UPDATE: 9 am Israel time Wednesday:
There have been scattered instances of “rock throwing” by Palestinian terrorists on roads throughout Judea and Samaria overnight.
UPDATE on judicial decision concerning former Israeli PM Ehud Olmert:
The bizarre decision of the Jerusalem Court yesterday concerning the two main acquittals of former PM Ehud Olmert in his corruption trial has become clear this morning.
In the Rishon Travel double billing affair, Olmert was found “innocent” not because double billing did not occur, but because the state “failed to show a pattern of double billing.” In other words, there was corruption, but not consistent corruption.
In the Talansky affair, Olmert was found “innocent” not because he did not take $600,000 from Morris Talansky under the table, but because the state failed to show that Olmert used his power to help Talansky and because the state did not disprove Olmert’s contention that the money was used for “political” not “personal” purposes. In other words, Olmert took the money but who knows how he used it?
And of course Olmert was found guilty of “breaching the public trust.” Based on all of this, Olmert’s claims yesterday that he was “completely vindicated” are simply laughable. In any case, Olmert is far from off the hook; the state is considering appealing the decision to the Israel Supreme Court, and Olmert’s main corruption trial involving the Holyland property in Jerusalem is set to begin this summer.
Can you name the top ten Israeli cities in order of population–from largest to smallest? Here are the choices; answers appear after today’s blog:
Petah Tikvah, Haifa, Rishon LeZion, Jerusalem, Beersheva, Netanya, Ashdod, Tel Aviv
As is often reported in this blog, so-called and self-proclaimed “international human rights and peace activists” have become a regular feature of life in Judea and Samaria. Everyday, these “human rights and peace activists” lead violent demonstrations against Israel usually joining forces with Israeli “peace activists” and Palestinian “activists” to throw “rocks”, burning tires, and anything else they can find at Israeli security personnel.
Whenever there is a riot against Israel’s security barrier, whenever there is mob action against Jewish communities, whenever there is any attack by a crowd on Israeli security forces, there you can find the “international human rights and peace activists” in the forefront leading the assault.
From the perspective of the PLO/Palestinian Authority, this has all been fine and good–so fine and good that these “international activists” have been encouraged to come to Judea and Samaria from all over the world in order to bring media attention to the “plight” of the “poor” Palestinians. What the PLO/Palestinian Authority apparently did not count on is that many of these “international activists” have taken up residence in Ramallah and in rural Palestinian settlements.
And what are they doing now? Not only are they violently protesting against Israel, but they are violently turning on their hosts, taking to the streets to protest against the PLO/Palestinian Authority and in the process sounding a lot like Hamas.
The first hint of trouble came two weeks ago when a protest by “Palestinians for Dignity” turned violent. Critical of Mahmoud Abbas for his proposed meeting with Shaul Mofaz (the head of the left-wing Kadima Party that is now a part of the government coalition), the marchers attempted to reach Abbas’ presidential compound. In the ensuing melee, seven protesters and five journalists were wounded by Palestinian police and intelligence officers (intelligence officers = secret police).
The second violent protest occurred several days later, this time directed against the Palestinian police brutality that occurred in the first demonstration. This round caused PLO President Abbas to set up a special commission to investigate the protests.
In establishing the commission, Abbas issued the following Orwellian statement: “We will not permit any type of violation of freedom of expression and the right to free assembly, including the right to protest in a manner consistent with the law. We will not permit any abuse on the part of official bodies against our people; we will not accept any attack on the prestige of official institutions.” Let’s see . . . no violation of freedom of expression and freedom of assembly–just no freedom of expression and freedom of assembly directed against the PLO . . .
In the meantime, a third demonstration took place in Ramallah last week–again criticizing the PLO and Mahmoud Abbas for not abrogating the Oslo Accords. In this regard, the “human rights and peace” protesters were taking the line of Hamas–after all it was the Oslo Accords that essentially established and empowered the PLO/Palestinian Authority.
Apparently enough is enough. A PLO/Palestinian Authority official revealed yesterday that the protests are being engineered by “at least 10 Western activists” who are “affiliated with a number of anti-Israel NGOs.” (So you mean the NGOs are really ‘anti-Israel’ after all!)
And what about freedom of speech and freedom of assembly? Apparently that will not be happening anytime soon in Ramallah. The same official declared: “The involvement of Western nationals in protests against the Palestinian Authority is completely unacceptable. We will be forced to cut off all ties with non-Palestinians who incite against the Palestinian leadership.”
Your humble servant was trying to think of the right expression this morning to cover this laughable situation: “the chickens have come home to roost”? “if you lie down with dogs you get up with fleas”? or my grandmother’s favorite: “Beware of what you wish for.” I leave it to you dear reader to choose the best description–or to come up with one of your own.
ANSWERS TO THE DEMOGRAPHIC QUIZ:
1. Jerusalem: 804, 355
2. Tel Aviv: 404, 750
3. Haifa: 270, 348
4. Rishon LeZion: 232, 410
5. Ashdod: 212, 278
6. Petah Tikvah: 210, 376
7. Beersheva: 196, 395
8. Netanya: 189, 678
So how did you do?
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