October 5, 2018

In The Name Of Peace, It Is Time To Accept Israel’s Possession Of The Golan Heights – Rafael Bardaji & Richard Kemp

→Syrian forces launched an invasion of northern Israel across the Golan Heights in June 1948.  After the 1949 armistice, there were years of sporadic attacks against Israel from the Golan Heights, including cross-border raids by Fatah, and shelling of civilian communities by the Syrian Army.  Syria intensified its artillery fire against Israel on the outbreak of the Six-day War in 1967. Israel then seized a major area of the Golan heights to protect its citizens and its territory.

→It is a commonly held view that Israel’s possession of the Golan Heights is illegal under international law.  But this position is not tenable. It is illegal to hold onto territory acquired through wars of aggression, but Israel gained the Golan Heights during its defense against aggression launched from the Golan.  Under the UN Charter, defensive war is not illegal and throughout history countries have retained territory gained in their own defense.

→Returning the Golan Heights to Syria would not only endanger Israel, but it would also send the message that an aggressor has nothing to lose as there is no territorial price to pay for its violent actions.

→Western support for Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights would equally extract a price from Assad – albeit a comparatively small one – for the monstrous war crimes he has committed, in which millions have suffered and perhaps half a million died.  The events of the last seven years have proven beyond all doubt that he is a murderous despot who must not be given any opportunity for further aggression.

→Syria is now and will remain for the foreseeable future under the dominion of Iran.  We know that Iranian ayatollahs are intent on aggression against the Jewish state.

→It is time for the international community to recognize Israel’s possession of the Golan Heights as legitimate and necessary.  Such a move would also advance peace and regional stability.

(Col. Richard Kemp was Commander of British Forces in Afghanistan.  Rafael Bardaji was National Security Adviser to the President of Spain)



3 Palestinians Indicted For Conspiring To Carry Out Terrorist Attacks Against Israelis

Three Palestinian residents of the West Bank were indicted Wednesday (3rd) for conspiring to carry out terror attacks against Israelis, Channel 10 News reported.

Quoting a statement by the Shin Bet security agency, the report said that Issa Shalalda, 21, and Amar Masud, 20, both students at the Birzeit University near Ramallah, and Hazem Hamail, 24, had contacted Hamas officials on Facebook with the aim of raising funds to stage terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians and soldiers in Judea and Samaria.

Shalalda and Masud were indicted on suspicion of membership in a terrorist organization and contacting a terror operative.  Hamail faces charges of contacting an enemy agent.

The three were recruited by Hamas’ terror operatives in the West Bank, the report said.

“Since 2015, senior operatives with Hamas’ military wing have established and maintained secret infrastructure in Judea and Samaria with the purpose of recruiting operatives there and carrying out terrorist attacks against Israeli targets,” the Shin Bet said in a statement.

“Special efforts were made by Hamas in recruiting Palestinian engineering and technology students who could serve as engineers and manufacture explosive devices,” the statement read.



Hamas Entices Preschoolers To Play With Incendiary Balloons

A new attempt by Hamas to entice Israeli children to play with incendiary balloons includes choosing colorful balloons and attaching lights and toys to them, Yediot Ahronot  reported.

According to the report, a cluster of balloons recently found in the Eshkol Region was attached to an explosive toy.  The balloons, found late at night, were colorful and included colorful flashing lights.

Kibbutz Be’eri’s secretary, Yaniv Hagi, said: “Incendiary balloons land in our kibbutz at all hours of day and night.  They arrive with flashing and sparkling lights, and some of the balloons have smiley faces on them, so children will want to touch them”

“Two days ago, we had a kite festival,” said Hagi, “and suddenly I heard a little girl ask her father, ‘How will I be able to tell the difference between one of our kites and a kite which flew in from Gaza?’”

The Yediot Ahronot newspaper quoted new safety guidelines, asking parents to “tell your children not to touch objects which are attached to balloons and look like toys.  In such cases, tell them to distance themselves from the object and call an adult or a security officer. Sometimes there are pictures on the balloons, with hearts and smiles, and funny faces and other things.  All of these are intended to create the impression that the object is safe. Tell your children not to touch these, and tell them not to go near them.”



Israel To Use F-35I Stealth Fighters In Syria

Israel will use the F-35I stealth fighter to attack Syria, Army Radio reported this week.

The decision comes after Syria began receiving on Tuesday (2nd) its new S-300 surface-to-air missile defense system.

The new system sold to Syria by Russia, is intended to stop enemy planes – including Israeli planes – from attacking.

Army Radio quoted a source in the Israeli Air Force who said that in light of the situation in Syria, Israel has decided to increase the use of F-35 stealth fighters in its attacks on Syria.

This step is expected to allow the Air Force to better handle the growing threat in Syria, the source explained.

“The coming attacks won’t be the first, but they will be safer for the pilots in light of the new reality in Syria’s skies.  This is the most expensive weapon in the world, and it’s the most advanced airplane in the world. Israel paid $125 million for each plane, and the Minister of Defense purchased 50 of the Model A planes… Our planes are called the F-35I.  Eight of the planes have already landed in Israel and 33 are expected to arrive by 2021,” the source told the radio station.

In May, Israel became the first country to carry out strikes with the F-35.  

“We are flying the F-35 over the entire Middle East and that has become part of our operational capability,” Israeli Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin said.  

“We were the first in the world to attack with the F-35.  The Israeli Air Force has twice carried out strikes with the F-35, on two different fronts.”



Famed Egyptian Author Youssef Ziedan Wants to Visit Israel

Well-known Egyptian philosopher, Islamic studies expert, lecturer and novelist Dr. Youssef Ziedan said he wants to lecture in Israel, “where they are more interested in my views than in Egypt.”

The author of Azazeel, a historic and theological novel that won him the International Prize for Arabic Fiction, said on Tuesday (2nd) in an interview on an Egyptian TV channel that it was “in Egypt’s interest to enter a genuine dialogue with Israel.”

Since the 1977 Camp David Accords, Egypt and Israel have shared close security and intelligence ties but almost no social or cultural cooperation.

The author, who has published more than 50 books, made headlines in 2015, when he insisted in an interview on Egyptian television on using the words “beit hamikdash” in Hebrew, referring to the Temple Mount, and explained why, in his opinion, Muslim claims to al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem were baseless.

“Al-Aqsa Mosque didn’t exist back then,” said Ziedan in the interview.  “There was no city named al-Quds, and modern teachings claiming this, are disastrous.”

Instead, he claimed that the phrase “al-Aqsa” refers to a mosque on the outskirts of the city of Ta’if, west of Mecca.

He bases his hypothesis on the teachings of the ancient Muslim historian Al-Waqidi, who was born 100 years after the appearance of Muhammad and made similar claims.