Naftali Bennett, who heads the Bayit Yehudi (merged Jewish Home-National Union) slate of Knesset candidates, reminded President Shimon Peres Monday that the Oslo Accords “brought us more than 1,600 murdered Israelis.”
(Medics remove bodies of ‘Oslo War’ victims)
Responding to the President’s controversial remarks on political issues in the middle of the election campaign, Bennett stated, “Enough, already. The President of the country is supposed to represent all of the country, not just a part of it.”
Peres said on Sunday that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas wants peace and is the only man with whom Israel can sign an agreement.
“Mr. President, it is clear that your intentions were good, but that does not make any difference. The time has come for some soul searching. Perhaps giving land to our enemies does not work?
“Perhaps you are mistaken? It is reasonable to have a Palestinian Authority country that will rain thousands of missiles on Tel Aviv?”
Bennett recalled that the Arab public in Judea, Samaria and Gaza went to the polls eight years ago and “elected a legislature with a decisive majority for Hamas – 57 percent of the legislature. Hamas – which calls for the destruction of Israel. With them, you want to make peace?”
Abbas’ Fatah party is in the midst of reconciliation with the rival Hamas terrorist organization, and Hamas has allowed Fatah to hold on Friday its first public rally in Gaza in six years, to mark the founding of the terrorist party founded by Yasser Arafat.
Bennett said Peres should stop saying that “there is no alternative” other than to accept to Abbas’ demands for a Palestinian Authority state.
“There is an alternative – sovereignty over Area ‘C’ with citizenship for Arabs,” Bennett said, referring to the areas of Judea and Samaria that include all of the Jewish population in Judea and Samaria of approximately 300,000 and only 4% of PA Arabs..
Bennett reminded Peres, “The bottom line is that public elected the government of Israel, and you have no right to advance policies that are surrounded by deep differences of opinion.”
(Carl) Well, isn’t this amazing? ‘Human rights watch’ has finally figured out that Hamas and other ‘Palestinian’ terror groups committed war crimes by shooting rockets from civilian areas in Gaza to civilian areas in Israel during Operation Pillar of Defense.
“Palestinian armed groups made clear in their statements that harming civilians was their aim,” said HRW’s Middle East director Sarah Leah Whitson. “There is simply no legal justification for launching rockets at populated areas.”
The group also found that Gazan groups, including Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Popular Resistance Committee, justified targeting civilian centers as reprisal for Israeli strikes, an act also banned under international law.
Furthermore, such groups “repeatedly fired rockets from densely populated areas, near homes, businesses, and a hotel, unnecessarily placing civilians in the vicinity at grave risk from Israeli counter-fire,” the report said.
The detailed report included examples of rockets being launched from densely populated areas in Gaza, and noted that groups fired from underground tunnels with hatches for the first time. HRW faulted Palestinian armed groups for failing to alert civilians or urge them to evacuate prior to launching rockets in their vicinity.
As the ruling power in the Strip, the human rights group said, Hamas was responsible for reining in the behavior of other groups.
“As the ruling authority in Gaza, Hamas has an obligation to stop unlawful attacks and punish those responsible,” Whitson said.
But lest you get your hopes up for a Goldstone or other style of inquiry into these human rights violations….
A week earlier, HRW reported that Israeli attacks on journalists and media facilities during the operation also violated laws of war, saying that Israel provided no specific information to justify claims that they were military targets.
“Just because Israel says a journalist was a fighter or a TV station was a command center does not make it so,” Whitson said. “Journalists who praise Hamas and TV stations that applaud attacks on Israel may be propagandists, but that does not make them legitimate targets under the laws of war.”
Well yeah, except that Israel did provide evidence, and Hamas’ al-Aqsa television is a designated terror organization.
Fox News is reporting, based on an interview with Jonathan Schanzer, that Israel avoided its own Cuban missile crisis by destroying Hamas’ Fajr-5 rockets in Operation Pillar of Defense (Hat Tip: Memeorandum).
Rocket attacks from Gaza were commonplace in Israel prior to the campaign, dubbed “Operation Pillar of Defense,” with at least 750 projectiles falling on the area close to the border since January. The attacks were ratcheted up in early November, which seemed to prompt Israel’s move and the deployment of its vaunted “Iron Dome” defense system. But behind the scenes, the Israel Defense Force (IDF) had a more pressing need to launch their intense bombardment on Hamas’ weapons stores.
Israel’s elimination of senior Hamas figure Ahmad Jabari as he drove in broad daylight in Gaza also fits into Schanzer’s narrative.
“Ahmad Jabari, along with another major Hamas figure, Mahmoud al Mabhouhk, [who was assassinated in Dubai in 2010], was a key part of the procurement network for the Fajr missiles and there is little doubt that Israel was keen to take out the man responsible,” Schanzer explained.
Schanzer contends that the operation actually began three weeks earlier, when, on Oct. 23, the Iranian-owned Yarmouk armaments factory in Sudan – believed to be the assembly plant for the Fajr5 missiles that have a range of up to 45 miles – was devastated by air strikes for which the Sudanese government holds Israel responsible. Israel, and for that matter the U.S., both deny any knowledge of the attack.
Gaza-based armed groups tied to Abbas’s Fatah party claim they fired 516 rockets at Israel during recent conflict.
PHOTO: REUTERS/MOHAMMED SALEM
Khaled Abu Toameh..
24 November ’12..
Several armed groups belonging to Fatah in the Gaza Strip claimed Saturday that they had also fired various types of rockets and missiles at Israel during Operation Pillar of Defense.
A spokesman for the groups, which are affiliated with Fatah’s armed wing, the Aksa Martyrs’ Brigade, told reporters that his men fired 516 rockets and missiles at Israel during the conflict.
The spokesman warned that the Fatah groups would “continue to defend the heroic Palestinian people against Israeli crimes and massacres.”
According to the spokesman, Fatah gunmen fought alongside members of other groups in the Gaza Strip during the recent escalation.
He urged Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal to “head immediately to the Gaza Strip to put an end to the state of despicable state of division [between Hamas and Fatah].”
The Fatah groups also “welcomed” last week’s terror attack against a civilian bus in Tel Aviv, in which 28 people were hospitalized.
The masked Fatah spokesman revealed that a member of his group, Mohamed al-Zaini, who was responsible for launching rockets and missiles at Israel, was killed in an IDF air strike.
Abbas Zaki, a member of the Fatah Central Committee, was quoted over the weekend as praising Hamas and Islamic Jihad for “deciding to die for the sake of the Gaza Strip.”
Zaki said in an interview with a Palestinian TV station in the West Bank that Abbas was not against the “resistance” in the Gaza Strip.
“We gave legitimacy to the rockets and provided them with a political cover,” he added. “I have tremendous sympathy for Hamas. God bless them. They told Israel that the war was not a picnic. God bless Hamas and Islamic Jihad and all the other resistance groups which decided to die for the sake of the Gaza Strip.”
President Obama promises to put U.S. troops in the Sinai without asking Congress? you ready for a real f’n disaster? Welcome to a bloodbath of Americans.
(RT) Israel and Palestine are momentarily at a ceasefire, but the potential reasoning behind the recess could have some real international implications. Israel’s Debka reports that the pause in fighting comes after the US promised to send troops to Sinai. According to Debka, US troops will soon be en route to the Sinai peninsula, Egyptian territory in North Africa that’s framed by the Suez Canal on the West and Israel on the East. In its northeast most point, Sinai is but a stone’s throw from Palestinian-controlled Gaza, and according to Debka, Hamas fighters there have been relying on Iranian arms smugglers to supply them with weaponry by way of Egypt. Debka reports this week that Sinai will soon be occupied by US troops, who were promised by President Barack Obama to Israel’s leaders as a condition that a ceasefire be called. Once deployed, the Americans will intervene with the rumored arms trade orchestrated by Iranians, ideally cutting off supplies for Hamas while at the same time serving as a thorn in the side of Iran. “Once the missile and arms consignments depart Iranian ports or Libyan arms bazaars, Tehran has no direct control of their transit from point to point through Egypt until they reach Sinai and their Gaza destination,” Debka reports. “All the same, a US special forces operation against the Sinai segment of the Iranian smuggling route would count as the first overt American military strike against an Iranian military interest.” The decision to send US troops to Sinai in exchange for a ceasefire was reportedly arranged early Wednesday morning after Pres. Obama made a deal over the phone with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In the days prior, Israel was relentless in targeting Gaza, killing more than 100 persons — including civilians — during a renewed assault on Hamas. A ceasefire has since been called after a week of fight, but more military action could soon occur, claims Israel, if the flow of weapons to Gaza is not stopped. Netanyahu has been adamant with his pleas for the United States to strike Iran in an effort to disrupt its nuclear enrichment facilities, a demand which up until now has been brushed aside by Pres. Obama. The White House has up until now insisted on diplomatic measures in order to make an impact on any Iranian output, but Debka’s sources suggest that US troops may now have to intervene in Sinai if any smugglers should attempt to move weapons into Gaza. “By opening the Sinai door to an American troop deployment for Israel’s defense, recognizes that the US force also insures Israel against Cairo revoking or failing to honor the peace treaty Egypt signed with Israel in 1979,” adds Debka. According to their sources, US troops are expected in Egypt early next week. Meanwhile, American forces have all but surrounded Iran and are stationed in countless bases across the Middle East.