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Is Israel Planning an Iran Strike?


Israel has proposed to the United States to strike Iran on several occasions this year, Saudi newspaper al-Watan reported Sunday morning. According to the report, the latest proposal was raised during the Knesset Defense and Foreign Affairs Committee's visit to Washington several days ago, where committee members apparently attempted to "market one agenda: Launching a war on Iran."

The newspaper quoted Knesset Member Arieh Eldad saying that "nothing will restrain Iran aside from the use of force" and adding that Teheran's nuclear project will not end "unless it is convinced it will be destroyed through military force."

Meanwhile, Knesset Member Yosef Lapid reportedly said threats of sanctions and isolation have no effect on Iran. "We won't accept the fact we need to live under the threat of an Iranian nuclear bomb and therefore we feel we should warn our friends we don't see any solution except for acting on our own," Lapid said according to the Saudi report.

The newspaper said this was not the first time Israel demanded to strike Iran. President Bush rejected Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's offer to use military force during the latter's latest visit to Washington, the report said. Sharon reportedly presented Bush with satellite photos of Iran's nuclear facilities and asked to attack them. The president apparently "coldly" referred him to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who told the PM the U.S. chose to pursue the diplomatic channel, in conjunction with European states, to resolve the problem.

Earlier reports said Sharon informed Washington in a special letter that Iranian nuclear arms would threaten the safety of Israelis more than any other nation. The PM reportedly said Israel would consider postponing military action against Teheran out of consideration for the U.S., but added Israel would not "wait forever." According to al-Watan, Israel made it clear that it would only be able to wait until a certain date next year and would strike at Iran if no progress is made by that time.

Israel Suspends Offensive Against Palestinian Militants

By Robert Berger (VOA-Jerusalem)

Israel ended a week of punishing air strikes against Islamic militants in Gaza, and arrest raids in the West Bank. The Palestinian rocket attacks from Gaza that sparked the raids stopped, and Israel said the goal of the offensive was achieved. The tough military response shows that Israel has set out new rules of deterrence since it pulled out of Gaza three-weeks ago. "If there is terrorist activity from Gaza into Israel, the Israeli public will demand of the Israeli government, that we defend the citizens of Israel," government spokesman Mark Regev told VOA.

The Palestinian Authority welcomed the end of the offensive, but Israel said that was not enough. Regev said terrorist groups must be disarmed, as demanded by the internationally backed "Roadmap" peace plan. "We have fully pulled out of the Gaza Strip, the Gaza Strip today is totally under Palestinian control. We expect the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian leadership now to deal effectively with the terrorists," he said.

Palestinian Authority spokesman Nabil Abu Redeineh said his government was determined to end armed chaos. "This is a national Palestinian target and we hope that with the end of occupation there will not be any weapons. The only weapons is the weapons of the Authority," said Redeineh.

With the end of the offensive, both sides are taking steps to get the peace process back on track. Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas called Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, and they agreed to hold a summit by Oct. 20. Abbas conveyed best wishes for the Jewish New Year, and Sharon sent greetings for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Both holidays begin this week.

Meanwhile, Palestinian police and Hamas militants fought gun battles in Gaza City. The fighting erupted after police tried to arrest the son of Abdel Aziz Rantisi, the late Hamas leader who was assassinated by Israel last year. Witnesses say police stopped Rantisi's car, but he refused to hand himself over. Police began shooting when an angry crowd surrounded them, sparking a firefight. Then, Hamas terrorists armed with rifles, rocket propelled grenades and hand grenades stormed several police stations.

The clashes point to a growing power struggle between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas since Israel pulled out of Gaza three weeks ago. So far, Abbas has had little success in his efforts to restore law and order. Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat accused Hamas of acting like a "parallel authority." He told VOA: "Seeking revenge or violence will only add to the complexities and will harm Palestinian interests.:

Since Gaza is seen as a test case for Palestinian statehood, Abbas is anxious to show the world that he can restore the rule of law. But for now, the well-armed Hamas rule the streets.

PFLP Leadership Moving From Syria to Gaza


Syrian terrorist leader Ahmed Jibril is likely to enter Gaza via Rafiah, granting what at least one member says will be "renewed momentum" to the PFLP terror organization. Jibril, 77, is the founder and leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine/General Command (PFLP-GC), which has staged numerous attacks against Israeli and other targets, both military and civilian.

The London-based Al-Hayat newspaper quoted Dr. Adal Al-Hakim, a member of the PFLP's diplomatic office, as saying that Jibril is expected to arrive in Gaza - though he did not specify a time frame. Al-Hakim says that leading PFLP figures will arrive first in Gaza to investigate and shore up the organization's infrastructure and prepare for the leader's entry. Jibril's move will alleviate world pressure on Syria to get rid of Palestinian terror bases.

In Al-Hakim's evaluation, Jibril's arrival in Gaza would grant "renewed momentum" to the organization's activity in the Palestinian Authority-controlled areas. Jibril, like PLO Oslo-opponent Farouk Kaddoumi, has refused to enter the PA-controlled areas until now, so as not to have to receive Israeli permission. With the opening of the Rafiah border crossing between Egypt and Gaza, Jibril will not have to face this issue.

Among the PFLP's attacks are the Nahariya/Avivim school bus attack (May 1970) along Israel's northern border in which nine children and three adults were murdered; the massacre of 18 people in a Kiryat Shmonah apartment building (April 1974), half of them children; the bombing of a Swiss Air plane (Feb. 1970), killing 47 people; and the hang glider attack from Lebanon (Nov. 1987) in which six Israeli soldiers were killed.

The most destructive attack attributed to the PFLP was apparently the infamous Pan Am Flight 103 bombing. The plane was downed over Lockerbie, Scotland in December 1988, killing 270 people. Much cumulative evidence linked the PFLP to the attack, including the finding of explosive devices similar to the one presumably used against the Pan Am plane in the possession of a PFLP cell captured in West Germany. In fact, only seven weeks before the Pan Am explosion, a terrorist cell of 16 members and supporters of Jibril's gang was arrested in Germany, amidst evidence that they were planning a series of mid-air attacks on five international aircraft. The Germans, however, released most of the arrestees after a short period.

In May 2001, Jibril claimed responsibility for sending a boat filled with weapons to Gaza; the Israeli Navy found and seized the ship in the Haifa port. Jibril said at the time that it wasn't the first of its kind, nor would it be the last. A year later, Jibril's son, the head of the PFLP-GC's military wing, was killed in a car bombing in Beirut. The Arabs blamed Israel, but it was known that the Jibrils had many enemies in Lebanon. Although the PFLP-GC has lost importance over the years in proportion to the rise of Hamas, Jibril's gang has long been on the U.S. list of terrorist organizations.

Despite Warnings, Dozens of Israelis Enter Sinai


In spite of solid warnings that terrorists are planning to kidnap Israelis in Sinai, dozens of Israelis refused to give up their travel plans and traversed the Taba Crossing into Sinai. The Anti-Terrorism Task Force, working under the auspices of the Prime Minister's Office, issues travel warnings to areas under terrorist threats. Its latest declaration is against travel to Sinai, because of what it calls "specific and well-based intelligence" indicating plans to kidnap vacationing Israelis there. The body also called upon tourists already in Sinai to return home at once.

Between 2,000 and 3,000 Israelis were estimated to have been in Sinai over the weekend, and some 30,000 have made plans to vacation there over the coming holidays. Several dozen Israelis returned home today, but it is not yet clear how many will heed the warning and return in the coming days. Israeli officials explained that they could not close the Taba Crossing and forbid Israeli entry, because of the peace agreement with Egypt that stipulates "open borders."

A year ago, on the Sukkot holiday, a car bomb at the Taba Hilton Hotel and a simultaneous double bombing nearby killed over 30 people, including 12 Israelis. Three months ago, some 90 people, including one Israeli - an Arab - were killed in another terror bombing at Sharm el-Sheikh.

Holocaust Book Brought About 1985 Airlift Of Ethiopian Jews


A book about America's failure to rescue Jews from the Holocaust helped convince then-Vice President George H. W. Bush to order the US airlift of 900 Ethiopian Jewish refugees to Israel in 1985, a US ambassador has revealed.

John R. Miller, a former Congressman (R-WA), who is now the US ambassador for combating human trafficking, revealed the episode for the first time in public, in a statement presented to more than 200 participants in a Sept. 18 conference at the Fordham University Law School organized by the David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies.

Miller said that when the Ethiopian Jews became stranded in Sudan in early 1985, he brought a copy of Prof. David S. Wyman's book about America and the Holocaust, The Abandonment of the Jews, to Bush. "This is a chance to write a very different history than the history of America's response to the Holocaust," Miller told the vice president. Miller said that in a later conversation with Bush, the vice president confirmed that Wyman's book "was a major influence in his decision to order to the airlift


Curriculum of Hate

By Ed Ziegler (Commentary)

It has been well established that there are numerous fanatic Muslims through out the world who do and say anything that serves their purpose, lying and distorting the truth. One of their techniques is to teach their children to hate their enemies.

According to the Hudson Institute they do teach hatred. The Institute reported that textbooks used in Saudi Arabian schools are filled with anti-Jewish, anti-Christian and anti-American bigotry along with violent interpretations of Islamic scriptures. What makes this interesting is how they can lie so easily. Prince Sa'ud, of Saudi Arabia, categorically denied that hate is propagated in Saudi schools. He stated, "Five percent was actually abhorrent to us. So, we took a decision to change that, and we have changed." However the evidence offered by the Hudson Institute gives a different story. It is widely understood that control of the schools in Arabia has been conceded to hard line Islamists.

According to BBC News, the Malaysian government has accused its religious schools of teaching hate, not religion, and has stopped their state subsidy. More than 125,000 children in Malaysia receive an Islamic education in such institutions. Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir Mohamad also, accused the schools of teaching hate. Imagine what 125,000 misguided children can do. Then imagine what can happen when they become 125,000 fanatic adults.

Pakistan has been under pressure to crack down on the schools for teaching hatred and is viewed as training ground for Islamic militants. There is concern about the future of about 1.500.000 graduates to be produced by their madrases (schools). There are no regulations governing these schools. What complicates the situation is that this is the primary education available.

There are schools and then, there are schools. Jeremy Cook, in Gaza, on the BBC, July 18, 2001 reported the Islamic Jihad is running a summer school - to teach boys the benefits of becoming suicide bombers. Our children go to summer camp to enjoy themselves while Palestinian boys aged 12 and 15 years old learn to kill and to enjoy blowing themselves up. Who do you think has more fun?

An Islamic Jihad member, Mohammed el Hattab, one of the teachers on the program said, "We are teaching the children that suicide bombing is the only thing that makes the Israeli people very frightened. Furthermore, we are teaching them that we have the right to do it, Mohammed, a 14-year-old boy, draws a picture of himself with explosives strapped to his body, ready to blow him to pieces if it means killing Jews.

Bad enough but children in Arab countries, like Saudi Arabia, are being taught to hate but how about in the United States? On Aug 9, 2005, FOX News asked, "Can it be true that Islamic schools in the United States teach hatred towards Americans, Christians and Jews?" The Washington Post, answered, reporting that there is an Islamic school outside of Washington, D.C. that uses textbooks teaching 11th graders that "the Day of Judgment can't come until Jesus Christ returns to Earth, breaks the cross and converts everyone to Islam, and Muslims start attacking Jews."

At the Al-Qalam All-Girls School in Springfield, Va., seventh graders learn that Usama bin Laden may not be a villain but a victim of Americans' biased views toward great Islamic leaders.

All too many freedom-loving Americans are totally unaware that there are many dangerous Islamic fanatics here in the United States growing their children to hate all of us as well as to hate any non-fanatic Islamists. Therefore we must "Never Forget" the Holocaust to remember what one group of people can do to other groups

Ziegler is a board member of the New Jewish Congregation and president of its brotherhood. He can be reached at

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