Apologies – and a midweek link-dump

My apologies for my recent absence on this blog. A combination of recovering from sad news, preparations for good news, pressure of work and volunteer work plus a bout of mild flu have kept me from writing, despite the dozens of tabs open on my browser. I’m not sure when I’ll be back to normal programming, but hopefully some time next week.

Here are some of the links that I was going to write about. You can read them and comment here or send them on.  Guest posts are always welcome too. You can send any contributions to my email listed in the sidebar and I will consider them for publication.


Netanyahu: boycotters are antisemites

European calls for a boycott of Israel are “an outrage,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Monday.

“I think the most eerie thing, the most disgraceful thing, is to have people on the soil of Europe talking about the boycott of Jews,” Netanyahu told visiting American Jewish leaders in Jerusalem on Monday. “I think that is an outrage. That is something we are re-encountering. In the past, anti-Semites boycotted Jewish businesses and today, they call for the boycott of the Jewish state.

“I think it’s important that the boycotters must be exposed for what they are — they’re classical anti-Semites in modern garb. And I think we have to fight them.”

Dovid Efune in the Algemeiner reminds us of Tony Blair’s immortal words in a speech in 2006:

“It is almost incredible to me that so much of Western opinion appears to buy the idea that the emergence of this global terrorism is somehow our fault,” Blair said. “For a start, it is indeed global. No-one who ever half bothers to look at the spread and range of activity related to this terrorism can fail to see its presence in virtually every major nation in the world. It is directed at the United States and its allies, of course. But it is also directed at nations who could not conceivably be said to be allies of the West.”

“It is also rubbish to suggest that it is the product of poverty. It is true it will use the cause of poverty,” he added. “But its fanatics are hardly the champions of economic development. It is based on religious extremism. That is the fact. And not any religious extremism, but a specifically Muslim version.”

Israellycool shows how to fight BDS:

Musical BDS and the backdown by the boycotters after a fightback

The UN and the abuse of human rights

The biased UN has finally woken up to the horrific human rights abuses in North Korea, but after years, decades, of accusing Israel of the worst human rights abuse, the UN’s reputation has lost all legitimacy. Even today, the outgoing “special raporteur on the Palestinian territories”, the execrable Richard Falk, has issued one last smear of Israel, accusing it of “inhuman acts”.

With that slanderous hyperbole, how can the UN retain any legitimacy?  Who will believe the UN’s latest report on North Korea and who will agree, or even be bothered, to intercede on behalf of the poor people of North Korea?

Meanwhile, over the border in Syria, the death toll has now exceeded 140,000 and still no one has intervened:

“It is shameful that the international community has done nothing to show that it will defend human rights,” Abdelrahman told Reuters by telephone. “They are just looking on at this tragedy. The Syrian people dying are just statistics to them.”

Watch this video: “Who else is injured by the vilification of Israel” to understand the danger of the hijacked human rights agenda:

However there is a small glimmer of hope. Israel’s ambassador to the UN, Ron Prosor, has been unanimously elected to chair the committee to choose a new Human Rights Committee head. Perhaps this unprecedented selection will signal a new season and a new mindset at the UN. Maybe the real victims of human rights abuses will get a fair hearing and not have their cause hijacked by the spoiled Palestinians.

There is a caveat though:

The elections to the Human Rights Committee, not to be confused with the more high-profile Human Rights Council, happen once every two years. The Human Rights Committee is a treaty-based mechanism where a group of experts examines reports and rules on individual communications pertaining only to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Iran, its nukes and the deal –  the slow train to nowhere:

Skepticism reigns as nuclear talks begin in Vienna

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the man who has the final say on all matters of state in the Islamic republic, declared again on Monday that talks between Iran and six world powers “will not lead anywhere.”

Hours later, a senior U.S. administration official also played down expectations, telling reporters in Vienna that it would be a “complicated, difficult and lengthy process” and “probably as likely that we won’t get an agreement as it is that we will.”

If successful, the negotiations could help put an end to years of hostility between Iran and the West, ease the danger of a new war in the Middle East, and open up vast new possibilities for Western businesses.

Diplomats privately acknowledge that Iran’s nuclear work is now too far advanced for Iran to agree to dismantle it completely.

But while Iran may keep a limited enrichment capacity, the West will seek guarantees that mean any attempt to build a nuclear bomb would take long enough for it to be detected and stopped, possibly with military action.

Ynet has produced a list of the major hurdles facing a final nuclear deal with Iran.

A non-proliferation expert warns that the Iran deal sets a dangerous precedent for other countries:

One “serious problem is that once you’ve said that Iran, a country that’s violated its IAEA safeguards, defied multiple UN Security Council resolutions to stop centrifuge enrichment, can have centrifuge enrichment, there’s no basis to denying centrifuge enrichment to any other NPT member country,” Jones said. “Once any country has centrifuge enrichment it’s already quite close to being able to produce the HEU for nuclear weapons.”

Yet with all this there are some Israeli politicians who worry that Israel’s hard line on Iran’s nukes will make it irrelevant. I rather think that if Israel does not take a hard line it will become physically irrelevant – i.e. non-existent.

John Kerry’s interference in Israel’s deal with India:

I conclude this link-dump with a report that John Kerry has been exerting pressure on India to pull out of an arms deal with Israel:

Until recently, it appeared that the major arms contract between Israel and India was all but finalized, according to the report. The Spike missiles were tested extensively by the Indian army, which had reportedly agreed to spend millions of dollars on the rockets.

At the last moment however, John Kerry along with other senior U.S. government officials began to exert political pressure on the Indians to renege on their agreement with Israel.

According to Ma’ariv, the Americans’ motivation for meddling is financial. The U.S. government is reportedly trying to lure India into acquiring American-made Javelin missiles instead of the Israeli Spike. Washington is allegedly making an offer that it hopes New Delhi won’t be able to refuse: active participation in the development of the next U.S. anti-tank missile.

The man should have his diplomatic passport confiscated and be declared persona non grata in Israel.

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2 Responses to Apologies – and a midweek link-dump

  1. peteca1 says:

    entering late on your articel …

    Anne said: “Meanwhile, over the border in Syria, the death toll has now exceeded 140,000 and still no one has intervened”

    SAD but incredibly TRUE. We have become a do-nothing world –
    Men, woman and children gassed by nerve agents …. that’s a shame but no-one does anything.
    Secret underground labs and 20,000 centrifuges … let’s talk about it.
    Thousands of civilians killed in Central African Republic … too bad.
    Boko Haram slaughters school kids and villagers in N. Nigeria … it’s awful but let’s watch the Olympics.

    You really get the feeling that another genocide is entirely possible in the world these days.
    Maybe even two or three.

    Pete, USA

    • anneinpt says:

      Yep. And now look at Ukraine and Venezuela in the last couple of days. Kerry has issued “sharply worded statements”. I’m sure that has them shaking in their boots!

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