Wednesday, December 31, 2008

These are the cowards we have to fight

According to YNET, (,7340,L-3647934,00.html) the head ofIsraeli's intelligence reported today that Hamas terrorists are hiding in hospitals and maternity wards, wearing the clothes of doctors and nurses.

They are moving rocket launchers into crowded residential neighborhoods, and thus their success in shooting over 45 rockets into Israeli towns this morning alone.

The difficulty of rooting out terrorists who hide behind newborn babies and cancer patients is hard for a civilized country like Israel to deal with. Israel allowed 100 truckloads of medical supplies and basic fooditems to enter Gaza yesterday, along with five new ambulances donated byTurkey. This morning, the Gazans requested that Israeli hospitals takein two small children injured in the hostilities. Israel allowed them in, even as Hamas continued to bomb.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Two hospitals - both the same side of the coin

In Ashkelon’s Barzilai’s underground children’s ward, sick Gazans lay alongside sick Israelis as a clown hopped around trying to coax smiles from them all.
A senior doctor said that his facility has close ties with Gaza’s Shifa Hospital, and accepts many of its patients who need treatment the Gazan hospital cannot provide. He said it isn’t uncommon to have a colleague in Gaza call him for assistance even as rockets rain down on Ashkelon.

“It might seem completely absurd”, he said. “But we have the privilege of being doctors. Our medical ethics do not distinguish between patients. We treat whoever needs to be treated.”

A Gaza woman, whose two-month old granddaughter was being treated for an unidentified ailment, wept when asked how she was coping. She said she was fortunate her grand-daughter was getting the best medical treatment but was worried about her daughter and other grandchildren in Gaza City.

“I am very sad and hurt,” she said in Arabic. “We want peace, not wars.” She refused to identify herself or have her picture taken for fear of retribution if her presence in Israel was discovered in Gaza.

A few doors down in the maternity ward, 23 year old Keren Shaltiel was resting after giving birth to her second child. She said hearing sirens and exploding rockets outside while in labour was bizarre.

Meanwhile, another hospital about 150 miles northeast of Gaza is “also feeling the effects of what’s happening down south”, said a friend who wrote to me. He writes “Since Israel decided to deal with a mortal threat to its citizens, some Arab citizens of Israel have chosen to riot. One must question, what are they angry about? That Israel and the Jews have once again been forced to defend themselves or the fact that we dare to do so?”

“The Medical Center once again finds itself at the crossroad between humanity and maniacal human behavior. Since yesterday (December 28, 2008), the center has already received and treated eight casualties of Arab rioting. A couple on their way home to Afula found themselves in a maelstrom of rocks being hurled at vehicles by rioters from the Arab town of Um El Fahm (15 minutes away).

They attacked traffic on Highway 65 that connects Afula to central and coastal Israel, the same road that was closed during the riots of 2000. The couple was treated in our ER. Later, two boys aged 9 & 11 from the same Arab town were rushed to EMC suffering from a near-fatal gunshot wound that barely missed their hearts. Apparently, a bullet discharged from the pistol of one of the rioters, wounding both boys who were standing nearby. Later in the day, four Border Patrol Policemen were treated here for wounds received by flying rocks. They did not shoot their attackers, even though they were armed.

The Jewish and Arab staff of the center continue to quietly mend the broken bodies that stumble or are carried through our doors. Now, with emotions stirred and extremists waiting at every corner, we have been placed on high alert. Once again, we must be ready to deal with a mass casualty event, hoping that it does not materialize. We’re heading into a cold winter, yet the temperature is rising all around us”.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Operation "Cast Lead"

Well that’s it, we are in another war. This time, unlike Lebanon in 2006, government ministers are calling it a war. With an incessant barrage of missiles on Israel’s civilian population in the south after the end of the “cease fire”, no government in the world could allow this to continue.

A friend living in a Kibbutz on the border writes

So far we are OK. We are told to stay in a protected room and not to go outside if not necessary.

At about 10 this morning, Dec 27th, it was very quiet, when all of a sudden we hear a rolling sound outside then a thunderous boom and the whole house shook, like in a earthquake, then a second time and then a third time. After that, we heard airplanes and some more explosions.

On our beeper, which all of the homes surrounding Gaza have, we were told what has happened and we were told to stay inside.

A Moshav which is not to far from here but out of rocket range has opened up rooms for all of us who want to leave. We have been invited to family to stay with them and some friends of mine who live up North also invited us. We are staying as most of the families are also staying, those with children might want to send their children, if we still have children at home, we might be doing that also.

The whole area is under military rule and no one who does not live in this area are not allowed through.

The air strikes helps but we still need to go in. Israel surprised Hamas and us also, because they and us, did not think that Israel would strike on Sabbath. So the leaders of Hamas came out of hiding until Sunday and it cost them.

Our TV stations are all broadcasting nothing but what happened today in Gaza. Alon's (my son for those of you who do not know) reserve unit but not Alon so far, have been called up.

What night will bring and at 5:30 PM it is already dark, I do not know, but we for the first time are thinking of putting a mattress in our security room to sleep tonight.

If the army tells us to leave, I will volunteer to stay on the kibbutz and work in the dairy farm, life goes on with the livestock. They have to be fed and milked and calves are born.

Will let you know what happens when it happens. “

Another conversation 24 hours later with a resident of Sderot raises a surprising comment. “In Sderot, there is quiet, the missiles are targeting communities further afield” And so it is today that very very missiles actually landed in and around Sderot.

Nevertheless, revenge attacks abroad are feared. It is certainly reasonable to assume that Hamas and the organizations operating under its auspices will now attempt to turn the lives of southern Israel residents into hell, both due to a desire for revenge as well as an attempt to create a strategic equation, as the Hizbullah did at the end of the Second Lebanon War. Technically, Palestinian organizations in Gaza are capable of launching more than 100 rockets a day. This is of course a theoretical pace, which also depends on the actions undertaken by the IDF.

On a wider front, we can assume that Hamas will attempt to dispatch members of the group and of Islamic Jihad to carry out suicide attacks in Israel at any price, with bombers originating in the West Bank and attempting to enter Israel or target settlements.

There have been interesting reactions from world leaders, one of which from the Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit surprisingly blames Hamas for war. He said "For quite some time, Egypt has been warning. Whoever tried to confuse the understanding of [ignore] this warning, must bear the responsibility.

In a statement by the Israeli Foreign Minister to the foreign press, she says "Whoever wants peace in the region, with a two-state solution, must understand that we must fight terror and extremism. Confronting Hamas is the only way for the Palestinians to enjoy a good life in a country of their own. Israel wants peace, and must operate against the Hamas in order to achieve this.

By showing one-sided footage from Gaza, you are not helping to promote peace. I understand that provocative images arouse people's rage and hostility, but we want to achieve a better future for this region. Hamas does not want peace; Hamas uses the residents of Gaza as hostages.

Israel proposes a vision of peace, while Hamas proposes a vision of war. Peace with Israel and calm in the region can only be achieved by dialogue. This situation cannot continue. Hamas, Iran and Hizbullah are enemies of the free world."

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Co-Existence, Israeli Style

I received a letter from my friend at a hospital in the North whcih again gives the example of what good relations between citizens in the area can mean and should mean. Oh, that the Gazans could learn from this.

A senior nurse who for the past eleven years has acted as the Transplant Coordinator between his hospital and the Israeli Ministry of Health’s National Transplant Center related the following story:

On November 26, 2008, a 54 year-old man was tragically pronounced brain dead here in the hospital. His wife, also a nurse at the hospital, immediately informed the transplant coordinator of her desire to donate her husband’s organs so that others may live.

Thus began intense communications between the hospital and the National Transplant Center, which culminated several hours later in coordinated operations (in several hospitals) that gave renewed life to seven Israelis. One received a liver, two received kidneys, two received heart valves and two received corneas. Among them were both Jews and Arabs; each a human being in desperate need of a medical miracle. This death gave life to others, people he never knew.

When asked what were the most emotionally-charged moments of the wife's long career as a nurse, without hesitation, she said, “The moment when a family agrees to donate their loved one’s organs to strangers. That precise instance is the most difficult moment in a person’s life … it’s the intersection where death meets life.”

The dead man, like hundreds of others, became unknowing heroes in their deaths. Their families gave the gift of renewed life to total strangers and lengthened an unbreakable thread that weaves throughout our society.

The Jewish commitment to life is exemplified the medical center’s absolute coordinated efforts between medical departments, physicians, nurses, technicians and administrative staff. The gift of life could not be delivered were it not for their combined timely efforts.

Dare we hope that one day in our lifetime the gift of life takes precedence over death as is promoted by the terrorists whose aim is to destroy Israel?

Monday, December 22, 2008

Bethlehem, Not According to the BBC

In spite of the fact that many media organisations want to focus on the negatives of the Israel Palestinian conflict, the signs are good in Bethlehem

Tens of thousands of visitors are expected to arrive for Christmas celebrations in Bethlehem this week, an influx that will push tourism to Israel to a record high of three million visitors in 2008.The town of Christ’s birth is busy readying for a crush of Christian pilgrims in Manger Square next week, following years of dismal figures during the holiday season. Local hotels are reporting 100% bookings and as many as 60,000 visitors are expected by Christmas Day next Thursday.

Today, Bethlehem is an Arab city of over 100,000 that has lost its Christian majority. The city council has been dominated in recent years by loyalists of Hamas, whose suicide bombing campaign earlier this decade forced Israel to encircle the town with a security wall.

Bethlehem has high unemployment and relies heavily on tourism, which normally peaks around the Nativity celebrations. Thus, Israeli authorities have made extra efforts to ease the entry of pilgrims into Bethlehem this Christmas."There is not just an atmosphere of peace, but an atmosphere of trust for the whole world to see… We believe, when it comes to tourism, there are no borders," said senior Deputy Director General of the Tourism Ministry.

According to statistics released this week, the three million visitors who will have entered Israel this year marks an all-time high and represents a 30% increase over 2007. Some two-thirds of the tourists who arrived in the Holy Land this year, totaling two million travellers, were Christians. Roughly half of them were Catholics and the other half various Protestant and Orthodox denominations.The USA accounted for 625,000 visitors in 2008, (20% of all incoming tourism), followed by Russia, France the UK and then several other European countries plus Canada.

For 58% of tourists in 2008, this was their first visit to Israel, whereas 42% had previously visited the country.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Racism Durban Style and Italian Style

With the imminent start of 2009, the infamous Durban II conference gets nearer and nearer. Nothing in the preparation for this conference suggests that it will be any different from the Durban I Israel bashing forum. I would have hoped that by now that more governments would have made the decision to opt out of this fiasco of a conference, but no such luck.

So far only Canada and Israel have made the decision not to participate and the USA and Holland are “threatening” not to participate.

Thus, as so my commentators far more professional than me are writing, the Islamization of Europe is continuing apace. In my simplistic mind I would have thought what has been proposed for the conference in black and white would be sufficient for the governments of the EU to announce as a body their unwillingness to be part of this conference. Ah well, such is the reality of European politics today.

I suppose that many think of my comments as not politically correct, even racist, but as Michael Richards, better known as Kramer from TV's Seinfeld series, said in his defense speech in a US court after making racial comments in his comedy act.
“I'm proud To Be White, there, someone finally said it.

How many are actually paying attention to this?
There are African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, Arab Americans, etc.
And then there are just Americans.You pass me on the street and sneer in my direction.You call me 'White boy,' 'Cracker,' 'Honkey,' 'Whitey,' 'Caveman' ... and that's OK.But when I call you, Nigger, Kike, Towel head, Sand-nigger, Camel Jockey, Beaner , Gook, or Chink .....You call me a racist.

You say that whites commit a lot of violence against you, so why are the ghettos the most dangerous places to live?
You have the United Negro College Fund the Martin Luther King Day, Black History Month, Cesar Chavez Day.You have BET, if we had WET (White Entertainment Television) we'd be racists.

If we had a White Pride Day, you would call us racists.If we had White History Month, we'd be racists.If we had any organization for only whites to 'advance' OUR lives we'd be racists.A white woman could not be in the Miss Black American pageant, but any color can be in the Miss America pageant.

If we had a college fund that only gave white students scholarships you know we'd be racists. There are over 60 openly proclaimed Black Colleges in the US. Yet if there were 'White colleges' THAT would be a racist college.

In the Million Man March, you believed that you were marching for your race and rights. If we marched for our race and rights, you would call us racists. You are proud to be black, brown, yellow and orange, and you're not afraid to announce it. But when we announce our white pride, you call us racists.Why is it that only whites can be racists?”

I suppose in Italy there will be calls of racism after the centre-right gov't in Italy,
the only EU country where the elected Gov't rules in full respect of citizens' will as manifested in their clear electoral choice, by gradually erasing the previous Prodi's Left's disastrous policies of indiscriminate immigration which had been responsible for social turmoils and abuses from the growing Islamic contingent ..

The good news now concerns a project of a package of laws regulating future authorizations of Mosquees and of so-called Islamic Centers, representing in reality the perfect Trojan Horse for Islamic propaganda and indoctrination, AND incitement to terrorism - as proved by recent arrest of Moroccan (Italian resident) terrorists planning attacks in Milan and surroundings.

By this body of laws, one of the requirements will be that sermons and speeches shall have to be delivered in Italian language. There's no doubt that one country where good sense and sane minds rule is Italy.

An Italian minister has proposed a register of imams in Italy in order to control the construction of mosques and a referendum to integrate new places or worship in a social and urban context.Andrea Ronchi, European Affairs Minister, and member of the rightist National Alliance party (note: accused of 'fascist tendencies' by the left) proposed the move on Tuesday in what he called a bid to improve interreligious dialogue.

Ronchi also wants to restart dialogue between Muslims and institutions such as the state-backed Islamic Council or 'Consulta per l'Islam'. However, Ronchi said he did not want Italy's largest Muslim group, the Union of Islamic Communities of Italy (UCOII) to take part in the initiative, calling them "the real exponents of non-dialogue".

"We do not speak to those who deny the existence of Israel," he said.

Ronchi announced his proposal after meeting the vice-president of the Italian Islamic Religious Community (COREIS), Yahya Pallavicini.Ronchi said that the existence of new mosques in Italy should be dealt with in a transparent manner and included in a national register. "We need to put a stop to mosques being hurriedly built, without the consensus of the community. We need to match them with the reality of the place," said Ronchi.

The initiative has already been carried out by COREIS, which has trained 20 Italian-speaking imams.Italy's rightist Northern League, allied to Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, wants to limit the growth of Islam and block the construction of mosques through strict new regulations.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christians Still Under Threat

Bethlehem, the centre of Christianity is looking decidedly cheerful this holiday season. Hotels are booked solid through til January and Manger Square is bustling with tourists, and Israeli and Palestinian forces are working to make things go smoothly.

With calm gradually returning to the West Bank, Bethlehem has once again become a magnet for Christmas pilgrims.

These facts, however, bear no relation to the lies and distortions being related in various areas of the world.

Rev Stephen Coulter in London has decided based on Palestinian propaganda that his congregants could not, truthfully sing the carol’s line, “How - still - we see thee lie” in the preparation for Christmas.

So much wool is being pulled over the eyes of the world that many can’t see the wood for the trees. Rev Coulter intimated that a crib set he used in his church had to be “smuggled“out of the West Bank and that the producers of communion wine could not export their produce.

But let’s confuse this issue with facts

1) There is no hold up of wine coming out of the Cremisan winery in Beit Jala -- this has been confirmed by a spokesman at the winery who says they ship out the wine daily (there was a short temporary hitch of a few days) . These shipments go direct to Haifa and Ashdod to be shipped abroad. It is true it is going via Hebron as that is where the most up-to-date modern crossing point.

2) Israel has not banned exports of olive wood models of any type.

3) Tourism into Bethlehem – including of course Christian pilgrims- is up an astonishing 96.5% in the first nine months of 2008, thanks to the significant improvement in the security situation in the last two years.

4) The Palestinian economy in the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) has shown signs of strengthening since the beginning of the year, according to a recent analysis by the Civil Administration. The analysis was based on data gathered by the Civil Administration as well as publicly available figures.

There have been large increases in the passage of commercial goods as a direct result of the increase in employment licenses and trade permits issued to Palestinian merchants and business owners by the Civil Administration since the beginning of 2008.

A full report of the progress of the Palestinian economy can be found at

Let me also try to remove more of the wool from eyes. Having previously desecrated the Nativity Church, Muslim terrorists confiscated Christian property, burned shops and attacked Christians, so that many have fled, thus the once mainly Christian 60% of the population has become a small, fearful minority of approx 20%

Israels critics are so busy belabouring Israel, perhaps they don’t notice what is going on.
Jeff Alper, another fierce critic of Israel currently touring Scotland has been given free range to his agenda where according to Halper,'s%20inhumanity.pdf due to Israel, Palestinian Christians are:

“being driven out, very systematically even targeted perhaps. If you eliminate this population, then you will weaken the Palestinian society. So they are being forced out, out of their homes, off their land and out of the country completely.”

The truth is very different. The parlous position of Palestinian Christians, indeed the difficult position of most Christians across the Arab world, is a consequence not of Israeli aggression but of growing Islamist influence. Israel goes out of its way to honour sites and traditions sacred to other faiths while the radicals who are driving Palestinian politics seek to create an Islamist state in which other faiths, if they survive at all, do so with the explicit subject status of dhimmis. But when it comes to Israel's position in these matters it's still a case of “O little town of Bethlehem, how still we see them lie”

It is quite remarkable that the Western media is totally ignoring a systematic campaign of persecution of Christians is taking place in the Gaza Strip, and to a lesser extent in the West Bank. The general silence surrounding this campaign aids its perpetrators.

The perpetrators are a variety of Islamist groups, all of which are manifestations of a process of growing Islamic militancy and piety taking place across the region.

Jonathon Spyer in the Jerusalem Post Dec 11th reports that :-

a) A recent article in the Palestinian Al-Ayyam newspaper drew attention to the long-simmering issue of "compulsory purchase" of land owned by Christians. This trend has been particularly noticeable in the Bethlehem, Ramallah and al-Bireh areas. Individuals with close links to the Palestinian Authority security forces, or to powerful clans, have adopted a variety of means to lay their hands on Christian-owned land. These have included false registration documents, squatters, and the involvement of senior PA security officers.

b) The Al-Ayyam columnist who raised this issue, Abd al-Nasser al-Najjar, lamented that no "constructive action" by the authorities to protect the Christians has taken place. Najjar listed the PA authorities, the Palestinian political factions, and the myriad of NGOs present in the West Bank among the bodies who might have been expected to take an interest in this situation, and who have not done so.

c) The official bodies of Palestinian nationalism continue to claim that the Palestinians are a single nation, with harmony between Christians and Muslims. The official leadership of Palestinian Arab Christianity repeats this claim.

d) These events reflect broader regional processes. Their failure to become known is also part of a larger trend. The foreign media, NGOs on the ground and some Western political leaderships prefer to foster a version of events in the West Bank and Gaza based on illusion and willful ignorance of the evidence. The slow death of an ancient community is one of the fruits of this.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Holiday of Holidays in Haifa

Once again as December comes around, Haifa celebrates the month of “Holiday of Holidays”, the Muslim “Id Eladha”, the Jewish “Chanukah” and the Christian “Christmas”

As Wafa Zoui-Fahoum, the Chairperson of the multicultural Bet Hagefen center writes “we shall celebrate all the festivals in one great, big festive holiday throughout the month”

The theme, this year is “Dream, Window” a sign which inspires many, as Haifa, in its own unique style, is an inspiration to many cities and towns in Israel and abroad.

Each weekend there are theatrical presentations, exhibitions of artist’s works, concerts, antique fairs and co-existence walks through the area of Wadi Nisnass , an area housing some 8000 of Haifa's Arab residents

The streets are decorated and atmosphere is quite electric. Since we don't have snow, the effect has to be created as can be seen in the photo.

Haifa is quite an underestimated city, isn't it time for you to come and visit us?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Three Faiths

Israel's tourist industry is on the up again following the downturn from the second intifada, with around 3 million visitors coming this year, the highest ever..

Few people have been boarding planes with a copy of the Koran in their hand luggage, hoping to fulfill the dream of praying at Jerusalem's al-Aksa Mosque.

But among those few were the 20-plus Muslims who recently traveled to the Holy Land for a busy one-week pilgrimage, organized by the East London chapter of the Three Faiths Forum - a UK-based initiative that encourages friendship and dialogue between Muslims, Jews and Christians. Thus is the visit reported in the Jerusalem Post

Despite some doubts about safety, however, Muslims were keen to sign up for the tour of the Three Faiths Forum , and many are already planning on making a return trip.

"Compared to what you see on television, coming here and seeing the reality is completely different," said one participant. "On the television, it's just bad news and sensationalism. You have to come to see for yourself in order to understand."

The tour attracted an unusually high number of Muslims, who jumped at the opportunity to make their first visit to the Holy Land. Destinations on the hectic itinerary included the Judean Desert and Masada; Christian sites in the Galilee such as Nazareth and the ancient synagogue of Capernaum (Kfar Nahum), where Jesus began his ministry; and the 18th-century Jazzar Pasha Mosque in Acre.

One Muslim who works in the British Health Service, says she was particularly impressed by the Poriya Hospital in Tiberias, which serves a mix of Arab and Jewish patients. "The dedication of the staff at the hospital was wonderful," she says. "They have some technology that we don't even have in England, like monitoring units for babies and mothers in labor. Israel should be proud."

The pilgrims made the ascent to the Temple Mount, to pray at al-Aksa no fewer than four times. But visiting Islamic holy places was no less important than learning about Jewish and Christian sites in the country, making the group probably the only Muslims in Jerusalem to mingle with Jewish worshipers at the Western Wall after finishing Friday prayers at the al-Aksa Mosque.

Following their return to London, many of the participants said they wanted to come back to Israel. "I am going to arrange a trip with a larger group”, said one enthusiastically.

"Israel was a big eye-opener for me," said another pilgrim "I always wanted to come - not just from a religious point of view, but also because I wanted to see the other side of the coin. The media can be good and bad. Some people have the perspective that Jews are the enemies of Muslims, but you mustn't tar everyone with the same brush."

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Education, Education, Education

Education is the lifeblood of the future for our young. Studying a traditional curriculum at school enables the student to progress in their life and provide financial security for a future family. Negative education, (brainwashing) is a dead end street with little hope for the future.

I have now included in the list of links on the right hand side “Exposing Jewish anti-Semitism” which discusses Israel's Academic Fifth Column.

In one of the blogs “A Call to Arms” , the writer Steven Plaut from Haifa University says, that a specter is now haunting the Israeli Academic "Post-Zionist" extremists in Israel, and it is ISRACAMPUS (

Modeled in part on "Campus Watch" in North America, ISRACAMPUS monitors and exposes the anti-Israel (and sometimes anti-Semitic) political activities, writings, and pronouncements of Israel's far-leftist academic extremists. Israeli universities contain hundreds of faculty members who are active in promoting boycotts of Israel, in collaborating with anti-Israel groups attempting to delegitimize Israel as a terrorist, racist, apartheid entity.

Students, professors, donors, alumni, journalists and others participate in ISRACAMPUS and help it gather materials. If anyone knows of or hears about academics collaborating with anti-Israel groups or attempting to delegitimize Israel through their students, ISRACAMPUS would like to hear about it.

Until ISRACAMPUS came upon the scene, few in Israel and fewer still outside Israel were aware of the anti-Israel activities of these Israeli academic radicals. That is now changing. The past two years, when there were numerous attempts to adopt boycott of Israel resolutions in the UK, Canada, in the US, and elsewhere, it was ISRACAMPUS that exposed the fact that most of these resolutions have Israeli academic initiators and sponsors, faculty members who draw salaries paid for by the Israeli taxpayer, calling on anti-Semites all over the world to boycott Israel. The Israeli media and the Jewish press around the world are increasingly discussing and reporting about the shenanigans of "Israel's Academic Fifth Column."

Monday, December 1, 2008

And so the BIG LIE continues

According to reports in the local press, United Nations General Assembly President, Nicaraguan national and Roman Catholic Priest Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann leveled speeches laced with antisemitism at the State of Israel, last week, accusing the Jews of "crucifying" the Palestinian Arabs, libeling Israel as an "apartheid" state, and calling for global trade and economic sanctions to be imposed on Israel.

This tirade was delivered on the UNs' "International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People."

This day is held annually to mark the United Nations vote, in 1947, to partition the ancient Jewish national home - then known as Palestine - between Arabs and Jews

Instead of applauding the outcome of its vote, the UN gathering condemned the Jews (who accepted the dividing up of THEIR land) and supported the Arabs - who through war at the time, and terrorism in the ensuing decades, rejected the partition even though it offered them a homeland for the first time in history.

Speaking from the podium, Brockmann said Israel was responsible for "crucifying the Palestinians." His choice of phrase echoed that employed by such enemies of Israel as the Rev. Dr. Naim Ateek, a Palestinian Christian and former Anglican canon who founded and heads up the Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center in Jerusalem.

Ateek has compared Israel's "abuse" of the Palestinian Arabs to Herod's mass-murder of Bethlehem's baby boys in an effort to kill Jesus Christ.

Brockmann, not willing to make do with just this antisemitic accusation, went on to wield the most recent libelous charge against Israel.

"It has been 60 years since some 800,000 Palestinians were driven out of their homes," Brockmann said, perpetuating the myth that the Jews were responsible for the "Palestinian refugee problem."

Israel was perpetrating "a version of the highest policy of apartheid" against the Palestinian Arabs, he went on to say. As the world had forced South Africa to abandon apartheid, the UNGA president said, it must rally to boycott Israel and sever its financial ties to the world, imposing sanctions against Jerusalem until the Jewish state likewise buckles under the pressure.

And despite all that Israel has offered, hatred persists. Persists and grows only stronger. Not only from the Palestinian Arabs or their other Arab brethren. Not only from the Islamic nations. Not only from Near Eastern and Middle Eastern and Far Eastern countries. But also from many in Scandinavia, Europe and Africa. And it's also manifesting in the Americas, north and south; in Australia and in New Zealand.

As Israel's new ambassador to the UN, Professor Gabriela Shalev has quickly learned (Ynetnews November 21, 2008) double language is the order of the day: One language at the corridors, in private talks backstage, with a lot of appreciation for the Zionist state, and poisonous remarks against Israel in the official speeches.

Thus the BIG LIE concerning Israel continues and continues, ad nauseum.

In an unrelated issue, an opposition member of the Israeli Knesset, in an attempt at creative thinking said that Israel should set up a temporary detention facility in the Gaza vicinity and jail Hamas and Islamic Jihad prisoners there. "If they [members of Hamas] don't work to stop the fire, they should take into account that the rockets may hurt their men as well.

And what was the reaction from Hamas? "Using Palestinians as human shields is a war crime"!! Now just how cynical can you get??

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Israeli Medics Again Ready to Help

Although sitting here in Israel, the news of the latest terrorist tsunami in Mumbai gives rise to very personal feelings. It is just under two years ago since my wife and I were in Mumbai to celebrate a wedding in the family of a good friend of ours.

Having enjoyed the wonderful sights of Mumbai (and many other places) it is brought home in stark reality what must be going on in the minds of the Indians at this time with their version of 9/11. Having sailed to Elephant Island from the
Gateway to India opposite the Taj hotel one can vividly imagine the panic amongst the throngs of people that are always in the area.

As always Israel is prepared to help with such tragedies and medical staff from the Israeli Red Cross (
Magen David Adom) is already preparing to fly to India to bring their expertise to bear on this dreadful scenario.

It is a little too early for these medics to use a new technique of welding rather than sewing in safe way to close incisions in the skin that inventors say could also be used on cuts inside the body.

The team was led by Prof. Abraham Katzir, announcing the new technique , who explained how a way was to maintain laser heat at the correct temperature so that the incision is sealed to minimize the risk of infection and scars and speed healing.

Katzir says the development is "a groundbreaking medical technology" and could also be used quickly and easily by medics on the battlefield and at road accidents, as well as by plastic surgeons and other surgical specialists.

The breakthrough has aroused world interest and is presented on the Web site of the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (

Monday, November 24, 2008

Gaza Operation Soon?

I believe that it is now a matter of a short time before Gaza explodes once more. The uncertainty that pervades this interim period prior to elections is bound to be exploited by Hamas. Close to 100 90 rockets have been launched from the Gaza Strip, including 35 on Nov 5, since the June tahdiyeh (calm) was announced between Hamas and Israel.

According to a blogger at
pajamasmedia a recent analysis, terror groups in Gaza have undergone a massive buildup in training and arms, and have expanded their tunnel networks for smuggling.

One representative for the Palestinian Popular Resistance Committees told the London newspaper Asharq al-Awsat that terrorists have used the tahdiyeh “to train in the abduction of [Israeli] soldiers and martial arts,” and he threatened Israel with “unpleasant surprises.”

It is quite clear that just as Hizbollah has been rearming under the noses of the UNIFIL there is now a massive stock of rockets in the hands of Hamas.

So, as our blogger goes on to say “renewed conflict draws nearer”.

One option being considered for defending the citizens is the Iron Dome defensive missile shield seems irrelevant in the scheme of things until, maybe next year or even into 2010.

A reestablishment of the tahdiyeh (period of calm) could be considered after it officially expires on December 19. However, an extension of the ceasefire, much like the development and deployment of Iron Dome, would only provide temporary security and would not end Israel’s rocket problem.

Gaza operations: The third option is for Israel to launch a ground offensive in the Gaza Strip. This option would be very unpopular among the Israeli public, as it would be dangerous and almost certainly result in many casualties.

Public sentiment notwithstanding, both sides of the political spectrum seem to agree that a military offensive in Gaza should be undertaken if rocket fire persists.

Yuval Steinitz surmised earlier this year, “The only way to eliminate rocket attacks is for Israel to launch a military operation.” He added that because Gazans elected Hamas, this gives Israel “the full right and duty to react.” In May, Labor leader [15] Binyamin Ben-Eliezer agreed, stating that Israel has “no choice but to destroy all the nests of terror.”

Let us not forget that Hamas’ charter, never changed, states that the aim is to destroy the Jewish state. This is repeatedly called for in the Islamist group’s speeches and sermons. Hamas sees its struggle with Israel as a zero-sum conflict. Thus, Israel can employ the first two options to temporarily protect civilians living in the south, but the attacks will almost certainly continue. While it is the least appealing, the third option will ultimately be necessary for Israel to experience a lasting quiet on the Gaza border.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

More Media Manipulation (the 3 M's)

In a dispatch from the Israeli mission at the UN, they express shock to read the High Commissioner's utterly shortsighted press release regarding the humanitarian situation in Gaza. Most disturbing is the way she casually refers to Palestinian aggression in the very last sentence of her statement, as almost an afterthought. Unfortunately, Israel does not have the option of being so casual in its response to rocket and mortar attacks on its civilians, attacks which violate the most fundamental right of all, the right to life.

Once again Hamas is playing the “poor down trodden and misunderstood Palestinian” and once again the world is falling for the media campaign being orchestrated by Hamas

How come 70% of Gaza is blacked out when 75% of the electricity to the Gaza strip is supplied directly from the Israel Electric Corporation? The fuel to the power plant in Gaza only can supply 25% of the needs. Why not stop production of weapons and use the electricity for the civilians – what a silly idea!!!

Better still why not stop the bombardment of missiles on the civilian community in Israel or is that just too simple?

Even the Palestinian Authority officials in Ramallah accused Hamas of staging the latest blackouts in the Gaza Strip in a bid to win sympathy and incite the Palestinian public against Israel and the PA.

The officials said that contrary to Hamas's claim, there is no shortage of basic goods, medicine and fuel in the Gaza Strip, largely thanks to the many underground tunnels along the border with Egypt.

The mission at the UN continues that “overall responsibility for the situation in the Gaza Strip lies with Hamas, which invests all of its resources in arms and terrorism instead of providing for the civilians that it brutally controls. It is disappointing to see the High Commissioner fall victim to Hamas' cynical manipulation of the media, and reprint blatant misinformation in her press release.

Rather than engaging in the political game being promoted by the Palestinians, Israel expects the High Commissioner to investigate the facts before issuing one-sided statements about the humanitarian situation in Gaza, and to begin by forcefully condemning the perpetrators of terror.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Haifa's Future Prosperity

With all the talk of gloom and doom in economic circles, it is good to read that the pundits are forecasting that following on from Israel’s Hightec boom, the next boom is going to be in the Biotech field. In this regard Haifa is well placed to take advantage with the new park be specifically established for this purpose. The park will compliment the Hightec MATAM park which contains such famous names as Intel, Google, Microsoft, GEC, Elbit, Phillips and IBM.

Among the newest arrivals at the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange are a group of small biotech firms which launched their IPOs beginning in late 2005.

Israel's famous information technology (IT) and electronics industry originally got its head start from a project called "Yozma," where the Israeli government, in the early 1990s, guaranteed venture capital investment in hi-tech to the tune of some $100 million. The investment more than paid off, with the sector now generating some $10 billion a year.

With no major project financing in this new industry, the sector turned to "technology incubators," small companies supported by the Chief Scientist's Office whose goal was originally to nurture the start-up ideas of Russian immigrant computer scientists. As those began to mature and find independent means of financing, the incubators looked for another resource to develop - and the life sciences fit the bill.

In the plans for an economic package to stimulate the economy and to maintain research and development activity of start-ups, the Treasury is expected to double the budget of the Chief Scientist's Office from NIS 1.3 billion in 2009 to about NIS 3b. This can only be good news for this young industry in general and Haifa in particular.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Childen Education and Parenting in Haifa

As mentioned in the previous blog, I have been “on the road” with my Taiwanese journalist friend, this time visiting an Early Childhood Education and Parenting Center, part of the Leo Baeck Education Center

Between 1989 and 2007, 69000 new immigrants have settled in Haifa including 3000 from Ethiopia, swelling the population to 270000 and changing the face of Haifa society.

The Early Childhood Education and Parenting Center, Beit Yitzhak was started in response to the needs of the new Ethiopian community but has now widened its outreach to include not only immigrants from the former Soviet Union but also native Israeli families that are underserved in their areas.

It is however, the Ethiopian community whose family structure and social order has gone through the most dramatic of changes. Families were used to an agricultural lifestyle where the father figure was the dominant person and the mother busied herself with the home and the children. Children respected their elders and followed their father’s footsteps. Now in Israel, the former head of the family faces an uncertain future, has difficulty with the language and thus finding work. The mothers usually fare better with the language and are in most families the wage earners.

The children are quickly absorbed into the Israeli culture and learn the language and so become the leaders in the family which creates many tensions.

The manager of the center explained the programs offered and the psychologist informed us why there are issues of trauma in many children. Although the Lebanese war of 2006 finished over two years ago, post traumatic stress disorder (PTST) is only now in some cases being diagnosed. In addition to the war, trauma is also derived from abuse at home and the center offers help to these children.

One of the assistants in the centers was a young, bright, pretty Ethiopian girl who is studying psychology at Haifa University and is gaining practical experience in dealing with the children.

Yet another feature of life in Haifa

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Come and Join Us

Since I started this blog, I have tried in many cases to give a flavour of life here in Haifa. With my Taiwanese journalist friend we visited, this morning a trauma treament center where she conducted interviews with the staff and filmed some of the children there.

After we had finished and we were discussing future projects for filming in the City, she said to me "Haifa is such an interesting city with such a variety of activities and challenges"

She plans to do a lot more filming in the City.

So to those of you living abroad, (and even to those in Israel not living in Haifa this brings me to the message in this blog WHY NOT COME AND JOIN US IN HAIFA!

The well known Rambam hospital has quite a number of vacancies immediately available and particularly in ONCOLOGY, ANESTHESIA AND GENERAL SURGERY. A great opportunity if you are thinking of coming to live in Israel. you can arrange your work before even setting foot in the country.

Oh, and by the way there is a great support team of Anglos ready to help you settle in

Friday, November 7, 2008

Co-existence in Practice in Haifa

I visited an educational institute this week for the purpose of checking out its suitability for co-existence projects to be filmed by my Taiwanese journalist friend who is based here in Haifa. Se is based in Haifa to film different aspects of life here.

I was amazed at the number of programs covering such a wide field. The education center is called Leo Baeck and has been established in Haifa for 70 years.

In the mission statement, it refers to the need developing the students to the needs of a developing Israeli society, the community and for the individual, also educating for understanding and mutual tolerance.

The center caters for over 3000 students in six different programs. Although the Haifa population has around 20% Arab (of which 13% are Christian and 7% Moslem), there are approx 900 Arab students in the centers various programs representing 30% of the students.

In addition to the direct education programs, there is a community center and social outreach with 11 satellite branches around Haifa. These branches deal with
- serving the Ethiopian community
- reaching out to children at risk
- after school care for children at risk
- a center for the elderly
- Arab Jewish summer camps
and many others

The school has students from all walks of life in the City, Jews, Christians, Moslem and Druze.

I will be visiting the school again shortly and will write in more detail about some of, what I feel, are exciting programs which are varied and promote the concept co-existence in such a positive way

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

What Other Arabs Think of Israel

With a new American president now decided it seems that some have decided to "celebrate" in a less conventional way!!

As a friend wrote this morning from the border with Gaza:-

I can not say that because Obama is elected president of the USA and I wish him well, Because as of 4 AM this morning here in Israel,Kassams are falling again, we are hearing "Color Red" and again at 7:02 AM I have just heard 4 times in the last few seconds and two Kassams I heard fall near the Kibbutz.

Israeli army also found a tunnel being build underground to enable the terrorists to kidnap Israeli soldiers.

I was hoping that I would not have to start relaying to you,what is happening in my area of Israel,about kassams etc. and I hope this is a one day deal but doubt it.

Again I have to emphasize,I wish Obama well and can not say that I blame him for what is happening in my neck of the world. I just hope Obama will let the terrorists know,that he stands with Israel,just as past Presidents have.

It is now 7:11 and just heard an other kassm fall.

The Jerusalem Post expands on this story Rescue services reported a "massive" cross-border Kassam barrage on Wednesday, with three of the rockets landing in the western Negev, damaging several greenhouses

The IDF said at least 20 rockets were fired from the Strip.

No one was wounded in the bombardment from Gaza which came after a night on which three soldiers were wounded by a mortar shell fired by Palestinians during IDF operations in southern Gaza.

Two of the soldiers were in moderate condition while the third was lightly hurt. They were evacuated by helicopter to Soroka Hospital in Beersheba.

According to Palestinian reports, six Palestinian gunmen were killed in what was the first armed confrontation with the IDF since the cease-fire took effect in June

Five of the gunmen were reportedly killed in two IAF strikes south of Khan Yunis, which the army said were carried out against mortar shell launchers.
It came after several mortar shells were fired toward the Eshkol region, one of which landed on the Israeli side of the Kissufim crossing.

What was not reported in the international media was that earlier Tuesday night, IDF special forces entered Gaza in order to blow up a tunnel dug by Hamas terrorists for the purpose of kidnapping IDF soldiers.

During the course of the fighting, terrorists blew up a house in which the tunnel surfaced, an explosion which testified to a "large amount of explosives," a military source said.

A military source said the attack tunnel was ready for "imminent use," describing it as a "ticking tunnel" for the purpose of kidnapping soldiers. The IDF accused Hamas of jeopardizing the truce by digging the tunnel and plotting to abduct more Israeli soldiers in the immediate future.

"The tunnel we uncovered was ready for imminent use, forcing us to act immediately," the military source said. "We did not know where the other end of the tunnel surfaced. In light of the intelligence we received about its immediate use, plans for special forces to enter Gaza this evening after sundown were approved," he added.

"The operation will end tonight and soldiers
will head back to Israeli territory," the source added. "We are committed to the ceasefire, but we saw an immediate threat of kidnapping. Hamas placed the ceasefire in jeopardy. We can't ignore a red warning light of a kidnapping attack."

Asked if he believed the cease-fire had ended, the military source told The Jerusalem Post, "I don't think there's any reason for this to happen. We are doing what needs to be done. But if [the] other side forces us, we will take further steps."

Since the cease-fire went into effect in June, Hamas has dug an unknown number of tunnels to facilitate future attacks on Israel and to smuggle large quantities of weapons from Sinai. The tunnels are seen as central to Hamas's terrorist infrastructure in the Strip.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

What Israeli Arabs Think of Israel

So much is written by journalists on the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians that the story of the real Israel is usually ignored altogether. At a recent conference I attended, the results of a survey in two countries, Denmark and India, showed that the average man on the street really knew very little about day to day life of the Israeli citizen.

In a recent briefing 223 by Beyond Images a number of examples are given which report the way the Arab community views their lives in Israel. These are not isolated cases. I will be visiting an institution this week dealing with a number of very successful co-existence projects and will write about this visit shortly.

Case 1 - Arab parent praises the 'equal treatment' of Jews and Arabs in Israel by a charity for disabled children

Keren Malki is an Israeli charity which supports families with disabled children. It was founded in memory of 15 year old Chana Malka Roth, who was killed by a Palestinian suicide bomber in the Sbarro pizzeria in Jerusalem in 2001. An Arab parent recently wrote to Keren Malki praising it for "not differentiating between Jews and Arabs", despite how it came into being, and describing how his requests for support and help have always been received warmly. You can
click here for the briefing 223, where the text of the letter is printed in full.

The key message is that Keren Malki is a great example of how personal suffering (in this case of the Roth family) has become a foundation on which to build hope. Keren Malki shows the highest respect for human dignity, of Jews and Arabs. It is also a massive refutation of the 'cycle of violence' theory.

Case 2. 77% of Israeli Arabs say they prefer living in Israel to living in any other country

This is a startling conclusion from a 2008 Harvard School of Government survey. And this is despite the social and economic challenges which Israeli Arabs face. Not exactly proof that Israel is an 'apartheid state'.

Case 3. Don't leave us outside Israel - 50,000 of us will move "within minutes" - Arab communal leader

The leader of Shuafat, an Arab neighbourhood of Jerusalem, publicly stated in October 2007 (in a Canadian newspaper) that 50,000 Arab residents in and around Shuafat would move to Israel 'within minutes' if they felt they'd be excluded from Israel under a permanent border arrangement agreed between Israel and the Palestinians.

Case 4. Praising the democracy and justice of Israeli society - communal leader in Umm el-Fahm

The Arab mayor of Israel's largest Israeli Arab town, Umm el-Fahm, who is also chairman of Israel's Islamic Movement, stated publicly in 2004 that in his opinion, despite the discrimination and injustice faced by Israel's Arabs, the democracy and justice in Israel is better than the democracy and justice in Arab and Muslim countries.'

Whilst it is true to say that recently, relations with the Islamic movement in Umm el-Fahm have deteriorated, due to the increased radicalisation of many Arab residents in the town, and their association with Hamas. Nonetheless, the underlying messages from the Umm el-Fahm residents is unmistakeable).

Friday, October 31, 2008

The Positives and The Negatives

As always, one can find good news and bad news stories on a given subject here in Israel. Speaking to a friend who has just returned from the States where he gave a talk on the achievements of the State of Israel since its birth, he commented that the conflict with the Palestinians is always there beneath the surface.

This week on two consecutive days we have seen the positive side of Jewish Arab cooperation, followed by the negative side.

On the positive side, the number of Arab-Israelis performing national service has quadrupled in the last two years and now exceeds a thousand, according to government statistics. The figure had increased from 230 two years ago to 630 last year before already surpassing more than 1,000 volunteers for the 2008/2009 fiscal year.

More than 80 percent of the Arab participants are women, officials said.
"The young Arabs - male and female - who have joined the national civic service in the last year or two have reached very high levels of satisfaction, a sense of accomplishment and a strong sense of helping their own community.

And that has spread by word of mouth from one to another," said Dr. Reuven Gal, head of the Administration for Civilian National Service.

More details on this story can found at

Contrary to this, the Acre riots story is still bubbling under the surface, almost like a volcano waiting to erupt. A group of extreme Acre Arab residents (?)have promised that the clashes have not yet finished. The group calling itself the “Shabab of Old Acre” released a video on the internet to its members promising “to free Acre and the occupied territories”. The video shows masked Arab youngsters in the Jewish neighbourhoods with sub titles reading “I sacrifice myself for an Arab controlled Acre”.

The municipality responded by saying it “hoped that the police would deal with the inciters before they try to implement their plans.

To counter this incitement, a group of Arab and Jewish residents went on a solidarity march through the streets of Jaffa last week. The demonstration aimed to show that Jews and Arabs can live side by side and that Jaffa, like Acre an ethnically mixed city, provides a model of cooperation and coexistence.

"What happened in Acre should not have happened," a local Arab spokesman said. "It is the duty of everyone to respect the religion and customs of the other. Divisions are not solved by violence, but by discussions." What happened in Acre shows the face of extremism, there are still strong bonds of friendship and religious tolerance and many in the city have expressed the view that it is vandals from outside the city who are trying to tear the social fabric apart.

Life is not dull!!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

A Beautiful Wedding But Oh So Sad

My wife and I were invited to the wedding of a young couple whose families lived on the Golan Heights, in the Moshavim Nov and Ramat Magshimim.

The setting for the wedding was idyllic, on a beach, the Blue Beach, situated on the edge of the Sea of Galilee in Tiberius. Following our very hot summer the temperatures were comfortable and the lawns adjacent to the beach were bedecked with tables and chairs for over 350 guests.

The reception for the guests was held on lawns on another part of the site allowing guests to munch tasty tidbits such as chicken wings, salmon, typically Moroccan dishes such as “cuba” or “sigarim” and mingle amongst the guests meeting old friends and meeting new ones.

As we well know, traffic in Israel can be quite horrendous with many slow moving stretches as people leave work and head for home. A number of important guests arrived much later than planned so the wedding ceremony was held up for 45 minutes to allow everyone to arrive.

After the groom had bedecked his bride with the traditional veil, everyone headed for the “
chuppah” (canopy) under which the actual wedding ceremony took place. The “chuppah” was situated down a series of steps on to the small beach in a cove that led to the water’s edge. Here the stark reality of Israel’s water shortage became so apparent and stark. The small cove in which the wedding ceremony took place should theoretically be full of water but the small pier to which small boats would normally be berthed was approx 5 meters above our heads!! So sad!!

In the synagogues around the world, the prayer for rain was introduced into the daily prayers last week and in Haifa those prayers must have been particularly fervent, for within 24 hours there was an immense downpour. It was reported that 3.1/2’ of rain fell in the Carmel Forest in the vicinity of the University. Let’s hope that this is a sign of things to come this winter. My gosh we need it.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Iran Premptive Strike??

The following story may appear to be written by a well science fiction writer, but in today’s world it seems that anything goes, especially where Israel is concerned.

Even if the story below reports turns out to be inaccurate, the fact remains that the Iranian government's stated intention - the destruction of Israel and the United States - coupled with its ongoing efforts to manufacture nuclear weapons of mass destruction, make the scenario below very plausible...if not now, sometime in the future.

There seems to have been a news blackout on this story in the West but the Russians see the news differently. It transpires that a Somali hijacked Iranian Ship was a Dirty Bomb Meant for Israel on Yom Kippur

On August 21st, 2008, the MV Iran Deyant, 44,458 dead weight bulk carrier was heading towards the Suez Canal. As it was passing the Horn of Africa, about 80 miles southeast of al-Makalla in Yemen, the ship was surrounded by speedboats filled with members of a gang of Somalian pirates who grab suitable commercial ships and hold them and their cargos and crews for ransom. The captain was defenseless against the 40 pirates armed with AK-47s and rocket-propelled grenades blocking his passage. He had little choice other than to turn his ship over to them. What the pirates were not banking on, however, was that this was no ordinary ship.

The MV Iran Deyanat is owned and operated by the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) - a state-owned company run by the Iranian military that was sanctioned by the U.S. Department of the Treasury on September 10, shortly after the ship's hijacking.

According to the U.S. Government <> , the company regularly falsifies shipping documents in order to hide the identity of end users, uses generic terms to describe shipments to avoid the attention of shipping authorities, and employs the use of cover entities to circumvent United Nations sanctions to facilitate weapons proliferation for the Iranian Ministry of Defense. The MV Iran Deyanat departed Nanjing, China, July 28, and, according to its manifest, planned to sail to Rotterdam, where it would offload 42,500 tons of iron ore and "industrial products" purchased by an unidentified " German client". The ship has a crew of 29 men, including a Pakistani captain, an Iranian engineer, 13 other Iranians, 3 Indians, 2 Filipinos, and 10 Eastern Europeans, stated to be Albanians.

The MV Iran Deyanat was brought to Eyl, a sleepy fishing village in northeastern Somalia, and was secured by a larger gang of pirates - 50 onboard and 50 onshore. The Somali pirates attempted to inspect the ship's seven cargo containers but the containers were locked. The crew claimed that they did not have the "access codes" and could not open them.

From the Russians, we learn the real story of the MV Iran Deyanat. She was an enormous floating dirty bomb, intended to detonate after exiting the Suez Canal at the eastern end of the Mediterranean and in proximity to the coastal cities of Israel. The entire cargo of radioactive sand, obtained by Iran from China (the latter buys desperately needed oil from the former) and sealed in containers which, when the charges on the ship are set off after the crew took to the boats, will be blasted high into the air where prevailing winds will push the highly dangerous and radioactive cloud ashore.

It should be obvious that when the contents of the ship's locked cargo containers finally descended onto the land, the death toll would be enormous. This ship was nothing more nor less than the long-anticipated Iranian attack on Israel. Not the expected rocket attacks (which could be intercepted by the Israelis) but an even more deadly and unexpected attack by sea. It is very interesting to note that the Israeli government has in the past few weeks, been loudly demanding that the United States establish a naval blockade of Iran.

The reason for this blockade would be to prevent any more Iranian ships with deadly cargos from attacking either Israel or other targets from the sea.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Christians Today, Jews Tomorrow?

What a contrast? We see this week the TOTAL freedom for Christians in Israel. A religion whose adherents are growing in only one country in the world – ISRAEL. Do we see this reported in the world press? Of course not!!

In parallel, another country where exactly the opposite is the case – IRAQ also sees no reporting in the world press. And the United Nations remains silent

a) The International Christian Embassy Jerusalem and the Norweigan Christian satellite channel Visjon Norge are presenting the 2008 Feast of Tabernacles, live from Jerusalem this week from
Tuesday Oct. 14th to Thursday Oct. 16th between 7.40pm and 11pm Israel Time*
The broadcast will be carried on the network's new English speaking channel Vision Heaven and will feature the Feast's unique brand of world-class music, teaching and dance from the International Convention Center in Jerusalem. Tune in online to participate in this year's feast directly from your desktop.

* Note: If you are having trouble accessing the live webstream, go to and click on the Web-TV link at the top left-hand side of the page. Evening Celebrations begin each night at 7.40pm (Israel/Central Europe); 6.40pm (UK); 1.40pm (ET)

The highlight of the Feast for most pilgrims will take place on Wednesday with the popular Jerusalem March through the streets of the city. This year's March is part of Israel's official 60th Anniversary celebrations and a large contingent of IDF units will also join the parade.The week-long festival runs through next Sunday, and organizers expect to top 8,000 pilgrims at this year's Feast - a new record for an event.

b) Meanwhile Canon Andrew White of the Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East in Iraq writes:- Things are now desperate for the Christians in Iraq. We had such high hopes that the situation was improving but now it is worse than ever. All of my relief and emergency money has gone and we have in no way been able to compensate people for the loss they have suffered. I have just finished a conversation with a person in our church. All of their relatives' money and possessions were taken and then their house was totally blown up. Seven of them are now homeless. The demands for help are coming every few minute and we have now run out of funds. People expect me to have solutions and I have none.The services today with both the US congregation and the Iraqis were simply wonderful.

In a press release Andrew writes:- It is with great sadness that we report the growing violence against Christians in Iraq's Northern region of Mosul which includes the dominant Christian area of Nineveh. Whilst violence against Christians has abated in Baghdad, the success of the "Surge" has resulted in terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda moving North.Although Christianity has been in this land since its beginning nearly 2000 years ago, the Christian faith is often associated with the West and thus Iraqi Christians are often wrongly seen as being in relationship with the Coalition forces. In the last few days many Christians have been killed in the Mosul/Nineveh region and several thousand have tried to flee to the Kurdish areas. The Iraqi Government has responded by dramatically increasing the Police presence in the area and we wait to see if this will have any effect on the reduction of violence in the area.In our own Anglican church in Baghdad many people today expressed their grave fear and concern about their relatives in the Nineveh area. Some have been killed and others have had their homes destroyed and all their possessions taken. We are in a very serious situation and the quiet of the past few weeks has now gone.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Another Media Field Day??

It is somehow inevitable that the events in Acre during the Yom Kippur holiday are going to get the “media’s” treatment with all that that implies.

I would like to start by going back a couple of months to life in Jerusalem. There, three terror attacks occurred within a short space of time and everyone was aware of what happened and the details of the attacks.

Now casting one’s mind forward to Yom Kippur, we find that the streets throughout the country are conspicuous by the absence of vehicles and have been taken over by kids on scooters, bicycles, skateboards, etc. There is a total absence of vehicular traffic.

According to one eyewitness report, a car appeared in the neighbourhood, radio blaring and driving at speed. With the large number of people using the road there was a distinct danger of an accident. But there is another thought, is this yet another terror attack?

These same eyewitnesses contradict the Arab driver's claim that he respected the sanctity of Yom Kippur by driving quietly into the neighborhood on the evening of Yom Kippur. He inexplicably told reporters that his radio was turned off, while Jews in the neighborhood said it was blaring and that he drove at such a high speed that people were afraid he intended to run them over in a repeat of similar terrorist attacks in Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria.

Another eyewitness report, translated from the Hebrew,7340,L-3607155,00.html , said that Arabs carried out a planned attack against their Jewish neighbours on Yom Kippur. The witness, who said he was standing in the main square of the Jewish neighborhood of Acre, a city with many Muslim residents, when a taxi driven by an Arab entered the neighborhood Yom Kippur evening at high speed with music blaring and almost ran down children in the street. Surrounded by angry Jewish residents, he parked his car, cursed them, and entered a building, where he targeted residents with objects pitched from the seventh floor.

Arab leaders have condemned the driver for disregarding the sanctity of the holy day. They have announced that they will be releasing a flier condemning the man's drive through the Jewish neighborhood on Yom Kippur. However, it appears this is to be in Hebrew and distributed in the Jewish neighborhood. That is, it is designed to placate the Jews and not to advise the Arab community regarding appropriately respectful behavior. The mayor has brushed aside this conciliatory gesture made by the leaders of the Arab community.

Certainly, the stoning of the Arab’s car cannot be condoned in any way. The police were present and should have been allowed to get the driver and his family out of the area.

BUT, BUT – The spread of false rumours that Arabs had been seriously harmed or killed by Jews reached the Old City, and then one has to ask the question, “How is it that so quickly other Arabs drove into the neighborhood at high speed AND in addition, a busload of Arabs arrived and went on a rampage, wielding knives, axes and truncheons and damaging more than 150 stores and cars along a 400 metre stretch of the main street?”

While on the one hand community leaders tried to calm things down, as if to exacerbate the situation further, Knesset member Ahmed Tibi called the riots a "Jewish pogrom," and said the police were handling the "attack against the Arab residents" in a discriminatory manner and another Knesset member Muhammad Barakei echoed Tibi's words, saying that "fascist gangs in Acre carried out a pogrom against Arabs, reminiscent of dark days in human history.

With tensions still high, the city council has for the moment postponed the Acre Theatre festival planned for the Succot holiday. This has infuriated the small shopkeepers, many of them Arab, as they see this resulting in a serious drop in their income. However, the council needs assurances that calm is to be assured.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Do the Press Report or Make the News?

Seems to me the press have given up any pretence of reporting in a fair and balanced way. No, this is not new it has been going on for years, it just seems to be more blatantly obvious with no attempts to defend its “journalism”, this is a word that needs to be redefined in today’s dictionaries.

From Just Journalism in the UK comes a review of how the press reported the visit of Paul McCartney and his performance in Israel. No mention of the 50,000 people who attended a successful concert in a thoroughly peaceful and enjoyable atmosphere. (the motorists had problems with traffic jams but that was expected)

JJ reports that whilst the overwhelmingly positive reception he received was reported, much of the coverage was devoted to objections by Palestinians and Palestinian sympathisers to McCartney's visit and to the fact that he would not be performing in the Palestinian territories.

These themes were most prominent in the television broadcasts, with both ITV and the BBC focusing on the Palestinian perspective. ITV broadcast two items by Julian Manyon about the McCartney visit, on 24 September and the following day. The first report covered the singer's visit to Bethlehem and focused entirely on Palestinian opposition, quoting Palestinian activist Omar Barghouti calling Israel ‘the oppressor'. In both the studio introduction to the report and in a question the journalist put to Paul McCartney, the focus was the accusation by Palestinians that the artist was acting as ‘an accomplice to the occupation'.

BBC Six O'clock News broadcast a report by Wyre Davies on the day of the concert, which also spent more time focusing on Palestinian objections than on Israel's view. The journalist did not interview an Israeli in his report.

The broadsheets reported Palestinian calls for McCartney to boycott Israel, while the tabloids concentrated on the huge security requirements in light of death threats from Islamic hardliners.

Interestingly The Times also reported “rumours” that Israeli right-wingers might also protest against the concert. Their leading article stated that these protests, which were not mentioned in any other paper, and never materialised, - how is that for “making news headlines” ?

While The Guardian led with ‘
McCartney Israel gig sparks controversy', over half the article actually focused on a totally separate story - the release of a report by several aid agencies, which criticised the Quartet for not doing enough to alleviate Palestinian suffering.

And it is not only Britain!! Kenneth Timmerman, President and director of the Middle East Data Project reveals extremely disturbing evidence that foreign nationals from the Muslim world are trying to influence the presidential election through illegal contributions to the Barack Obama campaign.

We're not talking a few dollars here. As Timmerman notes, the Federal Election Commission has compiled a list of questionable foreign contributions totaling nearly $34,000,000! The "mainstream media" has virtually ignored this issue, in spite of the many, many news reports coming out of the Middle East and Muslim world that document the strong support Barack Obama has there. Has investigative reporting gone out of the window totally??

Sunday, October 5, 2008

The True Face of Human Rights in Israel

For several years, the Rapporteur to the UN Commission on Human Rights (now the UN Human Rights Council) and human rights groups have criticized the Israeli government and health care system for denying access to Gazans seeking to receive permits for care in hospitals in Israel, the PA and Jordan.

Yet the data shows that the number of patients receiving permits for referrals to hospitals in Israel - or the PA or Jordan - increased by 45 percent from 4,932 in 2006 to 7,176 in 2007, and continued to increase in the first six months of 2008 These trends occurred despite a decline in entry approval rates, mostly because of security reasons.

The facts are that Israel has provided ever increasing numbers of approvals of permits since the Hamas takeover of Gaza, despite increasing rocket attacks on Israel's civilian population, including mortar and terror attacks directed at the Erez crossing used by patients.

At the same time, there have been at least 20 incidents where Palestinians used medical missions to attempt terror attacks.

A full report can be read at

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Whose Land Is It Really?

Land ownership in Israel and the disputed territories has always been the subject of argument; the deeds of ownership have often been unclear. A friend of mine unearthed the following response to questions leveled during the Peel Royal Commission of Enquiry in 1937 by Sir Laurie Hammond, a member of the Commission to Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Mufti of Jerusalem, and I think it is most illuminating:

A). How did the Jews Acquire Land?
SIR L. HAMMOND: His Eminence gave us a picture of the Arabs being evicted from their land and villages being wiped out. What I want to know is, did the Government of Palestine, the Administration, acquire the land and then hand it over to the Jews?
MUFTI: In most cases the lands were acquired.
SIR L. HAMMOND: I mean forcibly acquired-compulsory acquisition as land would be acquired for public purposes?
MUFTI: No, it wasn't.
SIR L. HAMMOND: Not taken by compulsory acquisition?

B) How much land was acquired?
SIR L. HAMMOND: Would you give me the figures again for the land. I want to know how much land was held by the Jews before the Occupation.
MUFTI: At the time of the Occupation the Jews held about 100,000 dunams. ….
SIR L. HAMMOND: .. He says that in 1920 at the time of the Occupation, the Jews only held 100,000 dunams, is that so? I asked the figures from the Land Registry, how much land the Jews owned at the time of the Occupation. Would he be surprised to hear that the figure is not 100,000 but 650,000 dunams?
MUFTI: It may be that the difference was due to the fact that many lands were bought by contract which were not registered.
SIR L. HAMMOND: There is a lot of difference between 100,000 and 650,000.
MUFTI: In one case they sold about 400,000 dunams in one lot.
SIR L. HAMMOND: Who? An Arab?
MUFTI: Sarsuk. An Arab of Beyrouth

C) Were Arab Cultivators Evicted ?
SIR L. HAMMOND: His Eminence gave us a picture of the Arabs being evicted from their land and villages being wiped out. What I want to know is, did the Government of Palestine, the Administration, acquire the land and then hand it over to the Jews?
MUFTI: In most cases the lands were acquired. …
SIR L. HAMMOND: But these lands amounting to some 700,000 dunams were actually sold?
MUFTI: Yes, they were sold, but the country was placed in such conditions as would facilitate such purchases.
SIR I HAMMOND: I don't quite understand what you mean by that. They were sold- Who sold them?
MUFTI: Land owners.
MUFTI: In most cases they were Arabs.
SIR L. HAMMOND: Was any compulsion put on them to sell? If so, by whom?
MUFTI: As in other countries, there are people who by force of circumstances, economic forces, sell their land.
SIR L. HAMMOND: Is that all he said?
MUFTI: They were not prevented from selling the land, and mostly the country was in such economic condition as facilitated the sale. If the Government had the interest of these poor people at heart they should have prevented sales and these people would not have been evicted from their land. A large part of these lands belong to absentee landlords who sold the land over the heads of their tenants, who were forcibly evicted. The majority of these landlords were absentees who sold their land over the heads of their tenants. Not Palestinians but Lebanese.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

What a Crazy World

Another day, another show but the UN continues along its immoral path. Iran's president (hard to bring myself to even write his nanme - yes I can spell it!) claims "The dignity, decency and rights of the American and European nations are being manipulated by a small but cunning group of people called Zionists… who control the important centers of the economy and the decision-making… It is troubling to see that a number of leading presidents and [presidential] candidates from large countries are visiting these people, participating in their conventions… and are committed to their interests… These facts indicate that the American people and the European states are forced to give in to the demands and whims of a small group of materialistic and invasive people… and to waste their resources and dignity on the crimes of the occupiers and the threats of the Zionist network against their will."

Following this speech, Ahmadinejad received the applause of heads of state, diplomats and dignitaries. Now, to add insult further, Iran is seeking a seat on the UN Security Council. Sick, sick,sick

Meanwhile in the UK, Islamisation continues to affect life in a slow and steadily increasing way.The Mail Online reports that the passport photo of 5 year old girl was banned 'in case it offends Muslims'

The post office clerk stunned the girl's parents by claiming the skin exposed by her daughter's halter-neck dress would not be accepted by the Passport Office as it might prove unacceptable in a Muslim country.

An official spokesman said: 'Our offices have a Passport Office template which says what the photograph should and shouldn't be.'Bare shoulders don't come into that at all. We can't see any instruction to that effect so all we can do is apologise to Mrs Edwards. It was clearly a mistake made by the clerk."

Of course, some would say I am overreacting, however Diane West writing in states "With Wall Street convulsing, and the White House race intensifying, the question "Who lost Europe" is on no one's lips, let alone minds. Indeed, the question begs another: "Is Europe lost?"

The answer to the second question is, "No, not yet." And losing Europe, I would add, is by no means inevitable. But that doesn't mean the continent isn't currently hell-bent to accommodate the dictates of Islamic law, bit by increasingly larger bit. Such a course of accommodation, barring reversal, will only hasten Bernard Lewis' famous prediction that Europe will be Islamic by century's end. "

Just as the Jews of Germany could not accept what was happening to them and buried their heads in the sands, ostrich style in the 1930's, so many in Europe are today doing exactly the same - will the human race ever learn?