May 11, 2021
Special Edition

In-Depth Issues:

U.S. Blocks UN Security Council Statement on Jerusalem - Jacob Magid (Times of Israel)
    After the UN Security Council held an emergency meeting on the subject of Jerusalem, the U.S. Mission to the UN prevented the release of a joint statement on Monday, a diplomat involved told the Times of Israel.
    14 of the 15 Security Council members backed a draft statement, but it failed to move forward after the U.S. asked for more time to deliberate the matter, adding that such a step might not be useful at this time, two diplomats present said.
    A spokesperson for the U.S. Mission said, "The United States is engaging constructively to ensure any action by the Security Council is helpful in de-escalating tensions."
    See also Secretary of State Blinken Says Rocket Attacks on Israel Must Stop "Immediately" (Reuters)

Photos: Israel Under Attack (Jerusalem Post)
    Israelis take cover as a siren sounds warning of incoming rockets from Gaza during Jerusalem Day on Monday.

Jewish Leaders Denounce Palestinian Incitement, Violence, and Rocket Attacks (Conference of Presidents)
    The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations said Monday:
    "We condemn the willful incitement by the Palestinian Authority and Hamas that is instigating violence and unrest in Jerusalem, as well as the continuing rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza."
    "We stand in solidarity with Israel as she continues to face lawlessness and rioting spurred by Palestinian leaders who are shamelessly fanning the flames of hate and violence with apparent disregard for the safety and security of Palestinians and Israelis alike."
    "The rocket attacks, which continue to target Israeli cities including Jerusalem, requiring thousands of Israeli civilians to protect themselves in bomb shelters, constitute a clear violation of international law and must be condemned by the international community at once."
    See also ADL Condemns Rocket Attacks on Jerusalem (ADL)
    The Anti-Defamation League said Monday:
    "We strongly condemn Hamas' firing rockets at Jerusalem and across southern Israel. We stand by Israel's right to self-defense."
    "Those who explicitly seek to destroy the State of Israel, including Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the government of Iran, are fanning the flames of hatred and stoking animosity."
    "We are concerned by those who demonize Israel's conduct while ignoring Israel's right to self-defense and its obligation to protect all of its citizens."
    See also Board of Deputies of British Jews Condemns Hamas Rocket Barrage Against Israel (Board of Deputies)

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Israel Issues First Aid Guidelines to Prevent PTSD after Rockets (Jerusalem Post)
    Israel's Health Ministry issued guidelines on how to prevent people from developing Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder after a rocket attack.
    Focus: Make a commitment to the distressed individual by telling them, "You are not alone, I am here with you."
    Encouragement: Encourage the distressed individual to perform simple actions such as contacting relatives, preparing food, or even attempting to care for another distressed individual.
    Question: Ask simple questions that will allow the distressed individual to think and make analytical decisions. Avoid discussing emotional distress which could increase distress.
    Construction: Help the distressed individual recreate the sequence of the events to reorient their thoughts. Stress that the threatening event is over and that the person is no longer in danger.

News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • Rockets Fired at Jerusalem from Gaza - Felicia Schwartz
    Palestinians in Gaza fired a barrage of rockets at Jerusalem on Monday for the first time since 2014. Hamas claimed responsibility for the rocket fire. State Department spokesman Ned Price said the U.S. condemned Hamas rockets fired into Israel, calling them "an unacceptable escalation." He said the U.S. recognized Israel's right to defend itself. (Wall Street Journal)
        See also Palestinians Fire 250 Rockets at Israel - Judah Ari Gross
    Palestinian terror groups in Gaza fired a massive barrage of rockets at the Israeli city of Ashkelon at dawn on Tuesday, striking two apartment buildings and wounding 19 people. Over 200 rockets and mortar shells were fired toward Israel from 6 p.m. Monday to 6 a.m. Tuesday, with almost constant rocket fire striking Israeli communities near Gaza. Dozens of rockets were intercepted by Israel's Iron Dome missile defense batteries.
        The Israel Defense Forces responded with air strikes on targets in Gaza. Gaza's Hamas-run Health Ministry reported at least 24 people were killed. The IDF said at least 15 of those killed were members of Hamas who were launching rockets at Israel.
        IDF Spokesperson Brig.-Gen. Hidai Zilberman said a third of the rockets fired from Gaza landed inside the Strip and a number of those killed in Gaza, including a number of children, were struck by those Palestinian rockets. He said Israel was taking steps to avoid Palestinian civilian casualties, but that Hamas deliberately operates within densely populated areas to use the residents as human shields. Zilberman said the fighting was expected to last at least several days.
        On Monday, an Israeli man was injured when Palestinians in Gaza fired an anti-tank missile at his car near Sderot. Palestinian Islamic Jihad released video footage of the attack. (Times of Israel-Ha'aretz)
  • Israel: Palestinian Violence Is a Direct Result of the Failure of the International Community - Dmitriy Shapiro
    Israeli Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan said Monday: "What we are seeing now is the direct result of the international community's failure to understand the reasons behind the Palestinians' violence. The UN, the Security Council, the Quartet and many others who have refused to unequivocally condemn Palestinian incitement have only served to embolden Hamas terrorists, now firing rockets at Jerusalem and innocent civilians all over Israel."
        "Israel has no other choice but to defend its citizens from these indiscriminate attacks, and we demand that the international community hold the Palestinians accountable and forcibly condemn their actions."
        Former Israeli UN Ambassador Danny Danon said: "One thing which I cannot accept is to hear from different countries the remark calling both sides to show restraint. It's unacceptable to use the term 'both sides.' You cannot put Israel, a sovereign democracy, together with a terrorist organization that is sending rockets into civilian populations."  (JNS)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • Israel: Palestinian Rocket Attacks on Israel Are War Crimes
    Hamas and other terrorist organizations in Gaza fired a salvo of rockets on Monday at Jerusalem, and additional salvos on Ashkelon and Israeli communities along the border with Gaza. Hamas launched an indiscriminate attack on a civilian population - a war crime.
        Israel will take any action necessary to protect its citizens and will not allow the terrorist organizations to attack the civilian population of Israel without a response. It is the right and the duty of every state to protect its citizens. We call on the international community to condemn the rocket fire and Palestinian terrorism targeting Israeli citizens, and to support Israel's right of self-defense.
        Prior to these attacks, Israel sought to achieve calm in Jerusalem and took every measure to prevent conflict and allow freedom of worship. Complete responsibility for the situation rests with the terrorist organizations and on the unrestrained incitement by the Palestinian Authority. (Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
  • Who Is Behind the Disturbances in Jerusalem? - Pinhas Inbari
    The recent violence in Jerusalem was not spontaneous. It was clearly pre-planned. Firebombs were produced by Palestinian organizations and stored in the mosques on the Temple Mount, along with fireworks that were used as weapons. This was mostly the work of Hamas, but it was prompted by outside Middle East players.
        Jordan, unfortunately, is one of the cooks stirring the pot. PA President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah movement is also calling to mobilize to defend the al-Aqsa mosque, in competition with Hamas which has threatened terrorism to defend al-Aqsa. At the same time, the leader of Hamas in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, wants to show everyone that Gaza is the leading Palestinian issue. (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
        See also Anatomy of an Intentional Escalation - David Wurmser (Center for Security Policy)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis:
  • Video: Hamas, Not Israel, Is Responsible for the Violence - Amb. Dore Gold
    Amb. Dore Gold told BBC on Monday: "If you have violent individuals from Hamas going into a mosque and using it to attack Israelis, you have to bring that to an end. I don't care where you are. If you are in St. Peter's Cathedral or if you are in some other religious site, violence has to be brought to an end."
        Q: People from the outside will see a march that goes through the Muslim Quarter of the Old City and will see that as the reason why tensions were so high.
        Gold: "I know that the march of Israelis with the national flag is something which has occurred for many years now and I don't see that as some new factor that's been poured onto the situation that has created the problem."  (BBC)
  • The "Al-Aqsa Is in Danger" Lie that Sets Jerusalem Alight - Nadav Shragai
    In the riots on the Temple Mount, everything is coordinated: The ideological line is that of the Muslim Brotherhood. The operation on the ground and the incitement is handled by Hamas, the Islamic Movement, and some Arabs in eastern Jerusalem. The Palestinian Authority, as usual, is along for the ride. The goal is to move the conflict onto religious lines after the nationalist issue turned out to be insufficient for a conflagration. The way to do this is through the same old lie, "Al-Aqsa is in danger."
        This claim has served as the catalyst for terrorist attacks, rioting, and now a semi-uprising whose purpose is to weaken Israel's hold on and sovereignty over the Old City of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. The discourse that radical Islam drags the world into focuses almost entirely on the Temple Mount's holy status for Muslims. No one mentions that the state of the Jewish people, which recaptured the holiest place in Judaism in 1967, then placed it in the hands of a competing religion, Islam, for which it is only the third-holiest site. There is no example of another concession like this in interfaith relations anywhere in the world.
        The writer, a fellow of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, has documented Jerusalem for Ha'aretz and Israel Hayom for over 30 years. (Israel Hayom)
        See also The "Al-Aqsa Is in Danger" Libel: The History of a Lie - Nadav Shragai (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
  • Palestinians Still Act as if Violence Can Make the Jews Go Away - Jonathan S. Tobin
    On May 1, 1921, an anti-Jewish pogrom by local Arabs began in British-ruled Palestine. By the time the violence ended, 47 Jews had been slain and another 146 injured. It had been inspired by agitators who sought to send a message that not only were the Jews not welcome, but that they could be killed with impunity. The importance of the centennial of the 1921 riots lies in the fact that the same delusion that motivated the agitators of that slaughter is still helping to fuel the ongoing violence and make peace impossible.
        Palestinians are still largely operating under the same belief that more bloodshed will alter the outcome of a struggle that was actually decided 73 years ago. They still think that somehow the world will help them reverse the verdict of history and enable them to eliminate what the Jews have built.
        Moreover, those Americans who seek to pressure Israel or who buy into the anti-Semitic libels of the Jewish state are only prolonging the agony of both sides, rather than promoting peace. They are equally responsible for the continuance of a conflict that should have been resolved long ago. (JNS)
  • Understanding the Current Sheikh Jarrah (Jerusalem) Property Dispute - Prof. Avi Bell
    The current dispute in Sheikh Jarrah involves several properties with tenants whose leases have expired, and in a few cases squatters with no tenancy rights at all, against owner-landlords who have successfully won court orders evicting the squatters and overstaying tenants. Critics claim that the Israeli government should (or even that international law requires the Israeli government to) deny the owners their property rights, but these claims are not based on any credible legal argument.
        Since the owners are Jews while the squatters are Arabs, the critics demand that Israel discriminate against the owners due to their Jewish ethnicity. It's obvious that the critics would pay no notice if the owners were Palestinian and the squatters were Palestinian or Jewish. (Kohelet Policy Forum)
        See also Fox News Mangles Reporting on Sheikh Jarrah - Karen Bekker
    The situation in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of Jerusalem is essentially a private property dispute that has been politicized to forward an anti-Israel narrative and is being manipulated on an international scale. Fox News claimed on May 8 that the court decision to evict certain residents was based on "an obscure Israeli law," but there is nothing "obscure" about the requirement that tenants pay rent. (CAMERA)

Jerusalem Riots: What the Media Ignore - David Harsanyi (National Review)
  • Israel does not "attack" the Al-Aqsa mosque - though it is impelled to quell riots occasionally. Israel does not even occupy it. The country handed custodianship of the site to Jordan's Hashemites to avoid conflict. By contrast, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem is peaceful because local Christians tend not to hurl stones at praying civilians nearby.
  • The recent rioting in Jerusalem was sparked by the culmination of a long legal battle involving Palestinian families living on land that had been taken from Jewish families after 1948. Palestinians are upset that the case was adjudicated by a court of law rather than by the UN or a mob. Then again, it's a convenient excuse for more violence.
  • It is the Palestinians who demand a Judenfrei West Bank and eastern Jerusalem. There is no other region in the world, no other conflict - involving no other ethnicity, race, or faith - in which Americans accept this kind of prejudice.
  • Indeed, the real reason for Palestinian anger is that Israel is again celebrating Jerusalem's reunification this week. From 1948 to 1967, Jews had been banned from their holy sites in the city.
  • An average American probably needs a translator to make sense of the coverage of this conflict. When the media say "settlers," they mean "Jewish homeowners." When they say "ultranationalist Jews," they mean "Israelis with yarmulkes." When they say "Palestinian protesters," they mean "rock-throwing rioters." When they say, "Israeli car hits Palestinian," they mean "Palestinians throw rocks at Israeli car until it loses control and crashes - and then attempt to lynch the people inside."
  • And when someone says "provocation," they mean "the Jewish presence in Jerusalem," where Al-Aqsa sits on the rubble of an ancient Jewish temple in a city with a permanent Jewish presence.

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