Is There Hope for the Palestinians — and the Peace Process?

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When Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Al-Hamdallah submitted his resignation to President Mahmoud Abbas last month, it was yet another reminder that Palestinians remain mired in a crisis of leadership and a cold civil war between their dominant factions.

For some, the ongoing spat between the Hamas terrorist organization and Abbas — a so-called moderate and sometime Holocaust denier — is a tragedy. An optimist, however, might see the current situation as an opportunity for more capable leadership to emerge.

Unfortunately, there are powerful incentives to ensure that Palestinian society remains dysfunctional.

At the root of the problem is the unquestioning pursuit of Palestinian statehood and the acceptance of armed struggle as a means of achieving that goal.

via Is There Hope for the Palestinians — and the Peace Process?

Why Was Stone Arrested Instead of Being Asked to Surrender?

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The reasons given thus far for Roger Stone’s pre-dawn arrest by armed FBI agents are utterly unconvincing. He was not a flight risk, as evidenced by the low bail and easy conditions of release set by the judge without objection from the government. Stone knew he was going to be indicted and if he wanted to flee, he had plenty of time to do so. The same is true of destroying evidence, wiping his electronics or doing anything else that would warrant an arrest rather than a notice to his lawyer to appear in court at a specified time. A search was conducted of various residences pursuant to a search warrant. No arrest was necessary to conduct these searches.

So, if there was no legitimate reason for the arrest and handcuffing of this presumed innocent defendant, what was the illegitimate reason? To paraphrase the indictment against Stone, the illegitimate purpose of the arrest was to intimidate the potential witness — namely Stone — into not invoking his constitutional right to remain silent, rather than to testify as a government witness.

The arrest was nothing more than a show of toughness — a foretaste of what Stone could expect if he did not cooperate with Mueller. Police do this all the time: “Look, we can do this the easy way or the hard way.” The tough arrest with handcuffs and shackles was a demonstration of the hard way.

via Why Was Stone Arrested Instead of Being Asked to Surrender?

Muslim U.S. Air Force Intelligence Specialist tried to pass classified American information to Iran

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“Iran Conducted Cyber Hacks on U.S., Recruited U.S. Air Force Officer to Steal Classified Info,” by Adam Kredo, Washington Free Beacon, February 13, 2019:

WARSAW, Poland—The Trump administration announced a new package of sanctions on Iranian entities tied to the cyber backing of U.S. individuals, a move that comes on the heels of American authorities indicting a U.S. Air Force officer who allegedly tried to pass classified information to Tehran after defecting to the country.

The Department of Justice announced early Wednesday that it had indicted Monica Elfriede Witt, also known as Fatemah Zahra, a former active duty U.S. Air Force Intelligence Specialist and Special Agent, for attempting to pass classified American information to Iran.

Witt had access to secret and top-secret information, according to the indictment, unsealed early Wednesday.

via Muslim U.S. Air Force Intelligence Specialist tried to pass classified American information to Iran

Radicals Rally to Support Ilhan Omar’s Anti-Semitic Tweets

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Anti-Semitic sentiments and incidents continue to rise worldwide, particularly in the West. Sometimes this form of bigotry is perpetuated by far-right elements, other times at the hands of far-leftists and Islamists. It is rare to see both extremes unite for any cause except for their mutual disdain for Israel or Jews. It is even rarer to see them applaud and defend an American politician.

But that is exactly what’s happening as Rep. Ilhan Omar’s anti-Jewish tropes receive widespread praise from both U.S.-based Islamists and white supremacists.

Criticism and condemnation rained down on Omar, a Minnesota Democrat, Monday after she tweeted, “It’s all about the Benjamins baby” to explain why she and fellow Democrat Rashida Tlaib draw attention for their “criticisms of Israel.”

Who is the source of this popular reference to cash? “AIPAC!” Omar added, referring to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

via Radicals Rally to Support Ilhan Omar’s Anti-Semitic Tweets

PA minister ignores brutal murder of Israeli woman, condemns Israel for searching for jihadi in mosque

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Ori Ansbacher “was stabbed several times and brutally murdered in Jerusalem. DNA from the scene led Israel to the Palestinian, 29-year-old Arafat Arfiah, who was captured after soldiers entered a mosque.” Palestinian Authority Minister of Religious Affairs Yusuf Ida’is was quick to “‘condemn’ Israel’s entering the mosque to search for the terrorist.” Ida’is referred to the arrest as an “attack” by the “occupation forces.”

The attack on Ansbacher was so brutal that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the murder “shocking brutality,” and it has been described by many as one of “the most horrific murders Israel has ever seen.” Why was Ori Ansbacher murdered? Because she was Jewish.

According to attorney and former prosecutor Ari Lieberman: “Forensic teams scoured the site for evidence and within 24 hours, there was a significant evidentiary breakthrough that led to the doorstep of 29-year-old Hebron resident, Arafat Irfayia. So strong was the physical evidence that police noted that they could secure a conviction even without a confession. Following the crime, Irfayia hid in a mosque in the Arab village of El-Bireh”

Palestinian Minister of Religious Affairs Yusuf Ida’is was so incensed that Israeli authorities dared to enter a mosque to search for the jihadi that he issued a statement with no mention of the murder of Ori Ansbacher, and he bizarrely dragged Christianity into it:

via PA minister ignores brutal murder of Israeli woman, condemns Israel for searching for jihadi in mosque

The Palestinians: Who Really Cares?

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A Palestinian who tries to bring a bag of cement or other construction materials into a refugee camp to build a house is subjected to arrest, interrogation, trial by military court and a fine.

Is this happening in the Gaza Strip? No. Is it happening in the West Bank? No. This inhumane and unjust practice is taking place in an Arab country where more than 500,00 Palestinians live: Lebanon.

Moreover, this ban on the entry of construction material is punishing not only the living, but also the dead. Palestinians say that because of the prohibition, they cannot even find enough stones and cement to build graves.

The wretched condition of the Palestinians living in Lebanon is often ignored by both the international community and the Western main stream media. The only Palestinians the international community seems to care about are those residing in the West Bank and Gaza Strip — those whose grievances can be blamed on Israel.

Most of the Palestinians in Lebanon live in 12 refugee camps, where they suffer from poverty, overcrowding and violence, as well as Lebanon’s discriminatory and apartheid laws and measures that deny them basic rights.

via The Palestinians: Who Really Cares?