Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Tyranny of the Minority

This is the best political theatre I have seen in Canadian politics in awhile. The Liberals are attempting to cobble a coalition government with the NDP and have called out Jean and Ed out of retirement to work the phones to seal the deal. Toronto Star
OTTAWA–Former Liberal prime minister Jean Chrétien and one-time NDP leader Ed Broadbent are planning to meet today to discuss the possibility of a coalition government.

A senior NDP official told The Canadian Press that Broadbent spoke to Chrétien at least four times yesterday and last night after Finance Minister Jim Flaherty delivered an economic update that threatened to bankrupt the opposition parties.
"The idea is to have elder statesmen smoothing things out," the official said. "It's going to be a long day (today)." A Liberal MP confirmed that the talks were going on and the NDP said Broadbent was having a morning meeting with Layton.

Chrétien was seen on his way to his downtown Ottawa office, but when asked about the coalition talks he feigned an inability to understand English.
"Je ne comprends pas anglais," he said.
Finally, Chrétien answers directly and honestly what Canadians have long suspected.

And the confidence issue which would bring this down the Conservative government is about what? All because the Conservatives have proposed to do away the draconian finance law brought in by the old Liberal retrograde Chrétien himself; which saw the public purse shell out to political parties for every vote cast their way.

According to parliamentary procedure, once the government looses a confidence vote the Governor General has the option of asking the official opposition if a coalition government can be formed or dissolves parliament and calls for an election. So if Jean and Ed and close the deal, and the opposition parties who did not receive a mandate from Canadians to govern will suddenly be leading the country. And progs, libber and dippers routinely accuse tories of being ‘undemocratic’. Don’t even bother to quote the 63% didn’t even bother to vote Tory as absolutely no one in your respective camps voted for a voted for a Liberal/Dipper/Bloc coalition

I started to write this earlier today before the drugs kicked and sent me off to la la land and then I woke up to find Harper won’t include introduce the plan to cut funding to political parties as a confidence vote. At first, I had to give my head a shake trying to understand why he would bother backing down as facing an electorate saying no to a political free ride would especially resonate with ordinary Canadians in times of an economic downturn.

I don’t care that the libbers, dippers and Greenies would all scream Harper and the Tories are meanies because they won’t play nice with us. Frankly, most days I find it entirely too trying and difficult to get along with anyone other than a few libertarians-conservative types, but then, I have never had much patience with whiners or the smug self-righteousness of the progressive crowd. And for all their hype about equality and fraternity, their obvious contempt and ill-will for those who think remarkably different from themselves is self-evident. So I crushed up a few more painkillers, and struggle to get the horse sized anti-biotics down my swollen throat and head back to the big sleep.

Arising from my drugged stupor to discover three important things; it is possible for my face to continue to swell more than it has already, the joys of having an impacted wisdom tooth surgically removed seems never-ending, and the Libber-Dipper are so in love with the idea of a coalition betwixt the two that they have decided to go for broke and introduce their own confidence motions designed to replace the Tory government with Liberal-NDP Axis -entitlements or no entitlements. The Globe and Mail:
Earlier, the federal Liberals laid out a potential plan to bring down the Harper government by putting forward a motion they could use to defeat the Conservatives on Monday and replace them with a coalition made up of themselves and the NDP.

The Liberals presented four possible motions, one of which says the opposition "has lost confidence in this government, and is of the opinion that a viable alternative government can be formed within the present House of Commons."

Well, you know what – go for broke. I say, let the little tyrants bring down the government and present Canadians with an Axis coup. Besides it will be endlessly entertaining watching the Liberals attempt to be responsible stewards of the economy when they cannot even manage their own party’s finances responsibly. All the while the Bloc and the NDP will be holding out their hands out screaming, "More, more, more!" Even better yet - put Bob Rae in as Minister of Finance so he can do to Canadians what he already did to Ontario. I am pulling for Duceppe as Foreign Affairs Minister. Then Dion can teach us all the verses to the green shaft with the Axis parliamentary choir chiming in with the chorus.

Once the country is wheeling under the weight of the Axis feasting with economic entitlements will be coming out of everyone and their grandmother’s arse and as my children’s economic future is indentured for the next 20 plus years. One of two things will happen; Harper will finally get his long sought majority or the East will not just smell the Fire Wall but see it. Either way, I’ll know which side of the firewall me and mine will be on. Long live the free men and women of the West.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Egyptians: Forget Hamas, the Bedouins are running amuck

Ynet News carries a warning from Cairo which suggests the Egyptian-Israeli-Gaza Strip border is a dangerous place because of out of control…Bedouins.
The Egyptian parliament's defense committee says the situation at the border with Israel is dangerous because of heavily armed Bedouin and police inability to control smuggling tunnels. The state-owned Al-Gomhuria daily, in its early Wednesday edition, said committee members warned parliament of increased smuggling operations through the tunnels and the unrestricted spread of weapons among the Bedouin.

(…)Tension is high between the Egyptian government and Bedouin of the Sinai, who complain they are discriminated against and not given job opportunities in the mountainous desert peninsula that is home to some of Egypt's top beach resorts. Bedouin smugglers use the border areas to send weapons, drugs and other items into the Gaza Strip, often through underground tunnels. Traffickers also ferry African migrants seeking to enter Israel.

Just how bad (er, embarrassing?) is it for the Egyptians? Go back and read here.

UN Decisions divorced from reason or reality

While anyone still thinks the UN can play a useful geo-political role beyond arming every tin pot third world tyrant is beyond my ability to comprehend. The Jerusalem Post. Jerusalem Post:
The UN nuclear agency on Wednesday approved technical aid for Syria despite suspicions that the country had a secret atomic program that could be used to make weapons.
When Syria has finally turned its peace nuclear program into arms against the Israelis I hope the Samson Option includes a missile strike on the UN Atomic agency as well.

Forget about saying it with flowers or go to jail…

The Hamas – Fatah strifle keeps heating up in the Gaza Strip. Actually, it only nominally cooled down once Hamas' ascension to power was consolidated. The thing one should always keep in mind when looking at the Hamas-Fatah divide is how really tribal the how Hamas-Fatah dictate is. One generally does not become a Hamas or Fatah loyalist because of the appeal of any particular platform issue of either party but because one's clans leans that way. Anyhoo, the current Hamas – Fatah infighting has now extended its reach into how one shows consolation for the sick. Arutz Sheva is reporting.
Hamas has forbidden Palestinian Authority (PA) residents from "bringing flowers" or otherwise expressing consolation to someone who is sick or wounded in Gaza, if the visitor identifies himself as a Fatah member.According to Fatah sources quoted in a report published Tuesday in the PA newspaper Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's faction was declared an "illegal organization" by the ruling rival Hamas terrorist group.

Hamas "threatened them with kidnapping and torture should any activities on behalf of the movement be carried out in the [Gaza] Strip, even in the case of humanitarian activities," said the report, which was translated by Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) watchdog organization. "The [Fatah] movement has revealed that Hamas has summoned a number of Fatah activists for interrogation and warned them of the consequences of helping any sick or wounded [person] or expressing consolation to any person, if they identify themselves as members of the Fatah movement.

"Fatah added that Hamas has warned the people of the movement [working] in the field and who carry out social and humanitarian activities and forbidden them [to perform] any social activities, sports activities and to bring humanitarian aid to [those who] need it. ...

"The sources pointed out that the activists have been subjected to threats and have been updated on the prohibition against issuing any consolation announcements of any kind, be it signs, bringing roses to the sick or any greeting in the name of Fatah.
In other Gaza Strip hardship news (outside of secret prisons) apparently there is a shekel shortage. Perish the fracking thought!

For behold.Your enemies in are in uproar, and those who hate you have raised their head

While I am aware of the latest terrorist attacks in Mumbai I am really rather ignorant of all the players in Indian politics. I, no more know the ins and outs of the situation in India than I know about quantum physics. I had thought the attacks were strictly on US or British nationals staying in the city so I was a little more surprised to learn there was a deliberate attack and hostage taking by terrorists on a local Chabad house in Mumbai. Jerusalem Post:
One terrorist has been killed by Indian special forces in the Chabad House in Mumbai, but four others still remain barricaded inside and are holding off efforts to reach Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg, his wife Rivka, and possibly others, who have been held hostage since multiple attacks rocked the city late Wednesday night, Reuters reported on Thursday morning.

Sky News reported that a loud explosion had been heard at the Chabad House. There was no official word as to the cause of the explosion, which could indicate an Indian attempt to storm the compound.

Earlier, the kidnappers apparently released the couple's young boy and his nanny, who said that the rabbi and his wife were alive but unconscious. Indian television showed footage of the young boy leaving the building with the nanny. The rabbi's mother confirmed to Army Radio that her two-year-old grandson had been released.

"Pray that we should hear good news," urged a Chabad spokesman, Rabbi Zalman Shmotkin, in a telephone conversation with The Jerusalem Post from New York in the early hours of Thursday morning, Israel time. Chabad later said that it feared for the life of another man, the brother in law of a prominent Israeli rabbi, who may have been among those beind held hostage.

Joshua Runyan, the news editor of the website, told the Post that there had been "several reports that shots were fired in the vicinity of the Chabad House, and unconfirmed reports on CNN of casualties in the Nariman House." Nariman House, Runyan said, was the original name of the Chabad House, which was purchased two years ago.

There is something more than a little bit existentially depressing that even in India ‘kill the Jews’ still resonates as a valid motif. Tehillim can be said Gavriel Noach ben Freida Bluma and Rivka bas Yehudis.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

New Dating Rules

When I was younger I really didn't have any hard and fast rules for dating men in which I articulated much beyond 'never date a Cohen' (to keep my grandfather happy) and I wouldn't date men whose hair was longer then mine. Last weekend my daughter came home from university seeking dating wisdom, and thanks to Japanese innovation, I just discovered a new rule to add to her list. Reuters:
TOKYO (Reuters) - Who said bras are only for women? A Japanese online lingerie retailer is selling bras for cross-dressing men and they've quickly become one of its most popular items.

Since launching two weeks ago on Rakuten, a major Japanese web shopping mall, the Wishroom shop has sold over 300 men's bras for 2,800 yen ($30) each. The shop also stocks men's panties, as well as lingerie for women.

"I like this tight feeling. It feels good," Wishroom representative Masayuki Tsuchiya told Reuters as he modeled the bra, which can be worn discreetly under men's clothing. Wishroom Executive Director Akiko Okunomiya said she was surprised at the number of men who were looking for their inner woman.

"I think more and more men are becoming interested in bras. Since we launched the men's bra, we've been getting feedback from customers saying 'wow, we'd been waiting for this for such a long time'," she said. But the bra, available in black, pink and white, is not an easy sell for all men.

New Rule: Never date a man whose bra size is bigger than yours.

x/p: Dust my Broom


I read this by-line “Tax Authority wants hazard pay over mob’ at the Jerusalem Post and got excited thinking Israeli’s were leading the way in tax reform Kateland style.

Of all the causes to riot over - paying taxes cracks my top ten. I clicked in only to discover the Israel tax authorities want hazard pay for tax officials turning over financial tax information to the police on ‘mob’ members. Talk about a disappointment.

Show Cause

The Jerusalem District Court has ruled Noam Federman and family should be allowed to return to their home the Israeli government forcibly evicted them from a month ago. Jerusalem Post
"It is not clear to me," presiding Judge Moshe Drori wrote in his decision, "why it was necessary to embark on an operation involving 100 police officers in order to evict a man from a closed military zone which was closed 10 months earlier, without any warning, without any attempt at negotiation, and without checking the claims of the other side."

Around 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, October 26, security forces, in a surprise operation, destroyed an outpost which consisted of two unauthorized homes belonging to the families of singer Sinai Tor and Federman.

"I haven't heard any claims which would support [Federman's] inclusion in an order declaring a closed military zone," the decision read. "[He] is not suspected of conducting a terror attack against Israeli communities, which is one function of the order, and certainly the closure of this area does not apply to [Federman]."

"Indeed," the judge continued, "producing this order [implies an attempt] to prevent a 'terrorist infiltration,' and it is inconceivable that [Federman] be included in this category. For this reason he should have been permitted to remain in the closed territory in order to protect the Israeli communities from terrorist attacks and infiltration, and not have been expelled from the area."

"The methods by which [the State used to evacuate the outpost] were unconstitutional and not proportional, inasmuch as they prevented Federman from living in a significant portion of the land of Israel," the ruling read. "The petition by the State is defective [because of its] grave discrimination. I have not heard any explanation as to why the State chose to evacuate a man with a family which includes a wife and nine little children at 1:30 at night. I don't see how this kind of thing exhibits an obligation by the state to protect its children."

Ehud Barak, current Israeli Defense Minister, has announced his department will appeal this court ruling.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

What's the point of free speech when only some are freely allowed to speak?

Of all the criminal trials underway in Canada today I cannot think of a more frivolous matter than the ongoing second criminal court trial of former Aboriginal leader David Ahenakew for ‘hate speech’. One could be forgiven for presuming the public purse has unlimited resources. The Globe and Mail reports:
Saskatoon — A second hate crime trial is under way for former aboriginal leader David Ahenakew. The 75-year-old sat quietly in Saskatoon court as the Crown began presenting evidence he wilfully promoted hatred in 2002 by telling a newspaper reporter Jews were a “disease” and caused the Second World War.

Mr. Ahenakew avoided a throng of reporters during the lunch break, rushing off to visit his ailing wife during her dialysis treatment in hospital.(…)He was originally found guilty and fined $1,000, but the conviction was overturned on appeal.

While Ahenakew’s bigotry and ignorance is beyond question and his opinions offensive (well, at least to me) he has already been tried in the court of public opinion and found not only guilty but wanting and flawed as a man. A lifetime spent achieving accolades and honours for his work within and outside the Aboriginal community is left more tattered than a pair of my discarded Swan Lake toe shoes. This is what one should do with bigots and ignoramuses.

Ahenakew is not on trial for counselling, inciting or even promoting violence against Jews but for merely having expressed a poorly reasoned bigoted opinion which in another lapse of questionable judgment he chose to share in conversation with a reporter. My own beloved grandmother had her own set of dearly held prejudices which she never learned not to voice but we all learned early the bankruptcy of those opinions, and consequently, did not take them to heart. It never crossed our minds she should be jailed for voicing her bigotry.

I wonder at the apparent zeal of the crown in seeking a criminal prosecution against an old aboriginal man for ‘hate speech’ and I cannot help but wonder if the zealotry of the Crown is more a case of venomous bigotry than justice blind. If David Ahenakew was a Muslim rather than a Native; would he even face a first trial, let alone a second?

Think I am mistaken – then ask yourself why no charges have been laid against the Khalid Bin Al-Walid Mosque in Toronto for the published ‘hate speech’ found on their very own public website. Certainly the messages in the public domain were on par with anything Ahenakew said to the Star Phoenix reporter in a one-on-one conversation. The mosque administration has removed the offensive material and apologized. David Ahenakew has apologized too but for some inexplicable reason he is still being held under the bus.

Hate speech laws have no valid place within any society which aspires to be a free and open society but even more repugnant - is criminalizing hate speech and then only using the selected enforcement of those laws. I am favour of giving everyone – including all bigots, the right to speak their mind in the public market place of ideas. It makes it far easier to know which opinions one should discount and avoid at all costs.

Monday, November 24, 2008


The urge to blog just isn’t there and today is really one of them but I do have two quick thoughts.

As I sit here in the centre of the down turned universe, I really wonder how long and how far will the Toronto Star go to bash Alberta. I mean, can there ever be a bottom to this petty mean spirited prattle? Furthermore, attempting to draw a comparison between Norway and Alberta is trying to compare apples and oranges. There might be some validity in such a comparison if the Western Separatist movement actually succeeded in separating from Confederation, but until then, from ringside my perch, a $2 billion surplus is nothing to be pooh-poohed at. We should all have it so good.

It appears Hillary Clinton is set to be the next US Secretary of State and I am reminded of an old Israeli joke about Shimon Peres – no matter who one votes for you always get Shimon Peres. The joke works for the Americans as all one has to do is replace the Peres with Clinton. Am I the only one struck by the smallness of change the new American Administration of Hope and Change actually brings?

Friday, November 21, 2008

Danes to the fore

Well the Danes maybe set to make the best case for immigration to Israel if a law recommended by Denmark’s National Council for Children makes it into law . Ynet News
COPENHAGEN - At a time where anti-Semitic acts seem to be on the rise in Europe, a bill was proposed in Denmark that will affect mainly Jews – the banning of male child circumcision. Denmark's National Council for Children has recommended the legislation of a law banning circumcision of boys under the age of 15.
The passing of this law would make the Jewish mitzvah and tradition of circumcising a child on his eighth day a crime. The country's Ethics Council supported the proposal and now only the parliament's medical committee can intervene and prevent the proposal from being heard. "Circumcision is the irreversible damage to a child's body before he is given the chance to object," the National Council for Children argued.

The Council further claimed that the banning of male child circumcision was a matter of equality among the sexes. "Just like female circumcision was banned five years ago, male circumcision should be banned," the Council said. The new proposal caused a storm among the Jewish and Muslim populations in Denmark, with 95% of the 7,000 Jewish population circumcising their sons.

What a world we live in when circumcision in a male is being preceived seen as equal to the removal of partial or full removal of female sexual organs - nor can the risk of complications arising from both procedures be seen as equal.

And if the Danes are all about the promotion of equality between the sexes and using their reasoning - than why ban female genital mutilation outright? For the sake of equality shouldn’t female genital mutilation be an option for 15 plus year old girls? No doubt the Danes would recoil at that idea. What an ironic time for the Danes to propose this piece of legislation when the World Health Organization is actively promoting circumcision as one tool in the fight against HIV/AIDS transmission.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

No Eviction - for now

According to the Jerusalem Post the IDF has decided this would not be an opportune time (owing to the many who are expected to arrive to spend Shabbat in Hebron) to evict the families from Beit HaShalom in Hebron. Although the JPost article does all suggest the eviction will come and alludes to the ‘when’ will be up for discussion on Thursday.
Fearing extreme violence, the IDF does not plan to evacuate the disputed four-story building in Hebron this week, senior defense officials said on Wednesday. Initially it was expected that the IDF would move immediately to forcibly remove the nine families who live there once the court-ordered deadline for their voluntary exit expired Wednesday morning.

According to defense officials, the decision to postpone the evacuation was made due to festivities planned for the weekend in the Jewish section of the city and concern that right-wing activists would barricade themselves in the building, known as Beit Hashalom. It is located on Worshipers' Way, the road that leads between the Kiryat Arba settlement and the Cave of the Patriarchs.

And just what exactly is the Torah reading this week which would inspire Jews to come to Hebron? Nothing less that the Parshah Chayei-Sarah which tells the story of Sarah’s death and Abraham’s insistence on buying the Machpeilah Cave to bury Sarah in for 400 shekels of silver from Ephton the Hittite.

There is an irony here which I suspect even the IDF command and the secular political left echelon recognizes and has decided this is not most politically expedient time to be remembered and associated for evicting Jews from their home in Hebron.

Of course, no one asked me, but I would still like to put out an alternative suggestion for the most appropriate night to come as thieves in the night and carry out this nefarious eviction – providing of course if the Barak and Livni camp cannot be deterred from the utter folly of this course. My vote goes for the after the first candle has been lit on the 25th day of Kislev.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Meaning of the showdown at Beit HaShalom

I have written about Beit HaShalom in Hebron before. I have been reading steadily the most recent developments in the papers and I have been trying to write a coherent post on why the coming showdown at Beit HaShalom is important. Rafi at Life in Israel nails it better than I.I hope he forgive this stranger from far for co-opting most of his post:
Why this is so important to be done now, can only be answered with one word - elections. The left wing government, and the Supreme Court, need to retain their control of the country. They see the populace turning more and more to the right, and that means they are losing control, and their agenda will lose its momentum. The only plan they have to thwart that is by engendering hatred for the "violent settlers who are anti-state".

How do you get people who send their kids to the elite army units, people who are involved in every aspect of the state, people who are involved in settling the land, to appear as anti-state?

The easiest way seems to be by riling them up by knocking down their homes, destroying their villages, and ruining their lives. They never really turn anti-state, as we saw after the Disengagement. They continued to send their kids to the most elite combat units, they continued serving faithfully despite threats and concerns that they would not. But at least for a few days if they can be upset, and shown in the media as being violent, and get some salient anti-government quotes said in the heat of the conflict, then they can easily be branded and portrayed as being anti-state and violent.

So the Supreme Court decides it is time to throw out a bunch of people who paid for their house, with video proof and full documentation. The government says they are going to do it. The residents and their supporters (of which I count myself) start getting upset and defending their position and themselves as being persecuted, and we are heading for a violent clash.

The leaders of the families at Beit HaShalom are warning that the upcoming fights will make Amona look like it was a cakewalk.

And you know what? I hope they break some heads.

The government is very selectively enforcing the law. Their is tremendous illegal construction going on all over the country, some by jews, and most of it by Arabs and Bedouin. As a matter of fact, there is a report by a comittee appointed by Interior Minister Meir Shitreet recommending today that tens of thousands od dunams of land stonlen by Bedouins in southern Israel and illegaly built upon be formally and retroactively approved, even though nobody went through any process of apllying for permits and making it legal. Just wave your hand and make all that illegal construction, and land theft, legal.

Yet here a few people go and pay full price for a house in a city, and nobody has argued that what they did was invalid or illegal, and the governemt is going out of its way to evict them.

If they think this will be a cakewalk, they are wrong.

The problem is that the residents of Beit HaShalom are playing into the hands of the government. The government is trying to get images of violent settlers into the media right before elections. That is the only way to get the left wingers, and even more centrist people, to hate the right wing, call them violent, condemn them and the like right before elections.

But what else can the residents do? Just walk away peacefully? They cannot. If they do that, then there will be more razings, evictions and disengagements around Yehuda V'Shomron.

They need to fight back. They have to defend themselves against the governments selective enforcement and the governments redifa* of the settlers.

And Rafi, sometimes it takes courage just to chose sides and speak out. If my life was my own and I could afford to leave my children; I can think of no better place to be today or in the coming tomorrows than Beit HaShalom.

*redifa translates as repression.

Propaganda sure isn’t what it use to be

If there is a bright spot in the Fatah-Hamas divide it is this – neither side gets a free pass on the propaganda divide. Jerusalem Post:
Palestinian Authority officials in Ramallah accused Hamas on Tuesday of staging the latest blackouts in the Gaza Strip in a bid to win sympathy and incite the Palestinian public against Israel and the PA. The officials said that contrary to Hamas's claim, there is no shortage of basic goods, medicine and fuel in the Gaza Strip, largely thanks to the many underground tunnels along the border with Egypt.

This is not the first time that Palestinians have accused Hamas of staging Gaza blackouts under the pretext that Israel had cut off fuel supplies to the district's power grid. Earlier this year, Palestinian journalists in Gaza City told The Jerusalem Post that scenes of Palestinian children and women holding lit candles in the dark had been staged by Hamas and some Arab satellite TV stations.

"There's no shortage of fuel in the Gaza Strip and the Electricity Company is continuing to function normally," said a PA official. "Our people in the Gaza Strip have told us that the blackouts are all staged as part of the Hamas propaganda." Another PA official noted that Hamas's lies reached their peak last January when its legislators held a meeting in a darkened hall of the Palestinian Legislative Council - while light could be seen coming in through the curtained windows.

(…)The Fatah-controlled Pal-Press Web site on Thursday quoted a senior official in the Gaza Electricity Company as saying that Hamas has been stealing fuel supplies intended for the power grid. The official, who asked not to be identified, also denied claims by Hamas and Al-Jazeera about power outages in large parts of the Gaza Strip. He noted that 70% of the Gaza Strip's electricity came from Israel and Egypt, while the remaining 30% were being supplied by the local company. "Hamas has seized more than 220,000 liters of fuel that was intended for generators belonging to our company," he revealed. "There's no shortage of fuel and as such there is no reason for a crisis."

The official also disclosed that Hamas militiamen had been forcing the company to cut off power supplies to some areas in the Gaza Strip so as to create the impression that the outage was due to a lack of fuel caused by the ongoing closure of the border crossings.

But shhhhh - nobody tell Dr. Dawg – his buddies are losing the propaganda wars.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Ruff. Ruff.

Dr. Dawg is at it again.

October 21st of this year marked the 28th kassam launched from the Gaza Strip into Israel since the June 19th ‘truce’ went into effect but Dawg takes offense that the Gaza Strip leadership is branded the agressor….well, well. If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck - in Dr. Dawg’s world it must be a dove if it involves a wacked-out Islamist group.

If we were to believe Dr. Dawg, the cross-border raid in which six Hamas men were killed in a tunnel shoot-out with the IDF is a gross human rights violation. Who knew there was a human right to build a tunnel leading into a sovereign nation? It carries absolutely no weight with Dawg that the only express purpose of a tunnel beginning in the Gaza Strip and leading into the Israeli state would be for the express purpose of launching an attack and/or kidnapping of Israelis – just like the tunnel used to launch the Shalit affair.

I suppose now it is the human right to kill Israelis. The problem with lefties like Dawg is that the human rights bar keeps changing. Like the human right of the “Hezzies” to launch rocket attacks against Israeli civilians. Frankly, I am having a hard time keeping up with all the new human rights which keep being established by Dawg and his pack.

The Dawg also takes issue with the fact Israel will not allow journalists into the Gaza Strip from their side of the border but he offers absolutely no criticism of the Egyptian authorities who also share a border with the Hamas run Gaza Strip and will not allow journalists to enter from their side of the border. I suppose geography is not his strong suit – either that or he believes the Egyptians are merely Zionists stooges or dupes.

Dawg also neglects to mention the kinds of things which caused international news agencies to pull their journalists out of the Gaza Strip in the first place. Of course, you can check his archives for September of this year and you will not one word of support for the Gazan journalists who have been protesting against their treatment by the Hamas government.

While the Dawg and his pack want you to believe Gazans are suffering ‘serious privations’ what he doesn’t want to acknowledge is that the markets on the streets of Rafah are doing a booming business in the Gaza Strip. I mean, who are you to believe – Dawg, the UN, Amnesty International, Oxfam or your own lying eyes?

Go read and look at the whole article at Arutz Sheva, and since Dawg invoked the Geneva convention thingy how come his yelp makes absolutely no sound concerning Hamas prisoner of war violations - a la Gilad Shalit?

And just why did Dawg spare us his yelping and the invoking of the Geneva Convention when Hamas was busy fighting Fatah for the control of the Gaza Strip? Of course, no Israelis Jews were involved so I suppose in Dawg’s world; Hamas earned a pass.

x/p at Dust My Broom

Monday, November 17, 2008

See - there can be a common meeting ground between the Left and Right.

I was feeling rather pleased as a case of wine has just arrived at what is to be my winter digs yesterday. Nothing like a little Yarden to make one feel at home.

And it was in this spirit that I decided to see what StageLeft et al are up to and found this post – Where my money goes is my decision. It centres around the recent controversy of Britian demanding products being produced in the West Bank/Judea/Samaria being labeled as such rather than being labeled ‘Made in Israel’. Ha’aretz carries the report. I decided to make a brief foray into the comments on this issue and then decided this comment was worthy of its on post on my blog.

For the record, this is just another incident where I believe the Israeli government is taking the wrong stance.

Secondly, I would like to note the Israeli government is not objecting to the ‘Made in Israel’ label but what the British government is suggesting is that products be labeled not ‘Made in Israel’ but ‘Made in Judea or Samaria’. And unabashed Zionist that I am, I don’t have a problem with products being labeled ‘Made in Judea or Samaria’ or even ‘Made in the West Bank’ although I suspect the law of unintended consequences will eventually be applied here.

For example, a Swedish firm which operated a branch in the ‘West Bank’ was recently pressured to close their branch office via political pressure applied at home and move it behind the so-called ‘Green-line’. Consequently, a few hundred Palestinian Arabs are now out of work. And in a response to unintended consequences of the situation, I suspect the British government will eventually demand product labeling being based upon the content as being ‘Judenrein’ or not. I still don’t have a problem with that and I suspect many others won’t as well but there will be an enormous amount of irony watching Gentiles making their purchasing decisions based on the ‘Judenrein’ content of goods offered for sale.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Call for the Return of the Auschwitz Borders

"We have openly said that the map will never again be the same as on June 4, 1967. For us, this is a matter of security and of principles. The June map is for us equivalent to insecurity and danger. I do not exaggerate when I say that it has for us something of a memory of Auschwitz. We shudder when we think of what would have awaited us in the circumstances of June, 1967, if we had been defeated; with Syrians on the mountain and we in the valley, with the Jordanian army in sight of the sea, with the Egyptians who hold our throat in their hands in Gaza. This is a situation which will never be repeated in history." Abba Eban, cited in the Jerusalem Post, August 18, 1995, by JP columnist Moshe Kohn.

The Sunday TimesOnline is reporting that US Presidential Elect Barack Obama is set to back the Arab “Peace Plan” circa 2002 which Israel has rejected many times.
Barack Obama is to pursue an ambitious peace plan in the Middle East involving the recognition of Israel by the Arab world in exchange for its withdrawal to pre-1967 borders, according to sources close to America’s president-elect.

Obama intends to throw his support behind a 2002 Saudi peace initiative endorsed by the Arab League and backed by Tzipi Livni, the Israeli foreign minister and leader of the ruling Kadima party. The proposal gives Israel an effective veto on the return of Arab refugees expelled in 1948 while requiring it to restore the Golan Heights to Syria and allow the Palestinians to establish a state capital in east Jerusalem.

On a visit to the Middle East last July, the president-elect said privately it would be “crazy” for Israel to refuse a deal that could “give them peace with the Muslim world”, according to a senior Obama adviser.

I don’t know how much truth there is behind this highly biased report which among other things could lead one to conclude there was an official policy of mass expuslion of Arabs from the Israeli state in 1948 contrary to all known evidence.

But a return to the 1949 Armitice borders demanded by the Arab Peace Plan would spell a return to Auschwitz borders by the Israeli state, and while the Arab League proposes it would ‘normalize’ relations with Israel I suspect the Arab League cannot speak for Hamas, Hezbollah or Iran. And honestly, the Israeli economy seems to be doing quite nicely overall without the Arab world.

Then there is the question of what the word of the Arab League actually worth? For example, Saudi Arabia could be considered one of the most respected members within the Arab League. Saudi Arabia, in order to join the World Trade Organization, had to agree to end their participation of the Arab League boycott of Israel. So the Sauds, signed on the dotted line and were fully cognizant of the fact they would have to end their participation in the Israeli boycott but they have still not done so.

If this report is true, it does underscore not only naivety but a complete lack of understanding of the Israeli psyche by the Obama team. Quite frankly, I can not imagine the Israelis being crazy enough to accept this horrendously bad deal nor can I cannot imagine any Israeli leader accepting the deal as originally offered. Obama has neither the muscle nor political cache to intimidate the Israelis into risking civil war by accepting this deal.

The Amazon Proposition

I have been watching the ongoing saga of the Proposition 8 in California. The surprise was not necessarily that the Proposition 8 was defeated but rather the fall-out bullying by the electoral minority largely has been.

During Canada’s own ‘gay marriage’ debate I proposed that the government of the day and the opposition was going about this issue all wrong. What the government should have proposed was a reform of marriage laws whereby civil partnerships were the rule of law in the land and leave ‘marriage’ strictly in the realm of religious institutions.

Quite frankly, in this way we don’t get bogged down in moral murkiness of the state attempting to define a one size fits all solution which compromises both secular and religious institutions. Eventually, the day will come in Canada when we will see religious institutions which define marriage according to tenants of their faith sued in secular civil courts for discrimination. It hasn’t happened yet, but given enough time, and it will be. I have no idea how the Supreme Court of Canada will rule but I am not optimistic that freedom of religion and conscience will trump equality rights. Besides, with civil partnership agreements as the norm; it also allows anyone to form any kind of ‘partnership’ with anyone else.

I understand completely the desire of Lesbians and Gays to have their partnerships recognized by the state. Besides, property, inheritance, divorce, custody and health benefits/rights which are extended and entrenched by state recognized ‘marriages’, there is also the question of taxes. But let’s take it a step further, why shouldn’t consenting adults be allowed to make any manner of arrangements for their living conditions? For example, what about the case of two elderly people, whether related or not, with limited resources, who decide that forming a civil partnership agreement would raise their standard of living? I do not believe the state should be making laws which would hinder their ability to ensure a private comfortable standard of living by merging resources. Go ahead, take your best shot but I really cannot think of one compelling case whereby the state should stand in their way.

Saturday, November 15, 2008


I could not resist this little foray with 'artifical' intelligence.

GenderAnalyzer - Determine if a homepage is written by a man or woman


We think is written by a man (85%).
Not being the kind to kiss and tell, the one person (still living) who can vouch for my 'gender' unquestionably - I am not at liberty to name. I suspect the creators have a way to go before all the 'kinks' are worked out.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Canada, land of the refugees, and safe harbour for terror suspects


Well, well. There seems to be a whole lot of dodgy going on. The original report issued by the Toronto Star online has been completely re-written and incorporates both a Canadian Press and an Associated Press account without changing the original link or offering any citation that the report has been updated.

At the time, I didn’t think I needed to take a screen capture of the article so you will only have my word on it. In my favour, there is always the time my piece was published versus the new improved update time. And bloggers are the ones so often being accused of being unreliable by the mainstream media. I am letting my piece stand as originally written as it serves as a lesson in caution for any bloggers using a link to Toronto “Pravda” Star articles.

I have to hand it to the Toronto Star and their judicious editing team for dumbing down of the arrest of a Canadian-Lebanese man in Gatineau Quebec for the 1980 bombing of a Paris synagogue. Here is the Toronto Star’s account of all the ‘relevant’ facts:
OTTAWA – A Canadian man h Hassan Diab as been arrested and could face extradition to France in connection with the 1980 bombing of a synagogue in Paris.

Hassan Diab was taken into custody today on a provisional extradition warrant issued at the request of French authorities, said Justice Department spokesman Christian Girouard. He was being held pending a bail hearing, which normally is held within 24 hours of detention in such cases.

Girouard said that, under Canadian law, French officials will have 45 days to provide further legal details to back up their extradition request. Diab, a part-time sociology instructor at the University of Ottawa, was first named in French news reports last year.

A Reuters account I read earlier in the day was considerably meatier.
PARIS (Reuters) - A suspect in a bombing that killed four people outside a Paris synagogue in 1980 was arrested in Canada Thursday, the French Interior Ministry said.

Earlier, the website of the French magazine L'Express reported that Hassan Diab, a man of Palestinian origin in his 50s, had been arrested in the town of Gatineau in Quebec. "French judges involved in the case are there now," said a source familiar with the case in the Paris prosecutor's office.

Two French judges issued an international arrest warrant against Diab earlier this month. He is suspected of making and planting the bomb that killed three French people and an Israeli woman outside the synagogue in an upmarket area of Paris.
Twenty other people were wounded in the bombing. No group claimed responsibility.

In Ottawa, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police confirmed they had arrested a person at France's request but would not give more details. A police spokesman said the suspect would stay in custody until an extradition hearing is held. L'Express said Diab had dual Lebanese and Canadian citizenship and was a sociology lecturer at a university in Ottawa.

The Paris synagogue bombing on Oct 3, 1980 was ultimately attributed to the special operations branch of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. It was also the first pre-WW2 strike at a synagogue outside of the Middle East and ushered in the era of security protocols for synagogues in Europe and North America. Not only did the blast result in the deaths of four people but scores of others were injured.

The only issue I have with the Reuters account is referring to Diab’s original nationality as both Lebanese and Palestinian. Lebanon has never accorded any Palestinian with citizenship – not even if the ‘Palestinian’ was the third or fourth generation born in Lebanon. But it really does make one wonder if the Canadian immigration department suffers from a severe case of PC-itus as it does appear only the most superficial of background checks is done on all potential immigrants from Middle East hotspots.

x/p at Dust My Broom - maybe.

Just can't keep a Jew down

Apparently, Bibi can’t find a way to block Moshe Feiglin from obtaining a respectable place on the Likud list for a seat in the Knesset - providing Likud wins the next election. The Jerusalem Post:
Likud chairman Binyamin Netanyahu wishes he could prevent far-right activist Moshe Feiglin from winning a realistic seat on the party's Knesset candidates list, but he has not found a way to do so, sources close to Netanyahu said Tuesday. In the past two national elections, legal reasons were found to block Feiglin from running. But a former Likud official who was involved in successful efforts to stymie Feiglin in the past said Netanyahu would have to get used to seeing Feiglin in the Knesset. "We realize that Feiglin would only damage us, but there doesn't seem to be anything to do," a source close to Netanyahu said.

Kadima strategists have already started using the examples of Feiglin and former science minister Bennie Begin to paint the Likud as an extreme right-wing party. Strategist Lior Chorev made a point of repeatedly referring to the Likud as the "Begin-Feiglin party" last week.

Feiglin was convicted of sedition for blocking streets during heated demonstrations against the Oslo Accords in the mid-1990s, when he headed the Zo Artzenu protest movement. He later formed the Manhigut Yehudit (Jewish Leadership) movement inside Likud and has been gradually rising in power as he signed up more and more members to the party. After losing to Netanyahu by a landslide in the last Likud leadership race, Feiglin began to refer to himself as "the No. 2 man in Likud."

The party's law committee will meet on Wednesday to decide on procedures and a mid-December date for selecting the party's Knesset list. The decisions will then need the approval on Sunday of the Likud central committee in which Feiglin is powerful. Feiglin said Netanyahu's decision to take away the 3,000-member central committee's power to select the Likud's Knesset list and give it to the party's 100,000 members increased his chances of getting elected. He said that his movement had registered some 10 percent of the members. "The change was a big help because now we don't have to make as many political deals," Feiglin said. "We will be judged by our inner truth. The Likud is the most democratic and real party in the Knesset, so the real Likudniks will win, and that's us."

Feiglin's supporters helped pass extended membership requirements for the party, which prevented Netanyahu or others from signing up thousands of people in a fast membership drive as was done in Labor and Kadima. He expressed confidence that thanks to such political moves, he would finish among the Likud's top 20 Knesset candidates.

While the Jerusalem Post’s claims Netanyahu won a ‘landslide’ victory in Likud party elections only 40% of eligble Likud voters cast ballots so I wouldn’t be too cocky about any ‘win’. Feiglin does not yet enjoy the same support in Likud as Bibi but his fraction is not to be sneezed at. Overall, I see this as a positive step for Likud, and if there is one person who could keep Netanyahu honest and stop him from giving away everything but the kitchen sink - it would be Feiglin.

Keystone Kops

No matter how one looks at this, it has to be embarrassing. The Jerusalem Post carries this report of a siege on a police checkpoint in the Sinai:
The IDF is monitoring an ongoing feud between Sinai Beduin and Egyptian policemen, although it is not overtly concerned about the situation at this stage. Armed Beduin attacked a security checkpoint Tuesday in Egypt's Sinai Peninsula and seized 11 policemen in a restive area near the border with Israel, an Egyptian security official said. In the clashes, Egyptian police shot and killed three Bedouin men, security and local government officials said.

The Beduin tribesmen were angered by a police shooting a day earlier that killed a suspected Beduin smuggler in the area. Smugglers use the border area to send weapons, drugs and other items into the Gaza Strip, often through underground tunnels. Traffickers also ferry African migrants seeking to enter Israel. The Beduin tribesmen raided a security checkpoint Tuesday and dragged the 10 policemen and a senior officer into getaway cars in a town 10 kilometers from the Israeli border, the security official said.

A later Jerusalem Post report put the total kidnapped Egyptian police officers at 25.
The 25 Egyptian police officers taken hostage by Beduins in northern Sinai on Tuesday have now been freed. The men were released on the Egyptian border with Israel, reportedly unharmed.

The freeing of the hostages concludes a series of events that began on Monday with a shoot-out between local Beduin and police on Monday, in which one Beduin was killed. A large and angry crowd of Beduin then gathered, firing weapons in the air, burning tires and clashing with security forces. The kidnapping took place in the context of these protests.
So tell me, who rules the Sinai?

strange symmetry

Current Israeli Prime Minister is to be questioned by police for the 10th time.

Meanwhile Rockets continue to fall in Israel – some truce, nu?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Whosoever denies idols is called a Jew - Talmud Megilah 13

Some days I wonder if Israeli state has spent too long dwelling beside the neighbors and has now taken on the characteristics of the neighbors. Ha’aretz is reporting that the IDF has punished a soldier for yawning during a Yitzhak Rabin memorial service. The punishment – a 21 day stint in the hoosegow.
The Israel Defense Forces has sentenced a soldier to 21 days in jail for yawning during a recent memorial service for assassinated Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin.

The soldier yawned while the commander of the Ramat David Israel Air Force base was delivering a speech on last week's memorial day for Rabin. The senior officer paused for a few minutes after the yawn, which was allegedly long and loud. The soldier was consequently by the army tried on account of his "disrespectful act" and was sentenced to 21 days in military prison.

When a tired or bored conscripted soldier can draw 21 days incarceration and have to count himself extraordinarily lucky he didn’t pass gas and receive an even lengthy term of imprisonment. While I can comprehend why Israeli society would memorialize a murdered Prime Minister, what escapes my understanding is the lengths in which secular progressive society wishes to go to proscribe the exact degree of reverence each citizen is obligated to express in the public forum. Truly, it borders on idolatry. Rabin is neither saint nor sinner, and as much as he was sinned against, so he sinned against others.

Whole Lotta Zion going down in Egypt

An Egyptian lawyer goes on Egyptian television to suggest Arab men should make a point of sexually harassing ‘these Zionist girls with Israeli citizenship' as another means of 'resisting the ‘occupation'.  Arutz Sheva:

( A female Egyptian lawyer has recommended that Arab men begin sexually harassing Jewish women as a means of forcing Jews to leave Israel. Egypt, which signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1979, is perceived among Western nations as a moderate Arab nation where secular Arabs are a majority.

In a video clip of the interview which aired on Al Arabiyah television on October 31, 2008, Nagla Al-Imam said, "In my opinion, they are fair game for all Arabs, and there is nothing wrong... this is a new form of resistance


Well, no actually, it is a very old form of harassment and it appears Egyptian men do not lack opportunities to horn their skills - either that or there is a whole lot of Zion going on in Egypt.



x/p Dust my Broom well, maybe not.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Who's the liar?

The Globe and Mail has an interesting denial by the Obama camp:
JERUSALEM — Advisers to Barack Obama held a secret meeting in Gaza with a leading member of Hamas during the last few weeks of the U.S. election campaign, according to the senior political adviser to Hamas's "prime minister" in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh.

Ahmed Yousef told the al Hayat newspaper in London in an article published today that the meeting, was between himself and a small number of Obama foreign policy advisers. Mr. Yousef is quoted as saying the emissaries asked him not to say anything about the meetings lest it give support to Mr. Obama's rival for president, Senator John McCain.

But Mr. Obama's Senior Foreign Policy Adviser Denis McDonough told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday: "This assertion is just plain false." Speaking from Gaza, today, Ayman abu Leilah, aspokesman for Mr. Yousef, confirmed these statements as true, adding that the most recent meeting took place in early October "one month before the election." He said Mr. Yousef had first met the Obama people some years ago when he was studying in the United States. Mr. Yousef said that the connection to the Obama people is "ongoing."

Last week, Mr. Yousef said Hamas wanted to be among the first to congratulate Mr. Obama on his victory."This is an historic day, a turning point," he was quoted as saying. "Everybody is looking forward to Obama's change, for a change in the U.S. policy, particularly in the Israeli-Palestinian equation, which is the mother of all conflicts."

(…)In August, Chicago attorney Mazen Asbahi, the Muslim-outreach co-ordinator to the Obama presidential campaign, was forced to resign from his volunteer position when questions arose over his alleged involvement in an Islamic investment fund that was believed to have links to Hamas.

Here is the rub. I cannot come up with a valid reason or motive for why a Hamas spokesman would deliberate lie about his organization's association/ties to the P(E)OTUS thingy, but I can come with a number of reasons without straining my brain why the President-Elect's office would prefer to deliberately lie about such an association.

Less we forget

Today is Remembrance Day in Canada. The time we as a country honour our veterans and in that spirit I am highlighting my mother’s father’s attestation papers.
It clearly shows his date of birth as 1896 and his ‘apparent’ age as 19. He stood 5’5” tall with a waist size of 31” so he was remarkably small and slight for a 19 year old.

He was scout and messenger and in the course of his war, he was injured three times – twice at Vimy Ridge. He survived his war and spent the last six month at a rehabilitation hospital in the UK before being shipped home. He came back and became a fur trapper and woods guide. But what I want to point out is the lie in his papers. He was not born in 1896 but 1899, and I want you to remember is the fact he was not the only ‘recruit’ who lied about his age.

The ranks of our armies were filled with such teenage boys. So the next time someone tells you the child soldier Khadr is not capable of fully understanding his actions think of Private McNamara of the Fighting 26th Battalion.

Hamas bans Arafat Memorial Services

I am not going to really comment on this Ynet News report but would merely point out how radical this act is. The equivalent in Israeli society would be for an Israeli government banning a Yitzhak Rabin memorial service.
While the Palestinian Authority is marking the fourth anniversary of Yasser Arafat's death, Hamas security forces in Gaza on Tuesday have prevented young Fatah supporters from holding spontaneous processions in memory of the late Palestinian Liberation Organization leader.

Eyewitnesses said Hamas forces used force in some cases and removed Fatah flags and posters of Arafat that were suspended from houses in the Strip. Homeowners who refused to remove the banners were taken in for questioning, they said.

The PA has held several memorial services for Arafat in the past few days, and the main ceremony is scheduled to take place near the deceased leader's tomb in Ramallah later in the day. Additional rallies will be held throughout the West Bank. Last year hundreds of thousands of Gazans took part in a rally commemorating Arafat, but this year Hamas declared a high state of alert among its security forces and said it would prevent any attempt by Fatah supporters to mark the occasion.
In other news, Jimmy Carter suggests Arafat fought for ‘just causes’.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Russia to arm Lebanon...

In the last four years of blogging I have stated consistently that Russia has chosen sides and it is not the West who Russia seeks an alliance with. Arutz Sheva is carrying this report of a whole lot of crazy going on.
( Following a meeting last week between leading Lebanese legislator Sa'ad Hariri and Russian leaders, Hariri was quoted by Russian media this weekend as saying Russia will sell heavy weaponry to Lebanon. Previously, Hariri said that he hoped Russia would help Lebanon claim Mt. Dov from Israel. Russia is expecting Lebanon to recognize the independence of the breakaway Georgian districts of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Hariri, the son of the assassinated popular former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, represents the Western-backed majority in the Lebanese parliament. Russia will "help the Lebanese army," the Vremia Novosti newspaper quoted Hariri as saying, "which needs heavy weapons" such as tanks and artillery. American military aid, Hariri told Russian media, only consists of light arms.

Lebanese Defense Minister Elias Murr is to visit Moscow in coming weeks, when the details of the arms deal will be finalized. The Russian state arms export firm, Rosoboronexport, has been boycotted by the United States government for arms deals with Iran, North Korea and Syria.

Since Russia seems determined to play the rogue kingmaker - perhaps its time to seriously re-think the Russia veto on the UN Security Council.

The Israeli state’s war also includes a front on Jewish teenagers

Three teenaged girls (a 17, 15, and a 12 year old) were indicted in Jerusalem district court for assaulting Israeli security forces and obstruction reports Ynet News:
Three teenage Israeli girls were indicted at the Jerusalem District Juvenile Court on Sunday for attacking police officers with rocks during the evacuation and demolition of an illegal structure in the Givat Harsina neighborhood of Kiryat Arba three days ago.

The State Prosecution is charging the young girls, aged 12, 15 and 17, with reckless endangerment, aggravated assault of security forces, and the obstruction of a police officer. Due to the severity of the accusations, the hearing on the remand of the girls' arrest through the end of the legal proceedings will be held at the Jerusalem District Court.

Apparently, this incident was not just any ‘outpost’ but part of the continuing conflict over the Federman farm area. The girls’ sage does end there either and good on them for fighting back. Ynet News:
Three girls who were arrested last week during clashes between settlers and security forces in Hebron claim to have been abused by the police, according to the attorney representing one of the suspects. Attorney David Halevy filed a complaint with the Police Investigation Unit (PIU) claiming that the girls, aged 12, 15, and 17, were falsely accused of a number of crimes in police reports and abused by officers in various manners.

(…)Halevy sent a letter to head of the PIU, Herzl Shviro, in which he claimed the arresting officers had committed fraud and breach of trust during the incident. He also accused one of the officers of forging signatures on the arrest documents. The attorney appealed to Shviro to launch an investigation against the officers and to suspend the case against his client, the 17-year old girl. He claimed the officers had unnecessarily used brute force against his client and her friends.

Halevy further claimed that his client had told him the officers denied the girls basic rights such as sleep and food for many hours, and refused to allow them to go to the bathroom. He wrote that the officers yelled at the minors repeatedly and used offensive language, calling them "smelly" and "dirty".

Finally, the attorney claimed the officers turned on the air conditioning to intolerable temperatures in order to freeze the girls and suppress their ability to fight back, simultaneously forcing them to sit with their faces just inches from the wall for a number of hours.
Don’t count on Rabbis’ for Human Rights or B’Tselem to be championing the case of these young teenager girls - as these ‘human rights’ groups only champion the human rights of anyone but Jewish children in Israel.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Brotherly love among the Christians in the holy land.

I often wonder if there exists any place in the world more contentious than Jerusalem. It seems no one is immune to violence. Jerusalem Post:
A brawl erupted in Jerusalem Sunday between rival monks at one of Christianity's holiest sites, and police have detained two clergymen for questioning. Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said fighting erupted between Armenian and Greek Orthodox monks at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem's Old City. The church marks the traditional site of Jesus' crucifixion, burial and resurrection. Police called in to break up the brawl detained one monk from each side.

Brawling Christian monks seems to be part of the long-standing tradition at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, and even more ironically; it often requires Jewish intervention to prevent the altercations from shedding more than a little blood among the monks.

Christian monks battle regularly over such contentious issues of the placement of a chair a ladder or even an open door. In fact, the roof is actually in danger of collapsing the entire chapel but the necessary repairs require the various rival brethren to turn the other cheek and cooperate with each other in the spirit of brotherly love to facilitate the repairs.

So far the Christian monks have opted to let the possibility of the structure falling to rack and ruins upon their heads rather than engage in the necessary consensus building in order to carry out the repairs.

Friday, November 07, 2008

The Israeli governments continued war against the Jews

I have been trying to write about Noam Federman for days but just when I think I am done the papers report another new incident. I understand why someone like Noam Federman or an Avi Ran (and others too numerous to mention) is problematic to the secular Israeli body politic. They are eminently unbribable and imperious to coercive force. Knock them down, and they get up and soldier on. They pour their whole heart, mind and soul into things of an otherworldly nature. They are not only committed to an ideal but are committed to living out that very ideal at any price.

So how to deal with them? Well, the Romans choose to kill as many as possible and then salt the earth which worked but only for a short time. Christians and Muslims have been killing them for a few millenniums but still the Federmans and the Rans of the world are born and rise up. The current Israeli government, much like previous Israeli Administrations, has decided to pervert their own laws and persecute them to the fullest perversion which the law bends and twists to allow.

Case in point. Over 200 Yassam came to evict and destroy the Federman’s home October 25th in the middle of the night which works out to well over 10 Yassam for less than 20 people which makes you wonder how dangerous and tough those Jewish children are when a 2 year old needs to be subdued by at least 10 security officials. By all accounts, Noam Federman was immediately arrested and handcuffed with his arms fastened behind his back.

The Israeli border officials arrested him and attempted to indict him for allegedly breaking the leg of a soldier while he was handcuffed and pinned to the ground by at least 10 or more men - where it has been alleged he was beaten. The judge took a look at Noam Federman’s bruised and bloody body and asked for the medical report of officer whose leg was broken by Federman’s ‘assault’. The government was unable to supply any evidence and presented conflicting police accounts so a Jerusalem judge demanded Federman be released and dismissed the charges.

The original demolition of Federman’s home could only be carried out with the IDF surrounding Federman’s farm, and it required IDF command lie to the soldiers who had the misfortune of pulling guard duty that night. Federman’s neighbors set about rebuilding his home within 24 hours. By my count the structures have been set up at least 4 times since the original destruction by Israeli security forces. The government keeps destroying the buildings, and yet, they keep rising. On October 31st the Israeli security forces again entered the new structure and Israeli security forces beat up on the children and knocked one daughter unconscious and wounded four other children.

Noam Federman’s wife Elisheva was recently detained by police who demanded she uncover her hair publicly to provide a DNA sample. Who knew the Israeli police prefer the time consuming and expensive testing of hair samples rather than a cheek swab? Frankly, the whole exercise was nothing more than a simple case of police harassment with an eye to humiliate a religious Jewish woman. Although, it might not have turned out quite the way the Israeli police hoped for as the exercise in humiliation ended with a spontaneous protest by local Jewish women picketing the police station where Elisheva was detained.

Yesterday, the Jerusalem Post reported that Noam Federman was indicted for assaulting an Israeli border by breaking his arm and obstructing police.
The Jerusalem District Attorney's Office filed an indictment against right-wing activist Noam Federman on Wednesday for allegedly assaulting a policeman and obstructing a police officer during the evacuation of his illegal home at an outpost outside Hebron last week.
This time I suspect all the appropriate medical paperwork documenting the injury was duly submitted although there is no report in newspaper accounts of what day the alleged Super Jew Federman actually did the deed.

Today, Ynet News carries this report:
The Jerusalem Magistrate's court rejected Friday the Prosecutor's Office's second request to ban rightist activist Noam Federman from Judea and Samaria, after he was indicted for aggravated assault of a police officer. Judge Shulamit Dotan ruled Friday that the Prosecutor's Office petition to forbid Federman from entering Judea and Samaria is premature, and that the rightist activist should be allowed to see the evidence against him before any decision on the matter is taken. On Thursday, the judge rejected the first request made by the Prosecutor's Office because it failed to hand over the required documents to Federman.
I have always wondered about the ordinary people who can in good conscience commit or be a party to these kinds of acts for when you pervert justice for one it is only a matter of time before justice is perverted for all. But what is even harder for me to grasp is why Israeli secular society encourages and lights Chanukah candles. To light the Chanukah menorah is not only to remember to the miracle of the rededication of the second Temple but it is to remember why the miracle was needed. The Maccabbean revolt was not just a rebellion against a foreign ruler but a revolt whereby religious Jews actively rose up against their secular brethren who actively chose to live their lives outside of the Torah.

I know which side Federman stands in this long line of Jewish tradition, but on what side does the homeland of the Jewish state stand? In other news this week, over 50 kassams have been fired into Israel this Tuesday from the Gaza Strip - good thing there's a truce.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

all bin Laden and no where to go

I have been following the asylum sage of Omar bin Laden for the last year.

The Jerusalem Post is reporting that Spain has denied the asylum request of Omar Osama bin Laden, the 27 year old son of Osama, and he is currently being held in the airport transit area but he does have to appeal the decision.

Apparently, Omar had been living in Cairo after his request for residency in Britain was turned down earlier this year. A British official did claim Omar made "statements made during recent media interviews indicate evidence of continuing loyalty to your father".

Before Canadians get too compliance, there is always a chance that someone will advise him of Canada’s rather lax asylum standards. I mean, who don’t we let?

There is no human right to build tunnels into Israel

The IDF discovered a new tunnel network into Israel from the Gaza Strip. Intelligence suggests its only purpose is to be used as an entry point to launch future attacks into Israel a la Corporal Shalit. This new tunnel is in direct violation to the Israel-Hamas truce. The IDF launches a pin-point operation into the Gaza Strip to collapse the tunnel network. The entrance to the tunnel has been dug under a private home in the Gaza Strip. The IDF successfully destroys the tunnel and in the process blows up the entrance which is located under a private home.

Hamas in retaliation launches over 35 rockets and mortars into Israel. Ha’aretz carries this account.
Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip fired 35 Qassam rockets at the western Negev before dawn on Wednesday, a day after an Israel Air Force strike in the southern Strip killed at least five militants and wounded several others.

Hamas claimed responsibility for the rockets, which caused no reported injuries or damages. Two of the rockets exploded in the northern Negev city of Ashkelon, one struck a kibbutz in the western Negev and six others were located in open fields.

Also on Tuesday, an Israel Defense Forces soldiers killed a Hamas gunman and wounded two others on Tuesday in the first armed clash in the Gaza Strip since a cease-fire was declared in the territory in June, Palestinian medics said.

An Israeli army spokeswoman said troops had entered the territory to destroy a tunnel which Gaza militants had dug under the border to try to abduct soldiers.

According to Palestinian sources, the troops entered the area east of Deir el-Balah and carried out an operation at a house belonging to the Abu Hamam family. An exchange of fire took place between the troops and Hamas gunmen. Four IDF soldiers were wounded during the operation, two of them moderately. The others were lightly injured. Six mortar shells were also reportedly fired at Israel from Gaza on Tuesday.

"Qassam fighters are engaging in violent armed clashes with a Zionist (Israeli) force that raided east of central Gaza Strip," Hamas said in a statement on Tuesday. Abu Obeida, a spokesman for Hamas' military wing, said in a text message to reporters that Hamas troops were engaged in a gunfight with Israeli forces in central Gaza. Hamas quickly vowed revenge for its losses. "Our response will be harsh, and the enemy will play a heavy price," Hamas said in a statement on its military wing's Web site.
In spite of the Hamas bluster, the truly amazing thing is; what part of ‘don’t build tunnels into Israel’ can’t Hamas grasp? It was a violation which was begging for a response.

Morning time in Canada after US elections

In morning time in America - 55,821,650 American voters feel Hillary Clinton’s pain so she has earned the right to take the great communicator title from Bill.

If there is an upside for a Canadian with an Obama win it is this – no more will I have to listen to the progressives liberals screech 'Harper is a lap dog for Bush/Cheney/Neocon Overlords' and I just bet not one progressive or liberal uses the Harper=Obama mantra in the next Canadian election.

Who knows, maybe we can finally have an election in this country without the progressives and liberals invoking anti-Americanism in their campaigning! I personally have my doubts as the American recovery will be in full-tilt disaster mode by the time of next our election. I suspect I will hear them plead not to Obamasize Canada which should be worth a few good schadenfreude moments for me.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

one who preaches doctrines he knows to be untrue to men he knows to be idiots. - H. L. Mencken

Election Day USA. I haven’t a clue as to who will win the election. Polls and pundits claim a clear victor is in sight but I have seen both the polls and pundits get it wrong, wrong, and more wrong - over and over again. The alleged ‘undecided’ are still too high for anyone to be complacent of victory in this election.

In 2004, I knew George W. Bush would win the election and he did. I won my bets but this time around I not only didn’t make any bets I have no sense of surety of anything. Little did I realize when I watched a young ‘up and coming’ senator from Illinois address the Democratic convention that four years later I would be watching that same junior senator run for the presidency of the United States. Frankly, I am still stunned the Democrats rejected steely Hillary Clinton in favour of shallow populism of Barack Obama. No doubt Bill, Hillary and 18 million democrats and countless republicans are still stunned too. Demagoguery has its place but ultimately it most often leads one to a bad end as in the style of the Brothers Gracchi.

For me, watching this election as an observer with no vote or dog in this fight, the most remarkable thing I have witnessed has not been the fact that either Obama or McCain won their respective nominations but watching the mainstream media actively choosing to act outside their role as the fourth estate, and thereby, betray the trust of American people.

No matter who wins the election there is one clear loser - the American press.

Lieberman speaks truth to power and gets sued

I haven’t done a fun with Avigdor Lieberman post in a while. Truth is, until last week, Leiberman has been relatively quiet since he resigned his party (Israel Our Home) from the Kadima coalition. His party is poised to perhaps be returned as the third largest fraction in the next Israeli election.

Last week Lieberman suggested that Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak can go to hell for never visiting Israel. This week he is being sued in an Israeli court for the alleged “libel” for insulting Mubarak. The Jerusalem Post carries this report:
An Egyptian lawyer has launched a lawsuit against Yisrael Beiteinu Avigdor Lieberman, who slammed Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak last week over not coming to visit Israel. An official at the general prosecutor's office says the lawyer, Galal Khalil Abdel-Rahman, filed the suit Monday.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release the information. The lawyer could not be reached for comment. The official said the suit contends Lieberman insulted Mubarak when he said last week that the Egyptian president can "go to hell" because he never makes return visits to Israel but receives Israeli officials in Egypt. The suit demands Lieberman be summoned on libel charges.
Of course, in most traditional western court systems, truth is a defence against libel charges but during the last Sharon Administration the Knesset enacted a law which in effect made it against the law to ‘insult the dignity of a public official’ so I suppose Mubarak meets the bar per say. Either way, it will be fun to watching the Egyptians dive off the deep end of reason over how far Lieberman will go. And Lieberman is like a force of nature which nothing man-made can restrain.

eating your own

If a second Jewish state is ever established or civil war breaks out in Israel you can blame the policies of the secular government of Israel for it. Arutz Sheva carried this report of an attempted kidnapping carried out by Arabs under the eyes of the Israeli border police who were too busy demolishing a Jewish home to care what happened to two young Jews.
( Jewish residents of Migron reported Monday that Arabs from a nearby village had attempted to kidnap two young Jews. The attack took place on Monday morning as border police were demolishing five buildings, including a structure used as a meeting place by local Jewish youths. Border Police either failed to notice the attack or chose not to intervene, residents said, and the kidnapping was foiled only due to the efforts of alert local teens.

The attack began when a group of Arab men approached two Jewish youths who were standing near an olive grove on the outskirts of town and began pelting them with stones. The Arab men had gained access to the area by telling soldiers they were farmers who had come to harvest olives. The attackers managed to overpower and grab the two youths. They then bound them and began dragging them away. The two youths continued to struggle and were beaten by the mob. One was stabbed in the head and wounded.

The two were saved thanks to an alert young man who noticed the struggle and gathered a group of 15 young Jews from Migron, who ran after the attackers. The attackers fled, leaving the two bound and injured Jewish youths behind. One youth was treated at the scene of the attack, while the other required more extensive treatment and was taken to a hospital.

The end result – the kidnapping was foiled and Israeli border police arrested one of the injured Jewish youths. Go figure.

Monday, November 03, 2008


Let’s file this under what will they think of next? Ha’aretz:
Thousands of observant Jews around the world are praying three times a day - using their BlackBerry handheld devices.

A software program for BlackBerries combines Hebrew prayers and technology, the brainchild of two entrepreneurs who attended New York's Yeshiva University.

The program, which provides texts of daily prayers instead of the traditional, printed book, has been dubbed the JewBerry. The program is not linked to Research in Motion Ltd., maker of the BlackBerry.
Sorry but I have to ask - but is it kosher?

You can take the despot out of the desert but you cannot take the desert out of the despot

Of all the current political despots, Gadhafi is remains consistently my all-time favourite. Ha’aretz:
Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi has pitched a tent in a Kremlin garden before talks with Russian leaders on Saturday.

Gadhafi is to meet Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin for talks expected to focus on arms sales and access for Russian energy companies to projects in the North African state. Located a few meters from the building where Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has his office, the military-style tent was decorated with North African fabrics and a metal barbecue grill has been set up in front, a Reuters reporter said. A large, flat-screen television was switched on inside the tent.

Gadhafi, who was born to a Bedouin herdsman in a tent in 1942, frequently greets foreign visitors in a tent next to the ruins of his Tripoli residence, which was destroyed in a bombing raid by U.S. aircraft in 1986. On a visit to Paris last year for talks with French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Gadhafi pitched his tent in the garden of the presidential guesthouse.

A flat screen television housed inside a tent pitched outside the Kremlin, and if that isn’t 7th century meets the 21st century - what is? I bet the Amazon guard was was busy guarding the flaps too. The cornel just cracks me up.

War against the Jews makes Israeli cabinet discussions

Cabinet discussions Sunday revolved around the ‘settler question’ and not Jewish settlement in Tel Aviv. Ha’aretz offers this account:
A government decision to evacuate more territory may lead to a large-scale violent conflict with settlers, complete with live fire, Shin Bet security service chief Yuval Diskin warned at yesterday's cabinet meeting. The meeting ended with the ministers voting to end all government support, both direct and indirect, for illegal outposts.

"The scope of the conflict will be much larger than it is today and than it was during the disengagement," Diskin warned. "Our investigation found a very high willingness among this public to use violence - not just stones, but live weapons - in order to prevent or halt a diplomatic process."

While Diskin did not comment explicitly on the danger of another political assassination, the timing of his warning - just days before the anniversary of prime minister Yitzhak Rabin's assassination - was not lost on cabinet members.

"They [the settlers] don't think like us. Their thought is messianic, mystic, satanic and irrational," Infrastructure Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer said, warning of another political assassination.
In response, the Yesha council is set to file a complaint against MK Ben-Eliezer and Vice Premier Chaim Ramon for libel and incitement reports the Jerusalem Post:
The Committee of Samaria Settlers is set to file a complaint against Vice Premier Haim Ramon and National Infrastructures Minister Binymain Ben-Eliezer, claiming that remarks made by the two made during a cabinet meeting Sunday constituted libel and incitement against the settler community. Ben-Eliezer and Ramon had railed against the settlers during the meeting, which was devoted to extreme right-wing violence.

There is a real pot kettle moment in Ramon ranting about settler conduct when he was found guilty of an indecent sexual conduct against an IDF soldier in 2007. And at least one’s daughter is safe from sexual harassment by the ‘settlers movement’.

Any way, back to Ha’aretz:
"What we are seeing today is the result of a deep rift with the faith-based community, and not only in the West Bank," Diskin said. "Their approach began with the slogan 'through love, we will win' during the [Gaza] disengagement, but has now reached 'through war, we will win."

He also warned that right-wing extremists view their "price tag" policy, in which they retaliate for every outpost evacuation with attacks on soldiers and/or Palestinians, as having been successful, and are therefore liable to expand it to within the Green Line.

The Shin Bet believes there are a few hundred extremists of this type. "There is no clear leadership," Diskin said. "They are motivated by a unity of purpose - not to allow the security forces to evacuate people." Following the cabinet vote on the outposts, the Yesha Council of settlements termed the decision "scandalous and demagogic," saying there is "no connection" between the outposts and extremist violence.

"The decision constitutes collective punishment and denies essential services to loyal citizens whose only sin is living in communities that the State of Israel built and sold apartments in, but has not yet finished the process of approving," it stated. The Legal Forum for the Land of Israel also called the decision discriminatory, as many illegal Arab neighborhoods receive services from the state.

In addition to its decision on outposts, the cabinet ordered a ministerial committee headed by Defense Minister Ehud Barak to submit recommendations within two weeks on how to tighten law enforcement, including by taking action against civil servants who facilitate illegal outpost construction. Most of the meeting, however, was devoted to ministerial tirades against violent settlers and attempts by security and law enforcement agencies to pass blame.

Public Security Minister Avi Dichter said that about one-tenth of Israel's total police force is already in the West Bank, and that it is impossible to transfer additional forces there, other than temporarily for specific missions. He also said that lenient sentencing by the courts deters the police from pursuing indictments "even when they have a suspect in hand."

Dichter must have had the Noam Federman case in mind. Arutz Sheva:
The Jerusalem Magistrate's Court ordered the police Sunday evening to release Hevron community activist Noam Federman from custody. Federman was arrested on Sunday morning on charges of attacking and injuring policemen who were destroying his family's home on an unauthorized outpost. During a hearing to extend Federman's being held in custory, several policemen testified that Federman was hand-cuffed at the time he was accused of assaulting the officers.

Or who knows, maybe Dichter had the children’s case in mind when he suggested the Israeli courts were far too lenient with Jewish dissenters: Arutz Sheva
( The Jerusalem Magistrates Court ordered the release of four of the seven minor girls who have been imprisoned for three weeks despite their continued refusal to cooperate with the justice system. This, as opposed to earlier reports that all seven had been freed. One girl was released Thursday when it became clear that police knew her identity from a card in her posession, and three more were freed Friday after a court-order required the parents to identify their daughetrs. A fast day on their behalf took place Thursday.

The first 14-year-old girl that was ordered released after police admitted she had been identified due to a card that was among her possessions. She continued to refuse to identify herself, along with her six friends. The girl was forcibly evicted from Gush Katif during the 2005 Disengagement and lives at the Nitzan caravan camp with hundreds of other expellees. About 30 friends of the young activists protested outside the courthouse on Friday.

Take note, that even though Israeli police were in possession of the 14 year old girl’s identification, Israeli police still choose to detain her for three weeks because she would not offer willingly offer up her name. But Dichter is right, there is a deep rift between the secular and religious community within Israeli society and is just one of the reasons why the idea of a second Jewish state carries much more weight now than it did even five years ago.