Category Archives: Israel

A friend of Israel doesn’t boycott

Is your Senator / Congressman a friend of Israel?

Boycotting Israel has been for decades – and still is – high on the agenda of the enemies of Israel.

Refuse to finance the occupation – Boycott Israel
“Refuse to finance the occupation – Boycott Israel” – a Swedish poster calls for a boycott of Israel

Since Israel was established in 1948, the Arab League implemented a broad boycott of Israel,* prohibiting direct trade between Israel and the Arab nations, prohibiting doing business with companies that do business with Israel, and blacklisting firms that trade with other companies that do business with Israel.

The Arab League is no friend of Israel.

 

United Nations General Assembly hall
United Nations General Assembly hall

Year after year, Arab delegations to the United Nations walk out upon the Israeli ambassador delivering Israel’s message to the General Assembly.

These Arab states are not friends of Israel.

 

Boycott, Divest, Sanction demonstration against Israel
Boycott, Divest, Sanction demonstration against Israel

In 2005, Palestinian organizations launched the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement in an attempt to exert pressure on Israel to end the “Israeli occupation and colonization of Palestinian land,” and to pressure Israel to “respect the right of return of Palestinian refugees to Israel.”

Palestinians are not friends of Israel.

 

In January 2007, the South African Food and Allied Workers’ Union (FAWU) called on national supermarket chains to stop importing avocado from Israel, ultimately leading to the banning of all imports from the Jewish state. Katishi Masemola, secretary general of FAWU said, “We haven’t made the call to impose sanctions against Israel yet, but we are moving there. It’s just a matter of months.”

The FAWU is not a friend of Israel.

 

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President of Turkey
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President of Turkey

In February 2015, Turkey pulled out of the Munich security conference, announcing it will not attend because Israeli officials were invited.

Turkey is no friend of Israel.

 

Durban University
Durban University

In February 2015, Israel boycott activists in the Student Representative Council and Progressive Youth Alliance at South Africa’s Durban University of Technology called for their school to expel its Jewish students, especially those who do not support the Palestinian struggle.

These students are no friend of Israel.

 

To this day, at least 32 nations around the world do not recognize the existence of Israel. These countries include Afghanistan, Algeria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Brunei, Chad, Comoros, Cuba, Djibouti, Guinea, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Morocco, Niger, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

These countries are no friend of Israel.

 

In mid-January 2015, the United States Speaker of the House of Representatives invited the Prime Minister of Israel to address Congress about Iran’s nuclear program. The Prime Minister accepted the invitation and delivered remarks to a joint session of Congress on March 3rd 2015.

Natanyahu's speech to Congress, March 2015

A number of Senators and Congressmen boycotted the speech, some claiming to be upset that the Speaker may have violated protocol or blindsided the Administration with the invitation. They took their anger out on the Prime Minister with this boycott. 

Others made the claim that this speech would somehow help the Prime Minister in his reelection campaign – in spite of the fact that the arguments regarding Iran’s nuclear program that he was expected to reiterate in the speech  are ones on which there is national unity in Israel, with all major Israeli opposition parties in agreement on. To avoid ‘interfering in Israeli elections,’ however, these US Senators and Congressmen boycotted the speech.

Playing into the hands of Israel’s enemies with this boycott, can you honestly call the following Senators and Congressmen (who went on to boycott Israel’s Prime Minister) a ‘friend of Israel?’

Vice President Joe Biden (Democrat)

Sen. Al Franken (Democrat, Minn.)
Sen. Martin Heinrich (Democrat, N.M.)
Sen. Tim Kaine (Democrat, VA)
Sen. Patrick Leahy (Democrat, VT)
Sen. Bernie Sanders (Independent, VT)
Sen. Brian Schatz (Democrat, Hawaii)
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Democrat, Mass.)
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (Democrat, R.I.)

Rep. Karen Bass (Democrat, Calif.)
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (Democrat, Ore.)
Rep. Corrine Brown (Democrat, Fla.)
Rep. G.K. Butterfield (Democrat, N.C.)
Rep. Lois Capps (Democrat, Calif.)
Rep. André Carson (Democrat, Ind.)
Rep. Joaquin Castro (Democrat, Texas)
Rep. Katherine Clark (Democrat, Mass.)
Rep. Lacy Clay (Democrat, Mo.)
Rep. James Clyburn (Democrat, S.C.)
Rep. Steve Cohen (Democrat, Tenn.)
Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (Democrat, New Jersey)
Rep. John Conyers (Democrat, Michigan)
Rep. Danny K. Davis (Democrat, Ill.)
Rep. Rosa DeLauro (Democrat, Conn.)
Rep. Peter DeFazio (Democrat, Ore.)
Rep. Diana DeGette (Democrat, Colo.)
Rep. Lloyd Doggett (Democrat, Texas)
Rep. Donna Edwards (Democrat, MD.)
Rep. Keith Ellison (Democrat, Minn.)
Rep. Chaka Fattah (Democrat, Pennsylvania)
Rep. Martha Fudge (Democrat, Ohio)
Rep. Raúl Grijalva (Democrat, Ariz.)
Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (Democrat, Ill.)
Rep. Denny Heck (Democrat, Washington)
Rep. Ruben Hinojosa (Democrat, Texas)
Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (Democrat, Texas)
Rep. Walter Jones (Republican, N.C.)
Rep. Marcy Kaptur (Democrat, Ohio)
Rep. Rick Larsen (Democrat, Wash.)
Rep. Barbara Lee (Democrat, Calif)
Rep. John Lewis (Democrat, Ga.)
Rep. Dave Loebsack (Democrat, Iowa)
Rep. Zoe Lofgren (Democrat, Calif.)
Rep. Betty McCollum (Democrat, Minn.)
Rep. Jim McDermott (Democrat, Wash.)
Rep. Jim McGovern (Democrat, Mass.)
Rep. Jerry McNerney (Democrat, Calif.)
Rep. Gregory Meeks (Democrat, N.Y.)
Rep. Gwen Moore (Democrat, Wisconsin)
Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (Democrat, D.C.)
Rep. Beto O’Rourke (Democrat, Texas)
Rep. Chellie Pingree (Democrat, Maine)
Rep. David E. Price (Democrat, N.C.)
Rep. Cedric Richmond (Democrat, La.)
Rep. Jan Schakowsky (Democrat, Ill.)
Rep. Bennie Thompson (Democrat, Miss.)
Rep. Mike Thompson (Democrat, California)
Rep. John Yarmouth (Democrat, Ky.)

Total: 58
56 Democrats
1 Republican
1 Independent
1 Vice President (President of the Senate)
8 Senators
49 Members of the House of Representatives

Bad deal? Netanyahu’s not alone!

Who else agrees with Netanyahu that the emerging nuclear deal with Iran is a bad deal?

Netanyahu’s address to a joint session of Congress on March 3, 2015 laid bare dramatic gaps between his Israeli government and the Obama administration regarding Iran.

Netanyahu’s message to Congress was that a deal, in its current formation, would constitute a historic mistake.

The policy disagreement has resulted in what experts say is the greatest chasm between Washington and Jerusalem in decades.

Natanyahu's speech to Congress, March 2015

After Netanyahu’s address on March 3, 2015, publication A ran an article by Mr. A, the editor-in-chief of its English website titled “President Obama, listen to Netanyahu on Iran.”

Faisal J. AbbasMr. A wrote: “…one must admit, Bibi [referencing Netanyahu by his nick name] did get it right, at least when it came to dealing with Iran.”

“The Israeli PM managed to hit the nail right on the head when he said that Middle Eastern countries are collapsing and that “terror organizations, mostly backed by Iran, are filling in the vacuum” wrote Mr. A.

“In just a few words, Mr. Netanyahu managed to accurately summarize a clear and present danger, not just to Israel (which obviously is his concern), but to other U.S. allies in the region”.

“What is absurd, however, is that despite this being perhaps the only thing that brings together [these two peoples*] (as it threatens them all), the only stakeholder that seems not to realize the danger of the situation is President Obama, who is now infamous for being the latest pen-pal of the Supreme Leader of the World’s biggest terrorist regime: Ayatollah Ali Khamenei [referring to the supreme leader of Iran] (although, the latter never seems to write back!)” wrote Mr. A


Netanyahu's address to Congress, March 3, 2015
Netanyahu’s address to Congress, March 3, 2015.

In a separate article published one day prior to Netanyahu’s speech in publication B that was reported on by MEMRI (the Middle East Media Research Institute), columnist Mr. B supported Netanyahu’s decision to speak at the US Congress against a nuclear deal with Iran.

“I will conclude by saying the following: Since Obama is the godfather of the prefabricated revolutions in the Arab world, and since he is the ally of political Islam, [which is] the caring mother of [all] the terrorist organizations, and since he is working to sign an agreement with Iran that will come at the expense of the US’s longtime allies in the Gulf…” said Mr. B, “I am very glad of Netanyahu’s firm stance and [his decision] to speak against the nuclear agreement at the American Congress despite the Obama administration’s anger and fury”. Mr. B went on to conclude, “I believe that Netanyahu’s conduct will serve our interests, the people of the Gulf, much more than the foolish behavior of one of the worst American presidents.” 


Publication A is the Saudi Al Arabiya and Mr. A is Faisal J. Abbas, the Editor-in-Chief of its English website.

Publication B is the Saudi daily Al-Jazirah and Mr. B is its columnist Dr. Ahmad Al-Faraj.

Newspapers in Saudi Arabia are subsidized and regulated by the government. The “Basic Law” of the kingdom states that the media’s role is to educate and inspire national unity, consequently most popular grievances go unreported in Saudi Arabia. As of 2013, BBC news reports that criticism of the government and royal family and the questioning of Islamic tenets “are not generally tolerated. Self-censorship is pervasive.” As of 2014, Freedom House rates the kingdom’s press and internet “Not Free”.

Thus, you may correctly infer that the above ‘opinions’ are fully supported by the Saudi Arabia’s government.

*[these two peoples] was originally referred to by Mr. A as “Arabs and Israelis”.

All the falsities that are fit to print

New York Times false facts about the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

On April 14, 2014, the New York Times published an editorial titled: In the Middle East, Time to Move On.

All The Falsities That Are Fit to PrintThe article is filled with false facts, expresses anti-Israel opinions and frequently uses anti-Israel sentiment.

New York Times false facts

While the New York Times is entitled to express its anti-Israel opinion and use anti-Israel sentiment – after all, it is an editorial – falsifying facts and bending the truth, especially for the purpose of supporting a biased opinion, is nothing short of lying.

Here are a few examples of the New York Times false facts (see highlighted text in the original New York Times article*):

(1) “In 2009, the administration focused on getting Israel to halt settlement building and ran into the obstinacy of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and resistance from the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, to entering peace talks.

Flat out false.
On November 25, 2009, in a step characterized by top U.S. envoy for the region George Mitchell as “more than any Israeli government has done before, and [a decision that] can help move toward agreement between the parties“, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did agree to a 10-month settlement construction freeze (through Sep. 26, 2010) in the West Bank, yielding to the Obama administration pressure and the Palestinians demand. 

West Bank settlementThe Palestinian Authority rejected the gesture as being insignificant and despite the construction halt, continued to refuse to enter negotiations for almost 10 months into the construction-freeze period. When they finally entered negotiations on Sep. 2, 2010, they immediately threatened to exit them should the looming expiration of the construction-freeze period not be extended. When the 10-month settlement construction-freeze period elapsed and the halt was not extended – the Palestinians broke off the talks.

(2) “Since then, members of Mr. Netanyahu’s coalition government have tried to sabotage the talks.

Speculation, not a fact.
This speculative accusation has been put forward by Tzipi Livni, the head of a small left-wing faction (Hatnu-ah) that won only 6 seats (5%) in the Jan. 2013 elections to the 120-seat Israeli parliament.

Mahmoud Abbas (left) and Tzipi Livni (right)
Mahmoud Abbas (left) and Tzipi Livni (right).

The height of Livni’s political career was her Foreign Minister post under Prime Minister Sharon government of 2006, as a member of the ruling Kadima political faction.

After Sharon’s stroke, and Olmert’s (his successor as Prime Minister) decision to step down, Livni in Sep. 2008 won Kadima‘s leadership by a 1% margin (431 votes).

After Olmert’s resignation as Prime Minister, Livni was tasked in Sep. 2008 to form a government, but was unable to garner sufficient support in the Knesset (Israeli parliament).

New York Times false facts

In the following 2009 elections, Livni ran against Netanyahu. She was endorsed by the New York Times, and by the left-wing Israeli newspaper Ha-Aretz. Netanyahu endeded up forming a government following the elections, while Livni became the opposition leader. In Mar. 2012, Livni lost her primary elections in her Kadima faction by a wide margin (64.5% to her 35.5%) . She then resigned from the Knesset.

In Nov. 2012 Livni formed a new faction (Hatnu-ah) and ran against Netanyahu for prime-minister position in the Jan. 2013 elections, with its platform emphasizing on its aggressive push for a peace settlement with the Palestinians.

After winning only 6 seats (5%) in the Jan. 2013 elections to the 120-seat Israeli parliament, Livni joined Netanyahu’s government as Justice minister and head of Israeli negotiation team with the Palestinians.

(3) “The process broke down last month when Israel failed to release a group of Palestinian prisoners as promised and then announced 700 new housing units for Jewish settlement in a part of Jerusalem that Palestinians claim as the capital of a future state.”

An opinion, not a fact.
The process broke down because:

The Palestinians…
Refused to discuss any recognition of Israel as a Jewish state.
– Refused Kerry’s proposed framework which aimed for the formulation of a final agreement.
– Said “No” to Kerry’s request to agree to extend the talks beyond the looming April 29, 2014 deadline.
– Indicated clearly that all they were interested in was the release of the last batch of 28 terrorist before the deadline, after which they would walk away and take unilateral steps to gain international recognition as a state outside of an agreement with Israel.

Released Palestinian terrorists
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, second from left, waves with released Palestinian terrorists coming from Israeli jails during celebrations at Abbas’ headquarter in the West Bank town of Ramallah, October 30, 2013.

While Israel…
Released 78 Palestinian terrorist in 3 batches during the negotiation period as a gesture to the Palestinians in order to gain their consent to restart the talks brokered by Kerry.
– Never committed to halt construction in Jerusalem or the West Bank, thus has not violated the conditions under which the talks were held.
– Was prepared to accept Kerry’s proposed framework which aimed for the formulation of a final agreement.
– After realizing that the Palestinians – by their refusal to agree to the extension of talks and their threats to go to the UN – are not interested in continued negotiations but only in the release of their terrorists – Israel postponed the release of the last batch of terrorists while negotiating a broader deal that will tie such a release with the continuation of the negotiations.

(4) “…Palestinians responded by applying to join 15 international conventions and treaties. That move won’t get them a state, but it is legal

Rabin Clinton Arafat

Flat out false.
The Palestinians applying to join 15 international conventions and treaties was a violation of the terms of negotiations, as well as a violation of previous agreements with Israel in which Palestinians have committed not to take any unilateral steps outside the context of a negotiated agreement with Israel that have any effect of the political status of Palestine as an independent entity (1995 Oslo Interim Agreement Article XXXI Final Clauses 7).

(5) “…[Israel] took its own unilateral steps by announcing plans to deprive the financially strapped Palestinian Authority of about $100 million in monthly tax revenues

Flat out false.
The Israeli decision was to deduct Palestinian debt from the monthly transfer of tax collections, which typically amounts to about $100 million per month. Palestinians owe Israel hundreds of millions of dollars for electricity and hospital bills. There was no Israeli specific announcement as to the amount that would be withheld to cover Palestinian debt. 

Perhaps the New York Times needs to change its tag line.

New York Times new tag line

 

In the Middle East, Time to Move On.