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Thursday, December 26, 2013

The Muslim's Omar al-Bashir Fights Against the Christian Salva Kiir in Sudan

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                              

              Omar al-Bashir, President of North Sudan

Here we have a country that has been divided in 2011 between Muslims and Christians, North and South Sudan, and it's not working out well at all.

Barack Hussein Obama has a scandalous half brother.  Word is on the streets that Malik Hussein Obama  is reported to be buying recruits in the Sudan for as much as $5,000 American dollars for the Muslim Brotherhood.  Where is he getting this money from?   Who he has formerly been known to associate with has been Omar al-Bashir who was behind the attack on the US embassy in Khartoum, Sudan.  This attack occurred at about the same time as the Benghazi attack. If the money is coming from Bashir, how is he getting so much American money?  It appears that the embassy attacks have lost momentum on the TV news.  Nothing much has been said about who the perpetrators were, though there was a lot of haggling over it.

Omar al-Bashir is the president of North Sudan.  He is known to have a despotic government.  Al-Basir is something like Hitler, an Islamic tyrant responsible for the deaths of over 3 million people in the name of Jihad.  He has held a war against Christians.

American embassies in Egypt and Libya have been attacked by Muslims.  Muslim mobs have now raided the British, German and American embassies in North Sudan and again, Omar al-Bashir is the one responsible.
                 Salva Kiir, President of South Sudan

Who seems to be stopping the revolution against this Omar al-Bashir?  By supporting the Islamic uprisings, it is President Obama.  His administration is in support of the rebels in Syria, so has condemned Assad.  Obama prevented Salva Kiir, the Christian president of South Sudan from aiding rebels who wanted to topple al-Bashir's regime.  Omar al-Bashir, a Muslim leader,  has been receiving a lot of protection from Obama.

Salva was President of South Sudan by gaining its independence from North Sudan in 2011.  Salva is a devout Christian.  ""Indeed, many political analysts and opinion leaders worldwide describe him as the Biblical Joshua who took the mantle of leadership from Moses just as the Israelites were on the verge of entering Canaan and capably established the then fugitives in the Promised Land," the South Sudan government says on its website.

 Malik Obama is the Executive Secretary for the IDO, (Islamic Da'wa Organization which is in Khartoum, Sudan.  Their primary focus is to expand Wahhabist Islam in Africa.

 Bashir was in Khartoum where he declared that he was going to make Sudan's  constitution 100% Islamic.   Malik Hussein Obama shares this ideal with Bashir.  Both men attended the general Conference of the Islamic Council of South Sudan and a meeting for the Islamic Da'wa Organization with the Board of Trustees.  Malik Obama is an Executive Secretary in the Dawa Organization.

A fatwa against Christians which Malik Obama is all for is the cause of violence against Christians in Africa today.  Bashir's thugs are slaughtering and attacking Christians in front of Kambouni playground with sticks and machetes.  Bashir's government is enforcing Arabic to be the language of the land and are deporting missionaries while bulldozing their churches.  It was in 2012 that Bashir gave Christians until March 1st to leave North Sudan, but one half a million were stranded there and became targets for shooters.

Sudan is the 8th highest Muslim majority country in the world out of 48.  The country has been 70% Sunni Muslim with 43,939,598 population.

Malik Obama is from  Kenya.  He is being accused by the Egyptian government of managing funds for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.   Egypt's Tahani al-Gebali, former chancellor and adviser to the constitutional Court of Egypt is claiming that Malik Obama is the architect of the Brotherhood's financial investments and this is the reason that the USA cannot fight the Brotherhood.   Malik heard the allegations and calls them nonsense.

Criminal charges have been filed in Egypt against Malik  on the basis of Gebali's accusation of him managing investments for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.  Malik says that he hasn't been in Egypt and that as a Muslim he doesn't promote hatred or violence and has never belonged to any extremist group in his life.  That would sure rule out the Muslim Brotherhood for they are all of that.  However, he is the secretary of IDO, created by the Sudanese government which is a terrorist state by the standards set by the USA State Department.

How this all involves Israel is very simple.  Malik is the chairman of IDO now, having been secretary.  He is very close with his boss, Al Dahab.  Al Dahab is very close with Hamas's prime minister, Ismael Haniyeh, and also the religious leader of Hamas, Qaradawi, formerly of Egypt.  In fact, when Morsi was president, he spoke to the people in Egypt.  Qaradawi is the head religious leader of the Muslim Brotherhood and of many Muslims.

In the 2000s, a large number of undocumented Africans entered Israel illegally through the fenced border between Israel and Egypt.  About 26,635 came by July 2010 and over 55,000 in January 2012.  They were seeking an asylum status under the UN laws.  Only a few were really eligible for this.  Most were citizens of Eritrea and Sudan and could not be forcibly deported from Israel.  Eritrea has a difficult internal situation and those people are defined as temporary humanitarian protection group.  Israel was in fear for the Sudanese and did not deport them back immediately.  Israel had to grant a temporary residence permit to be renewed every 3 months.  Most live in Tel Aviv and Eilat.  They were causing many problems and were accused of robbery. Now the Sudan is being stirred up again with plenty of fighting going on.

Update: 12/27/13

Friday, December 6, 2013

Mandela's View of Israel

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                   

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela died at 8:50 pm  on Thursday, December 5, 2013.  He had been ill with pneumonia and died at the grand age of 95.  The man was an icon in South Africa.  He was born in the village of Mvezo in Transkei, South Africa. It was on the border of the Indian Ocean.  His mother was Nosekeni Fanny, the 3rd of 4 wives of the chief and counselor to 2 successive Xhosa kings.  As a lawyer, he became South Africa's first black president.  His big thing had been fighting apartheid in this country which had been settled by Africaners who were descendants of 17th century Dutch and French settlers.  He had been held in prison for 27 years, first as a terrorist, then just an agitator.  At age 75, he became president of South Africa on May 10, 1994.  The preceding president had been F.W. de Klerk, the last apartheid-era president.

Mandela had said  on July 11, 1996 that "racism is a blight on the human conscience.  The idea that any people can be inferior to another, to the point where those who consider themselves superior define and treat the rest as subhuman, denies the humanity even of those who elevate themselves to the status of gods."  Of course he was referring to his own experience in South Africa between apartheid facts between the many blacks and the few whites of a country where whites had ruled.  When I read that I think of the Nazi attitude towards Jews.  Nazis thought they were the superior race and that Jews were sub-human.  Today Iran has taken on the same idea, calling Jews all sorts of animals; apes, or even viruses.  Arab countries have taken on the goal of finishing the Nazi goal of wiping out Jews and now Israel, the Jewish state.

Mandela carried his own relationship with Apartheid  to Israel, where he blamed Jews for practicing apartheid on the Palestinians.  For this he fails my class with a resounding F.  The situation was completely different.

Here we have Jews, who have been treated as he and his people have been by the whole world for a reasoning of religious difference.  Jews were a minority religious group, and many did look a little different from the country they happened to reside in.  Often they even dressed a little different.  One of their differences discovered is that they were a little smarter than others.  They believed in education.  The average IQ of a population is 100.  Theirs is 106.  They have produced such people as Einstein with an IQ of 180.  They have been turned down from entering medical schools because they were flooding the schools who had limitations on Jews accepted.  So even though they met the qualifications, they were Jews and were turned away after a few were accepted.

Jews were treated as 2nd class citizens in the Middle East after the fall of Jerusalem in 70 CE.  They were called dhimmis.  So there was apartheid there.  They were denied the education they craved, but had to pay more in taxes, couldn't build higher homes than their Muslim 1st class citizens.  There were all sorts of reminders that they were beneath others in their eyes.

In Italy, they were locked up at night in the first ghettos.  It might have been their only protection from marauding citizens of Rome, but it was humiliation to be living in such a confined manner under conditions unlike others..

The same thing happened in Christian countries.  Often they were reminded of a false fact generally accepted that they were the ones who had killed Christ, so they were treated as the bottom of the barrel people.  The Nazis treated them as a sub-race of people while contrary to this they were the ones who were successful in business.  How could they then be a sub race?  The amazing thing is that out of jealousy, people believed the accusations thrown at them.  They were kikes, a derogatory word.  The worst show of racism was the Nazi near successful attempt at eradicating the world of Jews.  We were of the inferior race, so they said.

Our leadership knew that life of 2,000 years of living under such racism could not go on.  So many of them had been suffering from Pogroms where the citizens of a city would gather together and attack a Jewish village, killing, marauding, destroying everything in sight, usually with the assistance of alcohol.  They gathered together at the end of WWI and talked to Britain about being able to return to their ancient homeland which had been barren since they had left 2,000 years ago.  They could have seriously considered some jungle spot in Africa, but had been praying in their religion to return home, so home it was for them.  Why not?  Nobody really had taken it as a country.  It had gone to pot, as the Americans would  have said.

After many years of meetings, it was decided through the League of Nations and voted upon democratically.  The deal was signed by the nations.  They would have a Jewish Homeland.  Out of guilt for having treated these people so vile, out of growth in their own religious teachings, it was decided that this was the right thing to do.

The plan of the Jewish leaders was to make the land a Utopia, fair for all the inhabitants, even the animals and plants as well as people.  It was planned out by an intelligent group directed by their religious principals.  It was even blessed by Abdullah, head Arab leader of the Middle East since he had also been the leader of Arabs who fought for Britain against the Ottoman Empire.  The Jews had done this also, but in a smaller group, being they were a smaller population.  One of the Jewish leaders was Chaim Weizmann who had invented a chemical which helped Britain have better ammunition of which without this, would most likely have lost the war.  It was like going from a slingshot to the Uzi machine gun.  So Britain made the mistake of making the same promise of land to both the Jews and the Arabs.

Enter the picture, Arabs from the neighboring lands who heard that Jews had returned to their land and were building.  They realized that they could get jobs there, and the word went out.  They came as workers.  Now the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, another Arab leader, was all against the creation of a Jewish Homeland and he agitated his followers who rioted and screamed against the idea, shaking up the British who didn't want to rock the boat and lose out their holdings of land with oil.  So they wound up siding with them.  Oil and money did rule over being nice to Jews, something they were not used to, as they had been cast out of England several times, and there existed lots of anti-Semitism with the English.

Thus, the idea of being a Utopia was fought against by the Arabs in blind rage.  They were from a paternal society that ruled, and that meant that they were easy followers and took direction very well without thinking things out for themselves.  Most were way undereducated and illiterate at that.  So they were dependent on their leadership.

The idea did not come to them to really want their own state until after the 1967 war with Israel of which all Arab nations attacked and lost.  It was embarrassing for them.  They lost face.  Anger only festered.  At the same time, they were walking bombshells against Israel and Jews.  Though the war was over, danger was everywhere for the Jews.  Now, for the past 65 years, there is no peace treaty signed except with Egypt and Jordan, the 2 closest neighbors.  The PLO's have gone through a change of calling themselves Fatah, and a group broke off from them to call themselves Hamas.  Hamas kicked out Fatah from Gaza and have been shooting at Southern Israel ever since  2001.  Fatah took over Judea and Samaria, the 2 oldest Jewish centers in Eretz Israel.

To this day, Apartheid has not  been practiced against the Arabs who maintain their hatred and fight against Israel at every opportunity and then some.  Their weapons are not only real ones, but they also use lies and create terrible propaganda that such people as Mandela has bought.  Because now for the first time they are people without a nation, they are looked upon as the blacks of Africa being ruled by the whites, or Israelis.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

Mandela reacted violently when Israel won in 1967 against its huge enemy.  He hadn't bothered to read about this history so he was against Israel's control of the territories it was "occupying" and urged Israel to concede land to the Palestinians and Syrians, just like they had done with Egypt for the sake of peace.  The difference is that Egypt reacted wanting peace and the others didn't, but he ignored or refused to learn this fact.  His view was still the simple-Israel is occupying Arab lands and wanted them to withdraw from all the areas.

Total Forces

This chart from the Jewish Virtual Library shows why Egypt and Jordan decided to make peace with their neighbor.  In 1948 Israel started with 650,000 .  By 1968 it had a population of 2,841,100.  So losing almost 800 soldiers was a lot for this little country.   Today it has grown to 6 million Jews and 1.7 million Arabs.  Remember, it was the Arabs who had attacked Israel.  They could not imagine such a great force losing against former dhimmis.
Mandela finally visited Israel for 2 days when he was 81 in 1999.  He had held it against Israel that they had worked closely with the South African apartheid regime.  He didn't realize that for some time South Africa was one of the few countries for their own reasons who were friendly with Israel.  It wasn't like Israel had a lot of choices, so they had a military relationship with  South Africa.  Mandela won a Nobel peace prize for his attitude in South Africa of burying his bitterness against the whites and working for the future with them.  When he became president in 1994 he worked against apartheid crimes against its victims and families in earnest.

When Mandela went to work as a lawyer, his first job was with a Jewish law firm in Johannesburg.  Some of his best friends were Jews as a result.  When he needed advice or money, he went to them.  Many Jews in South Africa supported him.  Arthur Goldreich gave him refuge on his farm in Rilvonia.  However, Mandela passionately supported the PLO which he took as a liberation movement like his own ANC.  He had mixed emotions, also supporting Israel right to exist as a democratic Jewish state.  He just didn't understand what the Jews were under in order to continue existing.  If he had bothered to read the platforms of Israel's Arab enemies, he would have seen that their goal was to completely destroy Israel and carry out the goal of the Nazis, to kill off all the Jews along with their state.

The Sabeel movement, founded through Nelson Mandela and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, both of South Africa, is still throwing "apartheid" accusations at Israel. It's a Christian organization in Jerusalem founded by a Palestinian Anglican priest who are partners with the Presbyterian Church and are enforcing BDS practice against Israel.  The Methodists are also into BDS movements and finally voted in 2012 against divestment from the Caterpillar  company for doing business with Israel.   This is so unrealistic as all its history shows that Israel is the most un-apartheid state in the whole world.  Arabs have all the rights that Jews have in Israel.  They are not dhimmis as Jews were in Muslim countries.  The only thing they are not included in is having to serve in the armed forces if they don't care to.  They are relived of this responsibility because it would be asking them to fight against fellow Arabs of their own religion, and Israel is being overly aware of this.  In the USA, Italians had to fight in the army, and so did Germans.  Japanese fought as well for the USA.  But the USA is a huge country and Israel is one of the tiniest, the size of the smallest of USA states.  To them it would be like expecting Iranian Jews to fight against Israel.

To sum it up, Mandela had an ambivalent relationship with Israel.  It could have been improved upon with more curiosity as to the history of Israel and how it differed from South Africa.  Even finally visiting for all of 2 days hadn't warranted further research evidently.  For that I'm disappointed.  He never once told the Palestinians to make peace with Israel or to take on a different attitude.  He maintained a 2-state solution but told Israel not to be a bi-national apartheid state when they weren't practicing apartheid in their own one state of Israel and an Arab minority.  He thought there was danger in Israel becoming an international pariah like apartheid South Africa had been.  That showed he knew nothing at all about Jews, Judaism or Israel.
                                             Michelle Obama and Nelson Mandela 

It doesn't make a lot of difference in the world if one person harbors such feelings of anti-Semitism, but when a leader does, it's almost impossible to re-educate people.  Mandela made a huge impression on  USA's President Barack Obama who said that "he was one of the countless millions who drew inspiration from Nelson Mandela's life.   My very first political action, the first thing I ever did that involved an issue or a policy or politics, was  a protest against apartheid.  I studied his words and his writings.  The day that he was released from prison gave me a sense of what human beings can do when they're guided by their hopes and not by their fear."  

In October 1999, during his 2 day visit in Israel when he also visited Iran, Syria, Jordan, and the "Palestinian territories", Mandela showed that he was naive and overly trusting everyone but Jews evidently because after visiting Iran, had felt that the Iranians would be free and fair about the trial of 13 Iranian Jews who had been arrested in July 2001 earlier that year on charges of spying for the "Zionist regime"  It wasn't until February 19, 2003 that the trial was over with 5 of them released.    Iran was backed by terrorist groups targeting Jews and the Jewish state and was not about planning on giving Jews a fair hearing.  This came up when Mandela spoke with Foreign Minister of Israel, David  Levy at the Foreign Ministry.  He thought that being the new president was Khatami and had become more moderate. Khatami was president from 1997 to 2005.

Yes, but make sure they are being guided by a compass made up of good, not of evil intentions, please.  Now my question is that Obama did not deal with apartheid in the USA.  That had been a problem basically of  President John Fitzgerald Kennedy in the 60's.  One of the first things Obama did after being sworn in as president on January 20, 2009 was go to Egypt and make a speech on June 4, 2009 at Cairo University  which aroused the Arab Spring.  My paranoia leads me to conclude he is referring to the Palestinian  Israel issue of a 2 state solution, and if he is following Mandela, is blaming Israel as being an apartheid state. Obama has been pushing that Israel must go back to the 67 lines.   After all, Mandela did.

Resource: Sabeel Movement is Harming Israel, January 30, 2012 Movement Not Impressing Methodists, May 3, 2012
Oregonian newspaper, 12/6/2013, page A9
Kike by Selzer
Abraham's Children, race, identity, and the DNA of the Chosen people by Jon Entine  dates
Additional 2;48pm
Update 12/7/13
update: 12/9/13
Update 12/10/13

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Arabs' Attempt in Reviving the Dead 181 Partition Resolution

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                         

World War I was fought from 1914 to 1917 with the Ottoman Empire losing and the West winning which resulted in Palestine being taken over by the Western Powers in which Britain held the mandate from 1917 to May 14, 1948  to create a Jewish Homeland.  This was decided through the Balfour Declaration and the League of Nations.  The League of Nations died because they were breaking their own rules. It was started January 1918 by the USA and ended 12 April 1946.  It wasn't able to prevent WWII.   It changed over to become the United Nations on June 26, 1945 and in 1947 Britain put the matter of Palestine into their hands.  The UN Commission RECOMMENDED partitioning what was left out of the original Mandate into 2 new states; one Jewish and one Arab with Jerusalem to be an international zone belonging to neither.
David Lloyd George, British Prime Minister, said that the Balfour Declaration implied that the whole of Palestine, including Transjordan, should become a Jewish state, but in 1922 it had been taken illegally by the Hashemite ruler, Abdullah which was later called Jordan.  During all the attack on Israel after declaring itself a state, Jordan had invaded and annexed it illegally.  The UN did not call them on it.  That was one state created out of the Jewish Homeland already.   Abdullah had taken 77% -80% of the landmass of the original Mandate for the Jews.  He set up an Arab Kingdom.

 There are already 57 Muslim majority countries in the world and 22 of them are right in the Middle East: Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Turkey, Sudan, Algeria, Morocco, Yemen, Libya, Kuwait, Oman,  Bahrain, Qatar, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates.  Now Arabs living in the land and others who came in looking for work are calling themselves Palestinian Arabs.  Jews who lived there were called Palestinian Jews.  The Arabs want to create a state and call it Palestine but they have been refusing every offer made since 1947.

17,000,000 Arabs live on 1,290,000 square miles while Palestine, after losing the 76% of land to Transjordan has been decimated to having only 8,000 square miles.  In 1967 Israel picked up what Jordan had taken of Samaria, Judah, East Jerusalem and Golan through winning against a gigantic Arab attack.  The proposals would have taken the 10,000 square miles they had and reduced it by 1/2 for Palestine to be carved out of it.  UNSCOP wanted to eliminate the Western Galilee from the Jewish state which would have meant taking Safed, my city which had been Jewish since time memorial.  It was the center of Kabballah.

In 1947 talk was If another state is to taken out of the remainder of the Jewish state, the Jews would be getting only 1/8th of their original promised Homeland.  Originally, their Israel and Judah had covered more space than this original allotted Jewish Homeland  including Trans Jordan was to be, but the Jews accepted the deal  called Resolution 181 or the Partition Plan and the Arabs refused.  this was a non-binding RECOMMENDATION  WHOSE IMPLEMENTATION HUNG ON ACCEPTANCE BY BOTH PARTIES.  Not only did the Arabs refuse but they threatened bloodshed if the UN adopted the Resolution.  This scared Britain since the Arabs proposed to attack and impede its work in every possible way.    This means that Resolution 181 was rejected by the Arab world.   Not only that, but it was the last straw.

Before that were many other recommendations from the Mandate people and other international commissions.
1. 1922:  Great Britain partitioned Palestine; Arabs wanted the whole country to be Arab.
2. 1937  Peel Commission
3. 1938 Woodhead Commission
4. 1946  Two proposals championed a bi-national state,
            a. Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry, April- single state with equal powers
            b. Morrison-Grady Plan, July - federal state with 2 provinces

The Arabs rejected them all.

Now they want to divide and conquer.  They won't recognize Israel as the Jewish state and their charters all call to destroy Israel.  when Resolution 181 was read in the General Assembly of the UN, each Arab country spoke from the dais to sound off their rejections.  Iraq's Mr. Jamali said the decision was anti-democratic, illegal, impractical and contrary to the Charter (?) and Iraq doesn't recognize the validity of this decision and those who pass it are responsible for the consequences.  Syria's Amir. Arslan  said that the charter was murdered and his country would never recognize the partition, and the consequences were on the heads of others, not theirs.  Yemen's Prince Abdullah said that the partition plan is contrary to justice and to the UN Charter (?).  They did not feel bound by such a decision and would reserve its freedom of action towards it.  All the others were of the same mind.

 Israel was created May 14, 1948 through a UN vote  and within seconds was attacked by all the Arabs in a bloody war..  3 days later, the Palestine Commission adjourned sine die without picking a date after the General Assembly appointed a UN Mediator in Palestine, which relieves the UN Palestine Commission from the further exercise of its responsibilities.  181 then became a moot issue.  The establishment of an armistice-line (the "Green Line") was just a temporary ceasefire line expected to be followed by peace treaties.  No peace treaties were signed.  Since Israel was later attacked in 1956, 1967, 1973, etc. to this day, one wonders about peace treaties since states change hands, thus politics.  Egypt had a peace treaty signed by Sadat in 1979 after the 1973 war.  It's still in effect.  Jordan has a peace treaty signed October 26, 1994, still in effect.

By July 30, 1949 it was seen that the Arabs rejected the scheme entirely.  Armistice agreements were reached after much fighting between Israel and Egypt, Lebanon, Syria and Trans-Jordan with the help of UN Mediator, Dr. Ralph Bunche.  By now the UN had abandoned the recommendations of Resolution 181 and its ideas "were drained of all relevance by subsequent events."  The Arabs continued to reject 181 after the war.  This was possibly because they controlled Judea and Samaria (West Bank) from 1948 to 1967 when they, including  Jordan,  again attacked Israel.

Now, the Arabs are trying to revive Resolution 181.  For over 60 years they have rejected it and are now trying to bring it to life to use as a leverage to  make Israel withdraw from Western Palestine so they can attack the rest of Israel easier because  it would have no defensive borders.

Professor Sir Elihu Lauterpacht of Cambridge, Judge ad hoc of the International Court of Justice and renowned expert on international law said that from a legal standpoint, the Resolution 181 had no legislative character to give territorial rights to either Jews or Arabs.  Any binding force would have had to come from the principle pacta sunt servanda, or treaties must be honored.  This would be from agreement of the parties at variance to the proposed plan.  The right of a State to exist come from its factual existence.  When that existence is prolonged it shows every sign of continuance and is recognized by the generality of nations.

Professor Julius Stone, authority on the law of Nations, " one of the world’s best-known authorities in both Jurisprudence and International Law. His publications his activities and the many honours conferred on him are eloquent evidence of his high standing in these two fields.said that Israel's "legitimacy" or "legal foundation" for its birth does not reside with the UN Partition Plan, which as a consequence of Arab actions became a dead issue."

  He then said that its validity rests on assertion of independence by its people and government, on the vindication of that independence by arms against assault by other states, and on the establishment of orderly government within territory under its stable control.

He just described Israel.  This is a legal state, not matter how you look at it.  For a variety of reasons, it again lives.

Resource:  UN Resolution 181-The Partition Plan of November 29, 1947 by Eli E. Hertz
Update: 12/7/13 video *****

Monday, December 2, 2013

Israel in Bible Days and Today: A Land flowing with Milk and Honey

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                  

Beit She'an Valley, Israel -notice irrigation in background:
This is where Kibbutzx Ein Hanatziv was started in 1946 and where in 1969 Katushas and mortar attacks from Jordan hit. During the Second Intifada, in the 2002 Beit She'an attack, six Israelis were killed and over 30 were injured by two Palestinian militants, who opened fire and threw grenades at a polling station in the center of Bet She'an where party members were voting in the Likud primary. 
In biblical times, the Land of Israel was covered with forests, more like the Pacific Northwest of the USA.  In the centuries that follow, and especially during the Middle Ages, many of the forests were destroyed by nomads and their goats.  Some forests were used as fuel by the Turks for their military trains during the 400 years prior to 1914-1917's WWI.  Of the ancient forests, very few survive but are mainly found in the Galilee.  In 1948 there were 4,388,000 trees in Israel.  By 1970-71, there were 103,000,000 trees which were mostly all planted by the Jewish National Fund.  This is when you paid so much money as a gift in someone's name for a tree that would be planted in Israel.

Today, there are 7,933,200 people living in Israel, a country of 8,000 square miles which is 263 miles long and from 9 to 71 miles wide.  It would take 76 Israels to fit into Iran, or 2 Israels to fit into Switzerland.  
The Land then abounded in wild animals which included lions and bears.  Both are found now only in Israeli zoos.  Hyenas, jackals, wild-cats, lynx, otters, mongoose and the spotted weasel are the main beasts of prey.  There are also wolves and leopards in Galilee.  Gazelles have multiplied, and porcupines are plentiful.  There area 3 species of hedgehogs and several of shrews.  The wild boar is hunted.  400 species of birds are found and Lake Kinneret is rich in fish.

Since Israel was re-established on May 14, 1948, several areas have been set aside as nature reserves.  Most of them are open for hiking and picnicking.  There are 4 zones found in Israel on this tiny speck of land that only amounts to 8,000 square miles, about as big as the state of Rhode Island.    It ranges from semi-arid to temperate, then sub tropical.  There is the coastal plain which is the Valley of Jezreel, the mountains  of the Galilee of the north and Samaria and Judaea in the center, and then the Desert and Jordan Rift Valley. There is also the Negev which is a prairie and has mountains and also the Sinai Desert which separates the Land of Israel from the Land of Egypt.   The largest problem faced is water.

This was the land of wheat and barley and vines and fig-trees and pomegranates, a land of olive-oil and honey, says the Bible.  The Jews have added bananas, oranges and other citrus fruits which grow on the Coastal Plain with irrigation where they receive great soil and sunshine.
                                              Almond tree blossoms 

Deciduous fruit trees grow everywhere and like the cool hills.  You can see dates, bananas, avocados, guavas, mangoes in the hot Jordan Valley and Coastal Plain.  The grains, vegetables grow well along with tobacco, cotton, groundnuts and sugar-beets.  Fruit trees bloom in January, and from then till April the slopes of the Carmel range are a riot of color and perfume.  What I loved were the orange blossoms everywhere.

Indigenous trees like the Jerusalem pine, tamarisk and carob are used in afforestation.  Eucalyptus trees had been planted extensively because they soak up the water in the malaria-filled swamps and helped to make the land more livable.  Pine forests in the mountains and acacias on the Negev dune-lands have been planted.
Grapes have been planted once again for wine.  Israel is now producing many types of wines, both white and red. They are rating as good as any French wines.   Strawberries are sold on the street corners by the kilos.  Hotels feature strawberries and ice cream.

 The land is full of medicinal herbs and wild flowers. In December,  one can see flowers such as hyacinths, crocus and narcissus.  After that come the anemones, tulips, cyclamen, iris, daisies and more.  Hothouses are found in villages supplying the domestic and export markets with millions of blooms.  There are roses, gladioli, tulips, gerbera and chrysanthemums.

Dairy farming has been a major endeavor taken on by many kibbutzim.  Israel produces the best milk products of so many varieties which all beat any I have tasted in the USA.  Their yogurts back in 1980 were outstanding.  They had all types, drinkable and spoon-eaten.  Yes, the land is flowing with milk and honey.  Everything was so natural; so many organic products.
The sabra, which is the fruit of the cactus, has a prickly exterior and the sweetness and savour inside.  It has become the icon of the native-born Israeli.  They are said to be prickly on the outside when you first meet them but oh so sweet when you get to know them.  They have a huge heart.

In the 1880's when the first aliyah of Russians returned to the Holy Land in 1882, they found deserts and swamps.  The land was full of weeds and that was about it;   dust and weeds and camel dung.  It was as if the land was waiting for the last 2,000 years to be taken care of once again.  It was in a horrible state, somewhat like the movies on the history channel of what would happen to the USA if suddenly all the people were gone.  The flora and insects would take over, and that's what happened in the very hot and dry land that used to be Israel and Judah.  The Russian Jews had to be on guard for marauding Arabs that would fire on them.  By 1910, the first kibbutz, Degania Alef was started where they raised wheat, barley and oats.

Resource:  Facts About Israel, Division of Information, Ministry for foreign Affairs, Jerusalem'an
The Settlers by Meyer Levin, a novel.  set in Palestine from the turn of the century to the Balfour Declaration and covers over a quarter of a century; the Jewish pioneers, tyranny of the Turkish overlords, Jew and Arab neighbors with blood feuds and hatreds, WWI, Russian Revolution, with Chaimovitch family who fled Czarist Russia to live on the strange, barren faraway rocky, parched land.

The Law of Return to Israel: Who and When Jews Returned

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                    

Jews suffered greatly when Jerusalem was taken by the Romans in 70 CE.  They were taken to Rome or other places as slaves.  Some managed to remain in Judah while others scattered to other parts of the Middle East.  It wasn't till May 14, 1948 that Israel was again re-created out of what the Ottoman Empire had taken of what was renamed as "Palestine."  This was because of the WWI when the Ottomans had lost the war-being they were on Germany's side

                    Israel is for the Ingathering of the Exiles

The Law of Return of 1950 gave legal sanction to all immigrant Jews. Israel was created as a haven for Jews who had suffered for 2,000 years from anti-Semitism in other countries for being what they were;  Jewish.  Judah  had been occupied by the Romans.  Jews had been blamed for killing Christ by causing him to be crucified, which was something that the Romans had done to thousands of Jews in Judah,  but Jews were blamed anyway being he had been Jewish even though they had denied causing this.   Jews had been the object of attacks by the Crusaders, the Spanish Inquisition, and then the Holocaust and actually were expulsed from countries or forcibly converted to Christianity.  Some communities had been annihilated even before the Holocaust.  They had not had the rights of citizens in these 2,000 years until after WWI.  In the Middle East they were treated as Dhimmis, which were not 1st class citizens.  There they were penalized in many ways for being Jewish.  The one country of safety was the USA, which had its share of anti-Semitism.
               Rome, parade of displaying Jewish artifacts stolen from Jerusalem

Now, what is a Jew?  There is no legal definition.  There are halachic concepts (rabinical law) and sociological ones.  By halacha, a Jew is a person born of a Jewish mother.  They can also be Jewish by conversion to Judaism.  Under 1970's amendment, the Law of Return grants Israeli nationality also to the spouse of any immigrant Jew and his descendants for 2 generations and to their spouses equally whether they were Jewish by halacha or not.
The population of Israel in May 1948 was 650,000.  By May 1972 it was 3,164,000.  This shows that 1,400,000 were immigrants (olim).  Immigrants entered in 4 large waves of immigration.  They have continued to arrive throughout all these years according to their own needs as well.

1.  May 1948-end of 1951:  754,800 came from :
     a. Holocaust in Europe mainly from Poland, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia.
     b. Iraq (121,000 out of 130,000); Yemen (44,000 out of 45,000); Libya (30,500 out of 35,000).

2. 1955-1957:  165,000 came from:
     a. Morocco and Tunisia
     b. Poland and other countries such as Romania

3. 1961-1964:  215,000 came from:
    a. Eastern Europe
    b. North Africa

4. 1967-to end 1972; 200,000 on came from:
   a. North and South America
   b. Western Europe
  c. Soviet Union
1981:  Here I am in my Sachnoot apartment in Safed sitting on my bed-with pillows to look like a sofa in front of my barred window.  That's because we are on the ground floor.  We just moved in after living in Haifa for 10 months attending the ulpan (school).

5.  1980-2013 My husband and I made aliyah in 1980  and were in a large group of teachers of English from the Soviet Union.  We were one of the few actual professional teachers from the West and went through a 10 month program to earn our certification to teach English in Israel first.  There were over 40 in our class that was later divided into Hebrew language groups to bring us up to a level of higher ability.

19,135 olim arrived in 2011
18,691 olim arrives in 2012
Of them 2,432 were from Ethiopia.  Western Europe olim were 3,243 in 2012.  Soviet Union olim were 7,755 and France olim were 1,907.  North America had 3,512 olim in 2011 and 3,389 in 2012.  The UK had 560 in 2011 and 698 in 2012.

 The census now shows that there are 6 million Jews and 1.7 million Arabs living in Israel.  As conditions have become worse towards Jews in France and Sweden with much anti-Semitism, they have been forced to move to Israel. About 3 years after we arrived, Ethiopians were coming to Safed.
                                                               Ethiopian immigrant
6.  The Lost 10 Tribes of Israel:-taken by Assyria 721 BCE and Babylon 597-586 BCE
     a. Returning from Ethiopia
     b. Africa-Masai
    c. Asia-Myanmar(Burma), Bnei Israel from Bombay, India, Bnei Menashe of India
    d. Middle East, Mashadi of Mashad, Iran

In integrating Jews from 2 separate cultures from the East (Sephardis, Mizrachim) and from the West (Ashkenazis) ,  we find that the  half of the immigrants that came from Muslim countries in North Africa and Asia had to live in poverty and  the basic values were those of a traditional and authoritarian society similar to the Muslim country they had left.  Most had very large families.

The other half came from European and American countries where the basic values were of a modern democratic and technological society.   This caused a cultural gap which gave immigrants from the developed countries an advantage over the Jews from the Muslim countries so the administration had to be devoted to narrowing this gap.

Education has been the means to do this.  Only 13% of children in 1956 from Asia and Africa attended high school  but by 1969-1970 there were 44% attending.  At the same time, children from Europe and America had 41% attending in 1956 and this went up to 77% by 1969-1970.   By 1970, 18.5% of marriages taking place were of mixed cultural origins.  In other words, the means to even out the disparity was through marriage.  It has increased since then.  Another means is through serving in the IDF.  It has erased differences in sex and in origins.  A Jew is just a Jew today in Israel, back to the way we were before 70 CE.  No differences.

The big population centers in Israel were in the coastal regions between Tel Aviv and Haifa.  New towns and development centers have been built.  This is where many of the immigrants have settled.  They have gone to Eilat, Dimona and Arad in the Negev; Kiryat Gat, Ashkelon and Beit Shemesh in the center;  and Karmiel which is almost all American and Kiryat Sh'mona in the Galilee.  I settled in Safed which is also in the Galilee simply because it reminded me of Oregon with all the fir trees and because it was higher up.  We went where jobs were available.  Being a teacher, I found that Jerusalem, which is a highly desirous city to live in, was already full of teachers and a more expensive place to live.  Teachers were wanted in development towns.  Israel managed to send Russians to the desert and Ethiopians to Safed where it was very cold, but they had to consider where available housing was at that time of immigration.  It gave us lots to laugh about.  Russians preferred to be in Tel Aviv where culture was at the height with music and theater.  We all had our preferences.

It is important to Israel to reclaim Jews who have been found to be still practicing Jewish  beliefs after all these years of separation.  They have been studied by rabbis and even have taken dna tests for their proof.  Through one or both of these tests, they have been accepted as one of our Lost brothers' descendants.  This has been prophesied in the Torah to happen at the end of days.  It's very exciting to us to find that many are still living and claiming their proud connection to the rest of us.  To me, they have gone through much pain to continue their heritage.

Resource: Facts About Israel, Division of Information, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Jerusalem

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Breaking USA Rules: Hezbollah and USA in Secret Talks

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                    

Hezbollah is an Iranian sponsored terrorist organization originating from Lebanon made up of Shiites who are fighting to destroy Israel.  They have 50,000 to 70,000 Iranian-supplied missiles sitting in civilian areas in southern Lebanon that are all aimed at Israel.  Their troops are fighting on the side of Assad in Syria and have helped to killed over 120,000 Syrian civilians and other rebel terrorist groups.

The USA has a law that prohibits the Administration from speaking with a group like Hezbollah who have political and military wings, but that isn't stopping our administration. 

 They are involved in secret indirect talks through London.  The talks supposedly are about fighting against the other main terror group, al Qaida.  What the USA is doing, they say, is hearing the views of this party and warming up to a direct relationship in the future.    Iran backs Hezbollah.  It's interesting that Rouhani, the Iranian president, spoke to David Cameron, the British Prime Minister, last week and then placed the talks in the context of the ongoing negotiations between the West and Tehran.  This makes Washington seem very willing to have diplomatic relations with the Islamic Republic.  Britain and Iran's relations fell after the Iranians stormed the British embassy in Tehran in November 2011.  The odd thing is that a month before this happened, in October, Britain and Iran had renewed diplomatic relations and Britain named a new charge d'affaires to Iran. " The British Embassy in Tehran is closed following an attack on the Embassy on 29th November 2011. Sweden now represents British interests in Iran through a British interests section at the Swedish Embassy in Tehran. The UK has not cut diplomatic ties with Iran, although they remain at the lowest level consistent with the maintenance of diplomatic relations."  
Obama's administration is that of the Democratic party.  The Republicans are about a 180 reversal of what they are trying to do.  Senator Marco Rubio, Republican from Florida is opposed to the nuclear deal with Iran.  He calls Iran a "rogue state," and has pointed out that Iran's Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei will oversee implementation of the agreement and was calling Israel a "rabid dog" and accusing the USA of war crimes.   It must be remembered that Khamenei is their supreme leader and the country's head of state and holds more power than the President does.  It is Khamenei who is in charge of Iran's foreign policy which includes the nuclear agreement.  Some of the things Khamenei is throwing into the face of the USA are crimes in Iraq, drones in Pakistan, more drone crimes, Afghanistan's bombing, torture, killing, the Guantanamo prison, etc.  So he doesn't like the USA much less than he hates Israel.
The USA most likely is talking with Hassan Nasrallah, the head of Hezbollah which started in 1985.  Hezbollah is in the government of Lebanon, and is called a state within a state.  They call Israel the Zionist Entity when they are feeling nice.  He has said many quoted statements, but one was that "if Israel attacks Lebanon, Iran, Syria or Gaza, they will be met with a fierce response. "   Israel doesn't initiate attacks, only engages in defensive attacks after being hit or to squelch an oncoming attack.  He also refuses to believe that there is a legal state of Israel.  I guess news hasn't gotten to Iran in the past 65 years.

Al Qaeda is the terrorist group that Osama Ben Laden formed which is a global Sunni group out for all to follow the Sharia Law.  It came from Peshawar, Pakistan.  So we have Sunni against Shi'a terrorists, both all for Sharia Law but obvious competitors where both have been trying to take over Syria.  .

Resource: by Ariel Ben Solomon
Oregonian newspaper, December 1, 2013, page A2, Rubio calls out Iranian leader for referring to Israel as a "rabid dog".

Saturday, November 30, 2013

November 30th Riots Over Bedouins in Negev with Prawer Plan

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                   

                                                     Negev Desert south of Jerusalem

Today, November 30, 2013 on Shabbat which is a day of rest and no work, time to be spent in the synagogue starting in the morning, turns out to be the Arabs' Day of Rage.  They are demonstrating right in Haifa with over 1,000  who turned into a riot.  Police were called in with riot squad who were pelted with stones.  This was against the Prawer Plan or Law which affects from 40,000 to 70,000 Palestinian-Bedouin who live in the Negev.  The Negev comprises 60% of the land allocated to be Israel.

Demonstrations and debates have been going on about it since about October 10th in the Knesset.  Thousands more demonstrators have planned to demonstrate on this day in Gaza, Ramallah, Berlin, The Hague, Cairo and 25 other cities in the world.

The Prawer Law/Prawer Plan/Prawer-Begin Plan is the step decided on  in September 2011 taken to bring about the Bedouins into Israeli society and reduce the economic and social gaps between their population in the Negev and the Israeli society.  It will then allow Jewish families to settle in the Negev to make the desert bloom.  Small gated farming communities have already developed close to the Bedouin villages that have water and electricity.

The Prawer plan is designed to be part of a campaign to develop the Negev.  Existing bedouin communities will be expanded.  Some unrecognized communities will be recognized and will receive public services.  Infrastructure will be renewed within the framework of the Beer Sheva District master plan.  Most residents are to be absorbed into the Abu Basma Regional Council and the nature of future communities will be decided in full cooperation with the local Bedouins as to whether they will be agricultural, rural, suburban or urban.

This might mean moving about 30,000 Bedouin in the Negev to more permanent existing Bedouin communities close by.  This might mean ending their traditional cultural and social life in the name of development which goes on in all American cities.  For example, right here in Portland, Oregon, South Portland was a neighborhood of Italians and Jews.  In the name of Urban Renewal, the city had the right to completely destroy this area which meant homes, school and synagogues (Neveh Zedek Synagogue, which was the synagogue I attended)  to put in revamping of the whole area.  It happened in the 60's.

The Negev was land given to Israel in the very beginning of the divide between Israel and Palestine, which Palestinians refused.  This is a big piece of the 20% left to become Israel and Israel has allowed the Bedouins much time to themselves.

The largest minorities in Israel are the Arabs and the Druzes.  In 1972 the minorities numbered 458,500.  Almost half lived in about 100 villages and 2/5ths lived in towns which included 73,000 in Jerusalem.  The rest which numbered about 44,000 were semi-nomadic Bedouin.  Some 75% were Muslims, 17% Christians and 8% Druzes and others.

Israel's law ensures equality before the law for all, without distinction of race, religion or language and gives its Arab citizens every opportunity to maintain their own culture and traditions.  There is, however, no peace between Israel and her Arab neighbors except for Egypt and Jordan.  Israeli Arabs are sometimes torn between their loyalty to Israel and their Arab kinship.  Coexistence between Jews and Arabs of Israel have had 65 years to get used to it and there has been a growing pattern of coexistence.   At least 27 Arab villages are represented in mixed Arab-Jewish local or regional councils.  Apart from the Bedouin, 82.5% of the  Arabs live in areas with local government.  
This 5 year plan is to improve the Bedouin  living conditions.  Israel claims they are nomads and they claim that they have settled in villages more than 100 years ago and have led a sedentary, agricultural based life for more than 20 years now.  "The rate of growth of the Negev Bedouin is the highest in the world – the Bedouin population doubles its size every 15 years." 

The Negev makes up more than half of Israel (60%) and has been a stark dry land that is a desert without the endless dunes of white sand like the deserts of Hollywood movies.  This is just plain dry wilderness going from mountainous heights to flat land far below sea level made up of dirt, rocks and canyons.    Once, it was land covered by the sea.  You can find fossils of ancient sea animals if you take a jeep tour of the desert.  For most of the year this is hot and dry land, but in early spring it has a beautiful carpet of green grasses and colorful wildflowers.  The Bedouins are an Arab people who travel the desert looking for fresh water and pasture land for their donkeys, goats and camels.  Their camps have an occasional TV antenna among them.  Israel has brought in modern irrigation which makes it possible to support new communities like development towns, cities and industrial centers.

Far to the south lies an experimental farm on Kibbutz Ketura that was founded in 1973 by Americans from the Young Judea movement.  Israeli agriculturists have had success in growing persimmons, pomegranates, kiwi fruit, litchis, kumquats, and have already sold them in European markets.  They have domesticated the "sabra" which is a prickly pear into one with no thorns now.  A field of sunflowers carpets the land in the Upper Negev at the right time of year.  Ketura has a garden of experimental fruits brought in from the wilds and marketplaces of Latin America, India and Africa.  They had worked on the black spote, a purple fruit with an inside like chocolate pudding.  This has become an ice cream flavor in the Negev town of Beersheba, which is probably the largest town in the Negev.  They also have developed the ber apple which is a dark brown plum tasting like a combination date and apple and many others.

The Negev can be viewed from the air where you can start at the southern tip of Israel and see Eilat.  Not far from Eilat which is a port, is the city of Timna where the mines of King Solomon's engineers built the country's fortune by mining rich deposits of copper.  Jordan and Egypt are its boundaries.  Beersheba is a modern city with 130,000 and goes back into our ancient history.  Kibbutz Sde Boker is where Ben Gurion lived out his life after being President of Israel in a hut. The Ben-Gurion University is here.   In the center of the Negev Desert is a valley with steep walls that looks just like a crater., Makhlesh Ramon.

This Negev extends over 5,138 sq miles or 60% of Israel.  Rainfall is less than 200 mm.  It's home to Israel's Badlands like in the USA where cowboys and Indians fought it out which is in the southernmost section  which is made up of eroded rocks.

After the Exodus with Moses leading out the Israelites from Egypt, the Beersheba-Egypt route was developed.  The southern Negev was occupied by nomadic tribes, the Amalekites.  The northern part belonged to the tribe of of Simeon, which later amalgamated with Judah.  David won over the Amalekites and Edom which opened up Elath and the copper mines to the Israelites under King Solomon.  At the same time, the Israelites had maritime trade going on with the Phoenician from Elath to Ophir which is in southern Arabia.

Back in the 1860's Mark Twain, author of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, took a trip to the holy land.  He described the Bedouins that he saw as "tall, muscular, very dark-skinned Bedouins, with inky black beards.  They had firm lips, unquailing eyes, and a kingly stateliness of bearing.  They wore the parti-colored half bonnet, half hood, with fringed ends falling upon their shoulders, and the full, flowing robe barred with broad black stripes-the dress one sees in all pictures of the swarthy sons of the desert.  These chaps would sell their younger brothers if they had a chance, I think.  They have the manners, the customs, the dress, the occupation and the loose principles of the ancient stock.  They attacked our camp last night, and I bear them no good will.   Twain continued to say that he saw evidence of cultivation-a rare sight in this country-an acre or two of rich soil studded with last season's dead corn-stalks of the thickness of your thumb and very wide apart.  But in such a land it was a thrilling spectacle.  Close to it was a stream, and on its bands a great heard of curious-looking Syrian goats and sheep were gratefully eating gravel.  I do not state this as a petrified fact-I only suppose they were eating gravel, because there did not appear to be anything else for them to eat. "

In other words, 146 years ago they were lousy farmers and lousy shepherds and would  attack strangers.  They were pretty wild people from this description of one American writer who was not happy with them on his 1867 voyage to see the Holy Land.

Today, "The population of the Israeli Negev is around 640,000 and of that total there are around 210,000 bedouin. Few of the Israeli bedouin lead the nomadic lives that mist the eyes of European arabists and retired British foreign service personnel and expats. Indeed, a few thousand live in illegally built houses, many of them in shacks without basic services. Many settlements lack essential infrastructure, including sewage systems and electricity, and access to services such as educational and health facilities is limited. Around 14,500 bedouin have settled illegally within the danger zone of the Ramat Hovav Toxic Waste Disposal Facility in the Negev.  All residents will be given property rights. Already, a further 120,000 bedouin live in planned and regulated settlements in 7 urban centres in the Negev and in two regional councils with 11 villages.  Those moved will be relocated close by where they had been living.  

What Israel is doing is trying to  build a better country for all Israeli citizens including the bedouin minority.

Facts About Israel , Division of Information, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Jerusalem, 1973
A young person's history of Israel 2nd edition by David Bamberger
The Innocents Abroad by Mark Twain page 203.
update: 12/2/13

Friday, November 29, 2013

Earthquake Near Iran's Nuclear Power Plant

Nadene Goldfoot                                                    Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant          

A 5.7 earthquake hit near Borazjan, 35 miles from the Bushehr nuclear power plant in Iran.  It destroyed 250 homes and businesses and electricity pylons.  7 people died and 30 were injured who were in the hospital.

Iran was hit with a 7.8 earthquake in April in SE Iran and Pakistan in which 40 people died.

Before that on December 26,  2003, a massive quake of 6.6  had struck Bam,  a southern city in Iran which killed 26,271 people and injured 30,000.  It's ancient mud-built citadel was destroyed.  This is the medium used for many of their buildings and homes, mud bricks.  44 countries sent in people to help.  60 countries in total offered assistance.  Being it struck when people were sleeping at 1:56am did not help matters.

Earthquakes are very common in Iran.  It must be similar to be living in Anchorage, Alaska.  "This earthquake occurred as a result of stresses generated by the Arabian plate moving northward against the Eurasian plate at approximately 3 centimetres (1 in) per year."  People were affected psychologically years afterwards from this one as the people were in Alaska on March 27, 1964 which was a huge one.  Relations between Iran and the USA improved after this earthquake.  Before this, Bush had called Iran one of the axis of evil.  "Iran then  promised to comply with an agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency which supports better monitoring of its nuclear interests. This led U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell to suggest direct talks in the future. Sanctions were temporarily relieved to help the rescue effort.  

Of course earthquakes cause concern to the Arabs across the Gulf as to the reliability of the Bushehr plant and radioactive leaks it could have in case of another major quake.  Since 2002 there have been 13 major earthquakes that have hit Iran.
2002   6.5  262 killed
2003  6.6   26,000, (Bam)
2004  6.3    35 killed
2005  6.4  602 killed
2005  6.0     13 killed
2006  6.1     70 killed
2008  6.1      7 killed
2010  5.9    19 killed
2011 5.3       2 killed
2012 6.4   306 killed
2013 6.3     30 killed, April 9th
2013 7.8      40 reported killed, April 16th  SE Iran and Pakistan
2013 5.7       8 killed, 190 injured

To calm everyone's fears, Iran and Russia say that it is built by international standards under the supervision of the UN nuclear watchdog.  They had gone ahead and built it even though Iran stands on several seismic fault lines.