Different River

”You can never step in the same river twice.” –Heraclitus

November 28, 2008

We’re all Chabadniks now

Filed under: — Different River @ 3:53 pm

Ron Coleman: “We’re all Chabadniks now.”

Even in India, which has had small Jewish communities for centuries and little history of antisemitism, it is possible to be killed for no other “crime” than being Jewish.

Not by Hindus of course — by Muslims.

September 17, 2008

Hillary’s Odd Priorities

Filed under: — Different River @ 10:21 am

A coalition of American Jewish groups has scheduled a rally for Sept. 22 outside the UN, to protest the appearance of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. This is not surprising, since Ahmadinejad has repeatedly called for the destruction of Israel and the slaughter of Jews worldwide. He is one of those people who denies that the Holocaust, the mass-murder of one-third of the world’s Jewish population during World War II, actually occurred, but seems to think it would have been a good idea. Protesting against Ahmadinejad seems to be the sort of thing every decent person would support, regardless of politics — unless your politics is that all Jews deserve to die. Sounds safely bipartisan, right?

Sen. Hillary Clinton was invited to speak at the rally. She accepted.

Gov. Sarah Palin was invited to speak at the rally. She also accepted.

Then Clinton heard Palin was going to be there, so Clinton cancelled. She claimed to have been “blindsided.”

Thus, Hillary Clinton refuses to appear on the same platform as Sarah Plain — even at an event that ought to be thoroughly uncontroversial to all Americans.

This might be understandable — barely — if Clinton had a long-standing policy of refusing to appear with people with whom she disagreed. This would hardly be a policy of “uniting not dividing,” but at least it would be consistent.

But inevitably, her refusal reminds me of a previous incident, in 1999, when then-First Lady Clinton appeared with Suha Arafat, wife of Yasser and listened passively as Mrs. Arafat falsely accuse Israel of poisoning the Palestinian water supply, of “‘daily and intensive use of poison gas’ against Palestinian women and children.” After which, Mrs. Clinton not only refrained from calling Mrs. Arafat on her slanders or her previous endorsements of terrorism, including suicide bombings, but in fact embraced and kissed Mrs. Arafat on the platform, in effect endorsing her claims.

So, Hillary Clinton hugs one who endorses terrorism and slanders Israel, but refuses to appear on the same platform with Sarah Palin.

What can we conclude from all this?

Either Hillary Clinton thinks anti-Israel terrorism is OK, or she thinks Sarah Palin is worse than a terrorist.

Is anyone going to call her out on this?

August 22, 2008

Will birthday parties be legalized in Saudi Arabia?

Filed under: — Different River @ 8:00 am

Not yet, apparently:

Celebrating anniversaries, birthdays or mother’s day is against Muslim ‘righteousness’, Saudi Arabia’s top cleric has said, quashing suggestions by a colleague that Islam permits personal celebrations.

(Hat tip: Joe Malchow of Dartblog)

August 21, 2008

A Secular Israeli Encounters China

Filed under: — Different River @ 1:52 pm

Anyone who is aware of, and interested in, the divide between secular and religious Jews in Israel, should find this worth reading:

Thank God we’re Jewish

Adi Dvir says her time in China changed her perception regarding Israel’s Jewish identity

Adi Dvir

As I have never been religious, and have always supported the separation of religion and state, I always wondered what it would be like to live in a land with no religious tendencies whatsoever. In my mind, such land had all the makings of a utopia: There would be no religious fanatics dressed in 19th century garb, no holy wars, and gender equality would reign supreme.

This utopian dream was shattered, however, after I recently had the opportunity to live in such country: China. I soon found myself thanking God we have religion in Israel.

Click here to read the rest!

March 6, 2008

“15-, 16-year-old guys lying on the floor with their Bibles in their hands, all dead on the floor”

Filed under: — Different River @ 7:33 pm

From the BBC:

Eight people have been killed an nine wounded by a Palestinian gunman who infiltrated a Jewish seminary in West [sic] Jerusalem, Israeli officials say [sic].

The Palestinian Islamist group, Hamas, praised the attack, calling it “heroic”, but did not claim responsibility. There was also celebratory gunfire in Gaza.

In the world of diplomacy, this is called the “peace process.”

The Jerusalem Post has more details, and some background on the seminary, Yeshiva Mercaz HaRav.

Arutz-7 has more, and provocative pictures.

From the Jewish point of view, this is the equivalent of someone shooting up the library at Princeton University, killing many students, and being praised for it.

Beyond that insufficient statement, words fail me.

One term you will not hear from the diplomatic community, politicians, or the mainstream media: “hate crime.”

November 21, 2007

Gang Rape Victim Sentenced to 200 Lashes

Filed under: — Different River @ 2:30 am

No, you didn’t read that wrong. A 19-year-old woman was sentenced to 90 lashes of the whip for the “crime” of being raped by seven men. When the appeals court reviewed the case they increased the sentence to 200 lashes! At the same time, they decreased the sentence given to the seven rapists.

As Dave Barry might say, I am not making this up:

RIYADH (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia defended on Tuesday a court’s decision to sentence a woman who was gang-raped to 200 lashes of the whip, after the United States described the verdict as “astonishing”.

The 19-year-old Shi’ite woman from the town of Qatif in the Eastern Province and an unrelated male companion were abducted and raped by seven men in 2006.

Ruling according to Saudi Arabia’s strict reading of Islamic law, a court had originally sentenced the woman to 90 lashes and the rapists to jail terms of between 10 months and five years. It blamed the woman for being alone with an unrelated man.

Last week the Supreme Judicial Council increased the sentence to 200 lashes and six months in prison and ordered the rapists to serve between two and nine years in jail.

It gets worse: They disciplined the woman’s defense lawyer for publicizing the sentence:

The court also took the unusual step of initiating disciplinary procedures against her lawyer, Abdul-Rahman al-Lahem, forcibly removing him from the case for having talked about it to the media.

“The Ministry of Justice welcomes constructive criticism … The system allows appeals without resort to the media,” said Tuesday’s statement issued on the official news agency SPA.

Now you would think that if they were really interesA State Department spokesman told reporters on Monday that “most (people) would find this relatively astonishing that something like this happens”.ted in deterring “crime” they would want sentences to be publicized — to discourage other “offenders.” (As if women need to be discouraged from becoming rape victims…)

It [the official news agency SPA] berated media for not specifying that three judges, not one, issued the recent ruling and reiterated that the “charges were proven” against the woman.

Right, so there are three judges who think victims should be whipped, not one. That’s supposed to make it better?

It also repeated the judges’ attack against Lahem last week, saying he had “spoken insolently about the judicial system and challenged laws and regulations”.

In other words, this was no rougue court. The government approves of this decision.

The Bush Administration’s reaction?

A State Department spokesman told reporters on Monday that “most (people) would find this relatively astonishing that something like this happens”.

Maybe that’s because “most people” think Islam is a “Religion of Peace.”

(UPDATE: More on the U.S. reaction here.)

November 16, 2007

“Bad” News from Iraq

Filed under: — Different River @ 11:29 am

Sometimes, people often say the media is biased. Sometimes, they say the media focuses too much on bad news. Sometimes, they are so right it’s almost funny.

Note that the story quoted below is not a parody. It is not from The Onion, or Scrappleface, or some other humor-focused publication. It is from the quite mainstream McClatchy Newspapers, which include such papers as the Raleigh News & Observer, The Miami Herald, and others, and it appears on Yahoo News.

You have to see it to believe it:

As violence falls in Iraq, cemetery workers feel the pinch

By Jay Price and Qasim Zein, McClatchy NewspapersTue Oct 16, 2:40 PM ET

NAJAF, Iraq — At what’s believed to be the world’s largest cemetery, where Shiite Muslims aspire to be buried and millions already have been, business isn’t good.

A drop in violence around Iraq has cut burials in the huge Wadi al Salam cemetery here by at least one-third in the past six months, and that’s cut the pay of thousands of workers who make their living digging graves, washing corpses or selling burial shrouds.

The burials aren’t expensive, usually $200 or less, but many people draw their income from them.

When a family arrives— after going through the indignity of having the coffin searched repeatedly for explosives— the body is taken to be washed at one of five family-owned businesses. Female bodies are washed by teams of women. Men wash the male bodies.

The bodies are then carefully wrapped in white cotton shrouds, made in factories in Najaf that also export them. Then the bodies can be taken to the tomb of Imam Ali for a ceremony that includes circling the imam’s tomb.

After prayers, the coffin is borne to the gravesite. There, professional preachers are paid to recite verses from the Quran. The family and the gravedigger remove the body from the coffin and ease it into the grave, placing the head in a niche dug at the end of the grave that faces Mecca.

“Certainly, when the number of dead increases I feel happy, like all workers in the graveyard,” said Basim Hameed, 30, a body washer. “This happiness comes from the increase in the amount of money we have.”

So if “the surge is working,” they can blame Bush for the decreased income of Iraqi cemetery workers!

December 11, 2006

Rumsfeld’s Farewell

Filed under: — Different River @ 10:48 am

Citizen SMASH attended Secretary Rumsfeld’s last “Town Hall” meeting in the Pentagon — basically, Rumsfeld’s farewell to the Pentagon employees. Read it and weep. Selections:

Donald Rumsfeld is not universally loved in the Pentagon. I’m told that he can be a tough, stubborn, and demanding boss. Rumsfeld is infamous for firing off short memos — known colloquially as “snowflakes” — asking next-to-impossible-to-answer questions or demanding revolutionary changes. He came to the building in 2001, promising to transform the Department of Defense from a Cold War force to a more flexible, agile military, better prepared to face the challenges of the Twenty-first Century. Almost six years later, that transformation is well underway, but not yet complete. Along the way, Rumsfeld has stepped on many toes, and slaughtered many sacred cows. Inevitably, he made some enemies, especially among the senior officers and long-serving bureaucrats who were heavily invested in the “old way” of doing things.

But the troops, and a solid majority of the officers, love him. This is abundantly clear from the warm reception Rumsfeld receives as he walks up to the podium.

Another woman asks what was his worst day, and his best day. I expect him to say “September 11, 2001.” But he surprises me.

“Abu Ghraib.” He says, and a pall crosses over his face. Most men, having been faced with such a profound shame, wouldn’t bring it up voluntarily. But Rumsfeld isn’t most men. He seems genuinely, personally ashamed of what happened in that awful place. It has been reported that he submitted his resignation over the affair, but that the President prevailed upon him to remain.

“My best day?” He pauses. “How about a week from Monday?” A week from Monday, Robert Gates will be sworn in as the new SECDEF, and Rumsfeld will leave the building. He will be missed.

After the questions are done, there is a standing ovation. People in the auditorium crowd up to the aisle, in order to shake Rumsfeld’s hand as he passes.

I’m watching all this from the outside, on the monitor. And then the doors open, and he’s in the hallway. A bit smaller than I expected — I’m guessing about 5’8″ — and he looks really short next to General Pace, who is a giant of a man. But at 74, he’s a remarkably solid man, and he walks with strength and confidence. He proceeds slowly down the line of chairs, stopping to shake hands with several people.

He’s standing right in front of me. I offer my hand, and he shakes it. He looks me straight in the eye. “My goodness,” he exclaims. “Did all of you people stand out here for all this time?”

Read the whole thing.

November 6, 2006

“Dancing on Streets of Baghdad”

Filed under: — Different River @ 2:15 am

Saddam has been sentenced to hang, and Iraqis are dancing on the streets of Baghdad. This according to the London Telegraph — not exactly a bastion of neo-conservatism.

Yet, there are still UN officials American Democratic politicians who think that the Iraqis were better off under Saddam than they are now.

Some U.S. senator better go tell them they were better off under Saddam; they’re too busy celebrating Saddam’s downfall to realize it!

November 2, 2006

The Troops’ Response to Kerry

Filed under: — Different River @ 2:24 am

I posted this as an update below, but I think it deserves a separate post.

Matt Drudge has this picture posted on his web site. I think this tells us what the troops think of all this:



The guys in the picture above are from the 1st Brigade Combat Team of the 34th Infantry Division (1/34th BCT), a unit of the Minnesota Army National Guard.

For the truth about how well-educated our troops are, see my previous post.

Heard on the radio: Kerry’s apology was, “I’m sorry all you people are too stupid to understand what I really meant.”

October 31, 2006

The Nature of the Sacrifice

Filed under: — Different River @ 3:42 pm

By example: The story of 2LT Joshua L. Booth.

October 16, 2006

Bombing — For Free Tuition

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:22 pm

I few days ago, I posted the story of an unemployed fellow who robbed a bank to get arrested, so he could live rent-free in jail until he was old enough for social security benefits.

Now, we hear from that young Palestinians are carrying small bombs through Israeli checkpoints to get arrested — so they can get an Israeli high school diploma while in prison! The Israeli radio broadcaster Arutz Sheva reports:

Faking Attacks in Order to Graduate: Correspondent Haggai Huberman reports on a new phenomenon among the Arabs of Judea and Samaria: Youths carry knives or small bombs across checkpoints in order to get themselves arrested so that they can study for high school matriculation exams at the State of Israel’s expense.

Sitting in jail for a number of weeks or months is a small price to pay, and the returns are significant: A high school diploma, and a high social standing as a “freed terrorist.”

Huberman notes that earlier this week, IDF soldiers reported that they had thwarted an attack in the northern Shomron when they arrested two 19-year-old boys carrying two pipebombs of one kilogram (2.2 lbs.) each. However, the IDF later concluded that the boys were merely trying to get arrested for the purpose of matriculation exams, and that the pipebombs were not designed to cause significant damage.

Hat tip: James Taranto, who adds: “Or maybe they wanted 72 dates to the prom.”

October 1, 2006

Does the “anti-war” side have a plan for after we pull out of Iraq?

Opponents of the Bush administration’s Iraq policy are fond of accusing Bush of “not having a plan” for dealing with Iraq after the war to overthrow Saddam Hussein. This is, of course, just a self-righteous way of saying they didn’t like the plan Bush actually did have, and that the plan has not lead to perfect results immediately.

Nevertheless, it’s worth asking those who call for an immediate pullout from Iraq, or a timetable for a pullout within a specified short time frame, what their plan is for dealing with the situation that will result from a pullout.

Clayton Cramer has posed this question, and given some realistic answers. All of his answers are worse than the worst likely scenarios resulting from staying in Iraq. As he points out:

But if the American people decide that the cost is too high, what is the alternative strategy? Leaving Iraq alone right now will lead to full civil war, and probably the crowd that likes to torture people to death with power tools will be back in power–just like the way things were under Saddam Hussein. As the declassified Key Findings of the National Intelligence Estimate last week pointed out, if we lose in Iraq, it will embolden jihadists throughout the world. The reason isn’t hard to figure out: it will be perceived that like what happened in Somalia, Americans are weak, and lack the willingness to fight.

What are the options? Here’s Clayton’s list (I’m summarizing here, not quoting — for his more complete explanations click here):

  1. “Fortress America”: Lock down the U.S. at the border and within, and curtail civil rights in the pursuit of terrorists who are here. Of course, it only takes one terrorist to get through — either shipping a nuclear weapon with a long-period timer, or getting one single legal U.S. resident to cooperate. So we are probably looking at more 9/11-scale attacks. (Why is this less likely if we are in Iraq? Because so many jihadists are fighting us over there on their home turf. We don’t want them freed up to attack us at home.)
  2. Make the terrorists happy: Don’t just leave Iraq — forget about stopping the Al-Qaeda-backed genocide in Darfur, give them back Afghanistan, cut off aid to Israel and acquiese when Iran uses nuclear weapons to annihilate Israel. And this will only work until they decide it’s time for all of us to convert to Islam also and replace the Constitution with Shari’a law, at which point we will have to either acquiese to that, or go to war with a much stronger enemy.
  3. Here I’ll quote: “Treat Muslim nations the way they have treated every other nation. Invade them; occupy; convert their mosques into churches; send in troops with orders to kill anyone that gives them any lip; assess a special tax on Muslims; pass laws that give Muslims less legal rights than non-Muslims, not just in ways that matter (say, a ban on Muslims possessing anything more deadly than a butter knife), but in ways intended to degrade them, like the laws that Muslims nations had prohibiting non-Muslims from riding horses.” I don’t think we, as a society, are willing to do that. We still believe in religious freedom.
  4. Prove that Islam is not really as superior as it claims, by nuking Mecca. I don’t think we’re willing to do that, either.
  5. Nuke a lot of Muslims. I don’t think we’re willing to do that, either.

So next time someone tells you we should pull out of Iraq, ask them one question: What’s your plan for after that?

September 17, 2006

In Memoriam, Oriana Fallaci

Filed under: — Different River @ 1:15 pm

Oriana Fallaci, arguably the greatest journalist of the century (this one, and the last one), passed away on Friday in her native Florence. She was 77, and had been fighting cancer for 14 years.

She had spend most of the last decade or two in New York, especially in the last year and a half — since she was facing charges in Italy for what she wrote in her last book.

Fallaci lived a fascinating life, and her biography reads like a history of the world from the time she was born. She joined the Italian anti-fascist resistance with her father at the age of 10. After Italy was captured by the Allies and switched sides, her father was tortured by the Nazis but released alive; Oriana was honorably discharged from the Italian Army at the age of 14. She started writing at age 15, and became a reporter in Florence at age 16, while attending the University of Florence. She was originally a Leftist, but was open to changing her mind based on what she saw — and as such, she necessarily abandoned the Left repeatedly on issues she covered in depth, from Vietnam to Iran to the Middle East to the War on Terror — which she never hestited to call Islamic terror. She was an avowed atheist who had a strong admiration for Pope Benedict XVI, and in fact was one of the first people invited to meet with him after he became Pope. (And she will be buried at an Evalgelical cemetary.)

The Left, of course, called her a fascist. Never mind the fact that she started off in life fighting the real fascists.

Tributes are pouring in from such diverse quarters as Daniel Pipes, Tammy Bruce, Victor Davis Hanson, The Anchoress, Rusty Shackleford, and many others.

Formal obituaries are from the New York Post, Times [of London], the Basque news channel EiTB,

Her manifesto against antisemitism is worth rereading. As is her interview with an Iraqi soldier in Saddam’s army.

One Arab’s Apology

Filed under: — Different River @ 2:43 am

Emilio Karim Dabul writes in the New York Post:

September 12, 2006 – WELL, here it is, five years late, but here just the same: an apology from an Arab-American for 9/11. No, I didn’t help organize the killers or contribute in any way to their terrible cause. However, I was one of millions of Arab-Americans who did the unspeakable on 9/11: nothing.

The only time I raised my voice in protest against these men who killed thousands of innocents in the name of Allah was behind closed doors, among the safety of friends and family. I did at one point write a very vitriolic essay condemning their actions, but fear of becoming another Salman Rushdie kept me from ever trying to publish it.

Those of us who wondered why all those “religion of peace” Muslims didn’t speak out — well, here’s our answer: The are afraid of all those non-peaceful Muslims, just as we are. The difference is, they acknowledge that there actually are non-peaceful Muslims.

Well, I’m sick of saying the truth only in private – that Arabs around the world, including Arab-Americans like myself, need to start holding our own culture accountable for the insane,
violent actions that our extremists have perpetrated on the world at large.

Yes, our extremists and our culture.

Every single 9/11 hijacker was Arab and a Muslim. The apologists (including President Bush) tried to reassure us that 9/11 had nothing to do with Islam, but was a twisting of a great and noble religion. With all due respect, read the Koran, Mr. President. There’s enough there for someone of extreme tendencies to find their way to a global jihad.

I’ve always thought there was something quite odd about President Bush’s protestations that Islam was a “relgion of peace” and the the 9/11 hijackers had distorted “a great religion.” Obviously, President Bush meant to say merely that he wasn’t going to war against Muslims as such, just against terrorists and murderers who in this particular case happen to be Muslims. But the way he said it — declaring plainly what Islam is (“a religion of peace”) and which strain of it is legitimate Islam (the peaceful one) — it seems like he is presenting himself as some sort of authority on Islam; perhaps even one who can speak for Islam. Clearly, he is neither. Bush is a Methodist, not a Muslim — and I imagine he wouldn’t appreciate Osama Bin Ladin telling him what true Methodism is any more than Osama appreciated Bush telling him what true Islam is. The question of whether Islam is a “religion of peace” or a religion of constant armed jihad against non-Muslims is a question that has to be resolved by Muslims, not Methodists (or Baptists or Jews or Catholics or secular humanists…). As Dabul puts it,

The men who killed 3,000 of our citizens on 9/11 in all likelihood died saying prayers to Allah, and that by itself is one of the most horrific things to me about that day.

And, while my grandparents never waged a jihad, their attitudes toward Jews weren’t that much different than Mohammed Atta’s. No, they didn’t support the Holocaust, but they did believe that Jews were trouble in many different ways, and those sorts of beliefs were passed on to me before I’d ever actually met a Jew.

I’m sorry for that, for ever believing that anything that my grandparents or other relatives had to say about Jews or Israel, for that matter, had any real resemblance to truth. It took me years to realize that I’d been conned into believing the generalizations and stereotypes that millions around the Arab world buy into: that Jews, America and Israel are our main problem.

One look at the average Arab regime should alert us to the fact that the problem, dear Achmed, lies not overseas or next door in Tel Aviv, but in the brutal, corrupt despots that we have bred from country to country in the Mideast, across the span of history. …

Five years after that awful day, it’s time for all Arab-Americans, and Arabs around the world, to protest against Islamic fascism, to raise our voices – and, where necessary, our arms – against these tyrants until their plague of terror has been driven from the face of the earth forever.

September 11, 2006

This is BIG News

Filed under: — Different River @ 10:00 pm

One of the original — and I mean original — al-Qaeda-style Islamofascists was captured today in eastern Afghanistan. This is none other than the unlamentable (and unpronounceable) terrorist leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. I remember Hekmatyar from the 1980s when the U.S. was aiding anti-Soviet fighters in Afghanistan, and Hekmatyar was sort-of on our side in the sense that he was against the Soviets, but was deemed insufficiently trustworthy to receive U.S. support, since he seemed to spend as much time fighting other anti-Soviet allies as fighting the Soviets. When the (Islamic) mujahideen finally drove the Soviets out, Hekmatyar refused a place in the coalition government, claiming it was “un-Islamic” — and continued the war, shifting effortlessly from shooting rockets into Kabul to fight the Soviets, to shooting rockets into Kabul to fight the “un-Islamic” Islamic government. His nemesis was Ahmad Shah Masoud, “The Lion of Panjshir,” the very Islamic, and very pro-Western leader of the anti-Soviet resistance and then the United Islamic Front for the Salvation of Afghanistan, better known as the Northern Alliance. Masoud was assassinated on September 9, 2001 — which, as you can see by subtraction, was two days before September 11, 2001. It’s never been entirely clear whether Masoud’s assassination was ordered by Osama bin Laden or Gulbuddin Hekmatyar — it’s believable either way.

As for Hekmatyar, he is the sort of guy who thought the Taliban were not “Islamic” enough — meaning, not violent enough against non-Muslims and not-his-type-of-Muslim. The funny part — if you can call it that — is that according to this biography written in 1997, Hekmatyar was originally a Communist. When he became disillusioned with Communism and fell under the influence of the writings of Sayd Qutb, he traded one form of absolute evil in for another.

And, today — five years to the day after the attack on the United States — this advocate of “martyrdom” to the cause of Islam, surrendered without a fight. Glenn Reynolds quotes Bill Roggio:

On the day of the fifth anniversary of the 9-11 attack, Coalition forces score a high value target in Afghanistan. Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the commander of Hezb-i-Islami and ally of al-Qaeda and the Taliban, has been captured during a joint U.S. and Afghan Army raid in “eastern Afghanistan.” Hekmatyar, contrary to his rhetoric gave up to the Coalition forces without a fight. Hekmatyar’s arrest is said to be part of an ‘ongoing operation.’

Hekmatyar has been designated by the U.S. Department of State as a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist“ and “has participated in and supported terrorist acts committed by al-Qa’ida and the Taliban.”

I’ve been waiting for 20 years for Hekmatyar to be taken out of action The first 15 of which were spent waiting for the West to decide he ought to be taken out of action.

As an aside, here’s my media prediction: This will get practically no play in the mainstream media. My subsidiary prediction is that if If I’m wrong about that and it does get significant play, half that play will consist of Democrat politicians and strategists and commentators explaining how unimportant it is.

It’s about as unimportant as capturing bin Laden.

September 1, 2006

Yes, Hamas Really Did Win

Filed under: — Different River @ 10:15 am

If there is any doubt that Hamas won the recent battle with Israel, recall that the whole thing started when Hamas staged a cross-border raid from Gaza, kidnapped an Israeli soldier named Gilad Shalit, and demanded that Israel release a bunch of convicted terrorists in exchange for him. Israel said no, give him back right away, Hamas started firing rockets at Israeli towns, Hezbollah thought that was a great idea and started the same things from the Lebanese border, and the rest you know.

Now, it looks like Hamas is going to get what they originally asked for:

Deal would free 1,000 for Israeli soldier

CAIRO, Sept. 1 (UPI) — Saudi newspapers say Israel has been working toward securing the release of kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit in negotiations with Hamas in Egypt.

Newspaper Okaz reported that a senior Arab source said Israel and Hamas have been working on a deal to release the soldier in exchange for the freedom of 1,000 Palestinian prisoners, YNetNews.com reported Friday.

Under the deal, Israel would begin freeing the prisoners, including 500 women and juveniles, three days after Shalit is turned over to Egyptian custody. First, 350 prisoners serving short prison terms would be released, followed several days later by 350 prisoners serving medium terms and 300 prisoners serving long sentences 10 days after that.

The inescapable conclusions are:

  1. The bad news: Terrorism works.
  2. The good news: Hamas just admitted that one Israeli is worth 1,000 Arabs.

August 23, 2006

Why Aren’t Jews Rioting?

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:50 pm

Six months ago, Muslims the world over rioted over the publication of some anti-Muslim cartoons in a Danish newspaper.

Now, a reader wrote to me to point out that Iran has set up an entire museum exhibit of anti-Jewish Holocaust cartoons:

Organisers of Iran’s International Holocaust Cartoon’s Contest said the museum exhibit, which has drawn more than 200 entries, aims to challenge Western taboos about the discussing the Holocaust.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has drawn international condemnation for dismissing the Holocaust as a “myth”. Nazi Germany killed six million European Jews in World War Two.

Ahmadinejad has repeatedly called for Israel’s destruction.

Iran’s best-selling newspaper, Hamshahri, launched a competition in February for the best cartoon about the Holocaust in retaliation for the publication of caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad in Danish and other European newspapers.

Notice that Jews are not rioting about this. We are not even rioting “in retaliation” for the Muslim riots before.

In fact, the most strident reaction has been a strong statement by Abraham Foxman of the ADL, who is basically paid to fight antisemitism wherever he can find it.

The Iranian sponsorship and exhibition of a cartoon contest on the Holocaust is outrageous, hateful and cynical.

One should ask two questions: Why is the outrage in the Muslim world to the cartoons depicting the prophet Mohammed directed against Jews, who were not responsible for the Danish cartoons? Why, if, as President Ahmadinejad says, the Holocaust is a myth, call for a cartoon contest to deride it?

The questions are easily answered in the fact of the constant drumbeat of anti-Semitism and demonization of Jews and Israel emanating from the Arab/Muslim world, through their media and through leaders such as Ahmadinejad. Everyday, in much of the Arab/Muslim world anti-Semitic and other hateful material is produced for mass consumption.

Denying the Holocaust and deriding the Holocaust are two sides of the same coin and must be denounced by the international community as classical anti-Semitism.

I’m not holding my breath. But perhaps it’s worth pointing out that not all religions are equally tolerant.

August 18, 2006

Train Bombing Attempted in Germany

Filed under: — Different River @ 3:22 pm

Ray D. reports:

According to reports circulating throughout the German media today, two suitcase bombs placed by two unidentified men very nearly went off on regional trains in Dortmund and Koblenz at the end of July. A deadly simultaneous bombing was only averted because the bombs were technically defective. Had they fully detonated, German authorities believe that a mass casualty event similar to the recent attacks in London could have been the result.

Police believe that a terrorist motive is probable, particularly because the suitcases contained Arabic writing and telephone numbers from Lebanon. The men who placed the bombs also strongly appear to be of Middle Eastern origin. …

Our take: This is yet another wake up call for all Germans who believe that terrorism at home can be averted through a policy of appeasement and pacifism at all costs. One has to wonder how the far left can continue to collaborate with Islamic extremists in their quest of anti-American, anti-Israeli hatred. Hopefully it doesn’t have to come to a horrific attack before the German media and politicians get realistic about the threat Islamic extremism poses to the modern world.

Cue Bob Dylan:


How many bombs must the terrorists place
Before they are called to account?

How many innocent people be killed
Before Europe stops appeasement?

When will they ever learn?
When will they e–ver learn?

August 10, 2006

Hezbollah Making More Palestinian Refugees

Filed under: — Different River @ 4:54 pm

Apparently, Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah is trying to increase the number of Palestinian refugees — using the same technique other Arab leaders used in 1948: encouraging Palestinians to leave. Here’s the story:

Nasrallah Urges Arabs to Leave Haifa

BEIRUT, Lebanon (AP) – Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah on Wednesday warned all Israeli Arabs to leave the port city of Haifa so the militant group could step up attacks without fear of shedding the blood of fellow Muslims.

Haifa, Israel’s third-largest city, has been the frequent target of Hezbollah’s rocket attacks.

“I have a special message to the Arabs of Haifa, to your martyrs and to your wounded. I call on you to leave this city. I hope you do this. … Please leave so we don’t shed your blood, which is our blood,” Nasrallah said.

This is the same thing that happened in 1948, when the British left, and Israel declared its independence, whereupon it was immediately invaded by five Arab armies. Arab leaders encouraged Arabs living in Israel to leave, so their armies could have free reign to kill anyone they saw, secure in the knowlege that they were killing only Jews. They promised a triumphant return after the Jews were “thrown into the sea.”

But then they lost, so they herded the Arabs into refugee camps, refused to allow them to return to their homes or to resettle in Arab countries, and renamed them “Palestinians” — and have used them and their descendants as political pawns every since.

Nasrallah obviously thinks he needs more pawns.

Note, by the way, that Israel has been dropping leaflets over the towns they are about to bomb — but in their case, it’s not the Jews they are urging to leave, but enemy civilians. Does anyone see the moral difference here?

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