, India, Lithuania, New Jersey and Michigan have asked the Israeli NGO to help them set up similar systems to get aid to victims of accidents and illness within three minutes. "In Israel we have Christian, Muslim, Druze and Bedouin volunteers alongside Jewish volunteers," says Dov Maisel, UH director of international operations. "We are a nonprofit NGO teaching people how to save people, no matter who they are or where they are."  (israel21c)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):
  • The New UN Consensus on Syria: Israel Must Pay - Benny Avni
    On Tuesday the UN Security Council, including America, finally agreed on something regarding Syria: It must get back the Golan Heights from Israel. Not Raqqa, the capital of the ISIS caliphate, nor ancient Palmyra. Not northeast Syria, owned by the Kurds, nor the Syrian heartlands controlled by the al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front. And not the enclaves ruled by Druze and various warlords. Nah. After all, what are half a million lost Syrian lives compared to Syria's wounded pride over events of a half-century ago?
        Soon after the Syrian civil war erupted in 2012, Assad started neglecting the Golan. The border area was taken over by gangs who discovered that kidnapping UN peacekeepers is a lucrative business. The UN withdrew its peacekeepers to the safety of the Israeli side. (New York Post)
  • Can You Build a Modern Society on an Arab Tribal Culture? - Philip Carl Salzman
    There is not one Arab nakba, the establishment of Israel. Rather, all of modern history is a nakba for the Arab world, a self-induced, cultural nakba as the Arab world has clung to pre-modern tribal forms: The seventh century CE remains the ideal for the Arab world.
        Modern liberal society depends upon a constitutional foundation, governing institutions based on law, politics allowing constant recall, and civil society going about its business peacefully. Loyalty must be to the constitution, not to groups. Building a modern society and liberal state on a tribal culture is building on shifting sands. The writer is a professor of anthropology at McGill University. (Middle East Forum)
  • Why Is It Never the Terrorist's Fault? - Judith Bergman
    Not only do the parents of the Hamas terrorist who bombed the Jerusalem bus recently insist they had "no idea" their son had been involved with Hamas, they feel no remorse for his actions. "You Jews have to understand something: Abed al-Hamid did not come from a poor family; he came from an affluent one. He had his own car. A family with property and money...a cultured household - with manners, respect, education."
        Ironically, by emphasizing that the terrorist had come from a financially comfortable, "cultured" household, the parents inadvertently put to rest the idea that terrorists become terrorists out of poverty.
        What causes "a boy like ours to want to do such a thing?" It is unadulterated hatred of Jews, inculcated in children all over the Muslim world, along with the accompanying refusal to accept a Jewish state in Israel. It is about the Islamic injunction to perform jihad against infidels and the ethics stemming from that injunction. When Arabs massacred Jews in the Hebron pogrom in 1929 there was no "occupation" to "resist." There were just Jews to hate. Nothing has changed. (Israel Hayom)

Sykes-Picot and the Golan - Zalman Shoval (Israel Hayom)

  • Mark Sykes, the British negotiator of the Sykes-Picot Agreement of May 16, 1916, which shaped the borders of our region a century ago, was a Christian Zionist who viewed the establishment of a Jewish entity in the Jewish people's ancient homeland as a historic, moral and religious directive. The Sykes-Picot Agreement had a considerable influence on the formulation of the Balfour Declaration issued in 1917.
  • At the end of World War I, the Zionist movement claimed the area where the sources of the Jordan River are located. Originally, the Upper Galilee region was supposed to fall under French control, but in 1924 the territory of the British Mandate for Palestine was expanded northward, largely due to the establishment of the Jewish settlements of Metulla, Tel Hai and Kfar Giladi.
  • However, the sources of the Jordan River, Mount Hermon, most of the Golan Heights (up to 10 meters from the Sea of Galilee shoreline) and the Banias River remained under French control (and later became part of Syria).
  • This situation lasted until the Six-Day War in 1967, when the status of the Golan Heights was restored to what it was supposed to have been according to the original agreement.

    The writer is a former Israeli ambassador to the U.S.

        See also The Failures of the International Community in the Middle East since the Sykes-Picot Agreement, 1916-2016 - Amb. Freddy Eytan (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)

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