Iyar 9, 5777
May 5, 2017
The News on the Israel Street Today:
Palestinian terrorism this week:
As we report everyday, Palestinian terrorists continually attack Israeli men, women, and children. On average, there are between 30 and 40 attacks per day, attacks that are never reported in the international or Israeli media. According to our friends at hakolheyehudi, there have been more than 150 terror attacks in the last five days–that resulted in 14 Israelis being wounded.
Palestinian terrorism so far today:
Today has been marked by large-scale riots in Nabi Saleh, Silwad, Hevron, Qadum, at the Qalandiya Checkpoint, Beita, A-Ram, Issawiya, Silwan, Uzrin, and Umm Reihan. “Large-scale” means that more than 300 rioters were involved in attacking Israeli security personnel at a particular location.
Numerous other attacks took place targeting individual civilians throughout the day.
Gross laxness in the IDF:
Following this past week’s sorry episode in which a Lebanese citizen somehow managed to walk casually across the border and all the way to Kiryat Shmona before even being noticed comes even more distressing news.
This morning, two masked men walked right into an army base in the Golan Heights while soldiers were asleep, and then right into a room on the base, and then walked out with two M-16s. Incredibly, the M-16s were under the pillows of two soldiers.
Already severe disciplinary actions have been taken in regard to the Lebanon-Kiryat Shmona incident; we can expect more in regard to today’s.
The Chinese are coming, the Chinese are coming:
The huge Israeli program begun last year to encourage Chinese tourists to come to Israel has become wildly successful. In the first three months of this year alone, there was a 131% increase in the number of Chinese coming to Israel. China is now ranked in the top 10 of “source countries” providing tourists to the country.
And Israelis are pouring into China as well.
All of this travel back and forth has sparked intense airline competition between China’s Heinan Airlines and Israel’s El Al. Yesterday El Al announced that it has begun hiring Chinese flight attendants to serve on El Al planes flying from Tel Aviv to Beijing, an announcement that follows Heinan’s announcement that it is hiring Israeli flight attendants for the same route.
Rabbis from the Pikuach Nefesh telegram President Trump:
380 Israeli rabbis who were astonished two days ago by President Trump’s meeting with Mahmoud Abbas have sent the President a message that reads in part:
” . . . it is clear to everyone that the concept for achieving peace on Israel to give up territory under its control has long since collapsed. Over the past 25 years, it has been proven time and time again that any statement and any negotiations based on the idea of handing over territories to the Palestinians or establishing a state for the Palestinians, let alone handing over territories in practice, caused onl y one thing: terrible bloodshed and increased terror in the Holy Land.
The sages of Israel observed this centuries ago. They wrote this in the Talmud, and this is halachically ruled in the book of Jewish law – the Shulchan Aruch. Any talk of giving up and handing over the land of Israel to non-Jews will not bring peace. If the United States is sincere in its desire for peace for all sides, there is only one way to do this: to declare that all of Israel remains in Israel’s hands and never to establish a Palestinian state in the territory of the Land of Israel.”
Unfortunately, see below, that does not seem to be the direction in which the Trump Administration is headed.
How Did We Get To This Point?
Speaking of President Trump, Israeli officials have outlined Trump’s day in Israel on May 22.
Apparently, his plane will land at Ben Gurion whereupon he will be taken to Jerusalem to meet with PM Netanyahu and President Rivlin; he will then visit Yad Vashem and the Kotel (Western Wall). Afterwards, he will meet with PLO Chairman Mahmoud Abbas in Bethlehem. It is believed that he will then go to Masada where he will speak to the country.
Unfortunately, and these reports are completely unverified, Trump now plans to announce that the U.S. now recognizes Jerusalem is the capital of Israel (like Russia just did last week), but he will not announce the move of the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to the capital.
Also unfortunately, there is every indication that he will announce U.S. support for an independent Palestinian state.
All of which begs the question of how did we get to this point? How did we get to a point at which Netanyahu has apparently signed off on resuming peace negotiations with the PLO without Palestinian recognition that Israel is a Jewish state. Wasn’t that supposed to be the fundamental step that was to precede any new “peace process”?
Instead, that recognition has now apparently been given up by Netanyahu in return for the Trump Administration focusing on Iran and for the Palestinians agreeing to stop inciting and funding terrorism (neither of which they have done).
What really seems to be happening is that Netanyahu is being bowled over by an American president who genuinely thinks he can bring peace simply by the force of his personality.
And as we all know, no matter how well-meaning Trump may be, he cannot change create peace in a situation in which the Palestinians remain dedicated to the destruction of Israel.