September 4, 2023
A project of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
Israel's Global Embassy for National Security and Applied Diplomacy
Dan Diker, President - Yechiel Leiter, Director General

In-Depth Issues:

Iran Accuses Israel of Sabotaging Its Missile Program by Sending Faulty Parts - Jon Gambrell (AP-Washington Post)
    Iran accused Israel on Thursday of trying to sabotage its ballistic missile program through faulty foreign parts that could explode, damaging or destroying the weapons before they could be used.

Israel, U.S. to Conduct Drills Simulating Attack on Iran Nuclear Facilities - Joe Saballa (Defense Post)
    Israel will conduct a series of joint exercises with the U.S. in the coming months, including a simulation of a potential attack on Iranian nuclear facilities, Israel's Channel 12 reported.
    Another drill will practice Israel's response to a multi-front missile attack.

Rival Eritrean Groups Clash in Israel (i24News)
    Eritrean asylum seekers in Israel who oppose the regime in Eritrea rioted outside a conference of regime supporters organized by the Eritrean embassy in Tel Aviv on Saturday.
    121 people were wounded, including 30 police officers. 18,500 Eritreans currently live in Israel.

Ahead of High Holidays, Israel Warns Travelers of Kidnapping Threat - Lazar Berman (Times of Israel)
    The Israel National Security Council's Counter-Terrorism Bureau issued updated travel warnings on Thursday ahead of September's Jewish High Holidays, emphasizing the threat of kidnapping by Iranian-backed groups abroad and by Hamas.
    Iranian forces and their proxies are continuing to contact Israelis abroad under the guise of businessmen in order to kidnap them.
    Jews and Israelis in countries bordering Iran, or in Africa or the Mediterranean Basin, face a particular threat from Iranian operatives.
    The NSC also warned that Hamas is trying to target Israelis abroad and that Israeli intelligence agencies thwarted such an attack in a foreign country, Israel's Channel 12 reported.
    Iranian plots have been uncovered over the past year against Jews and Israelis in Azerbaijan, Cyprus, Greece, and Georgia.

Palestinian Terrorists Open Fire on Arab School in Jerusalem Using Israeli Curriculum (JNS)
    Terrorists affiliated with the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, an armed militia of PA leader Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah faction, opened fire at a new Arab school in the Kafr Aqab neighborhood of Jerusalem on Wednesday because it is using the curriculum of Israeli Arab schools.
    85% of Arab students in eastern Jerusalem follow the Palestinian Authority curriculum.

Palestinian Governments Compete over Who Kills Most Innocent Jews - Itamar Marcus (Palestinian Media Watch)
    Fatah and Hamas compete daily for the hearts and minds of Palestinians by bragging who killed the most Israelis.
    The two not only publicize their own terror attacks but take credit for the other's attacks in which Israelis were killed.
    Since the PA's establishment in 1994, through its incessant demonization of Israel and Jews it has convinced Palestinians that killing Israelis is valuable for both nationalistic reasons and Islamic reasons.
    Because the PA indoctrination has been so successful, the Palestinian population supports the killing of Israelis, and all Palestinian movements compete for popularity by trying to murder Israelis and boasting about their terror murders afterward.
    The writer is founder and director of Palestinian Media Watch.

Palestinian Fighter Killed while Preparing Bomb near Nablus (IMEMC)
    Ayed Adel Al-Quni, 30, was killed on Wednesday in Kafr Qalil, south of Nablus, after the accidental detonation of a crude explosive device during preparation.

Kuwait Hires over 500 Palestinian Teachers (Kuwait Times)
    The Kuwaiti Ministry of Education announced on Wednesday that it has contracted 531 teachers from the West Bank and Gaza.

News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • UN Demands that Lebanon's Forces and Hizbullah Allow Unannounced Peacekeeping Patrols - Edith M. Lederer
    The UN Security Council on Thursday voted 13-0, with Russia and China abstaining, to approve a resolution extending the UNIFIL peacekeeping mission in Lebanon for another year and reaffirming that UNIFIL forces do not require prior authorization or permission from the Lebanese military or Hizbullah to patrol. Lebanese officials had pushed to remove this provision.
        Israel has repeatedly accused Hizbullah of impeding UNIFIL peacekeepers from carrying out their mandate. Israel's Foreign Ministry welcomed the renewal of UNIFIL's mandate until Aug. 31, 2024. (AP-Washington Post)
  • Hizbullah and Iran Focus on West Bank in Meetings with Hamas and Islamic Jihad Leaders
    On Sep. 1, Hizbullah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah and Iranian Foreign Minister Hussein Amir-Abdollahian met with Ziad Nakhala, Secretary General of Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), and Saleh Al-Arouri, Deputy Head of Hamas' Political Bureau, to discuss "the recent upswing in resistance activities in the West Bank." During these meetings, Amir-Abdollahian referenced Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's directive to arm the West Bank. (Iran Dossier)
  • Egypt Halted Gas Exports to Europe after Running Low at Home - Claire Parker
    When Russia invaded Ukraine last year, and European demand for natural gas skyrocketed, Egypt ramped up its gas exports. The 2015 discovery of the Zohr field - the biggest gas find in the Mediterranean - led to Egyptian exports of 60% of its natural gas production to Europe in 2022.
        Yet a year later, gas shortages have left Cairo with rolling blackouts, as exports were halted in June. A ballooning population and hotter summers have increased domestic demand for electricity in the Arab world's most populous country. Moreover, there was declining output amid reports of water filtration problems at the Zohr field.
        Under a deal inked in June 2022 with Israel and the EU, Israeli gas has been supplied to Egyptian plants to be converted into liquid form and sent to Europe. On Aug. 23, Israel approved the expansion of natural gas exports to Egypt from the Tamar field. (Washington Post)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • IDF Arrests Hamas Terrorists in Jenin - Yonah Jeremy Bob
    Israeli forces operated inside the Jenin refugee camp on Monday, where they arrested members of the Hamas-affiliated al-Ayash battalion, who attempted to launch rockets from the West Bank at Israeli communities multiple times in the previous months. Palestinian sources reported clashes between armed gunmen and the IDF. (Jerusalem Post)
  • Soldier Killed in Palestinian Truck Ramming Was Immigrant from Ukraine - Itamar Eichner
    Sgt. Maksym Molchanov was identified as the soldier who was killed on Thursday when a Palestinian rammed his truck into troops near a checkpoint. Molchanov arrived in Israel in 2017 at the age of 15 from Kharkiv in Ukraine as part of a youth program. He immigrated on his own and enlisted in a combat unit. A year ago he donated bone marrow to save the life of a child in Germany. (Ynet News)
  • Israel Criticizes UNESCO Plan to Designate Ancient Jericho as Palestinian World Heritage Site - Hanan Greenwood
    Israel has criticized the UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) for its plan to designate the ancient city of Jericho as a Palestinian World Heritage site. According to Jewish tradition, the Israelites crossed into the Land of Israel at Jericho after wandering in the desert for forty years following the Exodus from Egypt. "This is not only an insult to Jews, but also an insult to Christians around the world who admire the site for its biblical history," said Knesset Member Dan Illouz.
        "The Palestinian Authority is systematically working to erase all ties of the Jewish people to the Land of Israel. This is evident on the Temple Mount, where valuable archaeological findings were destroyed, as well as throughout Judea and Samaria, where acts of vandalism and deliberate destruction of biblical evidence frequently occur."  (Israel Hayom)
  • Palestinians Riot on Gaza Border - Emanuel Fabian
    Hundreds of Palestinians rioted at the Gaza-Israel border on Friday, hurling explosive devices and attempting to break through the security barrier. Footage posted by Palestinian media showed rioters detonating an explosive device at a gate and Palestinians attempting to cut through the fence with bolt cutters. A report on Thursday claimed that Hamas was considering a resumption of regular attempts to storm the border, as occurred from March 2018 until the end of 2019. During those attempts, more than 200 Palestinians were killed and thousands were injured. (Times of Israel)
  • IDF Raids Palestinian Gun Workshop - Emanuel Fabian
    Israeli security forces on Thursday raided a Palestinian workshop in Beitunia used to manufacture firearms. Seven lathes, six handguns, three assault rifles, and dozens of weapon parts were confiscated.
        In Zababdeh, close to Jenin, IDF troops located and destroyed dozens of primed explosive devices made out of fire extinguishers. (Times of Israel)
  • Netanyahu Meets with Visiting Congressional Black Caucus
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with 10 Democratic members of the Congressional Black Caucus in Jerusalem on Sunday, during a visit to Israel sponsored in part by the American Israel Education Foundation, an affiliate of AIPAC. Netanyahu emphasized that the meeting was "an opportunity to cement our relationship which is always based on a bipartisan relationship between Israel and both sides of the House and both sides of the Senate."  (Prime Minister's Office)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis:
  • The Escalation of Palestinian Terrorism - Prof. Kobi Michael
    The Hamas leadership continues to encourage Palestinian terrorism in the West Bank and to develop the terrorist infrastructure. While the scope of IDF activity in the Palestinian cities is growing, the scope of Palestinian terrorism has expanded and continues to take a toll on Israeli citizens. The expanding terror system rests on a psychological infrastructure grounded in the consciousness of the armed struggle planted in the hearts of the young Palestinians.
        The writer, a senior researcher at INSS and editor in chief of Strategic Assessment, served as deputy director general and head of the Palestinian desk at Israel's Ministry for Strategic Affairs. (Institute for National Security Studies-Tel Aviv University)
  • Why Iranians Don't Hate Israel - Jake Wallis Simons
    Most Iranians feel very warmly about the Jewish state. They have no quarrel with it; the two nations do not share a land border or territorial dispute. The civilized, intelligent, sensitive, cultured, warm-hearted Iranian public hate the regime and its agents much more than anybody else. Israel is the only country that truly understands the nature of their rulers, and the only state willing to do something about it.
        This creates an informal alliance between the Iranian people and Israel, which makes Mossad's operations in the country easier. In the aftermath of any Israeli attack on Iranian forces in Syria, there is an outpouring of jubilation on Farsi social media.
        The writer is editor of the Jewish Chronicle-UK. (Spectator-UK)
  • Libya Should Be Grateful Israel Even Considered Diplomatic Ties - Avi Benlolo
    Media headlines last week accused Israel of provoking a backlash over its meeting with Libya's foreign minister, a meeting that was meant to initiate diplomatic ties. While agreeing to the meeting, the Libyans pretended that the encounter was a catastrophe, with Libyan Foreign Minister Najila Mangoush having to flee for her life.
        While numerous Arab nations have normalized relations with Israel, Moammar Gadhafi's hateful ethos still resonates among Libyans. The loss of diplomatic relations is not on Israel, but on Libya. Frankly, the Libyans should be thanking Israel for even considering diplomatic relations, given the instability and lack of legitimacy.
        Israel should be commended for its outreach and continuous search for peace, despite the backward behavior of some of these countries. Israel's economy is 11.4 times larger than Libya's. By striving to open diplomatic relations with its sworn enemies, Israel has shown the moral high ground. Libya's reaction to diplomatic efforts speaks volumes about Libya more than about Israel. The case uncovered a nation with deeply held prejudices that is undeserving of Israel's hand in peace.
        The writer is the founder and chairman of the Abraham Global Peace Initiative. (National Post-Canada)
        See also Senior Libyans Met Secretly with Israeli Lawyer - Itamar Eichner
    Israeli attorney Mordechai Tzivin has secretly met with senior Libyan officials in recent years, including the Libyan deputy prime minister and the son of General Khalifa Haftar, the commander of the Libyan National Army. Tzivin said that some Libyans actually love Israel, hate the radical Islamists, and "miss" their neighbors from the Jewish community who moved to Israel. "They emphasize that Israel is their preferred country for receiving help in various fields. They believe in the legendary 'Jewish mind,' and nostalgically recall the Libyan Jews that developed trade in the country," he said. (Ynet News)
        See also Report: Libyan Prime Minister Met with Mossad Chief in Jordan to Discuss Normalization - Gianluca Pacchiani
    The Lebanese newspaper al-Akhbar reported on Monday that Libyan Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh met with Israel's Mossad head David Barnea in Amman, Jordan, in 2022 to discuss normalizing relations between Libya and Israel. (Times of Israel)
  • Anthropology Boycott of Israeli Universities Is Misguided and Discriminatory - Cynthia Saltzman and Geoffrey E. Braswell
    In a recent vote, 2,016 members of the American Anthropological Association (AAA) supported a boycott of Israeli academic institutions, while 835 opposed. Any academic boycott contradicts the AAA's core mission to serve the community of anthropologists and foster intellectual exchange. It threatens academic freedom and compromises the AAA's role as a forum for debate and scholarly investigation.
        Rather than foster polyvocality surrounding a complex issue, the boycott of Israel seeks to silence social critique by implementing a single official position. The boycott also will hurt the 20% of students in Israeli higher education institutions who are themselves Palestinian.
        The AAA boycott against Israeli universities and academics is nothing more than antisemitism hiding behind the virtue-signaling sophistry of a false morality.
        Cynthia Saltzman is a faculty member in the Department of Anthropology at Rutgers University-Camden. Geoffrey E. Braswell is a faculty member in the Department of Anthropology at the University of California, San Diego. (Algemeiner)

  • Since its founding in 1994, the Palestinian Authority's antisemitic discourse, rooted in Nazi and Soviet-era conspiracy theories, has fueled its decades-old political warfare campaign to isolate, destabilize, and subvert the State of Israel.
  • The international community has largely overlooked this flagrant violation of the Oslo Accords: to desist from incitement to terror and violence.
  • This essay documents nearly 30 years of PA antisemitic rhetoric in its media, social networks, official government statements, and educational system.
  • PLO and PA antisemitic rhetoric constitutes a national security threat to Israel and the Jewish people today.
  • Israel has the legal and moral mandate and responsibility to hold the PA accountable for its ongoing antisemitic incitement.
  • Israel should penalize the PA by withholding funds and referring the PA to international legal bodies for inciting and encouraging deadly terrorism, which has killed and wounded thousands of Israelis.

    The author is President of the Jerusalem Center. This article is part of the Center's new "Oslo at 30" compendium.

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