September 26, 2019

In-Depth Issues:

Al-Qaeda, ISIS Plan to Attack Jews, Israelis in India (ANI-Times of India)
    Intelligence agencies have warned of plans by al-Qaeda and Islamic State to attack Jewish and Israeli communities in India during their holiday season in September and October.
    This includes plans to attack the Israeli embassy in New Delhi, as well as synagogues, Jewish schools, restaurants and hotels frequented by Israelis.

At Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, Call to "Establish Caliphate to Mobilize Army and Liberate Palestine"  (MEMRI)
    On Sep. 13, 2019, Palestinian Sheikh Abu Mahdi Baydoun said at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem:
    "Hasn't the time come for you [to]... support those who loyally strive to establish an Islamic state...a Caliphate that will mobilize its army and liberate the blessed land of Palestine?"

American Astronaut with Israeli Father Blasts Off for Space Mission - Chelsea Gohd (Space.com-Israel Hayom)
    NASA astronaut Jessica Meir, 44, began a six-month mission aboard the International Space Station on Wednesday.
    Meir lifted off from Kazakhstan in the Soyuz MS-15 spacecraft alongside Hazza al-Mansouri, the first UAE astronaut, and Oleg Skripochka, a Russian cosmonaut.

Iraqi Shiite Leader Muqtada al-Sadr Calls for Return of Pro-Iran Militias from Syria - Iran Desk (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
    Over the past year, Muqtada al-Sadr, leader of Iraq's Shiite Sadrist movement, has sharply criticized Iran's expansionist regional policy and its support for the Iraqi Shiite militias allied with Iran.
    He called for their return from Syria to Iraq because the Iraqi people are paying the price with their own blood for these wars that Iran has been waging through them, including within Iraqi territory.
    Al-Sadr has emphasized the importance of having these Iraqi militias operate under the single command of the Iraqi army and the Iraqi government.
    During the escalation of tension between Iran and the U.S. and Israel over the past few months, al-Sadr has been working on a regional and international level to distance Iraq from this dispute, while expressing concern that a war between all sides will lead to "catastrophic consequences for Iraq."

Cousins Reunite 75 Years after the Holocaust - Ashley Boucher (People)
    For 75 years, Morris Sana, now 87, and his cousin and best friend, Simon Mairowitz, now 85, believed each other had died during World War II.
    But this month they were reunited in Israel after Sana's niece and daughter connected with relatives on Facebook.

News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • The World Awakens to Iranian Aggression - Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo
    Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo told the 2019 summit of United Against Nuclear Iran on Wednesday in New York: "Iran is the aggressor and not the aggrieved....From murdering and torturing their own people, to killing Americans from Lebanon to Iraq, to harboring al-Qaeda even today, Iran has rampaged for four decades, and sadly with too few consequences."
        "During the nuclear deal negotiations, Iran's malign activity didn't abate one bit....Thanks to Israel, we now know they were also protecting, hiding, and preserving their nuclear knowhow at that very same time. Indeed, after the deal was signed and the pallets of cash were delivered, they continued backing Hizbullah, Hamas, the Houthis, and Shia militias throughout the region. The world too much appeased them, and then underwrote their terrorism."
        "More and more nations are beginning to stand up to Iran's thuggish behavior, and disengaging economically....Countries are indeed awakening to the truth that the more Iran lashes out, the greater our pressure will and should be....Today we are imposing sanctions on certain Chinese entities for knowingly transporting oil from Iran contrary to United States sanctions....And we're telling China and all nations, know that we will sanction every violation of sanctionable activity."  (State Department)
  • U.S. to Bar Entry to Senior Iranian Officials - Arshad Mohammed
    The U.S. on Wednesday took steps to bar senior Iranian officials and their immediate family from entering the country as immigrants or non-immigrants, the White House said. A senior U.S. official said, "For years, the Iranian regime has attacked, criticized, and aggressively worked against the United States. Meanwhile, hypocritical regime leaders and their family members have been exploiting our freedom and prosperity. They come to America to go to our schools, seek jobs, enjoy our entertainment, and take in our culture. [Such] officials and their families don't deserve the privilege and luxury of coming to the United States."  (Reuters)
  • As Attack Drones Multiply, Israeli Firms Develop Defenses - Ilan Ben Zion
    Israel, one of the pioneers of drone warfare, is now on the front lines of an arms race to protect against drone attacks. Over a dozen Israeli firms presented cutting-edge anti-drone technologies at London's Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) exhibition this month.
        Israel Aerospace Industries says its Popstar system can track and identify flying objects day or night without being detected. Israeli company Vorpal says its system can identify a drone - and locate its operator - within two seconds. During this year's Eurovision song contest in Tel Aviv, police caught more than 20 operators who were flying drones in no-fly zones. (AP-Washington Post)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • Iran Could Fire Cruise Missiles at Israel from Iraq - Yoav Limor
    Iran could fire missiles at Israel from Iraqi territory like the ones that struck Saudi oil facilities last week, Brig.-Gen. Dror Shalom, the head of the IDF Military Intelligence Research Division, told Israel Hayom. "My working assumption is that it's only a matter of time," he said. "It could be in the form of a surface-to-surface missile, cruise missiles, or long-range UAVs."  (Israel Hayom)
  • Report: Islamic Jihad Seeking to Build Rockets in West Bank
    Islamic Jihad is seeking to set up rocket production capabilities in the West Bank to attack cities in central Israel, Israel's Channel 12 reported Wednesday. Photographs showed rockets assembled in the West Bank city of Tulkarem. Three Islamic Jihad operatives were arrested this week by Palestinian Authority security forces, who seized a rocket prototype. (Times of Israel)
  • Palestinian Stabs Israeli Woman near Modiin
    An Israeli woman, 22, was stabbed Wednesday near the central city of Modiin by a 14-year-old Palestinian from the West Bank, who was arrested. (Times of Israel)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis:
  • The UN's Dangerous Refusal to Face Facts on Iran - Israeli UN Ambassador Danny Danon
    After an Iranian drone and missile attack devastated Saudi oil facilities, the UN General Assembly gathered to discuss the gravest threats to international peace and security. Through its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and with the use of its national airlines, Iran has spread its tentacles to Yemen, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, as well as Gaza, dedicating years and more than $7 billion annually to building this extensive terrorist network.
        Due to its narrow borders, Israel lacks the strategic depth necessary for our defense forces to detect and respond to an attack before it threatens population centers. An Iranian military presence near the Golan Heights virtually guarantees that any strike will result in Israeli civilian casualties. Thus, Israel has conducted hundreds of strikes against IRGC and Hizbullah forces in Syria to prevent Iran from gaining a permanent foothold.
        All along, the United Nations has remained silent in the face of Iran's growing aggression. For years, Tehran has staged terrorist operations in dozens of countries across six continents. Last year, Israel revealed the existence of a nuclear site Iran constructed in violation of the nuclear agreement. Two weeks ago, we exposed another Iranian nuclear research facility that the regime never disclosed. While Israel continues to sound the alarm about Iran's genocidal ambitions, the regime itself has been steadily building its own case for why it is deserving of international sanction. (New York Post)
  • Western "Peacemakers" Lend Aid and Comfort to Those Who Try to Murder Jews - Dexter Van Zile
    In their efforts to promote peace in the Holy Land, some Christian peacemaking organizations end up lending aid and comfort to folks who have murdered (or have tried to murder) Jews. The worst offenders are associated with the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI). These activists, who have been recruited by the World Council of Churches, come to the Holy Land and annoy Israeli soldiers as they protect Jews. They wear brown vests with the logo of a cross and a dove on the back and "World Council of Churches" stenciled across the top to give their wearers an air of authority.
        In November 2016, EAPPI volunteers visited the homes of two Palestinians who were killed while attempting to murder Roy Harel and his family in their home in Eli. In a blog post, they described their efforts to console the families of the two Palestinians, describing the would-be killers as good boys who were doing well in school. The last thing the Holy Land needs is a bunch of well-meaning but ignorant outsiders. The writer is Christian media analyst for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting and Analysis - CAMERA. (Israel Hayom)

Why BDS Fails the 3D Test on Anti-Semitism - Natan Sharansky (Newsweek)
  • To distinguish between legitimate criticism of Israel and anti-Semitism, 20 years ago I formulated the 3D test for anti-Semitism. The three Ds are demonization, delegitimization, and double standards - the three main tools that anti-Semites employed against Jews throughout history. This test shows that the same tools are being used today against the collective Jew - the Jewish State.
  • Many who support the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement may do so out of a naive belief that it is working to achieve a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But the movement takes it cue from the BDS National Committee based in Ramallah in the West Bank. It has one goal: the destruction of the State of Israel - a goal cleverly masked behind the veneer of fighting for human rights.
  • When caricatures against Israeli leaders repeat the worst anti-Semitic caricatures of Czarist Russia or Nazi Germany, depicting Israelis as crucifying Palestinians and portraying Palestinians as living in Nazi death camps - that is demonization.
  • When the legitimacy of the Jewish State is denied and, in the language of some of the founders and key promoters of BDS, there is no place for a Jewish state in the Middle East in any borders - that is delegitimization. Indeed, the movement's leader, Omar Barghouti, has said unequivocally: "Most definitely, we oppose a Jewish state in any part of Palestine.''
  • When the Jewish State is singled out for criticism that not even the vilest dictatorship is subject to and it is held to standards that not even the most vibrant democracy is judged by - those are double standards.

    The writer, a former Prisoner of Zion in the Soviet Union, served as Israel's Minister for Diaspora Affairs, Deputy Prime Minister, and Chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel.