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Gaza faces daunting reconstruction when elusive truce struck

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 08:21
By Nidal al-Mughrabi and Noah Browning GAZA (Reuters) - As the United States and regional powers strive for a ceasefire between Israel and Gaza militants, the impoverished enclave faces a daunting recovery, such is the scale of damage after almost three weeks of fighting. In 2012 the United Nations had already recommended urgent action to improve basic services for Gaza's mushrooming population or the place would be uninhabitable by 2020. The cost of rebuilding Gaza homes destroyed so far in Israeli bombing amounts to $800 million - the whole of Gaza's annual budget - the Palestinian housing minister told Reuters. "We cannot make a definite estimate under fire ... Once the war is over, the ministry plans to call on all the countries of the world to assist in the rebuilding of Gaza," he told Reuters.

Wreckage of Air Algerie plane carrying 116 people found in Mali

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 19:11

Authorities said on Thursday they located the wreckage of an Air Algerie flight after it crashed in northern Mali carrying 116 passengers and crew, nearly half of them French, en route from Burkina Faso to Algeria. Two French Mirage fighter jets and United Nations helicopters on Thursday had for hours hunted for the wreck of the McDonnell Douglas MD-83 plane in remote northern Mali, a region prey to scattered Islamist militants and Tuareg separatist fighters. Malian state television said the wreckage of the flight was discovered between the town of Gossi and the Burkina Faso border.


Mosul Christians’ flight triggered by leaders’ refusal to meet Islamists

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 15:13
Abu Imad wasn’t particularly worried when masked gunmen from a range of militant Islamist groups took control of the northern city of Mosul, where he lived. Click to Continue »

THE DEATH OF CHRISTIANITY IN MOSUL

Wed, 07/23/2014 - 08:02
The news out of the Middle East only grows more horrible. The newest ground zero is the northern Iraqi city of Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city. Christians have lived there for more than 1,600 years. But no more. Islamist extremists have literally killed Christianity in Mosul. And the silence of President Obama and other Western leaders is unforgivable.

ISIL issues decree asking Iraqi shopkeepers to veil mannequins in Mosul

Wed, 07/23/2014 - 01:36
Washington, July 23 (ANI): The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), a Sunni terror group that has wrecked havoc in Iraq and Syria, has now issued a decree asking Iraqi shopkeepers in Mosul to cover the faces of all mannequins. One of Iraq's prominent Christian politicians, Yonadam Kanna, said that this was ethnic cleansing but nobody was speaking up. Islamist militants have been forcing ...

The death of Christianity in Mosul

Tue, 07/22/2014 - 19:55
Islamist extremists have killed Christianity in Mosul. The world's silence unforgivable.

ISIS Torches 1800-Year-Old Mosul Church After Expelling Christians

Tue, 07/22/2014 - 14:47

ISIS, which recently rebranded as the Islamic State, has solidified its control over Iraq's second-largest city by imposing Sharia law and expelling Christians who won't convert to Islam. Friday at noon was the deadline for Christian families to meet ISIS’s demands: Convert to Islam, pay an anachronistic Islamic tax for non-Muslims known as jizya, leave Mosul, or be killed. On the way out of town last week, the final 1500 families of Mosul's Christian population were reportedly robbed at ISIS checkpoints. And following Friday's deadline, ISIS reportedly set fire to a 1800-year-old church. Last month, ISIS shocked much of the world by swiftly capturing Mosul in an offensive that allowed the group to take control of major parts of northern and western Iraq.


07/20 Links Pt2: The Inside Story of the Kerry Peace Plan; To the Fake “Human Rights” Activists

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 13:00
From Ian:
The Explosive, Inside Story of How John Kerry Built an Israel-Palestine Peace Plan—and Watched It Crumble
Recounting the history of the Kerry effort, he sounded almost wistful. “We definitely tested the proposition that American in­volvement, creativity, high-level engagement with the leaders, intensive negotiations—all of the things the U.S. can bring to the table—could achieve peace,” said Indyk. “And it wasn't enough.”
Nearly everyone we interviewed felt the same way: that Kerry was absolutely correct to attempt a deal. The outlines were clear; the cost of inaction too great. “I always tell American secretaries of state that you get points for trying,” said Tony Blair, now a Middle East envoy. But they also believed that, for any agreement to be reached in the future, something major, something fundamental would have to change—the leaders, the American approach, the terms of reference, the external pressures.
There's no shortage of ideas, in other words. And some of them—particularly that last—may bring Israelis and Palestinians closer to a deal than Kerry got this time. But few of the people we spoke to expected progress any time soon. With Netanyahu entrenched, Abbas on his way out, settlements and rocket ranges expanding, and the populations increasingly hardline, we seem to have reached the end of an era in the peace process. And no one harbors much hope for what comes next.
“I see it from a mathematical point of view,” said Avi Dichter, the former chief of Israel’s Shin Bet intelligence agency. “The American effort will always be multiplied by the amount of trust between the two leaders. So if Kerry's pressure represents the number five, and then Obama's help brings the American effort to ten, it really doesn't matter. You’re still multiplying it by zero. The final result will always be zero.”To the Fake “Human Rights” Activists
While I see or hear about all of the above, you then proceed to claim that you’re standing up for human rights. You claim that you are fighting “oppression” against the Palestinian-Arabs face on a daily basis. You claim to fight for freedom. You claim that you seek peace in the region. For some of you, you claim that you are upholding Jewish values by supporting these actions. Most importantly, you claim that you are standing up for the Palestinian-Arabs themselves. Here is the reality: You lie, and you have always lied.
True human rights activists do not spew Jew-hatred like it is second nature. They do not compare Jewish self-determination to racism. They do not hold double-standards against a people undergoing rocket fire at a rate unprecedented in the modern era. They do not stand in defense of a group of people who use their own citizens as human shields while firing rockets into another civilian population. They do not support diabolical terrorism bent on destroying the self-determination and the existence of another people. They do not stand by while propagandists emit vitriolic anti-Semitism against a state that has not only demonstrated peaceful intentions, but restraint against additional civilian casualties.Fascism in the 21st Century: Why are so many people waving Hezbollah flags?
The late Christopher Hitchens infamously saw no difference between radical Islamism and European fascism. As he put it, ‘both movements are based on a cult of murderous violence that exalts death and destruction and despises the life of the mind.’
In London, symbols of fascism are brandished in public without any public concern. Our MPs are too busy critiquing ‘Israeli war crimes’ in the comfort of Westminster than they are stopping intimidating displays of racism around the corner.
That man on the bus was not a humanitarian or a pacifist. He was expressing his admiration for an ideology akin to fascism.
Fascists are not humanitarian. This is such an old point, but where are the demonstrations against Assad? Where are the rallies against Putin? It is only the Jews which fascists are so disturbingly obsessed with.Chloe Valdary: ‘When we speak Zionism, we speak freedom’ (Video)
Chloe Valdary is a New Orleans-based pro-Israel student activist. Here is a clip of her short yet powerful speech at a Rally for Israel on July 18th held at Boston Common. (Valdary was reportedly assaulted at a rally last week outside the Israeli Embassy when 100 or so pro-Palestinian counter-demonstrators swarmed Israel supporters.)When We Speak Zionism, We Speak Freedom




Book review: The scariest nonfiction book I have ever read
"The French Intifada: The Long War Between France and Its ‎Arabs" by Andrew Hussey (Granta Books, 2014) is the scariest nonfiction book I've ever read. ‎
Hussey builds a convincing case that jihadist Islamists seethe with ugly ‎fury toward impious Western civilization. Ruthless violence is the tool of preferred ‎choice to mete out revenge to their oppressors, and deconstruct Western society.‎
Hussey concludes that their world, whether living in the Paris slums or rural ‎villages in North Africa, are prepared for a long war with the West. The West either ‎pathologically ignores this reality, or is to too arrogant to accept it. Citizen of the ‎French Republic first, Muslim second, is what they expect.‎Hamas teaching naïve dreamers a Middle Eastern lesson
Once upon a time there was an ancient folktale, straight from Europe's black forests, named "The Two-State Fairytale" (its full name, "For Two States," is no longer mentioned), but last week this fairytale breathed its last under a barrage of missiles, stones and the conquests of the new Islamic caliphate.
The fairytale is interrupted by missiles. When the majority of Israel is being targeted by missiles fired by a terror organization which took over a territory, how can anyone consider giving the Palestinians more independent land? Isn't it clear that no matter who rules this land, the terror will start launching missiles from there on Israel's cities, and this time from the center of the Land of Israel?
The IDF's presence is the only thing preventing this threat today, and we have already seen Ben-Gurion Airport threatened with Hamas missiles from Gaza, so imagine missiles being launched from just several kilometers away. Qanta Ahmed: Palestine Occupied by Islamism as Much as Israel
Public sentiment in favor of beleaguered Palestinians, however well intentioned, is rapidly translated into support for Hamas. Western sympathies, especially European sentiment, embolden Hamas (and similar radical Islamist groups) towards an incipient crime against humanity which truly threatens not every Israeli and every Jew with extinction, but also moderate Muslims everywhere, particularly those within Hamas's current purview — cue the decapitations and crucifixions now a daily occurrence in ISIS-controlled Iraq, the escalating persecution of minorities, especially Christians in Iraq and the wider Islamist Middle east.
Were reality to hit home, adult solutions for regional, and Israeli-Palestinian peace in particular, would be seen to be truly bleak. Israel is fighting an impossible battle, on one front with nihilist political Islamists who willingly lead their populations to slaughter in the interests of religionized war for fictionalized spiritual gain rather than true political solutions, and on another front waging other battles with an international media reflecting an increasingly ignorant and biased public opinion. The sooner media commentary can be broadened to explain political Islamism, diplomatic and political powers globally can begin to plan the true long-term freedom of the Palestinians — freedom from the Other Occupation and a lasting liberation from the stranglehold of Hamas' political Islamism.Hamas are the true occupiers in Gaza
What do the Arabs in Gaza want? They want us gone. That is what they learn in their books and that is what they pray will happen. That is why they are bombing our citizens. The fact that we manage to defend ourselves does not make us the “villain”. It only makes us alive. For some people in the world, that is reason enough for punishments, boycotts, and sanctions.
The fact that more citizens have died in Gaza than in Israel is a welcome fact. God help us if it was the other way around. The poor Gazans could have stopped what they refer to as “slaughter” a long time ago. They can stop it at any moment, and in fact, they shouldn't have started it in the first place.
Demonstrations around the world, if things were seen as they really are, would turn against Hamas, which is the real and absolute “villain” in this story. The bill for those killed and wounded, for destruction and famine, should all be mailed to them.
We left Gaza. With sadness and pain, we were torn away from a populated, blossoming strip of land. We gave every last grain of sand to the Arabs, including the Philadelphi Route, which connects Gaza and Egypt and the north of the Strip. Don’t let them tell you anything about the “occupation”. There is no occupation in Gaza. There is no siege. We continue to send them, even today, medicine and equipment. The only occupation is by Hamas, which is an absolutely immoral occupation. The residents of Gaza need the help of an enlightened and humanistic world which is willing to sacrifice time, energy, and money to help them be free of this terrible occupation, and help lead them onward to a better life. We are definitely willing to help.MP Kristian Norheim of the progressive Party slammed for posting a cartoon condemning Hamas Human shields policy
Alan Dershowitz has called it “the most anti-Semitic and anti-Israel country in Europe today.” Hanne Nabintu Herland, a religious scholar at the nation’s leading university, has criticized it for “refus[ing] to distance itself from Hamas as a terrorist organization.” Its government, as NR’s JayNordlinger has noted, was “the first outside the Islamic world to recognize Hamas.”
We’re talking, as you might have guessed, about Norway.
In the corridors of Norwegian power, Israel-hatred and sympathy for Islamic terrorists have long been the norm. In 2011, Norway’s ambassador to Israel distinguished between Anders Behring Breivik’s murder spree and Hamas atrocities in Israel: While the former, he said, was inspired by an ugly ideology and was utterly undeserved by its victims, the latter is a result of Israel’s own “occupation” — and thus, presumably, justified, or at least understandable.Brende narrowly escapes Hamas rockets, then slams Israel
What a funny character our FM Brende has turned out to be. According to local pundits in Vårt Land, there is precious little difference between conservative FM Brende and his two immediate predecessors, Støre and Eide with regards to how he relates to Israel. In a bid to help Hamas continue to siphon aid money off to reinforced terror tunnels from where to launch attacks on Israel, FM Brende has shipped off NOK 30 million to help relieve the humanitarian crisis on the Strip (please make sure to check receipts for non-humanitarian purchases, such as more weapons…) and also his most experienced diplomat to Doha to have pillow talks with the Hamas millionaires who hand out in this paradise of inequality and corruption. But maybe he is shell shocked after having been whisked off to shelters three times during his last visit to Israel, and accidentally hits his saviour for fear of his life?The ‘media war’ is finally tilting to Israel’s side
Considering this, and all its struggles since its birth, I’ve long thought that tiny, democratic Israel should just be left alone to thrive. Maybe others are starting to see it that way, too. I sense some turn in the world’s opinion on what we call the Middle East conflict. The terms of understanding are changing.
Canada, more particularly Stephen Harper, can take partial credit for some of that change. As a world leader, Mr. Harper has been the best counter-voice to the cliched hostility and animus found in most self-labelled “progressive” perspectives. Indeed his clarity on Israel’s right to exist, to be free of menace and molestation from its enemies, greatly annoys the professional anti-Israelis who flourish on the campuses and in the progressive opinion pages of the West.Over 700 Syrians Were Killed Last Week. But Jews Didn't Do it, So the Media Doesn't Care
"More than 700 people killed in Syria on Thursday and Friday, in the bloodiest two days of the conflict until now. A woman was executed for adultery in Raqqa. None of the above were killed by Jews, however. This presumably explains the total lack of interest by the western media, (and of course by the Islamist/far-left crowd who have been attacking synagogues and so on in Europe in recent days.)"
Yes the preoccupation with how many Muslims are killed by Jews, rather than how many are suffering at the hands of their fellow countrymen/co-religionists is a stark reminder of how natural it is for most people to still focus their attentions on Israel and the Jewish people respectively. Indeed it is this "everyday anti-Semitism" that leads the Guardian to depict the MH17 disaster in the same cartoon as that criticising Israel's operation in Gaza as if there were some link, and indeed which forces thousands of 'pro-Palestinian' activists onto the streets of London to demonstrate against Israel - but not so much against ISIS or Bashar al-Assad.Greenwald Wrong Again: The Real Reason NBC Correspondent Ayman Mohyeldin Was Pulled From Gaza
But now, thanks to Brian Stelter (who actually committed some journalism to get at the truth of the story), we learn that Mohyeldin’s withdrawal from Gaza had nothing to do with his empathy for Palestinians, but everything to do with internal NBC politics around the most important thing to a cable news network: ratings.
What Really Happened With NBC and Ayman Mohyeldin.
"Did this decision demonstrate unfairness on the part of NBC, or more mundane internal politicking? Engel is one of NBC’s most recognizable correspondents, after all, and “Nightly News” is locked in a battle with ABC’s “World News” for No. 1 in the Nielsen ratings.
“The producers are so paranoid about the ratings, they’ll do anything to stick with the faces viewers know and trust — so that would be Richard over Ayman,” said one of the employees. “Plus, there is no tolerance if a story is fed in and doesn’t live up to expectations.”

At this point, one has to wonder how many times Glenn Greenwald will cry “WOLF!” and still be considered a reputable journalist, instead of what he really is: a propagandist who regularly twists and distorts facts to suit his agenda.NBC Promotes Anonymous Palestinian Official Declaring Israeli Military Strike ‘A War Crime In The Making’
In the wake of the Israeli military launching a ground offensive into the Gaza Strip to prevent Hamas militants from continuing to fire rockets into their country, NBC has repeatedly taken jabs at Israel and its military.
In a report filed on Today on Sunday, July 20, Richard Engel, NBC’s Chief Foreign Correspondent, provided a fairly biased report on the ongoing violence in the Middle East which concluded by the reporter hyping a Palestinian official saying Israel’s ground attack “was a war crime in the making.” (h/t MtTB)When journalists call Israelis ‘scum’
Journalists covering Palestinians often place themselves not as unbiased observers, or even those purporting to be unbiased, but rather as narrators for the “people” and the “reality.” They are always “struck by how hospitable, genuine, gentle and kind the [Palestinian] people are,” as another journalist wrote on Facebook.
This appears to reflect a sympathetic point of view, but in fact stems from Orientalist superiority. The Palestinians are a “people” precisely because the British, French or Israelis are not. They are not seen through a romantic prism – because they are perceived as “us,” not as “them.” No journalist who leaves Paris waxes romantic and poetic about “the people.” Maybe they worry about missing the baguettes and wine, but the “masses” are not involved – because local people are perceived as individuals, rather than a collective mass of romantic humanity.
Similarly, few mainstream media commentators based in Israel leave such melodramatic prose about the “People of Israel” upon leaving.Is the BBC really pro-Israel?
Some 5,000 rowdy demonstrators chanting anti-Israeli (and in some cases blatantly anti-Semitic) slogans, brought traffic to a virtual standstill outside the BBC’s central London headquarters in Portland Place last week. They were protesting what they claim (to the surprise of many) to be the BBC’s pro-Israel bias.
The next day, the BBC flagship ‘Today’ radio news program (a program which is near compulsory listening for the British political elite, including the prime minister), ran an item on the demonstration, examining the absurd proposition that the BBC – which for decades has been at the forefront of providing a worldwide platform for Palestinian extremists (one correspondent, Barbara Plett, even admitted on air that she cried in sorrow when Yasser Arafat died) – was in fact “pro-Israel”.The New York Times: Apologist for a Terrorist Organization
Indeed, to make clear the paper’s desire to put forward an apologist position for Hamas, it selected Thrall to provide an op-ed essay a few days later. In it, he blamed the West for forcing Hamas into its course of action. Thrall wrote that Hamas compromised with the PA for the sake of the welfare of the Gaza populous: “Seeing a region swept by popular protests against leaders who couldn’t provide for their citizens’ basic needs, Hamas opted to give up official control of Gaza rather than risk being overthrown.” And what were Israel and the West’s response: to tighten the restrictions place on Gaza. Thus, just as Ruderon claimed in her article, it was concern for the economic wellbeing of Gazans that forced Hamas to act militarily.
Nowhere does the NYTimes mention that if the wellbeing of Gazans was paramount, all Hamas had to do was accept an Israeli state and renounce violence in the settling of disputes. In response to this declaration, billions of dollars of economic development aid would be showered on Gazans. Even more troubling is the NYTimes unwillingness to associate Hamas with evil. As Daniel Gordis has notedNicholas Kristof Does it Again
Cross-demonization? Really? It is, in fact, remarkable that New York Times writers seem to mention demonization by Arabs only when they want to claim that both sides are equally guilty of it. The fact – actively ignored by the Times – is that there is no comparison between the two sides when it comes to hate speech, incitement to genocide and demonization.
Even a cursory knowledge of Israeli society, and a cursory visit to the sites Palestinian Media watch and MEMRI, demonstrates that beyond dispute.
Indeed, Times reporter Scott Shane, questioned on the subject by Prof. Jeffrey Herf at a public event, explained the paper's failure to cover Arab demonization of Jews and Israel, and Arab anti-Semitism, with the assertion that such demonization happens so often and is so well-known that it's not news. Here's that segment of the video:Al Jazeera supporting Hamas’s narrative in Gaza
Al Jazeera, the popular pan-Arab news site, tops its website with gruesome pictures and videos of dead bodies and bombed areas in Gaza on a daily basis.
The station’s importance is greater during the holiday of Ramadan, when Muslims fast during the daytime and many are on vacation, spending more time watching television.
Eyal Zisser, a Middle East expert from the Moshe Dayan Center at Tel Aviv University, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that Al Jazeera is fully supporting Hamas, and not the Palestinian people.Geraldo, Get Real
I'm sorry that we have no bodies to show you -actually, I'm not sorry at all. I'll take your condemnation any day, I'll take your hypocritical and unfair accusation that we have lost some moral authority rather than have to watch the funerals of our people and explain to more orphans why we did nothing.
But I'll ask you a question, Geraldo, as the Zionist you claim to be...how many dead Jews will convince you that we are only acting in self-defense? By the way, when Baruch Mizrachi was murdered by Palestinian snipers right in front of his wife and children, did you come to his funeral? Did you suggest that the Palestinians were losing their moral authority? I didn't see you at the funeral of our three murdered Israeli teenagers - Eyal, Gilad and Naftali. I didn't hear you cry in agony as we cry and I heard nothing from you about the immorality of their murders.BBC’s Doucet promotes and amplifies Hamas “massacre” propaganda on WS radio
Allowing unchallenged free rein – and amplification – to the Doctor’s baseless claim of a “massacre” carried out “intentionally”, Doucet makes absolutely no attempt to report accurately or impartially on the events in Shuja’iya. No effort is made to explain to audiences that the residents were advised to evacuate four days previously, that Hamas ordered them to stay to act as human shields or why military action was necessary there. No inquiry is made into the topic of how many of the dead and injured civilians were actually killed by terrorist fire and notably, the words ‘terrorists’ and ‘Hamas’ do not appear at all in this report. No mention is made of Hamas’ missile launchers, tunnels and weapons stores located in the neighbourhood: all that would detract of course from the gut-wrenching, emotional picture she so earnestly tries to paint.
Emotional reactions such as those the BBC’s chief international correspondent is deliberately trying to solicit in this item produce judgement. When audiences are prevented from seeing the whole picture in its proper context as they are in this item, such judgement is necessarily flawed and can even be dangerous. And that is how a lethal narrative is created.BBC omits vital context in reporting from Shuja’iya
No attempt is made to clarify to readers that as well as being a significant site of Hamas command centres, weapons storage, missile manufacturing facilities and the launch site of some 140 missiles fired at Israeli civilians since the beginning of the current operation alone, Shuja’iya neighbourhood also houses the entrance to some ten of the tunnels that the BBC has so far avoided adequately informing audiences about.
Notably too, the BBC is very coy about clarifying to readers that Hamas opened fire at Israeli troops in the vicinity of Wafa hospital in Shuja’iya during the two-hour humanitarian hiatus (later extended by one hour) it had requested.Independent Newspaper Publishes Pro-Conspiracy Theory Article on Gaza
The UK-based Independent newspaper has published a pro-conspiracy theory article that links the capture and killing of three Israeli students to an attempt by ISIS to distract attention from its ongoing offensive in Iraq and Syria.
Using a picture of the twin towers on 9/11, and the dead Israeli students as a hook, the article by Middle East correspondent Patrick Cockburn give serious thought to the idea that ISIS arranged for the three Israeli teenagers – Naftali Frenkel, Gilad Shaar and Eyal Yifrach – to be captured and killed in order to provoke Israel into attacking Gaza, thus distracting the world from its own operations in Syria.Guardian cartoon mocks IDF efforts to avoid civilian casualties
In stark contrast to Hamas’s cruel indifference to the suffering of their own population, it’s unclear if any army in the world goes to such lengths to avoid civilian casualties as the IDF.
No matter. Much of the media – and other ‘commentators‘ – have been on a crusade to obfuscate this clear moral divide.
To boot, a ‘First Dog on the Moon‘ cartoon which appeared in the Guardian on July 21st:Newt Gingrich wants to know where the ‘serious concerns’ were when Hamas fired at Israel
Obama is suddenly very concerned about the growing number of casualties in the Middle East.
Newt Gingrich: "Why didn't obama have "serious concerns" over the first thousand missiles Hamas fired at Israel"Daniel Pipes: Are Millions Worldwide Protesting Israeli Actions?
RT, the Russian government's news network – and successor to the Soviet-era Pravda – published an article under the extreme, attention-seeking headline, "'In our millions, we're all Palestinian': Wave of protests worldwide demand end to Gaza slaughter." The article goes on to list anti-Israel demonstrations. However, if one actually reads the article, it quickly becomes apparent that the headline contains two major inaccuracies:
1. There are no "millions" involved. Far from it. Using RT's own numbers, we find them significantly smaller: 17 participants; more than 10,000; 1,300; dozens; 4,000; and 150 demonstrators.Large Pro-Israel Rally In Kensington London
Yesterday afternoon in Kensington London there was a large Pro-Israel rally outside of the Israeli Embassy, which was organized by the Zionist Federation in London.
A friend of mine attended this rally and took these pics and video you see below. He mentioned that there was no trouble at all, it was peaceful and it was a great show of support.
He also mentioned that some of the best lines shouted out at the rally were:
“We Want Peace, They want War”
“More Hummus, Less Hamas”
They also played rocket alert sirens at the rally which is the first time air-raid sirens were last heard in London since World War 2.New Yorkers Protest in Support of Israel
A group of New Yorkers gathered in Manhattan on Sunday for a spontaneous demonstration in support of Israel.
Thousands of people came by to express support for the Jewish state amid its military operation against Hamas’s terrorist infrastructure in Gaza.San Francisco Solidarity with Israel march
On July 20, San Francisco joined with dozens of other cities around the world, gathering in prayer and in solidarity with our friends, our family in Israel.
Meeting at the San Francisco Jewish community center, a march was held to Temple Emanu-El, where a prayer gathering was scheduled
A beautiful, enthusiastic multi-generational group participated.Sydney Rally for Gaza, Gusty Israel supporters & More.
I headed up to Sydney Town yesterday, to another rally for Gaza in the grounds of the very beautiful Sydney Town Hall. What a beautiful place to host a rally with such awful people in attendance.
I was feeling a bit more than low after the events of the past week and with all the anti-Israel sentiment in the world at the moment and to be confronted by the usual riff raff was more than depressing. For that reason I couldn’t look at any more on pro-Palestinian web sites and Facebook pages.
The rally was the same old, same old. I spoke with Police, who agreed with me that the number was around the same as last week – around 2,500.Lunatic Israel Haters Harass Pro-Israel Girl In Melbourne
A large group of Anti-Israeli thugs were at a rally when a lone Pro-Israel girl showed her face with an Israeli flag. They proceeded to shout at her while chasing her and then instead of engaging in dialogue, they did what ever Anti-Israel hater does….they harassed her and ripped her flag from her hands. I am sure if the police were not there, they would have harmed her.

Jordanians Protest Near Israeli Embassy, Call for More Rockets
Protesters chanting slogans backing Hamas urged a jihad in smaller marches in Amman and in cities and refugee camps across the kingdom.
"O Hamas... Your rockets have raised our heads... hit again and again Ashkelon and Tel Aviv," angry youths carrying a large PLO flag shouted, according to Reuters.
"O Hamas, you are the gun and we are your bullets," chanted a dozen bearded Islamist youths wearing green headbands of the Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas.French prime minister: Behind hatred of Israel lies hatred of Jews
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls on Sunday drew a direct line between the hatred of Israel – as seen in violent protests across France and elsewhere in the world against Operation Protective Edge in Gaza – and the never-ending hatred of Jews.
He spoke at a ceremony marking the 72nd anniversary of the Vel’ d’Hiv Roundup, a mass arrest of Jews in Paris by the French police, directed by German authorities, during the Second World War.
From July 16-17, 1942, more than 12,000 Jews from the Paris region, including 4,000 children, were taken into custody.
Of those, 7,000 victims were packed in desperate conditions into the Velodrome d’Hiver, an indoor sports stadium. Many were later transferred to Auschwitz and other death camps in Eastern Europe.French minister decries ‘anti-Semitic’ Gaza protests
France’s interior minister Monday slammed “intolerable” acts of anti-Semitism after a rally against Israel’s Gaza offensive descended into violence pitting an angry pro-Palestinian crowd against local Jewish businesses.
Sunday’s demonstration in the north Paris suburb of Sarcelles was the third to deteriorate in a week, as shops were looted and riot police lobbed tear gas and rubber bullets at the crowd. French online forums overflow with anti-Jewish hate
“As soon as you talk about Israel, it crystallizes all passions, with up to 20,000 or 30,000 comments sometimes after an article, of which we will only let five to 10 percent through,” said David Corchia, head of Concileo, a firm of moderators that counts the dailies Le Figaro and Liberation as clients.
Helped by software that automatically reports suspect keywords, online moderators can filter comments in accordance with special legal requirements in France as well as client requests. Those laws ban racist, anti-Semitic or discriminatory messages among others, as well calls for violence.
The moderators have little time to decide whether to let a remark through, and generally block 25% to 40% of comments.
But on the subject of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the rejection rate can reach 95%.Wave of anti-Semitic rallies hits cities across Germany
An angry mob gathered on Berlin’s famed Kurfürstendamm avenue Thursday. Draped in Palestinian flags and shaking their fists in rage, they chanted in German, “Jude, Jude feiges Schwein! Komm heraus und kämpf allein!” (“Jew, Jew, cowardly swine, come out and fight on your own!”)
Earlier last week in Dortmund and Frankfurt anti-Israel protester chanted, “Hamas Hamas Juden ins gas!” (“Hamas Hamas Jews to the gas!”). On Friday, a 200-strong mob in Essen chimed in, “Scheiss Juden!” (“Jewish shit”)
This week, similar mobs gathered in Kassel, Nuremberg, Mainz, and other cities throughout Germany. The crowds are largely young, with both immigrants and native Germans, many of Middle Eastern origin. Politically they span the spectrum, from German neo-Nazis to Marxist anti-Imperialists, from secular Palestinian nationalists to Islamic fundamentalists.German Jews decry hate speech at pro-Gaza rallies
Protesters waving Palestinian flags and signs of late leader Yasser Arafat have in recent days openly shouted angry anti-Semitic slogans at rallies against the offensive Israel launched to counter unceasing rocket fire from Gaza at Israel’s south, according to German media.
Exclaiming “Allahu Akbar” (God is great), crowds in Berlin have reportedly yelled “Death to Israel” and chanted “Zionists are fascists, killing children and civilians.”
A Berlin imam has openly prayed for the annihilation of Zionist Jews, asking Allah to “kill them to the very last one,” according to a video published online by Israel’s Haaretz daily.
The president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Dieter Graumann, said: “We are currently experiencing in this country an explosion of evil and violent hatred of Jews, which shocks and dismays all of us.Kashmiri teenager killed in anti-Israel protest
The youngster’s death marked the first fatality in a string of demonstrations across the Himalayan territory that have been staged against the Israeli military campaign.
The boy, a ninth-grade student, was killed in the village of Khudwani, 60 kilometers (40 miles) south of Srinagar, the main city of the disputed Muslim-majority region of Kashmir.
“The boy died in (police) firing on anti-Israel protesters who were also angry about injuries suffered by other protesters during earlier demonstrations,” a senior police officer told AFP.Rooting for Hamas in Toronto (with Judy Rebick)
This afternoon downtown Toronto witnessed the second installment of screams and chants in defense of Hamas’ “right” to attack and harass Israel without any consequences. Today’s rally differed from the previous one because this time there were no Jews to kick around in front of the Israeli Consulate.
The crowd, which gathered at the Royal Ontario Museum, was smaller but that fact didn’t reduce the noise they were making. The lack of originality and innovation in their message was clearly displayed again – the anti-Semitic slogan “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!” was being repeated ad nauseam along with the equally unoriginal “Harper, Harper, you will see, Palestine will be free!”Super-Rich Stage Crass London Lamborghini Protest For Palestine
Super rich ‘activists’ have launched the most bizarre protest in support of the Socialist Workers campaign on Palestine yet: driving through Mayfair in Lamborghinis with banners. The drivers took placards with "Socialists Workers. Free Palestine" and drove the expensive super-cars past Harrods.
The ‘protest’ came a day after tens of thousands of activists took to the streets to support the plight of Hamas in Gaza, as they are attacked by the Israeli Defence Force. But today it was the turn of the well-heeled to launched their own crass display that appears to have backfired, both literally and figuratively.
One onlooker took to Facebook to say: "Loads of guys speeding through Kensington waving flags and honking horns, presumed they were celebrating a football win or something then I realised that they were protesting about what's going on in Gaza. Z Street: The Case Which Could Blow Open The IRS Scandal
In August of 2010, almost three years before Lois Lerner announced at a law conference that the IRS had indeed targeted certain groups, Z Street filed a lawsuit contending they were being targeted by the IRS because they disagreed with the President’s policy on Israel. In fact Z Street filed their suit against the IRS after an agent allegedly told them his direction was to “give special scrutiny to organizations connected to Israel,” and that the files of some of those “organizations were sent to a special unit in Washington, D.C. to determine whether the activities of the organization contradicted the public policies of the administration.”

In its lawsuit against the IRS, Z Street alleges that the IRS violated the First Amendment when it implemented a policy that subjected Israel-related organizations applying for tax-exempt status to more rigorous review procedures than other organizations applying for that same status. They call this viewpoint discrimination. (h/t MtTB)SodaStream fires 60 Palestinian employees
Carbonation machine company sacks workers who complained about quality of food provided for Ramadan break-fast meal
Sodastream’s management said: “The employees were fired because they took the law into their own hands and went on a rowdy strike for no practical reason.” Company officials said, “We regret that WAC-Maan chose to turn to the media before comprehensively reviewing the facts.”
According to these officials, the process of firing the employees was perfectly legal, and a hearing was held for employees and they will not be denied compensation.
“Palestinian employees went on strike and shut down the production lines of the plant with no connection to food. We will not accept a situation where the workers, the moment food doesn’t appear, shut down the plant and demonstratively ignore their supervisors.”Britain Calls for Probe into Beating of Sudanese Editor
Britain expressed hope on Sunday that a "proper" probe would be made into an assault by armed men who beat a Sudanese newspaper editor over his support for Israel, according to AFP.
Gunmen raided the Al-Tayar daily on Saturday evening and severely beat chief editor Osman Mirghani, who had called for normalization of ties with Israel.
"I hope there will be a proper investigation to discover what has happened," British ambassador Peter Tibber told reporters outside Al-Zaytouna Hospital in central Khartoum, where Mirghani was conscious and being treated.Adult suspect in Abu Khdeir murder named
Ben-David, 29, is a resident of the West Bank settlement of Adam and owns an eyewear store in Jerusalem. His detention has been extended until the end of his legal proceedings.The other two suspects, both minors, have not yet been named.
Ben-David is one of three suspects indicted on July 17 for the crime. Two of the defendants were also charged with the attempted kidnapping of a seven-year-old Palestinian boy in Beit Hanina the night before the murder; attempted arson; and the torching of a Palestinian store in the West Bank village of Hizme in June.After 2,000 Years, the Last Christian is Forced to Leave Mosul
The last Christian reportedly left Iraq's second largest city of Mosul at 12:00pm on Saturday, ending over 6,000 years of Assyrian history in the city. Assyrians have lived in Mosul for over 6,000 years, converting to Christianity over 2,000 years ago. This all came to an end on Saturday, when the last Assyrian Christian left the city.
On Thursday, July 17th, the Islamic State (IS)-- formerly the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS)-- released a statement demanding the Christians in Mosul either to convert to Islam, paying the jizya (tax on non-Muslims), leave the city, or be killed. The threat was to be implemented on Saturday. It is being reported locally that by noon yesterday, every Christian had chosen to leave.
Here in Erbil, about an hour an half away from Mosul by car, I have spoken with families who were forced to flee. They describe how ISIS invaded their homes, taking whatever they wanted, and threatening to kill them. The estimates are that over 500,000 refugees have fled Mosul after Islamists took control on June 10th, and the few remaining Christians left yesterday. Erdogan And The Armenians
Perhaps the most astounding development in the wake of the Gaza incursion was the revelation that Turkey had suddenly discovered that there is such a thing as “the conscience of humanity.”
Those were the very words used by that country’s foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu.
They surfaced during the endless ranting and raving by him and Turkey’s pathetic farce of a prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan against Israel.
The other astounding development is that Erdogan actually used the word “genocide.”Forty Years after the Invasion of Cyprus
Today marks the gloomy 40th anniversary of the day that Turkish troops overpowered the tiny, almost undefended island of Cyprus in a brutal exercise of military might whose immorality only intensifies with the passing decades. Some thoughts in honor of the day:
- The invasion did not take place under Islamist rule: Although an Islamist (Necmettin Erbakan) served as deputy prime minister in a coalition government for almost all of 1974, he was not the key decision maker in Turkey. Rather, Prime Minister Bülent Ecevit, a leftist, enjoyed that privilege.
- The Ecevit-Erbakan cooperation in 1974 symbolizes a support among Turks of all political persuasions for the invasion of Cyprus that still persists. This near-unanimity is a basic fact of Turkish political life.
- That consensus will presumably remain in place until the Turkish occupation begins to take its toll – economic, diplomatic, or even military – on the Republic of Turkey. After 40 years, this has not even started, making one wonder if it ever will.Erdogan Slams Egypt's Sisi as 'Illegitimate Tyrant'Turkish Prime Minister says Egypt cannot be relied upon to negotiate a truce with Israel.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday slammed Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi as an “illegitimate tyrant” and said Cairo could not be relied upon to negotiate a truce with Israel.
"Is Sisi a party (to a ceasefire)? Sisi is a tyrant himself," Erdogan was quoted by the AFP news agency as having told reporters.
"He is not different from the others," he said, adding that it was Egypt's current rulers who were blocking humanitarian aid channels to Gaza.90 percent of slain Muslims killed by 'brothers': Turkey's religious head
One thousand Muslims are being killed each day and 90 percent of the killers are also Muslims, the head of Turkey's Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet) has said.
"They are being killed by their brothers, not only in Syria and Iraq, but also in Libya, Pakistan, Africa and Myanmar," Prof. Dr. Mehmet Görmez said in his address to the participants of the World Islamic Scholars, Peace, Moderation and Commonsense Initiative conference in Istanbul on July 19.
Görmez cited "some studies," without elaborating on details.
The Islamic world needs to make a joint effort to revive the quintessential values of Islamic civilization, he added.
"Suffering, violence and conflicts in various parts of the Islamic world, including its storied cities like Baghdad and Damascus, wound every Muslim's heart profoundly," Görmez said.Pope Francis Marks Anniversary of JCC Bombing
Today is the 20th anniversary of the deadly bombing of the AMIA Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, in which 85 people were killed and 300 more were injured. It was the deadliest attack on Latin American soil, though no arrests have been made in the intervening two decades.
According to JTA, the video was recorded this month at the Vatican on the cell phone of Claudio Epelman, the director of the Latin American Jewish Congress.
“On the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the tragedy at the AMIA, I would like to express my solidarity with the Jewish community of Argentina and with all the family members of the victims, be they Jews or Christians,” he said in Spanish.
“Terrorism is lunacy. Terrorism’s only purpose is to kill. It does not build anything, it only destroys,” Francis said. “For this reason, I stand side by side with all those who have seen lives cut short, hopes destroyed, and ruin. Today, together with my solidarity and my prayers for all the victims, comes my desire for justice. May justice be done!”

Iraq Crisis: Isis Expelling Monks from Ancient Christian Monastery

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 11:34
Islamic militants have stormed and seized a Christian monastery in northern Iraq and expelled its resident monks, according to a cleric and residents. Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isis) militants stormed Mar Behnam, a 4th century monastery, previously controlled by the Syriac Catholic church and a place of pilgrimage near the majority Christian town of Qaraqosh. The incident is the ...

Iraq monastery 'seized by militants'

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 10:34
Islamist militants who control the Iraqi city of Mosul are reported to have seized a nearby ancient monastery and ordered the monks to leave.

Christians flee Iraq as Muslim group warns: Convert, pay tax, or die

Sun, 07/20/2014 - 07:20
"We offer them three choices: Islam; the dhimma contract - involving payment of jizya; if they refuse this they will have nothing but the sword,"

Execution or exodus, Iraqi Christians face grim choice

Sat, 07/19/2014 - 12:36
For Iraqi Christian Fadi and his young family, it is a lonely wait to see whether they will be executed soon. Their Christian neighbours and friends have already fled the city of Mosul in Iraq's north, which last month fell into the hands of Sunni jihadists led by the Islamic State group, which espouses an extreme form of Islam. Along with the rest of the city's estimated 25,000 Christians who ...

ISIS forces Iraqi Christians to convert to Islam, pay protection tax or die

Sat, 07/19/2014 - 12:15
Islamist militants are reportedly forcing Iraqi Christians in Mosul to convert to Islam or pay 'protection tax' to save their lives.

Iraqi Christians flee Mosul after threats by extremists

Sat, 07/19/2014 - 10:56
Baghdad, July 19 (IANS) Hundreds of Christian families have fled their homes in Iraq's militant-held Mosul fearing an ultimatum to accept extremist militants' options, a provincial security source and witnesses said Saturday. All of the Christian families who lived in Mosul, 400 km north of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, have left the city by Saturday noon - a deadline declared by the Islamic State ...

Isis Tells Iraqi Christians: Convert, Pay 'Jihad Tax' or Face Death

Sat, 07/19/2014 - 10:32
Christians are fleeing Mosul for safer areas in neighbouring Kurdistan following threats from Isis militants.

Isis Tells Iraqi Christians: Convert, Pay 'Jihad Tax' or Face Death

Sat, 07/19/2014 - 10:30
The ancient Christian community of Mosul, in northern Iraq, are facing renewed threats after being told by Isis, now known as Islamic State, they must pay a tax, convert to Islam, or leave to avoid "death by the sword". Many have already chosen to flee the city after Isis militants began marking their homes. In a statement  read out at Mosul's mosques, Isis said: "We offer them three choices ...

US taxpayers fund Ramadan dinner in Turkey, Muslims burn US flags, injure 7

Sat, 07/19/2014 - 07:55
When paying the jizya backfires…the U.S. resorts to more dhimmitude, condemning Muslims for throwing the halal food on the floor. via Seven injured as group attacks fast-breaking dinner organized by US consulate in Diyarbakır. h/t @DanielPipes A crowd protested a fast-breaking iftar meal organized in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır by the U.S. consulate in […]

Iraq insurgents to Christians: Convert, pay tax, or die

Sat, 07/19/2014 - 02:57
The resident of Mosul who saw the Islamic State announcement estimated the city's Christian population before last month's militant takeover at around 5,000.

ISIS forces Iraqi Christians to convert to Islam, pay protection tax or die

Sat, 07/19/2014 - 01:28
London, July 19 (ANI): Islamist militants are reportedly forcing Iraqi Christians in Mosul to convert to Islam or pay 'protection tax' to save their lives. Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) announced in city mosques that called on Christians to comply by midday on Saturday or face death if they did not leave the northern city. Isis has control of large parts of Syria and Iraq and said last ...

Convert, pay tax, or die, Islamic State warns Christians in Iraq

Fri, 07/18/2014 - 22:10
Islamist insurgents have issued an ultimatum to northern Iraq's dwindling Christian population to either convert to Islam, pay a religious levy or face death, according to a statement distributed in the militant-controlled city of Mosul.

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