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Friday, May 18, 2018

From Ian:

Caroline Glick: Israel’s sucker’s game on the Gaza border
There was a depressing familiarity both to Hamas’s suicide protest operation along Gaza’s border with Israel this week and to Israel’s response to it.

Hamas’s jihadist regime in Gaza doesn’t have a lot of cards to play in its continuous war against the Jewish state. But, as we have been seeing since Hamas launched its campaign against the border six weeks ago, it does have one card, and no matter how often it plays that card, Israel can’t seem to figure out how to beat it.

Hamas’s card is Western hostility to Israel. The Western media, along with the EU and most European governments, hate Israel. Leftist governments in other Western countries – Canada under Justin Trudeau, the US under Barack Obama, are similarly disposed.

Acting on the sure knowledge that the Western media, the EU and the international Left will always side with Israel’s enemies against it, Hamas’s high card is its ability to stage assaults on Israel that provide Israel’s haters in the West with a pretense for condemning it.

For more than a decade Hamas has deployed Western Israel-haters alongside Palestinian civilians as suicide protesters used for anti-Israel photo-ops. In 2003, Rachel Corrie, the Israel-hating activist from Washington state, walked in front of a giant IDF bulldozer building the border wall separating Gaza from Egypt’s Sinai. The driver couldn’t see her, ran her over, and Hamas and its Western partners created a blood libel of Corrie’s martyrdom.
Einat Wilf: The Gaza Protest Is About Ending Israel
In the past few days, we have come closer than we have in some time to touching the core issues that drive the conflict between Israelis, Palestinians, and the wider Arab and Islamic world.

After decades of discussing “territories,” “borders,” “settlements,” “two states” and “occupation,” and lamenting the lack of trust between the sides and the absence of leadership, we are finally discussing the key question, which is: Is the Arab and Islamic world, and the Palestinians among them, ready to acknowledge that the Jewish people, as a people, have the equal right to self-determination and sovereignty in their ancestral homeland?

Put another way, is Israel a temporary aberration in what should be properly an Arab and Islamic region?
Israel’s Choice To Shoot Palestinians Should Horrify — But Not Surprise Us
Peter BeinartMay 15, 2018

The twin images of the clashes on the 1967 border of Palestinian Gaza with Israel, and the inauguration of the American Embassy in Jerusalem, both serve to highlight the two dominant issues in the conflict that directly touch upon the question of the right of the Jewish people to the land: Jerusalem, and the Palestinian demand for “return” into the state of Israel within its pre 1967 lines.

No other two issues expose so clearly the extent to which the dominant Islamic, Arab and Palestinian narrative remains still one in which Israel is a colonial enterprise of a foreign, invented people who came out of nowhere to a place to which they have no connection.

Col Kemp: Gaza: Distortion of the Truth
Speech made by Colonel Richard Kemp at the emergency session of the United Nations Human Rights Council on the deteriorating situation in Gaza on 18 May 2018

I commanded British troops in Afghanistan, Iraq, the Balkans and Northern Ireland and served with NATO and the UN. I’ve come straight from the Gaza front line to share my assessment.

Based on what I observed, I can say that everything we just heard here is a complete distortion of the truth. The truth is that Hamas, a terrorist organization that seeks the destruction of Israel and murder of Jews everywhere, deliberately caused over 60 of its own people to get killed.

They sent thousands of civilians to the front line — as human shields for terrorists trying to break through the border. Hamas’s goal, in their own words, was, quote, ‘blood… in the path of Jihad’. I ask every country in this Council: you have all been telling us that Israel should have reacted differently. But how would you respond if a Jihadist terror group sent thousands to flood your borders, and gunmen to massacre your communities? Your failure to admit that Hamas is responsible for every drop of blood spilt on the Gaza border encourages their violence and use of human shields. It makes you complicit in further bloodshed. If Israel had allowed these mobs to break through the fence, the IDF would then have been forced to defend their own civilians from slaughter and many more Palestinians would have been killed. Israel’s actions therefore saved lives of Gazans; and if this Council really cared about human rights, it should commend the Israel Defence Force for that, not condemn them on the basis of lies.
The High Level Military Group report about the ‘Great Return March’: PDF
“Hamas’s use of actual smoke and mirrors to conceal its aggressive manoeuvring on the Gaza border is the perfect metaphor for a strategy that has no viable military purpose but seeks to deceive the international community into criminalising a democratic state defending its citizens.

The UN and EU, NGOs, government officials and media — primary targets for Hamas — have been willingly taken in. For example a Guardian headline, ‘The use of lethal force to cow nonviolent demonstrations by Palestinians’, blatantly misrepresents the violent reality that has been plain for all to see. Likewise the NGO Human Rights Watch claims that we are seeing a movement to ‘affirm Palestinians’ internationally-recognised right of return’.

In reality these demonstrations are far from peaceful and do not pursue any so-called ‘right of return’. Rather they are carefully planned and orchestrated military operations intended to break through the border of a sovereign state and commit mass murder in the communities beyond, using their own civilians as cover. The purpose: to criminalise and isolate the State of Israel.”

Cruz Blasts Anti-Israel Media Bias in Wake of Violence at Gaza Border

Eugene Kontorovich: Al Jazeera interview re ICC investigation into Gaza

JCPA: Why Is Hamas So Interested in Palestinian Deaths?
Hamas defined the day of violent clashes at Israel’s border with Gaza on May 14, 2018, during which some 59 Palestinians were claimed to have been killed, as proof of a victory for jihad and the armed struggle against Israel.

It openly admitted these were not spontaneous demonstrations but a campaign orchestrated by Hamas.

On May 14, Hamas explained the goals of the “Great Return March,” which are the elimination of the State of Israel and ethnically cleansing any Jewish presence from the land:

“Our people set out today to react to the new American Zionist aggression and to tell the world with its blood and limbs that it is the one that will draw the map of return and the map of victories.”

“The blood that has been spilled in resisting this crime will arouse a revolution until the occupation is removed, and the embassy is removed from Palestine forever.”

If, in the past, Hamas counted its victories according to the number of Israeli casualties, today it measures victory according to the number of Palestinian casualties.
Hamas rioter: group 'tricks' women, children to enter line of fire
A Hamas activist who was arrested by Israeli security forces while attempting to infiltrate the Gaza border into Israel during Monday’s violent protests, explained during his investigation on Wednesday that Hamas deliberately encourages women and children to approach the border fence with the sole aim of incurring casualties and diverting negative attention away from the terror organization.

“Hamas organized the protests in order for people not to ‘turn’ on them. They (Hamas) say: Instead of them harming us and ‘turning’ on us, we’ll send them to the border fence where they will be hit,” he told his investigators.

“They tell women to go forward. They say to a woman: Go ahead, you’re a woman and the army doesn’t shoot women. They tell small children: Go ahead, the army doesn’t shoot small children. They tell a child to go ahead and he goes. It’s a small child. They trick him,” the man insisted.

Tens of thousands of Gazans clashed with Israeli forces on Monday in another wave of the weekly “March of Return” protests, which have included in recent weeks violence, attempts to breach the border into Israel, and Israeli retaliation using riot-dispersal techniques and in some cases live fire.

Ben Dror Yemini: The Palestinians' self-made Nakba
If we want to understand why the Palestinian refugees’ descendants have remained in a state of distress, and why Hamas rioters vandalized the strip’s gas supply pipes, and why the Arab world hasn’t bothered to rehabilitate for 70 years now, and why the Palestinians failed to establish a state and had no concern for Jerusalem, we should go back to the Alami farm rioters. It’s the same logic. For 70 years now, the Nakba isn’t just a memory. The Nakba is the ethos. It’s the identity. It’s the lifetime achievement.

The Alami story, as part of the refugee saga, appears in Adi Schwartz and Einat Wilf’s new book “The Right of Return War,” which is being published these days. The book is an indictment, not just against the international community, not just against Arab states, but against Israel as well. Because all of them together have made it possible for the monster known as the refugee problem o reach shocking dimensions.

In the exact same years that Alami’s farm was active, from 1951 to 1955, $200 million (the equivalent of nearly $2 billion those days) were allotted for refugee development and rehabilitation projects. Only $7 million were used—3.5 percent. They weren’t interested in rehabilitation. UNRWA, which was created to solve the refugee problem, has turned into an agency for the perpetuation of refugeeism.

Monday’s dead are the product of payments from Iran, an addiction to the self-victimization and self-deception ethos, and the fostering of the return fantasy, by UNRWA as well.

The bloodshed and the suffering can be stopped. The free world should make it clear to the Palestinians: Peace, welfare and prosperity will arrive when you stop dreaming about ruin, destruction and return. But the free world is “condemning both sides,” encouraged by part of the Left. And the Palestinians are paying the price.
Seth J Frantzman: Eight weeks in Gaza: What did the ‘Great March of Return’ accomplish?
Eight weeks. Up to 8,700 wounded and around 100 people killed. Those are the brutal numbers of the “Great March of Return” that Hamas launched in Gaza on March 30, to coincide with Land Day.

The protests were supposed to reach a peak on May 15, to culminate with Nakba Day, when Palestinians mark what they see as the catastrophic creation of Israel in 1948.

What did Hamas think would happen, and did it accomplish what it wanted? Many questions remain about the weeks of riots in which thousands were shot with live ammunition. The fallout from the clashes will likely continue to be felt through criticism from the international community, ramifications in the region, and lessons learned by both Hamas and the Israeli authorities.

Israel’s goals and controversies
The Israel Defense Forces said from the beginning that the riots in Gaza were planned and executed by Hamas. In late February, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman warned Gazans not to approach the border fence, that they were endangering their lives by doing so and being used by Hamas. Israel said it would respond aggressively and had learned its lessons from the use of civilians to mask infiltration attempts.
UN Human Rights Council votes to investigate Israel for Gaza protest deaths
The UN Human Rights Council on Friday voted to establish an investigation into Israel’s killing of Palestinians during protests along the Gaza border, in a move Israel rejected as being an attempt to undermine Israel’s right to self-defense.

The council voted 29 in favor and two against with 14 countries abstaining. Australia and the US were the two countries to oppose the decision. The council also condemned “the disproportionate and indiscriminate use of force by the Israeli occupying forces against Palestinian civilians.”

The “independent, international commission of inquiry” mandated by the council will be asked to produce a final report next March.

Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said Israel will not cooperate with the investigation.

“The UN Human Rights Council prefers to back Hamas instead of supporting Israel’s right to defend itself from terror,” tweeted Hotovely. “We have no intention of cooperating with an international investigative committee that wants to dictate results without a connection to facts.”

Danon: Kuwait’s call for international force to protect Gazans ‘shameful'
Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon issued a stern rebuke of Kuwait on Friday after the oil-rich Arab nation circulated a draft resolution calling for an international force to be deployed to Gaza in order to protect Palestinian civilians from Israel.

In a strongly worded statement released just before Friday morning, Danon called the proposed measure “shameful” and decried the move as a helping hand to the Palestinian terror organization Hamas.

"The cynicism and attempts to distort reality have reached a new low. Israel will continue to defend its sovereignty and the security of its citizens against the terror and murderous violence of Hamas," said Danon.

"This shameful draft resolution is a proposal to support Hamas's war crimes against Israel and the residents of Gaza who are being sent to die for the sake of preserving Hamas's rule," he added.

Earlier this week, Kuwait’s UN Ambassador Mansour Otaibi said he would call for a multilateral force to be deployed in Gaza for the “protection of Palestinian civilians,” though he added “we’re not talking about peacekeeping.”

That promise was fulfilled on Thursday evening after Otaibi distributed the draft resolution to each country on the 15-member United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
Col Kemp: to UN Gaza session: “Hamas seeks destruction of Israel and murder of Jews everywhere”
UN High Commissioner Zeid: “87 Palestinians have been killed by the Israeli security forces, and over 12,000 people have been injured…The stark contrast in casualties on both sides is also suggestive of a wholly disproportionate response: on the Israeli side, one soldier was reportedly wounded, slightly, by a stone…. Israel, as an occupying power, is obligated to protect the population of Gaza and ensure their welfare. But they are, in essence, caged in a toxic slum from birth to death; deprived of dignity; dehumanized by the Israeli authorities…”

PLO: “None of the civilians used any firearm or lethal weapon… [For Israel] those who were killed from amongst the protesters have no value, just like Nazis… Criminal acts of the Israeli occupation forces against civilians…”

UAE for Arab Group: “We deeply condemn Israel’s repression of Palestinian protesters, collective punishment… We call for an international inquiry to put a prompt end to repression…”

Qatar: We condemn massacres and gross violations of the occupying forces. Women, children, and journalists have been killed.”

Iraq: “Horrific violations by Israeli forces…”
South Africa opposed Syria debate, but excoriates Israel in Gaza debate
South Africa today likened Israeli actions to Nazi atrocities in a vitriolic speech to the UNHRC session on Gaza. “It would have been inexplicable for the Human Rights Council, the moral conscience of the world, not to convene today,” said the South African delegate, two months after South Africa strenuously objected to an EU-backed urgent debate over Syrians getting gassed to death by their own government.

On the UK proposal for an urgent debate for the Syrian victims, South Africa on March 2, 2018 regretted “the short notice,” saying “we do not understand this goal in light of the efficiency measures adopted by this Council, especially in light of the fact that this Council will also discuss Syria later in this session… What we are seeing instead is the outsourcing by the Security Council of its mandate to this Council. And this has to stop.”
South Africa compares Israel to Nazis, cites Rabbi in UNHRC Gaza debate

Israel's Belgian envoy turns table on Brussels' Gaza reprimand
Israel's Ambassador to Belgium and Luxembourg Simona Frenkel chastised representatives of the two countries’ foreign ministries Wednesday after being summoned to be reprimanded herself following Monday's deadly clashes between the IDF and some 40,000 Gazan protestors.

“It seems that the Belgian Foreign Ministry belongs to a school of thought according to which when an ambassador is summoned for a conversation or a reprimand, he is supposed to behave like a child who has misbehaved, to listen with a bowed head and not to respond,” Frenkel wrote in a report sent to the Foreign Ministry.

“I responded and fired back against Belgium: Your one-sided positions do not contribute to peace.”

Frenkel was first invited to a meeting with Deputy Director-General of the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Anick Van Calster, who recently visited Israel.

Van Calster opened by saying that she had been instructed by Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders to invite Frenkel in order to clarify the Belgian position, to voice objections to events that occurred on Monday on the Gaza border and to protest against what was described as a “disproportionate” use of force.

Calster also expressed anger over statements made by Frenkel during an interview with the country’s RTBF radio station, in which she described those killed in Gaza during the wave of unrest as terrorists.
Israel’s PR failure on Gaza border fence
The international response to the deadly clashes along the Gaza border fence exposes a serious failure in Israeli public diplomacy.

Monday’s international news broadcasts and Tuesday morning’s newspaper headlines in Europe and in most countries of the free world point to a perceptual victory for Hamas and the Palestinian terror organizations operating in Gaza.

They managed, unchallenged, to sway the public opinion in Europe, North America, many countries in Asia and in Eastern Europe as well, into believing that the Palestinians who got hurt on the fence were “innocent protestors trying to break the siege on the Gaza Strip through non-violent protests” —a simple and catchy narrative backed by hours of video footage and thousands of still images from the Gazan side, raising it to the level of a heroic struggle by the Palestinian people against their oppressors.

This huge flow of visual information and interviews with Palestinian “protestors” on the fence and with Hamas speakers was countered, on the Israeli side, by a thin drizzle of several dozen still images which mean nothing to an inexperienced eye, as well as short clips—10 to 20 seconds—from security cameras and quadcopters and a few photographers from the “combat documentation” of the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit.

In a world where visual material and fake news are the main shapers of public opinion, volume is significant. And what happened on Monday was that the visual volume, which came entirely from the Palestinian side, struck a chord even those who are usually willing to listen to the Israeli arguments.
Hen Mazzig: What I hear when I hear Diaspora Jews on Gaza
The comments of some diaspora Jews about the recent Gaza events sounded, to me, a lot like this:

“As a Jew who lives outside of Israel, it is heartbreaking to hear that 60 people were killed in Gaza today. Even if a large number of them are terrorists, even if they threw Molotov cocktails and explosive devices, and shot at the soldiers guarding the border with Israel. Even if they sent bomb kites and waved Nazi flags with swastikas on them. Even if the leaders of Hamas called Palestinians to storm the border with Israel, saying ‘tear down the fence and then tear Israeli hearts out from their bodies.’ Even if less than a mile away from the border with Gaza, Israeli families and children were sitting at their homes worried for their lives. Even if it is not the first time we have faced these violent mobs of tens of thousands of Palestinians, led by bloodthirsty Hamas terrorists. It still breaks my heart to see it.

“As a Jew I am ashamed of myself today. I understand that I have no military or security experience, but is this the only way to stop tens of thousands of people and terrorists trying to cross a border of a country? I know that if it was in any other country we would have seen many more casualties. I know that my country, for instance, would have carpet bombed the border and killed everyone that tried to break through, but it is Israel that I am ashamed of. Although my country has secure borders and I have nothing to worry about except whether or not Starbucks will have my almond milk latte, I can still judge. I can tell you we should be ashamed of Israel today.

“As a Jew, I know that every bullet shot, even if it was targeting Hamas terrorists, was not supposed to be shot. I understand Israel’s need for self-defense, but can’t they just talk and play nicer? Don’t they understand what it does to us? Don’t they know how hard it is to be Jewish and not condemn Israel? We might ruin our reputations and come off as ‘not liberal enough’ in our social circles and then what? We will have to be brave? Why won’t Israelis be brave and let them break through the fence to their cities?
Why Gaza is no Selma
The imbalance in statistical death makes for ominous headlines, but it doesn't violate international law.

These are entirely new rules of engagement. The nations who stand in judgment have no idea how they would respond to enemy combatants not wearing uniforms, blended within the population and not fighting on defined battlegrounds. This is more a public relations battle than a military one, a sadistic game of Palestinian roulette, where dead Gazans serve a greater purpose than dead Israelis.

Disproportion may infuriate political leaders like Bernie Sanders and Theresa May, but Hamas plays this numbers game as if devised by legendary military strategist Sun Tzu's "The Art of War." Hadashot, an Israeli network that also broadcasts in Gaza, featured a video of Palestinian children happily stating that they are finally going home and that dying at the border will guarantee them a place in paradise.

In its dealings with Hamas and other terrorist groups like Hezbollah, Israel serves as the canary in the coal mine of fourth-generation warfare, where the distinctions between combatants and civilians are entirely blurred. There are no conventional armies. The rules of armed combat are up for grabs in the chaos of moral compromise. What's more, civilians protected under the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 bear little resemblance to Gazans who are not trapped in a war zone by an occupying force, but many of whom are voluntary participants in the way Hamas wages war against Israel.

Gazans were given clear instructions in these weekly calls to rage. Hamas' military leader, Yahya Sinwar, proclaimed, according to the Times of Israel, the people of Gaza "will eat the livers of those besieging."

These were not peaceful gatherings, and Americans, at least, should know better than to judge them as if they were. The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. led a protest movement that rejected violence and never glorified death. And yet, some headlines are treating Gaza like a Middle Eastern Selma. King, who is memorialized with a forest in Israel, would be surprised that we now somehow couldn't tell the difference.
JCPA: The Conflict in Gaza: Three Ways to View It
A Third View of Gaza

The third view looks at the economic conditions and standards of living in the Gaza Strip. There is no connection between the hardships of the Gazans and the riots. The Palestinians in Gaza suffer from poor infrastructure, high unemployment, and restrictive mobility into and out of Gaza. They have severe shortages of fresh water and electricity. But these sufferings are the result of Hamas corruption, such as misappropriation of supplies, and the punitive denial of funds by the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority.

But Gazans do not lack essential products of any kind. Israel makes sure that all the needs of Gaza, except for military or dual-use equipment, enter and meet the demand.

Rioters’ severe damage to the Kerem Shalom border crossing through which truckloads of supplies and gas pipelines pass will further worsen the situation for Gazans as it forced Israel to shut the crossing temporarily.

Yet many pundits and politicians tend to present the violent riots as if they are motivated by the poor economic conditions created by Israel. If this was the reason Palestinians would have not destroyed the crossing and chosen the Nakba day for their riots. It is hard to understand what lies behind their myopia. Maybe it helps to justify the riots, and maybe it makes it easier to blame Israel.
Gaza Riots: Really About the Embassy?
Throughout history, the excuses to attack Israel keep changing.

For 8 years under the Obama administration, the Palestinians had portrayed themselves, and been treated as, the deserving underdog -- the "good guys." Now, a foreign government is actually holding the Palestinians accountable and calling them out for activities they had taken for granted, such as incitement to riot and murder, or funding terrorists and their families. The Palestinians do not like it one bit.

The Palestinians hate the Trump administration not because of the decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem, but because it speaks truth to them and exposes their perfidy and malice. They hate the Trump administration because they see it as an obstacle on their way to eliminating Israel.

What happened at the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip was an act of aggression by Hamas on Israeli sovereignty. It was an act of war. Even the terrorists did not say that they were protesting the embassy relocation. The terrorists and the rest of the Palestinian demonstrators were chanting "Death to Israel" and "Death to America." They were chanting that their goal is to replace Israel with an Islamic state.
Algemeiner Editor-in-Chief: Hamas-Orchestrated Gaza Border Violence Is an ‘Active Suicide Terror Campaign’ Against Israel
The recent Hamas-orchestrated violence on the Israel-Gaza Strip border is “an orchestrated, active suicide terror campaign,” the editor-in-chief of The Algemeiner said during an i24 News debate on Tuesday.

“What Israel is responding to is simply this — there is gunfire, there are reports of grenades being used, there are pipe bombs, there are Molotov cocktails, there are flaming kites,” Dovid Efune pointed out, a day after 60 Palestinians — most of whom were members of terrorist groups — were killed as they tried to storm across the border into the Jewish state.

Watch Efune’s debate with Dr. Maher Massis — the director of public policy for the Coalition of Palestinian American Organizations
Canadian PM calls for probe of Gaza violence
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Wednesday called for an independent probe of the violence along the Israel-Gaza border after a Canadian doctor was among those injured in the clashes.

Trudeau did not specifically call out Israel over the violence, but also did not mention Hamas’s role in encouraging the riots.

“Canada deplores and is gravely concerned by the violence in the Gaza Strip that has led to a tragic loss of life and injured countless people. We are appalled that Dr. Tarek Loubani, a Canadian citizen, is among the wounded – along with so many unarmed people, including civilians, members of the media, first responders, and children,” he said.

“We are doing everything we can to assist Dr. Loubani and his family, and to determine how a Canadian citizen came to be injured. We are engaging with Israeli officials to get to the bottom of these events,” continued Trudeau.

“Reported use of excessive force and live ammunition is inexcusable. It is imperative we establish the facts of what is happening in Gaza. Canada calls for an immediate independent investigation to thoroughly examine the facts on the ground – including any incitement, violence, and the excessive use of force,” he said.

“Canada stands ready to assist in such an endeavor. We will work closely with our international partners and through international institutions to address this serious situation,” concluded Trudeau.
IsraellyCool: Busted! Palestinian “Medic” Killed Was a Hamas Terrorist
This week, the CBC’s Carol Off interviewed Tarek Loubani, a palestinian-Canadian MD who works in Shifa Hospital and in Ontario, and was wounded during the latest “march of return” riots. In the interview, Loubani recounts how one of the paramedics who helped him was shot dead.

In fact, Loubani’s supposed shooting was the impetus for Canadian PM Justin Trudeau to call for an investigation.

Well, it looks like Musa Abuhassanin aka Musa Jabr Abu Hasanin was not an innocent paramedic as Loubani would have us believe. He was a Hamas terrorist.

According to the poster released by Hamas, he was a Captain (verified by an Arabic speaking friend of mine)
Erdogan: 'Time for us to take a physical stance on Israel'
In a speech in a main square in the Turkish city of Istanbul on Friday, Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan denounced Israel's recent actions with relation to this week's protests in Gaza, saying that the world's Muslims must take a "physical stance on Israel."

His speech began with a cry for Muslims around the world to unite with one another in the face of "fights and conflicts and disputes among themselves." He invoked phrases from the Quran to ignite the crowd, which cheered him on as he spoke of the Muslim unity and the faith's connection to the city of Jerusalem, revered as holy by the three Abrahamic religions.

"Whose blood did Da'esh spill? Whose cities did Da'esh burn? Whose lives did Da'esh take? Only Muslims," he said.

Da'esh is the Arabic name for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, which has waged a years-long bloody campaign against the civilian populations in both those countries, while simultaneously waging a war against the Iraqi and Syrian militaries. Of ISIS's targets, a majority have been Muslims, but the terrorist organization has also carried out what many to consider to be a genocide of the Yazidis. They have also murdered Christians and many other minorities.

"It is our sole responsibility to pick [up] the Islamic world from this hole of ignorance," Erdogan told the crowd.

The rally was held in support of the Palestinians, with participants waving Palestinian and Turkish flags together.
Arsen Ostrovsky: My interview on Turkish TV @The_Newsmakers on sitn in #Gaza, why #Israel will never apologize for defending our citizens & protecting our borders, and that responsibility for the violence rests with Hamas terror org that instigated these riot

Here's the real story on the Palestinian 'protest'
Israel has the right to defend itself.

It has every right to protect its people and defend its borders against attacking mobs and armed terrorists trying to target and murder Jewish citizens.

But judging from the media coverage of the clashes along Israel’s border – the border that separates Israel from the terrorist-run Gaza Strip – there seems to be an expectation that Israeli forces simply give up and cede ground to the terrorist organizations seeking to destroy them.

This week was supposed to be a celebration of important milestones in Israel. Its historic capital in Jerusalem was finally recognized, and Israel celebrated its 70th anniversary of nationhood.

Israel was created in the aftermath of the Second World War, after the true horrors of Auschwitz and the Holocaust were uncovered. Never again, the global community promised, and Israel – the world’s only Jewish state – was recognized and protected.

The important events this week, however, were deliberately and maliciously interrupted by Hamas’s criminal stunts. Knowing that the international media would be in Jerusalem to commemorate the historic U.S. recognition of Israel’s capital, Hamas sent in thousands of rioters to steal the show.
Senators Who Voted Against Confirming Pompeo Beg For His Ear on Gaza
A group of Democratic senators who voted against confirming Mike Pompeo as secretary of state late last month have sent him a letter telling him they "stand ready to work" with him on the humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.

The letter to Pompeo was backed by anti-Israel advocacy group J Street and had Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) as its lead signatory. It won the support of Sens. Sherrod Brown (Ohio), Tom Carper (Del.), Dianne Feinstein (Calif.), Martin Heinrich (N.M.), Patrick Leahy (Vt.), Ed Markey (Mass.), Jeff Merkley (Ore.), Jack Reed (R.I.), Tom Udall (N.M.), Chris Van Hollen (Md.), Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), and Sheldon Whitehouse (R.I.), all of whom voted against Pompeo's April 26 confirmation.

The letter follows weeks of violent riots at the Israeli border led by Hamas, a terrorist group that has governed the territory since 2007.

It calls for Pompeo to reverse a Trump administration decision to slash funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, which was cut off in January for the continued misuse of humanitarian aid funds. It also advocates for infrastructure investments in Gaza and for the administration to push for eased restrictions on the movement of goods and people in and out of Gaza.

The letter concludes by putting partial blame on both Hamas and Israel for the "horrific conditions in Gaza," and saying the senators would like to work with Pompeo on the issue.

"We stand ready to work with you on this important matter," it says.

J Street said in a press release that it was "proud to support and advocate on behalf of this deeply important message from prominent lawmakers."
6 days after rioters burn crossing, Gaza’s fuel lines to partially reopen
Less than a week after Palestinian rioters burned the fuel terminal at the Kerem Shalom Crossing into the Gaza Strip, the Defense Ministry announced on Thursday night that the flow of gasoline and diesel fuel into the coastal enclave was being partially restored.

Earlier in the day, engineers succeeded in sending a small amount of fuel through the two pipelines and hoped to bring the equipment back into partial service by the beginning of next week, after the Jewish festival of Shavuot on Sunday.

“The repair work on the gas pipeline concluded today, with the expectation that the system would come back to partial service after the Shavuot holiday,” the Defense Ministry said in a statement.

The Kerem Shalom Crossing serves as the main terminal for commercial goods and humanitarian aid into Gaza. Ordinarily, hundreds of trucks pass through the crossing each day. Its fuel terminal is also the only way to bring significant quantities of diesel and gasoline into the beleaguered coastal enclave.

Three times this month, rioters from the Gaza Strip broke into the Palestinian side of the crossing and set fire to parts of the facility.
Egypt to keep Rafah crossing with Gaza open until end of Ramadan
Egypt said Thursday it would leave the Rafah crossing with Gaza open for the remainder of the holy month of Ramadan, making a rare concession for the ailing Strip.

The move comes after years that have seen Egypt open its sole border crossing with the Strip only sporadically and for short intervals.

“I issued my directions to the concerned apparatuses to take the necessary measures to maintain the opening of the Rafah border crossing throughout the holy month of Ramadan in order to ensure the easing of the burdens on the brothers in the Gaza Strip,” Sissi said on his official Twitter account according to Egyptian news site al-Ahram.

Ramadan, which began Wednesday night, will end on June 14, making it the longest the crossing has been open consecutively for years, as Egypt has fought an insurgency in north Sinai bordering the Palestinian enclave.

Egypt played a large role in convincing Hamas to call of protests this week after deadly clashes with Israeli troops at the border fence Monday. 60 people were killed Monday and another two on Tuesday during the demonstrations, according to the Hamas-run Gaza health ministry. A Hamas official said 50 of them were members of the terror group which controls the Strip.
SHOCKER: Even Leftist Thomas Friedman Rips Hamas, Says They Committed 'An Act Of Human Sacrifice'
Appearing on CNN with Anderson Cooper, New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, who has spent his career attacking the Israeli right wing, astonishingly ripped into Hamas for the violence along the Israeli-Gaza border and the Palestinians who were killed, saying Hamas had committed "an act of human sacrifice."

Cooper precipitated Friedman's response by assuming Friedman would buy into the media's false narrative of the correlation between the opening of the embassy in Jerusalem and the Hamas riots, ignoring that Hamas had been rioting every week for weeks: "Tom, it was striking yesterday to watch members of the Trump Administration celebrating the unveiling of the new embassy and at the same time Palestinians were being killed on the Israeli-Gaza border."

Shockingly, Friedman ignored Cooper's attempt and targeted Hamas instead, saying:

You know, the whole thing, Anderson, is just like diplomatic pornography from beginning to end. Let’s start with Hamas and Gaza. I mean, it was an act of human sacrifice. I’m sorry, when you throw thousands of your youth, the flower of your youth against an Israeli fence, supposedly to get into Israel, some of them surrounded by armed Hamas fighters, it was inevitable that a lot of people were gonna get killed. Israel was not going to open the border to them and Hamas knew that, and this was entirely designed by Hamas to distract the attention of the world, not to mention the Middle East.

Cooper commented, "And Hamas controls what happens in Gaza."
Palestinian Islamic Jihad Claims Minor, Double Amputee Among Its ‘Mujahedeen’ Killed on Gaza Border
The Iran-backed terrorist group Palestinian Islamic Jihad announced that a minor and a double amputee were among its fighters who died in clashes on the Gaza-Israel border on Monday.

In a death notice vowing “to continue Jihad and resistance,” the Islamist group released photographs of its fallen “mujahedeen” in uniform, among them 16-year-old Ahmed Adel Musa Alshaer.

A second PIJ member was identified as “wounded hero” Fadi Hassan Abu Salah, who lost his legs in a “Zionist bombing” during Operation Cast Lead in 2008-2009.

A tweet announcing Abu Salah’s death received over 19,000 retweets on Monday before it was retracted, after it was revealed that it featured a photo of a different Palestinian man from an earlier protest. The tweet didn’t mention Abu Salah’s affiliation.

At least 62 Palestinians were killed and over 2,500 others injured in clashes with Israeli troops on Monday, when the US opened its embassy in Jerusalem, the Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry said. The day was the deadliest of the weeks-long “Great March of Return” campaign, which Gazans launched to protest Israel’s refusal to allow Palestinian refugees of the 1948 Independence War and their five million descendants into Israel.

A top Hamas leader claimed in an interview on Wednesday that of those fatalities, “50 of them are from Hamas and 12 from the people.”

“I am telling you, these are official numbers,” he added.

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Wishing a happy holiday of Shavuot to my readers in earlier time zones!

I will not be online until Monday night EST at least.

Chag sameach!

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(This is an expansion of a Twitter thread I wrote yesterday.)

The revelation that seemingly 53 of the dead on the Gaza border on Monday were Hamas and Islamic Jihad members doesn't only exonerate the IDF - it shows that the IDF acted in a remarkably professional way, exactly the opposite of how they are being painted.

It's simple math. We can assume that there were at least 48,000 non-Hamas members out of 50,000 people there. Many women and children were at the fence itself, in the front of the Hamas members who were often behind and giving instructions. As the ITIC writes:
Confirmation of Hamas involvement was ascertained by information gained by interrogating Palestinians who crossed the fence into Israeli territory. According to the interrogations, Hamas encourages and dispatches demonstrators (including children and adolescents) to the border to carry out violent acts, vandalize security installations, and even cross the fence. On the other hand, Hamas forbade its operatives to approach the fence, lest they be killed or captured by IDF forces, and therefore when they are present in the field (i.e., among the rioters) they wear civilian clothing.
Confirmation that Hamas members were told to take off their uniforms, to appear to be civilians, came from Hamas head Yahya Sinwar's statement in an interview:.

Picture the scene: real Gaza civilians, including women and children, are dispatched to the fence. Some of them, in their enthusiasm, try to cut the fence itself - including a 14 year old girl who was given the wire cutters from some unknown person.

Yet nearly 90% of those killed happened to be members of the (say) 4% from terror groups, members disguised as civilians, and possibly not at the fence itself but behind the scenes, directing the action.

Behind huge walls of smoke from burning tires that were specifically set to protect the ringleaders from IDF snipers.

It is astonishing accuracy.

It shows that the Israeli snipers are incredible at identifying potentially deadly behaviors and neutralizing them, while avoiding the tens of thousands of people deployed as chaff to hide the Hamas activities.

There really were human shields in Gaza. A captured Gazan said explicitly that  Hamas "tell women to go forward. They say to a woman: Go ahead, you’re a woman and the army doesn’t shoot women. They tell small children: Go ahead, the army doesn’t shoot small children.”

And somehow the IDF managed, for the most part, to avoid killing the human shields and to target the terrorists who were orchestrating what can only be considered a military operation using civilians as shields.

Israel's critics, if they really cared about saving innocent lives, should be using the IDF as a model for all armies and police in violent riots. Given a completely unprecedented and complicated situation, the IDF was exemplary in avoiding killing innocent people.

But Israel's critics have an agenda that rarely has anything to do with the humanitarian principles they pretend to espouse.

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Matti Friedman in his New York Times op-ed talks about Hamas' ability to use the media to tell an anti-Israel story:

Most Western viewers experienced these events through a visual storytelling tool: a split screen. On one side was the opening of the American embassy in Jerusalem in the presence of Ivanka Trump, evangelical Christian allies of the White House and Israel’s current political leadership — an event many here found curious and distant from our national life. On the other side was the terrible violence in the desperately poor and isolated territory. The juxtaposition was disturbing.

The attempts to breach the Gaza fence, which Palestinians call the March of Return, began in March and have the stated goal of erasing the border as a step toward erasing Israel. A central organizer, the Hamas leader Yehya Sinwar, exhorted participants on camera in Arabic to “tear out the hearts” of Israelis. But on Monday the enterprise was rebranded as a protest against the embassy opening, with which it was meticulously timed to coincide. The split screen, and the idea that people were dying in Gaza because of Donald Trump, was what Hamas was looking for.
In The Forward,  Lisa Goldman pretends to destroy Friedman's argument this way:
In fact, the May 14 demonstration was planned and announced many weeks ago. The date was chosen to coincide with the eve of Nakba Day, the day on which Palestinians mark their exile 70 years ago from the land now called Israel. It was not, as Friedman writes, chosen to coincide with the inauguration of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem.
Why would the Great Return March organizers have chosen the eve of Nakba Day, and not Nakba Day itself?

A little research shows that the original date of the climax of the riots was indeed May 15, not May 14:

Al-Monitor, April 18:
Despite the protest organizers noting specific dates for the "Great Return March" — from Land Day, on March 30, to Nakba Day, on May 15 ....
+972, March 30:
Thousands of Palestinians are protesting in Gaza near the border fence with Israel on Friday. The protest marks the beginning of the “Great Return March,” a 45-day series of events planned to culminate on May 15, Nakba Day.
Middle East Eye, April 4:
In the Gaza Strip, where 1.3 million of the territory’s two million inhabitants are refugees, protest organisers have called for six weeks of demonstrations called the "Great March of Return" along the border of the besieged Palestinian enclave and Israel, starting on Land Day and culminating on 15 May for Nakba Day, marking the displacement of Palestinians by Israel in 1948.

The organizers did originally plan to protest on Tuesday as well, and Friedman is correct that the Monday protest was timed to coincide with the US Embassy opening. I couldn't find any announcement of May 14 protests until after the US Embassy opening schedule was publicized.

The Monday protest did its propaganda job so well that they canceled the protest that was meant to be the culmination of the entire Great Return March! When have Palestinians ever canceled a demonstration before?

This is hardly the mot objectionable part of Goldman's article in The Forward. She claims that every single Gaza death was civilian even after knowing that 88% of them were Hamas members in civilian clothing when she says "Israel’s population is four times that of Gaza. Imagine the reaction if 240 Israeli civilians were killed and 10,000 wounded in a single day in a military attack. Just the thought is unbearable." Her entire premise, that blaming Hamas for Palestinian deaths is "racist," is undone by the knowledge that IDF snipers somehow managed to shoot around the masses of civilians and hit the small  minority of disguised terrorists.

But this just shows how easily and willingly the anti-Israel "journalists" are willing to lie for their cause.

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Thursday, May 17, 2018

The New York Times has a backgrounder on the Gaza protests and the fence, which it claims is the source of the unrest.

The article briefly touches on the word "return" but downplays that as well:

Why is the conflict flaring up now?
The “March of Return,” as Palestinians are calling the protest campaign that began in March, was intended by its creators to publicize global awareness that about two-thirds of Gaza residents are considered Palestinian refugees.

I've covered the planned march since February. It is always exactly what it claimed: to overrun the border with Israel and force it to deal with thousands of people at once, aimed at forcing Israel to allow them to "return" - and destroy the Jewish state.

To call that "publicizing the refugees" is not close to the truth.

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 Vic Rosenthal's Weekly Column

I attended a lecture on Monday by Moti Toledo, who participated in Operation Solomon, the 36-hour airlift of about 15,000 Ethiopian Jews to Israel while Ethiopia was in the throes of revolution.

Religious people can be excused for believing that miracles occurred during the operation. An El Al 747 with all its seats removed set the world record for number of people on a commercial aircraft, carrying 1088 passengers (two or three of them were babies born on the flight to Israel). According to the secular Toledo, the runway at that time was not considered long enough for even a normally-loaded 747, and the plane struggled to get airborne before it ran out of runway. An unexpected gust of wind came along from precisely the right direction, just in time. Make of this what you will.

This was after several covert operations had brought thousands of Ethiopian Jews to Israel, including the fascinating “Operation Brothers,” a Mossad-operated diving resort in Sudan (a country as hostile to Israel as any you can think of) which operated during 1981-5, and succeeded in rescuing some 12,000Jews.

The efforts to get the Ethiopian Jews to Israel began after then Sephardic Chief Rabbi Ovadia Yosef wrote a letter to Prime Minister Menachem Begin. Supposedly, Begin then called the head of the Mossad, and told him “Bring me my brothers, the Jews of Ethiopia.”

Toledo said that the story of the Ethiopian Jews illustrates the connection between the State of Israel and the Jewish people. Israel is and will always be a place of refuge and a protector of Jews everywhere. I can’t think of another country that has this kind of relationship with its people (and I am using “people” in its tribal sense). Perhaps if there will be an independent Kurdistan, there could be one more.

He also mentioned that when he gave a presentation in Europe, a non-Jewish person said to him that they too wished they had a place of refuge, the way Jews did. It reminded me of what an African-American Muslim said to my wife and I when we were about to make aliyah in 1979: “I wish we knew where our home was.”

Israel today is experiencing what Ofir Haivry called a “demographic miracle.” Everyone knows that when economic well-being and educational level increase, fertility goes down. This is true in Europe, North America, East and Southwest Asia, and the Middle East, including Palestinian and Israeli Arabs. But not among Jewish Israelis, where each woman has an average of 3.1 children (and this number is rising, despite Israel’s economic success). Haivry notes that this is not mostly because of a high birthrate among Haredim, but because the majority of secular and non-Haredi observant Jews are having more children. I can attest to this anecdotally – the streets and parks here are full of Jewish children and pregnant women.

Haivry attributes this to the strong family orientation of Jewish Israelis. He writes,

Throughout Israeli society, the educational and moral welfare of children as well as the continuity of the family remains at the center of parents’ (and grandparents’) lives, not only emotionally but as a matter of almost day-to-day practice.

But this is only part of it – and I think it is a small part, because close family ties characterize many countries in which there is nevertheless an inverse correlation between development and birthrate. He continues – and here I think he hits the nail on its head:

This peculiarly strong culture draws sustenance from and in turn informs the equally strong sense of national solidarity. Thanks to that strongly shared national identity, Israeli Jews are unusually willing to make personal sacrifices when it comes to welcoming new Jewish immigrants into the state and into their homes—and also when it comes to stoically enduring protracted periods of violence and bloodshed perpetrated by intractable enemies. As traditional communities of origin have receded in importance elsewhere in the world, the shared sense of an Israeli nation-family underlies the habitual instinct of most Israeli Jews to regard other Jews, and especially those in Israel itself, primarily as family members rather than merely as fellow citizens.

In a word, the secret is Zionism.

This is precisely why Menachem Begin asked the Mossad to bring him his Ethiopian brothers. This is why, when my own son told me that his wife was going to have a fourth child, he said – only half-jokingly – “I did it for the demographic struggle of the Jewish people.”

Having children is a joy, especially when one gets older. But in the beginning it means that parents have to sacrifice some of their own well-being for the sake of the children. There are adventures that they will not have, and pleasures that they will have to forgo. In highly self-centered societies, people often prefer not to make such sacrifices. They choose travel, extended education or careers over children. If they do have children, they have them later in life, so they have fewer of them. 

This is why the highly developed native cultures of Europe, for example, are phasing themselves out of history with fertility rates far below the replacement rate of 2.1 children per woman. And worries about their shrinking work force which must support an increasingly aged population have led them to welcome the immigration that will ultimately put an end to those cultures.

And this is why liberal Jews will soon be disappearing as a distinct group in American society: their affluence together with a lack of national feeling – which is also the reason they are attracted to anti-Israel politics – leads them to put their personal gratification before any Jewish consciousness that they may have. They have fewer children, and don’t see a downside to intermarriage.

This also applies to the bitter anti-Zionist Left in Israel, the ones that advise their (few) children to refuse to be serve in the IDF. But for this very reason – they too will be gone soon – I don’t see them as a major threat to Israel’s national consciousness.

Someone said to me at Toledo’s lecture that while the immigration of the Ethiopians was a big success, their absorption has been less so. I disagree. We are just beginning to see the first generation of Ethiopian Jews born in Israel, and they are Israeli in every way. The usual problems of immigrants – prejudice, crime, poverty – are fading away, and in another generation or two will be gone. Jews from Ethiopia are finding their places in our society, including having plenty of children of their own.

Today Israel is militarily the most powerful nation in the region – we’ve just demonstrated that to the Iranian regime – and an economic powerhouse, but we are also vulnerable due to our small size. Begin realized that we need more than military strength to survive – we need to care about each other and our nation.

And despite the sometimes deafening disagreements, we do.

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From Ian:

Matti Friedman (NYTs): Falling for Hamas’s Split-Screen Fallacy
The press coverage on Monday was a major Hamas success in a war whose battlefield isn’t really Gaza, but the brains of foreign audiences.

Israeli soldiers facing Gaza have no good choices. They can warn people off with tear gas or rubber bullets, which are often inaccurate and ineffective, and if that doesn’t work, they can use live fire. Or they can hold their fire to spare lives and allow a breach, in which case thousands of people will surge into Israel, some of whom — the soldiers won’t know which — will be armed fighters. (On Wednesday a Hamas leader, Salah Bardawil, told a Hamas TV station that 50 of the dead were Hamas members. The militant group Islamic Jihad claimed three others.) If such a breach occurs, the death toll will be higher. And Hamas’s tactic, having proved itself, would likely be repeated by Israel’s enemies on its borders with Syria and Lebanon.

Knowledgeable people can debate the best way to deal with this threat. Could a different response have reduced the death toll? Or would a more aggressive response deter further actions of this kind and save lives in the long run? What are the open-fire orders on the India-Pakistan border, for example? Is there something Israel could have done to defuse things beforehand?

These are good questions. But anyone following the response abroad saw that this wasn’t what was being discussed. As is often the case where Israel is concerned, things quickly became hysterical and divorced from the events themselves. Turkey’s president called it “genocide.” A writer for The New Yorker took the opportunity to tweet some of her thoughts about “whiteness and Zionism,” part of an odd trend that reads America’s racial and social problems into a Middle Eastern society 6,000 miles away. The sicknesses of the social media age — the disdain for expertise and the idea that other people are not just wrong but villainous — have crept into the worldview of people who should know better.

For someone looking out from here, that’s the real split-screen effect: On one side, a complicated human tragedy in a corner of a region spinning out of control. On the other, a venomous and simplistic story, a symptom of these venomous and simplistic times.
Bret Stephens (NYTs): Gaza’s Miseries Have Palestinian Authors
Notice, also, the old pattern at work: Avow and pursue Israel’s destruction, then plead for pity and aid when your plans lead to ruin.

The world now demands that Jerusalem account for every bullet fired at the demonstrators, without offering a single practical alternative for dealing with the crisis.

But where is the outrage that Hamas kept urging Palestinians to move toward the fence, having been amply forewarned by Israel of the mortal risk? Or that protest organizers encouraged women to lead the charges on the fence because, as The Times’s Declan Walsh reported, “Israeli soldiers might be less likely to fire on women”? Or that Palestinian children as young as 7 were dispatched to try to breach the fence? Or that the protests ended after Israel warned Hamas’s leaders, whose preferred hide-outs include Gaza’s hospital, that their own lives were at risk?

Elsewhere in the world, this sort of behavior would be called reckless endangerment. It would be condemned as self-destructive, cowardly and almost bottomlessly cynical.

The mystery of Middle East politics is why Palestinians have so long been exempted from these ordinary moral judgments. How do so many so-called progressives now find themselves in objective sympathy with the murderers, misogynists and homophobes of Hamas? Why don’t they note that, by Hamas’s own admission, some 50 of the 62 protesters killed on Monday were members of Hamas? Why do they begrudge Israel the right to defend itself behind the very borders they’ve been clamoring for years for Israelis to get behind?

Why is nothing expected of Palestinians, and everything forgiven, while everything is expected of Israelis, and nothing forgiven?

That’s a question to which one can easily guess the answer. In the meantime, it’s worth considering the harm Western indulgence has done to Palestinian aspirations.

No decent Palestinian society can emerge from the culture of victimhood, violence and fatalism symbolized by these protests. No worthy Palestinian government can emerge if the international community continues to indulge the corrupt, anti-Semitic autocrats of the Palestinian Authority or fails to condemn and sanction the despotic killers of Hamas. And no Palestinian economy will ever flourish through repeated acts of self-harm and destructive provocation.

If Palestinians want to build a worthy, proud and prosperous nation, they could do worse than try to learn from the one next door. That begins by forswearing forever their attempts to destroy it.
Col Kemp: Hamas are using their own people as expendable tools. Don’t fall for their games
Many have condemned Israel for using excessive and disproportionate force. I cannot assess every incident, but I can say for sure that this is not the case. The IDF has strict rules of engagement, similar to our own, which conform to the laws of war and, when appropriate, to human rights law. IDF commanders exercise tight control over use of force, and I stood beside a battalion commander on the border as he directed operations in his sector.

Those who say it would be no big deal if the crowds reached the border fail to understand the potentially catastrophic implications. If they succeeded in breaking down the fence, thousands would pour through, intent on violence against Israeli civilians. Among them would be armed terrorists with orders to reach border communities and carry out mass murder. Some villages are just a few minutes’ dash from the border. Hamas social media provided Google maps marked with routes from the border to the communities they intended to attack. Had that horrendous scenario occurred, the IDF would have defended these communities with lethal force and many more people would have died.

All of this is no doubt hard to fully understand, especially if you are conditioned to see Israel in a bad light. But those who wrongly accuse Israel of using too much force play into the hands of Hamas.

I am in no doubt that the international reaction to conflict in Gaza has validated Hamas’s human shield tactics and encouraged them to step up their violence. This has contributed to the death toll. Anyone who is genuinely interested in human rights and concerned to improve the wretched lives of the people of Gaza should support Israel’s lawful efforts to defend its sovereign territory and condemn Hamas, which so malevolently oppresses its people and throws away the lives of innocent men, women and children.

I was at the Gaza border, we did all we could to avoid killing
Of course, the primary mission was to prevent hundreds of thousands of Gazans from infiltrating into our territory. That kind of invasion would be perilous, mortally dangerous, to the nearby communities; would permit terrorists disguised as civilians to enter our kibbutz and moshav communities, and would leave us with no choice but to target every single infiltrator. That’s why our soldiers were directed to prevent infiltration, in a variety of ways, using live ammunition only as a last resort.

The IDF employs many creative means of reducing friction with Gazans and uses numerous methods, most of which are not made public, to prevent them from reaching the fence. In addition, over the past few weeks there have been serious efforts to save the lives of children and civilians who have been pushed to the front lines by the Hamas, who are trying to hide behind them in order to infiltrate and attack Israel.

When there is no alternative, and live ammunition must be used to stop those who storm the fence, the soldiers make heroic and sometimes dangerous efforts not to kill and to only injure those on the other side. The IDF stations senior commanders at every confrontation point to ensure that every shot is approved and backed up by a responsible figure with proper authority. Every staging area has an especially large number of troops in order to make sure that soldiers are not put into life-threatening situations where they will have no choice but to fire indiscriminately.

A situation where thousands of people rush you is frightening, even terrifying. It is extremely difficult to show restraint, and it requires calm, mature professionalism. Sixty-two dead is an enormous number. But I can testify from my first-hand experience, that every bullet and every hit is carefully reported, documented and investigated, in Excel spreadsheets. Literally. I was there and I saw it with my own eyes.

This isn’t the time or place to discuss the situation in general and the desperate plight of the residents of Gaza. I’m not interested in starting a political discussion here, although I do have a clear position. What I’m trying to do is present, for everyone who really wants to listen, the extent of the IDF’s enormous effort to protect Israel’s borders while minimizing injuries and loss of life on the other side.

And despite all this – the situation on the border with Gaza is deteriorating. I hope that we won’t be called up again soon for reserve duty to protect our country. But if we are, we will go with the knowledge that we are serving a morally just cause. We do not rejoice when we must go to war, but we also don’t go like sheep to the slaughter. Not anymore.
The Top Ten Stupidest Criticisms of Israel's Actions on the Gaza Border
1) People have a right to peacefully protest! (Indeed they do. But there are plenty of people here who are taking butcher knives and firebombs and guns to storm the border and kill and kidnap Israeli civilians.)

2) There is no evidence of that! (Yes there is. There are Arabic Facebook pages and interviews and photos.)

3) But it's not all the Gazans who are doing that! (Right. And it's not all the Gazans who are being shot!)

4) Israel is just trying to kill as many Gazans as possible! (If it was, there would be carnage like in Syria. Israel is trying to avoid killing Gazans - aside from anything else, it is politically very damaging.)

5) Israel should just use tear gas! (They have, but it often doesn't work, such as when it's windy, or when the Gazans have gas masks and bury the canisters.)
The Ben Shapiro Show: Why The Media Get Gaza Wrong Ep. 540

Alan Dershowitz: Why Does the Media Keep Encouraging Hamas Violence?
It is true that Gaza is in a desperate situation and that it is wounded. But the wound is self-inflicted. When Israel ended its occupation of the Gaza Strip -- removing every single soldier and settler -- Gaza could have become the Singapore of the Mediterranean. It is a beautiful area with a large seacoast. It received infusions of cash and other help from Europe. Israel left behind agricultural equipment and greenhouses. But instead of using these resources to feed, house and educate its citizens, Hamas built rockets and terror tunnels. It threw dissenters off roofs and murdered members of the Palestinian Authority who were willing to recognize Israel and negotiate with it.

Hamas rejects the two-state solution or any solution that leaves Israel intact. Its only solution is violence, and the events at the fence these past days are a manifestation of that violence. Would any country in the world allow 40,000 people, sworn to its destruction, to knock down a border fence and attack its citizens living peacefully near the border? Of course not. Could Israel have done more to reduce casualties among those trying to breach the border fence? I don't know, and neither do the legions of armchair generals that are currently criticizing Israel for the steps it took to prevent a catastrophe among the residents of villages and towns that are proximate to the border fence.

One thing is crystal-clear: Hamas will continue to use the dead baby strategy as long as the media continues to report the deaths in the manner in which it has reported them in recent weeks. Many in the media are complicit in these deaths because their one-sided reporting encourages Hamas to send innocent women and children to the front line.

Perhaps Israel could do a better job in defending its civilians, but it is certain that the media can do a better job in accurately reporting the Hamas strategy that results in so many innocent deaths.

There is a marvelous cartoon that illustrates the difference between Hamas and Israel. It shows an Israeli soldier standing in front of a baby carriage with a baby in it, shielding the baby. Then it shows a Hamas terrorist standing behind a baby carriage with the baby in it, using the baby to shield him. This cartoon better illustrates the reality that is occurring at the Gaza fence than most of the "objective" reporting by the media.

Kay Wilson: In The Name of Journalism
Throughout history there have been at least 150 blood libels – a false charge against Jews that they kidnapped Christian children and used their blood for religious rites. Following these hateful lies, in almost every case, Jews were murdered, either by a mob, or following torture and a trial. The number of Jewish victims is in the hundreds of thousands.

Today we are witnessing another blood libel – from journalists not only in the Arab world, but also in the West.

Holding positions of incredible influence, the reporters tweet blasé from safe spaces ignoring context and facts. Incredulously, they deem it fitting to sympathize with the worlds richest terror group, savages who prey on victimhood – those have sworn to “tear out the hearts of the Jews.” These journalists show no impartiality, and many are even offended that, so far, Israel has lost no lives.

In doing so, these journalists are irresponsibly and dangerously lancing a boil, and the pus of the world’s oldest hatred is pouring out.

In the name of “journalism,” a blood libel is happening in front of our eyes.

Shame on them all. Every. Single. One.
The people of Gaza are Victims of Hamas

David Collier: Gaza, Hamas and why I won’t be criticising Israel today
One of the reasons I won’t be criticising Israel today is because I am in London. I am not facing 40,000 rioters sent by Hamas to the Israeli border. Instead I am safely tucked away in a relatively secure part of the globe, with the armies of British enemies pushed back through centuries of brutal conflict. Even in the last two decades many have died in the Middle East because the British army, like that of the United States, protects its borders and global interests by fighting it’s battles far from away from our shores. Our enemies are not even allowed to get close to us.

More recently, our streets have remained silent from protest whilst the Syrian conflict has butchered half a million people. Given the absolute silence in the face of real Genocide and ethnic cleansing occurring across the globe, little is more hypocritical than global tears over the deaths of what we know now were mainly Hamas operatives on the Gaza border. One of those nations involved in the Syrian massacres, Turkey, has just expelled the Israeli Ambassador. Turkey? Erdogan is surely having a laugh.
Hamas and Gaza

It is thirteen years since Israel withdrew from Gaza. Pulling back its forces, dismantling settlements and forcibly removing Jewish residents. Almost immediately Hamas won an election and then tried to replace the Palestinian police with Hamas forces in Gaza. This internal conflict eventually led to the ‘Battle of Gaza‘ between Fatah and Hamas, which resulted in Hamas taking full control of the Strip.

The history since then has been tragic. The growing Gazan population has been under the control of a terrorist regime intent on conflict rather than dialogue. With international funding looking after the basic necessities of daily existence, Hamas funds have gone towards fighting Israel rather than improving the lives of its citizens. There have been three major conflicts and the last one in 2014, was devastating.
David Horovitz: World must tell Gaza’s Hamas-abused masses the truth: There will be no ‘return’
The world owes it to the Palestinians to correct its definition of Palestinian “refugees” — and it can do so, incidentally, without in any way impacting any aid assistance it provides for Gaza and the West Bank.

It owes it to the Palestinians to make clear that Israel will not be required or pressured to commit national suicide as a Jewish state by absorbing millions of descendants of Palestinians who used to live in what is today’s Israel. Just as Israel, following the division of Mandatory Palestine by the UN in 1947 and independence in 1948, built a thriving state in its revived historic home, including by absorbing hundreds of thousands of Jewish refugees from Middle Eastern and North African countries, so the Palestinians should be encouraged to build a thriving Palestinian state alongside and in true peace with Israel as the home to their millions — a first ever Palestinian state, in a framework that was spurned by the Arab world 70 years ago and that they tragically continue to reject.

The world owes it to the Palestinians to push for a genuine two-state solution — for a Palestine at peace with today’s majority Jewish Israel, not for a Palestine that simultaneously insists on destroying Jewish Israel. To help both sides move toward a genuine two-state solution that would give the Palestinians independence and enable Israel to maintain its democracy and Jewish character — a negotiated separation.

Want to alleviate the ongoing tragedies of Gaza? Want to prevent the endless repetition of horror days like Monday? Make plain to the Palestinians that they have no “right” of “return.” Tell them that they deserve leadership that doesn’t lie to them and abuse them. And make it clear that their independence can only be achieved through a genuine readiness for coexistence, alongside majority-Jewish Israel.
Daniel Sugarman: I said Israel should be ashamed – now I am the one who is ashamed
I failed to acknowledge that, either way, Israel would be giving Hamas what it wanted. Shoot at those charging at you and Hamas would have its martyrs. Fail to shoot and Hamas would break through the barrier and bring suffering and death – its stated aim - to Israelis living only a few hundred metres away from that barrier. The march may have originally been, as it was declared to be, about Palestinians returning to the homes they had to leave 70 years before. But Hamas’s aim was far more straightforward - “We will take down the border and we will tear out their hearts from their bodies.”

I wrote in my previous article that Israel was a regional powerhouse, and that it was strong enough to take criticism from Jews in the Diaspora.

I still believe it is strong enough to do so. I just don’t believe that my criticism of it was valid. Given the circumstances, and the situation on the ground, I am at a loss in terms of coming up with a better solution. The choice was, quite literally, shoot at people running at you with the stated aim of killing you and your families, or fail to shoot and let them do it.

A few days ago I said I could not and would not defend Israel’s actions. Now, in the cold light of day, I could not and would not see how I would fail to defend them.

I said that Israel should be ashamed of its actions. But today I am the one ashamed.
Haaretz: If You Call the Gaza Death Toll "Disproportionate," How Many Israelis Have to Die for the Sake of Symmetry?
Did the Israeli army act carelessly in Gaza, shooting hastily into crowds of helpless civilian protestors? Are Israel's critics suggesting that if there were a lot more Israeli dead, and a hundred Jewish bodies were strewn across the desert in southern Israel, then Israel's action would be acceptable?

Such a thing could happen easily enough. If the fence were breached and a single terrorist were to reach one of the civilian towns that have long been the intended targets of Hamas rockets and tunnels, the Israeli and Hamas death tolls might quickly "balance out."

But Israel will not sacrifice a single life in these long-suffering towns without a fight. Neither will Israelis permit an Israeli soldier or civilian to be kidnapped without doing their utmost to stop it. That is why Israel will do what it must to repel these mobs, and it is a moral obscenity to propose that it should do otherwise.

Multiple commentators have argued that Israel's military had alternative, non-lethal methods of restraint to contain the demonstrators. But this argument seems to me more a wish than a reality. 40,000 determined protestors cannot be contained with water hoses or conventional crowd control.

Israel's training of its soldiers was intense, instructions were detailed, and experienced officers were in command. Shoot-to-kill was not a first resort but an absolute last resort. If resorting to deadly force had been ruled out, a breach of the fence by thousands of demonstrators was likely inevitable.

In 2007, the Quartet set out the conditions for normalizing the political status of Hamas. They included a Hamas commitment to non-violence, recognition of Israel, and support of past international treaties and obligations. Hamas refused then, and refuses now, to meet these conditions. It is this refusal, and not the actions of Israel, that isolates Hamas and makes it a terrorist group and an international outlaw.
Ex-Shin Bet head: Hamas doesn't want to fight Israel but must lower demands
Despite the Gaza border crisis, Hamas has no interest in fighting Israel and wants a state like other nations, but needs to lower its demands to get there, former Shin Bet Director Yoram Cohen told Army Radio on Thursday.

Hamas is asking itself, “How can it get Israel to change its blockade policy? It wants to be a state like any other state… It has no interest in fighting Israel. It knows it cannot conquer us,” but that its terms for moving on with Israel are unrealistic, he said.

The openness to viewing Hamas as theoretically no longer wanting to fight Israel was surprising coming from Cohen, who has made few public appearances to date and is usually viewed as hawkish on security issues.

Cohen said that Hamas is at its lowest point yet and feels like it is out of military options, all of which Israel has blocked.

At the same time, he said, Hamas is frustrated with the desperate economic situation and knows its stability is potentially in jeopardy until it provides jobs and some normalcy to its people.
Trapped in Its Own Paradox, Hamas Is Buying Time With Gaza Protests
Four years after the end of its last armed conflict with Israel, Hamas once again finds itself in a corner, strategically isolated from the region and ruling over a sinking ship.

Hamas’ efforts to find a “big brother” in the area — a state power that could back it — have all ended in failure. The Sunni Arab world, which is busy dealing with Iran and its own domestic crises, has no patience for Hamas’ hardline Islamist ideology and its recipe for neverending conflict with Israel.

Still, Hamas needs a backer if it is to maintain its regime in Gaza. It is looking for a power that can promote its interests in the international arena. Hamas’ failure to find such an entity has driven it into the hands of Iran and Hezbollah. Hamas has moved closer to Iran simply because there is no one else. Even Turkey, a Sunni Islamist state that is sympathetic to Hamas, is too distant to make a significant difference or alleviate the pressure on the terrorist group.

Egypt vehemently rejects the idea of partnering with Hamas, correctly viewing it as a member of the same Muslim Brotherhood movement against which the Egyptian leadership has waged war for years. From the perspective of Egypt’s current leadership, Hamas will always be a collaborator with the enemy.

One Persian Gulf economic powerhouse, Qatar, does provide some funds to Gaza, but not enough to change the status quo.

Hamas knows it remains utterly isolated.
IDF hits Hamas targets in Gaza following gunfire to Sderot, troops
Israeli Air Force jets struck several Hamas targets in the northern Gaza Strip overnight Wednesday the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said.

Four different targets inside a military compound belonging to the group were hit, including buildings and infrastructure. Three additional targets inside a weapons production facility were also struck.

The strike was carried out in retaliation for heavy machine-gun fire that hit the southern Israeli city of Sderot, as well as for a number of shooting attacks against IDF troops along the Gaza border during the day, the army said.

"The terrorist organization Hamas is solely responsible for what is happening in and out of the Gaza Strip, and it will bear the consequences for the acts of terror carried out from Gaza against the citizens and sovereignty of Israel,” read a statement by the IDF’s Spokesperson’s Unit, adding that the military “is determined to continue its missions and to ensure security to the residents of Israel."

Following the gunfire, IDF tanks fired against two Hamas observation posts in southern Gaza. Sderot Mayor Allon Davidi said the response was not significant enough and called for a much harsher strike.
The Distortion of International Law in Gaza
The Israeli organization B’Tselem recently called for Israeli soldiers to disobey orders on the Gaza frontier and refrain from using live fire against attempted infiltration and terrorist acts. A formal “opinion” published by the Israel Democracy Institute lends support to B’Tselem. Another organization filed a petition with the Israeli Supreme Court, alleging that the IDF rules of engagement permitting the use of live fire on the Gaza border are illegal under international law.

These three examples and others like them all share a similar premise: international law permits the use of lethal force only as a response to direct mortal peril or against armed targets. This categorical claim represents a radical and distorted interpretation of international law that directly contradicts basic concepts in the laws of armed conflict.

International law is of course ambiguous and complex, yet certain principles are easy enough to define. So what does the law actually say?

The law distinguishes between civilians and combatants. While enemy combatants can be targeted with very few limitations, civilians are protected by an array of provisions and restrictions. However, the law withdraws these protections and in effect defines a civilian as a “combatant” for all intents and purposes when a civilian engages in “direct participation in hostilities.”
Amid Crisis, New Israel Fund Calls on UN to Investigate Israel
In the midst of vicious attacks along Israel’s border led by terrorists, the IDF has valiantly protected the State of Israel.

Against this backdrop, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley stated that “no country would act with greater restraint than Israel,” adding that Hamas is responsible for the deaths and injuries.

She said, “Let’s remember that the Hamas terrorist organization has been inciting violence for years, long before the United States decided to move our embassy.” She added, “Hamas is pleased with the results from yesterday.”

While reports from Gaza suggested that the majority of protesters were unarmed, Ms. Haley called attention to the tactics employed by some, which included the use of Molotov cocktails and other weapons.

The Trump administration noted Monday that the deaths of protesters along the border were “tragic,” but ultimately the responsibility of Hamas, not the IDF. “We believe that Hamas as an organization is engaged in cynical action that is leading to these deaths,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah told reporters.

But where is the New Israel Fund (NIF) when it comes to these Palestinian terrorists?
Self inflicted Palestinian humiliation is not Israel's problem
I am going to risk predicting that, contrary to their boasting, a million Palestinians aren't going to succeed in invading Israel this week.

And if I am already sticking my neck out I will share another prediction:

The Gaza Strip could have become a burgeoning export dynamo exploiting its close proximity to European markets.
That in the wake of this failure there are going to be talking heads suggesting that Israel must make concessions or gestures to the Palestinians to somehow compensate them for their humiliation.

And there will be sophisticated talking heads suggesting that Israeli must make concessions or gestures to support the Palestinian leadership that ostensibly acted behind the scenes so that a million Palestinians didn't invade the Jewish State.

Let's be clear.about this.

The Palestinians are responsible for their humiliation.
The Gaza battle isn’t over yet
The Gazan street was in a state of shock Tuesday, on Nakba Day of all days. The resistance movements—Hamas and the Islamic Jihad in Gaza, alongside Fatah in the West Bank—were supposed to demonstrate their full force on the street that day, but things didn’t go as planned.

Several hundred Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, mainly in the Al-Bureij area, flocked to the fences and run wild as a force of habit. The result was one dead Palestinian and 50 wounded. Considering the weekend protests of the past two months, it was almost a regular day.

In the West Bank, some 1,000 protestors gathered in 18 sites. Despite the forecasts, it ended up being the calmest Nakba Day Israel could have wished for.

There isn’t a single PR genius capable of explaining to normative people in the world a death toll of 61 and 2,850 wounded Palestinians in one day of protests. Israel will pay for Monday’s events. In the short run, these numbers created a shock in Gaza. Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar may have encouraged young Gazans to smash into the fences, but as the bodies piled up and the hospitals collapsed—it made the leadership stop and think.

The social media discourse reveals a dispute: Part of the Hamas leadership is demanding revenge and wants to keep pushing the street to the fences so as not to lose the momentum; another part wishes to examine the political-economic achievements Hamas might be able to score from Monday’s victims.

It’s quite possible that the clashes will resume. On Tuesday evening, reports began arriving about buses ordered to drive the masses to the fences. The IDF remains on high alert.
Palestinian caught at Gaza fence says Hamas plans riots so ‘people won’t revolt’
The Israeli military on Wednesday released footage from the interrogation of a Palestinian man who was arrested as he infiltrated into Israel from the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, in which he claims that Hamas is leading the recent border riots in order to stave off an uprising.

“Hamas organizes these riots so the people won’t revolt,” said the Palestinian suspect, whose face was blurred in the video.

“They’re the ones controlling the Strip, ruling it. Everything that happens goes through them,” he said.

On Tuesday, he was one of several Gazans who breached the security fence and entered Israeli territory during a violent border protest. They were arrested by Israeli soldiers shortly after they made it past the fence, the army said.

The Israel Defense Forces released his filmed testimony on Wednesday night. In the video, the suspect speaks in Arabic to the Israeli soldiers, while he sits handcuffed on what appears to be a kite covered in swastikas that had been flown into Israel from Gaza.

New weapon against rioters: 'The Choco Drone'
The Defense Ministry's directorate of research and development of weapons and technological infrastructure (Mafat) revealed Wednesday, in the context of disturbances on the Gaza border and in Judea and Samaria, a new development that will help IDF soldiers disperse rioters with nonviolent means.

The “Choco Drone” project was developed by Mafat and in cooperation with the Israeli defense industry, especially for the events of the current week, particularly “Nakba Day.”

This week, the drone began its operational activity in the Gaza Strip, with its operation defined as successful. With the new development, IDF forces are not required to reach a point close to the border - all operations are carried out from the air according to the decision of the commanding officer in the field.

The drone is designed to carry heavy weights and is suitable for a variety of uses as well as for low-altitude flying. The ability to disperse rioters was not among its planned uses, but when the need arose, its designation was changed within a short period of time.

The drone was fitted with a shell capable of holding a large quantity of bags containing foul-smelling substance - known as "chocolate."
Netanyahu Scoffs at CBS Question About Meeting with Hamas: ‘Could You Talk to Al Qaeda?’
In an interview with "CBS Evening News," Netanyahu said he wished the recent violence at the Gaza border had never happened. He told anchor Jeff Glor it was not a "peaceful demonstration."

"Hamas is pushing people with a view of a massive infiltration into Israel, openly declaring their goal is to destroy Israel," Netanyahu said. "They're paying these people so it's not the peaceful demonstration that you think about."

"They're pushing civilians, women, children, into the line of fire, with the view of getting casualties," he added. "We try to minimize casualties. They're trying to incur casualties in order to put pressure on Israel, which is horrible."

Asked if his army went too far, Netanyahu said he didn't know of any military that would do anything differently against a similar threat. No Hamas leaders were immune from Israeli targeting, he said, if they continue to dispatch "terrorists to kill us."

"Do you see yourself under any circumstance talking to Hamas?" Glor asked.

"As long as they seek our destruction, what am I going to talk about?" Netanyahu asked. "Could you talk to al Qaeda? Would you have discussions with bin Laden? About what?"

Glor drew parallels with the planned summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.

"Sometimes, meetings that might be unimaginable end up happening," Glor said.

"You're right. It's happened to us with our Arab neighbors [like Jordan]. But that's when you have leaders who've decided that they abandon the goal of war and destruction and annihilating the other side," Netanyahu said.

Gaza Border Coverage: Shame on the Media
We’re seeing a veritable tsunami of media commentary, most of it highly critical of Israel in the aftermath of this week’s Gaza border violence.

New information is now coming to light that calls into question the overwhelming and knee-jerk reaction of the media and elsewhere to place almost the entire blame on Israel for the violence and deaths that occurred.
Hamas publicly acknowledges 50 of its dead were operatives

The overwhelming narrative adopted by the media was one of Israel shooting dead unarmed civilians protesters who posed little to no threat.

This despite plenty of evidence to the contrary (see HonestReporting’s previous post) including social media posts from the protest organizers calling for participants to bring concealed weapons and encouraging them to breach the fence and kill or kidnap Israeli soldiers or civilians.

Yet, with the death toll at some 62 Palestinians, the truth is steadily leaking out. 50 of the dead were claimed by Hamas official Salah al-Bardaweel as their operatives.

James Delingpole: Enough Hamas Dead Baby Propaganda in the Western Media, Already!
What kind of mother takes her baby to a conflict zone where rocks and bullets are flying and tear gas chokes the air?

Why, a Palestinian mother like the one pictured weeping over her dead baby in lots of newspapers today. (Including, I note, the former conservative imprint the Daily Telegraph which has put it on the front page…)

“Palestinian officials said the baby died in an Israeli tear gas attack, a claim disputed by Israeli forces” says the Telegraph.

But if a picture is worth a thousand words then that caption is meaningless.

All most people are going to see is a pretty young mother, flanked by two older female relatives, desperately hugging the shrouded corpse of her baby.

What are we to make of this?

Well it’s theoretically possible, I suppose, that everything the Palestinian propaganda industry is telling us is true: that this young woman called “Mariam” just happened to be innocently wandering past with her eight-month-old Leila al-Ghandour when, lo!, the evil Israelis struck with their wanton tear gas and poor Leila died.

But if it is true, it would be a first. “Pallywood productions”, as Hamas’s propaganda arm is known, has a long track record of making stuff up – particularly when it involves Israelis supposedly doing bad things to kids.

What’s surprising is not that Hamas goes on trying to play this trick – but that the Western media goes on letting it get away with it.
Exclusive -- Michael Oren: Hamas Has Weaponized the Western Media
Deputy Minister Dr. Michael Oren, Israel’s former ambassador to the United States, told Breitbart News on Wednesday that Hamas is using the western media to undermine Israel’s national security.

Dr. Oren spoke exclusively with Breitbart News in the dining room of Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, two days after the U.S. embassy opened in Jerusalem and after dozens of Palestinian rioters were killed at the Gaza border.

The international media, he noted, had reported the clashes as if Israel were killing innocent, young Palestinian demonstrators, even though many of the rioters were armed, and many — at least 24 of the 61 dead — were members of the Hamas terror group.

“We developed Iron Dome,” Dr. Oren said, referring to Israel’s anti-missile system, “but we have no Iron Dome, as far as I can see, for the public diplomacy and legal aspect of this, because the next war is not going to end on the battlefield, but at The Hague.

“The battlefield is no longer the battlefield, but the media,” he continued, adding that Hamas had developed a “new missile” that can evade the Iron Dome.

“It’s called a ‘demonstrator.’ It’s cheaper, it carries less risk, and in most cases, the missile is reusable.”
WaPo Story About Dead Palestinian Baby Changes, No 'Correction' Made
The Washington Post published a story early Tuesday about the violent protests in Gaza, including reports from the Palestinian Health Ministry regarding the number of dead and wounded.

That story included a baby who reportedly died after inhaling tear gas. (The baby was identified as Laila Ghanem or Layla Ghaben, depending on the publication.) Palestinian officials and multiple media outlets seized on the story, calling the baby a martyr. A public funeral was held for her on Tuesday.

When conflicting reports came late Tuesday from the the Associated Press indicating that the baby had died of a pre-existing condition, The Washington Post changed both the headline and the story without issuing a correction.

Dozens of London Jews say Kaddish for Palestinians killed in Gaza
A few dozen young people in London recited Kaddish, the Jewish mourning prayer, for fatalities in Gaza whom a Hamas official had said mostly belonged to his organization.

The activists gathered outside Parliament Square Wednesday, reading the names of the 62 Gazan Palestinians listed by the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza as killed in clashes Monday and Tuesday between tens of thousands of protesters and Israeli troops guarding the border with Gaza. The riots were part of a march organized by Hamas whose stated goal was to breach the border fence and cross into Israel.

Israel accused the Hamas terror group of encouraging the protests and using them as cover to attempt to carry out terror attacks, including firing at troops and attempting to breach the border fence.

The group gathered outside the British houses of parliament sang songs and read out the names of the 62 people killed in Gaza, before reciting the Kaddish prayer. (h/t dabney)
Daily Express publishes Hamas propaganda and blood libel that Israel gases babies
The Daily Express is considered to be a 'conservative' British newspaper and one of the few that is not anti-Israel. In fact it rarely publishes much 'foreign news' in any detail at all, which is why yesterday's unprecedented full page story demonizing Israel with the blood libel that it gassed a baby to death in Gaza is so appalling. It was known the previous day that this baby’s death had nothing to do with Israel (the baby died of a pre-existing condition). But this is by no means the only thing shoddy about this most vicious and unbalanced anti-Israel hit piece. Note also the following:
  • The Express had not provided a single news item previously about Hamas's ongoing provocations and violence against Israel's border, so its readers will know nothing about the context of what happened on Monday. On the contrary the story presents the lie that this was a spontaneous protest against the opening of the American Embassy in Jerusalem.
  • In fact the border - where all of the violence took place - is not even mentioned until paragraph 9. Instead the narrative is that Israel - out of nowhere - started to drop cannisters of lethal tear gas in the middle of Gaza. The fact that many of the 40,000 demonstrators were armed and violently attempting to breach the border - is not mentioned.
  • Whereas the Hamas propaganda claims - including the ludicrous story of how the baby came to be in a war zone - are accepted as facts, the Israeli case is presented by claims in sarcastic quotes.
  • Especially interesting is the fact that the claims by Ambassador Regev and pro-Israel Colonel Kemp are both taken out of context from the the full statements they made. For example, whereas Kemp made a powerful and convincing argument about why all the blame for any deaths lay with Hamas and that the Israeli army had been meticulous in minimising casualties, the only quotes used by him here imply that force was being used as a deterrent to protesting.
CAA complains to BBC over claim that orthodox Jews are “dominating” Donald Trump’s inner circle
Campaign Against Antisemitism has complained to the BBC over an article published yesterday regarding the decision to relocate the embassy of the United States to Jerusalem, Israel’s capital.

The article stated that Donald Trump’s “base also lobbied hard for the move. That included right-wing American Jews whose message was amplified by the conservative orthodox Jews dominating Mr Trump’s inner circle.”

It is factually inaccurate to assert that conservative orthodox Jews dominate President Trump’s inner circle. Most of his inner circle and key foreign policy advisers are non-Jews, including Mike Pence, John Kelly, Mike Pompeo, John Bolton, Nikki Haley and Rudy Giuliani. President Trump’s daughter Ivanka, son-in-law Jared Kushner, and adviser Jason Greenblatt, are affiliated with modern orthodoxy, which is different to orthodoxy, while other Jewish senior advisers, namely Stephen Miller and Steven Mnuchin are connected to more liberal strands of Judaism.

Inaccurately reporting that conservative orthodox Jews dominate President Trump’s inner circle, which is a stereotype of Jewish control, could fuel antisemitism in the UK. This was evidenced in our Antisemitism Barometer research, which found that 81% of British Jews believe that media bias against Israel fuels persecution of Jews in Britain.
Israeli news crew attacked in Turkey amid diplomatic fallout
A pair of Israeli journalists were attacked in Istanbul on Wednesday amid the sharp deterioration in ties between Turkey and Israel over clashes on the Gaza border and the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem.

Ohad Hemo, Palestinian affairs correspondent for Hadashot TV news, and cameraman Oded Bino were reporting from Istanbul’s Taksim Square when they were accosted.

“A group of Turks recognized the ‘Hadashot’ logo and the language [Hebrew] in which we were speaking. They stood and yelled ‘murderers, murderers’ and then a few started pushing us,” said Hemo. “One of them started really hitting my cameraman.”

Hemo said the two then left the square. “Bino is OK, he’s in a lot of pain,” he said, though neither required medical treatment.

Hemo said the incident was indicative of the “strong anti-Israel atmosphere here” following President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s fierce broadsides against Israel.
Hamas Terrorist At Gaza Border Surprised To Hear Media Describe Him As Peaceful Protester (satire)
A member of militant terror group Hamas who had been attempting to breach the Israeli border after the opening of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem confessed he was surprised to hear dozens of U.S. media outlets describe him as a “peaceful protester,” sources confirmed.

The aggressive “soldier of Allah,” who has declared he will not rest until Israel has been wiped off the face of the earth, admitted he wasn’t quite sure how to take the news that Western media had labeled him an innocent family man and unwitting victim of Israeli aggression.

“Frankly, I want to get in there and kill as many of the evil occupiers as I can,” he told reporters as he hid among women and children after hurling rocks and rolling burning tires toward Israeli soldiers stationed at the border. “So to be called a ‘peaceful demonstrator’ was a little off-putting. Don’t I deserve more credit for my efforts?”

“It’s kind of embarrassing, really. What if my family sees that?” he added.

At publishing time, the Hamas terrorist had been surprised to learn the media had called him an “unarmed” demonstrator, in spite of the fact that he had clearly been armed with several weapons during the protest.

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