Tuesday, May 31, 2011
A short film by the David Horowitz Freedom Center that uncovers the lies of "Israel Apartheid Week"
David Horowitz at UCLA - Part 1
Part 7, Q and A
Part 8, Q and A
Part 9, Q and A
Monday, May 30, 2011
Al-Jazeera footage captures 'western troops on the ground' in Libya
Five of Gaddafi's generals are among latest defectors to rebels as South African president seeks to broker ceasefire
Julian Borger and Martin Chulov
guardian.co.uk, Monday 30 May 2011 15.33 BST
Armed westerners have been filmed on the front line with rebels near Misrata in the first apparent confirmation that foreign special forces are playing an active role in the Libyan conflict.
A group of six westerners are clearly visible in a report by al-Jazeera from Dafniya, described as the westernmost point of the rebel lines west of the town of Misrata. Five of them were armed and wearing sand-coloured clothes, peaked caps, and cotton Arab scarves.
The sixth, apparently the most senior of the group, was carrying no visible weapon and wore a pink, short-sleeve shirt. He may be an intelligence officer. The group is seen talking to rebels and then quickly leaving on being spotted by the television crew.
South of the Old City, visitors to Jerusalem can enter a tunnel chipped from the bedrock by a Judean king 2,500 years ago and walk through knee-deep water under the Arab neighborhood of Silwan. Beginning this summer, a new passage will be open nearby: a sewer Jewish rebels are thought to have used to flee the Roman legions who destroyed the Jerusalem temple in 70 A.D.
The sewer leads uphill, passing beneath the Old City walls before expelling visitors into sunlight next to the rectangular enclosure where the temple once stood, now home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the gold-capped Dome of the Rock.
From there, it’s a short walk to a third passage, the Western Wall tunnel, which continues north from the Jewish holy site past stones cut by masons working for King Herod and an ancient water system. Visitors emerge near the entrance to an ancient quarry called Zedekiah’s Cave that descends under the Muslim Quarter.
The next major project, according to the Israel Antiquities Authority, will follow the course of one of the city’s main Roman-era streets underneath the prayer plaza at the Western Wall. This route, scheduled for completion in three years, will link up with the Western Wall tunnel.
The excavations and flood of visitors exist against a backdrop of acute distrust between Israeli Jews and Palestinian Muslims, who are suspicious of any government moves in the Old City and particularly around the Al-Aqsa compound, Islam’s third-holiest shrine. Jews know the compound as the Temple Mount, site of two destroyed temples and the center of the Jewish faith for three millennia.
Muslim fears have led to violence in the past: The 1996 opening of a new exit to the Western Wall tunnel sparked rumors among Palestinians that Israel meant to damage the mosques, and dozens were killed in the ensuing riots. In recent years, however, work has gone ahead without incident.
Mindful that the compound has the potential to trigger devastating conflict, Israel’s policy is to allow no excavations there. Digging under Temple Mount, the Israeli historian Gershom Gorenberg has written, “would be like trying to figure out how a hand grenade works by pulling the pin and peering inside.”
Despite the Israeli assurances, however, rumors persist that the excavations are undermining the physical stability of the Islamic holy sites.
“I believe the Israelis are tunneling under the mosques,” said Najeh Bkerat, an official of the Waqf, the Muslim religious body that runs the compound under Israel’s overall security control.
Samir Abu Leil, another Waqf official, said he had heard hammering that very morning underneath the Waqf’s offices, in a Mamluk-era building that sits just outside the holy compound and directly over the route of the Western Wall tunnel, and had filed a complaint with police.
The closest thing to an excavation on the mount, Israeli archaeologists point out, was done by the Waqf itself: In the 1990s, the Waqf opened a new entrance to a subterranean prayer space and dumped truckloads of rubble outside the Old City, drawing outrage from scholars who said priceless artifacts were being destroyed.
This month, an Israeli government watchdog released a report saying Waqf construction work in the compound in recent years had been done without supervision and had damaged antiquities. The issue is deemed so sensitive that the details of the report were kept classified.
Some Israeli critics of the tunnels point to what they call an exaggerated emphasis on a Jewish narrative.
“The tunnels all say: We were here 2,000 years ago, and now we’re back, and here’s proof,” said Yonathan Mizrachi, an Israeli archaeologist. “Living here means recognizing that other stories exist alongside ours.”
Yuval Baruch, the Antiquities Authority archaeologist in charge of Jerusalem, said his diggers are careful to preserve worthy finds from all of the city’s historical periods. “This city is of interest to at least half the people on Earth, and we will continue uncovering the past in the most professional way we can,” he said.
Sunday, May 29, 2011
The question of the Human Body (Eliade, Mircea, Encyclopedia of Religion, Vol. 6, God - Ichi, 6:499) and its disposition is intriguing. What survives human life? Organic life exists for a finite period of time, then ceases to be.
I would come down on the side of a dualist which radically differentiates the life principle from all else, as opposed to the homologization of microcosm and macrocosm (which systematically correlates the body with the world outside, p. 499).
"With regard to the first, dualistic physiology posits a radical distinction between base matter and some non-material life principle which inheres only within certain material aggregates for a period of finite duration. the entry of the life principle--be it defined as soul, spirit, breath, warmth, or the life--vivifies and energizes the matter in which it resides: when it departs, death is the result. Such a dualism is implicit in the familiar account of the creation of the first human being in Genesis 2:7 (p. 499).
There are elaborate religious conceptions of origin, existence, and explanations of the soul but what intrigues me is the scientific application of the life force. Energy, insofar as I understand it, does not simply go poof! So what happens scientifically to energy, or a force, and an organic life force at the cessation of death? Ordinarily, and only for the sake of discussion, this is the soul.
David Hume is the skeptic who doubts that "we have any idea of the self" (Stumpf, Samuel Enoch, Socrates to Sartre and Beyond: A History of Philosophy, p. 301). There is no myself that truly exists according to Hume since what I really can catch is only some perception of myself, not the self, itself.
Terrorist, Dying America Is a Tremendous Opportunity for U.S. Revolution: Obama Radical Buddy Bernardine Dohrn
Saturday, May 28, 2011
Peter Gadiel of 9/11 Families for a Secure America is discussed on the Bill O'Reilly news show concerning a new memorial for Peter's son who was murdered in the 9/11 attacks. Peter is insistent that the memorial in Kent, Connecticut state that his son was killed by Muslim terrorists. According to O'Reilly, the city is objecting on the grounds of political correctness.
RT's Adam vs the Man host Adam Kokesh and several other activists participating in a flash-mob were body slammed, choked and arrested at the publicly-funded Thomas Jefferson Memorial. Their crime? Silently dancing, in celebration of the first amendment's champion and in response to US District Judge John D. Bates' ruling that denounced dancing on the site.
I disagree; the cross is a religious symbol and should not be paid for at state expense. On the other hand, these are religious symbols that are historically important for a time when America adhered to Judeo-Christian values. The First Amendment states that the government should neither promote nor prohibit religious observance. Thus, the existing monuments should remain as historically significant, and be paid for by the state, until such time as citizens abandon religious symbols altogether, or, if they decide they would like to be religious once again. In this way, the state is neutral in regards to religious observance which is what I believe is what the Founders intended.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told CNSNews.com on Wednesday that the administration's new $500 million early learning initiative is designed to deal with children from birth onward to prevent such problems as 5-year olds who "can't sit still" in a kindergarten classroom.
“You really need to look at the range of issues, because if a 5-year-old can’t sit still, it is unlikely that they can do well in a kindergarten class, and it has to be the whole range of issues that go into healthy child development,” Sebelius said during a telephone news conference on Wednesday to announce the Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge.
Friday, May 27, 2011
Thursday, May 26, 2011
It wasn’t merely that Medvedev had chosen a date almost comically far into the future to suggest when the two nations might come to terms; the particular date he chose carried special meaning. 2020 is the year when the State Department has estimated the U.S. will deploy the SM-3 Block IIB, a missile still on the drawing board but being designed to intercept medium- and intermediate-range missiles that might be launched from the Middle East.
This reference to the video was gone after I posted it.
Joe Schoffstall out to see just how far liberals would go to silence conservative speech. Joe went around Georgetown in DC with a petition to "Ban Conservative Hate Sites" that said this:
"The undersigned hereby adamantly demand that the United States government shut down right wing hate sites. The hate speech propagated by sites like the Drudge Report, Hot Air, Instapundit, Big Government, and others must not be allowed to corrupt our political discourse any longer. These sites are dangerous not only to truth and freedom but also to our society as a whole. BAN THEM NOW!"
Australian TV reporter Stephen McDonnell recently went to Beijing to report on the underground church booming in China. But he wasn’t in the country long before he started noticing something: he was being followed.
Rep. Gohmert has more information on how Obama is supporting terrorist's organizations.
http://RTR.org | After the unconstitutional Indiana Supreme Court ruling removing the protections of the 4th Amendment, the people of Indiana spontaneously organized in a trans-partisan alliance uniting for the Constitution at their state capitol. Gary Franchi was on the scene to report.
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Monday, May 23, 2011
A Punjabi speaker told the paper the word Chalaque is 'not considered rude', but could be 'mildly offensive'.
It is also said to mean 'cheeky, crafty and cunning'.
Codename 'smart alec': British police label Obama with 'mildly offensive' Punjabi word for visit to UK
Sunday, May 22, 2011
The first commercial recording was in 1962, by Pery Ribeiro. The version performed by Astrud Gilberto, along with João Gilberto and Stan Getz, from the 1964 album Getz/Gilberto, became an international hit, reaching number five in the United States pop chart, number 29 in the United Kingdom, and charting highly throughout the world. Numerous recordings have been used in films, sometimes as an elevator music cliché (for example, near the end of The Blues Brothers). In 2004, it was one of 50 recordings chosen that year by the Library of Congress to be added to the National Recording Registry.
The Legendary Shots are a group of basketball fans who go to great lengths to get the ball in the net – literally.
The Alabama friends recently scored a basket from around 150 feet – potentially a new world record – but it was actually the method of the shot that pleased them more than the distance.
The nine-strong gang built a wooden catapult which they used to fire the ball across a street and through the rim.
Free fall shot
Her best-known hit was the pop classic "The End of the World" in 1963; the video is from a television appearance in 1965.
Music video by R.E.M. performing It's The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) (2003 Digital Remaster), 4:04
Saturday, May 21, 2011
If Obama's ignorance of the Constitution holds, then limited actions such as Vietnam, which led to the deaths of 58,000 Americans, is a legitimate presidential action. In addition, if we are taking orders from an international body such as NATO, then we do not need the approval of not only Congress but the American people as well.
“Since April 4,” Obama wrote, “U.S. participation has consisted of: (1) non-kinetic support to the NATO-led operation, including intelligence, logistical support, and search and rescue assistance; (2) aircraft that have assisted in the suppression and destruction of air defenses in support of the no-fly zone; and (3) since April 23, precision strikes by unmanned aerial vehicles against a limited set of clearly defined targets in support of the NATO-led coalition's efforts.”
Friday, May 20, 2011
College students who claim to support the freedom of speech wish to ban conservative talk-show hosts from both radio & TV (filmed at CSU Fresno).
Check out our website http://www.ExposingLeftists.com and follow us on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ExposingLeftists
Here’s the map of that area legally belonging to Israel (unchanged today) as granted by the League of Nations:
These documents are the last legally binding documents regarding the status of what is commonly called “the West Bank and Gaza.”
The Jewish homeland was to consist of all the land west of the Jordan River, stretching to the Mediterranean Sea – and including the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
The the Arabs would not have it. The League of Nations dissolved into the United Nations and the problem was handed over to the U.N., including the trusteeship of the British mandate to make a Jewish state a reality. The Mandate stood.
U.N. Resolution 181, known also as the U.N. 1947 Partition Resolution, was passed by the U.N. General Assembly, and implemented but never accepted by the Arabs. The Iraq spokesman took to the podium and put on record “Iraq does not recognize the validity of this decision.”
From Syria: “My country will never recognize such a decision [Partition]. It will never agree to be responsible for it.” From Yemen: “the Government of Yemen does not consider itself bound by such a decision.”
The Partition Plan was met not only by verbal rejection on the Arab side but also by concrete, bellicose steps to block its implementation and destroy the Jewish polity by force of arms, a goal the Arabs publicly declared even before Resolution 181 was brought to a vote.
Arabs not only rejected the compromise and took action to prevent establishment of a Jewish state but also blocked establishment of an Arab state under the partition plan not just before the Israel War of Independence, but also after the war when they themselves controlled the West Bank (1948-1967), rendering the recommendation ‘a still birth.’
The UN itself recognized that 181 had not been accepted by the Arab side, rendering it a dead issue: …
The U.N. partition began. More land was taken from the Jewish homeland.
The partition plan took on a checkerboard appearance. This was largely because Jewish towns and villages were spread throughout Palestine. This did not complicate the plan as much as the fact that the high living standards in Jewish cities and towns had attracted large Arab populations. This demographic factor insured that any partition would result in a Jewish state that included a substantial Arab population. Recognizing the need to allow for additional Jewish settlement, the majority proposal allotted the Jews land in the northern part of the country, Galilee, and the large, arid Negev desert in the south. The remainder was to form the Arab state.
The map now looked like this:
Israel’s land which was originally mandated at 126,000+ sq. km., was now to be a mere 14,245 sq. kms. In addition to limiting Jewish lands, the immigration of Jews was also limited so that a majority of Jews in the land would never be accomplished.
Arab immigration had no immigration restrictions.
Israel accepted the partition, but in reality, it did not change or diminish the legality of the lands mandated for Israel – which still included the West Bank and the Gaza Strip – because the Arabs would agree to nothing which facilitated Jews in Palestine.
Creating the Arab state of Jordan in no way affected or “changed the status of Jews west of the Jordan River, nor did it inhibit their right to settle anywhere in western Palestine, the area between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.” Nothing from the time of the Mandate until today, changes the fact that under international law, the West Bank and Gaza is open to Jewish settlement.
Under international law, neither Jordan nor the Palestinian Arab ‘people’ of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip have a substantial claim to the sovereign possession of the occupied territories.
The UN Charter’s Article 80 implicitly recognizes the “Mandate for Palestine” of the League of Nations. The International Court of Justice has reaffirmed the validity of Article of 80.
In other words, neither the ICJ nor the UN General Assembly can arbitrarily change the status of Jewish settlement as set forth in the “Mandate for Palestine,” an international accord that has never been amended.
All of western Palestine, from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, including the West Bank and Gaza, remains open to Jewish settlement under international law.
The new Jewish state was to have the right to self-determination of political, civil and religious rights. “Not once are Arabs as a people mentioned in the Mandate for Palestine. At no point in the entire document is there any granting of political rights to non-Jewish entities (i.e., Arabs).”
The Arabs accepted nothing. They wanted no Jews in Palestine, under any circumstance – there would be, to this day, no acceptable plan to which Arabs would agree to living next door to Jews.
On May 14th, 1948, a temporary legislature of the soon-to-be Israel, accepted the U.N. partition and declared statehood.
Eleven minutes after, the United States recognized the State of Israel. On May 15th, 1948 Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon and Syria invaded the sovereign nation of Israel, crossing international frontiers, and the Arab-Israeli War (Israeli War of Independence) began.
By July 24, 1949, Syria had signed an armistice agreement and Israel had increased it’s land area by almost 50% over the U.N. partition plan. The resulting armistice determined Israel’s borders for nineteen years. Egypt gained Gaza in the armistice. This document offers an extended discussion and links to maps.
The odd and secretive 1956 War began. The short but incomplete story is that Israel took Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, and then under threat by the U.S., gave it back.
Then came the 1967 Six Day War. In the Spring, Syria conducted terrorist raids against Israel, water was diverted by Syria, from Israel and irrigation projects for south and central Israel, although approved by Arab engineers as non-detrimental to Arab lands, were not approved by the Arab governments. In May, Egypt blocked the Strait of Tiran to Israeli ships. “Lebanon, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia all mobilized their troops. Iraqi troops reportedly approached the Syrian and Jordanian borders while Jordan moved tanks towards the West Bank.”
Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Jordan and Saudi Arabia formed a “defense pact.” Egyptian President Nasser said “Our basic objective will be the destruction if Israel."
The Arab people want to fight.” This link is an excellent map of the areas of attack on Israel from the “pact.” Click to enlarge the map. The tiny nation of Israel was surrounded by “some 500,000 troops, more than 5,000 tanks, and almost 1,000 fighter planes.” France, Israel’s major arms supplier, issued a “complete ban on weapons sales and transfers to Israel.”
Under the leadership of Moyshe Dayan, Israel decided to go to war on June 5, 1967.
After a three days of fierce fighting, especially in and around Jerusalem, Israeli forces defeated the Jordanians and gained control of all of Jerusalem as well as the West Bank, the historical heartland of the Jewish people known to Israelis as Judea and Samaria. Following an air attack by the Syrians on the first day of the war, Israel dealt a shattering blow to the Syrian air force. On the fifth day of the war, the Israelis mustered enough forces to remove the Syrian threat from the Golan Heights. This difficult operation was completed the following day, bringing the active phase of the war to a close.
Israel now looked like this:
Israel has since returned all of Sinai to Egypt in return for peace.
Most of Gaza is currently under the jurisdiction of the autonomous Palestinian Authority (2002).
Parts of the West Bank (see Map of Israel and Palestinian territories following Oslo II) had been ceded to the Palestinian authority, but these areas are currently re-occupied by Israel. Following the 6 day war, Israel began building settlements in these areas.
The aftermath of the war was complicated, but one fact was all too simple: Arabs rejected all diplomatic attempts. Some of [the] displaced people were able to return to Israeli-controlled West Bank and, along with their neighbors, witnessed unprecedented economic growth over the course of the next two decades. Israeli investment into the infrastructure of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, coupled with policies that allowed Arabs to move freely increased the standard of living of Palestinians, who were now able to work both in Israel and in the oil rich countries in the Middle East. After years of relative prosperity followed but Palestinians and the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) insisted that they would replace Israel, not co-exist with her.
With continued PLO agitation of the people, violence became common. Israel made peace with Egypt and returned the Sinai. The 1993 failed Oslo Peace Accord had Israel giving up the Gaza Strip and the West Bank – which was accomplished with Israel’s withdrawal, including the ejection of Jewish residents in the area in 2005. Once out of Gaza, nothing changed. The terrorists of Gaza Strip became slumlords and violence against Israel has continued. Palestinian militants—with the support of their Hamas-led government—have used the evacuated territory to launch rockets into Israel’s pre-1967 borders, shelling residents of Sderot and other neighboring communities and causing death, injuries and damage within Israel. Since Israel’s withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, the territory has also become the site of deadly internecine violence among Palestinian factions, kidnapping of journalists, vandalism, looting and general mayhem. Far from bringing peace to the Gaza Strip, the withdrawal has resulted in less secure borders for Israel.
In the 1973 War (Yom Kippur War), again the Arab world came against Israel, as Egypt sought to regain territories lost to Israel in 1967. After two days of trying to recover from the surprise attack, Israel’s IDF blocked Syrian, Egyptian and Iraqi assaults and once again took the Golan Heights. By the time a U.N. ceasefire was implemented, “Israel had completely surrounded the Egyptian Third Army.”
The Palestinian leadership remains committed to the destruction of Israel. The terrorist organizations Hamas and Fatah have never accepted “peace” with Israel. They co-exist next door to her – if only Israel will remove all settlements from wherever they may be currently. The issue is not the Jews in the settlements. The issue is the Jews in the Middle East.
No discussion of the Israeli-Arab conflict is complete without taking a look at the Palestinian people. Who are they? Who did they evolve from? The area known as Palestine was and is a geographic area, not an ethnic people. In other words, Arabs living in the area are not ethnically Palestinian. To say it another way: Palestinians are not a native people. “The word Palestine is not even Arabic.” Palestine is a name coined by the Romans around 135 CE from the name of a seagoing Aegean people who settled on the coast of Canaan in antiquity – the Philistines. The name was chosen to replace Judea, as a sign that Jewish sovereignty had been eradicated following the Jewish Revolts against Rome. In the course of time, the Latin name Philistia was further bastardized into Palistina or Palestine. During the next 2,000 years Palestine was never an independent state belonging to any people, nor did a Palestinian people distinct from other Arabs appear during 1,300 years of Muslim hegemony in Palestine under Arab and Ottoman rule. During that rule, local Arabs were actually considered part of, and subject to, the authority of Greater Syria (Suriyya al-Kubra). Archeologists explain that the Philistines were a Mediterranean people who settled along the coast of Canaan in 1100 BCE. They have no connection to the Arab nation, a desert people who emerged from the Arabian Peninsula. Tagging the Arabs in Palestine as Palestinian was a mission fabricated by Arabs to attempt to assert the Arab right to the Jewish holy lands at the time when Jewish statehood was becoming a reality – but history shows that Arabs were never identified as Palestinians.
This is substantiated in countless official British Mandate-vintage documents that speak of the Jews and the Arabs of Palestine – not Jews and Palestinians. The Jerusalem Post, founded in 1932, was called The Palestine Post until 1948.
Bank Leumi L’Israel, incorporated in 1902, was called the “Anglo-Palestine Company” until 1948. The Jewish Agency – an arm of the Zionist movement engaged in Jewish settlement since 1929 – was initially called the Jewish Agency for Palestine. Today’s Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, founded in 1936 by German Jewish refugees who fled Nazi Germany, was originally called the “Palestine Symphony Orchestra,” composed of some 70 Palestinian Jews. The United Jewish Appeal (UJA) was established in 1939 as a merger of the United Palestine Appeal and the fund-raising arm of the Joint Distribution Committee.
Fifty-one countries acknowledged that Israel had an historic connection to the land eventually known as Palestine: whereas recognition has been given to the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine and to the grounds for reconstituting their national home in that country. Furthermore, the rhetoric by Arab leaders on behalf of the Palestinians rings hollow. Arabs in neighboring states, who control 99.9 percent of the Middle East land, have never recognized a Palestinian entity. They have always considered Palestine and its inhabitants part of the great “Arab nation,” historically and politically as an integral part of Greater Syria. The Arabs never established a Palestinian state when the UN in 1947 recommended to partition Palestine, and to establish “an Arab and a Jewish state” (not a Palestinian state, it should be noted). Nor did the Arabs recognize or establish a Palestinian state during the two decades prior to the Six-Day War when the West Bank was under Jordanian control and the Gaza Strip was under Egyptian control; nor did the Palestinian Arabs clamor for autonomy or independence during those years under Jordanian and Egyptian rule.
The population of Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Iraq did not “evolve,” but were created by “colonial powers.” There is no Palestinian DNA. Unlike nation-states in Europe, modern Lebanese, Jordanian, Syrian, and Iraqi nationalities did not evolve. They were arbitrarily created by colonial powers. In 1919, in the wake of World War I, England and France as Mandatory (e.g., official administrators and mentors) carved up the former Ottoman Empire, which had collapsed a year earlier, into geographic spheres of influence. This divided the Mideast into new political entities with new names and frontiers. The prevailing rationale behind these artificially created states was how they served the imperial and commercial needs of their colonial masters. Iraq and Jordan, for instance, were created as emirates to reward the noble Hashemite family from Saudi Arabia for its loyalty to the British against the Ottoman Turks during World War I, under the leadership of Lawrence of Arabia. Iraq was given to Faisal bin Hussein, son of the sheriff of Mecca, in 1918. To reward his younger brother Abdullah with an emirate, Britain cut away 77 percent of its mandate over Palestine earmarked for the Jews and gave it to Abdullah in 1922, creating the new country of Trans-Jordan or Jordan, as it was later named. Israel did not steal the homeland of the Palestinians.
The Fatah Constitution states in Articles 12 and 19: Complete liberation of Palestine and eradication of Zionist economic, political, military and cultural existence.” Armed struggle is a strategy and not a tactic, and the Palestinian Arab People’s armed revolution is a decisive factor in the liberation fight and in uprooting the Zionist existence, and this struggle will not cease unless the Zionist state is demolished and Palestine is completely liberated.” The PLO Charter Article 15 calls the liberation of Palestine a national (qawmi) duty to repel the Zionist and imperialist aggression against the Arab homeland, and aims at the “liquidation of the Zionist presence” in Palestine. The Hamas Charter: “The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. In the Hamas Charter Article 15 (a portion): “The day that enemies usurp part of Moslem land, Jihad becomes the individual duty of every Moslem. In face of the Jews’ usurpation of Palestine, it is compulsory that the banner of Jihad be raised. To do this requires the diffusion of Islamic consciousness among the masses, both on the regional, Arab and Islamic levels. It is necessary to instill the spirit of Jihad in the heart of the nation so that they would confront the enemies and join the ranks of the fighters.”
Related and Background: Israel – Palestine Flight from Fact – The Maddening Reality Other Sources: The Origins of the Arab-Jewish Conflict Over Palestine The Myth of Moslem-Jewish coexistence in “Palestine” How Feudal Arab landowners who exploited their peasantry became Nationalist Leaders" Map of Israel and Palestinian territories following Oslo II) Map of Israel and Palestinian territories following Oslo II) had been ceded to the Palestinian authority, but these areas are currently re-occupied by Israel. Following the 6 day war, Israel began building settlements in these areas. Click for a map of the settlements.
The aftermath of the war was complicated, but one fact was all too simple: Arabs rejected all diplomatic attempts.
Some of [the] displaced people were able to return to Israeli-controlled West Bank and, along with their neighbors, witnessed unprecedented economic growth over the course of the next two decades. Israeli investment into the infrastructure of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, coupled with policies that allowed Arabs to move freely increased the standard of living of Palestinians, who were now able to work both in Israel and in the oil rich countries in the Middle East.
After years of relative prosperity followed but Palestinians and the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) insisted that they would replace Israel, not co-exist with her.
With continued PLO agitation of the people, violence became common. Israel made peace with Egypt and returned the Sinai. The 1993 failed Oslo Peace Accord had Israel giving up the Gaza Strip and the West Bank – which was accomplished with Israel’s withdrawal, including the ejection of Jewish residents in the area in 2005. Once out of Gaza, nothing changed. The terrorists of Gaza Strip became slumlords and violence against Israel has continued.
Palestinian militants—with the support of their Hamas-led government—have used the evacuated territory to launch rockets into Israel’s pre-1967 borders, shelling residents of Sderot and other neighboring communities and causing death, injuries and damage within Israel. Since Israel’s withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, the territory has also become the site of deadly internecine violence among Palestinian factions, kidnapping of journalists, vandalism, looting and general mayhem. Far from bringing peace to the Gaza Strip, the withdrawal has resulted in less secure borders for Israel.
In the 1973 War (Yom Kippur War), again the Arab world came against Israel, as Egypt sought to regain territories lost to Israel in 1967. After two days of trying to recover from the surprise attack, Israel’s IDF blocked Syrian, Egyptian and Iraqi assaults and once again took the Golan Heights. By the time a U.N. ceasefire was implemented, “Israel had completely surrounded the Egyptian Third Army.”
How could they succeed when Palestinian leadership remained and remains committed to the destruction of Israel? Those deluded into thinking that terrorist organizations Hamas and Fatah will accept “peace” with Israel, and co-exist next door to her – if only Israel will remove all settlements from wherever they may be, please rethink this issue, and believe the words of Palestinian leadership, which says it will never happen.
The issue is not the Jews in the settlements. The issue is the Jews in the Middle East.
No discussion of the Israeli-Arab conflict is complete without taking a look at the Palestinian people. Who are they? Who did they evolve from?
Palestine is a Geographical Area, Not a Nationality
The area known as Palestine was and is a geographic area, not an ethnic people. In other words, Arabs living in the area are not ethnically Palestinian. To say it another way: Palestinians are not a native people. “The word Palestine is not even Arabic.”
Palestine is a name coined by the Romans around 135 CE from the name of a seagoing Aegean people who settled on the coast of Canaan in antiquity – the Philistines.
The name was chosen to replace Judea, as a sign that Jewish sovereignty had been eradicated following the Jewish Revolts against Rome.
In the course of time, the Latin name Philistia was further bastardized into Palistina or Palestine. During the next 2,000 years Palestine was never an independent state belonging to any people, nor did a Palestinian people distinct from other Arabs appear during 1,300 years of Muslim hegemony in Palestine under Arab and Ottoman rule.
During that rule, local Arabs were actually considered part of, and subject to, the authority of Greater Syria ( Suriyya al-Kubra). Archeologists explain that the Philistines were a Mediterranean people who settled along the coast of Canaan in 1100 BCE. They have no connection to the Arab nation, a desert people who emerged from the Arabian Peninsula.
Tagging the Arabs in Palestine as Palestinian was a mission fabricated by Arabs to attempt to assert the Arab right to the Jewish holy lands at the time when Jewish statehood was becoming a reality – but history shows that Arabs were never identified as Palestinians:
This is substantiated in countless official British Mandate-vintage documents that speak of the Jews and the Arabs of Palestine – not Jews and Palestinians.
The Jerusalem Post, founded in 1932, was called The Palestine Post until 1948.
Bank Leumi L’Israel, incorporated in 1902, was called the “Anglo-Palestine Company” until 1948.
The Jewish Agency – an arm of the Zionist movement engaged in Jewish settlement since 1929 – was initially called the Jewish Agency for Palestine.
Today’s Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, founded in 1936 by German Jewish refugees who fled Nazi Germany, was originally called the “Palestine Symphony Orchestra,” composed of some 70 Palestinian Jews.
The United Jewish Appeal (UJA) was established in 1939 as a merger of the United Palestine Appeal and the fund-raising arm of the Joint Distribution Committee.
Fifty-one countries acknowledged that Israel had an historic connection to the land eventually known as Palestine:
Whereas recognition has been given to the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine and to the grounds for reconstituting their national home in that country.
The rhetoric by Arab leaders on behalf of the Palestinians rings hollow. Arabs in neighboring states, who control 99.9 percent of the Middle East land, have never recognized a Palestinian entity. They have always considered Palestine and its inhabitants part of the great “Arab nation,” historically and politically as an integral part of Greater Syria…
The Arabs never established a Palestinian state when the UN in 1947 recommended to partition Palestine, and to establish “an Arab and a Jewish state” (not a Palestinian state, it should be noted). Nor did the Arabs recognize or establish a Palestinian state during the two decades prior to the Six-Day War when the West Bank was under Jordanian control and the Gaza Strip was under Egyptian control; nor did the Palestinian Arabs clamor for autonomy or independence during those years under Jordanian and Egyptian rule.
The population of Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Iraq did not “evolve,” but were created by “colonial powers.” No “Palestinian DNA exists!
Unlike nation-states in Europe, modern Lebanese, Jordanian, Syrian, and Iraqi nationalities did not evolve. They were arbitrarily created by colonial powers.
In 1919, in the wake of World War I, England and France as Mandatory (e.g., official administrators and mentors) carved up the former Ottoman Empire, which had collapsed a year earlier, into geographic spheres of influence. This divided the Mideast into new political entities with new names and frontiers.
The prevailing rationale behind these artificially created states was how they served the imperial and commercial needs of their colonial masters. Iraq and Jordan, for instance, were created as emirates to reward the noble Hashemite family from Saudi Arabia for its loyalty to the British against the Ottoman Turks during World War I, under the leadership of Lawrence of Arabia. Iraq was given to Faisal bin Hussein, son of the sheriff of Mecca, in 1918.
To reward his younger brother Abdullah with an emirate, Britain cut away 77 percent of its mandate over Palestine earmarked for the Jews and gave it to Abdullah in 1922, creating the new country of Trans-Jordan or Jordan, as it was later named.
The Palestinian position denounces Israel
Fatah Constitution Articles 12 and 19: Complete liberation of Palestine and eradication of Zionist economic, political, military and cultural existence.” Armed struggle is a strategy and not a tactic, and the Palestinian Arab People’s armed revolution is a decisive factor in the liberation fight and in uprooting the Zionist existence, and this struggle will not cease unless the Zionist state is demolished and Palestine is completely liberated.”
The PLO Charter Article 15 calls the liberation of Palestine a national (qawmi) duty to repel the Zionist and imperialist aggression against the Arab homeland, and aims at the “liquidation of the Zionist presence” in Palestine.
The Hamas Charter: “The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees….Hamas Charter Article 15 (a portion): “The day that enemies usurp part of Moslem land, Jihad becomes the individual duty of every Moslem. In face of the Jews’ usurpation of Palestine, it is compulsory that the banner of Jihad be raised.
To do this requires the diffusion of Islamic consciousness among the masses, both on the regional, Arab and Islamic levels. It is necessary to instill the spirit of Jihad in the heart of the nation so that they would confront the enemies and join the ranks of the fighters.”
Related and Background:
Israel – Palestine Flight from Fact – The Maddening Reality
The Origins of the Arab-Jewish Conflict Over Palestine
The Myth of Moslem-Jewish coexistence in “Palestine”
Feudal Arab landowners who exploited their peasantry became Nationalist LeadersHow
5/20/11 Charles Krauthammer on the 1967 border
Thursday, May 19, 2011
“Yet expectations have gone unmet. Israeli settlement activity continues. Palestinians have walked away from talks. The world looks at a conflict that has grinded on and on and on, and sees nothing but stalemate.”
Every time he attempts to equivocate the two sides, he favors Palestinians. “Palestinians” have not merely “walked away”, they grab rockets and make bombs and plot Israel’s destruction and fire away. (with the help of many friends; even in the “international community” ignoring it)
Obama – As Prepared for Delivery
“A Moment of Opportunity”
U.S. Department of State
May 19, 2011
As Prepared for Delivery –
I want to thank Hillary Clinton, who has traveled so much these last six months that she is approaching a new landmark – one million frequent flyer miles. I count on Hillary every day, and I believe that she will go down as of the finest Secretaries of State in our nation’s history.
The State Department is a fitting venue to mark a new chapter in American diplomacy. For six months, we have witnessed an extraordinary change take place in the Middle East and North Africa. Square by square; town by town; country by country; the people have risen up to demand their basic human rights. Two leaders have stepped aside. More may follow. And though these countries may be a great distance from our shores, we know that our own future is bound to this region by the forces of economics and security; history and faith.
Today, I would like to talk about this change – the forces that are driving it, and how we can respond in a way that advances our values and strengthens our security. Already, we have done much to shift our foreign policy following a decade defined by two costly conflicts. After years of war in Iraq, we have removed 100,000 American troops and ended our combat mission there. In Afghanistan, we have broken the Taliban’s momentum, and this July we will begin to bring our troops home and continue transition to Afghan lead. And after years of war against al Qaeda and its affiliates, we have dealt al Qaeda a huge blow by killing its leader – Osama bin Laden.
Bin Laden was no martyr. He was a mass murderer who offered a message of hate – an insistence that Muslims had to take up arms against the West, and that violence against men, women and children was the only path to change. He rejected democracy and individual rights for Muslims in favor of violent extremism; his agenda focused on what he could destroy – not what he could build.
Bin Laden and his murderous vision won some adherents. But even before his death, al Qaeda was losing its struggle for relevance, as the overwhelming majority of people saw that the slaughter of innocents did not answer their cries for a better life. By the time we found bin Laden, al Qaeda’s agenda had come to be seen by the vast majority of the region as a dead end, and the people of the Middle East and North Africa had taken their future into their own hands.
That story of self-determination began six months ago in Tunisia. On December 17, a young vendor named Mohammed Bouazizi was devastated when a police officer confiscated his cart. This was not unique. It is the same kind of humiliation that takes place every day in many parts of the world – the relentless tyranny of governments that deny their citizens dignity. Only this time, something different happened. After local officials refused to hear his complaint, this young man who had never been particularly active in politics went to the headquarters of the provincial government, doused himself in fuel, and lit himself on fire.
Sometimes, in the course of history, the actions of ordinary citizens spark movements for change because they speak to a longing for freedom that has built up for years. In America, think of the defiance of those patriots in Boston who refused to pay taxes to a King, or the dignity of Rosa Parks as she sat courageously in her seat. So it was in Tunisia, as that vendor’s act of desperation tapped into the frustration felt throughout the country. Hundreds of protesters took to the streets, then thousands. And in the face of batons and sometimes bullets, they refused to go home – day after day, week after week, until a dictator of more than two decades finally left power.
The story of this Revolution, and the ones that followed, should not have come as a surprise. The nations of the Middle East and North Africa won their independence long ago, but in too many places their people did not. In too many countries, power has been concentrated in the hands of the few. In too many countries, a citizen like that young vendor had nowhere to turn – no honest judiciary to hear his case; no independent media to give him voice; no credible political party to represent his views; no free and fair election where he could choose his leader.
This lack of self determination – the chance to make of your life what you will – has applied to the region’s economy as well. Yes, some nations are blessed with wealth in oil and gas, and that has led to pockets of prosperity. But in a global economy based on knowledge and innovation, no development strategy can be based solely upon what comes out of the ground. Nor can people reach their potential when you cannot start a business without paying a bribe.
In the face of these challenges, too many leaders in the region tried to direct their people’s grievances elsewhere. The West was blamed as the source of all ills, a half century after the end of colonialism. Antagonism toward Israel became the only acceptable outlet for political expression. Divisions of tribe, ethnicity and religious sect were manipulated as a means of holding on to power, or taking it away from somebody else.
But the events of the past six months show us that strategies of repression and diversion won’t work anymore. Satellite television and the Internet provide a window into the wider world – a world of astonishing progress in places like India, Indonesia and Brazil. Cell phones and social networks allow young people to connect and organize like never before. A new generation has emerged. And their voices tell us that change cannot be denied.
In Cairo, we heard the voice of the young mother who said, “It’s like I can finally breathe fresh air for the first time.”
In Sanaa, we heard the students who chanted, “The night must come to an end.”
In Benghazi, we heard the engineer who said, “Our words are free now. It’s a feeling you can’t explain.”
In Damascus, we heard the young man who said, “After the first yelling, the first shout, you feel dignity.”
Those shouts of human dignity are being heard across the region. And through the moral force of non-violence, the people of the region have achieved more change in six months than terrorists have accomplished in decades.
Of course, change of this magnitude does not come easily. In our day and age – a time of 24 hour news cycles, and constant communication – people expect the transformation of the region to be resolved in a matter of weeks. But it will be years before this story reaches its end. Along the way, there will be good days, and bad days. In some places, change will be swift; in others, gradual. And as we have seen, calls for change may give way to fierce contests for power.
The question before us is what role America will play as this story unfolds. For decades, the United States has pursued a set of core interests in the region: countering terrorism and stopping the spread of nuclear weapons; securing the free flow of commerce, and safe-guarding the security of the region; standing up for Israel’s security and pursuing Arab-Israeli peace.
We will continue to do these things, with the firm belief that America’s interests are not hostile to peoples’ hopes; they are essential to them. We believe that no one benefits from a nuclear arms race in the region, or al Qaeda’s brutal attacks. People everywhere would see their economies crippled by a cut off in energy supplies. As we did in the Gulf War, we will not tolerate aggression across borders, and we will keep our commitments to friends and partners.
Yet we must acknowledge that a strategy based solely upon the narrow pursuit of these interests will not fill an empty stomach or allow someone to speak their mind. Moreover, failure to speak to the broader aspirations of ordinary people will only feed the suspicion that has festered for years that the United States pursues our own interests at their expense. Given that this mistrust runs both ways – as Americans have been seared by hostage taking, violent rhetoric, and terrorist attacks that have killed thousands of our citizens – a failure to change our approach threatens a deepening spiral of division between the United States and Muslim communities.
That’s why, two years ago in Cairo, I began to broaden our engagement based upon mutual interests and mutual respect. I believed then – and I believe now – that we have a stake not just in the stability of nations, but in the self determination of individuals. The status quo is not sustainable. Societies held together by fear and repression may offer the illusion of stability for a time, but they are built upon fault lines that will eventually tear asunder.
So we face an historic opportunity. We have embraced the chance to show that America values the dignity of the street vendor in Tunisia more than the raw power of the dictator. There must be no doubt that the United States of America welcomes change that advances self-determination and opportunity. Yes, there will be perils that accompany this moment of promise. But after decades of accepting the world as it is in the region, we have a chance to pursue the world as it should be.
As we do, we must proceed with a sense of humility. It is not America that put people into the streets of Tunis and Cairo – it was the people themselves who launched these movements, and must determine their outcome. Not every country will follow our particular form of representative democracy, and there will be times when our short term interests do not align perfectly with our long term vision of the region. But we can – and will – speak out for a set of core principles – principles that have guided our response to the events over the past six months:
The United States opposes the use of violence and repression against the people of the region.
We support a set of universal rights. Those rights include free speech; the freedom of peaceful assembly; freedom of religion; equality for men and women under the rule of law; and the right to choose your own leaders – whether you live in Baghdad or Damascus; Sanaa or Tehran.
And finally, we support political and economic reform in the Middle East and North Africa that can meet the legitimate aspirations of ordinary people throughout the region.
Our support for these principles is not a secondary interest– today I am making it clear that it is a top priority that must be translated into concrete actions, and supported by all of the diplomatic, economic and strategic tools at our disposal.
Let me be specific. First, it will be the policy of the United States to promote reform across the region, and to support transitions to democracy.
That effort begins in Egypt and Tunisia, where the stakes are high –as Tunisia was at the vanguard of this democratic wave, and Egypt is both a longstanding partner and the Arab World’s largest nation. Both nations can set a strong example through free and fair elections; a vibrant civil society; accountable and effective democratic institutions; and responsible regional leadership. But our support must also extend to nations where transitions have yet to take place.
Unfortunately, in too many countries, calls for change have been answered by violence. The most extreme example is Libya, where Moammar Gaddafi launched a war against his people, promising to hunt them down like rats. As I said when the United States joined an international coalition to intervene, we cannot prevent every injustice perpetrated by a regime against its people, and we have learned from our experience in Iraq just how costly and difficult it is to impose regime change by force – no matter how well-intended it may be.
But in Libya, we saw the prospect of imminent massacre, had a mandate for action, and heard the Libyan people’s call for help. Had we not acted along with our NATO allies and regional coalition partners, thousands would have been killed. The message would have been clear: keep power by killing as many people as it takes. Now, time is working against Gaddafi. He does not have control over his country. The opposition has organized a legitimate and credible Interim Council. And when Gaddafi inevitably leaves or is forced from power, decades of provocation will come to an end, and the transition to a democratic Libya can proceed.
While Libya has faced violence on the greatest scale, it is not the only place where leaders have turned to repression to remain in power. Most recently, the Syrian regime has chosen the path of murder and the mass arrests of its citizens. The United States has condemned these actions, and working with the international community we have stepped up our sanctions on the Syrian regime – including sanctions announced yesterday on President Assad and those around him.
The Syrian people have shown their courage in demanding a transition to democracy. President Assad now has a choice: he can lead that transition, or get out of the way. The Syrian government must stop shooting demonstrators and allow peaceful protests; release political prisoners and stop unjust arrests; allow human rights monitors to have access to cities like Dara’a; and start a serious dialogue to advance a democratic transition. Otherwise, President Assad and his regime will continue to be challenged from within and isolated abroad
Thus far, Syria has followed its Iranian ally, seeking assistance from Tehran in the tactics of suppression. This speaks to the hypocrisy of the Iranian regime, which says it stand for the rights of protesters abroad, yet suppresses its people at home. Let us remember that the first peaceful protests were in the streets of Tehran, where the government brutalized women and men, and threw innocent people into jail. We still hear the chants echo from the rooftops of Tehran. The image of a young woman dying in the streets is still seared in our memory. And we will continue to insist that the Iranian people deserve their universal rights, and a government that does not smother their aspirations.
Our opposition to Iran’s intolerance – as well as its illicit nuclear program, and its sponsorship of terror – is well known. But if America is to be credible, we must acknowledge that our friends in the region have not all reacted to the demands for change consistent with the principles that I have outlined today. That is true in Yemen, where President Saleh needs to follow through on his commitment to transfer power. And that is true, today, in Bahrain.
Bahrain is a long-standing partner, and we are committed to its security. We recognize that Iran has tried to take advantage of the turmoil there, and that the Bahraini government has a legitimate interest in the rule of law. Nevertheless, we have insisted publically and privately that mass arrests and brute force are at odds with the universal rights of Bahrain’s citizens, and will not make legitimate calls for reform go away. The only way forward is for the government and opposition to engage in a dialogue, and you can’t have a real dialogue when parts of the peaceful opposition are in jail. The government must create the conditions for dialogue, and the opposition must participate to forge a just future for all Bahrainis.
Indeed, one of the broader lessons to be drawn from this period is that sectarian divides need not lead to conflict. In Iraq, we see the promise of a multi-ethnic, multi-sectarian democracy. There, the Iraqi people have rejected the perils of political violence for a democratic process, even as they have taken full responsibility for their own security. Like all new democracies, they will face setbacks. But Iraq is poised to play a key role in the region if it continues its peaceful progress. As they do, we will be proud to stand with them as a steadfast partner.
So in the months ahead, America must use all our influence to encourage reform in the region. Even as we acknowledge that each country is different, we will need to speak honestly about the principles that we believe in, with friend and foe alike. Our message is simple: if you take the risks that reform entails, you will have the full support of the United States. We must also build on our efforts to broaden our engagement beyond elites, so that we reach the people who will shape the future – particularly young people.
We will continue to make good on the commitments that I made in Cairo – to build networks of entrepreneurs, and expand exchanges in education; to foster cooperation in science and technology, and combat disease. Across the region, we intend to provide assistance to civil society, including those that may not be officially sanctioned, and who speak uncomfortable truths. And we will use the technology to connect with – and listen to – the voices of the people.
In fact, real reform will not come at the ballot box alone. Through our efforts we must support those basic rights to speak your mind and access information. We will support open access to the Internet, and the right of journalists to be heard – whether it’s a big news organization or a blogger. In the 21st century, information is power; the truth cannot be hidden; and the legitimacy of governments will ultimately depend on active and informed citizens.
Such open discourse is important even if what is said does not square with our worldview. America respects the right of all peaceful and law-abiding voices to be heard, even if we disagree with them. We look forward to working with all who embrace genuine and inclusive democracy. What we will oppose is an attempt by any group to restrict the rights of others, and to hold power through coercion – not consent. Because democracy depends not only on elections, but also strong and accountable institutions, and respect for the rights of minorities.
Such tolerance is particularly important when it comes to religion. In Tahrir Square, we heard Egyptians from all walks of life chant, “Muslims, Christians, we are one.” America will work to see that this spirit prevails – that all faiths are respected, and that bridges are built among them. In a region that was the birthplace of three world religions, intolerance can lead only to suffering and stagnation. And for this season of change to succeed, Coptic Christians must have the right to worship freely in Cairo, just as Shia must never have their mosques destroyed in Bahrain.
What is true for religious minorities is also true when it comes to the rights of women. History shows that countries are more prosperous and peaceful when women are empowered. That is why we will continue to insist that universal rights apply to women as well as men – by focusing assistance on child and maternal health; by helping women to teach, or start a business; by standing up for the right of women to have their voices heard, and to run for office. For the region will never reach its potential when more than half its population is prevented from achieving their potential.
Even as we promote political reform and human rights in the region, our efforts cannot stop there. So the second way that we must support positive change in the region is through our efforts to advance economic development for nations that transition to democracy.
After all, politics alone has not put protesters into the streets. The tipping point for so many people is the more constant concern of putting food on the table and providing for a family. Too many in the region wake up with few expectations other than making it through the day, and perhaps the hope that their luck will change. Throughout the region, many young people have a solid education, but closed economies leave them unable to find a job. Entrepreneurs are brimming with ideas, but corruption leaves them unable to profit from them.
The greatest untapped resource in the Middle East and North Africa is the talent of its people. In the recent protests, we see that talent on display, as people harness technology to move the world. It’s no coincidence that one of the leaders of Tahrir Square was an executive for Google. That energy now needs to be channeled, in country after country, so that economic growth can solidify the accomplishments of the street. Just as democratic revolutions can be triggered by a lack of individual opportunity, successful democratic transitions depend upon an expansion of growth and broad-based prosperity.
Drawing from what we’ve learned around the world, we think it’s important to focus on trade, not just aid; and investment, not just assistance. The goal must be a model in which protectionism gives way to openness; the reigns of commerce pass from the few to the many, and the economy generates jobs for the young. America’s support for democracy will therefore be based on ensuring financial stability; promoting reform; and integrating competitive markets with each other and the global economy – starting with Tunisia and Egypt.
First, we have asked the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund to present a plan at next week’s G-8 summit for what needs to be done to stabilize and modernize the economies of Tunisia and Egypt. Together, we must help them recover from the disruption of their democratic upheaval, and support the governments that will be elected later this year. And we are urging other countries to help Egypt and Tunisia meet its near-term financial needs.
Second, we do not want a democratic Egypt to be saddled by the debts of its past. So we will relieve a democratic Egypt of up to $1 billion in debt, and work with our Egyptian partners to invest these resources to foster growth and entrepreneurship. We will help Egypt regain access to markets by guaranteeing $1 billion in borrowing that is needed to finance infrastructure and job creation. And we will help newly democratic governments recover assets that were stolen.
Third, we are working with Congress to create Enterprise Funds to invest in Tunisia and Egypt. These will be modeled on funds that supported the transitions in Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall. OPIC will soon launch a $2 billion facility to support private investment across the region. And we will work with allies to refocus the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development so that it provides the same support for democratic transitions and economic modernization in the Middle East and North Africa as it has in Europe.
Fourth, the United States will launch a comprehensive Trade and Investment Partnership Initiative in the Middle East and North Africa. If you take out oil exports, this region of over 400 million people exports roughly the same amount as Switzerland. So we will work with the EU to facilitate more trade within the region, build on existing agreements to promote integration with U.S. and European markets, and open the door for those countries who adopt high standards of reform and trade liberalization to construct a regional trade arrangement. Just as EU membership served as an incentive for reform in Europe, so should the vision of a modern and prosperous economy create a powerful force for reform in the Middle East and North Africa.
Prosperity also requires tearing down walls that stand in the way of progress – the corruption of elites who steal from their people; the red tape that stops an idea from becoming a business; the patronage that distributes wealth based on tribe or sect. We will help governments meet international obligations, and invest efforts anti-corruption; by working with parliamentarians who are developing reforms, and activists who use technology to hold government accountable.
Let me conclude by talking about another cornerstone of our approach to the region, and that relates to the pursuit of peace.
For decades, the conflict between Israelis and Arabs has cast a shadow over the region. For Israelis, it has meant living with the fear that their children could get blown up on a bus or by rockets fired at their homes, as well as the pain of knowing that other children in the region are taught to hate them. For Palestinians, it has meant suffering the humiliation of occupation, and never living in a nation of their own. Moreover, this conflict has come with a larger cost the Middle East, as it impedes partnerships that could bring greater security, prosperity, and empowerment to ordinary people.
My Administration has worked with the parties and the international community for over two years to end this conflict, yet expectations have gone unmet. Israeli settlement activity continues. Palestinians have walked away from talks. The world looks at a conflict that has grinded on for decades, and sees a stalemate. Indeed, there are those who argue that with all the change and uncertainty in the region, it is simply not possible to move forward.
I disagree. At a time when the people of the Middle East and North Africa are casting off the burdens of the past, the drive for a lasting peace that ends the conflict and resolves all claims is more urgent than ever.
For the Palestinians, efforts to delegitimize Israel will end in failure. Symbolic actions to isolate Israel at the United Nations in September won’t create an independent state. Palestinian leaders will not achieve peace or prosperity if Hamas insists on a path of terror and rejection. And Palestinians will never realize their independence by denying the right of Israel to exist.
As for Israel, our friendship is rooted deeply in a shared history and shared values. Our commitment to Israel’s security is unshakeable. And we will stand against attempts to single it out for criticism in international forums. But precisely because of our friendship, it is important that we tell the truth: the status quo is unsustainable, and Israel too must act boldly to advance a lasting peace.
The fact is, a growing number of Palestinians live west of the Jordan River. Technology will make it harder for Israel to defend itself. A region undergoing profound change will lead to populism in which millions of people – not just a few leaders – must believe peace is possible. The international community is tired of an endless process that never produces an outcome. The dream of a Jewish and democratic state cannot be fulfilled with permanent occupation.
Ultimately, it is up to Israelis and Palestinians to take action. No peace can be imposed upon them, nor can endless delay make the problem go away. But what America and the international community can do is state frankly what everyone knows: a lasting peace will involve two states for two peoples. Israel as a Jewish state and the homeland for the Jewish people, and the state of Palestine as the homeland for the Palestinian people; each state enjoying self-determination, mutual recognition, and peace.
So while the core issues of the conflict must be negotiated, the basis of those negotiations is clear: a viable Palestine, and a secure Israel. The United States believes that negotiations should result in two states, with permanent Palestinian borders with Israel, Jordan, and Egypt, and permanent Israeli borders with Palestine. The borders of Israel and Palestine should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps, so that secure and recognized borders are established for both states. The Palestinian people must have the right to govern themselves, and reach their potential, in a sovereign and contiguous state.
As for security, every state has the right to self-defense, and Israel must be able to defend itself – by itself – against any threat. Provisions must also be robust enough to prevent a resurgence of terrorism; to stop the infiltration of weapons; and to provide effective border security. The full and phased withdrawal of Israeli military forces should be coordinated with the assumption of Palestinian security responsibility in a sovereign, non-militarized state. The duration of this transition period must be agreed, and the effectiveness of security arrangements must be demonstrated.
These principles provide a foundation for negotiations. Palestinians should know the territorial outlines of their state; Israelis should know that their basic security concerns will be met. I know that these steps alone will not resolve this conflict. Two wrenching and emotional issues remain: the future of Jerusalem, and the fate of Palestinian refugees. But moving forward now on the basis of territory and security provides a foundation to resolve those two issues in a way that is just and fair, and that respects the rights and aspirations of Israelis and Palestinians.
Recognizing that negotiations need to begin with the issues of territory and security does not mean that it will be easy to come back to the table. In particular, the recent announcement of an agreement between Fatah and Hamas raises profound and legitimate questions for Israel – how can one negotiate with a party that has shown itself unwilling to recognize your right to exist. In the weeks and months to come, Palestinian leaders will have to provide a credible answer to that question. Meanwhile, the United States, our Quartet partners, and the Arab states will need to continue every effort to get beyond the current impasse.
I recognize how hard this will be. Suspicion and hostility has been passed on for generations, and at times it has hardened. But I’m convinced that the majority of Israelis and Palestinians would rather look to the future than be trapped in the past. We see that spirit in the Israeli father whose son was killed by Hamas, who helped start an organization that brought together Israelis and Palestinians who had lost loved ones. He said, “I gradually realized that the only hope for progress was to recognize the face of the conflict.” And we see it in the actions of a Palestinian who lost three daughters to Israeli shells in Gaza. “I have the right to feel angry,” he said. “So many people were expecting me to hate. My answer to them is I shall not hate…Let us hope,” he said, “for tomorrow”
That is the choice that must be made – not simply in this conflict, but across the entire region – a choice between hate and hope; between the shackles of the past, and the promise of the future. It’s a choice that must be made by leaders and by people, and it’s a choice that will define the future of a region that served as the cradle of civilization and a crucible of strife.
For all the challenges that lie ahead, we see many reasons to be hopeful. In Egypt, we see it in the efforts of young people who led protests. In Syria, we see it in the courage of those who brave bullets while chanting, ‘peaceful,’ ‘peaceful.’ In Benghazi, a city threatened with destruction, we see it in the courthouse square where people gather to celebrate the freedoms that they had never known. Across the region, those rights that we take for granted are being claimed with joy by those who are prying lose the grip of an iron fist.
For the American people, the scenes of upheaval in the region may be unsettling, but the forces driving it are not unfamiliar. Our own nation was founded through a rebellion against an empire. Our people fought a painful civil war that extended freedom and dignity to those who were enslaved. And I would not be standing here today unless past generations turned to the moral force of non-violence as a way to perfect our union – organizing, marching, and protesting peacefully together to make real those words that declared our nation: “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal.”
Those words must guide our response to the change that is transforming the Middle East and North Africa – words which tell us that repression will fail, that tyrants will fall, and that every man and woman is endowed with certain inalienable rights. It will not be easy. There is no straight line to progress, and hardship always accompanies a season of hope. But the United States of America was founded on the belief that people should govern themselves. Now, we cannot hesitate to stand squarely on the side of those who are reaching for their rights, knowing that their success will bring about a world that is more peaceful, more stable, and more just.
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Reading since summer 2006 (some of the classics are re-reads): including magazine subscriptions
- Abbot, Edwin A., Flatland;
- Accelerate: Technology Driving Business Performance;
- ACM Queue: Architecting Tomorrow's Computing;
- Adkins, Lesley and Roy A. Adkins, Handbook to Life in Ancient Rome;
- Ali, Ayaan Hirsi, Nomad: From Islam to America: A Personal Journey Through the Clash of Civilizations;
- Ali, Tariq, The Clash of Fundamentalisms: Crusades, Jihads, and Modernity;
- Allawi, Ali A., The Crisis of Islamic Civilization;
- Alperovitz, Gar, The Decision To Use the Atomic Bomb;
- American School & University: Shaping Facilities & Business Decisions;
- Angelich, Jane, What's a Mother (in-Law) to Do?: 5 Essential Steps to Building a Loving Relationship with Your Son's New Wife;
- Arad, Yitzchak, In the Shadow of the Red Banner: Soviet Jews in the War Against Nazi Germany;
- Aristotle, Athenian Constitution. Eudemian Ethics. Virtues and Vices. (Loeb Classical Library No. 285);
- Aristotle, Metaphysics: Books X-XIV, Oeconomica, Magna Moralia (The Loeb classical library);
- Armstrong, Karen, A History of God;
- Arrian: Anabasis of Alexander, Books I-IV (Loeb Classical Library No. 236);
- Atkinson, Rick, The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945 (Liberation Trilogy);
- Auletta, Ken, Googled: The End of the World As We Know It;
- Austen, Jane, Pride and Prejudice;
- Bacevich, Andrew, The Limits of Power: The End of American Exceptionalism;
- Baker, James A. III, and Lee H. Hamilton, The Iraq Study Group Report: The Way Forward - A New Approach;
- Barber, Benjamin R., Jihad vs. McWorld: Terrorism's Challenge to Democracy;
- Barnett, Thomas P.M., Blueprint for Action: A Future Worth Creating;
- Barnett, Thomas P.M., The Pentagon's New Map: War and Peace in the Twenty-First Century;
- Barron, Robert, Catholicism: A Journey to the Heart of the Faith;
- Baseline: Where Leadership Meets Technology;
- Baur, Michael, Bauer, Stephen, eds., The Beatles and Philosophy;
- Beard, Charles Austin, An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution of the United States (Sony Reader);
- Benjamin, Daniel & Steven Simon, The Age of Sacred Terror: Radical Islam's War Against America;
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- Who cares in the Middle East what Obama says?
- WESTERN BOOTS ON THE GROUND IN LIBYA
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- Responsibility to Protect (R2P):
- Obama mocks Trump
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"Congress: I'm Watching"
A tax on toilet paper; I kid you not. According to the sponsor, "the Water Protection and Reinvestment Act will be financed broadly by small fees on such things as . . . products disposed of in waste water." Congress wants to tax what you do in the privacy of your bathroom.