Tag Archives: Gaza

Ben Swann Reality Check – Obama’s Drones = Hypocrisy

Ben Swann is news anchor and investigative reporter for Channel Fox 19 in Cincinnati.  In story after story, he lays out the facts so clearly they’re undeniable. If the national MSM had his intelligence, integrity and courage, this country would be a far better place.

Middle East in (even greater than usual) turmoil

Israel

Yesterday, Oct. 6, 2012, at around 10 am local time, the Israeli air force shot down a small unmanned droneafter it entered the south of Israel.

The drone was first spotted above the Mediterranean in the area of the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip to the west of Israel, said military spokeswoman Avital Leibovich. It was kept under surveillance and followed by Israeli air force jets before it was shot down above a forest in an unpopulated area near the border with the occupied West Bank.

Troops are searching for remains of the aircraft. It is not clear from where came the drone. Local media quoted officials as saying the aircraft flew in from the west, but not from the Gaza Strip.

It is rumored that the drone is American. If so, that means Israel may be preparing to undertake a military strike (against Iran?) and is telling the Obama administration not to interfere.

Iran

Iran currency crisisIran’s rial has lost a third of its exchange value against the dollar in a week.

In Iran, the country is hurtling down the abyss as the Iranian currency, the rial, has lost a third of its exchange value against the dollar in a mere week. It is Iran’s worst financial crisis since the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s.

The Guardian reports, October 3, 2012, that hundreds of demonstrators in the Iranian capital, Tehran, clashed with riot police on Wednesday, during protests against the drastic fall in the value of the rial. The Grand Bazaar – the heartbeat of Tehran’s economy – went on strike, with various businesses shutting down. Bazaar owners and foreign exchange dealers gathered in scattered groups chanting anti-government slogans.

According to the opposition website Kaleme.com, protesters shouted “Mahmoud [Ahmadinejad] the traitor … leave politics”. Infuriated by Iran’s alleged financial and military support for Syria’s Bashar al-Assad regime, protesters also shouted “leave Syria alone, instead think of us”.  

Security forces were soon sent to quell the protests, as police used batons and teargas to try to disperse the crowds.

“They used teargas to disperse demonstrators in Ferdowsi Street and also blocked the streets close to the protests in order to prevent people joining them,” said another witness, who asked to remain anonymous. “Some shop windows in that area have been smashed and dustbins set on fire.” A number of demonstrators had been arrested, according to Kaleme.

The rial‘s devaluation and soaring prices of staple goods are the latest signs that a combination of western sanctions targeting the regime’s nuclear program and government mismanagement are compounding Iran’s economic woes.

Some Iranians expressed anger on social networking websites to the national TV’s blackout of the protests, saying it discussed the European financial crisis with little, if no coverage, of Tehran’s unrest. The authorities were also reported to have jammed signals of the BBC’s Persian service as the protest unfolded.

The government has failed to bring the rial under control despite several attempts. It has lost 57% of its value in the past three months and 75% in comparison with the end of last year. The dollar is now three times stronger than early last year. The economy minister, Shamseddin Hosseini, said the government planned to “gather up” the unofficial currency market in the latest desperate ditch to curb the crisis.

Ahmadinejad blamed the rial‘s slump on his enemies abroad and opponents at home, saying his government was the victim of a “psychological war”. Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, speaking to elites on Wednesday, said the country was under pressure because “it did not yield to the demands of tyrannies”.

Iran is one of the world’s largest oil producers and relies on crude sales as the main source of its the foreign currency reserves. To force the Iranian government to come clean about its nuclear program, the latest US and EU embargo on the imports of Iranian oil has sent the rial tailspinning and making the dollar hard to come by.

What is the response from our absentee president, the POS, to all this turmoil?

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

~Eowyn

Rumor of Israel mobilizing for war

I got this from a friend who is a conservative, a veteran, a former journalist, and prolific professional writer.

He says he can’t vouch for what you’ll read below, but it was sent to him by a former captain in the U.S. Navy, who is “very reliable.” Here’s what the naval officer wrote (note that he wrote this BEFORE the assassination of Ambassador Christopher Stevens, and the attacks on our embassy in Cairo and on our consulate in Benghazi):

……………………

Subject: Something unusual is happening in Israel

Date: Sept. 11, 2012

Just recv’d this from a good friend in Bel Air, MD

I got this from one of my close friends who has a brother in Israel and believe it 100%. Something is coming.

I don’t know if you follow such things but…

My brother and his family live in Jerusalem – he is a minister – and a former Navy SEAL – his office is close to one of Israel ‘s largest underground military bases.

He called me last night which is very unusual – usually it is email.

He called to tell me that he is sending his family back to the US immediately due to what he is seeing happen within the last week and what he is being told by his military contacts in both the Israel and US military.

He said he is seeing with his own eyes military movements the likes of which he has never seen in his 20+ years in Israel. What he called a massive redeployment and protective tactics of forces is underway.

Over the last two days he has seen anti-aircraft missile deployments throughout the Jerusalem area including 3 mobile units that he can see from his office windows. In addition, he has seen very large Israeli armored columns moving fast toward the Sinai where Egypt has now moved in Armor.

There are reports of the top military leaders meeting with Israel’s senior rabbi which is something that has happened preceding every prior military campaign.

His admonition is to watch carefully and pray for Israel and its people.

He is convinced that barring something extraordinary Israel will attack Iran – with or without the US – and very soon.  It is the belief in Israel that Obama does not stand with Israel but with the Arab countries.

He has told me before that Israel will saber rattle from time to time but that this time is very different from what he is seeing and hearing. He was at the Wailing Wall 2 days ago and there were hundreds of IDF [Israel Defense Forces] soldiers there. As he was leaving he passed at least 20 military buses full of soldiers in route to the wall.

He has never seen this before either.

Just thought I would pass this along.

My brother is not an alarmist by any means.  When he talks like this it gets my attention for sure and usually I find he knows more than he shares.

There are reports that Israel is asking Obama to come to Israel immediately but they are being answered with silence.

My opinion is that I see the making of the perfect storm.

——————-

Obama in fact is refusing to communicate with Israel. Reuters reports on Sept. 11, 2012, that “In a highly unusual rebuff to a close ally, the White House said on Tuesday that President Barack Obama would not meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a U.S. visit later this month….”

In so doing, the POS in the White House is deliberately isolating Israel — at a time when extremist Muslims in the Mideast are rampaging, rioting, killing.

Israel is being pushed into a corner.

God help us. Pray!

Update:

DEBKA is reporting tonight (Sept. 13) that “In the wake of the anti-US Islamist turbulence sweeping Arab capitals, Israel has posted additional military, police and security forces in the West Bank, opposite the Gaza Strip and among Israeli Arab communities following information received that all three are preparing to stage big anti-American protests Friday, Sept. 14, which could easily spill over into Israel.”

~Eowyn

PM Netanyahu’s Stinging Speech to the UN

Last Friday, the Palestinians formally presented to the United Nations their “demand” for statehood, based on the borders that existed before the 1967 Six-Day War. Such a state would mean Israel’s reversion to its pre-1967 borders. That, in turn, means that, with the West Bank gone, Israel’s mid-section is severely narrowed. Lacking strategic depth, the state of Israel will be territorially indefensible, as you can see by the red arrow in this map:

There is also the small matter [sarcasm!] of a Palestinian state that vows its eternal enmity to Israel….

This is Israel’s rebuttal, delivered by its Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the UN, September 23, 2011, 4:08 p.m.:

Netanyahu made these important points:

  1. We can’t just wish for peace. Peace can only be achieved via security.
  2. A Palestinian state would render Israel indefensible (no strategic depth).
  3. Palestinians keep vowing to destroy Israel and refusing to negotiate.
  4. Conclusion: There can only be a Palestinian state if and after Palestinians and Israel have negotiated a peace settlement.

In his speech, Netanyahu especially dealt a stinging rebuke at the UN which deserves wider attention. Here are some choice excerpts from his speech:

“I extend my hand to the Palestinian people, with whom we seek a just and lasting peace.

Ladies and gentlemen, in Israel our hope for peace never wanes. Our scientists, doctors, innovators, apply their genius to improve the world of tomorrow. Our artists, our writers, enrich the heritage of humanity. Now, I know that this is not exactly the image of Israel that is often portrayed in this hall. After all, it was here in 1975 that the age-old yearning of my people to restore our national life in our ancient biblical homeland — it was then that this was braided — branded, rather — shamefully, as racism. And it was here in 1980, right here, that the historic peace agreement between Israel and Egypt wasn’t praised; it was denounced! And it’s here year after year that Israel is unjustly singled out for condemnation. It’s singled out for condemnation more often than all the nations of the world combined. Twenty-one out of the 27 General Assembly resolutions condemn Israel — the one true democracy in the Middle East.

Well, this is an unfortunate part of the U.N. institution. It’s the — the theater of the absurd. It doesn’t only cast Israel as the villain; it often casts real villains in leading roles: Gadhafi’s Libya chaired the U.N. Commission on Human Rights; Saddam’s Iraq headed the U.N. Committee on Disarmament.

You might say: That’s the past. Well, here’s what’s happening now — right now, today. Hezbollah-controlled Lebanon now presides over the U.N. Security Council. This means, in effect, that a terror organization presides over the body entrusted with guaranteeing the world’s security.

You couldn’t make this thing up.

So here in the U.N., automatic majorities can decide anything. They can decide that the sun sets in the west or rises in the west. I think the first has already been pre-ordained. But they can also decide — they have decided that the Western Wall in Jerusalem, Judaism’s holiest place, is occupied Palestinian territory.

And yet even here in the General Assembly, the truth can sometimes break through. In 1984 when I was appointed Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations, I visited the great rabbi of Lubavich. He said to me… you’ll be serving in a house of many lies. And then he said, remember that even in the darkest place, the light of a single candle can be seen far and wide.

Today I hope that the light of truth will shine, if only for a few minutes, in a hall that for too long has been a place of darkness for my country. So as Israel’s prime minister, I didn’t come here to win applause. I came here to speak the truth. (Cheers, applause.) The truth is — the truth is that Israel wants peace. The truth is that I want peace. The truth is that in the Middle East at all times, but especially during these turbulent days, peace must be anchored in security. The truth is that we cannot achieve peace through U.N. resolutions, but only through direct negotiations between the parties. The truth is that so far the Palestinians have refused to negotiate. The truth is that Israel wants peace with a Palestinian state, but the Palestinians want a state without peace. And the truth is you shouldn’t let that happen.

…a malignancy is now growing between East and West that threatens the peace of all. It seeks not to liberate, but to enslave, not to build, but to destroy.

That malignancy is militant Islam. It cloaks itself in the mantle of a great faith, yet it murders Jews, Christians and Muslims alike with unforgiving impartiality. On September 11th it killed thousands of Americans, and it left the twin towers in smoldering ruins. Last night I laid a wreath on the 9/11 memorial. It was deeply moving. But as I was going there, one thing echoed in my mind: the outrageous words of the president of Iran on this podium yesterday. He implied that 9/11 was an American conspiracy. Some of you left this hall. All of you should have. (Applause.)

Since 9/11, militant Islamists slaughtered countless other innocents — in London and Madrid, in Baghdad and Mumbai, in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, in every part of Israel. I believe that the greatest danger facing our world is that this fanaticism will arm itself with nuclear weapons. And this is precisely what Iran is trying to do.

Can you imagine that man who ranted here yesterday — can you imagine him armed with nuclear weapons? The international community must stop Iran before it’s too late. If Iran is not stopped, we will all face the specter of nuclear terrorism, and the Arab Spring could soon become an Iranian winter. That would be a tragedy. Millions of Arabs have taken to the streets to replace tyranny with liberty, and no one would benefit more than Israel if those committed to freedom and peace would prevail.

This is my fervent hope. But as the prime minister of Israel, I cannot risk the future of the Jewish state on wishful thinking. Leaders must see reality as it is, not as it ought to be. We must do our best to shape the future, but we cannot wish away the dangers of the present.

And the world around Israel is definitely becoming more dangerous. Militant Islam has already taken over Lebanon and Gaza. It’s determined to tear apart the peace treaties between Israel and Egypt and between Israel and Jordan. It’s poisoned many Arab minds against Jews and Israel, against America and the West. It opposes not the policies of Israel but the existence of Israel.

Now, some argue that the spread of militant Islam, especially in these turbulent times — if you want to slow it down, they argue, Israel must hurry to make concessions, to make territorial compromises…. there’s only one problem with that theory. We’ve tried it and it hasn’t worked. In 2000 Israel made a sweeping peace offer that met virtually all of the Palestinian demands. Arafat rejected it. The Palestinians then launched a terror attack that claimed a thousand Israeli lives.

Prime Minister Olmert afterwards made an even more sweeping offer, in 2008. President Abbas didn’t even respond to it.

But Israel did more than just make sweeping offers. We actually left territory. We withdrew from Lebanon in 2000 and from every square inch of Gaza in 2005. That didn’t calm the Islamic storm, the militant Islamic storm that threatens us. It only brought the storm closer and make it stronger.

Hezbollah and Hamas fired thousands of rockets against our cities from the very territories we vacated. See, when Israel left Lebanon and Gaza, the moderates didn’t defeat the radicals, the moderates were devoured by the radicals. And I regret to say that international troops like UNIFIL in Lebanon and UBAM (ph) in Gaza didn’t stop the radicals from attacking Israel.

We left Gaza hoping for peace.

We didn’t freeze the settlements in Gaza, we uprooted them. We did exactly what the theory says: Get out, go back to the 1967 borders, dismantle the settlements.

…But ladies and gentlemen, we didn’t get peace. We got war. We got Iran, which through its proxy Hamas promptly kicked out the Palestinian Authority. The Palestinian Authority collapsed in a day — in one day.

…So you might understand that, given all this,Israelis rightly ask: What’s to prevent this from happening again in the West Bank? See, most of our major cities in the south of the country are within a few dozen kilometers from Gaza. But in the center of the country, opposite the West Bank, our cities are a few hundred meters or at most a few kilometers away from the edge of the West Bank.

So I want to ask you. Would any of you – would any of you bring danger so close to your cities, to your families? Would you act so recklessly with the lives of your citizens? Israel is prepared to have a Palestinian state in the West Bank, but we’re not prepared to have another Gaza there. And that’s why we need to have real security arrangements, which the Palestinians simply refuse to negotiate with us.

…Israel is such a tiny country. Without Judea and Samaria, the West Bank, Israel is all of 9 miles wide.

I want to put it for you in perspective, because you’re all in the city. That’s about two-thirds the length of Manhattan. It’s the distance between Battery Park and Columbia University. And don’t forget that the people who live in Brooklyn and New Jersey are considerably nicer than some of Israel’s neighbors.

So how do you — how do you protect such a tiny country, surrounded by people sworn to its destruction and armed to the teeth by Iran? Obviously you can’t defend it from within that narrow space alone. Israel needs greater strategic depth, and that’s exactly why Security Council Resolution 242 didn’t require Israel to leave all the territories it captured in the Six-Day War. It talked about withdrawal from territories, to secure and defensible boundaries. And to defend itself, Israel must therefore maintain a long-term Israeli military presence in critical strategic areas in the West Bank.

I explained this to President Abbas. He answered that if a Palestinian state was to be a sovereign country, it could never accept such arrangements.

And there are many other vital security issues that also must be addressed. Take the issue of airspace. Again, Israel’s small dimensions create huge security problems. America can be crossed by jet airplane in six hours. To fly across Israel, it takes three minutes. So is Israel’s tiny airspace to be chopped in half and given to a Palestinian state not at peace with Israel?

…I bring up these problems because they’re not theoretical problems. They’re very real. And for Israelis, they’re life-and- death matters. All these potential cracks in Israel’s security have to be sealed in a peace agreement before a Palestinian state is declared, not afterwards, because if you leave it afterwards, they won’t be sealed. And these problems will explode in our face and explode the peace.

The Palestinians should first make peace with Israel and then get their state. But I also want to tell you this. After such a peace agreement is signed, Israel will not be the last country to welcome a Palestinian state as a new member of the United Nations. We will be the first. (Applause.)”

For the full text of Netanyahu’s speech, CLICK HERE.

~Eowyn

Israel: Iron Dome Not Fully Operational Against Attacks

This is worrisome news.

Iron Dome” is a mobile air defense system in development by Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defense Systems designed to intercept short-range rockets and artillery shells up to 70 kilometers in all-weather situations. The system was created as a defensive countermeasure to the rocket threat against Israel’s civilian population on its northern and southern borders, and was declared operational and initially deployed in the first quarter of 2011.

On April 7, 2011, the system successfully intercepted a Grad rocket launched from Gaza, marking the first time in history a short-range rocket was ever intercepted. On April 8 it made history again by successfully intercepting 3 rockets from the same attack.

But now, Israeli officials admit that Iron Dome is not yet capable of providing “full or effective defense” against short-range attacks.

~Eowyn

Iron Dome intercepts Grad rocket, Jan. 2010

From GeoStrategy-Direct.com, April 13, 2011:

As new missile war looms, shortcomings of Iron Dome reported

TEL AVIV — Israel, under increased Palestinian rocket attacks, has acknowledged shortcomings of its new defense system. Officials said the Defense Ministry and military have determined that the new Iron Dome was not yet capable of providing full or effective defense against short-range missiles, mortars and rockets. They said Iron Dome, developed by the state-owned Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, was not ready to counter Palestinian or Hizbullah missile or rocket salvos.

“The Iron Dome will provide sound protection against missile and rocket fire at the residents of Israel’s southern communities,” Brig. Gen. Doron Gavish, air defense commander at the Israel Air Force, said. “However, it is not hermetic.”

Gavish, in a statement on April 4, did not elaborate on the limitations of Iron Dome. But officials said the system, designed to intercept missiles with ranges of up to 80 kilometers, has not yet demonstrated its ability to intercept salvos. They said Hamas and its Palestinian militia allies have developed techniques to fire up to 20 projectiles at a time.

So far, two Iron Dome batteries have been deployed in southern Israel near the Gaza Strip. Officials said the batteries were deployed on March 27 and April 4 and meant to protect the cities of Ashdod, Ashkelon and Beersheba. They said a
battery would also be deployed in the Tel Aviv area.

Still, Israel has not yet used Iron Dome — a battery of which consists of a radar, fire control system, three launchers and 20 interceptors — to stop the nearly 150 missiles fired from the Gaza Strip in 2011. Earlier, the military asserted that Iron Dome would be deployed to protect military bases rather than civilian population centers.

“Its deployment, a final step before the system’s official operational use, will last a number of weeks, during which we will survey its effectiveness in various sites in the south,” Gavish said.

Officials said Israel would require at least 12 Iron Dome batteries for effective protection against short-range missiles and rockets. They said the Israel Air Force has still not trained soldiers to use Iron Dome, particularly the synchronization of radar and interceptors.

Israel plans to acquire and deploy another four Iron Dome batteries by 2013. Defense Minister Ehud Barak said funding for the four batteries would come from the United States, which has pledged $205 million to expand the missile and rocket defense program.

“With the financial help of the Americans, we hope to equip ourselves with four new Iron Dome batteries so we will have six in operation in the next two years,” Barak said.