by Stephen M. Flatow
It looks like Sweden is having second thoughts about the $49 million that it gave to the Palestinian Arabs last year. During her visit to Israel last week, Swedish foreign minister Ann Linde indicated that Sweden may be rethinking whether to continue that aid. She said that “corruption at such a level as exists in Palestine” has to end “if we are to be able to fully support” the PA.
Let it be noted that Sweden is far from Israel’s best friend in Europe. The Swedes have passionately supported forcing Israel back to the indefensible 1967 lines and creating a deadly Palestinian state in Israel’s back yard. Sweden also still pretends that Tel Aviv, not Jerusalem, is Israel’s capital.
But apparently the Swedes are concerned about how their money is spent. America’s current leaders do not seem to have that same level of concern.
Last week, in Washington, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved language giving the Palestinian Arabs $225-million, regardless of Palestinian behaviour, which is $40-million more than the Biden administration requested
You may wonder how such aid package can pass, when the Taylor Force Act of 2018 prohibits US aid to the Palestinian Authority until the PA stops paying salaries and rewards to imprisoned terrorists and the families of dead terrorists. The answer is simple - they will elude the law by routing the funds through non-governmental agencies. But that’s just sleight-of-hand.
US Senator Christopher Coons said the US aid “reflects America’s core values.” Terrorism, authoritarianism, and corruption are not American values. They are the values of the Palestinian Authority, a regime that deserves no American support.
Another interesting contrast: the Biden administration is withholding $130-military aid from Egypt because of human rights violations there. Yet the administration and its congressional allies apparently have no problem with the PA’s torture of dissidents, suppression of media critics, or mistreatment of women. Don’t Palestinian human rights matter?
Belgium, which had been giving the Palestinian Arabs more than $20-million annually, announced that it “will put on hold any projects related to the construction or equipment of Palestinian schools.”
Norway decided not to be associated with a women’s center in the PA town of Burqa, which is named after mass-murderer Mughrabi who killed an American Jewish nature photographer, Gail Rubin (the niece of US Senator Abraham Ribicoff), then hijacked an Israeli bus and massacred 36 passengers, including 12 children. One of Mughrabi’s accomplices was later hired as a senior adviser to PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas.
Six Palestinian NGOs were declared to be affiliated with the terrorist organization PFLP by the Israeli Justice and Defense Ministries. The Defense Ministry charges that the organizations serve as a network on the world stage working undercover as civil society organizations to support the PFLP and pursue its interests. The NGOs allegedly serve as a branch of PFLP’s leadership. Members of the PFLP serve as senior officials in the groups, and they have employed field activists who have participated in acts of terrorism. (As usual, traditional 'friends' of Israel are 'alarmed'.)
The US State Department criticized the announcement in the most explicit admonition from the Biden administration since the new Israeli government was formed in June. “We believe respect for human rights, fundamental freedoms, and a strong civil society are critically important for responsible and responsive governance,” said a State Department spokesperson Ned Price. (Anti-Semites have respect for "human rights" of all people, except for Jews! Hamas and Fatah are not "civil society", but terrorist organizations that have killed not just Israelis but also US citizens.)
Price noted that the Israeli government did not give the US advance warning that the organizations would be named. (Why must Israel inform or seek approval from any country about its internal matters? No other country does it!)
At the same time, Turkey declared 'persona non grata' and expelled 10 ambassadors, including a US envoy, who called for the release of a jailed philanthropist. (No immediate response from the White House. Why is Turkey still in NATO?)
Food for Thought. by Steven Shamrak
Is supporting enemies of the most reliable ally of the US in the Middle East represent the core values of the American people? It seems that the deep tradition of anti-Semitic values of the US political elite is still unshakable, and with the new administration in the White House it has become even more intolerable and alarming.
The United States and Israel are reportedly planning to form a joint team to hold discreet negotiations on the reopening of the US Consulate for Palestinian Arabs in Jerusalem. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid discussed the consulate issue during a meeting. (Just say "NO CHANCE' – for any sovereign country, that would be a normal response!)
Syria executed 24 people it said had set fires that swept swathes of forests mainly in the coastal province of Latakia and 11 others were sentenced to life in prison on the same charges from dozens arrested at the end of last year. Those executed on Wednesday were charged with committing "terrorist acts that led to death and damage to state infrastructure, public and private property."
While the Biden Administration is attempting to bring the Iranians back to the negotiating table, Israel has approved the budget package for building an attack capability against Iran's nuclear program amounting to about NIS 5 billion.
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett was taken aback by the intensity of the Biden administration’s opposition to Israeli construction in Judea and Samaria during his recent visit with President Joe Biden in the White House. “I was surprised by the American pressure against construction in Judea and Samaria. It is critical to them,” said Bennett.
Speaking at the opening of the 35th Conference of Islamic Unity in Tehran, Khalil al-Hayya, a senior Hamas official in the Gaza Strip, called on the Islamic nation to eliminate the existence of the State of Israel. "We are afraid we will wake up one day and find that the occupation and Zionism have already completely taken over the Al-Aqsa Mosque or destroyed it and expelled the Muslims from Jerusalem," he said. (Let’s hope his dream is prophetic, and all enemies will be expelled from Eretz-Israel soon.)
Following a complaint of stones and firebombs thrown at Homesh yeshiva, police descended en masse and arrested the yeshiva's students. Although they reported the incidents as they were occurring, neither police nor IDF forces were sent to Homesh to investigate. It was only later, in the morning that police sappers arrived to neutralize the explosives – which turned out to be phony. This was followed by the arrival of a large police force which descended on the yeshiva and violently arrested all the students.
Nearly 53% of Israelis favour former US president Trump over Biden when it came to their treatment of the Jewish state. The public gives US-Israel relations a score of 6.46 out of 10, with only 35% believing the state of relations with the US is good - the lowest the figure has been since 2016 and a steep drop from last year's rating of 8.05, when 67% believed the relationship was good.
Quote of the Week:
"Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas) pays money to terrorists who murder Jews – the more you murder, the more money you get. And Abu Mazen is suing IDF soldiers and officers in The Hague, so he is not a partner. The Prime Minister won’t meet with him and is not planning to meet with him.” - Ayelet Shaked, Israeli Interior Minister.
An American family of Evangelical Christians posing as Orthodox Jews has been outed by an anti-missionary organization after years of moving from one religious American community to another and performing religious rites that could now be invalidated.
They are from a group of 10 fake Jews who followed evangelical ringleader Michael Elk, whose Christian upbringing was exposed earlier. He is calling himself Rabbi Michael Elkohen. Elk had set up a seminary in Jerusalem called Yeshivat Yarim Ha’am, teaching a belief in Jesus. He gave students a ‘Messianic’ smicha, making them rabbis.
Christian missionary organizations in Israel are training their members who are IDF soldiers in how to get their Jewish comrades to convert. Yad L'Achim, anti-assimilation group, sent an urgent letter to Defense Minister Benny Gantz calling on him to remove active missionaries from the ranks of the army and to stop drafting members of Messianic groups and 'cult members'. (For too long this issued has not been addressed by previous governments of Israel. As many other problems, it is considered as too difficult and ‘controversial’ to deal with.)