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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Breaking: Cease Fire?

Deja vu all over again....

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AP changes anti-Israel tweet

The original:

Nearly five hours later, the correction:

The reactions are here.


Yes, there is justice in this world...

I must admit, however, that this was probably not an accident and the IAF probably knew what it was hitting.... Still, it's a nice touch....

Hat Tip: MFS - The Other News.


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Oh well... Hamas denies agreeing to 72-hour cease fire

Earlier this afternoon, the 'Palestinian Authority's Yasser Abd Rabbo (one of the sponsors of the 'Geneva Initiative') announced that Hamas and Islamic Jihad would unilaterally cease fire for 24 hours and that if Israel went along it would be extended to 72 hours. The cease fire was to go into effect immediately.
"After extensive calls and consultations with the brothers in Hamas and Islamic Jihad, the Palestinian leadership announces on behalf of everyone the willingness for a ceasefire and humanitarian truce for 24 hours," said Yasser Abed Rabbo, Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organisation.
"We call on all Arab and international parties to support this ... and hold Israel fully responsible for the consequences of refusing it," he said, reading out a statement.
He added that "there is also a suggestion from the United Nations to extend this truce for 72 hours and we are dealing positively with this suggestion."
The Israeli media fell all over itself to take the 'offer' seriously.
Israeli Channel 2's veteran Arab affairs analyst Ehud Yaari said that Abed Rabbo is "a serious person" and that an announcement of this nature probably has substance behind it. 
There was just one small catch....
There has been no cessation of the fire from Gaza into Israel and from Israel into Gaza so far, however. The IDF has been targeting the Rimal neighborhood of Gaza for the first time and telling residents of the eastern side of Khan Younis to evacuate their homes.
It turns out there was a good reason for that.
However, Hamas spokespersons have denied these reports and said they do not agree with this announcement and that a cease-fire cannot exist when Israeli forces are inside Gaza.

Israel did not immediately respond to the remarks.
Let's just forget the cease fire talk (we've had three and Hamas violated every one - including yesterday's) and finish the job. We never know when we will have another opportunity like this.

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OMG: What Hamas terrorists do during lulls in the action

I am actually glad that this video is not up close - that would be way too gross.

I'm not even going to tell you what this video is. For those of you who are really curious, you can look at the title on the top or click through to YouTube.

Let's go to the videotape (Hat Tip: Jack W).

Someone please tell me that the IDF didn't post this (it doesn't come from the IDF's account) or that it's a spoof... either that or please call PETA.

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Knocked out!

Gaza's power plant was knocked out by shells earlier today, and Hamas is blaming the IDF.
"Gaza's sole power plant has stopped working due to Israeli shelling last night, which damaged the steam generator and later hit the fuel tanks which set them on fire," Fathi al-Sheikh Khalil told AFP.
An AFP reporter saw huge fires raging near the plant Tuesday morning, noting that fire department vehicles were still unable to reach the area.
The damage of the power plant exacerbated the heavy damage to civilian infrastructure in Gaza already inflicted during the 22 days of the Israeli offensive aimed at stamping out terrorist rocket fire and destroying attack tunnels.
Besides the power plant, Gaza also purchases electricity from Israel, but many of the supply lines have been badly damaged by the recent fighting, Sheikh Khalil said.
"Five out of 10 of the Israeli electricity lines into the Gaza Strip were also damaged because of Israeli shelling, and maintenance still cannot reach the areas and fix them," he explained.
Israel blamed Hamas fire for damaging some of the supply lines. Two weeks ago, Israel said that a Hamas rocket hit the power line that supplies electricity to Khan Younis and Deir el-Balah. It's not clear when Israel Electric Company workers will be able to repair the system, but they are apparently in no rush to do so. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has asked the IEC not to risk the lives of its employees in trying to restore power to the affected sector in Gaza, an operation that could take hours.
One suggestion for action against Gaza that has come up numerous times in Israel – including from MKs – is cutting off electricity to Gaza, which Israel is still supplying.
The article also says that power to Gaza has been reduced by 90% and yet somehow they still have electricity 12 hours per day. Boo. Hoo.

JPost adds:
Palestinian witnesses said Israeli tank fire hit the fuel depot of the Gaza Strip's only power plant on Tuesday, cutting electricity to Gaza City and many other parts of the Palestinian enclave of 1.8 million people.

A thick column of black smoke rose from the facility, which supplies the territory with two-thirds of its energy needs, and the fuel containers were in flames.

"The power plant is finished," said its director, Mohammed al-Sharif.

He said the local fire brigade was not equipped to extinguish the blaze.

An Israeli military spokeswoman had no immediate comment and said she was checking the report.

The plant had already been hit last week and was working at a reduced capacity of about 20 percent, allowing only a few hours of electricity a day for Gaza's residents.
Maybe they should have thought of that before they started shooting rockets and digging tunnels.

The fire actually looks pretty impressive.

Let's go to the videotape.

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Ukrainian officials get their connection to Gaza

Evelyn Gordon reports that while the West is willfully blind to the connection between Ukraine and Gaza, many Ukrainian officials do get it.
Three weeks ago, Andriy Parubiy, the head of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, compared eastern Ukraine’s situation to what Israel faces and warned that terrorists would likely adopt similar tactics in other countries if the West didn’t take a firm stance against them.
“We, of course, studied the experience of both Croatia and Israel, but here a lot of new features are added,” Parubiy said. “And, if Russia sees that this experience is successful, this experience can very easily be used in any Baltic countries, and even in Belarus and Kazakhstan.”
Yesterday, Ukrainian Ambassador to Israel Henadii Nadolenko made both the comparison and the warning even more explicit in an op-ed in Haaretz. Unambiguously titled “Ukraine and Israel: Together in fighting terrorism,” it declared, “We, the representatives of Ukraine, have, together with the people of the State of Israel, personally felt the totality of the threat posed to civilians by the criminal activities of the terrorists.”
After enumerating the losses both countries have suffered, Nadolenko continued, “I am convinced that the huge loss of civilian and military life might have been avoided had the activities of terrorist organizations had been condemned by the international community.” Then, citing the recent downing of a civilian airliner over eastern Ukraine, he drove the point home:
I would like to emphasize once again that the crime, which killed 298 innocent civilians from around the world, is another confirmation of the fact that today’s terrorism is not constrained by borders…
In this regard, once again I would like to appeal to the thinking and caring people of the world to demonstrate their support for these peoples, who came upon a fight with an evil that threatens the security of everyone, regardless of nationality or place of residence.
I believe that the countries that are faced with terrorism and who try to fight this evil should support each other, and should join their efforts in order to draw the world’s attention to our cause. We must begin to receive real help and support from international organizations in order to combat this threat.
I feel sorry for the Ukrainians. They cannot fight Russia on their own, and the odds of them getting any help from the West so long as the Hussein Obama administration is in power are not good. They have to hold out for at least another two and a half years (longer if Obama is replaced by Hillary Clinton or Elizabeth Warren).

What could go wrong? 

Read the whole thing.

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North Miami Beach synagogue vandalized by Hamas supporters

Hamas and its supporters haven't just taken their battle against Israel and the Jews to Europe. They've also taken it to the United States. Here's video from a synagogue that was vandalized in North Miami Beach, Florida.

Let's go to the videotape.

More here.

Hey - isn't that Debbie Wasserman Schultz's district? 

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The IRS's political agenda isn't just about the Tea Party

In the ongoing imbroglio over the Internal Revenue Service, it's the IRS's treatment of the Tea Party that has grabbed most of the headlines. But I have shown in the past, as have others, that the IRS also discriminated against organizations that opposed President Hussein Obama's Middle East policies. The most blatant case where that happened was the denial of tax exempt status to Z Street, an organization based in Philadelphia that seeks to help Jews in Judea and Samaria. The IRS claims that conservative organizations like Z Street were 'stuck' in the bureaucracy, and that's why their applications took so long to process. But the Wall Street Journal reports this morning that emails from the IRS (at least those that were not erased) show that the dragged out process that Z Street (specifically) faced was deliberate.
In 2009 the Pennsylvania group Z Street applied for tax-exempt status for its mission of educating people about Israel-related issues. In 2010 an IRS agent told Z Street that its application was delayed because the tax agency's Washington, D.C. office was giving special scrutiny to groups whose missions might conflict with Administration policies. The IRS's "Be On the Lookout" list that November also included red flags for groups referring to "disputed territories."
Z Street sued in August 2010 for viewpoint discrimination and its case is headed for discovery in federal court. Now emails uncovered by the House Ways and Means Committee show that the IRS and State Department were conferring in 2009 about pro-Israel groups like Z Street and considering arguments to deny their tax-exempt applications.
In an April 16, 2009 email, Treasury attache to the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem Katherine Bauer sent IRS and Treasury colleagues a 1997 JTA News article sent to her by State Department foreign service officer Breeann McCusker. The subject was whether 501(c) groups buying land in Israel's disputed territories were engaged in "possible violations of U.S. tax laws." The article chronicles the controversy and whether "ideological activity" can "legally be financed with the help of U.S. [tax] dollars."
"Thought you might find the below article of interest—looks like we've been down this road before," Ms. Bauer wrote. "Although I believe you've said you can't speak to on-going investigations, I thought it was worth flagging the 1997 investigation mentioned below for you if it can be of any use internally when looking for precedence [sic] for the current cases." A Treasury spokesman declined comment on Ms. Bauer's behalf.
The "current cases" would have been applications like Z Street's in which Israel-related activity was apparently being scrutinized for its ideological and policy content. The government says Z Street got special scrutiny because it was focused in a region with a higher risk of terrorism, which is hard to believe and in any case doesn't explain all of the IRS's behavior.
It doesn't cover, for instance, why one questionnaire we've seen from the IRS to another Jewish group applying for tax-exempt status asked, "Does your organization support the existence of the land of Israel?" and "Describe your organization's religious belief system toward the land of Israel." No matter the answers, they should not affect the processing of an application for 501(c) status. The State-IRS emails reveal a political motivation for IRS scrutiny that gives Z Street powerful evidence for its suit charging IRS bias.
On Monday the IRS filed an appeal of the judge's decision denying its motion to dismiss Z Street's case. The government says the action stops all discovery while the appeal is pending, a process that could take months or even years. By filing the appeal on the last possible day, the Justice Department is running out the clock on discovery during the remainder of the Administration.
It's a pity that by the time this case is decided, it may no longer be possible to sanction the Obama administration. If I were representing Z Street, I would do everything I could to expedite a decision.

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This is President Hussein Obama's Deputy National Security Adviser

No, this isn't a post about Benghazi, although perhaps the connection illustrated above could explain why CBS News is so consistently anti-Israel.

Last week, Ben Rhodes made a statement about as dumb as any I have ever heard from a national security adviser. In an interview with Candy Crowley, Rhodes said the following:
Interviewed by CNN's Candy Crowley, Mr. Rhodes offered the now-standard administration line that Israel has a right to defend itself but needs to do more to avoid civilian casualties. Ms. Crowley interjected that, according to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the Jewish state was already doing everything it could to avoid such casualties.
"I think you can always do more," Mr. Rhodes replied. "The U.S. military does that in Afghanistan."
In the Wall Street Journal (same link as above), Bret Stephens rips Rhodes some new body parts over that statement.
How inapt is this comparison? The list of Afghan civilians accidentally killed by U.S. or NATO strikes is not short. Little of the fighting in Afghanistan took place in the dense urban environments that make the current warfare in Gaza so difficult. The last time the U.S. fought a Gaza-style battle—in Fallujah in 2004—some 800 civilians perished and at least 9,000 homes were destroyed. This is not an indictment of U.S. conduct in Fallujah but an acknowledgment of the grim reality of city combat.
Oh, and by the way, American towns and cities were not being rocketed from above or tunneled under from below as the Fallujah campaign was under way.
So why did Rhodes make the comparison? Stephens has an explanation for that too.
Or maybe he was just another victim of what I call the Palestine Effect: The abrupt and often total collapse of logical reasoning, skeptical intelligence and ordinary moral judgment whenever the subject of Palestinian suffering arises. 
In other words, you have to be dumb to support the 'Palestinians.'

But Stephens says it goes beyond the question of the intelligence of 'Palestine's supporters.
But let's assume for argument's sake that the numbers are accurate. Does this mean the Palestinians are the chief victims, and Israelis the main victimizers, in the conflict? By this dull logic we might want to rethink the moral equities of World War II, in which over one million German civilians perished at Allied hands compared with just 67,000 British and 12,000 American civilians.
The real utility of the body count is that it offers reporters and commentators who cite it the chance to ascribe implicit blame to Israel while evading questions about ultimate responsibility for the killing. Questions such as: Why is Hamas hiding rockets in U.N.-run schools, as acknowledged by the U.N. itself? What does it mean that Hamas has turned Gaza's central hospital into "a de facto headquarters," as reported by the Washington Post? And why does Hamas keep rejecting, or violating, cease-fires agreed to by Israel?
A reasonable person might conclude from this that Hamas, which started the war, wants it to continue, and that it relies on Israel's moral scruples not to destroy civilian sites that it cynically uses for military purposes. But then there is the Palestine Effect. By this reasoning, Hamas only initiated the fighting because Israel refused to countenance the creation of a Palestinian coalition that included Hamas, and because Israel further objected to helping pay the salaries of Hamas's civil servants in Gaza.
Let's get this one straight. Israel is culpable because (a) it won't accept a Palestinian government that includes a terrorist organization sworn to the Jewish state's destruction; (b) it won't help that organization out of its financial jam; and (c) it won't ease a quasi-blockade—jointly imposed with Egypt—on a territory whose central economic activity appears to be building rocket factories and pouring imported concrete into terrorist tunnels.
Yes, these are the people that the Obama administration and the Leftist American media love.

What could go wrong? 

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Another 'Palestinian' #epicfail

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! (Hat Tip: MFS - The Other News).

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OMG: What Hamas is teaching its children outside the classroom

You've all seen clips of Hamas brainwashing its children in the classroom. This clip is unusual because it takes place outside the classroom. In fact, it takes place on one of those pristine Gaza beaches. This boy couldn't be more than 5 or 6.

Let's go to the videotape (Hat Tip: Jack W).

Innocent civilians? More like abused children whose innocence was stolen by Hamas.

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Ismail Haniyeh's new dining room

This is likely former Hamas 'Prime Minister' and Gaza leader Ismail Haniyeh's new dining room, after the IAF - finally - took care of his house on Monday night.
Israeli aircraft hit the home of Hamas's top leader in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, inside the Shati region of Gaza on Monday night, his son said.
"The Israeli enemy struck our house twice," Abed Salam Haniyeh said in a statement quoted by AFP.
The Reuters news agency quoted Gaza’s interior ministry as having said that the airstrike caused damage but no casualties.
An IDF spokeswoman had no information on the report but was checking for details.
Maybe Haniyeh should just get a real job. I hear there's an Emir in the Gulf looking for a driver.


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America tells Israel not to feel alone

Hat Tip: Jack W.

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Obama's Secretary of State off to his next job

Heh (Hat Tip: Jack W).

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Monday, July 28, 2014

Hillary Clinton: 'Hamas hides rockets in civilian areas because... ya know... Gaza is so small'

No, I didn't make this up.
Via Breitbart:
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Fusion TV’s Jorge Ramos that part of the reason Hamas hides rockets in schools and civilian areas is “Gaza is small.”
I’m not a military planner but Hamas puts its missiles, its rockets in civilian areas, part of it is Gaza is pretty small and its densely populated,” she said as neglecting the question of whether or not Hamas should have rockets in area to begin with.
Where does Liechtenstein put its missiles and rockets? Andorra? Luxembourg?

Let's go to the videotape (I needed to replace the video with the YouTube version, which is much longer, so make sure you watch the last 30 seconds).

And this moron wants to be President of the United States?

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Please pray

Received by email:
Please daven for Rachamim Ben Aliza Chana an Israeli soldier who jumped on top of a live grenade to save his friends. He is in very bad condition and needs all our prayers.
 Some of you may recall a similar incident during the Battle of Bint Jbeil in the Second Lebanon War.

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Pelosi: 'Qatar told me Hamas is a humanitarian organization'

Nancy Pelosi is a moron. But then you knew that.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) says the United States must look to Qatar, an ally of the terrorist group Hamas, for advice in resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
As CNSNews.com reported last week, Qatar is a strong supporter and funder of Hamas. Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal operates from Qatar, and has so far rejected ceasefire proposals put forward by Egypt and promoted by Secretary of State John Kerry.
“War is a deadly thing,” Pelosi said on Sunday, speaking about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
“And I have many Palestinians who live in my district, and I am hearing them regularly about how their families are affected who live in the region. It’s a terrible thing. But let me just say that any missile that comes from someplace has a return address. And if Israel is responding to that address, then that’s a shame that the Palestinians are …rumored to be using children and families as shields for their missiles.”
Pelosi said the first thing to do is to “avoid conflict” that “Hamas initiated.”
“[T]his has to be something where we try to have the two-state solution, that we have to support…(Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud) Abbas and his role as a leader there. We have to support Iron Dome to protect the Israelis from the missiles. We have to support the Palestinians and what they need. And we have to confer with the Qataris, who have told me over and over again that Hamas is a humanitarian organization, maybe they could use their influence to –
Crowley interrupted her at that point, and they turned to another topic….
This moron was once third in line to be President of the United States? She makes Biden look intelligent.

Let's go to the videotape.

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Breaking: 5 IDF soldiers killed today

Israel Radio (10:00 pm) Five IDF soldiers were killed today - one in Gaza and four who were in a vehicle that was hit by a mortar while stopping the infiltration into Kibbutz Nachal Oz a couple of hours ago.

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IDF shelling northeastern Gaza

The homeowner has gone berserk. The IDF is shelling all over northeastern Gaza after ordering civilians to leave.
"A short while ago, phonecalls were made and text messages were sent out to the civilian population of Shejaiya, Zeitun and eastern Jabaliya calling them to evacuate immediately towards central Gaza City," a statement from the IDF said, referring to three areas to the north, south and east of Gaza City.
Such phonecalls are usually a prelude to an IDF attack on a region, and are meant to reduce civilian casualties.
Shortly afterward, the IDF began striking areas of Gaza that had not been attacked before, including Zeitun and Jabaliya.
Israel had appeared to be winding down its attack operations in Gaza Monday and contenting itself with blowing up the remaining tunnels from Gaza into Israel. However, a serious incident in which at least four Israelis were killed by a Hamas mortar changed all that.
At least four, possibly five, people were killed when the mortar shell scored a direct hit on a home in the Eshkol region Monday afternoon. Four other people were seriously injured. The injured were taken to hospitals in Beersheva and Ashkelon, Voice of Israel public radio said.
In another serious incident, five Hamas terrorists were eliminated near Kibbutz Nahal Oz. They appear to have infiltrated via an attack tunnel.
The house was hit in a major round of rocket firing Monday afternoon, as the last vestiges of what was supposed to be a 24-hour truce evaporated. By 6 p.m., Hamas had fired nearly two dozen rockets at Israel, most of them in the late afternoon. Iron Dome missiles shot down two rockets, one over Ashkelon and one over Sderot. At 7:30, rockets were fired at the Hadera and Binyamina region, not far south from Haifa.
I give any 'official' Gazan source about as much credibility as Baghdad Bob, but....

Official medical sources in Gaza say that in the IDF attack on Jabalya in the norther Strip, three people are dead and 40 wounded.

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Israel Radio: US call for humanitarian cease fire 'irrelevant'

I thought that sentence was worth a separate post.

But they're also saying that until the army says that it has finished with the tunnels, nothing is going to happen on the diplomatic front.

IDF radio also quoting Amos Yadlin who says that Israel has reached a strategic balance with Hamas and that is far from enough.

We live in interesting times....

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Liveblog: Netanyahu speaking

Netanyahu: We will not end this operation without neutralizing the tunnels which aim to destroy our population and our land. That's unequivocal.

The war against the tunnels is a necessity for demilitarizing Gaza. Demilitarizing Gaza has to be part of any solution and the 'international community' must forcefully demand it rather than supplying money, cement and concrete to Hamas for more tunnels. There must be supervision.

It is impossible for Israel's citizens to live under the constant threat of rockets and infiltrations. Hamas rejected every cease fire offer and has been cruel to our citizens and to its own.

I said and I repeat that we must be prepared for a long war. We will continue to act with force and sobriety until we accomplish the goal.

Defense Minister Yaalon: We will not compromise on the security of our population. We will continue to fight to destroy tunnels and rockets and missiles.  If the terror organizations think they can defeat us, they will see in the coming days that won't be the case. We will not be afraid and we will continue until Hamas understands that they cannot defeat us. We will hit them from land, air and sea in the coming days.

We are sorry for every civilian casualty but they will not come before our population. We are dealing with the tunnels now. The soldiers are aware of the magnitude of the tasks. We ask everyone to support the IDF in its sacred work. We wish the wounded a speedy recovery and reach out to the families of those who died.

They're taking questions.

Yaalon says the IDF did not hit Shifa Hospital.

Says we will get anywhere Hamas is hiding. 

Says the population has to have patience.

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Kerry wakes up, calls for Gaza disarmament

Something slapped John Kerry in the face.
While American officials continue to fume at the Israeli media for its harsh criticism of US Secretary of State John Kerry’s efforts to reach a ceasefire last week, apparently it had some effect. During a speech, Kerry says that “any process to resolve the crisis in Gaza… must lead to the disarmament of Hamas.” In a ceasefire proposal Kerry had submitted to Israel on Friday, no disarmament of Hamas was mentioned.
Israeli ministers had unanimously rejected the draft, arguing that it undermined the Egyptian ceasefire proposal that Israel had previously accepted and Hamas had rejected, and reflected the input of Turkey and Qatar to the clear benefit of Hamas, sources told TOI earlier Monday.
The wording marked an upgrading of Hamas’s standing, to an entity on an equivalent level with Israel, the sources said. And it provided specific gains for Hamas while including only amorphous language regarding Israel’s security needs, they said.
However, Kerry’s proposal did reflect “a position that both demilitarization and the reconstruction of Gaza are important agenda items that follow negotiations that follow a ceasefire,” a senior US official insists Sunday night.
I can't wait to hear what this costs us.

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Breaking: IDF kills four terrorists who infiltrated near Nahal Oz

Israel Radio is reporting that the IDF has killed four terrorists who infiltrated near Nahal Oz. The area is apparently not far from where the mortar shell killed four Israelis earlier. If there's an explicit connection between them, no one is saying. JPost says 5 terrorists.
Palestinian gunmen slipped into Israel from the Gaza Strip on Monday and penetrated Kibbutz Nahal Oz near the border before being repelled by the army, adding that five terrorists had been killed.

Hamas Islamists said in a statement their "fighters" had killed 10 Israeli soldiers in the incident before returning home safely.

Residents of the kibbutz and nearby communities were asked to remain in their homes earlier on Monday evening due to the suspected security incident.
Netanyahu is due to speak in about 10 minutes. I will live blog it.

IDF is evacuating Zeitoun neighborhood of Jabalya. Probably as preparation for destroying tunnels.

Anyone still wonder why Israel doesn't want a cease fire until all the tunnels are destroyed.

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MK's deliver withering criticism of Kerry

Some of the criticism of US Secretary of State John FN Kerry from Israeli MK's is positively withering.  They say that the United States harmed Israel's interests.
“America harmed its allies in Israel, Egypt, and the Palestinian Authority by ignoring their demands and coming to the table with a plan that was not approved or even semi-approved by any of them," said Agriculture Minister Yair Shamir (Yisrael Beytenu). "Maybe it’s because they have a problem with the regime in Egypt and they thought that by going through Turkey and Qatar, they’d be seen as an honest broker. But instead, they lost the allies that they had and didn’t get any new ones. Kerry lost credibility in the eyes of everyone, and the president ended up undermining him.”

Likud MK Tzipi Hotovely said Israel must reject Obama’s cease-fire proposal, which she said only serves the interests of Hamas. She said the government of Israel must change the rules of the game in the Gaza Strip and defeat Hamas.

Her Likud colleague Danny Danon called upon Obama and his government to "cease firing at Israel."

"We need to withstand the exorbitant pressure that is put on us and deal with the interests of Israel," he said. "Would America cease fire on al-Qaida when it is being attacked? John Kerry is disconnected from reality and ignores the security concerns of Israel.”

MK Eli Yishai (Shas) said “The security of the citizens of Israel must come before our relations with the United States." He said that although Israel owed much to America, "that obligation cannot come at the expense of Israel’s future.”

The criticism of America's handling of the cease-fire proposal also came from the Left side of the political map.

“America has displayed a shameful lack of elementary understanding of how the Middle East works," said Hatnua faction chairman Meir Sheetrit, who ran for president last month. "No matter what America says, it is forbidden to end the war as long as there is a threat of tunnels and rockets. I hope our friends in the US and Europe won’t get in the way by insisting on an immediate ceasefire. The free world must support Israel, not weaken it, and I hope our friends in the US give us their backing.”

MK Nachman Shai (Labor) said Obama’s demand to stop the fighting prevents Israel from maximizing its military and public diplomacy achievements. He said he doubted America's ability to demilitarize Gaza and prevent future war there.

But there were also voices on the Left praising the US and attacking Netanyahu and his government.
Wow. I cannot remember the United States coming under attack by an ally like this. And I cannot remember the United States attacking an ally like this either. The attacks on Kerry are well-deserved.

Messianic? This is beyond Messianic.

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US threatens Israel over criticism of Kerry

This time the criticism is across the board in Israel. It's not just the Prime Minister.

Nevertheless, the White House has issued some not very veiled threats over Israeli criticism of US Secretary of State John FN Kerry.
Obama administration officials are fuming over Israeli criticism of Secretary of State John Kerry’s latest bid to secure a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.
In unusually harsh language, officials say the criticism of Kerry could put the relationship between the US and Israel in jeopardy. They also say the personal attacks on Kerry cross a line and are particularly disappointing at a time of active conflict.
Well, Kerry's behavior towards America's supposed number one ally in the Middle East at time when we (and not the US) are in active conflict was particularly disappointing too.

Damned prima donnas.

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'Several' people killed and injured in mortar attack on southern Israel - UPDATED X3

There goes the 'cease fire.'

'Several' people (the initial report said three but they removed the number) have been killed and several more injured in a mortar attack by 'Palestinians' on the Eshkol regional council in southern Israel.
Ten people in total suffered from the attack. Emergency teams evacuated at lease nine people to Soroka University Medical Center in Beersheba. Four of those injured were airlifted to the hospital. 

The projectile fired from the Gaza Strip landed among a crowd of people.
None of those killed or hurt in the projectile attack were Eshkol residents, said a spokeswoman for the regional council.
Shortly after the mortar shell attack, the Code Red siren sounded in the area.
The head of the Eshkol Regional Council Haim Yellin urged civilians against visiting soldiers in the area.
This does not sound good.... Sounds like it was a bunch of people bringing packages to soldiers.... Time to start praying again.


I'm now hearing four dead and six wounded.


 Source for four deaths.


Israel Radio reports four dead and seven wounded - one critical, one serious, five light to moderate. 

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Netanyahu rejects, slams UN Security Council call for cease fire

Within the last hour, Prime Minister Netanyahu has rejected the United Nations Security Council statement that was worked out over the weekend. He blasted the plan for seeing to Hamas' needs but not to Israel's.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday slammed a UN Security Council statement calling for an immediate humanitarian cease-fire in Gaza, saying during a phone conversation with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon that the statement addresses the needs of a murderous terrorist organization, but not those of Israel.

The statement, he said, does not address Israel's demands for the demilitarization of the Gaza Strip, a principle already established by previous interim agreements with the Palestinians.

“The statement did not deal with the harm done to Israeli civilians, nor to the fact that Hamas turned Gaza civilians into human shields,” he said. Netanyahu, who met Ban in Jerusalem last week, also complained that the statement made no mention of the fact that Hamas used UN facilities to attack Israeli civilians.

Israel accepted a UN request for a humanitarian cease-fire three times, he said, while Hamas violated each one.

“They are continuing to fire even now at Israel citizens,” he said. “Israel will continue to deal with the terror tunnels, which is only the first step in demilitarization.”

Instead of having its money used by Hamas to build terror tunnels to attack Israel, Netanayhu recommended that the international community “should work to demilitarize Gaza.”
What do you expect him to do when the polls say that 86.5% of Israelis don't want to stop?

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Breaking: Shifa Hospital bombed? UPDATED X6

For those who have forgotten, Shifa Hospital is the main hospital in Gaza City. Hamas' leadership is hiding in its basement.


Israel Radio reports that the building supposedly under attack is the outpatient clinic.

Clear that IDF is reacting to Hamas' shooting all day long.

More to follow.


Israel Radio reports that the IDF has also attacked the Shati 'refugee camp' in Gaza City and that ten people are dead.

There is a story going around that a senior commander of the Izz a-Din al-Qassam brigades - Hamas' 'military wing' - has been killed. I cannot confirm that.


And from the link:
5:24 P.M. Palestinians report four were killed in an IDF attack on a civilian vehicle near the Shati Camp, west of Gaza City. In addition, three were reported killed and several wounded by a drone strike in the Shifa Hospital's external clinics in Gaza. According to eyewitnesses, an unmanned aircraft fired a rocket at the clinic. The Palestinians noted that the hospital compound is used as a shelter by thousands of Palestinians who fled their homes due to the fighting. (Jack Khoury)
That 'civilian vehicle' may have been carrying the Hamas commander. Waiting for a car swarm....


Israel Radio reporting IDF did attack Shati neighborhood in Gaza City. Hamas says ten killed and many wounded. Hamas claims most of dead are children.

There was a report of a building in Shifa Hospital being hit. The IDF denies that it attacked that building.

The significant attack was in Shati - 10 dead and 40 wounded. IDF also shooting east of Gaza City and east of Khan Yunis.

For Israel, the 'cease fire' today was premature. Hamas never accepted the cease fire and continued to shoot all day long. It was clear that this would not work.


The IDF says there was no drone attack on Shifa - it was a Hamas rocket gone astray.
Palestinian media reported that 10 people were killed and several injured, including children, in an explosion near Shifa Hospital in Gaza City on Monday afternoon.

The IDF confirmed that the hospital had been struck by a failed Gazan rocket, not by an IAF drone strike, as Hamas had claimed.

Thousands of Palestinians have taken refuge at Shifa Hospital, according to Palestinian news agency Ma'an.

The IDF did not comment on reports of an Israeli air strike that hit a public garden in the Beach refugee camp that, according to Palestinian medics, killed five of the 10 people.


The IDF says that the Shati 'attack' was also a Hamas rocket misfiring

The Hamas rocket that exploded outside Shifa Hospital was a Fajr-5 aimed at central Israel and had a 100 kilogram (220-pound) warhead.


IDF says Islamic Jihad responsible for Shifa rocket. 

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Do you all remember who said this?

I don't think any country would find it acceptable to have missiles raining down on the heads of their citizens.

The first job of any nation state is to protect its citizens. And so I can assure you that if -- I don't even care if I was a politician. If somebody was sending rockets into my house where my two daughters sleep at night, I'm going to do everything in my power to stop that. And I would expect Israelis to do the same thing.

In terms of negotiations with Hamas, it is very hard to negotiate with a group that is not representative of a nation state, does not recognize your right to exist, has consistently used terror as a weapon, and is deeply influenced by other countries. I think that Hamas leadership will have to make a decision at some point as to whether it is a serious political party seeking to represent the aspirations of the Palestinian people. And, as a consequence, willing to recognize Israel's right to exist and renounce violence as a tool to achieve its aims. Or whether it wants to continue to operate as a terrorist organization. Until that point, it's hard for Israel, I think, to negotiate with a country that -- or with a group that doesn't recognize Israel's right to exist at a country -- OK.
Here's a hint:

Yes, he really would - and did - say anything to get elected. And so many stupid Jews believed him.

Source for quote here.


Let's go to the videotape.

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How much longer will this continue?

As of 4:00 this afternoon, there have 'only' been 12 rockets shot into Israel today.

How much longer will this go on?

Indeed it will.

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'Why Gaza saddens me'

Someone on the Left who seems to get it - Paul Estrin, the Chairman of Canada's Green party - says that Gaza makes him sad. Here's why.
It has nearly been ten years. Since August 2005, Gazans have been in control of their own destiny. Some might say otherwise, yet Gazans have their own government and they are their own people: If their neighbours, Egypt and Israel, close their borders to Gaza, one must look to a Gaza run by a terrorist organization cum government that teaches and propagates hate, death and destruction to understand why.
Since then, stories of resources being used, such as concrete supposed to be used for infrastructure for civil use instead used for purposes of terrors, or stories of repression of the people there by its own government, or stories of how under Hamas rule people no income or ways to support themselves … I’m reminded of Bill Clinton’s remark “It’s the economy, stupid” … but instead of showing openness to the world, or managing, or caring ... Gaza has instead shown that it is not interested in peace, in building a stable economy, in a secure future.
The Gazan government has had ample opportunity over these past years, nearly a decade, to alter its ways, change its mantra of death to the Jews, and become respectable caretakers of the people in their charge.
They have not.
Surely they could have done more. Should have done more.
We can forgive them for at first being overjoyed with the departure of the Israeli forces, and them as a terrorist organization unable to initially take up the challenge of good governance.
We can forgive them for not immediately changing their charter. In Canada and elsewhere, national charters protect the people. In Gaza, the first article calls for the death of Israel and the Jew. (Let me quote just a bit: “Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it." I would like to believe all of us in our organization can see how atrocious such a statement is, and that we would believe in things like the right of people to not be obliterated …)
They said, they being the Hamas government newly in power, they needed time. They have had nearly a decade. What is the holdup … oh, wait, the hate and desire to obliterate.
So, let us fast forward past a decade’s worth of battles, wars, incursions, etc.
How much aide has Israel given Gaza? How much has the world given Gaza?
Giving aid is worthwhile, a noble cause. But, has it gone to the people that need it? Ten years …
So, now, this month, what do we see:
Israel is more threatened than even because its neighbour, instead of caring about the welfare and well-being of its citizens, cares about the cause of killing, of carrying the banner of martyrdom, and of watching its fellow people die.
And yet, these are the same people who are embraced and loved by the international community, with marches on Parliament Hill in Canada’s capital, and in cities throughout the world, holding banners and chanting about the destruction of the state of Israel and of death to the Jews.
Meanwhile, Gaza uses UN locations to launch or house weapons … yet the international community cries out, a day after the UN itself admitted this and said that this practise puts at risk those in these facilities given that these places then are not safe havens but rather places of war to be targeted ..
Meanwhile, Gaza is giving children grenades … and asking their citizens to be sheep to the slaughter.
Gazan officials tell their people to be killed while they hide in bomb shelters.
Cowards? No, this is worse than cowardice. It is vile and ugly and they should be put to shame.
Read the whole thing.  No, it's never been about a 'Palestinian state.' It's always been about destroying Israel. It was started by the Arab countries immediately after Israel's War of Independence. Many of the Arab countries have given up on destroying Israel, even if they won't say so. But they're still not willing to face the consequences of their actions. They're not willing to help resolve the monster they created. And the monster still wants to destroy us all.

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Surprise: Pro-Hamas rally in Montreal 'turns violent'

In Montreal last Saturday (July 19), a woman stood up with an Israeli flag in the middle of a pro-Hamas terrorism rally. Within a short time, pro-Hamas thugs assaulted the woman, tore away her flag and dragged her on the ground.

Let's go to the videotape (Hat Tip: Gateway Pundit).

Hamas' supporters are no different than they are. Despicable scum of the earth.

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IHH sending another terror flotilla, this time accompanied by the Turkish military

The IHH terror organization - the same group that organized the 2010 'freedom flotilla' that ended in nine dead during an Israeli navy raid on the Mavi Marmara - says it is organizing another flotilla designed to break Israel's 'blockade' on Gaza, but this one will be protected by the Turkish military.
IHH chairman Bulent Yildrim was quoted by The Middle East Monitor as telling Gulf Online last week that the activists would set sail as soon as they receive the necessary permit from the authorities in Ankara and that the Turkish military would provide protection to the ship.

Diplomatic officials said Jerusalem was following the reports carefully, but stressed that it was not clear whether the flotilla would ultimately set sail.

So far there has only been a declaration of intent, with no firm date set, one official said.

Harold Rhode, a senior fellow at the New-York-based Gatestone Institute and a former adviser at the in the office of the American defense secretary on Islamic affairs, told The Jerusalem Post in an interview on Sunday that the real issue in the ongoing conflict is that Turkey and Qatar are supporting the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas in their goals.

“[Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip] Erdogan has been associated with the Muslim Brotherhood long before he was prime minister,” Rhode said.

It should now be clear to all that Erdogan “is now out of the bag,” Rhode said, adding that US President Barack Obama does not speak to the Turkish leader anymore despite previously describing him as one of his closest friends among the world’s leaders.

“Erdogan is doing whatever he can to help Hamas,” he said, asserting that it will only hurt the Palestinian people in the end.
Sorry but I'm nowhere near as optimistic as Rhode. I don't know whether Obama still talks to Erdogan or not, but the bottom line is that the United States has been serving Turkish interests in the 'cease fire' negotiations. As far as I'm concerned that's all that counts.

What could go wrong?

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How many rockets from the Gaza Strip?

Here's a graph from the IDF showing how many rocket attacks there have been on Israel from Gaza (source here). Please note that the number for 2014 does not include Operation Protective Edge and is still more than 10 times the number of rockets fired in 2013.

Anyone still believe that Operation Protective Edge was the result of the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers? My guess is that had Hamas not started firing rockets from Gaza, much of the IDF would still be engaged in the search for the kidnappers (who might have been found by now).

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Did Israel get all the terror tunnels? (With video of terror tunnel destruction on the ground)

It would be a bit easier to accept a 'cease fire' if Israel got all the Hamas terror tunnels. Of course, we would still need to demilitarize Gaza and ensure that the tunnels cannot be reconstructed - both of which appear unlikely now.

According to Hamas spokesman Mushir al-Masri, the IDF has not even reached all the terror tunnels.

Let's go to the videotape.

But the IDF says it is in possession of all the tunnels and just needs a few more days to blow them up.
A few more days are needed in order to dispose of the remaining tunnels, [a senior IDF officer] said.
The IDF blew up two more tunnels in the course of the last 24 hours. “The longer we stay on the ground [inside Gaza], the more we learn about the extent of the tunnels and the route they were built in.”
IDF forces attacked 40 terror targets in Gaza in the last day, and the tunnels remained their main focus. “This is our central goal and that is why we are concentrating more and more forces in Gaza to complete the assignment.”
There is no official 'cease fire' yet, and the IDF is still in Gaza but limiting itself to blowing up tunnels and responding to Hamas' fire

Here's what it looks like when a terror tunnel is destroyed on the ground.

Let's go to the videotape.

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Kerry managed to anger everyone

By butting into the 'cease fire' talks and working against the interests of the United States' traditional allies, US Secretary of State John FN Kerry has managed to anger everyone except the bad guys: Hamas (whom he has apparently saved to fight another day) and its supporters Qatar and Turkey.

David Horovitz has written a devastating piece on the Israeli view of Kerry's shenanigans. He refers to Kerry's actions as the betrayal.
The Netanyahu government has had no shortage of run-ins with Kerry in the mere 18 months he has held office. The prime minister publicly pleaded with him in November not to sign the interim deal with Iran on its rogue nuclear program, and there has been constant friction between the two governments over thwarting Iran’s bid for the bomb. Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon in January ridiculed Kerry’s security proposals for a West Bank withdrawal, calling the secretary “messianic” and obsessive” in his quest for an accord with the Palestinians that simply wasn’t there. The collapse of the talks in March-April was accompanied by allegations from Jerusalem that Kerry had botched the process, telling Israel one thing and the Palestinian Authority another, including misrepresenting Israel’s position on Palestinian prisoner releases.
But none of those episodes, though deeply troubling and relating to issues central to Israel’s well-being, provoked the kind of outraged disbelief at Kerry’s performance that has been emanating from the Israeli leadership in the past 48 hours. Leaked comments from unnamed senior government sources to Army Radio, Channel 2 and other Hebrew outlets have described the secretary as amateurish, incompetent, incapable of understanding the material he is dealing with — in short, a blithering fool.
But actually, it’s worse than that. What emerges from Kerry’s self-initiated ceasefire mission — Israel had already accepted the Egyptian ceasefire proposal; and nobody asked him to come out on a trip he prefaced with sneering remarks about Israel’s attempted “pinpoint” strikes on Hamas terror targets — is that Jerusalem now regards him as duplicitous and dangerous.
Contrary to his public claim at his press conference in Cairo that his ceasefire proposal was “built on” the Egyptian initiative, it manifestly is nothing of the kind. As indicated by the unconfirmed text reported by Issacharoff, by other subsequent reports of its content, and by the cabinet’s outraged rejection, it is a proposal that, to quote an unnamed official cited by Channel 2, “tunneled under the Egyptian initiative,” a document, to quote from another of those leaked comments, that reads like it was drawn up for or even by Hamas’s Khaled Mashaal.
And Kerry didn’t let up after unleashing his dreadful proposal. Following Friday’s fiasco, he jetted off to Paris and, quite extraordinarily, convened further consultations dominated by countries that overtly wish to do Israel harm. He met with his counterparts from Turkey, whose Hamas-backing leadership has lately accused Israel of attempting genocide in Gaza and compared Netanyahu to Hitler, and with Qatar, Hamas’s funder in chief, directly accused by president Shimon Peres last week of financing Hamas’s rockets and tunnels. Staggeringly, he did not bring Israel, Egypt, or the PA to his Paris sessions.
David seems uncertain whether Kerry's behavior is 'amateurish' or purposeful. Perhaps this piece by Ed Lasky from ten years ago - in which Lasky explained why people to whom Israel is important ought to vote for George W. Bush and not for Kerry (who was then running for President) will make it clear that Kerry is far from an amateur. Like so many others on the Left, Kerry is viciously anti-Israel.
As the son of a diplomat posted overseas and as someone who spent many years living abroad (indeed, he attempted but failed to get a deferment to study in Paris during the Vietnam war), he brings to the table a multilateralist view of the world, a penchant to seek international approval for his actions — what he notoriously called the 'global test.' 
Kerry trumpets that he will work with the United Nations and European allies in developing foreign policy. Some have said that he intends to outsource our foreign policy to the likes of France and the UN. Others term this a surrender of American sovereignty. This is not surprising since he has a fetish for the UN
When has multilateralsim ever been a positive for the world's Jews? 
Kerry spoke negatively about Israel's security fence before the Arab—American Institute last year, when he bemoaned 'how disheartened Palestinians are by the Israeli government's decision to build a barrier off the Green Line, cutting deeply into Palestinian areas' and went on to say that 'We do not need another barrier to peace... and that provocative and counterproductive measures only harm Israel's security over the long term.' Of course, the fence has actually lead to fewer deaths among both Palestinians and Israelis, and has been the number one cause of the reduction in terror casualties.
Kerry also denounced the 'endless cycle of violence and reprisals' — thereby equating Israel's defensive measures to root out killers to the murder of innocent Israelis by Palestinian terrorists.
Kerry supporters point to a seemingly solid Senatorial record on votes for Israel, but this is a specious argument. It does not take much to have a solid record on Israel, since most of the Resolutions regarding Israel are painless offers of moral support.
In a devastating article, 'John Kerry on Israel: Second to Several' ,  Rick Rickman pointed out that Kerry was not a strong supporter of Israel. In 2000, for example, he did not join 60 co—sponsors of the 'Middle East Peace Process Support Act' — a bill calling on the President not to recognize a unilaterally declared Palestinian state. He also failed to co—sponsor a pro—Israel 'Peace Through Negotiations Act.'  In 1993 he failed to join 55 Senators in signing the Grassley/Lautenberg letter to the State Department, demanding that Hamas be listed as a terrorist organization. He did not support the assassination of Sheikh Yassin, often called  'the Palestinian Osama bin Laden' for his exhortations to violence.
In a book Kerry wrote, he called Yasser Arafat a 'statesman'. Granted this was during a period when diplomats were attempting to whitewash Arafat. But it was also a period when Arafat was openly brainwashing Palestinians to hate, and was planning his terror campaign against Israel.

Who would carry Kerry's water in negotiations with Europe, Israel, and the Arab nations? Kerry has suggested Jimmy Carter and James Baker. Jimmy Carter's animus towards Israel should be known by any reasonably intelligent Senator and many instances of this dislike can be found. James Baker famously said 'F%$#ck the Jews.... they don't vote for us anyway' (more on this later), when advisers remarked that his condescending approach to Israel could hurt domestically.
Other 'experts' surrounding Kerry include Sandy Berger, who even said in May 2000 that Palestinian violence was 'a blessing" because it might speed up the negotiating process.  Martin Indyk is an ex—Ambassador to Israel and recently told Israel to unilaterally give up the strategically vital Golan Heights to Syria, or continue to expect Syria to support Hizbullah. Indyk has been called Arafat's Yes—Man.
Iran poses the foremost threat to Israel. Iranian missiles are paraded in Tehran with Tel Aviv and Jerusalem scribbled on their sides. Iran openly brags that it will destroy Israel and says it does not fear a nuclear counterattack because the Arab world is so big that it can absorb retaliation. The Iranians have even gloated that concentrating so many Jews in Israel will make their genocidal task easier. Yet, Kerry seeks engagement with these rulers and wants to explore areas of mutual concern. He takes the non—confrontational approach with Iran. He even wants to provide them with nuclear fuel! This is absurd: Iran has a long history (like North Korea) of using these negotiation to further develop their weapons and to make 'deals' that can and will be easily broken when it is advantageous to do so.
Kerry's aversion to using force was frozen in amber upon his return form Vietnam over 30 years ago. Since then he has been adamantly opposed to the use of force anywhere in the world, and has constantly voted to cut defense spending and funds to support our intelligence operations. He thought so much of his responsibilities on the Senate Intelligence Panel that he was absent for over 75% of its meetings! . Left wing dictatorships don't sem to bother Senator Kerry at all. He pushed for engagement with the dictatorial Sandinista regime in Nicaragua and found reasons to favor them with his praise. He also seems to have a soft spot for Castro and such fondness is reciprocated. He found no reason to support 40 million South Vietnamese against an invasion form the north and saw no risks of violence should North Vietnam defeat the South Vietnamese. Tell that to the hundreds of thousands killed and tortured after Saigon fell, and to the millions still living under a Communist dictatorship. If he wouldn't act to help 40 million South Vietnamese will he take a risk to help a few million Jews, especially when it would offend his European friends and disappoint 300 million Arabs?
Sounds a lot like Obama, doesn't he? 

But it isn't just Israel that's furious with Kerry. So is the 'Palestinian Authority' and 'moderate' 'Palestinian' President Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen (Hat Tip: Memeorandum).
Palestinian sources told the London-based A-Sharq Al-Awsat that Kerry had initially agreed to an Egyptian proposal for an immediate ceasefire followed by five days of negotiations between Israel and the PA, with American assurances to address some of Hamas’s demands. But on Friday evening Kerry produced a new plan based on consultations with Qatar and Turkey and conducted between “the State of Israel” and “the Palestinian factions,” excluding the PA. The Israeli cabinet unanimously rejected Kerry’s plan.
“Kerry tried, through his latest plan, to destroy the Egyptian bid and the Palestinian remarks on it (the Abbas plan). His initiative is an alternative to ours,” an unnamed Palestinian official told A-Sharq Al-Awsat. “Kerry was in fact trying to create an alternative framework to the Egyptian initiative and our understanding of it, in a way that placates the Qataris and the Turks.”
The Palestinian source said that PA negotiators were “very close” to finalizing a ceasefire deal that would insure the lifting of the blockade over Gaza and “realize all Palestinian demands.”
An aide to Abbas related to A-Sharq Al-Awsat the contents of a phone conversation between French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius and Abbas following the Paris meeting.
“Abu-Mazen [Abbas] asked Fabius: ‘Did Israel agree to the ceasefire?’ He said: ‘No.’ ‘Did Hamas agree?’ He said: ‘No.’ So he embarrassed him with the question: So what is requested from me now?’
“Abbas’s conversation with Fabius demonstrates his level of anger and displeasure with Kerry and France’s role,” the article concluded, before quoting the Palestinian official: “Abbas considers the Kerry initiative as good as dead after being rejected by Israel. He is very angry that Palestinian blood has been manipulated and subjected to regional power struggles.”
The only group to whom Obama and Kerry show any loyalty is the Muslim Brotherhood and those nations that support those violent Islamist. This pattern has held since the beginning of the Obama administration in 2009. Now, President Hussein Obama himself is placing enormous pressure on Israel to accept a 'cease fire' it does not want, and that does not serve its interests.

What else could go wrong?

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Don't say you didn't know

Here's a powerful new video about the terror tunnels put out by the religious forum of Bat Yam (a suburb of Tel Aviv).

Let's go to the videotape.

More about the video and its makers here.

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'Asking Hamas to demilitarize Gaza is like asking a Priest to convert to Judaism'

Former Israeli military intelligence chief Amos Yadlin says that asking Hamas to demilitarize Gaza is like asking a Priest to convert to Judaism. It won't happen. If Israel wants Gaza demilitarized, the IDF must do it.
“This is their ideology, what they believe in, their resistance,” he added. “They will not demilitarize Gaza voluntarily. The only one who can demilitarize them is the IDF.”

Yadlin, who is currently the head of the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv, said that Israel needed to apply “much more military pressure” on Hamas' military wing, which he acknowledge has been “beaten,” but not hard enough.

Neither Hamas' leaders, nor its “main terrorist fighters,” have been killed, Yadlin said in a conference call organized by The Israel Project.

The only way to achieve a durable ceasefire and a political arrangement in the long run “is either by weakening or even destroying Hamas,” he said.
Yadlin also dismissed the US claim that if we destroy Hamas we will get something worse. 
Yadlin said that the paradigm that the devil you know is better than the one you don't, and that at least with Hamas in control of Gaza there was an “address,” was applicable up until two months ago.

But since then, he said, Hamas has proven to be “not an address, but a military threat. I don't see any alternative that will be worse than Hamas. I call to waken and destroy Hamas as much as we can.”
Yadlin also said that Israel has known about the tunnels since the Shalit kidnapping in 2006, but could not act against them preemptively because the 'international community' would not have let us. He also said that there are greater threats to Israel in the region.

Read the whole thing

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We must really be winning

It took a while, but at this writing, the United Nations Security Council is about to adopt a resolution calling for a 'cease fire.' That great friend of Israel (/sarc), Barack Hussein Obama, is also pressuring Prime Minister Netanyahu for a cease fire that will allow Hamas to live to fight another day. And the 'Palestinians' are disappointed that no one has called for a full withdrawal of Israeli forces. This is from the first link.
The UN Security Council agreed on a statement on Sunday urging Israel, Palestinians and Hamas to implement a humanitarian truce beyond the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr and engage in efforts to achieve a durable cease-fire.

The statement expresses strong support for "an immediate and unconditional humanitarian cease-fire, allowing for the delivery of urgently needed assistance" in Gaza, where Israel's military offensive has entered its 21st day.

All 15 council members had agreed on the statement, diplomats said, and it would be formally adopted at a midnight meeting on Sunday.

The Security Council statement, drafted by Jordan, "urged all parties to accept and fully implement the humanitarian cease-fire into the Eid period and beyond" and "calls on parties to engage in efforts to achieve a durable and fully respected cease-fire, based on the Egyptian initiative."

The council commended the efforts of US Secretary of State John Kerry and United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who spent last week in the Middle East trying to help broker an end to the fighting.
This is from the second link:
An immediate and unconditional ceasefire ending Israel's assault on Hamas is a "clear strategic imperative" to Israel, US President Barack Obama told Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu in a phone call on Sunday.

'Clear strategic imperative'? What a load of crap.

Obama told Netanyahu he wants a ceasefire "that both allows Palestinians in Gaza to lead normal lives and addresses Gaza’s long-term development and economic needs, while strengthening the Palestinian Authority," the White House said, in a readout of the call to reporters.
You mean the 'Palestinian Authority' that now includes Hamas? When are we going to deal with that? On the golf course?
For a permanent ceasefire to be agreed upon, Hamas is requiring an end to Israel's blockade of Gaza, formed to prevent Hamas from obtaining weapons to attack the Jewish state. Minister of Justice Tzipi Livni has told US Secretary of State John Kerry that Israel categorically rejects this condition, and indeed, Netanyahu's cabinet has unanimously voted against the measure as part of an end to the current crisis.
And nearly all Israeli Jews agree with the government....

And finally from the third link:
Palestinian representative to the United Nations, Riyad Mansour, expressed disappointment with the statement, saying it fell short of a formal resolution demanding that Israel withdraw its forces from the Gaza Strip.
"They should have adopted a resolution a long time ago to condemn this aggression and to call for this aggression to be stopped immediately," said Mansour following the meeting.
"We are disappointed in that sense," he said, adding that the Palestinians would continue pressing the Security Council to move toward a formal binding resolution.
What could go wrong?

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