On Tuesday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu adopted a new strategy for managing Israel’s diplomatic relations with the West. Long in the making and increasingly urgent, Israel’s new strategy is very simple. Foreign governments can either treat Israel in accordance with international diplomatic norms of behavior, or they can continue to discriminate against Israel.
If they act in accordance with international diplomatic norms, Israel will respond in a like fashion. If they choose instead to discriminate against Israel and treat it in a manner no other democratic state is treated, Israel will abandon diplomatic convention and treat foreign governments as domestic critics.
On Monday, after his repeated requests for Germany’s visiting Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel to cancel his plans to meet with Breaking the Silence and B’Tselem, Netanyahu gave Gabriel an ultimatum. Gabriel could meet with Netanyahu, or he could meet with them.
Gabriel refused to cancel his meeting with Breaking the Silence and B’Tselem. So Netanyahu canceled their meeting.
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Free speech as protected in the First Amendment does not protect “Hate Speech,” or so says Howard Dean. This is kind of funny as my remembrances were that unpopular speech was exactly the speech the First Amendment was meant to protect, and “Hate Speech” would most certainly be very unpopular. The proof of this is exactly what is playing out at University of California, Berkley Campus, often referred to as the home of free speech. It was at Berkeley in the 1960’s that freedom of speech was first tested and protected with the anti-war movement. It was back during this tumultuous time when the five rights delineated in the words of the First Amendment: ”Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people…
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The day after Israel celebrates its 69th Independence Day, US President Donald Trump will greet PLO chief Mahmoud Abbas at the White House. The date of their meeting, May 3, is notable not least for its timing.
The timing of the meeting presumes a linkage between the establishment of Israel and the establishment of a Palestinian state. This is not merely obnoxious, it is also blind to reality.
In reality, an independent state of Palestine has existed for the past 12 years in Gaza. Rather than build that up and declare independence, Abbas and his comrades surrendered Gaza to Hamas in 2007.
Hamas, in turn, transformed independent Palestine into a base for jihad.
Abbas’s failure to declare independence in 2005 – and the subsequent failure of his US-trained forces to defend their control over Gaza in June 2007 from Hamas terrorists – is generally overlooked. But it is critical that Trump understand the significance of his behavior before he meets with Abbas.
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Officially, France prohibits any form of boycott against Israel. In 2015, the Court of Cassation confirmed a 2013 decision regarding the illegality of boycotts and the call for boycotts in France. Under the law, in 2013, BDS France was fined €28,000 (USD $30,000) by a local French court, after a call made in 2010 by 14 activists to boycott Israeli products in a supermarket. In addition, each of the 14 activists was fined €1,000.
However, according to a report recently released by NGO Monitor, the French government continues to fund NGOs openly hostile to Israel and to fund NGOs that support and promote boycott campaigns against Israel.
The French government’s financial support for boycott campaigns embraces:
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Al-Qaida’s leader meanwhile urged his followers and other militants in Syria to unite and prepare for protracted jihad, or holy war, against what he called an “international satanic alliance,” apparently referring to the Syrian government, its ally Russia, and the U.S., all of which are targeting the group – MORE
Dry Bones- Israel’s Political Comic Strip Since 1973