May 10, 2019

In-Depth Issues:

3/4 of Palestinians Killed in Recent Fighting Were Terrorist Operatives (Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center)
    During the escalation of May 4-6, 2019, 23 Palestinians were killed whose names were included in the list issued by the Gaza Ministry of Health. Of the 23, at least 17 (74%) were terrorist operatives or members of terrorist organizations.
    This time, the IDF attacked weapons caches and operations rooms located inside operatives' residences. Before the houses were attacked the IDF warned their occupants so they could leave, preventing many civilian casualties.

Synagogue Gunman Boasted of Hate for Jews (AP-CBS News)
    After California synagogue gunman John T. Earnest fled the scene, he spoke to a 911 dispatcher and said he opened fire at a synagogue, thought he killed some people, and said he did it because "I'm just trying to defend my nation from the Jewish people....They're destroying our people," according to a federal complaint announced on Thursday.

U.S. Air Strike Kills 13 Islamic State Fighters in Somalia (Reuters-New York Times)
    A U.S. air strike killed 13 Islamic State fighters in Somalia's Puntland region on Wednesday, the U.S. military said, days after another strike killed three.

Transcript: Inside the Trump Administration's Middle East Peace Effort - Jared Kushner interviewed by Robert Satloff (Washington Institute for Near East Policy)
    Jared Kushner, senior advisor to President Donald Trump, was interviewed by Washington Institute executive director Robert Satloff on May 2.

U.S. Embassy to Celebrate Independence Day in Jerusalem for 1st Time (Asharq Al-Awsat)
    The U.S. Embassy in Israel has decided to hold its annual Fourth of July celebrations in Jerusalem, further cementing Washington's recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
    U.S. Independence Day celebrations have in the past been held at the ambassador's residence in Herzliya.

Former Iraqi MP Mithal Al-Alusi Supports Aid from Israel (MEMRI)
    Former Iraqi MP Mithal Al-Alusi said in an April 21, 2019, interview on Asia TV (Iraq) that he has no problem visiting Israel and putting "an end to the great Arab and Islamist lie" surrounding Jerusalem, which he said he does not view as an Arab capital.
    He said that he is more concerned with helping Iraqis and with Iraq's food security, which he said would improve if he traveled to Israel and built a "bridge between the half-a-million Iraqi Jews and Iraq."
    Al-Alusi also asserted that Israel is a legitimate state.

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Saudi Journalists Support Israel over Hamas - Zack Evans (MEMRI)
    'Abd Al-Hamid Al-Hakim, former director of the Middle East Center for Strategic and Legal Studies in Jeddah, tweeted on May 5:
    "May Allah protect Israel and its people. We will not let the treacherous hand of Iran and its agents in Gaza reach the Israeli people."
    "It's time to say this out loud: confronting the terror of Hamas is the responsibility of all the countries in the region and of the international community, not only of Israel. I say to the Arabs...: Do you want these murderers and agents of Iran to rule Jerusalem?!"
    Muhammad Al-Kahtani from Riyadh tweeted: "We stand with our cousins in Israel following the terror attack of the terrorist Hamas...on unarmed civilians. May Allah protect Israel and give it victory over the terrorist Hamas and everyone who supports it."

Video: Thousands Fill Miami's Marlins Park Stadium to Cheer Israeli Independence Day - Carli Teproff (Miami Herald)
    Thousands of children and staff members from 17 South Florida schools showed their support for Israel at a massive celebration Thursday held at Marlins Park to mark Israeli Independence Day.
    "It was the best independence day celebration I have been to outside of Israel," said Lior Haiat, Israel's consul general in Miami. "It is so much fun to be with the children and see their excitement."

Austrian Police Fine Students for Waving Israeli Flag at Anti-BDS Protest - Benjamin Weinthal (Jerusalem Post)
    Police in Vienna, Austria, fined four students 150 euros for waving an Israeli flag at a protest in March against advocates of the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign (BDS) targeting Israel. A police supervisor told the students the Israeli flag is a "provocation."
    A spokesperson for an organization that monitors anti-Semitism (Informations- und Beobachtingsstelle antisemitismus) noted that a speaker at the BDS rally was wearing a PFLP scarf "in solidarity with an organization classified by the EU, among others, as a terrorist organization."

The Palestinian Boycott of Israel Unmasked - Dan Diker and Adam Shay (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
    The Palestinian Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) has been unmasked as a Palestinian Authority-based organization that serves as the de-facto operational arm of the terror-linked BDS National Committee (BNC) in Ramallah.
    PACBI directs, mobilizes, and coordinates global BDS political warfare campaigns with the goal of isolating, delegitimizing, and ultimately dismantling the State of Israel.

Israel Will Not Allow In Activists Targeting Eurovision - Oliver Holmes (Guardian-UK)
    The Eurovision Song Contest will take place on 14-18 May in Tel Aviv with 42 participating acts.
    Israel Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon said, "This is going to be a huge party in which thousands of people will participate, but we will remain extremely vigilant in order to make sure that no one comes here in order to disturb and destroy."
    "We don't want to prohibit the entry to the State of Israel for people. But on the other hand, if we know for certain that we will be facing people who are anti-Israel activists and whose sole purpose is to disturb the event, then we will use the legal instruments that we have regarding the entry to Israel."

Record Number of Tourists Visit Israel from Muslim Countries - Raphael Ahren (Times of Israel)
    The Population and Immigration Authority reported on Monday that 72,109 citizens of Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Qatar, Malaysia, Indonesia, the UAE, Oman, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia visited Israel in 2018, an increase of 15% over 62,658 tourists from these countries in 2017.
    In 2018, 37,555 Indonesians, nearly 14,000 Malaysians, 12,363 Jordanians and 4,947 Egyptians came to Israel.
    Other Muslim visitors included 2,108 Moroccans, 949 Tunisians, 81 Qataris, 56 Omanis, 36 Algerians, 34 Kuwaitis, 25 Emiratis and six Saudis.

Israeli Air Force Ace Ran Ronen - Andy Wolf (War Is Boring)
    Brig.-Gen. (ret.) Ran Ronen flew over 350 combat sorties. By 1969, he had seven kills, four of them being MiG-21s.

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News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • U.S. Blasts UN for "Anti-Israel Bias" at Security Council Meeting - Edith M. Lederer
    U.S. envoy for international negotiations Jason Greenblatt lashed out at the UN's "anti-Israel bias" Thursday at an informal Security Council meeting called to discuss Israeli settlements. Greenblatt said it was "surprising and unfair" that Indonesia, Kuwait and South Africa organized the council meeting and condemned Israel's behavior when it "was not even invited to speak," while Palestinian diplomat Riad Malki was present.
        Greenblatt said settlements aren't keeping Israel and the Palestinians from negotiating peace, and that the council should condemn Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad for recently firing hundreds of rockets into Israel from Gaza. (AP-Toronto Globe and Mail)
        See also below Observations: Why Doesn't the UN Condemn Hamas Attacks on Israelis? - Jason Greenblatt (U.S. Mission to the UN)
  • U.S. Sanctions Hit Iran's Non-Energy Exports - Michael Lipin
    New U.S. sanctions targeting Iranian industrial metals will hit some of its most lucrative non-energy exports, as President Trump signed an executive order Wednesday seeking to deny Iran revenue from its exports of iron, steel, aluminum and copper. Iranian exports of industrial metals account for 10% of its export economy. (VOA)
        See also Executive Order on Imposing Sanctions on the Iron, Steel, Aluminum, and Copper Sectors of Iran
    "It remains the policy of the United States to deny Iran all paths to both a nuclear weapon and intercontinental ballistic missiles, and to counter the totality of Iran's malign influence in the Middle East. It is also the policy of the United States to deny the Iranian government revenue, including revenue derived from the export of products from Iran's iron, steel, aluminum, and copper sectors, that may be used to provide funding and support for the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, terrorist groups and networks, campaigns of regional aggression, and military expansion."  (White House)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • Israeli Resilience: Dodging Missiles on Sunday, Dancing in the Streets on Thursday - Herb Keinon
    Last Sunday, hundreds of rockets pounded Ashdod and Ashkelon and Sderot and Nir Am. Four of our countrymen were killed by indiscriminate rocket fire. Last Sunday, residents of communities around Gaza were worried about whether they would be able to shepherd their children into bomb shelters in under 20 seconds.
        Three days later on Independence day, the country's mood was light and carefree. The ability to shift from a near war footing one day to a country that feels softly at ease the next is one of the secrets of Israel's success. It is the ability to move on and not be paralyzed by fear or grief or pain or a sense of victimhood. It's called resilience.
        Thursday's picnics in the forests, the parties on the beaches, the thanksgiving prayers in the synagogues and the visits to army installations, all those routine acts we perform on Independence Day, took on a bit more meaning this year, coming - as they did - just days after the most recent attempt by our enemies to shut down the Zionist enterprise. (Jerusalem Post)
  • What Israel Has Managed to Do in Recent Years - Dror Eydar
    Where were we a little over 70 years ago, and where are we now? From a scattered, lowly people that was trampled by anyone who passed by and a third of whom went up as smoke in the crematoria, we rose from the ashes and bloomed into a strong, proud nation that is being courted by many countries.
        30 years ago in 1988, 4.44 million people were living in Israel, compared to 8.96 million last year. 30 years ago, the gross domestic product stood at $44 billion. Now it is more than 700% higher, standing at over $355 billion. The per capita GDP has increased from $10,000 30 years ago to over $38,000 last year. Israel's foreign currency reserves were $4 billion 30 years ago, and now they total $115 billion. In 1988, annual inflation stood at 16%, compared to only 1% in 2018.
        Since the beginning of the 21st century, the Israeli economy has grown by 90%, more than double the average growth among OECD nations. Exports grew from $10 billion in 1988 to $107 billion in 2018. The discovery of offshore natural gas reserves provides the resources for the production of 73% of the country's electricity.
        Israel is ranked third in the world (after Japan and Canada) in the number of college-educated citizens per capita. R&D comprises a bigger percent of Israel's GDP than any other country in the world. The writer is Israel's next ambassador to Italy. (Israel Hayom)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis:


  • Ignorance and Bigotry on Gaza Rockets - Alan M. Dershowitz
    All decent people should be outraged at the terrorist groups in Gaza that fired 698 rockets at Israeli civilians, killing four, injuring 234 and traumatizing thousands of innocent children. Imagine what other countries, including the U.S., would do if lethal rockets targeted their civilians. Yet Israel has responded with restraint. Many of the Palestinians killed and injured by Israeli efforts to stop the rocket rampage were terrorists or civilians who were put in harm's way by the terrorists.
        Israel ended its occupation of Gaza in 2005, when Israel removed every soldier and settler from that area. Gaza could have become Singapore on the Mediterranean, with its port and location. But Hamas decided to turn it instead into a large-scale rocket launcher. To use the "occupation" - there is no longer any occupation - as a justification for why "rockets must be fired" is to show both ignorance and bigotry.
        The world should recognize that if Israel's enemies stopped attacking its citizens, there would be peace. But if Israel stopped defending its citizens, there would be genocide. The writer is Professor of Law Emeritus at Harvard Law School. (Gatestone Institute)
  • Palestinian Islamic Jihad: Iran's Branch in Gaza - Yaakov Lappin
    Lt.-Col. (res.) Michael Segall, a senior analyst at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and a former head of the Iran Branch at the Israel Defense Forces' Military Intelligence Directorate, described Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) as a "kind of Iranian branch inside the Gaza Strip." The PIJ's former leader, Ramadan Salah, as well as its current chief, Ziad Nakhalah, are "familiar guests" in Iran. With Iran conducting training sessions for PIJ inside the Islamic Republic, the organization is an "explicit proxy of Iran, in contrast to Hamas, which is under Iranian influence but has its own agenda and is more independent."
        Segall summed up the Iranian proxy strategy: "The more Israel bleeds on its borders, the less it can engage Iran directly. This is a central component in Iranian doctrine. It's about asymmetric warfare....The Iranians work with a proxy toolbox against the Saudis, the Egyptians and Gulf states. This is not limited to Gaza."  The writer is a Research Associate at the Begin-Sadat Center. (Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies-Bar-Ilan University)
        See also Israel Blames Islamic Jihad for Spoiling Gaza Truce Talks - Felicia Schwartz and Dov Lieber
    Israeli officials say they are increasingly concerned that Gaza's second-largest militant group, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, is stoking conflict that neither Israel nor Hamas wants. "Israel is a bit concerned with regard to the strengthening process that Islamic Jihad is going through. It's become too dangerous," said Kobi Michael, a senior researcher at the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv. (Wall Street Journal)
  • Latest Round of Conflict with Hamas Won't Solve the Root Problem - David Horovitz
    The root of this round of violence, as of those that have preceded it in the 12 years since Hamas seized control of Gaza from the Palestinian Authority, is that Hamas, Islamic Jihad and their sponsors have no tolerance for the presence of the Jewish state. Since 2005, Israel has no presence in Gaza, no quarrel with Gaza, and would like nothing more than to see Gaza thrive. But Hamas has other ideas. The "concessions" that Hamas seeks to leverage from Israel, in this and all previous rounds of violence, are the same: to be able to bring in money and weaponry to cause greater harm to Israel. (Times of Israel)
  • Palestinian Leaders and Inconvenient Truths - Khaled Abu Toameh
    The Arab states continue to lie to the Palestinians. At the last meeting of Arab foreign ministers in Cairo, the Arabs "affirmed their commitment to support the budget of the state of Palestine by activating the resolution of the Arab summit in Tunisia to provide a $100 million safety net [to the Palestinians] each month." Yet despite the pledges of support, the Palestinians have not received any funds. In fact, Arab financial aid to the Palestinians has dropped over the past few years by 50%.
        The Arab countries have their own problems, particularly financial ones. Most Arab countries seem sick of the Palestinians and see them as ungrateful, particularly after the PLO's support for Saddam Hussein's 1990 invasion of Kuwait. (Gatestone Institute)
  • Corruption: A Major Cause of Palestinian Suffering - Pierre Rehov
    When you talk to Palestinians about the misappropriation of funds allocated by the international community, the first term they use is "corruption." Many Palestinians no longer hesitate to blame their leaders for their miserable living conditions. In Gaza, luxury villas and 5-star hotels flourish by the sea, dealerships offer the latest Mercedes and BMW models, and if the population continues to suffer, it is much more the result of the perpetual embezzlement by a minority protected by the leaders, than by the security blockade set up by Israel and Egypt.
        In Ramallah and Hebron, interviewees noted that they often hear about international aid through the media and on the Internet, but that they themselves never benefit from it. These people do not want a country where corruption is the rule. Nationalism, they say, does not nourish their children. (Jerusalem Post)
  • Israel Has the Right to Defend Itself - Noah Gal Gendler
    Imagine waking up in the middle of the night to a wailing siren - your warning that in less than 15 seconds, your house could be destroyed. Your body goes on autopilot, and sprints to the bomb shelter across the street. You barely make it inside when you hear a loud "boom," signifying that the rocket has struck a mere block away. Now imagine millions of ordinary citizens subjected to this experience.
        As sirens wail and rockets explode, mothers grab screaming children off the playground, fathers body-shield their kids on the side of the road, grandparents struggle to descend five floors - all in hopes of saving their and their families' lives. Imagine homes and kindergartens destroyed and ordinary citizens killed simply for being Israeli.
        Israel will continue protecting its citizens and ensuring their security. Would anyone allow terrorists to dictate their life? The writer is the Israeli ambassador to Kenya. (The Star-Kenya)

  • Other Issues

  • Iran Was Developing Shock Wave Generator for Nuclear Weapons Program - David Albright and Olli Heinonen
    The Iranian Nuclear Archive reveals that under its early 2000s nuclear weapons program, Iran was developing and manufacturing a key nuclear weapon subcomponent called a "shock wave generator." A full-scale, hemispherical test of the shock wave generator, using sophisticated diagnostic equipment, was conducted. The archive indicates that Iran had completed almost 2/3 of the tasks associated with the Shock Generator Project by 2002. Foreign assistance from at least one former member of the Soviet nuclear weapons program was key to Iran's development of this technology.
        Preserving these complex nuclear weapons capabilities was a priority for Iran in its 2003 reorientation plan. After 2003, the Shock Generator Project activities were given a cover purpose of performing non-nuclear military and non-military explosive tests, and some activities were shifted to universities, such as Malek Ashtar University of Technology, and research institutes. Iran prioritized maintaining the project's workforce. Iran's Organization of Defensive Innovation and Research (SPND) appears to have inherited the personnel and capabilities of the project. (Institute for Science and International Security)
  • Arab Polls Support Push for Compromise Israeli-Palestinian Peace Agreement - David Pollock and Catherine Cleveland
    Polls reveal a high level of Arab popular approval for both tough U.S. talk and action against Tehran, and enlisting Arab state support for an Israeli-Palestinian compromise agreement. The polls, commissioned by the Washington Institute, were conducted in late 2018 in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Jordan, Lebanon, and Egypt.
        Most Arab respondents were interested in Arab states playing a larger role in resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict - including by "providing incentives for both sides to moderate their positions." At the same time, a plurality of Emiratis, Kuwaitis, Jordanians, and Egyptians strongly disagree with efforts to cooperate with Israel now, before peace with the Palestinians, despite some quiet existing cooperation with several of these countries.
        Iran's regional allies are extremely unpopular. In a remarkable turnaround from the years before Syria's civil war, Sunni support for Lebanon's Hizbullah is now in the low single digits - except inside Lebanon where it barely hits 10%. However, Shiite support for Hizbullah is quite high. The writers are Fellows at The Washington Institute. (Washington Institute for Near East Policy)
  • Erdogan Has Just Made a Huge Mistake By Cancelling the Istanbul Elections - Louis Fishman
    The banging on pots and pans, the whistling and the hooting from cars started almost immediately in neighborhood after neighborhood of Istanbul as news spread of Turkey's Supreme Election Council's decision to annul Istanbul's mayoral election - disqualifying the anti-Erdogan opposition's win on March 31. Ekrem Imamoglu was stripped of his mayoral office just weeks after he had been certified as the winner.
        The Election Council's decision to cancel the election was based on a strange technicality: that some polling officials were not civil servants - indicating that they had indeed capitulated to government pressure. Istanbul is Erdogan's home turf, where he started his political career as mayor in 1994.
        EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini warned that Turkey was in breach of its commitments as member of the Council of Europe: cancelling the elections "go against the core aim of a democratic electoral process to ensure that the will of the people prevails." The writer is an assistant professor at Brooklyn College who has lived in Turkey. (Ha'aretz)
        See also What Istanbul's Mayor Found in 17 Days - Carlotta Gall
    Ekrem Imamoglu of the opposition Republican People's Party spent just 17 days as the mayor of Istanbul before the election council of Turkey annulled the vote and forced him from office. But the short peek he gained into the dealings of the mayor's office - revealing dozens of cars at his disposal, millions budgeted for officials' homes, and a city sinking into debt - gave him ammunition in the political battle ahead. (New York Times)
        See also Why Erdogan Will Win in Istanbul Next Time - Soner Cagaptay
    In the new Istanbul election on June 23, Erdogan will pull out all the legal, political, and diplomatic stops to bring his candidate to victory. The writer is director of the Turkish Research Program at The Washington Institute. (Washington Institute for Near East Policy)
  • Islamophobia - A Weapon to Silence Our Freedom of Speech - Adam Milstein
    Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia are often framed as equivalent phenomena and equal dangers. But these are two very different phenomena and should not be lumped together. A phobia is a strong, irrational fear of something that poses no real danger. Judeophobia is an irrational fear of Jews. Islamophobia is an irrational fear of the Islamic religion or Muslims generally. Anti-Semitism is a race-based ideology rooted in stereotypes - not based on fear, but ancient hatred.
        Islamophobia became prominent in 1989 when Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa, following the publication of Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses, which imposed a death penalty on Rushdie and also criminalized all the publishers and translators of the book. Since then, the Islamophobic label has been used increasingly to deter any scrutiny of any groups or individuals who happen to be Muslim, even when they are advancing radical or harmful ideas.
        The sword of Islamophobia is wielded to deliberately chill discourse and narrow the public marketplace of ideas. Today, the unfortunate reality is that any time somebody is brave enough to critique a dangerous ideology, the government of a Muslim country or even a terrorist network, they're silenced, shut down and stigmatized for engaging in Islamophobia. (Jerusalem Post)

  • Anti-Semitism

  • Anti-Semitism Is Thriving in America - Deborah Lipstadt
    In my neighborhood, there are a number of synagogues and churches. The church doors are open, welcoming all. The synagogues have armed guards, fences, door codes, and people who will stop strangers as they enter. Ostensibly these are welcomers, but their real job is to check whether these strangers wish to do the people inside harm.
        When it comes to anti-Semitism, the right and the left often find common ground. The far right talks about the federal government as the Zionist Occupation Government; the left sees the American Israel Public Affairs Committee as a behemoth of unbelievable proportions, driving American policy in ways that are antithetical to America's best interests.
        This absence of a dividing line between left and right when it comes to anti-Semitism was evident when former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke "liked" Rep. Ilhan Omar's tweet claiming that American support of Israel is "all about the Benjamins baby." Certainly the government must act, but in the interim, we must be willing to criticize our political allies when they cross the line into anti-Semitism.
        Acts of terror begin with words. We must place this kind of talk well outside the pale of legitimate discourse. There is nothing legitimate about these views. We must strive to banish open anti-Semitism so that we will no longer need armed guards screening worshippers as they enter their synagogues. The writer is professor of Holocaust history at Emory University. (Atlantic)

  • Weekend Features

  • Jewish NASA Astronaut Jessica Meir Gets Ready for Her First Trip into Space - Josefin Dolsten
    Jessica Meir has been preparing to go into space since the age of 5. Last month, NASA announced that Meir will be participating in her first mission. On Sept. 25, Meir will co-pilot a Russian Soyuz spacecraft launching from Kazakhstan to the International Space Station, with Russian cosmonaut Oleg Skripochka and Hazzaa Ali Almansoori, the first astronaut from the United Arab Emirates.
        Meir, the daughter of a mother from Sweden and an Iraqi-Israeli father, holds Swedish and American citizenship. She will be the first Swedish woman, the fourth Jewish woman and the 15th Jew overall to be part of a space mission. (JTA)
  • Palestinian Businessman Launches New Party - Khaled Abu Toameh
    Ashraf Jabari, 45, a Palestinian businessman from Hebron, announced over the weekend the establishment of the Reform and Development Party. Jabari, who belongs to a prominent clan in Hebron and previously worked for the PA security forces, said, "We just want to focus on the economy and ensure a better future for our people....The young people care more about a strong economy. They want jobs. They want economic stability....Most people realize that the economic situation was much better before the Oslo Accords. Let's focus now on the economic track. We can deal with the political track later."
        Asked about charges that he's promoting normalization with Israel, Jabari said: "Nearly 100% of the Palestinians are already doing business with Israel in all fields. We buy food from Israel. We have industrial and trade ties with Israel. Every day, some 200,000 Palestinians enter Israel, legally and illegally, for work and business. Two thousand Palestinian businessmen have special permits to enter Israel."  (Jerusalem Post)
  • Historic Jewish Sites in Eastern Jerusalem - Gabriel Barkay
    One may mistakenly assume that areas within Jerusalem containing large Arab populations are of less historical significance to Jews and Christians, yet nothing can be further from the truth. Within the Arab neighborhood of Shuafat is the hill of Tel el-Ful. In 1922, American archaeologist William F. Albright identified Tel el-Ful as the biblical city of Gibeah, recounted in the Book of Samuel as the site from where King Saul, Israel's first king, ruled. On this site, an ancient fortress was discovered, believed by some archaeologists to date to his reign.
        Jebl Mukaber has long been associated by tradition as the place referred to in the story of the Binding of Isaac recounted in the Book of Genesis, where Abraham "looked and saw the place from afar." Topographically, this would have been the first place from where Abraham would have been able to see Jerusalem and Mount Moriah - the Temple Mount.
        Terms like east and west Jerusalem may sound definitive, but Jerusalem's rich archaeological heritage is not bound by any arbitrary lines in the sand. The writer, a professor at Bar-Ilan University, is the co-director of the Temple Mount Sifting Project and was the recipient of the Jerusalem Prize for Archaeological Research. (Jerusalem Post)

Why Doesn't the UN Condemn Hamas Attacks on Israelis? - Jason Greenblatt (U.S. Mission to the UN)

U.S. Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt told a UN Security Council meeting on May 9, 2019:
  • "It is baffling and disappointing to see the obvious, continual anti-Israel bias here....It is truly shameful that in these halls there have been nearly 700 resolutions condemning actions of Israel - the region's only real democracy - yet not one condemning Hamas' attacks on Israelis or its abuse and neglect of the very people it purports to govern."
  • "Forgive me for pointing out the elephant in the room, which is that Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad - not Israel - are the problem here. The Israelis, as they celebrate their Independence Day, are reeling from 36 hours of unprovoked attacks on them, their families, and their homes by Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad."
  • "Where is the urgent condemnation from this room for that unconscionable, sustained attack? Where is the sympathy and the solidarity for the people of Israel? All I hear is silence....I did not hear anyone - not one of you - mention the 10 Israelis who have been murdered and the hundreds injured by Palestinians in the past year in terror attacks."
  • "Another critical issue that many ignore as an obstacle to peace is the Palestinian Authority's practice of rewarding terrorists....What would you do if a neighboring government offered lifelong bounties for the killing of your citizens?"
  • "Let's stop pretending that settlements are what is keeping the sides from a negotiated peaceful solution. This farce and obsessive focus on one aspect of this complicated conflict helps no one."
  • "We will continue to speak the truth, even when it is not welcome. The truth is that Israel, just days ago, came under a vicious, cynical, unprovoked attack that was intended to terrify, kill, and maim Israelis. The truth is that there has been no effort in the halls of the United Nations to hold the terrorists who perpetrated that attack accountable."
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