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Monday, May 30, 2011

JERUSALEM DAY: JUNE 1, 2011-Letter to the World by Stanley Goldfoot

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                   
                      Stern of the Stern Group, Stanley Goldfoot was Chief of Intelligence of this group.

The Palestinians want East Jerusalem or all of the city as their capital in their possible state of Palestine that they are attempting to create without any peaceful arrangements with Israel.  At the same time, these Palestinians have in the Hamas charter the goal to destroy Israel.  We will soon see how the rest of the world feels about our only Jewish state.  In the meantime, Israelis will celebrate Jerusalem Day  on June 1st this year commemorating 44 years of freedom for our Jerusalem of Gold.  My 3rd cousin Stanley wrote this letter to the world in 1969 about his feelings toward his city of Jerusalem.  1967 was when Israel was able to take control of Jerusalem once again.  Stanley and Helen  lived on Dor V'Dor Street.  (from generation to generation) in Jerusalem.  Stanley was the first Jew to make aliyah from South Africa at the age of 18 when he graduated from his yeshiva.  He entered Israel  in 1932 from a ship hoisting a swastika flag, afraid he wouldn't get there.  He was fighting as the Chief of Intelligence of the Stern Group when Israel was pronounced a state in the UN.  In 1956 he returned to Israel after a hiatus.  He created the newspaper, The Times of Israel, where the following letter was printed in the first issue in 1969.  It has as much meaning today as it did then. 
A Letter to the World from Jerusalem

by Eliezer ben Yisrael (Stanley Goldfoot)

 I am not a creature from another planet, as you seem to believe. I am a Jerusalemite-like yourselves, a man of flesh and blood. I am a citizen of my city, an integral part of my people. I have a few things to get off my chest. Because I am not a diplomat, I do not have to mince words. I do not have to please you or even persuade you. I owe you nothing. You did not build this city, you did not live in it, you did not defend it when they came to destroy it.

And we will be damned if we will let you take it away. There was a Jerusalem before there was a New York. When Berlin, Moscow, London, and Paris were miasmal forest and swamp, there was a thriving Jewish community here. It gave something to the world which you nations have rejected ever since you established yourselves- a humane moral code.

Here the prophets walked, their words flashing like forked lightning.

Here a people who wanted nothing more than to be left alone, fought off waves of heathen would-be conquerors, bled and died on the battlements, hurled themselves into the flames of their burning Temple rather than surrender, and when finally overwhelmed by sheer numbers and led away into captivity, swore that before they forgot Jerusalem, they would see their tongues cleave to their palates, their right arms wither.

For two pain-filled millennia, while we were your unwelcome guests, we prayed daily to return to this city. Three times a day we petitioned the Almighty: "Gather us from the four corners of the world, bring us upright to our land, return in mercy to Jerusalem, Thy city, and swell in it as Thou promised." On every Yom Kippur and Passover, we fervently voiced the hope that next year would find us in Jerusalem.

Your inquisitions, pogroms, expulsions, the ghettos into which you jammed us, your forced baptisms, your quota systems, your genteel anti-Semitism, and the final unspeakable horror, the holocaust (and worse, your terrifying disinterest in it)- all these have not broken us. They may have sapped what little moral strength you still possessed, but they forged us into steel. Do you think that you can break us now after all we have been through? Do you really believe that after Dachau and Auschwitz we are frightened by your threats of blockades and sanctions?

We have been to Hell and back- a Hell of your making. What more could you possibly have in your arsenal that could scare us?

I have watched this city bombarded twice by nations calling themselves civilized. In 1948, while you looked on apathetically, I saw women and children blown to smithereens, after we agreed to your request to internationalize the city. It was a deadly combination that did the job- British officers, Arab gunners, and American-made cannon. And then the savage sacking of the Old City-the willful slaughter, the wanton destruction of every synagogue and religious school, the desecration of Jewish cemeteries, the sale by a ghoulish government of tombstones for building materials, for poultry runs, army camps, even latrines.

And you never said a word.

You never breathed the slightest protest when the Jordanians shut off the holiest of our places, the Western Wall, in violation of the pledges they had made after the war- a war they waged, incidentally, against the decision of the UN. Not a murmur came from you whenever the legionnaires in their spiked helmets casually opened fire upon our citizens from behind the walls.

Your hearts bled when Berlin came under siege. You rushed your airlift "to save the gallant Berliners". But you did not send one ounce of food when Jews starved in besieged Jerusalem. You thundered against the wall which the East Germans ran through the middle of the German capital- but not one peep out of you about that other wall, the one that tore through the heart of Jerusalem.

And when that same thing happened 20 years later, and the Arabs unleashed a savage, unprovoked bombardment of the Holy City again, did any of you do anything?

The only time you came to life was when the city was at last reunited. Then you wrung your hands and spoke loftily of "justice" and need for the "Christian" quality of turning the other cheek. The truth- and you know it deep inside your gut - you would prefer the city to be destroyed rather than have it governed by Jews. No matter how diplomatically you phrase it, the age old prejudices seep out of every word.

If our return to the city has tied your theology in knots, perhaps you had better reexamine your catechisms. After what we have been through, we are not passively going to accommodate ourselves to the twisted idea that we are to suffer eternal homelessness until we accept your savior.

For the first time since the year 70, there is now complete religious freedom for all in Jerusalem. For the first time since the Romans put a torch to the Temple, everyone has equal rights (You prefer to have some more equal than others.) We loathe the sword- but it was you who forced us to take it up. We crave peace, but we are not going back to the peace of 1948 as you would like us to.

We are home. It has a lovely sound for a nation you have willed to wander over the face of the globe. We are not leaving. We are redeeming the pledge made by our forefathers: Jerusalem is being rebuilt. "Next year" and the year after, and after, and after, until the end of time- "in Jerusalem"!

Stanley Goldfoot
Founder Editor
The Times of Israel
August 1969

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Israel's 1948 Fight For Birth and How Abbas Left Safed

Nadene Goldfoot
Abbas,  leader of Fatah in Judea and Samaria,  finally decided to tell his friends the real story of how his family came to leave Safed in 1948.  They were afraid of retribution for their killing of Jews in previous years, most likely in the riots of 29 and so they left quickly.   This riot happened on August 29, 1929 when 18 to 20 Jews were killed and 80 were wounded.  The Jewish street had been looted and burned as well.   What he had been telling everyone was that the Arabs had been forced out in 1948 , which was not true.  Safed had been designated as a Jewish city by the UN in their division of land, so the Jews had good reason to defend it. 

Americans may be thinking that the only reason that Israel has won its wars is because of American aid which has been extremely necessary, but I think we have had help from above as well.  There have been some outlandish situations with the outcome in Israel's favor.  Here's one of them.

Many times the Arabs of Safed had rioted against the Jews there because they had been incited to do so by their leaders.  The riots of 1930's were very brutal with much killing.    When Britain had the mandate, the Jews there had to seal themselves into a concrete building with enough food to last until the British authorities got around to coming and rescuing them.  Jews had been in Safed we know since Josephus in Roman days as he mentioned it, when it was called Sepph. Being the country had been ruled by King David, it most likely was in existence then as well.   It's mentioned in the Talmud and in the days of the Crusades.  A fortress was built there by the king of Jerusalem, Fulk of Anjou in 1140 AD.  It was then Templar property in 1168 and destroyed by the Baybars in 1266.  By the 16th Century it was a rabbinical and kabbalistic center.  Rabbi Isaac Luria and Joseph Caro lived here and L'cha Dodi was written then. They experienced epidemics that killed many.   A great earthquake happened in 1837 so that by 1845 there were only 400 people remaining.  In 1948 there were 12,000 Arabs and 1,800 Jews; a ratio about 12:2.    By 1990 there were 16,400 Israelis, and I was one who left there at the end of 1985.  It's a great summer resort as it's high up at 2,720 feet and is has an art colony. 

In 1948 the Jewish defenders of Safed were few in number.  There were two men and a 14 year old boy in a trench in front of a reinforced concrete building and the only  arms they had were one pistol, a sten gun with a broken stock and a few grenades.  Two of them were pleading with the Haganah commander for reinforcements when they heard the first shots fired in the battle for Safed.  They met up with more than a dozen armed Arabs and the older man just froze.  The  14 year old pulled the pins on his 2 grenades and threw them.  Then the three  turned around and ran, thinking they would be shot in the back when Hamous, the largest man on the Safed Defense Force ran toward them.  He had ammunition and weapons in his pockets and belt.  The two grenades had killed most of the group of armed Arabs and the others got away.  Hamous had picked up the weapons of the deceased.  Thus the four fighters held their position until the Palamach fighters came.

The Arabs were attacking here by the concrete building with many fighters because they thought the money and jewels the Jews had were in the  building  hidden for safekeeping.  One can see the walls are pocked with bullets so that you can imagine the battle that went on.

The birth of Israel was accompanied with much labor pain involving  fighting, and that fighting was miraculous.  It wasn't missiles against slingshots and rocks.  Israel had help of a higher power than man.   To me it's a miracle that the few Jews were able to win against so many Arabs, but this is only one of the miraculous events that happened.  . 

Resource: Legends of Safed by Dov Silverman, writer/school principal friend of mine in Safed
The Standard Jewish Encyclopedia

Gene Simmons, KISS Star Speaks Up for Israel

Nadene Goldfoot
Gene Simmons, co founder of the hard rock supergroup, KISS,  is a Sabra, the Israeli-born Chaim Witz, born in  Tirat, Carmel, Israel in August of 1949, the year after the declaration of Israel as a  state.  His family had immigrated to New York when he was a child. 

Gene was like many Jews who had voted for Obama, but is speaking out now and telling him that he has no idea about Israel and would if he lived there.  Gene realizes that it is terrible to suggest that Israel should be at the 67 line and then make concessions. 

Gene is a musician,  an American rock bassist, singer, songwriter, actor, businessman and member of KISS.  His parents were from Hungary.  His mother is Flora Klein.  In German Klein means "small" but in Hungarian it means "kiss."  She and her brother  Larry were the only ones to survive the Holocaust out of their family.  His father, Firi Witz, stayed in Israel while his wife and child left for New York.  Gene attended the Yeshiva Torah Vodaath in Williamsburg in Brooklyn from the age of 7 on. 

He is best known as a member of KISS and for his TV show, "Gene Simmons-Family Jewels". 

Like he said, "When you grow up, you see that life is not like you thought it was."  He suggests that Obama go live in the 9 mile wide section of Israel to see how he likes it.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Abbas Covers His Tracks When Speaking About Safed, Israel

Nadene Goldfoot
When I saw that Benny Morris, well-known historian and professor of history at the Middle East Studies Department of Ben-Gurion University, was writing about Abbas and Safed, I was very interested.  I lived in Safed from 1981 to the end of 1985 and learned a lot about it as I was teaching English at the junior high on David Eleazar Street.

Prof. Morris tells that when Mahmoud Abbas, leader of Fatah,  was 13 he was "forced " and "driven" out of his home in Safed by the Zionists.  To his friends on July 6, 2009 he told the true facts;  that  his family ran out of Safed on their own because they feared Jewish retribution for a massacre they had committed against the Jews 20 years before.  Prof. Morris comments that the Haganah troops entered on the 9th and 10th of May 1948 and there was no expulsion.

In Genesis 1948 by  Dan Kurzman we learn that there was a British General in Haifa, General Stockwell, and when Haifa fell, the British decided to help the Arab Legion reconquer that city after their troops had already departed.  The General liked to drink whiskey a lot and celebrate with the Jews, and he drank tea with the Arabs of Safed in eastern Galilee which he also commanded.  He told these Arabs that he was going to cooperate with the Haganah capture Haifa.  All the time he figured the Arabs would take Safed.  So he offered to turn over major strongholds to the Arabs when the British withdrew from Safed.  He told them not to attack the Jews until the British withdrew on April 16th.  Syrian Col Adib Shishekli agreed.  The deal was that the Arabs would have to permit British intervention in the fighting if the Jews requested it, and they had to treat the Jews humanely when they captured the town.  Oh, yes, Shishekli promised.  The Colonel  didn't care that Safed was to go to the Jews under the UN partition plan, but after all, there were only about 1,500 Jews to the 12,000 Arabs and the Jews couldn't win.  He had it all figured out.  The stubborn Jews would ask the British to mediate a truce agreement and then they would give Safed to the Arabs.

 The story goes on but after 14 hours of shelling and battle, peace came to Safed with the Jews holding out and like  the Jews had forewarned their Arab comrades, a unit of Palmach soldiers came through the Arab blockade to help the Jews of Safed.  The leader was 30 year old Yigal Allon.  The story is never boring.  Unknown to the Jews, the Arab Liberation Army units had left Safed right after the British did with only about 20 soldiers remaining to support the local Arab fighters.  The Arabs wound up under seige and surrendered.  In the rukus, an Arab man told a Haganah officer that 6 days ago he was with his wife and children in Syria and knew nothing about Palestine and then they came and asked me if I wanted 30 pounds and a white woman.  I said, "Yes, of course, and so I came here to Palestine."  He looked up and saw a Jewish female soldier standing there listening and then added, "Now I see my first white woman--just before I die.  The world is made of!@#$ I tell you."  She looked at him and then told the officer not to touch him, and cried.  After that the Arabs escaped and every other Arab in Safed had fled the town.

The refugees of Safed went down the road and came to 3 large parked cars.  Mayor Kaddoura asked the men in the first car  what they were waiting for.  They answered that they were waiting for Haj Amin (the Mufti) to guide him into Safed.  The mayor could hardly keep from laughing. 

My Hebrew teacher was a native of Safed.  She spoke English very well, I suppose because of the British soldiers there.  James Mitchener lived there while he was doing research for his book, The Source.  She was the lady who sent material secretly to the Russian Jews in Russia to learn Hebrew.  It was against the law to do this.  Well, people who are against our good Jewish people never do well, do they. 

Abbas is the man we are to work with and yet he doesn't tell the truth about his history or the history of Safed to people who need to know the truth.  Knowing he was making up a story must have bothered him to finally be honest with his friends, but it doesn't do any good in  making his people  stop hating Jews.  The British were such devious overseers, manipulating everyone to their liking and feathering their own nests.  They sold the Jews out and found they really didn't know them at all.  With all those Arabs, I find it wonderous that they had Syrians in command and had to lure other Syrians in to help with the fighting against Jews. 

 Resource: from Daily Alert: Professor Benny Morris
Genesis 1948 by Dan Kurzman

Jewish Right to Perform Circumcision in San Francisco and in the World

Nadene Goldfoot
The people of San Francisco have 7,700 signatures making it official that a vote will be on the ballot in November outlawing circumcision.  This is a rite given to Jews from bible days in that this brit mila (Hebrew for circumcision) is practiced at the age of 8 days.  Now San Francisco is trying to take our right away with the penalty of $1,000 or a year in jail.  In a city of leftists, I see down right anti-semitism against Jews in this act. 

Because Jews have done this for so long, 80% of the males in the US  have had  it done automatically in the hospital because it was a good surgical technique that saved lives of males.  It has a cleanliness factor.  Suddenly Jews can't do it or be penalized?  What timing ! 

If there are any Jews who don't care to have this procedure done, they don't have to, but in a tight Jewish community it would be considered weird not to.  There would only be a social condemnation in a community where a brit mila ceremony is practiced.   We Jews have no police inspecting children.  It's our choice to do so.  It says much to us, such as our son is a member of our Jewish community.  Even with non-affiliated Jews the parent or parents breathe a sigh of relief when a circumcision is performed in the hospital.  The last people that tried to stop us were the Romans.  So now you're in good company, San Francisco. 

Usually when a boy is born a big party is planned for the brit mila.  A mohel, an orthodox gentleman who is trained to perform the circumcision, does it.  It's also called the "Covenant of Abraham," because this comes from Abraham which was the sign of his covenant with G-d.  It has become our symbol distinguishing the Jew from the idolator.  Of course today many men in the United States have had it done, but it still has this important meaning to us.  Muslims do it to their sons at age 13.  Not doing it is taking away our extremely important right. 

Nobody in this world is forced to have it done.  Why is it necessary to punish Jews who want to do it?  Isn't this an example of coming down hard on the Jewish community?  Is San Francisco trying to make Dhimmis (3rd class citizens) out of Jews like they were in Arab lands? 

Not only are Jews are being discriminated against, but all males in our society.  The choice of having this healthy procedure done is ours, not the government.  This isn't protecting rights.  This is a sneaky way of taking away our rights.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Palestinian Terrorist Groups: PLO, Hamas

Nadene Goldfoot
From the time of Israel's creation in 1948 to 1967 when Israel won in the Six Day War, Judea and Samaria (West Bank) were under Arab rule.  There were no Jewish settlements there.  Gaza was occupied by Egypt and the West Bank by Jordan.  The Arabs were not yelling for their own independent state until Israel took control of these places in 1967. 

The PLO was founded in 1964 by the Arab League.  Terrorist groups were set up in Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq.  They looked over at Israel and wanted it so said they wanted to "liberate it." They clearly stated that they'd accept a West Bank state as the 1st step toward their creating a Palestinians state in place of Israel.  They called this the strategy of stages.  Their leader, Arafat cried out in 1988, "No, no, no!  We do not recognize Israel.  We said there would be recognition when a Palestinian state is established and it will decide whether to recognize Israel or not."  The fight continued from 1965 to the present with hundreds of Israelis and others dying in PLO terrorist attacks. 

The original PLO Covenant's Article 6 declared that only Jews who were in Palestine before ...1917, when the Balfour Declaration was signed would  be considered Palestinians.  You see, they also planned to replace Israel with their "democratic" state.  At that time they didn't know what democratic even meant.  Their leadership was decided by bullets instead of ballots.  The size of each militia decided how many representatives they could have.  Opponents were murdered.  They did become less secular to counter the growing influence of Islamic groups such as Hamas.

The PLO received a very stiff challenge from the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas).  UN employees at refugee camps in Gaza chose Hamas over the PLO to represent them in 1990.  The Hebron Chamber of Commerce held eletions in 1991 and many Hamas candidates outpolled the PLO hopefuls.  The PLO made overtures to Hamas, but didn't have fundamentalist Islamic groups represented.  Evidentlly today this has changed. 

In 2006 an election was held in which Hamas won.  They had a battle, but Abbas, Fatah's leader was driving to Judea and Samaria.  Just recently they have united once again. 

Fatah's leader, Abbas, is now 76 years old.  He's tired.  He's given into Hamas and his citizens who have wanted unity with Hamas.  The charter of Hamas refuses to recognize Israel.  The Palestinians are going to have to change their tune or else they must pick a different site for their country, because Israel it won't be. 

Reference: Book: Myths and Facts, a concise record of the Arab-Israeli conflict by Dr. Mitchell G. Bard and Joel HImelfarb

Obama's Flawed Statement About Judea and Samaria

Nadene Goldfoot
Obama wants Israel to go back to the 1967 lines and then make some adjustments with the Palestinians. 

Been there, done that, Obama.  I do not feel your plan is a worthy one.  It is logical only to the cold, callous and non-caring. 

Our forefathers who yearned and planned from all over the world were able to put forth a plan to the League of Nations after Germany fell in the first world war and bring it to fruition.  They did settle for less than half of the land to be Israel than they had been originally promised, and they took it gladly.  The Arabs refused their very generous allotment offered.  That's because our need was great, greater even than the Pilgrims' need to sail for America.  Our need was a matter of life and death.  The Arabs, what few that had been living there or traversing it on camels, were not of the ilk that were nation-builders and had no need.  They just wanted the freedom and were not about to allow Jews into the land.  After all, the Ottoman Empire had been on the German side in The Great War. 

Israel has had to fight to exist in 1948, 1956 and again in 1967.  Enough already.  That's when we gained Judea and Samaria, the part that was originally promised as the Jewish Homeland that we had to resign ourselves to not receive as it was to be given THEN to the Arabs.  And it had always been known to anyone as Judea and Samaria.  It was the Jordanians who referred to it as "The West Bank" because it was land  that was west of the Jordan River, which is a great dividing element.  Note: Israel didn't go after Judea and Samaria and attack Jordan and the Arabs to get it.  It was gained after all the nations around attacked Israel.  That's what happens.  People lose land because of their blood-thirsty decisions to kill and seize another's country.

The Arabs continued to fight Israel in 73 and again 82 when we had to go into Lebanon to stop the PLO from attacks.  You know the PLO, who have renamed themselves Fatah.  2000 has seen an insurgance of attacks from Gaza, the land we gave up taken in 67 for the sake of peace which was about the worst thing that Israel has had to do.  Now it's a staging ground for missile attacks.  Israel is not about to make the same mistake twice.  Moving a half million Jews out of towns and cities is asking a lot after Gaza's experience.  Israel is just a speck on a map.  It's already taken in Jews from Gaza and other places.  Most people in Israel live in high rise apartment buildings because of the lack of space. 

The Arabs seem to not want peace as their charter and their actions do not tell us that peace is their goal.  Whenever that happens, Israel will be interested.  For 63 years Israel has been demonstrating both a desire and a need for peace.  Now it's the Arab's turn to take it to heart.  They really don't need a state.  It's that they want a state, the state of  Israel in actuality.  There are at least 47 Arab majority states in the world and they are busy populating all the others including the USA.  There's only one Jewish state in the world:  Israel. 

Alan Dershowitz, my favorite lawyer-historian on Israel,  feels that Obama's statement is flawed because he makes it hard on the Palestinians to compromise by giving them more than they asked for. It just makes me feel like lecturing Obama again.  For a smart guy, he hasn't learned much about Israel and its history yet.  Well, I'll have to give him this:  He did know that the bible called the West Bank Judea and Samaria.  I can't say that about everybody.  What he doesn't realize is that Israelis still do.  After fighting wars three times and defending themselves, the Israelis deserve to be able to live in Judea and Samaria once again.  I haven't seen them throw out the Palestinians living there.   That's because their world is a fair one. 


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What's Your Point, Josef Federman?

Nadene Goldfoot
Josef Federman of Associated Press couldn't bring himself to view Israel as Netanyahu does so has done his best to attack Netanyahu's speech to the USA Congress

While our Congress was proud of him and gave him about 30 standup-clapping recognitions and was in agreement with him, Josef found nothing but reason to assail him. 

Netanyahu mentioned that the USA hasn't had to send any troops to Israel and they haven't.  That's a truth.  Josef has to remind readers of foreign aid including military financial assistance they have received but didn't mention that Israel has paid back loans or that Israel spends the money they receive in the USA as per agreement therefore saving many a community of their financial loss.  Gee, Josef, I just saw that on TV where the people of the community were more than happy with the deal. (You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours.) 

Netanyahu explained that in Judea and Samaria (West Bank) Israel is not a foreign occupier like the British were in India or the Belgians in the Congo.  Josef sides with the international community (mostly people who never have liked Jews in the first place and the reason we need to have our own Israel) who considers the West Bank occupied territory because after winning the 67 War wound up capturing it but had never annexed it.  Can you imagine the screaming that would have happened if Israel annexed it?  Because they were terrorists of Fatah led by Arafat Israel has had to keep soldiers there who protect the Jewish settlements and control Palestinian residents in their movements as many times they have raided into Israel proper and have killed people.  The old saying which Oprah repeated tonight on her last show was for every action there is a reaction.  She reminded her audience of this physics law and then repeated the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have done unto you.  Well, when the Palestinians are the ones who have wanted to kill off the Jews, this is Israel's reaction.  Abbas hasn't tried being nice yet nor have the Hamas in Gaza who just keep shelling Israel. 

Netanyahu stated a big truth which was that Israel is a democracy.  Then Josef had to comment very unwisely that Israeli Arabs suffer from discrimination in housing and the workplace.  I've seen Israel work on the housing problems a few have had.  Some Israeli home owners haven't wanted to sell to Arabs.  It's against the law and the law has come down on them.  Is this really surprising when Arabs have continually attacked Jews for the past 63 years?  Our own country had the same problem for over 200 years and are just getting around to following a non-discrimination law.  As for work, the major thing on a resume is that they belong to the IDF (Israel Defense Force).  Being a soldier is everything.  It shapes their ability to be creative thinkers.  Read the book: START UP NATION.  Even the orthodox Jews who have not served have the same problem.  Josef didn't dare mention that Israel hasn't forced Arabs to serve as soldiers defending Israel for obvious reasons, which weren't so obvious to my Democratic cousin who thought that it was being discriminating.  Israel is sensitive to feelings and emotions.  Now some Arabs do want to serve in the IDF.  I've met some Beduins who have been serving for some time and are leaders and men that are greatly admired.  Josef actually complains that the 2 million Palestinians living in Judea and Samaria aren't citizens and cannot vote in Israeli elections.  Really?  Does he think they want to be Israeli citizens?  I don't think so.  You can only vote if you are a citizen and the one million 4 hundred thousand Arabs that do live in Israel do vote and they are there because their forefathers did not leave their homes when others ran to be able to come back and take over Jewish property. 

Then Josef complained about the 650,000 Israelis living beyond the 67 lines in Jerusalem and greater Tel Aviv.  He's got his numbers wrong.  There are 300,000 living in Judea and Samaria dn 200,000 in East Jerusalem.  This adds up to 500,000.  After all the times Israel has tried to get Abbas to sit down and talk of peace, nothing has happened.  If it were me, I'd open up more land for more settlers every single time this happened.   There's no use in letting this land that Israel rightly inherited after being attacked by all these countries for no reason other than hatred sit idle just waiting for the Arabs to show up someday.  They were offered their half of Palestine in 1948 and have refused it ever since.  Arafat was great in doing that.  I don't think they really want a country at all.  They just don't want us to have our country.

Netanyahu is proud of the fact that the Palestinian economy is booming, growing by 10% plus each year, but Josef throws in his pugnacious words of wisdom that it comes after years of contraction during fighting and has been fueled by huge amounts of foreign aid and that Israel has to do more to encourage the Palestinian private sector.  He neglects to say that the Palestinians have been on the dole with the UN for about 63 years and when Israelis left Gaza they left businesses that the Arabs promptly tore apart.  Considering all that, I think it's a miracle that they're starting to work. 

Of course Netanyahu said that "Israel will not negotiate with a Palestinian government backed by their version of al-Qaida, meaning Hamas who just recently united with Fatah.  Now we have two terrorist organizations, one moderate and one pure evil connection again.  Josef, the Pollyanna it looks like, climbed  all over semantics  saying that Hamas and al-Qaida have no connection. ( Has Josef forgotten that Netanyahu speaks Hebrew all day every day unless speaking here or to some English speaker?)  He admits they have both killed hundreds of people in religious holy wars, though.  He thinks that Hamas has been criticized for being too moderate.  I suppose that there are even worse groups in Gaza today.  His difference is that Al-Qaida preaches global jihad and Hamas is only against Israel.  To Netanyahu I think they are the same; both wanting to destroy Israel.

Why all the negativity, Josef.  You're not commenting on Josef Stalin, you know.  There were reasons why Netanyahu could say what he said.  Luckily Congress had a better background and understood him as he spoke elequently.  I and many Americans find his speech most admirable.  I'm proud of him and his speech.  It wasn't empty words like some I've heard from others.  Israel isn't made up of angels.  It is made up of a group of people who have been trying very hard to be extremely fair and just to their enemies because that's part of their religion.  They are the people who have undergone more discrimination and hatred in the world than anyone has and are still under the gun.  They really believe in doing to others as they would have done unto you and they do their utmost to practice what they believe.  You know, I know who Josepheus wrote for; the Roman army.  That was his audience.  Who are you writing for?   

Resource:  5/25/2011
Book: Letters From Israel by Nadene Goldfoot effect of Federman's writing. 5/29/11

Syria in the Arab Spring

Nadene Goldfoot
Who does Syria think they are, anyway?  The city, Ebla in the northern area of Syria goes back to 3,000 BCE.  They traded with Sumer and Akkad.  The Pharaoh of Egypt sent them gifts.  Ebla was the center of the oldest semitic language.  It became the nation of the Amorites mentioned in the bible.  Later it was conquered by the Hittites and occupied by the Canaanites, Phoenicians, Arameans, Persians Alexander the Great, Seleucids, Romans and finally the Byzantines.  Damascus became a capital. 

In 83 BCE Teyranes the Great King of Armenia conquered the land but not for long.  By 64 BCE it was a Roman Province and finally became part of the Ottoman Empire from the 16th to 20th Century along with Palestine.  Thus stepped in France who was given the mandate of caring for Syria and Lebanon from WWI when the Ottoman Empire fell along with Germany.  The USA recognized the mandate in 1924.  Faysal was ousted in 1920 and from then on there were riots, uprisings and war.  The Syrians wanted independence and revolted in 1925.  With WWII approaching, the semi-independence of Syria and Lebanon ended. 

Syria was created a state in April 1946, after WWII.  It has a parliamentary Republic but is not a Democracy.  Syria saw many coups from 1949 to 1970.  From 1962 to 2011 they have had to have Emergency Law.  Bashar al-Assad is the ruler who took over from his father, Hafez al-Assad. 

From 1948-67 Damascus controlled the Golan Heights which it used as a military stronghold from which its troops shot at Israeli civiilians in the Huleh Valley below.  It was like shooting ducks at the carnival.  Their gun fired into Israeli farms below.  This forced children on kibbutzxim to sleep in bomb shelters.  Roads in northern Israel were not passable until they were probed by mine-detection vehicles.  In 1966 a child was blown to pieces by a mine while playing football near the Lebanon border.  Attacks were carried out by Yasir Arafat's Fatah which operated from Syria. 

Of course Israel protested many times to the UN Mixed Armistice Commission, who was in charge of ceasefire but it was Israel who got condemned by them when it had to retaliate after these attacks as nobody else was stopping the sniping.  When Israel had demanded a stopping of Fatah the Syrians, who allowed it, retorted that it wasn't their job to stop them but to encourage and strengthen them.  As one historian wrote, "there was an open season for killing Israelis on their own territory."

The Six-Day War began and put a stop to much of this as well as gave Israel land such as the Golan Heights.  It had started on June 9, 1967 and by late afternoon, June 10th, Israel was in complete control of the plateau.  Finally the shooting gallery of 19 years came to an end.  Never did the international community act against these Syrian aggressors. 

In 2007 Israel had to fly over Syria and bomb their clandestine nuclear reactor.  Any atomic warfare would have been used on Israel and the USA.  So much for the watchdog, IAEA. 

Syria and Lebanon's history has been continuous religious rivalries and wars for a long time.  Muslims, Christians and Druze fought each other. Also, different sects within Islam and Christianity fought among themselves.  Today there are 74% Sunni and 13% Shia and Alawite Muslims, 10% Christians and 3% Druze living there. 

Today the people of Syria are trying to overthrow Bashar al-Assad.  Lebanon is still his ally and Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, a Hezbollah terrorist leader stands behind him.  He is very much against his overthrow as he thinks it would just suit the USA and Israel's interests.  The bad guys stick together. 

Book: Myths and Facts, a concise record of the Arab-Israeli conflict by Mitchell G. Bard and Joel Himelfarb
Book: Battleground: Fact and fantasy in Palestine by Samuel Katz
Textbook: Middle East Past &I Present by Yahya Armajani and Thomas M. Ricks added 5/26/11
Note correction: I had Ebla spelled wrong:  I had it originally as Elba, which is an island Napolean was imprisoned on.  Thanks to a sharp historian, I have corrected it. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Palestinian's Twisted Retort to Netanyahu's Speech to Congress

The Palestinians are claiming that Netanyahu's speech to the USA congress this morning was a declaration of war upon them because he said he is keeping some settlements in the Judea/Samarian land.

It is the Palestinians who are declaring war as there is no declared state of Palestine.  By saying this Netanyahu is not declaring war; he's stating some land facts.  The land is under the state of Israel's realm as they gained it in winning the 1967 war. 

As I understood it, Netanyahu also said he'd give up a lot of so called settlements for the sake of peace if the Palestinians recognized Israel and wanted peace with them.  Fat chance, I'd say.  I know that the Palestinians want the whole West Bank and want it Judenrein; free of Jews.  They're also counting on Jerusalem which isn't going to be divided by Netanyahu, either, or allowed to slip into Palestinian ownership. 

Reference: News on TV; Fox

Abbas's Fairy Tale He's Spinning to Netanyahu

Nadene Goldfoot
Nakba, the Palestinian Arab's day of mourning when Israel was born on May 1948 held festivities in Ramallah and Gaza.  Mahmoud Abbas gave a speech through his advisor and representative, Abdallah Al-Ifranji. 

In it he denies the Jewish history in what had been called Palestine and instead wove a fairy-tale Arabian Nights type story claiming their history of going back to 7,000 BCE and called themselves the "owners of history."

Like a child, the speech taunted PM Benjamin Netanyahu with "Oh, Netanyahu, you are incidental in history; we are the people of history.  We are the owners of history." 

Evidently Abbas doesn't like history books as they deliver things he doesn't want to admit.  Jewish history is written in the bible in what at times seems to be tedious description as well as in Josephus's writings, ancient and non-Jewish sources, archeological excavations, Hebrew coins and Jewish ritual baths that have been found there.  Even the Kurkh Monolith, an Assyrian document from the reign of King Shalmaneser III (859-824 BCE) said, "King Ahab of Israel sent 2,000 chariots and 10,000 soldiers."  The Koran "refers to the people of Israel and even the destruction of the Temple in (Sura 17), but not to Palestinians. 

Jewish history tells of not only being in the land when they left Ur in what is today Iraq but having had a real country.  In fact, Jews had two countries, Judea and Israel.

What is an embarrassing  try is that Abbas is trying to say that the present day Arabs of Palestine were the original Canaanites which the Jews conquered.  "According to the Book of Jubilees, the Israelite conquest of Canaan, and the curse, are attributed to Canaan's steadfast refusal to join his elder brothers in Ham's allotment beyond the Nile, and instead "squatting" on the eastern shores of the Mediterranean, within the inheritance delineated for Shem."  Canaan was the son of Ham.  Ham was the son of Noah who built the ark.  Noah was angry with his son Ham for uncovering him while he was sleeping which caused him to be naked before his family and he said, "Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren. And he said, Blessed be the Lord God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant. God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.  So if Abbas takes on the cloak of being a Canaanite, he has to take on the curse as well. 

30% of Israeli Jews and from 16.8% to 25% of Palestinian  Arabs have been found to have the J2 Ydna haplogroup. This only proves that the two groups have a slight genetic connection, like very distant cousins. Supposedly according to the bible, we Arabs and Jews are said to be cousins, but certainly haven't turned out to be kissing cousins. Our arguments go back to bible days to the days of Abraham and his two sons; one by Sarah's Egyptian handmaid and one by Sarah. From there on we have had disagreements.

Probably there were only a few Arabs living in Palestine at the time of 70 AD, and some may have  stayed after the Romans conquered the land..  When Jews returned in the late 1800's to develop the land there were a few there.  Mark Twain wrote about them in his book, "Innocents Abroad."

However, these Arabs who entered the land after the Jews' First Aliyah back in the 1800's came from surrounding Arab nations who were looking for work.  They weren't  natives of the land.  Their people weren't taken by the Romans as captives.  There just weren't any living there.
Palestinia was the name of the land named by the Romans which only meant to erase the Jewish presence.  It was not a nation. 

Abbas's speech stated that Hamas and Fatah reconciled in order to face Israel and Netanyahu.  This is the twosome that Netanyahu is admonished to talk with about a peace settlement yet Abbas refused to come to the table.  This tango pair again needs a greater ratio to even face a Jew now, except both have refused to come and Hamas only wants to destroy Israel. 

Israel is not trying to transport the Arabs to Alaska.  They're trying to live in peace in this ancient land.  It's the Arabs who have not wanted peace with the Jews.  This direction of making peace with an entity who is calling for their destruction does have its problems.  Perhaps tonight's speech by Netanyahu to the USA Congress will have an answer. 

Resource:  Book: "From Time Immemorial" by Joan Peters by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik telling about dna

Let's Talk Turkey About Palestine and Israel

Nadene Goldfoot
Turkey, which was the  Ottoman Empire, was on the German side in WWI and  lost. The Great War lasted from 1914 to November 1918.   French and British mandates were set up to care for the Ottoman Empire property that they had held from 1517 to 1917 without developing Palestine.

The French took over what we know as Lebanon and Syria.  The British got Palestine and Iraq.  In 1926 the borders were redone and Lebanon was separated from Syria. 

Britain was not given any sovereignty in Palestine.  She was there to fulfill the Mandate and answerable to the League of Nations.  Britain put in Emir Faisal, a sheik deposed by the French in Syria as ruler of Iraq.  In 1922 they created the emirate of Transjordan which took in all of Palestine east of the Jordan River so that Emir Abdullah, a family man defeated in tribal warfare in the Arabian peninsula would have a kingdon to rule. 

In 1917 the Balfour Declaration had been created by the British after the war.  Chaim Weizmann had been a chemistry professor and had saved Britain with his invention, the ABE process which made acetone through bacterial fermentation .  This was used to win the war. He was rewarded with  land for a Jewish Homeland. 

In 1939 the White Paper was issued by Britain which restricted the immigration of Jews to Palestine.  This came at a time when Jews were being restricted and harmed in Germany and they wished to get out of there.  My own uncle was one of the last to make it out of Germany in 1939 and came to the USA.  He failed in getting out his parents and 16 year old sister and they died in the holocaust.  There were restrictions on Jewish immigration at that time into the USA.  They had to have sponsors taking all responsibility which my great uncle did. 

In 1947 there were about one million Arabs in western Palestine.  Of this, those  living in the land which became Israel was 561,000.  Not all left when Israel was created.  At the end of the warfare in 1949, there were 140,000 Arabs in Israel.  Those who left amounted to about 420,000.  At the end of May 1948 Faris el Khoury, the Syrian Representative on the UN Security Council said there were 250,000.  Emil Ghoury, an authoritan, said on September 6, 1948, that 200,000 Arabs had fled.  Then Count Bernadotte, the UN Special Representative in Palestine reported on September 16, 1948 that the number was 360,000, including 50,000 in Israel territory (UN document A1648).  After July 1948 there was a fourth group who left of about 50,000 Arabs from Galilee and from the Negev.  They left on their own free will or from the direction of their leaders, not from the Jews. 

On November 29, 1947, the United Nations recommended the partition of Palestine into an Arab and a Jewish state.  The Jews were given a smaller piece than earlier promised.  They got a little more than half of western Palestine which was about 15,000 square kilometers or 6,000 square miles including the semi-arid Negev desert.

The Arabs got 7/8th of Palestine on both sides of the Jordan River which had been promised to the Jews for the Jewish National Home.  The Arabs refused it.  Why?  They wanted it all, they said.

Existing Arab states at that time were Egypt, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Transjordan.  Their leaders wanted to prevent the birth of Israel.  Their land was 230 times larger than what was originally promised as Israel and they had a population 60 times more than its Jewish inhabitants who numbered about  half a million plus.  Their secretary of this confederation of invader states was Azzam Pasha who called to memory the massacres by the Mongols and the Crusaders.  They thought it would be a piece of cake.   After all, the ratio of Arabs to Jews was 7 to 1. 

Thirty years earlier on February 1919 there was only one recognized Arab leader, Emir Faisal, who signed a formal agreement with Dr. Chaim Weizmann, head of the Zionist Organization providing for cooperation between the projected Arab state and Jewish state of Palestine.  Faisal said the Zionist proposals were moderate and proper. 

In 1947 when the Arabs refused to set up their Arab state, the British then refused to carry out the recommendations of the UN to implement the partition plan,  and they worked to prevent Israel's birth.  This turned out to be the start of problems for all.  Perhaps the Arabs knew this was how to throw the monkey wrench into the decision.  Britain had gone along with the Arab decision, most likely because of their need for oil.  Their personal need was to placate the Arabs and they had nothing to gain with Jews:  so much for having saved their own nation. 

Some Jews had always lived in their homeland even though most were dispersed or killed in 70 AD when Rome attacked Judea.  When the British were overseers, they had their hands full.  Attacks of Arabs on Jews were going in in 1921 to 1929.  They were regular pogroms.  1936 saw a big attack led by Haj Amin el Husseini, mufi and president of the Muslem Supreme Council.  Men of the Cairo school were able to carry out a campaign against Zionism using propaganda saying they were bringing Bolshevism, maybe because past Jewish immigrants were from Russia.  Lawrence of Arabia's claim that Arabs had been "let down" by the British was told as "historic truth."  The Balfour Declaration allowing land for the Jewish nation was  twisted in their minds to be a meaningless paper.  The "rights of the Palestine Arabs" was created now and given a fictitious history which they use today for their propaganda to each other.

The League of Nations had become less effective and did nothing to change the attitude of the Arabs towards Jews. Sounds familiar today, doesn't it.  The UN really has done nothing to change the attitude of the Arabs towards Jews.  Iran boasts of their goal of destroying Israel.  What seems like an impossible position, one has to remember that Jews have lasted for the past 2,000 years, something many other people have not been able to do even though Hitler tried his best to kill them all.  It's been forseen that they would take back their land in the bible.  The Ingathering of Jews has already taken place.  What is to be seen now is a final acceptance of their position as an island amid an Arab sea.  Then the world just may experience a time of peace.
Book: Battleground, fact and fantasy in Palestine by Samuel Katz
Book: Myths and Facts, a concise record of the Arab-Israeli conflict by Dr. Mitchell G. Bard and Joel Himelfarb

Monday, May 23, 2011

Problems With Obama's Speech to Israel

Nadene Goldfoot
President Obama has thrown quite a wrench at Israel with wanting Israel to take BOLD ACTION.  Israel has taken lots of bold action already and the only thing I see from the Palestinians is warfare.  Israel has:
  1. Withdrawn from the Sinai which is land 3 times larger than pre-1967 Israel
  2. Gave up oil fields it developed there (which would have made Israel self sufficient for oil)
  3. Left Gaza in the name of peace
  4. Believed and trusted in Arafat's word of renouncing terrorism, allowed a return of 10,000 plus militia (armed terrorists) there, costing the lives of about 1,500 Israelis.  The promise was not kept.

Now again bold action from Israel  is asked for without expecting anything from the Palestinians.  Nothing has been asked of the Palestinians.

First and foremost, how can Israel be expected to negotiate with Fatah and Hamas who have united?  Hamas refuses to recognize Israel's right to even exist and is constantly at war with her.  This is the main impasse, and all other talk seems to amount to bubkas. One cannot make peace with people that hate you and want your demise.  They wouldn't make promises and if they did they would break them as they have in the past.  A peace pact has to mean something between parties that have more at stake.  That's why Israel has been so accomodating in the past ; it wanted peace.  Abbas wouldn't even come to the table and be serious  because he knew he was joining up with Hamas again. 

President Obama's approach differs from former President Bush's approach.  Obama has changed key elements of US policy with the Arab-Israeli questions profoundly.  The problem of the borders of Israel and Palestine have been taken back to the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps, states Obama's policy.  Bush didn't mention any baseline and was most careful to refer only in negative terms to the 1949 Armistice lines, saying that these wouldn't be the final outcome of negotiations.  The Bush letter was endorsed by the House and Senate in a non-binding concurrent resolution, H.Con. Res.460.  Hillary Clinton, Senator even voted for it.  Obama has departed from these terms, and may call into questions the value of such Presidential assurances, including his own, which would make these negotiations even more difficult.  In other words, assurances from the USA wouldn't mean anything. 

At Camp David in 2000, President Clinton offered compromises and dictated the "Clinton Parameters" in private to the parties without giving them copies and without a map of land swaps so that they themselves could record it, explains Dennis Ross.  They were told that if they couldn't accept Clinton's ideas, this was the culmination and we would withdraw them.  We didn't want to formalize it.  Even today the Palestinians haven't presented to their own people what was available in the proposal. 

President Obama is not following Clinton's plan which was to avoid providing the baeline for future negotiations if his peace efforts failed. 

The biggest issues I see after recognition would be :
1. The future of JerusalemThe mayor has already stated that to divide this city is impossible. 
2. Return of Palestinian refugees(I must mention here that the very youngest returnee would be 63 years old now.  The Palestinians want not only those that were alive in 1948 but all their thousands or millions of descendants.  Muslims allow at least 4 wives and each one can have at least 10 children.  Israel already has about one million 400 thousand Arabs as citizens, those that did not leave in 1948).  There are only about five million Jews making up Israel.  Anymore Arabs and it would not be the Jewish state it was meant to be.  After allowing the return already of 10,000 terrorists next door, it would be unrealistic to allow all these people into a Palestine whose goal is to destroy Israel, and impossible if they want to return to Israel itself. 

Clinton thought of having a fund of $30 billion internationally for compensation to cover repatriation, resettlement and rehabilitation costs.  At a time that the world is in deep financial trouble, is it practical to move people who are permanently residing in another country and pay for such a move?  What problems are they facing in their lives that they need to do such a thing?  What problems would this create for Israel?  Obama didn't mention this but it's something to foresee the future if this is comes about.

Bush gave the promise of fostering the dismantling of Hamas yet the Palestinians were encouraged to have a democratic voting process and voted them in.  They were to have no group or individual in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to manufacture, sell, acquire, possess, import or otherwise introduce into these two areas any firearms, ammunition, weapons, explosives, gunpowder or any related equipment, unless otherwise provided for in Annex I.  This is laughable.  That's what has been going on in Gaza most of all.  Such promises are ludicrous.   There is nothing to safeguard such empty promises except Israel. 

There is the proviso of the Palestinians anti-Terrorism Act of 2006 and the supplemental Appropriations Act , 2009 which bar funding to any entity related to Hamas and any government which includes Hamas.  Hamas not only refuses to recognize Israel's right to exist but has attacked Israeli citizens thousands of times from suicide bombings to rocket attacks.  This Hamas group is a recognized terrorist organization by the USA and  the European Union.  Now aid to the Palestinian Authority should be barred by law.  Besides that, omitting the US concerns about Hamas is a departure from past presidential policies and promises to Israel.  The USA was to join others in dismantling terrorist organizations.  I haven't seen this happen at all concerning Hamas. 

Obama's speech includes spelling out  what the territorial outcomes would be.  This hardens positions and makes compromise more difficult.  Previously, Bush and Clinton have not done this.  Obama has broken from key elements of US policy for the past decades.  Though he tells Palestinians that delegitimizing Israel will end in failure and says the USA is committed to Israel's security, expects more give from Israel allowing Palestinians to take once again. 

Great Britain promised that the future Jewish state would be much larger than what they wound up with, but they broke their promise, the Jews getting half of the original offer.    Ben Gurion took the offer despite this.  He must have been thinking of the old saying, "A bird in the hand is worth two  in the bush."  The Palestinians didn't take the half that was offered to them.  Instead they've preferred fighting the Jews ever since.  They really didn't need their own state or they would have taken what was offered gladly, like the Jews did. 

Resource: Camera website:

Sunday, May 22, 2011

A Softa's View on President Obama's Talk With Netanyahu

Nadene Goldfoot
The impossible suggestion coming from Obama for Israel to go back to the 67 borders and adjust them in 2011 after all the warring going on to me shows a complete negation of reality or feeling.  All I see is a president trying to make points with everyone and failing with all.

One of the things that might be a consideration stopping nations from attacking each other is the fact of losing, and in that I mean losing some of their own land.  This keeps people from coveting others' property; the fact that there are consequences to their actions.

No doubt this has turned Egypt and Jordan around and we have seen a peaceful coexistence in the past 44 years.  The lesson here is not to destroy the bee hive or you anger the bees which puts your own house in danger.

This is tantamount to sending our soldiers out on the battlefield to appease the Right but send them without arms to appease the Left.  What happens would be a slaughter of life.  This is what could happen to Israel.  It would certainly please our Arab enemies who are gleeful about having so many Jews close at hand in order to have one huge pogrom.  This is something they have bragged about.  Asking Israel to back away to indefensible borders is asking them to commit suicide, and they're not about to put themselves in harm's way.  It's chutzpa to ask them to do this sort of thing.

The clothing war wears today has changed.  Most people in the world do not know how to identify it anymore.  I see the Palestinian leaders leading their people against Israel in many ways.  There has been the constant shelling of missles landing haphazardly without direct aim which has put all of southern Israel in a state of complete anxiety, not knowing when this Russian roulette will drop on them.  Now I see Muslims marching in hordes against Israel putting the whole country on alarm and readiness.  Facebook is being used for their organization.  Going to the UN, their friend and protecter in declaration of a state against all negotiations with Israel is another tactic.  Terrorist attacks here and there keep the Israelis on guard and tense.  The whole country has been affected to some degree since its existence, but has honed its ability to think about how to continue existing and why this is important.  Nobody is ready to commit suicide, for depression is not their outcome.  Instead, they thank the Lord that they are there and wind up being one of the happiest people on the face of the earth. A trust in G-d has brought them to this conclusion.   The constant biting attacks from their enemy is not working.  What the Jews have become are warriors ready to save themselves. 

One lives in the present, but the fullfillment of the biblical prophesy of the return of Jews from all the corners of the world, the Ingathering,  strengthens Israelis and others with them.  This return is bigger than a people wanting a state such as the Palestinians are clamoring for.  This is a most monumental time in our history and we know that this is a serious plan being carried out.  It's a time when people have a spotlight on them showing what they are made of and what they believe in.

Ever since King Saul this land that Israel sits upon has been a Jewish land and was lost only by 70AD.  Jews have yearned and needed their land for 2,000 years, whereas the Palestinians, coming from their own native states, made a decision to have it much later than 1948 since they were given the chance and refused it.  Their momentum to take it has not really been reached as they have refused to talk "turkey" with Israel.  That's a drop in the bucket compared to the yearning and killing of Jews in the past and present.  My hope is that sane logic will win out  and Israel will soon be able to live in peace in their own land. 

Reference: with articles showing both Hamas and Israelis who are against Obama's suggestion. 
Exerpt from Netanyahu's speech to AIPAC: A peace agreement with the Palestinians must include effective security arrangements on the ground. Israel must prevent a repeat in the West Bank of what happened when it withdrew from Lebanon and Gaza. Israels main security problem with Lebanon is not its border with Lebanon. It is Lebanon's porous border with Syria, through which Iran and Syria smuggle tens of thousands of weapons to Hezbollah.

Israels main security problem with Gaza is not its border with Gaza. It is along Gaza's border with Egypt, under which nearly 1,000 tunnels have been dug to smuggle weapons. Experience has shown that only an Israeli presence on the ground can prevent weapons smuggling. This is why a peace agreement with the Palestinians must include an Israeli presence on the eastern border of a future Palestinian state. As peace with the Palestinians proves its durability over time, we can review security arrangements. We are prepared to take risks for peace, but we will not be reckless with the lives of our people and the life of the one and only Jewish state.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Obama's Assistants in Speech About Israel and Borders

Nadene Goldfoot
According to last night's TV news program, CNN's news reporter, Fareed Zakaria and Thomas Friedman were the people assisting Obama in his speech writing  where Obama urged Israel to go back to the 1967 borders.  Fareed is denying this but has admitted speaking to the president on several occasions. 

Netanyahu is due to speak to Obama personally today, but has already said that this is indefensible and putting Israel in harm's way for the sake of a declared Palestine is not going to happen. 

In the meantime, the surrounding Palestinians are planning a march on Israel again today after their Friday prayers.  This has been organized by facebook connections.  It looks to me like there isn't any shortage of computers or methods of getting onto this social network that I myself am on.  It's an ongoing activity of Nakba Day,The Palestinian day of sorrow of when Israel was declared a state by the UN.  They should be thinking of the sorrow of their ancestors leaving their homes at the insistence of their own leaders who bragged that all the Arab armies were attacking Israel and they would win in a few days allowing the families to return and take over the Jews' homes and valuables and it didn't turn out that way.  This seems to be the basic problem.  There is the coveting going on of the Palestinian people for what the Jews have; their land.  Now the largest and most powerful nation in the world is aiding and abetting this outlook by telling Israel to give up more land they have gained from being attacked and surviving. 

I can't believe that President Obama would actually think that Israel would go along with such an idea.  However, I've heard on  a Fox News interview that J Street had even suggested this move to the 67 border which doesn't surprise me.   It's amazing to me that Friedman and J Streeters think they are such great strategists.  They have no respect for the country's democratic values.  It is for Israel to make their own decisions for their welfare and survival, not a bunch of intellectual couch potatoes who probably have never even served in an army or even set foot in Israel to promote their own outlook on this miraculous land of their fathers.  Fareed's conversation is excused.  He's an Egyptian and evidently is thinking of Egypt's wishes.  Friedman and J Street need to stop being so egotistical and come down off the mountain to find out what's really going on in that part of the world.  But for our president to rely on such counseling is utterly sick.  I for one wish he had talked to someone in the know like Dick Morris.  Perhaps it is this twosome who agreed with Obama's own thinking, however.  More than likely, that's the answer. 


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Social Studies 101: Definition of Apartheid: Not Israel

Nadene Goldfoot
Israel is a bustling  multi-cultural melting pot made up of people from all over the world who live in a democracy that even outshines the United States, but is so small that it's about the size of New Jersey.  Even its TV programs come from other countries as well as Israel.   Its Knesset is made up of a rainbow of positions with respresentatives of  communism, socialism, Muslims, Jews (being the majority) and every left to right position.  Arabs can and have served on the Israeli supreme Court as well.  Both Jews and Arabs living in Israel as well as Christians are citizens of Israel.  They relish in the freedom of their many newspapers and worship of all kinds.  Even the Mormons have a park there.  Israel was created as a Jewish State because after 2,000 years of not having their homeland, needed one badly. They had come to the fork in the road where they realized they could have saved lives of their people had they had a state as a refuge, and to reach their potential which they certainly are now doing amid the nightmare of constant attacks. 

Arabs receive medical care in hospitals just like the Jews.  Arabs living in Gaza are governed by Hamas, the terrorist group who they themselves voted in, and now very often find they are victims of their terror.  They are allowed to travel to Israel to receive medical care in the Israeli hospitals.  Many living in Judea and Samaria are even entitled to work in Israel as well.

Everyone, no matter who they are, have the right to bring cases before the Israeli Supreme Court which is the highest court in Israel.  The court tries to find a balance between security and human rights.  When the Security Fence caused problems for the Palestinians, the court ordered the government to re-route it .  They also ruled that Israel can't use torture in interrogation. 

How many times has Israel offered to leave areas it captured in defensive wars in exchange for peace and full recognition?  Too many times.  When Israel left southern Lebanon and the Gaza Strip they thought they did so with the promise of peace, but these places are used as launching points for rockets, mortars and missles.  Israeli citizens have experienced terrorism, kidnappings, and all the constant rocket attacks, and yet there are people in this world accusing Israel of being apartheid,  of all things.  This is the antithesis of what Israel is all about. 

Apartheid, which was practiced in Tutu's South Africa, was the white's complete control over the majority of the population who were black.  It included political, legal and economic discrimination against the blacks.  It was the very opposite of a democratic society.  Many Jews fought against this in South Africa.  Blacks there fought for equal rights and the need to be integrated into the society.  Whites were practicing discrimination like the USA did in the South for so many years till it was fought against in the 60's.  How is this different from Israel?

Israel was a recognized nation in 1948, and had never been without Jews living there ever since 70AD when they were overcome by the Romans.  There were some Arabs living there also, but the majority were Jews.  Then an influx of Arabs came when they saw building going on and they were looking for jobs.  Now they have created a national movement who call themselves Palestinians because that's what Rome had renamed the land, Palestinia.  They want the land that is Israel, and they even want   Jerusalem.  Jerusalem is mentioned many many times in the bible and was always the center of Jewish life, but is not mentioned in the Koran except when Mohammad rose on his horse into the sky. .  In fact, half of their group, Hamas, wants the total destruction of the state of Israel.  Now Fatah has joined hands with them, so they all can be considered as people wanting the destruction of Israel. 

There are over a million Arabs living in Israel proper, but the proposal of the Arabs who want to make their own state out of Judea and Samaria and Gaza is to have no Jews living there, and there are Jewish cities that have been there for over 30 years.  It's more like the Arabs intend to practice apartheid in their state being Jews cannot live there at all.  Talk about segregation and hatred, they show no consideration for Jews.

Calling Israel apartheid is like calling the skinny lady fat.  It goes to show that the Nazis were right; tell a lie enough times and there are always idiots who will believe you.  One group is London's NUS, a group of 10 who just spoke for 7 million students branding Israel as an "Apartheid regime" and these few plan to participate in a Gaza protest of the flotilla in order to allow the freedom of return of all the Palestinians born since 1948 who the Palestinians want to come back.  It would be similar to having all the Mexicans in Mexico enter and stay in the United States.  And we think we have a border problem. 

Resource: JCPA publication The London story.

Obama Endorsing Palestinians Forcing Israel to 67 Lines

Nadene Goldfoot
The biggest disappointment came today in Barak Hussein Obama's speech where he endorsed the demand of Israel's neighbors, the Palestinians in Gaza and Judea and Samaria,  to force Israel back to the indefensible 1967 lines, which imply boarders.   

Our President hasn't visited Israel.  He hasn't experienced how small it already is, and he's telling Israel to go back to borders where Syria can  rain down rockets, missiles and anything else from the ledge above onto a very thin strip about 9 miles wide called Israel.  Has he looked at a map?  Obviously he has and is okay with his decision.  I'm not.

I have his speech concerning Israel.  His words are lovely.  The message is not.  He mentions knowing about the change and uncertainty in the region and believes that with it all  it is the time to move forward, but he is only seeing the Arab viewpoint, I'm afraid.  He feels he's coming out with THE TRUTH as he sees it: that the present status quo is unsustaninable.  It sounds to me like he has given up and that there is no hope for Israel.  He doesn't know Israel.  He thinks that now "Israel too must act boldy" as if she hasn't always done this.  At the same time in his speech he raises the issue of Hamas recognizing Israel and just drops it as "it's an issue."  Obama talked about swaps but Israel first has to be concerned with defensible borders.  Swap what?  Israel is already so tiny from losing past land that she gave up that there isn't much left to give up without completely disappearing.  Obama is endangering Israel by suggesting that she become a 9 mile strip and allow missiles to reach every corner of her as it has been in Southern Israel from Gaza.

He feels that the Palestinians must be able to govern themselves in order to reach their potential.  They were given the chance when with the USA's assistance, held elections in Gaza, something no Arabs in any Arab country has been able to do to my knowledge.  They voted in Hamas.  That shows their true colors.  When the Israeli Jews pulled out of Gaza they left all their businesses for them and what kind of potential did they display?  They destroyed them.  It's easier to remain on the dole with the UN, and besides, they didn't want Jewish businesses.  

Israel has already said that they will go along with a two state solution, but they really want some nice people next door who respect them if they want to be respected and it hasn't happened, has it.  Hamas just wants to destroy Israel.  Some trustworthy neighbors Obama is pushing onto Israel.  He feels the Palestinians really need a state and now.  Oh yes, they certainly do; they did not come from a Palestine.  They came from the assorted states in the Middle East looking for jobs and  work,  and building was going on in what became Israel.  That's where the action was and now they want a piece of the action, or the whole thing, depending on how powerful Hamas's charter becomes.  Obama approaches his speech with the closing of that this is a choice between hate and hope.  Well, I think he should have made it clear to the Palestinians to quit hating Jews and Israel and get over it for "tomorrow's" sake.  It's been their hatred of Jews that they have been born into and raised with in the families and schools.  Israelis have been the ones to have been hoping for only peace, so much so that they have given many pieces of their already slithered piece of land away in the name of peace and have received bubkus for it. 

If we had had a president today that had stood up for Israel in no uncertain terms saying with strength that the Palestinians must recognize Israel for the sake of peace for all and cut out all the shooting and killing, they just may have realized they couldn't continue on this destructive path.  No, that isn't happening.  Instead I'm afraid that Obama is trying to make points with the Arabs who still regard him suspiciously. 

As Netanyahu is saying sternly, a Palestinian state cannot come about at the expense of Israel. 

This was all announced the day before Netanyahu's meeting with Obama, who Obama knew was coming with a proposal of his own.  Now Netanyahu has made it clear that Israel is NOT going back to the 67 borders.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

End of the World Slated for May 21st

Nadene Goldfoot
On Saturday we might be in the synagogue praying, but  some Christians  in the USA expect to actually ascend into the sky and go up to heaven.

These Christians, led by Family Radio Worldwide's Harold Camping, believe in The Rapture and know that May 21st is Judgement Day.  They've advertized the day  on billboards along highways.  Henry did think it would happen back in 1994 but after staying in place with his feet on the ground studied the Bible some more and came up with this date.  There are many who are his followers. 

I heard about it first while driving home from a meeting last night and thought, "Oh my gosh!  Here we've been trying to solve some very important problems and people just might go up in a poof except us!

While I lived in Israel from 1980-1985 I heard some very orthodox Jews speak of the nearness of the Meshiach's coming.  At the rate the world's politics are going awry in a handbasket, it's possible that both groups are right.  Times are getting very much out of hand.  Anything is possible.    As a 2nd Century teacher R. Jacob (Avot 4:17) said, "Better is one hour of repentance and good deeds in this world than the whole life of the world to come; yet better is one hour of blissfulness of spirit in the world to come than the whole life of this world." 

Friday's a big day at the White House with Netanyahu scheduled to speak with Obama.  They might come to an agreement for the good of Israel.  But please, not this Saturday;  not on our Shabbat.    I hope that everyone sticks around for a little bit longer.  It just stopped raining here.  I'm not in a hurry.  I would hate to see my friends take off now. 

The Mayan Calendar might be more accurate in that they forcast the end of the world for December 21, 2012.  I wonder if they forsaw today's world events and had decided it was just too awesome.   Their calendar was excellent, supposedly even better than our own of today.  Now if Harold had checked that out and agreed with that date, I just might be shaking in my boots. 

The outcome of all this is that we should all be thankful every day for life.  Orthodox Jews came to this conclusion long ago and say prayers of thanks upon rising, and again towards evening.  Be the best person you can be.  One never knows how long they have to live or what accident can befall them.  We can't take our lives for granted.  Life is a miracle after all.

(concluded after the radio program and after talking to my son about the short life of my grandfather who died at 40 and my father who died at 59)

In Defense of Israel's Right to Exist Safely

Nadene Goldfoot
What does J Street, the Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) and Stand With Us have in common?  These three distinct Jewish organizations all support one thing; the right for Israel to exist in security as the nation-state of the Jewish people.  The old joke of having two Jews stranded on an island forever with them building three synagogues defines the path these three take to support Israel.  When David Ben Gurion, first Prime Minister of Israel, met President Truman, he was told that Truman  was president of  152 million people.  "That's wonderful," said Ben Gurion.  "I'm Prime Minister of  600,000 presidents."  We Jews do come up with many opinions.   

Each of these groups presented different opinions about supporting Israel at a time in history when so many others in the world are against her.   Others are showing their disfavor with her policies by bringing about boycotting of her products.  Last night the Mittleman Jewish Community Center was the scene of a presentation of combating the Anti-Israel Boycott and Divestment Movement with the perspectives from the Left, Right and Center. 

Bob Horenstein was the moderator and reminded us of the UN Conference on Racism before 9/11 starting off the BDS movement.  There began global efforts to escalate and delegitimatize Israel.  At that time AIPAC and Hillel worked hard lobbying and our President did veto the resolution to divest from Israel.  It did fail, thank goodness.  We find that BDS is not a peaceful solution in solving any problems.

Martin J. Raffel of JCPA spoke first.  He spoke about how the UN not only has double standards for Israel, but that it is held to a different standard than any other country.  In 2001 Israel was charged with racism.  The Presbyterian Church came out with this method of boycotting to turn Israel around populating the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) and East Jerusalem.  Groups were comparing Israel to South Africa's Apartheid and backed boycotting.  We saw Olympia with a food co-op boycotting all Israeli products.  Princeton  had Sabra Humous removed from the menu, stevedores refused to unload Israeli ships, ads were placed on buses against Israel as well as other damaging acts.  There is a global campaign to smear Israel in favor of the Palestinian Arabs.  These are malevolent acts of uninformed people.  People are treating Israel like a rogue pariah state who is in violation of human rights and think that they deserve punishment.

This type of behavior is not the same as constructive criticism of policies.  Israel is facing a serious threat from Iran, and here we have people questioning its legitimacy.  Hamas in Gaza has been constantly attacking her.  How we can help is by countering these false claims.  We have 157 federations in the USA as well as many other groups.  Through our relationships we can show people that this boycotting is morally wrong and certainly counter-productive.  We need to educate people through our large network.

Rachel Lerner spoke next from J. Street.  She didn't really agree that the boycotting was a big deal or a threat to Israel, though a year ago she did work to oppose BDS at U of C's Berkeley.  She was in agreement with the BDS's good points but noticed bad parts about the movement.  Finally she did speak out at a Presbyterian assembly and told them not to demonize Israel.  She has found that many people speaking out against Israel are young Jews and that they are not lost causes.  She mentioned a San Diego student who hates the occupation of the West Bank.  She encourages criticism but not to go so far as to delegitimatize Israel. 

Rob Jacobs from Stand With Us was the last speaker.  He feels we can all work together.  Education is a key  to counter unfair criticism.  Israel is not a genocidal apartheid state.  The attack of divesting all of Israel's products is serious.  StandWithUs has worked on initiative 97, going to the Olympia coop to change attitudes about the divestment, working on the bus posters against Israel, and working on college campuses has been their line of defense.   He said that we can help by being persistent in our involvement to counter these false claims.  We need to create relationships, be passionate, and collaborate with each other.  Most of all, all of us need to really get involved and have personal relationships with people in order to change their attitudes.  He noted that the Presbyterians listened to Rachel Lerner because she had been criticizing Israel, so they felt she was one of them.  People forget that none of us are perfect.  War is hell, and that's why Israel and all of us wants peace.  We need to be compassionate.  We should realize that the Palestinians are living in miserable camps, but people also need to realize that this is not Israel's fault but their own leaders and they themselves  have put them in this position.  The majority of the Palestinians are naive and do believe the lies of their leaders. 

Bob Horenstein asked questions of the panel.  Rachel didn't think that the BDS movement meant people were deligitimatizing by doing this.  Martin quoted Tom Friedman.  He mentioned that even if Jews are against Israel they are still in our minyan.  He doesn't give up on anybody. 

It was brought out that there are constructive ways to change policies.  An audience member asked if this was also a show of anti-Semitism and Martin and Rob agreed.  Rachel's opinion was that young Jews don't see it as anti-semitism.  People have unfair stereotypes of Jews, commented Martin.  Rachel brought Israelis who were critics of Israel to university campuses for students to see that they are just regular people able to criticize themselves.  People see Jews as something completely different from their own families.  Even Martin commented that his own 15 year old daughter didn't understand why it was important for us to have a Jewish state. 

My viewpoint after hearing this panel is that we have to start with our own house and our young people to successfully understand what many of us older folks know.  I grew up with WWII newspaper headlines wondering whatever newspapers printed other than our war's progress.  At age 14 Israel was proclaimed a regular state in the UN and I had already learned about what our relatives had gone through in the Holocaust and why Israel was a miracle and a need.  This was at a time that the UN had just been created and I thought it was the end to all wars.  How wrong I was.  Our young descendants know nothing of all this by experience.  They've become a part of society and not necessarily a part of us.  It's what the Pilgrims feared in Holland and why they sailed the deep ocean to get to America.  We've got to get back on track and educate our youngsters and our neighbors so that they don't throw out our baby with the bath water.