Newsletter : 6fax0802.txt
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Canada: Hizbullah is a `Cancer'
Canadian Foreign Minister Peter MacKay said on Tuesday that the terrorist organization
Hizbullah is a `cancer' that was capable of breaking any ceasefire negotiated in the
future. MacKay dismissed criticism of his government's pro-Israel position, but for the
first time also had sharp words for the Jewish state. Israel's decision to bomb the Beirut
airport had made the process of evacuating Canadian citizens from Lebanon much more
difficult, he said.
Israeli Troops, Hizbullah Engage in Fierce Battles
Israeli commandos landed by helicopter late Tuesday night near the Hizbullah stronghold
of Baalbek in what Lebanese security sources described as a major operation against
suspected Hizbullah positions.
Lebanese security sources said the troops landed as aircraft launched several strikes
near Baalbek, which is located in eastern Lebanon's Bekaa Valley. One Lebanese officer
said the IAF presence in the air above the ancient city was "unprecedented."
The operation began with at least five rapid air strikes three hours before the end of
Israel's self-imposed two-day pause in air attacks. "The extreme, unprecedented number of
aircraft indicates the possibility that the Israelis are planning to land troops, but we
cannot yet confirm that," said one security official on condition of anonymity because of
the sensitivity of the information.
Early Wednesday, Hizbullah's Al-Manar TV reported the group's "guerrillas" were
fighting IDF ground troops west of Baalbek. The broadcast said fighters were involved in a
"confrontation with an Israeli unit that landed near Al-Hikma Hospital west of
The IDF would not comment when asked about the Bekaa Valley operation. Israel Radio
reported briefly on the Baalbek operation quoting reports from Lebanon with no local
Baalbek is about 60 miles north of the Litani River, which Israel had set as a northern
boundary for an expanded ground operation that was announced in the early hours Tuesday.
IAF warplanes and helicopters started the operation on Baalbek and its surroundings at
10:20 p.m. (local time).
Baalbek, an ancient city with spectacular Roman ruins, was a former Syrian army
headquarters and included the barracks of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards when they
trained Hizbullah terrorists there during the 1980s.
Hizbullah Praised Among Arabs
By Meredith Buel (VOA-Washington), IsraelNationalNews.com & Ha'aretz
Israeli Army Brig. Gen. Mike Herzog said the Jewish state has destroyed about 70
percent of Hizbullah's medium and long-range rockets and their launchers, although the
terrorist group is still believed to have thousands of shorter-range Katyusha rockets in
"The picture that I get from everybody in the know I speak with in Israel, until now
Israel has seriously degraded Hizbullah's capability, very seriously," he said. "So it
may not be the picture that is out there in the media, but they are suffering a very
severe blow, which takes them back years."
In Ramallah and Nablus, on the West Bank, thousands of Palestinians waving Hizbullah
flags and chanting "Nasrallah, bomb Tel Aviv!" rallied Tuesday in a show of support for
the Lebanese terror group in its conflict with Israel.
The protesters set American flags on fire and voiced encouragement to the Iraqi
insurgency to continue their attacks on US troops. The rally in Ramallah was organized by
the Fatah movement, which is headed by PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas.
A stormy protest against Israel's anti-Hizbullah campaign in Lebanon took place in
front of the American consulate in eastern Jerusalem on Tuesday morning. Five protesters
were arrested when the demonstration, which included tens of Jewish and Arab participants,
turned violent. Arab protesters at the event chanted slogans in praise of Hizbullah and
its warlord-leader, Hassan Nasrallah. A police spokesperson said that officers were
attacked by the crowd when they moved in to detain the event's organizer.
On Monday, dozens of anti-Israel demonstrators protested near the Israeli Embassy in
Washington DC. Carrying signs that said "Murderers," "Death to Israel" and "Stop the
Slaughter," the protesters decried Israel's ongoing military offensive against the
Hizbullah in Lebanon.
Protests last week included a joint Arab-Jewish protest against the war in besieged
Haifa on Tuesday. Hearing about the protest on television and the radio, outraged Haifa
residents left their bomb shelters to hold a stormy counter-protest.
Hizbullah's Gruesome Use of Dead Children for Propaganda.
By Barry Shaw (Commentary)
Qana was a human tragedy in a sad war. Hizbullah, like all terror groups, selected to
fight this war against civilian targets in Israel. They also purposely chose to launch
their fight from strictly civilian areas to achieve maximum propaganda when Israel
Now I am in possession of the most gruesome pictures of phony rescue workers using the
dead bodies of children for propaganda purposes. I am refraining from distributing them,
despite the fact that they tell a story of inhuman abuse of the dead, and are clearly
evidence of an international human rights crime.
Humanitarian rescue workers do not hold up the bodies of small children to waiting
cameras. Humanitarian rescue workers do not remove the bodies of little girls from
ambulances and parade them for the international media. Humanitarian rescue workers do not
carry the bodies of children for hours for public viewing by incoming photographers and
This type of behavior shows dishonor and disrespect for the dead. This type of behavior
is an international crime against human rights.
By inflaming the world with these staged pictures, Hizbullah has succeeded in changing
public opinion. The international media have joined the frenzy to put out pictures and
videos, thereby adding to the propaganda gain for Hizbullah.
By carefully examining the timeframes of the pictures it is clear that Hizbullah have
committed a human rights crime by exploiting the bodies of dead children for propaganda
purposes. Where is the outcry and criticism of such cynical use of dead children?
Court: Temple Mount Faithful Can Visit Holy Site
Israel's High Court of Justice ruled Tuesday to permit members of the Temple Mount
Faithful movement to visit the Jerusalem holy site on Tisha B'Av, in the framework of an
agreement the State Attorney's Office reached with the extreme-Right Jewish group.
The Temple Mount and Eretz Yisrael (Land of Israel) Faithful Movement is an Orthodox
movement, founded by Mideast Studies lecturer Gershon Salomon, which wishes to reestablish
the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem and re-institute the practice of ritual sacrifice.
Currently on the site of the Jewish Temple, which was destroyed in 70 CE, are Islamic
holy sites, the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque. In the past, members of the movement
have been forbidden access to the site out of fear they would spark clashes with
The judges wrote in their verdict that, "After discussions
the following was
agreed between the sides regarding Tisha B'Av: Those represented by the prosecution, with
the exception of Gershon Salomon, can visit the Temple Mount during regular visiting hours
for the public."
The ruling stipulated that the Temple Mount Faithful "could not carry any banners,
could not wear extraordinary clothing, and could not behave provocatively." With that, the
High Court authorized police forces to prevent the visitation should circumstances change
or should the agreement be violated.
Among the Temple Mount Faithful there was apprehension that police would attempt to
block the visits, and they were prepared to file complaints to the High Court of
Elements on the extreme-Right told Ynet, "It is our intention to bring hundreds of Jews
to the Temple Mount Thursday, and among other things we plan to pray for the wellbeing of
soldiers in the north. The Temple Mount is the heart of the nation, and as long as Israel
doesn't control the Temple Mount, then we do not control all of Israel."
Disney Exec Backs Gibson
By Kim Masters (Commentary in Slate)
Are we really surprised at Mel Gibson's drunken anti-Semitic outburst last week? After
his wink-wink Holocaust denials in the past? Probably not. The question is whether
Hollywood will continue to countenance him. Disney is set to release his next movie.
Oren Aviv, the new head of the Disney film studio, says he is prepared to forgive and
forget. Aviv happens to be a committed member of the tribe that Gibson seems to blame for
For those who might not remember, Gibson's father is a Holocaust denier, and Gibson,
pressed on the subject before the opening of The Passion of the Christ, said Dad had never
lied to him in his life.
He also offered some choice Holocaust-denier code talk: Many people died in World War
II and some of them were Jews. And we've heard that he didn't quite take the Jewish
blood-curse language out of his moviejust the English subtitle. Since our dead
languages are rusty, fact-checking this is tricky. God knows if it's true, if you know
what we mean. Gibson's publicist, Alan Neirob, declined to offer any enlightenment on the
Gibson has apologized for his recent outburst and said he didn't mean what he said
(which was, among other niceties, "Fucking Jews
The Jews are responsible for all
the wars in the world"). And of course, he was drunk. Certainly in our own limited
experience with inebriation, we've never found ourselves inclined to articulate opinions
utterly foreign to us. Given Gibson's Holocaust-denying history, it's hard to argue that
he deserves the benefit of the doubt.
Even in his apology, Gibson fudged. "I am deeply ashamed of everything I said, and I
apologize to anyone who I have offended," he said. "Also, I take this opportunity to
apologize to the deputies involved for my belligerent behavior." We can see that Gibson
had a lot of ground to cover herehe threatened to get one cop fired and called
another "sugar tits." But stillhe can single out a few deputies for an apology
without a word for millions of Jews? Asked why Gibson didn't address his slurs directly,
publicist Nairobi offered a bold "No comment."
Disney is set to release Gibson's Apocalypto in Decemberthe same Disney that
recently announced plans to slash its staff and its production slate while it pursues more
family-oriented movies worthy of the company brand. Certainly Apocalypto won't be one of
those, as it deals with human sacrifice and the bloody fate of the Mayan people. You can
be sure the subject has provided Gibson ample opportunity to indulge his well-established
appetite for gore
Back to more tangible concerns. One prominent producer says he already has an idea to
help Disney maximize its gains on the upcoming Gibson Apocalypto by launching a new
theme-park attraction. "You get in a speeding car," he suggests, "while a hologram of a
drunken Mel Gibson follows you shouting 'F*****g Jew!' "
(Kim Masters is an NPR correspondent and the author of The Keys to the Kingdom: The
Rise of Michael Eisner and the Fall of Everyone Else.)
ABC Cancels Plans for Holocaust Programs
ABC television (owned by Walt Disney Studios) has announced it is canceling plans to
host a mini-series based on the Holocaust which was scheduled to have been produced by Mel
Gibson, or at least by one of his companies.
Although critics have pointed out that Gibson, who is widely considered by many Jews to
be anti-Semitic in the wake of his movie The Passion of the Christ, should be prohibited
from being involved with the planned program, ABC announced that the reason for canceling
the plan is rather that two years have passed without significant progress on the project,
since the first draft was submitted.
Gibson Seeks Meeting with U.S. Jewish Leaders
Actor Mel Gibson on Tuesday apologized for making anti-Semitic remarks after his recent
arrest for drunken driving and asked to meet with members of the Jewish community to begin
a "path for healing."
"There is no excuse, nor should there be any tolerance, for anyone who thinks or
expresses any kind of anti-Semitic remark," Gibson said in a statement. "I want to
apologize specifically to everyone in the Jewish community for the vitriolic and harmful
words that I said to a law enforcement officer the night I was arrested," he added.
Gibson, who directed 2004's blockbuster movie "The Passion of The Christ" about the
last hours of the life of Jesus, was caught speeding in his car in the early morning last
Friday, and he went on a rant in which he is widely reported to have said "The Jews are
responsible for all the wars in the world."
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department report, parts of which have appeared on
celebrity Web site TMZ.com, is laced with anti-Semitic statements and expletives said by
His statement on Tuesday sought a meeting with Jewish community leaders in which he
could explain his actions. "I'm not just asking for forgiveness. I would like to take it
one step further, and meet with leaders in the Jewish community, with whom I can have a
one-on-one discussion to discern the appropriate path for healing," Gibson said. "I am
asking the Jewish community, whom I have personally offended, to help me on my journey
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