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  DAILY ALERT Wednesday,
March 15, 2017

In-Depth Issues:

Iranian Official Boasts of "Guerilla Movement" within the U.S. - Candice Malcolm (Toronto Sun-Canada)
    In a new video, Hassan Abbasi, a senior advisor to former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad who now runs a security policy division of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), is seen boasting about a "guerilla movement" of Iranian agents living and working in the U.S.
    Abbasi claims there are over two million Iranians in the U.S., and that Iran is leading a clandestine army of potential martyrs within the U.S.
    "We have identified the United States' Achilles' heel," said Abbasi. "We [know] all their ground, naval, air, technological and other vulnerabilities."
    Abbasi said that while only a handful of Saudis carried out the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Iranians are even better organized and more committed to waging war against the West.
    View the video.

Poland Confirms Minnesota Man as Nazi Commander (Canadian Press)
    Poland will seek the arrest and extradition of a Minnesota man exposed by the AP as a former commander in an SS-led unit that burned Polish villages and killed civilians in World War II, prosecutors said Monday.
    Prosecutor Robert Janicki said evidence confirmed "100%" that U.S. citizen Michael K. was a commander of a unit in the SS-led "Ukrainian Self-Defense Legion which carried out the pacification of Polish villages in the Lublin region." AP has identified the man as Michael Karkoc, 98, from Minneapolis.
    In Poland, prosecutor Andrzej Pozorski said, "This case shows that there is still a possibility, a chance to bring those responsible before a court and I think we should never give up the chance of exercising justice."
    Prosecutors in Germany shelved their own investigation of Karkoc in 2015 after concluding he was not fit for trial. However, the special German prosecutor's office that investigates Nazi crimes concluded that enough evidence existed to pursue murder charges against Karkoc.

Iran's Mandela - Majid Rafizadeh (Gatestone Institute)
    Ayatollah Seyed Hossein Kazemeini Boroujerdi is a high-ranking dissident Iranian clergyman who has called for separation of religion and state, and has condemns Islamic radicalism, fundamentalism, and terrorism.
    Boroujerdi is known as Iran's Mandela. He was arrested in Tehran on October 8, 2006, along with more than 300 of his followers, and was initially sentenced to death before his sentence was commuted to 11 years in prison.
    He had been found guilty of "waging war against God" and publicly calling political leadership by the clergy unlawful.
    In a 2014 letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, he wrote:
    "I have been imprisoned and tortured for the past eight years for simply speaking out against political Islam and the cruel crimes committed by the government of Iran against its citizens due to implementation of religious laws."
    "Iran's natural resources along with its national wealth are being spent - as a matter of priority - on funding Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, Yemen, Bahrain and Iraq by the authorities while Iran's own citizens are enduring widespread poverty."

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News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • Trump Sends His Envoy to Meet Netanyahu, Abbas - Ruth Eglash
    Jason Greenblatt, appointed by President Trump as his special representative for international negotiations, sounded out Israeli and Palestinian leaders on prospects for Middle East peace during the first visit by a key Trump envoy to the region. A U.S. Embassy official said the goal of Greenblatt's visit was primarily "to hear their views and perspectives on the current situation and how progress towards peace can be made."
        Former Israeli ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren said, "What I hear from [Prime Minister] Netanyahu is that this president is open to different ideas. It is not about ideology but what stands a chance of succeeding....We have an opportunity now to regain a level of intimacy and trust [with the U.S.] that has been lost, that is vital for moving ahead with the peace process."  (Washington Post)
        See also Netanyahu: "Good, In-Depth Talks" with Trump's Envoy
    Prime Minister Netanyahu said Tuesday: "About my talks with Jason Greenblatt, I must say that they were good, in-depth talks. I cannot tell you that we finished. We agreed, we are in a process, but a process of genuine mutual, very frank dialogue, in the good sense of the word."  (Prime Minister's Office)
  • U.S. to Seek Extradition of Hamas Member for 2001 Jerusalem Bombing that Killed Two Americans - Teresa Welsh
    On Tuesday, the U.S. Department of Justice made public charges filed against Ahlam Aref Ahmad Al-Tamimi for her role in the 2001 bombing of a Sbarro pizza restaurant in Jerusalem, the first time a member of Hamas has been charged for the death of American citizens. Fifteen civilians, including seven children and a pregnant woman, were killed in the attack and 122 were injured.
        Tamimi pleaded guilty in an Israeli court in 2003 but only served eight years before being released as part of the Gilad Shalit prison swap between Israel and Hamas in 2011. Tamimi, who is currently a television host in Jordan, is unlikely to face trial in the U.S. since Jordan does not extradite its citizens. (McClatchy)
        See also Individual Charged in Connection with 2001 Terrorist Attack in Jerusalem that Resulted in Death of Americans (U.S. Department of Justice )
        See also Jerusalem Pizzeria Bomber: "I Was Disappointed Because I Had Hoped for a Larger Death Toll" - William A. Jacobson
    Among those killed in the Sbarro bomb blast were Judith L. Greenbaum (31) of New Jersey (who was pregnant at the time) and Malka Roth (15) who lived with her family in Jerusalem. Four other Americans were injured: David Danzig, Matthew Gordon, and Joanne (Chana) and Sarah Nachenberg. Chana Nachenberg - whose only child Sarah was then two-years-old - never regained consciousness. The writer is Clinical Professor of Law at Cornell Law School. (Legal Insurrection)
        See also Chana Nachenberg's Story - Sarah Nachenberg (One Family Fund)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • PA President Mahmoud Abbas Meets with U.S. Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt in Ramallah
    Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas met Tuesday in Ramallah with Jason Greenblatt, U.S. President Donald J. Trump's Special Representative for International Negotiations. Greenblatt underscored President Trump's commitment to working with Israelis and Palestinians to achieve a lasting peace through direct negotiations. He emphasized the importance of all parties working to de-escalate tensions. President Abbas committed to preventing inflammatory rhetoric and incitement. (U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem)
  • Trump's Envoy Visits an Anxious Ramallah - Pinhas Inbari
    President Trump's special envoy, Jason Greenblatt, met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday to sound him out on restarting peace negotiations. His visit comes amidst growing uncertainty about the very future of the Palestinian Authority.
        In recent weeks, violent demonstrations have taken place in the PA by secular leftist activists, the pro-Iranian Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and Fatah's Tanzim military wing. One Palestinian source said, "There are enough weapons in the refugee camps to storm the Muqata'a and topple the Palestinian Authority. It is only a matter of a decision."  (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
  • Israel Shuts Down PA Agency Keeping Tabs on Arabs Selling Land to Jews - Roi Yanovsky
    A Palestinian Authority government agency secretly operating in Jerusalem that carried out surveillance and registration of Arabs who sold land to Jews was shut down on Tuesday by order of Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan. The names of Arabs wishing to sell homes and land to Jews were given to the PA security services in Ramallah. "The activities of this Palestinian Authority agency are part of a plan to undermine our sovereignty in Jerusalem and terrorize Arabs who sell real estate to Jews," said Erdan. (Ynet News)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):
  • Al-Qaeda Extremists Are Leading the Syrian Insurgency - Shiraz Maher
    On Feb. 9, Syrian rebel commander Hashem al-Sheikh announced the creation of a powerful, extremist-dominated entity known as Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), or the "Committee for the Liberation of the Levant." One of the main groups that joined the new committee is Nur al-Din al-Zenki, once backed by the CIA as "vetted," though this designation was later revoked. Far more significant was the folding into HTS of Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (JFS), which until July was known as Jabhat al-Nusrah - and which represented al-Qaeda on the ground in Syria.
        Capitalizing on ordinary Syrians' hatred of Islamic State (IS), al-Qaeda has pursued an audacious line of messaging that seeks to portray the group in Syria as a responsible actor that follows a "middle path." Al-Sheikh, the HTS leader, declared Shias "the enemy," cursed Alawites (the sect to which Assad belongs) and called for hostilities against the "forces of Zoroastrianism" (used as a pejorative reference to Iran).
        This marks a dangerous pivot in the Syrian Revolution. The ascendency of HTS heralds an end for the opposition's backers in both the West and the Gulf, who will shy away from supporting an alliance that so brazenly incorporates a former al-Qaeda affiliate. Already, the U.S., Saudi Arabia and Turkey have suspended support to moderate rebel groups, fearing that supplies will fall into the hands of extremists. The writer is a senior research fellow at King's College London's International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation. (New Statesman-UK)
  • The PA-EU Plan to Seize Land between Jerusalem and Jericho - Josh Hasten
    Over the past decade there has been a huge upsurge in the number of structures going up in illegal Bedouin villages and encampments on both sides of Highway 1 from Jerusalem to Jericho. These aren't just small herding communities, but strategically placed mini-towns set up by the Palestinian Authority and financed by the European Union to the tune of hundreds of millions of euros, with the explicit goal of taking over strategic lands.
        By creating substantial facts on the ground, the PA with the support of the international community seeks to lay claim to those areas and demand that they be part of "Palestine." Over 1,000 illegal structures, with more being erected nearly daily, now proudly bear the EU flag.
        The Israeli government has repeatedly gone out of its way to offer permanent housing solutions for these Bedouin families. Blueprints for the establishment of a legal town to be called Ramat Nueimah near Jericho were drawn up, but that plan has been shelved due to the PA and EU refusal to accept a practical solution which would enhance the lives of these Bedouin but would lessen their grip on the strategic Jerusalem-Jericho corridor. The writer is the international director for Regavim. (Jerusalem Post)
        See also Understanding Israeli Interests in the E1 Area: Contiguity, Security, and Jerusalem - Nadav Shragai (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)

Jordanian Soldier Who Killed Israeli Schoolgirls Was No Madman - Reuven Berko (Israel Hayom)

  • Ahmed Daqamseh, the Jordanian soldier who in 1997 killed seven Israeli schoolgirls and was released from jail on Sunday, is no madman. Many more like him grow in the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan and worldwide.
  • The footage of his release shows Daqamseh parading around like a peacock, surrounded by adoring fans. He told Arab media: Israel cannot be allowed to exist, normalization with it is forbidden, and Palestinian land cannot be divided into two states.
  • Daqamseh epitomizes the creed of radical Islamists who justify the murder of Jewish civilians, including young girls, as part of the religious battle to eliminate Israel. "Jews in Israel are nothing but human garbage...and they will be removed by war or we will bury them," he said.

    Dr. Col. (ret.) Reuven Berko was an adviser on Arab Affairs to the Jerusalem district police.
    See also Arab Editor Lauds Released Murderer of Israeli Schoolgirls as Beacon of Pan-Arabism (MEMRI TV)
  • Abdel-Bari Atwan, editor-in-chief of the Arab news website Al-Rai Al-Youm and former editor-in-chief of the London-based Al-Quds Al-Arabi, said that the entire Arab nation was celebrating the release of former Jordanian soldier Ahmed Daqamseh, who served a 20-year prison term for the murder of seven Israeli schoolgirls.
  • "The entire Arab nation is celebrating (Daqamseh's release), not just the Jordanians. The vast majority of this nation considers Ahmed Daqamseh a national hero, an Islamic hero, and an Arab hero, in the full sense of the word. That man defended the honor of the Jordanian land and of the Arab nation," he told Hizbullah's Mayadeen TV.
  • "He has become a beacon for many people, who yearn for the good old Arab days, when pan-Arab sentiments still existed, and most Arab regimes still considered Israel to be the enemy."

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