Iyar 8, 5777
May 4, 2017
The News on the Israel Street Today:
Palestinian terrorism today:
Thus far today there has only been one stabbing attempt: this one at the “Bakery Checkpoint” near the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hevron. A Palestinian terrorist was shot and wounded when he pulled out a knife and attempted to attack IDF soldiers.
In some of the other attacks today, Palestinian terrorists launched “rock” and Molotov assaults on Israelis near the T-Junction in Gush Etzion, just outside of Tekoa, at Beitar Illit (motorist wounded), Psagot, Hizma, Bardala, and Rechalim.
Palestinian terrorism yesterday:
Another day with more than 30 terror attacks: the most egregious being another attempted stabbing attack at the Shuafat Checkpoint.
Israeli civilians were attacked by terrorists at Al Mu’ayyir, Tekoa, El Khader, Ramat Shlomo, A-Ram, Azzun, Karnei Shomron, Hizma, El Aruv, Halhul, and Gush Etzion to name a few locations.
Israeli soldiers and security personnel were assaulted at Rachel’s Tomb, Jayyus, Abu Dis, Shuafat, Tel Rumeida in Hevron, and numerous other places.
Where were members of our “greatest generation’?
Veterans groups have been expressing their outrage over the fact that not one veteran of the 1948 War for Independence was asked to light a torch at this week’s Independence Day ceremonies in Jerusalem.
Twelve torches were lit by a variety of people including a Holocaust survivor and even leaders from the Diaspora. But no veterans from 1948–the very people who fought to establish our capital in Jerusalem.
In truth, the omission of such fighters was a gross oversight of the Independence Day planning committee.
Hebrew University of Jerusalem Dives into the Sewer
In what can only be described as a bizarre lowering of its standards, Hebrew University has invited Barak Cohen to speak.
Barak Cohen, as you may not know, is the ultra-left wing anarchist who accosted Israel Culture Minister Miri Regev a few weeks ago as she, her husband, and their teenaged daughter walked down Dizengoff street in Tel Aviv.
After screaming at Regev that she is “racist”, “garbage”, and a “sharmuta” (prostitute), Cohen proceeded to yell that he was going to sh*t on Regev’s entire family. Finally, the police had be called in to stop Cohen.
And now the “Social Involvement Unit” of Hebrew University has invited Cohen to speak on democratic regime change?
And you thought you couldn’t drive from the Arabian Peninsula to Israel?
Residents of Tel Aviv were shocked to see this vehicle on the streets today:
It turns out that it was a rental car, rented by a Norwegian man and his son in Qatar who then proceeded to drive through Saudi Arabia into Jordan whereupon they entered Israel via the Aqaba Crossing.
The Trump Effect in Syria?
Iran, Turkey, and Russia signed a memorandum today establishing four safe zones in Syria. As you may or may not remember, the establishment of safe zones was an idea encouraged by President Trump during the election campaign last year. Today, the three countries went to some length to say that Trump endorses the zones.
How would these zones work? Supposedly forces on the ground would maintain quiet, and no bombing of the areas can take place. Whether this has any chance of working is anyone’s guess. Already Syrian rebel groups have expressed their outrage that Iran is involved in the arrangements.
Can Trump Really Be So Naive About The Palestinians?
That is the question that many of us find ourselves asking today following the scenes and statements that emerged from the White House yesterday. What seemed to begin as a somewhat cold reception for Mahmoud Abbas at the White House portico developed into a virtual lovefest by the time the day ended.
What was especially troubling was how quickly the White House embraced Abbas and seemed to take Abbas’s pronouncements for peace at face value. One cannot help but think that Abbas woke up today thinking what an amazing con job he did on Trump.
But I am getting a little ahead of myself. Let’s read some of the words that were actually spoken yesterday.
First from Sean Spicer, the White House Press Secretary in prefatory remarks before answering questions:
“Today, the President welcomed the President of the Palestinian Authority to the White House for an official visit. The visit stemmed from a phone call the two leaders had on March 10th, when President Trump invited President Abbas to Washington so they could discuss, in person, ways to move forward on a comprehensive agreement that would end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The two leaders made their own statements just a little bit ago. But to give you a few additional details, some of the topics that were discussed during their meeting and the lunch were: advancing the Israeli-Palestinian peace; preventing incitements to violence, particularly media outlets directly associated with the Palestinian Authority; strengthening efforts to combat terrorism, including defeating ISIS; measures to empower the Palestinian economy and provide economic opportunity for the Palestinian people. And, additionally, the President raised concerns about the payments to Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails who have committed acts of terror, and to their families, and emphasized the need to resolve this issue.”
Spicer’s rendition of what was discussed is a litany of subjects that have been discussed many times before with the exception that somehow, ludicrously, the Palestinians will now help the world defeat ISIS.
Note that there was no discussion of the core issues whatsoever. No discussion of Palestinian recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, no discussion of Jerusalem as Israel’s eternal capital, no discussion of Judea and Samaria and the 400,000+ Israeli Jews who live there, no discussion of the supposed 5,000,000+ so-called Palestinian refugees whom the PLO demands should come and live in Israel.
And yet, we are supposed to believe that there will be peace this time?
A reporter asked this obvious question to Spicer:
Question: “. . . This is at least the fourth White House, fourth administration in a row that has come in with optimistic predictions of how Middle East peace will go. What’s going to be different this time?”
Spicer’s answer: “I think the man is different. You look at what — the President’s diplomacy style is paying dividends, whether it’s getting someone who has been held for years in Egypt released; whether it’s the action that China has taken. The relationships and the foundation that the President is rebuilding are going to pay huge dividends for this country in terms of our economic interest, our national security interest. But this President’s style is one to develop a personal bond with individuals. And I think you saw that today with President Abbas, him talking so kindly about the President. You saw that. The relationship that exists and is only getting stronger between him and Prime Minister Netanyahu. You have two individuals who, because of this President, are increasing their desire for peace.”
If this is not pure unadulterated hokum, your humble servant doesn’t know what is. Abbas and Trump talking so kindly about each other? Abbas is suddenly increasing his desire for peace because of his newfound relationship with Trump?
Here’s a new flash for Sean Spicer and President Trump: talk is cheap. And Palestinians are masters of talking out of both sides of their mouths. They are especially adept at flattering those who like to be flattered, in English –only to turn around in Arabic and declare uncompromisingly what they really believe.
How quickly did we find this out yesterday? Within hours of Spicer’s glowing description of how Abbas has been magically transformed by Trump into a man of peace–we had Abbas’s chief advisor Nabil Sha’ath saying this about Trump’s raising the question of payments to Palestinian terrorists:
“It is a madman who demands that the Palestinian leadership not pay salaries to the families of the prisoners. It is like demanding that Israel stop paying its soldiers.”
It is time for President Trump to wake up and smell the reality before we travel down the slippery slope to disaster once again.