Site Meter Yehudi Yerushalmi: Interesting Reads

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Interesting Reads

Arab Member of Israels knesset calls for the dismantling of Israel (once again)!

Knesset Member Azmi Bishara in Lebanon: We are original inhabitants of Palestine, not ‘those who came from Poland, Russia; says Israelis should leave, take their democracy with them.


While Tommy Lapid complains (falsely) of the Hechsherim driving up prices, in America, the food manufacturers are falling over themselves to get a Hechsher.


Entire Region of Norway to Boycott Israeli Goods
SOR-TRODELAG (NORWAY), December 17, 2005 (WAFA-PLO news agency)- The Norwegian Provincial Government of Sor-Trondelag voted by a majority on
Saturday to boycott the Israeli goods.

In a press release issued by the Grassroots Palestinian Anti-Apartheid Wall
Campaign, said tha the government, includes Trondheim, Norway's third
largest city and comprises almost 20 percent of Norway's population, decided
to completely and totally prohibits the purchase or sale of Israeli products
in all municipalities in the province.


Beilin proudly announces he will divide Jerusalem

Yoram Ettinger writes an excellent article on Magen David Adom’s recent capitulation to the anti-Semites.
From Oslo to Red Cross
Israelis continue to disengage from their roots
"Another 'victory' like this and we've had it," wrote the Wall Street Journal – the most influential newspaper in the United States – about Magen David Adom's admission to the International Red Cross, in exchange for relinquishing the red Star of David in favor of a red crystal. . .

This atmosphere represents weakness as if it were strength, servility as determination, fear as restraint, and adherence and devotion to our roots and principles and national pride as extremist and iron-clad assets as liabilities.
Nations don't concede their national principles – certainly not the 3,000-year-old ones – for temporary advantages, but rather as an expression of caving in to pressure.
History shows that sovereignty and national security rest on ironclad assets, the nurturing of which exacts an immediate-term price, but bears fruit in the long term. . .

The current example of capitulation is just one more stage in the dramatic burnout in Israel's staying power and deterrent power, joining the steep, slippery slope of withdrawals and flimsiness: Negotiations about Jerusalem, coming to terms with a growing balance of terror with the Palestinian Authority and Hizbullah, ignoring hate education in the PA and Chairman Mahmoud Abbas' central role in directing the escalation of incitement and terrorism, recognizing Hamas as a "political organization" running for elections, bowing to Condoleezza Rice's demand to open the Gaza crossings to terrorists, and much, much more. . .


Caroline Glick’s, Column one: Privatizing foreign policy

...As an Israeli, listening to [America's ambassador to the United Nations
John] Bolton I could not help feeling a deep sense of shame. True, it is
exhilarating to know that there is an American ambassador at Turtle Bay who
is going out of his way to defend Israel's rights. But I couldn't help
wondering where Israel's UN ambassador and Foreign Ministry fit into this

It seems that since he was elected vice president of the General Assembly,
Ambassador Gillerman has spent an inordinate amount of his time praising
Kofi Annan for the crumbs he throws in Israel's direction whenever he comes
under pressure from the US Congress to reform the endemically corrupt UN.

And truly, one has to wonder, what purpose other than irony is served by
having an official UN Holocaust Memorial Day? Every day the UN busies itself
facilitating a second Holocaust by advancing its agenda of delegitimizing
Israel's right to exist in every UN body except the Security Council where
Israel is protected by the US veto.

It is a source of embarrassment that the only reason the public became aware
of the UN's literal erasure of Israel from its official map is because of
the subterfuge of Bayevsky - a private citizen and human rights activist who
managed to smuggle a digital camera into the hall where the event took
place. Where was Israel's delegation when the UN officials were organizing
this event and printing up this map? Where was Israel's delegation when the
map was displayed? Where was Israel's delegation when Bayevsky was working
alone to show the world what the UN budget is being used to finance? And why
is the fact that the UN used a map with Israel wiped away not being
staunchly and resolutely condemned on the Foreign Ministry's Web site or
even mentioned there? Why are the ZOA's Web site and Bayevsky's UN Watch Web
site the only sites that posted word of the outrage?

WHAT IS prominently displayed on the Foreign Ministry's Web site is a report
on last week's vote by the Diplomatic Conference of all state parties to the
Geneva Conventions that will pave the way for Magen David Adom to finally
become a member of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Society.
According to a statement by Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom posted on the Web
site, the vote "reflects Israel's improved international standing in recent
years.. This is yet another achievement for Israel's diplomacy, joining a
long list of other successes in recent months."

Sadly, as in the case of Israel's treatment at the UN, what we see here is
yet another example of Israeli diplomats mistaking spit for raindrops.

The agreement that Israel reached with the International Red Cross is not an
achievement but a travesty. Israel's dispute with the organization was a
dispute over symbols. For 58 years Israel has justifiably demanded that the
Red Cross recognize the red Star of David - long the national symbol of the
Jewish people - as a symbol equal in legitimacy to the cross and the
crescent. But the organization's vote did not recognize its equality.
Rather, the symbol of the Jewish people was replaced with a bizarre diamond
shape. MDA delegations abroad may be permitted to stick a red Star of David
inside of the diamond, but then again, they may not be permitted to do so.
That decision lies in the hands of the government that MDA is deployed to

As The Wall Street Journal editorialized the day after the vote, "Israeli
diplomats celebrate this deal as a great victory. We'd hate to see a
defeat." The editorial continued, "If Israeli relief workers around the
world or army medical corps must hide their identity and wear some 'New Age'
symbol to be accorded the protection of international law, one might
consider this as just another example of the gradual delegitimization of
Israel as a Jewish state."

What the Journal's editorial, Bayevsky's activism and Bolton's actions at
the UN have in common is that in all cases, foreigners, rather than the
Government of Israel, are the ones protesting Israel's mistreatment by
international bodies.

Indeed, since the outbreak of the Palestinian terror war, as Israel's
international standing and the standing of Jews throughout the world have
deteriorated to a level not seen since the Holocaust, the most effective
actions taken in defense of Israel internationally have been conducted by
private organizations and private individuals, mainly in the US. These
actions run the gamut: from countering anti-Semitism on college campuses;
lobbying the US Congress and the EU to cut off funding to the Palestinian
Authority, Egypt and Saudi Arabia; exposing the finding arms of terrorist
organizations; to monitoring the US media for distortions in Middle East
coverage. The Middle East Media Research Institute, which monitors and
translates the Arabic press, has done more to expose the anti-Westernism,
misogyny, anti-Americanism and genocidal anti-Semitism that is rife in Arab
culture than any government of Israel ever dreamed of doing.

In some cases, these organizations have been supported by the Foreign
Ministry. In others, they have been undercut by the Foreign Ministry. But
regardless, it is impossible to deny the fact that the incompetence of the
Israeli government in defending Israel in the international arena, and
particularly in the US, has been mitigated substantially by the valiant
efforts of these organizations and individuals, many of whom work as

RATHER THAN demand that the Foreign Ministry operate more effectively, the
time has come for Israelis to simply acknowledge that, for whatever reason,
the ministry is incapable of operating differently. The fact of the matter
is that since the beginning of the Oslo process in 1993, the Foreign
Ministry has preferred fancy, empty ceremonies to actual diplomatic
achievements. Perhaps one day we'll get our own Bolton who will fix the
situation. But regardless of whether one ever appears, the time has come for
Israelis to start advancing private initiatives.

A reader from Florida sent me an idea this week that could potentially make
an enormous contribution to Israel's strategic alliance with the US.

It has been widely reported that the greatest drag on the morale of US
military personnel deployed in Iraq are their long separations from their
families. Divorce rates among US servicemen and women are skyrocketing. My
reader suggested that Israelis organize a program for housing US military
families in Israel while their fathers and mothers are deployed in Iraq. If
their families were comfortably ensconced in Israel, American soldiers,
marines, sailors and airmen could see their families once a month rather
than once a year.

It is true that the US Defense Department will not suggest that the families
of US military personnel in Iraq should move to Israel for the duration of
their family members' deployment. But no one could stop them from doing so.
There can be no doubt that the project would strengthen US-Israel ties and
there can also be no doubt that the initiative can be handled more
efficiently and effectively by private citizens than by the government.

We Israelis spend an enormous amount of time and energy criticizing our
government's incompetence. The time has come to stop complaining and start

Bolton ended his address by discussing the uniqueness of American foreign
policy. In his words, "Our foreign policy is not run by an elite group that
sits in its foreign ministry and dictates policy without regard to what the
voters and what our legislature thinks. The overwhelming characteristic of
our foreign policy is that it is ultimately determined by our citizens."

Yet another example of the lessons we can learn from our American friends

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