News Digest — 7/15/22
Israel, US Sign ‘Jerusalem Proclamation’ Pledging To Deny Iran Nuclear Weaponry
US President Joe Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid on Thursday (14th) signed a pledge to deny Iran nuclear weapons, closing ranks after long-running disputes between the allies over global diplomacy with Tehran.
Biden, who is visiting Jerusalem, said in an interview broadcast on local TV on Wednesday (13th), that he was open to “last resort” use of force against Iran – an apparent move toward accommodating Lapid’s call on world powers to present a “credible military threat” against Israel’s arch foe.
In their proclamation, signed by the two leaders, the United States confirms its commitment never to allow Iran to acquire nuclear weapons, “and is prepared to use all elements of its national power to ensure that outcome.”
“The United States further affirms the commitment to work together with other partners to confront Iran’s aggression and destabilizing activities, whether advanced directly or through proxies and terrorist organizations such as Hezbollah, Hamas, and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.”
Also Israel and the United States say they are committed to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The proclamation also addresses the rise in global antisemitism with an American commitment to combat “all efforts to boycott or de-legitimize Israel.”
US To Work With Israel On Laser Defense Development
“The historic Jerusalem declaration signed Thursday (14th) by US President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Yair Lapid includes an understanding about the US coming on board as a partner in Israel’s cutting-edge Iron Beam laser interceptor system.
The countries expressed enthusiasm to move toward the US-Israel defense partnership through cooperation in cutting-edge defense technologies such as high energy laser weapons systems to defend the skies of Israel and in the future those of other US and Israel security partners,” the declaration reads.
The phrase “other security partners” appears to hint that the system might be sold to the United Arab Emirates and other states that are party to the Abraham Accords, and possibly additional countries that might enter into a future regional defense pact that the US is trying to promote in the Middle East.
Iron Beam is projected to be operational within three years. Former Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said that one system would be set up on Israel’s border with the Gaza Strip in 2023.
Iron Beam is the first laser-based defense system of its kind, and is expected to comprise a strategic shift in Israel’s ability to cope with rocket and missile attacks.
The main drawback to the Iron Dome missile defense system, which intercepts missiles using rockets, is the high cost of the interceptors. Each rocket or mortar Hamas fired at Israel cost the terrorist organization anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars, whereas a single Iron Dome interceptor rocket costs some $50,000. In most cases, Iron Dome fires its interceptors in pairs, bringing the cost of a single interception to $100,000.
The cost of the system means that massive rocket onslaughts, such as the ones Hamas fired at Israel during Operation Guardian of the Walls in May 2021, carry an enormous defense cost for Israel, not to mention putting it at risk of running out of interceptor rockets. After the May 2021 operation, the US provided Israel with a special $1 billion grant to restock.
Laser interception is much less expensive, costing an estimated $2,000 at most per interception.
Another advantage to Iron Beam is that it intercepts rockets immediately after they are fired – over the Gaza Strip or Lebanon, rather than as they are about to fall. This new capability will mean far fewer warning sirens in western Negev communities. In the event of a successful laser interception, no alert will go off.
In addition to Iron Beam, which operates at ground level, Israel is also in the initial testing stages of an airborne laser system to be affixed to aircraft, which is designed to allow one or two aircraft to provide coverage for all of Israel, rather than having to deploy dozens of rocket-based batteries.
The US, meanwhile, is working on a laser system capable of intercepting long-range missiles. The US laser is more powerful measuring 1,000 kw or more. The Americans have begun initial tests of the new system, spurred on by concerns about the hypersonic missiles China is developing.
Former Kuwaiti Minister: Palestinians Suffering Due To Their Own Leadership
Former Kuwaiti Information Minister Sa’ad Bin Tefla Al-Ajmi wrote in the Saudi daily Independent Arabia on July 8, 2022: “For the Palestinians, their models of heroism in the region, whom they wish to emulate, are people like Saddam Hussein and Qassem Soleimani. The former occupied Kuwait, calling this a step towards liberating Palestine, and the latter claimed that his country had taken over Iraq, Syria and Lebanon as a step towards liberating Jerusalem. We are all familiar with the destruction inflicted by Saddam Hussein on the entire Arab nation…As for Iran, innocent blood continues to flow in the countries it has taken over in the name of resistance and liberating Jerusalem.”
“Opposing Hamas in Gaza, or the PA in the West Bank, can result in disaster and loss, torture and death… According to independent investigations, 57 Palestinian activists have been tortured to death in PA prisons and Hamas prisons in Gaza. Human Rights Watch likewise states that the PA and Hamas systematically employ torture in their prisons. As for corruption, it has even reached the point of stealing the international aid money that is intended for the needy.”
“The number of Palestinians with Israeli citizenship (Israeli Arabs) is currently 1.5 million. How many of these Palestinians have given up their Israeli citizenship in favor of a Palestinian one since the signing of the Oslo Accords, and the forming of the Palestinian Authority in 1993? The answer is: not even one.”
Why Arabs Are Fed Up With The Palestinians – Khaled Abu Toameh
Most of the Arab countries long ago turned their backs on the Palestinians and they can only blame themselves for ruining their relations with the rest of the Arab world. It is ironic that while the EU and the Biden administration continue to talk about providing financial aid to the Palestinians, the Arab countries offer a lot of lip service but, with the exception of Algeria, channel hardly any money to the PA treasury. Consequently, for the past few decades the Palestinians have become almost entirely dependent on American and European taxpayer money.
Arab financial aid to the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) has dropped by 90% in the past few years. Moreover, the Palestinian Islamic-Christian Committee for the Support of Jerusalem and the Holy Sites has warned of a “dangerous and unprecedented decline” in the level of financial support provided by a number of Arab countries to Palestinian institutions in Jerusalem.
The Arabs are clearly not as naive as the Americans and Europeans, who are continuing to pour millions of dollars annually on the Palestinians without conditions and without demanding accountability. Had the Palestinians welcomed the peace accords between Israel and the Arab states instead of condemning them and bad-mouthing the Arab leaders, they would have been in a much better situation today.
Jews Can No Longer Afford To Tolerate The Erasure Of Our Identity – Karen Lehrman Bloch
→ Last year, there were nearly 3,000 antisemitic attacks in the US, an increase of 34% over 2020. This is mirrored in the daily incidents on campuses involving blatantly anti-Israel professors, speakers, students and resolutions. Antisemitism’s dramatic surge has hitched itself to “Palestinianism,” an ideology of lies about the Land of Israel combined with a complete erasure of Jews’ Judean identity.
→ Nerdeen Kiswani of the group Within Our Lifetime recently claimed that Jewish community organizations “are Zionist organizations hiding behind Judaism. So every single organization…is a legitimate target.”
→ Zahra Billoo, Executive Director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations’ San Francisco chapter, said, “We need to pay attentions to the Zionist synagogues. They are your enemies.”
→ The New York group Decolonize This Place posted online, “Find targets nearby, find where these Zionist fools live, and where their offices are, and act!”
→ Israel is not a “settler, colonial state” occupied by “white Europeans.” Jews hail from Judea and are indigenous to the Land of Israel.
→ Despite centuries of persecution, we have remained a people, a nation, an ethnicity – which is not “white,” “European,” or “privileged.” Before 1948, the term “Palestinian” referred to Jews.
The writer is editor-in-chief of White Rose Magazine, which hosts the Judean Ethnicity Project to reclaim Judean identity as well as our indigenous ties to the Land of Israel.
Mass Grave With Remains Of About 8,000 Nazi Victims Found In Poland
A mass grave containing human ashes equivalent to 8,000 people has been discovered near a former Nazi concentration camp in Poland, the country’s Institute of National Remembrance said on Wednesday (13th).
The institute which investigates crimes committed during the Nazi occupation of Poland and the communist era, said the remains were unearthed near the Soldau concentration camp, now known as Dzialdowo north of Warsaw.
Nazi Germany built the camp when it occupied Poland during World War II, using it as a place of transit, internment, and extermination for Jews, political opponents, and members of the Polish political elite.
The victims buried in the mass grave were probably assassinated around 1939. In 1944, the Nazi authorities ordered Jewish prisoners to dig up the bodies and burn them to wipe out evidence of war crimes.
Andrzei Ossowski, a genetics researcher at the Pomeranian Medical University, told AFP that samples from the ashes had been taken and would be studied in a laboratory.
“We can carry out DNA analysis, which will allow us to find out more about the identity of the victims, following similar studies at former Nazi camps at Sobibor and Treblinka,” he added.