Hamas Threatens Jordan

An article published in Al-Quds Al-Arabi on April 20, 2016 asked why Jordanian Prime Minister Abdallah Ensour fired Salame Hamad from his post as Minister of the Interior, despite Hamad having restored internal security and causing Jordanians to feel they were living in a country of law and order.

The reason, it turned out, was that he was not decisive enough in dealing with the Muslim Brotherhood. While he did close some of its offices and place strict limitations on the number of Gazans visiting Jordan, he apparently did not deal with the movement emphatically enough, and had even met with its leaders in his office twice.

One of the signs of this weakness in dealing with Islamists was Jordan’s surprising recent backpedaling on an agreement instituted by the Jordanian Wakf (office of religious endowment), which was brokered by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. According to the agreement, video cameras would be installed in Jerusalem at the Al-Aqsa mosque. The footage would be transmitted in real time to both Israeli and the Jordanian authorities. Such an arrangement would improve security in Al-Aqsa, and expose and prevent hostile activities by the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas, the Northern Branch of Israel’s Islamic Movement and members of the Hizb al-Tahrir radical Islamist group.

The Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas, have, in fact, managed also to foul their relations with Egypt, the Palestinian Authority and Jordan. After years of loyalty by Jordanian Islamists to the royal house of the Hashemites, descendants of the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.a.w.), in recent years Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood entered into conflict with the Jordanian government.

MORE…

What to Expect from an Independent Palestinian State

France, with the support of the United States, is leading a new attempt at peace between Israel and the Palestinians, with the implied goal that an independent Palestinian state would be created — but what should we expect from such a state?

Although past behavior is not a perfect predictor of future behavior, it is a strong indicator of it, especially if no corrective action has been taken.Judea

Violence

When Israel withdrew from Gaza in 2005, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas declared, “The dawn of freedom rises with the evacuation of the last Israeli soldier and settler.” Yet, instead of using that freedom to build a successful economy, Palestinians destroyed the greenhouses that the settlers had left, and terrorists launched rocket attacks against Israel. These attacks forced Israel to institute a naval blockade of Gaza, to limit the supply of weapons to terrorists.

The Oslo Accords signed by Israel and the Palestinians in the 1990s provided a transition period meant to lead to Palestinian statehood. However, instead of peaceful coexistence with Israel, the Palestinian leadership launched an assault that became known as the Second Intifada.

During the recent stabbing attacks by Palestinian terrorists, Abbas declared, “Each drop of blood that was spilled in Jerusalem is pure blood as long as it’s for the sake of Allah. Every shahid (martyr) will be in heaven and every wounded person will be rewarded, by Allah’s will.”

These violent actions and the incitement are not exceptions. They are part of a pattern of Arab denial of the Jews’ right to exist, which started well before Israel declared its independence, and that caused several wars and innumerable terrorist attacks against Israel.

MORE…

Could Italy Bring Down the Euro?

A move by Italy — the third-largest economy in the eurozone — to abandon the euro could strike a potentially fatal blow to the currency and to the bloc itself.

Meanwhile, at more than 130% of GDP, Italy has one of the biggest public debt burdens in Europe, second only to Greece.

“A perfect storm of slow or zero Italian economic growth, low interest rates and politically connected, often corrupt, lending have combined to create a situation where the Italian financial system is in need of a large rescue.” — Mihir Kapadia, Sun Global Investments.

M5S blames the euro for Italy’s woes, and many Italians agree.

MORE…

Hey, BDS-Loving Professors Watching the Assault on Academic Freedom in Turkey: Why So Quiet?

Following the failed coup attempt in Turkey last weekend, Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government has stripped 59, 628 private school teachers of their accreditation, and the state-run Council of Higher Education called on all 1,577 the deans of private and public universities to immediately resign. Yesterday, the government took the assault on academic freedom a step further, firing an additional 100 academics and issuing a travel ban on all professors still employed.

In light of this blatant assault on the very core of academic freedom, I would like to offer a hearty mazel tov to the legions of American academic associations rising up to fight for principle and stand in solidarity with their beleaguered Turkish colleagues. The calls this week by the American Anthropological Association, the American Studies Association, the Association for Asian American Studies, the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association, the National Association of Chicana and Chicano Studies, the Critical Ethnic Studies Association, and others were all shining examples of precisely the sort of fierce commitment to freedom and justice we’ve come to expect of American academics, those lionhearted champions of liberty, those defenders of moral…

What’s that? None of them said anything? Even though they have all voted to boycott Israel for its alleged academic apartheid, a cruel policy of discrimination that has led to such clear abuses like a dramatic increase in the percentage of Arab students attending Israeli universities? How odd.

MORE…

Germany’s Turkish-Muslim Integration Problem

Nearly half of the three million ethnic Turks living in Germany believe it is more important to follow Islamic Sharia law than German law if the two are in conflict, according to a new study.

One-third of those surveyed also yearn for German society to “return” to the way it was during the time of Mohammed, the founder of Islam, in the Arabia of the early seventh century.

The survey — which involves Turks who have been living in Germany for many years, often decades — refutes claims by German authorities that Muslims are well integrated into German society.

The 22-page study, “Integration and Religion from the Viewpoint of Ethnic Turks in Germany” (Integration und Religion aus der Sicht von Türkeistämmigen in Deutschland), was produced by the Religion and Politics department of the University of Münster. Key findings include:

MORE…

Morning Briefing – The Telegraph

Good morning.

Theresa May has finished her mini-European tour this week by meeting with Francois Hollande in order to get the ball rolling on Brexit. After enjoying a meeting of with fellow no-nonsense leader Angela Merkel, the Prime Minister may have expected a cooler response from the French President, but she left with reason to be positive. She was able to trumpet a “very clear” agreement between them afterwards that Britain’s border controls would remain in Calais,  despite warnings from the likes of David Cameron during the referendum campaign that Brexit could see them move to Dover. He also indicated that British expats living and working in France can stay “as long as they like”. This will start to pave the way for Prime Minister May to give European migrants in Britain the same concession, as she has indicated so far that she would only do so when she secured it for Britons across Europe during these Brexit talks.

But beneath the bonhomie, some sticking points remain. President Hollande insisted that the exact details of Brexit need to be resolved, indicating that Britain must decide whether it wants access to the single market, and the controversial free movement of people, or not. This could prove tough for Prime Minister May in her bid to find something to answer voters’ concerns on immigration while maintaining the best economic links with Europe. He also restated France’s position that it wants Britain to invoke Article 50, starting its formal departure, “the sooner the better”. Only then could they get down to the nitty-gritty, he said, warning that “uncertainty is the greatest danger” for the EU. With EU leaders like Hollande determined not to give ground and Tory Brexiteers keen to ensure May delivers on her pledge that “Brexit means Brexit”, she has quite the diplomatic challenge ahead.

The Tories at least have little to worry about on the domestic front, as Labour’s civil war means Prime Minister May can get on with the job over the next few months of negotiating Brexit. Fraser Nelson is impressed by how she has moved into Labour territory with her platform as a “One Nation” Conservative, and argues in today’s paper that she could render them irrelevant with such a pitch. “Now, the Tories are selling progressive politics to Britain. They have done so gingerly at first, but it looks as if Mrs May might take up the cause with conviction and panache. If she gets this right, then Labour faces a long spell in the wilderness,” he writes.

How Businesses in Judea and Samaria are Beating BDS

Every month, Michael Stines, 32, of North Carolina purchases a package of goods from Judea and Samaria, ranging from honey from Hebron and olive oil from Shiloh to handmade jewelry from Yitzhar and ceramic pottery from Maale Michmash.

“There’s something for everyone in my family to be found in each package, like candy for the kids and jewelry for my wife. We can’t wait to open up the goods each month. This is our way of supporting Judea and Samaria,” Stines told Tazpit Press Service (TPS) in an interview from his North Carolina home.

Stines, a general contractor, has led 15 church tours to Israel which have included visits to Judea and Samaria and believes that it is imperative to support Israel not only “through words but through deeds.”

The fervent backer of Israel purchases the packages through an organization called Lev Haolam, which was established nearly four years ago by Nati Rom, a lawyer from Esh Kodesh in Samaria, along with his wife, who looked for a way to help small businesses in Judea and Samaria fight the international boycott of goods from the region.

MORE…