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Today's News

Nov. 27, 2014



Israeli Government's 8-Step Plan to End Terror



An 8-step plan to deal with the recent wave of terror and unrest in Israel was put forward by the leader of the Likud's Knesset chairman in the form of temporary legislation Wednesday, and it purportedly will allow Israel to crackdown on terrorists, their families and supporters.


The plan, being spearheaded by MK Yariv Levin, who said he formulated the bill at the behest of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, will give the police and security establishment the tools it needs to create "real deterrence."


From revoking the citizenship to baring the Palestinian flag in riots, the bill stipulates eight central moves:  Israeli Arabs caught engaging or cooperating with terror will automatically lose their citizenship - or Palestinian Authority residency, in the case of Palestinians.


After completing their prison term, terrorists will be deported from Israel; Those killed during their attempt to conduct a terror attack will not receive a funeral: The body of terrorists will not be transferred to their families, and will be buried in an unknown location, without ceremony and without future access for their families; Terrorists' houses will be destroyed within 24-hours of the attack.


Masked stone throwers and those inciting for terror and violence participating in illegal protests in which firebombs or fireworks were thrown will be arrested and held in remand until the completion of legal procedures against them. The same measures will be taken against those who waved an 'enemy flag' during the protests, including the Palestinian flag. Anyone convicted at the end of their remand will lose their social welfare benefits and driving license for a 10 year period.


Families of terrorists will lose their citizenship and will be deported to Gaza should they express support for their relative's deed. Support, according to the bill, can be expressed through public or social media. The bill also includes a clause that would close businesses and printing presses that print posters that support terror or terrorists.


The bill further stipulates that a business can now request the police to inform them whether anyone of their employers has ever been held in relation to a security related offense and give them the right to fire such an employee. The article could serve a major economic blow to many Israeli Arabs, already struggling to find work in an increasingly hostile environment.



Netanyahu Presents Principles of 'Jewish Nationhood' Bill



Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was forced to attend a Knesset plenum on Wednesday evening, after legislators invoked the "40 signature" rule. While the scheduled debate centered on the cost of living, MKs used the opportunity to challenge the prime minister on the "Jewish Nationhood" bill.


Netanyahu took to the podium towards the end of the session to defend his decisions on the controversial legislation, officially defining Israel as a Jewish state, and to present the principles of his proposal. "The bill I will present will be based on Israel being a Jewish and democratic state. Israel guarantees equality of personal rights to all its citizens without discrimination based on religion, race, and gender."


Israel is the historical birthplace of the Jewish people and the place where the State of Israel was established. The State of Israel is the national home of the Jews, where they realized their right to self-determination. The right to self-determination in the State of Israel is exclusive to the Jewish people. The State of Israel is a democratic state which guarantees the personal rights of all its citizens before the law.


Netanyahu said the bill would be brought to a government vote on Sunday. "Now, explain to me why you disagree. Tell me. I want to know," Netanyahu said, as opposition legislators continued to shout their objections.


The Likud leader emphasized his support for the legislation officially defining Israel as a Jewish state was in part due to diplomatic considerations. "I oppose a bi-national state. Israel is the national state of the Jewish people and the Jewish people alone. Those who praise murderers – calling them martyrs – and incite or commit acts of terror – will not receive national insurance," Netanyahu said.


Opposition Chairman Isaac Herzog (Labor) challenged Netanyahu on several issues during his turn on the podium, going as far as to warn the sitting prime minister that his fragile coalition could dismantle, leaving Labor in a position to poach his supporters. At the end of the session, 46 MKs supported the prime minister's statement – 35 opposed the motion.


Netanyahu: European Recognition of Palestinian State is 'Big Mistake'

 By Reuters and Israel Hayom


 Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Tuesday warned against unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state without negotiations. During a meeting with the Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka, the Israeli prime minister called the recognition of a Palestinian state "a big mistake for peace."


"These twin needs of mutual recognition and solid security arrangements on the ground which are so essential for peace, these are not addressed by the European countries that unilaterally give recognition to a Palestinian state. I think that's a big mistake for peace, it encourages the Palestinians to harden their positions, not to compromise on mutual recognition, not to compromise on the things that are needed to achieve genuine security. I think these European positions actually push peace away and I believe that they make reaching a solution much harder," he said.


Israel stepped up pressure on European countries to support the Jewish state after Sweden officially recognized the state of Palestine. British and Spanish parliaments also called on their governments to recognize Palestine as a state and the European Parliament was also set to vote on the subject on Thursday.


Sweden's decision drew praise from Palestinians, who called on other countries to match it, but Israel says a "unilateral recognition is counterproductive and would hurt prospects for future negotiations."


Palestinians seek statehood in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with east Jerusalem as their capital. The land was captured by Israel from Jordan and Egypt in the 1967 Six-Day War, although Israeli soldiers and settlers pulled out of Gaza in 2005.


Years of efforts to forge a two-state solution have made little progress, with the last effort at negotiations collapsing in April. Palestinians now see little choice but to make a unilateral push for statehood.


A total of 135 countries already recognize Palestine, including several East European countries that did so before they joined the European Union. With Britain's parliament having recognized Palestine in a nonbinding vote earlier this month, and similar votes in the pipeline in Spain, France and Ireland, the Palestinians hope momentum in Europe is shifting.


Some EU states that are closer to the Israeli position were irritated by the Swedish step, diplomats in Brussels said. But the move showed growing international frustration at the lack of progress, with continued Israeli construction in areas the Palestinians want for a future state being a particular point of concern.



US Ambassador to Israel Prays at Terrorized Jerusalem Synagogue



A week after a terrorist attack in Jerusalem's Har Nof neighborhood, which left four worshippers and one policeman dead, U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro attended prayer services at Kehilat Bnei Torah synagogue on Tuesday.


Shapiro was accompanied by Eli Beer, the founder of United Hatzalah of Israel and President of U.S. based organization Friends of United Hatzalah -- a non-profit, volunteer emergency medical services organization -- and several first-aid volunteers who were among the first responders to arrived at the scene of the attack.


"I saw a great need to come here on the last day of the shiva [the week-long mourning period] for those who were murdered. I wanted to be here today with the worshippers and with the members of United Hatzalah, who acted with immense dedication to save lives," Shapiro said.



Wife of Synagogue Massacre Terrorist Expelled




Interior Minister Gilad Erdan (Likud) decided on Wednesday to strip the permit of stay in Israeli territory for Nadia Abu Jamal, the wife of one of the two Arab terrorists who attacked a Har Nof synagogue in Jerusalem last Tuesday, murdering four Jews at prayer and a police officer.


Abu Jamal, who originally lived under Palestinian Authority jurisdiction, was living in Jerusalem's Jabel Mukabar neighborhood due to the "family unification" process allowing her to be in sovereign Israeli territory as the wife of the terrorist who was killed in the attack.


She will now have to leave Israel, and will lose all financial and social privileges from the state, such as national insurance and health insurance. "I've ordered the cancellation of Nadia Abu Jamal's permit of stay in Israel," said Erdan. "Anyone involved in terror needs to take into account that there may be consequences also for their families."


The decision to negate the rights of terrorists, their families and accomplices was made by Erdan in conjunction with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. Erdan likewise on Sunday cancelled the permanent residency status of Mahmoud Nadi, the driver for the suicide bomber responsible for the bombing at the Dolphinarium Disco in Tel Aviv in June 2001. That attack killed 21 people and wounded over 100 others.


In the Har Nof attack, the two terrorists Ghassan and Uday Abu Jamal held Israeli residency and the privileges entailed by it, and one of them reportedly worked in a grocery store next to the synagogue they attacked. While the wife of one of the terrorists has been targeted, it was also reported that the sister of one of the terrorists is a social worker employed by the city of Jerusalem.


The families of the two celebrated the attack by passing out candies, with one relative calling the attack "a normal thing that can be expected from every man who has courage and a feeling of belonging to his people and to Islam."



Pope: Don't Shut Door to Dialogue with Islamic State

 By Reuters


Pope Francis said on Tuesday that while it was "almost impossible" to have a dialogue with Islamic State insurgents, the door should not be shut. "I never say 'all is lost,' never. Maybe there can't be a dialogue but you can never shut a door," he told reporters on his plane returning from Strasbourg, France, where he addressed the European Parliament and the Council of Europe.


"It is difficult, one could say almost impossible, but the door is always open," he said in response to a question about whether it would be possible to communicate with the militants.


The ultra-radical Islamic State group has captured thousands of square miles of territory in Iraq and Syria, beheaded or crucified prisoners, massacred non-Sunni Muslim civilians in its path and displaced tens of thousands of people.


The Iraqi government, backed by U.S.-led air strikes, has been trying to push back the Islamic State, although Shiite Muslim militias and Kurdish peshmerga forces have helped contain the Sunni insurgents and repelled them in some provinces.


Pope Francis repeated comments made earlier this year that while it was legitimate to fight an "unjust aggressor," doing so had to be supported by an international consensus.



Chabad Rabbis Take 'World's Largest Selfie'



About 2,000 rabbis gathered for a group selfie this week at the International Conference of Chabad-Lubavitch Emissaries in Brooklyn, New York. The Chabad-Lubavitch rabbis have been gathering for a traditional group shot every year since 1983.


According to the website, while the first gathering drew 65 rabbis. There are more than 4,200 rabbis are in town for this year’s conference. Over the years, the photo has grown in scope with the rabbis crowding the frame.


This year, Chabad says, a few tech-savvy rabbis decided to add a modern twist to the photo. Using Twitter and WhatsApp to coordinate, they gathered for a massive group selfie which was taken with a particularly large lens that was held up with a 5-meter-long stick carried by two men.


 "We are really one big family," said Rabbi Levi Slonim of the Rohr Chabad Center for Jewish Student Life at Binghamton University in New York, who was part of the group triggering the selfie. "Who better to be with, for what might be a world-record-setting group selfie?"


















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I can't speak for you, but my grandparents came to the United States to find a refuge from "change." They came to The United States where their basic freedoms were guaranteed by the Constitution; where they could build a future on this solid ground.

Whether our forefathers and forI'm sure you will find some truth in this song.






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Air France flew from the U.S. to Israel during the early 1950s. They flew Lockheed Constellations and the flying time was 20 hours.

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 Paradise Regained, Paradise Lost

By Don Canaan (Commentary)

This year marked the 29th anniversary of the return of the Sinai by Israel to Egypt--a day of mourning by many of the 2,000 settlers who settled and later were forcibly evacuated by Israeli authorities under the command of Ariel Sharon, from the seaside city of Yamit on the Mediterranean.

Yamit was former Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Dayan's dream--a projected seaport and city of 250,000 founded on the Sinai sand dunes overlooking date palm trees and the blue Mediterranean--a populated buffer between the Gaza Strip and Egypt on the other side of the Suez Canal.

Some alternate historians say Moses and the children of Israel passed near the site of Yamit 3,500 years ago as they wandered for 40 years through the Sinai Desert on their way to the proverbial land of milk and honey.

Since April 25, 1982 only the whine of the desert wind weaves its currents through the crevices of destroyed homes, businesses and monument--a memorial to the young men who died during the 1967 Six Day war.

Christians, Jews and Muslims died during three Arab-Israeli wars and battles that took place in the Sinai in 1956, 1967 and 1973--Egyptian and Israeli--young people who fought and died in that desolate, forsaken desert wasteland.

The modern-day chariot carrying Egyptian President Mohammed Anwar al-Sadat hugged the intermittently green coastline of Sinai on its historic mission to Jerusalem. Israelis glancing upward into the clear night sky saw merely a jet banking gently to the northwest.

Official Israeli government policy was that the settlers had to be removed and the army came and forcibly removed the remaining diehard residents. The Jerusalem Post described the scene: Apocalypse had arrived in Yamit and in the dust and noise and destruction one could wander freely. Dozens of bulldozers and giant mobile air hammers were loose in the city like a pack of predatory beasts."

April 25, 20011 marked the 29th anniversary of Israel's withdrawal from Yamit and Sinai and a cold peace between long-term enemies.

That gift of peace silently glided overhead as the Sabbath disappeared and the stars appeared. At 8:01 p.m. Sadat's jetliner landed at Ben-Gurion Airport and the first minutes of a then potential peace came to the Middle East.

Old enemies became new friends. The crowds roared its approval when Sadat shook hands with Moshe Dayan. A person standing nearby, according to the Jerusalem Post, said Sadat told Dayan, "Don't worry Moshe, it will be all right."

The peace treaty between the two nations was signed on March 26, 1979 and on April 25, 1982; the events that had started on a November day at Camp David came to fruition. Sinai was returned to Egypt. Yamit was bulldozed to the ground. But Anwar Sadat did not live to see that day. He had been assassinated seven months before.



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