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Review Category : Terrorism

March of Return Nothing More than Terrorists’ Plaything

On March 30, coinciding with the start of Passover, the former and current Hamas prime ministers in Gaza, Ismael Haniya and Yahya Sinwar, organized what they called the “March of Return.” Although this had been dubbed by many news outlets throughout the world as a peaceful demonstration, these two Hamas leaders told their followers to “infiltrate the border,” that doing so will “mark the beginning of the liberation of all of Palestine from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea,” i.e., all of Israel.

This was not intended, as many media outlets had described it, “to eliminate the economic suffering in the Gaza Strip,” but rather to eliminate the sheer existence of the Jewish state.

At least 30,000 protestors, many known terrorists of Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Al Qassam Brigades, came to the border with Israel with explicit instructions to penetrate the fence and thereby create a security and demographic nightmare for the Jewish state. The objective was to remain there until May 15, the English anniversary of Israel’s Independence Day, which the Palestinians and many in the Arab World dub “al nakba,” “the Day of the Catastrophe.” May 15 is also, not coincidentally, the day that President Trump and his team have designated for the opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem.

This “march” was not a peaceful demonstration reminiscent of the sit-ins of Selma, Ala. The protestors sought to storm the border with lethal intent, hurling firebombs, rocks and burning tires at Israeli soldiers. In at least two cases, they fired bullets directly at troops on the other side. And unfortunately, it resulted in the fatalities of 17 Palestinians, who have consistently been manipulated by their leaders to despise the state of Israel.

Considering the inflammatory potential of the situation, the IDF has got to be commended for training their young men and women to act with such amazing discipline and restraint.

It is also important to remember that Gaza is not under Israeli occupation. In 2005, in a heart-wrenching, politically divisive move, the Israeli government decided to uproot any remnant of a Jewish presence in Gaza and withdrew to the pre-1967 lines, giving the Palestinian people there total independence. Jewish philanthropists actually bought the greenhouses to give to this “nascent Palestinian state.” Some rabbis wanted to leave the synagogues in Gaza, arguing, “After all, we all pray to the same God.”

Many of my friends who were for the Gaza withdrawal explained to me, “This will finally prove to the world just how far Israel is willing to go for peace.” Do you think the world remembers any of this today?

As soon as the blue and white flag was lowered, and the IDF closed the gate, those greenhouses and synagogues, as well as any other vestige of Jewish life, were all destroyed in a heightened display of hate-infested anarchy and mayhem.

And then in 2007, after a bitter internecine war between Fatah and Hamas, Hamas, an organization that was created specifically to achieve the imminent destruction of the State of Israel, took over Gaza.

The result of the magnanimous gesture of the Gaza withdrawal was that more than 10,000 missiles raining down on Israel, provoking Israel to fight three wars: Cast Lead in 2008, Pillar of Defense in 2012, and Operation Protective Edge in 2014. With each successive war the range of the rockets was extended. By now, the Palestinians in Gaza have missiles that can reach all of Israel’s main population centers.

And just in case the missiles do not do the trick, those living in Gaza have been assiduously digging underground tunnels.

Yet there are many powerful voices in Washington who have not learned the lessons of the Gaza withdrawal. They want a precipitous withdrawal from Judea and Samaria, and try to delude themselves into thinking that that will solve the problem.

They are looking at today’s impasse with the Palestinians and want to seize upon a solution, any solution, not realizing the lessons of the Gaza withdrawal.

These people choose to willfully blind themselves to what Palestinian leaders say to their own people in Arabic, and prefer not to entertain the notion that in today’s volatile Middle East, power changes hands very quickly.

The recent actions of Hamas, which could step in for the Palestinian Authority at any moment, should provide a wakeup call to everyone.

Photo: Amir Cohen/Reuters

Originally Published: http://washingtonjewishweek.com/45435/march-of-return-nothing-more-than-terrorists-plaything/editorial-opinion/voices/

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Press Release: EMET Applauds the US Congress for the Imminent Passage of the Taylor Force Act

EMET Applauds the US Congress for the Imminent Passage of the Taylor Force Act
Legislation Holds Accountable the Palestinian Authority for Paying Terrorists and their Families

March 22, 2018 (Washington, DC) Today, the Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET) praised U.S. Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC) and Representative Doug Lamborn (R-CO), as well as Representatives Lee Zeldin (R-NY), Eliot Engel (D-NY), Ed Royce (R-CA); and Senators Roy Blunt (R-MO), Tom Cotton (R-AR), Tim Scott (R-SC), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Richard Burr (R-NC), John Thune (R-SD), Marco Rubio (R-FL), and John Boozman (R-AR) for leading the effort in Congress to pass the Taylor Force Act.  EMET particularly thanks citizen activist Sander Gerber who worked more than anyone else to expose the Palestinian Authority’s heinous ‘pay for slay’ program, and to ensure that America does not turn a blind to this practice.

The Senate is expected to pass the Taylor Force Act (TFA) as part of an omnibus appropriations bill by Friday, in order that it be signed into law by the President.  The House passed the Taylor Force Act in December 2017, with overwhelming bipartisan support.  The Taylor Force Act is key legislation which conditions aid to the Palestinian Authority (PA) until it stops financially rewarding Palestinian terrorists through their “martyrs’ fund” and “prisoners’ fund.”  The bill also calls on the PA to takes steps to end acts of violence against the U.S. and Israeli citizens, including publicly condemning acts of terrorism, and helping to bring Palestinian terrorists to justice.

The bill is named for former U.S. Army officer and Vanderbilt University graduate Taylor Force, an American citizen who served one tour of duty in Iraq and one tour of duty in Afghanistan and came home unscathed, only to be stabbed to death in Israel in March 2016 by a Palestinian terrorist.

Palestinian terrorists that are arrested and imprisoned by Israel are glorified by the PA as heroes and treated as employees of the PA government.  While in prison, these terrorists and their families are paid salaries and receive benefits as rewards for their service.  The more heinous the crime, the more money the terrorists and their families receive.  Since September 2015, 65 innocent people have been killed by Palestinian terrorists in Israel and Judea and Samaria, and more than 900 wounded.  They have been killed or harmed by car rammings, stabbings, shootings, and bombing attacks.  This includes many Americans, including U.S. Army veteran Taylor Force.

For the past two Congresses, EMET has arduously educated the Congress about the importance of the Taylor Force Act.  Last month, EMET also spearheaded a letter signed by 13 pro-Israel organizations, representing at least 4.1 million Americans, to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell urging him to bring the Taylor Force Act to the floor for a full vote, or to attach it to a legislative vehicle that will ensure it will be sent to President Trump to enshrine into law.

“I wish to express my deep appreciation to Senator Lindsay Graham and Congressman Doug Lamborn, and all of the Congressmen and Senators that have worked tirelessly to ensure that the Taylor Force Act pass. I would also like to particularly thank citizen activist Sander Gerber who worked more than anyone else to expose the PA’s heinous ‘pay for slay’ practice,” Sarah Stern, the founder and president of EMET said.

Stern added: “Although I would prefer a floor debate to further educate the public about the immorality of the Palestinians and their barbaric incentivization of the murder of innocent civilians, the most essential thing is that the Taylor Force Act finally be passed.  The willful blindness that the United States and the Western world has been giving to the Palestinians for 25 years, and their systematic incitement to despise and to murder American and Israeli civilians, and their brazen system of ‘pay for slay,’ has finally got to be put to an end.”

Stern concluded, “The Palestinians have been playing all of us by shielding their murderous actions under the phrase of a ‘peace process.’ One asks how this behavior can possibly fall under the banner of ‘Peace?’”  The Palestinians, and the Arab world in general, place a great  premium on honor, and a significant reduction in their funding will be a  tremendous wake-up call that not everyone in the world can continue to be duped by them.”

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About The Endowment for Middle East Truth
Founded in 2005, EMET’s mission is to educate policymakers in Washington and the general public about the importance of Israel to the United States in their common struggle against radical Islam. For more information, please visit, http://www.emetonline.org. Follow EMET on Twitter and Facebook.

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“Holding Social Media Accountable for Providing Support to Terror Organizations”

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

The creation of the Internet and the advent of the handheld Information Age have revolutionized every aspect of modern life. A dark side haunts these new technologies, however. The Internet and the social media platforms have been insidiously used by hate groups, criminal enterprises, and terrorist factions to promote their perilous agenda. Social media has allowed terrorist groups including Hezbollah, ISIS and Hamas to become public entities with tens of thousands of followers, fan pages, news sites, and media production companies. The use of social media to promote extremist ideologies and incite individuals to engage in terrorist violence is dangerously effective and has established a new front in the war on terror.

While US law, including the Anti Terrorism Act, plainly prohibits American companies from having any contact or providing any support or services to the terrorists groups, the social media giants in Paolo Alto continue to provide their platforms to these designated organizations with impunity. The companies claim a legal defense under the Communications Decency Act of 1996, which they contend provides them with blanket immunity for the extremist posts and terrorist incitement on their platforms. There is a need to aggressively challenge the social media companies for their role in aiding and abetting terrorist organizations and hold them accountable for their documented provision of material support to the designated groups.

These details have recently come to light with the release of the book Harpoon: Inside the Covert War Against Terrorism’s Money Masters, co-authored by Nitsana Darshan Leitner of the Shurat HaDin Law Center. The book addresses how the terror groups are utilizing American social media.

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Stand Up to Erdogan, Protect Ethnic and Religious Minorities in Syria

Turkey’s latest incursion into the Kurdish- held territory of Afrin, located in northwest Syria, is yet another provocative and illegal act by the fascist Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Afrin has historically been a predominately Kurdish region. Afrin survived the brutal Assad regime, al-Qaida affiliate groups and Islamic State (ISIS), and now Erdogan has opened a new offensive against the indigenous people in this small region.

Afrin has sheltered nearly 400,000 internally displaced peoples (IDPs) who have fled both Assad and ISIS in Adlib, Aleppo and surrounding areas. In addition to the IDPs, Afrin is a multi-ethnic and multi-religious enclave, unlike anywhere else in Syria.

Kurdish forces have valiantly defended the world against ISIS, all while Erdogan’s troops silently watched from a hilltop on the Turkish- Syrian border. It was Erdogan who aided ISIS, after realizing it was failing to defeat the Kurds. Erdogan took it upon himself to finally “bury” and “strangle” the Kurds.

“Operation Olive Branch,” the name given to Erdogan’s invasion of Afrin, only prolongs the Syrian civil war. This benefits jihadists and Islamic regimes like Iran and Turkey, all while disturbing civilians and those truly aiming for peace.

The Kurdish force, the Peoples Protection Units (YPG), has successfully thwarted any attempts at infiltration into the region since the civil war began. Isolated from the rest of the Kurdish-controlled areas in northern Syria, Afrin is surrounded by the Turkish military, Free Syria Army (FSA), Assad forces and a handful of terrorist organizations prepared to shake the stability of the small enclave.

Erdogan’s aim is clear: to remove Kurds from their historical lands and replace them with Turkmans. If that doesn’t work, his next step is to flood the area with Arab Syrian refugees from inside Turkey. Publicly calling for ethnic cleansing against a peaceful people seems to be the new norm for American’s NATO ally.

Just as the international community failed to protect Jews persecuted under Adolf Hitler’s brutal Nazi regime, the world is once again turning a blind eye, this time to Islamo- fascist aggression against the Kurdish nation.

The muddled US response has emboldened Erdogan’s harsh rhetoric, paving the way for continuous hostility. The Kurds look to the West, especially the US, to use its leverage with its hostile NATO partner. The Kurds in Afrin have never provoked or threatened Turks or Turkish territory, yet it is the Kurds that are being labeled “terrorists” by the Erdogan regime.

If the Kurds in Afrin truly are terrorists, would they have protected Yazidi minority persecuted by ISIS in Iraq? Would terrorists have protected Christians in the Middle East, whose numbers have dramatically decreased?

The Kurds have even taken upon themselves to defend religious minorities fearing jihadist backlash. Christian Syrian officials who have aligned with the Kurds in Afrin have stated that many Muslims have converted to Christianity inside the Kurdish regions and have not suffered any repercussions from the Kurds.

This pluralistic ideal is how the Kurds wish to govern their territories. They do not wish to enforce an Islamic-like system of government which threatens the existence of a diverse Middle East.

It is long overdue that the world finally stand up to Erdogan, protect ethnic and religious minorities in Syria, and keep the promise made to the Kurds, who have courageously fought ISIS.

Having been betrayed on many occasions throughout history by the West, the Kurds have a saying: “no friends but the mountains.”

Kurds are more than just great fighters; they desire peace and yearn for democracy in a stable, secure region with neighbors who share the same values. Unfortunately, Erdogan is the Kurds’ neighbor, and he will not rest until they are eradicated from their historical lands.

Originally published at: http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Stand-up-to-Erdogan-protect-ethnic-and-religious-minorities-in-Syria-542974
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EMET Sends Letter to Senator Mitch McConnell Urging him to Bring the Taylor Force Act to the Floor for a Full Vote

On Thursday, February 15, 2018, EMET send a letter to Senator Mitch McConnell urging him to bring the Taylor Force Act to the floor for a full vote.

The letter was signed by 13 organizations, representing at least 4.1 million of Americans.

Click Here to Read EMET's Letter to Senator Mitch McConnell

 

 

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The Latest Situation in Israel’s Northern Border

Over the weekend, a series of extremely significant events happened in the skies over northern Israel and Syria.  An Iranian drone, dispatched from Syria, flew over the Golan Heights, violating Israeli sovereignty and Israeli airspace. Within one minute, the Israeli Air Force (IAF) downed the drone, and immediately embarked on a military campaign that struck at Iranian military sites inside Syria.

The Israeli military’s response was excellent. It was immediate. It was direct. And it was harsh. It struck down 12 military targets within Syria, which included four Syrian defense missile batteries, and four Iranian sites. Unfortunately, one IAF jet was downed and its pilot remains in serious condition.

On Saturday, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu said at a Cabinet meeting, “I have been warning for some time about the dangers of Iran’s military entrenchment in Syria. Iran seeks to use Syrian territory to attack Israel for its professed goal of destroying Israel. This morning, Iran brazenly violated Israel’s sovereignty. They dispatched an Iranian drone from Syrian territory into Israel. This demonstrates that our warnings were 100% correct. Israel holds Iran and its Syrian hosts responsible for today’s aggression. We will continue to do whatever is necessary to protect our sovereignty and our security.”

According to Amos Yadlin, the Executive Director of the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv, who spoke on a conference call for The Israel Project, this recent military action “is perhaps the most serious event since the second Lebanese war or the alleged Israeli attack on the Syrian nuclear reactor in 2007.  It is serious because for the first time we have targeted Iranian sites in Syria, and a lot [of] Iranian bases, which leads Damascus exposed. The rules of the game are not changing. There is a determination by Iran to build a serious military force inside Syria and Lebanon, and we have a serious determination not to allow this to happen.”

Thanks to the disastrous Iranian nuclear deal, the Iranians are using much of their recently acquired wealth to build factories inside Syria and Lebanon.  The Iranian mullahs, Turkey’s Erdogan, and Russia’s Putin are all using what is left of the decimated country of Syria, after its protracted seven year civil war, to flex their muscles.

This is a very dangerous situation.

The Iranians are turning Syria into a Shiite military base and weapons factory. Many of these weapons are being transferred directly into the hands of Hezbollah.

According to MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute, the Lebanese, pro-Hezbollah website Dahiya boasted that Hezbollah has 70,000 missiles ready to launch at Israel, and by the end of the year, they will have 500,000.

Unfortunately, much of the Sunni world, who is just as fearful of an Iranian crescent as Israel is, is sitting back and letting Israel do its job (although I am certain they are applauding).

But Israel knows what it has to do to survive in the Middle East. And it has never been easy. Now, thanks to the newly enriched and emboldened Iran, the Levant might become the theater in which the attempt for Shiite hegemony will have to be confronted.

Watch this space.

Originally posted at https://voiceoftruth.fireside.fm/articles/watch-this-space

Photo: REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun

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The Palestinian Dane-geld

The Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) was the terror group that introduced the world to airline hijackings. Because of the PLO and other terror groups, the average air traveler must go through long security lines and metal detectors, remove his shoes and belt, and refrain from bringing large bottles of liquid onto the plane, among other items.

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Lessons from Pyongyang

Last weekend, the world experienced a petrifying “wake up call” when Pyongyang test launched a hydrogen bomb. According to Yukiya Amano, director of the International Atomic Energy Authority (IAEA), Sunday’s test represents “a new dimension to the threat.” Added Amano, “I think the North Korean threat is a global one now.

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