Israel under Threat from all Sides

The Middle East is back on the agenda. Israel's military chief of staff reportedly warned this week that an increase in rocket attacks against Israel might lead to a large-scale military operation in Hamas-controlled Gaza. Additionally, Israel's defence minister warned of a possible Israeli military strike against Iran's nuclear program after the international nuclear watchdog agency reported that Iran conducted secret weapons-related tests and may be close to developing a nuclear warhead.

Lt.-Col. Avital Leibovich, the head of the international media division of the Israeli Defence Force (IDF), told CBS News that the Israeli military now needs to deal with several fronts, where in the past they have had only one.

Leibovich said, in a regional environment altered by the "Arab Spring," Israel's borders with Lebanon, Gaza, and Syria pose the greatest risks to its population and the IDF. On the northern border with Lebanon, Israel has to contend with the Shiite militia Hezbollah, which stores its weaponry under civilian villages in the south of Lebanon. Near Gaza, Israeli citizens now face missiles fired from the Hamas-run enclave that can reach farther into the Jewish state than ever before. And in Syria, uncertainty surrounding the fate of the embattled Assad regime, which last May organised mass marches on the Golan Heights border with Israel.

The use of civilian populations as fronts for military operations, is one of the most difficult developments. "Basically we can see a phenomenon which is becoming stronger and stronger in the recent region in which civilians serve as human shields. We've seen it in Gaza, and we see it now in Lebanon," she said.

Quote of the Week:

“Many people, especially ignorant people, want to punish you for speaking the truth, for being correct, for being you. Never apologize for being correct, or for being years ahead of your time. If you’re right and you know it, speak your mind. Speak your mind. Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is still the truth.” - Mohandas Ghandi

Export of a New Libyan ‘Democracy’

Fifty Libyan Muslim Brotherhood mercenaries arrived in the Gaza Strip from Tripoli. They arrived at the wheels of minivans on which were mounted the new Grad multiple rocket-launchers which Palestinian terrorists fired for the first time last month. The 50 mercenaries did not bother to paint over the Libyan national colors or replace the trucks' Libyan license plates.

Anti-Israel Schizophrenia of Academia

The University of Colorado stated that investments in companies that do business with Israel will continue despite disputes over Palestine. In June members of the University of California faculty and Students for Justice in Palestine formally announced the launch of the "UC Faculty Divestment Campaign" with a press conference on the UC - Berkeley campus. Almost 126 UC professors have signed the Faculty Petition for Divestment from Israel.

Why Must Israel Tell about her National Security Plans?

Israel has refused to reassure President Barack Obama that it would warn him of a pre-emptive strike on Iran's nuclear infrastructure. Obama was rebuffed when US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta wanted an unshakable guarantee that Israel would not carry out a unilateral military strike against Iran's nuclear installations, suggesting that Israel no longer plans to ''seek Washington's permission'', sources said. Alarmed by Mr Netanyahu's noncommittal response, Mr Obama reportedly ordered the US intelligence services to step up monitoring of Israel to glean clues of its intentions. (Why is it OK for the United States to spy against Israel? This ‘friendly country is still holding Jonathan Pollard in prison for providing Israel information, which THE ‘ally’ supposed to share!)

Israel Curbing Foreign anti-Israel Political Funding

The Ministerial Committee for Legislation approved a bill that would limit donations by foreign governments or international bodies such as the United Nations or European Union to 20,000 shekels, or about $5,200, annually. 

Israel Paid Syria $100 Million for Golan?

Israel paid Syrian President Bashar Assad’s grand-uncle $100 million for the Golan Heights before the Six-Day War in 1967, said Dr. Mahmoud Jame’, a former close friend to assassinated Egyptian president Anwar Sadat. Dr. Mahmoud Jame’ said Sadat was briefed on the deal.

Only 2-3 Months Left for Military Option

The intelligence reaching US President Barak Obama is that by April, Iran will already have five nuclear bombs or warheads and military action then would generate a dangerous level of radioactive contamination across the Gulf region, the main source of the world's energy. The road of diplomacy, favoured by Moscow, has proved worse than ineffectual. Its only result was to buy time for Tehran to carry on with its military atomic project free of international pressure. Recently Obama said: "We are not taking any options off the table. Iran with nuclear weapons would pose a threat not only to the region but also to the United States." This was the first time the US president had called a nuclear-armed Iran a threat to the United States.

Too Many Empty Reaffirmations

Vice President Joe Biden stressed President Barack Obama's commitment to Israel and the continued support of the US during a fund-raiser in Detroit. Biden spoke at the Yeshiva Beth Yehudah Dinner, in front of hundreds of supporters of what is touted as the largest Jewish school system in the state. Tickets started at $250 each.

Food for Thought by Steven Shamrak

There is nothing more delusional as belief in a notion of political friendship. All countries are looking for their own interest, forging temporary military, political and economic alliances. Israel must be particularly aware of it, considering history of the noxious treatment Jews received from others, and pursue its own national interests, as any sovereign country should, in securing the future of the Jewish people.

Kenya PM asks Israel for help fighting terrorists

Kenya's prime minister is seeking Israel's support in stopping reprisal terror attacks by an al-Qaida-linked militant group Kenyan troops are pursuing in Somalia. Israeli security forces are among the best in the world in dealing with terror threats. Kenya last month sent hundreds of troops into Somalia to pursue al-Shabab, whom it blames for attacks and kidnappings in Kenya.

Why would Britain Care?

Britain is heading for a potential rift with Israel over plans for legislation designed to curb foreign funding of so-called human rights and civil society organisations that are mainly critical of government policy. Matthew Gould, the British ambassador in Tel Aviv, has already taken the unusual step of warning Ofir Akunis, the architect of the bill, and a Knesset member in Mr Netanyahu's ruling Likud Party, that the measure would reflect badly on Israel. (In a current bad economic environment one would think the UK would be happy to reduce its ‘foreign aid’)

Declining Number of Israelis who Enlist IDF

According to statistics presented by Major General Orna Barbivai, head of the IDF’s Manpower Directorate, by the year 2020 about 60% of the Israeli population will not be serving in the army. The data for 2011 indicate that as of today, every second citizen in Israel does not enlist in the IDF. At the same time, the IDF expects a sharp increase, about 25%, in the number of religious girls who opt for full army service in the coming year. (Disillusionment and the absence of direction and political will to achieve the Jewish national aspiration could be major reasons for this decline.)

Look Who is Talking:

"No regime can survive by killing or jailing… No one can build a future over the blood of the oppressed." - Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, signaling that he is fed up with Assad's response to the uprising  - Doesn’t Turkey still kill and jail Kurds, while occupying their land? Turkey has not come clean and ‘forbids’ other countries to even acknowledge the genocide of up to 1.5 million Armenians by Ottoman Turks and Kurds between 1915 and 1923.

Jam, Spoof and Hack Iran First

by Spencer Ackerman

Iran’s nuclear program inspires perennial rumours of an Israeli air raid. No one really knows if one is coming. But if it does, it won’t be a conventional bombing run. Israel has quietly developed powerful jamming, spoofing and electronic weapons to confuse the mullahs before, during and after an attack.

A combined squad of Heron drones, manned electronic attack planes from a unit called the Sky Crows and fighter jocks in F-15s and F-16s would execute the attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities. The Israeli team will spoof the radars on the Iranian air defence weapons, telling their monitors that either no planes are in the sky or hundreds are. A separate spoofing effort will disrupt cellphone networks. Then the Israelis will hit the Iranian military’s command network with a distributed denial of service attack…

Israel may have already given its joint electronic-air attack a test run. In 2007, when it bombed Syrian nuclear facilities, Israel reportedly remotely disabled the tripwires on Syria’s air defences. Reportedly, it pumped the sensors on those air defences full of data streams that the sensors think are commands from the systems administrator.

The U.S. has looked at Israel’s electronic warfare weapons with interest. The Navy wants its forthcoming next-generation jammer to do many of the same things - especially inserting malware into an adversary’s command network. The Pentagon’s chief information officer has launched a study into how the military safeguards its own electromagnetic spectrum from infiltration or attack. If there is an Israeli attack on Iran, US military planners will probably be taking notes…