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Friday, February 17, 2017

Netanyahu: “The deal essentially said this, it said no bomb today, 100 bombs tomorrow, in ten years”





The deal essentially said this, it said no bomb today, 100 bombs tomorrow, in ten years.  That is what it says, because Iran can go for the enrichment of uranium which is the key component.  Now the assumption was, people had hoped, well, OK, we’re kicking the can down the road, but this nuclear can, this single bomb then becomes a capacity to make dozens and dozens of bombs. 

Since the signing of the deal, Iran has become more aggressive, more deadly, sponsoring more terrorism … with more money, a lot more money. 

They’ve killed Americans all over the place. They’ve sponsored terrorism against Americans all over the place. Now they’re going to build ICBMs that can reach the United States and have multiple warheads to do that? That’s horrible.  It’s dangerous for America, dangerous for Israel, dangerous for the Arabs. Everybody now understands it and there’s an American president who understands it and we’re talking about what to do about this common threat. 

Monday, February 13, 2017

Bret Stephens: Mideast Rules For Jared Kushner



Forget peace talks. Work on building an alliance of moderates and modernizers.


By  BRET STEPHENS

Jared Kushner will get his first real taste of Mideast diplomacy this week, when his father-in-law receives Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House. Since the 36-year-old former newspaper publisher has been widely touted as the administration’s point man on Israeli-Arab issues, this week’s column humbly offers four rules Mr. Kushner ought to observe in the months and years ahead.

(1) The Clifford Rule. After stepping down as Lyndon Johnson’s defense secretary in 1969, the late Clark Clifford settled into the life of a Washington superlawyer—the sort of man who, for a price, could open all the right doors for his clients and fix some of their worst problems.

Approached by a man with one such problem, Clifford considered the matter, then advised: “Do nothing.”

Two days later, the man got a bill from Clifford for $10,000. Infuriated that such seemingly simple advice would cost so whopping a sum, he marched into Clifford’s office to remonstrate.

Clifford replied: “Do nothing.” He then sent the man a bill for an additional $10,000.

The moral of this (perhaps apocryphal) story is that “do nothing” is often the best advice—and that failing to heed it can cost you dearly.

Had John Kerry adopted the Clifford Rule, he might have been spared his fruitless yearlong foray into Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, which led to the 2014 Gaza War. Had Condoleezza Rice adopted it, she might not have advocated Palestinian elections that led to victory for Hamas in 2006. Had Bill Clinton taken it, he might have been spared the diplomatic humiliation of being spurned by Yasser Arafat at Camp David in 2000.

(2) The Kissinger Rule. If “do nothing” is generally good advice, what’s Mr. Kushner supposed to do?

Henry Kissinger once observed that “when enough bureaucratic prestige has been invested in a policy, it is easier to see it fail than to abandon it.” So it is with the formulas that govern official U.S. thinking toward the Arab-Israeli conflict: “land for peace” and the “two-state solution.” The State Department has been rolling those boulders up the hill for 50 years, and still it thinks one last push will do the trick.

The Kissinger Rule disposes with the futility. It says that if you can’t solve a small problem, fix the larger one that encompasses it. So it was with Taiwan and the “One China” policy, or with Egypt and its post-1973 realignment with the U.S.

For Mr. Kushner, that means the goal of diplomacy isn’t to “solve” the Palestinian problem. It’s to anesthetize it through a studied combination of economic help and diplomatic neglect. The real prize lies in further cultivating Jerusalem’s ties to Cairo, Riyadh, Amman and Abu Dhabi, as part of an Alliance of Moderates and Modernizers that can defeat Sunni and Shiite radicals from Raqqa to Tehran. The goal should be to make Palestinian leaders realize over time that they are the region’s atavism, not its future.

(3) The Bush Rule. In 2004, George W. Bush and then-Prime Minister Ariel Sharon exchanged letters in which the president acknowledged that the world had changed since 1967.

“In light of new realities on the ground, including already existing major Israeli populations centers,” Mr. Bush wrote, “it is unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final status negotiations will be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949.”

The point of the Bush Rule is to dispose with the flimflam that the Mideast’s contrived borders are sacred. And the best place Mr. Kushner could put the Bush Rule to use is to offer U.S. recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, captured in 1967 from Syria.

The benefits: Nobody there, including 20,000 Druze, wants to be ruled by Damascus. U.S. recognition would put the Assad regime and its Iranian and Russian backers on notice that there’s a price for barbaric behavior. And it gives the administration an opportunity to demonstrate its pro-Israel bona fides while exerting a restraining influence on settlement building in the West Bank.

(4) The Shultz Rule. Ronald Reagan’s secretary of state held to a clear principle when it came to negotiating with tough adversaries: Establish a reasonable position, announce your bottom line, stick to it. No haggling. It proved effective in dealing with Soviet arms negotiators.

The overworked metaphor for Mideast diplomacy is the bazaar. The secret to not losing one’s shirt is not to enter the bazaar in the first place.

The U.S. cannot solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict; only Palestinians can. The U.S. does have an interest in strengthening ties between its allies, both for their own sake and to counter their common enemies. If the Palestinians want to be a part of the solution, so much the better. If they want to continue to be a part of the problem, they can live with the consequences.

The principles are straightforward. The courage to stick to them will be the test of Mr. Kushner’s diplomatic mettle.


***

Do nothing, because there indeed is nothing you can do. Why is that?

Robert Spencer  explains it well here:   "Chapter 2, verse 191. 'Kill them wherever you find them, and drive them out from where they drove you out' . Drive them out from where they drove you out means that no  land that has ever belonged to Muslims or  been ruled by Muslims can ever  legitimately in the eyes of Islam be ruled by non Muslims. "

Sunday, February 12, 2017

The shortest explanation on the chances of the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict I have ever seen


Robert Spencer:   "Chapter 2 verse 191  Kill them wherever you find them, and drive them out from where they drove you out ". ( Robert Spencer's source is a slightly different  translation than the link above)  

"Drive them out from where they drove you out means that no  land that has ever belonged to Muslims or  been ruled by Muslims can ever  legitimately in the eyes of Islam be ruled by non Muslims. "

How many Israeli and world politicians know this? Do Trump and Jared Kushner?

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Weapon wizards, public relations incompetents



5.0 out of 5 stars Weapons wizards, public relations incompetentsFebruary 4, 2017
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Weapon Wizards: How Israel Became a High-Tech Military Superpower (Kindle Edition)

I read the book in two sittings. It explains clearly and concisely the history of how Israel became the leader in many area of weapons design -- drones (Heron), tanks and tank protection systems (Merkava and Trophe), ballistic missile defense (the Arrow, David’s Sling and Iron Dome), malware (stuxnet and flame) and complex information systems to wage a modern war in real time .

But what also comes from the book is the discrepancy between the brilliancy in innovation in technical solutions and the total inability to apply this brilliance in the area of public relations to explain why Israel needs all this technology in the first place. Innovate or you will not survive is the motto of the book. But survive against the threat from whom? Why does Hamas launch thousands of rockets on Israeli cities and build 30 tunnels at enormous expense to attack Israeli kibbutzim? If only some of the Israeli ingenuity were devoted to explaining to the world that the ideology behind Hamas’s attacks, jihadi attacks in Nice, San Bernardino and yesterday’s attack outside the Louvre is one and the same, Israel would be in a much better position.

It is time that Israeli ingenuity turn towards illuminating the world whose ignorance became apparent after the hysteria that erupted in the US and the world after Trump’s travel ban.

***
The above review has disappeared from amazon . The last time I looked it had 3 out of 4 people who liked it 


I posted it again today, Feb 9, slightly modified and this version appeared with the original date of Feb 4 . Bizarre. Let's see how long will it be on

5.0 out of 5 stars Weapon wizards, public relations incompetentsFebruary 4, 2017
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Weapon Wizards: How Israel Became a High-Tech Military Superpower (Hardcover)
I read the book in two sittings. It explains clearly and concisely the history of how Israel became the leader in many area of weapons design -- drones (Heron), satellites (Ofek), tanks and tank protection systems (Merkava and Trophe), ballistic missile defense (the Arrow, David’s Sling and Iron Dome), malware (stuxnet and flame) and complex information systems to wage a modern war in real time .

But what also comes from the book is the discrepancy between the brilliancy in innovation in technical solutions and the total inability to apply this brilliance in the area of public relations to explain why Israel needs all this technology in the first place. Innovate or you will not survive is the motto of the book. But survive against the threat from whom? Why does Hamas launch thousands of rockets on Israeli cities and build 30 tunnels at enormous expense to attack Israeli kibbutzim? If only some of the Israeli ingenuity were devoted to explaining to the world that the ideology behind Hamas’s attacks, jihadi attacks in Nice, San Bernardino and the attack outside the Louvre is one and the same, Israel would be in a much better position.

It is time that Israeli ingenuity turn towards illuminating the world whose ignorance became apparent after the hysteria that erupted in the US and the world after Trump’s travel ban

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

As of today, we are officially putting Iran on notice






"The Trump Administration condemns such actions by Iran that undermine security, prosperity, and stability throughout and beyond the Middle East and place American lives at risk."

Washington The Trump administration sent a stark message to Tehran on Wednesday over Iran’s continued missile tests and support for proxy militia groups battling Saudi Arabian forces.

Speaking publicly for the first time since Donald Trump became US president, his national security adviser, former lieutenant-general Michael Flynn, said the White House was putting Iran “on notice,” and vowed to act decisively in response.

“Recent Iranian actions, including a provocative ballistic missile launch and an attack against a Saudi naval vessel conducted by Iran-supported Houthi militants, underscore what should have been clear to the international community all along about Iran’s destabilizing behavior across the Middle East,” Flynn said, calling the test a violation of international law.

The UN Security Council met on Tuesday to review the matter and confirmed that the test occurred.

US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley called the test “unacceptable,” and her UK counterpart, Matthew Rycroft, warned that it was a sign Tehran had not moderated since world powers signed an international nuclear agreement with Iran in 2015.

Iran continues to threaten US friends and allies in the region,” Flynn said. “The Obama administration failed to respond adequately to Tehran’s malign actions – including weapons transfers, support for terrorism and other violations of international norms.

The Trump administration condemns such actions by Iran that undermine security, prosperity and stability throughout and beyond the Middle East and place American lives at risk.”

Flynn noted that Trump has, in the past, characterized the nuclear deal as “weak and ineffective.” Trump’s national security cabinet members have thus far signaled an interest in strictly policing the nuclear accord, as opposed to scrapping it.

In a briefing with reporters, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the US was “not going to sit by and not act” as Iran continued what it characterizes as malign activity.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu plans to focus on the threat posed by Iran in his February 15 meeting with Trump at the White House.

“Instead of being thankful to the United States for these agreements, Iran is now feeling emboldened,” Flynn warned.

“As of today, we are officially putting Iran on notice.”

Monday, January 30, 2017

TRUMP’S BAN




Isi Leibler’s sane “Pseudo-liberal Jews are causing unspeakable damage” (Candidly Speaking, January 29) serves as an antidote to the madness I’ve been hearing since US President Donald Trump’s executive order on refugees.

However, the crux of the matter is not being addressed: The ban should be on ideological, not religious grounds.

During the Cold War, communists could get into the US only through a waiver. Since Islam is not only a religion, but a political ideology, Trump is applying similar rules to Muslims, and we should view this as targeting the ideology.

If there were a way to easily differentiate between what Ayaan Hirsi Ali calls the “Mecca Muslims” (i.e., “Muslims who are loyal to the core creed and worship devoutly, but are not inclined to practice violence”) and the “Medina Muslims” (who “see the forcible imposition of Shari’a as their religious duty”), there would be less of a problem.

But this test is not easy to come up with, so it makes sense that until then, there should be a ban.

MLADEN ANDRIJASEVIC Beersheba

Sunday, January 22, 2017