UPDATES 11 am Israel time, Monday, December 2 2013:
**There could hardly be more miraculous news for Chanukah. Regular readers of israelstreet will remember Lt. Ahiya Klein who was critically wounded in the Hamas tunnel explosion near the Gaza Border last month.
As you may remember, Lt. Klein was blinded, but doctors have performed multiple surgeries on his eyes with the slim hope of that he may once again be able to see.
On Friday night Lt. Klein was allowed to leave the hospital to return home for one night to light the Chanukah candles along with his family and some friends from around the country. It was revealed that Lt. Klein has now regained partial vision in one eye.
If you are lighting Chanukah candles tonight, or even if you’re not, say a prayer for IDF Lt. Ahiya Klein.
**It has been nauseating during the last week to see Barack Obama’s friends on the Israeli left rush to defend him on the Iranian agreement at the expense of what is good for Israel. Yesterday, it was Ehud Olmert’s turn as he spoke at Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv. Pounding his fist on the podium, Olmert gave a fiery address in which he accused Netanyahu of waging war “on the American Administration.”
In Olmert’s own, less than eloquent words: “You cannot blur it. We waged war. They were always on our side. What do you want from them?”
What one would have wanted from the Obama Administration was for America to continue down the road of sanctions that had led Iran to finally, perhaps, want to negotiate. Instead the U.S. gave them the house, with nothing but a bundle of empty promises in return. And no one even cares now, least of all the Obama Administration, that the Iranians are saying that the agreement that they signed is not the agreement that Obama published.
**Speaking of Iran, all roads suddenly lead to Tehran. The Turks announced yesterday that improved coordination is now taking place between Turkish and Iranian security agencies. Lukoil, a huge Russian oil producer, announced yesterday that it is putting in motion a process to cooperate with Iran on oil production and distribution. The Russian government and Iran announced yesterday that a second nuclear reactor will now be built jointly at Bushehr. Iran’s foreign minister met with the emir of Kuwait yesterday and discussed improving relations.
The list is endless. The sanctions are history. Everyone is rushing to jump on board the Iranian bandwagon.
**The Syrians have published a list of Syrian officers who were killed in November. That list includes 9 major generals, 54 brigadier generals, and 61 colonels. As reported in previous israelstreet blogs, the tide may have turned in the direction of the Syrians, but the Syrian officer corps has been decimated.
Let’s play a game this morning.
Your humble servant will give you a line of reportage from the Haaretz newspaper today, and then you guess to what it refers.
Here’s the line:
“The U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv was furious at the report, as was Mahmoud Abbas’ office, and both demanded explanations.”
Was this “sound and fury” as a result of:
A. The closure of the Temple Mount to all Jews yesterday because two Jewish teenagers were assaulted by Muslim “worshipers” after singing Chanukah songs on the Mount.
B. The Housing Ministry publication of bids yesterday for new construction in Judea and Samaria which neglected to remove the new housing units that PM Netanyahu has already said were frozen.
C. The ministerial vote in the Knesset yesterday that allowed “Basic Law: Referendum” out of committee. The Referendum Law is already a law; it does not permit the Israeli government to give away any part of Jerusalem, swap any land with the Palestinians, or give away the Israeli Golan Heights, without a national referendum. By turning the Referendum Law into a Basic Law, the Law is put beyond the reach of the Israel Supreme Court which can strike down “non-basic” laws.
So what do you think the answer is?
Obviously the answer is not A. Neither the U.S. government nor the PLO gives a whit whether the Temple Mount is closed to Jews or not. Now if the Mount, Judaism’s holiest place, were closed to Muslims, the outcry from the American Embassy in Tel Aviv and from the Muqata in Ramallah would be louder than the house-rattling roar from the squadrons of F-16s flying low over your humble servant’s home in Ashdod at this very moment.
That leaves B or C.
On the face of it, one would think that the answer would be C since Netanyahu has already kowtowed to the Americans and frozen all housing construction (by the way, note just how disingenuous Netanyahu was–he first said he was just freezing construction planning in the E1 area–but now it turns out that he froze all construction planning everywhere in Judea and Samaria).
So of course, the previous paragraph indicates the correct answer is B.
By the way, who cares if the Americans and the PLO are “furious” or not?
When will Israelis ever be able to pray on the Temple Mount? When will Israelis ever be able to build homes, schools, and health clinics in the land of our matriarchs and patriarchs–with no regard for the world thinks? Why does the Netanyahu government have to continually walk around with its tail between its legs? When will Israel ever recover its self-dignity?